Grist List

Climate & Energy

Renewable hydropower could supply all of Africa’s electricity

In Africa, 587 million people go without electricity — only about two-fifths of the continent’s population has access to a regular supply. But according to a new United Nations report, hydropower — a form of renewable energy — could supply all of Africa’s electricity needs. Right now, only about 32 percent of the continent’s energy comes from hydropower, but there’s vast potential for growth. Africa is only using about 5 percent of its hydropower potential. There are two main obstacles to tapping into this resource: money (not enough of it) and the need for cooperation. Rivers make great international borders, …

Renewable Energy

Soon, your toilet could heat your apartment building

Now you can dump energy waste just by, well, taking a massive dump. Green tech company OriginOil is working on a project that uses toilet wastewater as a way to heat apartment buildings. OriginOil, a start-up based in Los Angeles, CA., has begun a pilot of its urban algae farm concept at the La Défense complex near Paris. Wastewater from buildings nourishes algae growth; algae is processed to make heat. The company is attempting to prove that integrating algae production into large building complexes will help bring them closer to net zero.

Green Home

Energy monitoring device lets dad bust up rager from 500 miles away

If this were a movie, hardware and software developer David Rowe would look like a sitting duck for teen shenanigans — I mean, we don’t know the dude, but we’re pretty sure he’s a dweeby dad (or as close as you can get in Australia). The man describes himself as “kind of a power geek” — and he is talking about home energy use, not imperialism. But in fact, Rowe’s power geekiness has now translated into powerful hardass parenting: He busted up his daughter’s New Year’s bash from 500 miles away, thanks to his home energy monitoring device. Over New …