Tag Archives: Jacksonville

Georgia Power new acquisition AGL’s Pivotal LNG exporting through Jaxport

Back in May 2015, Southern Company CEO Tom Fanning and Georgia Power CEO Paul Bowers both told me “If we can’t do coal, we have to do pipelines”. I-75 through Atlanta, Macon, Valdosta, I-10 through Lake City A year in the making, Southern Company bought pipeline company AGL Resources. Turns out AGL Resources is also an LNG export company, exporting through Jacksonville by LNG containers on trucks. And the plot thickens with the pending corporate takeover of CSX Railroad by the former CEO of Canadian Pacific, given that CSX depends a lot on carrying coal, which remember is what Southern Company is rapidly getting away from. Could CSX want to carry LNG? Meanwhile, LNG containers are already rolling down I-75 and I-10 to Jaxport, apparently through Atlanta, Macon, Valdosta, and Lake City.

Southern Company PR, 1 July 2016, Southern Company and AGL Resources complete merger, create a leading U.S. energy company, Continue reading

Possible corporate takeover of CSX

CSX stock went up 29% in January on rumors of a corporate takeover. The same CSX that let a plume of toxic chemicals leak below its Rice Rail Yard in Waycross, including into the upper Suwannee River watershed. It’s not clear a corporate takeover would do anything to stop that, or other possible contamination in for example Valdosta.

John Burr, WJCT, 6 February 2017, Business Brief: CSX Board To Consider Possible Takeover Friday, Continue reading

Kinder Morgan’s Palmetto Pipe Line to Savannah and Jacksonville

If you thought Sabal Trail was a one-off pipeline, think again. Kinder Morgan wants to build another pipeline conveniently past Elba Island LNG through Savannah and Jacksonville. Apparently it’s not actually for methane, but it’s still another fossil fuel boondoggle among many that local and state governments and NGOs need to proactively deal with instead of each type one by one.

Chip Harp, Valdosta Today, 9 February 2015, New Nat Gas Pipeline to Fuel Coast, Continue reading

Clean Green Metro Florida by Brookings Institution

Amy Liu spoke about globalization last week in Orlando, Leaders will seize the clean economy about clean industries leading economic growth. Even though she was talking linear growth, her Metropolitan Policy Program at Brookings Institution has some interesting points that mesh with the exponential growth like compound interest Georgia can get on with in solar and wind power.

The Florida Economic Development Council 2013 FEDC Conference 26-28 June 2013 was the venue for Amy Liu’s A Globally Competitive Florida: Regional Opportunities in the Next Economy. To summarize her slides (which are in a format not easily linkable, she bashes Congress to motivate cities leading. In particular, Florida’s 20 metro ares have 61.75 of land area, 94.1% of population, and 95.9% of output. Nothing surprising there: cities are densely populated. Two of the biggest in Florida are in our Floridan Aquifer: Orlando and Jacksonville. (She didn’t mention the aquifer; I did.)

The national economic recovery is slow, the middle class has been hard-hit, and Florida is recovering faster, except on unemployment. The U.S. population is rapidly getting older and by 2050 53.7% will be minorities, each of which have very different educational achievements, and much of this is happening in metro areas.

Her solution is Continue reading

Arctic sea ice melting faster than expected —WMO

A major source of the water for the sea level rise already affecting Savannah and Jacksonville is melting Arctic Ocean sea ice. WMO Press Release No. 966: 2012: Record Arctic Sea Ice Melt, Multiple Extremes and High Temperatures,

“Naturally occurring climate variability due to phenomena such as El Niño and La Niña impact on temperatures and precipitation on a seasonal to annual scale. But they do not alter the underlying long-term trend of rising temperatures due to climate change as a result of human activities,” said WMO Secretary-General Michel Jarraud.

“The extent of Arctic sea ice reached a new record low. The alarming rate of its melt this year highlighted the far-reaching changes taking place on Earth’s oceans and biosphere. Climate change is taking place before our eyes and will continue to do so as a result of the concentrations of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, which have risen constantly and again reached new records,” added Mr Jarraud.

30 years of Arctic sea ice 15 September 1982 vs 16 September 2012

The Arctic reached its lowest annual sea ice extent since the start of satellite records on 16 September at 3.41 million square kilometers. This was 18% less than the previous record low of 18 September, 2007. The 2012 minimum extent was 49 percent or nearly 3.3 million square kilometers (nearly the size of India) below the 1979—2000 average minimum. Some 11.83 million square kilometers of Arctic ice melted between March and September 2012.

WMO noted other effects of climate change outside the arctic, including:

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Savannah and Jacksonville most vulnerable to rising sea level

Savannah and Jacksonville are among the east coast cities most vulnerable to rising sea levels due to climate change, a study finds. Savannah, Georgia’s main seaport, with storm surges, hurricanes, and waves on top: what will that look like?

Suzanne Goldenberg wrote for the Guardian today, US coastal cities in danger as sea levels rise faster than expected, study warns: Satellite measurements show flooding from storms like Sandy will put low-lying population centres at risk sooner than projected,

A study published last March by Climate Central found sea-level rise due to global warming had already doubled the risk of extreme flood events — so-called once in a century floods — for dozens of locations up and down the Atlantic and Pacific coasts.

It singled out the California cities of Los Angeles and San Diego on the Pacific coast and Jacksonville, Florida, and Savannah, Georgia, on the Atlantic, as the most vulnerable to historic flooding due to sea-level rise.

Sandy, which produced a 9ft storm surge at Battery Park in New York City, produced one example of the dangerous combination of storm surges and rising sea level. In New York, each additional foot of water puts up to 100,000 additional people at risk, according to a map published with the study.

That study projected 6 inches rise at Fort Pulaski by 2030 (minimum 3 inches) and 13 inches by 2050 (maximum 24 inches). But projections have gotten worse since then:

Sea level changes measured and projected The latest research, published on Wednesday in Environmental Research Letters, found global sea-levels rising at a rate of 3.2mm a year, compared to the best estimates by the IPCC of 2mm a year, or 60% faster.

So that would be more like 9 inches by 2030 and 20 inches by 2050.

Add to a higher base sea level bigger storms like Hurricane Sandy, and Savannah and Jacksonville have a problem. Sure, Savannah is Continue reading

Southern Company shutting some coal generation

Southern Company (SO) is reducing its coal fuming and making the rest comply with EPA regulations, and is surprised to discover that won’t cost nearly as much or take nearly as long as it complained only 8 months ago. But remember SO isn’t even abandoning coal and is shifting to big-plant baseload natural gas and nuclear while avoiding distributed solar and wind power.

Cassandra Sweet wrote for Dow Jones and the WSJ 25 July 2012, 2nd UPDATE: Southern Co. Second-Quarter Profit Up as Economy Improves,

Southern Co. plans to shut down about 4,000 megawatts of older, coal-fired power plants to comply with stricter federal pollution rules.

How much coal generation is that? SO’s Plant Scherer near Juliette, Georgia, the largest power plant in the western hemisphere, burning 12 million tons of Wyoming coal every year, is the “nation’s No. 1 producer of carbon dioxide — the heat-trapping gas that is held chiefly responsible in models of global warming” (number two is SO’s Plant Bowen near Cartersville and number three is SO’s Plant Miller in Quinton, Alabama). Each of Plant Scherer’s four plants is rated at 880 megawatts, or 3520 MW total. But don’t get your hopes up: one of those four plants is owned by Florida Power and Light and JEA of Jacksonville, Florida. Why should Florida power companies want to shut down a plant that leaves the pollution in Georgia while exporting the power to Florida?

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A cheery possibility from Japan

Takao Yamada wrote for Mainichi Japan 2 April 2012, In light of further nuclear risks, economic growth should not be priority,

A report released in February by the Independent Investigation Commission on the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Accident stated that the storage pool of the plant’s No. 4 reactor has clearly been shown to be “the weakest link” in the parallel, chain-reaction crises of the nuclear disaster. The worse-case scenario drawn up by the government includes not only the collapse of the No. 4 reactor pool, but the disintegration of spent fuel rods from all the plant’s other reactors. If this were to happen, residents in the Tokyo metropolitan area would be forced to evacuate.

Fukushima is about 200 miles from Tokyo. Plant Hatch at Baxley, which has the same reactor design as at Fukushima, is about the same distance from Atlanta and Charleston, closer to Tallahassee and Jacksonville, and much closer to many of us in south Georgia.

The article concludes:

We cannot accept the absurd condescension of those who fear the worse-case scenario, labeling them as “overreacting.” We have no time to humor the senseless thinking that instead, those who downplay the risks for the sake of economic growth are “realistic.”

So, what do you get in a solar spill? Sunshine. What do you get when a wind turbine breaks? Maybe some local damage. What do you get when a nuclear plant fails? Oh….

-jsq

Ben Copeland on water and growth in south Georgia

Ben Copeland asked the big question: “How much growth do we want?” He related it to regional water in the aquifer, rivers, growth, and planning, speaking at the Lake Park Chamber of Commerce annual dinner, 28 January 2011.

Copeland is Past Chairman of the Board, Wiregrass Technical College. He serves on the regional water planning council. He said those councils were started due to worries about Atlanta not having a reliable water supply. He said the councils were planning for water and wastewater to 2050. The local regional council is the Suwannee-Satilla regional water council. He described the extent of the water planning region (see map). He expects finalization of the water plan by May. He talked about the Floridian aquifer, and how he’s worried not so much about Atlanta taking our water as about Orlando, Jacksonville, and Tallahassee. “Because they all have their straws in that same aquifer.”

Finally, Ben Copeland asked the big question: “How much growth do we want?”

“Do we want to be Jacksonville? Do we want to be Tallahassee? Do we want to be a large metropolitan region?

Folks are going to move to south Georgia, I can tell you that, because of all the resources that we have. I’m a great believer in the free enterprise system. How much do we try to limit that?

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