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John Rogers

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About the author: John Rogers is a senior energy analyst with expertise in renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies and policies. He co-manages the Energy and Water in a Warming World Initiative (EW3) at UCS that looks at water demands of energy production in the context of climate change. He holds a master’s degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Michigan and a bachelor's degree from Princeton University. See John's full bio.

Toward a Clean Energy Future: 7 Top Reasons to Celebrate 2013

The last 12 months have brought a lot of change to the world — some good, some less so; some too fast, some too slow. But in the energy space, the essential transition to energy that is cleaner, healthier, lower-cost, and more secure is definitely underway in the U.S. This year, we saw strong signals that we’re moving in the right direction on energy, with renewables like wind and solar (going up), coal (going down), renewables integration (looking good), and energy storage (on its way). Here’s a look at some of the year’s highlights. Read More

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LED Christmas Lights: Merry, Bright, and 17X Cheaper to Power

The day after Thanksgiving around our house this year, as usual, involved cleaning up from the festivities of the day before, harvesting a tree, and stringing the lights. The scrumptious desserts at our celebration on Thursday may have added to my weight (I promise to exercise more, really), and the tree may have involved a little slice of temporary deforestation (though I know the Christmas tree farms plant more).

But thanks to LED technologies, the part about the holiday lights involves a whole lot less electricity — and carbon — than it used to. Read More

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How Much Water Do Power Plants Use?

If droughts, heat waves, and power plant troubles aren’t strong enough signals that power plant water use is something worth paying attention to, maybe this week’s approval of an energy-water resolution by NARUC, the national association of utility regulators, can help. Understanding the importance of actions like NARUC’s (and Mother Nature’s) depends on understanding how much water U.S. power plants use, and why. It’s a good time to take stock of what we know about that issue. Read More

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Energy-Water Collisions: Today’s Landmark Resolution from the Nation’s Electricity Regulators

NARUC may not be a household name, but it, as the national body of state public utility commissioners (PUCs), deals with a whole lot of important issues for consumers in every state. And today its members weighed in on the important issue of power plant water use, following up on what UCS, Mother Nature, and others have been saying about water-related risks for the power sector, and how to deal with them.

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Which States Rank Highest on Energy Efficiency Efforts? Latest Results May Surprise

The latest ranking of states’ energy efficiency policies and programs is out, and many of the results are what you’d expect. (Hint: the Red Sox aren’t the only winners in this neck of the woods.) But there are some surprising results worth checking out—including shout-outs for Mississippi, Illinois, and others. Read More

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Do Wind Turbines Affect Property Values? No — or at Least “No Statistical Evidence” — Says New Hedonic Study

I noted in my recent post on wind turbines and tourism that a related issue, wind farms and property values, was also important to consider. A new study does just that, and finds “no statistical evidence” of effects. Read More

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Six Reasons to Celebrate the Brayton Point Coal Plant Closing

The Brayton Point coal plant is shutting down, and that’s a really positive development for a whole lot of reasons.

The new owners of the Somerset, MA, plant let it be known this week that they’d be shutting down Brayton Point by 2017. For the many community members and organizations that have worked for this goal for years, it’s a cause for celebration. But it’s also a great thing for the public at large. Read More

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Energy-Water Collisions: Our 2013 Update

While a lot of folks are rightly focused on the House-Senate budget collision in D.C. right now, I’ve been thinking (as is my wont) about collisions of a different sort: between power plants and the rivers and lakes they depend on. Read More

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Renewable Energy Contracts and Energy Efficiency Progress: New England is Sprinting

For fans of the Boston Red Sox and the New England Patriots, life in New England right now is awfully good. The Sox hold a commanding lead in the race to the post-season, and the Patriots are 3-0.*

Life in New England is also good for fans of clean energy and a stronger, cleaner energy future, which should include just about anyone with lungs or a wallet. Just-announced plans for more local renewable energy, and a new report on best cities for energy efficiency, show the important progress New England is making in some key areas for our economy and our environment. Read More

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Whalewatching and Windwatching: Turbulence, Turbines, and Tourism

My family and I were fortunate to get to vacation last month with cousins, siblings, and grandparents on  a long road trip around an area northeast of home. Great family time, loads of car games and card games, historical and natural attractions, and lots of driving practice.

The trip also included chances to see whales doing their thing, and wind farms doing theirs. To this ocean-loving and energy-oriented tourist, both aspects of the trip — the whales and the turbines — were marvels to behold. They have important differences, but more similarities than you might think. Read More

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