Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Greenleaf to produce biofuel in New Haven

Greenleaf Biofuels, based in Guilford, CT, was awarded $1.3 million from the state of Connecticut to support a major biodiesel production facility in New Haven.  With 6.7 million gallons of renewable biodiesel pumping out every year (over 18,000 gallons per day), this will be one of the largest biodiesel facilities in the Northeast.   The plant will use waste oil as feedstock and is said to be a "next generation" facility.  Would love to hear more details.

West Hartford energy plan

Major props to West Hartford's Clean Energy Task Force for compiling a comprehensive energy plan that will save the town hundreds of thousands of dollars every year.  Let this serve as a model for all of Connecticut's municipalities.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

State Energy Authority

Dick Blumenthal makes a case for a state-owned energy authority in the Hartford Courant. I have to say, this sounds pretty good though I would love to hear a good rebuttal. One little item that irked me is that he questioned why electric rates didn't drop with fuel prices (as they did at the gas station after oil prices dropped).
If high oil and natural gas prices were the cause, electric rates should have fallen along with fuel prices. Rates have barely budged.
I think he is probably aware that our rates are based on long(ish)-term contracts that buffer sharp rises and dips in fuel costs. However, I do not deny that profit seeking middlemen are primary driver in our high costs.

As someone who thinks we need to use less energy, though, I have to say I am not as outraged by these prices as many others are. People are actually using less electricity. My bill is manageable because I do everything I can to conserve. People are kicking and screaming about the high rates, but is everyone really doing all they can to use less? Are they using air conditioners as soon the thermometer gets into the 70s? Still using incandescent bulbs? Leaving a large screen TV on all the time? I bet there's a lot more we can all do to make our electric bills more irrelevant.
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