Hello Friends and Readers!
I’m Blondeee. That’s the Blonde Energy Economist. I am a whole mix of potential contradictions with a few thoughts to share. I know there are a lot of you out there too so join me! Or, if you’re just entertained by my musings, that’s great too. I start with the blonde contradiction. I am the first to laugh at dumb blonde jokes. But, I am no dumb blonde. In fact, I embrace my nerd status.
Looking forward to this adventure,
The Guardian reports– Britain to ban sale of all diesel and petrol cars and vans from 2040. Like, woah!
This ban follows a similar commitment from France. Ohlala!
The times they are a changing! Britain commits to sell no diesel and petrol fueled vehicles after 2040 following in France’s footsteps.
Why this matters? It’s a pretty big deal for a few reasons. When countries make these commitments, auto manufacturers design to what demand will be. Manufactures want to lead design and consumption (a la Apple or Tesla). These country commitments provide incentive to design a range of vehicles which do not run on diesel or gasoline. And, manufacturers will most likely make models available to the market prior to 2040 (as we already see with hybrids and electric vehicles).
Additionally, once consumer decisions change en mass, this will have a large effect on petrol use and commodities prices (think: consumption drops which leads to excess supply which leads to commodity price decreases). This is a whole other topic which gets in to oil producing countries and economic stability….. stay tuned.
So, Volvo just made a huuuuuuge announcement last week- all models introduced starting 2019 and after will either be (1) hybrid vehicles (running on electricity stored in a battery with a small gas tank which can be used once charge runs out of the battery) or (2) completely electric (battery storage) vehicles.
Most all major auto manufacturers are designing and have introduced hybrid and electric vehicles to meet growing consumer demand and to make a smart business move of diversifying their model portfolio, so to speak. Leave it to the Scandinavians (Volvo = Swedish) to put pressure on the king in this game of chess.
Nerd alert: (this is the crux take away)
Overall, this is worth watching in the trend of energy. With Tesla and now Volvo going full monty electric, electricifacriton of the transportation fleet will continue to gain market share. In the short run, electric vehicles will still be a minority in the scheme of things. But, a growing share leads to a domino effect- less demand for petroleum in transport means there continues to be supply of petroleum in the global marketplace (i.e. prices/revenues remain low when there is plenty of supply to meet demand). This continues to be hard on economies which rely on income from petroleum products (example OPEC countries, Russia and Venezuela). Also, as batteries permeate (both static storage facilities and fuel sources in vehicles) the electricity mix can, and probably will, continue to evolve.
Who’s ready for a road trip?!
The lady of the deep, oceanographer, explorer and all around bad ass, Dr. Sylvia Earle.
I had the great pleasure of hearing Dr. Earle speak last weekend. I am in total crush status. Sylvia Earle is like the real deal Gidget, but before hanging out at the beach blanket bingo, Dr. Earle is like ‘I’m going to go live on the bottom of the ocean for two weeks where I’ll be busy looking at coral and talking to dolphins. Catch ya on the flip side!’
Fact- she lived under water for two weeks (google Tektite Project). Fact- she still holds the deepest female dive. And, all in the name of striving to understand what lies beneath the ocean’s surface. She’s incredibly passionate about Earth’s oceans, preserving the diverse ecosystem and continuing to discover more about the great giver of life- the ocean.
The ocean is vital to humans existence on earth. In the natural cycle of things, the ocean absorbs Carbon Dioxide (CO2). Carbon Dioxide is a part of the natural cycle of the earth, but human created CO2 emissions are greatly adding to the normal cycle of CO2 creation and absorption. As a result, CO2 collects in the atmosphere and obstructs solar heat from escaping back to space. To break this down- solar rays travel from the sun to the earth, and some (not all) basically bounce off the earth back towards space. But, they get stopped by CO2- i.e., heat gets captured in our atmosphere, arguably more than usual because of an increasing abundance of CO2. In the ocean’s effort to absorb more CO2, it’s throwing the ocean off balance and leading to issues like ‘ocean acidification’. The ocean is more acidic than it used to be. I don’t know about you but my stomach is not happy when its more acidic…. need to keep those pH levels balanced in our bodies as well as our ocean!
Photo by Jeremy Bishop
Oh, and she’s glamorous! Hello?! Science and glamour? Yes please. She was a 2014 Glamour Woman of the Year.
Cheers to Inspiration Sundays! Sylvia inspires me. What inspires you?
….. Warriors! Let’s go! Yes, they lost last night but just need one more game to wrap up the NBA championship.
And, in other news somewhat buried by other more ‘sensational’ items of the week (think Comey hearings), this picture sums up the shift we are seeing on many fronts in America. But, of course, my thoughts are dedicated to energy ….
Time: Last week
Handshake left: California Governor Jerry Brown
Handshake right: US Secretary of Energy Rick Perry
Who does it look like China has more interest in talking to about energy policy? Indeed, CA the 9th largest economy in the world who’s looking at heading to 100% renewable energy over the Secretary of Energy post the US puling out of the Paris Agreement on emission reductions. China is maintaining their position in the Paris agreement and positioning themselves to be a global leader. And, it appears the States are stepping up to be leaders where the Federal Government falters.
Golden State for the win.
Did you see H&M came out with a ‘Conscious Exclusive’ collection of clothing made from at least 50 percent sustainable or recycled material? I mean, how lovely is this dress?
Business finding ways to make business decisions good for their bottom line and for the longevity of our planet- a win/win.
Part of the issue is, we don’t have to consider the full lifecycle of goods. We take the ability to ‘waste’ for granted. Perhaps we would make different consumption decision if we had to pay something like a rental fee in landfills? One could say we pay this through taxes, but I’d venture to say we don’t pay the true value.