Been dealing with stress today.
Being outside helps.


You’re probably reading this on your phone. If not, take it out your pocket and look at it.

It’s a smartphone, isn’t it? Think how often you use it and all the useful things it helps you do. Now, think back. How long since you bought your first smartphone?

It will be about 10 years, most likely a bit less. Not long. Yet they are now ubiquitous: virtually everyone, everywhere has one and uses it for hours every day.

It shows how quickly new technology can take off. The original iPhone was only introduced in 2007 and – bizarre as it now seems – it wasn’t regarded as revolutionary back then.

Check out this Forbes magazine cover published nine months after the iPhone was released. (above)

And Forbes wasn’t alone. The iPhone was just “one more entrant into an already very busy space,” according to the boss of the company that made Blackberrys. Remember them?

Not only have smartphones crushed all other phone technologies, they have upended dozens of other industries too. They’ve killed the camera and powered the rise of social media and dating apps. They’ve decimated the traditional taxi industry.

So what has this got to do with energy?

It proves an important point about all successful new technologies: it is easy to see why they were so transformative in hindsight, much harder to predict how they will reshape our world in advance.

Which brings me to green technology – wind turbines, electric vehicles, solar panels and batteries, that kind of thing.

If you still think adopting these new technologies will be an expensive chore, think again.

Green tech is at a tipping point where it could take off explosively – just like the smartphone did. And, just like the smartphone, it could bring a revolution in how we do much more than just create energy.

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As cases on Friday spiked over 100k, Trump, Republicans continue to smear Physicians, Nurses, and health professionals as somehow profiting off of Covid numbers.

Susan R. Baily MD, President, American Medical Association:

During this COVID-19 pandemic, physicians are unfortunately fighting a two-front war. Already facing one of the greatest threats to public health in generations, we have been pulled into a public battle we did not want over the very legitimacy of our work and our motivation.

The assault on public health and the undermining of efforts to defeat COVID-19 began with unfounded suspicions about the science and evidence of this novel coronavirus and how it spreads. It grew with speculation about harmful and unproven treatments for COVID-19, false claims that masks were a source of infections, and by misleading suggestions that increased testing alone explains why case counts are surging.

It expanded again with inaccurate, dangerous statements about children being “almost immune” from the most serious effects of COVID-19, a reckless plan of “focused protection” and naturally acquired “herd immunity” as a pathway out of this pandemic, and most recently with wild and highly offensive claims that physicians are inflating the number of COVID-19 cases and deaths to increase our incomes.    

At every turn, at the highest levels of government, our motives and efforts are undermined, questioned and discredited in a misguided attempt to downplay the seriousness of the pandemic we continue to fight.

It starts with climate change.

Has Fossil Gas Peaked?

October 30, 2020

Yer lookin’ a little peaked..

Yahoo Finance:

Exxon Mobil Corp. warned it may take up to $30 billion in writedowns on natural gas fields acquired more than a decade ago, and reported a third straight quarterly loss.

Exxon is confronting one of its biggest crises since Saudi Arabia began nationalizing its oilfields in the 1970s. If the company takes the full $30 billion impairment, it will be the industry’s worst in more than a decade, according to Bloomberg data.

The company lost $680 million, or 15 cents a share, during the third quarter, compared with the 25-cent per-share loss forecast in a Bloomberg survey of analysts. The shares fell 1.6% to $32.45 at 12:09 p.m. in New York and are down more than 50% for the year.


One of the largest utilities in the U.S. put $8 billion into a bet that natural gas would dominate American electricity much like coal had before. “We really consider this to be a growth play,” Tom Fanning, chief executive officer of Southern Co., said in an interview just five years ago, as his company set on its landmark acquisition: natural-gas distributor AGL Resources Inc.

Gas looked to be on the verge of generational dominance at the time. The American fracking boom had made the fuel superabundant and cheap, hastening coal’s rapid decline, while energy from wind and solar had higher costs and lower reliability. A giant utility like Southern would naturally see gas pipelines and storage as the key to a durable and lucrative future, meeting demand that would continue to grow.

Now those expansive time horizons are in deep doubt. In fact, there are flashing signs that the U.S. power sector is approaching peak gas, with demand topping out decades ahead of schedule. “The era of robust growth in the U.S. natural gas market is likely coming to a close,” says Devin McDermott, an analyst at Morgan Stanley. “It doesn’t mean the market falls apart. It doesn’t mean gas demand falls off of a cliff. It means that we need less new supply going forward.”

Several states including California and New York already have legal mandates to reach 100% renewable or carbon-free electricity by 2050 or sooner. This is just the start.

The others have established mandatory goals below 100% or voluntary targets. All told, more than half of U.S. states have established renewable-energy targets that will push utilities away from gas.

At the local level, more than 30 cities have put in place gas hook-up moratoriums on new construction in support of all-electric buildings.

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I’m on the other side of the camera for this interview from October 23 on prospects and import of the oncoming election.
The idea was to get an encouraging GOTV message to voters who may be overwhelmed with the climate crisis, and not understand the huge importance of voting, and the vast chasm between the incumbent and the challenger.
Musician/Activist Seth Bernard is the interviewer.

We discussed the importance of voting, and the real potential for change on the scale needed to mitigate the climate crisis.I worry that some greens and young people may feel too hopeless, or have been mislead to believe that the Biden Climate program is not adequate. That’s wrong. The program is big enough, and has the right components, to get us where we need to go. For a deep dive on the prospects for a clean energy revolution, take time to listen in.

This has gotten quite a few views on Facebook, and the comments make me feel like it’s hitting the target.

The Onion:

YORBA LINDA, CA—Asking the members of the wealthy local citizenry to put a brief pause on their construction projects, Orange County authorities reportedly urged residents Thursday to stop building additions onto homes that are currently on fire. “We understand that a breezeway or infinity pool is your top priority at the moment, but we humbly ask residents to just delay any inessential home improvement projects until firefighters have extinguished the wildfires currently blazing through your estates,” said Orange County fire marshal Lori Smith, adding that it was making firefighters’ jobs more difficult when they were competing for room with construction workers erecting a sauna.

“The nature of the fast-moving Silverado and Blue Ridge wildfires means that more than likely, that fourth floor you’re adding might end up getting destroyed by a blaze, and you’d just have to start over. We recommend waiting until the fires have at least subsided into smoldering embers before continuing construction on the sunroom or fitness center, and we pledge to let you know as soon as your guest wing project can resume. In the meantime, if you must continue building a patio or gazebo, we recommend stone materials, as these will work best in the face of the flames currently moving through your properties.” Orange County officials added that they had already secured millions of dollars in emergency funding from California to allow local residents to build their third dream homes after the fire was extinguished.

Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis:

The IEA halved the cost of solar power in Europe, in a single year, in its annual World Energy Outlook, published this month, showing just how far it is trailing the market and how fast solar costs are plunging.

Moreover, it shows both onshore wind & solar PV were cheaper in 2019 than the IEA had projected a year ago for 2040. In other words, renewables costs reductions are now already beating previous forecasts for 2040… an outrageous 21 years ahead of expectations! That speaks for itself…

This is the first time the IEA are acknowledging that solar and wind are the cheapest form of power generation in Europe. While much commentary around the hefty report has focused on the perceived impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on energy demand, and in particular the timing of ‘peak oil’, the fact that the IEA has drastically slashed its renewables cost assumptions in just one year seems to have slipped under the radar.

Many in the European energy industry have known for a few years now that renewables are least-cost, and as a result may have been disregarding IEA data in favour of more progressive sources. In any case, it’s worth highlighting the extent of the IEA’s recent revision which hints at the momentous change of direction that is underway across our energy system.

While this latest outlook shows that the transition is finally being acknowledged – for the first time the IEA have outlined a ‘net-zero by 2050’ case – we can already see from their Stated Policies Scenario (SPS) that it remains behind the curve. Perhaps this is understandable given the ongoing pace of change, including ever-cheaper batteries driven by the growing EV market and the mobilisation of multi-lateral efforts towards a future ‘green hydrogen’ economy.

Zeta blew up overnight, now hammering NOLA as a Cat 2.
Teachable moment, if you know anyone who wants to understand the link between hurricanes and climate, check below.

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