Monday, March 08, 2010

Burgh Energy Report: Bloggers Wanted Part II

By way of a following to Saturday's post about the need for bloggers dedicated to energy issues in SW PA (or the entire TechBelt), I am very impressed with today's stream of energy news out of the Houston Chronicle. I use Google Reader and the first post on Monday was a concise compilation of stories. Think of it as what the coverage could and should be for the Pittsburgh energy industry.

“America’s Natural Gas Alliance applauds the extraordinary work spearheaded by Governor Ritter, policymakers, energy companies and environmentalists to sharply reduce air pollutants in Colorado by replacing older coal-fired power plants with facilities fueled by natural gas and other lower-emitting energy sources. This plan will not only improve Colorado’s environment, create jobs and boost the economy, but it will also serve as a model for other states and for our country.”

“Natural gas already plays a key role in Colorado’s clean-energy economy, serving as a low-carbon source of base-load electricity generation and supporting use of wind and solar. According to an IHS Global Insight study, natural gas supports 137,000 Colorado jobs and $18.3 billion in annual contributions to the state’s economy. Colorado has the third-largest reserves of natural gas and is the seventh-largest producer of natural gas in the nation.

“Natural gas is twice as clean as coal and abundant right here in America, where we have enough domestic supplies to power our nation for generations. This forward-thinking public-private collaboration makes clear that there are viable, commercial and meaningful clean-energy solutions that can be achieved very quickly, while also supporting economic growth.

“This is an historic decision for the state of Colorado and hopefully a new way of thinking for the rest of our nation.”

I added the emphasis, highlighting a transition that could happen in the Rust Belt. One of the problems facing the natural gas industry is a lack of demand to eat up all the new supply coming on line. A new generation of gas-fired electricity production would go a long way to enhancing the viability of drilling in Pennsylvania and support the emerging energy economy.

The information keeps streaming across my desktop and is overwhelming (and fascinating). Pittsburgh is on the cusp of becoming the Houston of the Northeast and the Midwest. If I'm Erie, I start thinking about this landscape change and how I can plug into it.

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