Monthly Archives: June 2012

report questions military motivation for renewables

In light of the recent debates in congress on whether to ban the military from purchasing renewable energy, mostly as a way to provide a market for new technology development, this report questions that reasoning: http://uk.reuters.com/article/2012/06/19/us-usa-defense-energy-idUKBRE85I06120120619 “There is no credible … Continue reading

Posted in biofuels, energy, policy | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Does government funding of science reward U.S. taxpayers?

How government funding of science rewards U.S. taxpayers It seems like there is a constant debate about the governments role in funding projects. This article points out that there are always going to be projects that fail and succeed. Specifically, … Continue reading

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Agrivida and corn that grows its own enzymes to preprocess cellulosic materials

A company is starting field trials of some corn they engineered with enzymes that degrade the corn stover for cellulosic bioenergy: http://ethanolproducer.com/articles/8877/agrivida-launches-field-trials-to-test-modified-corn-stover What is so cool about this approach is the enzymes are not activated until the corn stover is … Continue reading

Posted in biofuels, science | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Are estimates of bioenergy emissions broken?

Tim Searchinger has a history of questioning assumptions and justifications put forward by proponents of biofuels.  His points are usually valid, or at least adds to the conversation.  In his latest article with Keith Smith in Global Change Biology, he … Continue reading

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outrageous bill to stop military investment in biofuels gains traction

This is ridiculous.  If anyone has the power (and the need) to really help bioenergy move forward by providing a viable market it is the US military.  Tying them up with short-sighted legislation like this should outrage all of us. … Continue reading

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the problem with dedicated bioenergy crops on degraded lands

Sometimes I find it hard to understand the aggressive funding in the US towards dedicated bioenergy crops – crops like switchgrass and miscanthus that proponents argue can be grown on degraded land (land that we wouldn’t be able to grow … Continue reading

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renewable energy doesn’t offset fossil fuel use

At first glance I was very surprised and skeptical of the claims of this recent paper in Nature Climate Change.  Richard York did some simple regression modeling of renewable energy and total energy use in 132 countries and found that … Continue reading

Posted in energy, sociology | Tagged | 7 Comments