[GWSG] C tax plans; CAES; DC affordable net zero; seals in danger; WAIS heating; A/C for India

Tilley, Al atilley at unf.edu
Mon Dec 24 07:37:08 EST 2012

1.  Patrick Parmenteau sends this on the tax and dividend plan linked in the last news list:   “Aside from the fact that here is no realistic chance of a carbon tax going anywhere as long as the R’s control the House, there are significant structural and conceptual problems with the ‘tax and dividend’ approach Hansen advocates.  Personally, I favor the upstream, rising tax on carbon content as a preferred policy instrument but it won’t bring renewables to scale all by itself. Here are a couple of links people might want to check out to delve into the details.   Mark Muro, Brookings  http://www.brookings.edu/research/opinions/2012/10/31-carbon-tax-muro    David Roberts, Grist  http://grist.org/climate-energy/ten-reasons-a-carbon-tax-is-trickier-than-you-think/  “  Thanks to Patrick.  The articles beneficially complicated my thinking on the issue.

2.  Nebraska is using a depleted natural gas reservoir to test holding compressed air for use to store 100-300 megawatts of energy. A 110 megawatt facility is operational in Alabama.  Energy storage will render a grid based on wind and solar energy more dependable.   http://columbustelegram.com/news/local/nppd-hopes-compressed-air-can-create-electricity/article_bded82de-cf4a-11e1-99d3-001a4bcf887a.html  Two of the companies developing Compressed Air Energy Storage (CAES) are LightSail Energy and General Compression.  http://www.lightsailenergy.com/  ;  http://www.generalcompression.com/index.php/what  A CAES project in Germany, internationally backed, hopes to achieve 70% energy conversion efficiency by conserving the heat generated when the air is compressed.  http://www.rwe.com/web/cms/en/365478/rwe/innovation/projects-technologies/energy-storage/project-adele/  The German project escapes using natural gas to heat the air when it is decompressed.  WindSoHy also conserves the heat and further avoids natural gas by using hydrogen.  http://www.windsohy.com/  Thanks to Tom Larson and to the Sierra Club Global Warming Chairs List for these leads.

3.  Parsons, Stevens, Habitat for Humanity, and the DC Department of Housing and Community Development have collaborated on building a net zero affordable duplex employing passive design.  http://www.washingtonpost.com/realestate/collaborative-brings-affordable-green-home-to-deanwood/2012/12/20/d462c270-4882-11e2-820e-17eefac2f939_story.html?hpid=z9

4.  The US has listed two ice-dwelling seals as endangered.  http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/12/21/us-usa-seals-listing-idUSBRE8BK18920121221?feedType=RSS&feedName=environmentNews&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+reuters%2Fenvironment+%28News+%2F+US+%2F+Environment%29

5.  The West Antarctic is warming three times as fast as the earth in general, and twice as fast as scientists had thought.  http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/12/121223152408.htm?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+sciencedaily+%28ScienceDaily%3A+Latest+Science+News%29  The most immediate threat of increased sea level rise comes from the breakup of the floating ice shelves which impede the movement of the ice sheets toward the sea.  http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-20804192#

6.  Home air conditioning has cut premature deaths in the US by 80% since 1960.  It is a challenge to develop sustainable air conditioning, especially for areas such as India, where the number of days with temperatures over 90° is expected to soar.  http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/health-science/study-home-air-conditioning-cut-premature-deaths-on-hot-days-80-percent-since-1960/2012/12/22/5b57f3ac-4abf-11e2-b709-667035ff9029_story.html?hpid=z3
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