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Archive for the ‘Energy’ Category

The Economics of Grid Defection

Tuesday, March 4th, 2014
The Economics of Grid Defection

Distributed electricity generation, especially solar PV, is rapidly spreading and getting much cheaper. Distributed electricity storage is doing the same, thanks largely to mass production of batteries for electric vehicles. Solar power is already starting to erode some utilities’ sales and revenues. But what happens when solar and battery technologies are brought together? Together they can make the electric grid optional for many customers—without compromising reliability and increasingly at prices cheaper than utility retail electricity. Equipped with a solar-plus-battery system, customers can take or leave traditional utility service with what amounts to a “utility in a box.”

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The Hudson Valley’s “Virtual Pipeline”: Carrying Crude Oil by Train

Friday, February 28th, 2014
The Hudson Valley’s “Virtual Pipeline”: Carrying Crude Oil by Train

A new “virtual pipeline” carries crude oil by train through Hudson Valley communities including Albany, Kingston, Newburgh, Haverstraw and West Nyack, New York.
Carrying crude oil by train risks “major loss of life, property damage, and environmental consequences,” the NTSB said in the wake of a series of accidents, derailments and explosions.

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Renewable Energy for Military Installations

Friday, February 28th, 2014
Renewable Energy For Military Installations

As the single largest consumer of energy in the U.S., the Department of Defense (DoD) has embarked on an ambitious program of expanded renewable energy generation on bases and in the field, with a goal of producing 25% of its energy from renewable sources by 2025.

Renewable energy is not just a “policy objective” for the armed forces, but also an “operational imperative.” The deployable and decentralized energy production possibilities offered by renewable sources, and by enabling technologies like microgrids, have tremendous implications for the safety, security, and effectiveness of the military. Renewable energy and efficiency improvements can increase warfighter capability, enhance the energy security of its installations, and cut operational and military base energy costs.

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How Plug-In Electric Vehicles Work

Thursday, February 27th, 2014
How Plug-In Electric Vehicles Work

Considering an electric vehicle? Or just want to learn more about them? This short video describes how electric vehicles and different types of plug-in hybrid electric vehicles work. Learn where to find information on a vehicle’s driving range, how to charge your vehicle, and how driving an electric vehicle could save you money in fuel costs and reduce air pollution.

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Interactive Infographic: 100% Renewable Energy Benefits in the 50 States

Tuesday, February 25th, 2014
The Solutions Project: 50 Plans, 50 States

This interactive infographic from The Solutions Project gives you a glimpse into the future of renewable energy. By analyzing each state’s renewable-energy potential, The Solutions Project was able to predict which types of renewable energy could contribute to meeting each state’s energy needs, in a future where fossil fuels and nuclear power are no longer options. Each state’s profile includes additional effects of switching to renewables, like reduced mortality and illness costs, and the percentage of land needed for wind, water and solar projects.

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Heavy Traffic Still Ahead

Friday, February 21st, 2014
Figure 4 - Casselton, North Dakota Oil Train Derailment

The Western Organization of Resource Councils (WORC) is a regional network of grassroots community organizations with 10,000 members and 38 local chapters. WORC member organizations are: Dakota Rural Action; the Dakota Resource Council; the Northern Plains Resource Council; Oregon Rural Action; the Powder River Basin Resource Council; and the Western Colorado Congress. WORC’s mission is to advance the vision of a democratic, sustainable, and just society through community action. WORC is committed to building sustainable environmental and economic communities that balance economic growth with the health of people and stewardship of their land, water, and air resources.

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Interactive Map: Wind Farms of America

Thursday, February 20th, 2014

The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) created this sleek, highly functional interactive map to illustrate the country’s vast network of wind turbines. Vital stats are available for each site, and you can filter results by unique parameters like total height, capacity and blade length. Wind energy aficionados, stakeholders and curious citizens couldn’t ask for a better visualization of our at-home wind farm network.

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Energy Efficiency and Technologies in America’s Cities

Wednesday, February 19th, 2014
Technologies Receiving Top Priority by Cities within Two Years

Cities were asked to describe their one “top priority” in their own words, rather than selecting from multiple choice answers, the format used for nearly all other questions in this survey. Ninety-one percent of all cities participating in the survey – 263 out of 288 cities – responded to this question, with the responses as shown above grouped by categories. The “All other” category captures several additional response categories, including cogeneration, waste-to-energy, and water treatment technologies.

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The Clean Trillion: Closing The Clean Energy Investment Gap

Friday, February 14th, 2014
FIgUre 1: The Clean energy InvesTmenT gap

This paper refers to the necessary additional investment in clean energy as the “Clean Trillion.” Current annual investment in clean energy falls far short of this goal. In 2012, global investment in clean energy (as defined by Bloomberg New Energy Finance) was $281 billion—and in 2013 this figure is expected to be even lower. Simply put, there is a clean energy investment gap.

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Strategic Directions: Utility Automation and Integration

Friday, January 31st, 2014

Since the rollout of the first smart grid programs, there has been a realization that automation and “smart” programs benefit all types of utilities and infrastructure systems. Gas and water smart grids, for example, will result in more efficient storage, improved distribution, reductions in system losses and expanded customer engagement.

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