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In his 2011 State of the Union address, President Obama challenged Americans to reinvent themselves for a new economy, especially in the area of “clean-energy technology.”

Obama said the nation must confront a new “Sputnik moment,” referring to the 1957 surprise launch of a Soviet satellite into space, and to “turn sunlight and water into fuel for our cars.” He wants one million electric vehicles on the road by 2015 and 80 percent of U.S. electricity to come from clean-energy sources by 2035. He’d pay for it by cutting taxpayer subsidies to oil companies.

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Editor's Pick

Energy Dept. oversight on loans is inadequate, GAO says

The Energy Department is mismanaging oversight of $34-billion in taxpayer-backed loans for green-energy and other projects, congressional auditors said Monday in a new report.


Oil prices plunge as production rises, fueling concern in OPEC

(Hasan Jamali / AP)

OPEC members are squabbling and Russia is fretting as crude oil prices slide to a four-year low.


The logic in exporting U.S. oil

(Linda Davidson / The Washington Post)

There are benefits to letting U.S. producers sell abroad.

Just how oil rich is Scotland?

Many oil and gas experts have warned that Scotland might not be quite as well off as nationalists are claiming.


Protesters in D.C. ask for halt to gold mining in El Salvador, say it will endanger ecology

(Nikki Kahn / The Washington Post)

Protesters in D.C. seek to stop gold mining in El Salvador, saying it will destroy the environment

Where do the latest U.S. sanctions leave Russian oil?

On Tuesday, the Obama administration moved to choke off the flow of U.S. technology for Arctic and shale oil exploration in Russia, the country’s next hydrocarbon frontiers.


Will U.S. sanctions against Rosneft work?

(Andrey Rudakov / Bloomberg)

The oil company has already taken steps to shore up financing that will make it easier to withstand sanctions.


Obama administration proposes restrictions on massive Alaskan mine

The Pebble Mine project in Bristol Bay’s watershed would rank as one of the world’s largest open-pit mines.


Harry Reid’s land sale to gold mine is boon for him and opportunity for Searchlight

(Isaac Brekken / For The Washington Post)

The senator’s home in a town that loomed large in his stories brings $1.75 million in a sale.

Iraq’s biggest oil refinery is on fire. How important is that?

The Baiji refinery is the biggest supplier of motor fuel for the northern part of Iraq and accounts for about one-third of the nation’s refining capacity.


End in sight for platinum mining strike in South Africa

Representatives from South Africa's striking AMCU mining union urge leader Joseph Mathunjwa to sign a wage deal with the three major platinum firms.


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