Thursday, June 30, 2011

It turns out that rare earth minerals aren't really that rare. We buy ours from China because they are deadly to mine and process, not because we don't have any. In fact, we have more than enough to supply our own needs. We just don't know how to do that without causing environmental catastrophes. So we let China do it for us. Now Malaysia is getting into the rare earth mining act with terrible consequences. See Engineers Fear Rare Earth Refinery in Malaysia Is Dangerous -

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

A new study by Google using a computer model developed by McKinsey tries to predict which green and sustainable energy technologies could become commercially viable. The conclusion: As long as coal plants can release GHGs for free, any advances in energy storage technology will result in us burning more coal
Norway launches world's largest carbon capture project Will use chemical process to separate carbon and, ultimately, inject it back into depleted oil and gas wells

Monday, June 27, 2011

What do you do if you're the largest owner/operator of nuclear power plants in Germany and the government announces that they all must shut down over the next 12 years? German power giant Eon initially cried foul and threatened to sue for damages. But now it says that the shift to renewables is "a huge opportunity" to make Germany a leader in 21st century energy technologies. See Eon calls Germany's move to renewables "a huge opportunity" despite loss of nuclear revenues

Sunday, June 26, 2011

The Philippine National Renewable Energy Program (NREP) launched last week has set ambitious targets, including Php 1.2 trillion (US$27.6 billion) in renewable energy investments between now and 2030. This will nearly triple the country’s renewable generation capacity to 15,300 megawatts (MWs) in 2030 from 5,400 MWs today. See Philippines Targets $27.6 Billion in Renewable Energy Investments by 2030 If the Philippines can do it, why can't we?
Cable boxes and DVRs drain more power than some refrigerators -
New species found in Philippines amaze US and Philippine scientists Can we protect them now that they've been found?

Saturday, June 25, 2011

We need to educate people about the very real and immediate dangers of fossil fuels. Since 2005, more and more studies have shown a correlation between air pollution and deaths from heart attacks, strokes, lung disease. The latest study is dramatic -- an increase in heart attacks for two days every time air pollution spikes. See New Study Finds Air Pollution May Trigger Heart Attacks So, yes, we need to educate about climate change. But most people have trouble getting worked up about something that might happen 50 or 100 years from now. Tell them that they might die tomorrow, and maybe we'll get their attention.
We could access relatively inexpensive, sustainable biofuels by allowing imports from Brazil. And we would be consuming a crop with very little nutritional value for humans. Or we could continue to pour billions of dollars in government subsidies into corn ethanol, with the result that prices for a basic, nutritious food will continue to increase, poor people will suffer, and we on;t have much of an impact on our oil consumption anyway. See
America worsened the Great Depression by cutting back on investments. It ultimately became the dominant economy of the 20th century by making massive investments in infrastructure -- more miles of roads, railroads, power lines and telecommunications lines than the rest of the world combined. When will we understand that lowering gas prices for the summer by releasing oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve will not create jobs or save the economy? Making massive investments in renewable energy over the next decade will both create jobs in the short term and make us a competitive economy again in the long term.

Friday, June 24, 2011

800 million people in the Asia Pacific region do not have regular access to electricity. But that is about to change as the fastest growing region in the world builds more power plants. Which is why the Asian Development Bank is urging Asian nations to embrace sustainable energy. See

Thursday, June 23, 2011

The decision to release 30 million barrels of oil from the US strategic oil reserves (and another 30 million from Germany, France, Spain and Japan) is not about Libya, nor is it about re-electing a President. It is about a global economy that has failed to respond to every other effort at resuscitation. See Desperate measures in oil markets as global economy fails to recover
The US became the dominant global economy of the 21st century by building infrastructure -- more railroads, roads, power lines, and phone lines than the rest of the world combined. The construction created jobs, and the infrastructure created new industries. Now China is doing what we did (see High-Speed Rail Poised to Alter China - ) while we say we cannot afford to build 21st infrastructure.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

News today that Japanese industries are exploring biomass and other alternative forms of energy to power their economy after Fukishima
Just when we thought our earth was small, scientists have found seven new mammal species in the Philippines Not is some terribly remote location, but on the island of Luzon which is home to Metro Manila.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Germany is pushing renewables after its decision to abandon nukes; same with Japan after its Fukushia crisis; which will give those economic powerhouses an energy infrastructure with zero ongoing fuels costs; while US energy companies use every political tactic in the book -- including half-truths and outright lies -- to keep us in the 19th century. See AEP Tries to Bully Past Clean Air Act -

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Six ASEAN states call for peaceful resolution of South China Sea disputes

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Philippines Sends Warship After China Boat Heads to Disputed Parts of South China Sea - Bloomberg

Friday, June 17, 2011

Philippines' Cebu Air places $3.8 billion Airbus order | Let the Philippine tourism boom begin

Thursday, June 16, 2011

I don't want to get down on the US -- we're still a highly educated, innovative, independent and entrepreneurial nation. But the demographic numbers don't lie. We're getting old. Economies elsewhere are posting stable growth and seem to be managing it well. See Should our children consider careers in that part of the world?
NRC told that nuclear power plant safety rules understate risks -

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Reading of the workers in China who have been poisoned by working with lead, and of their young children who have been scarred for life with lead poisoning from emissions in the air, reminds one of why we need a strong and independent EPA. See Lead Poisoning in China: The Hidden Scourge -

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Like lottery players waiting for a jackpot to hit instead of building a business with a stable income, sometimes it feels like we're just waiting for someone else or some new technology to solve our impending food, water and energy crises. The latest news no one seems to pay attention to is the depletion of fish populations.

Monday, June 13, 2011

China rattled some sabres in the South China Sea this week -- interfering with a Vietnamese vessel, warning the Philippines not to claim ownership of reefs and atolls off its coast, and announcing the launch of its first aircraft carrier. Could it all have to do with this: Philippines Attracts Upstream Oil and Gas Interest Off its Coast
It turns out that nuclear science is the easy part. The problems arise from very human responses to crisis. New reports from Fukushima reveal elected officials and company executives who distrusted one another, lied to one another, and literally said one thing and did another - - apparently with more concern for their own self-interest than for the health and safety of millions of innocent people.
The International Atomic Energy Agency says Iran is continuing work on a nuclear payload for a missile - Should the US do anything about that?
Former Democratic Interior Secretary Bruce Babbitt called out the President for not standing up to the oil companies and Republicans on the environment and more specifically on climate change - Is climate change the issue to lead with? Or is the President making a good tactical decision to focus on energy independence and creating clean energy jobs?

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Renewable Aviation Fuels Standard Gains Preliminary Approval
Former President Ramos explains the meaning of freedom and independence in the Philippines, from the 1898 perspective to today.
Bacteria in our food kill more people than terrorism And that's just in the US where we have meaningful food safety regulations. How will we provide safe food to the world in the future when it is home to twice as many people? The food crisis will make the energy crisis look like a mere inconvenience.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Rebound in Philippine Exports and Foreign Direct Investment
US Ex-Im Bank Finances Small Scale Renewable Energy Exports

Friday, June 10, 2011

The Philippines is setting the stage for $1 billion in renewable energy investments that are awaiting final approval of feed-in-tariffs, renewable portfolio standards, and net metering rules.
President Aquino's appointment of former Senator Mar Roxas as Secretary of the Department of Transportation and Communications puts a very smart and savvy leader in charge of some major infrastructure projects.
Could It Happen Here? Will our obsession with budget cutting put our health and safety at risk?

Thursday, June 9, 2011

China gets aggressive in the South China Sea....with an aircraft coming soon.
We need to make a distinction between government "spending" that does not create any value, and government "investing" in infrastructure (a 21st century grid, repairing our century old bridges and roads, etc) that will make our economy more competitive in the future. Right now, we're at risk of falling behind. See U.S. Said to Be Falling Behind in ‘Green’ Technologies -

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

The Earth Is Full - Can We Build a Post-Consumer World? Will our children and grandchildren redefine the pursuit of happiness in a way that is more sustainable than the waste-all-you-can society we live in today?
First NJ Gov Christie killed a train tunnel that would create jobs now and provide more mass transit in the future, and now he is scaling back NJ's renewable energy goals that would push the private sector to create good jobs now and a more efficient energy infrastructure for the future. See Christie Disappoints Again, Plans to Scale Back New Jersey’s Energy Goals - Our generation inherited the largest rail, roads, and energy infrastructure in the world because our grandparents and great-grandparents built it. Will we leave a crumbling, inefficient, non-competitive, 19th and 20th century infrastructure for future generations of the 21st century?