These issues plague *all* engineering and always have. In long term, they can be solved. and alike however like it black-and-white: solar is a pink unicorn that we just need to do more to get rid of asap! This is where they hit the reality.

"Developers, contractors and bankers all struggle to come to terms with the risk of large power loss factors, grid stability problems, connection problems, and equipment performance issues … So we’re out."

@kravietz I kindof like the idea of distributed microgeneration tbh. I know there are economies of scale that can make big projects more efficient, but I feel like decentralisation is a better fit for getting people to reduce consumption at the same time.

I don't know how that works for, say, a hospital, though.

@artsyhonker Microgeneration is good for energy efficiency. The energy stays where it's used, transport loss is minimal. Also by using rooftops for PV you use space that would be otherwise taken on land. Most (if not) all building however - residential, public and industrial - use way more energy than they are able to produce, so this cannot really replace grid..

@kravietz Most buildings in industrialised areas, I think you mean?

Millions, if not billions, of people live with no electricity at all.

I'm not saying we should all do our cooking with wood fires or live in the dark. But a lot of us really are profligate, and that's another problem entirely.

I don't think distributed microgeneration solves everything but I guess I'd like to see it encouraged more.

@kravietz Mind you I also think everyone who is physically able to should cycle whenever possible. If everyone did, if this were just normal, the roads would be much safer.

@artsyhonker House insulation standards in UK are profligate and that's the primary issue I'd say. Most houses I've seen have thermal efficiency of a camping tent, so whatever ultra-efficient energy generation you'll use, it's going to heat the air above anyway.

@kravietz as a Canadian who grew up with cold winters and hot summers, I strongly agree re: insulation in the UK.

I am giving up motored public transport (including buses and trains) inside a certain area for Lent, to get back into the habit of cycling more. It will be... interesting.

@artsyhonker In Reading (where I live) and London (where I work) bicycle is also usually the fastest way to move from A to B for typical town travel.

@kravietz When I was cycling a lot I didn't really think anything of it, but eventually I got out of the habit of using my bike for journeys I didn't know well, and then I had a bunch of health challenges that left me exhausted and only really cycled very short journeys. Then when one of the health things started getting better (plantar fasciitis), I started walking those short journeys instead. And suddenly I... wasn't cycling much any more at all. Oops.

@artsyhonker I think it's important to do both - or generally, as many diverse physical activities as possible. Cycling is fast and easy... too easy actually :) At least once per week I try to make a long walk too. And mountains as often as time allows.

@kravietz I have a bunch of chronic healthcrap which makes cycling more appropriate sometimes depending what my joints and energy levels are up to, but in general, yes, both is good.

If I *don't* do a certain number of steps per day my walking mobility goes downhill pretty fast.

@artsyhonker Ha, if I don't do enough exercise my lower back muscles contract (a typical IT chronic issue) which is... painful! A very good motivation indeed.

@kravietz But now I have a couple of regular journeys that are a pain in the backside on public transport. I live in Leytonstone and go to church in Finsbury Park, it's *fine* when the Goblin is running, but Sundays are a popular day for repairs etc, and currently it's out of commission for ages after a derailment.

And the allotment is a good two and a half miles away, which is an annoying walk but trivial on a bike.

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