Studies that do examine it find that venting methane directly into the atmosphere is drastically more dangerous than burning carbon dioxide, negating the supposed benefits of natural gas over coal.
The Palo Alto Green Energy Initiative (PAGEI) kicked off its petition drive in front of City Hall on Sept. 25, calling for an initiative on the November 2011 ballot for the rededication of 10 acres of Byxbee Park for a composting operation. The initiative supports the construction of a composting operation, or anaerobic digestion facility, on 10 of the 127 acres scheduled to be turned into parkland when the Byxbee Park landfill closes in 2012–but it is facing some community opposition.
The six grants, which total $1.8 million, are set to fund projects on energy storage, fuel and solar cells, geothermal system modeling, water oxidation and carbon dioxide reduction.
The future of energy policy remains in flux.