Energy Tomorrow Blog
Posted August 15, 2016
I really like this quote from Chris Mooney’s analysis in the Washington Post last week – the speaker being Italian scientist Elena Verdolini, whose new research basically finds that solar and wind energy need big help from natural gas:
“If you have an electric car, you don’t need a diesel car in your garage sitting there. But in the case of renewables, it’s different, because if you have renewable electricity and that fails, then you need the fast acting gas sitting in your garage, so to speak.”
Posted March 4, 2016
Just recently saw this article on National Geographic.com, suggesting the United States made a significant shift in its energy economy in 2015:
Consider what happened last year alone. The amount of electricity from coal-fired power plants hit a record low while that from natural gas generators hit a record high. Also, renewable energy added the most new power to the electric grid, and annual carbon emissions reached a 20-year low.
First, a reminder that new power capacity added to the grid doesn’t translate directly to new power. Below, U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) data shows that in terms of electricity generation change (from 2014 to 2015) at utility-scale facilities and including distributed solar, natural gas led in net generation:
That’s not knocking renewables, just an illustration of today’s energy reality and a reminder of the oft-overlooked energy, economic and climate benefits accruing to the United States from increasing natural gas use.
Posted July 9, 2015
So, Facebook has posted an announcement that its newest data center near Fort Worth will be 100 percent powered by a wind farm that’s being built near Wichita Falls, Texas. Of the wind farm Facebook says:
Construction on the project is already under way on a 17,000-acre site in Clay County, just 90 miles from the data center, and we expect it to begin delivering clean energy to the grid by 2016. 200 MW is more energy than we will need for the foreseeable future, and we're proud to have played a role in bringing this project to Texas.
No question, this is a good example of one way that big wind figures into an all-of-the-above approach to energy – one in which America ensures its energy security into the future by harnessing all available energy sources.
Posted October 9, 2013
A tactic used by ethanol backers trying to defend the relatively defenseless Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) is attempting to frame the RFS debate as one between America’s oil and natural gas companies and renewable energy.
That’s faulty for a couple of important reasons. First, we’re Big Ethanol’s biggest customers, buying billions of gallons a year, as a useful additive in E10 gasoline. Second, our companies are for renewables, not against them, investing $81 billion in renewables and carbon-reduction efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions between 2000 and 2012 – nearly as much as all other U.S. industries ($91 billion) and more than the federal government ($80 billion).
Posted September 25, 2013
A few words of support for Adam Sieminski and his professional team at the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA). When it comes to collecting data about our energy past, analyzing trends and projecting future energy supply and demand, no one does it better than EIA. Which is why reported grousing over EIA’s forecasts for renewable energy raise an eyebrow, or two.
POLITICO picks up on the grousing in Sieminski’s response to an earlier letter from some groups, in which it’s clear some in the environmental community are concerned that EIA’s renewable projections are lower than recent growth trends. Again, from Sieminski’s response, some have suggested that EIA’s projections haven’t been grounded in science.
EIA has a reputation for calling them as it sees them, so the complaint is a little surprising
Posted April 2, 2012
Update: The author has changed the article, without noting so. Original article here. The new article suffers from many the same problems in that it fails to note that the majority of the money involved is through government efforts to lower prices in developing countries. As the IEA notes ending this support will shift "the burden of high prices from government budgets to individual consumers…" and that “…low-income households are likely to be disproportionately affected by the removal…”
We see a lot of false arguments about “subsidies” for the oil and natural gas industry, but this tweet caught us by surprise...
Posted May 18, 2011
Posted February 14, 2011
Posted February 8, 2011
Posted February 4, 2011