- Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens in Pittsburgh has reduced its carbon dioxide emissions per square foot by 56%. This significantly exceeds the Paris Climate Agreement goal of a 26% to 28% reduction by 2025. Phipps reduced its carbon footprint through the use of renewable energy and sustainable, building designs. [InvestorIdeas.com]
The Broderie Room in the Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens (Cbaile19, Wikimedia Commons)
- It’s official. The solar industry has met the 2020 utility-scale solar cost target set by the Energy Department’s SunShot Initiative – three years early. The DOE’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory released new research today that shows the average price of utility-scale solar is now under $1 per watt and below 6¢/kWh. [Greentech Media]
- Vermont Gas Systems will begin offering renewable natural gas – methane produced from landfills, cow manure, and other organic sources – this heating season, regulators said. The company was required to develop a plan to do so as part of the approval for its recently completed 41-mile natural gas pipeline into Addison County. [vtdigger.org]
- The Climate Group announced that Kellogg Company, DBS Bank Ltd, and Clif Bar & Company joined its RE100 campaign and committed to sourcing 100% renewable electricity across their global operations. The total demand of the 105 campaign members is now around 150 TWh annually, more than enough to power New York State. [The Climate Group]
- As was expected, the 2018 Honda Clarity Plug-In Hybrid (PHEV) has been granted an impressive EPA all-electric range rating – 47 miles (76 kilometers) per full charge. The EPA’s range ratings are essentially real-world figures. Honda brags that the car “earned the highest all-electric range rating among all midsize plug-in hybrids.” [CleanTechnica]
- The ongoing natural disasters ravaging the western and gulf coasts of the US should serve as a dire warning about climate change, according to Washington Gov Jay Inslee. He said the damage of hurricanes wildfires show that “we are seeing, in real time, a slow-motion disaster movie that we are now living through that is not hypothetical.” [CNN]
Damage done by Hurricane Irma
- A Lawrence Berkeley National Lab study published in Nature Energy finds that wind power in the United States is responsible for saving tens of billions to hundreds of billions of dollars from prevented health care costs and saved lives from 2007–2015. The savings come from reduced pollution that causes asthma attacks and other diseases. [CleanTechnica]
- “Hurricane Irma: Climate change deniers’ chickens come home to roost” • Recently, US right-wing media personality Rush Limbaugh was still enthusiastically pushing the climate change denial barrow. Two days later, he was evacuated from his Palm Beach residence along with his neighbours at Mar-a-Lago. He has not been heard from since. [Independent Australia]
- Climate change denials amid catastrophic hurricanes are a reminder that humans are not a particularly smart species, Pope Francis said while flying over areas in the Caribbean decimated by Hurricane Irma. “Man is stupid,” he said, referencing a passage in the Old Testament. “When you don’t want to see, you don’t see.” [HuffPost UK]
- About 6.5 million homes in Florida, two-thirds of the total, are without power after Hurricane Irma cut a deadly path through the state, officials say. Relief operations are under way and engineers are working to restore power, but many areas remain stranded. The Keys and western parts of the state bore the brunt of the category-four hurricane. [BBC]
Common Ground Fair, September 22 – 24, 2017
Coming to Unity, Maine this year for the Common Ground Fair? This year, there’s a special attraction: the power of the sun! ReVision is deeply grateful to further its partnership with the Maine Organic Farmers & Gardeners Association (MOFGA) with the installation of 311 solar panels which span several barns. This expands a previous project on a historic barn (located at the Pine Gate as you come into the fair).
Over 60,000 people are expected to attend the Common Ground Fair, one of New England’s largest celebrations of rural living and all things sustainable, held this year from September 22-24. ReVision will have a booth in the Energy & Shelter tent and will be participating in several talks. Catch you in Unity!
Did you know that electric car owners in Maine are saving hundreds of dollars a year in fuel costs? By driving electric, thousands of Mainers are saving money, embracing clean transportation, and reducing climate changing pollution, too!
Please join in for the Maine Drive Electric events. They are fun, free, informative ways to get behind the wheel of different electric cars and enjoy free food. What a unique way to learn more about these vehicles and the future of transportation—and reducing your personal pollution levels.
South Paris, ME
September 16, Noon – 4 PM, Oxford Hills Comprehensive High School, 256 Main St
- A free, fun event with many electric cars to ride in or drive. Come see the new Chevy Bolt among many others and stay to chat with other fellow Mainers considering going electric.
- Chat with electric car owners from the Maine Electric Vehicle Association about their experiences driving electric in Maine.
- Celebrate with a ribbon cutting for three new electric car chargers and their solar tracker. Hear ReVision Energy, NRCM, and others talk about electric cars in Maine
- EV 101 talks throughout the day from Paris Autobarn owner Tony Giambro and Education Outreach Coordinator Travis Richie, so you can learn more and ask all your questions about going electric in Maine!
- Enjoy free pizza and refreshments while learning the latest on EVs in Maine!
South Portland, ME
September 17, Noon – 4 PM, South Portland Community Center, 21 Nelson Road
- Free, fun event featuring dozens electric cars to ride in and drive –EV models currently registered to attend include a Tesla Model S and Model X, Chevy Bolt and Volt, BMW i3, Nissan Leaf, and many more!
- Free coffee and cupcakes from Bard Coffee of Portland. Enjoy free pizza (delivered via electric car!) from Portland House of Pizza, too.
- Free raffle with prizes, including NRCM ”swag,” when you test drive any electric vehicle.
- Chat with electric car owners, car dealers, electric utilities, and experts from Maine’s leading environmental organization, the Natural Resources Council of Maine (NRCM).
- As Hurricane Irma swept through South Florida, power utility officials warned Sunday that restoring electricity to more than 2 million homes and businesses will be a slow, dangerous, and time-consuming process. A Florida Power & Light spokesman said that he expects full power restoration after the storm to take “multi-weeks.” [The Recorder]
Irma at Boynton Beach (Jim Rassol | South Florida Sun-Sentinel via AP)
- “Good news! Energy demand will peak for the first time in human history” • Global energy demand will plateau from 2030, oil demand will flatten from 2020 and then decline significantly, the shift to renewable energy will be quicker and more massive than most people realize, according to findings of DNV GL’s Energy Transition Outlook. [HuffPost]
- Offshore wind is now cheaper than nuclear and gas in the UK. The second Contracts for Difference subsidy auction that saw two developers win the rights to build offshore wind farms for just £57.50/MWh ($75.83/MWh). This compares to the rate of £92.50/MWh agreed for the nuclear power station at Hinkley Point. [pv magazine International]
- “Nationals demand “coal target” as energy politics spirals into loony fog” • It seems unbelievable, but the politics of energy just got worse. A week that began with a bizarre push save the life of a decrepit, 50-year-old coal-burning power plant, finished with the Nationals demanding that subsidies intended for renewable energy go to coal instead. [RenewEconomy]
- China, the world’s biggest car market, plans to ban the production and sale of diesel and petrol cars and vans. The country’s vice minister of industry said it had started “relevant research” but that it had not yet decided when the ban would come into force. China made 28 million cars last year, almost a third of the global total. [BBC]
- “Irma takes aim at America’s most vulnerable, unprepared city: Tampa” • Hurricane Irma appears to have Tampa in its cross-hairs, potentially hitting the city as a Category 3 storm Monday morning. Unfortunately, Tampa is unprepared. Climate science denial has thwarted efforts to plan for rising seas and worsening storms. [ThinkProgress]
- The Nebraska State Board of Education approved new science standards that challenge kids to think and act like scientists. Under the new standards, students will “analyze geoscience data and the results from global climate models to make an evidence-based forecast of the current rate and scale of global or regional climate changes.” [Omaha World-Herald]
- JP Morgan Cazenove has joined the ranks of those who believe the electric vehicle revolution will happen sooner rather than later. JP Morgan noted that the price differential between legacy vehicles and EVs is gradually narrowing as battery prices fall, but that once a certain tipping point is reached, things could start happening quickly. [CleanTechnica]
- “President Trump’s War on Science” • From Day 1, the White House and its lackeys in certain federal agencies have been waging what amounts to a war on science. In nearly every case the principal motive for decisions seemed the same: to serve commercial interests whose profitability could be affected by health and safety rules. [New York Times]
- Helicopters will start flying this month between a Schoharie County electrical facility and the Capital Region as part of a $1 billion smart grid plan by the New York Power Authority. They will help ground crews install fiber optic lines connecting the Blenheim-Gilboa Storage Power Project to a new command center in White Plains. [Albany Times Union]
- A living-history museum depicting a rural New England town from the 1830s, is now powered by a 1.8-MW solar ground mount, owned and operated by Green Street Power Partners, LLC. The solar system will provide power at a discounted rate for 25 years to Old Sturbridge Village, which welcomes more than 250,000 visitors annually. [Broadway World]
- New documents show that Connecticut-based Freepoint Solar has plans to develop three arrays, each capable of generating 20 MW of power, in Vernon, Shaftsbury, and Fair Haven, Vermont. Only one array of that size has been approved in Vermont at this point. Large photovoltaic projects have spurred debates about siting and transmission capacity. [vtdigger.org]
- “How Hurricane Irma Became So Huge and Destructive” • As Hurricane Irma barrels dangerously toward Florida, scientists say that a perfect mix of meteorological conditions has conspired over the past week to make the storm unusually large and powerful. In a season expected to have powerful hurricanes, Irma stands out. [New York Times]
- Minnesota added almost 2,900 clean energy jobs from 2015 to 2016, bringing its total to 57,351, according to a news release from Gov Mark Dayton’s office. The 5.3% growth meant clean energy jobs grew 3.8 times faster than overall jobs in the state, or about 2% of the state’s workforce, according to the group behind the annual study. [INFORUM]
- “Let’s Fund Disaster Relief – And Fight Climate Change – With A Tax On Carbon” • Texas, Louisiana, and Florida are in dire need of funds to haul debris, fix houses and schools, replace cars, and build better flood protection, after record-breaking storms. A carbon tax for disaster relief could accomplish multiple interlinked goals. [Forbes]
The monthly Better Buildings webinar series is back with fresh content on the issues that matter to you. The 2017-2018 season is based on feedback gathered from Better Buildings partners and affiliates, and features more industry experts and opportunities to explore the changing landscape of energy and water efficiency in the built environment.
The first installment premieres September 12, from 3-4PM ET, and explores how schools can incorporate energy efficiency into their buildings and facilities.
In October, you’ll hear about exciting new developments for energy efficiency in leased spaces, followed by the relationship between energy and water savings in November. From energy data management to building resiliency, the Better Buildings Webinar Series has something for everyone.
|Webinars are typically held the first Tuesday of the month, from 3-4PM EST. Don’t miss an opportunity to hear from experts in the field and your peers in energy efficiency – check out the full series schedule and sign up today!
Judith Enck will be the 2017 Renewable Energy & Sustainable Fair keynote speaker. Many other informative people will be presenting at this Fair too. The event will occur on Saturday, October 28 from 10 – 4 pm at Doane Stuart School 199 Washington Ave. Rensselaer, NY. Admission and parking are free.
Judith is a dynamic community leader who has spent her entire career working to protect public health and the environment.
She began her career as an environmental advocate and has held top influential positions in state and federal government. Judith is an environmental policy expert and is a Senior Advisor at the Institute for Governance and Sustainable Development.
Stop NY Fracked Gas Pipeline (SNYFGP), the People of Albany United for Sustainable Energy (PAUSE/350.org) and the Sierra Club Hudson-Mohawk Group are organizing the largest indoor/outdoor Renewable Energy & Sustainable Living Fair ever held in the Capital Region.
Building off its success last year, the 2017 Fair will expand to include a Bike Expo and exhibits about how we can break free from fossil fuel dependency and live sustainably.
SNYFGP, PAUSE and the SIERRA CLUB are seeking exhibitors and displays for all types of solar, wind and geothermal energy, insulation and other energy efficiency products and services. Earth-friendly and sustainably sourced products and crafts are desired too, as are cycling and energy-related vendors. To register for this Fair, go to: http://stopnypipeline.org/
In addition, if one wishes to assist the sponsors with Fair Booklet advertisements, distributing flyers, planting lawn signs, and/or working the day of the Fair, contact Bob Connors or Becky Meier at: 518-781-4686, or email@example.com or Tina Lieberman at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Donations may be made at: stopnypipeline.org and can also be sent to SNYFGP c/o 1409 County Rte 5 Canaan, NY 12029.
Capital Region Meeting of the New York Solar Energy Society
Guided Tour of Skidmore College’s Innovative Renewable Energy Projects
With Paul Lundberg
Friday, September 15th from Noon to 1:00
129 in the Scribner Library (Center of Campus)
Park at Harder Hall or Palamountain Lots off Broadway main entrance
Skidmore has implemented a number of small-scale and large-scale renewable energy projects to shift the College toward a more renewable energy portfolio.
Check out this neat interactive then come see for yourself:
Bring your “green” bag lunch (drinks and treats provided)
For more information contact:
Save the date: November 17th, Troy Hilton Garden NYSES Conference
We welcome renewable energy installers, building efficiency experts, teachers, professional engineers, homebuilders, architects, advocates, students and all interested community members.
Wondering about the technology behind renewable energy? Please join us at the monthly noontime Capital Region meeting of the New York Solar Energy Society. We tackle solar cooking, solar heating, solar hot water, wind, ground source heat transfer (“geothermal”) and tidal and wave technology. And, we won’t leave out the deep energy retrofits for homes and the importance of
mass transportation and electric vehicles.For more information: email@example.com