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Governors' Wind Energy Coalition

February 11, 2020

Top Story

Energy Markets Need Winter, and Climate Change Is Taking It Away

By Olga Tanas, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted 2020-02-10 15:40:37

Even before the deadly virus struck, another menace confronted the global energy industry: the warmest winter anyone can remember. Russia’s winter was so balmy that snow was trucked into downtown Moscow for New Year, and bears came out of hibernation. In Japan, ski competitions were canceled and the Sapporo Snow Festival had to borrow snow. On the shores of Lake Michigan, Chicago residents watched playgrounds and beaches disappear under the waves as warm weather swelled the water level. Norwegians basked in T-shirts in January. London’s spring daffodils have already flowered. [ read more … ]

Wind Energy

Report: Onshore wind faces slowdown without a ‘game changer’

By Parker M. Shea, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2020-02-10 15:39:15

Transmission challenges, a lack of breakthrough technologies and competition from solar threaten the growth of onshore wind in the 2020s, according to a report last week from Wood Mackenzie. Yet offshore wind power could become cheaper than coal, natural gas and nuclear due to improvements in the technology. Demand for offshore wind is currently 10% of all wind power demand, but that number will reach 25% by 2028, the firm said. [ read more … ]

Solar Energy

Calif. homebuilders rush to get ahead of solar mandate

By Noah Buhayar, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted 2020-02-10 15:39:32

California has struggled to produce enough housing for decades, the result of high construction costs and decades of government policies that have discouraged development. So why did homebuilder permits jump at the end of last year? The answer, according to an industry group: a state mandate that requires almost all new homes to have solar power starting this year. [ read more … ]

How a Utility’s Counterintuitive Strategy Might Fuel a Greener Future

By Katherine Blunt, Wall Street Journal  •    •  Posted 2020-02-10 15:41:01

Consumers has since stopped adding fossil fuels to the grid. It has retired seven of its coal-fired power plants and, by 2040, plans to retire the remaining five. Instead, Consumers will generate more electricity from solar and wind farms, large-scale battery storage and other technologies. Several of its solar projects are due to come online in 2022; a competitive bidding process is underway. Consumers is also working to help customers manage and reduce their electricity consumption with connected devices such as smart thermostats and smart meters, which enable remote tracking and management of energy consumption. It’s a big shift for a 134-year-old utility that finished rolling out smart meters only two years ago and, until then, performed meter checks in person. [ read more … ]


3 governors tell their peers to prepare for climate change

By Thomas Frank, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2020-02-10 15:40:18

Three governors, including California’s Gavin Newsom, outlined the vastly different approaches they are taking to prepare for climate change as they urged colleagues yesterday at the National Governors Association’s winter meeting to improve their states’ resilience. As the Democratic governor noted California’s struggles to contain growth in wildfire-prone areas, one counterpart promoted the use of technology to improve disaster response and another urged officials to cut state emissions.
[ read more … ]

Antarctica Sets Record High Temperature: 64.9 Degrees

By Derrick Bryson Taylor, New York Times  •    •  Posted 2020-02-10 15:41:46

Antarctica, the coldest, windiest and driest continent on Earth, set a record high temperature on Thursday, underscoring the global warming trend, researchers said. Esperanza, Argentina’s research station on the northern tip of the Antarctic Peninsula, reached 64.9 degrees Fahrenheit, or 18.2 degrees Celsius, breaking the previous record of 63.5 degrees set on March 24, 2015, according to Argentina’s National Meteorological Service. The station has been recording temperatures since 1961. The temperature at Esperanza, where it is summer, was comparable to the weather in Los Angeles and Huntsville, Ala., where the high temperatures were 64 on Thursday, according to the National Weather Service. [ read more … ]

Car Rule

Calif. uses privacy agreement to shield talks with automakers

By Maxine Joselow, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2020-02-10 15:39:54

California regulators are engaged in secretive discussions with four automakers as they seek to finalize a historic agreement struck seven months ago to reduce tailpipe emissions in defiance of President Trump’s effort to loosen federal climate rules for cars. Details of the negotiations stemming from the deal, which provoked an unsuccessful antitrust probe by the Trump administration and the president’s personal derision, are being withheld from the public to satisfy the terms of nondisclosure agreements between California officials and the car companies, according to sources with knowledge of the talks. [ read more … ]


Erring on the side of trampling on states’ rights

By Jessica Bell, Utility Dive  •    •  Posted 2020-02-10 15:41:36

State clean energy policies. State water quality certifications. Pipeline construction on state land. Lately, when given the choice between co-existing with state authorities — as contemplated by the longstanding cooperative federalism surrounding environmental and energy regulation — and simply steamrolling those authorities, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) has consistently pursued the latter. [ read more … ]

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