IE Questions: Super Grid! Spanning Continents In A Single Bound!

Somewhere in the world, the sun and wind are always shining and blowing, and people are always using electricity. Wouldn’t it be nice if we could get renewable power from the windy and sunny places to the power hungry places? That was presumably the thinking behind a question posed by an Inside Energy audience member:

Would transmission losses be too high to sustain an international green power electrical grid? The short answer: Yes. An international power grid would sustain huge transmission losses and would therefore be too expensive to be feasible, right now. But in some situations, regional or continental grids do make financial sense and are already under development.

This chart shows oil/gas and coal company contributions to presidential candidate committees. It includes contributions from company PACs as well as individuals employed by the companies who donated at least $200. While coal interests have retained their strong preference for Republican presidential candidates, oil and gas interests have shifted their spending to Clinton in the general election. With a month to go before the election, oil and gas interests had spent roughly the same amount on candidates who did not make it past the primaries as they did on Trump and Clinton combined. Note that this does not reflect super PAC spending. View the data used to make this graphic as a spreadsheet.

Surprises In Oil And Gas Campaign Spending

Fossil fuel companies have a history of backing Republican candidates. But this year’s unusual presidential campaign appears to be having a strange ripple effect on political giving — at least from the oil and gas industry.