Articles

Time to Make Our Electric Grid More Reliable

by Lisa Richardson and Mark Reynolds** During a summer of unprecedented weather disasters and climate extremes, a diverse mix of power options protected Americans from blackouts as temperatures soared. NASA named the summer of 2023 as the hottest on record and the World Meteorological Organization confirmed that the past eight years were the warmest on record globally. It’s clear that America’s electric grid is under more pressure than ever. How can it withstand the strain? Right now, our energy system is dominated by fossil fuels.… Read More »Time to Make Our Electric Grid More Reliable

SHAPIRO MUST GET PA BACK INTO RGGI

The Fifth National Climate Assessment came out this week and it said that future climate change impacts (extreme storms, flooding, droughts, fires, extreme heat) will depend on the choices we make today. We have serious work to do as individuals, and as a state, to reduce the pollution that is changing the climate. This is not the time to point fingers, this is the time to take action to move toward a common goal, to reduce how much energy we use. This is why Governor… Read More »SHAPIRO MUST GET PA BACK INTO RGGI

EV charging stations benefit Bellefonte

I’m a representative of the Citizens’ Climate Lobby here in Centre County and proud of my roots in Bellefonte. I applaud Bellefonte’s forward thinking in developing charging stations for electric vehicles. Strategically placed in downtown areas, these charging stations attract people needing to spend some time to get their vehicles fully charged and back on the road. I drove around to find each one in town, noting how many businesses were so very near to them. There are multiple proposals for charging stations across the… Read More »EV charging stations benefit Bellefonte

Make Community Solar Legal in Pennsylvania

**by Richard W. Jones This OpEd appeared in the Centre Daily Times on Oct. 8, 2023 I have friends and acquaintances who have solar panels on the roofs of their houses. They love it. Their electric bills are zero or almost that. Their houses increase in value. It’s a great deal. But not everyone can do what they’ve done. What if you live in an apartment building? What if you rent a house? What if you’re a homeowner who can’t afford the upfront cost to… Read More »Make Community Solar Legal in Pennsylvania

Mark Neely’s Review of Klimat by Thane Gustafson

Thane Gustafson, Klimat:  Russia in the Age of Climate Change (Cambridge:  Harvard University Press, 2021).  321 pages.  Maps.      If you are travelling to Russia anytime soon (and I realize that you most likely are not), do not expect to see houses with solar panels on their roofs in the cities or electric cars on the roads.  Russia has very few of either.  Most people live in apartment blocks and there are few intercity roads for cars or trucks to travel on.  Trains are standard… Read More »Mark Neely’s Review of Klimat by Thane Gustafson

Review of Unruly Waters by Sunil Amrith

A review of Sunil Amrith, Unruly Waters:  How Mountain Rivers and Monsoons Have Shaped South Asia’s History (New York:  Penguin, 2020), 397 pp., maps, photos.      This sweeping history of India from the nineteenth century to the present focuses necessarily on agriculture, climate, and engineering.  Unlike the United States, where agriculture has not been dominant for a century, agriculture “employs 60 percent of India’s population,” and India’s “population will continue to be predominantly rural by the mid-twenty-first century” (p. 14).  Therefore, climate matters less in… Read More »Review of Unruly Waters by Sunil Amrith

Review of Fire and Flood

A Review of Eugene Linden, Fire and Flood:  A People’s History of Climate Change, from 1979 to the Present (New York:  Penguin Press, 2022)      Eugene Linden’s Fire and Flood is a history of the problem of climate change over the last forty-odd years– must reading for members of CCL.  Linden captures the essence of developments decade by decade, the eighties, the nineties, and so forth, from four standpoints:  the reality of climate changes in the period, the scientists’ increasing understanding of them, public opinion… Read More »Review of Fire and Flood

Review of Vaclav Smil book by Mark Neely

Vaclav Smil, How the World Really Works:  A Scientist’s Guide to Our Past, Present and Future (New York:  Viking, 2022), 326 pp.     Vaclav Smil, a member of the geography department at the University of Manitoba, in this well organized and clearly written book, argues that globalization and what he calls “the four material pillars of modern civilization,” plastics, steel, concrete, and ammonia, are central to understanding the problem of climate change.  The problem, simply put, is that all of them are carbon intensive.     … Read More »Review of Vaclav Smil book by Mark Neely

Letter: Senator Casey should back Carbon fee

By Richard W. Jones Bloomberg News reported Sept. 3 that the Senate Finance Committee is seriously considering putting a $15 per ton price on carbon in the budget reconciliation package. This fee would be paired with a rebate for low-income taxpayers and a border-adjustment tax to ensure that foreign companies can’t take advantage. This is encouraging news. President Joe Biden has set a 50 percent reduction goal for carbon emissions by 2030. Read more at Lock Haven Express

Decision Time: Will Senate Go Big or Small on Climate Change?

While the media spotlight is elsewhere, the U.S. Senate this summer is seriously negotiating climate change legislation. Senate Democrats have signaled that they are focused on climate change. They plan to address the issue in this year’s budget reconciliation. This is potentially good news for those who have argued for a price on carbon. That’s because consideration of a carbon price meets the strict parliamentary requirements of budget reconciliation. The reconciliation is not subject to the filibuster, meaning that it can be passed with 51… Read More »Decision Time: Will Senate Go Big or Small on Climate Change?