Emma Jacobs http://innovationtrail.org en Innovation Conversation: Following the Power Lines http://innovationtrail.org/post/innovation-conversation-following-power-lines <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden "><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><p>We&#39;re drilling for gas, planning pipes from Canadian tar sands, and pumping millions of dollars into green energy projects. &nbsp;</p><p>But the energy mix that we&#39;ll end up with in New York State is still a work in progress. What do we want to see powering our toasters and laptops in the years to come?</p> Mon, 05 Dec 2011 17:43:16 +0000 Emma Jacobs 1426 at http://innovationtrail.org Innovation Conversation: Following the Power Lines Canadian hydropower could come at high cost to tradition http://innovationtrail.org/post/canadian-hydropower-could-come-high-cost-tradition <p><em>This story is the second part of a series<a href="http://innovationtrail.org/term/following-power-lines"> following New York&#39;s power lines to Canada</a>. &nbsp;You can <a href="http://innovationtrail.org/post/new-york-eyes-more-energy-canadas-mega-dams">read the first part here</a>.&nbsp;</em></p><p>People in the energy field often point out in conversation that &quot;renewable&quot; is not synonymous with &quot;green.&quot; The mega-dam project proposed for Newfoundland &amp; Labrador could be exhibit A.</p><p>The Lower Churchill Project, envisioned for a remote area of a far northern province on Canada&#39;s Atlantic coast, could provide large amounts of energy.</p><p>That &nbsp;low carbon&nbsp;power could flow for more than a 100 years, and provide enough capacity to replace dirtier fuels.</p><p>But building the dam would also mean making permanent choices about the landscape around it,&nbsp;including flooding that would completely change the local ecosystem. Another, less tangible, toll would be paid culturally.</p><p>In this second installment of<a href="http://innovationtrail.org/post/new-york-eyes-more-energy-canadas-mega-dams"> our series </a>looking at the impact of New York importing Canadian hydroelectricity, we follow the proposed Champlain Hudson Power Express transmission line, from the New York side of the border, to Newfoundland &amp; Labrador.</p><p> Fri, 02 Dec 2011 19:28:00 +0000 Emma Jacobs 1459 at http://innovationtrail.org Canadian hydropower could come at high cost to tradition New York eyes more energy from Canada's mega-dams http://innovationtrail.org/post/new-york-eyes-more-energy-canadas-mega-dams <p><em>This story is the second part of a series<a href="http://innovationtrail.org/term/following-power-lines">&nbsp;following New York&#39;s power lines to Canada</a>. &nbsp;You can <a href="http://innovationtrail.org/post/canadian-hydropower-could-come-high-cost-tradition">read the second part here</a>.</em></p><p>Say you&#39;re a big state, in need of a lot of electric power. Specifically, you&#39;re the fifth largest power consumer in the nation.</p><p>And let&#39;s also say you have a newfound zeal for shutting down a large nuclear facility, one that&#39;s unsettlingly close to a major city (for these purposes we&#39;ll call it &quot;Indian Point&quot;).</p><p>In this scenario, if your northern neighbor swooped in with an offer to provide you with hydroelectric power, produced by massive dams, you&#39;d say yes - right?</p><p> Thu, 01 Dec 2011 20:43:08 +0000 Emma Jacobs 1464 at http://innovationtrail.org New York eyes more energy from Canada's mega-dams A dam, a plan, Canada http://innovationtrail.org/post/dam-plan-canada <p><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/QQPOW0OTWxE" width="440"></iframe></p><p>In the video above is Muskrat Falls. &nbsp;It&#39;s a steep climb down the river valley to the first step of the falls - and it&#39;s not a path that&#39;s maintained for hikers. &nbsp;Visitors have worn down the route to the rapids, but at one or two points, it&#39;s a nearly vertical climb down the rocks.</p><p>On the way down, my guide and I meet a group of telecom workers in florescent vests, on their way back up. Though they wouldn&#39;t say it, in all likelihood, they have come here to scout this out-of-the-way corner in advance of new construction. &nbsp;</p><p>Later, as we&#39;re climbing out, we&#39;re passed by a group of office workers from the nearest town, Goose Bay (population: 8,000). &nbsp;They&#39;ve come by to take in the views, which are, admittedly, spectacular.&nbsp; Not as big as you&#39;d expect, but in the spray, the rapids still feel enormously strong.</p><p>This - the views, and the power of the falls - is what makes them attractive to conservationists and energy developers alike.</p><p> Thu, 17 Nov 2011 17:12:54 +0000 Emma Jacobs 1407 at http://innovationtrail.org Save the Rain protects Onondaga Lake from sewage http://innovationtrail.org/post/save-rain-protects-onondaga-lake-sewage <p>http://stream.publicbroadcasting.net/production/mp3/wrvo/local-wrvo-993820.mp3</p><p>Reverend Jim Matthews says the streets outside St. Lucy&#39;s Church on the west side of Syracuse used to flood with every rainstorm.</p><p>&quot;The sewage used to overflow and it was raw sewage and it was a mess,&quot; he recalls.</p><p>But now that the county has re-paved the church parking lot with porous asphalt, the flooding has stopped.</p><p>That improvement came after an epic court battle that resulted in Onondaga&nbsp;County being ordered to clean up its overflowing sewer system, to prevent the Metro sewage treatment plant from overflowing into Onondaga Lake.</p><p>And St. Lucy&#39;s is just one of 50 &quot;green infrastructure&quot; projects taken on by the county&#39;s &quot;Save the Rain&quot; initiative.</p><p> Tue, 15 Nov 2011 17:23:41 +0000 Emma Jacobs 1442 at http://innovationtrail.org Save the Rain protects Onondaga Lake from sewage