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Tough Love – Part 1

image credit: EPA
John Benson's picture
Senior Consultant Microgrid Labs

PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE: Microgrid Labs, Inc. Advisor: 2014 to Present Developed product plans, conceptual and preliminary designs for projects, performed industry surveys and developed...

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  • Aug 18, 2020

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This is a two-post paper in Part 1 we will focus on top three greenhouse gas emitters: transportation, electricity production, and industry. In the second post (about a week after the first) we will look at possible roles of government and negative emissions technology.

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Matt Chester's picture
Matt Chester on Aug 18, 2020

It's likely just a choice of how you categorize, but what about buildings? Obviously they're a huge user of that generated electricity and include industrial activity-- but improving the building stock seems to be a critical function that's needed as well so that precious electricity generated isn't wasted. 

John Benson's picture
John Benson on Aug 18, 2020

Thanks for the comment Matt.

Most (large) buildings are part of the commercial sector, and these are already pretty heavily electrified. Also this sector in the above chart (Commercial and Residential) is pretty small compared to the big three. One thing I was looking for in the above was big stuff that we can work on in the next decade or two. After all:

When it is not necessary to make a decision, it is necessary not to make a decision.

- Lord Falkland

Jim Stack's picture
Jim Stack on Aug 21, 2020

Thanks for this article John. If you look around you will see Tesla is making big progress in all of these areas. Let's hope others take note and join in the progress and can do as well as Tesla. Almost EVery Power Utiltiy has been adding advanced battery storage to their GRID. This makes Renewable Energy much more valuable. 

As to building design and energy as Matt mentioned I still see all glass buildings and everyone knows glass is a very poor insulator. In my home I have reversible Inflectors that are on the inside and reversible for heat or cold. The National Guard also uses them in their buildings so there is hope for that sector. 

John Benson's picture
John Benson on Aug 21, 2020

Thanks for the comment Jim.

If you look at my public profile you will & worked for Landis & Gyr and Siemens for about 30 years. Although I was in a different division, both of these had facility control divisions (same company - Siemens acquired this when that acquired Landis & Gyr), and I worked with them on several major projects. The last was the new Apple HQ (flying saucer). There is much we can do to make large buildings and residences more efficient.

More directly to your comment - I too have tried to make my two residences as efficient as possible. We put in double-glazed windows a couple of decades ago, and seven years ago we put in a high-efficiency HVAC in Livermore where we get the serious heat.

As far a Tesla goes, I write about them frequently - see my public profile. My latest post on Tesla is linked below. I'm accumulating info for another post (after Battery Day).


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