USA

05/02/23
Author: 
Oliver Milman
The plummeting cost of energy has been supercharged by last year’s Inflation Reduction Act. Photograph: Tannen Maury/EPA

Jan. 30, 2023

It is cheaper to build solar panels or cluster of wind turbines and connect them to the grid than to keep operating coal plants

Coal in the US is now being economically outmatched by renewables to such an extent that it’s more expensive for 99% of the country’s coal-fired power plants to keep running than it is to build an entirely new solar or wind energy operation nearby, a new analysis has found.

04/02/23
Author: 
Phil Gasper
A Planet to Win

Website editor: An interesting interview

Winter 2023 (New Politics Vol. XIX No. 2, Whole Number 74)

An Interview with Alyssa Battistoni

Alyssa Battistoni teaches political theory at Barnard College. She is the co-author of A Planet to Win: Why We Need a Green New Deal (Verso 2019) and is currently writing a book titled Free Gifts: Capitalism and the Politics of Nature. Phil Gasper spoke with Alyssa on behalf of the New Politics editorial board on November 4, 2022.

04/02/23
Author: 
Phil McKenna
Electricity pylon and power cables. Credit: Tim Graham/Getty Images

Jan. 31, 2023

Electric utilities are likely responsible for the nation’s higher than expected emissions of sulfur hexafluoride, a greenhouse gas 25,000 times worse for the climate than carbon dioxide.

While emissions of sulfur hexafluoride (SF6), the world’s most potent greenhouse gas, have fallen sharply in the U.S. in recent decades, actual emissions are significantly higher than the official government estimates, a new study concludes.

03/02/23
Author: 
Cathy Bussewitz
A flare burns off methane and other hydrocarbons as oil pumpjacks operate in the Permian Basin in Midland, Texas, on Tuesday, Oct. 12, 2021. File photo by The Associated Press/David Goldman

 

“The minute we release a policy," - - - - - “they’re going to jump at it with 50 lawyers and look at any loopholes, gaps, mistakes, unclear sentences.”

Feb. 1, 2023

The doors of a metal box slide open, and a drone rises over a gas well in Pennsylvania. Its mission: To find leaks of methane, a potent greenhouse gas, so that energy companies can plug the leaks and reduce the emissions that pollute the air.

30/01/23
Author: 
Daniel Yergin
Refinery - Katja Buchholz/Getty Images

Jan. 23, 2023

Given the scale and complexity of the transition away from hydrocarbons, some worry that economic analysis has been given short shrift in the policy planning process. A clear-eyed assessment of the transition's prospects requires a deeper understanding of at least four major challenges.

25/01/23
Author: 
Nina Lakhani
Joe Biden at the GM Factory Zero in Detroit, Michigan, in November 2021. Photograph: Dominick Sokotoff/REX/Shutterstock

Jan. 24, 2023

By 2050 electric vehicles could require huge amounts of lithium for their batteries, causing damaging expansions of mining

The US’s transition to electric vehicles could require three times as much lithium as is currently produced for the entire global market, causing needless water shortages, Indigenous land grabs, and ecosystem destruction inside and outside its borders, new research finds.

25/01/23
Author: 
Thea Riofrancos, Alissa Kendall, Kristi K. Dayemo, Matthew Haugen, Kira Mcdonald, Batul Hassan, Margaret Slattery, Xan Lillehei
lithium triangle

Jan. 2023

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

“ Reducing demand for lithium by increasing the lithium efficiency of the transportation sector will be an essential strategy to improve the sector’s prospects for timely decarbonization while protecting ecosystems and meeting the demands of global justice.”

 

25/01/23
Author: 
John Woodside
The RBC building in Toronto on Thursday, April 7, 2022. Photo by Christopher Katsarov / Canada's National Observer

Jan. 25, 2023

New York City pension plans are attempting to force RBC to disclose its full greenhouse gas emission targets for 2030 because the bank keeps financing fossil fuel expansion despite making net-zero pledges.

24/01/23
Author: 
Oakley Shelton-Thomas and Mia DiFelice, Food and Water Watch
Direct air capture

Jan. 21, 2023

Direct Air Capture Promises To Suck Carbon From The Sky.

But its proponents — including Big Oil — are hiding some dirty downsides. Here are five.

We know that the window is quickly closing for us to slash emissions and avoid climate change’s worst effects. So it’s easy to get excited about direct air capture: technology designed to suck carbon dioxide straight from the atmosphere.

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