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Environmental Policy

Hawaii to Test Smart Water Heaters as Grid Resources

November 22, 2014 by Jeff St. John

Hawaii and Smart Water Heaters

Hawaiian Electric is trying out all sorts of distributed energy assets to help it manage its solar-impacted island electricity system, including behind-the-meter batteries, and smart-meter-enabled energy disaggregation. But one of the cheaper grid tools at its disposal could be the ubiquitous electric water heater.[read more]

A Carbon Tax on Me: How to Cut Emissions, Save Money, Invest for the Future and Help End Energy Poverty

November 22, 2014 by David Lawrence
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Amidst politics, hyperbole, gridlock, bipartisanship, skepticism, cynicism, advocacy and denial, we as individuals can feel powerless in making a substantial difference in the world in which we live. Yet each of us can contribute to solving issues which matter most to us.[read more]

Energy Quote of the Day: 'The West Will Have to Recognize we Have the Needs of the Poor'

November 22, 2014 by Jared Anderson

Energy Development and Energy Poverty

Notoriously complex global energy issues encompass science, economics, politics, the environment, demographics and social dynamics. One of the most stubborn problems is finding a way to simultaneously address energy poverty while reducing global carbon dioxide emissions.[read more]

ARPA-C: How an Advanced Research Projects Agency for Carbon could Catalyze Development of the CDR Field

November 22, 2014 by Noah Deich

Research Project Support and CDR

While CDR technologies have been thrust into prominence in the climate change debate, a major problem remains: currently, no CDR technologies exist that are scientifically, technically, and economically proven at the billion+ tonne scale required to prevent climate change.[read more]

Two Years After Sandy, the Conversation Around Energy Resiliency Still Going Strong

November 22, 2014 by EDF Energy Exchange

Disaster Preparedness and Resiliency

New Jersey has made great strides forward and impressive progress toward making the Garden State’s energy infrastructure more resilient in the two years since the damage and flooding from Superstorm Sandy caused a massive weeks-long power outage.[read more]

White House Climate Preparedness Task Force Releases Recommendations and Tools

November 21, 2014 by NRDC Switchboard

The President’s State, Local, and Tribal Leaders Task Force on Climate Preparedness and Resilience rolled out its recommendations recently, and the White House announced a new user-friendly online ‘toolkit’ to help the public and decision-makers.[read more]

The Planet Just Had Its Hottest October On Record

November 21, 2014 by Joseph Romm

October Temperature Records

The Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA) reports that last month was the hottest October in more than 120 years of record-keeping. This follows the hottest September, August, June, and March-May in JMA’s records. Projections by NOAA make clear 2014 is increasingly likely to be hottest year on record.[read more]

Eight Pitfalls in Evaluating Green Energy Solutions

November 21, 2014 by Gail Tverberg
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Green Energy Risks

Some citizens who are concerned about the long-term viability of the electric grid will no doubt want to purchase their own solar systems with inverters and back-up batteries. I won't discourage those who want to do this–the systems may prove to be of assistance. But I see no reason to subsidize these purchases.[read more]

Senate Rejects Bid to Force Approval of Keystone XL Tar Sands Pipeline

November 20, 2014 by NRDC Switchboard
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The U.S. Senate defeated an effort to approve the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline. This bill would have turned Congress into a permitting authority, overriding environmental law, and giving a green light to a pipeline project that would worsen climate change and threaten water quality.[read more]

Obama-Xi Climate Agreement Opens Door to Success in Paris in 2015

November 20, 2014 by Durwood Zaelke

US-China Climate Deal, and Preparing for Paris

 

President Obama's historic agreement Wednesday with President Xi Jinping of China is the kind of bold action needed to reinvigorate the world's efforts to slow and eventually reverse climate pollution. The president has opened the door to success with a global climate agreement in Paris next December.[read more]

Clinton (well, Gore) Went to Kyoto. Obama Went to Beijing

November 20, 2014 by Maximilian Auffhammer
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Obama and International Climate Deals

 

Last week, United States President Obama and China's Premier Xi stood together announcing a deal on emissions reductions between these two great nations. The fact that such a bilateral agreement is possible and sealed with a handshake is a big deal.[read more]

Study Finds no Energy-Related Water Contamination in Bakken Region, But...

November 20, 2014 by Jared Anderson

Bakken Fracking and Water Risk

Oil and gas development in the Williston Basin of North Dakota and Montana has not impacted shallow water resources, according to a new study. However, the age of the groundwater sampled and the sample locations indicate additional research should be conducted to fully evaluate energy production impact.[read more]

Cooling India: Financing the Cost of Transition to Refrigerants with Lower Climate-Change Impact

November 19, 2014 by NRDC Switchboard

At the Montreal Protocol meeting, starting on Monday in Paris, countries could seize one “low hanging fruit” opportunity by agreeing to move forward on phasing down hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), which are potent and fast-growing heat-trapping gases.[read more]

U.S Commits $3 Billion to Green Climate Fund

November 19, 2014 by Tom Schueneman
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Green Climate Fund and Funding

On Friday, sources revealed the Obama administration’s intention to pledge $3 billion to the Green Climate Fund (GCF) to serve as a “call to arms” for focusing attention on climate change at the G20 summit over the weekend in Brisbane, Australia.[read more]

The Importance of the U.S.-China Climate Accord

November 19, 2014 by Steven Cohen

Last week, the US pledged to reduce its greenhouse emissions by 26% from 2005 levels before 2025. China agreed to stop growing its emissions by 2030. Since we don't have a world government and are unlikely to get one soon, we are dependent on the actions of nations if we are to mitigate global warming.[read more]