Michigan getting sick over climate change
Rising temperatures and altered precipitation coincide with state illness spikes.
Talk to folks in Michigan this time of year, and a little bump up in the thermometer doesn’t sound half bad. But disease-carrying bugs, pollen-induced asthma and soupy, algae-filled lakes that might make us sick? Eh, no thanks.
It’s these health impacts, coinciding with northern Midwest climate changes, that worry health officials: Breathing problems from more pollen and...
Oil and gas drilling prospects dim here, expert says
If oil and natural-gas prices increase substantially, new well drilling likely will get a boost in Columbiana County, but the prospects aren’t good in Mahoning and Trumbull counties, an industry expert said.
“Right now, you’re really just looking at Belmont, Harrison, Monroe, and maybe a little bit of Noble County” as the focus of drilling activity, said Mike Chadsey, public-relations director for the Ohio Oil and Gas Association, a...
Bowling Green, OH council to reconsider solar project Plan’s latest version avoids increasing electricity costs
BOWLING GREEN — City-owned farmland northeast of Bowling Green soon could convert to a solar panel field and power station.
About half of a 317-acre site at Carter and Newton roads would host a 20-megawatt solar field, if approved by city council. The project has been on council’s agenda for about a year as it went through changes, but the city’s board of public utilities approved its latest iteration April 25, and council is expected to take up the...
Study: US oil field source of global uptick in air pollution
WASHINGTON — An oil and natural gas field in the western United States is largely responsible for a global uptick of the air pollutant ethane, according to a new study.
The team led by researchers at the University of Michigan found that fossil fuel production at the Bakken Formation in North Dakota and Montana is emitting roughly 2 percent of the ethane detected in the Earth’s atmosphere.
Along with its chemical cousin methane, ethane is a...
I Was Wrong About the Limits of Solar. PV Is Becoming Dirt Cheap
Harvard’s David Keith revisits his assumptions about solar costs: “Facts have changed.”
Over the last few years, solar PV has gotten cheap. Cheap enough to start impacting some commodity energy markets today. Cheap enough that with continued progress, but no breakthroughs, it might alter the global outlook for energy supply within a decade.
I have long been skeptical of solar hype. In 2008 we did an expert judgment exercise suggesting only even odds...
Study indicates lingering saltwater contamination in oil patch
A published and peer-reviewed Duke University study finds that thousands of saltwater and frack flowback spills throughout the oil patch have left a legacy of toxic contamination, including radioactive soils and polluted streams unsafe for human consumption and aquatic health.
The Duke team of researchers, which advocated that more study is needed, published the findings Wednesday in the Environmental Science & Technology journal. Funding for the...
Pennsylvania Commission Approves Controversial Oil and Gas Regulations
Despite formal disapproval by Pennsylvania House and Senate Committees, the Commonwealth’s Independent Regulatory Review Commission, on April 21, 2016, in a 3-2 decision, approved contentious oil and gas regulations that the Governor’s Office claims will improve protection of water resources, address landowner concerns, enhance transparency and improve data management. The regulations include updates to the well permitting process, requiring drillers...
Address carbon emissions now to leave world a better place: Sister Joan Lang
It’s spring and time to care for creation.
The article “Global jump in temperature in February stuns climate scientists” published on March 15th, highlights the critical need for people to understand where greenhouse gases come from and the need to improve oversight of the facilities which produce them.
Protecting creation is a core value. We long for a healthy and vibrant world that we can pass along to the next generation. Climate...
Bill introduced in Ohio Senate would extend freeze on renewable-energy standards
Ohio Sen. Bill Seitz, a Republican from Cincinnati, introduced a bill on Monday that would extend a freeze on the state’s renewable energy standards for another three years.
After lifting the freeze in 2019, Senate Bill 320 would phase in renewable energy goals in three-year increments through 2028. Utilities would be required to obtain 5.5 percent of their energy from renewable sources in 2022, 8.5 percent in 2025 and 11.5 percent in 2028. Starting...
Institutional Investors Are Walking Away From Ohio Utility Companies That Insist on Coal
Hundreds of Millions of Dollars in Divestment From One Fund Alone
Utilities in Ohio and West Virginia clinging stubbornly to coal-fired power plants for electricity generation are finding the strategy backfiring in a way they might not have anticipated.
Some of the world’s biggest investors are saying no thank you to enterprises so deeply—and dangerously—attached to coal. They include Norway’s Government Pension Fund Global, or GPFG, which last...