Facebook offers a global soapbox, so let’s use it. Facebook offers many of us a place to communicate, and a lot of this communication is awareness (and education) of all issues, including my own favorite topics – sustainability and solar energy.
I think Facebook is the new Town Hall folks!
Remember … that’s the place where people used to gather to do things like see old friends, share pictures, discuss and share ideas. People went to town hall meetings to discuss the issues that confronted them. This involved providing education of the topic at hand – which in turn – stimulated discussion. Technology has transformed the way we communicate. These postings/comments are representative of those old-school discussions. Yes, people today do seem less cordial when making their point or expressing themselves, but old-schoolers did their share of mud-slinging when the conversation got a little heated.
Facebook affords opportunity to reach a varied and engaged community. I relish the comments no matter the POV because as long as we’re talking about solar – it’s all good. Using this medium to advocate and educate for things we believe in will enable us to get better connected in today’s virtual neighborhood. That’s my two cents.
Posted by Mac on February 21, 2010
Posted in A Sustainable Life • Rants, Raves & Musings • Solar | Tagged With: Alternative Energy, renewable energy, Solar, solar blog, solarize portland | No Comments yet, please leave one
There’s so much happening that’s its difficult keeping up. The Trailblazers traded for center Marcus Camby. Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, and other black leaders are here talking about PPD (police) actions. There are protests in the streets. The Oregon BETC is under investigation. Mayor Adams is facing a second recall attempt. PGE wants to raise electrical rates by 7.4%. Jobs are down and taxes are up.
This entire churn is under an umbrella of Spring-like weather here in Portland while the rest of the country is barely surviving a severe winter experience. I’d like to think this is an El Nino phenomenon and not another sign of climate change. This remains to be seen but I gotta tell you, the birds, trees and flowers all love this early sunshine. So do our solar panels! They’re humming along generating more power than we can use so we’re putting electricity into the grid this week (in mid-February!) and that’s some good news.
Also in the news this week, The Oregonian newspaper had two major stories about Solar Power. These articles are related to things right here in our own backyard. The first article entitled “Solar power bargains” (by Dylan Rivera) highlights the Solarize Portland campaigns sponsored by the City of Portland BPS, Energy Trust of Oregon, Solar Oregon, a number of neighborhood associations, and volunteers like myself.
Check out the story for yourself …
“Oregon’s Solar Future” written by Amy Hsuan, asks the question “Can Oregon ride solar technology to prosperity?” She writes about the German incentive model called a feed-in tariff and wonders if the German subsidy model will show us the way to growth of our own “Solar Forest.” I intend to post articles of my own on the subject of feed-in tariffs as Oregon is planning to roll out our (pilot) version this summer.
In the meantime, check out this story http://www.oregonlive.com/business/index.ssf/2010/02/oregons_solar_future_could_hin.html
Posted by Mac on February 16, 2010
Posted in A Sustainable Life • Rants, Raves & Musings • Solar | Tagged With: Climate Change, mr sun solar, ron mcdowell, Solar, solar blog, SUSTAINABILITY | 1 Comment
I am giddy with excitement and anticipation. John Patterson, Portland’s Mr. Sun Solar himself, stopped by the house and delivered a copy of his new book FOOTPRINT for me to read and review. It is one of the very first copies, still hot off the press, and I’m so grateful he asked me to read it. Wants to know what I think! I am honored to do so.
John P is my solar guru. The guy has forgotten more than I’ll ever know about passive & active solar, and the science related to carbon dioxide and climate change. He’s been involved in the solar biz since 1980 and I consider John to be the voice of clean energy here in the Pac NW. I’m happy to report that his voice now has a new conduit – the written page. I suspect his book is going to be an important read for anyone interested in understanding how to determine, and then reduce, their carbon footprint.
I gotta say … I do like the title – FOOTPRINT. It’s simple, but offers interpretation. In the context of the climate change/global warming discussion, it literally refers to our human carbon footprint. In his Introduction John points out that “Sustaining the lifestyle of an average middle class American in a twenty-four hour period results in the release of one hundred pounds of CO2.”
FOOTPRINT can also mean the first step down a path where others may someday follow (e.g. Neil Armstrong’s footprint on the Moon.) It connotes a pioneering spirit. When I read the word I see Lewis & Clark in my mind’s eye.
FOOTPRINT connects past to present and many cultures have the saying, ‘following in the footprints of our ancestors, those who came before us’.
All these interpretations fit in the case of this book and certainly in the case of the author. The full book title is, “FOOTPRINT – a Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Extinction”, by John H. Patterson. Regardless of how one takes the subtitle this is a serious book about a serious subject.
I’ve only read the first two chapters, so to be fair it is way too soon to provide a critique or review. John’s asked for a quick turn-around, so I’ll be reading it this week. Once I’ve given him my review, I’ll share it my faithful readers. I expect to really like the book, so I must take some care to remain objective, and caution myself not to swoon too much over the prose.