Category Archives: energy

Mitt shifts to the right when it comes to talking about energy

That’s right. Stuff like oil drilling, punching holes in Earth for natural gas, building more roads and paving more wildlife habitat, etc. etc. And the cars he talks about now, in fitting for the son of an automobile executive, don’t have to get great mileage. In fact, the more gasoline and petroleum they burn up, the happier he and his Big Oil campaign contributors are. This NY Times piece spells it all out.

Breaking news: Corn for food, not automobile fuel

Hah. That’s right and here’s why: Making ethanol, especially from corn, uses more energy than it yields. That’s a shocker to many folks, I know. This op-ed makes that case in fine fashion.

The business of fracking

The federal government should set baseline environmental safety standards for hydraulic fracturing. So pleads the NY Times in this editorial. Again, missing from the discussion are the ancillary effects of drilling, whether for natural gas or oil or even water: The construction aspect of setting up a drill pad etc. means building a new road, chopping up wildlife habitat, clear-cutting forest, touching off noise pollution, etc.

A carbon tax: Pathway to energy security

A carbon tax is an opportunity to reduce existing taxes, clean up the environment and increase personal freedom and energy security.

Global warming’s twin threatens West Coast fisheries

Of course the problem is hardly limited to the West Coast. It’s ocean acidification and this article, while focusing on Pacific waters, explains it well. Will the politicians eact? Huh?

We have met the enemy, and it is us

Cute headline, NY Times. Cute. And this column by these two professional “environmentalists” was OK as far as it went. But until folks – like my neighbors here in Vermont – start connecting the dots, there seems little hope. Let me know what you think. A first objective, dear columnists, should be to get the grassroots back in action. And I don’t mean only in terms of raising money so tat you can get your paycheck on time. Go it?

Group of 8 affirms climate change efforts

Wow. This will finally, finally end the madness of burning fossil fuels forever and ever. Wanna bet? Sure, sure you say. And you are likely on the mark. The Group of 8 certainly got some positive PR-type news coverage, but that’s about it. You can read about it all here and get a look at the Group of 8 leaders hamming it up for camera people.

Dr. James Hansen: Game over for world’s climate

The director of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies is plain spoken and we’d all better believe what he says and writes. There is no getting around it. We either deal with our fossil fuel addiction now, or we make the planet uninhabitable for generations to come. Dr. Hansen’s op-ed essay from today’s NY Times can be read here.

EPA caps emissioins at gas and oil wells

The Environmental Protection Agency issued its first standards for oil and gas companies covering air pollution from hydraulic fracturing, or fracking. That’s good, of course, although the drillers will cry foul and again will label the EPA as anti-business. Balderdash. But this new rule will do nothing to restore the forest fragmentation and outright habitat destruction that accompanies a drilling operation, especially in New York State and Pennsylvania.

EPA: U.S. greenhouse gas emissions on rise

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has released the 17th annual U.S. greenhouse gas inventory. The final report shows overall emissions in 2010 increased by 3.2 percent from the previous year. The trend is attributed to an increase in energy consumption across all economic sectors, due to increasing energy demand associated with an expanding economy, and increased demand for electricity for air conditioning due to warmer summer weather during 2010.

Total emissions of the six main greenhouse gases in 2010 were equivalent to 6,822 million metric tons of carbon dioxide. These gases include carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, hydrofluorocarbons, perfluorocarbons and sulfur hexafluoride. The report indicates that overall emissions have grown by over 10 percent from 1990 to 2010.

The Inventory of U.S. Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Sinks: 1990-2010 is the latest annual report that the United States has submitted to the Secretariat of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, which sets an overall framework for intergovernmental efforts to tackle the challenge posed by climate change. EPA prepares the annual report in collaboration with experts from multiple federal agencies and after gathering comments from stakeholders across the country.

The inventory tracks annual greenhouse gas emissions at the national level and presents historical emissions from 1990 to 2010. The inventory also calculates carbon dioxide emissions that are removed from the atmosphere by “sinks,” e.g., through the uptake of carbon by forests, vegetation and soils.

More on the greenhouse gas inventory report: http://www.epa.gov/climatechange/emissions/usinventoryreport.html