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Governors' Wind Energy Coalition

December 4, 2019

Top Stories

Climate Change Is Accelerating: ‘Things Are Getting Worse’

By Henry Fountain, New York Times  •    •  Posted 2019-12-04 04:23:08

Things are getting worse,” said Petteri Taalas, Secretary General of the World Meteorological Organization, which on Tuesday issued its annual state of the global climate report, concluding a decade of what it called exceptional global heat. “It’s more urgent than ever to proceed with mitigation.” But reducing greenhouse gas emissions to fight climate change will require drastic measures, Dr. Taalas said. “The only solution is to get rid of fossil fuels in power production, industry and transportation,” he said. [ read more … ]

U.S. solar industry to lose 62,000 jobs due to Trump tariffs – study

By Nichola Groom, Reuters  •    •  Posted 2019-12-03 15:57:47

The outcome of the International Trade Commission’s midterm review could decide whether President Donald Trump makes changes to or even cancels the four-year tariff that was imposed in early 2018. The levy started at 30%, and is designed to drop by five percentage points each year. If that regime is left unchanged, the solar industry will create 62,000 fewer jobs than it otherwise would have between 2017 and 2021, SEIA said in the study. That’s more than the 53,000 workers in the U.S. coal mining industry, according to government data. The $19 billion in lost investment equates to 10.5 gigawatts in missed solar energy installations, enough to power about 1.8 million homes, according to SEIA.
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Solar & Wind Energy

Solar, wind tax credits ‘a costly barrier’ — report

By David Iaconangelo, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2019-12-03 15:58:53

Existing federal tax credits for solar and wind power need to be reformed and aren’t conducive to development of new clean energy technologies, according to a report yesterday from the Information Technology & Innovation Foundation. Facing phase-downs of two key tax credits in coming years, solar and wind industry associations have launched lobbying campaigns in recent months to push for extended incentives.
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Grid ‘transfers’ can account for up to 40% of CO2 — study

  •    •  Posted 2019-12-03 15:44:14

The carbon footprint of consumed electricity varies “significantly” by region and time of day — and electricity “transfers” between grids can constitute up to 40% of greenhouse gas emissions in some parts of the country, according to a new study from Stanford University researchers. The paper, published yesterday in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, traced the course of electricity across the continental United States throughout 2016 and found it’s possible to track associated emissions in near real time. [ read more … ]

Can new transmission tech boost capacity and save billions? Two proposals aim to find out

By Herman K. Trabish, Utility Dive  •    •  Posted 2019-12-03 15:59:38

New grid-enhancing technologies (GETs) have been shown to cost-effectively increase the power existing transmission lines can carry and the services they can provide without compromising reliability, advocates, including former Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Chair Jon Wellinghoff, said at a Nov. 5-6 FERC workshop on the technologies. But the technologies’ supporters want to replace the incentives that have so far driven limited deployment.
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Policy & Politics

Minnesota Governor Walz forms sub-Cabinet to help fight climate change

By Associated Press  •    •  Posted 2019-12-03 15:58:11

Democratic Gov. Tim Walz has established a pair of panels to advise him on ways Minnesota can tackle the problem of climate change. Walz signed an executive order yesterday to form a climate change sub-Cabinet of state agency leaders. It will be led by Laura Bishop, commissioner of the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency. He’ll also appoint a Governor’s Advisory Council on Climate Change. The sub-Cabinet will be tasked with identifying policies and strategies for meeting or exceeding goals set by a 2007 state law for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The 15-member advisory council will provide perspectives to the sub-Cabinet. [ read more … ]

Coal Exports Choked by Green-Minded Towns on U.S. West Coast

By Will Wade. Bloomberg  •    •  Posted 2019-12-03 16:00:00

It’s about to get harder for America’s miners to ship coal to Asia. On Tuesday, the city of Richmond, California, is expected to approve a ban on coal at a terminal that accounts for almost a quarter of exports from the U.S. West Coast. The prohibition will shut miners out of one of the few places in the region willing to handle the fuel and limit their access to one place in the world where coal demand is still growing. That’s exactly what Richmond city officials want. “This is something we can do that will almost certainly result in less coal shipped from the U.S. to Asia, and maybe less coal burned in Asia,” Richmond Mayor Tom Butt said in an interview. [ read more … ]

5 hot spots will decide climate’s fate — report

By Adam Aton, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2019-12-03 16:00:56

Five developments over the next decade could make or break the global climate fight, according to a new Rhodium Group analysis. Potentially the biggest pivot point, the research firm found, is the 2020 U.S. elections, where climate denial will be on the ballot as President Trump seeks reelection, Democrats try to take the Senate and several key states hold gubernatorial races. [ read more … ]

The protest that jump-started the Green New Deal

By Nick Sobczyk, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2019-12-03 16:00:42

It was a moment made for Twitter: Rep.-elect Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) stood in Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s office encircled by cameras, egging on young protesters who had gathered to call for a new economy remade around climate concerns. On that November morning, a week after the 2018 midterms, the wildly viral progressive star, then 29, for the first time brought national attention to the Green New Deal, a broad set of progressive ideas that had for years languished in esoteric climate activism circles. [ read more … ]

Trump: ‘Climate change is very important to me’

By Nick Sobczyk, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2019-12-03 16:00:23

President Trump today said climate change “is very important” to him, despite his long-standing denial of science that shows greenhouse gases are warming the planet and his administration’s rollbacks of emissions regulations. “Honestly, climate change is very important to me. I’ve done many environmental impact statements in my life, and I believe very strongly in very, very crystal clear clean water and clean air,” Trump said this morning during a meeting with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. “That’s a big part of climate change.”
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Note: News clips provided do not necessarily reflect the views of coalition or its member governors.