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30 Apr


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2016 – The State of New Energy

April 30, 2016 | By | No Comments

This is not a political post in spite of the picture of the bad hair boy.  It is a post about the difference between mis-information and dis-information compared to well researched and well communicated information.

The keynote address at Bloomberg New Energy Finance’s annual summit given by Chairman Michael Liebreich contains the most definitive source of well researched data and analysis that is available on the current state and emergence of the New Energy Era.  His speaking style is direct and without drama or theatrics.  It is very worth watching all the way through.

Here is a link to a video of Michael’s talk.  This is a must watch.

Here is a link to the written transcript.

Enjoy, Bob.

22 Nov


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All about EROI – Energy Return on Investment

November 22, 2015 | By | No Comments

Chris Nelder’s podcast – The Energy Transition Show probes particularly deeply into analysis and questioning of how the transition is progressing, and what are the accelerators and headwinds.

In Episode 7, Christ dialogues with his guest Dr. Dave Murphy, Assistant Professor, St. Lawrence University, on the subject of Energy ROI – how much energy does it take to harvest energy.

For example in the early days of Saudi oil fields the ration was 1:100, now it’s closer to 1:20.  For every one unit of oil expended in extraction and delivery to cars, you get 20 units.  Note the dropping trend.

On the other side with renewables, the trend is going in the other direction and accelerating.

Click here for a link to the podcast.

14 Oct


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Grid Neutrality guided by Net Neutrality

October 14, 2015 | By | No Comments

The Tech Sector is inherently focused on the future, on technological advances in their own right, and on the changes to society and organizations that these advances enable. One example, tech firms were the first to embrace email and to adapt to flatter organizational structures which email communication enabled.

There are many learnings from tech that can be useful in other sectors, particularly around thriving in a world of accelerating change and supplanting hierarchical structures with network structures. The Internet is of course a network structure that radically altered all previous communication structures.

The conversation and imperatives around Net Neutrality have been explored and evaluated for around two decades. The excellent two articles below highlight how the electric grid has been hierarchical or flowing in one direction, and yet how it will necessarily be supplanted by a network electric grid more similar to the Internet than today’s electric grid. The articles further point out how the principles of Net Neutrality have their equivalent principles in Grid Neutrality to guide the supplanting of the grid.

From David Roberts at Energy & Environment “You know about net neutrality. Meet grid neutrality.

From Fortnightly “Grid Neutrality”.

27 Jun


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On Care For Our Common Home

June 27, 2015 | By | No Comments

On June 18, 2015, Pope Francis released an encyclical on ecology entitled, “Laudato Si: On Care for Our Common Home.”

I have carefully reviewed the full text and the official summary, as well as many video interviews and stories.  I am personally deeply inspired and moved by the Pope’s message and ask my friends and colleagues and all people of goodwill, with an open heart and mind, to evaluate this scientific and spiritual “oeuvre” or body of work.  While I have already been called to work on social and environmental justice, this beautiful message has motivated me further and to act more swiftly.

Below I’ve curated a short list of some of the more substantive links, videos, and interviews from among the many I’ve viewed.  The full text link is at the bottom.

A useful introduction or map to the near 200 page document:  Laudato si’, A Map

A summary of the key points and passages for Bishops:   Summary for Bishops – EN

A video interview produced in Canada that brings a calm and caring analysis.  The interview section comes first and is 40 minutes long before another 20 minute documentary style section.

A video of the televised National Press Club briefing by the U.S. Conference of Bishops.  I recommend watching the first two prepared statements by USCCB President Archbishop Joseph Kurtz of Louisville, KY and Washington’s Cardinal Donald Wuerl who talk about Pope Francis’ new encyclical and its impact on Catholics and the people of the world.  The entire briefing runs 54 minutes.  The key content begins with Archbishop Kurtz at 2:50 and the joyful comments by Cardinal Wueri begin at 10:34 through 25:16.

A 19 minute video of the scientific briefing given by Prof. Schellnhuber at the Conference of Presentation of the Encyclical Laudato si’ in Rome.  It’s an excellent summary of current scientific consensus, although at times a bit hard to follow, but worth paying close attention.

And finally, a link to the full text of the Encyclical.

In deep appreciation for this guidance and leadership, Bob.