Sustainable Energy

The world she is a changin'

South Australia is delivering on their energy plan thanks to the world’s largest lithium-ion battery. Manufactured in an impressive 60 days by Tesla, it will revolutionize the way electricity is produced and stored, according to this Guardian article.

The World She is a Changin'

Solar power was the fastest-growing source of new energy worldwide last year, outstripping the growth in all other forms of power generation for the first time, another key tipping point for moving towards a carbon neutral economy. “What we are witnessing is the birth of a new era in solar photovoltaics [PV]. We expect that solar PV capacity growth will be higher than any other renewable technology up to 2022.” (Dr. Fatih Birol, executive director of the International Energy Agency)

Why the SDGs alone aren’t enough

There is a new metric when it comes to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals: the ‘spillover effects’ of each country on the world at large. These spillover effects include pollution, financial secrecy, and contribution to peace abroad. Since these effects are accounted for outside of a country’s borders, they are not represented by national statistics. A country might rank very highly when judged only by its own statistics (such as the US and Switzerland), but this is a lopsided view when looked at in a global context.

Seismic Change in Global Energy

The global energy landscape is changing dramatically as evidenced by the following five trends.

  1. Last year, coal production fell by a record number. A higher number of producers than ever before are switching to natural gas, wind, and solar energy.

  2. The world’s largest economies are among those who are turning away from coal. China and the U.S. are the world’s largest two economies, so their reduced use of coal has the most impact.

U.S. Will Be Left in the Dust

As the Trump Administration announces their plans to withdraw the U.S. from the Paris Climate Agreement, other countries are set to take the lead in reducing global carbon emissions.

Raise the Roof for Tesla’s New Solar Tiles

Tesla has recently begun taking orders for their new solar tiles, which are a game-changer for those looking to invest in alternative home energy. The design itself is innovative, with modular tiles that can cover as much or as little of the roof as desired. And since the tiles look almost exactly like regular tiles, coming in a range of styles, they can easily blend in with non-solar parts of the roof.

Things are Looking Brighter

India is well on its way to meeting the renewable energy targets set during the Paris Climate agreement. With plummeting wholesale prices of solar power reaching another record low in the country, renewable energy is continuing to undercut fossil-fuel generated power. Cheaper finance and growing investor confidence have resulted in this historic 40% drop in price thereby enhancing India’s renewable energy capacity. Even as the world’s third largest carbon polluter, the country is set to exceed renewable energy targets by 2027.

Pacific Climate Warriors are Raising a Paddle

A delegation of the Pacific Climate Warriors, a climate activist group from the Pacific Islands, are arriving in Canada today to raise a paddle. During their 9-day trip, they will tour the tar sands in Alberta, engage in public events, and meet with various Indigenous Communities in Western Canada.

Abstracting Industrial Scars

 J Henry Fair doesn’t really consider his mesmerizing aerial photographs art. He sees them as documents or intricate studies that tell a complete story about the things we take for granted on our planet.

Waterloo to Teach the Rest of Us New Tricks

Waterloo, Ontario will begin a pilot program to turn dog waste into energy and fertilizer. Our current mode of disposing dog poop leaves municipal garbage bins up to 80% full of just doggie bags. This is a shockingly high percentage, considering how much garbage is produced every year. To address this problem, one man in Waterloo borrowed an old idea from rural life and updated it for the city. Small green receptacles will be placed in parks in Waterloo (starting with three parks for the pilot) for the special disposal of dog poop.

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