Former President of the United States Jimmy Carter leases a 10-acre site to SolAmerica Energy for the next 25 years to harvest the power of the Sun
Atlanta-based SolAmerica Energy, a leading solar, development and construction firm, launches a 1.3MW solar array on President Carter’s Farm in Plains, Georgia.
Former President Carter leased a 10-acre site in his hometown to SolAmerica for development of the 1.3 MW solar project, which will provide over 50% of the power needs of the City of Plains.
Carter, an early advocate and leader of the renewable energy movement during his tenure in the White House, commented;
“Rosalynn and I are very pleased to be part of SolAmerica’s exciting solar project in Plains. Distributed, clean energy generation is critical to meeting growing energy needs around the world while fighting the effects of climate change. I am encouraged by the tremendous progress that solar and other clean energy solutions have made in recent years and expect those trends to continue.”
President Carter created the Department of Energy and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), and signed the Public Utility Regulatory Act (PURPA), which became catalysts for the advancement of renewable energy in the U.S.
Carter was also the first president to put solar panels on the White House.
SolAmerica executive vice president George Mori added,
“We are honored to work with President Carter and his family on this project in Plains, as President Carter’s leadership on renewable energy matters is well known and much appreciated in our industry.
Through a 25-year Power Purchase Agreement with Georgia Power, this project will help expand the growth of renewable energy assets in Georgia, while contributing to the overall economy of Plains.”
“There remains a great deal of untapped potential in renewable energy in Georgia and elsewhere in the U.S. We believe distributed solar projects like the Plains project will play a big role in fueling the energy needs of generations to come.”
SolAmerica developed, engineered and installed the single-axis tracker solar array on Carter’s property. Over the next 25 years, the system is projected to generate over 55 million kilowatt hours of clean energy in Plains.
To contact SolAmerica to find out how they can help your farm, commercial, or residential property to save money on electricity costs and help you to become more energy independent, visit: SolAmericaenergy.com
This latest call to remove fossil fuel subsidies came two years after the G20 Brisbane Summit where leaders announced their intention to, “reaffirm our commitment to rationalise and phase out inefficient fossil fuel subsidies that encourage wasteful consumption.” — G20 Brisbane Leaders’ Communiqué(November 2014, Item #18)
The 16-member mega-investor group says G20 nations should set a clear timeline “for the full and equitable phase-out by all G20 members of all fossil fuel subsidies by 2020,” and mobilize “to accelerate green investment and reduce climate risk” in a report submitted to G20 foreign ministers preparing for the upcoming G20 Summit in Hamburg, Germany.
G20 fossil fuel subsidies total $452 billion a year according to the Overseas Development Institute and Oil Change International.
Meanwhile, annual subsidies for renewable energy in the G20 nations amounts to only 1/4 of the annual subsidy awarded to fossil fuels, which have received mega-billions of subsidy dollars every single year since 1918.
For the next few paragraphs, let’s look at the United States exclusively…
The average annual subsidy for Oil and Gas alone in the U.S. from 1918-2009 totals $4.86 billion.
Adding all those (oil and gas only) subsidy years together gets you the astonishing figure of $442,260,000,000. in total from 1918-2009 — that’s half a trillion dollars right there, folks.
Which doesn’t include wars to protect foreign oil exporters to the United States.
Nor does it include so-called ‘externalities’ which are the negative costs associated with the burning of oil and gas — such as the 200,000 annual premature deaths in the U.S. caused by airborne pollution, along with the other healthcare costs associated with air pollution, the environmental costs to farmers and to the aquatic life in our rivers and marine zones, and higher infrastructure (maintenance) costs.
This chart shows only the U.S. capital gains allowance! There are other coal subsidies, direct and indirect, at play in America — in addition to the externality costs of coal.
On the Externality Cost of Coal Harvard Medicine
Each stage in the life cycle of coal—extraction, transport, processing, and combustion—generates a waste stream and carries multiple hazards for health and the environment. These costs are external to the coal industry and are thus often considered “externalities.”
We estimate that the life cycle effects of coal and the waste stream generated are costing the U.S. public… over half a trillion dollars annually.
Many of these so-called externalities are, moreover, cumulative.
Accounting for the damages conservatively doubles to triples the price of electricity from coal per kWh generated, making wind, solar, and other forms of non-fossil fuel power generation, along with investments in efficiency and electricity conservation methods, economically competitive. — Full Cost Accounting for the Life Cycle of Coal (Harvard Medicine)
Fossil Fuels = High Subsidy Costs, High Externality Costs and Lower Employment: When Compared to Renewable Energy
In addition to the direct and indirect subsidy costs of fossil fuels, there are the externality costs associated with carbon fuels, but almost more important, is the ‘lost opportunity cost’ of the carbon economy.
Over many decades in the U.S., conventional energy producers have tapered their labour costs to only a few persons per barrel of oil equivalent (BOE) while renewable energy hires more workers per BOE, which will result in a significant net gain for the U.S. economy.
Even with the paltry subsidy regimes presently in place for U.S. renewable energy in the year 2017 — once fossil fuel subsidy costs, the externality costs of fossil fuels, and the ‘missed opportunity’ costs (fewer jobs per BOE) are factored-in to the equation, renewable energy really begins to shine.
And best of all — by 2020 and without any subsidies (yes, really!) renewable energy will regularly beat highly subsidized conventional energy generators at their own game — by lowering electricity costs, by lowering healthcare and infrastructure costs, and by creating thousands of new, good-paying jobs.
Who was saying that renewable energy was a pipe-dream?
China to Fast-Forward EV Charging Installations to Combat Historic Air Pollution Levels
To combat the air pollution in China’s rapidly-growing cities, the Chinese government operating in conjunction with China’s big-city mayors, are making rapid progress towards Electric Vehicle infrastructure in an attempt to roll back historic pollution levels and consequential high healthcare costs.
In addition to the existing fleet of 150,000 public Electric Vehicle (EV) chargers operating in China in 2016, China plans to add 100,000 more public charging units, for a total of 250,000 units by the end of 2017.
These units are in addition to the 900,000 private Electric Vehicle charging units that will be installed in China by January 1st, 2018, for a grand total of 1,250,000 individual EV chargers, made up of public and private charging locations across the country.
A report issued last month by the International Energy Agency (IEA) identified air pollution as “one of the largest environmental health risks” facing Poles.
It also urged Warsaw to rethink its dependence on coal and focus instead on developing cleaner energy sources.
According to the IEA, coal accounted for 81 percent of Poland’s electricity generation in 2015 and the heavily indebted coal-mining sector—one of Europe’s largest—provided more than 100,000 politically sensitive jobs. Read more at: phys.org
It’s always an honour to be the first invitee of the new president, and the timing couldn’t be better as the Western economic order is beginning to churn.
In the West, the past 70 years have been a relatively stable era with increasing wealth (although since the Reagan-era tax cuts, obscene inequality has become a destabilizing force) and social mobility has increased dramatically since the creation of the internet.
This combination could prove extraordinarily useful to motivate leaders to provide the kind of leadership required of the times — or 2017 could prove to be the pivotal moment in the unravelling of the Western democracies.
President Trump wasn’t elected U.S. president because American citizens were bored by the Democrats.
Americans voted Trump/Pence to overthrow the existing plutocracy in Washington, not to overthrow foreign governments.
Americans voted for Barack Obama (2008 and 2012) and now Donald Trump (2016) in large part to stop the unfolding economic disaster in the West. Britons may have held similar ideas to American voters about a sustainable economic plan when they voted for Brexit.
The chart below (from 2010) reveals the bottom 80 percent of Americans share just 7 percent of the nation’s wealth, but it’s much worse now (in 2017) and this phenomenon is no longer confined to the United States.
That trend will not change until politicians are bigger than the challenges that confront them, and actually do something about the record inequality sweeping the West.
It’s not a call to ‘do something, anything, anything at all’ — as some so-called ‘solutions’ might be worse than the problem.
But what citizens of the Western nations require is an acknowledgement by politicians of the sheer scale of the problem, and some initial steps to slow the rapid transfer of wealth away from the bottom three quintiles to the top 1 percent. (Even tiny baby-steps are preferable to the decades-long stony silence on the matter)
Inequality ignored, will only result in citizens ‘giving up’ on their governments and ‘giving up’ on democracy — and we know how that will end. Badly. For everyone.
Including powerful politicians who serve for amazingly short stints of time in office. Once you’re in politics, four years pass by like a long summer!
Today’s toxic combination of ultra-low taxes on the rich and unrestricted globalization aren’t working for 3/5ths of the population. In 10 years, it won’t be working for 4/5ths of the population. And let’s remember, all of them are voters.
Here’s how that looks
In 2016, more than 50 percent of the world’s wealth was owned by the 1 percent.
By 2030, more than 70 percent of the world’s wealth will be owned by the 1 percent.
By 2045, more than 85 percent of the world’s wealth will be owned by the 1 percent.
Put another way; Do you really want to live in a world where 8 billion people are fighting over the then-remaining 30 percent of the world’s wealth?
Can you imagine what it’s going to look like in 2045 when 9 billion people are fighting over the then-remaining 15 percent of the world’s wealth?
At that time, you’d better be living on an island in the mid-Pacific that doesn’t appear on any map, in a castle with 100-metre high concrete walls.
I respectfully suggest to Prime Minister Theresa May and President Donald Trump that if inequality isn’t addressed this year, it’ll be too late. Just look for a remote island in the Pacific Ocean… now, before the rush begins.
The time involved in getting new legislation passed, combined with the lag time involved for it to take effect during the following fiscal cycle, is years after the day it is first discussed.
Let’s hope that January 27, 2017 will come to be known as, ‘The day the decline of the bottom-three quintiles was halted and reversed’ by these two great leaders.