Mist Showers Conserve An Amazing Amount Of Water And Energy – How come I never heard of it

I am embarrassed to say that I have never heard of a mist shower. So I am putting this up as a very very long public service announcement. But if everything it says is true, I gotta get me one. It should be amazing.

https://www.lowtechmagazine.com/2019/10/mist-showers-sustainable-decadence.html

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The Carbon Footprint of the Daily Shower

The shower doesn’t get much attention in the context of climate change. However, like airplanes, cars, and heating systems, it has become a very wasteful and carbon-intensive way to provide for a basic need: washing the body. Each day, many of us pour roughly 70 litres of hot water over our bodies in order to be “clean”.

This practice requires two scarce resources: water and energy. More attention is given to the showers’ high water consumption, but energy use is just as problematic. Hot water production accounts for the second most significant use of energy in many homes (after heating), and much of it is used for showering. Water treatment and distribution also use lots of energy.

In contrast to the energy used for space heating, which has decreased during the last decades, the energy used for hot water in households has been steadily growing. One of the reasons is that people are showering longer and more frequently, and using increasingly powerful shower heads. For example, in the Netherlands from 1992 to 2016, shower frequency increased from 0.69 to 0.72 showers per day, shower duration increased from 8.2 to 8.9 minutes, and the average water flow increased from 7.5 to 8.6 litres per minute. [1]

In many industrial societies it’s now common to shower at least once per day

 

 

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Go there and read and read and read. I may never take a shower again. More next week.

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Rivian Could Be The Car Marker Of The Future – or a Billion Dollar bust

It is so hard to imagine that Bloomington/Normal may be the next Detroit. All that glamor. All those people. Well all those robots and some new people. All the international stylin.  All that money which means banks. It could also be well… a mirage. Still, Amazon is ordering vehicles already. Ford is the leader in self driving cars. This could be amazing. I can hold my breath for 2 or 3 years I guess.

https://www.cnbc.com/2019/02/15/rivian-announces-700-million-investment-round-led-by-amazon.html

Autos

Electric truck start-up Rivian announces $700 million investment round led by Amazon

  • Amazon led a $700 million round of funding in Rivian, a Michigan-based electric vehicle startup.
  • Rivian plans to launch an electric pickup and electric SUV in the U.S. in 2020.

https://media.ford.com/content/fordmedia/fna/us/en/news/2019/04/24/rivian-500-million-investment-ford.html

Rivian Announces $500 Million Investment from Ford; Partnership to Deliver All-New Ford Battery Electric Vehicle

  • Ford and Rivian form strategic partnership through $500 million minority investment
  • Ford to build all-new battery electric vehicle using Rivian’s flexible skateboard platform
  • The investment is subject to customary regulatory approval; Ford’s Joe Hinrichs to join Rivian’s board of directors

https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/rivian-announces-350-million-investment-from-cox-automotive-300915155.html

Rivian Announces $350 Million Investment from Cox Automotive


News provided by

Rivian

Sep 10, 2019, 09:41 ET

PLYMOUTH, Mich., Sept. 10, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — Rivian today announced an equity investment of $350 million from global automotive services company Cox Automotive. In addition to the investment, the companies will explore partnership opportunities in service operations, logistics, and digital retailing.

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The Things I Could Have Posted Today – Trump denies California’s ability to set fuel standards or Iran’s air strikes on the Saudi oil fields but

I chose to post about something more radical. INFRASTRUCTURE. The idea behind “keep it in the ground” is so subversive. That’s what the XL Pipeline was all about and why the itt was so hotly contested. If you can’t bring fossil fuels to the market; What good are they? Well, New York tried to do it through legislation, and things got hot right away.

https://www.globalenergyinstitute.org/epa-proposes-reject-new-yorks-keep-it-ground-scheme

May 28, 2019

EPA Proposes to Reject New York’s “Keep it in the Ground” Scheme

Heath Knakmuhs

Last September, I wrote about one of the boldest efforts yet by New York to halt energy infrastructure in its tracks.  This effort utilized a little-known provision of the Clean Air Act – the “good neighbor” provision at Section 126(b) – to argue that hundreds of energy-related and manufacturing facilities located across nine “upwind” states should be subject to additional, costly controls and limitations in order to assist New York in meeting its air quality obligations under 2008 and 2015 national ozone air quality standards.  Last week, the Federal Register published the proposal by the Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) to reject New York’s far-reaching petition, providing momentary relief to the thousands of workers across nine states that found themselves within the crosshairs of New York’s “keep it in the ground” ideology.

With this week’s EPA action, the comment period is now officially open for the public to weigh-in on whether it supports – or opposes – New York’s attempt to curtail or shut down legitimate business activities across Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and West Virginia.  If you live in any one of these states, and particularly if you live near or work at any of the many facilities targeted (pages 33-42) by New York’s petition, now is the time for you to speak up.

Take a good look at the map below to see the locations of the many facilities targeted by New York’s petition.  Not surprisingly, power plants and refineries are major targets, but so are countless other facility types.  From a Pennsylvania facility that produces renewable energy from municipal waste to steel plants in Michigan to a box factory in rural Virginia, New York’s petition contorts the Clean Air Act well beyond the intended “major source or group of stationary sources” which are typically the subject of a state petition under Section 126.  Even a facility in western Indiana at Purdue University – which is more than 400 miles away from New York’s westernmost border – is targeted as a “bad neighbor” by New York’s complaint.

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Two Weeks Ago I Said Trees Would Beat Global Global Warming

This week’s articles says – Not Likely. I say the trees are a good start. The point is that some people argue for trees or solar panels in the desert for instance. But the desert is an ecosystem that trees or solar panels would disrupt. Deserts are not “throw away” ecosystems. So we can only deploy so much of each. This is why i think geothermal is the ultimate solution.

http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/crux/2019/07/10/reforestation-climate-change-plant-trees/#.XS870XtOnct

planting trees
Planting trees, while beneficial to the planet, is not an easy solution to climate change. (Credit: Janelle Lugge/Shutterstock)

Last week, a new study in the journal Science highlighted the role forests could play in tackling climate change. Researchers estimated that by restoring forests to their maximum potential, we could cut down atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) by 25 percent — a move that would take us back to levels not seen in over a century. Though the study brings hope in the fight against climate change, other experts warn the solution is not that simple.

The study, led by scientists at ETH-Zürich, Switzerland, determined the planet has 0.9 billion hectares of land available to hold more trees — an area the size of the continental U.S. Converting those areas into forests would be a game-changer for climate change, the authors suggested.

“[The study] is probably the best assessment we have to date of how much land could support tree cover on our planet,” says Robin Chazdon, a forest ecologist and professor emeritus at the University of Connecticut not involved in the study, But she is quick to point out that restoring forests is not as simple as it sounds.

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Reducing Our Energy Consumption Is Job One – Here are some ways to do it

In a way the goal for a sustainable planet has always been peak energy, peak people and peak consumption at stable levels. These are ways towards peak energy. I suppose it is the easiest of the three.

https://www.cnbc.com/2019/02/14/homes-that-produce-their-own-energy-might-be-the-future-and-california-is-inching-closer.html

Powering the Future

Net-zero energy homes have arrived — and are shaking up the US housing market

Noah Higgins-Dunn

@higginsdunn

Key Points
  • In California most new homes and multi-family residential buildings up to three stories high will include solar rooftop panels beginning in 2020.
  • Net-zero energy homes can produce as much energy as they consume and are built to optimize energy efficiency through airtight construction of roofs, walls, windows and foundations.
  • The U.S. has an estimated 5,000 net-zero energy single-family homes today; California could add 100,000 a year.

In 2013 De Young Properties built a single-family house in central California that defied nearly three generations worth of homes the family business had constructed. It was a net-zero energy building — it had the potential to produce as much energy as it would consume in a year. De Young didn’t build another one for four years, but within that period the company refined its designs to be more energy-efficient and technology-focused and drove down costs.

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Carlinville Got Solar Going On – Blackburn College and Carlinville School District seek solar

This is so amazing. This is everything I hoped for 30 years ago or so. We do not need coal. We do not need oil. We do not need natural gas. All we need is ourselves.

Shining a Light on the Solar Array

https://www.cusd1.com/apps/pages/index.jsp?uREC_ID=1552877&type=d&pREC_ID=1678920

School Board discusses solar energy

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This Is How A Dying Industry Behaves – They try to steal every dime they can get before they fail

Next up, they will try to get the government to by their excess capacity. Oh They  already ARE, through Nuclear subsidies.

https://www.citizensutilityboard.org/blog/

A thing called capacity—and why it could be devastating to our power bills

When CUB threw its support behind the Clean Energy Jobs Act, the watchdog said one of the biggest reasons is an ongoing battle with fossil fuel generators in a special electricity market called the capacity market. If we don’t do something, this could cost most electric customers in the state up to $500 million a year in higher electric bills.

You may not know it, but EVERYONE pays for “capacity” on their electric bills. Here’s what you need to know—and why you should support the Clean Energy Jobs Act.

What is capacity?

Not only do you pay for the power you use now, but you also pay for power you could use in the future. Capacity refers to extra payments consumers give power plant operators for the commitment to have enough electricity available if demand suddenly spikes. (Think of a hot summer afternoon, when everyone blasts the AC.)

The PJM power grid stretches from Illinois to the East Coast.

The price for capacity for ComEd customers is determined through auctions run by PJM Interconnection, the power grid operator for northern Illinois and all or part of 12 other states and Washington, D.C.. (Ameren’s market is run by a different power grid operator.)

How does capacity affect my bill?
For most customers, capacity charges are embedded in the electricity supply charge on your power bill. While actual electricity prices have been relatively low in recent years, capacity has become a bigger and bigger part of your bill, and is now roughly 21 percent of the supply charge, according to the Illinois Commerce Commission. (By the way, alternative energy suppliers as well as ComEd buy electricity on this market. So you won’t escape capacity charges by changing suppliers.)

CUB has long said that capacity market rules are stacked against consumers, causing us to pay higher bills for more capacity than we actually need. But a new plan pushed by PJM and fossil fuel generators could make it even worse.

Why do generators want to change the rules?

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Japan Forsakes Nukes – I thought it would never happen

Many people have commented on the irony of the only ever to be nuked to be so heavily depemdent on nuclear power. It is difficult to be a well developed or advanced economy without many energy resources. While this is a baby step it does bode well for the future.

https://www.cnbc.com/2019/01/18/orsted-signs-agreement-to-work-on-offshore-wind-projects-in-japan-.html?__source=yahoo%7Cfinance%7Cheadline%7Cstory%7C&par=yahoo&yptr=yahoo

Danish firm Orsted signs agreement to work on offshore wind projects in Japan

  • Orsted is a world leader in wind energy and built the world’s first offshore wind facility in 1991.
  • Friday’s news represents the firm’s first involvement with the Japanese offshore wind energy sector.

Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings (TEPCO) has signed a memorandum of understanding with Danish energy business Orsted to work together on offshore wind projects.

In an announcement Friday, TEPCO said that it had been “exploring offshore wind business opportunities” in both Japan and overseas. Orsted is a world leader in wind energy and built the world’s first offshore wind facility in 1991.

TEPCO said that the two companies would work on the Choshi offshore wind project. In November 2018, TEPCO announced that it had been carrying out a seabed survey to assess the feasibility of the project. They will also work towards what was described as a “strategic partnership for broader collaboration.”

 

 

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50,000 Homes Powered By Solar In Texas – If we would have done this this 30 years ago

It really all comes down to the fossil fuel companies like Exxon. If they would have admitted that Global Warming was happening, like their research showed, then we could have been doing this in the 1980s. As it is now, we are in a horse race and we are losing. Still I try to be positive, this is happening in Texas, red of red states, so there is hope that this example will pick up the pace.

https://www.chron.com/business/energy/article/Construction-begins-on-largest-utility-scale-12507169.php

Construction begins on largest utility-scale solar project in Texas

Updated

California-based 174 Power Global is breaking ground Thursday on the largest utility-scale solar project in Texas, the company said.

The project is on 1,500 acres of private land in Pecos County, in West Texas, and area that has become a hub of utility-scale solar projects. It’s 236 megawatt capacity can power 50,000 homes a year, and all of its power will be sold to Austin Energy, a utility for the city of Austin. The project will cost $260 million.

174 Power Global is a subsidiary of South Korea’s Hanwha Energy.  174 Power Global has focused on developing solar projects on land without competing interests. The project in Pecos County, for instance, has not oil and gas development and the salinity of the property’s water prevents it from being used for livestock or agriculture.

RELATED: Solar power emerges where oil and gas once dominated

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California Mandates Solar In Residential Housing

I know I posted about this before, but this time they made it final. So this is a way to celebrate. 49 States to go..

California Becomes 1st State to Require Solar Panels on New Homes. Here’s How It Will Reduce Utility Costs

Natasha Bach
Fortune

https://finance.yahoo.com/news/california-becomes-1st-state-require-181816746.html

California has taken the final step to be the first state in the nation to require solar panels on new homes.

The California Building Standards Commission on Wednesday unanimously upheld a May 9 decision to require solar panels on homes up to three stories. The requirement goes into effect Jan. 1, 2020.

Currently, just 9% of single-family detached homes in California have solar panels. But as the state pushes toward decreasing greenhouse gas emissions—and with a 2045 goal to transition to a fully renewable energy grid devoid of fossil fuels—this rule will help accelerate that progress. Aside from energy efficiency, solar panels reduce ozone-damaging household emissions, most of which come from natural gas-generated electricity.

In the long-term, solar panels benefit homeowners. While the upfront cost for building a home will increase—by as much as $10,000, according to the California Energy Commission, or as much as $25,000-30,000, according to home construction company Meritage Homes—long-term energy bill savings will be considerable.

Reuters reports that a homeowner could expect to save $19,000 in energy costs over 30 years, while Meritage Homes predicts reduced operating costs could amount to as much as $50,000-60,000 over a 25-year period.

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It is OK to dance. Go there and read. More next week.

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