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News & Views Curation

November 30, 2013

The $3 Trillion Climate Ask

Fund managers, including NY State & California, who oversee $3 trillion in assets, ask 45 fossil fuel corporations if they are preparing for a low carbon world

News From The Philly Navy Yard

Economic growth & smart, sustainable energy innovations are full-speed-ahead at the Philadelphia Navy Yard

November 29, 2013

Climate Denier's Camouflage

The Heartland Institute's climate denial mass-mailing to schools goes out of it way to look like a climate science report

UK: Labor's Energy Ideas

The out-of-power Labor Party will propose an Energy Security Board & also encourage energy efficiency measures like home insulation

Africa: Pay As You Go PV

For Africans lacking access to the power grid, $10 solar power kits are a low-cost way to plug in

Green Cab Clusters

Looking for a NYC green (color not fuel) cab? Here's where they cluster

Energy For Home Heating

How much fuel does your home burn and how does it compare to homes elsewhere?

Science At Work: Methane

New studies of methane emissions from US gas/ooil drilling & Arctic temperature-linked releases

November 28, 2013

Courts Split On Energy Star

Federal courts divide over the meaning of Energy Star labels on consumer products

The Resilience Relay Race

Five resilience recommendations for Mayor de Blasio

26 Energy Star States

Mapping the 26 states with Energy Star action programs

November 27, 2013

EU: Carbon Prices Inch Up

Carbon market prices rise to $6.23/metric ton in EU markets

After Thanksgiving

Take walk in Central Park and discover history hiding in plain sight

Cooking With Gas

ICYMI - Standard models of US methane emissions miss ~50% of those coming from oil & gas operations

Maintain Energy Efficiency Momentum

Three suggestions for keeping buildings energy efficient after the ribbon-cutting

No Free PV In Arizona

Arizona regulators side with utilities on a payment for grid links by PV owners, but set the fee at $5 a month, far less than utilities demanded

Science At Work: Draw Your Own Conclusions

20 tips for laypersons to use when interpreting scientific claims with policy implications

Mexico: Carbon Market Opens

A voluntary market for carbon emissions permits opens on the Mexican Stock Exchange

Carbon Tax: More From Fewer

A new wrinkle on the carbon tax concept is to charge higher taxes from a limited pool of large emitters

Beijing/Shanghai: Carbon Markets

Beijing and Shanghai open pilot-scale markets for trading carbon emissions permits

November 26, 2013

Love That Insulation

Why every homeowner should value good insulation

The Electicity Internet

Distributed power + smart interconnectivity = electricity internet but is there enough demand to make it happen

Oakland: A Tale Of Two Cities

What will it take to bring clean fuel and energy efficiency to every Oakland, CA neighborhood?

China, Sweden, US: Climate Attitudes

Compare & contrast public opinions on climate change in these three nations

Krakow: No More Coal

Krakow is the first Polish city to ban burning coal and wood for heating

The Great Park Rip-Off

The ways NYC privately finances public parks are great deals for developers, but there are better options for the public

UK: Big Loss For Wind Power

The developer of a Devon offshore wind power project does an about-face, citing 'prohibitive' costs

No Thanks For Recycling

The #6 plastic New Yorkers started to put out for recycling in 2013 gets trashed as there are no buyers for it, but maybe 2014 will be better. For now, check out City Council efforts to ban styrofoam

Rebranding Transit Policy

Will NYC's defeated "congestion pricing" plan be resurrected with a new name and funds for road & bridge upgrades?

November 25, 2013

Tomorrow Is Today In California

It's easy & low-cost to unplug from the grid while keeping the lights on in California -- except for one hitch

New Day At Freshkills

Once a vast garbage dump, Freshkills will be home to enough solar power to light up 2,000 Staten Island homes

Science At Work: The Pause That Isn't

ICYMI -- data demonstrates there is no pause in planetary warming

A Love Canal Retrospective

35 years after the Love Canal made toxic waste headlines, what's its legacy?

Federal Friend Of Renewables

FERC, the federal agency with jurisdiction over transmission lines, issues rules to advance renewable energy storage projects

US: Home Of Global Gas Revolution

Today, fracking for US natural gas is transforming the global energy scene

China And India v Developing Nations

How did China & India's stance at the Warsaw climate talks cause a rift with developing nations?

Australia: Solar Power, Subsidy Sensitive

After a period of brisk PV installations, ending government subsidies takes a toll on new Australian home projects

A Millennial's Call To Climate Action

Climate action and preparedness require the kind of grassroots action Millennials can mobilize

November 24, 2013

Bloomberg's Climate Legacy On YouTube

Katherine Bagley, co-author of Hidden Legacy, explains why Mayor Bloomberg biggest contribution to NYC was taking action against climate change.

Creating Low-Carbon Cities

A World Bank infographic and a taxonomy of low-carbon development

November 23, 2013

When NYC Plugged In

A brief history of Gothamites' access to utility power

LEDs Could Light Up Your Life

Smart LED bulb networks morph from exotic to everyday

Go Gridless, Go Africa

Off-grid tech entrepreneurs start to bring renewable electricity to parts of Africa lacking access to conventional power supplies

LEED 4: Cheers And Jeers

The new LEED, version 4 attracts both cheers and jeers and here's more

November 22, 2013

Ew Canada

Waste from drilling in the Alberta tar sands will create lakes of toxic liquid

Staying Put And Rebuilding Better

One New Yorker's saga of surviving Sandy, staying in place & trying to rebuild resiliently

UK: Climate Mitigation's A Money Maker

The UK Energy Secretary foresees opportunities for financial services to mitigate climate impacts in vulnerable nations

NY Misses Renewable Energy Mark

New York State lags in meeting its renewable portfolio standard goal of 30% non-fossil power by 2015

Bloomberg's Climate Legacy And Energy Future

Part 5

The Rise Of Low-Carbon Cities

Energy efficiency is the best fuel for developing low-carbon cities, says World Bank

Re-Do The Emissions Math

A recalculation of California GHG emissions implies the trading system will be oversupplied with permits for years

New Ways To invest In The Planet

What are climate bonds and how have they evolved?

A Killer Fungus Among Us

The saga of a killer fungus starting in Vancouver Island, Canada, previously seen only in non-lethal forms in the tropics

November 21, 2013

Allowable Carbon Emissions

In the proposed global carbon emissions budget, there should be no "allowable" emissions, they are all damaging

Corporate Carbon Heavies

Which 90 companies have spewed 63% of the world's greenhouse gases?

UK: Utility Anxiety Over Policy Uncertainty

National Grid warns that uncertainty over UK government energy policy is scaring off utility infrastructure investors

Buffalo: Green Tech And Green Jobs

New York State provides $225 million for a new green energy tech research center in Buffalo and expects to create hundred of jobs

Sun Rises With Batteries

It's a new day for solar power in Maryland with 'islandable" PV and battery installations

Germany: More Time For Wind Power Payments

Germany will its current feed-in-tariff scheme for offshore wind projects for two years

Bloomberg's Climate Legacy And Energy Future

Part 4

Science At Work: Climate And Cyclones

Explaining the the specific links between the incidence and severity of cyclones/hurricanes and a changing climate is a work in progress

Risk And Resilence

The insurance industry can be a major player to upgrade urban resilience to weird weather events

November 20, 2013

The 2030 Palette

The 2030 Palette provides a free interactive online platform with ideas & actions for low-carbon and resilient built environments

China: Playing Catch Up

Chinese GHG emissions have caught up with those from the EU, so what does this mean for international climate treaties?

Scotland: 42x20

While lagging now, Scotland is optimistic that it will meet its goal of cutting GHG emission 42% by 2020

Bloomberg's Climate Legacy And Energy Future

Part 3

$4.8 Million For Energy Efficiency Tech

Governor Cuomo announces a $4.8 million fund for NY business projects exploring new technologies to improve buildings' energy efficiency, as part of a 3-year, $25 million program

Rio: TIme To Clean Up

Rio de Janeiro must tackle big water pollution problems if it's to show the world its best for the 2016 Olympics

November 19, 2013

London: Stay Cozy With The Tube

Waste heat from the London Underground will be used to heat hundred of homes

Lawyers At Work: Renewable Energy Patents

What are the top renewable energy inventions being patented now?

Securing Smart Meters

Hacking smart meters must be getting popular, because now there's an anti-hacking service for utilities

Carbon Emissions Keep Climbing

In 2013, global carbon emissions are on course to set a new record of 36 billion metric tons

Bloomberg's Climate Legacy & NY's Future

Must Read, Part 2

November 18, 2013

Big Solar Rising

Utility-scale solar power plants are coming on line, but still only 4% of US total power

London: Banks Quit Carbon Trading

Ten or more London-based banks abandon carbon markets, citing turmoil in the Euro trading scheme & low prices

Science At Work: Statistical Modeling

Read this, it's good for you, like eating your spinach

LA: Map It, Finance It

Los Angeles has a new mapping tool to help financial types find properties ripe for energy efficiency/solar upgrades

Bloomberg's Climate Legacy And NY's Future

Part One

Respect For Recycling Center

Check out Sims, it's not every recycling center that merits an architectural appraisal

iGreen, iClean

Unknown to many, Apple is an industry pioneer operating on renewable power

Australia: Hot But Not Bothered

Australia is fast becoming a leading climate reactionary, (despite record-setting weird weather)

November 16, 2013

Carbon Tax "In The Realm Of Possibility"

When EPA makes GHG rules for power plants, states could be allowed, if they wanted, to impose taxes on emissions

UK: Take The Money And Do Nothing

UK utilities collect surcharges from their customers to fund energy efficiency & related cost-savings programs, but don't do much

November 15, 2013

Scotland: Green Party Platform

What does Scotland's Green Party want, besides independence from England?

Germany: New Coal Plant

Citing low prices a German utility opens a 725 MW coal-burning power plant

The Saga of Solar Mamas

Around the world women are lighting the way for brining solar power to their communities

Japan: Fuggedabout Carbon Cuts

Japan reneges on cutting its carbon footprint, citing the loss of domestic nuclear power

What Makes LEED Grow

LEED-certified buildings have grown from 0 to 6,000 since 2000 and here's how

Asset-Backed Solar Securities

Now, there's a whole new way to finance solar power installations, S&P rated solar bonds

In Harm's Way

Critics charge a law signed by Governor Cuomo that encourages new building along the Hudson River will put people in harm's way during future storms and floods

Better Building Code

The NYC Council passes new building laws to ensure better survivability after storms, power outages, etc.

Chu's Washington Takeaway

Obama's first Department of Energy Secretary David Chu reflects on his years in Washington

November 14, 2013

Global Heating: The Pause Vanishes

Research using data overlooked in reports of a"pause" in global heating since 1997 finds the pause disappears

Brazil: Wind Trending

Brazil aims to build enough wind turbines by 2021 to power a city as big as Sao Paulo

Mothers Of Invention: Data Centers As Power Plants

Known as energy hogs, researchers seek to integrate fuel cell power input and energy efficient data output

Carbon Tax Alert

The Congressional Budget Office calculates a carbon tax could cut $1 trillion from the federal deficit

The Chinese Puzzle

How do Chinese leaders plan to propel economic growth while solving its pressing environmental problems?

Cuomo Vetos MTA Accountability Bills

Bills requiring the MTA to disclose service delay impacts & transfer of its funds to other state entities were vetoed by Governor Cuomo

Red-State America Gets Climate Change

Standford research discovers a majority of Americans in most states believe climate change is happening and power plant emissions should be controlled. Check it out state-by-state

2013: World Hot, Australia Hotter

World temperatures are on track to be the 7th hottest on record and Australian temperatures could reach an all time high this year

Guess Who's Going Solar

Tea Party supporters in Georgia and Arizona are trending pro-solar and anti-nuclear power

November 13, 2013

See Your Soot

A before & after fuel upgrades data visualization of fine particle air pollution in NYC

Chicago: Millions For Enegy Efficiency

Chicago's privately funded Infrastructure Trust commits $25 million for energy efficiency upgrades in 75 public buildings

Scotland: Trump's Blow Back

Donald Trump goes to court to stop a wind farm already approved by the Scottish government

The High Line's Newest Wow

For its final "spur" segment, the High Line designs an awesome elevated garden

Japan: Solar Super-Boom

Beating all forecasts, Japan's production and markets for PV skyrockets this year

Mothers of Invention: Solar Energy Autonomy

A solar powered generator that uses the grid as Plan B, is marketed by NRG, an electric utility

China: Youngest Air Pollution Vicitm

An 8 year old Chinese girl is diagnosed with air pollution-linked lung cancer

Make Oysters NY's Iconic Critter

ICYMI — oysters could save NYC from the ravages of the next superstorm

November 12, 2013

Standardizing Solar Contracts

Doing business gets easier when solar power contracts are standardized

Global Climate Action: Far From Enough

Despite some good news, the IEA reports the world is falling fall short on actions needed to cut global heating

NYers Pay Top Dollar For Power

Con Ed, seeking a rate hike, now charges 2.1 million NY residential customers 115.9% of the national average for electricity

Hamburg: Soft And Carbon Neutral

A "soft", carbon live/work row-house project wins a Hamburg, Germany design competition

NYC: Air Pollution Plummets

Compare these before/after NYC air pollution maps and breathe easier

Australia: Climate Scientists Catch Heat

As temperatures break records, Australia's government is axing its climate scientists

Abadoned NY

Once upon a time, there was a local subway station, now only intrepid photographers get in

November 11, 2013

Anthropocene Era: The Future Is Here

The 21st century so far, Bagdad, New Orleans, NYC, all kinds of shock and awe

Air Quality Mapping

Check out EPA's air-quality mapping tool and find out what you're inhaling

New Power Needs New Financing

For renewable energy to become the new normal, financial innovation is a must

Take Me To Your LED-er

More reasons to love LED light bulbs and take some home with you

PV: Rising Euro-Power

The use and value of solar power in Europe is on the rise

Berlin: Wind Takes A Hit

The future for wind power dims in talks to form a new German coalition government

Warsaw: Under A Cloud

Optimism is scarce at the Warsaw climate treaty talks

Chicago: The Bike App

Chicago makes it easy for everyone to know the local bike laws on its new app

Miami: Rising Waters Not Remote

With a population of 5.6 million, the greater Miami area starts to plan for tomorrow's rising water risks

Warsaw: Climate Talks Commence

Delegates gather for the latest round of talks on framing a 2015 international climate treaty

November 09, 2013

Euro Utility Transformation

The European power industry is on the verge of a fundamental renewables-driven transformation

Challenges For US Power Industry

What are the three biggest challenges facing the current business model for US power utilities?

November 08, 2013

Cities In The Climate Age

Many, many things cities can do to become climate-friendly and resilient

Denmark: Wind Master

With at least 30% of its energy coming from wind, Denmark demonstrates how to integrate renewables into the power grid

Climate Threat From The Deep

Scientists see a changing Gulf Stream off the US coast could bring potent GHG methane to the surface

Smart Cities, Open Technolgies

Tomorrow's smartest cities will have open source technologies accessible for all & dominated by no one

Germany: Slashing Wind Support

Germany to cut its wind power feed-in tariff, while retaining it for roof-top PV

Big Biking In Chicago

The Chicago bike share program is on track to outstrip New York's in 2014

Science At Work: Summetime

Whether a European summer is scorching or stormy has a lot to do with storm behavior

Listen Up On Renewable Supports

What could replace the production tax credit to grow the US wind power industry? And that's not all

November 07, 2013

The White Male Climate Effect

What is it about some white males that make them trend toward climate-change denial?

Science At Work: Melting Permafrost

Methane from melting arctic permafrost will be a big climate-change accelerant

UK: Don't Give Up The Green

UK Deputy Prime Minister Clegg urges the government not to dilute its carbon-reduction goals

Better Buildings Need Better Metrics

To measure office tower energy efficiency, an economic intensity index must be added to the equation

UK: Carbon Fraudsters Shut Down

19 firms marketing bogus carbon emissions credits are closed by UK authorities

Energy Efficiency By The Numbers

AEE's annual state-by-state energy efficiency ratings offers some surprises

Fukushima: Risky Rod Removal

Work to start on the risky task of removing radioactive rods from Japan's devastated Fukushima nuclear power plant

Green Footnote To 2013's Race

Who was that Green Party candidate running for NYC Mayor this year?

States: Tax What You Burn, Not What You Earn

Could the EPA delegate carbon tax powers to states?

November 06, 2013

Note To Mayor-Elect

While candidate de Blasio didn't say much about climate change, Mayor de Blasio will have to spend a lot of time doing something about it

China: Breathing Is A Must

Economic success in China will be worthless if its air isn't breathable

Coastal Cities' New Normal

Active options for coastal cities facing a certain future of weird wet weather

Math Problem

Claims that its cheaper to adapt to weird weather impacts than trying to prevent them rely on bad math

New Gas Pipeline Cuts Prices

With the opening of the controversial Specta natural gas pipeline, NYC's natural gas prices plunge

They've Gotta Have It

The latest rivalry between Microsoft and Google is over who's buying the most renewable power

Seattle: Super Green Code

Seattle's building code for new commercial construction & renovation let's a project's design team figure out how to meet stringent energy requirements and then checks on actual performance

Solar Power and Robots-- BFF

How can robots help make solar power cheaper?

November 05, 2013

Dallas Does Green Build Laws

Dallas, TX sets green standards for new construction to cut carbon emissions while growing the economy

80x50 -- A Stretch

Even with ambitious programs, California might not meet its goal of cutting carbon emissions 80% by 2050

The Future Of Nuclear Power

Two charts shows why new nuclear power won't be the non-fossil energy source of choice

Norway: Defund Coal

Norway is likely to pull $800 million in sovereign wealth funds out of the coal industry

Become Your Own Utility

Say goodbye to old-fashioned utilities with DIY electric power

Location Location, Location

What's the secret to siting more powerful wind turbines?

New Path To Smart Buildings

Expect smart building energy systems to shrink in number while growing functionality

It Ain't Necessarily So

Research finds that politically pro-welfare-state countries are not necessarily ecologically progressive

Denmark: More Than Enough

Denmark produces 113% of the energy it needs from wind power

November 04, 2013

Utility Seeks To Add Solar

Duke Energy seeks to build its own solar power capacity as par of its core generating business

Rating The Low-Carbon Investment Climate

Bloomberg NEF announces a new metric for rating nations on their ability to foster clinate-friendly investments

Cape Town: The Ties That Divide

Mass-transit planning in Cape Town, South Africa hold great potential while facing an apartheid past

Solar Power Rises

Why solar power can scale-up enough to be a game changer

Kyoto: Diplomatic Despair

Three diplomats involved with the Kyoto Climate Treaty see scant hope for preventing global overheating

Wind Tax Credit - Friends And Foes

Who supports, who opposes the wind power production tax credit that will probably end 01/01/14?

Berlin: Grid Won't Go Public

A voter referendum in Berlin to make its power grid a public utility is narrowly defeated

Microsoft Buys Texas Wind

Microsoft to purchase 1100 MW of wind-generated electricity to power its San Antonio data center

November 03, 2013

Giant Step For Energy Storage

Storing renewable energy to make it normal part of the power supply is happening now

Nuke Power Debate: Round Nth Degree

Among environmentalists the the battle over nuclear powe rages on

November 02, 2013


As prices plummet, the market for LED lighting leaps

Microgrids - Looking For Users

Psst! Wanna buy a mcirogrid?

November 01, 2013

Poland Is Coaland

Why Poland continues its love affair with coal

Tea Party: Just Says No

GOP Tea Party types form the core of climate denialists & think they have science on their side

Canada: Show Me The Heat

Canada's eastern arctic is hotter than any time in millennia according to new physical evidence

Science At Work: Oceans As Heat Sinks

New research & reactions on the relationship between oceans' ability to soak up CO2, a hotter planet & measurement baselines

Boston: The Champ

If there was a World Series for the most energy efficient city in the US, Boston would be the 2013 winner

Obama To America: Be Climate-Prepared

The President's Executive Order on the federal role in climate preparedness & resilience

NYC: Talking The Transition

George Soros is reported to be backing a project to add public engagement to the transition process for New York City's next mayor.

Berlin: Vote On Grid Takeover

Berliners will vote Sunday on a municipal take over of its privately-held electric power grid

Modeling A Green Bond Market

The definition and scope of green bonds is a work-in-progress

Trashing History

Search a century of Scientific American articles on treating trash to find useful ideas for today

Green Tech Incubator Hatches Miracle

Ancient miracles turned water into wine; today, a building's water system can make electricity, thanks to a NYC green tech incubator graduate