Archive for April 19th, 2020

April 19 Energy News

April 19, 2020


¶ “Designing An End To A Toxic American Obsession: The Lawn” • Lawns cover 2% of the US. Maintaining them produces more greenhouse gases than they absorb. They are biodiversity deserts that have contributed to vanishing insect populations. They require more irrigation than any agricultural crop grown in the country. But there are alternatives. [CNN]

Greenery (Credit: Jennifer Roper)

¶ “Norway And The A-ha Moment That Made Electric Cars The Answer” • In 1995, the lead singer of the 1980s band A-ha and the head of the Norwegian environmental group Bellona took off on a road trip in a converted electric Fiat Panda they had imported from Switzerland. Eventually, the car was impounded, but it started a movement. [The Guardian]

¶ “The World’s Energy Order Is Changing – And China Is Set To Reap The Strategic Benefits” • The production cap agreed on by OPEC+, the instability of the markets, the economic fall due to the coronavirus pandemic, and ongoing technological changes are playing out in a power shift. And it looks like China is set to be the main beneficiary. [ABC Science Online]

Solar farm in China (Brant Cumming | ABC News)

¶ “How Will Earth Day Celebrate Its 50th Birthday? Not As Planned” • Picture the biggest protest ever. Crowds stretch on for miles on streets normally bustling with cars. From a birds-eye view, the moving bodies form a glittering mosaic. The mass of chanting people brims with bright signs. That is not how Earth Day will be, because Covid-19 is here. [Grist]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Is Fungus The Answer To Climate Change? Student Who Grew A Mushroom Canoe Says Yes” • Catch a glimpse of Katy Ayers paddling her canoe on a Nebraska lake this summer and you might do a double take. Her 8-foot canoe seems much like any other until you look closely. Then you may see it is different; it is made out of mushrooms. [NBC News]

Katy Ayers in her canoe (Courtesy Katy Ayers)


¶ “120-MW Floating Solar Project Completed In China” • Phase 2 of a 320-MW floating solar project in China’s Zhejiang province has been completed, according to a PV Magazine report. Its 120 MW of new capacity complements the 200 MW installed in 2017. The panels are in Cixi, floating on the surface of the Changhe and Zhouxiang reservoirs. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Biking Provides Critical Lifeline During Coronavirus Crisis” • Worldwide, over 3.9 billion people are under lockdown orders due to the pandemic. Many public transportation systems have been halted. People have been turning to biking for essential transportation, and cities have been taking action to ease bike and pedestrian traffic. [CleanTechnica]

Bicycles in Groningen (Zachary Shahan | CleanTechnica)

¶ “Covid-19: India Woos Renewable Energy Equipment Makers” • India is eyeing renewable energy equipment manufacturers looking to move from China after the Covid-19 outbreak. The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy set up a renewable energy Industry Facilitation and Promotion Board to facilitate investment. [EnergyInfraPost]

¶ “French Court Backs EDF In Dispute With Distributors Over Supply Contracts” • Electrical energy distributors in France cannot break contracts to purchase nuclear energy from EDF at pre-established costs, France’s highest court has dominated, after some argued that the coronavirus outbreak materially altered the state of affairs. [Sunriseread]

EDF nuclear plant


¶ “2019 Report Shows South Dakota Had Country’s Largest Percentage Increase In Wind Growth” • In 2019, 39% of new US capacity was wind power. Texas and Iowa led the country in wind power additions, but South Dakota had the largest percentage of growth, increasing its installed wind capacity by over 50%, with 506 MW of new windpower. []

¶ “Sea Turtles Are Thriving As Coronavirus Lockdown Empties Florida Beaches” • With the beaches in Florida closed in an effort to stop the spread of coronavirus, researchers are seeing less plastic and waste, fewer people and vehicles on the beach, and less disorientation for emerging hatchlings from artificial lights, the Sea Turtle Conservancy said. [CNN]

Hatching turtles (Sea Turtle Conservancy)

¶ “As Climate Changes, Midwest To Need More Electricity And Water” • By 2030, Indianapolis may need to generate up to from 12% to 20% more electricity in the summer months, researchers at Purdue University said in a report. They also forecast that water demand would grow by 5% to 8% every year, unless some action is taken. [The Herald Bulletin]

¶ “A Coal-Fired Power Plant Closed. Another Cleaned Up. What Happened Next To Asthma Attacks” • Researchers made use of a “natural experiment” brought on by the closure of one coal-fired power plant and the addition of new pollution controls at others to document how lowering air pollution improves the lives of asthma patients. [Courier Journal]

Have an irrepressibly comfortable day.

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