Energy

EarthTalk
12:00 am
Sun December 25, 2011

New Standards for Light Bulb Efficiency

iStock/Thinkstock

EarthTalk®
E - The Environmental Magazine

 

Dear EarthTalk: What do I need to know about the new U.S. energy efficiency standards for light bulbs that take effect in January 2012? Will certain bulbs be unavailable? And am I supposed to switch out my older inefficient bulbs with newer efficient ones?   -- Melissa McCarthy, Aptos, CA

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NH News
5:01 pm
Wed December 21, 2011

More New Hampshire Families Will Get Help Paying Fuel Bill

More families in New Hampshire can now get help with their fuel bill this winter.

Congress increased funding for the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program, or LIHEAP, this week.

New Hampshire will receive a total of $26 million, rather than the $14.7 million dollars originally allotted.

That original appropriation forced Community Action Agencies to target the money to families of four earning less than $28,000.

Other low-income households were placed on a waiting list.

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The Exchange
9:00 am
Thu December 15, 2011

What's Next for Wind Power

At first, many New Englanders seemed on board with this alternative energy source, but now some these projects are encountering stiff breezes.  We’ll find out how Wind Power is playing at the local level in the Granite State and how recent debates have become more nuanced and less black-and-white than in the past.

Guests

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Environment
1:31 pm
Thu December 8, 2011

Seabrook Officials: Nuclear Plant is Safe

Seabrook Nuclear Plant
Jim Richmond via Flickr Creative Commons

Seabrook Nuclear Plant officials says the plant is continuing to operate safely.

The vote of confidence came during the Seabrook’s annual required press briefing.

Spokesman Alan Griffith said the failed cooling system pump that prompted the plant’s shutdown in October has been fixed. But he said engineers continue to assess possible deterioration of concrete under one plant section, an electrical tunnel.. Griffith says a core sample turned up what is called Alkalide silica reaction, or ASR .

 

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NH News
2:39 pm
Tue December 6, 2011

Woodstove Changeout Project for Southern NH

Pellet Stove in Action at Armstrong Hearth and Home
Sam Evans-Brown

The American Lung Association announced a project that will pay individuals in Southern New Hampshire to swap out their old woodstoves.

The money for the program comes from a company’s settlement with the EPA.

The project provides consumers from Merrimack, Hillsborough, and Rockinghman counties vouchers  to replace old, inefficient wood stoves, with new clean burning ones.

The vouchers are worth anywhere from one to three thousand dollars, and can be used for pellet stoves, or wood-burning stoves.

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Word of Mouth
12:00 pm
Sat December 3, 2011

Word of Mouth for 12.03.11

Photo by Tom Maglieri, courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons

PART 1

 “Clean coal,” refers to technologies that reduce heavy metal, carbon and other emissions from the burning of coal. The development of technologies that could, potentially, filter greenhouse gases and store CO2 permanently is moving ahead. “Carbon Sequestration” is an important step in testing the potential of clean coal technology. We spoke with Maggie Koerth-Baker, Science Editor for Boing-Boing; she visited a carbon sequestration demonstration in Alabama.

plus

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EarthTalk
12:00 am
Sun November 27, 2011

Can Using Thorium Instead of Uranium Make Nuclear Energy Safer?

iStock Collection/Thinkstock

EarthTalk®
E - The Environmental Magazine

Dear EarthTalk: Thorium is a naturally occurring element that is supposedly more available, more efficient and safer to use than uranium for generating nuclear energy. Is this true and, if so, why haven’t we made the switch?                                                                    -- Jane Westermann, Austin, TX

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NH News
4:49 pm
Fri November 4, 2011

PUC Awards Grants For Renewable Energy

The Public Utilities Commission has awarded grants to fund renewable energy projects in the state.

Four companies and one elementary school will receive part of a one million dollar grant for projects that reduce dependence on fossil fuels.

Carbon Harvest Energy will receive the largest portion of the grant -$500,000- for a landfill gas-to-energy combined heat and power plant in Lebanon.

Greenville Elementary School will receive a grant to replace its oil-fired boiler with a wood pellet one.

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NH News
4:43 pm
Fri November 4, 2011

EPA Holds Hearing On PSNH Power Plant

The Environmental Protection Agency held a public hearing on a new permit for PSNH’s coal-fired power plant in Bow.

The draft permit could force the utility to upgrade its cooling system to prevent fish kills.

The EPA says the Merrimack station power plant withdraws large quantities of water from the Merrimack River and returns it at much higher temperatures.

The agency says installing a more modern cooling system would reduce fish kills by 95-percent.

But it would also cost PSNH $112 million over a 20 year period.

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NH News
4:40 pm
Fri November 4, 2011

Senators Call For Electric Grid Investigation

With power still out from last weekend’s snow storm, New Hampshire’s senators are pressuring federal regulators for answers.

New Hampshire’s senators are asking the federal agencies that oversee electrical grids to identify why the power keeps going out.

More than three hundred thousand people in New Hampshire were left in the dark and cold after the storm Republican Senator Kelly Ayotte says that’s unacceptable.

“With the ice storm there was a pretty lengthy outage and with this storm there was an outage and we want to make sure the grid is where it should be.”

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NH News
5:55 pm
Tue November 1, 2011

Report: Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative Working As Designed

Public Service of New Hampshire

New Hampshire environmental officials presented an updated report on the state of the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative to lawmakers Tuesday.

As NHPR’s Amy Quinton explains, the report reignites the debate over whether to keep the state in the carbon emission cap and trade program.

The report shows that program, known as RGGI, is working as designed.

Under the program, power plants buy an allowance for every ton of carbon dioxide they emit.

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North Country
5:30 pm
Thu October 27, 2011

Saying "No" To Northern Pass - And Hundreds of Thousands of Dollars

The Northern Pass electric project is searching for a new, less controversial path through the North Country.

But a small group of landowners is determined to block the utility’s plan even though it means giving up hundreds of thousands of dollars.

NHPR’s Chris Jensen reports.

Sound of piano music.

At 65 years of age Lynne Placey gives piano lessons.

She lives with a cat and a gray-muzzled dog in a small house in Stewartstown.

And she hopes she’s blocking the path of a corporate giant.

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NH News
2:00 pm
Thu October 20, 2011

PSNH Asks for Rate Increase

Public Service of New Hampshire announced today it wants to increase its rates.

NHPR’s Sam Evans-Brown tells us why.

PSNH has asked the Public Utilities commission for a rate increase of a little more than a half cent per kilowatt hour.

For the typical resident that would mean about three dollars and seventy-seven cents more every month.

The hike will pay for a new scrubber designed to clean up emissions from PSNH’s coal burning plant in Bow.

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North Country
12:00 am
Wed October 19, 2011

New Massachusetts Rules Could Hurt New Hampshire Biomass

Public Service of New Hampshire

Massachusetts is expected to announce new rules that will raise the bar on the definition of green energy.

NHPR’s Sam Evans-Brown reports that shift could cost NH electric producers millions of dollars.

Massachusetts is on track to pass new regulations aimed at cutting the amount of greenhouse gasses going into the atmosphere.

The focus is on power from biomass – basically, burning wood to make electricity.

Dwayne Breger of the Massachusetts Division of Energy Resources, says there are two good reasons to get the most out of every tree.

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NH News
12:00 am
Tue October 18, 2011

Forecast Calls for Home Heating Oil Spike

The price of home heating oil is expected to hit an all-time high this winter. That’s unwelcome news from Maine to Maryland, where millions of people rely on the fuel to stay warm. The spike could make life difficult for heating oil suppliers and their low-income customers.

When the price of crude oil jumps the price of home heating oil pretty much follows.

In the last 12 months, the price of crude has shot up 40%.

What’s causing the spike?

Aaron Brady, an analyst for IHS Cambridge Energy Research Associates, says its emerging markets like India and China.

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