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Archive for the ‘Energy’ Category

Drinking Water & Fracking: Risk Assessment

Wednesday, June 10th, 2015
Figure ES-1. Schematic cross-section of general types of oil and gas resources and the orientations of production wells used in hydraulic fracturing.

UNITED STATES ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY
From our assessment, we conclude there are above and below ground mechanisms by which hydraulic fracturing activities have the potential to impact drinking water resources. These mechanisms include water withdrawals in times of, or in areas with, low water availability; spills of hydraulic fracturing fluids and produced water; fracturing directly into underground drinking water resources; below ground migration of liquids and gases; and inadequate treatment and discharge of wastewater.

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Analysis of the Impacts of the Clean Power Plan

Tuesday, June 9th, 2015
Figure 3. Change in electric power sector CO2 emissions in Clean Power Plan (CPP) cases relative to baseline, selected years

UNITED STATES ENERGY INFORMATION ADMINISTRATION
Power sector CO2 emissions declined by 363 million metric tons between 2005 and 2013, due to a decline in coal’s generation share and growing use of natural gas and renewables, but the CO2 emissions are projected to change only modestly from 2013 through 2040 in the 3 baseline cases used in this report. Relative to the AEO2015 Reference case, the projected emissions trajectory is somewhat lower in the High Oil and Gas Resource case baseline, which has cheaper natural gas, and somewhat higher in the High Economic Growth case, which has higher electricity use.

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North Carolina: The Impact of Electric Choices on Residential Rates & Bills

Wednesday, June 3rd, 2015
Figure 1. North Carolina

NC SUSTAINABLE ENERGY ASSOCIATION
In North Carolina, there are three types of electric power providers that sell electric power to retail customers: investor-owned utilities (IOUs), electric membership corporations, and municipally-owned utilities…Reliable and affordable energy is essential to support businesses, jobs, hospitals, and government services – but it comes at a cost. What makes up these costs and, in turn, customers’ rates is complex.

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Guest on The Infra Blog: Dr. Ernest Moniz, United States Secretary of Energy

Thursday, May 28th, 2015
Dr. Ernest Moniz on The Infra Blog

As United States Secretary of Energy, Dr. Ernest Moniz is tasked with implementing critical Department of Energy missions in support of President Obama’s goals of growing the economy, enhancing security and protecting the environment.

“What we have to do right now is make the investments in building and re-building the energy infrastructure that will be appropriate for the next decades ahead. That will include building infrastructure that is resilient against a whole variety of risks, but it also involves opportunity: the issue in the long term of transitioning to a low-carbon economy, and a tremendous increase in renewables, for example.”

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Renewable Energy and Jobs: Annual Review 2015

Wednesday, May 27th, 2015
Figure 1. Renewable energy employment by technology

INTERNATIONAL RENEWABLE ENERGY AGENCY (IRENA)
IRENA estimates that renewable energy employed 7.7 million people, directly or indirectly, around the world in 2014(excluding large hydropower). This is an 18% increase from the number reported last year. In addition, IRENA conducted the first-ever global estimate of large hydropower employment, showing approximately 1.5 million direct jobs in the sector.

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2015 City Energy Efficiency Scorecard

Tuesday, May 26th, 2015
Figure ES1. City Scorecard rankings

AMERICAN COUNCIL FOR AN ENERGY-EFFICIENT ECONOMY (ACEEE)
As in the last edition, Boston earned the top spot in the 2015 City Scorecard. It received 82 out of a possible 100 points, an improvement of more than 5 points from its 2013 score…Joining Boston in the top five are New York City, Washington, San Francisco, and Seattle. All have wide-ranging efficiency policies and programs and a history of implementing efficiency initiatives. They all have closed the gap with top scoring Boston by scoring at least 75 points. The top five cities were separated by 11.5 points in the 2013 Scorecard. This year they are separated by 7 points.

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Enabling Wind Power Nationwide

Friday, May 22nd, 2015
Figure ES-1. Land area achieving a minimum 30% net capacity factor by grid cell, based on current technology, larger rotor designs and a 140-m hub height

UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY
Today, wind energy provides nearly 5% of the nation’s total electricity generation. With 65 gigawatts (GW) deployed, utility-scale installations in 39 states, and wind power generation exceeding 12% in 11 of those states, wind is a demonstrated clean, affordable electricity resource for the nation. Research and industry experience indicate that wind can be deployed at higher levels while maintaining grid reliability.

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Solar Paneled Roadways Vindicated

Sunday, May 17th, 2015

Last year I wrote a piece discussing the possible use of solar panels as road surfaces. In it I discussed a project by engineer Scott Brusaw intended to take our decaying roadways, contributors to climate change, and repurpose them to become part of the solution. Solar power generating roadways, he argued, could virtually eliminate dependence on carbon emitting fossil fuels for decades to come.

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Tapping Iowa’s Wind Resources to Reduce CO2 Emissions

Thursday, May 7th, 2015
Of particular interest is the corollation especially observable in the 2010 – 2012 years, between the CO2

IOWA WIND ENERGY ASSOCIATION
In a conservative scenario it is estimated that Iowa wind could easily contribute a reduction of 15 million metric tons of carbon dioxide annually to the region outside of Iowa, and in a more optimistic but still moderate scenario Iowa’s contribution could easily be over 36 million metric tons annually.

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Elon Musk Debuts the Tesla Powerwall

Wednesday, May 6th, 2015
Elon Musk Debuts the Tesla Powerwall

Tesla Powerwall Keynote by Elon Musk “The Missing Piece”

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