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Sustainability Science
How might we keep the lights on, water flowing, and natural world vaguely intact? It starts with grabbing innovative ideas/examples to help kick down our limits and inspire a more sustainable world. We implement with rigorous science backed by hard data.
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Solar FREAKIN' Roadways! - YouTube

SustaiVideo by Michael Naphan It's the roadway of the future! Feel inspired? Help us bring this project to the next step: https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/solar-...

PIRatE Lab's insight:

I've seen this idea before, but it looks like with a little creative marketing and an entertaining video many more folks are finally checking out the idea.  The possibilities are (almost) limitless.  

 

Normally I am someone who worries about the harm roadways can cause.  Here we have an example of how a liability can become an asset.

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Bill banning fracking in California passes first committee

Bill banning fracking in California passes first committee | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it
A bill that would temporarily ban the oil and gas drilling procedure known as fracking in California was approved at its first state legislative committee hearing on Tuesday.
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How Weather Forecasts Can Help Optimize Energy Usage

How Weather Forecasts Can Help Optimize Energy Usage | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it

Researchers at the University of Adelaide have been exploring how using public weather forecast information can help deliver significant reductions in energy consumption.

 

Combining information from the Bureau of Meteorology with data from existing building management systems, the researchers have developed an intelligent model that remains one step ahead of the building’s temperature changes, automatically adjusting the heating and cooling supply accordingly.

Early experimental results have provided encouraging results, with at least 10 per cent energy savings shown to be possible.


Via Lauren Moss
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Spain breezes into record books as wind power becomes main source of energy

Spain breezes into record books as wind power becomes main source of energy | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it
Sector covered 20.9 percent of total demand last year followed by country’s nuclear plants, which met 20.8 percent

Via Organic Social Media, Schumacher Institute
PIRatE Lab's insight:

Awesome!  Now if we can just get this to happen in a country that isn't in an economic slump/isn't suffering from reduced energy demands.

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Organic Social Media's curator insight, January 17, 10:26 AM
#Spain breezes into record books as #wind power becomes main source of #energy #sustainability
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We're Close(er) to Harnessing Nuclear Fusion

We're Close(er) to Harnessing Nuclear Fusion | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it
Nuclear fusion is AMAZING. It's set to revolutionize the way we power almost everything on the planet. And scientists are closer than ever to achieving a sustained fusion reaction. Trace tells us just how close these pioneering scientists really are.
PIRatE Lab's insight:

Only another 30 years...

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Conservatives Spend Nearly $1 Billion a Year Fighting Climate Progress

Conservatives Spend Nearly $1 Billion a Year Fighting Climate Progress | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it
The first extensive study on the dark money that feeds the anti-climate change propaganda machine reveals that 91 organizations funded by 140 foundations have an annual income of over $900 million dollars with which to fight climate progress.

Via pdeppisch
PIRatE Lab's insight:

It is clear these folks are getting a good return on their investments.  At least in the short term.  I can't help but think their grandchildren will be ashamed of this immorality/selfishness/anti-social behavior.

 

Oh, and those hundreds of millions driven into poverty, refugee camps, etc.?  And the American taxpayer who will almost assuredly be forced into sprialing costs of the brushfires and military conflicts across the globe sparked and spurred on by climate change's impacts across the planet?  They too might not be too keen on these "investments" in the coming decades.  

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Gas, Hybrid and Electric Cars [Infographic]

Gas, Hybrid and Electric Cars [Infographic] | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it

Already, electric and hybrid cars are surpassing gas engine cars in not only miles per gallon and sustainability, but also affordability.

For example, the 2013 electric Nissan Leaf runs costs from $28,800 to $34,840. This affordable midsize car gets 75 miles on a full charge and has a refuel time of just seven hours at 240 volts.

Find more information at the link.


Via Lauren Moss
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Germany Delays Energy Market Insider Trade Watch to End-2014

Germany will probably delay monitoring energy markets for insider trading until the fourth quarter of next year, about three months later than planned because of delays in the region’s transparency rules.
PIRatE Lab's insight:

This is unfortunate, but I would rather see this done right the first time. 

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New York City doubles down on solar energy

New York City doubles down on solar energy | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it
A solar-power station planned for Staten Island will significantly boost the city’s renewable energy capacity.
PIRatE Lab's insight:

This is an ambitious effort.  It will be interesting to see if the momentum continues after the fresh glow of the election has worn off. 

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Stanford study could lead to paradigm shift in organic solar cell research

Stanford study could lead to paradigm shift in organic solar cell research | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it

A new study by Stanford scientists overturns a widely held explanation for how organic photovoltaics turn sunlight into electricity.


Via Socrates Logos, Szabolcs Kósa
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Global CO2 emissions

Animated time-lapse video of anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions in map form, spanning the 18th century until this current first decade of the 21st centur...

 

This is not a complete data set, but the video still shows the striking connection between CO2 emissions and  the historical geography of industrialization.


Via Seth Dixon, Byron Northmore
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Seth Dixon's comment, August 2, 2012 11:21 AM
I'd love to take credit for this, but I didn't create this video, but am simply sharing a resource that I found online with the broader community. Follow the YouTube link to see info about the creator there (Cuagau1).
Mark V's comment, September 4, 2012 8:41 AM
Frightening and guilt inducing. The US and Europe the biggest historical violators, plus living in the northeastern part of the country which shows the highest concentrations.
Rafael CAYUELA's curator insight, February 3, 12:18 PM

Interesting and well done..

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Owens Valley mobilizes against proposed DWP solar project

Owens Valley mobilizes against proposed DWP solar project | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it
INDEPENDENCE, Calif. — One by one, a parade of Owens Valley residents rose at a public hearing Tuesday to assail the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power's plan to meet its renewable energy goals by covering 2 square miles of high desert with 1 million solar panels.
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Radiation leak forces closure at New Mexico waste burial site

Radiation leak forces closure at New Mexico waste burial site | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it
The Energy Department suspended normal operations for a fourth day at its New Mexico burial site for defense nuclear waste after a radiation leak inside salt tunnels where the material is buried.
PIRatE Lab's insight:

Hmmmmmm....We are still having trouble figuring out where and how to store high level radiation waste?  It is almost like we started using a power source before we knew what to do with the inevitable aftermath and downstream consequences of the waste stream.  That's strange, I mean we would never do.....wait.  Never mind.

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Ad Agency Designs And Makes Brochures Without Using Electricity

Ad Agency Designs And Makes Brochures Without Using Electricity | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it

The Leo Burnett agency in Lisbon was commissioned to create a brochure for the EDP Group’s Access to Energy (A2E) campaign, which aims to bring electricity to communities in Sub-Saharan Africa and the Amazon.
This campaign also sought to show that many developed countries waste electricity, so the creative team challenged themselves by designing a brochure without using any energy.
Paper was made, pressed and dried, and the two colors of the brochure were printed manually on the paper. The last step was perhaps the easiest—folding these brochures by hand.


Even the process was documented without electricity—film cameras were used, and the amount of effort put in can be seen in the video at the link.


Via Lauren Moss
PIRatE Lab's insight:

Cool demo, but the future is clearly not abandon electricity.  The pollution associated with the film camera world has a host of problems as well (mercury, etc.).  But I like the idea here and the notion of being able to do things outside of the widely accepted standards of production.

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ramiro alonso's curator insight, February 4, 4:20 AM

Una campaña para una empresa de electrificación realizada sin electricidad.

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Goldman Sachs pulls out of proposed coal terminal

The Gateway Pacific Terminal would be the largest coal-exporting terminal in North America. But Goldman Sachs doesn't want to back it anymore.
PIRatE Lab's insight:

A good sign.

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Scotland to Move to 100 Percent Renewables By 2020

Scotland to Move to 100 Percent Renewables By 2020 | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it
New government figures show that Scotland gets over 40 percent of its electricity from renewables.
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Infographic: State of Solar 2013

Infographic: State of Solar 2013 | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it

“ U.S. solar market grows 30 percent in 2013 The infographic prepared by the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) and GTM research reveals another banner year for solar energy in the United States.”


Via Flora Moon, Lauren Moss
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Thomas Faltin's curator insight, December 30, 2013 4:52 AM

add your insight...

   
Maxwell Tech's curator insight, January 10, 8:58 AM

Even though 2014 has already started, it's good to review the successes of the previous year and carry it over to be even better this year. Check out this great infographic prepared by the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) and GTM Research on the growth of solar energy in the United States in 2013!

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BP Makes `Significant' Find in Gulf Of Mexico

BP Makes `Significant' Find in Gulf Of Mexico | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it
      LONDON (AP) - Oil company BP says it has made a "significant" discovery in the Gulf of Mexico in a well it co-owns with ConocoPhillips.   BP said Wednesday that the find a...
PIRatE Lab's insight:

BP keeps on chugging along!

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On the high plains, an almost invisible coal industry counts on Asia

On the high plains, an almost invisible coal industry counts on Asia | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it
Strip mines in the Powder Ridge Basin of Wyoming and Montana are isolated and out of sight. Their efforts to expand exports of coal to Asia are making them more visible.
PIRatE Lab's insight:

Ever cheap, ever abundant coal is the "come on, are we really all that bad" and the "come on, we've been burning this for centuries, lets just keep doing what we've been doing" of the energy sector.

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Why You Might Buy Electricity From Elon Musk Some Day | TheAtlantic.com

Why You Might Buy Electricity From Elon Musk Some Day | TheAtlantic.com | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it

At first glance, there’s nothing particularly Jetsons-like about Marco Krapels’ 1940s-era home in a prosperous suburb that lies in the shadow of Mount Tamalpais in Marin County, California. Open the garage door, though, and it’s Tomorrowland.

 

Attached to the wall is a charging station for Krapels’ Tesla Motors Model S electric sports sedan. And next to the charger are two metal boxes that effectively render Pacific Gas & Electric, the 108-year-old utility that serves Northern California, irrelevant. One box channels electricity generated by the SolarCity photovoltaic panels on the house’s roof. The other, a 10-kilowatt Tesla lithium-ion battery pack, can store up to three days’ worth of carbon-free electricity generated by Krapels’ solar array. 

 

In other words, during the sunniest part of the day, when no one is at home and power demand is low, the Tesla battery pack can store the excess electricity for use in the late afternoon and evening when power prices spike. No dirty and expensive utility electrons needed.  “I should technically be able to function with solar and just the battery indefinitely as long as the sun shines,” says Krapels, a renewable energy financer.

 

And the cost? Thanks to California incentives that subsidize 60 percent of the cost of energy storage, Krapels is paying less than $40 a month for the battery pack as part of a lease deal with SolarCity, the Silicon Valley company that installed the solar battery system.

 

 


Via Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
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Visualizing the Global Carbon Footprint

Visualizing the Global Carbon Footprint | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it

One of the key things I reinforce in conversations about globalization is that the advantages are unevenly distributed and the negative externalities to the system are also unevenly distributed.  This clever infographic highlights both rather effectively. 


Via Seth Dixon, Greenroom Dweller, Byron Northmore
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Dale Fraza's comment, February 27, 2012 12:26 PM
Really surprised at a couple things:
1. Brazil's relative tinyness in comparison with the U.S. Guess I've always just heard bad things about Brazil in regards to deforestation and the like.
2. Just how much a formerly agricultural nation (China) has exploded. Something really needs to be done about the environmental havoc they are wreaking (not to be a total ethnocentrist or anything).