Category Archives: Uncategorized

Is “Community Choice” Electric Supply a Solution or a Problem?

Big news! If you live in California, Massachusetts, New York, Illinois, or a few other states you may soon have the opportunity to ditch your local investor-owned utility and buy your electricity from a competing retailer.  And in a few … Continue reading

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Gas is too cheap

Readers of this blog are likely aware that oil is really cheap right now. While in July 2008, the U.S. benchmark price peaked at just above $140 a barrel, its price dipped to below $27 in mid-January. The internet is … Continue reading

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New CAFE Standards: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

New vehicles sold in the United States have long been subject to a set of fuel economy regulations known as the Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards. CAFE has been tightened several times during the program’s 40-year history, but no … Continue reading

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“Real” Electricity Still Comes from the Grid

A recent article in the New York Times describes how a solar home provider will, “help some of the 1.2 billion people in the world who don’t have electricity to leapfrog the coal-dependent grid straight to renewable energy sources.” Does … Continue reading

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Double Counting Virtue

If you’ve installed solar at your home and are now basking in the I’m-saving-the-planet warm glow, you may be in for a splash of ice water.  There’s a good chance someone else has purchased your halo and is wearing it … Continue reading

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Billing Tweaks Don’t Make Net Metering Good Policy

Just before Christmas, an administrative law judge at the California Public Utilities Commission put a shiny package with a big bow under the tree for distributed solar PV companies, and gave the state’s regulated utilities a lump of coal. That … Continue reading

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Don’t Be a Grinch When It Comes to Holiday Lights

We bought them more than a decade ago. Several sets of Christmas lights. Every year we decorate the tree listening to Willie Nelson’s Pretty Paper, the greatest Christmas album of all time. We have two boxes, adding up to a … Continue reading

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Economists are from Mars, Electric Cars are from Venus

I work at UC Davis, a University with at least two (that I know about) centers devoted to research “aimed at developing a sustainable market for plug-in vehicles.” I run into a lot of researchers and environmental advocates who are … Continue reading

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Heat and Happiness

As we Californians snuggle up around our ethanol or natural gas powered fireplaces to survive the barbaric temperatures which are dipping into the 50s, 40,000 people are hanging out in Paris trying to hammer out a new climate accord. Well, … Continue reading

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Good Energy Books for 2015

Soon, many of you will be asked what you might want as a Hanukkah or Christmas gift. Or, maybe you’ve already been asked by a Cyber-Monday-ing relative. Others may soon be on planes to or from Paris. So, what better … Continue reading

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