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In the Media

Centre Daily Times
Sarah Rafacz
Down the hill from Beaver Stadium on Penn State’s campus sits a home, but not an ordinary one. It’s a 100 percent renewable energy-powered home, called MorningStar Solar Home. No one lives there; it was built for the 2007 Solar Decathlon and utilized for educational purposes. On Wednesday, the home hosted a discussion for about a dozen students on the Penn State Advanced Vehicle Team and David Tulauskas, sustainability director for General Motors.
Centre Daily Times
Britney Milazzo
More than 100 acres of land sits behind Bellefonte Area High School, and teacher Myken Poorman is looking to develop 2 to 3 acres for educational and community use. The idea includes retrofitting a farmhouse and garden by implementing sustainable designs to allow district and community members to interact with and benefit from — all while working in partnership with Penn State students to find a model for growth, develop a master plan and create best practices for implementation for students.
The Pennsylvania Technical Assistance Program will hold a workshop to educate businesses about how to save money by becoming more energy efficient. The all-day Facility Operations Workshop will take place between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. on March 27 at the Penn Stater Hotel and Conference Center.
Centre Daily Times
Sarah Rafacz
The wind was whipping at the General Aviation Terminal on Wednesday afternoon as a King Air B-200 landed for a pit stop. “We’ve been bounced around all day,” said Greg Slover, one of the aircraft’s two pilots. Dressed in a beige NASA jumpsuit, he greeted a group of Penn State scientists as crews refueled the plane after a two-and-a-half-hour flight. Also aboard the aircraft was Jim Plant, an instrument operator for NASA, who had to sit facing backward for a particularly bumpy ride. The aircraft traveled over Centre County on the sunshiny day as part of the Atmospheric Carbon and Transport-America project, a study funded by NASA and led by Penn State.
Centre Daily
Roger Van Scyoc
According to the Department of Energy, the average U.S. household could save up to 30 percent on its annual utility bills with a home energy audit. Even simple tweaks, such as replacing incandescent bulbs with LED or fluorescent lighting, can add up in savings. The Pennsylvania Technical Assistance Program plans to host a workshop educating businesses on how to take the hacks from the home to the workplace. The Facility Operations Workshop runs from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday at the Penn Stater Hotel and Conference Center.
Science Newsline
Growing sustainable energy crops without increasing greenhouse gas emissions, may be possible on seasonally wet, environmentally sensitive landscapes, according to researchers who conducted a study on Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) land.
The Daily Collegian
Matt Katz
Climate change is one of the most discussed issues in the world today, but despite its prevalence, there is little discussion of how it is impacting wildlife. Researchers at Penn State have taken a unique approach to climate change studies by studying its effects on salamanders, specifically the red-backed salamander.
Jeff Mulhollem
“Food production must double by 2050 to feed the world’s growing population,” is a popular idea, but an inaccurate one, according to new research. Production likely will need to increase between 25 percent and 70 percent to meet 2050 food demand, a study in Bioscience suggests. The data don’t support the assertion that we need to double global crop and animal production by 2050, argues Mitch Hunter, a doctoral student in agronomy in Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences. He says the analysis shows that production needs to keep increasing, but not as fast as many have claimed.
Kevin Sliman
A team of Penn State researchers is helping the National Park Service measure and improve its impact on people’s health. According to Derrick Taff, assistant professor of recreation, park, and tourism management (RPTM) in the College of Health and Human Development, although many people think parks provide health benefits, there is very little empirical evidence to support that notion.
Business Insider
Mike McRae
In our rapidly warming world, finding a cheap way to pull greenhouse gases from the atmosphere while satisfying our energy needs could be the key to our continued survival on Earth in the centuries to come. And new research has brought us one step closer by developing a rechargeable battery that runs on solutions of carbon dioxide and air. But what if we could use carbon dioxide in the production of batteries directly? Researchers have explored this possibility in the past, but most plans for generating electricity from our glut of atmospheric CO2 are prohibitively expensive, or don't produce much of a current. A team from Pennsylvania State University thinks their new invention finally bucks that trend.
Danfoss North America and The Pennsylvania State University at Philadelphia today announced a major grant from Danfoss in support of Penn State’s 2017 Immersive Internship in Global Sustainability Practices. The grant marks the launch of a collaborative Engineering Tomorrow’s Cities initiative through which Penn State and Danfoss will focus on enlarging the workforce required to create, maintain, and renew sustainable, low-carbon communities; advance the deployment of innovative technologies and designs to reduce carbon emissions; and highlight the important role of engineering in creating the sustainable commercial buildings and communities of tomorrow.
Tafline Laylin
With so much excess carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, researchers from every corner of the globe are working on innovative ways to soak it up. Penn State University scientists have gone a step further with a powerful new battery that not only soaks up CO2, but also repurposes it to make more energy. Their pH-gradient flow cell battery is not the first of its kind, but it is the most powerful – take a closer look after the jump.
Jamie Rigg
Researchers at Penn State University have potentially come up with yet another way we could create energy from all that nasty carbon dioxide we pump into the atmosphere. They've developed an inexpensive flow cell battery that uses mostly water solutions containing either dissolved CO2 or dissolved normal air -- the technical name for the dissolving process is called sparging, just FYI. Because the liquids contain different concentrations of CO2, they have different pH levels, and it's this imbalance that generates electricity.
Onward State
Lexi Shimkonis
Welcome to day two of conference weekend at Penn State. Today, the seventh annual TEDxPSU conference will bring together leaders and innovators for a one-day series following State of State’s day-long forum yesterday. We’re live from Schwab Auditorium all day so check here for updates and coverage on each of the speakers. 2:41 p.m.: Academics Program Fellow from Penn State’s Sustainability Institute Peter Buckland is next on stage, here to discuss thrash metal. “Those things that might be really hard to listen to are things that we HAVE to listen to,” Buckland said of thrash metal music, which most of us admittedly wouldn’t willingly listen to. 2:50 p.m.: Buckland is highlighting the political statements that exist in thrash metal and pointed out that these bands fear for a world that may be taken over by global warming, and they are way ahead of the rest of us.
Kaleah Mcilwain
On Saturday, February 12th Penn State students, faculty and alumni came together for the fourth annual State of State conference, titled “Innovate the State,” with the goal of fostering conversation about innovation in a non-traditional way. The event, which was held in Alumni Hall at the HUB-Roberson Center from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., featured 15 speakers who challenged the audience to think, discuss, and ultimately take action on the issues and ideas that were presented. The next group of presenters touched on “Sustainable Practices” that have been and could be implemented at Penn State. Those presenting were or are involved in supplying sustainable resources here on campus.
Daily Collegian
Julie Biertempfel
Starting promptly at noon, the second session of State of State's "Innovate the State" kicked off with words from Doug Goodstein. Goodstein, the primary contact within the Institute for Student Affairs, was the first speaker under the theme of sustainability practices. He brought his expertise to this conference by speaking about the increasingly important shift to sustainability on campus.
Onward State
Emma Dieter
If you’re a student at Penn State, you’ve undoubtedly noticed the multitude of waste bins on your daily commute — some for compost, some for metals, some for trash. Perhaps in your first few weeks at school, you actually found the whole ordeal to be a bit obnoxious — after all, why should students have to stop in their tracks just separate two types of plastics? What’s the real difference?
Los Angeles Times
Associated Press
The plunging cost of solar power is leading U.S. electric companies to capture more of the sun just when President Donald Trump is moving to boost coal and other fossil fuels. "Solar growth is so extensive and has so much momentum behind it that we're at the point where you can't put the genie back in the bottle," said Jeffrey R.S. Brownson, a Pennsylvania State University professor who studies solar adoption. "You either learn how to work with this new medium, solar energy, or you're going to face increasing conflicts."