Over the past year, we’ve covered Pennsylvania a lot on Free Enterprise. So when we saw that the U.S. Chamber Blog recently did a story on the Keystone State, we were especially interested.
Energy & Environment
“At Ephesus, you feel good about what you’re doing. It’s a socially responsible company with a socially responsible product,” says Mike Lorenz, president of Ephesus Lighting. “There’s a lot of interest in adopting greener technology but it has to make business sense.”
Ephesus, based in Syracuse New York, believes that its LED lighting fixtures are not only better for the environment, but also better for the bottom line.
When he graduated from college, Ryan Renzi figured he would spend his days in an office, probably wearing a suit, managing other people’s money.
He figured wrong.
After realizing his young career in personal finance wasn’t going to fulfill his own financial ambitions, Renzi took the leap and joined a fast-growing industry that promised more upside potential: fracking.
It used to be that energy was the domain of the big guys: state companies or large multinational corporations. Think huge build outs of infrastructure and plants, massive amounts of capital, and long, long lead times before anyone saw a profit.
The future of clean energy is here and an explosion of innovation has resulted in a slew of startups that are developing products and services aimed at squeezing every last drop of efficiency from our energy resources.
“It’s gold in those hills,” says Gregg Wingo, gesturing toward the Appalachian foothills surrounding his wood-paneled office in southeastern West Virginia.
A modern-day prospector of sorts, Wingo is co-owner of Refrigeration Recycling, a busy operation that breaks down old refrigerators, drains the ozone-depleting Freon, and refurbishes them for reuse. If it’s in bad shape, Wingo’s team strips the unit and sells the metal scrap.
Creative destruction: it's what drives the economy and remakes the world in unpredictable ways. Often it's the result of a technological breakthrough, such as the telegraph. Sometimes it's a more subtle development, involving the bringing together of disparate elements in new ways, such as the assembly line. What they have in common is entrepreneurial talent, grit, and hard work that get new ways of doing things across the finish line.
Here are five technologies that are remaking the world right now.
In the movie The Monuments Men, a Hollywood “A List” of actors including George Clooney, Matt Damon, John Goodman, and Bill Murray don the roles of soldiers racing across Europe searching for art stolen by the Nazis.
This little-known story would’ve remained hidden to the general public if it wasn’t for the work of Robert Edsel, author of three books on the subject: Rescuing Da Vinci: Hitler and the Nazis Stole Europe’s Great Art; The Monuments Men; and Saving Italy: The Race to Rescue a Nation’s Treasures From the Nazis.
Thanks to surging production in the country’s oil and gas shale regions, the U.S. is importing significantly less oil and bolstering its energy independence. The Energy Information Agency expects U.S. crude imports this year to average 6.7 million barrels a day, down by nearly a million barrels a day from 2013 averages. The decline comes amid a boom in oil and gas production in places such as North Dakota, where monthly output has nearly quadrupled over the past four years.
The Texas sun is dipping below the horizon, setting the 16th floor of this Austin skyscraper ablaze.
Twenty-eight startups from all over the region have been working on their quick-draw one-minute pitches all day.
Now, in the moments before the Challenge Cup pitch competition begins, the startups are circling each other warily—a process made easier by the circular layout of Austin-based incubator and Challenge Cup host, Capital Factory.
Adding gigawatts to the power grid sounds like something out of Back to the Future. But it’s happening—now. Gas up the DeLorean. The future of clean energy is here.