Democrats Want Climate Debate – Is it to late

I do not believe this article needs much comment. The Polluters may have WON. But in winning for profits have they lost for humanity, I guess I am just a little bummed today. This article was published on my birthday last year.

https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-018-07617-1

NEWS

Greenland is losing ice at fastest rate in 350 years

Vast ice sheet’s dramatic transformation revealed by ice cores, satellite data and climate models.

Ice melt across Greenland is accelerating, and the volume of meltwater running into the ocean has reached levels that are probably unprecedented in seven or eight millennia. The findings, drawn from ice cores stretching back almost 350 years, show a sharp spike in melting over the past two decades.

Previous studies have shown record melting on parts of Greenland’s ice, but the latest analysis includes the first estimate of historical runoff across the entire ice sheet. The results, published on 5 December in Nature1, show that the runoff rate over the past two decades was 33% higher than the twentieth-century average, and 50% higher than in the pre-industrial era.

“The melting is not just increasing — it’s accelerating,” says lead author Luke Trusel, a glaciologist at Rowan University in Glassboro, New Jersey. “And that’s a key concern for the future.

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Go there and cry. Imean, go there and read. More next week.

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CWLP Is Doomed – Coal will strangle it to death

A “multi-post” that I rarely ever do any more. But this issue is important so first my recommendations, first published on Facebook, and then the facts on the ground.

CWLP IS Doomed

If the members of the City Council of Springfield had any sense at all (and guts/leadership) they would:

1/ Tell IBEW 193 to retrain the workers at Dallman 1 2 and 3 in Solar and Wind
2/ They would close Dallman 1 2 and 3
3/ They would put out a notice for proposals to gasify Dallman
4/ They would take the savings and invest it in renewables
5/ They would ask the County to drop their ridiculous zoning rules for wind farms so we could have a wind farm in Sangamon county

But instead they will live in the 1900s and like Trump demand coal for a fuel source no matter what.

First the SJ-R

https://www.sj-r.com/news/20190507/report-recommends-cwlp-retire-its-three-oldest-power-units-move-away-from-coal

Report recommends CWLP retire its three oldest power units, move away from coal

In a much-anticipated report, an energy consulting firm is recommending that City Water, Light and Power retire three of its four coal-fired power generators “as soon as feasible” while offering the utility a roadmap to a less coal-dependent future.

The Energy Authority (TEA), which was retained by the city last year to map out a plan for the utility’s power generation for the next 20 years, released the 84-page “integrated resource plan” on Monday and gave a presentation to members of the Springfield City Council.

The firm recommended that CWLP retire Dallman units 1, 2 and 3 by as early as 2020 after finding that “no scenario economically retained these units.”

The results are not much of a surprise given the age of the units and the current state of the energy market, which has been upended by the rise of natural gas and the increasing affordability of renewable energy. For coal-dependent utilities like CWLP, it has not been easy to keep up.

“One of the things that we’ve been saying for quite some time is that coal-fired units basically can’t compete very well in the market, they’re not competitive in the current market,” said CWLP chief utility engineer Doug Brown. “So this report basically confirms all of that.”

Then the Illinois Times.

https://illinoistimes.com/article-21209-consultant-retire-three-of-cwlp%E2%80%99s-coal-fired-plants.html

Thursday, May 9, 2019 12:05 am

Consultant: Retire three of CWLP’s coal-fired plants

How can Springfield’s City Water, Light and Power (CWLP) best provide electrical power to meet the community’s future energy needs? Retiring Dallman Units 1, 2 and 3 coal-fired plants, increasing the use of renewable energy and expanding energy efficiency are some of the recommendations included in a recently released report.

Last year the city hired The Energy Authority (TEA) to develop an Integrated Resource Plan (IRP). Kevin Glake from TEA presented the results of the comprehensive study to the city council on May 6 at a meeting of the Public Utilities Committee. Anyone who uses electricity generated by CWLP or cares about the future of the city’s public utility should be interested in this plan.

Public comments are being accepted now through June 3, and a public open house is scheduled for 5-7 p.m. May 20 at the Lincoln Public Library. More information and the complete plan are available online at https://cwlp.com/IRP.aspx. Comments can be emailed to IRP@cwlp.com or mailed to CWLP General Office, ATTN: CWLP IRP, 800 E. Monroe St., Springfield, 62701.

https://illinoistimes.com/article-21312-letting-go.html

Thursday, June 13, 2019 12:19 am

Letting go

Springfield ponders cutting back on coal

t’s not a welcome message in council chambers.

“They came back with exactly what everyone on the city council knows,” Ward 1 Ald. Chuck Redpath declared at a May 28 committee-of-the-whole meeting, joining colleagues in criticizing the report issued by The Energy Authority. “The point is, we can’t just…go down without a fight. We’re talking about getting rid of two, maybe three, of our plants, and it’s going to be detrimental to our ratepayers. It’s going to be detrimental because, eventually, you are going to have to go out on the net, and buy off the net – the grid – and then we’re going to be subjected to whatever prices we get stuck with if we’re down to one plant. We’ve got to start thinking outside the box and find a better way.”

And so Redpath and other aldermen cling to coal, even as they talk about new courses. Those opposed to coal have a simple response to complaints about a report that contains no surprises.

“They’re not learning anything new because nothing has changed in six years in terms of the economics of those old units,” says Andy Knott, senior campaign representative for the Sierra Club. “They don’t want to look at the facts and the reality and make the best decisions for the ratepayers.”

“They’re too old”

“Integrated resource plan,” a tag invented in the 1980s, is the official title of the study that’s drawing ire from aldermen. The planning process is supposed to help utilities figure out long-term economics. Thirty-three states, but not Illinois, require utilities to prepare IRPs that are subject to review by state regulators.

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Go there and read sadly/ More next week…

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People Who Deny Climate Change Have Always Blamed Cows – It turns out it is the farmers that raise them

So after Frackers and their flares and leaks, Farmers and Fertilizer manufacturers are the greatest danger to the planet. CO2 doesn’t even compare to methane. It is 10 times more powerful. So next time you see a farmer, thank them for THAT.

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2019/06/190606183254.htm

Science News
from research organizations

Fertilizer plants emit 100 times more methane than reported

Date:
June 6, 2019
Source:
Cornell University
Summary:
Emissions of methane from the industrial sector have been vastly underestimated, researchers have found.

Emissions of methane from the industrial sector have been vastly underestimated, researchers from Cornell University and Environmental Defense Fund have found.

Using a Google Street View car equipped with a high-precision methane sensor, the researchers discovered that methane emissions from ammonia fertilizer plants were 100 times higher than the fertilizer industry’s self-reported estimate. They also were substantially higher than the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimate for all industrial processes in the United States.

“We took one small industry that most people have never heard of and found that its methane emissions were three times higher than the EPA assumed was emitted by all industrial production in the United States,” said John Albertson, co-author and professor of civil and environmental engineering. “It shows us that there’s a huge gap between a priori estimates and real-world measurements.”

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Go there and read. More next week.

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Carbon Taxes, Will They Work – Will they work in time

Can making the world pay the true cost of dirty energy really be implemented!? What would the world do in the face of energy “riots” like what happens in congress when legislators try to pass climate legislation of any kind? One can only imagine what would happen if those protests moved to the street. That is the question this article raises.

https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2019/04/09/magazine/climate-change-politics-economics.html?fbclid=IwAR1g3oNMa_0ha-kjJdx1MHcjifTV2sfTW1Sj_yVGoq_4GsYuJsuDwDbnZgg

The Problem With Putting a
Price on the End of the World

Economists have workable policy ideas
for addressing climate change. But
what if they’re politically impossible?

In a Saturday afternoon in early December, inside a soaring auditorium on the campus of Stockholm University, William Nordhaus gave the crowning lecture of his half-century career as an economist. The occasion was his acceptance of the Nobel Prize in economics, which Nordhaus, a trim, soft-spoken Yale professor, had been jointly awarded. The title of the lecture was “Climate Change: The Ultimate Challenge for Economics.”

As a young professor on a sabbatical in Vienna in the mid-1970s, Nordhaus happened to share an office with an environmental researcher, who helped spark his interest in the emerging issue. While there, Nordhaus came up with the target, now famous, of holding global warming to two degrees Celsius above preindustrial levels. He chose the target, as he recently explained to me, because he believed that the earth has experienced similar fluctuations before and that humans had tolerated them.

The Nobel was a tribute to the originality and influence of his work developing economic models that help people think about how to slow climate change. It also seemed to be a cri de coeur from the Swedish academics who choose the economics laureates: Climate change is a threat like no other. Fatal heat waves, droughts, wildfires and severe hurricanes are all becoming more common, and they are almost certain to accelerate. Avoiding horrific damage, as a United Nations panel of scientists recently concluded, will require changes in human behavior that have “no documented historic precedent.”

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Go there and read. More next week.

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Oil Sands Suck – This story gets more ghastly by the day

First a word to New York Times Magazine, I was going to run your article on Pricing Catastrophe On Apocalypse or what ever you were calling it. You however informed me that my “free articles were over” and wanted a subscription from me. Well intentioned I am sure but NO ARTICLE here for you today.

 

Anyone who has read here for long knows that I think the tar sands operations in Canada are crime against humanity. Everyone involved should be charged, tried convicted and put in jail. I personally believe it is worse than open air Nuclear Bomb Testing. Really!

https://www.nationalgeographic.com/environment/2019/04/alberta-canadas-tar-sands-is-growing-but-indigenous-people-fight-back/

This is the world’s most destructive oil operation—and it’s growing

Indigenous people and environmentalists want to prevent the expansion of Canada’s oil sands development, and the water and air pollution that come with it.

As the world’s largest industrial project, the scale of Alberta’s tar sands operations is hard to grasp. Imagine driving on a highway and to either side behind a thin screen of trees is a vast industrial landscape as far as the eye can see. Now imagine 500 miles of that highway.

If Alberta, with its population of four million people, was a country it would be the fifth largest oil producing nation. While it produces conventional oil, most comes from the Alberta oil sands, the world’s third largest proven oil reserve at 170 billion barrels.

The local and national Canadian governments are pushing to expand oil extraction operations in the vast tar sands region, which already has a footprint roughly the size of England, even as they promote action on climate change on the world stage. And although the relationships between local people and the extraction operations are complex, involving jobs and services, a growing chorus of environmentalists and indigenous people are speaking out against pollution and degradation in the oil sands. Many are digging in for a fight against proposed expansions, including a major pipeline project.

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Go there and read. Warning – Pictures are gross. More next week.

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Lets Start A Wall of SHAME : I think it should be in Love Canal

Seriously, if Love Canal wouldn’t take it then there are Super Fund sites like Rocky Flats Weapons Factory that would. We could put up honorary members like the originators and manufacturers of Agent Orange, Whose ever idea leaded gasoline was, maybe the inventor and manufacturers of Mustard Gas. But the people who proposed and actually carried out atomic fracking must go near the top of the list.

https://www.pennlive.com/news/2018/02/nuclear_bomb_pennsylvania_proj.html

How about setting off a nuclear bomb to mine Pa.’s natural gas? It was considered

Fifty years ago Pennsylvania officials were presented a plan to detonate a nuclear device below north-central Pennsylvania. While the project never got past the planning stages it was part of a larger plan to use nuclear bombs in natural gas extraction. (Pennsylvania State Archives)

Editor’s note: This story has been update to fix broken art on this article.

HARRISBURG — In May 1966, Columbia Gas and the federal Atomic Energy Commission presented an audacious plan to a representative of the Governor’s Science Advisory Committee: A proposal to detonate a nuclear bomb more powerful than the one dropped on Hiroshima 3,500 feet below north-central Pennsylvania.

“At the present stage, this proposal involves a detonation of a ‘shot’ of perhaps 20,000 tons TNT equivalent at a location on the boundary between Centre and Clinton counties,” wrote Louis Roddis Jr., the governor’s representative in his report.

The goal was to use the nuclear blast to create a chamber that could then be filled with pressurized natural gas. Named Project Ketch, the proposal was an offshoot of another nuclear explosive-powered idea, Project Gasbuggy, which called on increasing natural gas production by detonating nuclear bombs underground to fracture rock deposits — nuclear fracking.

From the get-go, however, Roddis noted there would be challenges to the proposal. Safety considerations, he wrote, fell under three categories: seismic problems, immediate radioactivity problems, and long-term radioactivity problems.

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Go there and read. More next week.

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More Americans Fear Climate Change – But they won’t pay anything to stop it

I have mixed feelings about this article. On one level the Corporations and the international concerns that are most responsible for Global Warming should be MADE to pay the price. Very little should be paid by Common People. Still Common People drive cars, heat their homes and work in places that pollute so they should pay a little. It’s the willingness to pay that bothers me. We should all be pulling in this together.

https://www.theatlantic.com/science/archive/2019/01/do-most-americans-believe-climate-change-polls-say-yes/580957/

A surging number of Americans understand that climate change is happening and believe that it could harm their family and the country, according to a new poll from Yale and George Mason University.

But at the same time, Americans are not any more willing to pay money to fight climate change than they were three years ago, says another new poll, conducted by the Associated Press and the University of Chicago.

The polls suggest that public opinion about climate change is in a state of upheaval. Even as President Donald Trump has cast doubt on climate change, most Americans have rejected his position. Record numbers of Americans describe climate change as a real and present danger. Nearly a quarter of the country says they already see its tidings in their day-to-day life, saying “personal observations of weather” helped convince them of climate change’s reality.

Despite this increasing acceptance, there is no clear political path forward. Last year, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change warned that “rapid, far-reaching and unprecedented changes” were needed to keep the Earth’s temperature from rising 1.5 degrees Celsius. Such a transformation would be, in other words, expensive. But almost 70 percent of Americans say they wouldn’t pay $10 every month to help cool the warming planet.

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Go there and read. More next week.

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COAL – The gift that keeps on giving .. death

I have a severe head cold this week and last so I will be brief. The negative effects of burning coal will be with us for at least 100 years. Maybe more if humans make it that far.

https://www.sj-r.com/news/20181128/report-groundwater-contamination-at-coal-fired-power-plants-across-illinois

Report: Groundwater contamination at coal-fired power plants across Illinois

Coal ash disposal sites throughout Illinois, including at City Water, Light and Power’s Dallman Power Station in Springfield, have contaminated surrounding groundwater supplies, according to a report released Wednesday by a consortium of environmental groups.

CWLP officials responded that the city’s ash ponds do not pose a risk to Springfield’s water supply.

The report’s results are based on data sets made public for the first time earlier this year as part of new federal regulations of coal ash, a toxic byproduct of coal-fired power generation that is commonly stored in unlined ponds or landfills near the plants. The report by the Environmental Integrity Project, Earthjustice, Prairie Rivers Network and the Sierra Club found toxic pollutants emanating from 22 of 24 coal ash dump sites for which the data became available in March.

The coalition called for new legislative standards that would protect groundwater and regulate the closure of coal ash ponds to be drafted next year.

“Illinois needs to act now to strengthen rules that protect the public from coal ash,” said Andrew Rehn, a water resources engineer from Prairie Rivers Network. “We’re reaching a turning point as Energy companies are proposing to leave coal ash in floodplains of rivers and exposed to groundwater. We need stronger rules that provide permanent protection with a financial guarantee and give the public a voice in these decisions.”

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Go there and read. More next week if I live.

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Illinois Promotes Oil Train Crashes – Wham bam thank you ma’am

Following Dotards move to deregulate oil trains, Illinois bit hook ,line and sinker. Let me be clear, this deregulation will cause accidents and it will take lives. Let’s just hope a crash does not happen in Chicago or East St. Louis.

Putting On The Brakes: Transportation Department Rolls Back Oil Train Regulation

October 24, 2018
Madelyn Beck

The U.S. Department of Transportation has removed a regulation meant to force trains carrying crude oil or other flammable liquids to adopt electronic braking technology by 2020. Electronically Controlled Pneumatic brakes — or ECP brakes — are meant to stop train cars and keep them from slamming into each other when a train derails.

Illinois is both a train hub and an oil train hub, and the regulatory change will have several effects in the state.

One is cost savings to the railroad industry. According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, “the expected costs of requiring ECP brakes would be significantly higher than the expected benefits of the requirement.”

It would cost the industry between $375 and $554 million to install the braking systems in the next four to five years, hundreds of millions more than it would save in damages, according to the department. That’s an update from when this was first calculated under the Obama administration, which found that the benefits may outweigh costs. The change can partially be explained by reduced oil train traffic in general due to pipelines and lower oil prices between 2015 and 2017. Fewer trains means fewer potential accidents and damages.

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Go there and read so much more. More next week.

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Sparkling Bottled Water Company Cleans Ocean – It is only fair to give industry credit

In all fairness the headline should read TRYS to clean ocean. Why do I even cover this story? Well plastic is a really really energy intensive industry. Second we made a big point of the Dutch Boy’s attempt to clean up the north Pacific Gyre. So it is only far to point out when industry is trying too. Though to be fair Sparkling Water tackled a much smaller  (some would say manageable) problem.

https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/sodastream-builds-massive-marine-device-to-collect-plastic-waste-from-the-ocean-off-the-coast-of-honduras-300726688.html

SodaStream Builds Massive Marine Device to Collect Plastic Waste from the Ocean off the Coast of Honduras


News provided by

SodaStream International Ltd.

Oct 15, 2018, 09:00 ET

CEO Daniel Birnbaum Leads 300 SodaStream Executives from Around the World, Local Youth and Environmental NGOs to Clean Caribbean Sea and Roatán Shores

AIRPORT CITY, Israel, Oct. 15, 2018 /PRNewswire/ — SodaStream International Ltd. (NASDAQ: SODA) today announced the launch of the “Holy Turtle” – a massive ocean contraption designed to clean plastic waste from open waters. The innovative device will be initially piloted today in the Caribbean Sea, off the coast of Roatán, Honduras, as part of a bold ocean clean-up lead by CEO Daniel Birnbaum. This is the first-known attempt of a commercial company to undertake a physical clean-up of trash from open waters. SodaStream’s clean-up delegation includes 150 SodaStream executives from 45 countries, international environmental specialists, NGO Plastic Soup Foundation and hundreds of children from 7 different local schools with local Honduran government officials.

The “Holy Turtle” is a 1,000 ft. long floating unit designed to be gently towed by two marine vessels along kilometers of open waters. The contraption is uniquely engineered to capture floating waste while its large vent holes act to protect wildlife. The device design was inspired by oil spill containment systems and was developed by ABBCO in Florida, USA, who are leading experts in oil spill containment.

SodaStream’s Roatán initiative was inspired by a video filmed by Caroline Powers in October 2017 featured on BBC highlighting underwater photography of a floating trash patch off the Caribbean coast of Roatán. Moved by the disturbing video, SodaStream CEO, Daniel Birnbaum, himself an experienced skipper and naval officer, lead a search for a solution to clean up this floating waste. Birnbaum noted, “We can’t clean up all the plastic waste on the planet, but we each need to do whatever we can. The most important thing is to commit ourselves to stop using single-use plastic.”

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Go there and read. Have some hope. More next week.

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