As the editor of MIT Technology Review, I spend much of my time thinking about the types of stories and journalism that will be most valuable to our readers. What do curious, well-informed readers need to know about emerging technologies? As a writer, I am particularly interested these days in the intersection of chemistry, materials science, energy, manufacturing, and economics.
Every clean-tech startup these days claims to have a breakthrough that will finally make renewable and clean energy sources cheap enough to compete with fossil fuels. But are we really on the brink of a clean-energy economy?
A year and a half after the federal stimulus bill budgeted $80 billion for new energy technologies, the investment is providing much-needed momentum for clean tech. But what will happen when the money runs out?
Over the last several years, vast amounts of natural gas have been found in the Marcellus shale that lies underneath vast areas of western New York, western and northern Pennsylvania, and parts of Ohio and West Virginia. If geologists are right, the Marcellus shale could be the world’s second-largest natural-gas field in the world. The natural gas is held tightly trapped in the shale, but advanced drilling techniques have made it economical to drill for the gas. Much of the activity is centered in the counties south of Pittsburgh.