A collection of thoughts on subjects of my interest.
Solar, Wind Covered Belgium’s Entire Electricity Demand
Our high-voltage transmission operator Elia announced on their LinkedIn page that Belgium provided enough solar and wind electricity on May 29th to cover the country’s entire demand for the first time ever.
Image by Karsten Würth on Unsplash.
The record took place between 1:00 pm and 1:30 pm. Together, solar and wind generated 8.303 MW. For example instead of shutting down windmills if there is too much electricity, a customer oriented market model would mean that everyone can benefit from such low or even negative prices. You would participate in the market by charging your electric car or using your heat pump at moments of excess energy. No, this wouldn't be a hassle as all of this can be done automatically by using an energy management system like Smappee Infinity. You would be financially rewarded when you consume electricity at times when there is a lot of renewable energy and also help keep the grid in balance. The future is all about flexibility.
No Mow May
Like each year I'm taking part in 'No Mow May'. Here in Belgium known as 'Maai Mei Niet'. Well I'm not doing it only in May but the whole year round. We only mow like 3x a year. Why? Well by not mowing your grass in May, you provide a lot of bees and butterflies with crucial food sources.
Flanders has about 2.5 million gardens. They cover 10 to 12 percent of the territory. On average, half of a garden is lawn. So if each of us makes his or her lawn more flowery, even just a little, it can have a big impact. Every square meter of extra blooming flowers provides extra pollen for our insects. Doing nothing has never been so good for our biodiversity.
My most listened album for 2022 is from a Belgian band out of Aalst. According to the Apple Music Replay feature I played this album 28 times in 2022.
Maybe you already guessed that I am referring to a band called 'Intergalactic Lovers'. The band has 4 members, Lara Chedraoui - Brendan Corbey - Maarten Huygens - Raf De Mey. I also enjoyed Lara, the singer as actress in the TV series 'Lost Luggage'. She plays a policewoman that has to return luggage to the relatives of an attack at Brussels Airport. This recent album comes after a 4 year hiatus due to personal setbacks and COVID 19. For me it was my first introduction to the the band. I also didn't know they already made 3 albums before this one. Personally I really like that the electronics are given a more prominent role in their music. In my humble opinion Intergalactic Lovers certainly does not make your average pop songs. The voice of Lara Chedraoui is the band's strongest asset. This album keeps getting better by more listening, hence the 28 times 😀
Give it a listen, you won't regret it.
A Minimal, Modern Black Home
I once saw a wood-burning technique from Japan in the Apple TV series called 'Home'. If I remember correctly it was in Maine and I think it was in season 1. The outside of this house reminds me of that.
This house is the result of architect Geoff Campen and designer Diana Ruiz taking matters into their own hands and designing their own home at The Sea Ranch in Sonoma County, California. Super location with the ocean in front and trees in the back. The roof is quite special. The art/design studio is my favorite.
Riding The Untamed Northwest
I've linked to quite a few movies with Danny MacAskill in my newsletter but usally always on his trail bike. This time it is different though as he is on his Santa Cruz Heckler, built for the rigors of true mountain biking. That's exactly what you'll see in the brutal beauty of the Northwest of Scotland.
Don't wait, go enjoy it!
One of the cutest and best looking and super cute electric city car is The Microlino. You can safely call this the rebirth of the BMW Isetta. Designed in Switzerland by Wim, Oliver and Merlin Ouboter.
The Microlino weighs only 500 kg, less bulky than a car (barely 2.5 meters long!) but a lot more comfortable than a two-wheeler. The two-seater will feature a 25-hp motor drawing power from a choice of three batteries, offering 6-, 10.5-, and 14-kWh capacities, which are expected to be good for 95 km, 175 km and 230 km of range, respectively. Charging it would take 3 to 4 hours via a normal socket (depending on the type of battery). The tiny headlights are attached to the wings like feelers and shine with LED technology - giving the Microlino a unique light signature at night. All in all a wonderful piece of design. Base price in Belgium is 17.990 Euro.