December 18, 2012

Climate Science

Rising Temperatures Threaten Fundamental Change for Ski Slopes

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

In light of the consistently warming temperatures, perhaps it should come as no surprise that the long-term outlook for the US ski industry is, well, slushy. Read More

Climate Science

Book It: 2012, The Hottest US Year on Record

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

It won’t be official for weeks, but when all is said and done, 2012 will go down as the hottest U.S. year on record since accurate measurements began in 1895. Read More

Renewable energy

Court Upholds SC's Right to Regulate Waters Below Duke Energy Dams

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

In a case involving Duke Energy, the SC Court of Appeals ruled against the utility, upholding the state’s right to regulate water quality on the Catawba and Wateree Rivers. The case relates to the relicensing of Duke’s hydropower facility and dams on the river system, and was brought by groups concerned about low flows of water below several of these dams. Read More

Biomass · Economic Development

Santee Cooper Partners with Green Energy Solutions on Farm Project

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs), e.g., chicken houses, produce significant challenges for farmers with regard to the handling and disposal of organic waste. But Santee Cooper has partnered with Green Energy Solutions to make some of South Carolina’s CAFOs more sustainable. The partnership’s first plant in Lamar, SC will “produce electricity and heat by converting waste into methane gas, using a unique yet simple technique, bacterial digestion.” Read More

Biomass · Climate Science · Coal

Despite Threat to Southern Forests, UK Develops Industrial-Scale Biomass

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

European countries committed themselves to dramatic reductions in carbon emissions, but at the same time, Great Britain and others have moved forward with industrial-scale biomass facilities which will encourage forest degradation here in the South. For example, a UK company announced that two “monster pellet plants” will be built in Mississippi and Louisiana. Read More Here and Here


Some Want SC to Import Other States' Nuclear Waste

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Since 1971, nuclear waste has been leaking from unlined pits in Barnwell, SC, contaminating ground water as well as a nearby creek. One of the radioactive pollutants, tritium, exceeds safe drinking-water standards, and in some areas tritium levels are rising. Given this legacy of contamination, many South Carolinians question the appropriateness of a new effort to bring the nation’s spent nuclear fuel to the Aiken area. Read More Here and Here

Economic Development · Solar

Utility CEO Seeks "Solar Panels for Every Home"

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

David Crane, President and CEO of one of the country’s largest power generation and retail electricity businesses, has co-authored a powerful op-ed about the growing importance of solar energy in America. Mr. Crane contends that solar photovoltaic technology can significantly reduce our reliance on fossil fuels and our dependence on an outdated, vulnerable and expensive grid. Mr. Crane’s company generates power from coal, natural gas, nuclear, wind and solar energy. Read More

Economic Development · Energy Efficiency · Natural Gas · Renewable energy · Solar

"Get Ready, Utilities: Solar is Coming."

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Such was the headline from a recent article out of the Institute for Local Self-Reliance. The author spells out what many utility executives have known for years; the evolution of solar technology is changing the electric utility business model in transformational ways. So what is the key to the future? The article prescribes flexibility to incorporate low-cost, renewable energy and advanced demand-response systems to ensure reliability. Read More

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