NewEnergyNews: QUICK NEWS, September 14: THE STUNNING SPEED OF THIS CLIMATE CHANGE; TEXAS UTILITY GIVES SOLAR AWAY; COSTS AND BENEFITS OF DRIVING ELECTRIC

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    Monday, September 14, 2015

    QUICK NEWS, September 14: THE STUNNING SPEED OF THIS CLIMATE CHANGE; TEXAS UTILITY GIVES SOLAR AWAY; COSTS AND BENEFITS OF DRIVING ELECTRIC

    THE STUNNING SPEED OF THIS CLIMATE CHANGE Scientists: Climate change morphing ecosystems in 'blink' of geologic time

    Jacob Barker, September 11, 2015 (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)

    “…Higher levels of carbon dioxide are beginning to change [African grasslands] into forests…And studies show those trees will be bigger the more carbon there is…In some parts of Africa, [it may be necessary] to get rid of trees to preserve (biodiversity)…[A]s species within an interdependent ecosystem are thrown out of balance, the whole system is put at risk, threatening agriculture or causing other unintended consequences…Many of the Earth’s ecosystems and organisms, including humans, evolved during what was a period of carbon ‘starvation’...Just 200 years of burning fossil fuels has increased carbon to levels not seen in millions of years. Carbon dioxide has reached concentrations equal to or greater than current levels periodically throughout geologic time, wrought by changes in the Earth’s systems over millions of years…But continuing to emit carbon at current rates could raise atmospheric carbon dioxide to levels last seen tens of millions of years ago in the ‘blink’ of geologic time…” click here for more

    TEXAS UTILITY GIVES SOLAR AWAY Take My Solar Panel, Please!; San Antonio just announced a brilliant new business model for renewable energy.

    Daniel Gross, September 11, 2015 (Slate)

    “The business model surrounding rooftop solar has changed dramatically in the past decade…[C]ompanies like SolarCity changed the game by creating the solar lease—which required no money down but a long-term financial commitment that promised to lower monthly electricity payments…[Now San Antonio’s CPS Energy will offer residents cash—in the form of monthly credits on their electricity bills—if they [will] agree to let a third party put solar panels on their roofs…CPS is the largest municipally owned utility in the U.S...[M]unicipally owned utilities have the ability to approach the business in unorthodox ways. As a result, they frequently take an aggressive approach to renewables…CPS is already pretty progressive [with only 28% coal and 15% New Energy]…CPS hit on an insight. It could rebalance the grid, and rebalance the rollout of solar, by putting its money where its low-emission plans were…” click here for more

    COSTS AND BENEFITS OF DRIVING ELECTRIC Climate benefits from electric car equals $425, study says

    Morgan Lee, September 9, 2015 (San Diego Union Tribune)

    “…In the western United States, where electricity is generated from a relatively clean mix of fuels and methods, replacing a mid-sized conventional car with a plug-in electric vehicle can avoid pollution damages equivalent to $425, [according to From Cradle to Junkyard: Assessing the Life Cycle Greenhouse Gas Benefits of Electric Vehicles from] the University of California, Davis…That estimate of pollution benefits is below government subsidies attached to all-electric vehicle sales, including a $7,500 federal tax credit, California’s $2,500 rebate and a variety of state-by-state perks such as reduced vehicle registration fees and unrestricted access to car-pool lanes…[The analysis] looks at what would happen if an average household in the U.S. were to buy a new mid-sized electric vehicle instead of a comparable gasoline-drive car…The study admittedly left out other health and societal benefits linked to electric vehicles, such as protecting certain populations from highway-related soot and smog, or decreasing U.S. dependence on foreign oil…” click here for more

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