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Energy and Economy

How Wind Energy Helps Keep The Lights On Despite Variable Winds

March 6, 2015 by Michael Goggin
6

Renewables and Intermittency

 

Wind energy can help reliably meet a large portion of the electricity needs of the United States today. That means that states can turn to renewables like wind energy to meet the Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan to reduce carbon pollution.[read more]

The New (and Improved) Electric Grid in California

March 6, 2015 by NRDC Switchboard
2

California Electric Grid

 

During the day, California routinely gets more than 15 percent of its power needs from solar energy, which produces no harmful air pollution. That's enormously helpful for our environment and public health. It also means that the people who operate the grid don't need to find as much electricity elsewhere.[read more]

Advanced Energy Technology of the Week: Offshore Wind Power

March 6, 2015 by Maria Robinson

Offshore Wind

Offshore wind turbines are located on bodies of water where there is access to stronger wind resources than are typically available on land. These turbines convert the kinetic energy of the wind to electricity with no greenhouse gas emissions. Generally, these turbines are fixed directly to the sea floor.[read more]

Cheaper Crude Oil Helps Defense Department Get Jet Fuel 'Bargain'

March 6, 2015 by Jared Anderson

Defense Department Fuel Purchases

The US Department of Defense recently announced its latest round of annual jet fuel contracts and the bill came to almost $4 billion. That’s down about 20 percent from the last time the DOD awarded similar contracts and the military can thank cheaper crude oil for the discount.[read more]

Friction at the Grid Edge: Hawaii's PUC Orders HECO to Approve Solar Rooftops

March 6, 2015 by Eric Wesoff

Hawaii and Rooftop Solar

The latest skirmish in the Hawaiian solar power struggle stems from a letter sent out last week by HECO to 50 Big Island residents that suggested that until the islands' net energy metering policy is settled, interconnection approval of new PV would be on hold, according to a report on KHON Honolulu.[read more]

The UT Methane Studies: Critique and Response

March 6, 2015 by EDF Energy Exchange

Methane Study Response

People paying close attention to the growing body of research on methane emissions from the oil and gas industry may note of a recent exchange in Environmental Science & Technology (ES&T) between Mr. Touché Howard and a team of scientists lead by Dr. David Allen of the University of Texas.[read more]

Friday Energy Facts: Oil Production in Federal Gulf of Mexico Expected to Continue Increasing

March 6, 2015 by U.S. EIA: Today in Energy

Gulf Oil Production

Because of the long timelines associated with Gulf of Mexico (GOM) projects, the recent downturn in oil prices is expected to have minimal direct impact on GOM crude oil production through 2016. EIA projects GOM production to reach 1.52 million barrels per day (bbl/d) in 2015 and 1.61 million bbl/d in 2016.[read more]

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]

How Much Do You Know About Your Electric Utility?

March 5, 2015 by Coley Girouard

Utility Structure

Does your utility sell you power from its own power plants, or procure power on the open market on your behalf? Do you have the right to shop around for your electric power among competitive providers? Do other states do this the same way? Do you even know?[read more]

New York Calls for Utilities to Accelerate Distributed Energy With New Platforms and Partners

March 5, 2015 by Katherine Tweed

New York’s Reforming the Energy Vision initiative has been a bold vision for how a power system will be transformed, albeit one with a murky timeframe. More details emerged about how New York will go from its current structure to one where distribution utilities are platform providers for a distributed energy system.[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
7

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]

Energy Quote of the Day: Distributed Generation Needed to Strengthen Power Grid

March 5, 2015 by Edward Dodge
1

Distributed Generation and the Grid

The electric power grid is based on an outdated hub-and-spoke architecture of centralized power production and distribution through transmission wires. This system is highly vulnerable to attacks at multiple points, and failures at critical nodes could create cascading failures and widespread power outages.[read more]

Stranded Assets in Oil and Gas a Reality

March 5, 2015 by Deborah Lawrence
11

Oil and Gas Asset Utilization

A few years ago a friend asked me about the possibility of stranded assets in oil and gas due to climate change. This was an interesting idea coming out of the UK. Since then, the idea has gained traction. What is emerging is that stranded assets are not going to happen merely because of climate change.[read more]