Yoga Girl’s Spring Break Core + Balance Sequence


https://www.yogajournal.com/lifestyle/yoga-girls-spring-break-core-balance-sequence

Yoga Girl’s Spring Break Core + Balance Sequence

Visualize yourself on an Aruban beach as you challenge your core, balance, and shoulders in this sequence from Rachel Brathen’s new book.

Yoga teacher and Instagram star Rachel Brathen—aka “Yoga Girl" to her more than 1 million followers—is giving YJ readers a sneak peek at her new book. Visualize yourself on an Aruban beach while you work through these core, balance, and shoulder poses.

 

Kino MacGregor’s 4-Step Get-Your-Handstand Plan


https://www.yogajournal.com/practice/kino-macgregor-handstand-plan

Kino MacGregor’s 4-Step Get-Your-Handstand Plan

Use these four steps to guide your practice, build inner strength, and nail the coveted pose. Go get it!
kino-credit-563A7020i

Kino MacGregor has a plan for you: Use these four simple steps to guide your practice, build inner strength, and nail the coveted pose. Go get it.

It took me five years of practice before I could do a Handstand. I was not naturally strong. I was never a dancer or a gymnast. It’s all about practice.

Yoga is personal. Only you can choose to turn your mind inward and experience the deepest truth. No one can walk your path for you. There is a humility that can only be cultivated over years of getting on the mat and putting in the work. There’s no substitute for listening to that quiet voice of strength that says I will stay the course and keep the faith—no matter how long it takes, through good days and bad, with tenacity, focus, patience, sincerity, and joy.

4 Steps to Handstand

 

Modify Sleeping Pigeon Pose to Balance Body + Mind


https://www.yogajournal.com/poses/modify-sleeping-pigeon-pose-balance-body-mind

Modify Sleeping Pigeon Pose to Balance Body + Mind

Modify Sleeping Pigeon Pose if needed to find safe alignment for your body.

Modify Sleeping Pigeon Pose if needed to find safe alignment for your body.

PREVIOUS STEP IN YOGAPEDIAMaster Sleeping Pigeon Pose in 4 Steps
NEXT STEP IN YOGAPEDIA 3 Prep Poses for Flying Pigeon
SEE ALL ENTRIES IN YOGAPEDIA

 

Letting Go of Grief: How a Thailand Retreat Healed Heartbreak


https://www.yogajournal.com/lifestyle/thailand-retreat-helped-healing-process

Letting Go of Grief: How a Thailand Retreat Healed Heartbreak

Yoga Journal Senior Editor Meghan Rabbitt’s trip to Hau Hin, Thailand, turned into the ultimate healing journey as she found herself letting go of old heartbreak.
Thailand, Chiva Som International Health Resort

Yoga Journal Senior Editor Meghan Rabbitt’s trip to Hau Hin, Thailand, turned into the ultimate healing journey as she found herself letting go of old heartbreak.

I could feel the hot, wet tears starting to well behind my eyes, and willed them not to fall. After all, what the heck did I have to cry about? I was on a mat getting a Thai massage—in Thailand. Life was good. Three days earlier, I’d checked in to Chiva-Som International Health Resort, where I was introduced to a small army of practitioners, including massage therapists, skin-care specialists, a naturopath, and an acupuncturist, all working to help me feel my best by the end of my five-night stay. How was it that in this moment, fully relaxed with the smell of orchids and jasmine wafting in the air around me, I had to harness all of my energy to keep from weeping?

The small, strong Thai man working on my tight muscles was on to me. Even though I’d been on my stomach for the first part of my treatment, he knew something was up. When I turned over, and he placed my ankle on his shoulder to help me release the tension in my hamstring, it happened. I read his nametag—Mana—and thought how similar it was to the ultimate caretaker’s name, Mama. Then, he looked into my watery eyes and, just like my own mother would have done, whispered, “It’s OK. You can cry.” So I did. As I sobbed, Mana continued to excavate the untended wounds of my broken relationship, which I’d been storing deep within.

When he was finished, I held my hands in prayer at my heart and bowed my head, as is the custom when saying hello, goodbye, and thank you in Thailand. It’s a beautiful tradition—one that reminded me of the ritual in yoga, in which you offer the same gesture as you say Namaste: “The light within me honors the light within you.”

See alsoExplore Your Hamstrings: Yoga Poses for All Three Muscles

I walked away embarrassed by my emotional release, yet grateful it had happened. I felt lighter and more grounded—as if I’d just shed one layer of the sadness that had, without my realizing it, been dulling my inner light. I knew exactly what Mana had unearthed as he stretched and kneaded my muscles. Just one year earlier, I’d been in a different foreign country, Ireland, living with my boyfriend. Aaron was my first love; we’d met when I was studying in Dublin during my junior year of college and broke up only because I had to leave to finish my degree in the United States. Thirteen years later, the wonders of the Internet had brought us back together, which felt like destiny. So I moved to Ireland to give relationship 2.o a go.

We were happy—for awhile. And then the unraveling started to happen. Anger, resentment, and sadness dulled the joy. I hung on, trying hard to make things work, but at a certain point it became clear we weren’t going to make the turn. So I left. In the months that followed, distraction was the name of my game. I traveled. I buried myself in work. I snuggled up with my anger and resentment like a favorite blanket, comforted by the protection those emotions provided against the real culprit—grief.

When I arrived in Thailand, Aaron was far from my mind. After all, I was there for ultimate self-care, with a blissfully packed schedule of yoga, massage, milk baths, acupuncture, and ancient Ayurvedic treatments like shirobhyanga (Indian head massage) and dry skin brushing. Chiva-Som makes it easy to shake off stress the instant you walk through their front doors. Upon check-in, you meet with a health care advisor to design a program that takes into account all of your health, spiritual, and emotional considerations and goals. From weight management to general wellness, detoxing to establishing a regular meditation practice, the resort allows you to customize a healing plan so you can truly assess your current wellness and create a long-term blueprint for getting healthier and happier.

See alsoThe Ultimate Cleanse: Ayurvedic Panchakarma

When I met with my counselor, who probed with questions aimed at my health and emotional status, my answer was unwavering: “I feel great—never been better.” And as far as I knew, I was great. He put me on the yoga plan—complete with private asana and meditation sessions—after I told him about my daily home practice. All this yogifying combined with local, organic Thai food and the water from as many young coconuts as I could drink nourished me from the inside out. Which is why my tears during that Thai massage felt particularly unexpected.

I mentioned my upwelling during my appointment with Jason Culp, ND, Chiva-Som’s in-house naturopathic doctor, but he wasn’t as surprised as I’d been. After I explained my emotionally draining year and how busy I’d been keeping myself, he gave me a knowing nod. “We are capable of storing memories in the body as easily as we store them in our minds,” he told me. The kicker, he explained, is that while we may think that the fallout from a negative experience has passed, it might be that we haven’t fully dealt with it. It’s genius, actually: When we’re in emotional overload, we deal with what we can—and the body stores the rest until we can face it. Not surprisingly, it’s in the quieter moments, when we give ourselves the time and space to slow down and really drop in to our innermost thoughts and physical sensations, that the “stuff” we’ve been avoiding bubbles to the surface.

See alsoMy Month of “No": How Saying It More Often Changed My Life

By distracting myself from my post-breakup grief, I’d been trying to outrun it and pretend that it hadn’t affected me in profound ways. I was also brushing off the fact that the end of my relationship had dimmed my inner light—and altered my vision for the future. Not only had I lost a man I loved and the feeling of being deeply cared for, I also had to face the fact that the future I’d imagined for us would never happen. It was no wonder that my grief had caught up with me when I slowed down in beautiful Chiva-Som, holding my hands in prayer and bowing my head in Namaste countless times a day. It wasn’t just the massage that had helped me lean into the tough stuff; it was also the fact that I was deep in self-care mode, in a place that felt safe and serene, and where the people caring for me let me know in their own gentle way that it was time to face my sadness.

On my last day at Chiva-Som, I woke up before dawn to walk the beach as the sun rose over the Gulf of Thailand. Each morning, Buddhist monks walk the sand with silver bowls for their alms-giving, hoping to receive offerings of food in exchange for a blessing. I brought a basket of fruit with me that morning and placed my offering in a monk’s bowl. As I kneeled and held my hands in Anjali Mudra at my third eye, the monk blessed me. Though I couldn’t understand what he was saying, his sing-song prayer told me everything I needed to know. No matter his wish for me, I had one for myself: to continue to rediscover the light within me so that I can see it—and honor it—in everyone else.

Traveling to Thailand? Things to do and see:

In Bangkok

Visit Wat Pho, Bangkok’s largest and oldest wat (Buddhist temple) and get a massage at the adjoining Wat Pho Thai Traditional Medical and Massage School.

In Krabi

Stay at Phulay Bay, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve, luxury accommodations, and go island-hopping on a traditional Thai fishing boat in the clear waters of the Andaman Sea.

In Chiang Rai

Spend time with Thailand’s elephants at the Anantara Golden Triangle Elephant Camp & Resort, which facilitates street rescues.

See also11 Yoga Retreats You Can Actually Afford

 

A Home Practice for Happy, Open Hips


https://www.yogajournal.com/practice/home-practice-open-hips

A Home Practice for Happy, Open Hips

Maintaining flexibility and stability in the hip joints is crucial for lower-back health and cultivating overall freedom and ease in our bodies.

“Open” hips are a top priority for many yogis, and for good reason: Maintaining flexibility and stability in the hip joints is crucial for lower-back health, not to mention for cultivating overall freedom and ease in our bodies. And opening the hips can be particularly helpful when it comes to sitting comfortably for extended periods of time in meditation. In this sequence, we’ll warm up with standing postures to strengthen the outer hips, ensure stability and proper positioning of the femur in the hip socket, release tension in the lower back, and stretch the inner thighs. With the outer hips “turned on,” the inner thighs prepared, and the core awake, you’ll more readily launch into the peak pose—Flying Pigeon. (Remember, even if this pose feels out of reach, there is benefit in the attempt!) Finally, we’ll move into deeper stretches on the floor to help release any trapped physical and emotional tension.

About Our Pro
Teacher and model Vinnie Marino is a Los Angeles–based yoga teacher at YogaWorks. Learn more at vinniemarinoyoga.com.

 

【日晷之南】風雨的顏色──井伏鱒二


井伏鱒二的小說主要取材於現實社會底層人物的生活,突顯出日本昭和時期的文學特色,是時代精神的縮影,也納入日本庶民的心靈史。
#井伏鱒二 #日本小說 #日本文學
http://www.thinkingtaiwan.com/content/7001

【日晷之南】風雨的顏色──井伏鱒二

友善列印版本

在井伏鱒二的文學作品中,以《黑雨》、《約翰萬次郎漂流記》、《今日停診》、《遙拜隊長》這四部小說最具代表性。從文學風格來看,井伏鱒二被歸類為新興藝術派作家,其小說主要取材於現實社會底層人物的生活,突顯出日本昭和時期的文學特色,是時代精神的縮影,也納入日本庶民的心靈史。

井伏鱒二著作《黑雨》。(圖片攝影:邱振瑞)

井伏鱒二本名滿壽二,1898年2月15日生於廣島縣深安郡一戶地主家庭,在家排行第三,經濟條件還算寬裕。他五歲的時候,父親井伏郁太死亡,母親和祖父對他頗為疼愛。1912年,他進入舊制縣立福山中學就讀,三年的住校生活,為他開啟了新的視界。這所學校庭院裡有一座池塘,池內飼養了兩隻山椒魚(鯢魚),這兩條奇特的魚,也就是他後來發表小說處女作《山椒魚》靈感的原型。在學期間,他的作文寫得頗佳,整體成績卻不理想,自從中學三年級開始,他立志要當畫家。因此剛畢業,他就到奈良和京都等地,一邊旅行一邊作畫長達三個月。在他下榻旅館期間,因偶然的機緣,得知老闆認識畫家橋本關雪,便委託旅館老闆代為送交其素描作品,希望拜橋本關雪為師,卻遭到這畫家拒絕,他只好回到故鄉。那時候,其兄井伏文吉在早稻田大學念書,經常在同人刊物上投稿,屢次勸他報考該大學文科,這成了他轉向文學寫作的開端。

1917年9月,井伏鱒二順利考入早稻田大學文科高等預科(即高等學院),兩年後轉為文科本科。1920年學制改革,原本的文科改為文學系,同年進入新設立的法文科。儘管他選擇了文學之路,仍然有作畫的憧憬。與此同時,他在日本美術專門學校保留學籍,每周往返一次學習日本畫。他與法文科同學青木南八交情甚篤,經常相偕到當時著名作家岩野泡鳴和谷崎精二(谷崎潤一郎之弟)家裡訪問,加深文學生命的內涵。但是到了1921年,他與男性教授發生了語言衝突。事情起因是,其同性戀傾向的教授當面向他示好,他卻厲色拒絕對此毫無興趣云云,那位教授憤然向他摑了巴掌,這件事情讓他感到屈辱,因而休學回到故鄉。約莫半年後,井伏再度回到東京申請復學,但是該名教授強力反對,他只能無奈辦理退學。此時,不幸又接踵而至,好友青木南八自殺身亡了,給他帶來重大的精神打擊。

伏鱒二作品書影,取自《新潮日本文學アルバム》一書。(圖片攝影:邱振瑞。)

1923年8月,井伏鱒二在早大校友同人雜誌《世紀》上,發表大學時代的習作〈幽閉〉,不料,一名評論家在報紙副刊上,批評這部作品「了無新意」。當時,太宰治就讀青森中學一年級,讀到這部作品的時候,卻表示「激動得雀躍起來。⋯⋯我為自己發現了這被埋沒的無名的作家高興不已。」翌年,井伏與《世紀》同人創辦文學刊物《陣痛時代》,這是一份左翼色彩濃厚的雜誌,但他自承不曾讀過卡爾.馬克思《資本論》。後來,他進入了聚芳閣工作。這家出版社主要出版幕府時代小說叢書,出於各種原因,他數度進出該出版社,最後還是辭職了。1925年前後,其寫作之路出現小小轉折,經由小說家田中貢太郎介紹,他師事於左藤春夫門下。到了1928年2月,他再次修改了《山椒魚》,發表於《三田文學》,得到當時知名作家水上瀧太郎的讚賞。一年後,他加入舟橋聖一、阿部知二、梶井基次郎、今日出海等人創辦的雜誌《文藝都市》,並發表了一些作品。從這時起,他做為新進作家受到文學界的矚目。

登上文壇後,他繼續發表作品。1938年,其《約翰萬次郎漂流記》作品獲得第六屆直木獎,獲邀成為《文學界》同仁。1941年11月,他被日本陸軍徵兵入伍,在日軍占領的新加坡擔任日文報紙《昭南時報》編輯,翌年退伍回國。他說,這段特殊的戰地經驗給予其作品很大的影響。1944年7月,美國已開始轟炸日本本土,為了躲避戰火,他疏散到山梨縣甲府市岩月氏家裡。奇妙的是,儘管空襲的喧囂揮之不去,這裡仍然有著文學之緣。因為岩月家是雙英書房創辦者,岩月英男又是其門生,彼時正在編輯出版太宰治的相關作品。1945年7月5日,他避居之地受創嚴重,再次被迫搬到故鄉廣島縣福山在,而這歷劫性的遷徙卻為他日後寫作長篇小說《黑雨》的契機,於二戰後用含蓄的筆調,描繪美國軍機於廣島投下原子彈,這座城市剎那間化為人間煉獄的慘狀,日本當局的欺瞞和軍人的蠻橫行徑。

1942年井伏鱒二與日本記者們攝於英文報紙《昭南時報》報社樓頂,取自《新潮日本文學アルバム》。(圖片攝影:邱振瑞)

正如前述,井伏鱒二的文學世界,總是與戰爭和平民的苦難經驗相繫著,並以反諷的手法批判天皇制度及其思想。我們在〈遙拜隊長〉這部小說中,尤能看見這個荒謬人性的畫面,一個普通人經由思想改造後,就足以成為戰爭機器的組件,忠誠地為這部殺人機器鞠躬盡瘁,直到死亡的終點。概括地說,在日本文壇上,不乏反省和批判日本軍國主義的文章或小說,只是在文學表述上各有不同。在〈遙拜隊長〉中,他放棄了早期左翼小說慣用的尖銳筆調,以怪誕的卻又日常的故事情節,表達自己的反戰立場。

該小說主角岡崎悠一是個悲劇性的人物,二戰期間在馬來亞戰線擔任陸軍中尉,對待部屬極為嚴苛,不停向士兵灌輸為國犧牲的思想。在某次出任務途中,路況不佳導致車輛翻覆,摔斷了一條腿。退伍以後,他回到家鄉,卻患了瘋病,讓其母親非常苦惱。更糟糕的是,他一看見外地的男子來到村子裡,旋即訓斥命令對方:「正步──走!」、「衝鋒!臥倒!」、「混帳東西,前方有敵人,快臥倒!」、「要是有人逃跑,我就把你們宰了!」毋庸置疑,岡崎前中尉發出這樣的語言暴力,只會引致更大的衝突,最終雙方大打出手,嚇得村民們介入調解。

如果說,這位舊日本軍官岡崎悠一的反常行為,旨在突顯肢體的暴力性,那麼他之所以被取名為「遙拜隊長」,就更能說明危險思想的問題所在了。在戰爭期間,岡崎小隊長有個怪癖,即使夜間設營,第二天一大早,只要傳來有利的戰況,哪怕土溝裡盡是髒水,他也要沐浴一番,然後朝向東方(日本皇宮)遙拜。即便在運輸艦上,他只要聽到收音機播送什麼好消息,就命令部下在甲板上列隊,向神聖的東方遙拜,三呼萬歲,以此提振士氣。而當我們認識岡崎這段疾病前史,就更能把握其母親為他買來香菸,他說這是天皇恩賜的香菸,以感恩戴德的姿勢,面向東方致以遙拜之禮的精神起源了。

儘管隨著時間推移,類似遙拜隊長的悲劇性的故事並未因此絕跡,而是以更轟動社會的衝擊性畫面,闖入了日本民眾的公共視野。1944年12月,美國日本正式開戰,時年22歲的陸軍少尉小野田寬郎,被派往菲律賓盧班島參與作戰,卻不知戰爭已經結束,就此深入叢林生活了30年之久。1970年代中期,日本開始與菲律賓修補外交關係,委託菲方派出飛機朝盧班島的叢林上空投擲傳單,呼籲小野田盡快出來,甚至委請其胞妹親情喊話,但是出身情報系統「中野學校」訓練的小野田不為所動,直到1974年3月,直屬長官親赴現場,發布解除作戰命令,已屆51歲的小野田才走出了叢林,為最後一名受困於戰爭狀態的日本軍官劃下休止符。就此層面來看,岡崎小隊長面向東方的遙拜之姿,與小野田少尉自困於叢林30年的忠誠壯舉,似乎皆在證明效忠國家的思想是多麼綿延流長和牢不可破。

所以,經歷戰爭苦難與洗禮的井伏鱒二,自然有其深切的文學表現。而其長篇小說《黑雨》,正是對於廣島遭受美國原子彈攻擊的慘狀的具體紀錄,對於廣島淪為美日戰爭下的祭品,所做出清醒而溫厚的批判。就此而言,井伏比沒有戰爭體經驗的作家認清戰爭風雨的顏色,無論是黑色的或者致命性的熾烈白光,他以小說文字和形式保存下來,作為時代的見證。在此,我們不得不感佩小說的力量,畢竟它的滲透力既深且遠。當我們因展讀獲得這些靈感,是否應該提振精神來關注臺籍日本兵的問題,除了歷史研究之外,小說這個大眾媒介的載體,同樣能夠發揮積極作用,吸引或帶領讀者認識歷史中的風雨。在承平的時代生活太久,也許我們需要來點風雨明目醒腦,但又希望不遭到誤解這是自虐的行為。

 

I Moved to Bali to Start a Yoga Business—Here’s How I Pulled it Off


https://www.yogajournal.com/teach/i-moved-to-bali-to-start-a-yoga-business-heres-how-i-pulled-it-off

I Moved to Bali to Start a Yoga Business—Here’s How I Pulled it Off

Our writer Adam Carney took a great idea and relocated to Bali, Indonesia, to launch a yoga business. Here, his powerful story, and 4 tips to start a successful yoga company abroad.
Adam Carney

Adam Carney

I wake up in a beautiful villa set in a lush jungle and meditate at sunrise. My business investor meetings happen after yoga classes or over one of the three affordable, fresh vegan meals I eat each day. I go to ecstatic dance gatherings three nights a week and am building a successful yoga business with my best friends and spiritual teachers. I know it sounds like a dream—and it was my dream. Here’s how I made it all a reality.

See also YJ Tried It: Ecstatic Dance

How a Trip to India Sparked My Idea for a Yoga Business

In 2012, I went to India to do my first yoga teacher training. Something about learning yoga at my studio in Los Angeles wasn’t cutting it. I needed to go to the source.

On my first day of training, I met Amrit Pal Singh (or Gurumukh, as his students call him), who is the most skillful and humble yoga teacher I’ve ever met. I came to India with deep, pressing life questions I never thought I would have answered. He answered them all in 30 minutes over a casual lunch. I got to see the world through his eyes—and it changed everything for me.

Gurumukh

Gurumukh

See also 4 Ways to Find More Clarity in Your Yoga or Meditation Practice

Gurumukh and I both felt the teacher training schools in India were becoming like teacher factories, and we started brainstorming ways to make them better. There was a special dynamic between us: me, the young ambitious entrepreneur and Gurumukh, the man with the goods.

Our vision didn’t happen immediately. When I left India, I went back home to Los Angeles and got an offer to join the co-founding team of a technology company with a group of guys who’d become my brothers and work family. We were slaving away on a startup with a lot of potential. While I learned a lot from this experience, the truth is I chose that opportunity because I thought I’d make the most money—even though my heart knew it belonged with Gurumukh, building a yoga school.

My Epiphany: Start a Yoga Company for High-Quality YTTs Abroad

This is where it gets a little mystical.

There have been three times in my life when I have been visited by a powerful voice that was not my own, and each one of them fundamentally changed the course of my life. The most recent happened in September 2017. After a stressful week at the office, I took a trip to my vacation home in Palm Springs, Calif. Basking in the sun setting over the San Jacinto Mountains, I was sitting in silence for what may have been two hours or longer, thinking about nothing in particular. Suddenly, a wave of inspiration came to me, and a voice told me that now was the time to realize the dream Gurumukh and I imagined of running teacher trainings, and to name the company East+West. It was a strange message to receive, as the company I had helped co-found just raised a $3.5 million round of financing from a major Silicon Valley venture firm. I also didn’t care much for the name.

Two weeks later, my co-founders fired me, and told me they were retaining my stock options. I was nearly a millionaire on paper that morning when I walked into the office, and I left with $15,000 in severance. Turns out, that $15,000 ended up being almost exactly what I needed to rent a resort for a month and run our first training. East+West was born.

If I have learned anything on the spiritual path, it’s that when these voices come to you, you should listen.

How I Turned the YTT Business Idea Into Reality

I have traveled to Bali every year for the last five years. To me, Ubud is the new world capital of yoga, the perfect mix of East and West. I’ve heard it described as a mix between Hawaii and India. During my yoga teacher training in India, I was in a moldy room with no heat in 35-degree weather. Whereas India feels like a moment-to-moment struggle, Bali lulls you into a loving submission. So, when it came time to decide where to run East+West, Ubud was the hands-down winner.

For every business, there are one or two things you really need to nail for it to work. For us, it is our website and our teachers, and all my focus started there. Those first few months, I spent an irrational number of hours on our website, committing to making it the best in the industry. I recently looked back and had made 1,200 revisions on a two-page website over the course of three months. I was convinced that the website was the key to everything else; it was how our customers would make their decision to study with us or not. I see entrepreneurs focusing on the fluff a lot—things like social media and other to-dos that don’t really matter when it comes to the success of the business.

When our site was up and running, we shifted our focus to recruiting the best possible teachers to run our trainings. Gurumukh and I spent two months in India recruiting more master teachers. We wanted the humble ones—not the showy ones advertising all over town. We’ve learned over the years that the best teachers are always under the radar. It was a challenging task, as the best teachers in India can be hard to find. But we found a handful of exceptional teachers who have helped make our programs amazingly successful.

I also spent a lot of time really understanding the basic nature of the financials of this industry. I developed a photographic memory for retreat centers and their numbers, and this proved to be really valuable. Here’s an example of why this is important: A $10 difference per night on a resort may not sound like a big deal, but when you crunch the numbers, it’s actually a $50,000 decision for us on a given year.

4 Tips to Create Your ‘Dream Life’ (and Launch YourYoga Business!)

My friends on the spiritual path often ask for guidance in how to create their version of a dream life. Here are my best tips for creating an empowered life that allows you to go after what you really want to do:

1. Embrace that it’s significantly easier now than ever before to work remotely.

The world is more conducive now to remote lifestyle businesses, and it will only continue to get easier in the future, thanks to the ever-expanding technology, online courses, and resources to make this possible. Embrace a new way of thinking about business and life, where your business supports your life rather than your life supporting your business.

2. Give the important things attention and ignore everything else.

To get started, there are usually only one or two things that really matter to make things work. That’s where you need to put all of your attention at first. In the yoga world, it’s usually great teachers and great marketing. The rest doesn’t matter so much in the beginning.

3. Focus on quality first.

If you can’t do things better than your competitors, you are wasting your resources. Most people start a business because they want to, not because they are addressing a real need. When you focus on improving the quality of something, you will create value no matter what you do.

4. Drop the illusion of a dream life.

The dream life, viewed from the outside at least, is a myth. External circumstances appear to create a good life, but that’s the illusion. The best we can do is to be active participants in our lives and balance ourselves daily by practicing yoga and meditation. The joyful, abundant life we see on the outside is just a reflection of someone’s daily habits. When this is our focus in life, what happens in the external world matters less because we know we will be happy either way. That dream life is available to everyone, everywhere, right now.

 

《學做工》的啟示:學校教育為何讓勞工階級子弟難以流動?


《學做工:勞工子弟何以接繼父業》一書,深刻的描繪出了勞工階級子弟如何透過學校教育再製父母階級。

#勞工階級 #學校教育 #學做工
http://www.thinkingtaiwan.com/content/7000

《學做工》的啟示:學校教育為何讓勞工階級子弟難以流動?

友善列印版本

書名:《學做工:勞工子弟何以接繼父業?》
作者:Paul Willis
譯者:秘舒、凌旻華
出版社:麥田
出版日期:2018年4月12日

《學做工:勞工子弟何以接繼父業?》書封


六月是鳳凰花開的季節,代表將有一批畢業生即將從學校教育中畢業,邁入人生的下一個階段。筆者長期關心教育流動的問題,從學校、家長與學生間的三角關係來探討一個人的教育成就,也就是說一個人的成就是受到許多因素的影響,而非只有個體的問題。相對於其它國家,臺灣長期受到「萬般皆下品,唯有讀書高」的風氣所影響,導致升學競爭激烈,階級再製的問題亦相當嚴重。2018年由麥田出版的《學做工:勞工子弟何以接繼父業(Learning to Labour:How Working Class Kids Get Working Class Jobs)》一書,深刻的描繪出了勞工階級子弟如何透過學校教育再製父母階級。

《學做工》的作者Paul Willis在四十年前研究的勞工階級問題目前仍具極高的參考價值,他透過關注特定社會群體的生活處境,來深入探究工人階級子弟從學校到就業工作的轉變歷程。為達到此目的,Willis長期蹲點在英格蘭中部的一個小鎮漢默鎮,這是個勞工階級群聚的地方,他的田野調查就在小鎮裡頭的其中一所中學進行,核心研究對象則是學校裡頭校方無法管教以及嚴重反學校文化的十二個「小子」(The Lads)。蹲點分析的時間從「小子」在校期間一路追蹤到畢業以及在工廠工作的前半年。

Willis在書中用了相當多的社會學概念與研究技術,來逐步建立起「小子」們的社會網絡與社會化過程,讓我們不僅能深刻同理行動者主體的思維與行為,也能同步宏觀檢視校裡校外的規訓結構及其意識形態。雖然Willis的此書偏向於學術專書,但為了能夠讓社會大眾更理解勞工階級子女的流動困境,因此,將書的內容拆成兩個部份,第一部份是描述以說故事為主,對校園中「小子」的反學校文化、勞工社區生活與其人際網絡,做了清楚的描繪與鉅細靡遺的刻劃,讓非主修相關科系的人也能夠瞭解其中的問題並引起討論。

第二部份比較偏向理論化,談到階級問題就會想到馬克思的階級對立觀,馬克思認為階級之所以無法流動,是因為上下階層之間的區隔所形成的社會封閉,接著再透過階級再生產的方式來世代傳承並繁衍自身階級的利益、行為、價值與認同。而階級再生產的主要推手就是學校教育與媒體,透過兩者的宣傳讓工人階級認同資本主義的生產邏輯,產生虛假意識來建構階級觀而相信勞工階級無法流動。

綜觀《學做工》這本書的脈絡可以發現,階級流動不單只是意識形態的作用,而是受到日常生活中的慣習與態度所影響。相對於上層階級服從權威與循規蹈矩的乖乖牌,「小子」們不僅不愛讀書而且不斷的挑戰權威。Willis更發現,這套反學校文化的發展和運作,和他們父兄輩在工廠裡的「廠房文化」相同。

「小子」們不是沒有在學習,只是他們不想學習那些可以允諾他們改變階級的虛假意識,他們在學校內有自己的規劃與課表來學做工。他們忤逆師長並與乖乖牌對立,從裡到外,從頭到腳都與他人不同,就像工廠裡的大人一樣,才能證明自己的存在。Willis用洞察(Penetrate)來描繪「小子」們對於社會運作法則的失望,相對於臺灣則是使用「看破」一詞,勞工階級已經對於社會的階級運作有了相當深刻的體會,即使再努力也無法成為上層階級。

工人議題近兩年來臺灣迅速的擴展開來,從《做工的人》到《做鐵工的人》都是紀錄工地現場的勞動實作,這不只是一大創舉,更彌補了臺灣無人報導工人的缺陷。台灣幾十年來的教育改革,不斷強調教育的功能性與流動性,要學生相信學校學的可以運用於社會,乃至於十二年國教的目標,更是要培育具備終身學習的能力的人。但是對於勞動階級的父母乃至於其子女而言,學校教育能否真的促進階級流動,讓未來有更多可能和機會,值得我們深思。

 

《 Kirk Whalum – Into My Soul (54:02) 》


《 Kirk Whalum – Into My Soul (54:02) 》

您我做到了!三星Samsung承諾邁向再生能源


http://www.greenpeace.org/taiwan/zh/news/stories/climate_energy/climate/2018/Samsung-Commitment-to-renewable-energy/?utm_campaign=2018-rethinkit&utm_source=enews-20180615&utm_medium=email&utm_content=btn

您我做到了!三星Samsung承諾邁向再生能源

專題報導 – 2018-06-14

一年專案推動,50,000公眾連署,您我做到了!三星電子(Samsung)今天公布能源新政策,位於中國、美國、歐洲的生產廠房、辦公室大樓及營運設施,將於2020年前達到100%再生能源,比現在全球僅使用1%再生能源是一大進步!

作者:綠色和平專案經理李之安

還記得那段日子,一起為 Samsung 門市「大變身」……

德國行動成員在柏林一個 Samsung 廣告牌上拉起40平方公尺布條,向 Samsung 表達100%再生能源訴求。

也一起高呼要求「停止助長氣候變遷」……

https://www.facebook.com/plugins/video.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2Fgreenpeace.org.tw%2Fvideos%2F1722642817767536%2F&width=600&show_text=false&appId=1345560182236545&height=336

臺灣行動成員在西門町的 Samsung 門市大樓外牆,掛上兩幅接近9公尺布條,要求身為韓國平昌冬季奧運主要贊助商之一的 Samsung 停止助長氣候變遷。

還記得您曾經分享這段影片?https://www.facebook.com/plugins/video.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2Fgreenpeace.org.tw%2Fvideos%2F1735331193165365%2F&width=600&show_text=false&appId=1345560182236545&height=336

經過好幾個月集結公眾力量而成的全球行動,Samsung 終於接受了綠色和平 #DoWhatYouCant 的挑戰,踏出邁向100%再生能源的第一步,為地球、為全球數以十萬計挺身而出擁抱再生能源未來的公眾捎來好消息。

所以,Samsung確實的承諾是……

  1. 2020年或之前,在中國、美國及歐洲實施100%再生能源(包括所有生產廠房)
  2. 在韓國華城、平澤及水原半導體生產廠房附近安裝太陽能及地熱能設施,同時支持韓國政府的策略計劃,致力將2030年韓國再生能源比例提升至20%
  3. 2019年加入CDP「供應鏈計畫」(編註1),有助辨識、管理氣候變遷風險,由此推動供應鏈改變能源比例

點此查閱Samsung聲明全文(英文)

這代表什麼?

對 Samsung 減少全球生產鏈的龐大碳足跡而言,這確實是重要的第一步。光是2016年,這間科技龍頭企業的能源消耗高達160億度電,與加勒比海小國多明尼加共和國相近!政策承諾與改變,同時有助加快中國、韓國等倚賴煤炭國家的能源轉型步伐。

若有更多企業像 Samsung 一樣,願意承擔社會責任並積極行動,我們仍有時間扭轉乾坤,共同建立再生能源未來。

接下來的關鍵,就是要確保 Samsung 履行承諾,以實質行動增加再生能源比例,並將同等進步的能源轉型目標擴展至越南等其餘生產據點。

有您的支持,我們一定會繼續監督要求 Samsung 將承諾付諸實行。請將這個好消息分享給更多人知道!

編註1:CDP 前身為 Carbon Disclosure Project,以推動全球政府、企業及投資者公開環境訊息、加強應對氣候變遷、遏止森林砍伐及保護水資源為目標

 

《 Kirk Whalum – Through The Fire (06:07) 》


《 Kirk Whalum – Through The Fire (06:07) 》

守護亞馬遜珊瑚礁!綠色和平行動者突擊石油公司Total年度大會!


 

守護亞馬遜珊瑚礁!綠色和平行動者突擊石油公司Total年度大會!

專題報導 – 2018-06-15

250位綠色和平行動者和非暴力 COP 21行動組織人員,從天而降現身法國道達爾石油公司(Total)年度大會,要求他們撤回在亞馬遜珊瑚礁附近的石油探鑽計畫。

五月底,250名來自世界各地的綠色和平行動者和非暴力 COP 21行動組織人員(ANV-COP 21),集結在法國道達爾石油公司(Total)年度股東大會現場,展現人民堅決的力量,要求他們退出在亞馬遜珊瑚礁附近的鑽油計畫!

四名受過訓練的行動者,拉著繩索,從天而降,中斷會議,要求現場所有的股東停下來,聽聽全球超過兩百萬連署人,對亞馬遜珊瑚礁的聲援!

綠色和平的法國海洋專案主任 Edina Ifticene,在道達爾執行長普雅尼(Patrick Pouyanne)的邀請之下,到會議現場揭示這場抗議行動的主因:全球兩百萬人連署,要求 Total 撤回對氣候、生物多樣性帶來極高風險的鑽油計畫,但他們無視我們守護亞馬遜珊瑚礁的訴求,於是我們規劃以更直接的行動來回應。

在接受英國衛報(The Guardian)訪問時,Edina Ifticene 表示,「在去年的年度股東大會,我們曾對一個股東(公司)提出質疑,並提供許多證據,但得到的回應是,在此處鑽油對生態不會有任何風險。」

同時間,巴西環境局(IBAMA)也第四次拒絕這間法國跨國石油公司,在亞馬遜珊瑚礁附近的探鑽申請,質疑這間跨國石油公司環境評估的有效性,並要求他們在期限內釐清爭議。去年9月,巴西環境局才駁回 Total 的鑽油申請,要求他們再補充足夠的資訊,說明對環境的影響。至今,巴西政府因拒絕 Total 在外海的探鑽許可申請,已暫緩他們的計畫,達四年之久。

這片廣大的亞馬遜珊瑚礁,位於亞馬遜河出海口,從巴西西北部海岸伸延到法屬圭亞那,在2016年4月由一群科學家發表文章後,才首度為大家所知。

去年,在綠色和平最大的船艦「希望號」(Esperanza)的科學考察中發現,這片新的珊瑚礁群面積有9,500平方公里。今年4月,當「希望號」返回亞馬遜珊瑚礁,第二次展開科學考察時,驚訝地發現這片「海洋中的熱帶雨林」珊瑚礁群,事實上廣達56,000平方公里,面積約當1.5個臺灣!它全長1,000公里(約2.5個臺灣的長度),更可能是世界上最大珊瑚礁群之一

在這次考察中,專案團隊進一步發現,新的珊瑚礁群和 Total 的一處石油勘探選址互相重疊。廣大珊瑚礁群,距離鑽油區塊更只有28公里。若發生漏油事故,不但將染黑珊瑚礁群,對生活在這水域一帶的綠蠵龜、海鳥、亞馬遜粉紅海豚、紅藻石(rhodolith)等生物,將造成無法挽回的傷害。亞馬遜豐沛的自然生態,除了熱帶雨林,還有草原、濕地,在廣闊的出海口,更有世界上遍布最長區域,位於法屬圭亞那的紅樹林。

根據地質學家的分析,這大片珊瑚礁所在的亞馬遜河口盆地,石油蘊藏量高達140億桶,數量超過整個墨西哥灣已知的石油資源。但在此處鑽油,既不符合當前氣候變遷的趨勢,更有可能造成生態浩劫。

原本也預計在這片水域鑽探石油的全球礦業龍頭澳洲必和必拓公司(BHP),今年3月已經宣布,放棄在此處鑽油。另一家同時也是全球石油巨頭的英國石油公司(BP),在巴西環境局拒絕他們的環境評估後,也宣布石油探勘計畫將延後。

綠色和平的巴西亞馬遜珊瑚礁專案主任 Thiago Almeida 說:「光是考量到急湍海流和航行路線,風險就已是極高,石油更可能會因此擴散開來。當我們連把遙控潛水器,放到水裡紀錄影像都充滿難度時,實在很難想像,石油公司如何得以保證不會發生漏油事件。」

自然環境生態不是一個選項,是維持我們健康大自然一個必要的條件。如在行動抗議現場拉出的布條寫著:「Total 還在,我們不走」。在超級石油企業 Total 撤回亞馬遜珊瑚礁附近的探鑽申請前,綠色和平和關心這塊罕有生態淨土的大家,也將都不會放棄。

 

 

《 Kirk Whalum – You Are Everything (07:26) 》


《 Kirk Whalum – You Are Everything (07:26) 》

California Puts Solar on the Roof and Up For Grabs


https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2018-06-15/bitcoin-greater-fools-and-the-big-short

California Puts Solar on the Roof and Up For Grabs

A mandate may not be the guaranteed boon to established companies investors think.

12
A solar panel being installed on the roof of a home in San Francisco.

Photographer: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images North America

If we could somehow capture all the energy expended on Twitter when California approved new rooftop solar standards, we’d solve our climate problems immediately.

The perpetual emotion machine has cranked up in response to the California Energy Commission passing a new building code that will, among other things, require most low-rise residential buildings constructed after 2019 to have built-in solar-power systems. Cue rows about whether this is cost-effective versus other climate-friendly measures; will swamp wholesale power markets; makes California’s eye-watering property pricier still; and other sore points.

They’re valid debates. Assuming this is a done deal, though, one obvious question is: Who profits? As my colleagues at Bloomberg New Energy Finance pointed out in a report published Friday, the stock market, as usual, thinks it has the drop on that:

Sun’s Up

Solar stocks, especially those of the big residential-focused companies like Sunrun and Vivint, surged on news of the new California mandate

Source: Bloomberg

Large residential solar companies such as Sunrun Inc. look like obvious winners here. BNEF estimates the mandate could boost residential solar deployment in California in 2020 by 200 to 300 megawatts, or 23 to 34 percent — on top of a market already growing at more than 9 percent:

Energy Boost

California’s new mandate provides an added boost to a residential solar market projected to grow quickly anyway

Source: Bloomberg New Energy Finance

Note: Mandate uplift as per upper end of BNEF’s estimate of the impact of the new regulation. Data after 2016 are projections.

Builders might partner with established residential solar firms, effectively outsourcing the mandate to them. A homebuyer might pay the construction firm for the house and simultaneously contract with the solar partner for services such as long-term power-purchase agreements, maintenance and equipment guarantees. Financing could be done either through existing loan or lease products or, if preferable, rolled into the mortgage.

This seems to hold out the prospect of all-in unit costs for residential solar falling dramatically. As it stands, more than two-thirds of the cost of a typical rooftop system in California relates not to equipment but to such things as marketing, permitting and installation:

Electric Charge

The majority of the cost of installing household solar systems relates to labor and soft costs, not the hardware

Source: Bloomberg New Energy Finance

Note: Estimated costs for a residential fixed system in California.

Boosting installations should improve scale economies further, but it’s too soon to say it will automatically cut costs significantly. For example, customer acquisition costs — the bane of the solar-leasing business model — won’t just disappear. Instead, the construction firm will be the delivery channel for this class of customer and may well want to be compensated for that. Construction firms are old hands at squeezing sub-contractors; which makes sense given how much of the home-buying decision rests on weighing the simple math of price per square foot.

Indeed, the wider implication of the California mandate is that it accelerates an existing trend: commodification.

Solar panels, particularly those fixed to the roof of a house, aren’t exactly the stuff of the Jetsons. While advances in efficiency are still being made, today’s good-enough panels compete mostly on price — hence, President Donald Trump slapping tariffs on foreign-made ones.

Having panels mandated into the fabric of new homes makes them even more commonplace. That’s good for advocates of distributed renewable power, but perhaps more ambiguous if your company centers largely on designing and financing retro-fitted systems and handling tedious stuff like permitting.

This doesn’t mean the existing solar firms won’t benefit from California’s mandate (or those of any other states that might follow). But it isn’t necessarily the lock last week’s big stock gains imply.

Rather, it throws a spotlight on an existing aspect of the distributed solar boom; namely, that the value lies less in the hardware and increasingly in the services, both current and potential, that come with it. These include relatively straightforward things such as long-term maintenance and guarantees, with the latter likely to be especially important as batteries are integrated into home systems. But they also could encompass such things as managing residential energy flows to optimize pricing; integrating electric vehicles; and even pooling assets in community-wide networks.

New value propositions are needed, given distributed solar power is depressing wholesale power prices during the day in California already. This erodes the incremental value of extra power from new installations under the current pricing structure, pushing more electrons onto a glutted mid-afternoon market.

New models are also needed because, for the majority of the new-home buying population, panels just aren’t as sexy as granite countertops. Savings on monthly power bills are fine as far as they go. But construction firms will likely struggle to build a compelling proposition around them for most of their target customers.

Bundling energy services in with more compelling mod-cons such as Wi-Fi, security and other “smart home” stuff offers another potential model. But it’s unclear, for now, how much value homebuyers would place on such accoutrements and who is best placed to sell them. Building developers? Solar firms? Big Tech?

California’s new mandate tees up a huge experiment in brands and services potentially picking up the slack as residential solar’s commodification accelerates. It’s far from clear who will win.

This column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.

To contact the author of this story:
Liam Denning at ldenning1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story:
Mark Gongloff at mgongloff1@bloomberg.net

 

California’s new solar mandate for homes is hastening the inevitable grid “defection day”


https://qz.com/1274865/californias-solar-mandate-the-first-of-its-kind-in-the-us-will-hasten-defection-day-from-the-grid/

California’s new solar mandate for homes is hastening the inevitable grid “defection day”

OBSESSION

Energy Shocks

May 10, 2018

Utilities love solar, as long as they own it. The idea of customers generating their own solar power, and selling it back to the grid, strikes fear into big power companies.

Their panic likely just ticked up a notch. On May 9, California’s energy commission unanimously adopted a measure making solar panels mandatory on all new homes starting Jan. 1, 2020. It’s the first state to impose this sort of rule.

Yet, even without regulations like this, building homes without solar panels may not make financial sense within a decade or two.

A defection day is coming: the moment when people stop buying their electricity from the grid, and just generate it themselves. In a 2017 study, McKinsey examined the economics of power generation, and found that as soon as 2020, it will make more economic sense for the majority of US homeowners to generate and store 80% to 90% of their electricity on site while only using the grid as a backup. That’s “partial-grid defection.” Full grid-defection, or leaving the electric-power system completely through the installation and use batteries and solar, should arrive around 2028, the McKinsey report predicts.

Even today, California’s energy commission estimates, the average homeowner would only have to pay $40 per month for a solar system that shaves off $80 on monthly heating, cooling, and lighting bills.

solargird-e1498684214242
Grid defection scenarios.(McKinsey Sustainability & Resource Productivity)

California’s decision may usher in grid-defection day even sooner. By instantly creating a massive new market for solar panels in the world’s fifth-largest economy, the new regulations should drive down costs of every aspect of the home-solar market—panels, installations, and infrastructure—and force a massive, imminent restructuring of electricity markets.

Home solar upends utilities’ business model. Utilities tend to make their money when they build big, expensive infrastructure like power plants. Because most are regulated monopolies, they earn a fixed rate of return, set by government commissions, on these projects. While this ensures a steady supply of electricity, it tends to lead to what industry watchers call “gold-plating:” building out expensive capacity that may not be needed in the future. That’s a huge risk for utilities burdened by expensive fossil fuel plants in an age of ever-cheaper renewables. Every time someone stops buying electricity from the grid, the remaining customers must pay for the utilities’ total fixed costs for decades. That raises individual electricity rates for those who remain, and incentivizes customers to break up with the utility even sooner. Then the cycle intensifies. Precisely this scenario has played out in parts of Australia(paywall).

“The only way to pay for the grid is as a network,” an interconnected set of transmission and storage assets, said McKinsey’s David Frankel, a co-author of the report. “It’s very counter to what the industry has seen.”

California regulators estimate that 85% of state residents will partially or fully defect from investor-owned utilities by 2020. And, despite the fact that home solar itself is in the midst of a slowdown across the US, we’re only decades away from seeing this scenario play out across the country.

After at least 16 consecutive years of growth, solar installations fell for the first time last year. Five of six biggest home-solar companies have disappeared, slashed new spending, or been acquired in recent years, says Vikram Aggarwal, the founder of EnergySage, a marketplace where people can buy and sell home solar. Verengo Solar and Sungevity filed for bankruptcy, NRG sold its solar assets, Vivint cut back on its solar installations, and SolarCity was acquired by Tesla and nearly eliminated its marketing budget in the process.

But Aggarwal argues that home solar’s troubles are just a “temporary shakeup.” Instead, he argues, the industry is restructuring for expansion. It installed estimated 2,500 MW last year, a number it will likely top in 2018. Installers are now primarily local (as most construction businesses are), shedding expensive vertical integration models like SolarCity’s model. Expansion is due to resume in the most promising markets in the US like California, Arizona, Nevada, and the eastern seaboard states—where, already, the costs of installing home-solar pays for itself through energy savings in only seven to eight years.

Correction: A previous version of this post stated the incorrect date of adopted a measure making solar panels mandatory on all new homes: it is Jan. 1, 2020.

 

California’s new solar energy standards: Here’s how it could affect homeowners


https://www.cnbc.com/2018/05/11/californias-new-solar-energy-standards-how-it-could-affect-homeowners.html

California’s new solar energy standards: Here’s how it could affect homeowners

  • California now requires that most new homes built after January 2020 must have solar panels
  • The impact of the requirement is being debated, and may hike costs that could worsen the state’s housing crunch
  • In the longer term, some experts say it could lead to lower energy bills for consumers

Experts debate California's new solar panel mandate

Experts debate California’s new solar panel mandate  

On May 9, California gave the solar industry a huge boost by requiringsolar panels on most new homes built after January 2020. The historic measure will make the Golden State the first to require solar installations on most single-family homes, in addition to multi-family residential buildings up to three stories, including condos and apartment complexes.

Yet the move is already becoming the subject of a growing debate over how it could impact a range of costs, and potentially worsen a housing crunch. In light of California’s new mandate, CNBC recently spoke to several experts to identify ways in which the solar requirement could ripple across the state’s economy.

Construction costs will go up

A worker stands on the roof of a home under construction at a new housing development in San Rafael, California.

Getty Images
A worker stands on the roof of a home under construction at a new housing development in San Rafael, California.

For home builders, the mandatory addition of solar panels means added construction costs, perhaps as much as $10,000 per home, in the short term, according to one expert.

“Obviously, there is a cost involved in putting solar on a roof. The good news is when you do it during the building process, it’s going to be much more efficient and less costly," Anne Hoskins, the chief policy officer of Sunrun, a solar energy provider. She added that permitting could get easier as well, but costs would rise.

Housing prices will rise

SolarCraft workers Craig Powell (left) and Edwin Neal install solar panels on the roof of a home on Feb. 26, 2015, in San Rafael, California.

Getty Images
SolarCraft workers Craig Powell (left) and Edwin Neal install solar panels on the roof of a home on Feb. 26, 2015, in San Rafael, California.

California already has one of the frothiest housing prices in the nation, a condition that could get even worse with the new solar mandate.

Jimmy Pethokoukis, an economic policy analyst at the American Enterprise Institute, said the mandate will only hurt California homeowners who can’t afford the upgrade in an already saturated housing market.

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“This is great for wealthier homeowners, but for everybody else it’s one more reason to not go to California or to leave ASAP," Pethokoukis told CNBC recently.

Homes built before 2020 will likely add solar panels as well, as buyers begin expecting this as a feature in homes, Hoskins said, making solar energy a more common luxury.

Companies like Sunrun are offering an alternative to the upfront installation costs they hope will lessen the burden for customers who experience sticker-shock of installation fees.

The option to lease solar panels such as Sunrun’s solar as a service lets the company own the system and offer a production guarantee, a lease so homeowners can have access to the energy while the company takes care of the system and maintains it.

Arizona, Hawaii, and others could follow

A Tesla solar farm in Kauai, Hawaii.

Meghan Reeder | CNBC
A Tesla solar farm in Kauai, Hawaii.

According to Sunrun, California’s move may prompt Hawaii, Arizona, and other western states that have high levels of solar penetration to follow suit.

Roh Habibi, founder of luxury real estate firm The Habibi Group, agreed. He told CNBC that some of the resistance to residential solar panels has been a fear of being the first to act. He sees California as an early adopter.

“When the Toyota Prius first came out we didn’t see them often because they were kind of expensive, it was a new proposition, they had to wrap their heads around it but now if you’re on the road, you can’t count how many you’re going to see," said Roh, predicting the same will happen with solar-powered homes.

Homes will focus on “holistic health"

LED smart bulb from Sony.

Source: Sony
LED smart bulb from Sony.

Environmentally friendly lighting for commercial buildings is already an industry standard. Yet Habibi said that within in the next five years, there could be a new classification for residential “mood’ lighting that’s beneficial to homeowner health .

“This could mean there could be different lighting fixtures inside the home that are different colors at different times," he told CNBC. “Say in the morning your mirror and light in your bathroom will come with a cooler fluorescent blue hue to get your day started."

Electricity bills will go down…eventually

Electricity meter

Ridofranz | Getty Images

Solar energy accounts for less than 2 percent of electricity generation, according to Energy Information Administration data. While that sum is relatively small, some experts say it leaves room for the sector to grow — especially with the largest state in the U.S. expanding its capacity.

“What happens as you get greater demand, that helps increase economies of scale, draw in more producers and more in the market," said Sunrun’s Hoskins.

She envisions a future where customers can offer their services, and share energy, at times where it’s most valuable, instead of going through the utility.

California projects the new initiative will save consumers about $80 on monthly heating, cooling and lighting bills (based on a 30 year mortgage). Less than 20 percent of homes built in California currently include panels.

–CNBC’s Jeff Daniels and Kellie Ell contributed to this story.

 

California Will Require Solar Power for New Homes


California Will Require Solar Power for New Homes

Image
Solar panels on a Southern California home. State law requires at least 50 percent of California’s electricity to come from noncarbon-producing sources by 2030.CreditDavid Paul Morris/Bloomberg

By Ivan Penn

SACRAMENTO — Long a leader and trendsetter in its clean-energy goals, California took a giant step on Wednesday, becoming the first state to require all new homes to have solar power.

The new requirement, to take effect in two years, brings solar power into the mainstream in a way it has never been until now. It will add thousands of dollars to the cost of home when a shortage of affordable housing is one of California’s most pressing issues.

That made the relative ease of its approval — in a unanimous vote by the five-member California Energy Commission before a standing-room crowd, with little debate — all the more remarkable.

State officials and clean-energy advocates say the extra cost to home buyers will be more than made up in lower energy bills. That prospect has won over even the construction industry, which has embraced solar capability as a selling point.

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“This adoption of these standards represents a quantum leap,” Bob Raymer, senior engineer for the California Building Industry Association, said during the public comments before the vote. “You can bet every state will be watching to see what happens.”

Several California cities have required that some new buildings include solar power, or have made commitments to 100 percent clean energy through various sources. New Jersey, Massachusetts and Washington, D.C., have also considered legislation to require that new buildings be solar-ready, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. And Hawaii is among the states that have mandated other energy-efficiency measures, like solar water heaters.

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But California’s move is by far the boldest and most consequential of any.

California law requires at least 50 percent of the state’s electricity to come from noncarbon-producing sources by 2030. Solar power has increasingly become a driver in the growth of the state’s alternative energy production.

And a new rate structure coming next year will charge California customers based on the time of day they use electricity. So homeowners with energy-efficiency features — a battery in particular, allowing energy to be stored for when it is most efficiently used — will avoid higher costs.

“Any additional amount in the mortgage is more than offset,” said Andrew McAllister, an Energy Commission member who led a building-code review that produced the proposal. “It’s good for the customer.”

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The building-code change is one dimension of a broader transition away from centralized power. As with the breakup of the phone monopoly, which allowed customers to choose providers and shop for rates, changes in the way energy is delivered put more control into consumers’ hands.

Those goals have been furthered with smart meters that help control consumption, along with a choice of electricity retailers in many places. And with a combination of residential solar power and battery storage, homeowners can minimize their resort to the grid altogether.

At the end of 2017, California was by far the nation’s leader in installed solar capacity. Solar power provides almost 16 percent of the state’s electricity, and the industry employs more than 86,000 workers.

Under the new requirements, builders must take one of two steps: make individual homes available with solar panels, or build a shared solar-power system serving a group of homes. In the case of rooftop panels, they can either be owned outright and rolled into the home price, or made available for lease on a monthly basis.

The requirement is expected to add $8,000 to $12,000 to the cost of a home.

“Our druthers would have been to have this delayed another two or three years,” said Mr. Raymer of the building-industry group. But he was not surprised. “We’ve known this was coming,” he said. “The writing was on the wall.”

For residential homeowners, based on a 30-year mortgage, the Energy Commission estimates that the standards will add about $40 to an average monthly payment, but save consumers $80 on monthly heating, cooling and lighting bills.

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Will Clever, a 67-year-old retired correctional officer, moved into a new house six months ago in Roseville, about 20 miles northeast of Sacramento, where the developer KB Home offered the buy-or-lease option for solar panels.

Image
An array of solar panels in Oakland, Calif. Solar power provides almost 16 percent of the state’s electricity.CreditLucy Nicholson/Reuters

Not having the $14,000 it would cost to buy the panels, he chose a 20-year lease from SunPower, the nation’s No. 2 commercial solar-power company, for $76 a month.

The Sacramento area can have brutal summers, and having once lived in Phoenix, “I didn’t want to pay a fortune,” he said. “I was looking for a way of fixing my costs.”

So far, he considers it money in the bank. “As electricity costs go up, I don’t have to worry about it,” Mr. Clever said.

California averages about 80,000 new homes a year, with about 15,000 currently including solar installations. Over all, at the current rate of home building, the new requirement will increase the annual number of rooftop solar installations by 44 percent.

The approved requirement is expected to give a strong lift to California’s already hot solar market.

“This is a very large market expansion for solar,” said Lynn Jurich, co-founder and chief executive of Sunrun, a leading solar installation company. “It’s very cost effective to do it this way, and customers want it.”

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“There’s also this real American sense of freedom of producing electricity on my rooftop,” Ms. Jurich said. “And it’s another example of California leading the way.”

A strategic plan drafted by the California Public Utilities Commission in 2008 called for all new construction by 2020 to have net-zero energy needs — that is, to produce enough electricity on their own to avoid having to buy it from the power grid.

The Energy Commission’s plan is less ambitious. It requires new homes to have a solar-power system of a minimum 2 to 3 kilowatts, depending mostly on the size of the home. Residential solar arrays are typically two to three times that size, often enough to put power into the grid.

In fact, the state itself generates so much solar and wind power that it must sometimes halt production at some facilities or give the electricity away to other states to avoid overloading the electric grid.

And there may be a downside for some consumers in the increasing reliance on alternative energy sources.

San Diego Gas and Electric, for instance, said it hoped the state would ensure that utilities can generate enough revenue to operate the electric grid, as homeowners who can afford solar leave those less fortunate to pick up the cost of running the electric system.

“It’s a growing problem,” Tim Carmichael, state agency relations manager for the utility, told the commission. “It’s hurting families that can’t afford solar. We continue to support solar growth. We want to ensure that program structure is appropriate.”

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The utility industry has been preparing for the proliferation of energy-producing homes by studying its impact on the electric grid with tests like a net-zero community developed in Fontana, east of Los Angeles. The utilities are trying to determine how to manage a system where homes are putting electricity onto the grid during the day and consuming it at night.

“We’ve been working towards it,” said Ram Narayanamurthy, technical executive at the Electric Power Research Institute, a nonprofit group that does research for the nation’s power companies. “What we think we will see is greater and greater efficiency.”

The Fontana research has shown that with a combination of energy-efficiency measures and solar power, the overall cost of owning a home is reduced, he said.

The commission members saw their vote as advancing that vision of the future. “I’m really happy to get this to the finish line,” Mr. McAllister said. “One big step for mankind.”

A version of this article appears in print on , on Page B1 of the New York edition with the headline: Solar Power to Be Required For New Homes in California. Order Reprints | Today’s Paper | Subscribe

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加州打先鋒 規定新成屋設太陽能


http://e-info.org.tw/node/212215?utm_source=%E7%92%B0%E5%A2%83%E8%B3%87%E8%A8%8A%E9%9B%BB%E5%AD%90%E5%A0%B1&utm_campaign=452592e6a7-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2018_06_01_09_54_COPY_01&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_f99f939cdc-452592e6a7-84956681

加州打先鋒 規定新成屋設太陽能

2018年06月15日
文:王一方

加州一向是美國衝刺綠能的先鋒,5月上旬,該州又多了一項創舉——成為全美第一個要求所有「新成屋」都要裝設太陽能的州政府!

加州政府要求新屋裝設太陽能板
加州政府要求新成屋裝設太陽能板。圖片來源:mlinksva(CC0 1.0)

新規定經過加州能源委員會(California Energy Commission)五位成員一致通過,將在兩年後上路。亦即,2020年1月1日起新蓋的獨棟房屋與三層樓以下公寓,都得強制裝設太陽能板。這項計畫也是州長布朗(Jerry Brown)減碳政策的一部分,以符合2030年減碳40%(相較1990年水準)、至少一半電力來自無碳能源的長期目標。

每年新增萬棟,加速太陽能普及

過去,只有幾個零星城市執行過類似規定, 如要求新屋裝設太陽能板,或者提高清潔能源的使用比例,但從未有過以「州」為範疇的大規模實施。無怪乎《Bloomberg》(彭博週刊)下了這番註解:「以前被視為有錢人與環保人士專用的太陽能屋頂,現在已經成為主流能源!」

加州太陽能與儲存協會(California Solar & Storage Association)估算,往後每年將有1.5萬棟新屋裝設太陽能板,為當地新增260 MW的綠色電力,相當於一個大型太陽能農場的建置規模。

影響更大之處在於,此舉也為其他地方政府帶來了示範效應和遵循藍圖。「量子飛躍 (Quantum Leap) 時刻即將來臨!」加州建築產業協會(California Building Industry Association)高級工程師Bob Raymer在法令公布前就說,「我可以跟你打賭,全美各州都在等著看加州怎麼做,」他說的沒錯,從紐澤西、麻薩諸塞州、到華盛頓特區,都開始考慮做出類似要求,日照最充足的夏威夷與亞利桑那州,更是躍躍欲試。

去年一度陷入低潮的美國太陽能產業,在新規定頒佈後大受鼓舞。 (資料來源:彭博新聞)
去年一度陷入低潮的美國太陽能產業,在新規定頒佈後大受鼓舞。 資料來源:彭博新聞

不過,凡事總有一體兩面,加州強制新屋裝設太陽能板的創舉,雖被認為有助節能減碳、同時振興太陽能產業,卻也被詬病將推高房價,讓行情早就高不可攀的加州房市,令有意購屋者更難以負。「這項規定將對屋主形成莫大負擔,」美國企業研究院(American Enterprise Institute)分析師Jimmy Pethokoukis接受《CNBC》採訪時警告,「以後除了有錢的屋主,其他居民都會想逃離加州。」

炒高房價?從長期節能賺回來

對於推高房價的疑慮,加州能源委員會早有準備,據他們估算,加裝太陽能板約會增加9500美元費用,但增加的成本大可從往後節能效益補回,以使用30年為例,起碼能替屋主節省1.9萬美元的能源支出。換算下來,等於每個月在太陽能板花40美元,同時從熱水、暖氣、照明、電費等處拿回80美元,一來一往還是划算。

事實上,這項提案頗受建商歡迎,因為再生能源早就是新成屋的行銷賣點之一。剛開始,屋主可能會因多付了太陽能板裝設費用,而感到不悅,但長期來看,他們一定會發現,這是再正確不過的決定,」地產公司Meritage Homes Corp發言人Brent Anderson充滿信心地說。

不少媒體都認為,加州開了第一槍之後,太陽能板未來極可能成為建築的「新常態」。「以後10~20年內,買一棟沒有太陽能的房子,在財務上是說不過去的,」新媒體Quartz更大膽預言,「脫離電網」(grid defection)的日子已經愈來愈近,今後人們不再需要從中央電網取得電力,只要自己在家發電,就能供應日常所需。

太陽能成為建築標準配備的另一助力,來自裝設成本的急速下降。 (資料來源:彭博新聞)
太陽能成為建築標準配備的另一助力,來自裝設成本的急速下降。 資料來源:彭博新聞

其實在加州公布新法規的前一年,麥肯錫顧問公司就曾發表研究,預測2020年時的美國房產擁有者,有80~90%的用電都能靠自己製造或儲存、不假外求,而建築用電完全仰賴太陽能和儲能設備的那天,將在2028年正式來臨。如今看來,加州跨出的這一步,可能還提前了「能源獨立日」的來臨。

※本文轉載自低碳生活部落格,原文加州帶頭衝!建築「能源獨立日」不遠矣?

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《 Kirk Whalum – It’ What I Do (05:28) 》


《 Kirk Whalum – It’ What I Do (05:28) 》

海洋公民基金會:被觀光發展負面衝擊逐漸侵蝕的南海珍珠——七美嶼


http://e-info.org.tw/node/212225?utm_source=%E7%92%B0%E5%A2%83%E8%B3%87%E8%A8%8A%E9%9B%BB%E5%AD%90%E5%A0%B1&utm_campaign=452592e6a7-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2018_06_01_09_54_COPY_01&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_f99f939cdc-452592e6a7-84956681

海洋公民基金會:被觀光發展負面衝擊逐漸侵蝕的南海珍珠——七美嶼

2018年06月15日
文:海洋公民基金會

自由時報於2018年6月11日刊登一則新聞提到近年因七美島雙心石滬爆紅,觀光急速發展,縣議員呂啟宗建議拓寬南滬港道路並擴大闢建停車場。以南滬港碼頭腹地小、道路狹窄為由,爭取拓寬道路並擴大闢建停車場,建議將原本置放海堤外的消波塊再往外移,填海造陸擴大港埠用地,以供遊覽車迴轉,並讓機車停放。

此舉引起在地居民關切,認為不應為了圖利少數觀光業者而利用公帑擴建碼頭和停車場,破壞鄰近地區海域生態,進而發起聯署反對呂啟宗議員主張擴建七美碼頭和停車場一案。追溯事件發生原委為澎湖縣議會於06/06前往七美鄉鄉考察時(澎湖時報,2018/06/07),呂啟宗議員對七美觀光發展設施供給不足提出之建議。

七美 南滬港碼頭 空拍
七美南滬港碼頭空拍照。圖片來源:海洋公民基金會提供。

七美嶼觀光發展狀況

七美嶼主要觀光景點除雙心石滬外還有七美燈塔、望夫石、小台灣等,大多數觀光客停留時間多在五個小時以內,超過半數是停留三小時以內,遊客主要從馬公市搭乘公民營交通船或遊艇登島後再租用機車或搭乘巴士做環島景點觀光後即搭船離開,旅遊旺季時一天的遊客量約可達到3000人次,其中又以租用機車為主要交通方式(機車租用1~2小時150元,一天含油250元),島上食宿供應很有限加上提供的觀光活動有限,留宿型遊客數量少。根據七美鄉公所網站資料,七美島上共有三家公司提供巴士環島服務分別是,德奇遊覽車公司、旅行家、順天車行,巴士環島行程統一定價150元 / 人,一趟環島行程約為兩小時。

觀光發展衝突

七美島陸地面積不到七平方公里,島上淡水資源短缺,觀光旺季時每天可以湧入至少3000人以上的遊客人次,長年以來居民不但沒有因為觀光發展得到相對應的好處,卻必須飽受大量觀光客在島上騎機車隨處移動造成的空氣污染和交通問題,遊客在島上製造的大量垃圾也造成環境髒亂問題。

2016年6月30日七美南滬港曾因為觀光船舶進出頻繁,引發漁民不滿,漁船以集體不出海,占據碼頭方式,讓觀光船舶無法靠岸,發動封港抗爭,不只是漁民,飽受觀光負面衝擊困擾的居民也表示支持,希望縣政府能夠拿出辦法解決觀光客造成的負面衝擊。當地民眾抱怨每到旅遊旺季時就會湧進大量觀光客,帶來許多垃圾,卻只有少數觀光業者賺飽飽,鄉民卻飽受生活不便和環境髒亂之苦,早已積怨己久,才會如此團結,集體以封港方式抗爭。顯示出居民對失控的觀光發展早已忍無可忍,此時卻還有縣議員提議要破壞海域生態來擴建碼頭圖利少數遊覽車業者,卻不關心如何有效減少觀光衝擊對居民的影響。

七美 南滬港碼頭 附近的消波塊
七美南滬港碼頭附近的消波塊。圖片來源:海洋公民基金會提供。

除擴建碼頭停車空間引發爭議外,當日七美鄉代會主席張仁和則是特別提出水荒警訊,指稱全鄉近200口淺水井已全部乾涸,地表水庫儲水量也僅剩1%,若是大量觀光客再來島上增加用水量,七美即將面臨無水可用的窘境。

七美嶼在行政院版全國國土計畫與澎湖縣市層級國土計畫草案中都被歸類為海域生態環境條件佳,陸地環境脆弱與觀光承載量低的島嶼,以發展生態與永續觀光為主要的土地利用型態與經濟活動。提議擴建碼頭停車空間以滿足少數觀光業者(三家)需求而破壞海域生態的舉動,十足缺乏對地方與觀光衝擊的理解,而地方居民能夠團結起來捍衛家鄉環境則顯示出七美嶼目前面臨到負面觀光衝擊的嚴重性,本會建議七美鄉公所與鄉代會應盡快與縣府協商,提出解決之道,包括:

  1. 委託學者專家盡快研擬提出遊客總量管制計畫,包括登島人數、觀光型態等永續觀光相關措施以有效控制觀光衝擊;
  2. 針對登島觀光遊客收取環境維護費,用於解決環境髒亂和觀光衝擊等問題;
  3. 島上出租機車改以電動機車,巴士改為電動巴士以減少空氣污染;
  4. 推行遊客垃圾減量措施,減少觀光客在島上的垃圾製造量;
  5. 減少不必要的硬體建設(包括澎管處部分遊憩設施工程)以免破壞環境;
  6. 委託學者專家進駐七美協助發展島嶼生態或深度旅遊相關產業取代現在的大眾旅遊模式,讓觀光發展利益能夠更公平分配給鄉民。
七美嶼基本資料
七美嶼位於澎湖本島南方,距離馬公約29海浬(36公里)東距台南約 48海浬,南下高雄約58海浬。全島總面積約6.99平方公里,面積為澎湖群島第五大島,設籍人口有3853人(平均人口密度550人/平方公里),多數設籍人口並不常住島上,多在台灣與澎湖本島工作或求學。
七美雙心石滬
七美雙心石滬。圖片來源:海洋公民基金會提供。

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