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Governors' Wind Energy Coalition

February 24, 2020

Top Story

The Oil Industry Is Quietly Winning Local Climate Fights

By Robinson Meyer, The Atlantic  •    •  Posted 2020-02-23 10:30:28

Three years ago, after Donald Trump’s election, climate activists and environmental leaders turned their attention to state and local politics. They have stacked up real victories since. In December, a bipartisan group of 24 governors declared that their states were “still in” the Paris Agreement on climate change. And Democrats in New York, New Jersey, and Washington State have passed major bills aimed at eliminating carbon pollution from their local economies. But climate activists have not been alone in switching focus to local politics: The oil industry has also pivoted. [ read more … ]


FERC Rules Clean Energy Must Pay Higher Market Price in New York

By Nichola Groom, Reuters  •    •  Posted 2020-02-23 10:33:45

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission on Thursday issued a suite of orders that will require subsidized energy storage and renewable power resource providers to meet a price floor in New York state’s capacity market, making it harder for them to compete with fossil fuel plants. The move, which environmental groups said effectively bolsters fossil fuel generators by forcing renewable resource providers to pay a premium in the capacity market, follows a similar FERC order in December that applied to PJM Interconnection, the largest U.S. power grid operator. [ read more … ]

FERC deals blow to New York renewable, storage projects, adding hurdles to NYISO capacity market

By Iulia Gheorghiu, Utility Dive  •    •  Posted 2020-02-23 10:33:20

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission approved four separate orders to narrow exemptions of buyer-side mitigation (BSM) market rules in the New York Independent System Operator’s (NYISO) capacity zones during Thursday’s public meeting, which critics say will stifle the competitiveness of clean energy resources. The decisions would make it more difficult for new clean energy projects expected in the state to clear NYISO’s capacity auction. Clean energy advocates say bidding into NYISO’s capacity market is critical to the financial viability of projects like offshore wind and energy storage. [ read more … ]

FERC: Bailout 2.0?

  •    •  Posted 2020-02-22 04:22:01

Critics say the changes are effectively a bailout by another name. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said in a tweet that “FERC has become a wholly-owned GOP subsidiary, doing the bidding of the biggest polluters.” And many power market watchers expect the new price floors will end up boosting coal, oil and gas generators more than the flawed DOE plan. The price floors are “much more intelligently constructed than the [DOE’s Notice of Proposed Rulemaking],” said Sonia Aggarwal, vice president of the research firm Energy Innovation, which promotes clean energy. “That fact alone probably means it will be more effective at floating uneconomic coal.” [ read more … ]

He resisted Obama’s war on coal. Now a Trump official, he’s excited for clean energy

By By SAMMY ROTH, Los Angeles Times  •    •  Posted 2020-02-23 10:35:31

The American power grid is getting cleaner. And Neil Chatterjee is feeling optimistic. Chatterjee was tapped by President Trump to chair the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, or FERC, an important but little-known agency that governs interstate electricity markets and decides whether to approve pipelines, liquefied natural gas terminals and hydropower projects. Before joining FERC, he advised Sen. Mitch McConnell, the Republican majority leader, on energy policy, helping to orchestrate the resistance to President Obama’s so-called war on coal.
[ read more … ]


FERC Excludes Clean Energy From NY’s Capacity Market

By Cullen Howe Rebecca Behrens, Natural Resources Defense Council  •    •  Posted 2020-02-23 10:34:27

Today’s decision applying buyer-side mitigation (BSM) to state-supported resources that participate in New York’s wholesale capacity market is the latest attempt by a hyper-politicized Trump FERC to try and pose barriers to states deploying clean energy resources. FERC’s order, which is similar to an order it issued last December in PJM, effectively excludes clean sources of energy like wind and solar from participating in the state’s capacity market. [ read more … ]

Wind Energy

Buffett Touts Wind Energy Following Climate-Change Criticism

By Katherine Chiglinsky, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted 2020-02-23 10:30:49

Warren Buffett, long under pressure from activists to detail how climate change affects his businesses, used part of his annual letter to shareholders to highlight how wind power generated by a Berkshire Hathaway Inc. utility shows the company is reducing its reliance on fossil fuels. Buffett’s letter, with topics ranging from share repurchases to the makeup of corporate boards, detailed how Berkshire Hathaway Energy — one of the “lead dogs” of Berkshire’s non-insurance businesses — has been able to keep rates lower than its competitors in Iowa, partially because of its ability to generate electricity from wind. [ read more … ]

American Farmers Are Turning To Wind Energy

By Johnna Crider, CleanTechnica  •    •  Posted 2020-02-23 10:35:04

The article shares the story of the Rieckmann family, which has had their farm for nearly two centuries in Wisconsin. The couple who now run it, Mary and John, have been through a lot — droughts, floods, too much milk making prices fall — and today, they are around $300,000 in debt and the bill collectors want their money. The couple is struggling to make money and the debt is becoming impossible to pay. They receive $16 for every 100 pounds of milk they sell, which is a 40% decrease from 6 years ago. Sometimes, there are weeks in which the money they make from milk simply goes toward their monthly mortgage payment — $2100 a month. [ read more … ]

Trump on turbines: ‘They’re rotting, they look like hell’

By Scott Waldman, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2020-02-23 10:36:09

President Trump described the California landscape yesterday as a pincushion dotted with “tired” and abandoned wind turbines. Trump, speaking at a rally in Colorado Springs, Colo., recalled the sight from an earlier stop in Palm Springs, Calif., where he held a fundraiser at a golf resort during his swing across the West Coast this week. Idle and eroding wind turbines, he claimed, were “all over the place.”
[ read more … ]


Los Angeles makes largest ZEV bus order in U.S. history

By Anne C. Mulkern, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2020-02-23 10:31:16

Los Angeles has purchased 155 electric buses in the country’s largest ever zero-emissions bus order, Mayor Eric Garcetti said yesterday. “The clean transportation revolution is not a distant dream — it’s happening on L.A.’s streets right now,” Garcetti said in a statement. “Seeing these zero-emission buses rolling down our roads in the years ahead will bring us one step closer to realizing our vision of cleaner air, lower emissions, healthier communities, and a more sustainable future for all Angelenos.” [ read more … ]


Fracking debate causes tremors in battleground Pennsylvania

By The Associated Press  •    •  Posted 2020-02-23 10:36:38

The notion of banning fracking is dividing the Democrats running for president and increasingly dividing Democrats in the presidential battleground state of Pennsylvania, where fracking has vaulted it to the No. 2 natural gas producer behind Texas. The divide was clear, again, on Wednesday night’s debate stage in Las Vegas during questioning about climate change. [ read more … ]

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