"So my guess is that we’re going to see a rise of distributed energy—solar and wind being the best examples. But that is going to have interesting effects in all kinds of ways, one of which is a more democratic economy than the one we have now..."
When Robert Nohavec of Park City, Utah; Jabbar Graham from Cherry Hill, New Jersey; and Don Born, of Waldoboro, Maine installed solar on their homes, they had something unexpected in common. They were all giving back to their electric company and their community. That’s because solar energy systems tend to provide more value to theRead More
Flora Moon's insight:
I'd like to see the net benefit distributed to installation of solar energy systems and subsidized energy rates for the needy.
Oil and natural gas fracking requires 28 times more water now than it did 15 years ago, according to a study by the U.S. Geological Survey. The increased water demand is attributed to the development of new, water-intensive technologies that target fossil fuels in complicated geological formations, the researchers say. The amount of water used varies greatly with location, the study found. A fracking operation in southern Illinois, for example, can use as little as 2,600 gallons of water each time an oil or gas well is fracked. That figure jumps to more than 9 million gallons in Pennsylvania, Ohio, and south and eastern Texas. Fracking is often concentrated in arid regions and could exacerbate existing water shortages, especially as water requirements for fracking continue to increase. Most of the water used for fracking is disposed deep underground, removing it from the water cycle.
Flora Moon's insight:
Closed Loop Challenge: How do we get keep water used for oil exploration in the water cycle and fit for all living things?
WASHINGTON (JUNE 30, 2015)— China formally submitted its contribution to United Nations climate talks today. The pledge commits China to a peak in emissions by 2030, an increase in the share of non-fossil fuels in its energy mix by about 20 percent by 2030, and a reduction in carbon dioxide emissions per unit of GDP by 60-65% by 2030, from 2005 levels.
Like many other developing countries, not only do India’s cities face severe infrastructure bottlenecks and service level deficits that undercut economic performance, but poorly managed urban growth directly impacts health and quality of life. Worsening air pollution in Indian cities is estimated to have caused 620,000 premature deaths per year (WHO). Cities also add significantly to overall carbon emissions (close to half of India’s net greenhouse gas emission originate in urban areas). These costs are exacerbated by the ongoing real-estate boom in peri-urban areas fueled by demand from the IT and residential sectors that is not only unplanned, but almost entirely devoid of adequate public services (water, sewer, power) provision or reasonable access to transit infrastructure. This reinforces the vicious cycle of deeper and deeper reliance by firms and households on groundwater, private vehicular ownership, and polluting diesel power generation to meet basic needs. The costs of business-as-usual urban development are clearly unsustainable.
The core problem in climate policy design is that the costs and benefits of taking action are highly uncertain and have very different time dimensions. Costs are incurred in the short term while benefits are likely to be many decades into the future, writes Warwick McKibbin.
Today, the road towards an integrated grid is the one less traveled. But it is for this very reason that RMI is working with leaders in New York and elsewhere to collaboratively develop the solutions that will lead us down the road toward an integrated grid.
Former Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh believes the “cult” of unfettered economic growth has been ruinous for India’s environment. In an interview with Yale Environment 360, he talks about his vision of “green growth,” which he says is essential for his nation’s future.
European researchers have released a study that suggests turbines mounted underneath bridges could be a good way to harness the power of the wind in built up areas, or natural regions with limitations on development.
Flora Moon's insight:
DUMB QUESTION: This idea seems so wrong - how will the birds know not to fly under that section of bridge?
Thirty-nine countries now have carbon-pricing policies on the books, while hundreds of businesses have voiced support. Pricing carbon, which was just a theoretical concept a few years ago, has blossomed into real climate action.
Recent revelations about the firing of American tech workers and their replacement by temporary visa holders reveal, in the starkest way, why many Americans are wary of the impact of untrammeled immigration. Workers in American companies have been removed from their jobs not because they could not perform them, but because their replacements, largely from India, are simply cheaper and, likely, more malleable.
The H-1B temporary visa program was purportedly designed to help tech firms hire specialized talent to fill needs not adequately addressed by the U.S. labor market. But what it has really become is a way to lay off workers for cheaper ones.
While media attention continues to focus on the racial issues in America’s biggest cities and its most racially diverse regions, William H. Frey explains why newly released census data make plain why we need to expect a more racially diverse America everywhere.
One interesting development of the commercial solar industry boom that is currently under way in the U.S. is the numbers of professional investors getting involved with the sector. Over 60 percent of investors will invest in commercial solar and a staggering 83 percent of investors will make investment in solar a priority in the next fiveRead More
Gravity-assisted space travel is when you use the gravitational pull of one planet or other celestial body as a fuel-efficient way to "slingshot" yourself toward another, more distant goal, someplace you could not have reached without assistance, either in terms of your velocity or even your basic direction.
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