Thursday, May 06, 2010

Renewable Energy News, May 6, 2010

U.S. carbon dioxide emissions fell record 7% last year | USATODAY.com
Energy-related carbon dioxide emissions fell a record 7% last year, due partly to the economic downturn, the U.S. government reported Wednesday. While emissions have fallen in three of the last four years, 2009's drop was the largest since the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) began keeping comprehensive data in 1949.

Read the EIA's report, U.S. Carbon Dioxide Emissions in 2009: A Retrospective Review, for more.
Oil spill clouds future of energy legislation | msnbc.com
The Gulf oil spill has dealt a big blow to expanded offshore drilling, leaving the nation's energy problems as murky and unsettled as ever. The disaster may bolster arguments for greater energy conservation and renewable energy sources such as wind and solar, environmentalists say. But it's hard to see any other political beneficiaries, and under the best of scenarios, few experts think the nation's thirst for foreign oil will abate for years to come.
Thomas Friedman - No Fooling Mother Nature - NYTimes.com
There is only one meaningful response to the horrific oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico and that is for America to stop messing around when it comes to designing its energy and environmental future. The only meaningful response to this man-made disaster is a man-made energy bill that would finally put in place an American clean-energy infrastructure that would set our country on a real, long-term path to ending our addiction to oil.
Win-win on savings and comfort - The Manchester Journal
Martha Thompson owns a not untypical home in Manchester - a two-story Cape-style house built in 1963. Other than adding on an additional room 10 years later, not much changed; until last year. Then, Thompson was one of two area residents selected for a free home energy audit and insulation project underwritten by the Stratton Foundation, and Efficiency Vermont, an independent, non-profit organization under contract to the Vermont Public Service Board that provides technical assistance and financial incentives to Vermont households and businesses, to help them reduce their energy costs. The organization is funded by an energy efficiency charge on consumers' electric bills. One winter heating season later, the differences were marked - the house was warmer and her heating bill lower, she said.
NewNet News - Venture capital investment in clean technology bolstered by energy efficiency and electric vehicle deals
Venture capital investment into clean technology companies by US firms has increased by about two-thirds since the economic dip of early 2009 in the first quarter of the year, driven by energy efficiency and electric vehicle deals, according to a recent study. US venture capital investment in the sector in the first quarter of fiscal 2010 hit $733.3m, representing a 68 per cent increase in capital and 118 per cent increase in deals compared to the first quarter of 2009, according to analysis by Ernst & Young.
RI Govenor Carcieri backs special law for energy developer to bypass permit agency | The Providence Journal
Governor Carcieri went before a Senate committee on Wednesday to urge passage of first-of-a-kind legislation that would allow a private energy company to bypass a key regulatory board in a quest to build a wind farm in waters off Block Island. Carcieri gave “unqualified support” to a bill that would clear the way for developer Deepwater Wind to enter into a power-purchase agreement with National Grid, the state’s main electricity utility, which could go into effect without approval from the Rhode Island Public Utilities Commission. The governor told the Senate Committee on Environment and Agriculture that the special treatment the bill would give Deepwater is necessary for the company’s eight-turbine wind farm to move forward quickly, and is also a crucial step in the plan for Rhode Island to become a manufacturing hub for the nation’s offshore wind industry.
Colorado Seeks a Renewable Energy Peak | National Geographic Daily News
The United States gets only 4 percent of its electricity from wind, solar and biomass, but Colorado thinks it can do better. A lot better. This spring, Democratic Governor Bill Ritter signed into law a program for Colorado to get 30 percent of its power from renewable energy by 2020. Does Colorado have a secret it would like to share? Experts agree that Colorado has made great strides in incorporating renewables into its energy mix. The state is on its way to meeting its original 10 percent goal way ahead of schedule, and has raised the bar twice since then. But it remains to be seen whether what works in the heart of the Rockies can translate to places that lack Colorado’s unique geography or political landscape.

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