With strategic demand reductions, states lead the way on utility regulation that can cut costs and emissions

Forbes, Feb 5, 2020, Amanda Myers, Energy Policy Analyst at Energy Innovations States are committing to bolder clean electricity standards, driving increased adoption of cost-competitive renewables but also requiring additional system flexibility to support variable wind and solar generation while maintaining reliable service. Customer demand itself can be a zero-carbon source of grid flexibility – but it is still barely being tapped. Demand …

Flash treatment of carbon-based waste, from banana peels to chunks of coal, produces high-quality graphene that can be used in concrete and strong plastics

Coal to concrete? Scientists report chemical breakthrough E&E News | Parker Shea Feb 2020 Rice University researchers have discovered a way to convert coal, petroleum coke, plastic or any carbon-based waste into a substance that they say can slash emissions cheaply from some of the most energy-intensive industries, such as concrete and cement manufacturing. The resulting “flash graphene” can bind …

21st Century Urban Mobility: ID a champion and make the value proposition around why changes in the built environment can help to drive prosperity

In order to decarbonize the urban environment, we must change not only how we get around cities, but also how cities themselves are planned. “There are small changes that cities can make,” he says. “The first thing is a need to identify a champion that is going to really believe in this work. You need to make the value proposition …

Los Angeles Asks Residents to Design Their Own Parks and Get Involved in New Mobility Solutions

 ZOE SULLIVAN     NOVEMBER 7, 2019, Next City The ribbon cutting for Golden Age Park, an intergenerational pocket park planned with the help of community members. (Photo by Los Angeles Neighborhood Land Trust) Land trusts have gained attention across the U.S. as a means to preserve affordable housing, but the Los Angeles Neighborhood Land Trust (LANLT) has a different focus: it hones …

Innovation Opportunities in Grid-Interactive Efficient Buildings

November 19, 2019  |  By Sneha Ayyagari and Matt Jungclaus, RMI What if buildings could communicate with the electric grid to save money and reduce their environmental impacts? Buildings drive up to 80 percent of the peak demand on the grid, and peak demand drives grid investments in generation, transmission, and distribution assets, so there is a huge opportunity to balance building …

Designing a Climate-Positive Future with Zero-Energy Districts

September 23, 2019  |  By Victor Olgyay RMI The environmental impact of buildings is clear. Over the last 30 years the green building industry has emerged in full regalia, with products, rating systems, building science, and architectural élan. Our design and technology have jumped from making buildings perform “better than code” to “zero-energy” or even “net-positive-energy” construction. Today’s high-performance buildings have a …

About 24 percent of employed people worked at least part of the time at home last year. 30 percent of home shoppers worked at home 1 to 4 days a week; 13 percent worked at home full time.

By Lisa Prevost, NYTimes, Sept. 20, 2019, How Telecommuting Has Changed Real Estate As wireless technology changes how and where people do their jobs, giving many the freedom to work remotely at least part of the time, so too is it changing their thinking about real estate. Remote workers still represent a minority of the work force. According to the Bureau of …

Curbed, Sept 2019 But before any new infrastructure can be designed, we have to reframe what infrastructure actually means in America’s consciousness. “Right now the term ‘infrastructure’ as used by politicians is problematic,” says Vishaan Chakrabarti, an architect, incoming dean at UC Berkeley’s College of Environmental Design, and author A Country of Cities: A Manifesto for an Urban America. In the …

30% more local businesses than previously and a significant increase in the numbers of people making journeys on foot or cycling with Barcelona superblocks + lives saved

By Stephen Burgen in The Guardian 10 Sept 2019 Barcelona could save hundreds of lives and cut air pollution by a quarter if it fully implements its radical superblocks scheme to reduce traffic, a new report claims. A study carried out by the Barcelona Institute for Global Health calculates that the city could prevent 667 premature deaths every year if it created all 503 …