Urbana sustainability manager energized by climate-change convention

Urbana sustainability manager energized by climate-change convention

URBANA — After attending the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in Germany, Scott Tess is re-framing his scope of environmental work.

Talks of fighting climate change usually center around metric tons of airborne greenhouse gas, the city's environmental sustainability manager said. But he notes the other effects like asthma and heat strokes among the elderly.

"The climate crisis isn't about data or molecules in the air," Tess said. "It's about people. Human and economic development."

As a member of the nationwide Local Governments for Sustainability, Tess applied and was picked to attend the convention in Bonn, Germany, earlier this month. He was on an ICLEI panel, answered questions at a town hall and discussed all things clean energy and climate resilience.

Tess also reassured other countries that several non-federal groups are committing to the Paris Climate Accord, which President Donald Trump pulled America out of in June. A #WeAreStillIn campaign was present among convention goers.

"There's been concern that the U.S. wouldn't do its part to reduce climate pollution and develop a clean energy economy," Tess said. "That it could take wind out of the sails for other countries."

Achieving a widespread clean energy economy, Tess said, includes wind and solar power, improving electrical smart grids, hydroelectricity, energy efficiency, LED light bulbs, battery storage, electric cars and their charging stations.

It's all part of an exciting time for stakeholders, he said.

"This is where the job market is going. Solar panel installation is difficult to outsource, and the manufacturing is difficult to automate," Tess said. "Then the electrical work on panels is completely separate from installation, and the jobs there are enormous."

There's also the concept of turning local liabilities into assets. Tess said locations like closed landfills or unusable brown fields can start housing their own solar panels.

Coming out of the conference, Tess said ICLEI — of which Urbana is also a member — wants to further develop and integrate tools for measuring, reporting and verifying greenhouse gas. Personally, Tess is interested in the Rocky Mountain Institute's handbook for a carbon-free city.

"It has 22 short-term actions and some of them we're already doing," Tess said. "There's a lot of good strategies in there — the challenge is financing."

Luckily, he said, environmentally friendly technology is becoming more cost-effective as it gets older.

"I'm very optimistic about development of the clean energy economy," Tess said. "How fast and far it goes is up to us and remains to be seen."

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Common Sense wrote on December 02, 2017 at 9:12 am

As Elaine Benes said:  fake, fake, fake, fake.

If these gullible people ever actually ran some numbers, they'd find that the number of electric vehicles they envision one day could never be supported solely by wind, solar, etc. What does that leave?  Good ole "fossil" fuel. So instead of burning it directly in the vehicle, you're going to burn it elsewhere, and then have to build a huge distribution system to get it to the car.

Sounds a bit like insanity to me.

CallSaul wrote on December 02, 2017 at 10:12 am

And of course the RWNJ Republicans are still denying global warming.

What do you expect from sclerotic rightwingers who deny science across the board...?

They, just like their kooky Dear Leader Trump, think it's nothing more than a 'Chinese hoax'...

They think the vast majority of scientists --- y'know...the ones not being paid with petro dollars --- are in on the hoax for all that sweet sweet grant money they use to fund their private jets and lavish lifestyle...

They shout and screech about how this is all very normal and it's just a weird coincidence that global temperatures are matching rising carbon levels in our atmosphere...

But, hey...why not...?

They're able to deny evolution...

They're able to deny the economic ruin brought to Kansas by rightwing economic theory redistributing average people's money to the already obscenely wealthy...

They're able to deny that Trump is a con man grifting them out of their own money and giving massive tax breaks to his own crime family and wealthy backers...

So why shouldn't they be able to deny the obvious reality of global warming as well...?

After all, denying reality is what they do hundreds of times a day...

...why should climate change be any different...?

Don't like that pesky old reality...then vote Republican...and, uh, sure, it'll all be okay gramps...

GLG wrote on December 02, 2017 at 12:12 pm

Electrict Cars-Coal Burners!

How much fossil fuel did his and everyone else who attended airplanes burn up going to Germany?  Do as we say not as we do liberals. This could have all been done on a video conference.  But then Saul would not be able to show his hatered for the President.

CallSaul wrote on December 02, 2017 at 2:12 pm

Wow...

...a whole nuther layer of kookery on top of the existing rightwing Republican conspiracy theories about the global warming 'hoax'...

They had that conference in Germany just so a rando liberal commenter in a smalltown rightwing newspaper comment section can express his dislikitude of Our Beloved Dear Leader!!!11!!!11!

Preceded of course by the usual whataboutism regarding the fact that people concerned about climate change actually live in the real world and are constrained by the current options regarding transportation and energy production at this exact moment in time...

I bet you also love spewing some version of 'The fact that you won't tolerate my intolerance show's that you're nothing but a hypocrite!!11!!!!111!'

Just...utterly...devastating...

Will you answer this question: do you agree that climate change is real and is caused by human activity or do you believe in the lunatic conspiracy theory espoused by Trump and other RWNJs that it's just a 'Chinese hoax' and that all the scientists are in on it so they can cash in on all those loads and loads of unending grant money?

 

The Gipper wrote on December 03, 2017 at 8:12 am

Sure glad we can always depend on Call to show up with his hate filled name calling. Where would we be without him?

To him and all the other dupes out there, there is no, repeat NO proof of man-made global warming. It is all based on computer projections. As with any computer program, garbage in, garbage out.

They always want to claim that there is a "consensus" of scientists that agree. There is also a consensus that don't agree. Why don't you listen to them? It doesn't matter either way. Science is not based on consensus, it's based on fact, and they don't have any to cite.

CallSaul wrote on December 03, 2017 at 11:12 am

There are simply no bounds to rightwing extremist hypocrisy and lack of self awareness...

You condemn me for namecalling and then you call me and others who dare to disagree with you --- and who in the process agree with the scientific consensus supported by the overwhelming majority of scientists --- dupes...

Is it even remotely possible that you'll one day become the slightest bit aware of your overarching rank hypocrisy and oozing hatred...?

The answer of course, is sadly, no...

You clearly have great difficulty grasping the concept of scientific consensus and even the basics of how scientific inquiry works...

But keep spouting your anti science voodoo that 'there's no such thing as global warming' or, if you finally admit that the earth is in fact warming, that 'human activity is completely unrealted to it.'

It's just one more fox 'news'/brietbart/limbaugh delusoin in your rightwing extremist bubble based on ignoring obvious facts, rejecting plain reality and denying clear and overwhelming scientific consensus.

Those of us in the reality based community will continue to see your delusions and denials of science for what they are...

GLG wrote on December 03, 2017 at 11:12 am

These are the same folks that say they can predict what the weather will be in 25 years but can't give a reliable 7 day forecast. Remember in the 70's they told us we would be in an ice age by the year 2000??  This Global Warming/Climate Change was a left wing tax the fossil fuel users and brought to us by Al Gore and the democrats who have made millions of dollars on "Carbon Credits" and tell us how to conserve when his home uses 30 times the power of ours and his private jet gobbles up jet fuel and fills the skies with exhaust. Another do as I say not as I do LWNJ!

 

CallSaul wrote on December 03, 2017 at 11:12 am

Cite your source: who in the 70s 'told us we would be in an ice age by the year 2000??'?

This is of course a standard --- not to mention lazy, tired, brokedown and debunked --- rightwing extremist lie...

...just like the standard moldy old extremist rightwing Republican lie that global warming is just a 'Chinese hoax'...

 

GLG wrote on December 03, 2017 at 12:12 pm

I have an idea You do your own research. I'm sure you can manage to blame President Trump like you do for everything else! You should get some help for your severe case of "Trump Derangement Syndrome". In the mean time I'm sure there are some videos of Hillary telling you what she was going to do when she was elected, that should make you feel better snowflake, Now back to your safe  place and continue your hatefull postings from mommy and daddy's basement where you live.

 

 

CallSaul wrote on December 03, 2017 at 1:12 pm

Tsk, tsk, now...

Such name calling and hatred...

...for shame...

...why are you so hateful...?

...you clearly suffer from Saul Derangment Syndrome...

...so, y'know, get help and all...

And it's of course no surprise that you find yourself unable to back up your false claim about the supposed prophesies of a coming ice age with any actual evidence...

We all knew it's just a stale old lazy and debunked lie...

Yep...just anonther in the unending stream of extremist rightwing Republican delusional lies...

Dennis Held wrote on December 03, 2017 at 6:12 pm

There was a Newsweek/Time article about the possibility of global cooling.  Short term temperature seemed to indicate the expected cooling due to the Earth's orbital changes.  However, though the Milankovitch cycles say that we should be cooling right now, the are warming.  

 

Also, predicting weather is not at all the same as predicting climate.  Weather and Climate are not the same thing.  Weather is localized.  Climate is worldwide.  That is why a cool day in Chicago is not proof that Global Warming is not happening.

CallSaul wrote on December 03, 2017 at 10:12 pm

And of course what the science deniers never acknowledge is that a single article in a popular news/entertainment magazine is not somehow the same thing as climate scientists predicting 'a new ice age.'

But in their science denying rightwing delusional bubble, there is apparently no difference between scientific consensus and that single article...

cwakefld wrote on December 06, 2017 at 3:12 pm

On climate change I have two thoughts, well three, sort of.

1. We have modern climate data going back about 175 years. The earths climate has never been static. Ice ages, floods etc... To think that any change in climate in caused by human action is narcissistic and self important.

2. To think that we can use the resources the earth provides at will, without severe consequences for the future, is also narcissistic and self important.

3. This is not a zero sum equation

CallSaul wrote on December 06, 2017 at 6:12 pm

Given the choice between the scientific consensus that global warming is caused by human activity and your three thoughts on the matter, I'll be going with the scientific consensus...

...the scientific consensus that, by the way, is actually in no way 'narcissistic and self important'...

cwakefld wrote on December 08, 2017 at 2:12 pm

Ok