Weekend reads - Smart Energy Decisions

Demand Management, Energy Efficiency, GHG Emissions  -  August 22, 2020

Weekend reads: A Toronto brewery's quest for energy efficiency; How to make air travel sustainable

It's the weekend! Kick back and catch up with these must-read articles from around the web.

Propelling the transition: New and better transmission is key to zero carbon; here's what's driving it (Utility Dive) Electric transmission lines — capable of carrying large amounts of energy over long distances — may not be the most exciting thing going on in the energy space today. Utility Dive's Propelling the Transition series is highlighting a number of other developments helping to fundamentally change the power sector. But experts say improvements to the existing transmission system are crucial to broader decarbonization of the United States' grid, and that several developing technologies can make lines more efficient and affordable. The topic, however, tends to get short shrift, say some developers of new technologies.

The Challenge Facing Gas Bans–and What Can Be Done (IMT) In late 2019, the town of Brookline, Massachusetts became the first municipality outside of California to ban fossil gas hookups in new buildings and major renovations, a key strategy on the path to a fully electrified future. Fueling the many functions of a building with electricity allows buildings to be powered with clean renewable energy, as opposed to fossil gas, and is a critical strategy to meet climate goals. However, the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office (AGO) disapproved Brookline’s fossil gas ban last month, slamming the door shut on Brookline and other Massachusetts municipalities following their citizen’s demand to take immediate climate action. 

Webinar: EXCLUSIVE RESEARCH - COVID-19's Impact on Sustainability Programs (Smart Energy Decisions and BNEF) Wednesday, September 2, 2020, 2:00 PM Eastern Daylight Time. As the energy industry faces the continuing shock of the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s becoming clear that organizations want to hold firm to their sustainability strategies – but will budget uncertainty and competing priorities get in the way? Smart Energy Decisions, in partnership with BloombergNEF, fielded the “Pulse Survey: COVID-19's Impact of Sustainability Programs,” among energy executives to measure the influence of COVID-19 on a series of sustainability practice areas as well as what they anticipate the impact to be as we move through re-openings and economic recovery. REGISTER HERE

Here’s how California can keep the lights on while meeting its clean energy goals (Los Angeles Times) Although the exact causes of the blackouts are still up for debate — some critics have blamed the California Independent System Operator for poor management of energy markets — there’s no question that lining up enough power on hot summer evenings is one of the main challenges California must confront as it continues to phase out fossil fuels. Fortunately, experts say, there are many possible clean energy solutions.

Can airplanes go green? (The Washington Post) When Val Miftakhov touched down at Cranfield Airport in England last month, his Piper Malibu Mirage six-seater became the first commercial-grade, zero-emission airplane to fly in Europe. That test flight was just 21 miles. But Miftakhov, the chief executive of a Silicon Valley start-up called ZeroAvia, envisions a future of passenger planes that fly on hydrogen-powered electricity, not jet fuel. Air travel accounts for about 2.5 percent of global carbon dioxide emissions — much less than produced by cars. Despite a temporary dip due to the coronavirus, demand for air travel has been dramatically growing and planes are projected to produce as much as 25 percent of global carbon emissions by 2050.

Webinar: What’s the Total Cost of Ownership? (Duke Energy One) Thursday, September 10, 2020, 2:00 PM Eastern Daylight Time. It is critical for energy executives to understand and derive the true Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) for their energy infrastructure before making investment decisions. Even as the impact of COVID-19 and shrinking business margins could discourage investment, innovation will create more value through developing new products and services – but what’s the best financial model for your company to access these products and services? In this webinar, Duke Energy One will explore the key factors you need to know in order to make an informed decision about your company’s energy future. REGISTER HERE

 Mill Street Brewery – Setting The Bar For Energy Efficiency (Todayville Calgary) Mill Street Brewery, born out of the Toronto Distillery District, their story begins with the emergence of a small red brick brewery back in 2002. Over the last two decades, one thing has consistently taken precedence over their process. Care and consideration for their environmental footprint on the commercial and local level. The IBM Institute for Business Value (IBV), in association with the National Retail Federation, conducted a research study of 18,980 consumers in 28 countries. Some of this data reported 57% of consumers would pivot their spending habits for more environmentally friendly brands. In line with the efforts by the Mill Street Brewery team, the study also reports 77% of consumers consider sustainability and environmentally responsible brands important when asked about their spending habits.

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