CEO of wind energy giant says it would be better if US was in Paris Agreement

Source: By Amnar Frangoul, CNBC • Posted: Thursday, August 17th, 2017

“What drives the market and will drive the market up to – beyond – 2020, is the current PTC (production tax credit) structure in place in the U.S.,” he said. “That has… broad, bipartisan support, so that is what drives the market at least to (the) 2022 time frame, and we don’t expect any changes in that.”

Missouri regulators reject massive Midwest wind power line

Source: By DAVID A. LIEB, Associated Press • Posted: Thursday, August 17th, 2017

Missouri utility regulators on Wednesday rejected a proposed high-voltage power line to carry wind power across the Midwest to eastern states, delivering a significant setback to developers of one of the nation’s longest transmission lines. The decision marked the second time in a little over two years that the Missouri Public Service Commission has denied a request from Clean Line Energy Partners to build its power line through the state after a lengthy review process.

Big Oil Follows Silicon Valley Into Backing Green Energy Firms

Source: By Anna Hirtenstein, Bloomberg • Posted: Wednesday, August 16th, 2017

Major oil companies are joining Silicon Valley in backing energy-technology start-ups, a signal that that those with the deepest pockets in the industry are casting around for a new strategy. From Royal Dutch Shell Plc to Total SA and Exxon Mobil Corp., the biggest investor-owned oil companies are dribbling money into ventures probing the edge of energy technologies. The investments go beyond wind and solar power into projects that improve electricity grids and brew new fuels from renewable resources.

Pruitt slams ‘false narrative’ on climate report

Source: Nina Heikkinen, E&E News reporter • Posted: Wednesday, August 16th, 2017

U.S. EPA boss Scott Pruitt is downplaying the importance of a climate report that has sparked concerns that the Trump administration will ignore global warming data that don’t fit with its political agenda. Speaking to an Iowa TV news program Sunday, Pruitt criticized what he called a “false narrative” surrounding scientists’ fears that Pruitt and President Trump might dismiss the findings from 13 federal agencies that climate change is already clearly affecting the United States.

Wind alliance backs NY offshore

Source: By Renewable Energy News • Posted: Wednesday, August 16th, 2017

A coalition of business, environmental and community leaders has backed Governor Andrew Cuomo’s plan to make offshore wind the focus of New York’s renewable energy plan. Ahead of a series of public meetings hosted by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), the New York Offshore Wind Alliance (NYOWA) has voiced its support for developing green energy off the state’s coastline.

German Onshore Wind Power Costs Plummet in Second Auction

Source: By Brian Parkin, Bloomberg • Posted: Wednesday, August 16th, 2017

The cost electricity from the next bunch of onshore wind farms in Germany fell by a quarter in a government auction for power purchase contracts run by the regulator Bnetza. Bidders dominated by citizen groups won about 1 gigawatt of capacity at an average price of 4.28 euro cents per kilowatt-hour (5.03 U.S. cents/KWh), the Bonn-based agency said on Tuesday. That’s a reduction from the average of 5.71 cents/KWh from the first contest of its kind held in May and much lower than the average of 5.70 euro cents/KWh estimated by Bloomberg New Energy Finance for prevailing prices across the region.

Investor giant puts more emphasis on climate risks

Source: Benjamin Hulac, E&E News reporter • Posted: Wednesday, August 16th, 2017

An official at the mutual fund giant Vanguard said yesterday the company is discussing climate change with more companies than “ever before,” and he called the topic a priority. “Vanguard has prioritized climate risk on engagement agenda, and we have discussed the topic with more companies over the past year than ever before,” Glenn Booraem, investment stewardship officer at Vanguard Funds, said in a statement.

Judge, citing climate risks, halts Mont. mine expansion

Source: Amanda Reilly, E&E News reporter • Posted: Wednesday, August 16th, 2017

A federal judge this week halted the expansion of a coal mine in Montana, finding that regulators failed to adequately assess the project’s climate impacts. Senior Judge Donald Molloy of the U.S. District Court for the District of Montana threw out the environmental assessment prepared by the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement for the project.

FERC chairman takes heat for comments on coal, nuclear

Source: Sam Mintz and Hannah Northey, E&E News reporters • Posted: Wednesday, August 16th, 2017

The new Federal Energy Regulatory Commission chairman’s comments on coal and nuclear power on an agency podcast this week have sparked criticism from watchdog groups that say the FERC leader is opening the door to politics at the agency. In an interview on FERC’s “Open Access” podcast, Chairman Neil Chatterjee said coal and nuclear energy — “baseload” power sources — should be “properly compensated,” emphasizing coal’s importance to his home state, Kentucky, and to the country’s fuel mix

Unlikely allies try to sway White House before trade decision

Source: Zack Colman, E&E News reporter • Posted: Wednesday, August 16th, 2017

In an event matching the upside-down politics of 2017, some ideologically right-wing voices are allied with the solar industry’s main lobby group in a trade case that could shape the future of solar power. Consider this: The American Legislative Exchange Council is on the same team as the Solar Energy Industries Association, solar’s main trade group. ALEC is the conservative boogeyman that helped state lawmakers workshop a rash of bills to scrap incentives for rooftop solar installations.