CATS: Energy from tree leaves. One company’s products spark excitement

Number 37 in the Clean Air Technologies Series.

There are different methods by which energy can be captured and applied. Are you ready for this: How about an electricity-producing tree?

Now, it is widely known that Thomas Alva Edison was one of the first to harness electricity and use it to create artificial light. He is credited with inventing the light bulb. And, the lightbulb is indeed a revolutionary innovation/invention. But, trees to produce electricity?

Yeah, it’s true.

Besides capturing energy from the wind, the product available from as well as the French company New Wind have captured attention also.

As a case in point, Daily Kos correspondent Walter Einenkel in “Modern art trees in Paris can harness smaller wind currents for energy,” on Oct. 14, 2016 wrote: “A company called New Wind has begun to put up renewable wind energy ‘trees’ around Paris. The trees are made for urban centers, and while they do not produce the level of energy that large wind turbines can, they are able to generate energy in areas with lower wind currents as low as 4.5 MPH.”

On the international front, according to New Wind, the producer of the trees, one of its offerings has found commercial application at a shopping complex in Germany.

While not the genuine article, as a so-called “fabricated” tree, they have apparently been designed with the natural environment in mind. But because of their $36,000 per-tree cost, these “plantings” are pricey.

Elaborating further, Einenkel observes: “This is one of many attempts to add more pleasing design to much-needed renewable energy devices.”

Where renewables are concerned and as to the amount of energy produced by one of the trees, on the New Wind Web site, shown is a “USES” equivalency graphic.

For example, one tree can put out the equivalent electricity of what 15 streetlamps each with a lamp with a rating of 50 watts and an electric car powered for a year covering a distance of 10,168 miles can.

Meanwhile, on a different page, the equivalency with probably the most relevance is with a so-called generator tree, the power outputted equals the same amount of power outputted as 1,905 pounds of coal or 41, four-gallon containers of fuel, but without the harmful pollutant emissions created that results from the burning of each of those fossil fuels.

Here is yet another example among the many products that produce energy cleanly.

For more information, visit New Wind here.

Article updated on May 8, 2017 at 5:40 a.m. Pacific Daylight Time.

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