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Governors' Wind Energy Coalition

September 20, 2019

Top Story

Trump move to delay Mass. wind farm concerns NY

By Mark Harrington, Newday  •    •  Posted 2019-09-19 15:54:55

New York State is “watching closely” the federal government’s decision to stall a Massachusetts offshore wind project to review environmental and fishing impacts, a top state official said Wednesday, adding there’s no sign yet that the scrutiny will affect New York’s ambitious offshore wind plans. “That concern does exist,” Alicia Barton, president and chief executive of the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, told business leaders at a Long Island Association meeting in Melville Wednesday. She called the federal review a “significant setback” in the permitting schedule for that project, called Vineyard Wind. [ read more … ]

State Stories

Dominion Energy plans 220-turbine project off Va. coast

By Sarah Rankin, Associated Press  •    •  Posted 2019-09-19 15:57:26

Dominion Energy announced plans today to seek approval to build what it says would be the largest offshore wind project in the United States off the Virginia coast. The company told the Associated Press ahead of a public announcement that the project would include about 220 wind turbines in federal waters it has already leased 27 miles off Virginia Beach. If approved as proposed, Dominion said, the approximately $7.8 billion project would produce more than 2,600 megawatts of wind energy by 2026, enough to power 650,000 homes. [ read more … ]

Va. governor orders 100% CO2-free electricity by midcentury

By Carlos Anchondo, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2019-09-19 15:56:38

Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam signed an executive order this week that establishes a goal for the state to produce 100% of its electricity from carbon-free sources by 2050, sparking a debate about whether such a goal is achievable and in line with fossil fuel plans from the state’s chief utility. The order — announced Tuesday at the Virginia Clean Energy Summit in Richmond — also sets an intermediate goal that 30% of Virginia’s electric system will be powered by renewable energy by 2030. It said that by 2022, at least 30% of electricity consumed by state agencies and the executive branch will be procured from renewable resources. [ read more … ]

Wind energy in Texas to grow 50 percent in 3-year span

By L.M. Sixel, Houston Chronicle  •    •  Posted 2019-09-19 15:56:56

Wind energy is the fastest growing source of electricity in Texas, with the federal government expecting it to grow nearly 50 percent between 2017 and 2020. The Department of Energy reported that the wind industry in Texas added 3 gigawatts of wind generating capacity since the beginning of 2018 and plans to add another 7 gigawatts before the end of next year. One gigawatt provides enough power for about 700,000 homes. [ read more … ]

Car Rule

Trump officials defend plan to revoke Calif. waiver

By Timothy Cama, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2019-09-19 15:55:39

Senior Trump administration officials today defended their decision to block California’s plans to enforce greenhouse gas emissions standards for cars, saying they run afoul of the law and would stop the benefits that rolling back federal car rules would bring. Dubbing their decision the “One National Program Rule,” the leaders of the Department of Transportation and EPA said California — which is striving to enforce tougher emissions limits for cars sold within its borders and those of 13 states that choose to follow its rules — stands in the way of nationwide consistency for car manufacturers and consumers. [ read more … ]

Automakers caught in tup-of-war between Trump and California

By Josh Siegel, Washington Examiner  •    •  Posted 2019-09-19 15:55:15

There’s no way around it: Automakers are caught in the middle. Back in 2017, when the Trump administration first came into office, car companies lobbied the Environmental Protection Agency and the Transportation Department to take another look at federal fuel economy standards. The Obama EPA in its final few months had rushed through a determination to keep the stringent standards, and car companies wanted some relief, they told the administration. But now, car companies are the ones being lobbied by two warring factions — the Trump administration and its allies on one side, and California, Democratic lawmakers, and environmentalists on the other. [ read more … ]

Policy & Politics

Solar and Wind Power So Cheap They’re Outgrowing Subsidies

By Mark Chediak and Brian Eckhouse, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted 2019-09-19 15:57:48

For years, wind and solar power were derided as boondoggles. They were too expensive, the argument went, to build without government handouts. Today, renewable energy is so cheap that the handouts they once needed are disappearing. On sun-drenched fields across Spain and Italy, developers are building solar farms without subsidies or tax-breaks, betting they can profit without them. In China, the government plans to stop financially supporting new wind farms. And in the U.S., developers are signing shorter sales contracts, opting to depend on competitive markets for revenue once the agreements expire.
[ read more … ]

FERC proposes changes to Carter-era law promoting renewables

By Jeremy Dillon, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2019-09-19 15:58:05

An energy law passed during the Carter administration to promote the expansion of renewable energy was opened for reinterpretation today by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. FERC issued a notice of proposed rulemaking on the Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act (PURPA), with Chairman Neil Chatterjee saying the law is prime for an update to better reflect the realities of modern energy markets. [ read more … ]

‘I want to look better.’ For Trump, climate is a laugh line

By Scott Waldman, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2019-09-19 15:58:31

A master of messaging and branding, Trump has transformed complex energy policies into laugh lines at rallies. And while the accuracy of such remarks is often questionable, they’re hard to dispute in public debates and other formats that will be a feature of the presidential election, experts say. Trump is skilled at crafting an identification with his audience members, such that they feel he represents them in a particular way, even if large oil companies or car manufacturers are the true beneficiaries of his policies, said Anthony Arrigo, a rhetoric and communication professor at the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth.
[ read more … ]

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