Sailing into the Sunset

It seems as though we were just planning our Memorial Day getaways, but alas, the end of summer is nigh — and as we sail into summer’s sunset, let’s take a look at what’s occured during the past few months …

On all counts, the summer of 2012 was the hottest on record, setting new high temperature benchmarks across the country, exacerbating one of the worst wildfire seasons in history, and causing the worst drought in the United States since that of the mid 1930′s dust bowl.  In fact, the full economic consequences of this summer’s drought have not yet hit, as experts are predicting prices for grains–and in turn, prices for meat–to soar as farmers prepare for record low harvests.

It was also a cruel (cruel) summer for the globe’s usually ice-clad regions.  Climatologists are expecting a record low for Arctic sea ice this season, beating even the most aggresive warming trends and forecasts.

However, there have also been some notable highlights for the environment and renewable energy.  Installed wind power capacity in the United States surpassed 50 gigawatts, or enough to power 13 million homes.  And although it has not cleared all congressional hurdles, the Senate Finance committee included a one-year extension of the Renewable Energy Production Tax Credit (PTC) to a broad tax credit extension bill.  We already wrote about the importance of extending the PTC for the future of the domestic wind power industry and the thousands of jobs it supports.

But the fight for a greener, more vibrant, and healthier future is not over.  As the election season heats up, energy policy will continue to be a hot button issue, so we encourage you to read up on Governor Romney’s and President Obama’s respective stances on energy so that you can make the most informed decision come November 6.