Daily Roundup: July 7, 2009
Emission Remission: U.S. power plants' sulfur dioxide emissions, for the first half of 2009, have fallen 24 percent from last year. This is a much greater decline than energy analysts had predicted, even taking into account the recession and lowered electricity demand. ENN
Hold That Climate Bill! Current climate policies are not working well enough, says an international group of economists and scientists. Instead of focusing on cutting overall emissions, the group says, we should improve energy efficiency and research non-carbon-emitting energy sources. BBC News
Rice Into Concrete: Texas-based researchers have developed a nearly carbon-free way to make cement from the husks of edible rice plants. Regular cement production accounts for 5 percent of all human-related carbon dioxide emissions. MSNBC
Pet Frogs, Not Pesticides: In Argentina, where more than 20,000 cases of the mosquito-borne dengue fever have been logged this year, an official is recommending adopting frogs as pets over spraying pesticides. Frogs consume more than 15,000 insects per season, he says, while "aerotoxins" intended to kill the mosquitoes will likely do more harm than good. National Geographic
Winds of Change: Though rural electricity cooperatives are often exempt from renewable-electricity mandates, many are still adopting wind power. In places like Taos, New Mexico, this is thanks to consumer demand, while other utilities are responding to rising fuel prices. Green Inc.