Monday, August 23, 2010
ORNL in the News

Grand opening set for Pellissippi Place

(Knoxville News Sentinel) More than four years after Knoxville-area officials announced plans to build Pellissippi Place, a grand opening will be held this month for the mixed-use technology park under construction in Alcoa.  A "lighting ceremony" is scheduled for 7 p.m. Aug. 30 at the park's main entrance near the intersection of Pellissippi Parkway and Highway 33....The 450-acre project is part of the Innovation Valley Initiative, a regional marketing campaign that also includes Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Science and Tech park and the Cherokee Campus at the University of Tennessee...8/21

ORNL contributes to Knox's new transit center

(Knoxville News Sentinel) There was a big to-do earlier this month with the opening of the new $29 million transit center in downtown Knoxville (known as Knoxville Station), and Oak Ridge National Laboratory played a role with the shiny new, high-tech and energy-efficient bus depot...8/22

DOE

Energy Department defends use of stimulus dollars

(E2 Wire) The Energy Department official overseeing the agency’s distribution of billions of dollars in stimulus funding on Friday struck back at critics who say DOE is moving too slowly.  Matt Rogers — who advises Energy Secretary Steven Chu on stimulus spending — took to DOE’s blog Friday afternoon to make the case that stimulus funding has created tens of thousands of jobs...8/20

State & Regional

Tennessee named ‘State of the Year’ by business publication

(Maryville Daily Times) Tennessee was named State of the Year in the latest edition of Business Facilities magazine. The Knoxville-Oak Ridge Innovation Valley was highlighted for contributing to Tennessee's ranking and Knoxville, in its own right, was ranked among the top ten metros for economic growth potential...8/21

Tennessee works to raise its college graduation rates

(WBIR) Waves of bright-eyed freshmen are arriving on campuses around the state this week to find a safety net waiting to make sure they stay there until they graduate...8/23

National

Proliferation of old-style coal plants increases despite public outcry

(Washington Post) [Registration Required] Utilities across the country are building dozens of old-style coal plants that will cement the industry's standing as the largest industrial source of climate-changing gases for years to come...8/23

Federal regulators' knowledge of egg producer in salmonella outbreak is probed

(Washington Post) [Registration Required] A key member of Congress plans to send a letter to federal regulators Monday seeking a detailed explanation of what they knew about the activities of an Iowa egg producer at the center of a salmonella outbreak and massive egg recall...8/23

Post-Mortgage Meltdown, Where Do We Go Now?

(NPR) For more than 20 years, the mantra in Washington has been "more, not less" when it comes to Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and the expansion of homeownership.  But in light of the financial crisis and Fannie and Freddie's near-collapse, policy leaders are also rethinking the government's role — and many Americans are starting to question whether homeownership is the only path to the American Dream...8/21

energy & science policy

DoE finalizing ethanol import rules

(Business World) THE DEPARTMENT of Energy (DoE) is finalizing ethanol import guidelines preparatory to raising the percentage of fuel mix next year amid a projected local production shortfall. Energy Secretary Jose Rene D. Almendras told reporters on Friday that discussions center on ethanol importation to meet the 10% ethanol blend by 2011 under Republic Act (RA) 9367 or the Biofuels Law implemented in 2007...8/20

Department of Energy Extends Renewable Energy Loan Guarantee Solicitation

(DOE Press Release) Secretary Steven Chu announced today that the Department of Energy is extending the application deadline for the July 2009 energy efficiency, renewable energy and advanced transmission and distribution technologies solicitation. The Round 8, Part 1 application deadline is October 5, 2010. This gives companies an additional six weeks to apply for a loan guarantee under Section 1703, and if qualified, under Section 1705, provided by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act...8/20

Inside Energy Extra

8/23 A daily report on U.S. energy policy
[ORNL users only]

[Inside this issue]

  • Allen sees changes in oil-spill oversight
  • BLM to decide on 1000 MW solar farm
  • Gas producers reach royalty settlement

science & technology

Giant "Terror Birds" Used Their Heads Like Hatchets

(National Geographic) Phorusrhacids have been extinct for millions of years, yet the so-called terror birds just got a bit more frightening. The flightless birds stood up to ten feet (three meters) tall and had hook-beaked heads the size of horse heads. Now a new study has apparently deciphered how the birds used those fearsome skulls—employing a fighting style like that of legendary boxer Muhammad Ali...8/29

Early Jupiter Feasted on Super-Earths

(Discovery News) Jupiter sits today as the solar system's king planet, but it has a troubled past. In a new study, scientists say baby Jupiter was so strongly bashed by giant Earths that it lost part of its core. That would explain why Jupiter's core is disproportionately smaller today than sibling planet Saturn, says astronomer Douglas Lin, with the University of California in Santa Cruz...8/20

Other Stories

Death of the 'McMansion': Era of Huge Homes Is Over

(CNBC) In the past few years, there have been an increasing number of references made to the “McMansion glut” and the “McMansion backlash,”as more towns pass ordinances against garishly large homes, which are generally over 3,000 square feet and built very close together...8/19