To export LNG or not? If so, how much is prudent?

President Obama is preparing to decide how much liquified natural gas (LNG) from the the U.S. boom in shale natural gas production it makes sense to export. Economically and geo-politically a LOT hangs in the balance. If Obama’s first term on energy was mostly about incentivizing renewable energy, his second term is all about whether […]

Center for Sustainable Shale Development – peeling back the packaging

Since its launch about one month ago (see The Energy Fix, March 22), the Center for Sustainable Shale Development has been met with accolades from entities such as The Washington Post to harsh rebukes by the likes of the Sierra Club. It’s not surprising that these and other parties differ on the Center’s potential for […]

Collaboration on Illinois legislation could achieve standards for regulating hydraulic fracturing

Illinois is on track to go where no push for hydraulic fracturing has gone before in the U.S.: a consensus on how to regulate the controversial practice of injecting chemicals and large amounts of water deep underground to flush out large quantities of natural gas and crude oil. As states such as New York and […]

With Obama’s win, cleaner energy has another chance, but these questions loom

Just because President Obama won four more years, doesn’t mean the next four will be any easier. Sure, it’s now his legacy he is beginning to focus on. But there are tall hurdles even the election results will do to change. Renewable energy developers and suppliers have a few rays of sunshine and a more […]

FAST FIX: Score a win for Supermodel Elle Macpherson over OK Sen. James Inhofe

The Senate has voted 53-46 to defeat Republican Oklahoma Senator James Inhofe’s bid to halt the U.S. EPA restrictions of mercury and air toxic emissions standards (aka MATS) from coal-fired power plants. While not all, or even most of the credit goes to celebrities such as supermodel Elle Macpherson (photo), it certainly didn’t hurt that […]

Can Maryland spin any wind turbines off its coast after setbacks in New Jersey and Delaware?

Offshore wind has two strikes against it in New Jersey and Delaware. Cape Wind off Massachusetts’ Nantucket Sound is fighting to stay alive in extra innings. Now Maryland is trying to get ‘on base’ with a second bid by Governor Martin O’Malley which is halfway toward approval (at this writing) by the state’s General Assembly. […]

The opportunity lost with the Sierra Club’s admitting $25 million in natural gas industry donations

In a perfect world, there would be a quickly scalable source of electricity that would help with transition the world off of old, “dirty,” coal-fired power plants to renewables and other cleaner sources. Natural gas is such a fuel. But it does not come without some serious risks. Take for example the debate over “fracking.” […]

Fresh messages, new language needed to achieve sustainable energy future; when’s the inflection point?

Advocates of a more sustainable energy future can blame Solyndra, Al Gore, President Obama, James Hansen, Bill McKibben or environmental interests groups such as the 350.org, Natural Resources Defense Council, Greenpeace and the Sierra Club. The fact is a growing number of, if not most, “green” initiatives are not likely to achieve their missions of […]

Exelon’s bid for Constellation Energy: how real is the pledge to efficiency, EV’s and renewable energy in Maryland?

In the press release announcing its planned $7.9 billion acquisition of Baltimore, Maryland-based Constellation Energy, Chicago-based Exelon promised to spend $64 million over several years to spur energy efficiency, electric vehicle and renewable energy initiatives in Maryland. When pressed for details this week about one of the largest U.S. utility mergers ever, however, company spokesman […]

Greenpeace with Puma, Sierra Club and Bloomberg, making deep inroads for sustainability while governments languish

Within the span of one week, Greenpeace and its new corporate partner Puma, the athletic wear maker, and the Sierra Club with the philanthropy of New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, have unleashed an impressive one-two punch on two undeniable threats to human health and the environment: coal-fired power plants and dangerous toxic chemicals. What […]