Full Title: The Natural Gas Gamble: A Risky Bet on America’s Clean Energy Future
Author(s): Jeff Deyette, Steven Clemmer, Rachel Cleetus, Sandra Sattler, Alison Bailie, and Megan Rising
Publisher(s): Union of Concerned Scientists
Publication Date: 03/2015
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The U.S. electricity sector is in the midst of a major change. As power producers retire aging coal plants, they are turning to natural gas to generate electricity at an unprecedented rate.
While this rapid shift is providing important near-term environmental and economic benefits, strong evidence suggests that becoming too reliant on natural gas poses numerous and complex risks, including persistent price volatility and rising global warming emissions.
Analysis shows, however, that the dangers of an overreliance on natural gas can be overcome by greatly expanding the use of renewable energy and energy efficiency in our power supply. These technologies are already ramping up quickly across the country and demonstrating that they can deliver affordable, reliable, and low-carbon power. With sensible policies in place, these technologies can flourish and natural gas would play a useful—though more limited—role in a clean energy system.