Reports on Energy

The reports below represent a sample of Frontier Group’s work on Energy. For more of our reports on this and related topics, please visit Full archive coming soon.

Ohio's Clean Energy Report Card, Year 2: Wind, Solar, and Energy Efficiency on the Rise

Since Ohio's Clean Energy Law was adopted in 2008, the state has made rapid progress at developing wind, solar and energy efficiency. 2010 saw significant progress, as utilities moved ahead with major renewable energy projects and expanded their energy efficiency programs. Still, several utilities fell short of their goals, leaving significant room for improvement in future years.

(March 2012)
Benefits of the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative: How Cutting Pollution Protects New Jersey's Environment, Strenthens the Economy, and Reduces Energy Costs

In 2005, New Jersey joined nine other Northeastern states in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI), a program designed to clean up global warming pollution from the region's power plants while fueling the transition to a clean energy economy. RGGI has helped launch clean energy projects in New Jersey that are cutting pollution, benefiting energy consumers and creating new economic opportunities. This report outlines the even greater benefits New Jersey can achieve by remaining in the program and working with other Northeastern states to strengthen RGGI in the years ahead

(February 2012)
California's Solar Cities 2012: Leaders in the Race Toward a Clean Energy Future

California’s solar market is thriving. Ten years ago, solar panels atop roofs were a rarity. Today, solar is taking hold in cities across the state, from coastal metropolises to agricultural and industrial hubs in the Central Valley. This report provides a snapshot of the development of California’s solar market partway through the year 2011, quantifying the amount of solar power installed by city and recommending further steps toward a clean energy future

(January 2012)
Too Close To Home: Nuclear Power and the Threat to Drinking Water

Nuclear power plants can threaten drinking water supplies through leaks or accidents. The Fukushima disaster, for instance, led to public health warnings about drinking water sources as much as 130 miles away. "Too Close to Home" examines the proximity of nuclear power plants and drinking water in the United States, where 49 million people receive their drinking water from systems with intakes within 50 miles of a nuclear plant.

(January 2012)
America's Emerging Clean Energy Capital: How Houston Can Lead the Nation to a New Energy Future


In recent years, Houston has emerged as a nationwide leader in expanding its production and use of clean energy. The City of Houston has adopted strong, energy-saving building codes, ramped up purchases of renewable energy, and begun laying the groundwork for widespread adoption of electric cars – all steps that have jump-started the area’s transition toward a clean energy economy. However, Houston still has a great deal of untapped potential to save energy and avoid pollution. This report illustrates how Houston can build on its current momentum through a number of clean energy technologies, including net-zero energy home construction, rooftop solar installations and electric vehicles (EVs).

(November 2011)
Building a Brighter Future: California’s Progress Toward a Million Solar Roofs

In early November 2011, California passed the major milestone of installing more than 1,000 megawatts of rooftop solar power capacity -- more than all but five nations in the world. This success is the result of an innovative policy effort, launched in 2007, to make solar technology accessible to everyday Californians. As 2011 winds down, we are approaching the halfway point of this policy initiative. In Building a Solar Future, we take a closer look at the progress the program has achieved.

(November 2011)
A Smart Solution: EmPOWER Maryland Is Saving Energy, Saving Money, and Boosting Our Economy

Maryland electricity consumers are beginning to reap the benefits of the state’s ambitious efforts to improve energy efficiency and measures to cut peak demand. Consumers are saving money and avoiding paying for expensive new infrastructure projects, while employers have been able to increase their competitiveness and hire new staff. A Smart Solution documents these benefits, and makes recommendations on how to further strengthen efficiency measures so that the state achieves the goals of EmPOWER Maryland.

(October 2011)
Grand Canyon at Risk: Uranium Mining Doesn't Belong Near Our National Treasures

Uranium mining is an industry with a bad track record. At sites ranging from a giant tailings pile next to the Colorado River near Moab, Utah, to old mines near the Grand Canyon, the industry has left radioactive contamination behind it. Opening land near the Grand Canyon to uranium exploration would threaten one of our most valuable national places, and imperil the drinking water of 25 million downstream residents.

(August 2011)
Getting Off Oil: A 50-State Roadmap for Curbing Our Dependence on Petroleum

America's dependence on oil inflicts a heavy toll on our environment - harming our air, water and land. And with oil companies now having to go to greater lengths – and take greater risks – to satisfy the world’s demand for oil, the environmental impact of oil consumption will only increase in the years to come. Getting Off Oil describes how the United States can use a combination of local, state and federal policies to curb our consumption of oil for energy by 31 percent by 2030.

(August 2011)
Building a Clean Energy Workforce: Preparing Californians for New Opportunities in the State's Green Economy

California has taken strong action to promote cleaner cars, increase the amount of power it receives from renewable sources, and reduce emissions of global warming pollutants from throughout its economy. These policies have put California on a path toward cleaner air and improved public health, but fully achieving all potential environmental benefits will require the day-to-day work of tens of thousands of people trained in designing, implementing and repairing green technologies. Building a Clean Energy Workforce reviews the depth of green job training programs in the state and how they provide unique points of entry for California workers into the clean energy economy.

(July 2011)
A Program that Works: How the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative Is Helping the Northeast Shift to Clean Energy and Reduce Pollution from Fossil Fuels

Ten northeastern states created the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) as a tool to cut global warming pollution and reduce dependence on fossil fuels. In its two years of operation, it has succeeded in promoting clean energy development and demonstrated that a market for global warming pollution allowances can function smoothly. It needs a lower cap on pollution to deliver the cuts in global warming pollution the region needs.

(June 2011)
In the Shadow of the Marcellus Boom: How Shale Gas Extraction Puts Vulnerable Pennsylvanians at Risk

From Pittsburgh to Scranton, gas companies have already drilled more than 3,000 hydraulic fracturing wells, and the state has issued permits for thousands more. Permitted well sites exist within two miles of more than 320 day care facilities, 67 schools and nine hospitals statewide.

(May 2011)
The Way Forward on Global Warming: Reducing Carbon Pollution Today and Restoring Momentum for Tomorrow by Promoting Clean Energy

Humanity is running out of time to stop the most dangerous impacts of global warming. But there is still hope. The Way Forward on Global Warming provides a substantive and strategic roadmap for rejuvenating the climate protection movement and achieving concrete reductions in global warming pollution through the pursuit of clean energy policies, mainly at the local and state levels.

(April 2011)
Saving Energy, Growing Jobs: Illinois' Energy Efficiency Industry

Energy efficiency protects Illinois' environment, saves consumers money, and reduces dependence on fossil fuels. It is also sparking the growth of new industries that are potent job creators. Saving Energy, Growing Jobs surveys Illinois' "energy efficiency industry," highlighting the hundreds of companies statewide that are working to put Illinois on track to a cleaner, more energy efficient economy.

(April 2011)
Unacceptable Risk: Two Decades of "Close Calls," Leaks and Other Problems at U.S. Nuclear Reactors

As the eyes of the world have focused on the nuclear crisis in Fukushima, Japan, Americans have begun to raise questions about the safety of nuclear power plants in the United States. American nuclear power plants are not immune to the types of natural disasters, mechanical failures, human errors, and losses of critical electric power supplies that have characterized major nuclear accidents such as the one at Fukushima Daiichi power plant in Japan. Indeed, at several points over the last 20 years, American nuclear power plants have experienced “close calls” that could have led to damage to the reactor core and the subsequent release of large amounts of radiation.

(March 2011)