On the day after Super Tuesday, the federal Energy Information Administration came out with a striking fact: in 2011, the United States, for the first time since 1949, exported more petroleum products than it imported. On the big primary voting day, the same agency delivered news that might be even more relevant to current campaign oratory: the rise in gasoline prices is expected to continue. Its short-term forecast seemed particularly bleak: “During the April through September summer driving season this year, prices are forecast to average about $3.92 per gallon with a peak monthly average price of $3.96 per gallon in May.”
Here is the truth. If we are going to control our energy future, then we’ve got to have an all-of-the-above strategy. We’ve got to develop every source of American energy — not just oil and gas, but wind power and solar power, nuclear power, biofuels. We need to invest in the technology that will help us use less oil in our cars and our trucks, in our buildings, in our factories. That’s the only solution to the challenge. Because as we start using less, that lowers the demand, prices come down. It’s pretty straightforward. That’s the only solution to this challenge.
Environmentalists will link carbon emissions to asthma in a television ad campaign that begins today. The Sierra Club and Natural Resources Defense Council are sponsoring the ad featuring elementary-school children wandering the halls of Congress with inhalers and wearing oxygen masks to meetings with lawmakers.
The Bureau of Land Management received nearly 2,600 public comments on a draft evaluation of the proposed Gateway West Transmission Line Project, documenting a wide array of major policy issues that must be addressed before construction can begin on the first major power-line project in decades.
A deal between Southwire Company and energy company Clean Line Energy Partners LLC is expected to create 1,450 jobs in Illinois and boost wind energy projects.
A renewable energy project is taking shape and raising hope for a big economic boost for the state of Illinois and the Quad Cities. Illinois Governor Pat Quinn announced Tuesday that the wind energy project, called the Rock Island Clean Line, has taken a step forward with an agreement between it and the Southwire Co., which has a facility in Flora, Illinois. Together, they will build transmission lines connecting power from wind turbines in the Midwest and delivering it to Illinois and onto the east.
BP and other energy companies are funneling millions into building and operating wind farms in West Texas, helping to transform oil country into one of the nation’s leading hubs for green energy production.
U.S. investments in turbine farms and wind-energy businesses tumbled 38 percent last year to $9.7 billion, according to data from Bloomberg New Energy Finance. Venture capitalists have practically left the sector altogether. They invested only $177.6 million in wind startups last year, down 71 percent from the year before.
Governor Terry Branstad will open the Iowa Wind Energy Conference which runs through April 9-11 at the Iowa Events Center in Des Moines.
Seeing a sharp decline in the cost of building wind turbines on land and growing comfort with the technology, the Department of Energy is shifting its money toward offshore wind farms. DOE said in a funding announcement yesterday that it intends to give out $180 million over the next six years, including $20 million this year, to as many as four offshore wind projects that could help drive down the cost of offshore wind farms and reassure financiers about their value.