The first true biofuels company

hawaii bioenergyA consortia of Maui Land & Pineapple, Grove Farm (both part of visionary Hawaii entrepreneur & investor Steve Case's portfolio) and Kamahemeha Schools have contributed to a joint venture, Hawaii Bioenergy. Joining them is Vinod Khosla of Khosla Ventures and two Brazilian firms with existing biofuel technology.

The large amounts of highly productive land, world-leading crop-growing technology and Hawaii's year-round sunny climate & rich soil make Hawaii BioEnergy the first potentially economical and sustainable biofuels company in the United States. Unlike corn-based biofuels, Hawaii BioEnergy's focus is on true positive net energy balance fuels.

Watch this space. Hawaii BioEnergy has the potential be the IBM PC (or perhaps we should say AOL) of biofuels companies.

Retrofitting airliners to save energy

Seeing those upturned wing ends on more airliners? "Winglets" make airliners 6 - 7% more fuel efficient. Aviation Partners, the Seattle company that produces most winglets says it has saved airlines over 1.3 billion gallons of fuel by retrofitting older airliners and business jets. The wingletted aircraft also fly farther and climb faster for a smoother ride.

Aviation Partners also supplies Boeing with winglets for new 737s. Kudos to Southwest, American Airlines and Continental Airlines for retrofitting fuel saving winglets on hundreds of aircraft.

Saving energy with without compromise, and creating skilled jobs in America. That's what Use Half is about.

Blue Man on Climate Change

A powerful two minutes...


Ford is getting some things right...

Ford produces and sells efficient, fun, high mileage vehicles in the rest of the world. But Ford doesn't sell them in the U.S., yet it wonders why its US market share has declined from 5% since 2000 while fuel prices have tripled.

Bill Ford is starting to turn the tide at the firm that bears his name. He championed the charge to build & sell
efficient Ford & Mercury hybrid SUVs in the US and plans to introduce hybrid sedans in the US by 2008. Now Ford plans to invest $1.5 billion in a wide range of efficient vehicles getting up to 70 mpg.

Ford has decided to do the R&D England - let's hope Ford brings the models to the US and trains US engineers so we can start exporting this advanced technology.

Vespas N Scooters

Even the logo still has the style of Audrey Hepburn, the Mods, and Ska.
How cool is the new Vespa LX 50?
vespa lx 50 Updated with a clean modern motor that gets 70 mpg and an automagic transmission. It's about as much fun as you can have on two wheels. Vespanomics - what if Americans could save 14,000,000 gallons of gas per year by riding scooters?

If you can't afford a Vespa,
Yamaha scooters will get you there in almost as much style at about half the price, or check Craigslist for a used scooter near you.

iPods vs. CDs

We love iPods (and all MP3 players) because they help reduce the 20 billion CDs & DVDs produced each year. It's about the music or the movie, not the plastic it's been printed onto for the last 80 years. It's piece of plastic - get over it.

CDs must be made, packaged, shipped, stocked, purchased and brought home. How 20th Century.

OK, CDs sound better than today's iTunes downloads. For classical and some other kinds of music that matters - but not for most, and not forever. Apple's iTunes already supports "lossless" standards that make your iPod sound as good as the CD you ripped - and we think iTunes downloads will shortly have a "good as CD" download option.

"Collecting" CDs? You're joking...

You can buy a good MP3 player for the price of 6 CDs and the music is cheaper. Just Do It.