December 2014


I know I posted about this last week. I know that usually transportation is not thought of as saving residential energy. But gasoline is selling for the same price as it was when I was in college. I know that this makes me sound like an old foggey. But this is a serious issue. Gas is selling for $1.88 today.

http://www.therakyatpost.com/business/2014/12/23/oil-prices-continues-drop-saudi-comments/

PUBLISHED: Dec 23, 2014 10:18am

UPDATED: Dec 23, 2014 03:07pm

Oil prices continue to drop after Saudi comments

NEW YORK, Dec 23: 

World oil prices yesterday resumed their downward trajectory following comments from key Middle Eastern oil producers that they have no plans to cut output.

US benchmark West Texas Intermediate for delivery in February dropped US$1.87(RM6.53) to US$55.26 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

European benchmark Brent oil for February delivery fell US$1.27 to US$60.11 a barrel in London.

Yesterday’s trade marked a return to the dominant downward trend in the oil market following a brief rally Friday.

Appearing at an energy conference in Abu Dhabi Sunday, leading Middle Eastern producers held firm against any moves to cut production to boost crude prices.

“If they (non-OPEC countries) want to cut production they are welcome. We are not going to cut, certainly Saudi Arabia is not going to cut,” Saudi Oil Minister Ali al-Naimi said.

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Go there and read. Google it for heaven’s sake. More next week.

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But nobody knows why. They claim they do. One guy claims it is because of Fracking in the US. Another gal claims it is because of Saudi Arabia output is so high. Other people blame a lack of consumption. I believe it maybe because the speculators have unleash a flood of cheap oil from tanker storage. That does not change the fact that we are all guessing. This leads to some really confused reporting.

MERRY CHRISTMAS

http://www.pe.com/articles/year-756846-prices-holiday.html

News

GAS PRICES: Inland pumps average $2.71 a gallon

STAFF AND WIRE REPORTS

The eight days of Hanukkah. The Twelve Days of Christmas. So why not the weeks and weeks of plummeting fuel prices?

Again proving to be a gift with seemingly no end in sight, the average price of regular gasoline nationwide dropped an additional 25 cents a gallon in the past two weeks, to $2.39. That’s the lowest it’s been in more than five years.

And, just in time for the year-end travel boom, industry analyst Trilby Lundberg said prices will likely keep falling into the new year. Lower crude oil prices are driving prices down, along with an abundant oil supply and the rising value of the U.S. dollar, Lundberg said. The Consumer Comfort, Consumer Sentiment and Consumer Confidence indices were all at their highest levels since 2007, according to the American Automobile Association, which said the consistent decline in prices is the longest the organization has ever tracked.

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Go there and read. More next week.

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This is such a cool idea. I do not know which plants take in the most carbon. Probably young tree saplings. So they would not be good to use because their uptake slows down as they age. Maybe switch grass? Anyway this is about the concept and the New Mexico experiment to attempt it.

http://www.boulderweekly.com/article-13275-your-next-roadside-attraction-carbon-storage.html

Thursday, August 28,2014

Your next roadside attraction: Carbon storage

By Marianne Lavell

As you watch the miles roll by on family road trips this summer, look just behind the guard rails to see what some scientists believe is a significant untapped resource in the battle against climate change.

Roadside soils and vegetation on federal lands and along U.S. highways are already capturing nearly 2 percent of total U.S. transportation carbon emissions

The land alongside the 4 million miles of U.S. public roadways, already being maintained by federal, stat, and local governments, could be planted with vegetation that helps transfer carbon from the atmosphere into the soil, say scientists. Road banks and berms, in other words, could be managed as valuable “banks” for carbon sequestration.

“We’re talking millions of acres,” says biologist Rob Ament, of the Western Transportation Institute at Montana State University, who led a recent study to gauge carbon storage potential on just a fraction of that real estate — roadsides on federal lands.

Shrubs, grasses and other plants already along roads in U.S. National Parks, wildlife refuges and other public lands currently are capturing about 7 million metric tons of carbon each year, Ament said in a report on his findings at this month’s North American Congress for Conservation Biology. That’s equivalent to the annual carbon emissions of 5 million cars — without any effort made to optimize the mix of plantings and soil management practices for carbon storage.

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Go there and read. More next week.

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This is absurd.

 

http://www.sj-r.com/article/20141211/NEWS/141219899/-1/json

 

$137M Ameren rate increase approved

 

By Tim Landis
Business Editor
Posted Dec. 11, 2014 @ 9:05 am
Updated at 9:23 AM

Read more: http://www.sj-r.com/article/20141211/News/141219899#ixzz3LcX3TX5i

State utility regulators have approved a $137 million rate increase for power-grid upgrades on the Ameren Illinois system.

The 17.4 percent increase in electricity distribution rates, announced Wednesday by the Illinois Commerce Commission, take effect Jan. 1. Commissioners also approved a $245 million increase for system upgrades on the Commonwealth Edison system, serving Chicago and northern Illinois.

Ameren serves 1.2 million electric and 806,000 natural-gas customers in central and southern Illinois.

Commission chairman Doug Scott said in a statement the rates were set under the 2011 Energy Infrastructure Modernization Act, a state law that allowed Ameren and ComEd to recover annual costs for installation of smart grid technology such as high-tech meters, real-time pricing of electricity, more control options for consumers and more accurate energy data.

Scott said commissioners tried to balance the need for network improvements with long-term benefits to ratepayers.

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Go there and read. More next week.

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He killed over 20 people, so I think he needs to die. This is one arrogant son-of-a-bitch.

http://www.insurancejournal.com/news/southeast/2014/11/21/347725.htm

Blankenship Pleads Not Guilty to Charges Linked to Massey Mine Explosion

By Jef Feeley and Margaret Cronin Fisk | November 21, 2014

Former Massey Energy chief Donald Blankenship pleaded not guilty to charges linked to the West Virginia mine explosion that killed 29 workers in the worst U.S. coal industry disaster in almost 40 years.

The former executive, 64, once a powerful figure in the coal industry and state politics, wore a gray business as he stood with four lawyers in federal court in Beckley, West Virginia, and said, “Not guilty.”

Blankenship is accused of hampering regulators’ safety inspections of the Upper Big Branch mine in Raleigh County where the explosion occurred in April 2010.

The judge set a trial for Jan. 26. About 50 spectators were in the courtroom.

If the former chief executive officer is convicted of the four charges, he faces a maximum penalty of 31 years in prison, according to prosecutors.

Blankenship is accused of setting hyper-aggressive coal- production quotas and instructing subordinates to ignore basic safety measures, such as controlling explosive coal dust and providing proper ventilation in the mines

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Go there and read. More next week.

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