Category: Energy

Mining threatens to eat up northern Europes last wilderness

Originally Published by The Guardian – Vast network of rivers, lakes and mountains in Finland, Sweden and Norway at risk from being exploited for rare earth and other minerals.

A New Frontier for Fracking: Drilling Near the Arctic Circle

Originally Published by Yale 360 – Hydraulic fracturing is about to move into the Canadian Arctic, with companies exploring the region’s rich shale oil deposits. But many indigenous people and conservationists have serious concerns about the impact of fracking in more fragile northern environments.

Nuclear reactors in northern England to be shut down due to faults

Originally Published by The Guardian – Four nuclear reactors at two large power plants in the north of England are to be shut down temporarily, after inspectors discovered a fault with a boiler unit.

One-third of German Power Came from Renewables in First Half of 2014

Originally Published by Yale Environment – Thanks to abundant sunshine and wind, renewable energy generated 31 percent of Germany’s electricity in the first six months of this year, according to a new report. The report, released by the Fraunhofer Insititute, said that 27 percent of the country’s electricity production came from wind and solar, and four percent from hydropower. Solar power generation grew by 28 percent in the first half of 2014 compared to the first six months of 2013, and wind power grew by 19 percent over the same period. On a couple of particularly windy and sunny days in May and June, renewable energy accounted for 50 to 75 percent of Germany’s electricity production, the report said. The Fraunhofer Institute said that as Germany continues to phase out its nuclear power plants, it remains reliant on highly polluting “brown coal” to produce electricity. A substantial portion of German coal-generated electricity is being exported, the report said.

Vermont Law School: The Ethical Dimensions of Energy Policy

The human use of energy has profound moral and ethical implications, raising issues that can only be answered by considering notions of justice. Earthzine science writer Osha Gray Davidson blogs about these crucial issues while on a fellowship at the Vermont Law School.

Scientists discover how plastic solar panels work

Originally Published by Eureka Alert – (University of Montreal) Scientists don’t fully understand how ‘plastic’ solar panels work, which complicates the improvement of their cost efficiency, thereby blocking the wider use of the technology. However, researchers at the University of Montreal, the Science and Technology Facilities Council, Imperial College London and the University of Cyprus have determined how light beams excite the chemicals in solar panels, enabling them to produce charge.

The UK is making it a legal duty to maximise greenhouse gas emissions

Originally Published by The Gaurdian – Maximising the production of crude oil will, if the bill is passed, become a legal requirement.

Energy trilemma: Can power be cheap, clean and secure?

Originally Published by New Scientist – When it comes to electricity supply, we’re caught in a vicious triangle. A bold scheme that pays big business to switch off could be part of the solution.

How A Small College Launched Divestment from Fossil Fuels

Originally Published by Yale 360 -Unity College in Maine was the first in the U.S. to divest all fossil fuel holdings from its endowment. In an interview with Yale Environment 360, Unity president Stephen Mulkey talks about why he sees this groundbreaking move as an ethical decision and an extension of the college’s mission.

Eight U.S. States Unveil Ambitious ZEV Action Plan

Originally Published by ENS- An alliance of eight U.S. states Thursday announced a plan to put 3.3 million zero emission vehicles on the road by the year 2025 and establish a fueling infrastructure to support this number of vehicles.