Washington (GGM) Analysis | May 13, 2020
by Noreen Wise
It’s always the small things that make the difference in big transitional changes. So too with our transformation into renewable energy. If every household committed to replacing gas stoves and gas grills with electric in 2020, we’d be well on our way to converting our homes to solar and wind. Bloomberg Green’s recent article about this new trend highlights the pros and cons.
Realistically though, it’s all about taking the first step. We need to eliminate all fossil fuel usage including appliances. If we know that the elimination of fossil fuels is inevitable, (does anyone doubt that it is), then we should all immediately begin to replace easy to replace appliances. This is how progress is made. One step at a time.
Last summer, Berkeley, Californiabecame the first cityin the United States to ban natural gas in new homes. The law was passed unanimously and went into effect January 1, 2020. Interestingly, Berkeley was also the first city in the United States to ban smoking in restaurants and public places back in 1977. There’s a saying in California: As goes Berkley, so goes California. Let’s be on the look out for more California cities to continue with this trend, creating the much needed momentum.
As always, the changing of the tides comes when one person, one town is willing to step boldly in the right direction. Thank you, Berkeley, California. May your small step with climate action be as successful as the revolution you kicked off when you banned smoking in 1977. Think of how many lives Berkeley saved. Cheers to the Butterfly Effect.🦋
Washington (GGM) Analysis | January 29, 2020
by Noreen Wise
After a ten year struggle to become profitable, Tesla nailed it in 2019. The 4th quarter was the turning point according to CNN.
Some of the key factors for increased growth in consumer demand that put Tesla into the black are:
how long it takes to charge
how many public charging stations exist in local communities
and the EV car price
Every single one of these critical factors have moved in the right direction.
range increased with the new average at 200 miles per full charge
charging time went down significantly and now only averages a quick 20 minutes
public charging stations have mushroomed, not only businesses providing them in corporate parking lots to employees, but stores offering charging stations to consumers as a competitive advantage
EV car prices have dropped substantially
Climate action focused states such as New York, California, Connecticut and Massachusetts have crafted creative carrots and stick, incentives and regulations, creating a patchwork of solutions that are driving results. Very happy for Tesla to finally experience the upside of being an innovator, after schlepping through the painful wilderness for so long.
In 2020, Tesla will have to face a much more competitive landscape, now that most of the obstacles in the EV marketplace have been eliminated.
Washington (GGM) Analysis | November 30, 2019
by Noreen Wise
The holiday shopping season has begun. Packed malls and stores from coast to coast. American consumers are expected to spend nearly a half trillion dollars from Thanksgiving through December 25, 2019. But how many US shoppers will rely on their reusable bags at every store they visit?
Prior to 1977, stores offered paper bags to shoppers. But once the first plastic shopping bags appeared in 1977, the switch to plastic was swift and furious and by the end of the 1990’s, the vast majority of retail outlets across the globe relied on single-use plastic. According to The World Counts:
we consume 5 trillion single-use plastic bags per year
160,000 single-use plastic bags per second
but sadly, less than 1% of these are recycled
single-use plastic bags are made from oil, gas & coal which produce a significant amount of carbon
one ton of recycled single-use plastic bags equals 11 barrels of oil
the public’s seeming indifference to the extensive damage single-use plastic causes the environment, as well as it’s impact on climate change, has resulted in several states stepping in to regulate the use of single-use plastic bags
Connecticut just passed a law that went into effect August 1 2019, banning single-use plastic bags in grocery stores and restaurants by July 2021. Some grocery store chains and restaurants have already begun transitioning patrons to the ban by ditching all plastic bags and charging shoppers .10 cents for paper bags, as well as passing along a discount to shoppers who bring their own reusables. Businesses that continue to provide singles-use plastic bags these next 19 months will charge shoppers a .10 cent tax for each plastic bag. This is an excellent model for other states to follow.
California was the very first state to ban single-use plastic bags back in 2014, and San Francisco was the first US city in 2007
New York jumped in and banned single-use plastic bags on Earth Day 2019; the ban will go into effective March of 2020
Hawaii hasn’t officially banned these deadly bags, but beginning in 2015 every county in the state has barred them, so Hawaii too is included in the count of state bans