[GWSG] Soft costs; pension query; fossil search; activists meet; rain catching; NW accord; effects timing; German pv; US CSP

Tilley, Al atilley at unf.edu
Wed Oct 30 08:05:29 EDT 2013

1.  The SunShot initiative aims to cut the cost of solar panels by 75% from 2011 levels by the end of the decade.  Current efforts include cutting installation costs and supporting new businesses willing to innovate on installation costs.   This year for the first time new solar power in the US outpaced wind.  http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2013/10/24/2830401/sunshot-grants-solar-industry/
Soft costs are about half the retail tab for rooftop solar in the US.  Start-ups described their approaches to cutting costs at a recent industry gathering.  http://www.businessgreen.com/bg/news/2303565/startups-compete-to-defeat-the-soft-costs-of-solar-power  James Tong is working with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory to reduce soft costs, as he describes in this interview.  http://www.renewableenergyworld.com/rea/video/view/reducing-soft-costs-in-the-solar-industry?cmpid=WNL-Wednesday-October30-2013

2.  Pension funds require long term dependability of their investments.  The managers of 70 major funds have asked fossil fuel companies for their plans to transition to renewable energy.  http://insideclimatenews.org/news/20131024/wall-street-demands-answers-fossil-fuel-producers-unburnable-carbon?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+solveclimate%2Fblog+%28InsideClimate+News%29

3.  Fossil fuel companies spent $674 billion last year in developing new fuel sources.  The companies themselves cannot be the source of necessary change.  http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/oct/25/climate-change-exxon-fossil-fuel

4.  Nearly 8,000 activists from 720 universities gathered last week in Pittsburgh for Power Shift 2013 to plan how to push for an energy transition.  http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2013/10/24/power-shift-720-campuses/3180005/

5.  The Caribbean region is reintroducing rain water harvesting as a hedge against water shortages.  It is an old technology with a wide future.  http://www.ipsnews.net/2013/10/caribbean-looks-to-the-sky-for-water-security/

6.  California, Washington, Oregon, and British Columbia have signed an agreement to coordinate climate policies.  The region would be the world’s fifth largest economy if autonomous.  http://www.mercurynews.com/science/ci_24406734/california-oregon-washington-and-british-columbia-sign-climate

7.  An article in PNAS estimates that mitigation efforts are detectable in lowered surface temperatures after about 25-30 years, globally, and that it takes about 10 further years to detect regional impact.  http://www.pnas.org/content/early/2013/10/02/1300005110.abstract

8.  Germany has been peaking at about 60% renewable power on a good sunny, windy day.  Recently that drove power prices to $.0275/kwh, and the grid maintained stability as fossil power sources were taken offline.  Most of the press coverage has concerned the problems posed to the utilities.  They are challenging but soluble.  Meanwhile—woo hoo.    http://www.greentechmedia.com/articles/read/Germany-Hits-59-Renewable-Peak-Grid-Does-Not-Explode?utm_source=Daily&utm_medium=Headline&utm_campaign=GTMDaily

9.  Concentrated solar power can use thermal storage to deliver continuous electricity.  This month 1.3 gigawatts of CSP went into production in the US.  “Another several gigawatts is in construction.”  http://www.renewableenergyworld.com/rea/news/article/2013/10/us-solar-surge-flipping-switches-on-a-hoover-dam-of-utility-scale-concentrated-solar-power?cmpid=WNL-Wednesday-October30-2013
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