With the announcement from Vatican City that Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio has been elected the 266th pope of the Roman Catholic Church, a whole bevy of analysis has begun on the newly elected pontiff including his chosen name: Pope Francis. When I heard this, I immediately wondered, is Pope Francis the new “green” Pope?
For folks not following Catholicism, it may have been easy to overlook the green credentials of Pope Francis’ predecessor, Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI. In 2007, Vatican City became the first carbon neutral country in the world under Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI. As part of that decision, a forest was planted to absorb as much carbon dioxide as the Vatican emits annually. Just a year later, over 2,400 solar panels were installed on the Vatican’s papal audience hall. In 2010, the Vatican decided to expand its solar program to 100 megawatts – decidedly making Vatican City the greenest country on the planet. Other green credentials of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI include a publication by the Papal Academy of Sciences noting the dire effects of climate change on glaciers, an entire sermon for the celebration of the World Day of Peace in 2010 titled “If you want to cultivate peace, protect creation,” and last but not least, evaluating an all-electric, solar-powered Popemobile.
A new report from the Arise Citizens’ Policy Project released March 1, “Public Utility Regulation Without the Public: The Alabama Public Service Commission and Alabama Power” [PDF] details ways Alabama’s utility regulatory system leaves customers paying some of the highest bills in the country and Alabama Power profiting far more than other utilities nationwide. According [...]
February, Black History Month, is known for the remembrance of important people and events in the history of the African diaspora. As such, it is the perfect month to convene health care professionals and environmentalists to discuss public health disparities from pollution in low income and communities of color. On February 1, SACE, the Atlanta Black Nurses [...]
A decade ago this Sunday, our country was irrevocably changed. We have seen the impacts of this tragic day on a number of fronts, but perhaps the most overlooked impression is to our national energy security infrastructure. The catastrophic repercussions of events, which stemmed from the tragedies of September 11th, resonate through our collective conscious and have dramatically shifted the way we operate as a nation.
This blog is a repost from Facing South: The Online Magazine for the Institute for Southern Studies. Find the original blog post by Sue Sturgis here. There’s broad agreement among scientists nowadays that global warming is real and caused in large part by human activities like burning fossil fuels and cutting down forests. For example, [...]
It has been a great disappointment but not a surprise to watch the veil of utility regulation pulled back in Florida. The Florida Public Service Commission is the state agency entrusted with regulating Florida’s largest electric utilities. This responsibility requires that they balance the desire of the regulated utilities to maximize their shareholders profit with [...]
The debate for opening up waters to offshore drilling within 10 miles of the Florida coast continues in full fervor. In fact, it is likely that the Florida State Legislature will consider this issue again during a special session next month. You might recall that Florida’s leadership failed to pass a Renewable Portfolio Standard this [...]
Senator Alexander’s recently unveiled “Blueprint for 100 Nuclear Power Plants in 20 years” will neither reduce energy costs nor provide clean energy. The “Blueprint” is part of the GOP’s four-step plan to provide “low-cost clean energy” that completely ignores energy conservation and efficiency. (Even though FERC Chairman Jon Wellinghof recently stated we may not need [...]
It’s been a whirlwind of a year since I accepted the position as SACE’s Tennessee Valley Energy Policy Associate here in Knoxville. So much has happened, both good and bad, that it was difficult to keep up. All in all, however, I’m pleased to report that we’ve taken some significant steps towards achieving the clean-energy [...]
In the run up to the U.S. House of Rpresentatives vote on the American Clean Energy and Security Act (ACES) in June, we asked our supporters and allies to call their members of Congress and urge them to support America’s clean energy future and vote “yes.” We heard from several folks across the Southeast who [...]