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🏆 Top 10 Climate Bites to Read this Week

PodSnacks' Climate Picks

Table of Contents

👋 Welcome to this week’s roundup of PodSnacks.
🎙️ Discover selected quotes from 10 recently covered episodes.
Save 6 hrs 6 min of listening by reading these entire PodSnacks.


⚡ Carbon & Energy


Podcast: Redefining Energy
Episode: “Ultra-Fast EV Charging”
Hosts: Gerard Reid & Laurent Segalen
Guest: Arcady Sosinov | CEO | FreeWire Technologies
Category: ⚡ Renewable Energy
Apple | Spotify | 🕰️ 28 min | 🗓️ 12/01/2021

Selected Quote:

[8:37] “I don't see a site being capable of 100 to 200 ultra fast chargers. […] Two ultra fast chargers in front of a Walmart will use as much power as the Walmart itself. 200 will bring down the grid infrastructure on site. So it's just not feasible. There are two things to think about. One, you don't need sites with 100 to 200 ultra fast chargers. You need many sites with 2 to 8 ultra fast chargers. So you need to be ubiquitous, you don't need these centralized large depots except for situations like fleets. The service that we provide, and what we believe is the future of ultra fast charging is ultra fast charging has to be integrated with storage. There has to be storage on site, because charging by its nature is very unpredictable and peaky. […] We've developed at FreeWires a ultra fast charger with integrated storage that sits on existing willpower infrastructure. What that means that you can deploy at a lower capital cost than any ultra fast charger out there. You can have significantly lower operating costs, about 70% lower. And more importantly you can deploy in locations where other charges can't.

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Podcast: Catalyst with Shayle Kann
Episode: “A Bumpy Ride toward Decarbonizing Aviation”
Host: Shayle Kann
Guest: Dan Rutherford | Director of the Aviation & Maritime Programs | The International Council on Clean Transportation
Category: ☁️ Carbon Reduction
Apple | Spotify | 🕰️ 48 min | 🗓️ 12/02/2021

Selected Quote:

[4:22] “Aviation is kind of a tricky issue here. The emissions can either look really large or reasonably small, depending upon how you normalize it. But just to give you a few different figures. Airlines emitted about 900 million tons of CO2 […] in 2019. So if aviation was considered as a country, it would be about the sixth largest emitter, so a little bit larger than Germany, somewhat smaller than Japan. Globally that would be about 2.4% of anthropogenic carbon dioxide. But It doesn't account for the climate impact of co-pollutants. So when you burn a gallon of jet fuel at elevation, it has a larger climate impact than if you burn it, say on the road, because you're also emitting things like nitrogen oxides and black carbon and water vapor. So if you look at the total climate impact of flying, it's about three times larger than carbon dioxide alone. And if you put together all of the math, it would be about 3.5% of the total radiative forcing from anthropogenic emissions. But that's on a societal level. If you look at individual fliers, it can be very different. So half of the United States doesn't fly in any given year, and about 90% of the world doesn't get on a plane in any given year. So if you're a frequent flyer, flying is a much larger part of your overall carbon footprint, generally 20% or higher.”

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Podcast: CleanTech Talk
Episode: Freeing Energy (Original Title: "Bill Nussey is Freeing Energy with a New Book and Real Solar Innovation")
Host: Michael Barnard
Guest: Bill Nussey | Entrepreneur & Author
Category: ⚡ Renewable Energy
Apple | Spotify | 🕰️ 39 min | 🗓️ 12/01/2021

Selected Quote:

[28:38] “One area that I think is important when we define local energy, and I mentioned it in a very clinical way, which is, who owns it. But when you go to Africa, you see the human side of what that ownership means. You see how people's lives are transformed with the simple addition of a little bit of predictable and controllable electricity. […] The lighting for most people is by kerosene, which is expensive and dangerous. […] And I met with people and I talked about their stories in the book, a man named Francis who showed me the kerosene black ceiling in his earthen house where his children had used kerosene lamps to do their homework. And just in what a difference it made for health and breathing and things like that. Many of his neighbors before they had systems would spend an hour, two or three a day walking just to charge their phone. […] So the solar home systems do a lot more than just provide lighting for homework for children.”

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Podcast: Climate Tech Cocktails
Episode: “The Switch to Geothermal Energy” (Original Title: "Dandelion Energy: Kathy Hannun")
Host: Matt Myers
Guest: Kathy Hannun | Founder & President | Dandelion Energy
Category: ⚡ Renewable Energy
Apple | Spotify | 🕰️ 1 hr 7 min | 🗓️ 12/07/2021

Selected Quote:

[21:14] “You can have a geothermal heat pump anywhere you have adequate access to the ground. So you need some yard, for example. […] When we think about where we should go next geographically, it's all about economics. So we target places that are very expensive for homeowners today to heat and cool. For example, at our birthplace New York, it's very common for homes to use fuel oil, which is just an extremely dirty and very expensive way of heating […] your house. But because the winters are so cold in New York, you need to buy a lot of it, and it's very expensive. So you have people with very high heating bills. And that just means when they switch to geo, they save the most money, they have the most to gain. […] I would say the least attractive market for us would probably be [a place like] San Francisco, because the air temperature does not differ that much from the ground temperature at any point in time.”

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Podcast: Renewable Energy SmartPod
Episode: “Smart Buildings & Load Flexibility”
Host: Sean McMahon
Guest: John Powers | Founder & CEO | Extensible Energy
Category: ⚡ Renewable Energy
Apple | Spotify | 🕰️ 30 min | 🗓️ 12/07/2021

Selected Quote:

[27:35] “I think the smart building world and the smart grid world are kind of coming together. And while some of this technology has been available for a while in sort of big, rich buildings, think back to when cell phones were only available to rich people with their car phones, and how things changed as we all got smartphones in our pockets. I think you're gonna see things that were only available to the biggest richest buildings become way more democratized and distributed to every small to medium building on the grid. I think that's going to really expand the number of applications […] that are available to everyone on the grid from the perspective of energy savings, demand charge savings, but also direct participation and load flexibility markets […]. So I think the change is going to be pretty quick and pretty extreme compared to the cell phone transition. And I think it's going to really help the customers save money and the grid to clean up and electrify everything.”

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💧 Water


Podcast: (don't) Waste Water!
Episode: Water Trading in Down Under (Original Title: "How Water Trading Unbelievably Killed One Million Fishes (and a River)")
Host: Antoine Walter
Guest: Scott Hamilton | Researcher & Author
Category: 🗣️ Opinion
Apple | Spotify | 🕰️ 1 hr 2 min | 🗓️ 12/01/2021

Selected Quote:

[20:37] “In terms of making […] the [Australian] water market, one of the first things that was done was actually to disconnect the water from the land. So we call this unbundling. […] We actually think that that in itself wasn't necessarily a bad thing, provided there were sufficient rules around and ways to manage that. […] If I've got a farmer within a valley […] [that] has a bit of water left over one season and the farmer down the road […] could use that water, it […] makes sense to be able to allow that trade to happen. […] What is probably more of a problem and then it gets worse, was the actual allowing other players to come into the water market. So it's not just farmers and users, which could trade that water, anybody could trade that water. […] And of course, that means that people who are very sophisticated […] start to think maybe I can have some arbitrage through this water trading. And one of our key findings is that really what we created was a paradise for arbitrage. […] There's multiple prices, multiple valleys, multiple different types of water rights. So this provides […] holes in the market, so places where someone with better information, more speed, more market power, can take advantage of that.”

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Podcast: Water Nerds
Episode: “Bioaccumulation & Biomagnification”
Host: Analies Ross-Dyjak
Category: 🔬 Research
Apple | 🕰️ 7 min | 🗓️ 12/03/2021

Selected Quote:

[2:56] “Biomagnification […] has more to do with different organisms moving up trophic levels. So probably mercury and fish is the best example. […] The fish absorbs mercury in the water that they're swimming in […] and then humans of course, consum[e] the fish. So basically, […] as the mercury is working its way up trophic levels, the mercury levels are increasing because the organism in the next trophic level requires more of that organism to sustain itself. […] So the level of mercury is growing each time with trophic levels. […] You are what your food eats.

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Podcast: waterloop
Episode: “An Atlas For Local Solutions”
Host: Travis Loop
Guest: Ellory Monk | Co-Founder | The Atlas
Category: 🌐 Digital
Apple | Spotify | 🕰️ 39 min | 🗓️ 12/06/2021

Selected Quote:

[4:11] “The Atlas is a free online community for local government officials and staff to do three things. The first is to browse case studies. The second is to follow trending topics in local government. And the third is to post questions to one another to crowdsource ideas and advice. We have about 3,000 local government leaders that are using The Atlas each month. And the thing that we're most known for, and the thing that they're utilizing the most is the case study database of best practices and the corresponding […] topics functionality.”

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Podcast: The Water Values Podcast
Episode: “All about Charity: Water”
Host: Dave McGimpsey
Guest: Christoph Gorder | Chief Global Water Officer | charity: water
Category: 🗣️ Opinion
Apple | Spotify | 🕰️ 33 min | 🗓️ 12/07/2021

Selected Quote:

[5:16] “Charity: water is a nonprofit organization that's been around […] for about 15 years. And our mission is to provide clean and safe drinking water to people around the world. It's hard to fathom it, but there's almost 800 million people around the world, so […] one in nine people around the world don't have access to clean water. And this means that they are walking hours a day to a dirty water source, a stream or swamp. And the burdens of this fall mostly on women and girls. […] So it means girls aren't going to school, and in this sort of perpetual cycle of having to go fetch dirty water or getting sick from dirty water, and not being able to make any progress. […] Our focus almost exclusively on rural remote communities in Southeast Asia and Africa, bringing them access to clean water for the very first time, which is transformational.”

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Podcast: The Future of Water
Episode: “Workforce Disruption: Who do Utilities Call for Help?”
Host: Reese Tisdale
Guests: Eric Bindler | Research Director, Digital Water | Bluefield Research &
Isabel Kezman | Analyst | Bluefield Research
Category: 🚰 Utilities
Apple | Spotify | 🕰️ 33 min | 🗓️ 12/07/2021

Selected Quote:

[5:23] EB: “The biggest takeaway for me was that of the 400 something utilities that [AWWA, American Water Works Association] surveyed, 40% said that they're currently facing difficulty hiring. And 26% are expecting those challenges to continue to 2022. And if you look at the breakdown of positions where utilities are struggling the most to bring people on staff or to keep people on staff, it's really these high skill, kind of mission critical positions, like treatment plant operators, service technicians, commercial drivers, mechanics, engineers. […] The other big picture stat […] in terms of utility turnover: about 21% of utilities that they surveyed, are […] reporting higher turnover. Whereas it was only about 11% earlier in the year that we're seeing that.”

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