Green news harvest: Big Oil's lip service on clean energy
Some oil and gas companies have scaled back their commitment to renewable energy, although biofuels seems closest to what they do now.
A sampling of green-tech news with quick commentary.
- Oil Companies Reluctant to Follow Obama's Green Lead - The New York Times
Despite the advertising, oil and gas companies see renewable energy as a side business that will take decades to displace fossil fuels in a significant way.
- Energy Secretary Chu: 'Agnostic' on Pickens Plan - The Wall Street Journal
Chu favors fuel efficiency and biofuels over using natural gas as transportation fuel. One reason is that natural gas will be used more for electricity and heating.
- Rise of the Itty-Bitty Car: How Green Are the New Uber Compacts? - Earth2Tech
Gasoline-powered subcompacts don't bring a radical jump in fuel efficiency, but electric-powered versions--some expected to be unveiled today--do.
- Are the Benefits of Plug-In Hybrids Overstated? - Greentech Media
Mileage estimates vary widely for plug-in electric cars. Important point is that driving habits--i.e. not stamping on the accelerator--make a big difference.
- EnergyHub ropes first round for home energy management dashboards - VentureBeat
Companies that do home energy monitors seems to be sprouting everywhere, although few people in the U.S. use them yet.
- Momentum in ZigBee Smart Energy Fuels $8 Million in New Financing for Ember - Press release
The company, which makes a Zigbee wireless chip, has gotten funding to further pursue smart grid market.
- Wind vs. Petroleum at First Offshore Energy Hearing - Environmental News Service
Wind power, when offshore is included, could produce 20 percent of U.S. electricity load but faces competition for offshore drilling.
- Scientists try tapping 'ice that burns' - Greenwire
In case you were worried about the planet running out of hydrocarbons, there's always methane trapped in ice to burn.