Tag Archives: Fossil Fuels

As sea ice shrinks, Arctic shipping options expand

On October 7, 2013, the Nordic Orion bulk carrier ship completed its journey from Vancouver, Canada, to Pori, Finland, having traveled northward around Alaska and through the Northwest Passage. It was the first large commercial freighter ever to make the voyage through these typically ice-covered Arctic waters. Avoiding the longer journey, through the Panama Canal, […] … learn more→

Fossil fuel use pushes Carbon Dioxide emissions into dangerous territory

Increasing global emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2), a heat-trapping gas, are pushing the world into dangerous territory, closing the window of time to avert the worst consequences of higher temperatures, such as melting ice and rising seas. Since the dawn of the Industrial Revolution, carbon emissions from burning fossil fuels have grown exponentially. Despite wide […] … learn more→

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, […] … learn more→

Governments spend $1.4 billion per day to destabilize climate

We distort reality when we omit the health and environmental costs associated with burning fossil fuels from their prices. When governments actually subsidize their use, they take the distortion even further. Worldwide, direct fossil fuel subsidies added up to roughly $500 billion in 2010. Of this, supports on the production side totaled some $100 billion. […] … learn more→

Waiting for a strong mercury rule

We’re in a state of heightened expectation. The final Mercury and Air Toxics (MATS) rule, regulating one of the largest sources of toxic pollutants in our country (coal-fired power plants), was supposed to be released on Friday, December 16 to comply with a court-ordered deadline. (A proposed rule was released in March 2011). Advance news […] … learn more→

Solar energy incentives around the world

Sunlight is an unlimited source of non-polluting energy. Most power plants currently produce electricity with steam turbines. The heat to generate the steam is supplied by the combustion of fossil fuels such as oil, natural gas, or coal. Staggering volumes of carbon dioxide gas are produced through the combustion process. Carbon dioxide is a greenhouse […] … learn more→

Studies say natural gas has its own environmental problems

Natural gas, with its reputation as a linchpin in the effort to wean the nation off dirtier fossil fuels and reduce global warming, may not be as clean over all as its proponents say. Even as natural gas production in the United States increases and Washington gives it a warm embrace as a crucial component […] … learn more→

Green energy\’s big challenge: The daunting task of scaling up

To shift the global economy from fossil fuels to renewable energy will require the construction of wind, solar, nuclear, and other installations on a vast scale, significantly altering the face of the planet. Can these new forms of energy approach the scale needed to meet the world’s energy demands? … learn more→

Limiting ocean acidification under global change

Largely as a result of human activities such as the burning of fossil fuels for energy and land-use changes such deforestation, the concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is now higher that it has been at any time over the last 800,000 years. Most scientists believe this increase in atmospheric carbon dioxide to be […] … learn more→