Sustainability

Thursday, October 02, 2014

Global trade is, by and large, a good thing. Trade helps optimize the allocation of resources (materials, capital, labor, etc.) at the global scale. Today about one third of the global GDP comes from international trade. The value of traded goods and services today is about 50 times that of 1970, while the global GDP is only about four times that of 1970.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Is nuclear energy “sustainable”? Certainly it’s not categorized as such in any federal definition of the term. Nuclear power is not ballyhooed in pro-renewable montages of solar panels and wind turbines. The nuclear industry receives none of the tax incentives renewables do. But the argument for nuclear energy as an important part of any large-scale sustainable energy plan is a powerful one, and an urgent one to explore as climate change becomes an ever more pressing reality.

Friday, October 03, 2014

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Friday, July 18, 2014

Electricity for rainforest villages in Gabon. Tent fabric that harvests solar energy for nomadic people in Kazakhstan. A modular greenhouse and fish farm in an unused industrial building in Highland Park, Michigan.

These are some of the goals and possibilities a team of 17 researchers will pursue with a new $3 million Third Century Initiative Global Challenges grant from the University of Michigan.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Renewable Portfolio Standards- the percentage of a given energy portfolio made up of renewable power sources- are a contentious issue in many states. In this blog entry, University of Michigan researcher Jeremiah Johnson describes his new study, which will describe in detail the various costs and benefits of adding more renewables to Michigan’s energy mix.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

No matter what their income bracket, American consumers all express an equal degree of “personal worry” about the impact of energy use on the environment, according to the newest findings of the University of Michigan Energy Survey. A joint effort of the U-M Energy Institute and Institute for Social Research, the quarterly survey gauges consumer perceptions and beliefs about key energy-related concerns including affordability, reliability and impact on the environment.

Transportation is one of several major sectors that contribute to climate change. Globally, the sector's roughly 25% share of man-made carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions is similar to its share of energy consumption. Because liquid fuels are so well suited for powering cars, trucks, boats and aircraft, transportation is uniquely reliant on oil, which is the best natural resource for producing liquid fuels. 

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