January 28, 2011

EU Watching Rare Earths Closely: Trade Chief

The EU is watching the market for rare earth minerals closely and is determined to secure supplies from China and alternative sources, its top trade official said on Thursday.

Calderon and Zuma Urge U.S. to Step Up on Climate Change

Presidents Felipe Calderon of Mexico and Jacob Zuma of South Africa, hosts of global climate change summits, on Thursday urged the U.S. to take stronger action on the issue.


VantagePoint Sees Big Cleantech Deals in 2011

Up to 10 companies in the cleantech sector will go public in multibillion dollar U.S. offerings this year and many will be acquired in equally significant deals, VantagePoint Venture Partners said.

Edmunds CEO: Impose a $2-Per-Gallon Gas Tax

Congress should pass a federal gas tax on consumers instead of continuing to impose CAFE regulations on automakers, says the CEO of Edmunds.

Koch Industries Unamused by Climate Spoof

Koch Industries wants to unmask the pranksters who issued a phony press release suggesting that the company, which supports global warming skeptics, had had a change of heart.

Renewable Energy Generation Rejects £70 Million Bid Approach

Windfarm developer Renewable Energy Generation rejected a $111.5 million offer approach from an unnamed UK-listed firm, saying that the bid significantly undervalued the company.

AP Interview: Electric Car Boss Sees Global Change

Electric car pioneer Shai Agassi predicts that before 2020, more people everywhere will be buying electric cars than those powered by gasoline.

Bovine Bellies Yield Clues for New Biofuels

Researchers looking for better ways to make biofuels turned to experts at breaking down grass -- cattle -- and found more than a dozen new compounds in their guts that might help make new, cheap sources of energy.

UK Rail Revival and Tourism Boom Forecast

Disused rail lines may be reopened – or new ones commissioned – if the climate change that raises Britain's summer temperatures also proves a boon for domestic tourism.


January 27, 2011

Industry Ramps Up Oil-Sands Campaign Ahead of Key Decision

The oil industry is ramping up its campaign to pressure the Obama administration to approve a massive oil-sands pipeline project, arguing that approval would aid the country's economic recovery.

Obama Energy Plan Best Chance for Clean Power

President Obama's new plan to double U.S. clean power output could provide the kind of compromise needed to pass a divided Congress.

Obama's Clean-Energy Goals Have Industry Questioning Feasibility

Pres. Obama has grand plans — 1 million electric vehicles on the road within 4 years and clean power sources providing 80% of the nation's energy by 2035. Executives say steady funding would help.

Chu Plugs R&D to Hit Obama's Clean-Energy Target

Energy Secretary Steven Chu sheds light on how the White House defines "clean-energy sources" as it seeks to push ahead on energy innovation to boost the economy.

Interior Secretary: 'I'm Staying'

Ken Salazar has warned against reading too much into his absence at the State of the Union Address, saying he's not leaving his post any time soon.

Europe's Green Energy Faces Subsidy Shake-Up

The EU looks set to overhaul the way renewable energy projects and power grids are financed, launching a new type of infrastructure bond and converging the EU's tangle of overlapping subsidies.

Koch Conference Now a Target

Critics have launched a campaign to highlight what they say is the systematic way in which the Kochs use their political giving to further the interests of their oil and manufacturing empire.

Revised Data Show Feds Understate Climate Costs

Preliminary analysis suggests impacts from climate change could run twice as high as previous estimates, giving regulators more firepower to justify emissions-cutting regulations.

UK: Two-Thirds of Biofuel Fails Green Standard

Less than one-third of the biofuel used on UK roads meets government environmental standards intended to protect water supplies, soil quality and carbon stocks, according to new figures.

CEZ Loses 700,000 CO2 Permits in Cyber Attack

Czech power group CEZ said on Thursday it had detected two unauthorized transfers of its emissions permits, totaling 700,000, in a cyber attack on the Czech registry last week.

Brazil Approves Building of $17 billion Amazon Power Dam

Brazil's environment agency approved on Wednesday the start-up of the Belo Monte power dam, a controversial $17 billion project in the Amazon that has drawn criticism.

Mixed Results Shown from Dispersants in BP Spill

Dispersants injected deep in the Gulf of Mexico to counter an oil gusher last spring seemed to keep some oil from fouling the water's surface, but the chemicals lingered underwater, raising concerns about long-term problems, a new study found.

House Democrats Introduce Oil Spill Legislation

Key House Democrats introduced legislation Wednesday to implement a series of recommendations outlined by the national oil spill commission. But the legislation could face opposition from senior House Republicans, who have responded coolly to the spill commission's report.

Report: Gulf Oil Spill Was Deadly Time for Turtles

More sea turtles were killed or injured in the Gulf of Mexico in the months following the BP oil spill than in any similar period during the past two decades, a report released Wednesday found.

EPA Reaches $5.3 Million Settlement with Major Petroleum Refiner

The Obama administration has reached a settlement with the owner of the country's second-largest petroleum refinery, which will pay $5.3 million in penalties for emitting harmful pollutants into the atmosphere.

WVU Study Details Marcellus Permits, Income

Statistics released as part of an economic impact study by the West Virginia Oil and Natural Gas Association, state that between 2002 and 2008, West Virginia led the nation in the number of gas drilling permits issued.

Labour Party Calls for Shale Gas Drilling Halt

The Labour Party has called for a temporary halt to drilling for shale gas while its safety is checked. Shadow energy minister Huw Irranca-Davies has called on the government to put it on hold in England and Wales.

Greenland Ice Sheet Is Safer than Scientists Previously Thought

A new scientific study overturns fears that increased melting could lubricate the Greeland ice sheet, causing it to sink ever faster into the sea.

For Excess Solar Flow, a Veg-O-Matic for Voltage

A panel manufactured by Petra Solar can slice and dice voltage to to prevent a surplus of solar energy from crippling power lines.

GM Bets on Cheaper Electric Car Batteries with Envia, Leads $17M Round

Riding high on a bout of good press for its Chevy Volt, GM is putting $7 million into its next big bet on electric cars: cheaper, higher-energy batteries.

Chevrolet Accelerates Volt Rollout; Available Nationwide by End of 2011

Chevrolet is stepping up the national rollout of the Volt, and plans to have Volts in all participating dealerships in every state by the end of this year.

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