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United States Science Technology

Carbon Intensity is Falling in Industrial, Electric Power Sectors (arstechnica.com) 114

Over the last seven years, the electrical power sector has gone from being one of the most carbon-emitting sectors of the American economy per unit of fuel consumed to one of the least carbon-emitting sectors. From a report on ArsTechnica: That's according to new data from the US Energy Information Administration (EIA). Despite the good news, the EIA's numbers show that, since 1975, the carbon emissions of the US transportation sector per unit of fuel used has hardly changed at all. The EIA measured relative emissions across the US economy as "carbon intensity -- an average of the amount of carbon any sector gives off as it consumes different kinds of fuel. The measurements were applied to five sectors of the US economy: transportation, commercial, residential, electric, and industrial.
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Carbon Intensity is Falling in Industrial, Electric Power Sectors

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  • "Per unit of fuel used"

    What exactly is the expected result when the fuel is the same and the efficiency of the heat engine is already at or near the practical limit? As long as the fuel used is gasoline or diesel, there will be a practical limit to how far this can go. If they had picked 1930 as their arbitrary date they would get different results. If we all switched our cars to CNG, we'd have much higher "intensity", if we used coal it would be lower. Not sure what the point is.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Of course it has fallen. Replacing coal with nat gas generation (which is by far the biggest factor), tends to do that.

      • natural gas has methane which is worse than carbon dioxide as a greenhouse gas stupid

        • natural gas has methane which is worse than carbon dioxide as a greenhouse gas stupid

          Byproducts of natural gas include carbon dioxide and water vapor. Complete combustion of gas produces a harmless mixture of these two byproducts.

          https://www.google.com/search?... [google.com]

        • natural gas has methane which is worse than carbon dioxide as a greenhouse gas stupid

          1. The trick is to BURN the methane, rather than vent it into the atmosphere.
          2. Even though some methane leaks from valves and pipes, it has a half-life in the atmosphere of only 7 years, so it is not a long term problem. CO2 stays around for millenia.

    • by kamakazi ( 74641 ) on Tuesday May 02, 2017 @01:04PM (#54341737)

      Actually, it isn't a retarded measure, you just need to understand what it is sayig. Basically it says that our advances in internal combustion technology have made a negligible difference in the amount of carbon emitted while burning petroleum products, or in application terms, technology woun't make petroleum based ICEs much cleaner.

      In contrast the electrical generation industry has been changing fuels over the same period of time, and has indeed made carbon production improvements.

      The take away is that to make a dent in carbon pollution from cars and trucks they need to burn different fuels, not keep tweaking the long tail of internal combustion efficiency.

      I would be interested in seeing the same sort of measure of the other pollutants out our tailpipes, I think the reductions of evaporative loses and the requirement of catalytic convertors has probably made significant reductions of some other pollutants per unit of fuel used.

      • Actually, it isn't a retarded measure, you just need to understand what it is sayig.

        I disagree. Creating a measurement for something that is a constant is pretty dumb.

        At the end of the day, all we care about is the ratio of _something_ to carbon output. For transportation that _something_ can be people-miles. For electricity it is kW-h. You don't need a study to determine that coal has xxx carbon atoms and ethane has fewer - that's interesting, but it can't change over time.

        I would be interested in seeing the same sort of measure of the other pollutants out our tailpipes,

        We only talk about global warming now :)

        • Really dingus. Try reading the article again.

          "The EIA measured relative emissions across the US economy as "carbon intensity"—an average of the amount of carbon any sector gives off as it consumes different kinds of fuel. The measurements were applied to five sectors of the US economy: transportation, commercial, residential, electric, and industrial." https://arstechnica.com/scienc... [arstechnica.com]
          • You call me dingus and then you just repeat the same stupidness as the original author? Cars still use gasoline, just like in 1975. And except for some ethanol added recently, a gallon of gas still pretty much has the same amount of carbon in it as in 1975. It's a very dumb measure of carbon usage, as it is just restating the obvious - cars still burn gasoline, trucks still burn diesel. Why make a pretty chart?

            • You call me dingus and then you just repeat the same stupidness as the original author? Cars still use gasoline, just like in 1975.

              Most cars still use gasoline, but now we have these things called "electric vehicles" and they don't use gasoline, or ethanol, or diesel. Amazing isn't it?

              GP was correct: you are a dingus.

              And, yes, electric vehicles do contribute to CO2 emissions. I get that, but how much? What if the energy comes from a solar power system? It represents a change in the amount of CO2 emitted per

              • Jesus, at least go read the article before you fellate the guy. Electric cars exist, but the reason that the graph is so flat is that they don't yet exist in significant quantities to sway the numbers. The article does not consider CO2 emissions from electric cars at all - it just treats them as zero. YES, IT IS THAT STUPID.

        • It's a measurement of the proportions of the different fuel sources in use. And as you say, there's zero surprise that the numbers stayed constant in transportation from 1975-2005. I think the author didn't fully grasp that. Nearly all vehicles used gas & diesel in the same proportions that entire time, so of course the number will stay constant. Everyone already knew that. The exciting thing is seeing how that number changes from 2005 and into the future, as that is when we saw increased adoption of hy
          • The original paper says it is mostly ethanol that moved the needle on transportation. If you think about it, hybrids won't change it - same mistake I made in my original post. Ethanol by some measures is just as bad as gasoline when you include the entire supply chain, so that illustrates just how bad this number is as a CO2 measure.

        • It's not a "retarded" measurement, it just doesn't happen to be a measurement of what you think it should measure.

          Carbon intensity is not efficiency, which is what you seem to be interested in.

          Carbon intensity is, instead, a measure of where the energy comes from: not how efficiently it is used; but, how much of the energy comes from oxidizing carbon instead of from some other source.

          If you divide carbon intensity (carbon per million BTUs of energy) by the efficiency (amount of produce product per millio

          • I'm not complaining that people might be interested in showing that coal is "dirtier" than natural gas - there is indeed a place for that sort of thing. But it is a constant, not something you would graph. A headline such as "Carbon Intensity is Falling in Industrial, Electric Power Sectors" is retarded, because it is meaningless by itself. It gives you no information about, well, anything other than using some new jargon to say they have switched from dirty to clean sources of fuel. The opening line of the

            • I'm not sure why you say that this is "gives no information." A better statement would be "this measure does not give information about the things that I happen to want information about." That's correct. It measures something else.

              Specifically, it measures carbon intensity, which is a measurement of how much carbon is in the fuel-- basically, it's talking about the fuel source, not the end use. If that doesn't happen to be what you're interested in that, fine enough, but it is not "meaningless".

              • I feel like we are sliding into semantics and grammar. Let's shift direction a bit - being honest, did you learn anything from the article?

                • by XXongo ( 3986865 )

                  I feel like we are sliding into semantics and grammar. Let's shift direction a bit - being honest, did you learn anything from the article?

                  Yes, I learned that several segments of energy use have been slowly shifting from higher carbon-intensive fuels to lower carbon-intensive fuels, but that transportation has not.

                  • OK, well that's good for you then and probably explains our disconnect. As a frequent reader here, I already knew that cars continue to rely on gasoline and that electricity generation had largely migrated from coal to gas, with renewable energy recently making huge gains. I made the (mistaken) assumption that most people on Slashdot were coming from this position.

                    Since you did not have this information, I'm going to assume that you also may not be aware that fuel source can be very misleading. For instance

      • by ShanghaiBill ( 739463 ) on Tuesday May 02, 2017 @02:19PM (#54342245)

        Basically it says that our advances in internal combustion technology have made a negligible difference in the amount of carbon emitted

        That is because as fuel efficiency has improved, instead of using less fuel, people have bought BIGGER VEHICLES.

        I am waiting for the civilian version of the M1 Abrams.

        • and the reason people have bought bigger vehicles (and thus not helped reduce greenhouse gas emissions) as fuel efficiency increased is because governments did not have the mental acuity and testicular fortitude to increase gas taxes as fuel efficiency increased, which would have led to people having the same cost as before for operating a vehicle of the same size as before, so they would have stuck with the smaller vehicles they were happy enough with before (and are still happy with in most other countrie

      • Actually, it isn't a retarded measure, you just need to understand what it is sayig. Basically it says that our advances in internal combustion technology have made a negligible difference in the amount of carbon emitted while burning petroleum products, or in application terms, technology woun't make petroleum based ICEs much cleaner.

        No it does not say that AT ALL.

        What it says is that internal combustion engines don't sequester the carbon from the fuel. Essentially every bit of it is burned to carbon diox

        • Engines are more efficient and mileage is greater. Some of the fleet is being switched over to electricity, which doesn't emit any carbon from fuel - at least at the vehicle. More of it is running lower-carbon-per-unit-energy fuel, such as natural gas.

          Also: Hybrids are recycling energy from stopping, declerating, or going down hills, using it to replace energy from burning fuel when starting, accelerating, or going up hills.

      • There's a good reason that the advances have created a negligible difference. The stoichiometric ratio is 14.7 to 1 air/fuel for gasoline. The excess hydrocarbons coming out the engine pass through a catalytic converter that does a pretty good job of oxidizing any leftover hydorcarbons. Regardless of engine efficiency, what isn't burned by the engine is burned in the converter. We can't run leaner if we want to run as cleanly as possible because leaner mixtures burn hotter, which results in oxides of nitrog
    • by houstonbofh ( 602064 ) on Tuesday May 02, 2017 @01:12PM (#54341789)

      "Per unit of fuel used"

      I am still stuck on how they totally ignore that we went from 8 mpg to 40 mpg in that time. I wonder if that reduced emissions at all? Talk about fudging the numbers. Pollution per person per mile has plummeted!

      • They want to say that there's more solar and wind grid power generation instead of coal. They REALLY don't have to swaddle that blurb with bullshit metrics. It might make them sound smart to the dumb fuckers out there, but to anyone with critical reading skills it just makes us mad. Comparing that metric between grid power and transportation is just weird and extra bull-shitty.

      • by T.E.D. ( 34228 )

        I am still stuck on how they totally ignore that we went from 8 mpg to 40 mpg in that time. I wonder if that reduced emissions at all? Talk about fudging the numbers. Pollution per person per mile has plummeted!

        ...which helps not at all if we also went from commuting 8 miles to work every day to commuting 40 miles to work every day in that same time.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      ... and the efficiency of the heat engine is already at or near the practical limit?

      Actually the efficiency means nothing "per unit of fuel used." Think about it. Suppose suddenly, engines were 100x more efficient. Yes, we would use less fuel, but the same amount of carbon would be emitted per unit of fuel used. The only way this number gets smaller is if the carbon is sequestered.

    • The point is that society can and is reducing the amount of CO2 emitted by changing the energy sources. Changing from Coal to Natural Gas reduces CO2 emissions. Changing to Wind or Solar reduces emissions even further.

      Getting hung up on the use of the word "fuel" isn't helpful.

      • Society can reduce the amount of CO2 by doing any number of things: car pooling, transitioning to public transit, improving efficiency, etc. Fuel source is only one part of the pie, and isolating it is both obvious and stupid.

        By this measure, reforming coal into methane and then burning that as a separate step would improve their rating. Using diesel equipment and petroleum fertilizers to create ethanol to burn in cars improves the rating. All that counts at the end of the day is how much CO2 is cranked out

        • By this measure, reforming coal into methane and then burning that as a separate step would improve their rating.

          Now you are just proving your stupidity.

          The study talks about "primary fuels". It looks at CO2 emissions at each stage of use.

          • It may talk about primary fuels, but it does not consider them. If you burn ethanol in your car it just measures the amount of CO2 that comes out of the tail pipe - it does not consider the CO2 that went into the creation of the ethanol. If you burn coal in your power plant it just measures the amount of CO2 that comes out of the power plant, it does not consider the energy that went into extracting and transporting the coal.

            They even have a chart (for some reason?) that shows just how constant their assump

            • It may talk about primary fuels, but it does not consider them. If you burn ethanol in your car it just measures the amount of CO2 that comes out of the tail pipe - it does not consider the CO2 that went into the creation of the ethanol.

              Try reading TFA. This is the second falsehood you have posted about it. The article specifically calls out biogenic fuels:

              EIAâ(TM)s calculation of carbon intensities uses the convention that emissions from biomass combustion do not count as net energy-related CO2 emissi

              • I'm very confused by your comment. I say that one problem with this measure is that it does not include production costs (in terms of CO2). You then quote the part that agrees with my statement and call me out on my statement? Why?

                My problem with this article is that the author misinterpreted the original data and makes value judgements (e.g. "good news", "bad news") based on too-little information. This study simply says what you likely already know - changing from a high-carbon-content fuel to a low-carbo

                • I see what your problem is: you have trouble with the idea that someone might be concerned with accuracy and truth over pushing an agenda.

                  You stated: "By this measure, reforming coal into methane and then burning that as a separate step would improve their rating." This is false. The study attempts to track emissions back to primary fuels. It specifically comments on "indirect emissions".

                  You stated: "It may talk about primary fuels, but it does not consider them. If you burn ethanol in your car it just meas

                  • I have no idea what "agenda" you think I'm pushing. If you think I'm anti-AGW, you are completely off-base.

                    The study attempts to track emissions back to primary fuels. It specifically comments on "indirect emissions".

                    While I see the mention that you speak of, I do not see any evidence for accounting for indirect emissions. In fact, your next line proves that out.

                    The study does not measure CO2 emitted as a result of burning Ethanol.

                    You are correct - and I say elsewhere that this is very misleading because ethanol takes CO2 to manufacture.

    • by hey! ( 33014 )

      I suspect we're suffering from a misunderstanding of terminology here.

      Thermodynamic efficiency has nothing to do with carbon emitted by an engine per unit of fuel; that's determined by stoichiometry. Basically every carbon atom that goes into your tank comes out the tailpipe as soot, CO2, and a very smalll quantity (these days) of unburned alkanes.

      Since that means that the CO2 emitted per unit consumed by the engine is approximately constant, I suspect they're talking about the entire supply chain includin

      • You are right - I'm a dunce and did not think the efficiency part of my post through. With that said, burning a gallon of gasoline in 1975 produced about as much carbon as burning a gallon of gasoline does in 2017. It's a constant.

        And yes, it's as bad as that. If you open the source website [eia.gov], it even includes a chart with no x axis showing the "trend" of coal and other fuel sources. Why make a graph of constants?

        And no, they aren't considering supply chain. Just the average number of CO2 molecules emitted wh

      • Basically every carbon atom that goes into your tank comes out the tailpipe as soot, CO2, and a very smalll quantity (these days) of unburned alkanes. Since that means that the CO2 emitted per unit consumed by the engine is approximately constant...

        No, it's not constant. Carbon intensity is the amount of carbon emitted per unit energy (not per unit carbon). If you're burning hydrogen, your carbon intensity is zero. If you're burning anthracite, your carbon intensity is 104. If you're burning natural gas, your carbon intensity is halfway in between.

        Carbon intensity is a measure of what's in your fuel. Basically, it tells you how much carbon was in the fuel producing your energy.

        The reference is seen by clicking the link in Ars Technica article li

        • by hey! ( 33014 )

          Yes, I know what carbon intensity is, but the linked article confuses the issue and summary confuses it more.

          Emissions intensity is emissions relative to the volume of an activity, so I was trying to point out that if you measure an activity relative to energy consumption, you would not expect much change in the transport sector because people are for the most part powering their vehicles the way they did in 1975. For practical purposes almost nobody is running their car on hydrogen, so the carbon intensi

          • by XXongo ( 3986865 )
            Yep, you're right.

            We could have seen a change in transportation if cars (or trucks) had switched to ethanol or biodiesel in significant amounds, which they haven't, or if electric cars had become a significant part of the market (in which case their carbon intensity should mirror electric power). So, the lack of change in transport just tells you that the fuel for transportation hasn't changed, which is not particularly news.

    • It's called fuel efficiency moron. And it's something the automotive industry has been fighting tooth and nail since the '70s.

      If you think cars can't be more fuel efficient then you have your head severely up your ass.
      • Jesus you are calling me a moron and you can't even read. Reread the article - it has nothing to do with efficiency - and in fact I made an error by even mentioning it. My mistake. The article just says that burning a given amount of fuel in 2017 emits the same amount of carbon as it did in 1975. Wow, that's startling, isn't it?

  • Misleading data (Score:4, Interesting)

    by fred6666 ( 4718031 ) on Tuesday May 02, 2017 @12:53PM (#54341659)

    The only reason why it's falling is because they count renewables as "fuel". So of course per unit of "fuel" consumed (and remember, solar radiation count as "fuel"), they emit less CO2. It doesn't mean the process of CO2 emitting thermal power plants actually improved.

    • The only reason why it's falling is because they count renewables as "fuel". So of course per unit of "fuel" consumed (and remember, solar radiation count as "fuel"), they emit less CO2. It doesn't mean the process of CO2 emitting thermal power plants actually improved.

      They also base it on fuel used, not production outputs. Going from 8mpg to 40mpg is actually a very big deal. As is car pooling... If you have to fudge the data to make a point, perhaps it is the wrong point.

    • The only reason why it's falling is because they count renewables as "fuel". So of course per unit of "fuel" consumed (and remember, solar radiation count as "fuel"), they emit less CO2. It doesn't mean the process of CO2 emitting thermal power plants actually improved.

      Actually, it doesn't say that CO2-emitting thermal power plants haven't improved. I strongly suspect that they have, due to the move from coal to natural gas.

      That aside, how does counting renewables make the data misleading? It seems to me that *not* counting renewables would be misleading. Of course, ideally, all power sources should include total CO2 emissions, not just production emissions, and it doesn't appear that was done for any of them. Failing to include CO2 emissions from the construction of po

      • Because solar radiation, water and wind aren't "fuel".

        • You mean solar fuel https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/... [wikipedia.org]
        • Because solar radiation, water and wind aren't "fuel".

          So?

          • The intensity measure is the amount of CO2 released per unit of FUEL consumed. Sounds like a division by 0 to me.

            • Not over the entire industry, which includes lots of fuel-consuming components.
              • Also, the actual measure was CO2 per BTU, a unit of energy, not a unit of fuel. Yeah, I know, the summary said the other, but read the article.
                • from TFA :

                  The EIA measured relative emissions across the US economy as "carbon intensity"—an average of the amount of carbon any sector gives off as it consumes different kinds of fuel

                  They use BTU as a measurement of the amount of fuel consumed to produce electricity. They convert volumes or masses of gas, oil, uranium into BTU. What are they doing with solar or wind isn't clear.
                  A measure of CO2 per unit of energy produced would be much more meaningful, and wouldn't result in a division by 0 for solar.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by dj245 ( 732906 )

      The only reason why it's falling is because they count renewables as "fuel". So of course per unit of "fuel" consumed (and remember, solar radiation count as "fuel"), they emit less CO2. It doesn't mean the process of CO2 emitting thermal power plants actually improved.

      If you look at the source, it seems fairly straightforward that they are simply multiplying the amount of fuel used by the amount of CO2 emitted per BTU of that fuel. That analysis if flawed in several ways, but saying that renewables are affecting this in a large way is not correct. Solar + Wind only produced 22,490 Million Kilowatt-hours in January 2017 [eia.gov], or 6.5% of the total electricity produced in January 2017. Hydro and Geothermal production rate hasn't increased significantly in decades, so I will e

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Natural gas has been so cheap that power plants switched to it even they didn't have to.

    There is no, nor has there ever been a "war on coal." That is a lie started by Mitch McConnell (R-KY).

    Coal's decline is 100% caused by the free markets.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      You should be beheaded for apostasy! Everyone knows that free markets cannot have a good outcome for the environment, even by accident.

  • Over the last seven years, the electrical power sector has gone from being one of the most carbon-emitting sectors of the American economy per unit of fuel consumed to one of the least carbon-emitting sectors.

    Have no fear, the Good'ol US of A is about to change that! Hooraaa!!

    • On what ground?

      You sound like a bigot saying that.

      Trump isn't for "coal" per se. Neither are most of his supporters. What counts are blue collar jobs, which aren't necessarily brain dead jobs for brain dead people.

      Wind and solar are here and will soon be a dominant energy source. Yeah.

      But that doesn't mean to ridicule people (and of course then wonder why they don't vote for your candidates).
      • first off, that is total BS.
        Trump had to have been told that even if coal came back (it will not), that it will NOT bring back jobs. As such, trump and the GOP KNEW they were lying about jobs.
        And I will guess that you know that he was lying as well. After all, coal's death has NOT been due to regulations like you neo-con/tea-baggers claim, but it is one of economics. Nat gas has been cheaper than coal since 2010. MUCH CHEAPER. And it is expected to remain that way, unless trump allows massive exports of
        • There have been more than enough interviews of coal miners and people in those districts who KNOW coal isn't coming back. Coal is shorthand for blue collar job. Being pro-coal means that you are not ignoring or devaluing the work and contribution done by coal miners, farmers, and tradesmen.

          I did not vote for Trump but it resonates with people. You may think it's bullshit. You may think Trump is conning them. He may be. I'm not a fan. But it's clear (at least to me and millions of others) that "coal" mean
  • by WindBourne ( 631190 ) on Tuesday May 02, 2017 @02:13PM (#54342199) Journal
    With the next couple of years, we will see the transportation sector drop in emissions, a great deal.
    Tesla is forcing 1 major car maker to switch (BMW), and the others will be forced to follow suit in about 2-3 years. However, by 2020, about 1/3 to 1/2 of new cars in America will likely be EVs. In addition, car sales in America will have dropped a great deal simply because nobody paying above $25K will want to buy an ICE, while those below 25K, will simply buy the one time expensive now used ICE cars that will be going for less than 10K for a 2-4 year old car.
    Add to that the fact that Burlington Northern is in the process of switching ALL of their engines to nat gas, which they will have done in less than 5 years, will drop 5-6% of America's diesel use. Yup. Diesel useage is already going down, and will go down by about 1% a year. Then as the electric semis jump in from Tesla, that will by 2024, bring diesel down 1-5% a year, depending on how good tesla does.
    • With the next couple of years, we will see the transportation sector drop in emissions, a great deal.

      As it has over the past decades.

      But measured by the "carbon emitted per unit fuel burned" it still won't change at all - until NO vehicle burns fuel and the measurement blows up by doing a divide by zero.

  • While the summary says "amount of carbon any sector gives off as it consumes different kinds of fuel", TFA elaborates - what they are measuring is kilograms of CO2 per million BTUs used. So you can see that the electrical sector is moving towards a lower CO2 mix. Interestingly, the industrial sector is also lowering CO2, and the article credits this to wider use of biofuels which don't get counted as net CO2 contributions.

  • by argStyopa ( 232550 ) on Tuesday May 02, 2017 @02:33PM (#54342381) Journal

    ...when you consider that wind/solar are getting something like 400x the subsidies per megawatt hour that coal, oil, and ng are receiving.

    • ...when you consider that wind/solar are getting something like 400x the subsidies per megawatt hour that coal, oil, and ng are receiving.

      Depends on how you count subsidies. Typical subsidies quoted for fossil fuel production are quoted at $27 billion per year (http://priceofoil.org/content/uploads/2014/07/OCI_US_FF_Subsidies_Final_Screen.pdf ), and more for transporting the fuel. Much more, of course, if you count the cost of providing security in the Middle East, which many people think we only do because of the oil. https://www.eia.gov/todayinene... [eia.gov]

    • In total values, fossil fuels receive about half the subsidies that renewable do [wikipedia.org]. At least back in 2013.

      Of course, you made sure to say "per megawatt hour", but I'm not sure how many megawatt hours per gallon of gas my Mazda generates. Furthermore, you'd expect new and promising industries to get subsidies to help them get started while you'd hope established industries like oil and gas would be able to support themselves. Especially while making record profits. I get that it's a strategic resource and

  • Their metric is "kg of CO2 per million BTUs of fuel"?

    "electricity sector has shown the most change in the last decade ... EIA attributes this to increasing amounts of nuclear, wind, hydroelectric, and solar power"

    How much "fuel" goes into wind, hydro and solar? If it's zero fuel in, zero carbon out, how can it improve the "carbon intensity" of the electrical power sector? Neither the ars article nor the eia.gov website really explains this. My *guess* is that they are taking the electricity output of ren

  • In sane countries like the US, coal is not a 4-letter expletive but a source of energy; the workers are given greater respect in the US versus being written off completely in coal-phobic countries.

  • MsMash, please no more progressive dribble. Why don't you post these as submissions and get people to vote on them?
  • I'm sure some of the people replying to this don't understand how we measure emissions, or renewables content per unit produced, or how you deal with efficiency improvements (for a process) versus total usage.

    Let's assume you all took decent 400 and 500 level college courses in these subject areas, and realized that the electrical grid was powered by fairly carbon-intensive (or GHG-creating or "polluting") methods until quite recently.

    But under PURPA, electrical energy providers (utilities) have to buy exce

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