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Utilities

A Roadmap to Energy Efficiency in California

March 31, 2015 by Christine Hertzog

The California Public Utilities Commission released a draft document on energy efficiency that functions as a “10 year roadmap to activate market forces and transform California’s existing residential, commercial, and public building stock into high performing and energy efficient buildings.”[read more]

SMRs: Lots of Talk, but DoE's Budget is 1% of Yearly Wind Tax Credit [VIDEO]

March 31, 2015 by Rod Adams

Nuclear Development and Governmental Support

If developing smaller reactors as a tool in the battle against carbon dioxide emissions was as high of a priority for the Administration as one would believe based on the amount of talk given to the topic, it would be logical to have assumed that the DoE would have made additional funds available for research.[read more]

Just Who Are These Investors in Shales?

March 31, 2015 by Deborah Lawrence

Issuing additional shares of stock is a very expensive, and less than ideal, way for a company to get money. And yet, shale companies are issuing new shares at the fastest rate in more than a decade. The first three months of 2015 have seen about $8B in new issuance. But the market appears aberrant.[read more]

In Praise of Cleaner-Burning Gasoline

March 31, 2015 by Severin Borenstein

Gasoline and Environmental Risk

California has seen a price spike over the last month that at one point drove pump prices to a dollar above the rest of the country. We’re used to paying a bit more for gas here — due to higher taxes and the cleaner-burning fuel used only in California — but the difference is usually around 30-40 cents.[read more]

Mideast Nuclear Projects: A Mix of Progress and Perils

March 31, 2015 by Dan Yurman

With a nuclear regulatory structure and agency modeled after the US NRC, the United Arab Emirates announced that its Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation (ENEC) has submitted an application for an operating license for the first two units at the Barakah nuclear power station.[read more]

500 GW for Global Solar Energy in 5 Years, With 30 GW in India

March 31, 2015 by Tobias Engelmeier

According to the researchers at IHS, global solar might hit 500 GW in total installed capacity by 2019. This year, 2015, global solar demand is projected to increase to 75 GW alone, a 66% growth rate against 2014. In 2014, the largest markets were China and Japan.[read more]

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Eight Hurdles to a Proposed Constitutional Amendment for Solar Choice in Florida

March 30, 2015 by Jim Pierobon
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Solar Choice and Ballot Measures in Florida

 

A sea-change is brewing in Florida and is shaping up to be the most closely watched 2016 referendum on any state’s election ballot. Solar advocates are on track to ask voters to permit entities other than monopoly utilities to sell power generated by solar energy systems in the Sunshine State.[read more]

Who Could Benefit Most from Fair Electricity Pricing? Low-Income Customers

March 30, 2015 by EDF Energy Exchange
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Energy Pricing Reform

Urban dwellers, for whom mass transit is a central part of daily life and owning your own rooftop is less common, may view electric cars, rooftop solar, battery storage, and on-site energy generation as appealing, but also abstractions more suitable for upstate homeowners than those living in the city.[read more]

Power Grid of the Future: Distributed Generation Led by a 'Civic' Energy Sector

March 30, 2015 by Roman Kilisek

Future Grid Planning

“What would our energy system look like if the move to a low-carbon society wasn’t left to governments and big energy companies but was instead led by civil society?” asks Dr. Stephen Hall, a Research Fellow in energy economics and policy at the University of Leeds, UK.[read more]

The Energy Gang: The Solar Federal Tax Credit - Will Expiration Kill Jobs or Make Installers Stronger? [PODCAST]

March 30, 2015 by Stephen Lacey
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Federal Solar Subsidies and Industry Risk

The federal investment tax credit has enabled dramatic growth in the United States solar energy industry. But its looming expiration, coming soon in 2017, is causing some within the solar business to ask: will it still be needed to continue that growth?[read more]

Crude Oil Inventories Should Peak Soon

March 30, 2015 by Robert Rapier
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Oil Inventory Peaking?

If the crude oil export ban is repealed all bets are off. A flood of crude oil would be sent for export while we continued to import heavier oils from places like Canada and Venezuela. Crude oil inventories in that case would probably come down rapidly, and crude oil prices would move into a higher trading range.[read more]

Geopolitics and Oil Prices: Between A Rock and a Hard Place

March 30, 2015 by Amy Myers Jaffe

Oil Prices and International Politics

Oil traders currently appear to be hedging themselves against the possibility of a deal between Western countries and Iran on the nuclear question, but doing so misses the increasingly complex forces at play today in oil geopolitics and international relations.[read more]

Extrapolating Deployment Trends for Solar PV

March 30, 2015 by Adam Whitmore
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Solar Trends and the Future

Simple extrapolation of present trends implies around 1800 GW of installed solar PV capacity by 2030, with even faster growth looking possible. Low carbon technologies getting to scale like this, and reducing costs in the process, will help lower the political barriers to increased decarbonization.[read more]

A Roundup of Energy, Water, and Climate Bills in the 84th Texas Legislative Session

March 29, 2015 by Kate Zerrenner

Texas Energy Legislation

We’ve almost made it to the midway point of the 84th Session of the Texas Legislature, so it's a good time to check which climate, clean energy, and energy-water nexus bills have been filed this Session. Here’s a look at a few that are likely to rise to the top, and ones we hope will cross the finish line by June 1st.[read more]

Power Plant Owners can Reduce Emissions with Energy Efficiency: Here's How

March 29, 2015 by NRDC Switchboard
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When the Environmental Protection Agency proposed carbon pollution targets for fossil fuel-fired power plants under the Clean Power Plan last summer, the agency recognized that energy efficiency is a powerful tool for reducing emissions in the electricity sector.[read more]