Department Of Energy

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Inspired By Game Of Thrones, TEPCO Resumes Building "Ice Wall" Around Fukushima

14 Months after abandoning the "Game of Thrones"-esque frozen-water-wall containment plan for Fukushima, Bloomberg reports that TEPCO expects to begin freezing a soil barrier by the end of the year to stop a torrent of water entering the wrecked Fukushima nuclear facility, moving a step closer to fulfilling a promise the Japanese government made to the international community more than two years ago. Officials noted, rather uninspiringly, the frozen wall, along with other measures, "should be able to resolve the contaminated water issues before the Olympic games."

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Frontrunning: October 12

  • Central Bankers Urge Fed to Get On With Interest-Rate Increase (WSJ)
  • Bond Market Casualties Leading Biggest S&P 500 Revival Since '11 (BBG)... on hopes of more easing
  • U.S. Patrols to Test China’s Pledge on South China Sea Islands (WSJ)
  • Merkel Under Fire: German Conservatives Deeply Split over Refugees (Spiegel)
  • Assault Weapons Ban Before U.S. Supreme Court (NBC)
  • Hedge Funds Are Playing 'Dangerous Game' With Copper (BBG)
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Is The U.S. About To Break One Of Its Own Nuclear Treaties?

Bill Richardson could teach Donald Trump something about the art of the deal. He has done a lot of them. At present Richardson sees one of his deals in jeopardy, and he was in Washington last week to raise the alarm, meeting privately with former colleagues and appearing at a press conference at the National Press Club. The deal in jeopardy involves a commitment he made, when he was secretary of Energy in the Clinton administration, with the Russians to dispose of weapons-grade plutonium, the long-lived ingredient in nuclear weapons.

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The Worst Nuclear Disaster In US History That You’ve Never Heard About

The United States government deliberately hid “the worst nuclear disaster in U.S. history,” according to experts and an in-depth investigation by NBC4 Southern California. Whistleblowers have also come forward to expose the little-known catastrophe, which occurred north of Los Angeles in 1959 and leaked over 300 times the allowable amount of radiation into surrounding neighborhoods. That contamination is now linked to up to a 60% increase in cancer in the area, but the government still refuses to acknowledge its colossal mistake.

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This Is Why Americans Will Pay More For Gasoline If U.S Export Ban Is Lifted

They say that the first casualty of war is truth. And, on both sides of the fight over lifting the ban on exports of U.S. crude oil, the truth has already fallen into a coma. The ban was instituted in 1975 in order to make America less subject to swings in international oil supply after suffering the price shock associated with the Arab oil embargo in 1973. Last week a committee in the U.S. House of Representatives voted to end the ban after a Senate committee voted in July to do the same. A vote by the full House and Senate could be near.




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"Far Worse Than 1986": The Oil Downturn Has No Parallel In Recorded History, Morgan Stanley Says

The forward curve currently points towards a recovery in prices that is far worse than in 1986. As there was no sharp downturn in the ~15 years before that, the current downturn could be the worst of the last 45+ years. If this were to be the case, there would be nothing in our experience that would be a guide to the next phases of this cycle, especially over the relatively near term. In fact, there may be nothing in analysable history.

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Frontrunning: July 21

  • Gold claws back ground, European assets lose Greek tarnish (Reuters)
  • Greece's Euro Exit Back on the Agenda Next Year, Economists Say (BBG)
  • Greece submits bill needed to start rescue talks (Reuters)
  • Wall Street Lenders Growing Impatient With U.S. Shale Revolution (BBG)
  • Overtime Rules Send Bosses Scrambling (WSJ)
  • As Markets Swing, Beijing Steadies Yuan (WSJ)
  • Tennessee rampage suspect went to Qatar in 2014 (Reuters)
  • Kathryn Dominguez to Be Nominated for Fed Governor (WSJ)
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Frontrunning: July 16

  • Greece licks wounds after bailout vote, ECB move expected (Reuters)
  • Lose-Lose: Pushing Greece Out of Euro Is Costlier Than Write-Off (BBG)
  • EMU brutality in Greece has destroyed the trust of Europe's Left (Telegraph)
  • Schaeuble Shrugs Off Greek Vote Saying Euro Exit Is Best (BBG)
  • Merkel’s tough tactics prompt criticism in Germany and abroad (FT)
  • Investors Get Caught in Oil’s Slippery Wake (WSJ)
  • Obama Girds for Battle With Congress on Iran Deal (WSJ)
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How Much Money Can You Really Save With A Smart Home?

It has become conventional wisdom that the wave of the future is “smart home” technology from smart utility meters that read a houses energy usage automatically to smart lights that turn off when not in use. Smart home technology marries two of the most talked about trends in business right now – the internet of things and green technology. How useful are smart home devices really though? A recent report by the British government suggests that the smart home revolution may be starting to hit some bumps in the road.

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Latest $269 Million DOE Loan Causes Major Controversy

No doubt smarting from criticism about its lack of success in picking winners in alternative energy vehicles, the Department of Energy has given initial approval for a $269 million loan to a proven winner – Alcoa’s high-strength aluminum to make vehicles lighter and more fuel efficient. But the new loan came under immediate fire for being superfluous since Alcoa was proceeding with the plant with or without DOE assistance.

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The EMP Threat: Sending America Back To The 1800s

Previously, Elliott Management's Paul Singer has explained that he believes "there is one risk that stands way above the rest in terms of the scope of potential damage adjusted for the likelihood of occurrence" - an electromagnetic pulse (EMP). Today we dig deeper into that risk... Why are we writing about EMP? Because in any analysis of societal risk, EMP stands all by itself.

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Here Comes Solyndra 2.0: Obama To Hire 75,000 Solar Workers

What could possibly go wrong? Clearly having not learned their lesson from 'interfering' in free markets (and all the deflation-creating over-supplying, crony-capitalizing, taxpayer money-wasting malinvestment that goes with it), NBC News reports, The White House has announced a goal to train 75,000 workers in the solar industry by 2020, many of them veterans. In a sentence only President Obama could utter, he explains "these are good-paying jobs that are helping folks enter the middle-class." Climate 'fixed', folks 'fixed', veterans 'fixed' middle-class-economics 'fixed'... and we are sure it will be unequivocally good for America (until trade wars pick up once again).

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Steve Jobs Held Billions Of Dollars Offshore. Was He "Unpatriotic"?

At the end of September 2011, just days before his passing, the company that Steve Jobs founded had a $25 billion cash hoard. Nearly half of this was stashed overseas. His personal share of the untaxed offshore booty was obviously substantial. Did this make him ‘unpatriotic’?

Was the guy who revolutionized five industries and touched the lives of billions of people some nefarious traitor because he held so much money offshore? Of course not.

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