Diplomatic conversation continue around Turkey, Hurricane Michael makes its way to the Atlantic, and Kanye West heads to the White House, but here’s what you missed in energy this week. Catch up on all your energy needs each week as we highlight energy news and stories that are shaping global markets and affecting daily life.
The United States Department of Energy recently announced a $28 million check to aid in research, development and demonstration of new technology to strengthen the cybersecurity of our nation’s energy infrastructure. Using the available state-of-the-art technologies will help prevent, detect, and mitigate cyber-attacks on our vital energy infrastructure, including the electric grid and pipelines. Improving the cybersecurity of our infrastructure is about more than just keeping the lights on, it also helps bolster our national security.
The TransCanada Mountaineer Xpress pipeline is one step closer to fruition as U.S. federal energy regulators approved a request to put the Mountaineer’s Elk River compressor station into service. The Mountaineer is a natural gas pipeline designed to connect the Marcellus and Utica shale in Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Ohio with consumers across the United States and Canada. The proposed pipeline has a capacity of 2-billion cubic feet per day, which is enough gas to power about 10 million U.S. homes per day. At the same time, shale drillers in the Appalachian region are scheduled to have record high output of around 29.4 Bcf/d this month up from 24.2 Bcf/d this time last year.
As of January 2018, the U.S. first became a net exporter of natural gas thanks to increased shale exploration and new technology. LNG, or liquefied natural gas, is predicted to grow from 22% to 24% of the global energy mix by 2035 – allowing U.S. cities such as Houston and Jacksonville to take advantage of its increased natural gas production as markets in Asia, the Middle East and Europe already import U.S. LNG. As nation’s look for an energy source that is better for the environment, natural gas consumption is predicted to continue rising through 2050.
As global waste production continues to grow – potentially tripling by 2100, the need for reducing discarded waste becomes increasingly necessary. After examining data collected over a five-year period of 245 Massachusetts communities, three strategies top the list as the most effective actions municipal governments can implement to reduce waste and increase recycling. The most effective strategy is a pay-as-you-throw trash (PAYT) program – where residents pay per trash bag or bin of waste discarded, but are not charged for recycled materials.
Right inside the front doors of United Therapeutic’s new headquarters, on the wall of the building’s atrium, you may notice the 24 silver markers placed in the shape of a circle – resembling a giant sundial. This Maryland-based biotech company is one of the only “site net-zero” buildings on the East Coast – meaning the new headquarters will only use the energy it generates within its footprint. To remind workers and show when the building is using energy, the Energy Dial’s 24 beams of light will point to the center, displaying a geometric pattern on the wall. When the lights reverse their direction, the Energy Dial is showing that the building is generating solar energy.