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Communications and Messaging

Climate of Incivility

Raul Grijalva, a Democratic Congressman from Arizona, sent letters to seven university presidents, asking them to release information on funding sources for university professors. One of the professors under investigation is Roger Pielke, Jr. The problem is that Grijalva’s beef with Pielke is plainly ideological.[read more]

If Time-Variant Electricity Pricing Offers So Many Benefits, Why Don’t We Have More of It?

March 5, 2015 by EDF Energy Exchange

Time-Variant Electricity Benefits

Most residential electricity customers are charged the same price regardless of when the electricity is being used. Charging customers a uniform price for electric service looks a bit like buying groceries by the cart instead of by the items purchased – simple, to be sure, but so riddled with inefficiencies.[read more]

Following the Nest Path to Energy Efficiency

March 5, 2015 by Matt Conway

Home Energy Efficiency

The Nest thermostat is notable for matching the use of heating and air conditioning equipment to actual times of building occupancy and intuitively adjusting the temperature to a desirable level. Noticeably absent is the ability to optimize the inner workings of the equipment that is connected to the thermostat.[read more]

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The Bottom Line on Nuclear Energy

March 5, 2015 by David Hess
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Existing nuclear power plants are extremely valuable societal assets. Shutting them down in the absence of compelling economic or technical reasons is folly. Make no mistake. Closing well-performing nuclear plants before it is technically necessary costs society dearly.[read more]

And the World's Most Sustainable City Is...

March 4, 2015 by Roman Kilisek
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Urban Sustainability

A city is more that just a place where a concentrated group of people live and work. And as more of the world’s population gravitates toward city living, these urban centers must cater to their population’s myriad needs with sustainable solutions like never before.[read more]

Why Did Apple Pay So Much for 130 MW of Solar? Is Google Part of the Answer?

March 4, 2015 by Catherine Wolfram
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Apple Solar Investment

Sometimes, we write blog posts that pose rhetorical questions in the title. This time, I have real questions concerning Apple and First Solar announcing that Apple was paying $848 million for 25 years of the output of a 130 MW block of First Solar’s California Flats project in SE Monterey County.[read more]

Nuance or Nuisance: the Challenge of State-Level Incentives in Renewable Energy Development

States and Renewables Policy

A market closes, a market opens – such are the sharp ups and downs currently inherent to renewables development. Incentives in the US are currently decided at the state level. This adds challenge to an already inherently complex business, and more should be done to create parallel structures across state lines.[read more]

What is Prosumer Value to Utilities?

March 3, 2015 by Christine Hertzog

The Age of the Prosumer presents challenges for utilities used to thinking of their customers in terms of kilowatthours consumed. The Smart Grid is responsible for these challenges, borne out of technology, policy, and capital innovations. These innovations trigger many disruptions to the utility business model.[read more]

Petroleum Refinery Outage in California Highlights Markets' Quick Price Reaction

March 3, 2015 by U.S. EIA: Today in Energy

Refinery Outages and Price Reactions

On February 18, an explosion and fire occurred at ExxonMobil's refinery in Torrance, California. The Torrance refinery is an important source of gasoline and distillate fuel oil supply for Southern California. Unplanned refinery outages can have noticeable effects on liquid fuel markets.[read more]

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Business Leaders Recommendations for Restoring American Energy Innovation Leadership

March 3, 2015 by Jason Burwen

Energy Innovation and Leadership

Critical federal investments in energy innovation have remained unchanged since 2010, as detailed by the AEIC in its third report, which finds that Congress and the Administration have a mixed record on implementing their recommendations to promote energy innovation.[read more]

Be Careful About Rose-Colored Glasses When Viewing the Future of SMRs

March 3, 2015 by Dan Yurman
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Following another year of turbulence a casual observer of the nuclear industry may be forgiven for concluding that Small Modular Reactor (SMR) development has stalled, but a new report a new sense of clarity and purpose is emerging around the technology’s commercialization.[read more]

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Can Oregon Go Coal Free By 2025?

March 2, 2015 by Silvio Marcacci
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Oregon Energy Policy and Coal

Is Oregon about to kick its coal habit? Even though the state has an ambitious renewable portfolio standard, ranks second in the US for hydropower generation, and is a signatory to the landmark Pacific Coast Action Plan on Climate and Energy, it still receives a surprising 33% of its overall electricity from coal.[read more]

Nuclear Communication

March 2, 2015 by Suzanne Waldman
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Whenever I tell people that I research nuclear communication, they almost invariably say the same thing: "Now there is an industry that could very much learn to communicate better.” It’s a realization coming home to the nuclear industry itself.[read more]

The IEA's Central Projections for Renewables Continue to Look Way Too Low

March 2, 2015 by Adam Whitmore
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IEA Projections for Renewables

The IEA’s projections for wind energy and solar energy capacity look much too low, continuing a history of vastly underestimating renewables growth. Their projections are not a reliable basis for projecting the world’s future power generation mix.[read more]

The IPCC at a Crossroads

March 2, 2015 by Robert Stavins

Love it or hate it, the IPCC plays a very important role in global climate change policy around the world. This is because the IPCC's reports are accepted as the definitive source on all matters climate change by international negotiators. The IPCC is now at a crossroads.[read more]