Archives for November, 2010

Whose Oil Curse Is It?

Comments Off on Whose Oil Curse Is It?

Can having too much oil be a curse? Or is being dependent on oil the real curse? Since the 1990s, thanks to the insights of economists like Jeffrey Sachs and Andrew Warner (see “Natural Resource Abundance and Economic Growth” [pdf], Harvard University, 1997), it has been widely accepted that having an abundance of extractive resources…

Comments Off on Love Them, Leave Them, Need Them? Americans and Their Cars

For decades, a number of environmentalists have been hoping the American love affair with the car would fade away.  A lot of people who’d like this to happen see hope in a survey by Zipcar, the car-sharing firm, which found that a majority of 25- to 34-year-olds say they’d rather drive less. There’s also a…

The current energy buzz is all about alternatives – principally wind, solar, biofuels, and nuclear – and about reducing the use of carbon-based fuels and their emission of greenhouse gases to the atmosphere.  The buzz is usually a little breathless, so breathless that only lip service is paid to the notion that coal, oil, and…

In our previous post we discussed a specific solar project example.  We received many comments related to the post and wanted to share some of Pace Global’s additional thoughts regarding the value of solar energy projects and the prudency of the governmental policies that support solar power. The comments we received centered around the following…

Comments Off on The Messy Side of Energy Efficiency: Finance

The sad truth is that if you want to learn about or work on energy efficiency, you need to understand the world of finance. Many of us in the energy/environment field (especially those working on policy) are more comfortable talking about efficiency ratings than credit ratings. But implementing energy efficiency projects at the scale we…

The recent World Energy Outlook report by the International Energy Agency tell us that global greenhouse gas emissions are growing dramatically in the developing world. By 2035, world energy demand is expected by 36 percent, and almost all of that new demand – 93 percent of it – is going to come from developing nations.…

Comments Off on New Orleans’s Green Economy Leads the Way to Opportunity

New Orleans is justifiably proud that the city’s spirit has never been broken, never wavered. The city has seen disaster – twice in the last decade alone. The city has survived. The stories of those survivals have been told many times. They’re stories made possible by the people who live there; who remain and maintain…

Ranching families in New Mexico face a difficult dilemma. Last week I was in New Mexico attending a conference organized by the Quivira Coalition, a group dedicated to bringing together “ranchers, conservationists, scientists and public land managers around concepts of progressive cattle management, innovative stewardship and improved land health.” The topic of the three-day event…

Maybe the hardest thing for Americans to accept about the energy challenge is that it isn’t all about us anymore. Whether they realize it or not, both sides of the argument in the United States tend to see the root causes the same way:  it’s all about the American consumer.   For environmentalists, the  problem  is…

From Colonel Drake’s discovery of oil in 1859 to the vast cut-over of remaining primary forest, to a little-known offshoot of the Atomic Energy Commission’s Project Plowshares called Project Ketch, which (before it was stopped) would have nuked a cavity in north-central PA for storage of natural gas, Pennsylvania’s rural areas have served as an…