Solar advertisement: Vork hates dolphin babies!

Good idea on the part of SunRun — pay you to install solar panels with no down payment on your part, and you pay them back for the energy your panels generate. But we’re left with a framing problem. Now that generating power using solar panels is actually cheaper overall than fossil fuel based power generation, the company has to fix the image that solar’s just for hippies.

Now I don’t have a lot of problem with focusing on the cost, but I’m not a big fan of throwing hippies under the bus yet again. I can’t think of a better way to fix the messaging without doing exactly that, though.

It’s cool to see Jeff Lewis from The Guild in something more mainstream though!

Hat tip Climate Crocks.

Richard Alley on the Expense of Clean Energy

Professor Richard Alley explains why switching to clean energy — that which does not output CO2 — is pretty much an infrastructure problem, one which we’ve already solved once.

The technology we have to produce energy that does not rely on the burning of fossil fuels already exist, though they’re expensive. The main problems are those of cost-effectiveness and how much time we actually have before the issues become too great to overcome, and whether we’ll spend the necessary money to change our infrastructure before the damage we’re bringing on ourselves will cost way, way more than the cost for making the jump.

So the real question is not whether to do it, it’s a question of when. When will we stop putting short term profits over long term viability? When will we buckle down and solve the infrastructure problem that’s destroying our planet’s climate, in a way that will cost many more lives than did the emptying of chamber pots onto the streets?

Climate: definitely not due to solar forcing or cosmic rays

I kinda made a private vow that I wouldn’t keep reposting Peter Sinclair’s excellent Climate Crock of the Week videos quite so regularly, because I don’t want to be accused of simply ripping him off. But the bastard went and included both a Rickroll and several Fantastic Four references. Sigh.

I love that the anti-AGW crowd keeps positing arguments to take the place of the obvious and demonstrably correct reality — that the planet’s heating up and we’re responsible — and science just keeps knocking those arguments down. I’m very sad, however, that we’re probably going to keep playing this game and letting them posit more things that might be responsible for global warming in an attempt to supplant the understanding that it’s actually us burning fossil fuels, til it’s completely impossible to do anything about it.

We have five years to fix our shit before we destroy it

Looks like the server switchover ate this post yesterday. Good thing I kept a copy.

In order to cap our contribution to global climate change at 2°C over pre-industrial temperatures — a necessary limitation lest we do permanent damage to our ecosphere — we need to entirely change our methods of energy production within the next five years, according to a study by the International Environmental Agency. We’ve been pumping out more and more CO2 annually, and as a result, have completely overshot the IPCC’s “worst case scenarios”.
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