Can Nuclear Power Generation Be Green? Gregory Wood has provided us with another informative piece, this one on the nuclear energy industry. He sets forth the problems succinctly and understandably. Much of what you learn from Wood's writing will explain the true horror of the unfolding catastrophe at the Fukishima nuclear facility.
Energy Eaters Electronic gadgets in the home are eating up energy. Lots of it. What can you do?
Part 1: The Public Utility Holding Company Act of 1935 The Public Utility Holding Company Act of 1935 was one of the most important federal consumer protection laws ever passed. It was necessary due to the pyramidal structure of utility holding companies which gouged ratepayers. Consistent lobbying since 1935 finally led to various forms of deregulation during the 1980s and 1990s, culminating in the Energy Policy Act of 2005. This is the first in a series of articles which attempt to lay out the history of utility deregulation in order to better understand the current controversies.
Part 2: Public Utility Deregulation The Public Utility Holding Company Act of 1935 prohibited market manipulation by preventing utility conglomerates from forming monopolies and overtaking geographic regions. However, during the 1980s and 1990s, lobbying managed to chisel away at regulation, which led to less maintenance and improvement of the aging power grid. This resulted in rolling blackouts and the 2003 Northeast Blackout. This is the second in a series of articles which attempt to lay out the history of utility deregulation in order to better understand the current controversies.
Part 3: The Energy Policy Act of 2005 The Energy Policy Act of 2005 completely repealed the Public Utility Holding Company Act of 1935 and ushered in the total deregulation of public utilities. It will have profound impacts, including exorbitant costs borne by citizens and a total lack of oversight. It is argued that the Act puts the reliability of U.S. public utilities at risk, "which could have grave ramifications on U.S. national security, the U.S. economy, and the well-being and safety of the American people."
The Price of Gas How is the price of gasoline determined? The price of gasoline is primarily determined by the price of crude oil, refining costs, taxes, and distribution costs. However, there are other factors which may also impact the prices we pay at the pump: futures trading, inventories at U.S. refineries, the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, and corporate profits. The solution to high prices? Simple. Increase supply or decrease demand.