Midwest Energy News: Michigan Cities Gearing Up for Fight With Utilities Over LED Streetlights
A battle is brewing in the Michigan Public Service Commission over the rate DTE Energy will charge municipalities to operate LED streetlights. At least one municipal official is calling for cities to take over their streetlights altogether.
The issue is part of a larger rate case, DTE's first in four years. The utility is seeking increased rates to cover the cost of environmental compliance and new generation capacity. A decision is expected in the fall.
Buried within that case is a proposed increase for operating municipal LED streetlights, with a concurrent reduction in rates charged for less-efficient high-pressure sodium fixtures.
Vox: The Case for Sucking CO2 Out of the Atmosphere
If you ask climate modelers how we can avoid drastic global warming -- say, 2°C or more -- most will say that humanity needs to do two big things. First, we'll have to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions down to zero by the end of the century. Second, since we've been slow to make those cuts, we'll probably also need to figure out how to pull lots of carbon dioxide back out of the atmosphere.
That's a problem. We at least have some notion of how to cut emissions. But sucking carbon dioxide back out of the atmosphere? At the massive scale likely needed? No one has a clue how we'd do that. It's a huge, embarrassing blind spot in climate policy.
Washington Post: A Map Showing Where America's Sunniest Places Are
Are you a fan of sunshine? If so, you better get out there and soak it up while you can. According to 30 years of daily sunlight data tracked by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, we are just coming out of the period of peak sun in the lower 48. From here on out it's nothing but a slippery downward slope toward shorter days, polar vortices and pumpkin spice lattes.
Between 1979 and 2011, the absolute sunniest day of the year has been July 8, according to the CDC's numbers, which ultimately come from NASA. On the flip side, the least-sunny day of the year is Dec. 26.
Inside Climate News: Walker Gives GOP Presidential Field a New Anti-Climate Leader
Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker joined the crowded field of Republican contenders vying for the White House in 2016 on Monday, and immediately stands out for having one of the poorest records on environmental and climate issues, according to green groups and political experts.
Since taking office in 2010, Walker has dismantled several longstanding policies protecting wetlands and waterways, fast-tracked mining projects, fought climate action, slashed funding for dozens of state scientists and environmental education positions, and impeded development of wind energy in Wisconsin.
MIT Technology Review: Why Science Denialism and Conspiracy Theory Walk Together, Suspiciously
A group of social scientists headed by Stephan Lewandowsky has released a study of online blog comments, concluding that climate-change deniers are strongly prone to conspiratorial thinking. That climate deniers are also conspiracy buffs might seem like one of those dog-bites-man findings for which social scientists are often ridiculed (“People in love do foolish things, study concludes”). But the background to this study is actually more interesting than its conclusion.