April 2019 Newsletter

The Goal:  ZERO global emissions by 2050 b

Impacts: Global Migration

America could have millions of refugees fleeing lack of water; food & heat.

https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2019/04/david-frum…is…/583252/

“If Liberals Won’t Enforce Borders, Fascists Will. We need to make hard decisions now about what will truly benefit current and future Americans”.by D. Frum.

Positive Items:

Thirty years ago, the New Yorker “The End of Nature,” a long article about what we then called the greenhouse effect. I (Bill McKibben) was in my twenties and out on an intellectual limb: climate science was still young. But the data were persuasive. We were spewing so much carbon into the atmosphere that nature was no longer a force beyond our influence—and humanity, with its capacity for industry and heedlessness, had come to affect every cubic meter of the planet’s air, every inch of its surface, every drop of its water. Scientists underlined this notion a decade later when they began referring to our era as the Anthropocene, the world made by man.- insightful article see:

https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2018/11/26/how-extreme-weather-is-shrinking-the-planet

 OR .. Youtube version. 50 min, set speed 1.5. .    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Db6C0wKn440

  • This Does not happen to Renewable Energy: Deer Park plant fire: What’s burning and what schools are impacted?  “Last night was really bad. It was hard to breathe,” Rivera said. “We stayed inside.” ..
    The fire has been burning since Sunday around 10:30 a.m. It started with one tank at Intercontinental Terminals Company in La Porte and spread to more. Now six tanks are burning as emergency responders work with foam and water to try and control further spreading. 
    “By looking behind me, you can tell this is not normal, this is not fine,” said Corey Williams, policy and research director for Air Alliance Houston. “The only thing preventing this from being a major catastrophe is favorable weather conditions.” 

  • Definitions:  J. Gordon, Deputy Director of the Atlantic Council’s Global Energy Center and Lee Beck,  the Global CCS Institute.
  • In the wake of several major climate reports by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Many of the plans for confronting the climate crisis stress the imperative of decreasing emissions by transitioning to 100% “clean” or “renewable” sources of energy.
  • The terms “clean” and “renewable” are often thought to be interchangeable, while at other times authors simply use them without providing clear definitions. However, what seems like a small wording issue can have wide-ranging consequences for the policies and financing that support decarbonization.
  • Renewable energy is derived from sources that can naturally replenish themselves; wind and sun are the two most obvious examples. Clean energy encompasses all zero-carbon energy sources.
  • Clean energy or zero-carbon energy tent is wider; it not only leaves the door open to 100% renewables, but it also includes nuclear energy and the carbon-neutralizing impact of technologies like carbon capture and sequestration (CCS).
  • Carbon capture is a suite of technologies used to decarbonize emissions-producing sources of energy as well industrial processes like steel production, where electrification has its limits. 
  • Hydrogen and Methane  can be renewable if  produced through electrolysis using renewables and water, or it can be produced from natural gas, coal, biomass and oil; in the latter cases — and if utilized with CCS; becomes a zero-carbon energy source…
  •  California recently passed SB100, requiring the state to acquire 100% of its electricity from renewable and zero-carbon electricity, a tiny but important detail. The bill still boosts renewables with a 60% RPS by 2030.

However, the remaining 40% can come from any source of clean energy, including nuclear, CCS and renewables.Indeed, the bill’s careful wording signals that there are realistic limitations for a 100% renewable energy grid with today’s technology, particularly regarding cost.

  • Jupiter Services:  in San Mateo, Calif., Boulder, Colo., and New York Jupiter Intelligence has made a business selling data from satellite imagery and advanced computer models to cities like New York and Miami, along with the Federal govt and big insurance and real estate customers.

With its new financing, Jupiter plans to take its show on the global road, to clients in Rotterdam, London, and Singapore.

  • offers services for predicting specific perils and combined impacts. Each service is built on top of the Jupiter ClimateScore™ Intelligence Platform. Services are currently available for predicting the probability and climate impact of flood, fire, heat, drought, cold, wind, and hail events, providing climate-driven analysis from 1 hour to 50 years in the future. Predictions can be probabilistic or scenario based. Jupiter leverages billions of computed data fields per metro region and models for multiple hazards per region.
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CARBON & CH4 BOMB: Even in a dream-come-true scenario where we manage to stop all the world’s carbon emissions overnight, the Arctic would inevitably get hotter and hotter. That’s according to a new report by UN Environment, which says the region is already “locked in” to wintertime warming 7.2 to 9 F over temperatures of the late 1900s. and models show that it’s on track to become ice-free during the summer as soon as 2030.

That’s the bad news. So here’s even worse news: The Arctic contains much of the world’s permafrost, which holds what the report calls a “sleeping giant” made of greenhouse gases. As the ground warms, the microbes in the soil wake up and start belching greenhouse gases.

“New evidence suggests that permafrost is thawing much faster than previously thought, with consequences not just for Arctic peoples and ecosystems, but for the planet as a whole because of feedback loops,”.

  • FACT: 30% of CO2 emissions have been absorbed by the ocean. This leads to acidification, this makes it harder for Ca to be absorbed to make shells and skeletons. Impacting food chain.
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SHELL on Future: Maarten Wetselaar, a Royal Dutch Shell executive, spoke  “Fuels of the Future.” Shell has presented perhaps the most expansive vision of how the industry might change, described a company that, a few decades from now, will service an electrified, hydrogen- and bio-fueled vehicle market and provide natural gas for heavy transportation. To meet the goals of the Paris climate agreement, he said, electricity may be the only energy consumers buy within 20 years, although he said natural gas will still fuel ships and heavy transportation.

The following day, Shell urged the Trump administration to halt its proposed reversal of limits on methane emissions from new oil and gas development, and to go farther than the Obama administration had in cracking down on emissions from existing operations.

Later in the conference, executives with BP and Equinor, the Norwegian energy company that last year changed its name from Statoil, stressed many of the same points as Wetselaar. BP’s chief executive, Bob Dudley, told the conference that his industry needs to engage in a discussion with supporters of the Green New Deal.

“We need to demonstrate that we share the common goal of a low-carbon future and that we are in action toward it,” he said in a keynote address in the hotel’s packed ballroom.Their argument: who better to solve the climate crisis than the oil and gas 

Environmental impacts of food consumption by dogs and cats. Gregory S. Okin ,  More than 163 million dogs and cats in USA that consume, as a significant portion of their diet, animal products and therefore potentially constitute a considerable dietary footprint. Dogs and cats consume about 19% ± 2% of the amount of dietary energy that humans do and 33% ± 9% of the animal-derived energy. They produce about 30% ± 13%, by mass, as much feces as humans.

  • Use excess energy to heat large rocks/  dense material. Use that stored heat for more enetgy..

*SOLAR PANELS: Part of Roof. No racks.  https://www.gaf.com/en-us/residential-roofing/decotech

  • GM  is one of 84 global companies, one of three auto mfgs, to join RE100. The company pledges to meet the electricity needs of its global operations with 100 percent renewable energy by 2050. GM focused on four pillars: energy efficiency, procurement, energy storage, and policies. And assessed the markets where it had the largest footprint and where the energy and renewables markets are most developed, leading to an initial focus on the U.S., Brazil, China and Mexico. GM globally uses 9 billion kw hrs/yr.

Jamaica leads in Richard Branson-backed plan for a Caribbean climate revolution.  The Accelerator has been created to help transform the region’s economy through fast-tracking public and private investment opportunities that support sustainable development.  Its main areas of focus are:  This development will be fundamental in building a more resilient and climate-smart region that is able to deliver broad-based economic growth and social development to the Caribbean.e Change Impairs Trees’ Recovery from Wildfires

  • Ponderosa pine and Douglas fir are less able to regenerate in the face of climate change,  KERRY GRENS..

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-soil, temperature, and humidity conditions driven by climate change have made it more difficult for Douglas fire and ponderosa pine seedlings to establish themselves after a forest fire, researchers in PNAS. At some locations in the western US, a “critical climate threshold” has already been surpassed over the past 20 years, meaning forests may not return after wildfires.

“Maybe in areas where there are really abundant seed sources, there could be some trees, but it is becoming really hard to get these trees back due to climate change,”  Kim Davis, a postdoc at the University of Montana.

Davis and her colleagues analyzed tree rings sampled from nearly 3,000 trees in the Rockies and California from 1988–2015 to figure out when the trees had established themselves. When comparing regeneration after wildfires to annual climate conditions at their study sites, they found certain thresholds for summer humidity and temperature (too high) and soil moisture (too low) beyond which it became difficult for new trees to grow after a fire.

“Across the study region, seasonal to annual climate conditions from the early 1990s through 2015 have crossed these climate thresholds at the majority of sites, indicating conditions that are increasingly unsuitable for tree regeneration, particularly for ponderosa pine,” the authors write in their report.

  • The Green New Deal: One climate scientist’s view, from the other side of the Atlantic.  Myles R. Allen is head of the Climate Dynamics group at the University of Oxford’s Atmospheric, Oceanic and Planetary Physics Department.

Edited comments: Climate models have been widely criticized for making too-conservative assumptions about future technologies—but most are also designed with very optimistic assumptions about future policies, such as the immediate introduction of a global carbon price. No one knows if it is really possible to hit the brakes on global emissions that hard,.. given that current emissions are over 40 gigatons of carbon dioxide per year, it would take more than 20 years to reach net zero even if we start 2Gton/ yr reductions immediately—longer because the pace of reductions is expected to slow once we have dealt with the easy stuff. And because carbon dioxide accumulates in the climate system like Pb in the bloodstream, warming will continue at least until net global carbon dioxide emissions reach zero.

Given the scale of this challenge, the Green New Deal’s insistence on using only “low-tech” methods of carbon dioxide removal such as reforestation and soil restoration is worrying: It is not at all clear that measures like these can possibly remove enough carbon dioxide on the necessary global scale.

I would like to see politicians debate something much more clearly focused on just climate change—while the Green New Deal packages climate action with a host of other initiatives, like universal health care and employment. While these are worthy causes (and may be good politics), their presence makes it all too easy for its detractors to oppose the Green New Deal without addressing the fundamental climate issue.”

Comment from Bill Haaf. The Republicans and deniers will everyday scream “socialism” & “Hi taxes” &  “Take away your freedom to choose” & “no more hamburgers”. This will scare many voters.

  • Xcel Energy’s vision to deliver 100 percent carbon-free electricity to customers is now backed by a scientific study. The company announced today it verified its groundbreaking carbon goals in a newly published report — an industry first for in-depth analysis. It partnered with climate scientists with the University of Denver to confirm its vision is consistent with temperature goals of the Paris climate .

The #CarbonLaw – A roadmap for rapid decarbonisation

Stockholm Resilience Centre TV.. https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=149&v=UZ5nKGHMWC0

Carbon roadmap, driven by a simple rule of thumb or “carbon law” of halving emissions every decade. All industries and companies and individuals , cars, homes can/ should follow this carbon rule.

Such a “carbon law”, based on Moore’s Law in the computer industry, applies to cities, nations and industrial sectors. Fossil-fuel emissions should peak by 2020 at the latest and fall to around zero by 2050 to meet climate goal of limiting the global temperature rise to “well below 2°C” from preindustrial times.

  • The Uninhabitable Earth: What Climate Change Means

It is worse, much worse, than you think.David Wallace-Wells.. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yK4pMWZZh2I    .. set speed to 1.5.

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Heatwaves sweeping oceans ‘like wildfires’-The Guardian Damian Carrington Environment editor,  4 Mar 2019

  • Extreme temperatures destroy kelp, seagrass and corals – with alarming impacts for humanity
  • Global warming is gradually increasing the average temperature of the oceans, but the new research is the first systematic global analysis of ocean heat waves, when temperatures reach extremes for five days or more.
  • The research found heat waves are becoming more frequent, more prolonged, and more severe, with the number of heat wave days tripling in the past couple of years studied. In the longer term, the number of heat wave days jumped by more than 50 % in the 30 years to 2016, compared with the period of 1925 to 1954.
  • ,, heat-wave-induced wildfires that take out huge areas of forest, but this is happening underwater as well,” said Dan Smale of the Marine Biological Association in Plymouth, UK, who led the research published in Nature Climate Change. “You see the kelp and seagrasses dying in front of you. Within weeks or months they are just gone, along hundreds of kilometers of coastline.”
  • As well as quantifying the increase in heat waves, the team analyzed 116 research papers on eight well-studied marine heat waves, such as the record-breaking Ningaloo Niño that hit Australia in 2011 and the hot “blob” that persisted in the northeast Pacific from 2013 to 2016. “They have adverse impacts on a wide range of organisms, from plankton to invertebrates to fish, mammals, and seabirds,” Smale said.
  • The scientists compared the areas where heat waves have increased most with those areas harboring rich biodiversity or species already near their temperature limit and those where additional stresses, such as pollution or overfishing, already occur. This revealed hot spots of harm from the northeast Atlantic to the Caribbean to the western Pacific. “A lot of ocean systems are being battered by multiple stresses,”
  • billhaaf@verizon.net – feedback welcome

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