Amy Sinatra Ayres

Amy Sinatra Ayres is a writer, editor and producer based in Northern Virginia. She has worked for sites including AOL News and ABCNews.com.

Clean hydrogen power will soon be arriving at the Port of Honolulu in Hawaii, in a project that’s expected to help lower emissions and reduce energy consumption. Early next year, specially designed shipping containers powered by fuel cells and hydrogen will be used to keep refrigerated containers cool while they’re shipped on barges from island…

The kidnapping of two American citizens from an oil-supply platform vessel off the coast of Nigeria has put the spotlight on the sharp rise in pirate attacks in West Africa. On Thursday, a U.S. official said the captain and chief engineer of the U.S.-flagged C-Retriever were taken by armed men who stormed the 200-foot ship…

With the United Nations’ 20th annual World Water Day focusing on international cooperation in managing water, it’s a good time to highlight projects in the United States that are saving water — and energy. World Water Day, which takes place every March 22, aims to increase awareness of the millions of people who don’t have…

Solar energy continues to grow in the United States, but its relative unpredictability remains a hurdle in deploying it on the grid. Now a research team is working to create detailed 36-hour forecasts of incoming energy from the sun. The three-year effort, led by the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR), is funded by a…

Steven Chu, the Nobel Prize-winning physicist who has served for four years as President Barack Obama’s Energy Secretary, announced his resignation on Friday. As of this weekend, Chu will become the nation’s longest-serving energy secretary, a record previously held by Spencer Abraham, who served in the Cabinet post under President George W. Bush. The former…

With two of its cars among the five finalists, Ford took the Green Car of the Year Award for its 2013 Fusion on Thursday at the LA Auto Show. The newly redesigned, midsize sedan is offered with three different engines: gas-electric hybrid, plug-in hybrid and gasoline. The base model starts at $21,700, while the gas-electric…

Advocates scrambling to extend subsidies for renewable energy have wind back in their sails after the re-election of President Barack Obama and Congress’ return to Washington. The renewable energy production tax credit (PTC) gives wind power producers an income tax credit of 2.2 cents for every kilowatt-hour. Without it, wind energy can be too expensive…

For residents of the states hit hardest by Hurricane Sandy, there’s a new headache in the storm’s aftermath: miles-long lines for gasoline. The problem has been worst so far in New Jersey, but some residents of New York and Connecticut have had to wait in lines for hours, too. Analysts stress that there’s not a…

A new ranking of the top 25 energy-using nations found that Mexico has the highest level of energy security. The country — which is home to the state-owned Petroleos Mexicanos, one of the world’s largest oil companies — topped the International Index of Energy Security Risk ranking, released Monday by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s…

For the second consecutive year, Massachusetts has topped a prominent ranking of states’ energy efficiency efforts. The 2012 State Energy Efficiency Scorecard, which is compiled by the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy, placed California in the No. 2 slot. California had ranked No. 1 in the first four scorecards from the ACEEE before being toppled by Massachusetts last year. The top ten also includes New York, Oregon, Vermont, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Washington, Maryland and Minnesota — the same…

From the outside, the upscale look of this suburban Maryland home is typical for the Washington, D.C., area. But the inside reveals something very different. The virtual “family” inside the house is made up of state-of-the-art sensors, and the house aims to achieve net zero annual energy consumption. Built by the U.S. government, the $2.5…

When the reigning Super Bowl champions kick off the first game of the season Wednesday against the Dallas Cowboys, they’ll do it under a new solar ring around the top of MetLife Stadium, lit up in New York Giants blue. The NFL’s biggest stadium, which is also home to the New York Jets, is debuting…

In five to six years, highly diluted radioactive water from the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant in Japan could arrive on the Pacific shoreline in the United States, a new study concluded. The model developed by German oceanographers and the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Pacific Marine Environment Laboratory traced the probable pathway of…

The Navy’s Great Green Fleet staged an impressive show of force as it gears up for more battles — of a political nature — ahead. This week, F/A-18 Hornets powered by a mix of petroleum biofuels roared off the deck of the USS Nimitz for the first time in a demonstration north of Hawaii. Some…

The U.S. has opened more offshore areas to oil drilling — including parts of the controversial Alaska Arctic frontier — in the Obama administration’s push to further reduce the nation’s dependence on foreign oil. The plan, released by the Department of Interior, allows the leasing of 12 areas in the Gulf of Mexico, which suffered…

A proposed new route for the Keystone XL pipeline through Nebraska has sparked renewed debate over whether it is environmentally safe — and it could be early next year before a final decision is made on the project. Republican lawmakers tried to expedite the TransCanada pipeline extension’s approval this week, attempting to link the project…

The U.S. government announced Wednesday that it had finalized plans for $60 million in Gulf Coast restoration projects following the Deepwater Horizon disaster. But it has a broader to-do list ahead in order to boost its grades on the mediocre “report card” issued on its efforts two years after the worst oil spill in U.S.…

Wind energy in the United States faces strong cross-currents—some blowing in from overseas, and others being stirred up right at home. The nation that comfortably led the world in wind power (in both installed capacity and growth) as recently as three years ago saw a 17 percent increase in wind capacity to nearly 47,000 megawatts…

Ireland has always been known for its lush green landscape. But turning its energy a matching shade has been a longer road. The country long relied heavily on peat, its only domestically produced source of “fossil” fuel. Peat is a partially decayed plant matter that grows in bogs on that familiar countryside, and it takes…

One year after the Fukushima disaster in Japan, the nuclear industry is still grappling with how to handle the risks that come with extreme natural disasters. What if something similar happened in the United States? According to the Natural Resources Defense Council, there were five nuclear shutdowns in the U.S. last year, all due to…

With sales far lower than expected, General Motors says it will halt production of the Chevy Volt, its promising but high-priced plug-in car, for five weeks starting later this month. Still, just days after GM’s announcement, the Volt was named European Car of the Year. Analysts blame the Volt’s low sales on the vehicle’s high…

Big Bend National Park is known for its beauty — and its haze problem. So it might come as a surprise to some that it recently earned the designation of a Gold Tier International Dark Sky Park. The designation makes the 801,000-acre (324,153-hectare) West Texas park, which borders the Rio Grande, one of only 10…

For the first time in 34 years, the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission cleared the way for licensing of new nuclear reactors in the United States. It’s not the first step for the addition to the Vogtle site outside of Augusta, Georgia, which four years ago began what was supposed to be a streamlined approval process.…

Even before more than 2,000 retailers got together to create Free Shipping Day 2011 on Friday, Dec. 16, there have been so many free shipping offers this holiday shopping season than even Santa’s elves couldn’t keep up with them. With FedEx, UPS and the United States Postal Service (USPS) expecting to deliver millions of packages…

Diplomats from 194 nations converged on Durban, South Africa, this week, kicking off two weeks of climate negotiations in the United Nations’ 17th annual Conference of the Parties, or COP17. The discussions seek to advance the Kyoto Protocol, which was adopted at COP3 in Kyoto, Japan, to fight global warming by requiring nations to lower…