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  #21  
Old Posted May 15, 2019, 3:43 PM
Eau Claire Eau Claire is offline
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To wrap this up, there are soooo many things wrong with that article. Canada is not magically warming 2x faster than the rest of the globe. Northern parts of the globe are warming faster, and really just northern parts of Canada, but that obviously wouldn’t generate the same kind of fear as, “CANADA IS WARMING 2X AS FAST AS THE REST OF THE WORD!” But this is such a clearly ridiculous statement that I doubt that very many people bought into it. This is the kind of thing that makes a mockery out of the climate change issue. Good thing we have real scientists working hard on the problem behind the scenes.

On the issue itself, it appears that the flow in the Bow is down by about 10% over the last century, and that could be part of a long term trend. It’s definitely something to watch, but there’s no reason to believe that it has anything with to do with AGM. Calgary’s growth is the much bigger issue. Every city in Canada, and North American save possibly LA and Phoenix, uses far more potable water than it needs to. We need about 30 liters of potable water per day for drinking and cooking, but in Calgary we use over 10x that amount. The rest goes to things like taking showers, flushing toilets, and watering lawns, and there is a lot of potential for savings here. We probably want to keep showering with treated water, but we don’t need to flush our toilets or water our lawns with it. Long term we could move to some kind of grey water system, but in the short term we could keep using it but switch to very high efficiency toilets, lawns that don’t require as much water, drip irrigation systems, and even rain barrels to collect rain water from roofs for use on the lawn and garden. Lots of potential savings.
https://www.calgary.ca/uep/water/pag...-the-home.aspx
https://www.calgary.ca/UEP/Water/Pag...fficiency.aspx
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  #22  
Old Posted May 15, 2019, 4:10 PM
lio45 lio45 is offline
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Does Calgary have water meters? If not then that would be an obvious first step.

Over the years, I've noticed a significant difference in behavior between Quebec (where water is free and people use needlessly crazy high volumes) and Florida and France (where there are water meters and people pay attention to their consumption).

The kind of system you describe in Calgary has existed in my area of FL for as long as I can remember - there's the potable water line (metered) and there's also a non-potable water line (non-metered, IIRC) which is optional (not all properties have it; if you want one you pay the installation fee, and there might be a token yearly fee too, not sure) and people use it to water the lawn, etc.
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  #23  
Old Posted May 15, 2019, 4:21 PM
lio45 lio45 is offline
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Originally Posted by milomilo View Post
It isn't a doubling, it's increasing by ~60%, compared to the population increasing by 400% in the last 58 years.
? No it's not. It's (very close to) a doubling. Approximately, it's okay to call it a doubling. I'm using your own numbers, see post below - it's an increase of 192.3%. (A true doubling would be 200.0%)

(Similarly, 58 years is what I approximately call "a half century".)

Quote:
Originally Posted by milomilo View Post
Calgary going from 1.3m to 2.5m in 58 years doesn't seem implausible to me. In 1960 Calgary was less than 250,000, so if anything the projection seems conservative.


Quote:
I'm sure the city of Calgary has done more research into this and has more data than you have but obviously population projections are just that, projections.
It's really easy to find projections that were totally wrong in retrospect.


Quote:
Maybe that is the future, but the City of Calgary's job is to plan for infrastructure, so it's prudent to make sure we have planned adequate capacity for what they see as a realistic scenario.
Sure. I just don't think we need to panic because there isn't enough water in one given location for hypothetical people. If water is truly a limiting factor, then Calgary likely won't grow past that point where it'd need more water.

Notice how projection of growth was directly leading to the conclusion "Ireland won't have anywhere near enough food for all that people then!", and how in reality this limitation is precisely what caused the projection to be grossly incorrect...
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  #24  
Old Posted May 15, 2019, 4:42 PM
milomilo milomilo is offline
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Sorry, you're correct, not sure how I messed the numbers up there. Regardless, I'll trust the city of Calgary's projections over your skepticism of them. They could very well be wrong, but they are more likely to be correct than whatever you think the right number should be.
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  #25  
Old Posted May 15, 2019, 4:42 PM
milomilo milomilo is offline
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And Calgary does have water meters. My house does at least.
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  #26  
Old Posted May 15, 2019, 4:52 PM
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240glt 240glt is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lio45 View Post
Does Calgary have water meters? If not then that would be an obvious first step.

Over the years, I've noticed a significant difference in behavior between Quebec (where water is free and people use needlessly crazy high volumes) and Florida and France (where there are water meters and people pay attention to their consumption).

The kind of system you describe in Calgary has existed in my area of FL for as long as I can remember - there's the potable water line (metered) and there's also a non-potable water line (non-metered, IIRC) which is optional (not all properties have it; if you want one you pay the installation fee, and there might be a token yearly fee too, not sure) and people use it to water the lawn, etc.
I've never run into a property in BC or Alberta that was connected to a domestic water utility that did not have a meter. People who are connected to community water systems or who are on wells obviously don't have meters

You can however get a second meter installed if you use domestic water strictly for an exceptional use (such as irrigation, for a swimming pool or flooding a hockey rink) where the water used won't need to be treated as wastewater, and the water treatment charges will be omitted from the bill from that meter. It's almost more work than it's worth though, Only really helpful for larger users
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  #27  
Old Posted May 15, 2019, 10:32 PM
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Calgary started implementing water meters in the mid 80's. For a while, houses built before that were grandfathered, but I believe all have been metered for a while now.

Something doesn't add up. From the city's own website, Calvgary's water usage has been declining:


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  #28  
Old Posted May 15, 2019, 11:17 PM
whatnext whatnext is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 240glt View Post
I've never run into a property in BC or Alberta that was connected to a domestic water utility that did not have a meter. People who are connected to community water systems or who are on wells obviously don't have meters

You can however get a second meter installed if you use domestic water strictly for an exceptional use (such as irrigation, for a swimming pool or flooding a hockey rink) where the water used won't need to be treated as wastewater, and the water treatment charges will be omitted from the bill from that meter. It's almost more work than it's worth though, Only really helpful for larger users
Most older houses in Vancouver don't have a water meter.
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  #29  
Old Posted May 15, 2019, 11:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by milomilo View Post
Calgary going from 1.3m to 2.5m in 58 years doesn't seem implausible to me. In 1960 Calgary was less than 250,000, so if anything the projection seems conservative.
Cities of Regina and Saskatoon each have growth plans for half a million people in the next 30 to 40 years so I wouldn't be surprised if Calgary has a growth plan for doubling it's population too in the coming decades.

https://globalnews.ca/news/2568282/o...oon-residents/

https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/saska...-000-1.1396257


Even with 100-year-old record breaking cold temperatures in Saskatchewan this month of May, the province is preparing for climate change as predicted.

https://www.wsask.ca/About-WSA/News-...limate-Change/


Quote:
Climate records show a 1.5 C to 2 C temperature rise in northern Saskatchewan during the past 60 years, the difference was as much as four degrees in winter.

Those are some of the biggest temperature increases on the planet during that period. Climate modelling done by U of S researchers predicts an even greater rise, 2.5 to 3 C, during the next 50 years.
https://thestarphoenix.com/news/loca...-sask-s-future

A few months ago Saskatchewan completed it's 250-page Provincial Flood and Natural Hazard Risk Assessment due to climate change.
Quote:
The Saskatchewan Flood and Natural Hazard Risk Assessment concludes that drought and convective summer storms are the province’s highest risk natural hazards...

...It had been 140 years since the last devastating tornado struck Regina.

This one was far worse.

The tornado of 2052 traced a path much like the one that scarred the city in 1912. But this time it killed 150 people, injured 1,000 and left 13,000 homeless.

The punishing 325-km/h winds damaged the Legislature, levelled much of downtown and triggered catastrophe at the Co-op Refinery Complex.

But the destruction didn’t end there. Four of every five Reginans emerged to find their homes damaged by the ensuing hail, which also battered surrounding farms still recovering from the province’s 10-year mega-drought.

The traumatized city took a decade to get back on its feet. The provincial government, already weakened by the drought’s $5-billion economic toll, lacked the means to quell unrest among the ruins.
That task was left to the armed forces...

...It’s a hypothetical scenario, but a realistic one, according to the Saskatchewan Flood and Natural Hazard Risk Assessment released on Monday.

“A supercell convective weather system that includes an EF5 tornado, heavy rains, strong winds and hail having a direct hit on a large urban centre like Regina and surrounding communities is possible,” the assessment says.
https://leaderpost.com/news/saskatch...ays-new-report
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  #30  
Old Posted May 16, 2019, 1:14 PM
milomilo milomilo is offline
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After 5 years, Medicine Hat powers down $12M solar thermal power plant


This is a perfect example of why a carbon tax needs to be the backbone of our climate policy. This project was producing cheap energy (though apparently did go over budget) but now has to shut down because of how cheap natural gas is in Canada. Unless we ensure that burning fossil fuels has a predictable price penalty, then private investors will never be able to invest in clean projects. We will have to use ad hoc government subsidies and initiatives which are guaranteed to cost more than the guy burning gas.
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  #31  
Old Posted May 16, 2019, 6:18 PM
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lubicon lubicon is offline
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It also apparently did not work well in winter according to this article. It was a five year pilot project and hopefully has provided good data to help improve future designs so something like this might be feasible at these latitudes in the future.

https://chatnewstoday.ca/article/596...t-operate-year
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  #32  
Old Posted May 16, 2019, 7:56 PM
Jaws Jaws is offline
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Originally Posted by milomilo View Post
After 5 years, Medicine Hat powers down $12M solar thermal power plant


This is a perfect example of why a carbon tax needs to be the backbone of our climate policy. This project was producing cheap energy (though apparently did go over budget) but now has to shut down because of how cheap natural gas is in Canada. Unless we ensure that burning fossil fuels has a predictable price penalty, then private investors will never be able to invest in clean projects. We will have to use ad hoc government subsidies and initiatives which are guaranteed to cost more than the guy burning gas.
Reading the comments for that article makes my head hurt. Some people can't seem to grasp the difference between solar thermal and photo voltaic.
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  #33  
Old Posted May 16, 2019, 10:08 PM
Hackslack Hackslack is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by milomilo View Post
After 5 years, Medicine Hat powers down $12M solar thermal power plant


This is a perfect example of why a carbon tax needs to be the backbone of our climate policy. This project was producing cheap energy (though apparently did go over budget) but now has to shut down because of how cheap natural gas is in Canada. Unless we ensure that burning fossil fuels has a predictable price penalty, then private investors will never be able to invest in clean projects. We will have to use ad hoc government subsidies and initiatives which are guaranteed to cost more than the guy burning gas.
Natural gas is a clean burning fossil fuel, it's ridiculous to suggest to move away from that source of power generation today, especially with gas prices so low.

As I have provided is a separate post, when comparing natural gas to hydro...

Quote:
https://www.ucsusa.org/clean_energy/...ric-power.html

Interesting read here regarding the environmental impacts of hydro dams.

Notably:

"current estimates suggest that life-cycle emissions can be over 0.5 pounds of carbon dioxide equivalent per kilowatt-hour

To put this into context, estimates of life-cycle global warming emissions for natural gas generated electricity are between 0.6 and 2 pounds of carbon dioxide equivalent per kilowatt-hour"

I didn't realize hydro dams and gas fired power plants potentially emit almost the same amount of CO2... I italicized "potentially" because I am obviously poaching the lower end of the spectrum for gas fired power plants. Nonetheless, I believe the gas fired power plants are a clean burning source of energy if comparisons like that can be made to hydro energy.
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  #34  
Old Posted May 16, 2019, 10:10 PM
ssiguy ssiguy is offline
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Natural gas is a "bridge" commodity that is going to kill this planet and we should be phasing it out as fast as we are going to be for oil. Its a fossil fuel excuse used by oil & gas companies but the reality is there is absolutely nothing clean about it. Yes it's cleaner than coal and oil for electricity but that sets the standard embarrassingly low.

Emissions worldside will continue to grow as natural gas is simply exchanging one dirty commodity for another. Yes per plant emissions will fall but with soatring electrical needs around the world more natural gas plants will be built negating per plant reductions. Frankly I think I would rather the world continue to use coal or oil to produce electrcity until they switch to true clean power than this make-beleive "clean" alternative which is nothing more than an excuse for doing nothing.

This is where BC hypocrisy makes me sick. If it's an Alberta dirty commodity then it should be shunned and closed down but if it's a BC dirty commodity it should be embraced and expanded.
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  #35  
Old Posted May 16, 2019, 11:06 PM
milomilo milomilo is offline
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Originally Posted by Hackslack View Post
Natural gas is a clean burning fossil fuel, it's ridiculous to suggest to move away from that source of power generation today, especially with gas prices so low.

As I have provided is a separate post, when comparing natural gas to hydro...
It still generates significant amounts of CO2 so it needs to go when possible. And in western Canada we have some of the cheapest gas in the world, it is too cheap. Which means that alternative power sources will rarely be able to compete. The solution is simple and obvious - we likely don't need onerous taxation, just enough such that renewables don't have to compete against something that is almost free.
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  #36  
Old Posted May 17, 2019, 9:15 PM
lio45 lio45 is offline
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Originally Posted by milomilo View Post
Sorry, you're correct, not sure how I messed the numbers up there. Regardless, I'll trust the city of Calgary's projections over your skepticism of them. They could very well be wrong, but they are more likely to be correct than whatever you think the right number should be.
Yes and no, because I'm not venturing a number, precisely because I think it's just impossible to forecast.

I don't mind long-term projections, as long as everyone is aware they're likely to be bullshit. An example of a situation where a projection would be more harmful than just not making any projections at all would be if Calgary starts investing resources right now into building special infrastructure for water supply that won't be needed until the city passes 3 million people, the logic being "we're doing this now because we don't want to risk not being ready on time", and then more likely than not all of that becomes a huge and expensive and environmentally-unfriendly white elephant.

I have been fighting FLDOT for a couple years now as they want to eminent domain acquire one of my favorite properties that's super well located on a State Route because they want to enlarge it, adding more lanes in each direction. I pointed out that IMO that boulevard was already wide enough based on all my firsthand experience, and that they should leave it alone, and the engineer replied something along the lines of "sure, it's okay now, but we're planning for 2050 and beyond, and by that point with the robust population growth we've been seeing in the area all those new lanes will be needed according to our projections".

In 10-15 years we may all be riding in self-driving pods... riding efficiently bumper to bumper at relatively high speed while intersections have become optimized compared to the current situation (nonsynchronized traffic lights). Frankly it's very possible that those extra lanes will never become needed.

Pisses me off...

And it's all because of a stupid long-term growth projection.
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  #37  
Old Posted May 21, 2019, 2:41 PM
Eau Claire Eau Claire is offline
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Some articles I was reading over the weekend. So much progress being made! These are exciting times.

Carbon capture related:
New, largest in the US carbon capture project to go ahead. This one has some interesting new twists. The carbon is being captured from an ammonia plant, which in part at least is being used to make ethanol. The CCS aspect of this will lower the carbon footprint of the ethanol enough to work with California standards.
https://finance.yahoo.com/news/large...130400612.html

Germany Revives Underground Carbon Capture Plan in Sign of Climate Struggle
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/artic...imate-struggle

This is small but it’s yet another idea. The more different ways we can use captured CO2 the better. It all adds up.
Chemical Plant in India is Turning Its Carbon Emissions Into Baking Soda
https://weather.com/science/environm...to-baking-soda

SMR related:
Saskatchewan giving early consideration for small nuclear reactors
https://globalnews.ca/news/5286649/s...lear-reactors/
Comment: They don’t seem to understand the technology very well but the good thing is they’re starting to look into it. Sask would be a good fit for both the small and micro reactors, the latter of which would be used mainly up north.

Small nuclear reactors could make Alberta's oilsands cleaner, industry experts suggest
https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/calga...ands-1.5142864
Comment: Unfortunately this article is all too typical of today’s CBC. Terrible fact checking. The smallest reactors will fit into a shipping container, not a school gym. And lots of spin and false comparisons, the fake news element here is high. Today's CBC is not your grandparents’ CBC. But they do seem to be the only ones reporting this as of now.

Relatively unexplored ideas with relatively big potential:
Sucking methane from the air might deliver a bigger bang for the buck than just removing carbon dioxide.
https://www.technologyreview.com/s/6...limate-change/

Refilling the Carbon Sink: Biochar’s Potential and Pitfalls
https://e360.yale.edu/features/refil...l_and_pitfalls
https://www.sciencedaily.com/release...0111112854.htm
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  #38  
Old Posted May 21, 2019, 5:33 PM
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Doug Doug is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by milomilo View Post
After 5 years, Medicine Hat powers down $12M solar thermal power plant


This is a perfect example of why a carbon tax needs to be the backbone of our climate policy. This project was producing cheap energy (though apparently did go over budget) but now has to shut down because of how cheap natural gas is in Canada. Unless we ensure that burning fossil fuels has a predictable price penalty, then private investors will never be able to invest in clean projects. We will have to use ad hoc government subsidies and initiatives which are guaranteed to cost more than the guy burning gas.
Just listened to an interview with the City of Medicine Hat official in charge of the project. It was always considered an experiment to evaluate viability of concentrated solar at high latitudes. The conclusion is that the technology only works for a few months in the summer, even in one of Canada's sunniest locations. The analysis states that gas would need to be $22 per GJ for concentrated solar to be considered an alternative. That would require a 1,000% carbon tax
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  #39  
Old Posted May 21, 2019, 6:13 PM
CityTech CityTech is offline
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We're just too far north for large scale solar power plants. Wind is much more effective--Ontario makes good use of wind backed up by hydroelectric and gas.
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  #40  
Old Posted May 21, 2019, 11:43 PM
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SaskScraper SaskScraper is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eau Claire View Post
Some articles I was reading over the weekend. So much progress being made! These are exciting times.

SMR related:
Saskatchewan giving early consideration for small nuclear reactors
https://globalnews.ca/news/5286649/s...lear-reactors/
Comment: They don’t seem to understand the technology very well but the good thing is they’re starting to look into it. Sask would be a good fit for both the small and micro reactors, the latter of which would be used mainly up north.

Small nuclear reactors could make Alberta's oilsands cleaner, industry experts suggest
https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/calga...ands-1.5142864
Comment: Unfortunately this article is all too typical of today’s CBC. Terrible fact checking. The smallest reactors will fit into a shipping container, not a school gym. And lots of spin and false comparisons, the fake news element here is high. Today's CBC is not your grandparents’ CBC. But they do seem to be the only ones reporting this as of now.
There are approximately 150 Small Modular Reactor designs world wide.
For Saskatchewan to be a leader in this technology, the province will have to work more closely with America and The UK, the countries that seem to have to the most concrete plans for getting this technology viable.

Even though Saskatchewan being a world leader in Uranium mining, the province would undoubtedly have to import a new nuclear fuel source.
Russia currently has one of the only consumer market SMRs in use in the world, but will soon to be decommissioned this year.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Small_modular_reactor

SaskPower's research into Carbon Capture has been expensive but second generation technology being developed, though less expensive, could mean more retrofitting of The Shand Power plant near Estevan, Sask.

SaskPower continues with lowering emissions with National Gas power generation such as Chinook Power Station being built near Swift Current, Sask.

Saskatchewan plans to have 20% of provincial power production by it's wind farms 1000+ turbines within 10 years.

https://www.saskwind.ca/our-vision
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