The city of Los Angeles has launched an online permitting system for solar panels, seeking to streamline the process and reduce costs for homeowners.
Previously, those installing the systems had to go to a Department of Building and Safety office, with plans in hand, to apply for a permit, then wait days for approval, said department spokesman Luke Zamperini.
But now, it’s possible to receive permits for solar photovoltaic systems directly from the department’s website, the mayor’s office said in a news release this week.
Related story: Assembly bill could lower cost of residential solar in California
Zamperini said the time for approval has been slashed to minutes.
A few days ahead of the United Nations Climate Summit to be held in New York City, the United States government announced efforts at curbing climate change by focusing on energy efficiency and solar power.
One of the initiatives in place is a six-year job training program that will teach 50,000 veterans how to install solar panels. This, along with all other initiatives, will help the U.S. cut down on over 300 million tons of carbon emissions by 2030 (equivalent to getting over 60 million cars off the road for a year) while saving billions by reducing energy bills for businesses and homeowners.
For these plans to be realized, the White House said that $68 million has been set aside for more than 500 energy efficiency and renewable power projects in rural areas. About 240 of these projects are related to solar power. At the same time, stricter rules are being proposed for commercial air conditioners, which could save a lot of energy with minimal effort. As for the job training program for veterans, military bases are being tapped as partners.
Because for the wild west libertarians running the GOP safety regulations == Tyranny!
Let’s be clear. Vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) communications will be mandated in the United States. For car companies, V2V won’t be an option. For us consumers, it won’t be a nice feature to have if we can pay for it. If all goes well, V2V could become a new regulation by the end of this decade — though many may argue that this is a big “if.”
Under the V2V plan, your car would use a built-in transponder to broadcast its position, type, speed, and trajectory wirelessly 10 times a second in all directions. Other vehicles within range would do the same.
What for? For your safety, according to the Department of Transportation (DoT).
In a further attempt to bring campus sexual assault into the national conversation, President Obama launched the It’s On Us campaign Friday, a national public service campaign that urges college students to combat sexual assault on their campuses. Calling for a “fundamental shift in our culture,” Obama, joined by Vice President Biden in the East Room of the White House, affirmed that all Americans should feel responsible for preventing sexual violence:
Campus sexual assault is no longer something we as a nation can turn away from and say, ‘that’s not our problem,’…It is not just on parents of young women to caution them, it is on the parents of young men to teach them respect for women. It is on grown men to set an example and be clear about what it means to be a man. … It is on all of us to reject the quiet tolerance of sexual assault and to refuse to accept what’s unacceptable.
Along with a campaign website, itsonus.org, that encourages people to pledge to “not be a bystander to the problem,” the White House also produced a 30-second public service announcement about the new campaign that features celebrities such as Kerry Washington, Jon Hamm, Connie Britton, Questlove and Kevin Love. Several media groups have signed on to help spread the message of the It’s On Us campaign including MTV, VH1 and College Humor. The #ItsOnUs hashtag has already taken off on Twitter with Olivia Munn, Mayim Bialik, Grant Hill and the Big 12 Conference tweeting out their support for the initiative.
Mark Udall and Cory Gardner Colorado Senate Race: Democrats and Republicans Are Fighting Over How Best to Win Over Female Voters
DENVER—The Colorado referendum on women is just 47 days away. That’s not its official title. Most people here refer to it as the U.S. Senate race between incumbent Democrat Mark Udall and his Republican challenger, Cory Gardner. But the campaigns’ intense and protracted focus on women’s reproductive issues makes it seem like those issues are up for their own special vote.
Like all competitive Senate races, the neck-and-neck contest in Colorado may determine which party controls the Senate, but the race is also the central battleground for the fight between Republicans and Democrats over female voters. Will Democrats win by returning to the tested playbook of focusing on reproductive issues to run up their support with women, or have Republicans found a way to blunt that attack? The outcome will render a verdict on the principal strategic gambit of the Democratic Party, and it will contribute to a running debate within Republican ranks. Can the GOP win in competitive states—and even a national presidential contest—with its current positions, or must its candidates do more than offer cosmetic changes to core beliefs?
By Margaret Harmon
I know that parents worry about whether vaccines are safe for their children. But they should also consider the dangers of not vaccinating, which is why I’m telling my family’s story.
In 1970, on a Fulbright cultural exchange, my husband and I moved to the Midlands of England with our 5-year-old daughter and 10-month-old son. Our daughter had received all her vaccinations, but our son was too young for his measles shot when we left home. Our pediatrician wasn’t worried. “Just get it there in a few months,” he said.
But when we asked about the inoculation after our arrival, the English pediatrician said, “We don’t do those.”
A few months into our stay, when our son was 13 months old, he and his sister were playing at a friend’s house. Mothers and kids were talking and laughing when the host boy, Ian, gave an enormous sneeze, and our toddler marched right through the cloud.
Three days later, Ian’s mother called. “He has the measles.”
In an apparent reversal, Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach’s office is instructing election officials in the state to send out overseas military ballots without Democratic Senate nominee Chad Taylor or any other Democratic Senate candidate listed.
Does this spell the end for Sen. Roberts?
Large wind and solar power farms have the economics to go toe-to-toe with the cheapest fossil fuel-based power supplies in the United States according to the venerable financial advisory firm Lazard Ltd. Thanks to falling costs and rising efficiency, reports Lazard in an analysis released this week, utility-scale installations of solar panels and wind turbines now produce power at a cost that’s competitive with natural gas and coal-fired generating stations—even without subsidies.
The results appear in the eighth annual update of Lazard’s Levelized Cost of Energy Analysis [pdf], which compares the combined cost of financing, building, and operating power generating plants using a variety of energy technologies. Lazard projects that new utility-scale solar plants will deliver energy at US $72-86 per megawatt-hour, and wind turbines beat that with a cost of $37-81/MWh.
Those renewable energy options compare well against the cost of the most cost-effective natural gas-fired technology—combined cycle plants—which delivers at a projected $61-127/MWh (depending on whether the plant captures its carbon dioxide emissions). The renewables look even better against coal in Lazard’s analysis, which prices new coal-fired generation at $66-171/MWh.
In a significant discovery that sheds new light on the region’s history, archaeologists excavating a site on Capitol Hill reportedly unearthed evidence this week suggesting that humans once passed laws there.
The team of researchers from the University of Maryland confirmed that it collected a wealth of writing implements and ancient documents, which appeared to indicate that, in earlier ages, approximately 500 humans assembled at a centralized location and worked as a group, with the apparent goal of creating a system of rules designed to govern behavior.
“Our finding that early inhabitants used to work toward the common objective of improving society through formal, cooperative efforts completely changes what we knew about the Washington D.C. region,” said lead archaeologist Peter Douglas, who expressed admiration for the sophisticated, self-sufficient civilization that once flourished along the banks of the Potomac River. “In fact, based on the sheer number of artifacts that we’ve unearthed, it appears this practice of law-crafting may have been their primary livelihood.”
Yesterday, I posted about how Drudge was spreading all kinds if misinformation about current outbreak of enterovirus D68. That misinformation was courtesy of the AAPS, which is a crank organization with ties to both Rand and Ron Paul and filled with racists and xenophobes.
Well, the AAPS is back in the Drudge headlines courtesy of WND.
Today, Drudge is linking to WND and an article where a different AAPS doctor is being cited in claiming that it’s irresponsible to send US soldiers to West Africa to support the efforts to stop the Ebola pandemic.
According to WND (link donotlink’d), Lee Heib, it’s now apparently irresponsible for President Obama to send troops to provide logistics to help stop the Ebola epidemic across West Africa.
“You can see that these doctors, who are highly trained people, got themselves infected,” said Dr. Lee Hieb, former president of the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons. “So sending troops into an area, if they’re dealing one-on-one with a patient, they’re not going to be able to protect themselves very well. It’s not easy to [prevent transmission], because you get tired and you get careless and you make some simple mistakes. All it takes is one virus particle.”
Dr. Hieb said quarantine measures should be taken to control the outbreak and prevent Ebola from coming to America.
“You don’t get Ebola from Europe,” she told WND. “You get Ebola from Africa. And it’s a really simple formula: Don’t let people fly to America if they’ve been to areas where there’s an outbreak. When there’s an outbreak, stop air [traffic] flow.”
It’s still more purposeful misinformation since the US mission will not put the troops in direct contact with those with the virus. It’s a logistics, training, and support mission for those who are providing direct medical assistance.
It’s not without risk, but the troops going in are there supporting CDC, USAID, and other agencies providing assistance.
One of the reasons that doctors, nurses, and other caregivers are getting infected in Africa is because they are running into a shortage of proper facilities and isolation equipment to protect themselves and others from the disease. US troops have MOPP gear, which is designed to protect from a wide range of chemical, nuclear, and biological contaminants. They’re bringing those with them.
And who exactly is this Doctor Lee Heib? She’s running for Governor in Iowa who wants to repeal common core (among many other government programs), and adheres to the same wingnutty principles that the AAPS spreads.