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A New Approach to Valuing the Benefits and Costs of Distributed Energy Resources

September 30, 2014 by Ryan Katofsky

Distributed Energy Resources

For "Reforming the Energy Vision" (REV) program to be successful, utility regulators need a new framework for benefit-cost analysis (BCA) to accurately assess the full value of Distributed Energy Resources (DER) and to compare it to traditional solutions.[read more]

UN Climate Summit: Could Rising Seas and Coastal Flooding Give Rise to New Legal Category?

September 30, 2014 by Roman Kilisek

Rising Seas and New Law

Rising sea levels could potentially have the most devastating impact on small island states such as the Maldives. These small island states are already negatively impacted and can be expected to be the worst hit by continued rising sea levels – potentially even losing their entire state’s territory to the ocean.[read more]

Latest EIA Report Shows Marked Increase in U.S. CO2 Emissions

September 30, 2014 by Tom Schueneman
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U.S. Emissions Growth

As the World Meteorological Organization recently reported, atmospheric CO2 concentrations have risen to record levels. In line with this report is the latest Monthly Energy Review from the U.S. Energy Information Administration finding that U.S. CO2 emissions have reversed their downward trend.[read more]

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Can Mitigating Global Climate Change be a Free Lunch?

September 29, 2014 by Matthew Stepp
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Krugman and Climate Change Mitigation Costs

Paul Krugman launched the latest salvo in the battle over the economics of climate change when he recently announced: “Saving the planet would be cheap; it might even be free.” But he ignores critical nuances on policy and technology that lead him to the wrong conclusion that climate mitigation is a free lunch.[read more]

How a Top Liberal State Is Creating an Electricity Market That Conservatives Should Love

September 29, 2014 by Stephen Lacey
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Imagine an electricity market that gives small businesses and consumers the same ability to compete and make money that utilities have always had. The market has no explicit technology mandates that require utilities or individuals to "pick winners and losers." It simply sets some basic rules.[read more]

11 Wonktastic Charts that Will Help You Understand Climate Change

September 29, 2014 by Lindsay Wilson
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Climate Change and Information

One of the great shames about the communication of climate science is that it most often comes in two forms. It is either dumbed down to the point of backyard greenhouse analogies, or indigestible on the level of the IPCCs Summary for Policy makers.[read more]

The UN Climate Summit and a Key Issue for the 2015 Paris Agreement

September 29, 2014 by Robert Stavins

World leaders converged at the United Nations in New York City this past week for Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s much anticipated Climate Summit, a lead-up to global negotiations that will take place in Lima, Peru, in December of this year, and culminate a year later in Paris.[read more]

Will U.S.-India Summit Bring Historic Climate Action?

September 29, 2014 by NRDC Switchboard

United States and India Summit

As leaders of the world's largest democracies, the Obama-Modi summit is an opportunity to accelerate climate action in economically advantageous ways for both countries. The United States, India, and the world will benefit enormously if the leaders agree to immediate action to curb climate change.[read more]

Did the UN Summit Shift the Dial?

September 29, 2014 by David Hone
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The UN Climate Summit has come and gone and leaders from many countries have made announcements, pledges or at least offered moral support. But are we any better off as a result? Reflecting on the last few days of meetings, events, panels and speeches in New York, I would have to argue “yes.”[read more]

Future Energy Fellows post

Eye on the Prize: Solar Market Potential in Saudi Arabia

September 28, 2014 by Tanya Malik
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When 13 MW of renewable capacity is installed in the United States, understandably, no one bats an eyelash. When 13 MW of renewable capacity is installed in the Gulf, there’s a multimillion-dollar inauguration party, in true Gulf opulence.[read more]

Creating an Integrated Grid: Regulators, Legislators Can Help

September 28, 2014 by Chris King
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Grid Integration and Regulation

Integrating more distributed power generation and energy storage can help make a grid more flexible, resilient, sustainable and environmentally friendly. But in the U.S., there's a catch -- so far, utilities here are effectively barred from owning generation and storage assets at the distribution level.[read more]

What the McKinsey GHG Abatement Curve Tells us About CDR

September 28, 2014 by Noah Deich
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Abatement Curve and CDR

CDR has begun to emerge out of relative obscurity recently as scientists have grown more confident that we will need to remove carbon from the atmosphere to prevent climate change. But CDR is not a new concept. In fact, there are a handful of CDR approaches that have been hiding in plain sight.[read more]

As Hawaii Prepares for Utility Reform, the State's Solar Industry Sheds 3,000 Workers

September 28, 2014 by Stephen Lacey

Hawaii's solar industry is in a precarious situation. As regulators and the state's utility company prepare to negotiate a sweeping reform plan to support more distributed energy, solar installers are finding it harder than ever to get permits for residential solar projects from the utility.[read more]

People's Climate March: Why We March

September 27, 2014 by Sieren Ernst

Climate Activism

We left at six in the morning from D.C., bleary-eyed and unresponsive to the bus leader who gave us the run down on how the day would go. But by ten o’clock, when the bus rolled into New York City, people were introducing themselves, chatting about their points of origin, reasons for coming.[read more]

Advanced Energy Technology of the Week: Energy Service Company (ESCO) Services

September 27, 2014 by Matt Stanberry

Energy Service Companies

Energy Service Companies reduce customers’ energy use and costs by implementing comprehensive efficiency solutions. This involves retrofitting existing buildings with energy efficient equipment like efficient lighting, heating, AC, and motors, as well as energy management and control systems.[read more]

Energy Quote of the Day: 'Alaska is Going to be the Next Florida'

September 27, 2014 by Jared Anderson

Alaska and Environmental Risk

There is widespread agreement that carbon emissions have significantly increased since the industrial revolution and these emissions are playing a climate-changing role, but the consensus diverges when modeling future climate change effect scenarios.[read more]

Solar in Texas: It's Really Happening this Time (Really)

September 27, 2014 by EDF Energy Exchange
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Texas and Solar

Every year, it seems, is predicted to be the “year for solar,” and for certain states this may ring true. But in Texas, despite having a close relationship with the sun and its heat (2011 gave us 100 days over 100 degrees and no rain), we have yet to realize our potential for solar energy development.[read more]

Low Oil Prices: Sign of a Debt Bubble Collapse, Leading to the End of Oil Supply?

September 27, 2014 by Gail Tverberg
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Oil Prices and Supply Economics

Oil and other commodity prices have recently been dropping. Is this good news, or bad? I would argue that falling commodity prices are bad news. It likely means that the debt bubble which has been holding up the world economy for a very long–since World War II, at least–is failing to expand sufficiently.[read more]

Protecting Us Abroad, Ensuring Energy Independence at Home

September 27, 2014 by NRDC Switchboard

Military and Renewable Energy

Meet one of solar energy’s top advocates: the United States military. Whether it’s on an Air Force base in Arizona or at a U.S. Marine outpost in Afghanistan, many service members know that energy security is critical to our safety abroad and energy independence at home.[read more]

New Formulation Leads to Improved Liquid Battery

September 26, 2014 by Energy @ MIT
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Improved Liquid Battery

Researchers at MIT have improved a proposed liquid battery system that could enable renewable energy sources to compete with conventional power plants. Donald Sadoway and colleagues have already started a company to produce electrical-grid-scale liquid batteries.[read more]