• Wind and solar power, paired with storage, would be cost-effective way to power grid

    Renewable energy could fully power a large electric grid 99.9 percent of the time by 2030 at costs comparable to today’s electricity expenses, new research says; a well-designed combination of wind power, solar power, and storage in batteries and fuel cells would nearly always exceed electricity demands while keeping costs low, the study authors found

  • Detection aircraft surveys 600 miles of PG&E California pipeline for gas leaks

    PG&E’s transmission pipeline is routinely surveyed each year, typically by ground crews; accessing rural areas with difficult terrain, however, can be time consuming, expensive, and unsafe for crews on the ground; aerial surveys often look for dead vegetation as an indicator of gas leaks

  • Dallas area earthquakes were caused by fracking: geophysicists

    Three earthquakes that hit a Dallas suburb last week could be connected to fracking operations, according to a local geophysicist who studies earthquakes in the region; the earthquakes were considered minor, with the biggest one registered at a 3.4 on the Richter scale; no injuries were reported despite many emergency calls

  • Carbon capture and storage likely to cause earthquakes

    Carbon capture and storage, or CCS, is a major component of the world’s greenhouse gas reduction strategy; to make a significant contribution to emission reduction, however, CCS would need to operate on a massive scale, potentially sequestering upward of 3.5 billion metric tons of CO2 each year; researchers say that the injection of massive quantities of CO2 would be likely to induce small temblors which would break the reservoirs’ seals and release the stored CO2 into the atmosphere

  • Fracking poses low risk for causing earthquakes

    Fracking has a low risk for inducing earthquakes that can be felt by people, but underground injection of wastewater produced by hydraulic fracturing and other energy technologies has a higher risk of causing such earthquakes, says a new report

  • Energy-dense biofuel from cellulose may well be economical

    Researchers developed a process for creating biofuels which holds the promise of being cost-effective for production scale, opening the door for moving beyond the laboratory setting

  • Nuclear power stations launches emergency operations center

    The new 12,000 square-foot facility at the Beaver Valley Power Station supports overall management of activities related to maintaining public health and safety during the emergency at the plant

  • Companies team up to develop carbon capturing

     

    Three companies have teamed up to build a low-carbon, coal-based power plant in Scotland; the plant will include a carbon-capture and storage; with more than 90 percent carbon capture, the coal feedstock plant will generate extremely low-carbon electric power and also produce hydrogen gas for commercial use

  • The Transboundary Agreement is not just about the cost of gas and the environment

    The Transboundary Agreement, which the United States and Mexico reached on 20 February, regulates oil and gas development in the Gulf of Mexico; before the agreement is ratified, there is a need to address serious security issues related to building more oil rigs in the Gulf – for example, the fact that the Mexican government cannot control its powerful criminal organizations, and that it will be easy for terrorists in a small boat to overrun one of these deepwater rigs

  • A long-term low carbon energy strategy is essential for a prosperous U.K.

    An urgent remodeling of the U.K. energy infrastructure is vital if the country wants to decarbonize without “the lights going out” and not be reliant on imported energy supplies, says a new report

  • Researchers develop record-breaking plastic solar cell

    Researchers at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) have made a breakthrough with plastic solar cells, creating a record-breaking polymer cell that converts 10.6 percent of the sun’s energy into electricity

  • Pepco buys solar competition prize-winning building for display

    WaterShed, a prize-winning, energy-saving house designed by a team from the University of Maryland, has been bought by Pepco; the utility will maintain the building and open ot for public display

  • Study tracks safety of underground CO2 storage

    An international team of geoscientists show that carbon dioxide can safely be stored underground in depleted natural gas fields; fhe experiment, in the Otway basin near Melbourne, Australia, is the most heavily monitored project for CO2 storage in the world

  • Germany to scrap nuclear power by 2022

    Germany yesterday announced plans to become the first major industrialized power to shut down all its nuclear plants in the wake of the disaster in Japan; phase-out due to be wrapped up by 2022; it means that the country will have to find the 22 percent of its electricity needs currently covered by nuclear reactors from another source; Monday decision is a U-turn for Chancellor Angela Merkel, and means that the current government has adopted the timetable for a nuclear phase-out set by the previous Social Democrat-Green coalition government a decade ago; it also cancels Merkel’s decision from November 2010 to extend the lifetime of Germany’s seventeen reactors by an average of twelve years, which would have kept them open until the mid-2030s

  • Germany ends nuclear program

    Last Thursday German chancellor Angela Merkel declared that her government plans to close its nuclear power plants in a “measured exit”; the decision to end Germany’s nuclear power program was a result of the continuing nuclear crisis in Japan; some believe that Chancellor Merkel’s announcement is driven more by politics than safety concerns; recent polls show that 80 percent of voters are opposed to nuclear power; Merkel’s party faces close regional elections in states where nuclear plants are located; Switzerland, Venezuela, and China have also announced that they will suspend or delay plans to build new nuclear plants