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Cheap Nuclear

UC Berkeley's Per Peterson Pursues Radical New Design with Off-the-Shelf TechnologiesWhat is the best design to make next generation nuclear reactors safer and cheaper? That’s the question everyone from Bill Gates to the Chinese government is asking...

Posted May 5, 2014    

Can Geoengineering Save the Planet?

Two Climate Scientists Debate Pros and Cons of Climate EngineeringThe concept of geoengineering, whereby humans artificially moderate the Earth’s climate, is not the sexiest sounding topic, but a small group of scientists say it might be able to...

Posted January 24, 2014    

Chinese Nuclear Energy and the Future of Innovation

Over the past few years I've given the New York Times’ Justin Gillis a (deserved) hard time for some of his reporting. I'm now happy to given him some well-earned praise on the occasion of his first monthly column at the Times...

Posted March 15, 2013    

Air Pollution Decline Thanks to Gas Boom

The wild artistic license of movies like Gasland notwithstanding, the common feeling in the media and, therefore, among the public, is that fracking is causing significant environmental damage (Energy Justice). However, it seems that fracking may be...

Posted March 5, 2013    

Obama Aims for Nuclear Breakthroughs

 Two years ago, some thought that the nuclear energy had been leveled. But the industry today is picking up steam by getting construction licenses to build four new units and by getting government funding to develop smaller nuclear reactors...

Posted February 16, 2013    

‘No Clinically Observable Effects’ From Fukushima Radiation: UN

A very big report came out last month with very little fanfare.  It concluded what we in nuclear science have been saying for decades – radiation doses less than about 10 rem (0.1 Sv) are no big deal. The linear no-threshold dose hypothesis (...

Posted February 15, 2013    

Al Gore’s Nuclear Power Hypocrisy

I recently had the pleasure of reading Al Gore’s latest volume, The Future. This not particularly tightly written book has among other things a section on biotechnology that shows that Gore’s attachment to science is somewhat fleeting. Of particular...

Posted February 13, 2013    

America’s Nuclear Energy Future

When it comes to nuclear energy, Dr. Burton Richter is Mr. Credible. Winner of the 1976 Nobel Prize for discovering a new sub-atomic particle, Richter has advised presidents and policymakers for almost 40 years. Richter has been a Breakthrough...

Posted January 25, 2013    

Germany's Energy Transition: A Squandered Opportunity?

My conclusion so far is that unfortunately Germany’s ‘renewables revolution’ is at best making no difference to the country’s carbon emissions, and at worst pushing them marginally upwards. Thus, tens (or even hundreds, depending on who you believe...

Posted January 23, 2013    

Europe’s Climate Change Fail

Despite its green credentials, Europe has ramped up its consumption of coal. Ironically, the very policies that the continent has built its environmentalist reputation on — vigorous support for renewables — may be crowding out its best chances for...

Posted January 16, 2013    

Diversifying the Climate Movement

At Politico today, there is an important article focusing on the inability of the environmental movement -- for the most part -- to move beyond a primarily white, liberal base and to engage minority communities.  As Politico's Talia Buford...

Posted January 10, 2013    

Let Them Eat Solar Panels

Imagine the United States sending low-calorie food aid to Ethiopia in response to the global obesity epidemic. Absurd, right? Even if global waistline trends are worrisome, Ethiopians didn't create the problem. Such a policy would be futile since it...

Posted December 18, 2012