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  • The Great Transition, Part I: From Fossil Fuels to Renewable Energy

    The great energy transition from fossil fuels to renewable sources of energy is under way. As fossil fuel prices rise, as oil insecurity deepens, and as concerns about pollution and climate instability cast a shadow over the future of coal, a new world energy economy is emerging. The old energy economy, fueled by oil, coal, and natural gas, is being replaced with an economy powered by wind, solar, and geothermal energy. More

  • The Five Worst States for Renewable Energy Development

    Despite the availability of clean and sustainable energy sources like solar, wind, hydropower, geothermal and biomass, many states depend on outdated and dirty energy sources. Ohio, Pennsylvania, Indiana, Missouri and Tennessee are among the most in need of an energy portfolio diversification. More

  • U.S. Carbon Emission Down 7 Percent in Four Years, Even Bigger Drops Coming

    By Lester R. Brown Between 2007 and 2011, carbon emissions from coal use in the United States dropped 10 percent. During the same period, emissions from oil use dropped 11 percent. In contrast, carbon emissions from natural gas use increased by 6 percent. The net effect of these trends was that U.S. carbon emissions dropped […] More

  • Nuclear Energy and Renewable Technologies: Where We Stand (infographic)

    Another nuclear disaster, another round of worldwide questioning about the viability of nuclear energy. No doubt that nuclear industry makes a point when they argue that, overall, they have a strong safety record… but, as we saw again at Fukushima, when things do go wrong, they go really wrong… So, what’s the status of nuclear […] More

  • Hawaii: an Epicenter for Renewable Energy

    Hawaiian culture is steeped in a delicate harmony with nature. The islands boast consistently strong wind densities, great insolation characteristics, enormous reservoirs of geothermal energy, plant life that is perfect for the production of ethanol, and an incredible oceanic wave resource, all of which could be exploited by renewable technologies without damaging the environment. As […] More

  • 6 Wind-Powered Wineries

    There’s been some talk about solar powered wineries lately. But what about wind power? There are typically two ways a winery could use wind for its energy needs. It’s now possible for any size winery (in a suitably windy location) to use small wind turbines to convert wind energy into electricity. Due to the increased […] More

  • "Let No Man Say It Cannot Be Done": Restructuring the American Economy

    By Lester R. Brown We need an economy for the twenty-first century, one that is in sync with the earth and its natural support systems, not one that is destroying them. The fossil fuel-based, automobile-centered, throwaway economy that evolved in western industrial societies is no longer a viable model — not for the countries that […] More

  • Time to Rethink Japan's Energy Future

    By J. Matthew Roney Nearly four weeks after a 9.0-magnitude earthquake and tsunami devastated northeastern Japan, emergency personnel are still struggling to stabilize the disabled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant. Beyond the immediate need to minimize further radioactive leakage and protect public health, the government is beginning to reconsider its long-term plans for nuclear power […] More

  • Wind: The Centerpiece of the Plan B Economy

    By Lester R. Brown For many years, a small handful of countries dominated growth in wind power, but this is changing as the industry goes global, with more than 70 countries now developing wind resources. Between 2000 and 2010, world wind electric generating capacity increased at a frenetic pace from 17,000 megawatts to nearly 200,000 […] More

  • World on the Edge: Quick Facts

    We are facing issues of near-overwhelming complexity and unprecedented urgency. Can we think systemically and fashion policies accordingly? Can we change direction before we go over the edge? Here are a few of the many facts from the book to consider: There will be 219,000 people at the dinner table tonight who were not there […] More

  • A Global Shift to Renewable Energy

    By Lester R. Brown As fossil fuel prices rise, as oil insecurity deepens, and as concerns about climate change cast a shadow over the future of coal, a new energy economy is emerging. The old energy economy, fueled by oil, coal, and natural gas, is being replaced by one powered by wind, solar, and geothermal […] More

  • Offshore Wind, Not Offshore Oil

    By Janet Larsen The enormously devastating oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico is just one reminder that stretching out an addiction to a polluting and planet-warming fossil fuel poses risks to our health, our environment, and our economy. U.S. oil production peaked in 1970 at 9.6 million barrels per day. Since then production has […] More

  • Wind Power Soared Past 150,000 Megawatts in 2009

    By J. Matthew Roney Even in the face of a worldwide economic downturn, the global wind industry posted another record year in 2009 as cumulative installed wind power capacity grew to 158,000 megawatts. With this 31 percent jump, the global wind fleet is now large enough to satisfy the residential electricity needs of 250 million […] More

  • LA Community College System Heads for Energy Independence

    By Leslie Berliant Originally published on June 17, 2009, at SolveClimate By the middle of next year, the nine campuses that make up the nation’s largest community college system plan to be completely energy self-sufficient. It’s a huge step, and it will begin saving money immediately. The Los Angeles Community College District (LACCD) started down […] More

  • Book Review: POWER FROM THE WIND, a practical guide to small-scale energy production

    Tired of your increasing electric bills?  Want to change your relationship with energy, making your own, renewable, local power while doing your part to reduce carbon dioxide emissions and lessening the impacts of climate change? Read no further than Power from the Wind: A practical guide to small-scale energy production (New Society), by prolific writer […] More

  • Wind Energy Jobs Surpass Coal Mining Jobs

    Todd Woody reported last week that the wind energy industry now employs more people than coal mining. That is 85,000 jobs in wind – a 70% increase from 2007 – to coal mining’s 81,000 jobs. Not bad for an industry that is expected to continue to grow, even if not at the levels of the […] More

  • Earth Policy Institute: New Energy Economy Emerging in the United States

    By Lester R. Brown As fossil fuel prices rise, as oil insecurity deepens, and as concerns about climate change cast a shadow over the future of coal, a new energy economy is emerging in the United States. The old energy economy, fueled by oil, coal, and natural gas, is being replaced by one powered by […] More

  • New Facebook Application, Green My Vino, Helps Vineyards Go Green

    I just generated 20 minutes of green power. It took me less than five minutes. How did I do it? I added the Facebook application Green My Vino to my Facebook account and then sent one green power minute to 20 of my Facebook friends. Green My Vino was launched earlier today by Village Green […] More

  • Solar Night Industries Launches Modern Energy Plan Web Application

    Regular readers of sustainablog know that I’ve become a big fan of St. Louis-based Solar Night Industries since company president and founder Jason Loyet first reached out to me in early 2006. Jason and team have been kind enough keep me in the loop about new developments, and I’ve been impressed with what I’ve seen […] More