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September 2010 Archives

Another great turnout for the second in our Fall 2010 Frontiers in the Environment seminar series.  Paige Novak, Civil Engineering, spoke about halorespirers, and her work in trying to figure out their natural role and how to clean them up!

CLICK HERE to watch a recording of the presentation!

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Upcoming Frontiers in the Environment seminars:

October 6
Eight-Track Tapes, Compact Discs and Solar Cells
Eray Aydil, Professor, Chemical Engineering and Materials Science

October 13
Fuelish Choices: Improving Sustainability of Transportation
Jason Hill, Assistant Professor, Bioproducts & Biosystems Engineering

October 20
Property Rights on the New Frontier: Climate Change, Natural Resource Development, and Renewable Energy
Alexandra Klass, Professor, Law

Rescheduled from 10/27

Fall 2010 Frontiers in the Environment schedule
IonE Events
U of M Environmental Events (Environmental Portal)

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REGISTRATION NOW OPEN FOR E3 2010 - November 30 at the Saint Paul RiverCentre!

E3 2010 - Registration NOW OPEN!

E3.jpgRegistration is now open for E3 2010: The Midwest's Premier Energy, Economic and Environmental Conference!

This year's E3 2010 will take place on Tuesday, November 30 at the Saint Paul RiverCentre.  We have also collaborated with the Saint Anthony Falls Laboratory in putting on a second day focused on wind energy in the Upper Midwest.  This 2nd day workshop will take place on Wednesday, December 1, also at the Saint Paul RiverCentre.  Save $10 when you register for both events!

This year's keynote speakers are Daniel Kammen (UC Berkeley, World Bank), Nicole Lamb-Hale (U.S. Dept of Commerce) and Megan McCluer (U.S. Dept of Energy - 2nd day keynote).  We also have five breakout session tracks, each focused on a specific aspect of renewable energy.  Check out the agenda and session listings on the E3 2010 Website, and then register!

Early registration is available through October 26, 2010.

Breakout tracks:
Conservation & Energy Efficiency
Energy Policy, Environment & Economy
Solar Energy
Special Topics
Day 2 - Wind Speakers

E3 2010
would not be possible without the support of our sponsors and exhibitors.  If your company or organization is interested in exhibiting or sponsoring, contact Stephanie Szurek for more information on getting involved in E3 2010!

RSVP and invite your friends and colleagues:
E3 2010 on Facebook
E3 2010 on LinkedIn

Please join IREE supporter, North Central Cleantech Open, in celebrating its first year and the accomplishments of its participant companies.

The event will feature the announcement of the North Central finalists who will move on to Silicon Valley to compete with Cleantech entrepreneurs from around the country for a grand prize package of up to $250k of investment and services!

There will also be a trade show with exhibiting and showcasing of our participant companies, partner organizations and sponsors.


Nicollet Island Pavilion
40 Power Street
Minneapolis, MN 55401


5:15 pm -- Trade show starts with exhibits from 2010 Participant Companies, Partners and Sponsors.

6:15 pm - 8:30 pm -- Awards program, including announcement of 2010 regional winners.

*Awards program will also include a keynote and insights from prominent industry experts.

Who Should Attend

Entrepreneurs, Investors, Corporate, Media and Civic Leaders who want to help foster the local cleantech and renewable economy, and learn more about the exciting contestant companies who will represent North Central in the world's largest cleantech business competition. The North Central region includes participant companies from various states including Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, Wisconsin.

For more information, visit

The room was abuzz with energy about our first Frontiers in the Environment seminar for the fall 2010 semester.

Professor Larry Wackett presented "Biochemical Bloodhounds: Using Enzymes to Detect Toxins."

Biochemical Bloodhounds: Using Enzymes to Detect Toxins


How can we detect food contaminants before they do harm? Deliberate doctoring of milk with melamine to provide misleadingly high protein content measurements sickened 300,000 infants and children in China in 2008. It also motivated Institute on the Environment founding fellow Larry Wackett to look back to melamine-related research performed in his lab seven years earlier for a potential tool for preventing similar tragedies in the future. As the first speaker in IonE's fall Frontiers in the Environment lecture series, Wackett, distinguished McKnight professor of biochemistry, described how he and colleagues built on that earlier research to create an easy-to-use enzyme-based kit to test for the presence of melamine as well as uncover the biochemical basis for melamine toxicity. Wackett's work resulted in production of a commercialized test kit by Texas-based BIOO Scientific and opens doors to developing similar tests for other contaminants that might accidentally or intentionally be introduced into the food we eat. 

If you missed Professor Wackett's talk, or would like to watch it again, click here for a recording of today's presentation.

And be sure to join us for other Frontiers in the Environment and Institute on the Environment events!

September 29
Hooked on Halorespiration: How, Where and So What? - Paige Novak

October 6
Eight-Track Tapes, Compact Discs and Solar Cells - Eray Aydil

October 13
Fuelish Choices: Improving Sustainability of Transportation

Fall 2010 Frontiers in the Environment schedule
IonE Events
U of M Environmental Events (Environmental Portal)
Check out this article by Ashley Bray, MN Daily, about Roger Thurow's keynote speech at the Global Sustainable Bioenergy North American Convention!

Updates on GSB will be posted to the website next week, including presentations and the final resolution.

IonE Sponsors BioEnergy Conference (MN Daily, 9/16/2010)


Be sure to join us next week for Frontiers in the Environment, Wednesday at noon!

IonE Events Page
E3 2010
Adding more pizazz to E3 2010 this year, keynote speaker Daniel Kammen has recently joined the World Bank as the Chief Technical Specialist for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency. 

The press release about this impressive appointment is below - sign up for E3 2010 updates to be notified when registration opens and stay up-to-date on other E3 2010 updates.

International Leader on Clean Energy Joins World Bank

Daniel M. Kammen to head programs to foster low-carbon growth in developing countries

WASHINGTON, September 9, 2010- The World Bank today announced the appointment of Professor of Energy Daniel M. Kammen of the University of California, Berkeley as the organization's Chief Technical Specialist for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency. This is a new position created to provide strategic leadership on the policy, technical, and operational fronts. The aim is to enhance the operational impact of the Bank's renewable energy and energy efficiency activities while expanding the institution's role as an enabler of global dialogue on moving energy development to a cleaner and more sustainable pathway.

The appointment comes amid unprecedented demand from developing countries for World Bank support in their efforts to address development and climate change as interlinked challenges. This includes responding to the challenges in providing energy services to the one-and-a-half billion people who remain without access to clean, reliable, and affordable modern energy services.

"I am delighted that Dan Kammen will be joining the Bank in this critical role at this critical time," said Inger Andersen, World Bank Vice President for Sustainable Development "With Dan on board, we look forward to strong leadership and rich partnerships with many actors, in the public and private sectors, on this important topic."

"More than ever," Andersen added, "our client and countries are looking for solutions as they put in place economic growth and poverty reduction policies for their citizens today while taking into account the needs of the planet tomorrow. The supply and use of clean energy is a prime element in responding to both concerns. Dan's deep knowledge, broad experience, and extensive network of international actors working in this area makes him a perfect fit for this new position."

Daniel M. Kammen has worked for 25 years on the technical, analytic tools and policies that play a central role in enabling a low-carbon energy and wider sustainable economic systems.

"I am captivated and motivated by the need to respond to the immense clean energy needs of countries around the world to address quality of life and economic empowerment, address problems of inequity, and respond to the challenges of climate change," said Kammen. "As researchers and development professionals, we must refine what we are currently doing, as well as develop new tools, to provide more low-cost, high quality, clean energy worldwide."

"The World Bank, with its cadre of seasoned staff already working in this area, is in a position to make incredible contributions to this push for global sustainability. I look forward to joining the organization, being a part of this exciting venture, and contributing to lasting solutions that enable countries to get and stay on a path of development that reduces poverty and provides for the well-being of generations to come," said Kammen.

Currently, Kammen is the Class of 1935 Distinguished Professor of Energy at the University of California, Berkeley, where he holds appointments in the Energy and Resources Group, the Goldman School of Public Policy, and the department of Nuclear Engineering. The focus of his work is on the science and policy of clean, renewable energy systems, energy efficiency, the role of energy in national energy policy, international climate debates, and the use and impacts of energy sources and technologies on development, particularly in Africa and Latin America.

Daniel M. Kammen's appointment will be effective October 4, 2010.
About Daniel M. Kammen

Kammen is the founding director of the Renewable and Appropriate Energy Laboratory (RAEL), Co-Director of the Berkeley Institute of the Environment, and Director of the Transportation Sustainability Research Center. He has founded or is on the board of over 10 companies, and serves the State of California and the U. S. federal government in expert and advisory capacities. He has authored or co-authored 12 books, written more than 240 peer-reviewed journal publications, testified more than 40 times to U.S. state and federal congressional briefings, and has provided various governments with more than 50 technical reports. Kammen served for many years on the Technical Review Board of the Global Environment Facility. He is also a frequent contributor to or commentator in international news media, including Newsweek, Time, The New York Times, The Guardian, and The Financial Times. Kammen has appeared on 60 Minutes, Nova, Frontline, and hosted the six-part Discovery Channel series Ecopolis,

Kammen is a Permanent Fellow of the African Academy of Sciences, a fellow of the American Physical Society. In the U. S., he serves on two National Academy of Sciences boards and panels and, in April, 2010 was named by U. S. Secretary of State Hilary Clinton as the first Energy and Climate Fellow for the Western Hemisphere.

Kammen was educated in physics at Cornell and Harvard, and held postdoctoral positions at the California Institute of Technology and Harvard. He was Assistant Professor and Chair of the Science, Technology and Environmental Policy Program at the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University before moving to the University of California, Berkeley. Kammen has served as a contributing or coordinating lead author on various reports of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change since 1999.

For more information, please visit:

  The opinions expressed in this blog are those of the author(s) and not necessarily
  of the Institute on the Environment/University of Minnesota.

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