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Thursday, Jun 30th

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Nuclear reactor at Indian Point plant in N.Y. shut down again after leak found

Indian Point reactor leakOne of two reactor units at a nuclear power plant near New York City has been taken offline for the second time in four months after leakage was found in a pipe that pumps water into the facility, officials said Friday.

Reactor Unit 2 at the Indian Point Energy Center in Buchanan, N.Y., was shut down Thursday after discovery of the malfunction. Officials said the leak was found in a non-radioactive part of the plant.

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North Dakota rig count up more than 10 percent

N Dakota rigging up ten percentNorth Dakota saw the number of rigs actively exploring for or producing oil and gas increase by more than 10 percent from last week, state data show.

Data from the state government show 28 rigs in service early Tuesday, up 16 percent from last week. The increase follows a slow march toward $50 per barrel for West Texas Intermediate, the U.S. benchmark for the price of crude oil. WTI is up about 4 percent from last week.

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ExxonMobil tried to censor climate scientists to Congress during Bush era

Exxon tried to censorscientistsExxonMobil moved to squash a well-established congressional lecture series on climate science just nine days after the presidential inauguration of George W Bush, a former oil executive, the Guardian has learned.

Exxon’s intervention on the briefings, revealed here for the first time, adds to evidence the oil company was acutely aware of the state of climate science and its implications for government policy and the energy industry – despite Exxon’s public protestations for decades about the uncertainties of global warming science.

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Portugal runs for four days straight on renewable energy alone

Portugal runs four days on renewable energyPortugal kept its lights on with renewable energy alone for four consecutive days last week in a clean energy milestone revealed by data analysis of national energy network figures.

Electricity consumption in the Iberian country was fully covered by solar, wind and hydro power in an extraordinary 107-hour run that lasted from 6.45am on Saturday 7 May until 5.45pm the following Wednesday, the analysis says.

News of the zero emissions landmark comes just days after Germany announced that clean energy had powered almost all its electricity needs on Sunday 15 May, with power prices turning negative at several times in the day – effectively paying consumers to use it.

TVNL Comment:  Why, just why, are we always behind other countries in so many things?  Just asking...

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Blast in Baghdad market kills at least 50

Baghdad blast kills at least 50A car bomb in a predominantly Shia district of the Iraqi capital has killed at least 50 people and wounded at least 100 others, police sources told Al Jazeera.

A 4WD vehicle packed with explosives blew up near a beauty salon in a bustling market at rush hour in Baghdad's Sadr City on Wednesday.

Most of the victims were women, Iraqi police and hospital sources told Reuters news agency.

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Solar plane reaches California after flight across Pacific

Solar plane crosses pacificA solar-powered airplane reached the San Francisco Bay area and performed a fly-by over the Golden Gate Bridge on Saturday afternoon following 56 hours of flight over the Pacific Ocean as part of its journey around the world.

"I crossed the bridge. I am officially in America," pilot Bertrand Piccard declared as he flew over the iconic span as spectators watched the narrow aircraft with extra wide wings from below.

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Why North Dakota (aka Boomtown, USA) is running on empty

N Dakota running on emptyIn the mid 2000s hydraulic fracturing - or fracking - coupled with soaring oil prices, made it possible to unlock billions of barrels of oil from the rocky Bakken formation, one of the largest deposits of oil and natural gas in the country.

Almost overnight, the former backwater of Williston transformed into the unofficial capital of America's energy renaissance, experiencing unprecedented economic growth.

As oil workers flocked to the region, its population exploded, salaries ballooned, fancy new buildings appeared and chain stores arrived.

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