May the Fourth…you get it right? Somewhere along the line May 4th became a Star Wars related day as if we lacked for moments when Star Wars did not saturate our cultural landscape. Seriously, between Disney princesses, Marvel superheroes, and Star Wars the Walt Disney corporation probably controls a plurality of our cultural touchstones for anyone under the age of fifteen or over the age of forty.
On to the links…
Two Top Officials Close to Pruitt Resign in EPA ‘Exodus’—The level of corruption and stink coming from Scott Pruitt’s office is so high that I could post several entries a week just about the comings and goings of America’s top pollution enabler. Instead, I will just lead with more evidence of the chaos of the Trump administration.
Pruitt is Facing at Least 10 Ethics Investigations as EPA Watchdog Announces New Probe—Will there ever be a more ethically compromised presidency? People thought that it would be hard to top the likes of Warren G. Harding, but Trump’s people are really giving it a go.
The EPA Is Acting Like Big Tobacco—This is what you get when you put someone in charge of an agency that they had spent a career trying to damage. It’s like Rick Perry in charge of the Department of Energy or Mick Mulvaney in charge of anything.
EPA Chief Pruitt Overrules Staff, Gives Wisconsin’s Walker, Foxconn Big Break on Smog—I have to imagine that this is heading for court. The deal for the Foxconn plant is just turning out to be one of the biggest corporate giveaways and inside deals ever. Nothing says Republican governance quite like giving away the store in return for the promise of a few crumbs.
Proof that the Clean Power Plan’s Strategy for Cutting Carbon Pollution is the Industry Standard—The Clean Power Plan is probably dead, but that does not mean the Clean Power Plan cannot live again. It is a market based approach that lets individual states decide how best to meet targets. It is essentially an old school Republican ideal that has somehow become a bugaboo for today’s Tea Party right wing whackos.
It’s Time to Think Seriously about Cutting off the Supply of Fossil Fuels—If we can come at this problem from both the demand and the supply side progress will be much quicker.
A Zero-Carbon Economy is Within Reach, Thanks to Strong Public Policy—It will not necessarily be easy or cheap, but it is possible and that is they key. We have the solutions, we know how to deploy them, and there is a general acceptance of the urgency.
California Sets New Solar & Renewable Records At End Of April—The amount of energy generated is one thing, but the more critical part of this story is that the power authority is getting better at regulating the supply of renewables and the demands from consumers. This disparity has always been the great bugaboo when it comes to renewable energy.
A Renewable Energy Future In Hawaii, Faster Than We Thought—The time has come for Hawaii to embrace renewables even more so than in the past because the cost of doing so is now cheaper than the cost of doing nothing further. Imagine 84% renewable energy in 2030? Talk about living aloha!
The Stunningly Lopsided Growth of Wind Power in the US, in 4 Maps—Is anyone surprised that the southeast has very little wind power? Sure, the wind resources—excluding offshore wind—are not ideal but I have a feeling something else is going on.
Brooklyn SolarWorks can Turn Almost any Rooftop into a Sun-Powered Oasis—I like the idea of putting these over rooftop patios so that hipsters can have a shade generating solar canopy. However, imagine this type of system being placed on the top floor of every parking garage in the United States. Just in my mid-sized town there are acres of top floors of parking garages that could be generating amazing solar photovoltaic electricity.
Building on the Promise of Solar+EV Charging—The technology is not quite there yet, but as we deploy more and more solar along with more and more EVs there is an opportunity to combine the two into a powerhouse solution to intermittency. An EV is really just a portable battery that sits idle a lot of the time. Plugging that into a grid that can decide when to charge based on power availability and demand would be huge. Yuge!
Costco Sold a Million “Bleeding” Vegan Burgers in 60 Days—I knew about the Impossible burger and the Beyond burger, but I have never heard of Don Lee Farms or their version of a “bleeding vegan” plant based burger. Too bad it does not look like something that will be in a Costco near me.
Budweiser’s New Beer is Based on George Washington’s Hand-Written Recipe—Why did they not just call it ‘Merica and put this picture on the label: