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Sustainable Shipping and EPA's Truck Mileage Standards

June 2, 2015 by Steven Cohen

Trucks and GHG Emissions

Fuel efficient trucks will cost $12,000-$14,000 more than today's less efficient trucks, but given the amount of gas used by these vehicles and the amount of ground they cover, that cost will be recovered in less than two years.[read more]

Are Policymakers Driving Blind with Yesterday's Energy Cost Numbers?

June 2, 2015 by America's Power Plan

Energy Numbers and Policy

One of the most striking features of today’s modern energy economy is the pace and scale at which new technologies are changing an industry used to a much slower pace of evolution. Policymakers used to operating in an environment where capital deployment happens over the course of years.[read more]

Hero Worship of a Corporate Welfare King - Elon Musk

June 2, 2015 by Rod Adams
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Government Subsidies and Clean Energy

Musk has been an enormous beneficiary of government largess and some of his enterprises would close their doors tomorrow if the subsidy spigot that supports them was turned down even a little bit.[read more]

Water, the West, and the Clean Power Plan

June 2, 2015 by Tom Plant

Water and EPA Regulations

While much of the attention related to EPA’s Clean Power Plan is focused, appropriately, on the emissions and economic benefits of the new standards, a report just released by the CNA Corporation identified another benefit that may end up being worth more than all the other impacts combined: water.[read more]

Is Vaclav Smil a Pessimist or Voice of Uncomfortable Truths?

June 2, 2015 by Tracey Durning

Vaclav Smil was accused of being a “pessimist" because of his recent article titled 'Revolution? More like a Crawl'. The title doesn't reek of optimism, but the article acknowledges the advances being made in today's energy landscape, yet refrains from turning that reality into a narrative of solving climate change.[read more]

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Can Obama's Proposal to Reduce Total GHG Emissions by 26% be Achieved?

June 1, 2015 by John Miller
6

Obama and Greenhouse Emissions

President Obama recently announced plans to commit the United States to reducing total greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by at least 26 percent. Is this U.S. GHG reduction commitment reasonably achievable over the course of the next 10 years?[read more]

No Climate Change Progress without 'Climate Proofing' and Funding for Asia's Developing Countries

June 1, 2015 by Roman Kilisek

Asia and Climate Risk

The Asian Development Bank recently called for “climate proofing” – to borrow a term used by Preety Bhandari, who heads ADB’s Climate Change and Disaster Risk Management Unit – low-lying or coastal cities in Asia requiring the trifecta of sound integrated planning, adequate resources and political commitment.[read more]

Nearly Half of Western U.S. Power Plants Vulnerable to Climate Change

June 1, 2015 by Katherine Tweed
1

Power Plant Risk

The desert Southwest will be the hardest hit.

The ever-worsening effects of climate change could hamper electric generating capacity in the Western United States during peak summertime energy use by about 3 percent on average, and up to nearly 9 percent if there is ongoing drought.[read more]

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Electric Utilities Must Steer Clear Of Never-Never Land

June 1, 2015 by Dennis Wamsted
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Electric Utilities

Reporters spend a great deal of time reading—so much so that at times the corporate PR begins to blend together, blah, blah, blah, I’ve heard it all before. But a press release I read this week from Akron, Ohio-based FirstEnergy Corp. snapped me back to reality.[read more]

Heat Wave Preparedness in Action: What Ahmedabad is Doing Right Now

June 1, 2015 by NRDC Switchboard

India Heat Risk

The tragic heat wave in India - with a current death toll over 1,800 - has raised a lot of attention to the dire threat of rising temperatures. The question many are asking is, what can local governments do to prepare for future heat waves and mitigate the terrible effects of heat on people?[read more]

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Fossil Fuels Without the CO2: Can Carbon Capture and Storage Deliver? [PODCAST]

May 31, 2015 by Amelia Smith

Carbon capture and storage technology promises to deliver fossil energy without the CO2. Able to capture and permanently sequester carbon emissions from power plants, oil field operations, or other concentrated sources of CO2, the technology may be a critical tool in efforts to build a lower-carbon energy system. With several large-scale...[read more]

How Dark Matter and Nanotechnology can Help Transform the Global Energy System

May 29, 2015 by Jared Anderson
3

Dark Matter and Nanotech and the Future

It can be overwhelming to look at the world’s looming energy and climate challenges, but Dr. Franklin (Lynn) Orr, Under Secretary for Science and Energy at the US Department of Energy remains optimistic despite the complexity of these dilemmas.[read more]

Friday Energy Facts: Renewable Share of U.S. Energy Consumption Highest Since 1930s

May 29, 2015 by U.S. EIA: Today in Energy

Renewables Consumption Share

Renewable energy accounted for 9.8 percent of the total United States domestic energy consumption in 2014. This marks the highest renewable energy share since the 1930s, when wood was a much larger contributor to domestic energy supply.[read more]

Catalyzing Major Climate Actions by All Key Players Around the World this Year

May 29, 2015 by Jake Schmidt

Progress on climate change can seem depressingly slow--especially to young people full of energy and expectation. But look closer and you can see progress everywhere. Clean energy is both technically and economically viable, and it's challenging dirty energy around the world.[read more]

Faulty Logic Drives Fallin's Decision On Wind Incentives

May 29, 2015 by Dennis Wamsted

Wind Power Tax Exemption/Shutterstock

Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin signed a bill last week that will eliminate a state-wide property tax exemption for wind power developers beginning in 2017. The move will save the state on the order of $30 million annually.[read more]

Water, the West, and the Clean Power Plan

May 29, 2015 by Coley Girouard
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Power Generation and Water Consumption

Energy is a water intensive business. Thermal power plants need massive amounts of water for cooling. In Texas, during the most intense period of the recent drought, demand for water by energy sources rose 9% while the state’s reservoirs were at less than 50% of their capacity.[read more]

Will Silicon Valley Take On Clean Energy Access?

May 29, 2015 by Justin Guay

Clean Energy Access

With interest from Elon Musk to a16z's Steven Sinofsky, momentum in Silicon Valley may be heading in an unlikely direction -- towards addressing energy poverty. Energy poverty, which affects 1.2 billion people around the world who lack access to electricity, is the greatest challenge of our time.[read more]

Oh, happy day! Clean Water Rule adopted!

May 29, 2015 by NRDC Switchboard

EPA and Clean Water

One in three Americans - a total of 117 million of us -- relies on public drinking water systems that draw supply from headwater, seasonal, or rain-dependent streams.[read more]

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EIA Details Utility Sector Impact of Clean Power Plan

May 28, 2015 by Andy Stone

Clean Power Plan and Generation Mix

The Energy Information Administration (EIA) provides a snapshot of the extent to which EPA’s plan will accelerate the decline of domestic coal fired generation, coal production, and provide a tail wind for natural gas and renewables.[read more]

A Look at Wind and Solar, Part 2: Is There An Upper Limit To Variable Renewables?

May 28, 2015 by Jesse Jenkins
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Grid Limits to Renewable Energy Integration

As our journey through the world’s variable renewable energy leaders illustrates, while wind and solar have come a long way, they have only recently reached double-digit penetration at the grid-wide level in a couple of places.[read more]