Smart Businesses Tackle Climate Change

Climate Declaration 800 px

The CEOs of 33 US companies have signed a Climate Declaration calling on America to take the lead in combating climate change.  They say the same policies that will help the climate are also smart business practices, – using less electricity, choosing clean energy technology and creating new export technologies.  They recommend a coordinated effort to stabilize the climate as also the way to maximize opportunities and remain a superpower in a competitive world.

Representing employment of half a million citizens and  $450billion/year in revenue, the corporate group emphasizes that the same policies that combat climate change are also smart business practices.

A recent study by PEW backs up the claim that there huge financial potential in green energy development. It found that clean energy investment has increased by 600% from 2004 to 2011. They project that installation of renewable energy over the next six years will result in additional revenue of $1.9 trillion.

http://www.ceres.org/bicep/climate-declaration

http://bit.ly/12gUVEY

 

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Businesses Profit from City Solar

Lancaster CA has just updated its building code. Starting in 2014, all new single-family homes will have to include a solar system of at least 1.0 kW. The Republican mayor of Lancaster, R. Rex Parris, says the city wants to be the first to produce more electricity from sunlight it uses.

The city bought and installed solar panels on the roofs of 25 Lancaster schools that are now paying 35% less for electricity. Other solar installations have gone up on city hall, an arts center, stadium, and parking lots. There is a plan to create electric storage potential with more electric vehicles and batteries.

To get a permit to install solar in Lancaster takes 15 minutes.

 http://www.nytimes.com/2013/04/09/us/lancaster-calif-focuses-on-becoming-solar-capital-of-universe.html?pagewanted=2&_r=0

Solar Competition in a Darwinian Marketplace

Arno Harris, CEO of Recurrent Energy, a developer of large utility solar projects was asked by Russell Gold, energy reporter with the WSJ about bankruptcies among solar energy companies.

This was his response.

“Nobody wants to see that kind of trouble, we think about jobs lost, it’s extremely painful. However, you have to put it in context. This is fundamentally a very exciting transformation This is an industry that in the last 10 years has taken the cost of solar panels from $5 per watt to around $.50 per watt.  As result of this transformation, it has moved solar power from one of the most expensive sources of electricity to one of the second or third least expensive sources of electricity.

Inevitably, a part of that process is going to be the creation of a very Darwinian, challenging environment, in which those who cannot keep up with the cost structure necessary to stay competitive are going to get restructured, fall by the wayside, get reabsorbed.

We have to put this event in that context.  There are numbers of solar manufacturers demonstrating they do have cost structures that work in today’s prices. So that means that this industry can continue to deliver solar electricity at increasingly competitive costs.”

http://on.wsj.com/16NdWOg

Is the Rise in Global Temperatures Slowing Down?

An Economist article asks whether the flattening of the rise in world temperatures in the past decade, while carbon dioxide emissions were increasing, shows that the predicted rise of 4 to 6oC in this century is off base.

Response: No, unfortunately.

Carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions do not heat the earth immediately. We are told that there is a 15-year time lag between their release and when temperatures begin to rise. So the leveling of world temperatures in the past decade makes perfect sense. In 1988 the economy contracted and for the next decade GDP was lower and so were CO2 emissions.

With CO2 emissions rising by 4 parts per million per year in the 2000s, it makes sense to expect a marked increase in  extreme weather by the mid 2020s and beyond.

Investors who wish to direct their energy portfolio into solar, wind, geothermal, grid, algae, batteries and other green technology, would be advised to lobby for a carbon tax to allow promising green upstarts to compete successfully against the aging fossil fuel industry.

http://www.economist.com/news/science-and-technology/21574461-climate-may-be-heating-up-less-response-greenhouse-gas-emissions

http://climate.nasa.gov/key_indicators#globalTemp

http://www.esrl.noaa.gov/gmd/ccgg/trends/

Republicans Want Green Energy Economy

Should the US use more solar, wind or geothermal energy?  77% of Republicans who answered that question said ‘Yes.’

Should the US take action to use less fossil fuel? 64% of Republicans in a poll said ‘Yes.’

In a recent poll   by the Center for Climate Change Communication, Republican adults, expressed support for pursuit of a greener path.

Republican politicians have disdained hearings about climate science, voted against environmental protection for our vital resources, and scorned the economic potential of green technology.

Nevertheless, their constituents see the advantages of clean energy, in particular: reducing dependence on foreign oil, preserving resources for our children, improving our health, 4protecting the creation, creating jobs and a stronger climate, saving species, limiting climate change and improving national security.

What they want to avoid is more government regulation, higher energy prices, fewer jobs, or interference with the free market. Sounds like something we can work with.