ERTAC EGU Code v2.2 Available

It is exciting that the new version of the ERTAC EGU code, v2.2, is now available. I have worked on developing the new features for this open source python codebase, that uses EPA and state data to project future emissions from power plants. It was great to work with partners in several states and regional organizations to then test and evaluate the new code.

Full details of the new features are in a README, but some of the things I am particularly excited about are the so called “HIZG” hours and the new fuel/unit types and state input files.

We have found in previous versions that in projections, emissions from startup and shutdowns don’t get maintained. This because in the hourly Clean Air Markets Data (CAMD) that ERTAC EGU relies upon startups and shutdowns have heat input and emissions, but no gross load, though Heat Input Zero Gross load (HIZG). Since there ERTAC EGU projects by growing or shrinking generations due to supplied changes in demand, hours with no generation were simply dropped from consideration. With ERTAC v2.2 those hours can now be maintained. This not only allows startups and shutdowns to be projected to future years, it also is one of two necessary requirements to allow ERTAC EGU to process so called “non-EGUs,” essentially units in CAMD that do not generate power (e.g., oil refineries, steel mills, pulp mills).

The other major improvement is the ability to add new fuel unit types. The code was originally written to limit the user to five fuel/unit types. However, a new input allows users to add fuel/unit types. This was particularly useful to the group to allow non-EGUs to be processed. It also allows some types of power generators to be projected, such as various biomass facilities that were ignored in the original code. With incorporation of other data sources and extensive use of the “demand transfer” functionality one might be able to include renewables, though this was never tested. Also the ability to override the default state.csv file was included, which could allow this tool to be used to subdivide states (for instance to include EGUs within, and outside of, a nonattainment area in a state) or allow this tool to be used in other countries where hourly power plant data can be found.

This is all quite exciting. The new code base is available on github: I hope others can put the code to good use.

Development of a Fuel Economy Based Vehicle Excise Tax in the District of Columbia

Development of a Fuel Economy Based Vehicle Excise Tax in the District of Columbia
2nd Annual Transportation, Air Quality, and Health Symposium – CARTEEH
May 18, 2021
A presentation given to the 2nd Annual Transportation, Air Quality, and Health Symposium – CARTEEH on a project I completed in R.

View the Presentation

Non-Alcoholic IPA Reviews Redux

A little while back I wrote up some reviews of non-alcoholic IPAs.  The first set or reviews is here, and none of them beat Athletic Brewing’s – Run Wild IPA, my favorite from last time (though two come close).

As far as the beers themselves, first off, these are all way better than O’Douls, Kaliber, etc.  I would drink my least favorite of these any day before I ever ordered another Kaliber.  

Once things are back to normal and we can go out again, I do hope that restaurants and bars start to expand their selection to sell some of these brews.  And though I didn’t like all of the ones I have tried, some of them are great, and I am glad that all of them are creating a product that has been missing in the marketplace.

Over the next few months I also am thinking about trying some more of the non-alcoholic gins that are out there.  So maybe we’ll see a review of those at some point.

Pilot Program Single Hop IPA
Available at: Athletic Brewing
Probably $12.99 per six pack (not currently available), free shipping on orders of two or more six packs

This is now the third Athletic product I have tried.  It is hard to top their flagship Run Wild IPA, but this is still a high quality beverage.  It doesn’t have the same full body, but still maintains a subdued refreshing bitterness.  It has an aroma of grapefruit which is enjoyable, without being overpowered by a grapefruit taste.  If you want a good variety of brews to try (and this one come back around) it is worth checking out.

Milkshake IPA
Available at: Surreal Brewing
$12.99 per six pack

Interesting flavor bouquet. Has a strong flavor of cloves with hints of vanilla. Wouldn’t really compare it to a milkshake more of a chai tea latte.  Also lacks a little in fullness. It was a nice change of pace from the more typical IPAs.

Juicy Mavs Hazy IPA
Available at: Surreal Brewing
$12.99 per six pack

I do really like the main hop flavor on this one. It has the right mix of citrus and bitter and has been my favorite of the three Surreal products I have tried. However, it really is just that one flavor, so it lacks the complexity of a typical IPA. I’d definitely get this again if it was readily available locally, but I’d probably opt for the Milkshake IPA if I was going to order through the mail.

Partake IPA
Available at: Partake Brewing
$55 per twenty-four pack, includes shipping

This one tastes like a flat grapefruit soda. Not a fan.

Intentional IPA
Available at: Wellbeing Brewing Company
$10.99 per four pack (pints)

I saved the best for last. The Intentional IPA ios now second favorite. Like Athletic Brewing’s “Run Wild” it reminds me of real IPA, though more citrusy and bit lighter.  I also am a big fan that it comes in pint cans. Usually, I do prefer something richer and deeper, especially during a winter’s day, but this is a great option as the summer nears and has become a regular purchase.


Add Birthday Song to Google Contacts R Script

One of my favorite music columns of the past several years is The Number Ones on Stereogum.  The column is reviewing every single Billboard Hot 100 Number of Hit of all time.  I was looking through my contacts and thought it would be nice to know what someone’s #1 Birthday Song was, because that is the type of person I am (mine was Blondie’s “Call Me” – Tom Breihan gave it a 10/10). 

I thought it would be interesting to have that available for my friends and other network folks,  but I would never want to manually add that information.  So using rvest, I threw together a script that takes a csv downloaded from google contacts, finds every entry with a complete birth date (month, date, and year), and adds a custom field with the song’s name and title.  This data is then exported to a new csv. 

One then needs to make a minor edit to the header so that it looks like the next image (the single “.”s need to be replaced with a ” ” and a the “…”s need to be replaced with a ” – “).  Then the file can be re-imported into google contacts.  You then need to run “merge and fix” on all of these “new” contacts and voila you now can tell your friends what their #1 Birthday Song is.

The script is available here.