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Governors' Wind Energy Coalition

October 29, 2019

Top Story

Troubles lurk for America’s emerging offshore wind boom

By Amy Harder, Axios  •    •  Posted 2019-10-28 16:13:21

As I reported for this week’s “Axios on HBO,” Danish company Ørsted, the world’s largest developer of this kind of energy, is planning to put nearly 100 massive turbines 15 miles into the Atlantic Ocean that could power a half-million homes — but opposition and delays could stymie that goal and the industry writ large. With New England and mid-Atlantic states enacting aggressive clean-energy policies, offshore wind in the United States promises to help combat climate change and create jobs. The numerous projects in the regulatory pipeline could power nearly 10 million homes.
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Wind Energy

Offshore wind needs $1.2T to hit climate goals, IEA says

By Jeremy Hodges and William Mathis, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted 2019-10-28 16:13:36

The pace of expansion in the offshore wind industry needs to double to meet the world’s climate targets, the International Energy Agency said. The Paris-based institution estimated investment in the technology is growing 2.2% a year, drawing in $840 billion over the next two decades. To reach goals for reining in fossil-fuel emissions, that funding must reach about $1.2 trillion, meaning annual growth of 4.4%.
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‘Floating’ tech: The next frontier for offshore wind

By Heather Richards, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2019-10-28 16:10:29

The floating offshore wind industry is America’s for the taking, according to analysts from Wood Mackenzie. While the U.S. wind market in recent years has focused on capturing federal production and investment subsidies before their sunset, it has likely reached a critical turn. The next phase is a rapidly developing opportunity offshore, including the new frontier of floating technology, Wood Mackenzie analysts noted last week ahead of a recent American Wind Energy Association conference here in Boston. [ read more … ]


Is the fight with Exxon in N.Y. really about climate change?

By Jennifer Hijazi, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2019-10-28 16:11:03

Activists have rallied around a high-profile trial over Exxon Mobil Corp.’s disclosures of carbon costs as a landmark legal battle on climate accountability. Attorneys for the company, meanwhile, insist that the case has nothing to do with climate. They may both be right. [ read more … ]

Secret Deal Helped Housing Industry Stop Tougher Rules on Climate Change

By Christopher Flavelle, New York Times  •    •  Posted 2019-10-28 16:12:15

A secret agreement has allowed the nation’s homebuilders to make it much easier to block changes to building codes that would require new houses to better address climate change, according to documents reviewed by The New York Times. The written arrangement, in place for years and not previously disclosed, guarantees industry representatives four of the 11 voting seats on two powerful committees that approve building codes that are widely adopted nationwide. The pact has helped enablethe trade group that controls the seats, the National Association of Home Builders, to prevent changes that would have made new houses in much of the country more energy-efficient or more resilient to floods, hurricanes and other disasters. [ read more … ]

Climate and Energy Experts Debate How to Respond to a Warming World

By Mark Stein, New York Times  •    •  Posted 2019-10-28 16:14:45

As energy demand rises around the globe, so does concern about climate change. The science seems clear: Ninety-seven percent or more of scientists active in the field are convinced the climate has been warming over the past century, the pace of warming is accelerating and human activities — particularly the burning of coal, oil and other fossil fuels — are a primary cause. Many of these scientists also concur that the best option to mitigate the potentially catastrophic consequences of climate change is to reduce the use of fossil fuels and speed up the transition to renewable forms of energy, such as solar and wind. We asked experts in the energy and environmental fields whether they concur on the need for an urgent transition to alternative energy. And if so, how the energy industry can make that happen quickly enough to matter. [ read more … ]


Big Oil gears up to fight Schumer EV plan

By Maxine Joselow, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2019-10-28 16:11:39

Over 10 years, the program would take an estimated 63 million gas-powered cars off the roads, substantially lowering greenhouse gas emissions from the transportation sector. Schumer’s office touted support from a broad coalition of environmentalists, auto companies and labor unions, including the Sierra Club, the Natural Resources Defense Council, General Motors Co. and the United Auto Workers. Missing from the long list of supporters, however, was the oil and gas industry, which has waged a covert campaign to kill electric vehicle subsidies in recent years. [ read more … ]

How EVs could slash fossil fuel use

By Jeffrey Tomich, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2019-10-28 16:10:08

Consumers Energy CEO Patti Poppe has a visual of where electric vehicles fit into the utility’s broader long-range strategy. On a whiteboard, she draws a straight line that gives way to a few big spikes that represent hot summer days when air conditioners are blowing and electricity demand peaks across the utility’s service area, which spans much of Michigan’s Lower Peninsula. “We have this super-duper summer peak, and it’s literally a couple of hours a year,” she said in an interview with E&E News earlier this month. “It doubles our demand. The rest of the time we have almost double the capacity required across the entire grid.” [ read more … ]

Inside Tesla’s exclusive charging lounge

By David Ferris, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2019-10-28 16:11:18

Almost exactly halfway between San Francisco and Los Angeles, at a highway stop of fast-food joints and gas stations, Tesla Inc. is carrying out a social experiment in modern fueling. The electric automaker has a wide charging plaza for Teslas here, near the crest of a hill. Forty of its trademark fast chargers are lined up under canopies of solar panels. The company has two other charging plazas in California around this size. [ read more … ]

Policy & Politics

Calif. governor wants Berkshire to bid for bankrupt PG&E

By Mark Chediak and Michael B. Marois, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted 2019-10-28 16:14:25

California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) wants Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway to make a takeover bid for bankrupt utility giant PG&E Corp. If Berkshire is interested in buying the San Francisco-based power and natural gas company, now is the time to make an offer, Newsom said Saturday. “We would love to see that interest materialize, and in a more proactive, public effort,” he said in an interview. “That would be encouraging to see. They are one of the few that are in a position to make a significant run at this.” [ read more … ]

Tax Extenders May Miss ‘Last Train’ Out of Congress This Year

By Colin Wilhelm, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted 2019-10-28 16:15:17

Stalled government funding negotiations threaten to end expired tax benefits that a variety of industries have fought for Congress to extend. Senate Appropriations Chairman Richard Shelby (R-Ala.) told reporters that a short-term stopgap looked like a far more likely option to fund the government beyond Nov. 21 than the comprehensive government funding package lawmakers hoped to complete. Shelby said Oct. 23 that his preference would be to extend current funding levels for three to four months, likely without any additional policy riders. [ read more … ]

Bill seeks to streamline public lands renewable energy permitting

By Douglas Clark, Daily Energy Insider  •    •  Posted 2019-10-28 16:12:41

The Public Land Renewable Energy Development Act (PLREDA) of 2019 incentivizes responsible renewable energy development on public lands while enabling local communities to reap the economic benefits. It was introduced by Sens. Martha McSally (R-AZ), Martin Heinrich (D-NM), Cory Gardner (R-CO), Michael Bennet (D-CO), Tom Udall (D-NM), Steve Daines (R-MT), Jon Tester (D-MT) and James Risch (R-ID). [ read more … ]

Americans would rather reduce oil and gas exploration than ‘drill, baby, drill’

By Darryl Fears and Scott Clement, Washington Post  •    •  Posted 2019-10-28 16:14:03

A large majority of Americans say drilling for oil and natural gas off the coasts and on public lands should decrease or remain at current levels, a viewpoint at odds with the expansion promoted by President Trump as part of his “energy dominance” agenda. In a nationwide public opinion poll by The Washington Post and the Kaiser Family Foundation, more than 8 in 10 people said drilling in the United States should “decrease” or “stay as is.” [ read more … ]

D.C. wants 100% clean energy. Why is it rejecting solar?

By Maya Earls, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2019-10-28 16:15:01

In the years since his first meeting with solar panel recruiters, Steven Preister has installed more than 30 panels around his home in Washington, D.C. The 74-year-old’s latest push to add more has put him at the center of a dispute over aesthetics and what’s good for the planet. Preister, a Takoma resident whose century-old home is in a historic district, said he had always thought about installing solar panels but wasn’t sure how. Then seven years ago, representatives from the Utah-based company Vivint Solar Inc. knocked on his door and told him his roof would be ideal for supporting solar panels. [ read more … ]

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