Saturday, August 17, 2013

Alternative Clean Energy Roundup: 17 August 2013

Cleaner air would boost, not break economic progress
August 14, 2013 - We are writing together as an environmentalist and a Hispanic medical professional because our missions intersect on protecting people from the damaging impacts of climate change. We agree: Addressing this challenge doesn't involve tradeoffs, as some claim, but opportunities to trade up, for our future.

The choice between clean air and jobs is a false choice.

Here's the truth: Instead of letting climate change continue to wreak havoc with every freak storm, every drought, every heat wave, every wildfire, we can protect our communities and create new jobs. We can grow the economy and breathe cleaner air that doesn't worsen our children's asthma, and leave us coughing and missing work. read more>>>

NASA, JPL get set to study climate change on Earth in 2014
August 14, 2013 - NASA is getting ready to turn its scientific instruments toward our home planet with a trio of Earth-observing missions set to launch in 2014.

The three missions will allow scientists to measure water, wind and carbon dioxide with greater precision, and to improve the accuracy of weather forecasts and climate change projections.

NASA Administrator Charles Bolden said that understanding the ramifications of rising temperatures on Earth is an important priority for the space agency, which is most famous for studying outer space. Research on climate change “will inevitably be part of any agency in the federal government,” he said during a visit to the Jet Propulsion Laboratory on Tuesday. read more>>>

Get Started With Green Energy at

Better short-time local weather prediction = cheaper renewable energy
August 14, 2013 - There are all kinds of ways to make renewable energy cheaper. Most people focus on things like more efficient solar panels, bigger wind turbines, economies of scale in manufacturing, etc. But because clean sources of power like wind and solar are intermittent, there's also a lot of room for improvement in functionally making them more stable, or at least more predictable.

To understand why that's the case, you need to look at the power grid as a whole and not just at a wind or solar farm in isolation. read more>>>

National Clean Energy Summit With Reid and Schwarzenegger
08/14/2013 - The annual National Clean Energy Summit on Tuesday in Las Vegas, Nevada, pointed up the promise and pitfalls of such events.

On the one hand, it drew a glittering array of speakers to the cause of promoting renewable energy and energy efficiency, as well as an impressive crowd of energy participants and policy supporters. On the other hand, it didn't present much in the way of news, suggesting it may be wise to re-think how such events are conceived. There certainly wasn't a hint of conflict.

The scientific debate over the cause of climate change is over, new U.S. Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz said, though it rages on in Congress. "In the scientific community, there is near consensus on drivers of climate change," said Moniz. read more>>>

wind turbines

Flexible Grid, Renewable Energy Offer Hope for Future
08/15/2013 - Aug. 14, 2003, was a dark day in U.S. history -- in a lot of different ways.

It started off as a quiet Thursday. Then a single tree limb in Ohio came crashing down, touching off a power outage which cascaded across eight states and parts of Canada, leaving 50 million Americans in the Northeast in the dark. Commuters were stranded. Businesses closed. People sweltered in the heat. And the U.S. economy took a huge beating, losing an estimated $10 billion.

And to think all it started with a single tree limb. read more>>>

Businesses Back Greenhouse Gas Emissions Law
August 15, 2013 - As Texas Republican leaders continue their drumbeat against what they say is federal overreach by the Obama administration, the Environmental Protection Agency remains a primary target.

Attorney General Greg Abbott, a candidate for governor, trumpets the fact that the state has multiple lawsuits targeting the agency, and other candidates for statewide office are also pledging to protect Texas from what they see as encroachment by the E.P.A. read more>>>

Wind and Weather

Solar, geothermal projects touted at Vegas summit
Aug. 16, 2013 - The Obama administration's top land official praised a geothermal electricity project in California's snow-capped mountains as an example for others during a headline appearance at a green energy conference in Las Vegas.

U.S. Interior Secretary Sally Jewel talked briefly during a speech Tuesday at the annual Clean Energy Summit about the Casa Diablo project near Mammoth Lakes in the Sierra Nevada.

Jewell says it's projected to produce enough electricity for 36,000 homes, and demonstrates a willingness by the federal Bureau of Land Management to cooperate with wind, solar and geothermal energy developers. read more>>>

White House gets solar panels
8/15/13 - The Obama administration this week started to install solar panels on the White House roof, almost three years after initially pledging to do so.

“The White House has begun installing American-made solar panels on the first family’s residence as part of an energy retrofit that will improve the overall energy efficiency of the building,” according to a White House official.

The retrofit will also include installing equipment like updated building controls and variable-speed fans. “The project will help demonstrate that historic buildings can incorporate solar energy and energy-efficiency upgrades,” the official said in an email. read more>>>

Africa: Unep Highlights Key Role of Indigenous Communities in Transition to a Green Economy
9 August 2013 - Nairobi — To mark the United Nations International Day of the World's Indigenous Peoples, the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) has drawn attention to the vital role played by indigenous communities - who represent 5 per cent of the global population - in achieving inclusive sustainable development.

"From traditional and low-impact ways of conserving food to sustainable management of wildlife areas, indigenous peoples play a vital role in the mosaic of cultures and communities at the cutting edge of sustainability and the world-wide efforts towards an inclusive Green Economy," said UN Under-Secretary-General and UNEP Executive Director Achim Steiner. read more>>>

Town gets grant for 'microgrid' to power emegency services in outage
August 8, 2013 - The town has been awarded more than $1 million in state money to tie together electric-generating equipment that would power the Police and Fire departments, plus the adjacent homeless shelter, during a widespread outage.

The so-called "microgrid" power system will include use of two generators fueled by natural gas, plus solar panels to power the two public-safety headquarters, the adjacent Operation Hope homeless shelter and a cellular phone tower, state officials said. read more>>>

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