The Midwest’s remarkable renewable energy resources, vast agricultural land, strong manufacturing base, and leading research institutions have propelled the region to become a hub for renewable energy development. It is home to over a third of U.S. wind power capacity and 80% of U.S. biofuel production capacity. However, uncertainty about federal policy – like the production tax credit (PTC) and renewable fuels standard (RFS) – as well as transmission constraints could hinder Midwestern renewable energy capacity additions in the near term, with 2013 expected to yield only a fraction of the installations seen in previous years. Nevertheless, increasingly affordable project costs and state renewable energy targets will continue to drive market momentum in the region, as indicated by recent, positive signals given by renewable energy companies and utilities.
In a recent poll commissioned by the American Petroleum Institute, Harris Interactive found that 77% of Americans are “concerned” about putting ethanol - particularly E15 - in their vehicles. It’s sad to hear that, considering vehicles made beginning in 2001 have been approved by the EPA for E15 ethanol blends. These blends provide important benefits to American consumers and our environment. But here’s the thing about the API poll: outside the world of skewed polling, you will not find that 77% of Americans are concerned about putting E15 in their vehicles.
By Bill Holmberg and Contributing Authors 10/2/13
America has always been the vanguard for innovation in the automobile industry, particularly in regards to the development of high octane alcohol fuels. Unfortunately, the oil industry has been successfully able to suppress the wider implementation of many of these high octane blends including ethanol dating back to the 19th century.
Boosting Renewable Energy to 25% of Electricity Supply in Western U.S. Would Cut Pollution, Save Consumers Billions
By Michael Goggin 9/30/13
The Western U.S. could reap huge benefits in pollution savings and reduced spending on fossil fuels by installing more wind and solar power plants, according to a comprehensive new analysis released today by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). The study found that obtaining 25 percent of electricity in the Western U.S. from renewable energy will reduce carbon dioxide pollution by up to 34 percent and save $7 billion annually in fossil fuel costs.
By Sylvia Qi 9/27/13
As we move into a future of limited natural resources, the need for sustainability has become more apparent. The second day of REFF-West had an engaging panel of experts including- Neil Black, President of Califonia BioEnergy, Dan Oros, Partner of Kleiner Perkins, Ari Swiller, President of Renewable Resources Group, Michel Gelobter, Founder and Chairman of Cooler, Damon Yuzon, Principal CFA of Wastewater Capital Management, and Paul Owen, National sales manager of Caterpillar Financial Australia – highlight the role of renewable energy in addressing resource scarcity and opportunities generated by it.
By Bill Holmberg 9/26/13
America’s dependence on oil as a main source of transportation fuel is a problem. When people are compelled to use oil for almost all of their transportation needs, the situation leaves them unable to freely choose more economically rewarding and environmentally better fuel selections at the pump. Oil’s grip on the market hampers competition and fuel diversity. This hold on consumers often seems unbreakable. However, there are options available to break oil’s monopoly in the fuel market and now is the time to pursue those options.