News

Biden climate team says it underestimated Trump’s damage

Source: By Adam Aton, E&E News reporter • Posted: Wednesday, January 6th, 2021

“In looking at those [regulatory] rollbacks, we sort of understood the task ahead was going to be daunting. But really, the rebuilding efforts across the government are going to be more extensive than we have understood before,” the senior transition official said on a background call with reporters. “When the agency review teams are going into the agencies to assess the challenges … they are leaving those agencies with a really much bigger understanding of the challenges ahead.”

Rivian said to be close to raising funds at $25B valuation

Source: By Katie Roof and Ed Ludlow, Bloomberg • Posted: Wednesday, January 6th, 2021

Rivian Automotive Inc., the electric-truck startup backed by Amazon.com Inc. and Ford Motor Co., is close to raising a new round of funding valuing it at about $25 billion, according to people familiar with the matter. Several existing Rivian investors are participating in the round, which will raise several billion dollars, the people added, asking not to be identified because the matter is private.

Are gas bans needed? Study shows electrification surge

Source: By David Iaconangelo, E&E News reporter • Posted: Wednesday, January 6th, 2021

Electrifying the country’s new buildings may be easier than many policymakers assume — although in some regions it could require subsidies reaching into the thousands of dollars per household, according to a new analysis. Published in a blog post this week by energy economist Lucas Davis of the University of California, Berkeley, the working paper takes stock of the long, steady ascent of electricity as a source of heat.

Exxon reveals GHG emissions from using its oil

Source: By Mike Lee and Carlos Anchondo, E&E News reporters • Posted: Wednesday, January 6th, 2021

Exxon Mobil Corp. yesterday revealed for the first time the amount of greenhouse gases that are released by using its products. The company estimated that it was responsible for the equivalent of 570 million metric tons of so-called Scope 3 emissions in 2019. That’s roughly as much as Saudi Arabia’s total annual carbon dioxide emissions, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

Clean power agreement could spur $1.2 billion in wind, solar energy projects in Nebraska

Source: By Paul Hammel, Omaha World Herald • Posted: Wednesday, January 6th, 2021

Up to $1.2 billion in new wind and solar energy projects could be spurred by an agreement to provide 100% renewable energy for a proposed carbon black/anhydrous ammonia plant near Hallam, officials said Monday. Gov. Pete Ricketts joined officials of plant developer Monolith Materials, the Nebraska Public Power District and the Norris Public Power District to announce an intent to purchase power agreement the governor called “a win-win-win for everybody.”

Montana’s largest wind farm will be built near Colstrip beginning in 2021

Source: By Tom Lutey, The Billings Gazette. • Posted: Wednesday, January 6th, 2021

Construction of what’s expected to be Montana’s largest wind farm will begin in 2021 just beyond the shadow the coal-fired Colstrip Power Plant. NextEra Energy Resources will plug into the grid at Colstrip substation, to target markets in the Pacific Northwest. Its Clearwater Wind project, with a 750-megawatts capacity, will be three times larger than any wind farm currently spinning in Montana.

FERC: Developers submit plan to undo $8B pipeline

Source: By Arianna Skibell, E&E News reporter • Posted: Wednesday, January 6th, 2021

Developers of the now-canceled Atlantic Coast pipeline have submitted a plan to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission for dismantling the $8 billion natural gas project, which would have crossed West Virginia, Virginia and North Carolina. Utility companies Dominion Energy Inc. and Duke Energy Corp. have proposed a roughly two-year timeline for decommissioning parts of the pipeline that were almost complete and restoring disturbed land. In the FERC filing, dated Dec. 16 but made public yesterday, the developers outline where they want to clean up felled trees and where they intend to leave them.

Study: Warming already baked in will blow past climate goals

Source: By Seth Borenstein, Associated Press • Posted: Wednesday, January 6th, 2021

The amount of baked-in global warming, from carbon pollution already in the air, is enough to blow past international agreed upon goals to limit climate change, a new study finds. But it’s not game over because, while that amount of warming may be inevitable, it can be delayed for centuries if the world quickly stops emitting extra greenhouse gases from the burning of coal, oil and natural gas, the study’s authors say.

Climate action at stake as Trump, Biden cap bitter Ga. races

Source: By Timothy Cama and Adam Aton, E&E News reporters • Posted: Wednesday, January 6th, 2021

The nation’s leading Republican and Democratic figures held little back in stumping for their parties’ respective candidates in Georgia’s U.S. Senate runoffs, characterizing Tuesday’s elections as no less than decisions on the country’s future direction. Both outgoing President Trump and President-elect Joe Biden held rallies in the Peach State on the last day before regular voting in the races, although early and mail-in votes started weeks ago.

EPA finalizes rule to limit science behind public health safeguards

Source: By Juliet Eilperin and Brady Dennis, Washington Post • Posted: Wednesday, January 6th, 2021

The Environmental Protection Agency has finalized a rule to limit what research it can use to craft public health protections, a move opponents argue is aimed at crippling the agency’s ability to more aggressively regulate the nation’s air and water. The “Strengthening Transparency in Regulatory Science” rule, which the administration began pursuing early in President Trump’s term, would require researchers to disclose the raw data involved in their public health studies before the agency could rely upon their conclusions. It will apply this new set of standards to “dose-response studies,” which evaluate how much a person’s exposure to a substance increases the risk of harm.