Friday, March 21, 2008

Broadwater approved by FERC


The Broadwater LNG terminal floated past one of it's last remaining regulatory roadblocks yesterday. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission welcomed the project with open arms and rebuffed Connecticut officials who opposed it. Blumenthal threatened to sue. Approvals from the US Coast Guard and several NY state departments are pending. Let's hope the new NY governor has his mind on his job.

FERC press release
CT Governor Jodi Rell press release
NH Register article
Richard Blumenthal press release
New Haven Independent

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Two takes on CT's fuel cell investment strategy

I enjoyed the contrast between these two opinion pieces regarding investments of public funds into fuel cell technology. The first is a letter signed by three CT state representatives. They enthusiastically endorse a $200 million investment into a technology that could have a "huge impact" on our state's economy.
"The state already has 20 percent of the world's fuel cell producing work force."
Wow, 20 percent out of the whole world! Sounds impressive, but according to this piece in the Hartford Courant, this amount to only 1,200 jobs. That's less than 0.1% (one tenth of one percent) of jobs in the state.

My opinion -- buy technologies that make sense. Will forty million-dollar fuel cell bus recuperate the investment in fuel savings? Will they have a significant impact on emissions? The technology will take off when it can compete on these levels. Already there are niche markets where fuel cells make sense and more are developing as the technology improves.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Broadwater still brewing

Good editorial in the New London Day opposing the Broadwater LNG plant. With a new Governor coming into office in New York, things are still very much in the air with this project.

Residents understand the cost of energy. They pay for it every day. And most of them work hard to be able to make those payments.

They get it. But what Mr. Hritcko doesn't seem to understand is that protecting Long Island Sound is important to them. They believe the risk to the Sound, which they consider one of Connecticut's greatest assets, to be too great. They see an environmental disaster in the making.


Broadwater's take here.

Friday, March 7, 2008

Raising the age, lowering the consumption



Governor Jodi Rell says she's not interested in raising the driving age from 16 to 17. Aside from the safety issues, she (and the legislation) should consider this effect on energy consumption. According to the 2000 census, about 2% of the driving-age population is 16. A 2% reduction in fuel consumption would be a significant achievement. Actually, it might be higher as a 16-year-old might spend more time on the road than an 80-year-old. I would encourage the legislation to investigate this more thoroughly.