If they can screw up the Gulf and Santa Barbara, think what they can do to the Arctic.

http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-pipeline-santa-barbara-coast-20150519-story.html#page=1

105,000 gallons of oil may have spilled in Santa Barbara County

The operator of an underground pipeline that ruptured and released up to 105,000 gallons of crude oil in Santa Barbara County — and tens of thousands of gallons into the ocean — said Wednesday that the spill happened after a series of mechanical problems caused the line to be shut down.

The problems began about 10:45 a.m. Tuesday at two pump stations that move oil through the 11-mile pipeline along the Gaviota Coast, Rick McMichael, director of pipeline operations for Plains All American Pipeline, said at a news conference.

The company said its estimate of 105,000 gallons spilled west of Santa Barbara is a worst-case scenario that was based on the line’s elevation and flow rate — which averages about 50,400 gallons an hour.

AND

http://time.com/3892154/bp-oil-spill-dolphin-deaths/

The BP Oil Spill Killed a Lot of Dolphins

Lung and adrenal lesions were found on dead dolphins

The explosion of BP’s Deepwater Horizon oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010 had a deadly effect on at least one ocean dweller: bottlenose dolphins.

A new study from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration released Wednesday said lung and adrenal lesions found on dead bottlenose dolphins that were stranded along the Gulf coast from June 2010 through December 2012 are consistent with the effects of exposure to petroleum products after an oil spill.

The report supports earlier studies that suggested a link between the oil spill that gushed 4.9 million barrels of oil into the Gulf over the course of 87 days and mass dolphin deaths in Alabama, Louisiana, and Mississippi.

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Please make it stop. Go there and read.More next week.

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I hope things are even better this year.

http://www.fierceenergy.com/story/2014-hot-topics-renewables/2014-01-14

2014 hot topics in renewables

excerpt on solar…

The year 2013 was one for the record books for solar. According to the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), the third quarter of 2013 was the second largest for the U.S. solar industry, and new solar electric capacity added in 2014 will generate enough clean energy to power more than 850,000 average American homes.

Solar became one of the leading sources of new generation in 2013 with the continued decline in equipment costs

“[This gives] the industry the opportunity to focus on soft cost reduction as well,” said Tom Solazzo, principal, PwC Power & Utilities. “Initial efforts at addressing permitting, labor, financing, and contract costs through operational efficiency and standardization are bearing fruit, with more upside potential in the future.”

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I love the name Fierce Energy. Go there and read. More next week.

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Why is Elon Musk worshiped so? He blows a rocket landing and everyone says it “Was nicely played”. In the passed week or so, his companies have both launched a space capsule about a mile in the air and brought it back to the ground my parachute. This was done 50 years ago by NASA. And announce a new battery for the residential housing market which is anything but new. He is a carny shill if ever I saw one. I shall continue this rant over at myspace/dougnicodemus  if anyone is interested.

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/will-tesla-s-battery-for-homes-change-the-energy-market/

Will Tesla’s Battery for Homes Change the Energy Market?

Tesla did not reveal the price of its larger batteries for businesses and utilities, but it will sell residential models for $3,000—$3,500

May 4, 2015 |By Davide Castelvecchi and Nature magazine | Véalo en español

Tesla Motors, the electric-car maker based in Palo Alto, California, has announced that it will sell versions of its battery packs directly to consumers to help to power their homes, as well as to businesses that run larger facilities, and utility companies.

At a press conference in Los Angeles on April 30, the company’s charismatic founder Elon Musk said that the firm’s lithium-ion batteries would enable economies to move to low-carbon energy sources. Solar energy sources are erratic—but by storing their energy and then releasing it when required, batteries could solve that problem, he said.

Many other companies also sell stationary battery storage for buildings and for power grids—but analysts say that the technology is still too expensive for widespread use. Here, Nature explores whether Tesla’s announcement might change the game.

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Please go there and read. More next week.

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Talking is better then nothing I guess.

 

http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2015/04/28/3651715/deepwater-wind-project-construction-starts/

First Offshore Wind Farm In The U.S. Kicks Off Construction

Posted on

Offshore wind is coming to the United States.

Construction on what will be the country’s first offshore wind farm started Monday in Rhode Island. The wind farm, which is being developed by Deepwater Wind, will be located off of the coast of Block Island, a small island about 13 miles south of Rhode Island. Once completed, the five-turbine, 30-megawatt wind farm will produce enough energy to power all homes and businesses on Block Island, which previously relied on diesel generators, according to the Sierra Club. The wind farm will also send energy to mainland Rhode Island. It’s expected to come online in fall 2016.

Environmental groups, many of which have pushed for the project since it started going through hearings in 2013, applauded the start of construction. Bruce Nilles, senior campaign director for the Sierra Club’s Beyond Coal Campaign, told ThinkProgress that the start of construction was a “landmark” moment for the U.S. wind industry, and that it “really makes real the promise offshore wind has” in the U.S., particularly on the East Coast.

 “This is technology that will play a very important part in decarbonizing electric sector,” he said.

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Go there and read. More next week.

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I usually post here on Wednesday. Imagine the probability of Earth Day occurring on the same day! So today I offer a more optimistic view of the world then mine. Think: Global Warming.

http://aeon.co/magazine/science/why-extinction-is-not-the-problem/

 

Rethinking extinction

by

The idea that we are edging up to a mass extinction is not just wrong – it’s a recipe for panic and paralysis

The way the public hears about conservation issues is nearly always in the mode of ‘[Beloved Animal] Threatened With Extinction’. That makes for electrifying headlines, but it misdirects concern. The loss of whole species is not the leading problem in conservation. The leading problem is the decline in wild animal populations, sometimes to a radical degree, often diminishing the health of whole ecosystems.

Viewing every conservation issue through the lens of extinction threat is simplistic and usually irrelevant. Worse, it introduces an emotional charge that makes the problem seem cosmic and overwhelming rather than local and solvable. It’s as if the entire field of human medicine were treated solely as a matter of death prevention. Every session with a doctor would begin: ‘Well, you’re dying. Let’s see if we can do anything to slow that down a little.’

Medicine is about health. So is conservation. And as with medicine, the trends for conservation in this century are looking bright. We are re-enriching some ecosystems we once depleted and slowing the depletion of others. Before I explain how we are doing that, let me spell out how exaggerated the focus on extinction has become and how it distorts the public perception of conservation.

Many now assume that we are in the midst of a human-caused ‘Sixth Mass Extinction’ to rival the one that killed off the dinosaurs 66 million years ago. But we’re not. The five historic mass extinctions eliminated 70 per cent or more of all species in a relatively short time. That is not going on now. ‘If all currently threatened species were to go extinct in a few centuries and that rate continued,’ began a recent Nature magazine introduction to a survey of wildlife losses, ‘the sixth mass extinction could come in a couple of centuries or a few millennia.’

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Quick not: He favors Nuclear Power

Go there and read. More next week.

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This is a company that made a Billion dollars in revenue last year. But it wants to dig deeper into your pockets. I hope we all say no to this. Their threats to shut down nukes are hollow. Who would care if they did? Clinton Nuclear Power Plant sucks.

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/breaking/ct-exelon-com-ed-bill-met-0227-20150226-story.html

Exelon-backed bill seeks $2 more a month for nuclear plants

By Ray Long

Chicago Tribune
Critics of Exelon-backed legislation question why firm deserves consumer help.

Electricity users would have to dip into their pockets a little more to help cover costs of Exelon’s nuclear power plants under legislation unveiled Thursday that the influential corporation maintained would save jobs and keep service steady and reliable.

Exelon is backing the proposal because it could prop up what the company says are three money-losing nuclear plants that produce relatively clean energy compared with other sources of power.

Opponents question whether Exelon would get an unnecessary bailout when a trio of its other nuclear plants are in the black, and supporters of a separate bill prefer a broader approach that would build up renewable resources.

Where the state ends up on the issue will play out in the months ahead as the spring session unfolds, with companies like Exelon wielding clout at the Capitol through campaign contributions to lawmakers.

The Exelon legislation comes out of a joint report rolled out last month by multiple state agencies charged with examining the impact of closing nuclear plants and potential ways to keep them open.

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Go there and read. Better yet call your representatives. More next week.

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I don’t care if you are a Red State or a Blue State. Who could be opposed to something like this?

http://www.greentechmedia.com/articles/read/New-York-to-Build-Worlds-Most-Powerful-Smart-Energy-Lab

New York to Build World’s Most Powerful Smart Energy Lab

Superior computing power will help drive New York’s REV.

Katherine Tweed
March 26, 2015

The New York Power Authority and SUNY Polytechnic Institute will partner to build the world’s largest research and development facility focused on energy technology innovation.

New York State has goals of eliminating electricity peaks, enabling distributed energy resources and incorporating more large-scale renewables as part of its Reforming the Energy Vision proposal.

The yet-to-be-built facility, the Advanced Grid Innovation Laboratory for Energy (AGILe), will allow the New York Power Authority, distribution utilities and private companies to test everything from sensors on the grid and automation technology to novel power electronics and cybersecurity across the entire power grid.

“This is new and innovative and will allow New York state to lead the country in energy development, smart grid and other technologies and provide economic benefit to the state,”

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Go there and read. More next week.

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When I first saw this I thought it was from The Onion. But this for real.

http://www.technologyreview.com/news/532896/discarded-laptop-batteries-keep-the-lights-on/

Discarded Laptop Batteries Keep the Lights On

Millions of batteries discarded with computers have more than enough life to power home lighting for one year, researchers in India say.

Many of the estimated 50 million lithium-ion laptop batteries discarded every year could provide electricity storage sufficient to light homes in poor countries, researchers at IBM say.

In work being aired this week at a conference in San Jose, researchers at IBM Research India in Bangalore found that at least 70 percent of all discarded batteries have enough life left to power an LED light at least four hours a day for a year.

While it’s possible to combine LED lights with solar panels and rechargeable batteries (see “Innovators Under 35: Evans Wadongo”), using discarded batteries could make the approach far cheaper.

“The most costly component in these systems is often the battery,” says Vikas Chandan, a research scientist at the lab’s Smarter Energy Group, who led the project. “In this case, the most expensive part of your storage solution is coming from trash.”

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Go there and read more. More next week.

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How much longer can this comedy of errors go on? Nuclear Power – no way.

http://gizmodo.com/the-fukushima-cleanup-wasted-half-a-billion-dollars-on-1693324714

The Fukushima Cleanup Wasted Half a Billion Dollars on Bad Technology

23,716

6

Yesterday 11:30am

The cleanup of Fukushima’s leaking nuclear plant has been long, expensive, and plagued with problems. Now, the AP reports a government audit has found that more than a third of the budget for cleanup was wasted—totaling hundreds of millions of dollars.

The previous allegations of incompetence and straight-up lies that surround Tokyo Electric Power Co, or Tepco, the company responsible for the cleanup, might make you wonder if any of those millions were lost to corruption. But the Associated Press says that most of it was wasted because no one really knew how to clean up the site. The company spent millions on systems and machines that theoretically might have worked. But didn’t.

The Ice Wall That Wouldn’t Freeze

Let’s start with what AP calls “the unfrozen trench,” contaminated water leaks into these trenches—tunnels, really—that run alongside the plant, creating a major hazard. Tepco started injecting the water with coolants in an attempt to freeze it, creating an ice wall of sorts as Gizmodo reported. It didn’t work.

Tepco says “it has proved exceptionally difficult” to freeze the trenches completely, according to World Nuclear News. “Tepco subsidiary Tokyo Power Technology even threw in chunks of ice, but eventually had to pour in cement to seal the trench,” says the AP. The project cost $840,000, which is chump change compared to other items on the list.

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Go there and read. More next week.

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I saw this article on Digg.com a couple of weeks ago and tried to post it. When I went back to Digg to get the article and I could not find it, so I put up an older example. But then I put into Google “recent energy efficiency in the residential market” and there it was. So here it is.

http://news.discovery.com/tech/alternative-power-sources/water-house-slashes-energy-needs-150209.htm

 

‘Water-house’ Slashes Energy Needs

  //

 

As UN climate negotiators gather in Geneva this week, one Japan-inspired Hungarian inventor believes he has found a revolutionary and inexpensive way to construct buildings that could slash humanity’s energy needs.

And the magic ingredient for Matyas Gutai’s invention is simple: water. It was launched after a long process of testing and patenting and a decade of research and development at a Japanese university.

“Imagine a building without insulation, yet with a perfect indoor thermal balance, thanks to the properties of water,” the 34-year-old told AFP.

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Public Art Generates Renewable Energy, Beautifully

Play Video
While fossil fuel energy represents the most common class of power generation, solar power just made a big leap forward, hitting 46 percent efficiency.
Joe Raedle/Getty Images

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Go there and read. More next week.

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