How Should We Be Moving Oil?

Posted by
June 30, 2014 at 5:37 PM Filed Under: Critical Policy Issues, Discussions

oil-train2As the oil boom outgrows the US pipeline network, the oil industry is increasingly using alternatives such as rail to transport crude oil across the country. Between 2008 and 2013, annual crude oil transported by rail in the U.S. grew from 9,500 to 407,761 carloads (about 275 million barrels), according to the Association of American Railroads (AAR). During the same period, a debate about the safety of oil-by-rail has arisen in response to a few high profile accidents and spills, including the Lac-Mégantic derailment in Quebec on July 6th, 2013 that killed 47 people and destroyed half the … [read more]

Nuclear Power’s Role in Responding to Climate Change

Posted by Andy Kadak
Kadak Associates, Inc..
June 19, 2014 at 12:10 PM Filed Under: Critical Policy Issues, Discussions

Screen Shot 2014-06-19 at 12.00.39 PMWithout significant gains in storage technology, electric generation from solar and wind will not meet the world’s energy needs. Nuclear power, however, can deliver electric power in a sufficiently safe, economical and secure manner to supplement supply from other carbon-free sources. Despite this, there remain major objections to the safety, cost, waste management and proliferation risk of nuclear power, which I’ll seek to address here.

There have been three serious accidents that challenged the safety record of nuclear power: the Three Mile Island (TMI), Chernobyl, and the tsunami-induced Fukushima accident. In all these accidents there were no immediate public … [read more]

Transforming the Electric Utility Industry and Corporate Culture

Posted by Karl Rabago
Executive Director
Pace Energy and Climate Center
June 11, 2014 at 12:20 PM Filed Under: Critical Policy Issues, Discussions

This discussion is presented in conjunction with the closing keynote at the Association for Environmental Studies and Sciences 2014 Conference.

UnitedStatesPowerGridCost-effective and profitable energy efficiency technologies and services, and renewable energy generation alternatives are available today to end GHG emissions from the electric utility sector entirely. Traditional cost-of-service regulation rewards capital investments more than the provision of value, punishes innovation and efficiency, and treats customers as “ratepayers” with few choices and little clout. Today’s electric utilities are not well prepared to make the business model changes required to become truly sustainable. Three key strategies map a path forward.

First, … [read more]

Obama’s EPA to Cost Americans Billions of Dollars and Hundreds of Thousands of Jobs

Posted by Congressman Ed Whitfield (R-KY)
U.S. House of Representatives
June 2, 2014 at 7:00 AM Filed Under: Discussions, Legislation And Rule-Making

As Chairman of the House Subcommittee on Energy and Power, I’m continuing the fight against President Obama’s Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) overregulation of our nation’s power plants without any regard to the consequences for our economy and consumers.

This week, the EPA is expected to release its proposed rule regulating carbon dioxide emissions from existing and modified electricity power plants. This effort is certain to result in a de facto cap and trade program, which Congress most recently rejected in 2009.  This regulation follows the proposed rule on new power plants, which essentially makes it illegal to build a power … [read more]

Clean Energy Poised for Market Domination or More Innovation Needed?

Posted by Matthew Stepp
Senior Policy Analyst
Information Technology and Innovation Foundation
May 30, 2014 at 11:15 AM Filed Under: Critical Policy Issues, Discussions

Clean Energy InnovationWhether or not the world has all of the clean energy technologies it needs to dramatically cut greenhouse gas emissions is an important ongoing debate among the climate policy community. Buoyed by steep cost reductions for wind and solar power technologies during the past decade, proponents argue political will is the major factor holding clean energy back from dominating the global energy market. Critics counter that even with recent cost reductions clean energy still isn’t realistically competitive with fossil fuels everywhere without the help of unsustainable subsidies and contentious government mandates.

The debate over whether clean energy is ready for … [read more]

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