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Solar Economics Looking Sunnier, Even In Coal Country

Holly Copeland in front of the family's house and their newly-installed solar array.

Wyoming's solar potential is among the best in the nation, but even as residential rooftop solar has boomed recently in places like California, Colorado and New Jersey, it's barely made any inroads in the state. Economics and politics both play a role, but with the price of photovoltaics continuing to drop, some people are starting to ask whether momentum is building for solar in nation's largest coal-producing state. Continue Reading →

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O&G Task Force Sends Nine Proposals To Colorado Governor

Members of the Oil and Gas Task Force vote on recommendations Tuesday.

Votes have been tallied on over 50 proposals seeking to reduce conflicts between the public and the oil and gas industry. The Governor's Oil and Gas Task Force was able to send nine recommendations along. All passed with the two-thirds majority vote required. Continue Reading →

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Falling Oil Prices Leave Petroleum Engineering Students Out In The Cold

In Vladimir Alvarado's petroleum engineering class, there are no signs enrollment is shrinking, although job prospects are getting slim.

A year ago, a petroleum engineering degree seemed like the ticket to a bright and well-paid future. With six-figure starting salaries for a bachelor’s degree and endless optimism about the shale revolution, enrollment climbed rapidly in petroleum engineering programs across the country. But now that the oil price slide has turned to an oil price slump, the luster is wearing off. Continue Reading →

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Between Energy Development And The Ravens That Follow It, Sage Grouse Are In Peril

Ravens

Several new studies show ravens are feasting on the eggs of another iconic bird -- sage grouse -- further threatening a species on the brink of extinction. Now, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service wants to control more ravens, lethally. Continue Reading →

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4 Things You Need To Know About Wyoming’s Coal Future

This chart shows possible changes in Wyoming coal production if the Clean Power Plan, also called 111(d) is implemented. The blue and green lines are "reference scenarios," or what coal production is expected to be without the Clean Power Plan. The red and black dotted lines, along with the solid dark grey line, examine the impact of a carbon tax, something that is often discussed as an alternative to the Clean Power Plan. The scenarios labeled 111(d) model the effects of the Clean Power Plan, with and without regional cooperation and energy efficiency.

This week, researchers at the University of Wyoming offered a preview of a major new study that details potential threats to Wyoming’s coal industry. The final version won’t be out until the end of the month, but lead author Rob Godby sat down with Inside Energy for an interview. He described his reaction to the results as “the guy looking into the telescope and the being the first one to see the asteroid.” Continue Reading →

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Wyoming Fights Back Against Federal Plan To Cut Carbon Emissions

With the Republican’s sweep of November’s midterm elections, they now hold majorities in both the House and the Senate. With this newfound power, blocking or delaying the Environmental Protection Agency's controversial proposal to cut carbon emissions is high on their agenda. Wyoming lawmakers, in particular, will have influence over energy policy in Washington: Senator John Barrasso is chair of the Senate Republican Policy, Rep. Cynthia Lummis is chair of a brand new Interior Subcommittee charged with overseeing the EPA, and Sen. Enzi was named Chair of the Senate Budget Committee. Inside Energy's Leigh Paterson reports on what's a stake for American coal:

Check out Leigh's radio story for more on Wyoming's contentious relationship with the Environmental Protection Agency. Continue Reading →

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