Archive for May, 2013

During a brief speech at the White House on May 31, President Barack Obama, surrounded by college students, remarked on the state of student debt and noted how education loans have a significant impact on lifestyle choices, and ultimately, the economy. The speech was part of an effort to urge Congress to prevent subsidized student loan interest rates from doubling this summer.
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The Manufacturing Institute, an affiliate of the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM), has unveiled a charter set of schools that are teaching their students industry-validated manufacturing skills under the organization’s Manufacturing Skills Certification System.
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Credit: IMB.


bubble_burstConcerns about the impact of carbon emissions are beginning to bleed onto the balance sheets of energy companies, even in this country where strategic engagement on the issue has consistently lagged the rest of the world.

According to the International Energy Agency (IEA) in its 2012 World Energy Outlook, “No more than one-third of proven reserves of fossil fuels can be consumed prior to 2050 if the world is to achieve the 2-degree C goal, unless carbon capture and storage (CCS) technology is widely deployed.” Read more


The path to a STEM career is not the same for every student. While some excel in their coursework, others change majors during their college careers because they are not prepared to work in their chosen field. To help alleviate this problem and increase retention of computer science and engineering undergraduates in the U.S., the National Science Foundation (NSF), in partnership with Intel and GE, has awarded nine institutions with grants that will be used to enhance and support student preparation through graduation.
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While the global economy continues to lag, Wall Street pundits have expended a lot of energy adoring the economy’s bright spots: Web services, wireless, and petrochemicals, for starters. According to a new report from Boston Consulting Group (BCG), however, the chemicals industry has held up surprisingly well through the economic slowdown. Read more


carbontaxExpectations for European carbon prices through 2020 have fallen 47 percent since last year, Bloomberg reported recently. For those that think Europe needs sternly-enforced carbon emission reductions to stave off catastrophic global warming, that’s not good.

Other reports note that as of the end of May, European Union carbon permits “rose to their highest level in almost three weeks as lawmakers reconsidered a plan to temporarily curb supply in the market that they failed to endorse last month.”

Of course that “highest level” is $4.85 a metric ton on the ICE Futures Europe exchange in London, up from “all-time lows” in April. Experts say the price needs to be close to $38 for the exchange to survive. Read more

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