environmentalism


Over the years I have gotten 100s of requests to post links with other Blogs and Internet Sites that are related to the things that I post about; Sometimes tangentially. Sometimes very tangentially. Below I am going to try to post some of those with the text of the request where applicable or sometimes just the link.

I am only one guy by the way. That is it, Community Energy Systems and Energy Tough Love is just one guy with 900 bucks in the bank….so there is no way I can track down each post of mine and put the link on the page. Did I mention I was 63 years old. I would be dead by the time i did 10 or 20 post. Is some of this sarcastic? Well yah. But I never mean it spitefully. Please laugh with me not at me. Consider this:

Sometimes people even offer to write entire articles –

Hi!

There are more than 3 million teachers within the U.S. public school system. While some may plan on being work-free during summer break, others might enjoy – or need – to find a short-term job during that time.

As a retired teacher, I thought it would be fun to research and write about summer side gigs for teachers. (Side note: Many of these gigs, especially those that take advantage of the growing sharing economy, can also be worked into the school-year schedule.)

Is this something that would be of interest to your readers? If so, I would love the opportunity to write a guest article at no cost to you. Please let me know, and I’ll start writing.

Thanks so much!

Joyce

Joyce Wilson

joyce@teacherspark.org

Teacherspark.org

 

5 Eco-Conscious Summer Jobs for School Teachers

As a teacher, you need a second job to make ends meet. But as an environmentalist, the idea of driving for Uber or running people’s errands through an on-demand app doesn’t appeal to you. You want to spend less time commuting in your car, not more. So what are the options? Here are five eco-conscious side gigs that teachers can work during the summer and year-round.

Walking Dogs

The school year leaves you sitting inside for most of the day. When summer hits, you want to get outdoors as much as possible. Walking dogs for friends and neighbors is a great excuse to spend time outdoors, and the pay isn’t bad either. According to CostHelper.com, the typical pay for a dog walker is $18 to $22 for a 30-minute walk. Because the gig comes with minimal overhead costs, most of that pay ends up in your pocket. Dog walkers can also offer pet sitting to boost their earning potential.

Building Custom Gardens

Everyone wants a gorgeous edible garden in their yard, but few want to put in the work. Start a business designing, building, and maintaining custom vegetable gardens in local backyards. You’ll help your neighbors eat healthier while reducing their carbon footprint, and you’ll enjoy a paying job that hardly feels like work. The only downside? There’s not much gardening to do during the winter months. However, teachers can offer winter yard maintenance to keep money flowing through the off-season.

Creating an Online Store

According to the Sierra Club, online shopping beats driving to the store when it comes to environmental impact. While boxes and packaging seem wasteful, one delivery truck driving from house to house spends less energy than each household making trips to the store. It’s easy to build an e-commerce website with drag-and-drop website builders, and you don’t have to create a unique product to open an online store. Many online stores earn money by dropshipping popular products like wireless headphones and phone cases from larger retailers. Offer a diversity of products or choose products with staying power so your store remains profitable for the long-term.

Flipping Second-Hand Goods

Our throwaway society has largely moved away from repairing broken goods, choosing instead to replace items the moment they cease to function. The result? Countless lightly used appliances, gadgets, and furniture items headed to the dump when they still have lots of life. If you’re handy and enjoy hunting for treasures, start a side business picking up broken items, repairing them, and reselling for profit. Yard sales and Craigslist are gold mines for free and cheap items in need of repair. Finance Superhero offers tips for getting started.

Blogging

Starting a blog is perfect for teachers who want to explore their interest in energy and environmentalism. Teachers can blog about topics they’re passionate about and generate income through ad revenue. A blog can also be a great platform for sharing information and selling lesson plans on environmentalism with other educators, who can then use the materials in their own classrooms.

Additionally, business ideas such as selling workwear, selfie drones, and electronics online have a smaller environmental impact than driving a rideshare, delivering groceries, or another sharing economy mainstay. They also have minimal start-up costs, so your business doesn’t take months or years to start generating profit like some small businesses. That’s important when your priority is increasing your income, not launching a new career. However, teachers shouldn’t assume their side gig is in the black. Diligent record keeping is key to ensuring you’re meeting your income goals and not putting more into a gig than you’re getting out.

There are many ways to earn an income on top of a full-time job. But if environmentalism is important to you, you may find it difficult to find a job that aligns with your values. While these five side gigs might not change the world, they’re practical ways for eco-conscious teachers to increase their income without increasing their carbon footprint.

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More whenever.

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This Pope may be the best Pope I have ever lived through. I am not Catholic so I probably shouldn’t even be commenting on this or posting this BUT DAMN he is good. On sex abuse; On being gay; On capitalism and the poor; On so many issues he is right on. Now this. I am amazed.

https://thewest.com.au/business/energy/pope-francis-tells-big-oil-executives-clean-energy-is-an-epochal-challenge-ng-b88862527z

Pope Francis tells big oil executives clean energy is an ‘epochal’ challenge

AP

Pope Francis warned that climate change risked destroying humanity on Saturday (June, 9) and called on energy leaders to help the world to convert to clean fuels to avert catastrophe. Anna Bevan reports

Pope Francis has told world oil executives that the transition to less-polluting energy sources “is a challenge of epochal proportions”, and warned that satisfying the globe’s energy needs “must not destroy civilisation”.

The Vatican says the two-day conference with oil executives was meant as a follow-up to the Pope’s encyclical three years ago calling on people to save the planet from the ravages of climate change and other environmental ills.

Participants included the chief executives of Italian oil giant ENI, BP, ExxonMobil and Norway’s Statoil as well as scientists and managers of major investment funds. Their remarks on the first day of the closed-door conference were not released by the Vatican.

While Pope Francis lauded the oil executives for embedding an assessment of climate change risks into their planning strategies, he also put them on notice for their “continued search for fossil fuel reserves,” two years after the Paris climate accord “clearly urged keeping most fossil fuels underground”.

 

 

 

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This is what it is like at the end of a power source. People can hardly wait to get away from coal and on to something else. I say, GOOD FOR THEM. Coal is no longer competitive. No matter how they try to stand in the way coal supporters, including Dotard in Chief, will always lose. Can you say, dust bin of history.

  • 7:30 am

Solar is starting to replace the largest coal plant in the western U.S.

On Navajo land in Arizona, a coal plant and coal mine that have devastated the environment are being replaced by solar–with both enormous benefits and local drawbacks that can serve as a lesson for how the rest of the country will need to manage the transition to renewables.

In the desert near Arizona’s border with Utah on the Navajo Nation, a massive solar array built in 2017 now provides power for around 18,000 Navajo homes. Nearby, construction will begin later this year on a second solar plant. And on another corner of Navajo land, the largest coal plant west of the Mississippi River is preparing to close 25 years ahead of schedule, despite some last-minute attempts to save it.

“Those two [solar] plants really are the beginning of an economic transition,” says Amanda Ormond, managing director of the Western Grid Group, an organization that promotes clean energy.

The coal plant, called the Navajo Generating Station, was built in the 1970s to provide power to growing populations in Southern California, Arizona, and Nevada. A nearby coal mine supplies the power plant with coal. As recently as 2014, the coal plant wasn’t expected to close until 2044–a date negotiated with the EPA to reduce air pollution. But reduced demand for coal, driven both by economics and climate action, means that the plant is scheduled to close in 2019 instead. The coal mine, run by Peabody Energy, will be forced to follow.

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Go there and celebrate. I mean read. More next week.

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I haven’t written or posted about environmentally sound cars, but this article caught my eye. Having robust Secondary and Tertiary markets means that EVs are here to stay and will eventually conquer the market.

https://www.greencarreports.com/news/1116722_nissan-begins-offering-rebuilt-leaf-battery-packs

Nissan begins offering rebuilt Leaf battery packs

Starting this month, Nissan has begun offering rebuilt battery packs for the older Leafs, filling a gap for drivers of older cars whose packs have begun to run down.

The company built a new facility in Japan to rebuild the packs, and will sell them for about $2,850 (based on the price in Japan), according to Inside EVs. A Nissan spokesman told Green Car Reports that the company is investigating offering the program in the United States, but has not yet made a decision.

Electric car repair trainer Craig Van Batenburg, of the Automotive Career Development Center in Worcester, Massachusetts, said the refurbished battery packs are new among electric carmakers. Previously, older battery packs had to be replaced with new ones, which cost more than $6,500 (minus a $1,000 trade-in, or core charge, on the old battery pack.)

The cost covers the 24-kwh battery pack in the original Leaf, which was rated at only 73 miles of range when new.

Owners of early Leafs had problems with the cars losing range after only a year or two in hot climates such as Phoenix, Arizona.

READ THIS: Nissan Buys Back Leaf Electric Cars Under Arizona Lemon Law [2012]

 

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Go there and read. More next week.

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I have been at a loss for words for the last month. Things are going so well. I know Dotard is still President and many things are seriously messed up. But on the alternative energy front things just keep getting better and better. Don Blankenship actually made a fool out of himself and lost a primary vote for the Senate in West Virginia. Next week I may even get to report that Yucca Mountain is open for business. But for now, California hits one out of the park.

http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-solar-panels-20180509-story.html

 

California regulators approve mandate for solar panels on new houses

California regulators on Wednesday mandated that all newly built single family houses have solar panels, part of the state’s aggressive push to combat climate change.

The California Energy Commission voted 5-0 to approve the measure, which also applies to multifamily buildings of three stories or fewer. The mandate is set to take effect in 2020 and does not need the approval of the Legislature.

The requirement is expected to save consumers money in the long run through reduced utility bills, but also make a new house more expensive to purchase at a time many families already struggle to afford a mortgage.

In addition to the solar mandate, the commission approved new insulation and air filter requirements for newly built homes. In all, the new residential requirements are expected to make a single-family house $9,500 more expensive to build on average, but save $19,000 in reduced utility bills over a 30-year period, according to the Energy Commission.

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Go there and do a happy dance – I mean read. More next week

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I really have nothing to add here. It is gonna get really hot. Them it is gonna get dangerous. Who knows what fun we can have after that?

https://earther.com/pakistan-may-have-just-set-a-world-heat-record-1825690035

Pakistan May Have Just Set a World Heat Record

High temperatures are forecast to reach the mid-80s this week in New York, and I’m dreading it. But I have a plan to stay cool: just thinking of how much hotter it is in Pakistan, which is in the middle of a blistering heat wave.

Temperatures reported to have cracked 50.2 degrees Celsius (122.3 degrees Fahrenheit) on Monday in Nawabshah, located about 127 miles northeast of Karachi. If confirmed, that could make the measurement not just the hottest ever recorded for April in Pakistan, but the hottest ever reliably recorded for April anywhere on Earth.

 “There was a 51.0°C reading reported from Santa Rosa, Mexico in April 2011 but this figure is considered of dubious reliability, so yes, the 50.2° reading is likely the hottest April temperature yet reliably observed on Earth in modern records,” Chris Burt, a weather historian, told Earther in an email.

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Go there and read. Man 122 degrees. Are you kidding me? More next week.

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The slowing even the reversal of the Gulf Stream by fresh water discharge has been talked about for at least 20 or 30 years. It could be an “end state” of global warming or climate change, whatever you want to call it. But it is not the BRIEF article citing two studies that caught my eye…it was the snarcky stupid comments that followed. Is it possible for humans to devolve into maggots?

http://www.newser.com/story/257892/the-gulf-stream-is-dying-and-thats-bad.html

Dying Gulf Stream May Trigger a Global Nightmare
Scientists say climate change plays a role
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 15, 2018 4:00 PM CDT
Updated Apr 16, 2018 5:03 AM CDT

(Newser) – Scientists are raising alarm bells after two studies found that the Gulf Stream—an ocean current key to regulating Earth’s climate—is the weakest it’s been in 1,600 years, the Guardian reports. The culprit is apparently melting sea ice and glaciers, which inject fresh water into the North Atlantic and weaken the stream. “Fiddling with [the Gulf Stream] is very dangerous, because you may well trigger some surprises,” says climate scientist Stefan Rahmstorf. “I wish I knew where this critical tipping point is, but that is unfortunately just what we don’t know.” If the stream dies, scientists say, its equatorial heat would stop reaching the North Atlantic—plunging Europe into bone-numbing winters and affecting weather worldwide. Even subtler changes “could wreak havoc” on the Atlantic Ocean’s “delicate ecosystems,” Smithsonian reports.

vietvet1968
12 hours, 35 minutes ago
The Greenland Ice sheet is not melting. Check out the facts. It’s even with 2015. Danish Meteorological Institute. http://ocean.dmi.dk/arctic/icecover.uk.php
wboehmer
Apr 17, 2018 5:24 PM CDT
To claim the Gulf Stream “is the weakest it’s been in 1,600 years” requires having collected a lot of data which is impossible to have collected. For starters, since the Gulf Stream was only first discovered in 1513 by the Spanish explorer Juan Ponce de Leon, for the first 1,095 of those 1,600 years its existence was not even known, let alone how strong or weak it was. Like many claims about the Earth’s climate, this one is utter nonsense.
Francis Kennedy
Apr 16, 2018 11:23 PM CDT
It’s OUR fault, right?? Since humans are the cause, that’s also the solution? You just have to decide how many humans need to die, to save the earth. Simple.

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Go there and comment. Oh I mean read. More next week.

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Solar and Wind Power are on a huge tear. This is both in price, where coal is dead and natural gas is getting iffy. But in terms of availability and cutting edge technology. I see a future where generating electricity through renewables may be a same day thing and cheap as dirt. I know I am a dreamer but I am not the only one.

By the way, some people say that size doesn’t matter. I ain’t one of those.

SOLAR BLANKET

What Saudi Arabia’s 200 GW solar power plant would look like—if placed in your neighborhood

Obsession

Energy Shocks

April 01, 2018

Saudi Arabia has a plan to wean its economy off oil. In the biggest sign of what the future of the Gulf state would look like, Saudi Arabia’s crown prince, Mohammed Bin Salman, has signed a memorandum of understanding with Japanese multinational Softbank to build 200 GW of solar power by 2030 at a cost of $200 billion.

These are eye-popping numbers. If built, that solar-power plant will be about 200 times the size of the biggest solar plant operating today. It would more than triple Saudi Arabia’s capacity to produce electricity, from about 77 GW today.

With current technology, solar panels capable of generating 200 GW would likely cover 5,000 sq km—an area larger than the the world’s largest cities.

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No it is not an April’s Joke. Go there and read. More next week.

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Once renewables get a bite of the apple eating it down to the core does not take long. I know that is a really bad metaphor, but right now besides doing my happy dance it is the best I can come up with.

https://arstechnica.com/science/2018/03/renewables-conservation-start-pushing-fossil-fuels-off-the-us-grid/?comments=1&post=35009197

US electricity use drops, renewables push fossil fuels out of the mix

2017 saw both coal and natural gas use decline.

Former Vice President Dick Cheney once said that “Conservation may be a sign of personal virtue, but it is not a sufficient basis for a sound, comprehensive energy policy.” But in the US, increased energy efficiency has helped drive a drop in total electricity use. That, combined with the rise of renewable power, caused the use of both coal and natural gas to decline last year.

The changes, according to the Energy Information Agency, are relatively small. Total electric generation last year was down 1.5 percent compared to the year before, a drop of 105,000 GigaWatt-hours. But both coal and natural gas saw declines that were even larger. Coal use was down by 2.5 percent, a smaller decline than it has seen in many recent years. But the numbers for its future aren’t promising; no new coal plants were opened, and 6.3 Gigawatts of coal capacity were retired in 2017.

Continuing recent trends, 9.3GW of natural gas capacity were brought online, although that was partly offset by the retirement of 4.0GW of older gas plants. Despite the additional capacity, however, natural gas use was also down, dropping by nearly 8 percent.

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Go there and read. More next week.

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I have said for 30 years, storing nuclear waste onsite is dumb and dangerous. Especially at nuclear power plants. Yes the waste is dangerous and proper precautions must be taken. YES accidents will happen. But how many Fukushimas do you want to see. Melt downs and other disasters are really really bad, but how much worse are they with 1000s of tons of radioactive waste present. Yes, I think they should open Yucca Mountain as well.

https://www.forbes.com/sites/jamesconca/2018/03/06/will-we-actually-get-a-place-to-store-our-nuclear-waste/#283213a023a0

 

Will We Actually Get A Place To Store Our Nuclear Waste?

, I write about nuclear, energy and the environment

It certainly looks like it. At the end of February, the United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission accepted Holtec International’s license application for its proposed consolidated interim storage facility for spent nuclear fuel, called HI-STORE CIS.

To be located in southeastern New Mexico near Carlsbad, the facility would store spent nuclear fuel, which is better referred to as slightly used nuclear fuel, until a final disposal facility is built or until we build our new fast reactors that will burn it, or we recycle it into new fuel.

Reactor fuel usually spends five years in the reactor, after which about 5% of the energy in the fuel is used, but fission products of the reactions have built-up to the point where the fuel must be replaced. After leaving the reactor, the spent fuel usually spends about 5 years in spent fuel pools of water, until heat and radiation have decreased sufficiently to allow the fuel to be passively cooled in a dry cask (see 1,2,3).

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Go there and read. More next week.

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