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Four Years After BP Oil Disaster Many Lessons Remain Unlearned

April 20, 2014 by Frances Beinecke

BP Oil Disaster and Lessons Unlearned

Four years ago this weekend, the Deepwater Horizon rig exploded, killing 11 men and sending 170 million gallons of oil into the Gulf of Mexico. I flew over the site after the blowout and was stunned by the vast reach of the oil and the enormous scale of the response effort.[read more]

Java for the Grid Edge: From Blu-Ray Players to Smart Grid Devices

April 19, 2014 by Jeff St. John

Java and the Grid

The long-promised goal of embedding open, flexible computing power in all types of smart grid devices is starting to be realized in 2014. Open platforms are being introduced. Multi-vendor partnerships driven by utilities are creating new ways for technology to interact on the grid edge.[read more]

Excitons Observed in Action for the First Time

April 19, 2014 by Energy @ MIT

Solar Tech Advancements

A quasiparticle called an exciton — responsible for the transfer of energy within devices such as solar cells, LEDs, and semiconductor circuits — has been understood theoretically for decades. But exciton movement within materials has never been directly observed.[read more]

Energy Quote of the Day: ‘We Will Create Our Own Oil Company’

April 19, 2014 by Jared Anderson
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Oil Industry Changes

The changing global oil refining picture has seen several mid-range to large companies spin off their downstream operations in recent years, but the trend has yet to travel up the food chain to the world’s largest oil companies, despite pressure from investors to do so.[read more]

The EPA Gives Us 25 Ways to Limit Climate Change

April 19, 2014 by Sarah Battaglia

The earth is getting warmer. There’s no doubt about that. The average temperature of our planet rose 1.4°F over the last 100 years, and is expected to continue on that path over the next 100 years. Some are even predicting an increase by as much as 11.5°F.[read more]

Whiplashed by Weather?

April 19, 2014 by A Siegel

Weather Whiplash

Drastic shifts in weather (from beautiful sunny skies to dark menacing ones, from t-shirt frisbee temperatures to parka-wearing cold, etc.) are natural. Humanity, however, has recently been putting its thumb directly on the scales of what can be considered “natural.”[read more]

The Value of Natural Gas in Asia, After Gastech and OTC Asia

April 18, 2014 by Neil Gilmour

At Gastech 2014, Shell displayed renderings of its Prelude FLNG project, being built at the Samsung Heavy Industries Shipyard in Geoje, South Korea

The world’s population is growing by approximately 200,000 people every day. By 2050, there will be over 9 billion people on the planet, compared to 7 billion today. In Asia specifically, we are seeing a historic transformation as countries move from rural to urban societies. Neil Gilmour writes about Shell's vision for natural gas in the region.[read more]

Study Ties Epic California Drought, 'Frigid East' To Manmade Climate Change

April 18, 2014 by Joseph Romm
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Climate Change Effects

Natural variability alone cannot explain the extreme weather pattern that has recently driven both the record-setting California drought, and also the cooler weather seen across most of the Midwest and East this winter, a major new study finds.[read more]

Loan Guarantees Are Back: DOE Targets 'Catalytic' Grid Integration Technology

April 18, 2014 by Stephen Lacey
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Three years after the Department of Energy issued its last loan guarantee to a renewable energy project, the program is officially back in action. Ending a long hiatus, the DOE indicated that it would finally use the remaining $1.5 billion allocated by Congress for loans to clean energy project developers.[read more]

Report Challenges EIA's Renewable Energy Projections

April 18, 2014 by Tom Schueneman
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Renewables and the Future

New research that was recently released by the SUN DAY Campaign challenges the U.S. Energy Information Administration’s (EIA) assertion that only 16 percent of United States electrical generation in 2040 will come from renewable sources of energy.[read more]

Friday Energy Facts: Gulf Coast Crude Oil Inventories Reach Record Level

April 18, 2014 by U.S. EIA: Today in Energy

Gulf Coast Oil Inventories

Crude oil inventories on the U.S. Gulf Coast reached 207.2 million barrels on April 11, a record high. The levels are the result of the continuing strong crude oil production growth, the opening of TransCanada's Marketlink Pipeline, and a drop in crude oil inputs at USGC refineries as a result of seasonal maintenance.[read more]

Oil Price Leverage Over Russia in Ukraine Crisis

April 18, 2014 by Roman Kilisek
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Oil Price Leverage Over Russia

Following Russian annexation of the Crimean Peninsula, tensions between the West and the Kremlin have been dangerously simmering. Meanwhile, the spotlight has moved to Eastern Ukraine where unmarked soldiers appear to be keen on destabilizing the situation further.[read more]

New EU State Aid Guidelines for Energy and Renewables "Needed to Reach Climate Objectives," Claims Commission [VIDEO]

April 18, 2014 by Kasper Peters

EU State Aid Guidelines

Jennifer Baker, leading journalist at viEUws.eu, is joined by Pia Ahrenkilde Hansen, spokeswoman of the European Commission, to discuss the new State Aid Guidelines on Energy & Environmental Aid that will provide new criteria for the support of energy and environmental projects.[read more]

EPA Gets Started on Curbing Heat-Trapping Methane from Oil and Gas Operations

April 17, 2014 by David Doniger
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The EPA recently took the first step promised under President Obama’s Strategy to Reduce Methane Emissions, released last month. The EPA issued a set of white papers examining five big sources of heat-trapping methane and other dangerous air pollutants from the oil and gas sector.[read more]

Building Genome Project: Retroficiency Takes a City-Wide Approach to Efficiency

April 17, 2014 by Katherine Tweed

Building Genome

If more than 30,000 commercial buildings in New York City adjusted their thermostats just one degree upward in summer and one degree lower in winter, the savings would add up to $145 million dollars annually. That finding is just one gleaned from Retroficiency’s new Building Genome project.[read more]

Climate Change Drying Out Southwest Now, With Worse To Come For A Third Of The Planet

April 17, 2014 by Joseph Romm

Southwest Drying Out

Two new studies confirm that warming-driven climate change is already drying the U.S. Southwest and other parts of the globe. More worrisome, nearly a third of the world’s land faces drying from rising greenhouse gases — including two of the world’s greatest agricultural centers.[read more]

How Do You Justify Consuming ExxonMobil's Oil?

April 17, 2014 by Robert Rapier
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There is a risk of misinterpretation with this article, so I want to spell out my intent up front. This should not be read as a defense of ExxonMobil or their business practices, because that’s not what it is. It’s an attempt to get the reader to understand how they think, and why they do the things they do.[read more]

Floating Nuclear Plants Could Ride Out Tsunamis

April 17, 2014 by Energy @ MIT

Floating Nuclear Plants

When an earthquake and tsunami struck the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant complex in 2011, neither the quake nor the inundation caused the ensuing contamination. Rather, it was the aftereffects, the lack of cooling for the reactor cores due to a shutdown of all power, that caused the harm.[read more]

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Russian Gas Exports and Western Encroachments on Russia

April 17, 2014 by Willem Post
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According to Russian leaders, after the demise of the USSR, when Russia was in disarray under Gorbachev and Yeltsin, Europe and US leaders, brushing aside historic Russian geo-political interests as irrelevant, took geo-political advantage by steadily expanding NATO and the EU into East Europe.[read more]

Abbot's Systematic Destruction of Solar Energy Support in Australia Continues

April 17, 2014 by Nigel Morris
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The rationale behind the Abbott Government’s incessant unravelling of support for solar power is unclear. What is clear is that almost every single day, we find another example of their systematic destruction of an opportunity that many countries would be jumping at.[read more]