NEWS and LINKS
Battery Storage Steps Up to Support Renewables
From the Clean Economy Newsletter, May 7, 2020
Southern California Edison plans to build "an eye-popping 770 megawatts of battery storage" by 2021 via 7 lithium-ion battery storage projects in CA.
"The 300-megawatt Moss Landing project in central CA will be the largest battery storage project in the world when it opens near the end of this year, according to developers. It's being led by a different utility, Pacific Gas and Electric." And the Manatee Energy Storage Center in Florida, "scheduled to go online in late 2021, will be 409 megawatts".
"This is an important part of fighting climate change because the combination of renewable energy and battery storage can function much like a traditional power plant, capable of being dispatched when needed by grid operators during times of high demand".
100% Renewable Energy by 2030
Temple's citizens voted at our 2018 Town Meeting to adopt a Warrant Article requesting the creation of a Renewable Energy Task Force to recommend options for powering all of our municipal energy usage with 100% renewable energy by 2030.
A volunteer task force, charged with manifesting that mission, is meeting monthly to study various cost-effective and viable paths to implementing that goal.
For the task force's actions and details see the "Renewables Task Force" page of this website
The Level of CO2 in the Atmosphere is in Uncharted Territory
Since 350 parts per million is the top of the SAFE LEVEL of CO2 in the atmosphere for sustaining civilization as we've known it, it was
alarming when, in 2018, it jumped to...
409 ppm -
And then, within only 1 more year, it hit ....
415 ppm -
"a level unseen for 3 million years"!
Recorded by the Scripps Institution of Oceanography at the Moana Loa Observatory in Hawaii
Ocean CO2 Absorption
”When the rate at which CO2 enters the oceans pushes passed a critical threshold, it can trigger a reflex of severe ocean acidification that lasts for
"Today’s oceans are absorbing carbon at an order of magnitude faster than the worst case in the geologic record."
"Unprecedented State" in the Arctic
47 years of data lead over 20 scientists to warn about faster changes and dangers than previously predicted.
"Among the most detrimental findings are the extreme rise in temperatures.The Arctic has gotten warmer by 3.1 C in the cold season (October to May), leading to greener and wetter climates, less snow cover, and less land and sea ice.
"Associated with Arctic warming is an intensification of the hydrologic cycle, with increases in humidity, cloud covers, more rainfall and snowfall, increases in Arctic river discharge, increase snowline altitude, and accelerating loss of land ice.”
2019 is the Hottest Year and Summer on Record….
“Greenland’s ice sheet melted and poured 197 billion tons of water into the North Atlantic in July alone.”
So now,“the peat forests along Greenland’s shorelines are burning,
releasing long-ago-sequestered carbon into the atmosphere.”
But it’s not just from warmer air……
Now scientists have concluded that ”warm ocean water" is flowing under Greenland’s massive sheet of ice, causing it to melt faster.”
“Mass loss from Greenland's ice sheet is currently the single largest driver of sea level rise globally. And that one sheet alone holds enough water to raise global sea level over the centuries to 24 feet." https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greenland_ice_sheet
And in 2019, “Alaska’s sea ice completely melted away.”
In August, there was “no sea ice within 150 miles of the shoreline. None.”
Reported by the Alaska Center for Climate Assessment and Policy.
16 Year Old, Greta Thunberg inspires students worldwide to march and protest against the continued use of fossil fuels
Youtube video of marches worldwide-
NY City Student March for Climate Protection
Three US Military Reports
1. "The Military Could Collapse Within 20 years Due to Climate Change"
A report commissioned by the Pentagon states, "A combination of global starvation, war, disease, drought, and a fragile power grid could have cascading, devastating effects."
"The senior US government officials who wrote the report are from several key agencies including the Army, Defense Intelligence Agency, and NASA."
"The study called on the Pentagon to urgently prepare for the possibility that domestic power, water, and food systems might collapse due to the impacts of climate change as we near mid-century."
2. 2019 - Military Unpreparedness for Climate Change
3. 2012 Military PowerPoint
Fossil Fuel Dependence "Our Nation's Greatest Security Threat"
View Military PowerPoint Address from 2012
NH Local Energy Solutions Conference
November 26, 2018
Federal Climate Change Report
Senator's Shaheen & Hassan Respond to Findings for Northeast Region
(Washington, DC)— U.S. Senators Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and Maggie Hassan (D-NH) issued the following statements after the Trump administration released on Friday a report on the effects of climate change, which includes specific findings for the Northeast region. The report details the profound impact climate change is having, and will continue to have, on the region’s environment, economy and public health:
“Ignoring climate change is not an option,” said Shaheen. “This report makes it clear that every Granite Stater is impacted by climate change, and the threat to our state will worsen over time unless aggressive action is taken.
This report also praises the region’s participation in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) and suggests that it could serve as a model for the nation. I wholeheartedly agree, and urge leaders in Concord to maintain New Hampshire’s leadership in controlling harmful greenhouse gas emissions through RGGI. It’s time for the nation to catch up to the Northeast region in tackling climate change head-on.”
"Among the findings in this report for the Northeast region:
- Climate change threatens coastal marshes, fisheries, ecosystems and coastal infrastructure;
- In particular, warming waters are a direct threat to lobster and cod catches;
- Increased precipitation will lead to more inland flooding;
- Warming weather will lead to poorer air quality and allergens, with health-related impacts;
- Shifting seasonality is negatively affecting the health of forests and harming migratory patterns of birds and parasite infections for animals such as moose;
- Changing seasons are also threatening maple syrup production because of increased variability in the tapping season;
- And coastal and inland flooding will necessitate investments in aging infrastructure." .https://www.shaheen.senate.gov/news/press/shaheen-and-hassan-respond-to-findings-for-northeast-region-in-federal-climate-change-report
Public Health Threat of Climate Disruptions
"The disruption of climate poses one of the greatest public health threats of our time.
Pipelines as the mainstay of fossil fuel infrastructure are major drivers of that change in climate and extreme weather patterns. Rubber stamping of pipelines without considering the climate impacts is akin to pushing an unnecessary pill and disregarding its serious side effects.
The decisions that FERC makes have significant impact on communities and policy makers have a duty to protect the public by holding FERC accountable."
Pouné Saberi, MD, MPH
Physicians for Social Responsibility
New steps have been taken to protect NH from other pipelines and to stop the rubber stamping of all pipeline applications at FERC!!
1. NH Senator Shaheen and Congresswoman Kuster have initiated companion bills in Congress to rein in the unchecked power of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and give the public a voice at FERC!
It will fund the Office of Public Participation at FERC, populate it with a Consumer Advocate, and will fund intervenor status for state and local community representativesimpacted by potential fracked gas infrastructure ..... giving their needs and concerns a voice and a vote in FERC proceedings!
2. The NH Energy Impacts on Health Study Group worked with the NH Site Evaluation Committee (SEC) to create adequate and appropriate new Rules and Regulations that will prepare our state for any future applications for permits to site or construct "high pressure pipelines" in NH.
They informed the SEC that the public health threats posed by compressor station toxic emissions and the contamination of aquifers and wells from any pipeline construction process demanded several new Rules and Regulations for NH which the SEC adopted and were later accepted by the Joint Legislative Committee on Administrative Rules.
3. The Health Study Group has also been working with the Air Quality Division of the NH Department of Environmental Services (DES) to change and update the state's Toxic Air Statutes and list of toxins allowed in NH.
Fracked gas has brought new toxic emissions and substances into the environment and atmosphere surrounding natural gas infrastructure, particularly within 2 -3+ miles of compressor stations and in the proximity of metering stations, creating serious public health impacts.
The Climate Could Hit a State Unseen in 50 Million Years!
Carbon Dioxide levels are unprecedented in human history.
If carbon emissions continue on their current trajectory, new findings show that by mid-century, the atmosphere could reach a state unseen in 50 million years.
Back then, temperatures were up to 18 degrees warmer (10 degrees Celsius), ice was almost nowhere to be seen and oceans were dramatically higher than they are now.
The implications of the research, published in Nature Communications, are some of the starkest reminders yet that humanity faces a major choice to curtail carbon and methane pollution pushing the climate outside the bounds that have allowed civilization to thrive.
Atmospheric levels of carbon dioxide have varied for millennia, fluctuating largely on natural cycles. Humans have added dramatically more carbon dioxide to the atmosphere since the Industrial Revolution, though, raising carbon dioxide from 280 parts per million to 410 parts per million in 2017. (up to 415 ppm - 2019)
Scientists have been able to track the historic changes in carbon dioxide through a number of methods, from air pockets in Antarctic ice cores to sludge on the deep sea floor. The new research compiles 1,500 of these carbon dioxide estimates.
The carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere today are ones that likely haven't been reached in 3 million years.
Chinese leader Xi Jinping and President Obama struck a deal to limit greenhouse gases
China committed for the first time to cap carbon emissions and Obama unveiled a plan for deeper U.S. emissions reductions through 2025.
BEIJING — China and the United States made common cause against the threat of climate change, staking out an ambitious joint plan to curb carbon emissions as a way to spur nations around the world to make their own cuts in greenhouse gases.
The landmark agreement, jointly announced here by President Obama and President Xi Jinping, includes new targets for carbon emissions reductions by the United States and a first-ever commitment by China to stop its emissions from growing by 2030.
2014 Pentagon Climate Change Adaptation Roadmap
http://www.acq.osd.mil/ie/download/CCARprint.pdf - link to report.
"Drastic weather, rising seas and changing storm patterns could become 'threat multipliers' for the United States, vastly complicating security challenges faced by American forces, the Pentagon said in a new report on the impact of climate change released Monday....
The new report suggests broader cooperation and emphasis on the issue. Secretary of Defense, Chuck Hagel, said the Defense Department will work with the State Department, the U.S. Agency for International Development and the Federal Emergency Management Agency, among other organizations. He also said the United States must work with other nations. 'Climate change is a global problem,' the secretary said. 'Its impacts do not respect national borders. No nation can deal with it alone. We must work together, building joint capabilities to deal with these emerging threats.”
Washington Post, Oct. 13, 2014
UPDATE - 2019- Pentagon commissioned report states, " THE MILITARY COULD COLLAPSE WITHIN 20 YEARS DUE TO CLIMATE CHANGE "
(See a summary above)
CLIMATE CHANGE and ECONOMIC CHANGE
The ties between the economy and the climate — both in the way that the current system is hampering progress in addressing the issue and how worsening change will hurt the economy — are hard to dispute.
It may sound like it’ll cost a lot to fight climate change. But it may cost more to stay on our current course of taking little action.
The cost of failing to adapt could be a staggering $1,240 trillion, compared to $890 trillion if we make changes.
Following the hurricanes in Texas, Louisiana, Florida, Georgia, S. Carolina and the Caribbean Islands plus the wildfires in CA, OR, WA, and MT in 2017, COSTS ARE RISING MUCH FASTER THAN PREDICTED!
The U.S. Director of the Office of Management and Budget has estimated that it will cost the United States billions of dollars if we fail to act, given the cost of increasingly intense damage from storms, wildfires, and drought.
The U.S. is #1 in wind power
because we have.....
Outstanding wind resources –The U.S. Department of Energy estimates that our wind energy potential is 10 times the amount of electricity consumption for the entire country.
The most productive wind turbines in the world – Taller towers and longer blades have made wind turbines more efficient, and project developers have been smart about siting the turbines in environmentally friendly and wind resource-rich locations.
Thus, our turbines are nearly twice as productive as those in China and Germany.
We’ve also had a policy incentive that rewards electricity production. A key policy at the federal level – the production tax credit (PTC) – has offered tax relief to projects based on how much power they produce. This incentive spurred the wind power development that has made the U.S. #1. Once again, though, the PTC has expired, putting wind power’s momentum at risk.
Arctic Is Getting Darker, Absorbing More Heat.....
Earth's ability to reflect solar radiation is decreasing owing to the dramatic melting of Arctic Ocean sea ice.
February 19, 2014 By Kristine Wong
Climate scientists have hypothesized for decades that melting sea ice at the North Pole hastens global warming by decreasing the amount of heat from the sun that’s reflected back into space.
More dark ocean and less snow-covered ice equals less reflection—makes sense, right? While researchers developed models to demonstrate how this could happen, its occurrence has never been confirmed by data—until now.
According to a new study conducted at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography in San Diego, between 1979 and 2011 the average levels of Arctic albedo—the technical
term for the fraction of solar energy reflected from Earth’s surface —decreased from 52 percent to 48 percent.
Here’s the problem:
Reduced albedo creates a feedback loop. Higher temperatures lead to less albedo lead to higher temperatures lead to less albedo…and so on.
And the observed percentage is twice as much as model-based studies had forecast.
US Solar Industry Provides Employment for More People than Coal and Oil Combined
Published: Friday 7 February 2014
By Christina Sarich
"In the past four years, 50,000 well paying jobs were added—many of them building and installing solar panels and this employment rate is expected to continue growing at a steady pace."
"The high cost of solar, which was one factor slowing the industry’s growth is also now quickly changing. More than 51 percent of people are now installing solar not just to protect the environment, but because it is cheaper."
General Electric to Invest More than 1 Billion a Year in Renewable Projects -
G.E’s Energy Financial Services CEO, David Nason, told Bloomberg News that renewable power is the EFS’s fastest-growing energy market.
“We see renewable energy providing very significant returns going forward,” Nason said. “We have a robust pipeline in the U.S. for the next couple of years.”
The company is looking to invest in solar and wind because these forms of energy employ GE equipment such as wind turbines and power inverters. And CEO Jeff Immelt has made the area a key part of his desire to bring the company back to its manufacturing origins.
New Hampshire in Top 10 States for Per Capita Oil Savings From Solar Hot Water
Concord, NH- New Hampshire could reduce pollution and dependence on fossil fuels through the deployment of off the shelf, cost-effective solar hot water technology, according to a new report by Environment New Hampshire. New Hampshire ranks 7th in the nation for oil savings from solar hot water.
According, by taking advantage of this cost effective technology that harnesses solar energy to produce hot water for homes and businesses, New Hampshire could reduce global warming pollution by the equivalent of taking 22,000 cars off the road.
Across the country, polls reveal an America more committed than ever to a Clean energy path.
Nearly 90 percent of us want more renewable energy from our utilities. Nearly 80 percent of us want measures that will give us better gas mileage in our cars and more energy savings in our homes and offices.
Most representatives who supported the House clean energy bill won their races. In California, voters soundly thrashed Proposition 23, a measure that would have derailed that state’s visionary global warming law.
Here are some recent findings from a Kelton Research survey of solar/climate issues:
- 94% of Americans polled believe it's important to develop and use solar power;
- 80% want federal subsidies shifted from fossil fuels to solar;
- 70-80% want the Government to tackle climate change;
- 49% would pay more for clean, reliable solar energy
A 2010 Report Shows that the Warmest Decade in History was
Plankton Decline Across Oceans as Waters Warm
Microscopic marine algae known as"phytoplankton" have been declining globally over the 20th century, and scientists say the decline appears to be linked to rising water temperatures.
"Phytoplankton is the fuel on which marine ecosystems run. A decline of phytoplankton affects everything up the food chain, including humans," the lead author said (Science Daily, 7/28/10).
Marine Biodiversity Strongly Linked to Ocean Temperature
A team of scientists has mapped and analyzed global biodiversity patterns for over 11,000 marine species ranging from tiny zooplankton to sharks and whales.
The researchers found that temperature was strongly linked to biodiversity for all groups studied. These results imply that future changes in ocean temperature, such as those due to climate change, may greatly affect the distribution of life in the sea (Science Daily, 7/29/10).