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News you might have missed: 18 May 2009

newspapersStill trying to catch up on all the latest cleantech news after the weekend? Here’s Greenbang’s daily review of headlines you might have missed:

  • Berlin-based Braun Schaltgeräte & Service and LED specialist Future Lighting Solutions are upgrading historic gas street lamps in cities like Berlin, Prague and Warsaw with energy-saving LED (light-emitting diode) lamps (PDF);
  • Oxford professors have helped to create an international agreement to help governments and societies in developing countries manage their natural resources more effectively;
  • Three innovative companies based at Cranfield University managed to scoop half the awards at last week’s Bright Sparc Awards;
  • Initial results from Berlin’s Low Emissions Zone (LEZ) show some encouraging results, the European Federation for Transport & Environment reports;
  • Environmental groups in Slovakia have asked the European Investment Bank and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development not to provide loans for a €570 million public-private partnership for the Turany-Hubova section of the D1 motorway;
  • Several German cities have adapted the “car scrappage” to offer subsidies encouraging people to buy new bicycles, the European Federation for Transport & Environment reports;
  • The International Energy Agency has warned that global demand for oil will fall at the fastest rate since 1981;
  • Britain could be saved from the potentially devastating effects of a collapse in its bee population by turning to the native black honeybee, according to a study by the Bee Improvement and Bee Breeders’ Association;
  • Microscopic organisms from bacteria and cyanobacteria to fungi and microalgae are biological factories that could provide efficient sources of inexpensive, environmentally friendly biofuels that can serve as alternatives to oil, according to research presented at the 109th General Meeting of the American Society for Microbiology;
  • European researchers have developed a new system to protect vulnerable road users. The technology comes in two versions: a pre-crash system and a warning system;
  • Norway has delayed a parliamentary vote on whether majority state-owned oil and gas producer StatoilHydro should withdraw from a $2 billion Canadian oil sands venture, Reuters reports;
  • The Houston Chronicle reports that a consortium of companies is funding research to develop tiny devices 70,000 times smaller than the width of a human hair to gather information about oil and gas reservoirs deep underground;
  • Some wind-turbine makers are shifting their focus toward building bigger wind turbines that can harvest the lower-speed winds that are more readily available, CNET News reports;
  • Which UK ministry is least green? The one that runs climate change, according to a report hightlighted in The Observer. The energy efficiency report on 267 government offices shows that one in three has lowest rating.

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