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A quarter of a century ago, California stood at the vanguard in the development of alternative energy worldwide. With Gov. Jerry Brown lighting the way--and enduring no small measure of ridicule for doing so--the state took the lead in finding ways to coax electricity from the sun and wind, underground steam and agricultural waste.
The Senate on Thursday rejected a measure to require that 20% of the nation's electricity be produced from renewable sources such as solar and wind power by 2020, dealing environmentalists their latest defeat on energy policy. The action came a day after the Senate, as it debates legislation focusing on a variety of energy issues, refused to set tougher fuel-efficiency standards for cars, SUVs and other vehicles. The measure on renewable energy sources, sponsored by Sen. James M. Jeffords (I-Vt.
July 9, 2011 | By Julie Wernau
It's not a regulatory arm of the government, but try to find a gadget in your home that Underwriters Laboratories hasn't touched. Check under the computer mouse or the smoke alarm, beneath the light switch or on the TV cable, and the telltale "UL" stamp will be there. The marking means the device is unlikely to catch fire. And if you accidentally drive away from the gas station with the nozzle still in the tank, UL is the reason you don't haul away the entire pump and set the neighborhood ablaze.
October 13, 2009 | Tiffany Hsu
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has approved two major initiatives that will require utilities to pay consumers for generating extra power and will boost the payoff for certain solar facilities. Homes, businesses and schools that have solar panels or wind turbines previously had no financial incentive to use less electricity than they generated. But AB 920, written by Assemblyman Jared Huffman (D-San Rafael), will encourage efficiency, supporters say. SB 32, by state Sen. Gloria Negrete McLeod (D-Chino)
March 27, 2009
Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) has done a lot of admirable work protecting California's wild desert lands from development, but her latest plans for the Mojave threaten to split the state's environmental community and could stall clean- energy projects whose construction should be among the nation's highest priorities.
May 19, 2009 | Edward Silver, Edward Silver writes about business, energy and the environment from Los Angeles.
After President Nixon went to China, the United States urged that nation's leaders to forget Marx and Mao and embrace the blessings of capitalism. Unfortunately, it's been wryly said, they took our advice. Americans have by now become inured to China peeling off layers of the U.S. manufacturing base. The Asian giant, though, has never been at the starting gate of a new industry that promised exceptional growth. That's a natural place for America, we like to think. Indeed, the U.S.
November 23, 2009 | By Todd Woody
At a recent solar energy conference in Anaheim, economic development officials from Ohio talked up a state that seemed far removed from the solar panels and high-tech devices that dominated the convention floor. Ohio, long known for its smokestack auto plants and metal-bending factories, would be an ideal place for green technology companies to set up shop, they said. "People don't traditionally think of Ohio when they think of solar," said Lisa Patt-McDaniel, director of Ohio's economic development agency.
July 22, 2008 | Michael Shermer, Michael Shermer is an adjunct professor in the School of Politics and Economics at Claremont Graduate University, the publisher of Skeptic magazine and a monthly columnist for Scientific American. His latest book is "The Mind of the Market."
Our civilization is fast approaching a tipping point. Humans will need to make the transition from nonrenewable fossil fuels as the primary source of our energy to renewable energy sources that will allow us to flourish into the future. Failure to make that transformation will doom us to the endless political machinations and economic conflicts that have plagued civilization for the last half-millennium. We need new technologies to be sure, but without evolved political and economic systems, we cannot become what we must.
July 3, 2004
Re "Energy in a New Light," Editorial, June 24: All of us should be pleased to see the Western Governors Assn. support clean, renewable energy resources. But if indeed its goal is, as stated, to include solar, wind, geothermal, biomass and clean coal in order to respond to dwindling supplies of hydrocarbon energy, then alarms are ringing. Coal is renewable? Coal is not hydrocarbon? Coal is clean? In 35 years as an engineer in the energy field, I am amazed at the progress made in solar, wind, geothermal and biomass technologies.
February 7, 2012 | Michael Hiltzik
Manufacturing products overseas is an easy way to save money, right? Jerry Rosenstein would beg to differ. Rosenstein's Santa Monica company, Pioneer Magnetics, makes power supplies, which are boxlike units filled with circuitry and components that convert and control electricity for use in computers and high-tech systems. Found in virtually every industry requiring reliable electronics, such as personal computers, control systems for petroleum refineries, broadcast stations, and telecommunications networks, these devices can convert AC electricity from utility lines into DC power to run a machine, control voltage, even watch out for electrical problems and take steps to protect against damage.
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