Former Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels (R) teams up with a UC-Berkeley physics professor to tout natural gas as a clean alternative to coal. That’s a message, they argue, that needs to be pushed more in China, not the U.S.
Here’s an excerpt from their guest opinion column in The Wall Street Journal:
China’s yearly greenhouse-gas emissions first exceeded those of the United States in 2006, and by the end of this year the Chinese will be emitting twice as much as the Americans. This spectacular rise matches China’s economic growth and vast expansion of coal use. For the last seven years, China has been adding more than a gigawatt of new coal power each week, or more than 52 new gigawatts of additional capacity every year. (For comparison, New York City uses 10 gigawatts and isn’t increasing its use.) And we can expect Chinese economic and energy growth to continue.
In the U.S., by contrast, emissions are at the lowest they’ve been for 20 years thanks largely to America’s continuing switch from coal to natural gas, which emits half as much carbon dioxide for each kilowatt hour of energy generated.
Separately, a new Canadian study says fracking can cause earthquakes, despite several government backed studies showing otherwise. The Smithsonian Magazine has this: (h/t Politico’s Morning Energy)
Drawing on scientific research and reports by government agencies, Smart News and Smithsonian‘s Surprising Science blog have written that, as the National Research Council puts it, “there is no evidence to suggest that hydraulic fracturing itself is the cause of the increased rate of earthquake.” The known link between fracking and earthquakes has been to do with the waste disposal process, not the fracking itself: inappropriate disposal of waste water used during the fracking process has triggered induced earthquakes.
A recent report by the British Columbia Oil & Gas Commission, however, finds that fracking actually can cause earthquakes.
Earthquake monitoring equipment in northern British Columbia, Canada, says the report, recorded 216 small earthquakes clustered in a small area around an ongoing fracking project in the northern end of the province.