Half of U.S. electricity is generated by burning coal. That coal costs about $1.50 per million Btu. The oil we burn to heat our homes costs about $25 per million Btu. The elimination of coal from our national energy diet will be difficult. Read More
    The population of Maine is about 0.4 percent of the U.S. population. We also use 0.4 percent of all U.S. energy, 0.6 percent of the petroleum, 0.5 percent of the gasoline, 1.0 percent of the diesel oil, 0.4 percent of liquefied petroleum gases, 0.2 percent of the natural… Read More
    Worldwide investment in 2008 for oil and natural gas development projects totaled $492 billion, a 21 percent increase over 2007. Yet the worldwide reserves of oil and natural gas fell. Read More
    Every food package has a list of contents and percentages of total fat, sodium, and so on. A footnote says: “Percent daily values based on a 2,000-calorie diet.” (They mean 2,000 kcalories, but … Read More
    As part of the worldwide dialogue on carbon-in-the-atmosphere and global warming the Chinese have said: “Countries that buy goods from China should be held responsible for the carbon dioxide … Read More
    The annual electricity consumption in the U.S. is about 4,000 billion kilowatt-hours. This implies, on average, that each of us uses a bit over 1 kilowatt 24-7. Only one-third of this energy is used … Read More
    Three things are happening in the oil-rich countries of the Middle East: rapid population growth, an escalation in standard of living and a water shortage. Dominated by the need for desalination electricity, these events are driving a massive power plant construction program. The associated increase in the price… Read More
    Steven Chu, the U.S. energy secretary, has deep pockets: $26 billion as his department budget, and another $39 billion of stimulus money. Here is what is “in”: electric cars, a smart electric … Read More
    The Cape Wind proposal off Cape Cod has been in the works for nearly a decade. Here is the plan: 130 wind turbines to be installed; nominal generation capacity — 468 megawatts total; rotating blades of each unit will sweep the area of two football fields; turbines spaced… Read More
    The annual residential energy consumption, according to the Energy Information Administration, is about 100,000 Btu for each square foot of living space. Here is how you can check your house: • … Read More
    Combustion of fossil fuel now contributes 6 billion tons of carbon into the atmosphere in the form of carbon dioxide each year. Six thousand billion tons of carbon are still in the earth in the form of coal, oil and natural gas. The tolerance of the atmosphere for… Read More
    The U.S. electric network is operated by 3,000 utility companies (Bangor Hydro-Electric Co., Central Maine Power Co., etc.) using 146,000 miles of high-voltage transmission lines. These transmission lines are, in turn, owned by another 500 transmission line companies. Good sources of wind and solar energy are not close… Read More
    The most important energy news in a decade is in a book, and it’s online at www.withouthotair.com. The author, David J.C. McKay, is a professor of physics from Cambridge University. He tells it … Read More
    Packaged foods contain the note “Based on a 2,000 calorie-per-day diet.” (They mean kilocalorie, but that is another story.) This “calorie-per-day energy” can be stated as the steady-state … Read More
    The Energy Information Administration, the statistical arm of the U.S. Department of Energy, projects that by the year 2030 the annual use of electricity in the U.S. will be 5,000 billion … Read More
    The maximum electric energy use in New England occurs at 3 in the afternoon on a humid summer day. That load is about 28,000 megawatts. The population of New England is about 15 million. On the average, each person in New England, on that day, is using electricity… Read More
    In the aftermath of the Chernobyl accident, many European countries banned the construction of nuclear-powered electricity plants. Now, driven by concern for global warming and with Russia an … Read More
    The U.S. Department of Energy, the statistical arm of the U.S. Department of Energy, reports U.S. energy use in four categories: residential, 20 percent; commercial, 18 percent; industrial, 33 percent; and transportation 28 percent. The residential sector in New England consumes just 1 percent of total U.S. energy… Read More
    The residential sector (again, using data from the Energy Information Administration, the statistical arm of the U.S. Department of Energy) consumes about 20 percent of total U.S. energy. About 5 … Read More