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Damaged Fuel Rods Removed At Fukushima Nuclear Plant

Workers at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant successfully removed some radioactive fuel from one of the damaged reactors on Monday. It's an important first step, but there's a long way to go before the situation at the plant can be said to be completely under control

First Fuel Rods Plucked From Tsunami-Damaged Fukushima Plant

Workers at the Japanese nuclear plant begin a delicate yearlong operation to remove radioactive material from the first of several crippled reactors.

Is Running Your Car On Rubbish The Future Of Fuels?

The EPA proposed a new standard on Friday for how much biofuel must be mixed into the nation's gasoline. The portion of vehicle fuel that comes from plants has increased dramatically over recent years to about 10 percent. But most of it comes from corn. Congress hoped that, by now, a billion gallons would be coming from advanced biofuels, which have much smaller greenhouse gas footprints. That hasn't happened. But the nascent cellulosic fuel industry says don't count it out. Several plants are on the verge of opening and more will be on the way.

Electric Cars Drive Demand For Cheaper, More Powerful Batteries

Unlike the technologies in laptops, smartphones and electric cars, the batteries inside them have been slow to evolve. In Silicon Valley, more than 40 companies are working on finding a battery breakthrough. And they're facing international competition.

U.S. Oil Production Surpasses Foreign Imports

The U.S. produced more crude oil than it imported in October. That's the first time that has happened since 1995. The U.S. is still a long way from energy independence, but the trend is decidedly positive.

Fracking Boom Gives U.S. Geopolitical Leverage

Steve Inskeep talks to Gregory Zuckerman, a senior writer with The Wall Street Journal, about how the fracking boom has given the U.S. power in pushing for an agreement with Iran on its nuclear weapons program. Zuckerman is the author of The Frackers: The Outrageous Inside Story of the New Billionaire Wildcatters.

Ethanol Is Center Stage In Fight Over American Fuel Tanks

Two large industries — agriculture and oil — are fighting a pitched battle over access to your car's fuel tank. Americans are buying less gasoline, but a federal law requires the country to include an increasing amount of corn-based ethanol in the country's fuel supply. Facing billions of dollars in lost sales, the oil industry wants the government to reverse course on ethanol.

As Mirrors Beam Light To Town, Norwegians Share Patch Of Sun

Rjukan lies in the shadow of surrounding mountains for nearly six months every year. But the town recently installed a system of mirrors to bring sunlight to its central square. Not everyone can bask in the glow at the same time, but the project is bringing residents together.
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Should Maryland Allow A Natural Gas Export Facility On The Chesapeake Bay?

Now that a $3.8 billion liquified natural-gas export facility has received preliminary approval near Solomon's Island, Md., some environmentalists are fighting the plan.

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This Week On Metro Connection: Wild Cards

From the environment to school lunches to a local campaign designed to get us dancing in our underwear, we'll bring you an eclectic array of stories on this week's "Wild Cards" show.