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Mar 6, 2013

Energy News: The Week in Review (Feb. 25, 2013)


Amory B. LovinsHere’s a cross-section of the energy conversations that took center stage last week:

The Guardian included RMI co-founder and chief scientist Amory Lovins in its group of “climate change abolitionists,” people who are “fighting for a more sustainable world.”

The New York Times reported that, in the wake of Fukushima, there’s friction in the U.S. over enhanced nuclear safeguards.

Shell released its latest New Lens Scenarios, which predict that meeting forecasted increased demand for energy in 2050 while simultaneously dramatically reducing carbon emissions will be extremely difficult.

In its new report, “Drill, Baby, Drill,” the Post Carbon Institute shared analysis noting that shale gas and shale oil will be insufficient to achieve energy independence for the U.S.

AutoblogGreen reported the latest year-over-year sales numbers and trends for a broad range of EVs, PHEVs, and hybrids. The site also took a more detailed look at the Nissan LEAF and Chevy Volt.

Greenbiz ran a story about reporting standards for financial services emissions, noting a growing trend of accounting for and managing greenhouse gas emissions in value chains.

Bloomberg New Energy Finance released a new white paper, “U.S. Biofuels in 2013: Stories to Watch,” about colliding policies and standards.

GreentechMedia, citing Joule Assets, reported that the demand response market is expected to double to $6 billion in the next five years.

The National Association of Home Builders noted that the ICC 700 National Green Building Standard, recently approved by the American National Standards Institute, is now available.

AutoblogGreen reported that Oregon lawmakers are considering a per mile tax for plug-in and highly fuel-efficient autos.

PV Magazine, citing new Deutsche Bank forecasts, reported that unsubsidized solar has reached grid parity in India and Italy, with similar progress expected through 2014.

Grist pondered the “top four reasons the U.S. still doesn’t have a single offshore wind turbine.” Meanwhile, the Center for American Progress offered an issue brief on the economic case for domestic offshore wind.

The U.S. Department of State released its draft environmental impact statement of the Keystone XL Pipeline Project.

Greenbiz, citing a new report from Bloomberg New Energy Finance, warned that current financial markets are biased against clean energy.

AutoblogGreen reported that a Colorado company is focusing on making ethanol from woody biomass, including beetle-kill pine, in what some are hoping can eventually shift the “food vs. fuel” biofuels debate away from corn.

Bloomberg New Energy Finance released a new white paper, “Will Australia’s Carbon Price Last? A 2013 Update,” about the durability of that country’s carbon price in advance of an expected change of government forthcoming in September’s federal elections.

The Geothermal Energy Association forecasted that installed capacity could double in the next decade.

Climate Progress reported that Chevy plans to boost production of its Volt by 20 percent this year.

TriplePundit ran a story about green building opportunities in the rebounding housing market.

GreentechMedia called for transparency about energy use in the built environment, asking, “We disclose calories, fuel mileage and toxic emissions—why not energy use?”

New Orleans’ Times-Picayune reported that plans for Louisiana’s energy efficiency program were halted at the last minute.

Greenbiz reported that Dow Jones recently unveiled its new Sustainability Emerging Markets Index.

Bloomberg New Energy Finance released the results of its 2012 Bioenergy Leadership Forum, an “annual gathering of influential thought leaders and decision-makers from across the global bioenergy sector.”

AutoblogGreen reported that Los Angeles has launched a plan to synchronize the city’s nearly 4,400 stoplights in an effort to ease congestion, increasing traffic speeds while reducing travel times.

Seattle’s Daily Journal of Commerce ran a story about “a crucial step that green building teams often skip”—post-occupancy evaluation of building performance.

Grist reported on the U.S. military’s “clean-energy revolution.” So did Climate Progress, as well as other outlets, including Mother Jones magazine.

Greenbiz ran a story about “how local communities can benefit from EV growth.”

Pike Research released a new report, “Smart Energy: Five Metatrends to Watch in 2013 and Beyond,” which included the democratization of energy and the changing role of utilities.

AutoblogGreen reported that Estonia recently opened a nationwide network of 165 fast-charging stations, spaced 25–35 miles apart on highways and capable of providing about 90 percent charge in 30 minutes.

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