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Governors' Wind Energy Coalition

February 29, 2016

Senate energy bill, Flint aid could resurface

Geof Koss, E&E reporter  •    •  Posted 2016-02-29 06:36:37

Senate Energy Committee ranking member Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.) said that Sen. David Vitter (R-La.) was also withholding consent, but his office has not responded to requests for comment. The office of Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah) on Friday confirmed he had a hold on the energy bill — which he opposed in committee — but declined to comment on whether the objections extended to the Flint deal. Lawmakers plan to vote on that separately. Backers of moving forward with the long-stalled agenda are hoping to get an agreement to set up votes on the energy bill, about three-dozen amendments, and the Flint package. [ read more … ]

Slew of committees to scrutinize Moniz’s spending, research plans

Christa Marshall, E&E reporter  •    •  Posted 2016-02-29 06:36:58

DOE’s $32.5 billion request includes a 21 percent rise in clean energy research and development, including a large increase for programs like the Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E), which supports cutting-edge technologies outside the reach of the private sector. Other big winners under the proposal include sustainable transportation, renewable energy and energy efficiency programs, which would all receive at least a 27 percent increase over last year’s level. The administration is hoping that key appropriators like Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) — a historical supporter of R&D — will help make some of the funding requests a reality. [ read more … ]

Obama Points to Florida Factory as Evidence That Stimulus Worked

By JULIE HIRSCHFELD DAVIS, The New York Times  •    •  Posted 2016-02-29 04:38:55

President Obama on Friday used a visit to a high-technology battery plant in Florida to argue that the hundreds of billions of dollars in federal subsidies he signed into law during his first days in office had bolstered the economy, transformed the nation’s energy sector, and positioned the United States for a strong rebound. But Mr. Obama’s trip to the Saft America factory here, opened in 2011 with a $95.5 million investment from the Department of Energy, also highlighted the challenges that have tempered the economic recovery and the difficulty that the president has had in claiming credit for it. [ read more … ]

Washington Considers Nation’s First Carbon Emissions Tax

By BY PHUONG LE, The Associated Press  •    •  Posted 2016-02-29 04:39:22

Washington could become the first state in the nation to impose a direct tax on carbon emissions from fossil fuels such as coal, gasoline and natural gas. A ballot measure before the state Legislature would create a carbon tax of $25 per metric ton of fossil fuel emissions burned in Washington, while reducing taxes. Lawmakers have until the end of the session on March 10 to enact Initiative 732, offer an alternative proposal or automatically pass the carbon-tax measure to voters in November as written. It’s not clear whether lawmakers will approve an alternative by the end of the session. [ read more … ]

Washington yanks cap-and-trade proposal

Amanda Reilly, E&E reporter  •    •  Posted 2016-02-29 04:39:53

The state of Washington withdrew a plan today that would have set the first-ever limits on carbon dioxide emissions from large facilities. In a news release, the Washington Department of Ecology said it would update the plan based on feedback. The agency said it would issue a new proposed rule in the spring. “We appreciate all the helpful and constructive feedback we have received from stakeholders,” Sarah Rees, Ecology’s special assistant on climate change policy, said in a statement. “We’re listening and being responsive to the ideas on how to best move the rule forward.” [ read more … ]

These states are setting wind energy records – and suing over Obama’s climate plans

By Chris Mooney, Washington Post  •    •  Posted 2016-02-29 04:40:28

“I think it is part of a long transition that’s taking place, where people are only now starting to realize what the resources are in their states, and how fast they actually can make the transition,” said Rob Gramlich, senior vice president of government and public affairs at the American Wind Energy Association. “Wind is a new entrant in all of these places,” Gramlich said. “Almost all of it has been developed in the last 10 years, it’s relatively new, so, you know, and the utilities have been there for a hundred years or more, with their relationships with policymakers. That doesn’t change in a few years when a new technology comes in and enters the market.” [ read more … ]

Note: News clips provided do not necessarily reflect the views of coalition or its member governors.