To stave off rolling blackouts during a record heat wave, California relied on dramatic conservation by households and a growing renewable energy sector.
Renewable energy commitments aren’t to blame for the strain on California’s power grid, writes Jonathan Thompson in a piece for High Country News. Rather, the warming climate—caused by burning fossil fuels—is the real culprit, and shifting to renewables is one of the only ways to fight it.
On September 6, California utilities urged households to conserve energy to avoid rolling blackouts, even as temperatures across the state hit record highs. “Still, for most of that afternoon, all went smoothly on the California grid because solar and wind output was so high, offsetting about 30% of the total demand.”
In fact, Thompson writes, thanks in large part to a dramatic reduction in demand by California residents that day, “There were no statewide rolling outages, the grid stood up to extreme weather, and fossil fuel advocates’ attempt to politically weaponize the predicted blackouts fell flat.”
Thompson lists some key points to remember, “especially when you hear rhetoric about this near-miss being the result of green energy policies.” For example, California’s growing battery storage capacity and the more widespread adoption of electric vehicles, which can put power back into the grid, will enhance the stability of the state’s power supply. Ultimately, Thompson notes, the success of the state’s efforts to keep the lights on on September 6 hinged on the willingness of individual Californians to conserve during a crucial time.
The Hyperloop’s Prospects Dim
The media is coming around to the idea that the hyperloop is not a near-term solution for the country’s transportation woes. It’s too little, too obvious, too late.
Where Housing Costs Are Falling Fastest
Although median home prices remain close to record highs in many cities, some of the country’s priciest metro areas are seeing home prices plummet.
The Great American Exodus: A Conservative's Perspective
During his keynote speech on September 11 at the National Conservatism Conference in Miami, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis describes the demographic shifts in America since he became governor in 2019 in what he calls the 'Great American Exodus.'
Winners of the 2022 American Society of Landscape Architects
The Society’s annual awards highlight projects focused on reconnecting communities to the landscape and creating healthy community spaces.
How Remote Work is Changing the Playing Field for Workers With Disabilities
The more widespread acceptance of working from home is helping millions of Americans with disabilities get back into the workforce and find better job opportunities.
Study To Assess Climate Mitigation Options for East Boston
A grant-funded research team will evaluate solutions for shoring up the area’s flood protection strategies and improving access and service on the Blue Line for local residents.
California High Speed Rail Authority
City of Fargo, North Dakota
City of Crystal River
This six-course series explores essential urban design concepts using open source software and equips planners with the tools they need to participate fully in the urban design process.