Sean Casten

Sean Casten is president & CEO of Recycled Energy Development, LLC, a company devoted to profitably reducing greenhouse emissions.

The problem with renewables and ‘cost parity’

At what point do hamburgers reach cost parity with salad? Assume for a moment that this is a serious question and try to figure out how you’d answer it. What is the relevant metric of …

Natural Gas

Learning from history: Why natural gas prices will rise

Here’s the standard story about the U.S. power grid: It gets baseload supply from hydro, nuclear, and coal (in that order), using natural gas (and the occasional oil plant) as a swing producer to meet …

Growing Midwest and Appalachian efficiency markets

Like boiling frogs, it’s the rate of change that matters when it comes to energy efficiency investments. Consumers who have grown accustomed to $4 gasoline are much less likely to buy a hybrid car than …

How to buy (and price) clean power

You get what you pay for. Clean power mandates in the US mandate that we buy megawatt-hours of clean energy, but they don’t mandate that those sources be reliable. This isn’t to say that clean …

Natural Gas

DOE shocker: the future will be like the past, but more so

Last October, I had some fun looking at the Department of Energy’s historic predictions of natural gas prices and noting their consistent failure to, uh, predict. From 2004 to 2010, natural gas prices were massively …

Energy Efficiency

The conflict at the heart of U.S. energy policy: domestic extraction vs. cheap energy

Imagine you’re out to dinner with your spouse. When the waiter comes, she says, “I’m trying to decide between the house salad and the deep-fried twinkie. Which would you recommend?” You might think many things, …

Man-up, America

U.S. energy policy as a teenage boy

With all the media frenzy around the Japanese nuclear situation, one topic hasn’t been covered much : Why don’t the Japanese love fossil fuels? Not only have they pushed hard into nuke but they’re also …

MACT-Daddy

Good news: New EPA boiler regs include output-based standards

Finally the day you’ve all been waiting for has arrived: EPA has released its new boiler emissions rules for hazardous pollutants! (The cool kids call it “the boiler MACT.”) Most review and discussion of these …

Year-end economic musings

Last July, I wrote about trends in U.S. retail electric sales as an indicator of economic activity, and how this recession compares to prior on that metric. We’ve kept tracking that data, and it gets …

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