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Tag: Economy

The Newest Dirty Word: NIMBY

The Newest Dirty Word: NIMBY

George Carlin was made famous for his 7 Dirty Words.  But when it comes to meeting our electricity demands of the 21st century, we can add another word whose utterance should cause shock and outrage to the general public: NIMBY. NIMBY (“Not in My Backyard”) is the genesis for much of the opposition to various endeavors that would serve the…

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The Return of Manufacturing to the US

The Return of Manufacturing to the US

Is it possible that manufacturing may leave China and return to the US?  This may be wishful thinking, but there are signs that we may be moving down that path.  Consider the following from an AP article that appeared on many news outlets recently: Labor costs in China are increasing 15% per year since 2008.  Workers are demanding better wages…

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Filling in the Gaps in Lighting Solutions

Filling in the Gaps in Lighting Solutions

Today many concerned building owners, lighting designers and some regulators are increasing their efforts and attention on free, natural light.  Unfortunately, while it is certainly very energy efficient, it is not reliable.  Like all renewable resources it is subject to periods of unavailability, not just at night but also during the day.  Natural variation in the intensity of sunlight can be a challenge. …

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The End of the China Price?

The End of the China Price?

For the better part of the last decade, the notion of the “China price” has been central to understanding trends in global trade flows and the accumulation of a vast Chinese trade surplus. The “China price” flowed from the dramatically lower cost of producing labor intensive goods in the Middle Kingdom relative to the developed world thanks to the presumed…

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Economic Growth Surges in Q4, but Beware…

Economic Growth Surges in Q4, but Beware…

The Commerce Department reported that real GDP expanded at a 5.7% annualized rate in the final three months of last year, its second straight quarterly expansion. A strong increase in exports and a further moderation in inventory liquidation were the largest contributors to the increase. This is good news to be sure, but as the Washington Post cautions in this…

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Energy Saving Motor Control

Energy Saving Motor Control

As we all try to save energy, one of the most effective routes is through more efficient use of motors.  This is so important because motors are everywhere – household appliances from cleaning to kitchen, domestic/commercial/industrial fans and pumps, and especially in electric vehicles, among many applications.  They are so ubiquitous that a business "Public Service of New Hampshire – The…

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A Doozy of a New Year

A Doozy of a New Year

I sure hope the holidays were restful for our nation’s lawmakers, because the second session of the 111th Congress is shaping up to be a doozy.  First, we have health care reform – the House and Senate approved their respective bills in the waning days of 2009, and the process wasn’t pretty. Now Congress and the Obama Administration have the…

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Time for a New Economy Built Around Innovation

Time for a New Economy Built Around Innovation

This is typically the time of year — when Americans have that shop-till-you-drop mentality — that we hear about whether U.S. retailers will see red or black in their Christmas stockings. Such news, we're told, is important for a country whose economy, over the past two decades, has been driven by consumer spending.  But an interesting column in the WaPo opinion section…

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Bad News on Jobs

Bad News on Jobs

Even as numerous indicators suggest that the economy is emerging from recession, one of the most important of all continues to worsen. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today that the unemployment rate rose to 10.2% in October (subscription required), its highest since April 1983. Statistics like this don’t augur well for optimistic predictions of a snappy V-shaped recovery. Hoping for…

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Touting "No Layoff" Companies

Touting "No Layoff" Companies

Economic times are tough for all U.S. manufacturers, and many have had to lay off employees.  But some advanced manufacturing facilities have opted not to fire anyone, event if it means switching their roles until production picks back up. You can count NEMA members among the companies that are keeping their workforces intact.  In a radio segment today, NPR highlighted two…

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