More next Fall. HAHA Took me three extra months to return. Sorry did not EVEN think about posting until now.
First, of let me say I am now cancer free. Second, let me say that taking a break away from posting because of the cancer and the cancer treatment left me fairly lazy, so it is tough getting back to writing these posts. The thought has occurred to me that I might retire at the end of the year. Anyway it is good to be back for now. So without further adieu:
In one tiny German town, nobody worries about energy bills
By FRANK JORDANS yesterday
FELDHEIM, Germany (AP) — Europeans are opening their energy bills with trepidation these days, bracing for hefty price hikes as utility companies pass on the surging cost of natural gas, oil and electricity tied to Russia’s war in Ukraine. Many are trying to conserve by turning down the heat and shutting off lights this winter.
Not so the people of Feldheim, population 130.
Located about an hour and a half south of Berlin, this modest but well-kept village has been energy self-sufficient for more than a decade.
A bold experiment launched in the mid-1990s saw Feldheim erect a handful of wind turbines to provide electricity to the village. Then it built a local grid, solar panels, battery storage and more turbines. A biogas plant put up to keep piglets warm was expanded, providing extra income to the farmers’ cooperative, which pumps hot water through a village-wide central heating system. A hydrogen production facility is also under construction.
Come on! If a little tiny town can do it, we all can.
It’s true I have been very negative here lately. Though Thanksgiving has past, I should be thankful for what I have and for the Good Things going on around the world. So here is one. Also I get into big trouble over using pictures, but this really is a visual story so I am including one.
The underwater ‘kites’ generating electricity as they move
Tim Ecott – Business reporter, Tórshavn
·7 min read
A pair of sleek, winged machines are “flying” – or at least swimming – beneath the dark waters of the Faroe Islands in the North Atlantic.
Known as “sea dragons” or “tidal kites”, they look like aircraft, but these are in fact high-tech tidal turbines, generating electricity from the power of the ocean.
The two kites – with a five-metre (16ft) wingspan – move underwater in a figure-of-eight pattern, absorbing energy from the running tide. They are tethered to the fjord seabed by 40-metre metal cables.
Their movement is generated by the lift exerted by the water flow – just as a plane flies by the force of air flowing over its wings.
Other forms of tidal power use technology similar to terrestrial wind turbines but the kites are something different.
The moving “flight path” allows the kite to sweep a larger area at a speed several times greater than that of the underwater current. This, in turn, enables the machines to amplify the amount of energy generated by the water alone.
An on-board computer steers the kite into the prevailing current, then idles it at slack tide, maintaining a constant depth in the water column. If there were several kites working at once, the machines would be spaced far enough apart to avoid collisions.
Every once in awhile I return to CES’ residential roots. So, here is another pass. You know what I say in these situations – Buyer Beware. This site looks really really good. I think it is sexy that it is a nonprofit organization. But I have never used this organization. I am a homeowner who has made very little in the way of energy IMPROVEments – insulation, metal roof and efficient air conditioner but the furnace in my house is 20 years old. Nonetheless these people look cool.
The Zero Energy Project is a non-profit educational organization whose goal is to help home buyers, builders, designers, and real estate professionals take meaningful steps towards radically reducing carbon emissions and energy bills by building zero net energy homes and near zero energy homes. We envision the day when positive energy homes, which produce more energy than they consume, will power electric vehicles as well as homes, so that everyone can live well with less expense and without fear of energy price spikes, while greatly reducing our carbon emissions.
The mission of the Zero Energy Project is to provide information and education to prospective home buyers, builders, designers, real estate professionals and advocates about zero net energy homes and to advance the prevalence of these homes in the mainstream housing market. We seek to facilitate connections between industry professionals and buyers, remove perceived barriers to entry, and provide resources to people from all walks of life, empowering action towards a robust zero energy built environment.
We aim to provide all stakeholders with the necessary resources for understanding, designing, constructing, and selling affordable zero energy homes. We are committed to providing homebuilders, designers, and realtors with the marketing tools they need to convince their clients of the benefits of zero net energy homes.
I do not know what to say. I have never argued against Bill Nye and I do not propose to start here. If Bill Nye thinks we can beat climate change by a combination of Massive investments and New technology. Then today I believe him. Tomorrow will be something else.
Testifying before the House Committee on Homeland Security on Tuesday, Bill Nye told lawmakers that he was “scared too” about climate change, and that the U.S. needed to “invest in a big way” to solve the problem.
Nye, whose public television program “Bill Nye the Science Guy” has helped educate children in the U.S. on a wide range of scientific topics, testified on his own behalf. Asked by Rep. Al Green, D-Texas, how the nation could address climate change when so many people did not believe it was real, Nye recounted his own dealings with skeptics.
“I’ve fought this for 30 years: trying to get people to accept the science of climate change. I offered four bets to two notorious climate deniers. I offered them $10,000 that 2016 would be the hottest year on record, 2010-2020 would be the hottest decade on record. Neither one of them would take either one of the bets,” Nye responded.
He added: “They wouldn’t take the bets because they’re scared.
Go there and read happy thoughts. More next week.
We get requests for links all the time, so readers this is a link for Black Owned Businesses:
I repeat this only once. Elon Musk is a genius. His Electric Cars are also amazing and GENERALLY good for the environment, especially if charged by Solar and Wind Power. But they need some fire suppression ability because 4 hours and 30,000 gallons of water is like a major house fire. That’s is when these type of wrecks are uncommon. What happens when they are everywhere?
Then there is the whole disabling the auto pilot function. I mean Morons aren’t good for the environment either.
Two men died near Houston, Texas, on Saturday while riding in a 2019 Tesla Model S that, according to local authorities, was speeding into a turn and ended up going off the road and crashing into a tree. It took first responders four hours and more than 30,000 gallons of water to put out the resulting fire, which kept reigniting; when damaged, the lithium ion batteries in electric cars can cause fires that are very difficult to extinguish because of how they store energy. Authorities reportedly attempted to ask Tesla for advice on how to put out the fire, but it’s unclear whether they ended up getting any help.
Besides the fire, there was something especially disturbing about the crash: No one was in the driver’s seat. One of the men was in the passenger seat and the other in the rear. There has been no official confirmation that they had engaged the car’s “autopilot” feature—something that is beloved by many Tesla owners and that critics of the company say is marketed in unsafe ways—though their wives reportedly told authorities that they had been discussing the feature before leaving for their drive.
Unlike the systems that companies like Google and Uber have been developing and testing for years, Tesla’s autopilot is not completely autonomous, though it does allow the cars to accelerate, steer, and brake by themselves. The company warns drivers that they need to be behind the wheel and paying attention in case the system makes a mistake and they have to intervene. There have nevertheless been a number of serious accidents in which the autopilot feature appeared to be involved. For instance, a man died in 2018 while using the autopilot in California; data from his phone indicates that a video game had been active on the device. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration also confirmed to the New York Times in March that it is currently investigating the potential role of Tesla’s autopilot feature in 23 crashes.
While I have always said the storage is NOT the problem in renewable energy because you can always pump something like water or air during good times and discharge it in bad times. The storage of energy in moving things was always gonna be a problem and batteries were only an interim solution. Now some people are getting a handle on this problem, and I am supper EXCITED about it. This article is real techincal. Sorry.
Researchers have produced a structural battery that performs ten times better than all previous versions. It contains carbon fiber that serves simultaneously as an electrode, conductor, and load-bearing material. Their latest research breakthrough paves the way for essentially ‘massless’ energy storage in vehicles and other technology.
Researchers from Chalmers University of Technology have produced a structural battery that performs ten times better than all previous versions. It contains carbon fibre that serves simultaneously as an electrode, conductor, and load-bearing material. Their latest research breakthrough paves the way for essentially ‘massless’ energy storage in vehicles and other technology.
The batteries in today’s electric cars constitute a large part of the vehicles’ weight, without fulfilling any load-bearing function. A structural battery, on the other hand, is one that works as both a power source and as part of the structure — for example, in a car body. This is termed ‘massless’ energy storage, because in essence the battery’s weight vanishes when it becomes part of the load-bearing structure. Calculations show that this type of multifunctional battery could greatly reduce the weight of an electric vehicle.
The development of structural batteries at Chalmers University of Technology has proceeded through many years of research, including previous discoveries involving certain types of carbon fibre. In addition to being stiff and strong, they also have a good ability to store electrical energy chemically. This work was named by Physics World as one of 2018’s ten biggest scientific breakthroughs.
Go there and read. It is kinda long too. More next week.
But it is a very real question. I think it is Airplanes myself for 2 reasons. 1. Because they pollute at a high altitude (roughly 3 – 30 thousand feet) and, 2. because of an amazingly random accidental experiment after 9/11 that showed with all planes grounded our atmospheric temperature dropped a full degree. With Boats (ok large Ships) they burn something like warm asphalt, and that over water where the output can fall directly into what ever body on which they float. So essentially which is worse? High altitude kerosene or low altitude vaporized warm asphalt? I know – it makes me want to puke.
As a side note – i wish somebody would measure the net effects on global warming between Boats and Plane as opposed to co2 emissions which is awfully easy but not particularly insightful.
I am so glad this happened in England, but if it would have happened in the US I would have reported it and demanded change. Every business makes mistakes and has to correct them, if they are honest. I would like to think we in the alternative energy world were better than most. But you know that’s just a dream. After the Guardian got involved, they made it right. But then other people started speaking up.
A 94-year-old woman, who relies on a wheelchair and a daily home help, was left with a £4,000-plus bill after SSE installed a smart meter and left her previously functioning gas boiler out of action and irreparable.
In August Anita Grant, who lives alone, agreed to have the meter installed in her Harrow home.
But rather than the easy process promised in the advertisements, her son Neil says that the decision was set to cost her £3,840 for a new boiler plus £250 redecorating costs, after SSE first said it would fix it, but then denied any liability.
Only after the Observer got involved did SSE agree to cover the cost of the replacement boiler and the additional redecorating costs.
Experts say a smart meter installation should not affect a normally functioning boiler. But in recent years there have been a small but steady stream of people claiming “it happened to me, too”.
Go there and read. It’s disgraceful. More next week.
Trump doesn’t have a plan for the environment except to degrade it. Donald Trump doesn’t have a plan for energy consumption but to push coal usage and repeal regulation that encourage the switch to alternative energy sources. Joe Biden has a TRILLION dollar plan that is good for the environment and proposes to be carbon free at some point. We need sanity. We need Joe.
Former Vice President Joe Biden released a sprawling plan Tuesday to revamp American infrastructure and energy to both curb climate change and spur economic growth.
The presumptive Democratic presidential nominee’s proposal aims to achieve carbon-free power generation by 2035. As the coronavirus pandemic leaves the U.S. mired in an economic crisis, Biden said he will set out to create “millions” of union jobs that pay at least $15 per hour as the U.S. overhauls its roads, bridges, trains, auto industry and broadband system.
The plan, which comes days after a joint task force formed by the Biden and Sen. Bernie Sanders campaigns outlined a climate change agenda, sets out a more ambitious approach to developing clean energy than the Biden campaign did during the Democratic primary. It calls for $2 trillion in spending over four years, more than the $1.7 trillion the campaign previously proposed to spend over a decade.
“Even if we weren’t facing a pandemic and an economic crisis, we should be making these investments anyway,” Biden said of the plan during remarks in Delaware. He called the investments “critical” for the economy and public health.
It is rare that I have a good thing to say about any religion. Seriously, the sexism, the domination of nature, and the worship of the unknowable leaves little to praise. Same for Morgan- Stanley. When they get it right, they deserve all the praise we can afford them. So:
In a press release, the bank called the fund a “first of its kind collaboration … to find investment solutions which focus on climate change and aiding marginalized communities that are disproportionately impacted by global warming.” Examples of the fund’s “holistic” approach to climate solutions could include “early stage investments in energy efficiency software” as well as “more mature opportunities like fruit producers with water-saving hydroponic irrigation systems.”
Sister Patricia Daly, a Dominican nun from a congregation in Caldwell, New Jersey, helped create the fund. The nuns began organizing the fund in 2018 after they pooled $46 million. Daly said the sisters have long wanted to invest in companies and technology that are actively working toward the United Nations sustainable development goals, which include ending poverty, improving access to clean energy, curbing climate change, and more. When they couldn’t find a fund with that focus — most sustainable investment funds do not holistically address all of those goals, according to Daly — the congregations enlisted Morgan Stanley to create a new fund themselves and set a standard for future investing.