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Governors' Wind Energy Coalition

June 8, 2017

Defying Trump, Hawaii Becomes First State to Pass Law Committing to Paris Climate Accord

By JONAH ENGEL BROMWICH, New York Times  •    •  Posted 2017-06-08 06:40:13

Hawaii on Tuesday became the first state to pass a law committing to the goals and limits of the Paris climate accord, defying President Trump, who announced last week that he would withdraw the United States from the historic agreement. The state’s governor, David Y. Ige, signed two bills at a ceremony at the state’s capitol rotunda in Honolulu. One of the bills was explicitly geared toward reducing greenhouse gas emissions in accordance with the landmark goals adopted by world leaders with the Paris Agreement in 2015. The other will establish a task force to help the state improve soil health and remove carbon from the atmosphere. [ read more … ]

In Beijing, Perry Promotes US-China Clean Energy Cooperation

By The Associated Press  •    •  Posted 2017-06-08 06:40:43

An official readout of the meeting later distributed to journalists cited Perry as also mentioning renewables — essentially wind and solar power — as another area of “mutual interest” to both countries. China is a global leader in renewables, although much of its electricity production from solar panels and wind turbines goes to waste because of its outdated electrical grid and a preference among some local officials for coal, which still accounted for 62 percent of total energy consumption in 2016. [ read more … ]

Trump’s proposed asset sale sparks fury on Hill

Hannah Northey and Geof Koss, E&E News reporters  •    •  Posted 2017-06-08 06:41:02

The Trump administration is facing mounting backlash from both sides of the aisle after proposing to sell off federal power assets. Twenty-one senators called on Energy Secretary Rick Perry yesterday to oppose a provision in President Trump’s fiscal 2018 budget proposal that would auction power marketing administrations — independent companies within the Department of Energy that sell wholesale electricity, mainly from federal hydropower projects, and oversee more than 33,000 miles of transmission, according to DOE. [ read more … ]

Pruitt says coal losses make the grid vulnerable. Not really

Emily Holden, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2017-06-08 06:41:59

U.S. EPA chief Scott Pruitt and President Trump have appeared on national television to warn Americans that if coal power continues to decline, the lights could go out. But real-life examples and an expansive body of research by grid operators, engineers, nongovernmental organizations and scientists suggest that’s an exaggeration.Yesterday, Pruitt said if the share of coal use falls below 30 percent nationally, it could expose the United States to terrorist attacks. [ read more … ]

Ditching Paris had nothing to do with science

Scott Waldman, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2017-06-08 06:42:59

Ever since U.S. EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt helped orchestrate the United States’ withdrawal from an international climate accord backed by decades of scientific research, he has spent days deflecting dozens of questions about science. The hosts of MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” tried more than 10 times to get Pruitt to answer whether or not President Trump believes in climate change and whether that played any role in his decision to withdraw from the Paris Agreement. [ read more … ]

Meet the designer of Trump’s solar wall

Adam Aton, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2017-06-08 06:43:22

When reports surfaced late yesterday that President Trump was floating the idea of a border wall covered in solar panels, many observers found it hard to take seriously. “I mean, it’s physically possible. It seems politically silly,” said Michael Webber, deputy director of the University of Texas’ Energy Institute. “This is a bizarre way do do solar power, and it’s a bizarre way to build a wall.” [ read more … ]

Nev. makes its claim to be America’s green leader

Benjamin Storrow, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2017-06-08 06:43:41

Many states make claim to the title of America’s clean energy leader. Few states have a case like Nevada. Silver State lawmakers passed 11 energy bills before the clock ran out on the legislative session in Carson City on Monday. Among the approved measures: a plan to restore net metering for solar panel-owning homeowners, a proposal to boost the state’s renewable portfolio standard to 40 percent by 2030 and a requirement that state regulators consider the costs of carbon dioxide emissions when reviewing long-term utility plans. [ read more … ]

85 percent of the top science jobs in Trump’s government don’t even have a nominee

By Chris Mooney, Washington Post  •    •  Posted 2017-06-08 06:45:04

Trump is facing science-focused problems and issues with a key limitation: lack of staffing. As of June 6, Trump had announced a nominee for just seven, or 15 percent, of 46 top science posts in the federal government that require Senate confirmation, according to a Post analysis. This failure to fill top science jobs across the federal government has become even more pointed in light of his Paris choice. Recaps of Trump’s decision-making process have highlighted many influences upon it, but none of them principally scientific in nature. [ read more … ]

Op-Ed: Why red states should oppose Trump on climate

By Gant CNN  •    •  Posted 2017-06-08 06:44:14

For these reasons, many Republican political leaders had urged Trump to stay in the Paris treaty and pursue the expansion of wind energy. The bi-partisan Governors’ Wind and Solar Energy Coalition, which includes governors from 20 states, wrote to Trump back in March arguing, “The nation’s wind and solar energy resources are transforming low-income rural areas in ways not seen since the passage of the Homestead Act over 150 years ago.” [ read more … ]

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