Blog Archives

Why aren’t we using more hydropower?

Why aren’t we using more hydropower?

Hydropower is a clean, stable, and proven renewable energy source. So why aren’t we using more of it? Globally, hydropower – which generates electricity through the use of falling water – accounts for 16% of the world’s electricity output, according to the Worldwatch Institute. China is the largest producer, with a total of 19% of […] … learn more→

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→

Rising temperature, rising food prices

Agriculture as it exists today developed over 11,000 years of rather remarkable climate stability. It has evolved to maximize production within that climate system. Now, suddenly, the climate is changing. With each passing year, the agricultural system is becoming more out of sync with the climate system. In generations past, when there was an extreme […] … learn more→

Chapter 7. Grain yields starting to plateau

From the beginning of agriculture until the mid-twentieth century, growth in the world grain harvest came almost entirely from expanding the cultivated area. Rises in land productivity were too slow to be visible within a single generation. It is only within the last 60 years or so that rising yields have replaced area expansion as […] … learn more→

World solar power topped 100,000 Megawatts in 2012

The world installed 31,100 megawatts of solar photovoltaics (PV) in 2012—an all-time annual high that pushed global PV capacity above 100,000 megawatts. There is now enough PV operating to meet the household electricity needs of nearly 70 million people at the European level of use. While PV production has become increasingly concentrated in one country—China—the […] … 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→