Keep up with the latest green products, eco-friendly buildings and environmentally innovative businesses in San Diego. Contact us at contact@sddt.com to get involved.

  • Energy master planning -- Early adopters profit most

    California's Title 24 energy code defines the "worst building you can legally build." As California drives towards more efficient buildings, the worst building has gotten a lot better! But codes are never a replacement for good design, and the need for integrated design solutions and early energy planning has never been greater.

  • SD hosting desalination, water reuse conference through Friday

    Beginning Monday — and just a couple of months before Poseidon Water's Carlsbad Desalination Project is scheduled to become operational — the International Desalination Association's 2015 World Congress on Desalination and Water Reuse will take over parts of the San Diego Convention Center.

  • Solar drops California fight to pick another with utilities

    The battle between rooftop solar and utilities is moving into California’s statehouse.

  • Sempra wins US approval to export LNG from Texas facility

    Sempra Energy (NYSE: SRE) won government approval to export liquefied natural gas from a proposed terminal in Port Arthur, Texas.

  • SDG&E, state set renewable energy records

    What's described by San Diego Gas & Electric as a major milestone for its renewable energy delivery, the utility achieved a new record last week of 1,042 megawatts of renewable generation on its power grid.

  • UCSD receives $5 million to study, combat climate change

    A Del Mar energy executive has donated $5 million to UC San Diego to help combat climate change.

  • Colorado solar farm beats gas

    DENVER -- SunEdison Inc., the largest clean-energy developer, began construction on a Colorado solar farm that will be the largest in the state and comes out ahead in direct competition with natural gas.

  • Annual beach clean-up coming

    More than 400 volunteers, including civilian, military and Harbor Police divers, are expected to take to the shores of San Diego Bay on Saturday, Aug. 29, to remove trash and debris in the 25th annual Operation Clean Sweep.

  • Navy signs agreement to purchase renewable energy

    The Department of the Navy, Western Area Power Administration, and Sempra U.S. Gas & Power hosted a ceremony Thursday at Naval Air Station North Island to commemorate an agreement to construct a 210 megawatt direct current solar facility to benefit 14 Navy installations in California.

  • SDG&E offers meter adapters it says lower costs of solar installations

    A new technology that San Diego Gas & Electric says significantly reduces the cost for many customers installing residential rooftop solar was deployed by the utility last month.

  • Refinery outage adds to pressure on slumping prices

    Crude markets already in a downward spiral sank under the weight of a supply report showing growing stockpiles of oil after a major Midwest refinery shutdown.

  • Center for Sustainable Energy opens Massachusetts office

    The Center for Sustainable Energy announced the opening of its Northeast regional office in Cambridge, Mass.

  • Rooftop solar showing bright future

    NEW YORK -- A string of deals involving rooftop solar companies has shown both the appeal and potential of the business -- and limits to investor enthusiasm.

  • Report presents case for Wyoming wind power to California

    CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) -- California regulators could achieve savings in water use, electricity rates and greenhouse emissions by turning to Wyoming wind power to help offset the natural ups and downs of wind and solar power in their state, according to a University of Wyoming report released Monday.

  • ReWild Mission Bay seeks proposals for wetlands restoration

    The San Diego Audubon Society, a local organization dedicated to fostering the protection and appreciation of birds, wildlife and local habitats, announced ReWild Mission Bay and its new website, rewildmissionbay.org.

  • Rethinking gardens in a time of drought

    LANGLEY, Wash. (AP) -- Severe drought is parching large sections of America, but that doesn't mean giving up on gardening. Plants can be coaxed through the hot summer months despite severe water restrictions.

  • What happens after the coal plants close

    Roger Titchenell, mayor of Albright, W.V., a coal-plant town that lost its coal plant, isn't angry at the Environmental Protection Agency.

  • Smart growth projects awarded $15M from SANDAG

    Various projects promoting smart growth, transit and active transportation recently received a total of $15 million in grants from the San Diego Association of Governments, providing the grant recipients with funding for both capital and planning projects.

  • ASLA accepting applications for $5K grant

    The San Diego Chapter of the American Society of Landscape Architects is accepting applications from local community groups for a $5,000 grant.

  • Apple, Goldman among firms in $140 billion climate pledge

    Executives from 13 major U.S. corporations announced at least $140 billion in new investments to decrease their carbon footprints as part of a White House initiative to recruit private commitments ahead of a United Nations climate-change summit this year in Paris.

  • Raise the gasoline tax before it's too late

    Last week, I discussed why Tesla’s latest announcement was big. The electric carmaker said it planned a modification that would give its autos the ability to accelerate faster than cars that cost two to three times more and keep up with those that cost 10 to 20 times more.

  • SANDAG approves 'bus-on-shoulder' pilot project

    A budget amendment related to the proposed addition of express lanes to State Route 94 between Interstate 805 and Downtown San Diego — funding a new transit-oriented demonstration project along that corridor — was approved by the San Diego Association of Governments on Friday, drawing praise from groups pushing for more transit opportunities in the region.

  • Opoli, BYD add 50 EV cars to fleet

    Southern California rideshare service Opoli Technologies partnered with BYD Motors Inc. to “green” their fleet in San Diego, with BYD providing Opoli 50 zero-emissions e6 electric vehicles.

  • Downtown parking garage adds charging stations

    Emmes Realty Services has unveiled 30 electric vehicle (EV) charging stations in its public parking garage at 707 Broadway in downtown San Diego.

  • Envision Solar receives a statewide contract

    The state of California has awarded San Diego-based Envision Solar a contract to supply its rapid-deployment solar-powered electric vehicle charging stations to state departments, giving the renewable energy company contracted rights to the work until at least June 11, 2016.

  • First Solar, utilities say rooftops costlier

    NEW YORK -- Building vast fields of solar panels for utilities is cheaper than bolting lots of little ones to rooftops, and now First Solar Inc. has more data to prove it.

  • City outlines zero waste goal

    The San Diego City Council on Monday unanimously adopted a plan to cut the city's landfill-bound waste to zero over the next 25 years.

  • Struggling recycling industry created its own mess

    The American recycling business is in the dumps. According to Dave Steinert, the CEO of Waste Management, America’s largest recycling company, the industry is experiencing a "national crisis," with almost all of America’s 2,000 high-tech recycling facilities -- including Steinert's own -- running in the red.

  • Facebook Doubles Renewable-Energy Target to 50% by End of 2018

    (Bloomberg) -- Facebook Inc. set a goal of running half its operations with clean energy by the end of 2018, and eventually expects to reach 100 percent.

  • Coal stocks are down and probably never coming back

    In recent years, environmental activists have demanded that universities, foundations and other institutional investors divest their shares of coal, oil and gas companies.

  • Farm use of drones to take off as feds loosen restrictions

    CORDOVA, Md. — Mike Geske wants a drone.

  • LEED alignment with state codes hoped to advance green building

    The U.S. Green Building Council has announced two changes to documentation requirements for projects that may be eligible for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design certifications.

  • Agrotourism adds pizza to farm-to-table movement

    MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -- As the farm-to-table movement connects more consumers with local farmers, some farms have shortened the distance between the plow and the plate. They're inviting customers over for pizza.

  • MTS will spend $31.9 million grant on new trolleys, station

    The San Diego Metropolitan Transit System (MTS) announced that it has been awarded $31.9 million from the Transit and Intercity Rail Capital Program (TIRCP).

  • Clean energy companies beat the stock market

    Environmentalists love energy companies that don't pollute. That should be obvious. Not so obvious: So do investors.

  • USGBC aligns with state's green building code for LEED certifications

    The U.S. Green Building Council, the nonprofit known for developing the nationally recognized Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, or LEED, standards, announced on Tuesday a new path through which California project developers can earn LEED certification.

  • EPA loses at Supreme Court on power-plant emissions rule

    The U.S. Supreme Court ruled against the Obama administration’s effort to limit toxic pollution from the nation’s coal-fired power plants, leaving the fate of a landmark environmental regulation in doubt.

  • Utility choices

    Many people are unaware that we are in the midst of the biggest transfer of money and power in the history of the United States. For the past 60-plus years, the electric utility industry has been monopolized by very few companies operating in very large service territories with a captured client base. That model is changing rapidly.

  • EDF Renewable Energy places wind turbine order

    EDF Renewable Energy, a San Diego-based independent power producer, has placed a wind turbine order with Vestas Wind Systems to supply the 150-megawatt Salt Fork Wind Project.

  • Finavera completes acquisition of Solar Alliance of America

    Finavera Wind Energy Inc. has closed its acquisition of San Diego-based Solar Alliance of America, a solar sales and marketing firm.

  • Texas sets $8B bond deluge for water works

    (Bloomberg) -- The worst Texas drought in half a century has ended, with storms flooding downtowns and once-parched prairies.

  • Renewables to Beat Fossil Fuels With $3.7 Trillion Solar Boom

    (Bloomberg) -- Renewable energy will draw almost two-thirds of the spending on new power plants over the next 25 years, dwarfing spending on fossil fuels, as plunging costs make solar the first choice for consumers and the poorest nations.

  • KB Home development gets onsite water-recycling system

    KB Home and Australia-based Nexus eWater have built and installed the first U.S. residential water-recycling system in Rancho Penasquitos.

  • OneRoof to partner with Fry's Electronics

    OneRoof Energy Inc. is partnering with with Fry’s Electronics to install kiosks in select Fry's stores aimed at giving customers the opportunity to learn how easy and affordable it is "to go solar."

  • Energy expo highlights sustainability opportunities

    Nearly 1,000 people attended the San Diego Gas & Electric Energy Showcase Expo on Thursday, for information on energy-focused ideas ranging from new electric-vehicle technologies to "sustainability circles."

  • Kleinfelder

    William Siegel has spent 28 years at Kleinfelder, working his way up to CEO of this full-service, employee-owned, global engineering, architecture and science consulting firm, which is dedicated to solving the world’s most difficult infrastructure and natural resources challenges. In 2009, when the company’s key markets -- energy, facilities, government transportation and water -- rapidly changed due to the economy, Siegel led an aggressive effort to remake Kleinfelder for the new market reality. Departing from 50 years of tradition, the firm changed from being structured around individual regions and service lines to having today’s full-service, global, client-based structure.

  • SDG&E's Energy Showcase coming to Convention Center

    More than 75 local, national and international exhibitors showcasing recent innovations and energy-saving technologies and services will gather Thursday at San Diego Gas & Electric's annual Energy Showcase Expo at the San Diego Convention Center.

  • SDSU moving forward with LEED certifications

    The Conrad Prebys Aztec Student Union and the Aztec Recreation Center (ARC) are now LEED Certified, pushing San Diego State University closer to its goal of making all Associated Students facilities LEED Certified by 2020.

  • Sempra Energy moves forward with plans for LNG public offering

    Sempra Energy (NYSE: SRE) will move forward with plans to sell stock in Sempra Partners LP, a master-limited partnership that could own stakes in certain liquefied natural gas and renewable energy assets.

  • SDG&E rewriting contract for Carlsbad Energy Center

    A few weeks after the California Public Utilities Commission approved a scaled-down version of the power purchase agreement between San Diego Gas & Electric and the developers of the proposed Carlsbad Energy Center, SDG&E is ready to file a revised contract.

  • SANDAG public hearing on regional plan this week

    A second public hearing on the San Diego Association of Governments' regional plan draft will be held Thursday as the planning agency refines the required update to its regional transportation plan.

  • City of Riverside files suit over water restrictions

    FRESNO (AP) -- The city of Riverside has sued a state agency over water restrictions intended to combat the drought, claiming the rules are unfair because the city has ample groundwater supplies.

  • Process starts for walkable, bikeable corridor in East Village

    The 14th Street Promenade Master Plan is being designed to create a north-south pedestrian and bicycle-friendly connection from C Street to National Avenue, where 14th Street ends.

  • Canada to rely on technology as G-7 vows deep emissions cuts

    Canada will use innovation to meet its greenhouse-gas targets and avoid major industrial disruption, the Prime Minister said.

  • Coalition signs agreement backing SDG&E's EV charging program

    San Diego Gas & Electric and groups representing environmental, environmental justice, electric vehicle service providers, automakers and labor signed a settlement agreement in support of SDG&E's Electric Vehicle Grid-Integration pilot project.

  • EPA recognizes BOMA International with 2015 ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year Sustained Excellence Award

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has recognized the Building Owners and Managers Association International with a 2015 ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year Sustained Excellence Award for its continued leadership in protecting the environment through superior energy efficiency achievements.

  • EDF Renewable's Longhorn wind project fully operational

    San Diego-based EDF Renewable Energy’s 200-megawatt Longhorn Wind Project in Texas reached commercial operation on May 1, 2015.

  • New Nevada solar projects' high output

    LAS VEGAS -- Three solar projects proposed on federal land northeast of Las Vegas have been approved with output projections rivaling what has been expected from one of the world's largest solar power plants nearby.

  • Report details water-saving benefits of infill development

    Infill development with smaller lot sizes tends to use less water, says a report released Monday by Circulate San Diego.

  • CSE to administer new rebate program in Connecticut

    The Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) has selected the locally based Center for Sustainable Energy (CSE) to administer a new incentive program aimed at increasing the number of zero-emission vehicles that state residents own.

  • Protected habitat established in Oceanside

    After five years of restoration, the Seacliff Open Space Preserve (SOSP) has now been established in Oceanside. The preserve is made up of 2.87 acres along the south side of the mouth of the San Luis Rey River just west of Interstate 5.

  • Solar growth means sellers may pay buyers

    NEW YORK -- Move over, shale. The sun is now the fastest-growing source of U.S. electricity.

  • Canada presents climate-change conundrum

    The recent announcement that Canada won't match U.S. emission-reduction targets offers a fresh look at Canadians' enduring bipolarity on climate change: They're far more likely than Americans to say the problem is real, yet keep voting for a government that does nothing about it. Therein lies a cautionary tale for the rest of the world.

  • SANDAG set for Bike to Work Day

    The San Diego Association of Governments has confirmed that its Bike to Work Day will be held as rescheduled on May 29, motivating what it expects to be thousands of bike riders to switch from engines leg power for a day.

  • UL, UCSD form partnership to support sustainable energy technology

    Underwriters Laboratories LLC has announced a memorandum of understanding with UC San Diego to help support developments in sustainable energy technology.

  • Mexico's energy sector faces another deadline; long-term success expected

    Three months after revising the initial contract terms meant to open the energy sector to private companies for the first time in 75 years, Mexican regulators are up against another deadline.

  • CPUC approves Carlsbad Energy Center

    Citing grid reliability, the California Public Utilities Commission on Thursday approved a smaller version of the original power purchase agreement that lays the groundwork for the natural-gas-fired Carlsbad Energy Center.

  • Sempra solar plant receives safety recognition

    San Diego-based Sempra U.S. Gas & Power's Copper Mountain Solar 1 facility in Boulder City, Nev. has been recognized as the first solar power plant in the U.S. to receive the Voluntary Protection Programs Star work site designation from the state of Nevada Occupational Safety and Health Administration (Nevada OSHA). The award is the organization's highest recognition for exemplary safety performance.

  • OneRoof Energy closes purchase of Black Coral Capital

    OneRoof Energy Inc., a residential solar services provider and wholly owned subsidiary of OneRoof Energy Group Inc., announced that it has closed the previously announced purchase of 100 percent of Black Coral Capital LLC's sponsor equity interest in OneRoof Energy's first tax equity fund.

  • Poway, San Diego take top spots in national water conservation challenge

    The cities of Poway and San Diego took top honors in the National Mayor’s Challenge for Water Conservation, a conservation effort held by the Wyland Foundation.

  • Solar a growing issue in real estate transactions

    As homeowner interest increases in leasing and buying solar systems to offset electricity costs, the real estate industry is working to keep pace with the information that could pertain to their clients and potential transactions.

  • Barclay's Center in Brooklyn to get grassy lid

    NEW YORK (AP) -- A roof grows in Brooklyn.

  • San Jose water company imposes mandatory use limit

    SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) -- San Jose businesses and residents will soon have to restrict their water use or face fines, as the city becomes one of the largest in the state to impose strict water-use limits amid California's ongoing drought.

  • No hydro this summer? No problem, says solar-rich California

    California, facing the fourth year of an unprecedented drought that’s drying up hydroelectric supplies, has more than enough solar power to make up the difference, the state’s grid operator says.

  • CPUC delays Carlsbad Energy Center vote

    The California Public Utilities Commission on Thursday delayed a vote on a power purchase agreement between SDG&E and developers of a proposed power plant in Carlsbad.

  • Supreme Court will hear appeal over energy regulation

    WASHINGTON -- The Supreme Court said Monday it will hear a dispute over a regulation that offers financial incentives to factories, retailers and other large electricity users to reduce their power consumption.

  • SANDAG launches grant program for students' active transportation

    The San Diego Association of Governments launched on Monday its Walk, Ride, and Roll to School mini-grant program, aimed at increasing active transportation and safety education for students in the region.

  • SDG&E funds state's largest-ever on-bill financing loan for Pala Casino project

    The Pala Band of Mission Indians received on Monday a loan for more than $1.2 million from San Diego Gas & Electric for energy-efficient equipment scheduled to be installed in the nearly 630,000-square-foot Pala Casino Spa & Resort.

  • Sony exec appointed president of I Love Clean SD board

    Eric Johnson, the sustainability manager at Sony Electronics, has been appointed president of the board of directors of I Love a Clean San Diego.

  • SDG&E part of Dept. of Energy climate change partnership

    San Diego Gas & Electric joined U.S. Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz on Thursday to formally launch the U.S. Department of Energy's Partnership for Energy Sector Climate Resilience.

  • Two San Diego properties honored as regional TOBY Award winners

    Kilroy Centre Del Mar, owned and managed by Kilroy Realty Corporation, and San Diego Tech Center, owned by Locale Advisors and Lionstone Investments and managed by Edgecore Real Estate Group, have been named the Pacific Southwest regional winners of “The Outstanding Building of the Year” in the suburban low-rise and the suburban mid-rise categories respectively, by the Building Owners & Managers Association.

  • San Diego air quality levels improve

    San Diego saw marked improvement in air quality based on three measures in the American Lung Association’s State of the Air 2015, reaching its best levels yet.

  • Legal experts weigh in on city’s suit against Monsanto polluting San Diego Bay

    On March 13, the city of San Diego and the San Diego Unified Port District sued agrochemical giant Monsanto and two related companies for their role in polluting the bay with polychlorinated biphenyls, commonly called PCBs.

Roundtables

Profiles

  • Lee Krevat talks future of the smart grid

    Working in the energy business was never a goal for Lee Krevat, now the director of smart grid and clean transportation for San Diego Gas & Electric, and in fact was the result of a begrudgingly made career switch from Silicon Valley at the behest of his family.

  • Pearson Fuels celebrates 10 years

    It took eight years of operating in the red before Pearson Fuels began to turn a profit, but now that the alternative-fuels gas station and distributer is celebrating its 10th anniversary, it is finally seeing revenues in the multiple six-figure range, general manager Mike Lewis said. What’s his advice to others considering entering the market? “Don’t do it.”

  • Making a life from a father's gift

    When entering San Diego's business community about 30 years ago, Clint Walker’s aim had nothing to do with being in the solar business. His success as the co-founder and president of Southwestern Solar Systems since his entrance to the business in 2009 came about in much the same fashion his other major endeavors have.

  • Clean tech advocate, woman of action

    Holly Smithson's thirst for action and results led her to CleanTECH San Diego, the industry association that was just being put together back then by Mayor Jerry Sanders and Jim Waring, its founder chairman.

  • Kyocera Solar director pursues calling to help humanity

    When Cecilia Aguillon, director of marketing and government relations for Kyocera Solar Inc., immigrated to the United States from El Salvador as a teen, she grew into a young adult with a lofty goal in mind: to save the world.

  • Baker Electric's solar unit a core part of business

    In 2007, executives at Baker Electric decided to take a chance on a budding industry. After taking some lumps out of the gate, Baker's emergence into the solar electric installation market is becoming a regular and important part of its business.

  • Brummitt grows company out of desire to pursue sustainable living

    Some people look at buildings and see a combination of wood, steel and mortar with a number of things inside to make them more comfortable and workable — lighting, computers and maybe a few windows, even if they can't be opened.

  • Lighter, stronger, greener: Escondido firm develops low-cost steel alloy

    KVA Stainless Inc. is a research and development company involved in developing and promoting a martensitic stainless steel alloy that rivals the strength of titanium but is lower in cost and lighter in weight, making it suitable for many industrial applications, from automotive to agriculture, as well as oil and gas pipelines, sports equipment, aviation, medical devices and train cars.

  • Executive sees 'exciting time' for energy consulting industry

    Reducing emissions and energy costs while helping the environment is the goal that drew Doug Poffinbarger to energy consulting.

  • Beyond design: Architecture firm looks to understand clients' businesses, not just their buildings

    Austin Veum Robbins Partners (AVRP) approaches its design with a blend of pragmatism and beyond-architecture thinking that keeps it successful, and an awards recipient, even in climates like today's softer market.

  • Waxie Sanitary Supply goes green

    Miramar-based Waxie Sanitary Supply, one of the nation's best-known producers and distributors of bathroom and kitchen paper and cleaning products, has gone green.

  • Foam dons architectural structures in eco-friendly fashion

    A homegrown San Diego business has taken its architectural foam products onto the green scene.

Newsmaker videos

Interview with Michael Powers of Stellar Solar

With over a decade installing residential and commercial solar, Stellar Solar is one of the oldest and most experienced solar energy companies now operating in San Diego – we specialized in solar before it was hot! 

Environmental Innovation Videos

CCSE's Sachu Constantine on the solar industry

Oct. 9, 2012 -- George Chamberlin talks with Sachu Constantine, director of policy at the California Center for Sustainable Energy, about the solar industry and what its impacts are on the region, state and country.

Archived Reports

Environmental Innovation - 2015

Learn about the latest eco-friendly innovations and how local businesses are trying to reduce their impact on the environment.

Environmental Innovation - 2014

This edition focuses on new technologies and green building techniques that can aid in conserving water.

Environmental Innovation - 2013

Learn about San Diego's first solar-powered community.

Environmental Innovation - 2013

Learn about new options to finance solar energy systems, how retrofitting a swimming pool can reduce utility costs and local government’s latest commitment to become sustainable.

Environmental Innovation - Fall 2012

Learn about the latest eco-friendly innovations and how local businesses are trying to reduce their impact on the environment.

Environmental Innovation - April 2012

Read about local pioneers in environmental science, how electric cars are taking over San Diego’s streets, and why one Chargers player loves his Smart car.

Environmental Innovation - October 2011

From “green roofs” to sustainable surfboards, learn about the latest eco-friendly innovations and how local businesses are trying to reduce their impact on the environment.

Environmental Innovation - 2011

Learn about the latest innovations in eco-friendly technology and how local businesses are going green.

Environmental Innovation - Oct 2010

Take a closer look at how businesses in various sectors throughout the region are embracing sustainability.

Environmental Innovation - 2010

Explore some of the local companies and products driving green innovation.