wind power

Solar installations in China from space. Photo: NASA

Will China Take the Green Mantle From the U.S.?

While President Trump has promised to pull the U.S. out of the Paris climate accord, China’s President Xi Jinxing has vowed to continue to tackle climate change and honor his country’s obligations. Will China become the global leader in combating climate change?

by |March 3, 2017
Photo: Joe Brusky

For Climate Change, Carbon Pricing is No Silver Bullet

Many economists and policy experts believe carbon pricing is the most effective way to deal with global warming. But others argue that carbon pricing is not a silver bullet for dealing with climate change. Here’s why.

by |July 18, 2016
A green facade in Italy Photo: Anna Positano

The How and Why of Green Building

Buildings account for almost a third of global greenhouse gas emissions and the U.N. Environment Programme projects that if we continue with business as usual in the building sector, these emissions will double by 2030. Fortunately, green building is on the rise around the world.

by |May 3, 2016
Solar and wind power are on the rise, but they will need better storage technology to make a big enough dent in our use of fossil fuels. Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Before Paris, Cause for Optimism

If the international community were to fully understand the threat of climate change, and the likely cost of mitigation and adaptation, perhaps we would commit to continued tax breaks and incentives, and propel the renewable energy transition toward completion. In the long run, I am sure this would be less expensive than coping with the consequences of continued growth in greenhouse gas emissions through 2050.

by |November 18, 2015
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The Race for Better Batteries

The worldwide transition from fossil fuels to renewable sources of energy is under way, but to integrate all this variable power into the grid, battery storage is key. Researchers around the world are working on developing better and cheaper batteries.

by |June 12, 2015
Photo: Asian Development Bank

The Greening of China

China became the world’s largest carbon polluter in 2006, surpassing the U.S. But it is also rapidly going green through cutting coal use, investing heavily in renewable energy and launching the world’s largest carbon trading system.

by |November 8, 2014
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For a Wind-Powered City, Heat Pumps Are Key

Replacing conventional building boilers with electric heat pumps in New York City buildings could substantially increase the viability of renewable energy use in the city, according to a recent study from researchers from the Earth Institute’s Sustainable Engineering Lab.

by |June 27, 2014
Photo credit: Wayfinder_73

Rare Earth Metals: Will We Have Enough?

Cell phones, iPads, laptops, televisions, hybrid cars, wind turbines, solar cells and many more products depend on rare earth metals to function. Will there be enough for us to continue our high-tech lifestyle and transition to a renewable energy economy?

by |September 19, 2012
Guilio Verne off the 79th Street Boat Basin in the Hudson

Giulio Verne and the Windmills

Like some Quixotic dream, at long last the formerly Dutch island of Manhattan reaches westward for windmills.

by |January 18, 2012
OffshoreWind

‘One Yard Line’ For Cape Wind?

Jim Gordon, the developer of Cape Wind, recently spoke at Columbia University about his experience working to get the first offshore wind farm in the US built.

by |April 28, 2011