• Shutting Off Power to Reduce Wildfire Risk on Windy Days Isn’t a Simple Decision – an Energy Expert Explains the Trade-Offs Electric Utilities Face

    Maui County is suing Hawaiian Electric, claiming the utility was negligent for not shutting off power as strong winds hit the island in the hours before the city of Lahaina burned. Electricity is critical infrastructure and a foundational bedrock to many other services, so utilities have to balance the risk of keeping power on with the risks created by shutting power off.

  • How Much Wave Energy Is in Our Oceans?

    The ocean is never still, but exactly how much energy surges through our ocean waves is a matter of debate. That uncertainty makes it challenging for countries to weave wave energy into their future climate goals. New study could help countries better estimate how much power their waters carry.

  • Ms. Nuclear Energy Is Winning Over Nuclear Skeptics

    Kaylee Cunningham recognizes that her training as a Ph.D. student in nuclear science and engineering could be for naught if myths continue to plague the industry. The activist is committed to helping — one TikTok at a time.

  • A Tropical Storm in California? Warmer Waters and El Niño Made It Possible.

    Tropical Storm Hilary made landfall in Mexico and crossed into California last weekend, knocking out power and drenching wide swaths of southern California. Los Angeles received 2.48 inches of rain on Sunday, breaking a single-day record from 1906 of 0.03 inches. Storm Hilary adds to the lengthy list of climate-fueled disasters this summer.

  • Sediment Movement During Hurricane Harvey Could Negatively Impact Future Flooding

    Enormous amounts of sediment, or sand and mud, flowed through Houston waterways during Hurricane Harvey in 2017, due in part to modifications made by humans to bayous, rivers and streams over the past century. Harvey was the largest rainfall event in U.S. history, and it moved 27 million cubic meters of sediment, or 16 Astrodomes, through Houston waterways and reservoirs. This could seriously impact future flooding events and be costly to the City of Houston.

  • Thermal Battery Helps Industry Eliminate Fossil Fuels

    The explosion of renewable energy projects around the globe is leading to a saturation problem. As more renewable power contributes to the grid, the value of electricity is plummeting during the times of day when wind and solar hit peak productivity. The problem is limiting renewable energy investments in some of the sunniest and windiest places in the world. Antora Energy is commercializing a thermal battery that lets manufacturers use renewable energy around the clock.

  • Wastewater Can Help Tackle Water Shortages

    Europe has experienced severe heat and drought over the last few summers, and 2023 has been no different. Vast swathes of Central and Southern Europe are simply too dry from a lack of rainfall. Water shortages are causing tensions in some countries. But, for now, there’s enough water to go around. Using the precious resource more efficiently is key.

  • Scientists Are Helping Cities Adapt to Extreme Heat

    Extreme heat is dangerous and is one of the leading causes of weather-related deaths, and in a warming world, extreme heat is becoming the norm, not the exception. Scientists are working to mitigate the effects of extreme heat by developing strategies to build heat resilience which would allow communities to adapt to and thrive in a warming climate.

  • Climate Change and U.S. Property Insurance: A Stormy Mix

    Accelerating risks and damage from climate change are spurring private insurers in the United States to limit coverage in a growing number of areas, thus imposing mounting stress on local communities and straining the country’s overall economic health.

  • Is China Engaged in Biodiesel Fraud?

    European biofuel producers have come under significant price pressure as Chinese companies inundate the European second-generation biofuel market with their cheaper products. Shipping advanced biofuels from China to Europe should add about 20% to the price of the fuel, yet Chinese producers are selling it for half the price charged by European producers. The suspicion is that Chinese producers are using palm oil in the production of the fuel, even though palm oil, which will be phased out as a biofuel ingredient by 2030, is already tightly capped in Europe because it is linked to the destruction of rainforests in countries like Malaysia and Indonesia.

  • AI Cyber Challenge Aims to Secure Nation’s Most Critical Software

    In an increasingly interconnected world, software undergirds everything from financial systems to public utilities. As software enables modern life and drives productivity, it also creates an expanding attack surface for malicious actors. This surface includes critical infrastructure, which is especially vulnerable to cyberattacks given the lack of tools capable of securing systems at scale. New competition challenges the nation’s top AI and cybersecurity talent to automatically find and fix software vulnerabilities, defend critical infrastructure from cyberattacks.

  • State Pension Fund is Helping a Middle Eastern Firm Export Arizona’s Precious Groundwater

    As rural Arizonans face the prospect of wells running dry, foreign firms are sucking up vast amounts of the state’s groundwater to grow hay for Saudi Arabia and other wealthy nations. The state’s retirement system invested heavily in a private land deal that allowed a foreign company to effectively ship Arizona’s scarce water supply overseas.

  • Climate-Fueled Wildfires Lead to Rethink on Fire Tactics

    Climate change is making wildfires more frequent and more destructive, and long-time firefighting strategies are no longer working. Scientists are calling for a radical rethink of how we fight wildfires.

  • New Tidal Energy Project for Carbon Emission Reduction and Energy Security

    New £7 million project aims to deliver scalable, affordable and sustainable tidal stream energy. Besides boosting energy security, this could help enable tidal stream energy make a meaningful contribution to achieving U.K. Net Zero goals.

  • Feds Ease Up on Colorado River Restrictions — for Now

    The water shortage crisis on the Colorado River is improving, but it’s far from over. The water levels in the river’s two main reservoirs have begun to stabilize, lessening the need for states in the Southwest to cut their water usage. This year’s wet winter helped save the river from collapse, but a reckoning is on the horizon.