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Sierra Daily

Mar 17, 2011

Time for Ecoreimagination

Ge5c A $200 million investment isn’t a lot for a company whose annual revenue in 2010 topped $41 billion and whose most recent annual profit was $12.6 billion. But GE may want to pay more attention to the fruits of its clean-energy Ecomagination Challenge as bad news continues to flow from the Japanese nuclear reactors built by the mega-corporation’s joint venture, GE-Hitachi Nuclear Energy.

American Public Media's Marketplace reported Wednesday that GE pulled its latest Ecomagination television ad – the one that includes workers in contamination suits line-dancing to Alan Jackson's "Good Time." That’s a start, but some of the 800 entries in the latest phase of GE’s Ecomagination Challenge, devoted to clean-energy innovations for homes, are sure to engender that warm, fuzzy – but not toxic – feeling that GE is aiming for.

Five award winners will each be given $100,000 to fund their projects. Among the proposals are housetop wind turbines that hug a roof’s ridgeline and durable solar panels built into driveways, sidewalks, patios, and walkways. An earlier challenge netted innovative projects for making the energy grid cleaner.

--Reed McManus

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