Entries by John Thornton

Electric Refrigeration Reduces Fuel Consumption and Noise

When parked, it’s a common practice for operators of refrigerated trucks and trailers, also known as reefers, to maintain proper temperatures by idling the auxiliary diesel generator in their transport refrigeration units (TRUs). But just because it’s commonplace, doesn’t make it cost-effective—or healthy for the surrounding area. That’s why Portland, Oregon-based Meals on Wheels People—which […]

Electrification of Transport Refrigeration for Idle Reduction: Technical Assistance Case Study in EPA Region 10

Substantial diesel fuel is burned by idling diesel engines to cool transport refrigeration units on trucks and trailers to keep temperature-controlled cargo at proper temperature while parked at distribution centers, cold storage warehouses, freight terminals and other goods movement facilities. Technical assistance was provided to reduce costs associated with idling and diesel fuel use in parked transport refrigeration units (TRUs).

Water Flow Diagram Measures Water Efficiency at Industrial Plants

Water efficiency can be measured at industrial plants with a water flow diagram or water balance to show sources and use of water. Water is a ubiquitous resource yet one of the most important substances on earth.  All plants and animals must have water to survive. Without water there would be no life on earth. Water […]

Pecan Street Project: a community-wide collaboration to reinvent the energy delivery system

I saw a great presentation by Jose Beceiro yesterday on Austin’s ambitious Pecan Street Project.  Here’s a brief introductory video: httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bC5a3Wv2OsQ Meet the Pecan Street Project The Pecan Street Project is a community-wide collaboration to fully reinvent the energy delivery system. It’s more than a smart grid project. Pecan Street is an ambitious effort to […]

Japan-U.S. Smart Grid Market Trends of the Future

Here’s an event by the Japanese External Trade Organization (JETRO) on comparisons of smart grid trends in the U.S. and Japan I’ve been helping with: Global companies are closely eyeing the opportunity in the now-developing and popular smart grid market. Currently, the U.S. is the hot spot for smart grid development and is also attracting […]

Portfolio Approach for Energy Efficiency

A portfolio approach for energy efficiency was the topic of the keynote speech by Marty Sedlar of Intel at the second day of the Future Energy Conference in Portland.  An apt topic on Earth Day, Sedlar shared Intel’s commitment to sustainability by managing operations responsibly, designing products for energy efficiency and the environment, promoting sustainability initiatives, and […]

Energy Storage and the Smart Grid – Recap of April 21, 2010 with TiE Oregon and Business Oregon

Here are slides from Energy Storage and the Smart Grid, organized by TiE Oregon’s Clean Energy Special Interest Group: Energy Storage and the Smart Grid TiE Oregon Clean Energy Special Interest Group100421 View more presentations from John Thornton. Hopefully I’ll have some spare time for a brief summary write-up of the event.  This Clean Energy […]

Sustainability Ripples throughout the Supply Chain

Sustainability promulgates throughout the supply chain, particularly if Wal-Mart’s Chairman Pulls a Long Supply Chain Toward Sustainability.  A friend just forwarded this piece from the New York Times on Wal-mart’s influence on promoting sustainability throughout the supply chain. Ultimately, Wal-Mart wants the suppliers to measure the environmental impact of their products and make the data available to […]

A new segmentation for electric vehicles (pt. 2) – Driving Missions are Short and Local

The term “range anxiety” is often used to characterize the general concern about an electric cars’ relatively shorter driving distance between refueling as compared to the driving distance between refilling in a gas or diesel-fueled car. How much of a concern should driving range in an electric car be? MacKinsey and Company’s report on electric […]

Standards for ubiquitous electric car fast charging stations promoted by CHAdeMO

Standardized and ubiquitous charging stations are a must for electric cars to thrive, particularly to make electric vehicles’ (EVs) recharging time approach the time and convenience of refilling a fuel-burning car when an EV is used for longer trips.  A group of Japanese businesses including Toyota, Mitsubishi, Nissan, and Fuji Heavy Industries (aka Subaru) are […]