Dan Boyce

Jordan Wirfs-Brock

Jordan Wirfs-Brock is Inside Energy's data journalist.

Recent Posts

High Utility Costs Force Hard Decisions For The Poor

Lea Anne Shellberg in her home in Fort Collins, Colorado. A single mother who is disabled because of a work injury, Shellberg often struggles to pay her utilities on her fixed income.

The poorest among us pay more than they can afford for their power bills.
Economists call it an “affordability gap” when a household spends more than 6 percent of annual income on utilities. Many low-income households pay a much higher percentage. That means energy bills force hard decisions in other areas. Continue Reading →

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Massive Gas Leak Points To Vast, Aging Natural Gas Infrastructure

natgasinfrastructure

Methane is spewing from an underground natural gas storage field in southern California called Aliso Canyon at a rate of 50,000 kg per hour – the equivalent of 5 million full-grown cows. The leak is causing health problems, air traffic detours, and mass evacuations. And because methane is a potent greenhouse gas, its contribution to global warming is like having three extra coal-fired power plants. This isn’t just California’s problem: In addition to those direct consequences, Aliso Canyon is a wake-up call about the challenges facing our natural gas infrastructure. U.S. energy strategy, as outlined by the new Clean Power Plan, hinges on the idea that burning natural gas has a smaller carbon footprint than burning coal. Continue Reading →

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Citizen Science On The Rez – Kids, Science And North Dakota’s Oil Boom

The University of Colorado Team stands with Prairie Rose Seminole on a bluff overlooking Lake Sakakawea, observing  native plants and the changing landscape.

North Dakota’s Fort Berthold Indian Reservation is at the heart of the Bakken oil boom. When anthropologist Jen Shannon first visited the tribes there, it was to return religious artifacts. But the relationship grew. Next came an oral history project, then a film. And now, a more unusual request - help kids do science projects to understand their changing community. Continue Reading →

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