Texas snowstorm

Newsletter from PEGE - Planetary Engineering Group Earth from 2021-02-21.








  blizzard in Texas


Where is Texas, anyway? It starts in the north at the 36th latitude and extends south to the 26th latitude. Malaga in southern Spain is also at the 36th latitude, which is southernmost Europe, which is northernmost Texas. As a typical example of last week's weather event, let's take Austin. That's at the 30th latitude, just like Cairo.

Here's the weather chart from February 7 to 13.

On February 8, the temperature fluctuated between 6°and 24°. The high temperature difference between day and night is typical for continental climate. From this day on, it became colder.

Here is the weather chart from February 14 to 20.

On February 16, the lowest daily highs here were -4° C, and on February 18, the coldest night was -18°. On February 12, Austin saw 13 mm of snow and 40 km/h winds.

  Living in shanties


In 2000, I had the first heated discussion about the designation of houses in the US. A man from Florida was whining about 35,000 kWh electricity consumption of his villa. I explained to him that the high electricity consumption for air conditioning could only be explained by extremely poor insulation and that his house should therefore be classified as a shanty. Then there was the house owner in Alaska, who heats directly with electricity and was proud of 5 cm of thermal insulation. A hydroelectric plant there almost had to give away the power because a high voltage line to densely populated areas was just too expensive.

There are now really reasonable suggestions for thermal insulation, but they are just suggestions. R, by the way, is thermal resistance in BTU per square foot of Fahrenheit. U=0.1 equals R=57, u=0.2 equals R=28. R=1 / (u * 0.176 ). The table does include "uninsulated roofs" and roofs with 76 mm to 102 mm of insulation.

I have been living in a rented apartment built in 1995 in St. Leonhard since September 2000. Just when it was particularly cold there were failures of the heating. Thanks to the high minimum requirements for thermal insulation in the province of Salzburg, which already existed in 1995, this was uncomfortable, but not at all dramatic. I estimate the thermal insulation at u=0.2 to u=0.25. A barrack with u=1 almost not insulated cools down 4 times faster.

  What if? GEMINI next Generation in Austin Texas


Let's assume an even more dramatic case. Power outage from Feb. 12 continuously until Feb. 20. The customer just couldn't be sold a roof wiper, he just said "roof wiper?!? Are you guys totally nuts? When is it supposed to snow in Austin?". Well, he was kind of right, there was only 1/2 inch, or 13 mm of snow on February 12.



This is the solar yield forecast for 30 kW of horizontal photovoltaics in Austin Texas. The house does have an east-west roof, Further 6 kW on garage or carport, this is simplified here to 30 kW horizontal. There the yield difference between summer and December is clearly smaller than in Central Europe. There the sun is just at noon 18° higher above the horizon than at the 48th parallel.

For February, the forecast is 2,478 kWh. I suppose this forecast has to be divided over 28.25 days of an average February. 88 kWh for an average February day. But what would it be with a very cloudy day where there is also 13 mm of snow on the photovoltaic? I think 22 kWh are there also still there. There the question is then, how fast the snow disappears again.

With the first weather forecasts of an extreme cold wave, the house would have started to fill the 40 m³ low temperature heat storage. Therefore, the low-temperature heat storage should have been at 25° on February 12. During the cold wave, it would not have been necessary to charge the low temperature heat storage tank. Thus, during the cold wave, the electricity demand for the heat pump would be very low. In any case, less than 10 kWh per day.

After all, it was still quite warm on February 8. So the water pipes in the ground should not have been a problem. The only problem was that the water then came in to the insufficiently insulated houses and there the water pipes froze over. This makes it very likely that a "GEMINI next generation" house would have had water.

200 L of hot water is equivalent to 20 minutes of showers at 10 L/min. For that, I estimate less than 2 kWh of electricity. So the estimate on February 12 would be 10 kWh room heat, 2 kWh DHW, 5 kWh household electricity. 19% of the average February daily yield would have been enough for that. Quite likely that this would have been achieved despite heavy cloud cover and 13 mm of snow. If not, there is still the minimum equipment of 42 kWh LiFePo4 batteries.

Once the snow is gone, even dense cloud cover would not have been a problem to charge even the electric car. 20 kWh power surplus after household consumption as an assumption.

Perhaps the "GEMINI next generation" homeowner would have been kind enough to set up an emergency sleeping area in the living room for a dozen half-frozen neighbors. The body heat would have significantly reduced the electricity needed for space heating. The next day, the demonstration of how to use heat pumps to make 1500 liters of hot water for showers when the power grid is down.

  The heat pumps have arrived


On Friday I was able to pick up the 3 heat pumps from a freight forwarder in Elixhausen. Other orders needed for testing are not expected for another 2 months. Then the tests can start.

  The new policy


The difference between energy production and energy consumption should be as high as possible. This must replace the old idea “We must save energy, whatever the cost”. The passive house is the perfect expression of the old philosophy “We must save energy, no matter what it costs”. The Passive House described in 3 words: “Freezing for the rich”.

  Worldwide wealth needed for planetary repair


All the scenarios where it is sufficient to reduce emissions to zero are becoming increasingly implausible. Thawing permafrost soils and outgassing methane hydrate represent an enormous potential danger for climate development. A little reduction will not be enough. Even 100% less CO2 emission could still be too little. 200% less, i.e. no further human CO2 emission plus active reduction by filtering and splitting, should be enough. But this filtering of CO2 from the atmosphere and splitting it into C and O is an enormous effort that only a wealthy humanity with an industrial base completely based on renewable energy can manage. Therefore, saving, restricting, renouncing, is life-threatening for mankind. Promoting the GEMINI next Generation project is a new task for the Organisation for the Promotion of Infintism. A company will be founded later. The association can and will participate in the company. Supporting members of the association will have privileges in the foundation of the company. This will be formulated in the next weeks, but support in this difficult initial phase should pay off in any case.

  Year of the turning point for a civilization


My New Year's resolution to finally turn this civilization around. If the first model settlement in Unken is completed by the end of the year, it will be a turning point.

Contributing to global prosperity and creating a future without borders, can that also be your intention for the New Year? No, this resolution is not much too big and powerful, its implementation begins 50.-EUR annual membership fee in the Organisation for the Promotion of Infinitism.


  -250% CO2 bis 350 ppm are reached again


-250% CO2 emission until 350 ppm are reached again -250% CO2 emission until 350 ppm are reached again
Less CO2 emission is much too little, even zero emission is insufficient. Only a planet renovation with large-scale CO2 filtering and splitting from the atmosphere will help.


Climate change: Please do not panic Climate change: Please do not panic
With “irreversible” and “last chance, then it's too late” the impression of a hopeless situation is created, which leads to senseless panic reactions or apathy.


Filtering and splitting CO2 from the atmosphere Filtering and splitting CO2 from the atmosphere
Due to their enormous space and water requirements, plants are unsuitable for the necessary reduction of the CO2 content in the atmosphere. There is no room for 37 million km² of growing forest.


390 PWh/year electricity for CO2 from the atmosphere 390 PWh/year electricity for CO2 from the atmosphere
Reduce the CO2 content with Power to Carbon, generate fuels with Power to Liquid and use CO2 for indoor plant cultivation to replace large-scale agriculture.


Carbon fiber becomes standard material for construction Carbon fiber becomes standard material for construction
If we filter the 33.1 Gt CO2 emission of 2019 from the atmosphere and split it into C and O, we get 9 billion tons of carbon. What to do with it?




  The 1000 m² society


The 1000 m² Civilization The 1000 m² Civilization
More space for nature, more space for humans, stop wasting land through inefficient use, stop destroying nature for the nonsensically inefficient.


The 111 Rule: 1 m² 1 EUR 1 year The 111 Rule: 1 m² 1 EUR 1 year
Is it possible to pay EUR 1 land use tax per square meter per year for this application? This is modified with partial use and partial nature.


Risk of large-scale agriculture Risk of large-scale agriculture
Inefficient systems with their enormous space requirements not only destroy nature, but are also unreliable and can only be operated at enormous expense.


Example Germany Example Germany
With 233 inhabitants per km², Germany is four times more densely populated than the world average. This is how the 1,000 m² society and 100% renewable energy works.




  Make UBI possible


UBI Universal basic income UBI Universal basic income
UBI is becoming increasingly necessary, but is not compatible with the current system. Creating the foundations of a UBI compatible society.


No one should have to be afraid of big changes No one should have to be afraid of big changes
Those who are afraid of their existence will vehemently oppose any change. We must therefore design a system where every loser of change becomes a winner.


UBI for self-supplying people UBI for self-supplying people
Rental apartment in San Francisco, electricity, fuel, food, craftsmen for repairs are all easily paid by the UBI. Free yourself from such excessive illusions.


Keeping the economy competitive Keeping the economy competitive
If the costs for housing, food and energy are very high, even enormously high wages are hardly enough to live on. A vicious circle of economic decline.




  GEMINI next Generation


GEMINI next Generation - energy + food + living comfort GEMINI next Generation - energy + food + living comfort
What can housing cost? Where can you build? How much Energy should a house produce? How much building material is needed? GEMINI n.G. is looking for completely new answers to these questions.


A house must also be able to produce food
What do you get from the electricity surplus if you don't have anything to eat? The GEMINI next Generation project is hereby supplemented by a glasshouse with Vertical Farming Aeroponic.


Electricity Distribution Network 2.0 - E-mobility & Flexible Tariffs
Open response to the invitation of the German Green parliamentary group to the digital event “Electricity Distribution Network 2.0 - E-mobility & Flexible Tariffs” on September 22, 2020.


How can the expansion of renewable energy be unleashed?
Open response to the invitation of the Green parliamentary group to digital event “How can the expansion of renewable energy be unleashed ?” November 13, 2020.


From the factory for the first tests From the factory for the first tests
A green venture capitalist has invested in the project. Now it's a matter of proving the concept. The first devices for it are being shipped at the factory right now.


The heat pumps have arrived The heat pumps have arrived
On December 16, 2020 paid, on January 27 the ship arrived in the Slovenian port of Koper. On February 19, the 3 heat pumps could be picked up at a forwarding agency near Salzburg.




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Roland Mösl - PEGE - Planetary Engineering Group Earth

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Context description:  event events date time month 2 Feb February winter 2021-02-21