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Celebrate World Water Day: Four Power Plant Cooling Trends Help Us Party More Responsibly

This Saturday is World Water Day, and this year the focus is on the link between water and energy, a topic dear to my heart. Last year I offered some suggestions on how to celebrate World Water Day by focusing on saving energy. But we need the power sector to do its part, too. And, in some notable ways, it is. Here are four. Read More

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Renewable Energy Opponents at it Again in Kansas, but Wind (and Solar!) Power Forge Ahead

ALEC and their fossil fuel-funded cohorts are taking yet another crack at undermining renewable energy policy in Kansas. Fortunately, their ill-conceived antics are not distracting wind and solar development from moving full steam ahead. Read More

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At the Nexus of Energy and Water, 3 Reasons Why NEWS is Good News

A new bill from two Senate leaders looks to bring some semblance of rationality to federal energy-water work. Here are three reasons why the Nexus of Energy and Water for Sustainability Act of 2014 is welcome news. Read More

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Will Tesla be a Game-Changer for Battery Energy Storage?

Last week Tesla, an electric car manufacturer based in Palo Alto, made national news by announcing it intends to launch a “Gigafactory” to produce lithium-ion batteries for at least 500,000 vehicles by 2020. This is no small potatoes. The level of battery production Tesla envisions is equivalent to the lithium ion batteries produced worldwide last year. Read More

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The Economic Impacts of Future Coal Production in West Virginia

Last month colleagues and I published a paper in the journal Environmental Research Letters, focusing on the economic impacts of future coal production on West Virginia. Using scenarios for projected coal production published by the Energy Information Administration in its Annual Energy Outlook, we set out to understand how these projections might impact the economy of West Virginia, the second largest coal-producing state in the United States. Read More

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Another Step Forward for Cape Wind: Federal Court Upholds Decade-Long Review Process

A federal court has rejected the latest legal bid to stop what will very likely be the nation’s first offshore wind farm, Cape Wind. That’s good news for the project, and for all of us who are counting on having offshore wind as a powerful new tool in our clean energy belt. Read More

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Grid Security and Renewable Energy: Too Much Information, or Not Enough?

Grid authorities have been pushed to address physical attacks on the grid by recent reports of grid insecurity, most of which are not public. Detailed information about electric grid infrastructure is classified for homeland security. Read More

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How to Rescue Us from High Energy Bills? Energy Efficiency!

High energy bills and repeated debate over retiring old fossil-fuel plants are reminders that the market has failed to make the most profitable investments, and the regulators have failed to direct utilities to deliver the lowest cost energy supplies. The market is missing “more than $1 trillion in value through 2020.” That is the conclusion of international consulting firm McKinsey & Co. in Dec 2013. The choice is NOT burn coal or freeze in the dark. Read More

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Michigan Can Triple Its Use of Renewable Energy at Virtually No Additional Cost

With Governor Snyder’s recent announcement of clean energy goals for Michigan, the conversation is quickly developing around the future role of renewable energy in the state. To help inform that conversation, a newly released analysis by my UCS colleagues and me found that Michigan can triple its use of renewable energy — from 10 percent in 2015 to 33 percent in 2030 — at virtually no cost to consumers. Here’s how. Read More

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Women, Renewable Energy, and International Women’s Day: A Conversation with WoWE

In anticipation of International Women’s Day this weekend, I caught up with Kristen Graf, the executive director of Women of Wind Energy (and an esteemed former colleague). Below are notes from our conversation, with bonus links and added emphases. Read More

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