oiseauvert989 t1_izlc9in wrote

I don't know about that.

The weight of solar panels on my local swimming pool roof would be much lower than the weight of a heavy snowfall building up on the flat roof (originally I was studying structural engineering).

With rooftop installations there is also the possibility to place them in the locations where there is a higher degree of tolerance. Snow unfortunately builds up across the entire surface.

If course it is definitely something to be double checked on a case by case basis but I don't think solar panel weight would be a problem in every case.


oiseauvert989 t1_izjcrlb wrote

One place I think should have them is the rooftops for swimming pools. Often they are flat roofed and easily accessible.

Also a very good place for solar heating panels and air source heat pumps. If you are going to store future excess energy as hot water, that is a very good place to do it.


oiseauvert989 t1_iy8uds7 wrote

Reply to comment by [deleted] in Electric Vehicles by [deleted]

By do better, you mean do worse. Take a good thing and mess it up. What you are describing is called a "gadgetbahn".

The reason the trams and trolleybuses work is because they are big and carry lots of people. If you replace them with lots of crappy car sized vehicles then each one needs a separate physical connection to the electricity source.

That number of separate vehicles would very quickly wear through the contact material. Then of course you have other issues. Lots of trams can operate in one lane but lots of cars create congestion and then need multiple lanes, each with their own electrical supply. You will also have issues with connecting and disconnecting rapidly in the case of a potential collisions. Trams and trolleybuses generally don't need to worry about collisions.

Basically the problem is that you are restricting yourself to a specific set of dimensions for your vehicle (about 2metres wide and 5metres long). If you consider vehicles which are 50cm wide or 50metres long, then there are many more solutions.


oiseauvert989 t1_ixc4luh wrote

Especially when so much of the plastic we get is completely unnecessary. After decades of pointless polystyrene we are now starting to get things packed in rolled up recycled paper.

There are so many other use cases where the plastic isnt just unnecessary, it's easy to replace and should simply be banned.


oiseauvert989 t1_iwsjytv wrote

That's great but NZ has a huge amount of hydro power which means it is playing on easy mode.

NZ really should be at 100% renewable already. NZ has more or less the same situation as Uruguay but Uruguay is already at 100%. The hydro already exists, all that is needed are a few solar panels and turbines and the job is done.

Of course Australia also needs to up it's game. 70% shouldn't be a once off for Australia, it should be the average for the year.


oiseauvert989 t1_iwsimqo wrote

Absolutely. New ICE sales returning to 2017 levels is impossible at this point.

The question is whether combined ICE plus EV sales will ever reach 2017 levels again. I can't make up my mind if that will even happen or not. Currently I think it wont. EVs wont replace ICEs at a 1to1 ratio. We are definitely not seeing that currently.


oiseauvert989 t1_iwsi93k wrote

Realistically many people in developing nations as they become wealthier will invest in small electric vehicles, even including eBikes.

Once the wealthy start buying new electric cars, the supply of cheap second hand ICEs starts to dry up. China, South Africa, India etc. are not going to follow the US, they will take a different path. Eventually they will converge with European countries which are seeing falling ownership rates, especially in urban areas.


oiseauvert989 t1_iwsho6b wrote

Yep that is the real big change here.

Population goes up while sales go down for 5 consecutive years now. Realistically we are never going back to 2017 rates. There is a generational change happening.

Previously many people assumed that China and it's neighbours would as they grew richer eventually follow the Western model but that simply isnt happening. Then in Europe rates are falling rapidly, especially in urban areas.


oiseauvert989 t1_iwhhmvs wrote

Oh yeh. I would never advocate investing in something with that long of a pay off but I also think it depends a lot on individual circumstances. Costs are often higher to add to an existing property that to include in a new build.

Of course the cheapest of all are panels installed in vast arrays on the ground. Realistically for electricity generation the real solution is not home based. Most places are moving towards a situation where wind+solar+hydro will make up the majority of the electricity anyway.

The real home based cost savers / pollution reducers will be in the areas of transport and heating. Where I live currently the transport bit is easy (town centre with rail station) but the heating bit is hard (currently completely reliant on gas boiler).


oiseauvert989 t1_iwgiqyk wrote

Yeh SF isnt really representative of most cities in that sense. Even there, the only year with a significant drop was January 2020 to January 2021. SF has big barriers to building houses which creates all kinds of problems.

Some cities will stagnate, some cities will grow strongly but no cities are heading for big population drops except for places like Japan where the whole country is disappearing. Even there it is the rural areas that are becoming depopulated first. That is a much stronger trend over all and we are going to see much more of it in a lot of countries.

Well, we wont see it in person because we wont actually bother to visit those places but statistically it will be recorded more and more.


oiseauvert989 t1_iwgh5c5 wrote

That really depends on the details of the loan and also where people live.

I used to live in Jordan where most people are on a fraction of the wages described in this post but solar panels were very common because the value of energy they produced was greater than the interest and depreciation on the panels. I expect in Australia, Morocco, The US/Mexico border and other places with a lot of sunshine hours are reaching a similar situation. At some point it becomes worthwhile to finance properly and fairly.


oiseauvert989 t1_iwggkma wrote

It is well known.

It is a mish mash of illogical fallacies. It simply point out things everyone knows (renewable energy isn't perfect) and implies they undermine the case for making our energy renewable (which of course makes no sense).

I wouldn't really call it a good place to look for facts. It is one of those movies where if you think about it, the whole thing falls apart. As someone working for a humanitarian organisation which has to respond to climate emergencies and wars over oil, I would say that it is about time Michael Moore retired. He really doesn't have an accurate view of the present, never mind the future.


oiseauvert989 t1_iwgdqhs wrote

Thats because electricity is only about 25% of our current energy needs

  1. The transition of the electricity sector is indeed impressive and looks likely to continue strongly.

  2. The transport sector is sort of doing something but is definitely way behind the electricity generating sector. eBikes are one aspect that will by the 2030s have a much higher impact than most people think, especially in developing countries where the choice was previously a very expensive to maintain moped that sits in traffic at 10mph or walking at 5mph. eCars are going well but have a lot of questions around battery materials and other limiting factors. Realistically they will not be a one2one replacement for ICEs.

  3. Industrial energy production is a mixed bag. Some improvements and some stagnation.

  4. Home heating however is making almost zero progress and uses a lot of energy. Heat pumps have received too little investment for far too long. Insulation and heat pumps knocking 75% off the worlds heating bills would be a real game changer.


oiseauvert989 t1_iwgc4aq wrote

Usually what is happening is that moderate changes are proposed and then described as "bans" by opponents rather than proponents.

Bans on vehicles are not effective at that scale. Removing parking and putting in filtered permeability is much more effective. Road diets, cycle networks, bus lanes, urban trees etc. are the way to go.

"Bans" can only really work in inner cities and usually include some built in exceptions. This type of policy effectively already exists in many cases and the only real change is that some cities like Berlin are proposing expanding the boundary of what they consider the inner city. These kind of pragmatic changes are very interesting and exciting for the future.


oiseauvert989 t1_iwgbclo wrote

It was supposed to change due to the pandemic. That prediction turned out to be wrong though. The pandemic made a much smaller than expected change.

In the last couple of years I learned that urbanisation hasn't been knocked off it's long term path and if Covid couldn't do it, probably nothing will. 2 years ago I expected something quite different. I think one of the reasons was that many rural and suburban places were hit hard by Covid. If rural areas had escaped Covid, then I think the effect would have been stronger. Remote work changed a lot of thing but this aspect is turning out to be a much smaller and shorter lived change than I expected.


oiseauvert989 t1_iwg9a6w wrote

Bumper to bumper is a myth told to people who desperately want automation to solve congestion but we already know it won't.

This isn't a problem limited by automated systems. This is a problem limited by the physics of all the moving parts including tyres and breaks.

Paris metro line 14 is full automated and breaks in perfect timing every time but it needs 60 seconds between trains anyway. It has a reaction time of zero seconds but still needs 60 seconds between trains because of physics. For cars this time might be less than 60 seconds because they are smaller but added together it adds up to very large spaces between vehicles.

That will not change at any point in our lives. An automated car would actually make congestion worse because it makes additional journeys while empty every time the destination from journey1 doesnt line up exactly with the start of journey2. Realistically most people in sprawling locations will buy their own so it probably wont solve parking either.

The solutions to these problems involve re-allocating space away from roads and parking. That's where the really exciting changes are happening.