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Patrick Mazza's Posts

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Adventures in the Smart Grid no. 1

Why the Smart Grid is important

It's the world's largest machine -- the interconnected network of power plants, transmission towers, substations, poles, and wires that make up the power grid. When you flip the switch you expect the juice to flow and don't have much reason to think about it, except during the occasional blackout. Power engineers and energy wonks might get passionate about the grid, but for most people it's just a background fact of life. It's time to bring the grid into the foreground, because it positions at the exact center of the world's most crucial issue, global climate change. The power grid is …

Read more: Climate & Energy

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Now's the time to make the big leap to clean energy

For the burgeoning clean energy industry, these are heady times. Having spent most of its years in uphill struggle, the industry has now climbed to the takeoff point. Wind and solar are the world's fastest growing energy sources, their costs rapidly curving down toward competitiveness with fossil fuels. Fuel cells that provide clean electricity for buildings and new-generation vehicles are nearing the market. Making hay while the sun shines.Photo: NREL/PIX. With the right mix of public and private initiatives, clean energy could ramp up rapidly. Shell Oil planners see renewables potentially becoming cost-competitive with fossil fuels by 2020 and producing …

Read more: Climate & Energy