Leadership scramble starts as chairwoman steps down
The nation's nuclear regulatory agency is once again facing leadership uncertainty after its chairwoman announced yesterday she would step down at year's end. Allison Macfarlane announced yesterday she plans to step down to serve as director of the Center for International Science and Technology Policy at George Washington University, cutting short her current five-year term, slated to end June 30, 2018.
Koch Industries' spending surges
Koch Industries has amped up its lobbying spending in 2014. The company has spent nearly $9.5 million on its advocacy operations so far this year, according to lobbying disclosure reports filed with the Senate. That's a significant hike from the almost $8 million that the oil and gas giant spent on lobbying at this point last year and comes with the company dropping $4 million on K Street efforts during this past quarter alone -- a surge from the $2.7 million that Koch spent in each of the year's previous quarters.
Researchers find record leaks of methane from oil shale boom areas
Oil and gas basins in North Dakota and East Texas leaked around 10 percent of natural gas they produced to the atmosphere between 2006 and 2011. Natural gas is composed primarily of methane, a potent greenhouse gas that exacerbates climate change. The leakage rate in the study is the largest reported so far for the energy industry, and it challenged the industry's and U.S. EPA's perception of operations as relatively clean.
Most insurers, with $1T in coverage, still seem in denial about climate change
A majority of U.S. insurance companies neglect to consider the broad impacts that climate change might have on their business, from threatening investment portfolios to toppling homes, according to an analysis of the industry released today.
Burden of Germany's shift to renewable energy falls on taxpayers, but energy rates are close to U.S. range
BERLIN -- The cold, dreary winters in Germany's capital are taxing, even to a lifelong Berliner like Boris Stanarius.
In the epicenter of energy's transformation, a Democrat pushes a message beyond coal
MORGANTOWN, W.Va. -- The infectious energy the Democratic candidate for West Virginia's open Senate seat, Natalie Tennant, brings to her campaign is mired in the politics of coal, where state Republicans characterize the presidency of Barack Obama as singularly responsible for Appalachia's declining coal fields and the nation's shifting energy portfolio. It's in this arena where Tennant faces an almost impossible uphill climb toward the Nov. 4 election. Ideas about expanding economic growth outside the coal business are overwhelmed by the deluge of debate about which candidate supports coal miners the most. The state has bled jobs in its southern coal-producing counties.
Grid operator bracing for loss of power to Mexico
With memories of rotating power outages still fresh in parts of Texas, the state's main grid operator is seeking to temper the effects of a generator's plan to send electricity to Mexico.
States, enviros slam ozone limits in contentious court hearing
U.S. EPA's 2012 designations for what parts of the country meet air quality standards for ozone came under fire in court today, with various states and environmental groups challenging the agency's classifications.
Sportsmen seek room for wildlife amid drilling push
PICEANCE CREEK, Colo. -- When Bill Wille went hunting in the Piceance Basin in the 1980s, it wasn't long before he bagged a trophy buck. Mule deer then were plentiful in the Piceance Creek Basin between Rangely, Meeker and Rifle, numbering upward of 30,000 animals. A license to hunt deer in these rugged mountains of pinyon and juniper trees could be purchased over the counter. But these days, mule deer numbers are only half as large, and hunters wait years to draw a tag to shoot one.
'That stuff can get you so fast' -- deadly gas on the rise in oil fields
ODESSA, Texas -- Elaine Beadle initially thought the odor creeping into her home on this city's west side was a sewer leak. It started about the time she moved in four years ago -- a smell like rotten eggs. Sometimes it got so bad her eyes burned. She soon learned the real source: a tank battery that collects oil and gas from wells scattered throughout the vacant land and small homes near the intersection of University Drive and Loop 338.