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Arlington Vision 2020 Committee/Mass. Climate Action Network (MCAN) Chapter

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This page includes content from the Climate Change News blog, which is maintained daily by David Landskov, and content from our old SA blog archives.

  • In Landmark Day, East Coast States Secure 1.2 GW of Offshore Wind for US

    Climate Change News May 24, 2018 | 19:18 pm

    In Landmark Day, East Coast States Secure 1.2 GW of Offshore Wind for US Massachusetts and Rhode Island today selected two offshore wind projects for development, securing a total of 1.2 GW of offshore generating capacity along the East Coast. “With today’s landmark decisions, Massachusetts and Rhode Island are ready to pioneer large-scale offshore wind development that will light the way for our industry and nation,” Tom Kiernan, CEO of the American Wind Energy Association, said in a statement.  “With world-class wind resources, infrastructure and offshore energy expertise, the U.S. is primed to scale up this industry and lead it.  Becoming a world leader for offshore wind will open tremendous new opportunities for U.S. workers, factories, and ships throughout our coastal states.” Vineyard Wind won a competitive bid in Massachusetts with a 800-MW offshore wind proposal that includes a generator lead line. Massachusetts law requires the state’s electric distribution companies to obtain 1.6 GW of offshore wind energy by 2027.  A request for proposals from the state called for long-term contracts for offshore wind generation and associated renewable energy credits totaling 400 MW, but bidders were able to submit proposals for up to about 800 MW.  Bids were evaluated and selected by the state’s distribution companies and the Department of Energy Resources. “Vineyard Wind is proud to be selected to lead the new Massachusetts offshore wind industry into the future,” Lars Thaaning Pedersen, CEO of Vineyard Wind, said. Thaaning said Vineyard Wind is grateful for the time and commitment shown by many stakeholders, including Secretary of Energy and Environmental Affairs Matthew Beaton and Massachusetts[…]

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  • US Launches Nuclear Initiative to Cut Carbon with Canada, Japan, UK

    Climate Change News May 24, 2018 | 19:04 pm

    US Launches Nuclear Initiative to Cut Carbon with Canada, Japan, UK While the Trump administration generally avoids discussion of climate change, it is participating in a coalition to promote “clean, reliable” nuclear power. The US, Canada and Japan are to create a coalition aimed at promoting nuclear power as a carbon-free energy source around the world. The UK is also taking part, the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (Beis) confirmed to Climate Home News on Wednesday. The Nuclear Innovation:  Clean Energy (Nice) partnership will be launched on Thursday at a ministerial summit being held in Copenhagen and Malmö. In a blog post on his department’s website, US deputy energy secretary Dan Brouillette called for countries to work together for a “Nice Future”. “If the world is serious about reducing emissions and growing economies, then the ministerial must consider all options when it comes to carbon-free power, including clean, reliable nuclear energy,” he said. Read more at US Launches Nuclear Initiative to Cut Carbon with Canada, Japan, UK

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  • EV Revolution Could Wipe Out $21 Trillion in Oil Revenue

    Climate Change News May 24, 2018 | 18:49 pm

    EV Revolution Could Wipe Out $21 Trillion in Oil Revenue Hardly a day goes by without a research company releasing yet another report forecasting the future of electric vehicles and all related industries, oil included.  Some of these are skeptical, but most predict a bright future for electric cars.  The latest is no exception: a UK-based company, Aurora Energy Research, has projected that the adoption of electric cars could wipe out as much as US$21 trillion in revenues for the oil, gas, and coal industry by 2040. In oil, Aurora Energy Research predicts that revenues could fall from US$1.5 trillion in 2016 to US$1.1 trillion in 2040 on the back of fast EV adoption combined with major improvements in energy efficiencies.  Meanwhile, oil prices could plummet to as little as US$32 a barrel. This is what could happen under a “Burnout” scenario developed by the research firm that envisages fast growth in EV adoption and equally fast growth in electricity demand on the back of digital tech use driven by the expansion of the Internet of Things. Read more at EV Revolution Could Wipe Out $21 Trillion in Oil Revenue

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  • Global Warming Made Hurricane Harvey More Destructive

    Climate Change News May 24, 2018 | 18:35 pm

    Global Warming Made Hurricane Harvey More Destructive Hot oceans fueled Hurricane Harvey, generating more intense rainfall. Last summer, the United states was pummeled with three severe hurricanes in rapid succession.  It was a truly awesome display of the power of weather and the country is still reeling from the effects.  In the climate community, there has been years of research into the effect that human-caused global warming has on these storms – both their frequency and their power.  The prevailing view is that in a warming world, there will likely be fewer such storms, but the storms that form will be more severe.  Some research, however, concludes that there will be both more storms and more severe ones.  More generally, because there is more heat, there is more activity, which can be manifested in several ways. Regardless, there is very little doubt that a warmer planet can create more powerful storms.  The reason is that hurricanes feed off of warmer ocean water.  In order to form these storms, oceans have to be above about 26°C (about 80°F).  With waters that hot, and with strong winds, there is a rapid evaporation of moisture from the ocean.  The resulting water vapor enters into the storm, providing the energy to power the storm as the water vapor condenses and falls out of the storm as rain. Read more at Global Warming Made Hurricane Harvey More Destructive

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  • Strict Curbs on Global Warming Would Buoy World Economy:  Study

    Climate Change News May 24, 2018 | 18:28 pm

    Strict Curbs on Global Warming Would Buoy World Economy:  Study Stringent limits on global warming would bolster the world economy by averting tens of trillions of dollars in damage this century from heat waves, droughts and floods, a U.S. study said on Wednesday. The report, among the first to assess the economics of the 2015 Paris climate agreement, said the toughest temperature curbs would benefit 90 percent of the world’s population, especially in poor nations in Africa, Asia, and Latin America. The world’s biggest economies - the United States, China, and Japan - would also gain if the world achieves the toughest targets, according to the study led by researchers at Stanford University and published in the journal Nature. Russia, Canada, and Nordic countries, where rising temperatures could boost farm output and limit deaths from winter cold, would be among a few nations to [not benefit] economically from tough curbs on global warming, the study said....“The results should be interpreted with caution,” Bob Ward, of the London School of Economics and Political Science, told Reuters.  He said it was unlikely that “the impacts of future global warming can be simply extrapolated”.The authors acknowledged many uncertainties about the future economy.  Wider use of air conditioning in the tropics, for instance, might lift worker productivity and GDP as it has already done in nations such as Singapore, Burke said.The study also omitted some big potential benefits, for instance if a 1.5C ceiling could avert a thaw of Greenland or Antarctica that would drive up sea levels and swamp coasts. Read more at Strict[…]

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  • Exxon to Cut Methane Emissions in Bid to Tackle Climate Change

    Climate Change News May 24, 2018 | 05:39 am

    Exxon to Cut Methane Emissions in Bid to Tackle Climate Change Exxon Mobil Corp said on Wednesday it was targeting a 15 percent cut in methane emissions by 2020, the latest effort by an oil major to reduce its carbon footprint and address climate change concerns. Exxon, like oil and gas majors across the world, is working to placate environmentalists and governments who are concerned about pollution from fossil fuels. BP said last month it would keep carbon emissions flat over the decade to 2025 to help tackle climate change. Exxon, the world’s largest publicly traded oil producer, had said in September it would replace oil equipment and update technology to curb methane emissions from its U.S. shale facilities. Exxon said leak-detection-and-repair efforts at XTO Energy, its shale-focused subsidiary, had reduced emissions of the gas by 2 percent in the past year. The company also expects these efforts to cut natural gas flaring by about 25 percent by 2020, with most reductions expected in West Africa. Read more at Exxon to Cut Methane Emissions in Bid to Tackle Climate Change

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  • New Jersey Governor Signs Nuclear Power Subsidy Bill into Law

    Climate Change News May 24, 2018 | 04:54 am

    New Jersey Governor Signs Nuclear Power Subsidy Bill into Law New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy signed several legislative initiatives on Wednesday to advance the state’s clean energy goals, including a controversial bill that would subsidize the continued operation of nuclear power plants. The new nuclear law, which could cost about $300 million a year, establishes a Zero Emissions Certificate (ZEC) program to maintain New Jersey’s nuclear energy supply, which contributes close to 40 percent of the state’s electric capacity and is by far its largest source of carbon free energy. Plants seeking to participate in the program would be required, among other things, to demonstrate that they make a significant contribution to New Jersey air quality and are at risk of closure within three years. The four reactors operating in New Jersey are capable of generating over 4,100 megawatts (MW) of electricity.  Three are located at the Salem-Hope Creek nuclear plant and are operated by a unit of Public Service Enterprise Group Inc, the state’s biggest power company.  One megawatt can power about 1,000 U.S. homes. The other reactor, Oyster Creek, is owned by Exelon Corp, which also owns part of the Salem reactors.  Exelon plans to shut Oyster Creek in October 2018 under a long-standing agreement with the state. “Exelon commends New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy...by signing into law a package of legislation that will help to preserve 90 percent of New Jersey’s carbon-free power, protect 5,800 jobs and save residents and businesses $400 million on their electric bills,” Exelon said in a statement....Nuclear operators have shut several reactors[…]

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  • Wednesday 23

    Climate Change News May 24, 2018 | 04:43 am

    Wednesday 23

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  • World Temperature Rise Nears Danger Level

    Climate Change News May 23, 2018 | 07:33 am

    World Temperature Rise Nears Danger Level If world temperature rises more than another 0.5°C, the consequences will be catastrophic for millions of the poorest people. With world temperature rise already 1°C above pre-industrial levels, new research shows that there is only a 0.5°C safety margin left in the system before the most vulnerable groups of people suffer severely. The current political target, agreed in Paris more than two years ago, of aiming to prevent temperature from rising more than 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels, and certainly stopping a rise beyond 2°C, disguises the fact that we are already more than halfway to the danger point. And scientists have now shown that there is a huge difference in the consequences to the human race if the 1.5°C limit is exceeded and temperatures allowed to reach 2°C. Research to identify climate vulnerability hotspots has found that if the global temperature does rise by 2°C, then the number of people affected by multiple climate change risks could double the number affected by a rise of 1.5°C. Because people living in poverty are much more vulnerable to climate change impacts, knowing where and how many of them are at high risk matters for developing policies to improve their lives. Read more at World Temperature Rise Nears Danger Level

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  • Poland’s Stunning Electromobility Plans

    Climate Change News May 23, 2018 | 07:19 am

    Poland’s Stunning Electromobility Plans The Polish government has adopted a new law on electromobility aimed to turn Poland into an e-mobility leader in Europe.  The country wants to have 1 million EVs on the road by 2025.  Already home to electric bus manufacturing plants and a big EV battery plant, Poland is set to become the motor for electrifying transport in Europe.  “We are really pioneers”, says Marta Gajęcka, Head of Energy Advisors to the President of the Republic of Poland, in an exclusive interview with Energy Post. At first glance Poland seems like an unlikely candidate to become an industrial powerhouse based on electric vehicles.  The country had only 324 public charging stations available in 2016, compared with around 7,000 in the UK.  About 1,068 EVs were sold in 2017, up from 556 in 2016.  Contrasting with this apparently unpromising start, the Electromobility Development Plan adopted by the Polish Council of Ministers in 2017 plans for one million EVs on the road by 2025. Earlier this year, new legislation in the form of the ‘Act on Electromobility and Alternative Fuels’ was approved by lawmakers, setting out the legal framework for Poland’s EV ambition.  “There are not so many countries who are putting e-mobility forward as a central component of policy, we are really pioneers in this way,” says Marta Gajęcka, Head of Energy Advisors to the President of the Republic of Poland, in an interview with Energy Post.  “Electrifying transport has the potential to enable  cheaper and more reliable access to mobility.  Electro-mobility[…]

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