What two countries lead the world in energy consumption, energy production and greenhouse gas emissions? The United States and China. Can our two countries work together to help lead the world in a transition to clean energy? A recent announcement by U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu is an important step in that direction. (more…)
The DOE began testing the appliances after watchdogs raised serious questions about the federal labeling program. The (more…)
The U.S. retailing giant, Home Depot, is now selling a super-efficient, LED light bulb for just under $20, and the chain says that the bulbs are selling so quickly that it is having difficulty keeping them in stock. LED bulbs, which emit a brighter light than energy-efficient compact fluorescent bulbs, can last as long as 30 years, which makes their $20 price tag appealing; not long ago, (more…)
Four U.S. states generated more than 10 percent of their in-state power production from wind energy in 2009, according to a new report by the U.S. Department of Energy and the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. New wind power plants were built in 28 states, led by Texas, which added 2,292 megawatts of new power capacity, according to the annual Wind (more…)
Today, a panel of government scientists released a report which said that the vast majority of the oil from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill has either evaporated or been burned, skimmed, recovered from the wellhead or dispersed much of which is in the process of being degraded. A significant amount of this is the direct result of the federal government’s aggressive (more…)
Nine vehicles remain in competition for the $10 million Progressive Insurance Automotive X Prize, which is seeking to spur development of commercially viable cars that average 100 miles-per-gallon. The competition, the brainchild of Peter Diamandis’ X Prize Foundation, began 15 months ago with 136 entries and will end on Sept. 16 in Washington D.C. with the (more…)
Energy investors and entrepreneurs often refer to the period between technologies being developed in the lab and making their way to the marketplace as a "valley of death" due to the multitude of factors that can prevent those advancements from reaching the consumer. Last week, just miles from the real Death Valley in Nevada, Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar and I announced a venture that will help promising solar technologies make that journey to the market. The Nevada Test site, which was once used to test nuclear weapons, will now be dedicated to testing new (more…)
Picture a neighborhood block somewhere in your town. It might have single-story homes for 10 families — complete with front porches, sidewalks and green lawns. Or instead that block might have a single apartment building that houses 50 families over five floors. What we know is that each of the families — whether they’re living in a detached house or a mid-rise apartment — pays away some of their hard-earned dollars to pay for energy. And for many low-income Americans, these energy bills absorb a significant amount of the family income.
Now imagine that teams of trained experts come down that block and install measures to help those families save energy. Insulation, caulking, weatherstripping, windows, better furnaces or water heaters. So families’ energy bills go down and their comfort goes up. We call this ‘weatherization’ — and it’s happening in more than 82,000 homes as part of the Recovery Summer. (more…)
President Obama took the occasion of Independence Day to announce that the federal government will authorize $2 billion of Recovery Act funding to support the solar industry. Administered by the Department of Energy, the funds will target two companies: Abengoa Solar and Abound Solar Manufacturing.
Abengoa – an international solar firm with its roots in Spain—plans to build the world’s largest concentrating solar power plant in Arizona. The company says the facility, dubbed the Solana Project, will produce enough energy to power 70,000 households. The plant will use thermal storage equipment to parabolically recover energy for a 280 MW output capacity. The administration says the project will create 1,600 construction jobs. (more…)
Biofuels produced from algae hold “significant promise” as an alternative to polluting petroleum-based fuels, but the technology will require years of development before it is ready to be deployed at a large-scale, commercial level, according to a U.S. Department of Energy report. The “National Algal Biofuels Technology Roadmap” identifies the state of the technology and the challenges facing researchers, engineers, and policymakers in the advancement of algal biofuels. (more…)