Investing in more efficient ACs could cut future energy demand in half
Our Efficient Cooling Scenario shows that effective policies can double average AC efficiency and reduce cooling energy demand by 45% compared to the Reference Scenario.
Cooling will drive peak electricity demand, especially in hot countries
More efficient ACs can reduce the need for new power plants to meet peak power demand, especially at night.
2018-10-04: Research published today suggests that the power available from wind is much more limited than many experts thought, and that deployment on a larger scale could significantly raise temperatures over the Earth’s surface, as turbines alter atmospheric flows. The research highlights a painful but not altogether surprising reality: Even the cleanest renewable technologies come with environmental costs.
Research found that wind plants encompassing the largest areas had the lowest power densities, as expected. This figure implies that meeting current U.S. electricity needs alone would require wind farms to cover fully 12 percent of the U.S. land area. Wind power has physical limitations.
Miller and Keith found something even more surprising in another study that looked at a related question: What should we expect the climate impact of significant wind energy generation to be? Removing energy from atmospheric winds means those winds carry less energy afterward, moving more slowly, among other things.
simulations revealed that interactions of the turbines with the atmosphere would likely lead to a redistribution of heat in the lower atmosphere, resulting in a 0.54 degrees Celsius (0.97 degrees Fahrenheit) warming within the wind farms’ region itself, and an increase of 0.24 degrees Celsius (0.43 degrees Fahrenheit) over the continental U.S. This result, they note, actually matches up pretty well with recent satellite observations of local warming around wind farms operating in California, Illinois, Iowa and Texas. They also found that an expansive wind farm would need to operate for more than a century or so before the reduction of global carbon dioxide emissions would offset the local warming effect.
Miller and Keith also looked at U.S. solar farms, finding an achieved energy density about 10 times higher than for wind farms. Solar arrays in their study also led to much less local warming. There may be a good reason to shift future investments toward solar energy, as some big investors are doing already.
2014/12/08: The implications of such a paradigm shift in manufacturing for environmental sustainability are enormous. ‘Because they only use the exact material required, 3D printers could eliminate waste from traditional manufacturing – in which up to 90% of raw material is discarded’ In addition to realising economies in the use of raw materials, the type of distributed manufacturing undergirded by RepRap-like 3D printing implies a massive reduction in global transportation costs attendant upon the localisation of production (Rifkin 2011). Clearly, large-scale industrial infrastructures and the mass production model itself are no longer needed if people are able to micro-manufacture whatever they need in the comfort of their homes. And that is good for the environment
eating plants isn't going to save us from global warming or other environmental disasters.
Much has been made of the methane emissions of livestock, but these are lower in biodiverse pasture systems that ... may reduce emissions of methane by 70%.
In the vegan equation, by contrast, the carbon cost of ploughing is rarely considered. But since the industrial revolution up to 70% of the carbon in our cultivated soils has been lost to the atmosphere.
So, unless you’re sourcing your vegan products specifically from organic, "no-dig" systems, you are actively participating in the destruction of soil biota
The 3D printer is a double-edged sword. It stands to transform technology and society for the better, but we also can't ignore the potential negative consequences.
Computers powered on but not in use are expected to emit approximately 20 million tons of CO2 this year, roughly equivalent to the impact of 4 million cars, according to report by 1E and the Alliance to Save Energy.
The insatiable demand of the global building boom has unleashed an illegal market in sand. Gangs are now stealing pristine beaches to order and paradise islands are being dredged and sold to the construction industry. Neil Tweedie investigates a hidden disaster
What would it take to make the fashion industry truly sustainable?
Young people, especially, are holed up indoors
Plastic is polluting our ocean and damaging our health, and there are widespread calls to get rid of it. But it isn't as simple as wishing the pervasive material away.
Fablabs, makerspaces, emerging global knowledge commons... These are but some of the outcomes of a growing movement that champions globally-sourced designs for local economic activity. Its core idea is simple: local ownership of the means to produce basic manufactures and services can change our economic paradigm, making our cities self-sufficient and help the planet.
Current trends say generating new bitcoins will use all the power in the world by 2020. That might not happen, but the technical issues aren't going away.
Average land use area needed to produce one unit of protein by food type, measured in metres squared (m194178) per gram of protein over a crop's annual cycle or the average animal's lifetime. Average values are based on a meta-analysis of studies across 742 agricultural systems and over 90 unique foods.
2017-04-19: One of the most lavishly funded gadget startups in Silicon Valley last year was Juicero Inc. It makes a juice machine. The product was an unlikely pick for top technology investors, but they were drawn to the idea of an internet-connected device that transforms single-serving packets of chopped fruits and vegetables into a refreshing and healthy beverage. But after the product hit the market, some investors were surprised to discover a much cheaper alternative: You can squeeze the Juicero bags with your bare hands.
Like most people, I had no idea Juicero existed until very recently. In fact, I found out about the whole conundrum just this morning. Quick refresher for those of you who (like me until this
STYLE is supposedly for ever. But the garments needed to conjure up eternal chic are spending less time on shop racks and in homes than ever before.
The main difference between the Old Left and the Alt-Left is that the latter focuses more on the cultural, behavioral and psychological sides of economic life. In a world where material resources a...
Self-driving cars are at a fascinating juncture right now. We know they're coming soon. We know they're going to change things. But we don't know how they're going to change things - in what...
Changing habits and pollution concerns are calling time on our love affair with cars. But this doesn't have to be the end.