Deadly Gas Pipeline Explosion Rocks Kentucky

Deadly Gas Pipeline Explosion Rocks Kentucky

A large regional pipeline owned by Enbridge that carries natural gas from the Mexican border in Texas to New York City exploded in rural Kentucky early Thursday morning, killing one and injuring five others in what one resident described as a tornado of fire.  CBS News reported that the explosion destroyed railroad tracks and several trailer homes causing tremendous damage in its vicinity — it was so big it could be seen by weather radar — and it took several hours to bring under control by local fire officials. 

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Pipeline Company Challenges Gas Venting and Flaring in Texas

Pipeline Company Challenges Gas Venting and Flaring in Texas

In a first of its kind challenge, the Williams Pipeline Company is fighting to prevent natural gas venting and flaring by Exco Resources Inc., which is seeking to release nearly all of the gas produced by a group of its South Texas wells as a byproduct of its drilling for shale oil — Williams argues that this practice is a massive waste of natural gas and the flaring is banned by law

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Michael Bloomberg Pledges $500M to Shut Coal Plants

Michael Bloomberg Pledges $500M to Shut Coal Plants

Former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg pledged in a graduation speech at MIT late last week to spend $500m on a campaign focused on persuading state and local governments to speed the closure of the 241 remaining coal-fired power plants in the U.S. and to end the growth of plants that run on natural gas. Blocking natural gas from filling in behind coal will be especially difficult, and Axios’ Amy Harder reported that it was “the fastest-growing energy source last year —accounting for 45% of all such growth — with most regions and many industries turning to the fuel as a cleaner alternative to coal and oil.”

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California’s Road to electrification will mean learning to forgo gas cooktops

California’s Road to electrification will mean learning to forgo gas cooktops

In its effort to significantly reduce carbon emissions, the state of California is working to encourage electrification of homes and vehicles among its residents. While transportation and power generation are the most well-known sources of GHGs, in California, buildings (and the gas they use) account for a quarter of all emissions. As the LA Times […]

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Demand for renewables increases but coal and gas are still king

Demand for renewables increases but coal and gas are still king

As a follow-up to yesterday’s story about the price of battery storage plummeting thus painting a positive outlook for renewables, we still have some substantial supply and demand challenges to overcome before we can utilize renewables more broadly on a global scale. This week, the International Energy Agency released data showing that energy demand around […]

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Virginia Regulators Ignore Environmental Justice Concerns, Grant Pipeline Permit

Virginia Regulators Ignore Environmental Justice Concerns, Grant Pipeline Permit

Ignoring the pleas of residents of the historic African American community of Union Hill in Richmond, the Virginia state air pollution control board voted unanimously to approve a natural gas compressor station there. 

Why This Matters:  The large and powerful fossil fuel industry always seems to have the upper hand — in DC and in state capitals around the country.  The ruling probably does not matter because the pipeline is mired in more serious federal court litigation.  But environmental groups were disappointed that Democratic Governor of Virginia, Ralph Northam, replaced two skeptical air pollution control board commissioners whose terms had run out, with two pro-pipeline commissioners.  Governor Northam, according to The Post, attended a political fundraiser with Dominion executives in recent days.  Yup.  It’s all about the money.  

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