Author Archive: Sandy Buchanan

Executive Director Sandy Buchanan has worked on a variety of energy issues involving coal, nuclear, utilities, renewables, and energy efficiency since the 1980s. She served as executive director of Ohio Citizen Action for 20 years before joining IEEFA in 2013.

The Global Energy Transition Continues

The Global Energy Transition Continues

2015 Has Been a Watershed Year; 2016 Will Bring More Change

This has been a remarkable year in energy markets across the U.S. and around the world. Change has unfolded fast, and dramatically. The coal industry is in deep structural decline in 2015, oil and gas prices have plunged, the cost of renewable energy has dropped, and China and India—the most populous countries in the world—are […]

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A Double ‘New Normal’ Hobbles the Natural Gas Industry: Low Prices and Public Opposition to More Pipelines

A Double ‘New Normal’ Hobbles the Natural Gas Industry: Low Prices and Public Opposition to More Pipelines

The Economics of Expansion Don't Necessarily Spell Success

The U.S. natural gas industry is facing a daunting set of “new normals” that in combination are presenting significant obstacles for infrastructure expansion. These shifting dynamics, well documented in a new report by the global engineering firm Black & Veatch, are on especially sharp display today in New England, where several controversial new natural gas pipelines […]

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Accountability in Coal Country: The World Is Watching the Don Blankenship Trial

A Notorious CEO’s Legacy Is Well Established Already. The Question Now Is Whether Justice Will Be Served.

Something momentous is going on in the heart of coal country today: The once-mighty CEO of Massey Energy is on trial for violating mine safety laws, for covering up those violations, and for lying to the Securities and Exchange Commission in the lead-up to the worst mining disaster in the U.S. in 40 years. Twenty-nine […]

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FirstEnergy Continues Its Fear-Mongering Ways

‘Attempting to Scare Ohioans’ is a Tried and True Strategy for a Utility Seeking a $3 Billion Bailout

Andre Porter, the new chair of the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio, made headlines a couple of weeks ago when he said utilities have got to “stop attempting to scare Ohioans.” Porter’s admonition was noted by Columbus Business First reporter Tom Knox in response to an op-ed in the Plain Dealer by FirstEnergy CEO Chuck […]

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Prairie State, Sold as a Clean Coal Plant, Wants a Pass on New EPA Rules

Prairie State, Sold as a Clean Coal Plant, Wants a Pass on New EPA Rules

A Disingenuous Plea to Spare a Failing Project

The president of Prairie State Generating Co. has asked the Environmental Protection Agency to exempt the coal-fired Prairie State Energy Campus in southern Illinois from new pollution-control rules. In a May 11 letter to the EPA, Prairie State’s chief executive, Don Gaston, writes that the controversial plant cannot survive if—under new regulations aimed at curbing […]

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Traditional Owners of Galilee Basin Urge Wall Street Not to Finance Adani’s Australian Coal Scheme

Traditional Owners of Galilee Basin Urge Wall Street Not to Finance Adani’s Australian Coal Scheme

More Reputational Risk to Investors Who Would Support the Carmichael Project

Hoping to block Adani’s proposed coal project in Queensland, two representatives of the Wangan and Jagalingou people of northern Australia were in New York this week to discourage Wall Street from investing in the $10 billion mine. Their visit, part of a month-long round-the-world campaign, will most likely only add to the many hurdles Adani […]

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IEEFA Update: How a ‘Clean Coal’ Myth Squandered Hundreds of Millions of Taxpayer Dollars Before It Was Unmasked

FutureGen Is Now Properly Relegated to the Past

When the U.S. Department of Energy pulled the plug in February on a $1 billion subsidy to build FutureGen, a “clean coal” plant in Illinois, it put a merciful end to a twisted tale that had been unraveling for years. The coal industry peddled influence at high levels among both Democrats and Republicans to move […]

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An Ohio Wind Farm Proves the Case for a Wise Renewable-Energy Policy

An Ohio Wind Farm Proves the Case for a Wise Renewable-Energy Policy

The Evidence Is in How Much Customers Save Over Other Sources of Power Generation

Ohio, it’s fair to say, isn’t known as a leader in the transition to renewable energy. In fact, it attracted some well-earned infamy last year when it became the first state in the country to “freeze” a requirement that utilities purchase a certain amount of their energy from renewable sources like wind and solar. That […]

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The Truth About Prairie State Energy Campus (Part 3): A Crippling Burden to Its Many Towns and Cities

The Truth About Prairie State Energy Campus (Part 3): A Crippling Burden to Its Many Towns and Cities

An Ill-Conceived Power Plant Sapping the Economic Vigor of Communities Far and Wide … Imagine, if you will, the small-business pillars of a town shutting their doors suddenly because they can’t pay their bills. Households having to choose between paying their heating bills and buying groceries. Bigger businesses, universities and hospitals being forced to cut […]

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A War on the EPA Isn’t What Americans Want

When Sen. Mitch McConnell says states should refuse outright to comply with federal clean-air rules, he’s continuing a long tradition of stubborn resistance by the coal industry and its political supporters. But he’s out of step with the American people, and is doing a disservice to them by failing to lead the country—and his state—into […]

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