Above – “we’ve heard about cloud seeding, Chemtrails, these are all things”.
Well, actually only one of those is a thing, and probably not what crazy internet guy thinks.

There’s a “horseshoe theory” of politics, which states that the continuum of politics is not a straight line, but bent more like a horseshoe, meaning the two ends are closer to each other than they are to the center.
This was demonstrated again the other day when a DC City Council member blamed inclement weather on the machinations of Jewish Bankers.  Tongue and groove fit for crazy right, and crazy left.

None dare call it horseshit.

Washington Post:

A D.C. lawmaker responded to a brief snowfall Friday by publishing a video in which he espoused a conspiracy theory that Jewish financiers control the weather.

D.C. Council member Trayon White Sr. (D-Ward 8) posted the video to his official Facebook page at 7:21 a.m. as snow flurries were hitting the nation’s capital. The video, shot through the windshield of a car driving west on Interstate 695 through downtown Washington, shows snowy skies while White narrates.

“Man, it just started snowing out of nowhere this morning, man. Y’all better pay attention to this climate control, man, this climate manipulation,” he says. “And D.C. keep talking about, ‘We a resilient city.’ And that’s a model based off the Rothschilds controlling the climate to create natural disasters they can pay for to own the cities, man. Be careful.”


Horse what?

The Rothschilds are a famous European business dynasty descended from Mayer Amschel Rothschild, an 18th-century Jewish banker who lived in what is today Frankfurt, Germany. The family has repeatedly been subject over the years to anti-Semitic conspiracy theories alleging that they and other Jews clandestinely manipulate world events for their advantage.

In a video posted to YouTube this year titled “Kill Cities — Designed by Rothschild and Rockefeller: Resilient Cities Are Human Death Zones,” Internet commentator Deborah Tavares — a Northern California resident who argues, among other things, that climate change and wireless electricity meters are tools in a plot of global domination — calls the Resilient Cities program a “diabolical” effort to manipulate people.

“This a genocide program,” she says. “We are being moved now into what they call ‘resilient cities.’ And it’s important to get this word out, start looking it up: Resilient cities. Understand what this is: This is a plan brought in by Rothschild and Rockefeller.”

She adds, “We’re being categorized as lunatics, but we know that the weather is massively and completely, artificially controlled.”

Read the rest of this entry »


Above video outlines the problem.
I spend a lot of time pushing back on catastrophist notions that a “methane bomb” is going to wipe out humanity in coming decades.  Simply hard to find scientists who agree with that.

But we do have a problem, and it may be that the dimensions are poorly understood.
New study warns of possibly larger methane emissions from thawing permafrost. Important to caution not to fall in to the “one study syndrome” – science is a continuum, and in reading Chris Mooney’s Washpost piece, he makes it clear that current studies conflict on these issues.
Experts I have interviewed are stressing that the larger term of uncertainty in this equation is still the emissions decisions that humans make in coming years.

Washington Post:

For some time, scientists fearing the mass release of greenhouse gases from the carbon-rich, frozen soils of the Arctic have had at least one morsel of good news in their forecasts: They predicted most of the gas released would be carbon dioxide, which, though a greenhouse gas, drives warming more slowly than some other gases. Scientists obviously weren’t excited about more carbon dioxide emissions, but it was better than the alternative: methane, a shorter-lived but far harder-hitting gas that could cause faster bursts of warming.

Now even that silver lining is in doubt.

Research released Monday suggests that methane releases could be considerably more prevalent as Arctic permafrost thaws. The research finds that in waterlogged wetland soils, where oxygen is not prevalent, tiny microorganisms will produce a considerable volume of methane, a gas that doesn’t last in the air much more than a decade but has a warming effect many times that of carbon dioxide over a period of 100 years.

“What we can definitely say is that the importance of methane was underestimated until now in the carbon studies,” said Christian Knobloch, a researcher at Universität Hamburg in Germany and the lead author of the study, published in Nature Climate Change.

The divergent finding came after Knoblauch and his colleagues conducted a lengthy experiment, more than seven years long, monitoring patches of submerged and artificially warmed soil from Siberia in the laboratory, and gradually seeing sensitive methane-producing microorganisms become more prevalent over time.

Knoblauch contends that other studies have not examined waterlogged Arctic soils for as long, and he notes that in some cases it took three years or more for the methane-generating microorganisms to really get cranking.

“What we saw is that it takes a very long time until methane starts being produced, and the study that we did is really the first one which is so long,” Knoblauch said.

The research was conducted along with colleagues from several institutions in Germany, Sweden and Russia.

So much methane was produced in the experiment, the researchers calculated that the impact of greenhouse gas emissions from wet soils, or wetlands, will be higher than from drier soils, where carbon dioxide should indeed be the top gas released. This finding, if further confirmed, could reorient calculations of the overall potential of permafrost to worsen global warming over the coming century.

Read the rest of this entry »


Utility Dive:

The remarkable transition that utilities in the Southeast are undergoing is a powerful indicator of the profound changes happening in the nation’s power sector.

The Southeast had 200 MW of solar capacity in 2012, but led by North Carolina’s Duke Energy utilities and Georgia Power, it had 6 GW at the end of 2017, according to Solar in the Southeast, released in February by the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy (SACE). Even utilities not aggressively building solar now realize customers want solar — it is affordable, and there are ways it can serve utility purposes.

Utilities in the Southeast are responding to rising customer demand for renewables by capturing the economic opportunity in a solar resource second only to sun in the desert Southwest in the United States. Existing contracts and commitments promise over 10 GW of solar capacity in the Southeast by 2019 and as much as 15 GW by 2021, according to SACE. The growth has been and will continue to be almost entirely in utility-scale solar.

Utilities in the conservative Southeast have taken little notice of solar beyond its ability to meet growing residential and commercial customer demand at increasingly attractive prices. A third factor, which has emerged only recently in the wake of climate change-driven extreme storms and power outages, is solar’s potential resilience value. While the overall national trend for solar installations is upward, there have been some hiccups recently.

Total solar installations across the U.S. fell from 15 GW in 2016 to 10.6 GW in 2017, driven partly by uncertainty over tariffs on solar cells and modules that were eventually imposed in January by the Trump Administration. Other factors impacting solar growth include changes in state incentives and net metering policies, according to a new report from GTM and the Solar Energy Industries Association.

Due to the tariffs and recent tax changes, GTM has lowered its forecast for total photovoltaic installations in the U.S. from 2018 to 2022 by 13%.

2017 installations across the U.S. were still about 40% higher than the number in 2015, but the biggest obstacles to growth are the absence of supportive policy and diminishing utility load.


The reason why the sunny U.S. Southeast resisted solar power for years is the same reason that explains its about-face: cost.

The region was long the country’s smallest solar market, in part because state regulators argued it was just too expensive. Now that prices have come down sharply, area utilities are embracing power from the sun. Read the rest of this entry »


More reasons why Trump/Putin/Republicans want to do away with renewable energy research. (see below)

Technology and ingenuity can be tools of, or a weapons against, tyranny.
Perfect example showing simple tech improvements can leverage dramatic cost reductions.

Triple Pundit:

Solar energy fans haven’t had much to cheer about during the Trump Administration, especially after the President’s recent imposition of tariffs on steel and solar panels. Nevertheless, some analysts see healthy demand persisting in the US solar market. That’s partly due to keen interest on the part of US businesses eager to polish their green cred with renewable energy.

Demand could even pass expectations if the cost of installing solar panels continues to drop, helping to offset negative effects from the new tariffs. In one recent development on that score, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory has been testing a new installation system that could keep pushing down the cost of ground-mounted solar farms. That adds more weight to the argument that now is still a good time to invest in a solar installation, tariff or not.

The soft costs of solar energy

Analysts have pointed out that Trump’s new solar tariff only impacts the “hard” cost of solar energy, namely, the panels themselves. “Soft” costs account for much of the overall cost of a new solar installation. That can include anything from marketing and administration to transportation, permitting and labor costs. So, at least theoretically a savings on soft costs could offset any upward movement on hard costs.

One place where hard and soft costs intersect is the racking system needed to position solar panels on the ground or on a rooftop. These systems are generally made of steel, and that could be impacted by the new Trump tariff on imported steel. If the new racking system being tested at NREL pans out, though, labor and associated costs could drop significantly — and the steel tariff would be a moot issue, too.

A new solar racking system

The new racking system is being developed by the startup Powerfield. The system is designed to overcome three main hurdles.

First, the racks are lightweight, which could mean a significant savings on the cost of materials as well as transportation. Instead of the conventional “Erector Set” system of steel mounted in a concrete base, the system is composed of plastic shaped in a large U. To keep them in place, the plastic shapes are filled with several hundred pounds of any available material, such as sand, dirt or rocks. Read the rest of this entry »


Sinking ship. Yadda yadda.


A retired United States Army lieutenant colonel and Fox News contributor quit Tuesday and denounced the network and President Donald Trump in an email to colleagues.

“Fox has degenerated from providing a legitimate and much-needed outlet for conservative voices to a mere propaganda machine for a destructive and ethically ruinous administration,” wrote Ralph Peters, a Fox News “strategic analyst.”

“Over my decade with Fox, I long was proud of the association. Now I am ashamed,” he wrote.

Peters, who was also a heated critic of Barack Obama’s foreign policy, once described him as having been “date raped” by Vladimir Putin. He didn’t respond to an email about his missive.

“Ralph Peters is entitled to his opinion despite the fact that he’s choosing to use it as a weapon in order to gain attention. We are extremely proud of our top-rated primetime hosts and all of our opinion programing,” Fox News said in a statement.

Here’s Peters’ full email to colleagues:

On March 1st, I informed Fox that I would not renew my contract. The purpose of this message to all of you is twofold: Read the rest of this entry »


Today is International Happiness Day.

This is not Rocket science.


Former miner Graham Knight puts his cup of tea down on the cafe table and looks out through the large glass windows. Trees frame every view; a small herd of cows meander through a copse of silver birch towards a distance lake.

“It is quite difficult to put into words what’s happened here and the impact it has had on people,” says the 73-year-old. “Perhaps the best way to think about it is that people seem … well, more happy somehow.”

The cafe is in the heart of the first new forest to be created in the UK for 1,000 years, with 8 million new trees stretching over 200 sq miles of rolling Midlands countryside.

Knight, who worked in one of the area’s many coalmines before they were shut in the late 1980s, says the forest project has transformed an area ravaged by the loss of the mines into an increasingly vibrant – and beautiful – place to live.

“Twenty-five years ago all this was an opencast mine,” he says waving his hand towards the distant hills. “Mud and dirt with hardly a tree to be seen. Now just look, people want to live here, they are proud to be from here – it has totally changed how people feel.”

The first tree in the National Forest was planted more than 25 years ago and now much of the land that spans Derbyshire, Leicestershire and Staffordshire is unrecognisable.

John Everitt, the chief executive of the National Forest Company which oversees the project, says the simple act of planting trees has sparked a dizzying list of spin-off benefits, from tourism to a nascent woodland economy; from flood management to thriving wildlife; from improved health and wellbeing to housebuilding and jobs.

“We have embedded trees in and around where people live and made sure they are accessible rather than as a distant thing that they can visit occasionally. And we are seeing the benefits in all sorts of ways – and they are multiplying all the time.”

Everitt, an ecologist by training who has been heading the project for the past three years, fires off an impressive list of figures to back up his claims: the forest attracts 7.8 million visitors a year, it has brought about 5,000 new jobs with hundreds more in the pipeline, woodland industries from firewood to timber businesses are springing up, craft food and beer businesses are flourishing and thousands of people cycle or walk the hundreds of miles of pathways and trails each year.

But he says some of the most important benefits the area has witnessed are more difficult to quantify.

Read the rest of this entry »