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Natural Gas – Shakedown, 1979

By Energy Rant 2 Comments
My, how quickly some things can change, almost overnight, like natural gas markets. It seems only a year ago we had more natural gas than we could consume, as far as the eye could see. Barely three years ago, I wrote that Permian Basin oil production resulted in flaring off $1 million worth of natural gas per day, during rock bottom prices even. That was enough to fuel 2,500 MW of electricity generation. Customers are pissed off about soaring heating costs, which are 50% higher than a year ago. The chart below shows the NYMEX commodity price for natural gas…
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No Penalties for Attribution

By Energy Rant No Comments
This week, we finish the series on attribution studies. First, let me explain, while I beat up attribution assessments, they are necessary. This post will conclude with how I think they should be used. Experimental v Quasi-Experimental Second, I want to make a couple comments about last week’s post. Near the end, I explained randomized control trials (RCTs) for determining attribution. Test samples need to be drawn before the attribution study using the RCT. Correct me if I’m wrong, but this never happens when determining the attribution of an efficiency program. The attribution study always occurs after, or at best,…
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Capacity Factor

Renewable Energy, Bad Parents, and Midwest Strawberries

By Energy Rant 2 Comments
If you enjoyed the greatest modern decade of sports, when MJ went six for six in the NBA finals, you would remember this McDonald’s commercial nearby. In it, Larry challenges Michael to a game of trick shots for Michael’s Big Mac and Fries. (I don’t know why my adolescent idol, MJ, would agree to play for something he already paid for, but…) As you can see, the game quickly progresses into an outlandish game of “first to miss, loses.” It leaves off with a shot from the top of Chicago’s fourth tallest building, the Hancock Tower. Cost of Electricity I…
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Commercial Code Compliance and New Construction Program Failures

By Energy Rant 3 Comments
Earlier this year, the Energy Information Administration (EIA) released its Commercial Building Energy Consumption Survey of 2012. The prior release was 2003. The data do not paint a pretty picture for energy code effectiveness. Other data we are accumulating indicate new construction programs are failing to deliver. Regress At first glance, it seems substantial progress may have been made between 2003 and 2012. The first chart is from the EIA website. As EIA states, “the only statistically significant changes since 2003 are for office buildings, education buildings, and commercial buildings overall.” That is weak, especially considering that the data cover all…
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