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Governors' Wind Energy Coalition

January 14, 2020

Top Story

Dems swept the Midwest. Why hasn’t it helped clean energy?

By Jeffrey Tomich, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2020-01-13 15:56:50

New Democratic governors were sworn into office in three Great Lakes states almost exactly a year ago, each promising action on climate and clean energy. The election of J.B. Pritzker of Illinois, Gretchen Whitmer of Michigan and Tony Evers of Wisconsin was seen by environmental advocates as a ray of hope for Democrats and environmental advocates at a time when President Trump was busy reversing Obama-era climate actions.
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Wind Energy

Iowa Farm Bureau backs statewide regulations that guide wind, solar construction

By Donnelle Eller, Des Moines Register  •    •  Posted 2020-01-13 15:57:07

Iowa’s largest farm group is calling for statewide regulations that guide where large-scale wind and solar farms can be built, as members raise concerns about the loss of valuable farmland to renewable energy projects. Iowa Farm Bureau Federation says it backs statewide “siting and setback rules for wind and solar farms,” given the rapid growth of wind and solar energy projects in Iowa. [ read more … ]

Low Carbon Fuel

At Sea-Tac Airport, where emissions are rising, Gov. Inslee pitches low-carbon fuel standard

By Evan Bush, Seattle Times  •    •  Posted 2020-01-13 15:58:12

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee on Friday promoted a statewide low-carbon fuel standard during a visit at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, saying the policy would increase access to biofuels for the aviation industry, a portion of the economy that’s particularly challenging for reducing greenhouse gases. Aviation fuels are exempt from the proposed statewide policy, but airline fuel suppliers could opt into the program and earn credits, and potentially money, from the program. Inslee thinks the policy’s financial incentives would push fuel suppliers to develop supply chains for biofuel. [ read more … ]


N.Y. won’t fight Exxon’s climate victory

By Jennifer Hijazi, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2020-01-13 15:57:26

New York’s top lawyer will not appeal a recent court decision rejecting claims that Exxon Mobil Corp. misled shareholders about climate concerns, the state’s attorney general said last week. The decision was reported by Bloomberg on Friday, and E&E News confirmed with the office of New York Attorney General Letitia James (D) that an appeal of the closely watched case, People of the State of New York v. Exxon, is not forthcoming.
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Warming cost the U.S. an extra $24B — research

By Daniel Cusick, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2020-01-13 15:57:45

Extreme weather associated with climate warming drove U.S. property losses $24 billion higher over the past 25 years than would have been expected under a more stable climate regime, according to new research from the American Academy of Actuaries. That’s a “preliminary finding” of the newly released Actuaries Climate Risk Index (ACRI), which seeks to add quantitative muscle to what many insurance companies already believe: Climate change is a force multiplier to private property risk. [ read more … ]

Climate concerns persist as panels OK trade deal

By Geof Koss, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2020-01-13 15:58:30

Multiple Senate committees will vote this week on the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) as leaders look to clear a path for a final vote. The House easily passed the pact by a wide bipartisan vote last month, and last week the Senate Finance Committee gave it its blessing. This week the Environment and Public Works Committee is among the several panels that must also sign off on the president’s replacement for the North American Free Trade Agreement.
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Policy & Politics

Kan. should ease costs of aging coal plants — study

By Jeffrey Tomich, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2020-01-13 15:59:15

Kansas needs better tools to help beat back rising electric rates, according to a study ordered by state lawmakers. Among them: a mechanism to ease the transition away from coal. The 324-page report released last week is the first of a two-part study authorized by lawmakers in 2019 following complaints about climbing electric rates. The second phase is due this summer. [ read more … ]

U.S. coal-fired power plants closing fast despite Trump’s pledge of support for industry

By Scott DiSavino;, Reuters  •    •  Posted 2020-01-13 15:59:48

U.S. coal-fired power plants shut down at the second-fastest pace on record in 2019, despite President Donald Trump’s efforts to prop up the industry, according to data from the federal government and Thomson Reuters. Power companies retired or converted roughly 15,100 megawatts (MW) of coal-fired electricity generation, enough to power about 15 million homes, according to the data, which included preliminary statistics from the Energy Information Administration and Reuters reporting. [ read more … ]

For Trump, gasoline prices equal political success

By Scott Waldman, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2020-01-13 16:00:07

President Trump has long believed the fraught path to electoral victory is dotted with gas stations. For years, Trump has focused on gasoline prices that consumers pay at the pump, claiming that voters will reward, or punish, presidents who cost them more or less to fill up their cars. Now as tensions rise between the United States and Iran, the world’s fourth-largest oil producer, observers say Trump is closer to experiencing something he has long feared: rising gasoline prices. [ read more … ]

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