"The Texas blackout is another reminder that more frequent, climate-driven extreme weather puts stress on the country's electricity grid. It came just months after outages in California aimed at preventing wildfires."
From cardigans to orange tans, the history of presidential politics around energy efficiency has been an odd one. But the story of so-called nega-watts is actually a compelling one. And with new efficiency rules being eyed by the Biden administration, it’s also time for reporters to explore the local angle to energy savings. Our latest TipSheet explains how.
"President Joe Biden’s plan to crank up electric vehicle infrastructure is short on publicly available details, but electric vehicle advocates already have a long list of ideas on how the administration can make it a reality."
"Even as Texas struggled to restore electricity and water over the past week, signs of the risks posed by increasingly extreme weather to America’s aging infrastructure were cropping up across the country."
"Scientists have cloned the first U.S. endangered species, a black-footed ferret duplicated from the genes of an animal that died over 30 years ago."
"Bitter cold and icy conditions in Texas showed that wind farms are built for yesterday’s climate and often not winterized to withstand changing weather due to climate change."
"Systems are designed to handle spikes in demand, but the wild and unpredictable weather linked to global warming will very likely push grids beyond their limits."
A computer hacker nearly succeeded recently in rendering a local Florida facility a source of poisonous drinking water. And the risk of other such hacks is real, even as the vulnerabilities are hidden behind stringent U.S. secrecy laws. The latest TipSheet explores dangers to our drinking water supply — which go well beyond future hacking.
"Deep in the heart of Texas, above an oil patch about the size of Kansas, a little team in a small plane is trying to reveal a big problem. They are methane hunters. With an infrared camera and a Picarro Cavity Ring-Down Laser Spectroscope, they fly spirals over pumps and compressor stations that stretch to both horizons."
"The undersea power line would run south from San Luis Obispo County, hugging the California coast for 200 miles before making landfall in or near Los Angeles. It would be able to carry electricity from a fleet of offshore wind turbines, providing Southern California with clean power after sundown and helping to replace fossil-fueled generators."