January 13, 2014 |
Carbon dioxide emissions from the nation's energy sector rose about 2% in 2013 after declining for several years, federal energy officials reported Monday. The reversal came because power plants last year burned more coal to generate electricity, after years in which natural gas accounted for an increasing share of the nation's electricity, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, the analytical branch of the Department of Energy. Though the 2013 figures are not final, once all the data are in, analysts expect a roughly 2% increase in carbon emissions over 2012 because of a small rise in coal consumption, the agency said in a report posted online on Monday.
December 30, 2013 |
Environmental advocates, government regulators and the cable and satellite television industry have reached a landmark agreement to save an estimated $1 billion a year in energy costs by making TV set-top boxes more efficient. The voluntary agreement aims to make an estimated 90 million boxes in homes as much as 45% more energy-efficient by 2017. The boxes are considered energy hogs because they always are on, even when the television is turned off. The upgraded boxes could save enough power to run 700,000 homes, according to the Natural Resources Defense Council, one of the deal brokers.
November 24, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - For the growing numbers of home purchasers who care about energy efficiency, it's the ultimate "green" goal: Lenders should recognize the net savings that energy improvements provide to property owners and take them into account when they underwrite and set the fees for mortgages. Appraisers should also recognize the added value. The rationale: Owners of homes that reduce energy consumption pay lower utility bills than owners of energy guzzlers, so why not factor these out-of-pocket savings into calculations of household debt-to-income ratios and appraised valuations?
June 2, 2013 |
Approved by voters in November, Proposition 39 is expected to raise close to $1 billion a year by eliminating a tax break enjoyed by some multistate businesses. The money, however, comes with a significant string attached: For the first five years, half of it must be spent on projects that improve energy efficiency and reduce greenhouse emissions. Gov. Jerry Brown wants to direct next year's allotment exclusively to public schools and community colleges, which isn't a bad idea. But he's doing it in a way that violates the spirit, if not the letter, of the initiative.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 31, 2013 |
SACRAMENTO - Tom Steyer, the Bay Area investor who bankrolled last year's successful campaign to raise more money from corporate taxes, criticized Gov. Jerry Brown's plan to spend the cash in a letter Friday. The letter was also signed by state Sen. Kevin de León (D-Los Angeles) and Assemblywoman Nancy Skinner (D-Berkeley), who have been working on alternative proposals. The governor's current plan to use the money "does not live up to the promise of Proposition 39 to focus investment in energy savings and job creation," they wrote.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 24, 2013 |
SACRAMENTO -- California lawmakers are pushing an alternative to Gov. Jerry Brown's plan to use new revenue generated by Proposition 39, which changed the corporate tax code when voters approved it in November. Brown and Democrats in the Legislature are at odds over how to distribute $450 million to schools and community colleges for energy efficiency projects. The governor has insisted on allocating the money based on student population, but that hasn't satisfied lawmakers who fear the funding won't get to where it's most needed.