Truman Project VP: Clean Energy Critical to National Security

first_imgHome Energy Truman Project VP: Clean Energy Critical to National Security Facebook Twitter By Gary Truitt – Jun 19, 2012 SHARE Facebook Twitter SHARE Truman Project VP: Clean Energy Critical to National Security On Tuesday, Mike Breen, Vice President of the Truman National Security Project and Operation Free Veteran, testified before the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations at their hearing entitled, “The Federal Green Jobs Agenda.” In his written testimony, Breen addressed the dangers of man-made climate change and the policy measures we can implement to secure America and strengthen our national security, including a commitment to clean, domestic energy sources. At the hearing, Breen said: “The connection between our energy posture and the national security threats we face could not be more clear. Yet, even in the face of overwhelming evidence and the certain consequences that inaction will bring, some say that we cannot or should not act, claiming that the pace of progress is too slow, or the costs too high. Fortunately, there are still those who remember what the nay-sayers have forgotten: when Americans stand together, there is no new market we cannot master, and no technological revolution America cannot lead. By investing in 21st century technologies, like wind, solar and biofuels, we can reduce our dependence on oil and ensure America’s national security.” Since 2009, the Truman National Security Project has been the leading voice on the connection between national security and energy independence with their ground breaking Operation Free campaign. Previous articleHoosier Ag Today Launches iPhone APP and Re-designed Android APPNext articleSpider Mites Begin To Inhabit Drought-Stressed Soybean Fields Gary Truittlast_img read more

Tri Cities Opera’s ‘Pinocchio’ tour makes its’ way to Johnson City

first_imgThe cast says its amazing to see the children’s faces light up with excitement as they enjoy the show. The Pinocchio show started touring in early September of 2019, making its way around different schools in the area. For more than 40 years, Tri-Cities opera resident artists have been visiting schools across the state and northern Pennsylvania to present children’s operas and concerts. Last year the opera told the tale of Goldie Locks and the Three Bears.center_img “At such a young age they should be exposed to music, theater, and art so it’s important they get to see something like this.” said Gina Moscato who performs multiple roles in the opera. JOHNSON CITY (WBNG) — Artists from Tri-Cities Opera treated students at Johnson City elementary school to an operatic experience, telling them classic childhood story of Pinocchio.last_img read more

Charlie Nicholas names the five most exciting youngsters at Arsenal

first_imgAdvertisement Comment Charlie Nicholas has named Mikel Arteta’s five most exciting youngsters at Arsenal (Picture: Getty)Charlie Nicholas has named the five most exciting youngsters at Arsenal.The Gunners are currently tenth in the Premier League – eight points adrift of fourth-placed Chelsea – but are showing signs of improvement under Mikel Arteta.Arsenal were knocked out of the Europa League by Olympiakos last week but Nicholas is adamant that the team are on the way up under Pep Guardiola’s former Manchester City assistant Arteta.And the Arsenal legend has named Bukayo Saka, Reiss Nelson, Joe Willock, Gabriel Martinelli and Eddie Nketiah as the five most exciting youngsters at the Emirates.ADVERTISEMENTLooking ahead to Arsenal’s Premier League clash against West Ham on Saturday, Nicholas told Sky Sports: ‘West Ham had a wonderful result last week and I’m pleased for David Moyes.AdvertisementAdvertisement‘There’s been slow improvement for Arsenal under Mikel Arteta and I like his authority.‘I’m excited about the progress of the youngsters, and for the first time in a while I feel there’s a genuine hope for those coming through. Bukayo Saka, Reiss Nelson, Joe Willock, Gabriel Martinelli and Eddie Nketiah all have really strong Arsenal futures. Advertisement Arteta reflects on Portsmouth 0-2 Arsenal in FA CupTo view this video please enable JavaScript, and consider upgrading to a web browser that supports HTML5 video Play VideoLoaded: 0%0:00Progress: 0%PlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration Time 1:26FullscreenArteta reflects on Portsmouth 0-2 Arsenal in FA Cuphttps://metro.co.uk/video/arteta-reflects-portsmouth-0-2-arsenal-fa-cup-2122464/This is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window.‘West Ham will be a handful and Michail Antonio seems the best solution for them at present with his pace and power, but I still feel there’s a vulnerability about their defence.‘I think it’s going to be a busy day for Lukasz Fabianski back at his old club. Arsenal 3-1 West Ham.’Moyes’ West Ham picked up a crucial win over relegation rivals Southampton last week and Arteta is wary of the threat the Hammers can pose.More: FootballRio Ferdinand urges Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to drop Manchester United starChelsea defender Fikayo Tomori reveals why he made U-turn over transfer deadline day moveMikel Arteta rates Thomas Partey’s chances of making his Arsenal debut vs Man CityHe said: ‘They caused a lot of problems to big teams recently. I know David because I worked with him for seven years.‘I know his structure, I know how organised he is. I am sure he’ll put a team out there that is going to make life very difficult for us.‘They will compete, they will be physical. We need to use our resources, play our game and then just think about performing.’MORE: Mikel Arteta orders transfer clear-out of Arsenal stars to facilitate new signingsMORE: Arsenal keen on Jonathan David as potential Aubameyang replacement Charlie Nicholas names the five most exciting youngsters at Arsenal Metro Sport ReporterFriday 6 Mar 2020 7:51 amShare this article via facebookShare this article via twitterShare this article via messengerShare this with Share this article via emailShare this article via flipboardCopy link959Shareslast_img read more

Amtrak struggles to find secure funding

first_imgINTRO: May 10 is due to see further cuts to Amtrak’s inter-city network as the operator tries to balance its books. Julian Wolinsky looks at operational changes and funding proposals announced in March’WITHOUT DECISIVE action very soon, the United States will have no inter-city rail service’, according to the Republican Chairman of the House Transportation Committee. Rep Bud Shuster of Pennsylvania said on March 20 that Amtrak is heading for financial collapse unless Congress steps in to save it. Noting that ’the company is already borrowing to meet payroll costs, and even its own business plan will exhaust all available lines of credit by the middle of fiscal 1998’, Shuster announced plans to appoint a panel of experts to address the crisis.The same day, Amtrak confirmed that it would cut two routes on May 10. The Pioneer from Denver to Seattle and the Desert Wind from Salt Lake City to Los Angeles will go, after local states expressed little interest in subsidising their future operation. Texas and Massachusetts are hoping to save the San Antonio – St Louis leg of the Texas Eagle and the Boston – Albany segment of the Lake Shore Limited, but Amtrak has made it clear that they will also end on May 10 should funding not materialise. All four were originally due to finish last November (RG 11.96 p717).March 31 saw the demise of the New Orleans – Mobile Gulf Coast Limited launched last September. Initially subsidised by the states of Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama, this has averaged just 25 passengers a day.Rolling stock released from the Desert Wind and Pioneer will allow Amtrak to restore daily service to the Salt Lake City – Oakland portion of the California Zephyr, the Empire Builder from Chicago to Seattle, and the City of New Orleans between Chicago and New Orleans.Amtrak West has commissioned a study into a tourist-oriented service between Los Angeles and Las Vegas, over the UP corridor now served by the Desert Wind. Three daily trains each way would be worked by the two extra Talgo Pendular sets to be assembled speculatively in Washington (below). Target journey time is less than 5h, compared to the present 6h 50min. The report due this month is expected to put the start-up costs at $15m, requiring a return fare of around $100 to make the service self-supporting. Amtrak is also seeking support from the private sector, including hotel operators in Las Vegas.Tapping the freight marketAmtrak President & CEO Thomas M Downs is also looking for other traffic to boost revenue. The board of directors has approved plans to enter the premium freight market by leasing 617 Express Cars – boxcars with high-speed bogies to move mail and parcels in passenger trains, of which Amtrak already runs 150. As well as the 367 mechanical refrigerator cars and 250 insulated boxcars, Amtrak will lease 283 RoadRailers: 250 16m trailers, 20 side-door mail vans, eight refrigerated vans, and five ’auto railers’ to test auto-train service in new markets.Mail is already a major contributor to Amtrak’s income; for example, it accounts for 42% of all revenue from the Chicago – Los Angeles Southwest Chief. UP has voiced objections to the proposals, claiming it would be unfair competition because Amtrak is subsidised: ’we don’t want them hauling freight on our line … it’s a public institution competing against a private company that has to pay all its own bills.’ Downs counters that Amtrak plans to carry only time-sensitive shipments now moving by road or air.Further east, Amtrak is reportedly close to a deal with Norfolk Southern to run fast freight trains over the Northeast Corridor from the southern USA to New York. This reverses its long-standing policy discouraging freight traffic on the route, following a 1987 collision between a passenger train and a Conrail freight which killed 16 people. To reduce the risk of accidents, NS would only be allowed to run at night.Attempts to provide a source of capital funding for Amtrak restarted on March 13. US Senator William Roth, a Republican from Delaware, introduced a bill, co-sponsored by eight other senators, to transfer one-half cent of the 4·3 cent federal motor fuel tax now assigned to deficit reduction into a capital trust fund for the railway.A day earlier, the General Accounting Office, the investigating arm of Congress, issued a report confirming that Amtrak’s capital needs have been neglected. It pointed out that in recent years the railway has been forced to take out commercial loans, resulting in a significant portion of its capital grants being used to service debts.Testifying before the House Subcommittee on Railroads on March 12, Downs urged Congress to approve a dedicated funding source. ’That half-cent would enable Amtrak to upgrade its facilities and equipment, permit cost-saving productivity improvements, and allow high-return capital investments. The result would be improved equipment reliability, better maintained cars and locos, and better working conditions.’Nextea offers alternativeAmtrak capital funding is one of the most controversial sections of President Clinton’s planned six-year extension of the Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act, unveiled on March 12. The $175bn plan, known as the National Economic Crossroads Transportation Efficiency Act (Nextea) includes proposals to divert between $4bn and $5bn of the highway trust fund to subsidise Amtrak, although the railway would prefer the half-cent fuel tax option.Nextea is heavily tilted toward road spending, emphasising traffic safety and the environment. Total spending would be about 11% higher than the $157bn authorised in Istea’s six years, which end on September 30. For public transport there is only a vague promise to ’maintain mass transit investment at high levels.’ Federal transit funding would increase by 25% to $5bn a year.There would also be a six-year, $600m grant programme to ’support flexible, innovative transportation alternatives for people trying to get to work and off welfare.’ President Clinton also wants to increase funding for the Congestion Mitigation & Air Quality Improvement Program by more than 25% to $1·3bn a year.However, Congress must still appropriate the money for Nextea spending, and oppositon is growing. Republican Rep Jay Kim of California, a member of the House Transportation & Infrastructure Committee, noted that ’you and I are driving cars, so why should we pay for Amtrak?’The Amtrak board has approved an order for 30 more General Electric Genesis diesel locos and 21 F59PHs from General Motors. GE will supply 8 dual-mode diesel/electric P32DMs for New York’s Empire Corridor and 33 P42s, of which eight will be assigned to Amtrak West for the Coast Starlight. The F59s will all go to Amtrak West, including five dedicated to the new Cascade service (left). The 51 locos will replace all of Amtrak’s remaining FL9s and most F40PHs. olast_img read more

E.coli cucumber scare: Germany seeks source of outbreak

first_img Share Tweet Sharing is caring! Share HealthLifestyle E.coli cucumber scare: Germany seeks source of outbreak by: – May 30, 2011center_img 20 Views   no discussions Share Suspicion has fallen on cucumbers from SpainGermans have been warned not to eat cucumbers until tests identify the source of a deadly E.coli outbreak that has killed 11 and spread across Europe.It is thought contaminated cucumbers were imported from Spain, but further tests are being carried out.Germany has registered 1,200 confirmed or suspected cases in the E.coli outbreak so far.With cases reported in Sweden, Denmark, the Netherlands and the UK, Germany is set to hold crisis talks later.In many of the reported cases, the gastrointestinal infection has led to Hemolytic-uremic Syndrome (HUS), which causes kidney problems and is potentially fatal.Export chainOne woman was taken to hospital in Poland on Monday. She was said to be in a serious condition after returning from a trip to the northern German city of Hamburg, which has seen the majority of infections.Authorities in the Czech Republic, Austria and France have taken some Spanish-grown cucumbers off shop shelves amid contamination fears.Czech officials said contaminated cucumbers may also have been exported to Hungary and Luxembourg.Suspicion has fallen on organic cucumbers from Spain imported by Germany but then re-exported to other European countries, or exported directly by Spain. Austria has banned the sale of cucumbers, tomatoes and aubergines imported via Germany.Two Spanish greenhouses identified as sources for the outbreak have been closed and are currently under investigation to see whether the outbreak originated there or elsewhere, said an EU spokesman.Spanish officials have said Europe should not be so quick to blame Spanish produce.“You can’t attribute the origin of this sickness to Spain,” said Diego Lopez Garrido, Spain’s Secretary of State for European Affairs.“There is no proof and that’s why we are going to demand accountability from those who have blamed Spain for this matter,” he told reporters in Brussels.Contagious cucumbers? The Sweden-based European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control has called the outbreak “one of the largest described of HUS worldwide and the largest ever reported in Germany”.Ten of the oubtreak’s 11 fatalities have been women. All but one of those deaths were recorded in northern Germany, but fears that the outbreak was spreading increased when a 91-year-old woman died in North Rhine-Westphalia.The head of Hamburg University’s Eppendorf Clinic, Joerg Debatin, said more deaths were expected, as 30 people infected with HUS had lost kidney function.German authorities have warned the outbreak may get worse as its source may still be active.As German media reported the number of people infected had risen to 1,200, Health Minister Daniel Bahr was preparing to hold emergency talks with Consumer Affairs Minister Ilse Aigner and regional state representatives to discuss the outbreak, officials said.Meanwhile, the authorities in Schleswig-Holstein and Lower Saxony expect the number of seriously ill patients to rise, because it can take up to 10 days for symptoms of infection to appear, the news website Spiegel reported.Doctors are pinning their hopes on Eculizumab, an antibody treatment that has worked in the past against HUS, correspondents say.The head of the Robert Koch Institute (RKI), Germany’s national disease institute, has warned people to avoid eating raw cucumbers, tomatoes and lettuce.But RKI President Reinhard Burger said the source of the contamination had not yet been clearly identified, AFP reported.The outbreak has baffled scientists because whereas HUS normally affects children under the age of five, in this instance nearly 90% are adults and two-thirds are women, says the BBC’s Stephen Evans in Berlin.One possibility is that they became infected after eating food for what they thought were health reasons, adds our correspondent.The DNA of the bacterium is to be analysed later to try to find ways of catching it early in people infected by it.The sickness is not directly contagious but it can be transferred between people if an infected person prepares food for others.BBC Newslast_img read more

COLÁISTE AILIGH’S AISHLING WINS UCD SCHOLARSHIP

first_imgHERE’S one very happy girl with proud parents and principal.Aisling Ní Bhraoin is pictured with her delighted parents after receiving an entrance scholarship from UCD.They are pictured with Micheál Ó Giobúin, Príomhoide , Coláiste Ailigh.  COLÁISTE AILIGH’S AISHLING WINS UCD SCHOLARSHIP was last modified: November 25th, 2014 by John2Share this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:Colaiste AilighUCDlast_img read more

Ohio’s Crop Progress — August 28, 2017

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Cooler than normal temperatures and dry conditions were unwelcome for most growers when moisture and warm weather could have helped with grain fill and maturity, according to Cheryl Turner, Ohio State Statistician for the 20 USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service. There were 6.3 days available for fieldwork for the week ending August 27th, 2017. Soil moisture shortages grew as rainfall was fairly limited for most of the state. Effects of the extended dry period were evident statewide. Pastures and hay fields were turning brown, corn fired prematurely and some reports of soybean pods aborting were noted. Commercial vegetable harvest continued, and growers had more opportunities to harvest hay.Click here for the full reportlast_img read more

Beyond Sprawl: The Solar Suburbs of the Future

first_imgImagine a truly green suburb, one in which energy-efficient homes are powered by rooftop solar panels and electric cars glide quietly down the streets. Businesses, energy experts, and scholars say low-carbon suburban living is not only possible, but on its way, though not in the short run. Some glimpses of the future:— In Palm Springs, California, rooftop solar panels are standard in a new community of 42 energy-efficient homes built by Far West Industries of Santa Ana. The homes sold quickly, at prices ranging from $600,000 to $700,000. Scott Lissoy, president of Far West, says: “If we’re building in the Coachella Valley, which is one of the hottest areas in California, we’re building with solar panels. It’s the right thing to do.”— In Colorado, residents of Adams, Boulder, and Denver counties are taking advantage of a group buying program called Solar Benefits Colorado that offers discounts on solar panels from a company called Sunrun and on an electric car, the Leaf, from a local Nissan dealer. It’s one of a series of group procurement projects organized by Vote Solar, an advocacy group. Tax credits and state regulations also are importantThe economics of solar depend in part on federal investment tax credits of up to 30 percent for homeowners or for companies that install solar panels and lease them to homeowners — the most common home-solar arrangement today. But those credits are scheduled to fall to 10 percent in 2017 or disappear altogether. GTM Research expects a deep dip in solar installations in 2017 if the tax credits disappear.State regulation is key, too. In Florida — the Sunshine State — there is essentially no solar power industry because local utilities retain a monopoly on supplying electricity to homeowners. Some states have capped the amount of residential solar eligible for net metering, which allows homeowners to sell their excess electricity back into the grid and thus reduce their costs.“There is a lot of uncertainty right now with regard to the policies that have supported solar in the past,” says Laura Wisland, a senior energy analyst with the Union of Concerned Scientists.Despite the unknowns and unknowables, a growing number of investors and a few utility executives have come to believe that the electricity sector is undergoing dramatic change. “That the world’s energy system has begun a dramatic transformation to a cleaner, more local future is no longer a controversial statement,” says Michael Liebreich of Bloomberg New Energy Finance. Deutsche Bank published an exhaustive 185-page analysis of the global solar market that concluded: “We believe the solar industry is going through fundamental change and the opportunity is bigger than it has ever been before.”Not surprisingly, economics are the big driver. Solar panel costs have fallen sharply, and the so-called “soft costs” of solar that include marketing, installation, and permitting are declining as well, albeit more slowly. Instead of buying panels, most homeowners now lease them from solar providers like SolarCity, Sunrun and Sungevity or utilities, including Green Mountain Power and NRG Energy. “Leasing has been the game changer,” says Clint Wilder, a senior editor at Clean Edge, whose survey found that 82 percent of homeowners say “saving money” is the number one reason they buy clean energy products and services.Kelcy Pegler Jr., the president of NRG Home Solar, which now operates in 10 states, says: “The average customer is going to save from day one about 15 percent.” One company — CPS Energy, a municipally-owned utility in San Antonio — has even offered to pay select customers who agree to let a solar development firm install panels on their roof.Homebuilders, too, are slowly embracing solar. Six of the ten largest homebuilders make solar standard in some developments, according to solar provider SunPower. Lashing panels on a roof when a house is built saves money over installing them later, and the costs of solar can be rolled into a home mortgage.Cisco DeVries, the chief executive of Renew Financial, a California firm that finances solar and energy-efficiency projects, says the transition to an energy mix that is “decentralized, much cleaner and much more efficient” will come much faster than most people expect. Before the invention of smartphones, he notes, nearly every home in the U.S. had a landline; now fewer than 60 percent do. “The pace of change for distributed energy will start to look a lot like the iPhone revolution pretty quickly,” DeVries says. Electric cars have been a hard sellAnother key element of the solar suburb ecosystem — electric cars — has proven to be a hard sell. Back in 2011, President Obama called for 1 million electric plug-in cars (as opposed to hybrids like the Toyota Prius) to be on America’s roads by 2015. It’s 2015, and we’re not close: Cumulative sales are less than 375,000, reports the Electric Drive Transportation Association. Of the 16.1 million new cars and trucks sold in 2014, only about 118,000 (or 0.7 percent) were plug-in electrics, and sales this year are down slightly from 2014.As for batteries to store electricity at home, they are new and unproven. Last spring, Tesla set off a spirited debate among industry analysts with the announcement of its sleek Powerwall battery. Some said it won’t store enough electricity to run power-hungry appliances like air conditioners or clothes dryers, and at an installed price of $7,000, makes little financial sense for most people. Others said that in states with high electricity costs, batteries will enable solar owners to store power for the evening hours in a cost-effective way. Panasonic and Samsung are also developing batteries for the home storage, so Tesla’s Elon Musk isn’t alone in thinking there’s a business there.One reason why it’s hard to forecast the future of solar, electric cars, and batteries in the U.S. is that all are subsidized, and therefore policy-dependent, and not just at the federal level. Today, electric car buyers can take advantage of a $7,500 federal income tax credit, but the credit will expire once certain sales thresholds are reached. So electric cars could jump in price just as they become popular. Better batteries are a keyMeantime, an academic study of the city of Auckland, New Zealand, and its suburbs found that detached suburban homes can generate more than enough electricity than they need and send the surplus to the city in the batteries of electric cars driven by commuters. By email, Hugh Byrd, a professor at the University of Lincoln in the UK, who led the research, says another study found similar results for San Francisco.But, he added, realizing the clean-energy potential of suburbs will require, among other things, cheaper batteries with greater range to increase the market penetration of electric cars.And there’s the rub. For America’s sprawling suburbs to become environmentally friendly — let alone generators of excess energy — distributed solar power, electric cars, and battery storage will all have to become mainstream. That could happen — indeed, it probably will happen — but not in the near future.Across the U.S., distributed solar power — that is, photovoltaic panels installed on homes and businesses — is enjoying explosive growth, expanding by more than 50 percent annually for a decade, according to market researcher Clean Edge. SolarCity, the leading home solar company, says it aims to serve 1 million residential customers — up from 262,000 as of June 30 — by 2018, and it’s got plenty of competition.But distributed solar remains a niche business in every state except Hawaii, where 13 percent of residential electricity customers have installed solar. (California’s next, with 3 percent.) Nationally, about 734,000 homes — less than 1 in 100 — have on-site solar, according to GTM Research’s U.S. Solar Market Insight report. And a 2015 survey of U.S. homeowners by Clean Edge and SolarCity found that just 6 percent said they plan to install home solar in the next year, fewer than those preparing to buy LED bulbs, smart thermostats, and efficient hot-water heaters.(Some other countries, it must be said, are making far more progress. Germany, whose population of 80 million is one-quarter that of the U.S., has 1.5 million photovoltaic systems installed, twice as many as the U.S. Germany now generates nearly 7 percent of its electricity from solar power. In Australia, one in five homes now have photovoltaic panels.) Marc Gunther is editor at large of Guardian Sustainable Business U.S. and a blogger at MarcGunther.com. This post originally appeared at Yale Environment 360. RELATED ARTICLESSuburban Sprawl Costs a BundleNet-Zero Cities Aren’t Possible, You Say?Habitat for Humanity’s Net-Zero CommunityCalifornia Project Tinkers With a Net-Zero FutureVermont Utility to Develop New Grid TechnologyRunning Our House on Prius PowerCan We Power Our Car With the Sun?Tesla Will Sell Home BatteriesAn Off-Grid Solar CommunityA Net-Zero-Energy Community Near BoulderAn 11-Home Community Built for Energy EfficiencyGreen Neighborhood in North CarolinaSerenbe: a Green Town in the MakingEnergy-Saving Features of the Serenbe CommunityGiant ‘Geothermal’ Community in the Works — In Vermont, Green Mountain Power, the local utility, wants to sell its customers less electricity. Instead, it is selling them energy-saving heat pumps, weatherization, batteries, and solar panels that give them more control over their energy consumption. “Really, what we’re in the business of doing is trying to accelerate a consumer revolution that’s already happening, to transform the energy space,” says Mary Powell, the utility’s CEO.These examples point to the potential of what some are calling “solar suburbs.” The concept is a sweeping one — solar panels cover roofs, electric vehicles sit in garages, energy-efficient homes are outfitted with batteries to store electricity, and a smart two-way electricity system enables people to drive to work and discharge power from their electric cars at times of peak energy demand. The government of Australia has embraced this idea for a new military housing development being built near Darwin, where each home will come equipped with a 4.5 kW rooftop solar system, charging points for electric cars, and smartphone apps enabling owners to track their energy use and carbon saved.This vision bears little resemblance to the suburbs of today — with their big, inefficient homes, two or three gasoline-powered cars in the driveway, shopping malls, and vast parking lots. But advocates say that if all goes well, advances in technology, combined with smart policy, could lower the costs of solar power, electric cars, and batteries and drive a clean energy revolution in the suburbs.One evangelist for this revolution is David Crane, the chief executive of New Jersey-based NRG Energy, which aims to provide a complete clean-energy solution for homeowners, including electric-car charging and batteries. “Our home solar business is going to be about so much more about than just solar panels on the roof,” Crane said on a 2014 earnings call.Analysts at the Rocky Mountain Institute, led by Amory Lovins, also see an energy revolution coming. “The technical solutions are there,” says Titiaan Palazzi, a mechanical engineer at the institute who formerly worked for smart-thermostat company Nest. “You could eventually get to suburbs or communities that are net-zero energy.”last_img read more

Creating Opportunities > Qualifying Opportunities

first_img Essential Reading! Get my first book: The Only Sale Guide You’ll Ever Need “The USA Today bestseller by the star sales speaker and author of The Sales Blog that reveals how all salespeople can attain huge sales success through strategies backed by extensive research and experience.” Buy Now What if qualifying isn’t the most important thing you should be doing right now? What if you are supposed to be creating opportunities?Qualifying OpportunitiesWhat are your intentions when you are qualifying? If you still believe in the BANT process, you might be trying to make sure your prospective client has the budget, first and foremost. That isn’t always the best place to start a conversation, but then neither is starting the conversation with the question, “do you have the authority to make this purchase.”. These are different times, and they call for a different qualification process.Qualifying is still important, especially in low dollar, simple sales, where there isn’t a lot at risk. In more complex, more expensive, and more risky sales, this kind of qualifying isn’t very useful.The questions that you would ask to qualify don’t create value for your prospective client, and they don’t do anything to create opportunities.This is why SDRs and BDRs struggle.Qualifying has nothing to do with opportunity creation in sales where your prospects are known, targeted, and pursued over time. When your strategy is largely competitive displacement, you already know your dream clients are qualified. They’re already spending money with your competitor.The real challenge in sales now is opportunity creation.Creating OpportunitiesYour intention in above the funnel communication and when prospecting is to create opportunities.Your efforts at nurturing those relationships need to be built on creating a compelling case for change.The discovery meetings you have with your dream client are about exploring that change. You are going to qualify them as you determine whether you can create the requisite value and wether they are willing to make the investments necessary to change.It is more likely that your sales numbers aren’t what you need them to be because you aren’t creating enough opportunities than it is that you aren’t doing a good job qualifying.Opportunities are created by salespeople who are value creators and who have the business acumen and situational knowledge to help make the case for change. Opportunity creation is greater than opportunity qualification.last_img read more