Itâ''s really just a curiosity but does provide a glimpse of how things work. Talking Points Memo, the liberal news and blogging operation, has a story this week saying that New Jersey Senator Robert Menendez, an advocate of action to address climate change, is threatening to hold up two key Obama appointments over unrelated Cuba policy. Though a solid liberal, Menendez takes a hard line on Cuba and is troubled by some provisions in the presidentâ''s spending bill that could signal a softening of policy toward the post-Fidel Castro regime. As a result, heâ''s threatening to put a temporary block on Senate action to confirm Obamaâ''s science adviser and the appointee to become head of NOAAâ''along with Steven Chu, Obamaâ''s energy secretary, they are the two most eminent people nominated for top presidential positions.
IEEE Spectrum’s energy, power, and green tech blog, featuring news and analysis about the future of energy, climate, and the smart grid.
Newsletter Sign Up
Sign up for the EnergyWise newsletter and get biweekly news on the power & energy industry, green technology, and conservation delivered directly to your inbox.
How Do We Estimate Transmission Costs for New Generation?
Overlook the cost to move power to the detriment of your renewable energy project
How to Predict a Utility’s Transmission and Distribution Costs: Count the Customers
The number of customers found in a utility’s territory, not how much energy is delivered to them, is the best predictor of annual transmission, distribution, and administration costs
Innovative Direct-Current Microgrids to Solve India’s Power Woes
Solar DC microgrids could do for electrification what mobile phones did for telephony
For U.S. Jobs Creation, Renewables Are a Better Bet Than Coal
DOE report says renewable power generation jobs surpassed those in fossil fuels, and are growing faster
4 New Ways to Store Renewable Energy With Water
Stash it away in concrete bunkers, undersea bags, and other strange places
Will Rooftop Solar Really Add to Utility Costs?
Study shows significant PV generation can be integrated in the grid with little or no additional cost to utilities and their customers
The Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam Gets Set to Open
The controversial dam is nearly done, but will drought and lack of grid infrastructure lessen its impact?
WattTime, the Tool That Tells You When to Charge Your EV to Keep It Green
Analytics from Berkeley-based WattTime precisely match new loads on a grid to the power plant that will serve them, providing estimates of carbon intensity that are up to 45 percent more accurate than regional averages. Such tools can guide cleaner charging by electric vehicles, and yield a bigger carbon reduction bang from energy efficiency measures and renewable power projects.
Are Stationary Bikes that Generate Electricity Making a Comeback?
A new gym in downtown Sacramento plans to recuperate the cost of electricity-generating bikes in one year
Batteries Need to Get Big—Like, Enormous—for Solar Power to Shine
They need to store an order of magnitude more than anything yet seen
ARPA-E Under Trump
Some of the work of the U.S. Department of Energy's advanced research wing fits fine with Trump's priorities, but analysts worry the next generation of solar tech could suffer
Germany's Aggressive Switch to Renewables Will Save €149 Billion
The country’s goal of lowering its greenhouse gas emissions by 40 percent by 2020 is yielding dividends in addition to cleaner air.
Lights for the Enlightened: An Engineering Trek in the Himalayas
How a band of techie volunteers electrified Lingshed monastery and school
Why Southern China Broke Up Its Power Grid
An abundance of high-voltage DC makes big AC grids unstable
Building a Better Grid Backup
Even as the first grid-scale batteries come online, ARPA-E underwrites R&D for next-generation grid storage
What Makes a Good PV Technology?
Comparing maximum efficiency is a good place to start, but it takes more than that for a commercial breakthrough
Interactive: Record-Breaking PV Cells
The world’s leading PV research labs use this chart to track record-breaking solar cells. New champs appear as soon as they are certified
This Smart Watch Will Charge Itself Using Heat From Your Skin
Matrix Industries comes out of stealth today to say that wearables can—and should—power themselves
Flashy Recyclable Photovoltaic System Breaks Record for Solar Energy
Medium-sized, plastic silicon cell and solar concentrator photovoltaic modules achieve 5.8 efficiency
Offshore Wind Farms Don’t Harm Marine Life
Analysis suggests that crabs in Sweden are not negatively affected by Lillgrund farm