Ohio Valley Environmental Coalition
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Contents
Also see Web Extras

OVEC, Others Challenge Blair Mountain Mining Permit
Dont Let Area Power Plants Make Our Air Even Worse
Renewable Energy and a Renewed E-Council
Coal Expo Exposed:
Sludge is Not Safe
Coal Expo Exposed: Protesters Rally at Candlelight Vigil
Are Your US Senators and Reps Climate Champions?
Oberlin College Doing the Right Thing With Education
Bush Admin. Finalizes Mountain Massacre Study
Christians for the Mountains: Statement by Denise Giardina
Christians for the Mountains Spread Word of Responsible Earthkeeping And That Means an End to Mountaintop Removal
Massey Launches Total Environment Web Assault
Reckless Disregard: Settlement doesnt clear Massey, MSHA
Legal Victory! Judge Tosses OSM's Water Rule Approval
WV Passes Landmark Law Curbing 527 Groups
Capito Got Most
DeLay Money
Texas Congressman Kills National Renewable Energy Standard
Coal Industry Money Fuels Public Policy in West Virginia
Reports Detail
Senate Race Donors
Foxes Guarding Henhouse - Why We Need Real Campaign Finance Reform
Unclean Coal: Myth Perpetrators Get an Earful
Coal Very Costly, Not Cheap, If ALL Impacts Are Factored In
T H A N K S !
Update on Blair Mountain - Feds Want Still More Information
SouthWings Needs YOU!
WV Ranked 7th in Mercury Emissions
From Ireland to
Blair Mountain,
with Love and Lyrics
WV Singers and Songwriters Wanted for Blair Mountain Project
Rosa Parks Lights the Way
Holiday Shopping with OVEC
Students Pray for Kayford
Miscellany
Web Extras Below
Articles not in the printed newsletter
RENEWABLE FUTURE
Change or Die
Courage to Move Beyond Coal
Climate of Change: It's Easy to Save Money Being Green
Sequestration Smokescreen?
Massey settlement agreement scuttles insider trading allegations
Mining 'is turning Eastern Kentucky into a despicable latrine'
Ecoterrorism Tops the Charts
Human Activities Cause of Current Extinction Crisis
Kentucky needs study on truck weight limits
Meanwhile, elsewhere (jobs, money, renewable energy)
Mining pollution in Coal River needs drastic cut, state says
Not Nice to Wonder?
Things you can do for a better planet (while saving money!)
Where's the money for the Island Creek flood project?
Visiting Van, WV


For viewing the PDF version of the newsletter

 

Winds of Change Newsletter, December 2005     See sidebar for table of contents

Meanwhile, elsewhere (jobs, money, renewable energy)

Though the sun provides energy for free, the cost of the panels and other gear (a decade ago) was so high that solar couldn't begin to compete with grid power. In a sense, it still can't - solar energy in this country costs consumers something like a quarter per kilowatt-hour, compared with something like a nickel for conventional fossil fuel. But that's starting to change. Not because regular electricity is getting a lot more expensive; with its abundant coal America can generate cheap power for a very long time. But because - sporadically, haltingly, and over the objections of the federal government - America is beginning to realize that the real cost of cheap energy is considerably higher. That burning coal means polluted air, sick kids, global warming. And so, in a few key places, government is beginning to tilt the balance. If you put in a solar system in New Jersey, the state will cover as much as 70 percent of the cost. In California and in New York, about half. A scattering of other states - including Arizona, Vermont, and Massachusetts offer similar subsidies.

The pressure for such programs is increasing as the news about climate change becomes more urgent - in August, a study in Science reported that solar technology was developed enough to play a major role in fending off global warming, but only if we increased its use 700-fold in the next half-century. That sounds impossible - but it's only a 14 percent annual increase, less than half the current global rate. One solar panel manufacturer calculates that the domestic PV market is growing as fast as 60 percent a year, fast enough that within a decade, California alone should have more solar panels than any single nationThe world spent $20.3 billion on development of solar and wind power in 2003, one-sixth of the total global investment in power-generation equipment. Notes Udall, "This is not a children's crusade any more."

The subsidy for renewable energy doesn't come close to matching the billions in government support for fossil fuels, which includes everything from the oil-depletion allowance to the endless federal largesse for "clean coal" research. Still, the government help, almost all of it from states instead of the federal government, is crucial.

Our particular subsidy programs have been piecemeal, expensive, and not always very well designed.The Bush administration's energy policy has made token nods in the direction of renewables while preparing for a future that belongs to the oil, coal, gas, and nuclear industries.

Every day 10,000 times more energy strikes the earth than we humans use. If the sun's out, it's hitting your roof right now, and bouncing back unused into the atmosphere - a wink unnoticed, a flirtation ignored, a gift refused.
--Excerpted from One Roof at a Time: With no help from the Bush administration - but plenty from Europe, Japan, New York, and California - solar power is edging into the mainstream. by Bill McKibben in the Nov./Dec. 2005 issue of Mother Jones

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Indian govt to make tapping solar energy mandatory for all new buildings

In a bid to optimize the renewable sources of energy and to meet the growing demands of power in the country, the Indian government is planning to make tapping solar energy mandatory for all new buildings and complexes.

"Solar energy is such a renewable source that even countries that get hardly 25 percent of sunlight, tap this source for meeting their power requirements," an Indian official said.

 

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