Decarbonizing Air Travel
“How can we make air travel carbon-free?”
One of my favorite things to do is travel. Although I don’t get the opportunity often, I love the ability to see new lands, meet new people, and really change my perspective on the world. And one of my favorite parts is traveling to the destination by plane. Being able to gaze upon the entire world through my plane window almost makes me feel like a child again.
However, as a sustainability enthusiast, I feel bad every time I take a flight. I am aware that in one round-trip flight from San Francisco to New York I’ve generated about 20% of the greenhouse gases emitted by the average American car travel. In 1992, it accounted for 13% of all transportation emissions and is expected to grow in the coming years. As a result, Decarbonizing Air Travel is a necessity for achieving a climate-friendly world. This can be done through a multitude of sources, most notably replacement or decarbonization of jet fuel.
Wholesale Electricity Markets
“How do utility companies purchase electricity generation?”
Utility companies are responsible for transmitting electricity. However, they do not always own generation facilities. Instead, they may purchase it on a competitive platform known as a wholesale electricity market. This decoupling of electrical generation and transmission can create a multitude of opportunities for Power Purchase Agreements.
How Grid Defects Can Increase Climate Change Resilience
“How can grid defection increase infrastructure resiliency to climate change?”
Grid-islanded systems are typically thought of as expensive alternatives to their grid-depended counterparts. But with the advent of ever-increasing storms and floods induced by climate change, their constant reliability will make them a more reliable alternative. Since they can provide power in the case of natural disasters, they can provide extra resilience to communities such as Puerto Rico who experienced a grid shutdown from Hurricane Maria.
“What happens to total cost if one more unit is produced?”
Everything in economics has a cost associated with it. And these costs and can be divided into different categories. Take a factory producing solar panels for example. There is already a base cost with operating the factory, and the total cost for each unit of production. This is known as the Marginal Cost and can be used in risk assessment of engineering projects. Sometimes when more units are produced in a given span, the cost goes down because of economies of scale, while other times it goes up.
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How Community Choice Aggregators Can Offer Cleaner Energy at Lower Rates
“How can community-sourced energy be cheaper and greener?”
There is a revolution brewing in the renewable energy world. While in the past residents and businesses were tied to one electric utility based on their geographic area, organizations known as Community Choice Aggregators are starting to sprout up and challenge this. Community choice aggregators or CCAs are non-profit organizations that procure power generation and deliver it to customers through a utility’s transmission lines. Since these do not operate for investors and only need to pay for energy and staff, they can give their customers better rates than traditional electricity service and focus on particular resources. To illustrate, just look at the CCA San Jose Clean Energy. Even though their energy portfolio is 45% Renewable Energy/80% carbon-free, they sell energy at rates 1% lower than the standard San Francisco Bay Area PG&E service which is 33% Renewable Energy/78% carbon-free. This is How Community Choice Aggregators Can Offer Cleaner Energy at Lower Rates!
How Wave Energy Can Help Island Nations
“Why is wave energy really helpful for island nations?”
Island nations are strapped when it comes to energy resources. Their small land area limits the potential for distributed energy resources and centralized power plants pose a large resilience risk and monetary expense. However, there might be one form of power that can be a game changer. Since islands are surrounded by water, the can harvest the kinetic energy from the waves crashing onto their beaches. Complimenting this with other renewables, island nations can achieve true self-sufficiency. This is How Wave Energy Can Help Island Nations.
A Simple Reason Why Humanity Needs to be Less Wasteful to Curb Climate Catastrophe
“What is one tough thing humanity needs to adopt to fight climate change?”
Right now humanity is on track to shoot past a rise of 2-degree centigrade from pre-industrialization by 2030. And one of the primary reasons behind this is because human energy consumption and population has been rising over the years. Much of the global focus to fight this has been increasing technological energy efficiency. But according to the equation I = PAT, if population and affluence rise then it would offset more efficient technology. If humanity does not want to quickly decrease its population then it must change its culture of affluence. This is A Simple Reason Why Humanity Needs to be Less Wasteful to Curb Climate Catastrophe.