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Primetime Debate: Will an Ultra-High Voltage Transmission Supergrid Solve China's Air Pollution Crisis?

April 23, 2014 by Michael Davidson

China Pollution Crisis and Solutions

It’s hard to imagine coverage of electricity transmission policy here in the U.S. The contrast with Chinese television’s treatment of these issues shows how public concerns over air pollution and renewables are being injected into a decade-old discussion on the relationship between the grid and the state.[read more]

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How Far Can States Go In Supporting Renewable Energy?

April 22, 2014 by Ari Peskoe
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Renewable Energy and States

State policies and legislation promoting the deployment of renewable energy have played important roles in the rapid growth of wind and solar energy. But over the past few years, those policies are increasingly being challenged as unconstitutional.[read more]

Why a Climate Treaty or Carbon Tax Is Unlikely

April 22, 2014 by Steven Cohen
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Treaties and Taxes and Likelihood

For a long time colleagues have argued that we must limit greenhouse gas emissions via a binding international treaty. Often the same colleagues will say that we need to limit emissions by pricing carbon to discourage its use. As economists say: all things held equal; that solution should work.[read more]

The Losing Economics of Investing in Aging Coal Plants: Part 2

April 21, 2014 by NRDC Switchboard
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Investors have projected another bleak year for the US coal industry – but 2014 may be the worst year for coal producers. In contrast, investors are increasingly warming up to the economic viability of alternative energy sources, including energy efficiency, and giving the dirty coal industry the cold shoulder.[read more]

Plotting China's Air Quality: The Good, The Bad, The Un-Breathable [INFOGRAPHIC]

April 21, 2014 by Kate Rosow Chrisman

China Air Pollution

It’s common knowledge that the air in China is bad. After all, the country uses 50% of the world’s coal. But just how bad the air is – is it unhealthy or lightly polluted? – is more than just semantics. It’s been the source of debate and controversy between the US and Chinese governments.[read more]

Mitigation Talk Vs. Mitigation Cost

April 21, 2014 by David Hone
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Mitigation and Future Plans

The last of the three IPCC 5th Assessment Reports has now been published, but with a final Synthesis Report to come towards the end of the year. The “Mitigation of Climate Change” details the various emission pathways that are open to us.[read more]

Is This The End Of China's Coal Boom?

April 21, 2014 by Joseph Romm
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China Coal Boom Ending?

“The End Of China’s Coal Boom,” is a new, must-read, and chart-filled report from Greenpeace. It documents the continuing response of China to the almost unimaginable life-shortening air pollution caused by its rapid growth in coal use.[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]

Fossil Fuels are for Making Stuff

April 16, 2014 by Lindsay Wilson
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Fossil Fuel Makes Stuff

The IPCC has just recently released its third assessment report on mitigating climate change. I have spent the morning reading the full summary, and to help you save a little time I have whittled it down to a six word summary: Fossils fuels are for making stuff.[read more]

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Seeking Consensus on the Internalized Costs of Coal

April 15, 2014 by Schalk Cloete
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Internalized Coal Cost Consensus

This article will gather some data about TEC community views on the global average internalized cost of coal. Please chip in with your opinion so that we can gather a statistically significant sample size and get a meaningful indication of the current consensus (or lack thereof).[read more]

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The Watt Hour, with Guest Eric Maltzer [PODCAST]

April 14, 2014 by Reid Capalino

To assess the re-emergence of climate change as a topic of intense public discussion, I sat down with Eric Maltzer, who for four years worked on clean energy and global climate policy at the US State Department. Our hour-long conversation covers a wide range of topics.[read more]

FirstEnergy CEO: Renewables 'Sound Good' but Should Take Backseat to Coal

April 13, 2014 by Katherine Tweed
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FirstEnergy CEO Anthony Alexander traveled to D.C. this week to speak in front of the Chamber of Commerce about the challenges his utility is facing. With electricity use flatlining and renewable energy eroding margins for traditional generators he called for a renewed focus on fossil fuels.[read more]

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Economic Evaluation of Projects in the Electricity Supply Industry

April 11, 2014 by Hisham Khatib
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Electricity Supply Industry

 

Electricity is versatile, clean to use, easy to distribute and supreme to control. Just as important, it is now established that electricity has better productivity in many applications than other energy forms. This led to the wider utilisation of electricity and its replacement with other forms of energy.[read more]

Friday Energy Facts: Half of Power Plant Capacity Additions in 2013 Came From Natural Gas

April 11, 2014 by U.S. EIA: Today in Energy

Power Plant Capacity Additions

Natural gas-fired power plants accounted for just over 50% of new utility-scale generating capacity added in 2013. Solar provided nearly 22%, a jump up from less than 6% in 2012. Coal provided 11% and wind nearly 8%. Almost half of all capacity added in 2013 was located in California.[read more]

Yes, Climate Change Is Here: Yes, We Can Solve It

April 10, 2014 by Peter Lehner
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Climate Change Risk and Solutions

The latest report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change sounds a piercing alarm about the dangers every nation faces from runaway climate change. Climate change, the IPCC scientists tell us, is already jeopardizing food supplies, water resources, even the stability of nations.[read more]