No time left to think about cold-weather energy efficiency projects: it’s time to get them done if you want to cut your heating costs. As in most years, doing nothing will cost you more: the U.S. Energy Information Administration is predicting residential electricity prices in the U.S. to rise 2.2% compared to the Winter of 2012-13.
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Offshore wind power installations are on track to hit a seventh consecutive annual record in 2013. Developers added 1,080 megawatts of generating capacity in the first half of the year, expanding the world total by 20 percent in just six months. Fifteen countries host some 6,500 megawatts of offshore wind capacity. Before the year is out, the world total should exceed 7,100 megawatts. Although still small compared with the roughly 300,000 megawatts of land-based wind power, offshore capacity is growing at close to 40 percent a year.
Anaerobic digestion – extracting methane from organic wastes – doesn’t get the love of, say, solar and wind: it’s not nearly as sexy, and definitely more smelly. But it’s also a renewable energy technology with plenty of available feedstock: all of that food waste we discuss regularly could go towards the creation of biogas.
Carbon dioxide emissions from burning fossil fuels in the United States peaked at more than 1.6 billion tons of carbon in 2007. Since then they have fallen 11 percent, dropping to over 1.4 billion tons in 2013, according to estimates from the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Emissions shrank rapidly during the recession, then bounced back slightly as the economy recovered. But shifting market conditions, pollution regulations, and changing behaviors are also behind the decline.
Nuclear power generation in the United States is falling. After increasing rapidly since the 1970s, electricity generation at U.S. nuclear plants began to grow more slowly in the early 2000s. It then plateaued between 2007 and 2010—before falling more than 4 percent over the last two years. Projections for 2013 show a further 1 percent drop. With reactors retiring early and proposed projects being abandoned, U.S. nuclear power’s days are numbered.
The world installed 31,100 megawatts of solar photovoltaics (PV) in 2012—an all-time annual high that pushed global PV capacity above 100,000 megawatts. There is now enough PV operating to meet the household electricity needs of nearly 70 million people at the European level of use.
Despite news of melting ice caps and dying polar bears, the first instinct for most people in the hot summer months is to crank up the air conditioning. While reducing carbon footprints may seem like an impossibly grand task, there are ridiculously easy ways to save on home energy consumption, as well as your monthly bill. Here are five ways to save energy this summer
The World Bank’s Sustainable Energy for All initiative focuses on how to get “modern energy” to the entire global population efficiently, effectively, and with the lowest environmental and health impacts.
Got a dream green home you’d love to build? Sure, you’ll probably want to include solar panels in the building… but that’s just one element. Green building involves making the most efficient use of the materials that go into the building, and creating a space that allows for sustainable use of resources needed to live in that home.
Afraid that you’re wasting money on heat? Here are the main spots in your house to check for leaks and gaps.
Think you know every energy source under consideration for home or commercial use? Check out these more offbeat options…
The need for American citizens to become the policy-makers to create a just and sustainable food supply chain is urgent, because in the hands of the US government it has become increasingly unjust and unsustainable.
Via Campesina, the world’s largest confederation of farmers with member organizations in 70 countries, has called Monsanto one of the “principal enemies of peasant sustainable agriculture and food sovereignty for all peoples.” See how peasant farmers, and the activists who support them, are challenging the agribusiness giant’s incursions into developing world farming.