Solar power and other distributed renewable energy technologies could lay waste to U.S. power utilities and burn the utility business model, which has remained virtually unchanged for a century, to the ground. That is not wild-eyed hippie talk. It is the assessment of the utilities themselves.
The Department of Energy approved this week a fourth liquefied natural gas terminal to export to other nations, but even with the fuel much cheaper domestically than what it costs overseas, market observers differ on when, or if, the U.S. will become a major exporter. CNBC http://www.cnbc.com/id/
Americans bought more than 132,000 big SUVs from GM from January through August, compared with around 114,000 in the same period a year ago, even though the sticker price can top $50,000 and a fill-up can cost close to $100. With gas mileage around 17 mpg in city and highway driving, those fill-ups come more often than with many other vehicles. Yahoo Finance
Economist Tyler Cowen has some advice for what to do about America’s income inequality: Get used to it. In his latest book, Average Is Over, Cowen lays out his prediction for where the U.S. economy is heading, like it or not: “I think we’ll see a thinning out of the middle class,” he tells NPR’s Steve Inskeep. “We’ll see a lot of individuals rising up to much greater wealth. And we’ll also see more individuals clustering in a kind of lower-middle class existence.” NPR. http://www.npr.org/2013/09/12/
ROME, Sept 11 (Reuters) – The food the world wastes accounts for more greenhouse gas emissions than any country except for China and the United States, the United Nations said in a report on Wednesday. Every year about a third of all food for human consumption, around 1.3 billion tonnes, is wasted, along with all the energy, water and chemicals needed to produce it and dispose of it. NBC News
“In theory the Internet, along with its kindred advances, should expand our horizons, speeding us to aesthetic and intellectual territories we haven’t charted before. Often it does.
But at our instigation and with our assent, it also herds us into tribes of common thought and shared temperament, amplifying the timeless human tropism toward cliques. Cyberspace, like suburbia, has gated communities.” Frank Bruni, NY Times excerpt
Greenland’s ice added six times more to sea levels in the decade through 2011 than in the previous 10 years, according to a draft of the UN’s most comprehensive study on climate change. Antarctica had a fivefold increase, and the UN is raising its forecast for how much the two ice sheets will add to Earth’s oceans by 2100. Bloomberg. http://www.bloomberg.
After last year’s record low ice cover in the Arctic, the size of the northern ice caps appears to have increased this year…The Mail on Sunday cites a leaked report to the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) which says there was 60 per cent more Arctic sea ice this August than at the same time last year. The minimum reading for the year normally comes in September.