December 2020

U.S. corporate renewable energy purchases soaring

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Greentech Media:Corporate renewable energy procurement in the United States has reached a new level.As of August, non-utility buyers had announced contracts for more than 3.5 gigawatts of renewable energy projects in 2018 to date, setting a new single-year record in the U.S. That’s well above the previous 3.12 gigawatt record set in 2015, and the 2.89 gigawatts contracted for in 2017.Since then, procurement numbers have continued to grow, as the corporate renewables market has matured and expanded to include new geographies and new buyers. According to the latest figures from Business Renewables Center, a membership program at Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI), corporate buyers in the U.S. have now purchased a total of 4.81 gigawatts of renewable energy so far this year — and are expected to top 5 gigawatts by December.The total number of commercial and industrial renewable energy deals will be even higher, as RMI’s numbers refer only to contracts for large, off-site renewable energy projects. That means rooftop solar projects deployed by the likes of Ikea and Target are not included in the RMI deal tracker, which was updated this week at the Renewable Energy Buyers Alliance conference in Oakland, California.There are two main reasons for this, according to Kevin Haley, BRC program manager. First, there’s been strong continued support from major tech companies with large electricity loads. Facebook and AT&T, for instance, have procured the most new renewable energy capacity in 2018, with other large deals from Microsoft, Apple and Walmart. The second reason is that the pool of corporate customers is starting to expand. “A strong number of new first-time buyers are continuing to enter into the market,” said Haley. “A lot of this growth is being driven by companies that may not have done a deal yet.”More: Corporate renewable energy deals smash records in 2018 U.S. corporate renewable energy purchases soaringlast_img read more

Data show 2019 may have marked a turning point away from fossil fuels in global energy mix

first_imgData show 2019 may have marked a turning point away from fossil fuels in global energy mix FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Reuters:The use of fossil fuels such as coal and oil for generating electricity fell in 2019 in the United States, the European Union and India, at the same time overall power output rose, a turning point for the global energy mix.Those countries and regions are three of the top four largest producers of power from fossil fuels. The declines suggest the end of the fossil fuel era could be on the horizon, said Tomas Kaberger, an energy professor at Chalmers University of Technology in Sweden, who provided the power generation data to Reuters.Kaberger, who is also the chair of the executive board for Japan’s Renewable Energy Institute and a member of the board at Swedish utility Vattenfall AB, provided data covering more than 70% of the world’s power generation that showed for most of 2019 the amount of power sourced from fossil fuels dropped by 156 terawatt hours (TWh) from the year before. That is equal to the entire power output of Argentina in 2018.The data also indicates that renewable power generation increased at a faster rate than the overall growth in power output for the first time, rising by 297 TWh versus 233 TWh for overall output, Kaberger said.“It is economics driving this as low-cost renewable electricity outcompetes against fossil and nuclear power plants,” said Kaberger.  “New renewables are even cheaper than oil per unit of energy electricity generated and even fuels produced from electricity will outcompete against fossil fuels at increasing speed in transport, heating and industry,” he said. “Peak oil demand is close,” Kaberger said.Fossil fuel power generation last declined in 2009 after the global financial crisis, at the same time that overall global electricity output fell, according to BP’s Statistical Review of World Energy. That year was the first time overall power output dropped since BP began publishing the review in 1985.[Aaron Sheldrick]More: Fossil fuels for power at turning point as renewables surged in 2019: datalast_img read more

Spot personal tracker gives families and friends peace of mind.

first_imgExploring the outdoors sometimes limits your ability to communicate or get help if needed. The new personal tracking device from Spot helps to expand your communications horizons. Spot is the world’s first satellite messenger, and gives you the ability to communicate without cellular towers. It’s a personal tracking device that allows you to alert 911 if necessary, and check in with your party with messages (“I’m OK!”). The folks tracking you can do so via these messages, and also with a Google maps feature that shows them where you are. Spot works around the world, using commercial and GPS satellites to communicate. Anywhere you have a clear view of the sky, it works.Spot is ideal for anyone who goes outside of phone service to explore: hiking, boating, camping, and mountain biking, backcountry skiing… you name it. Stay safe doing everything you love to do.Spot MSRP: $149.99Spot Personal TrackerSpot Personal Trackerlast_img read more

Trail Mix – Andrew Combs

first_imgCatch Andrew Combs with Nicki Bluhm & The Gramblers this weekend in Asheville.If you take a look at the list of 21 country artists that Rolling Stone suggested you see at last month’s SXSW extravaganza in Austin, Texas, you’ll find Andrew Combs at the top.I don’t think the writers at Rolling Stone tossed him on top because they went with ABC order, either.Texas born and now Nashville based, the twenty-something Combs has enjoyed a meteoric rise to the forefront of the latest generation of countryish singer-songwriters. His sophomore record, All These Dreams, was released last month and has garnered critical acclaim from the likes of NPR, No Depression, and The Boston Globe.That acclaim is justified. All These Dreams is a tremendous collection of witty, introspective songs that brings to mind names like Prine, Clark, and Kristofferson.I recently caught up with Andrew to chat about songwriting and the new record.BRO – What’s the first song you remember writing?AC – Hmmm. Good question. The first song I remember writing that was decent was one called “It’s What You Need.” I wrote it in high school when a girl broke my heart. Naturally, it was extremely angsty. Somewhere my dad has an archive of songs I wrote during that time of my life. I’d like to find out where this stash is and burn any evidence of them.BRO – For you, what comes first – the lyric or the melody?AC – Either. I have no set formula or rules as to how I go about songwriting. I will say, though, my favorite is writing off a good title.BRO – We are featuring “Foolin’” on this month’s Trail Mix. What’s the story behind the song?AC – I wrote that song with my buddy Ian Fitchuk, who played drums on the record. It’s kind of an observation on society’s addiction to social media. I find it fascinating, and sad at the same time, how we have to have the ability to portray a “cooler” version of ourselves to the world, when we many not be anything like that in real life.BRO – Who is your favorite songwriter in Nashville right now?AC – Guy Clark forever, for always, for certain. In my closer circle of peers, I’d say Erin Rae, Jonny Fritz, and Robert Ellis are always writing new and interesting songs.BRO – Is there a cover tune out there that even money can’t buy?AC – If you give me a $100 bill to play a song, I’ll do my damndest to play it. I have to warn you, though, that it’s not going to be pretty. I have only had about three or four cover songs in my repertoire ever.BRO – Today is tax day. Any special message for the I.R.S.?AC – What’s that stand for? Intimate Real Sex?You can be sure that Andrew Combs will be featuring tunes from his latest release, All These Dreams, when he takes the stage on Saturday night at New Mountain in Asheville. Doors for this show open at 10:00. Sure, it’s late, but it will be worth hanging out until the wee hours to hear both Andrew and Nicki Bluhm & The Gramblers.How sure am I that it will be a great show? So sure that I want to make sure you get to go see it. Shoot me an email at [email protected] with ANDREW COMBS in the subject line. A winner of two passes to the show will be chosen from all of the emails received by noon on Friday, April 17th.And if you are looking for more info on Andrew Combs, including how you can get a copy of the new record of when he might be gracing a stage near you, check out his website.last_img read more

BRO Athletes | The Turtle Crawl Olympic Triathlon

first_imgThe Turtle Crawl Olympic Triathlon on Jekyll Island, GA was my first race of the season. It was supposed to be my second, but a mountain-bike-induced busted knee—a good six-stitcher—delayed the start of my race season. The water was a perfect 76 degrees and the surf was calm. And, for a sunny day in south Georgia, it could have been a heck of a lot hotter. No equipment malfunctions, other than some expired PowerGels (still edible; just a little crunchy) and some difficulty with the race number tattoos (effective but so gross – miss the days of Sharpie body marking).Race highlights:Winning the race. Kind of. Initial results showed me in second – hence, the second place podium pic – but a closer look revealed that the first place woman only did half of the run and bike courses. She must have been doing the choose-your-own-adventure race. I’m not too bent out of shape, though, because I technically only won because the second place woman got a time penalty. Yep, you get penalties – minutes added to your final time – in USAT-sanctioned triathlons for things like drafting or racking your bike incorrectly or snot rocketing your competition (kidding about the last one, unfortunately). So a two-minute penalty knocked her down a place, even though she was technically faster. Got all that? Results can be tricky in a tri.IMG_1479Getting the chance to race locally. I live on St. Simons Island, just north of Jekyll, which means that I got to sleep in my own bed and sleep in until 4:45 a.m. That’s a good deal for a race morning. It’s fun to see familiar faces and, even better, hear familiar voices. I coach the announcer’s daughter on my Girls on the Run team. Also, it’s a big destination triathlon and a really friendly one, too, so if you’re looking to give one a try, I highly recommend it. Watching two sea turtles get released into the ocean. While not technically part of my race, it’s highlight-worthy because it invlolved SEA TURTLES. Jekyll Island has been hosting this series of Turtle Crawl races since 2003 to benefit the Georgia Sea Turtle Center, an educational and research facility that rehabilitates injured and sick sea turtles. Two rehabilitated turtles were released after the race as hundreds of cheering onlookers created a wall of support along the turtles’ path to sea – not unlike race supporters lined up at a finish line. The turtles’ necks stretched high and their flippers began moving as they were carried through the surf. After a few false starts, they disappeared into the ocean to applause and cheers. While there’s no guarantee of a happy ending – only about 1 percent of these turtles live to adulthood – it was an inspiring end to my race day. (Yes, I cried. I’m not ashamed.)IMG_1473I’m looking forward to getting to some off-road races in the next month or so – hopefully Xterra Knoxville and/or Xterra Tsali – and hoping that my legs remember what to do on hills!last_img read more

Mountain Mama: Gratitude

first_img“It doesn’t feel like Thanksgiving,” I said to a friend in response to her question about my holiday plans.Since the election, my five-year-old-son’s best friend worries about whether bad things will happen to his dad, a Muslim from Africa. I hold my son’s hand as he sleeps and hang a dream catcher on the wall for his nightmares about monsters.Listening to my friends’ post-election worries, tears are never far, my emotional state raw. Single parents whose taxes will leap upwards, families losing healthcare insurance, gay couples whose marriages may no longer be recognized. *   *   *The forest burns not with the crimson tipped edges usually indicative of late fall in Western North Carolina, but the smoldering smoke of forest fires.  Eighteen at last count. One is four-miles from my house. Smoke hangs in the air so thick that health advisors warn against spending prolonged amounts of time outdoors. My son and I cough often, our eyes red and agitated. The outside world becomes an unrecognizable white haze, I no longer see sunsets, the silhouette of mountains on the horizon, or the moon.People are being evacuated. I check the whether forecast daily, the sun icon stretches across my laptop. There’s not a raindrop in the ten-day forecast. *   *  *A truck carrying paint thinner overturns in the Laurel River.She was the first river I paddled after finding out I was going to be a mom. I’ve taken my son for walks on the trail that parallels the rapids and whispered their names into his ear, a promise we’d one day paddle there together. *   *  *A writing conference takes me less than a mile from where I lived in Lake Tahoe during my ski instructor days.  Jet-lagged, I wake at 5 a.m. and hike toward the Pacific Rim Trail, the first tentative rays filtering through the pine trees.I round a switchback and lock eyes with someone.Her grey coat blends in with the early morning light, a perfect camouflage with the logs on the ground that look like driftwood.A coyote.I turn my head a few degrees to the right and see her companion. Neither are skittish. It’s clear I’ve intruded, that I’ve violated etiquette about their personal space so I shuffle backwards.Up until then I’d been in my head, analyzing a piece I was crafting, planning for the day. My whole body shook and my breath came out in short breaths. Fear takes residence in every inch of my body.I remind myself not to run, but the coyotes know my fear. They track me for a mile and just when I’m sure they’ll pounce, I find a stump three-feet in diameter and just as tall. I climb on it and stretch myself as big as I can, standing up taller and reaching my hands as wide as they’ll go, for once wanting to take up more space, not less. In that moment, I grow.I stare at the coyotes.  I belong out here, I remind myself. There is less to fear in the forest than in the cities, I say. Standing on that stump in a stare down with two coyotes, I remember I am a powerful being.The coyotes turn and lope up the mountain, away from me. *   *  *I return to Western North Carolina. The fires still burn, threatening my home and my community.  The places I hold most sacred are disappearing. There are no guarantees of when the fires will end or what will remain. There is no place to take refuge in this uncertain world.It takes a seven-year old to suggest that perhaps the non-native insect called the woolly adelgid attacking the hemlocks might be destroyed with the fires. His mom reminds me of the mushrooms that will flourish in the wake of the flames. With each day, democracy looks less like a promise and more like a responsibility.This is what I’ve learned:Gratitude is daring to hope. Gratitude is the opportunity to get outside of my bubble and to do the work.A chance to put myself in the way of other people, to look each person I meet in the eyes, and hold their stories with my heart. I am grateful for this place where I’ve been introduced to the kindest, most powerful, and best version of myself yet.I do rain dances. I volunteer more. I hold my son tighter.last_img read more

ACA Paddlesport Education Courses for Every Boat & Board

first_imgNew Certification Program Designed for Outfitter, Livery, & Guide BusinessesWho is ACA? Founded in 1880, the American Canoe Association (ACA) is a 501c3 national nonprofit organization serving the broader paddling public by providing education related to all aspects of paddling; stewardship support to help protect paddling environments; and sanctioning of programs and events to promote paddlesport competition, exploration, and recreation.What’s the big news? ACA has recently developed a brand new certification program called Paddlesports Safety Facilitator (PSF), which was designed primarily for staff from paddling outfitters, guide services, and livery businesses! This course can be completed in one day, and caters to the paddling activities conducted by your business.What’s the big deal? This certification adds credibility to your paddlesport business, is a perfect opportunity for continuing education and certification for your staff, and may help lower your insurance premiums. The end goal: this program will help you offer safe and fun paddling experiences for your guests and clients!PSF Certification – Catered to Your BusinessWhether your business rents canoes, kayaks, stand up paddleboards (SUPs), or any combination thereof, the PSF program has specific training modules to address your staff training needs!Comprehensive TrainingThe core of the PSF program focuses on basic paddling safety concepts: lifejacket wear, pre-trip talks and communication, signaling and safety equipment, weather awareness and protocol, accident prevention, and rescue principles.Kayaking Best PracticesThe kayaking PSF certification addresses important kayaking essentials such as loading and unloading from trailers, cars, and racks, kayak entry and exit from shore or dock, and assisted rescues which are required when a customer or guest is accidentally separated from their boat.Canoeing Trip EssentialsCanoeing is one of the most historic, recognizable, and family friendly paddling activities. This portion of the PSF certification program will enable your staff to perform basic canoe rescues and assist customers with proper trip planning, packing, loading, and launching.Pro tip: For more youth and family based paddling resources, watch this fun animated video, check out this infographic, or download our youth paddling game, Paddle Quest, in the App Store or Google Play!Stand Up Paddleboard (SUP) Tips & TricksWith the remarkable growth in SUP popularity, more and more customers are seeking their first (or second, or third!) SUP experience at local outfitters and liveries. The ACA PSF course offers training and certification for employers and staff wishing to learn important details about SUP rescue, inflatable lifejackets commonly used with SUPs, and the storage and maintenance of SUP boards, leashes, and their other associated accessories.Pro tip: For vital information about SUP leashes and lifejackets, check out this video.Outfitter, Livery, or Guide Service PSF certification not a good fit for you?The ACA offers a wide variety of other training clinics, skill development workshops, and instructor certification courses. No matter your experience, ACA can connect you with local instructors, clubs, or schools to assist you in meeting your paddling goals. Get the scoop on the variety of offerings, here. Not sure where to start? Send an email to our Education Department.Follow the ACA on Facebook and Instagram to keep up with all the latest paddling news.last_img read more

FARC Turns Over to Red Cross Pilots Kidnapped in Colombia

first_img On July 29, the FARC Colombian guerrilla group turned over to the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) two pilots of a civilian helicopter whom they had kidnapped on July 10, the humanitarian organization announced. The ICRC brought them by road to the city of Popayán (the capital of the department of Cauca, 650 km southwest of Bogotá), “where they have now been reunited with their families,” the organization’s spokesperson in Bogotá told AFP. In a press release, the ICRC specified that the release took place “in a rural area of the municipality of Argelia (Cauca)” and identified the pilots as Juan Carlos Álvarez and Alejandro de Jesús Ocampo. Speaking to the television news program Caracol, Álvarez said, “God grant that this be an opening for this to not happen again to any other Colombian. Hopefully, we can live in a Colombia at peace,” he added. For his part, Ocampo said that the most difficult part of captivity was “being far away from family and not knowing what’s going to happen with your life.” The head of the ICRC specified that the organization’s action came about via a “direct request from the armed group,” and he reiterated that the organization is “ready to continue providing our good offices for this and other kinds of humanitarian action in which our role as a neutral intermediary is sought.” The FARC had captured the two pilots when the helicopter they were flying had to make an emergency landing on the soccer field of the small town of El Plateado, in the municipality of Argelia. Following the landing of the helicopter and after the two pilots were seized by the guerrilla group, a motorcycle bomb exploded at the location, causing the death of a seven-year-old boy and injuring four. The FARC asserted in that statement that the helicopter “had been engaged in intensive overflight of the mountainous area between the municipalities of Argelia, Guapi, and Timbiquí (Cauca) for nearly two months.” They also warned that any public or private firm that aims to conduct overflights, study, or execute construction projects in regions with a rebel presence should “have the approval of the community inhabiting the location” and “inform the revolutionary insurgency of their activities,” because “only in that way will their safety be guaranteed.” By Dialogo July 31, 2012last_img read more

Colombian Government Accuses FARC of Using Peace Negotiations for Politics

first_img The peace process started in November 2012 with a five-point agenda, including agrarian developments (already agreed upon), political participation, illicit drugs, disarmament, and victims reparations. After a 19-day break, on July 28, the government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia started their twelfth round of peace talks, focusing on the second point – political participation – on the agenda, which provides guarantees for the guerrillas when they disarm, as well as measures for their inclusion into Colombia’s politics. The Colombian government accused FARC communist guerrillas of using peace negotiations to “do politics” when they resumed on July 28, and requested to “move forward” to seek agreements that might put an end to the armed conflict in the country. “This is a reminder of why we are here for these talks in Havana: this is not a negotiation process for the FARC to make politics, but to reach an agreement to end the conflict,” said Humberto de la Calle, the government negotiation head, to the press just before the talks started with the guerrilla delegation at the Convention Palace in the Cuban capital. On July 27, Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos declared that they will not agree on a ceasefire with the FARC while the peace talks are ongoing in Cuba, stating that the military offensive will continue to persuade rebels to disarm. By Dialogo July 30, 2013 The insurgents accused Juan Manuel Santos’s government of using a double standard, since they are “sending peace speeches to the world” and they keep on “maintaining and reinforcing confrontation causes, one of which is the ownership and use of lands.” last_img read more

Caribbean Corridor Strike Force makes counter-narcotics strides

first_imgBy Dialogo March 10, 2014 WASHINGTON, D.C., U.S.A. – United States forces arrested two alleged Dominican narco-traffickers in connection with the seizure of a US$30 million cocaine shipment aboard a go-fast boat that officials stopped in the Caribbean Sea on March 4. The arrests and seizure of 1,103 kilograms of cocaine, carried out by the Coast Guard, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), is yet another victory for the Caribbean Corridor Strike Force Initiative (CCSF). CCSF is an organized crime drug enforcement initiative that investigates South American-based drug-trafficking organizations responsible for the movement of multi-kilogram quantities of narcotics, utilizing the Caribbean as a transshipment point for distribution to the United States. The CCSF includes the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG), the U.S. Attorney for the District of Puerto Rico, the CBP and ICE. The operation was the result of U.S. Federal agents’ working together with the Caribbean Border Interagency Group’s (CBIG) Operation Caribbean Guard. “Our multiagency and international partnerships in the region continue to pay off as we continue to interdict major drug shipments and bring smugglers to justice,” said Capt. Drew W. Pearson, who commands Coast Guard Sector San Juan, said in a prepared statement. “Our resolve and commitment are unwavering.” The crew of a USCG HC-144 Ocean Sentry Maritime Patrol Aircraft from Air Station Miami spotted the 40-foot go-fast boat traveling without any lights late on the night of March 3. CBP Ponce Marine Units intercepted the go-fast vessel, about six nautical miles south of Ponce, Puerto Rico. The CBP’s crew seized about 30 bales that tested positive for cocaine in the morning. “The collaborative operations and partnerships under CBIG always yield positive results to stop smuggling ventures,” Johnny Morales, the director of air operations for CBP’s Caribbean Air and Marine Branch (CAMB), said in a prepared statement. The bust follows other recent major seizures under the CCSF. In October, the U.S. Coast Guard and its law enforcement partners seized about 1,155 kilograms of cocaine worth about US$34 million and arrested three suspects aboard a go-fast boat that the pursuers intercepted Friday in the Caribbean Sea south of St. Croix in the U.S. Virgin Islands. Officials charged Allan Hasani Greenidge, Ángel Luis Rivera-Montañez and Ángel Ribot-Aguiar with possession with intent to distribute five or more kilograms of cocaine. “Interdicting drug smugglers at sea in the middle of the night is a complex and dangerous operation only possible through the resolve of federal and regional law enforcement authorities committed to safeguarding Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands from the threats that come from the sea,” Pearson said in a prepared statement. “We will continue our aggressive patrol efforts with our interagency partners to interdict these major drug shipments as far from shore as possible and bring those responsible to justice.” In June, the U.S. Coast Guard, Royal Netherlands Navy and U.S. law enforcement partners arrested three alleged Dominican narco-traffickers in connection with the seizure of 688 kilograms following an interdiction in the Caribbean Sea. Officials valued the cocaine at more than US$24 million. In January 2013, ICE and HSI agents arrested alleged Dominican narco-traffickers José De León and Wilson Concepción after seizing about 1,179 kilograms of cocaine worth more than US$29 million off a boat 43 nautical miles off Puerto Rico’s East Coast. ICE encourages the public to report suspected weapons and narcotics smuggling and related information by calling at 1-866-DHS-2ICE.last_img read more