Saturday, July 10, 2021

Weekend Reading: The Heating Up and Cooling Down Edition

We turned on our AC for the first time last night. Petunia hadn't opened her window when we turned the whole house fan on, and so her room hadn't cooled down. It was after the flex alert that had been called to decrease energy usage in the peak hours, so we turned on the heat pump for about an hour. It definitely cools the house fast than the fan does, but we are still minimizing usage. The fan uses far less energy. 

That may change once we get a solar panel and home battery installation completed. We're currently evaluating our options. One of the quotes we got is from the same company who installed our heat pump. In fact, it was from the same person who handled the heat pump installation. He heard that we hadn't used our AC yet this summer and suggested we do a test run soon, so that if there was any problem we could get on the schedule to fix it before it gets hotter and his company gets busier. So, test completed at least.

Speaking of getting hotter... 

David Roberts' latest post on his Volts newsletter is really good. I can't tell if this post is free to all or limited to subscribers. If you can't follow the link - sorry! Basically, he argues that the most important piece of climate policy right now is clean electrification. He calls that the "main dish" and everything else - even if it is a good idea - the side dishes. The reason is that nothing else under discussion now can decarbonize us fast enough. 

Roberts also had a really interesting podcast recently, in which he interviewed Canadian climate activist Tzeporah Berman about a new initiative for a global treaty limiting fossil fuel production. It is a really interesting idea, and Berman is very knowledgeable on the topic of climate change and environmental policy and how activism influences change. She is also a refreshing combination of realistic and optimistic. I am glad I listened to this interview!

In other news... 

Over at Adjusted Latitudes, I wrote about a nice afternoon outing we did in Encinitas.

Here is a cool story about beavers restoring a dry creek bed that was a fire risk.

This thread comparing how South Dakota and Vermont got to similar levels of population immunity is worth your time:

In additional recommended listening: Alie Ward replayed her Ologies episode about marriage this week, and I really liked it.

And in things that made me smile:

This Oatmeal cartoon about wombats.

A pretty blue bird:

Your bunnies for the week:

Have a good weekend everyone!

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