Energy

Joby Warrick, Washington Post, March 8, 2015
Solar installation

Three years ago, the nation’s top utility executives gathered at a Colorado resort to hear warnings about a grave new threat to operators of America’s electric grid: not superstorms or cyberattacks, but rooftop solar panels.

Hamza Hamouchene, New Internationalist, February 27, 2015
Solar farm

A plan to power Europe from Saharan solar plants seems to have stalled, but several large North African solar projects are still going ahead despite local concerns. Hamza Hamouchene asks: where did the Desertec project go wrong, and can desert solar power yet play a role in a democratic and sustainable future?

If you use social media, you may well have seen a graphic going around, showing a tiny square in the Sahara desert with the caption: ‘This much solar power in the Sahara would provide enough energy for the whole world!’

David Roberts, Grist, February 25, 2015
poppies and turbines

An energy revolution is breaking out in California and a few other states, one that could radically increase the amount of renewable energy available to citizens and end the tyranny of foot-dragging utilities. Outside of the rapidly falling costs of solar power, it’s just about my main source of domestic optimism these days.

Sean Sweeney, Trade Unions for Energy Democracy, February 19, 2015

During its first days in office, Syriza has taken actions that suggest it is willing to confront the EU’s neoliberal approach to energy and to embark on a new course. New Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras has also stated his government will restore collective bargaining agreements and stop 300,000 planned layoffs.

Jimmy Betts, Popular Resistance, January 23, 2015
BXE activists at FERC

Washington, DC – In a bold moment of non-violent coordinated efforts, 16 members of the climate, energy, environmental, social, and ecological justice community coalition Beyond Extreme Energy (BXE) successfully disrupted the monthly “business-as-usual” Commissioner’s Meeting at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC).

Eric Ruder, Socialist Worker, January 8, 2015

A drastic fall in oil prices is having far-reaching consequences, reports Eric Ruder. AT BELOW $50 a barrel on January 7, the price of benchmark crude oil was well under half its high of $107.68 less than seven months before. The price plunge has been so rapid that even Wall Street's seasoned traders are alternately downing shots of whiskey and Pepto-Bismol--and that's before noon.

Juan Cole, Informed Comment, November 12, 2014

The good news is that US President Barack Obama and Chinese President Xi Jinping have reached an agreement on limiting carbon emissions in their two countries.

The US puts out 5.5 billion metric tons of carbon dioxide a year, and China does 7 – 9 billion. The US did 5 billion metric tons in 1990 but went on up to 5.5 in 1996 and 6 in the mid-zeroes.

Peter Rugh, October 24, 2014

No matter what metric we use, the price of adapting to climate change and mitigating against it runs high. However, the cost of doing little to nothing runs even steeper and, unlike the apathetic approach, taking action comes with some significant economic benefits.

John Queally, Common Dreams, October 9, 2014

In order to build an adequate low-carbon 21st century energy system that scientists have said is necessary to stave off the worst impacts of climate change, a new report argues that the world must look beyond large-scale, centralized renewable projects—such as industrial solar and wind farms—and take up efforts to build more democratically-controlled and decentralized power grids.

Naomi Oreskes, Z Magazine, August 31, 2014

Albert Einstein is rumored to have said that one cannot solve a problem with the same thinking that led to it. Yet this is precisely what we are now trying to do with climate change policy.

The Obama administration, the Environmental Protection Agency, many environmental groups, and the oil and gas industry all tell us that the way to solve the problem created by fossil fuels is with more fossils fuels. We can do this, they claim, by using more natural gas, which is touted as a “clean” fuel— even a “green” fuel.

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