[GWSG] EPA CO2 regs; loose methane; air tower; our last decade; IPCC forecast; 40mm/year slr; 26G in Germany

Tilley, Al atilley at unf.edu
Fri Mar 30 10:46:02 EDT 2012

1.  The EPA has set its pollution controls on CO2 for new power plants.  Existing and approved plants are grandfathered in and not subject to the regulations.  The limit of 1,000 pounds of CO2 produced per megawatt will allow new natural gas plants but not new conventional coal plants.  Natural gas leaked in production and transit is not represented.  http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/health-science/epa-to-impose-first-greenhouse-gas-limits-on-power-plants/2012/03/26/gIQAiJTscS_story.html  A second set of regulations meant for existing power plants is due, but perhaps not until after the election.

2.  Parts of the Scottish coast have been evacuated following a massive leak of natural gas from an abandoned platform.  Hydrogen sulfide is mixed with the natural gas.  The leak is expected to go on for months and to become even worse.  http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/03/27/us-total-gasleak-idUSBRE82Q0G720120327?feedType=RSS&feedName=environmentNews&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+reuters%2Fenvironment+%28News+%2F+US+%2F+Environment%29

3.  A new solar tower design uses heated air to drive its turbine and can be as small as 100 kilowatts.  We shall avert our eyes from the natural gas hybrid arrangement, which could be replaced by power storage or another renewable source.  http://green.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/03/26/a-smaller-route-to-solar-success/

4.  Scientists at a conference in London warn that this is likely to be our last decade to achieve an energy transition and have a chance of avoiding runaway warming.  http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/03/26/us-climate-thresholds-idUSBRE82P0UJ20120326  The general state of the world report from the Planet Under Pressure conference noted some good news in fertility rates and food production along with calls for immediate action (which most thought us unlikely to take—no choice but to act, I say).  http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-17513660

5.  A new IPCC report warns of increasingly disastrous weather.  http://www.weather.com/outlook/weather-news/news/articles/ipcc-special-report_2012-03-28

6.  Evidence from coral 14,000 years ago reported in Nature shows that the collapse of Antarctic ice sheets resulted in sea level rise at a rate of over 40 mm per year, more than ten time the current rate.  The result would be on the order of Jim Hansen’s estimate of 5 meters of rise by 2100 if such a rise were to begin now (not that the Nature article predicts such a thing).  http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/03/29/us-sea-level-ice-idUSBRE82R13E20120329?feedType=RSS&feedName=environmentNews&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+reuters%2Fenvironment+%28News+%2F+US+%2F+Environment%29  The article:  http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v483/n7391/full/nature10902.html

7.  “Why Generators Are Terrified of Solar” shows that 25 gigawatts of installed solar in Germany has greatly lowered the price of power at peak times, and provides a good general discussion of the price of power.  http://reneweconomy.com.au/2012/why-generators-are-terrified-of-solar-44279
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