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.

  • Obama says US must shift cars, trucks off of oil

    LEMONT, Ill. — Envisioning cars that can go "coast to coast without using a drop of oil," President Barack Obama urged Congress last week to authorize spending $2 billion over the next decade to expand research into electric cars and biofuels to wean automobiles off gasoline.

  • Celebrity 'fractivists': True advocates or NIMBYs?

    NEW YORK — The scene: a Manhattan art-house theater. The cause: a campaign against the gas drilling process known as fracking that's being led by more than 100 celebrities, including Yoko Ono, Sean Lennon, Robert Redford, Mark Ruffalo and Mario Batali.

  • IFMA San Diego: A leader in sustainability

    The International Facilities Management Association, San Diego Chapter (IFMA San Diego) is a volunteer organization dedicated to enhancing the performance and professional growth of members through networking, education and promoting the practice of facilities management. The integration of sustainability into the facility management process is a natural fit. Facility management professionals have long been concerned with and engaged in the environmental aspects of the facilities they operate, especially from the perspective of energy conservation and high-performance buildings.

  • Pumping out the inefficiencies in San Diego's pools

    Marty Turock was looking for new ways to save energy and cut costs for the Greening San Diego program that he heads at CleanTECH San Diego, when he decided to play the guinea pig and have an energy audit done for his 10-year-old home in Carmel Valley. There wasn’t a lot of potential for upgrades but when he asked the inspector about his two horsepower swimming pool pump that was on for eight hours a day to filter the water, he was told there was scope for improvement if he switched from single speed to a variable speed pump, which would run quieter and lower his energy bill by about 70 percent.

  • Options for financing solar power systems growing

    At a time when the costs for materials going into solar energy systems have dropped, installers of that home energy option — once considered too expensive for most homeowners — are reaching out to pitch its affordability to middle-income people. Those pitches can be read in newspapers or on billboards along the freeways near downtown San Diego, heard in radio advertisements and visualized on TV. Whether one’s motivation is to be personally less demanding on the grid, to save on monthly energy costs or to be more sustainable, there’s more than one way to finance a photovoltaic solar energy system should one want it.

  • A new light on financing your solar energy system

    2013 looks to be a brilliant year for home and business owners who are looking to reduce or eliminate their electricity bill while improving their green footprint.

  • Ferrari and McLaren unveil hybrid supercars

    GENEVA — Hybrids aren't just for fuel economy any more.

  • Gov. Brown honors Environmental Leadership Award winners

    Gov. Brown honored 17 companies and organizations last month with the Governor’s Environmental and Economic Leadership Award (GEELA), the highest environmental honor in the state.

  • Borrego Springs solar facility sign of regional things to come

    In early March, San Diego Gas & Electric announced that for the first time in six years, a utility-scale renewable energy project from which it’s receiving power became operational within the borders of San Diego County.

  • Mayor, county supervisors team up to make energy-neutral public space

    San Diego Mayor Bob Filner laid out an ambitious plan Friday: He hopes that within five years, the collection of public buildings operated by the city and county of San Diego will be energy-neutral.

  • From lights to EVs, Caltrans looks to reduce environmental impact

    About two months ago, the California Department of Transportation kicked off a two-year project expected to help the agency curb energy costs for keeping highways lit and drivers informed though its overhead message signs.

  • Kyocera Solar shaves staff in San Diego

    Kyocera Solar Inc., facing hot overseas competition, will downsize its manufacturing plant in Kearny Mesa.

Profiles

  • Figtree CEO 'fine-tuning' solar financing, one city at a time

    With a heavy financial background, Mahesh Shah, chief executive officer for Figtree Energy Financing, is steering the company toward expansion. Within the next couple of months, Figtree, a Mira Mesa-based facilitator of transactions using the financing mechanism of property assessed clean energy — PACE, will begin its part in carrying out the PACE program approved by the city of San Diego.

  • 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.

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

Solar installation in La Mesa with Sullivan Solar

March 20, 2013 -- Reporter James Palen goes onsite for a look at a solar installation at a La Mesa home, and takes a look at the various and expanding options for potential residential solar customers. Sullivan Solar explains what people thinking of going solar can expect and how they can make the change to an affordable one.

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 - 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.

Environmental Innovation - 2009

Take a closer look at how businesses in various sectors throughout the region are incorporating the green lifestyle.