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Mexico's Energy Reforms: Is the Country Now Open for Business? [PODCAST]

August 28, 2015 by Robert Rapier

A Discussion of Mexico's Energy Reforms

In August 2014, Mexico enacted a series of comprehensive energy reform laws, promising to radically transform the electricity and oil and gas sectors. Long controlled by state-owned companies, Mexican President Peña Nieto intended the reforms to open his nation's energy sector for new investment.[read more]

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Nuclear Innovation: Necessity of Test Beds

August 26, 2015 by Todd Allen
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Nuclear Innovation and Necessity

This is the first of four planned articles that will outline the recommendations from the Idaho National Laboratory led Nuclear Innovation Workshops, which cover the pressing need for designated test beds in order to advance nuclear innovation.[read more]

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Will the Iranian Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty become a Threat to U.S. Energy Security?

August 21, 2015 by John Miller
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Iran Nuclear Deal and U.S. Energy Security

The Obama Administration negotiated changes to the nuclear non-proliferation treaty that is supposed to curtail Iran’s possible nuclear weapons development for 10-15 years. While the pros and cons of this treaty are being strongly debated in Congress, the risks to U.S. energy security are apparently not a priority concern.[read more]

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Crowdfunders Threaten the Cozy World of Largescale Renewable Energy Provision

August 21, 2015 by Aedan Kernan
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A bid to crowdfund a 350 MW offshore wind project in Denmark looked likely to provide the ‘usual suspects’ with some stiff competition, that is, until the moment when the Danish government blocked it. Now, the crowdfunders are starting to fight back.[read more]

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Methane's Impact: An Under-Estimation of Global Significance

August 21, 2015 by Matt de la Houssaye
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Global Methane Risk

According to IPCC estimates, by the end of this century the global temperature will increase between 1.5°C and 4.5°C relative to the average of the 1880’s. Outcomes from this can be a higher chance of extreme weather events, crop shortages, and an elevated sea level due to the melting Antarctic ice sheet.[read more]

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Can Market Fixes Overcome the Declining Value of Wind and Solar at High Market Shares?

August 13, 2015 by Jesse Jenkins
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Electricity Markets and Renewable Energy

Ben Paulos says wind and solar energy "blow up" energy markets when they reach high market shares. But is this really a problem? Let's revisit the declining value of wind and solar at high penetration levels...[read more]

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How Big of a Deal is the Clean Power Plan? Comparisons to Other U.S. Climate Policies

August 7, 2015 by Michael Craig

Clean Power Plan Policy Comparisons

As any regular reader of the Energy Collective knows, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency released the final Clean Power Plan (CPP) on Monday. There’s been a debate over just how important the final CPP actually is and how it stacks up against prior actions taken by the U.S. to reduce CO2 emissions.[read more]

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Fracking Time for a Step Back

July 29, 2015 by Steve Heisler
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Fracking Analysis

Fracking is one of the hottest environmental topics under discussion these days, and for good reason: Many known dangers exist. Additionally, there may be more problems we haven’t yet discovered, because the fracking process currently in use has a short safety track record.[read more]

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Can U.S. Canadian Oil Sands Imports be Nearly Carbon Neutral?

July 28, 2015 by John Miller
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Oil Sands and Carbon Neutrality

The Argonne National Laboratory published a study that indicates Canadian Oil Sands imports would increase greenhouse gas emissions by 20% greater than existing conventional U.S. domestic crudes. Is this study reasonably accurate or is it feasible that actual Oil Sands imports could be almost carbon neutral?[read more]

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Seeking Consensus on the Externalized Costs of Energy: Methodology

July 27, 2015 by Schalk Cloete
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Seeking Consensus on External Costs

The next chapter of the Seeking Consensus project will evaluate externalized costs of a variety different energy options. This article details and explains the methodology that will be used in estimating these costs.[read more]

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Using China's Lack of Progress on Greenhouse Gas Reduction to Spur U.S. Climate Action

July 21, 2015 by Matthew Lichtash
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China and U.S. Climate Action

China is not on track to meet its international climate obligations—not by a long shot. Some use this sobering statistic as a reason not to limit our own emissions. Here's how we can flip this argument and turn China's lack of environmental progress into a motivating force for bold U.S. climate action.[read more]

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Making Deregulation Work: Developing a Consumer Friendly Energy Market

Deregulation and Consumer Choice

The restructuring of energy markets in over twenty states since the 1990s has offered consumers with choices for their electricity generation services. The introduction of consumer choice should create an environment that is conducive for accountability and transparency in retail rates.[read more]

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Energy Community Offers Targeted Recommendations on Nuclear Innovation

July 8, 2015 by Todd Allen
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Nuclear and the Energy Community

As global action builds in response to the dual challenges of growing energy demand and climate change, nuclear energy is increasingly in the spotlight. Nuclear has an important role to play in the Administration’s all-of-the-above energy strategy, checking many of the boxes that align with our shifting priorities.[read more]

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#EnergyChat Webinar: Can Carbon Capture and Storage Deliver?

July 7, 2015 by Jesse Jenkins

Carbon Capture Potential?

Carbon capture and storage technology promises fossil fuels without the carbon dioxide. But can the fledgling technology deliver on this promise? On May 27th, I hosted an Energy Collective #EnergyChat webinar, sponsored by Shell, on precisely this topic.[read more]

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Should Gas & Oil Methane Emissions Be the Next Obama Climate Policy Priority?

July 1, 2015 by John Miller
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Emissions Priorities

Is the Environmental Protection Agency’s new proposed gas and oil production greenhouse gas regulation actually the most efficient and effective approach to reducing total methane emissions in the United States? Or are there better alternatives?[read more]

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Watering Down the Energy Debate

June 29, 2015 by David Hess
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Energy Debate

Water is essential for the production of energy. Energy facilities both consume water and have impacts on the aquatic ecosystems they interact with. These interactions are complex however and it is a mistake to over-simplify – one we must avoid if we are to meet our future energy needs sustainably.[read more]

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Natural Gas Production in East Africa: An Inevitable Resource Curse?

June 25, 2015 by Neha Nandakumar

African Resources and Consequences

East African nations are experiencing a boom in oil and natural gas production that is increasingly exported by Western companies. While these activities may appear to be an economic boon to these countries, they could potentially cause natural gas to be a “resource curse” for developing nations.[read more]

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How Much Land Does Solar, Wind and Nuclear Energy Require?

June 24, 2015 by Jesse Jenkins
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Land use impacts of solar wind and nuclear energy.

Does wind and solar take up too much land to be practical? Does the extreme energy density of nuclear fuel make it the ecologically ideal energy source? In this post, I run the numbers on the land use impact of wind, solar, nuclear and other energy sources.[read more]

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Carbon Reduction through Energy Efficiency Isn’t Just a One-Man Show

Carbon Reduction and Energy Efficiency

Though ambitious carbon emission reduction goals are not exactly anything new, over the course of this past year there have been some exciting developments in pushing the envelope on carbon standards at the national and local levels in the United States.[read more]

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Procuring Clean Energy in the Developing World: The Appeal of Auctions and the Way Forward

Developing Nations, Clean Energy

Meeting rising energy demand with cost-effective new generation capacity is a critical challenge facing most developing countries. As policymakers and regulators seek out support schemes for clean energy, one procurement mechanism seems to lead the charge – the renewable energy auction.[read more]


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