GM Bets on Powermat for Wireless Charging in Cars

The Volt plus wireless charging is an early adopter power match made in heaven. At CES, GM said it will offer wireless charging in some cars — including the Volt — via startup Powermat. GM has also backed Powermat with $5 million.

First Solar Moves Closer to Delayed China Project

First Solar’s big plan to eventually build 2 gigawatts of power plants in China’s Inner Mongolia has moved ahead. The company signed a memorandum of understanding with China Guangdong Nuclear Solar Energy Development Co. on Wednesday to develop the first phase, 30-megawatt project.

LG Launches Smart Appliances, Better Luck This Time

LG entered the smart appliance fray in a big way this week, unveiling its line of Thinq appliances meant to save energy and communicate with owners and utilities via wireless networks. Hopefully, the connected appliances won’t follow the path of LG’s discontinued DIOS Internet fridge.

With Tesla, Nvidia Aims for New Market

Leave it to cooler-than-thou electric vehicle maker Tesla Motors to know its mobile graphic chips. Tesla announced this morning that it will use two NVIDIA Tegra chips to power the 17-inch screen and the instrument cluster for Tesla’s next-gen electric sedan the Model S.

Zipcar Extends Option to Buy Up Majority of Avancar

Zipcar had until the end of 2010 to decide if it wanted to buy majority share of Spanish car sharing company Avancar, which it invested $300,000 in for a minority share. The answer? Undecided. Zipcar has extended the option to buy majority share another year.

Green Guide to CES 2011

Each year we’ve brought you the greener — and not so green — sides of the massive annual Consumer Electronics Show. In 2011 we’ll continue with the tradition. Here’s the green guide for what to see, do, complain about, watch for, and test out at CES 2011:

Why 7B People in the World Is a Greentech Opportunity

This year, the world will hit 7 billion persons; by 2045 it will reach 9 billion. At that rate, we’ll reach a global population density of a little more than half of that of France. It’s not an explosion; it’s about resource management.

Khosla Invests in Coal-to-Gas Startup Ciris

The inevitable future of clean(er) power is natural gas. Startup Ciris Energy, which uses biotech to convert coal into methane gas, announced this morning that it has brought on high-profile venture investor Khosla Ventures for a Series B round.

The Telco Energy Home Is Coming … For Real This Time

A year ago, I predicted that telcos and cable providers would start dabbling in energy management before the ball dropped into 2010. I was right. . . . though about a year too early. Now 2011 is the year this looks like its going to happen.

Verizon’s Smart Energy Home Trial Is Finally Here!

Verizon’s long-rumored push into the smart energy home is, finally, on its way. Well, a trial version is. The phone company said today that starting in January it will conduct a home monitoring and control pilot program in homes in New Jersey that will include energy management.