'Alternative' energy and less energy

Seth Klein

May 17th 2021

Video here.

In the face of the climate emergency, this is the time of our Phoney War. Most of us know the battle for our lives must soon get underway, and most of our leaders — in government and industry — are now talking tough on climate. But in deeds, they aren’t there yet.

Charles Mandel
Research and development to support the advancement of small modular reactors and advanced reactors. Photo by Canadian Nuclear Laboratories / Flickr (CC BY-ND 2.0)

 May 12th 2021

John Gorman believes in a nuclear future — which, given his background, might come as a surprise. Before becoming president and CEO of the Canadian Nuclear Association, Gorman worked in positions where he championed solar, wind and hydro, renewable energy sources with a lot less baggage.

International Energy Association

For example, the report states that a typical electric car requires six times the mineral inputs of a conventional car, and an onshore wind plant

requires nine times more mineral resources than a gas-fired power plant. Since 2010, the average amount of minerals needed for a new

unit of power generation capacity has increased by 50% as the share of renewables has risen.

And that doesn’t include materials for backup power due to low capacity factors and intermittency.

And less than 1% of lithium is currently recycled.......

Eric Lipton and Ivan Penn

Atop a long-dormant volcano in northern Nevada, workers are preparing to start blasting and digging out a giant pit that will serve as the first new large-scale lithium mine in the United States in more than a decade — a new domestic supply of an essential ingredient in electric car batteries and renewable energy.

The mine, constructed on leased federal lands, could help address the nearly total reliance by the United States on foreign sources of lithium.

Jessica Corbett
The THRIVE Act plans to create nine million jobs by upgrading infrastructure for clean water, affordable public transit, and a reliable electric grid and expanding access to wind and solar power, electric vehicles, and healthy buildings. (Photo: aydinmutlu/Getty Images)

April 29, 2021

The bill aims to ensure "an intersectional response" to the climate crisis, coronavirus pandemic, economic inequity, and racial injustice "that is proportionate to the scope of the problems we face."

On the heels of President Joe Biden unveiling the second prong of his infrastructure proposal, progressives in Congress came together Thursday to formally introduce sweeping legislation that would invest $10 trillion over a decade in advancing climate, economic, and racial justice while putting 15 million people nationwide to work.

Vicki Robin, Kim Stanley Robinson

I highly recommend this interview with Kim Stanley Robinson about his most recent novel, The Ministry for the Future, which charts an imaginary path through our realistically projected future of ecocatastrophe. It's simultaneously brutal and optimistic. The interview delves into some of the book's main themes.

Nelson Bennett
Surrey's District Energy Network uses pipes like these to carry hot water to buildings. Submitted

Mar. 8, 2021

Every day, vast amounts of heat generated from industry, data centres and hockey rinks is just wasted.

When the source of waste heat is close enough, it can be tapped and piped into a building or a district energy system.

Clearly, it’s not feasible to run pipes from a cement plant in East Richmond, an oil refinery in Burnaby or a big data centre in Kelowna all the way to a district energy system in Vancouver or Surrey.

But what if it could be stored and transported by truck?

Snehal Shingavi

Capitalist competition and greed lie at the heart of the power outages causing desperation across the state.

Barry Saxifrage
Earth 2003 image

February 4th 2021

Humanity is hurtling towards a full-blown climate crisis. To avoid that dystopian future, all the world's countries joined together five years ago and signed the Paris Agreement.

Gerson Freitas Jr, Rachel Adams-Heard, and Ellen Gilmer

Maybe, taking a lesson from what this article reveals about the U.S., we need to increase the rattling of the cage about Canadian provincial and regional rights to decide whether unsafe megaprojects are allowed to proceed or, at least, have more ability to regulate them (to death?).  Gene MGuckin

January 20, 2021


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