01.26.22- What Is Holding The Solar Boom Back?
In 1975, Ford-era energy expert and policymaker Robert C. Seamans declared that solar power could likely represent a quarter of the United States’ energy production by 2020, while wind power would never represent more than 1% of the nation’s energy mix. Instead, solar power has never cracked 3% of the United States energy mix, while wind power has gone on to reach about 8% in the past year. In general, the United States lags far behind other Western developed countries when it comes to renewable energy production and adoption, but the lack of growth from solar is particularly surprising compared to the high hopes that experts had for photovoltaics in the not-so-distant past. Read More
We've already heard about hoses that get wrapped around existing hot water pipes, using heat radiated from the pipe to heat water inside the hose. A new wrap-around device, however, uses that same pipe-heat to generate electricity.
Created via a collaboration between Pennsylvania State University and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, the experimental thermoelectric device is made up of multiple flat, square modules known as couples. Read More
01.24.22- When Will The U.S. Tap its Massive Geothermal Energy Potential?
Following the COP26 summit in November, it seems governments are racing to develop their renewable energy sectors. But as they turn their backs on fossil fuels, many appear to be focused almost solely on wind and solar power, largely overlooking alternative options. After years in the making, the U.S. geothermal industry is finally gaining momentum, but will it attract the investment and support it needs to fully develop? Read More
Perovskite solar cells have come a long way in a short time, but there’s still room for improvement. Engineers have now added a layer of quantum dots to the recipe, resulting in a more stable solar cell with near-record efficiency.
Perovskite materials make effective solar cells for a few reasons. Thin films of them are able to efficiently absorb the entire spectrum of visible light, they’re cheap to make, lightweight and flexible. Read More
In my view, there are three ways a growing economy can be sustained:
A few years ago, battery energy storage began drawing attention as what one industry executive at the time called the Holy Grail of renewable energy. In the years since, EVs have stolen the spotlight but now battery storage is back, larger than life and, quite likely, twice as expensive.
The ongoing energy crunch in Europe is one good illustration of why, if we are going down the renewable energy path, we need to build battery storage - and a lot of it. One cause of the crunch, admitted unwillingly but still admitted, was lower than usual wind power output. With storage, at least some of that output might have been stored for later use. Read More
In the early days of the oil industry, the U.S. quickly established dominance as the world’s most important producer and consumer of petroleum. But over time, depletion in the U.S. and discoveries abroad caused U.S. dominance of the petroleum industry to fade. Although the U.S. remained the world’s largest consumer of petroleum, it became increasingly dependent on foreign oil. Read More
One hormone we are seeing implicated more and more in obesity research goes by the name of leptin, and scientists continue to demonstrate how changing the way the body responds to it might lead to improved health. A new study has shown how targeting an enzyme within fat cells can alter sensitivity to leptin and in turn drive rapid weight loss in obese mice, while also improving overall metabolic health. Read More
Moving is a difficult decision, so we hesitate. But when the window to do so closes, it's too late. We always think we have all the time in the world to ponder, calculate and explore, and then things change and the options we once had are gone for good. Read More
01.15.22- Biden May Cut 2022 Biofuel Blending Mandates: Report
President Joe Biden is considering a cut to this year's biofuels blending mandates focusing on ethanol and eying a cut below the 15 billion gallons proposed by the EPA, Reuters has reported, quoting unnamed sources close to the White House.
The move comes after last month the Environmental Protection Agency proposed lower biofuels blending mandates for 2020 and 2021 in a bid to quell the growing concern about oil refiners about their blending bill amid soaring inflation. Yet at the time, the EPA kept the 2022 mandates higher, at 20.77 billion gallons in total, according to a December Reuters report. The bulk of this biofuels mix is ethanol. Read More
As useful as renewable energy sources are, they need to be backed up by storage systems that hold energy for times when the Sun isn’t shining or the wind isn’t blowing. Ocean Battery is a new design for an energy storage system that functions a bit like a hydroelectric dam at the bottom of the sea.
Developed by Dutch startup Ocean Grazer, the Ocean Battery is designed to be installed on the seafloor near offshore renewable energy generators, like wind turbines, floating solar farms, tidal and wave energy systems. It is made up of three components that together function on a principle similar to that of a hydro dam. Read More
For decades, the nuclear energy sector has been regarded as the black sheep of the alternative energy market family thanks to massive cost-overruns, poor public perception as well as a series of high-profile disasters such as Chernobyl, Fukushima and Three Miles Island. However, last year, the sector received a much-needed shot in the arm after the Trump administration sought a $1.5B bailout in a bid to create sufficient federal uranium stockpiles for national security purposes.
And, suddenly, the out-of-favor industry has been receiving support from numerous quarters. Read More
01.12.22- Why Are Renewables Stocks Plunging?
Back in 2013, an announcement by the Federal Reserve about pulling back on the central bank's easy-money policies sent markets into a tizzy. Treasury bond yields skyrocketed, junk bond prices fell, emerging-markets stocks tumbled, and stock volatility was off the charts leading to the coining of a new phrase on Wall Street, "taper tantrum." Investors were expecting a similar scenario after the Fed met at its annual gathering at Jackson Hole in August to discuss tapering of asset purchases. Read More
“Try to unlearn the obsessive fear of death (and the anxious quest for death avoidance) that pervades linear thinking in nearly every modern society. The ancients knew that, without periodic decay and death, nature cannot complete its full round of biological and social change. Without plant death, weeds would strangle the forest. Without human death, memories would never die, and unbroken habits and customs would strangle civilization. Social institutions require no less. Just as floods replenish soil and fires rejuvenate forests, a Fourth Turning clears out society’s exhausted elements and creates an opportunity.” – Strauss & Howe – The Fourth Turning Read More
01.10.22- And Now, for Something Entirely Different: With America's Death Plunge Being Rushed To Completion, These Maps Show Why Population Density Will Be Critically Important To Surviving America's Dark Days
'The Decline And Fall Of Civilizations Are Barely Noticed By Most Of Its Inhabitants'
On January 5th, Susan Duclos published this story on ANP titled “Get Out Now Before It Is Too Late: Soros District Attorneys Handing Whole Cities Over To Criminals And This Is Their Plan For The Rest Of America!” within which she warned of the coming real world repercussions to cities across America because of horrendous political decisions. Read More
It is widely thought that a future low-carbon hydrogen industry will arise in industrial clusters. The emphasis is on ports, where concentrations of basic industries, pipelines, and shipping will support large scale production and efficient supply. Plans for major industrial ports in Europe, such as Antwerp and Rotterdam, are enhanced with the possibility of offshore storage of carbon dioxide. In the US, the region that appears best equipped for widespread adoption of clean H2 is the Texas Gulf Coast centered on Houston. The Houston region's industrial sector comprises approximately 30% of US refining capacity and more than 40% of US petrochemical capacity. Its industrial sector accounts for 40% of the state of Texas’ industrial emissions. Read More
Copper is a remarkable metal.
It goes into just about everything we use today – from plumbing to power lines, computers to motors.
In fact, it’s in so many of the things we use daily that its price can act as a signal for what’s going on in the overall economy.
As such, it’s hardly a surprise that copper was one of the top performers of the “COVID recovery” in 2021. It hit an all-time high of $10,480 per tonne in May. Read More
Good news for fusion energy progress and a new world record for the Chinese Academy of Sciences, as its Experimental Advanced Superconducting Tokamak (EAST), or "artifical sun," maintains 70 million degrees Celsius (126 million °F) for 1,056 seconds.
High-temperature plasma is a critical part of many large-scale fusion energy initiatives, which attempt to replicate some of the conditions that make the Sun a powerful enough fusion reactor to warm our solar system, with the goal of eventually supplying safe, clean energy for humankind. Read More
Markets are welcoming victory versus COVID, but the next crisis is upon us: Energy instability. The consequences could be dramatic...
Back to the grindstone with a vengeance today – holidays are over and the Christmas decorations are back in their boxes. Time to get serious about 2022. Time to buy or time to sell? Read More
One of the biggest electric-vehicle battery companies in the world is going public.
After years of disappointment, the U.S. IPO market has been recording a strong comeback. Traditional initial public offerings raised more money than ever before in 2021, as early investors tried to cash in on sky-high valuations. This year, a record nearly 400 traditional IPOs and an additional 600 special-purpose acquisition companies (SPACs) listed on the markets. Total deal value for traditional IPOs clocked in at $153.5B while SPACs fetched $162.3B, both record highs. Read More
At its core, the human body is a symphony of chemical reactions. The complexities and interdependencies of the molecular machinery that makes our bodies function are almost too staggering to ponder. As any chemist can attest, chemical reactions are usually quite sensitive to temperature, and sensitivity to temperature varies substantially across reaction pathways. As such, temperature control not only dictates reaction rates, but it also influences product and byproduct distributions. At one temperature, two reagents might react cleanly to produce a desired product with high purity. At a different temperature, an undesirable pathway might become more kinetically favored, leading to the accumulation of unwanted impurities. Read More
As our colleague Fouad Egbaria noted this week, rising power costs in Europe, almost wholly down to the cost of natural gas, resulted in reduced output at Europe’s largest aluminum smelter, Aluminium Dunkerque Industries France. Losses there ballooned to €20 million ($22 million) during November, as natural gas prices quadrupled this year.
Most aluminum smelters operate on long-term power contracts. However, spot prices do impact costs for many mills, either with contracts linked to spot prices or when contracts come up for periodic adjustment when the prevailing spot price comes into play. Read More
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