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Nebraska explores use of agriculture waste for biocoal fuel

Nebraska wants to find out whether its glut of agricultural waste could be processed into a coal-like substance to be used as a renewable fuel for power plants.  The state Department of Environmental Quality last month awarded a Mexico, Missouri, company a grant of more than $250,000 as part of that effort. The company, Enginuity Worldwide, says it can compress cow manure, spent cornstalks and other plant material into what it calls BioCoal. The product burns like regular coal, and the company says it could help power plants cut carbon emissions.

EIA Predicts Coal Production Will Plummet Under Regs

If new carbon regulations go into effect, U.S. coal production will fall by around 25% by 2040.If the plan doesn't ever take effect, the EIA predicts demand for coal will remain relatively flat over the next 25 years. That scenario assumes natural gas prices and that international demand for US coal will dip down and then return back to higher 2014 levels.

The Shale Boom’s New Winner: Propane

The U.S. is exporting record volumes of propane, another way in which the shale boom has made the nation a more dominant force in the global energy trade. Foreign sales are surging as U.S. producers capitalize on higher prices overseas. That in turn is causing U.S. prices to rise, making Fourth of July barbecues a bit more expensive than cookouts a few months ago.

How America could go dark

The U.S. electric system is in danger of widespread blackouts lasting days, weeks or longer through the destruction of sensitive, hard-to-replace equipment. Yet records are so spotty that no government agency can offer an accurate tally of substation attacks, whether for vandalism, theft or more nefarious purposes.  Most substations are unmanned and often protected chiefly by chain-link fences. Many have no electronic security, leaving attacks unnoticed until after the damage is done. Even if there are security cameras, they often prove worthless.

Retail Partnerships, New Technologies Will Help to Ensure U.S. Energy Independence

According to the Department of Energy's Argonne National Laboratory, ethanol reduces greenhouse gas emissions by an average of 34 percent in comparison to gasoline. Moreover, advanced biofuels have the potential to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by over 100 percent. July 10th is U.S. Energy Independence Day, a time to celebrate Earth-friendly American ethanol.

US has more oil reserves than Saudi Arabia, says study

The US holds more oil reserves thanSaudi Arabia and Russia, the first time it has surpassed those held by the world’s biggest exporting nations, according to a new study. Rystad Energy estimates recoverable oil in the US from existing fields, discoveries and yet undiscovered areas amounts to 264 billion barrels. The figure surpasses Saudi Arabia’s 212 billion and Russia’s 256 billion in reserves.

Agriculture community also affected by oil and gas slowdown

The 2013 floods in Weld County caused significant damage to Sylvester’s property. If it weren’t for the oil and gas wells on his land — and the monthly checks he receives from the leases — Sylvester said his family never would have been able to make the necessary repairs to keep their house livable.  Farmers and ranchers often use oil and gas royalties as fallback money when things go wrong, like during natural disasters or when commodity prices fall.

TCU lab tries to save bats from death by wind turbine

Texas may be known for oil, but it is also the nation’s largest producer of wind energy. And while renewable energy is generally a good thing to most people, it’s not great for bats. Those towering wind turbines that harness the wind’s power kill a lot of bats every year.

 

Energy developer again seeks Missouri approval for transmission line from Kansas wind farms

Buoyed by recent high-profile endorsements from the public and private sector, Clean Line Energy, developers of the Grain Belt Express transmission line from Kansas wind farms, submitted a new application for the project’s approval. The fate of the project now rests in the hands of the Missouri Public Service Commission, which scuttled the project's original application last year amid concerns from farmers and other landowners in the project’s path.

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