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Governors' Wind Energy Coalition

August 19, 2020

Top Story

California’s Heat Crisis Shifts to Fires Burning Across State

By Lynn Doan, Mark Chediak, and Kara Wetzel, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted 2020-08-19 15:34:19

Californians already struggling with rolling blackouts and sweltering heat are confronting the next crises tied to extreme weather: wildfires and thick haze choking the air. Blazes burning tens of thousands of acres spurred evacuations in Santa Cruz County and near wine country in the northern part of the state. Smoke blanketed San Francisco Wednesday, parked cars were dusted with ash and air-quality warnings were in effect throughout the Bay Area. More than 150 fires have erupted in the past two days amid record-breaking temperatures, leading Governor Gavin Newsom to declare a state of emergency. [ read more … ]

There’s a Lesson for the Energy Transition in California

By Will Wade, Mark Chediak, and Brian Eckhouse, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted 2020-08-19 15:34:32

California’s first rolling blackouts since the 2001 energy crisis are a stark reminder that achieving 100% carbon-free energy is harder than it looks. With the worst heat wave in generations fueling near-record electricity demand, the state’s rapid shift away from fossil fuels is making it difficult to ensure that the lights stay on. California, guided by one of the world’s most ambitious clean-energy policies, has shuttered a massive amount of natural gas-fired generation in its bid to for carbon-free power. Now, the blackouts are raising questions about whether that shift happened too quickly. [ read more … ]

Wind Energy

How Trump’s NEPA overhaul hits offshore wind

By Heather Richards, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2020-08-19 15:36:01

Offshore wind — a multibillion-dollar industry poised to go up along the Atlantic seaboard — seemingly is the optimal candidate to benefit from President Trump’s overhaul of the National Environmental Policy Act last month. But the NEPA changes — along with the 2020 presidential race — have added to the political uncertainty surrounding the industry as it tries to build the first large-scale projects in U.S. waters, some say. [ read more … ]

RTOs

NJ Lawmakers Want In On Fight Over Power Supplies

By TOM JOHNSON, NJSpotlight  •    •  Posted 2020-08-19 15:35:46

State legislators are looking for a say in resolving a dispute with the operator of the nation’s largest power grid and federal energy regulators — a battle whose outcome could sway both how much residents pay for electricity and how it is produced. The issue involves New Jersey and other states’ fears that changes instituted by the Trump administration in arcane rules governing how power supplies are procured by utility companies could derail the planned shift to cleaner sources of energy, like solar and offshore wind. [ read more … ]

Nuclear Energy

Mounting climate impacts threaten U.S. reactors — study

By Avery Ellfeldt, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2020-08-19 15:36:29

Soaring temperatures, intensified flood risks and heightened water stress will threaten 57 U.S. nuclear plants over the next 20 years, forcing operators to take additional resiliency measures, according to a new report. “The consequences of climate change can affect every aspect of nuclear plant operations — from fuel handling and power and steam generation to maintenance, safety systems and waste processing,” said the analysis, which was published yesterday by Moody’s Investors Service. [ read more … ]

Off Topic

EPA Administrators tell their story

By Kevin Bogardus, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2020-08-19 15:35:12

“I’ve had an awful lot of jobs in my lifetime and, in moving from one to another, have had the opportunity to think about what makes them worthwhile. I’ve concluded there are four important criteria: interest, excitement, challenge and fulfillment. I’ve never worked anywhere where I could find all four to quite the same extent as at EPA,” said Ruckelshaus, who died last year, in an oral history interview with the agency. [ read more … ]

Campaign 2020

Missing from the DNC platform

BY KELSEY TAMBORRINO, Politico  •    •  Posted 2020-08-19 15:36:54

Environmental activists are complaining that the Democratic Party’s policy platform sent to delegates ahead of a final vote this week omits a call to end tax breaks and subsidies for fossil fuel companies — despite being approved by the party’s platform committee last month. The language was approved in the July 27 “manager’s mark.” [ read more … ]

Democrats mention climate change frequently (but only briefly) during convention

By Dino Grandoni, Washington Post  •    •  Posted 2020-08-19 15:37:11

Democratic politicians and activists on Tuesday heaped praise on former vice president Joe Biden’s plan to tackle rising global temperatures at the convention— and criticized President Trump for denying the problem while in office. But like with so much else, the coronavirus pandemic and its economic fallout have dominated the Democratic National Convention so far.  [ read more … ]

Fracking battle escalates between Biden, Trump

By Lesley Clark, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2020-08-19 15:37:24

Joe Biden’s presidential campaign is asking Pennsylvania TV stations to stop airing a pro-Trump ad that it says spreads inaccuracies about the Democratic presidential nominee’s position on hydraulic fracturing. The Monday letter came as energy — and, in particular, fracking — plays an increasingly central role in the presidential campaign. [ read more … ]

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