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By Robert Rapier on Dec 10, 2009 with no responses

Brainstorming the Year’s Top Energy Stories

I am working on a few things right now that should be finished up in the next week or so. First, I am compiling a list of questions/comments for Bob Cohen regarding his recent guest post on ocean thermal energy conversion (OTEC). I will post his answers. If you have a relevant question that you feel wasn’t asked following that essay, post it here and I will get it to him.

Second, I am trying to put together the year’s top energy stories. In my mind the one at or near the top has been the resurgence in oil prices since January. Oil prices have more than doubled, and in a normal year that would be big news. But I think the news has been discounted merely because the levels are so much lower than the record levels of 2008. After that, there are a few stories that I think go in the Top 10, like the enormous amount of money devoted to energy in the stimulus package, the plunge in oil demand/imports, the commissioning of various alternative energy projects, Climategate, and the passage of Markey-Waxman. What other significant stories happened this year that deserve a spot in the Top 10?

Third, I have been really overwhelmed with e-mails lately. If I didn’t answer your e-mail in a timely manner, I apologize. If I missed it completely and you really need an answer, please resend. Sometimes things inadvertently end up in my spam folder. But I have gotten a couple of e-mails recently from people wishing to share links on energy saving tips, and so here those are:

20 Under $5 Tips to Improve Your Cars Gas Mileage

One of their tips:

Too much junk in the trunk – It’s a known fact that excess weight in your car caused the engine to work even harder. Being that said, having too much junk in the trunk, of your car, that is, can significantly affect the way your car utilizes gas. Please leave the unwanted items at home before starting your driving journey. Just think of all the junk you can accumulate in your car and how all those items can start to add up.

And:

8 Painless Ways To Cut Your Electric Bill This Winter

One of their tips:

Strip : According to the experts at Lowe’s, a 1/8″ space between a standard exterior door and its threshold is equivalent to a two square inch hole in the wall. Closing those gaps can save you up to 15% in heating costs and reduce the demand on your heating system. They also offer a guide on how to accomplish this at the beginner level. Only three tools, three materials, and a day is all it requires to weatherstrip your entire home.

Finally, thanks to all who read and contribute here. I probably don’t say that enough, but this blog continues because of you. I initially started it just as an outlet for myself, unsure of whether it would attract any readers. But I enjoy writing, and would have still probably written a dozen or so essays even if nobody ever stopped by. Based on current trends, 2010 should bring in the 1 millionth visit (page views are already at 1.2 million views) and I should publish essay number 1,000.