CLIMATE ADAPTATION

I want to punch climate change in the face. A blog about the interactions between the built environment, people, and nature.


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Posts tagged "disasters"

webofgoodnews:

This Pop-Up Solar Power Station Can Be Installed Instantly Anywhere In The World

At the push of a button, this shipping container instantly transforms into a pop-up solar power station: Hidden solar panels slide out of drawers on each side and immediately start generating energy wherever they’re needed, whether for disaster relief or in a remote village far off the grid.

—If that’s not good enough for you, then there’s also this:

The first model, released this month, includes onboard atmospheric water generators that pull water from the air. “We’re able to provide water without a water source,” says McGuire.

Read more

Interesting. I work in international development, and I can’t see who’d pay for these. Taxpayers? 

It seems the media loves them more than the markets. Diesel and gas generators are way waayyy cheaper. They’re produce more energy for more people in more places. They’re more accessible, easily repairable and replaceable, and are a more efficient response mechanism than a battery (solar panels charge a battery, then the battery is plugged into power station or some other distribution hub). In fact, many states already have long-term contracts with utilities to use the more reliable and time tested fossil fuel generator.

Utility power companies should consider using temporary power plants (coupled diesel or gas generators coupled, electric transformers with built-in power substation, fuel tanks and other power accessories) when no other possible alternative source of power generation, such as diesel-powered generators, is available to supplement the electricity shortfall during repairs and maintenance.

These plants can, for example, use a 100 MW rental power plant for six months to avoid power interruptions and continuously supply electricity to critical areas such as airports, data centers or hospitals… See here.

The fact that they’re dirty and pollutive does not trump their utility or world-wide acceptance.

I’d also point out that, as sexy as these units are, solar rental systems already exist. They’re used in the field by temporary construction crews, and possibly by disaster response teams (it’s unclear from their website), but their utility, availability, deployment times, maintenance and other costs are still unproven.

Finally, who is responsible for disposing the batteries?

(via fastcompany)

popmech:

Natural disasters are becoming more frequent, more intense, and less predictable—but technology is helping us fight back.

30 Ways to Survive Absolutely Any Disaster

Huge explosion caught on video of the Casselton, North Dakota oil train derailment. h/t Mental Transparency.

Local paper Valley News reports:

A train is derailed west of Casselton, North Dakota. It happened at 35th Street and 154th Avenue Southeast just before 2:20 p.m. Monday.

No injuries have been reported so far. Several area emergency teams are on scene and are setting up an incident command center. The Cass County Sheriff’s Office says a train went off the tracks and a second train hit it.

Several train cars are on fire and huge plumes of toxic, black smoke can be seen for miles. Several explosions have also been reported. Emergency crews are urging people to stay inside and a code red alert has been sent out to residents in a two mile radius of the accident.

Good read of the day. Skip to the first four paragraphs though.

Uncut footage of devastation in Philippines.

1) The Philippines has become increasingly vulnerable to typhoons for lots of reasons — and climate change is only one angle here.

Thanks to basic geography, the Philippines has long been one of the most storm-ravaged places on Earth, with about 8 to 9 typhoons making landfall each year, on average. The warm waters surrounding the island nation help fuel strong tropical cyclones, and there are few natural barriers to slow the storms down or break them up. …
2) Typhoons aren’t the only natural disaster the Philippines has to worry about. … But the precise risks are often difficult to pinpoint — and that makes preparation even harder. Many climate models still have trouble making predictions at a very fine-grained, regional level. And typhoons are especially difficult to forecast: While the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change thinks it’s “likely” that tropical cyclones will get stronger as the oceans warm, it’s less clear how the frequency of storms will change in the years ahead (they may even become less frequent).

3) Adaptation can help, but it’s not always enough. Many countries have managed to reduce their exposure to natural disasters over the years by implementing detailed adaptation plans. If climate change does increase the risk of natural disasters in the years ahead, then those plans will become increasingly important. …

Bangladesh, for instance, has steadily reduced the number of deaths from tropical cyclones since the 1970s through early-warning systems, shelters and evacuation plans, and building coastal embankments.

4) Where will the money come from for adaptation? There are two key questions that always come up at international climate talks like the one now going on in Warsaw. First, how will the world cut its carbon emissions to slow global warming? And second, where will the money come from to help poorer states prepare for its effects? The second question is likely to get more attention in the wake of Haiyan. …

"We have received no climate finance to adapt or to prepare ourselves for typhoons and other extreme weather we are now experiencing," Saño told the Guardian. “It cannot be a way of life that we end up running always from storms.”

The Washington Post covers climate adaptation FTW!

Typhoon Haiyan devastates Philippines. More photos from Al Jazeera.

revkin:

Some tragic tornadoes this year, but on track for record low count, overall. Keep track via @NWSSPC.

NPR asks: If coastal communities are so economically vibrant, why can’t they pay to rebuild after storms? Should the Federal Government continue to pay and subsidize rebuilding America’s coastal cities?

Trust