Please add the Governors' Wind Energy Coalition to your address book for uninterrupted delivery
View this email in a web browser.
Governors' Wind Energy Coalition

April 22, 2020

Top Story

Air pollution may be ‘key contributor’ to Covid-19 deaths – study

By Damian Carrington, The Guardian  •    •  Posted 2020-04-21 15:50:15

High levels of air pollution may be “one of the most important contributors” to deaths from Covid-19, according to research. The analysis shows that of the coronavirus deaths across 66 administrative regions in Italy, Spain, France and Germany, 78% of them occurred in just five regions, and these were the most polluted. [ read more … ]

Wind Energy

Wind tops coal in U.S. power, marking its rapid ascent

By Benjamin Storrow, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2020-04-21 15:46:58

Wind generated more electricity nationally than coal on three separate days over the past six weeks, according to an E&E News review of federal data. Such a milestone would have seemed unthinkable a decade ago, when coal accounted for almost half of U.S. power generation. But the last 10 years have seen coal’s position steadily erode due to a combination of slack electricity demand, mounting concern over climate, and increased competition from natural gas and renewables. [ read more … ]

Wind blows by coal to become Iowa’s largest source of electricity

By Tim Webber, Des Moines Register  •    •  Posted 2020-04-21 15:46:34

A new report from the American Wind Energy Association says wind is now the largest single source of electricity in Iowa. According to the trade association’s Wind Powers America 2019 Annual Report, Iowa is now generating more than 10,000 megawatts of wind energy, accounting for more than 40% of the state’s electricity. [ read more … ]

New Jersey Needs More Space to Meet Its Offshore Wind Goals

By Chris Martin, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted 2020-04-21 15:50:36

 There aren’t enough federal leases available off the coast of New York and New Jersey to supply the 7.5 gigawatts of wind farms that Murphy wants to develop by 2035, said Jim Bennett, a program manager for renewable power at the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management.
  [ read more … ]

Solar Energy

Diminishing returns: Why an upcoming Utah rate case may signal the end of net metering

By Emma Penrod, Utility Dive  •    •  Posted 2020-04-21 15:52:57

PacifiCorp — which does business under the Rocky Mountain Power name in Utah, Idaho and Wyoming — has proposed discussing a $.015/kWh tariff later this year as part of a rate case planned when state regulators agreed to end net metering in 2017. Per that agreement, the new tariff — which Rocky Mountain Power emphasizes is paid as a credit against future electrical bills — would take effect in 2021. The new rate would only apply to customers who install rooftop systems after the end of this year. [ read more … ]

EPA/Air pollution

EPA enforcement is down while industry violations across the Midwest are up, new report says

By Sarah Bowman, Indy Star  •    •  Posted 2020-04-21 15:49:52

Industries across the Midwest are violating their permits and environmental regulations at an increasing rate, while enforcement of such polluters is on the decline, according to a new report out today by the Environmental Law and Policy Center. After a nearly four-year downturn, the number of facilities across the Great Lakes region in significant noncompliance — or serious violations that pose a severe level of concern — of the Clean Water Act have nearly doubled since 2017. [ read more … ]

White House pushed EPA for looser ‘forever chemical’ regulation: documents

By Rachel Frazin, The Hill  •    •  Posted 2020-04-21 15:48:38

The White House pushed the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to loosen a potential regulation regarding a class of cancer-linked chemicals, according to documents released by Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.).  The chemicals, called PFAS, are also sometimes referred to as “forever chemicals” because of their persistence in both the environment and the human body. They can be found in a variety of products including raincoats, cookware and firefighting foam.  [ read more … ]

In the air

  •  BY KELSEY TAMBORRINO, Politico  •  Posted 2020-04-21 15:49:11

Close to half the U.S. population has lived with and breathed polluted air, according to a new report out today from the American Lung Association . The group’s annual “State of the Air” report, which examines data on ozone pollution and particle pollution, found more cities are experiencing more days with spikes in particle pollution compared to last year’s report. Nine of the most polluted cities reached their most days ever reported. [ read more … ]

Pandemic

How the pandemic upended climate politics

By Nick Sobczyk, E&E News reporter E&E Daily  •  BY KELSEY TAMBORRINO, Politico  •  Posted 2020-04-21 15:47:35

The COVID-19 pandemic, and the chaotic and expensive congressional response, has upended the climate politics landscape. Before the onslaught of the coronavirus, environmentalists had unprecedented success getting the issue into the mainstream, bringing it to the forefront of the 2020 election and, potentially, the policy agenda of a new Democratic government come 2021.
[ read more … ]

Coronavirus stimulus money will be wasted on fossil fuels

By David Roberts, Vox  •  BY KELSEY TAMBORRINO, Politico  •  Posted 2020-04-21 15:48:17

As countries across the world go into lockdown in response to Covid-19, economies are in free fall. Almost every sector is taking a hit, hemorrhaging jobs and value. And almost every sector will be shaped, for years to come, by the speed, amount, and nature of public assistance it receives. There is a finite amount of time, resources, and political will available to get economies going again; not every sector will get what it wants or needs. [ read more … ]

Oil prices collapse below zero, scrambling the clean energy transition

By Sammy Roth, Los Angeles Times  •  BY KELSEY TAMBORRINO, Politico  •  Posted 2020-04-21 15:51:26

Oil’s plunge into negative territory — which followed a months-long global price war started by Russia and Saudi Arabia, whose economies lean heavily on petroleum — is just one piece of a larger story playing out across the energy sector, with long-term implications for the world’s ability to phase out the fossil fuels that are responsible for rising global temperatures. The COVID-19 pandemic is at the center of that story. [ read more … ]

FERC

Secretive group’s petition to FERC could ‘end net metering as we know it,’ lawyers say

By Catherine Morehouse, Utility Dive  •  BY KELSEY TAMBORRINO, Politico  •  Posted 2020-04-21 15:50:55

The petition from the New England Ratepayers Association (NERA) asks FERC to “declare that there is exclusive federal jurisdiction over wholesale energy sales from generation sources located on the customer side of the retail meter.” In other words, NERA makes the case that any behind-the-meter, or customer-sited, energy generation is a wholesale sale, subject to FERC jurisdiction. [ read more … ]

2020

Why Biden won’t escape the Green New Deal

By Timothy Cama, E&E News reporter  •  BY KELSEY TAMBORRINO, Politico  •  Posted 2020-04-21 15:47:53

Biden’s actual platform calls for the United States to reach net-zero greenhouse gas emissions — which would leave little room for fossil fuels — by 2050. He calls the Green New Deal “a crucial framework for meeting the climate challenges we face” but stops short of endorsing or embracing it. [ read more … ]

Biden signals new green commitments

BY KELSEY TAMBORRINO, Politico  •  BY KELSEY TAMBORRINO, Politico  •  Posted 2020-04-21 15:48:55

Former Vice President Joe Biden signaled new environmental policies on Monday after receiving an endorsement from one prominent green group. The League of Conservation Voters Action Fund endorsed Biden, already the presumptive Democratic nominee for president, pointing to his history tackling climate change. [ read more … ]

Off Topic

The ‘Profoundly Radical’ Message of Earth Day’s First Organizer

By John Schwartz, New York Times  •  BY KELSEY TAMBORRINO, Politico  •  Posted 2020-04-21 15:49:33

One day in the fall of 1969, Denis Hayes, a graduate student at Harvard, snagged a 10-minute meeting with Gaylord Nelson, a United States senator from Wisconsin who had been talking up his idea for a national teach-in about environmentalism. The visit stretched into a two-hour conversation, and at the end of it Mr. Hayes had a job. He ended up organizing the original Earth Day on April 22, 1970. [ read more … ]

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