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GE’s Ecomagination Spent $1.8bn, Launched 22 Products in 2010

GE spent about $1.8 billion on research and development of clean technologies and developed 22 new products as part of its Ecomagination initiative in 2010, the company has announced.

According to its annual Ecomagination report, GE is on course to meet its goal of $10 billion cumulative investment between 2010 and 2015. Last year the company generated $18 billion in revenues from Ecomagination products, and has surpassed $85 billion in sales since the program began in 2005.

This investment helped lead to the development in 2010 of 22 new Ecomagination-qualified products such as WattStation, a charging station designed to accelerate the adoption of plug-in electric vehicles, and Nucleus, a smart meter technology that aims to help homeowners manage energy use.

“By providing the most advanced technologies across the energy-water spectrum, we are turning global challenges into business opportunities that contribute to a more prosperous world and demonstrate that economic success and environmental performance go hand-in-hand,” Ecomagination vice-president Mark Vachon said.

The report said that the company also reduced its energy intensity in 2010 by nearly 33 percent and greenhouse gas emissions by 24 percent, as compared with a 2004 baseline. Energy intensity improved by one percent over 2009 levels and surpassed a goal of a 30 percent improvement by 2012, but emissions worsened by two percent from 2009.

GHG emissions were 5.7 million metric tons in 2010. The fossil fuel emissions that GE-brand turbines helped to avoid last year totalled 45.4 million metric tons of CO2e, about eight times the emissions of GE’s business operations.

By 2015, GE aims to improve the energy intensity of its operations by 50 percent and reduce absolute GHG emissions by 25 percent, both compared to a 2004 baseline.

In 2010, GE’s water use was 11.9 billion gallons, a 22 percent reduction from the company’s 2006 water baseline, but up on 2009 levels. The company attributed the rise to increased attendance at NBC Universal theme parks, as well as increases in once-through cooling water use from product-testing campaigns.

GE has a goal of a 25 percent cut in water use, from a 2006 baseline, by 2015. The company said it expects an additional five percent reduction in water use from using its own Water & Process technology equipment to recycle and reuse water. The new U.S. plant housing this technology is set to be operational by 2015.

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