Natural gas that has been derived from hydraulic fracking is now the most commonly used fuel in gas fireplaces and kitchen ranges. It rose to that level over the past 15 years, with little examination of the health risks of the chemicals that are used in fracking and released when the gas is burned. “Few if any people have actually tested for what else is in this gas,” says Nathan Phillips, a College of Arts & Sciences earth and environment professor, one of the country’s foremost experts on natural gas leaks and explosions in the United States. “It’s 90 to 95 percent methane, but what else?” Phillips and a team of researchers from several universities and nonprofits are finding out, and they are concerned. Of the 108 volatile organic compounds, or substances that easily become vapors or gases, found in gas from four Massachusetts municipalities tested, 27 are chemicals that are considered hazardous by federal Clean Air Act standards, and 12 are suspected carcinogens.
BU Today 20th March 2018 read more »
The amount of new coal power capacity around the world fell by a record-breaking 28% last year, according to a new report. As coal plants continued to close globally, and India and China scrapped plans for dozens of new power stations, experts can now foresee what seemed unthinkable just a few years ago: the moment when the global coal fleet actually starts to shrink.
Unearthed 22nd March 2018 read more »
The number of newly completed coal-fired power plants around the world dropped by nearly a third last year, as global demand for new coal generation capacity continued its downward trajectory, new analysis will show today. An annual survey of global coal plant development carried out by leading NGOs found a 28 per cent year-on-year drop in newly completed coal plants last year. The results continue a trend that means the number of new coal plants coming online has fallen 41 per cent over the past two years.
Business Green 22nd March 2018 read more »