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Governors' Wind Energy Coalition

October 16, 2020

Top Story

Why a historic emissions drop is no cause to celebrate

By Benjamin Storrow, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2020-10-15 15:07:07

In 1945, as World War II came to a close, scientists logged a record drop in carbon dioxide emissions. They reckoned that global CO2 emissions fell by some 790 million metric tons — a record that stood for more than 70 years. Then 2020 rolled around. Global emissions fell 1,550 million metric tons in the first half of 2020, according to a study published yesterday in Nature Communications, obliterating the 1945 record and underlining the depths of the economic damage wrought by the coronavirus pandemic this year. [ read more … ]

Wind Energy

Trump’s renewable energy report card

BY KELSEY TAMBORRINO, Politico  •    •  Posted 2020-10-15 15:05:28

Trump’s energy agenda was built around trying to boost production of coal, oil and natural gas. He levied tariffs of 30 percent on imports of the photovoltaic panels and cells, and has frequently expressed hostility toward the clean energy sources that are overwhelmingly popular in both blue and red states. “If you have a windmill anywhere near your house, congratulations, your house just went down 75 percent in value. And they say the noise causes cancer,” Trump falsely claimed last year. [ read more … ]

Wind Turbines the Size of Skyscrapers Coming From MHI Vestas

By Ronan Martin, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted 2020-10-15 15:02:21

MHI Vestas Offshore Wind A/S is set to join the giants of the offshore-wind world by building a skyscraper-sized turbine to better compete with other machines in the market. The manufacturer has been working on the next-generation wind turbine and will release it to the public within 12 months, possibly as early as this year, Philippe Kavafyan, MHI Vestas’s chief executive officer said in an interview. The massive machines are for use in wind farms at sea, where there’s plenty of open space and more reliable breezes. The larger blades help increase efficiency and the amount of electricity that can be produced from a single site. [ read more … ]

Solar Energy

The Future of Energy Is About Technology, Not Fossil Fuels

By Nathaniel Bullard, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted 2020-10-15 15:06:40

It’s only fair that technology and electric vehicles, which at this point are long-term trends for oil, are mentioned relatively less this year. The question for the long term, though, isn’t about a pandemic. It’s about technology, and whether or not oil demand responds to new technologies the way coal is now responding to solar: with structural decline. [ read more … ]

Battery Storage

N.Y. utility floats plan to trade gas plants for batteries

By David Iaconangelo, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2020-10-15 15:04:12

One of the nation’s largest public power utilities said this week it would partner with environmental justice groups to study how it could replace its New York City fleet of “peaker” fossil fuel plants with low-carbon battery storage. The collaboration between the New York Power Authority (NYPA) and the five-group Peak Coalition will zero in on 11 gas-fired units at seven sites in and around New York City that run 10% of the day or less. An action plan to implement the findings — and possibly retool the plants, which are used to meet electricity demand during a small number of peak hours — is expected to follow. [ read more … ]

Supreme Court Nomination Hearing

Kamala Harris makes Amy Coney Barrett’s climate views a campaign issue

By Dino Grandoni, Washington Post  •    •  Posted 2020-10-15 15:01:47

Amy Coney Barrett, President Trump’s nominee for the high court, acknowledged during her confirmation hearing yesterday that the novel coronavirus is infectious and that smoking causes cancer. But during a grilling from Sen. Kamala Harris, a former prosecutor who is now Joe Biden’s running mate, Barrett refused to weigh in on whether the changing climate is a threat. Calling the issue “very contentious,” Barrett said: “I will not express a view on a matter of public policy, especially when that is politically controversial.” [ read more … ]

Barrett’s climate answers raise question: Is she a denier?

By Jennifer Hijazi, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2020-10-15 15:04:52

Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett called climate change “a contentious matter” and declined to acknowledge the existence of the scientifically established phenomenon during the third day of her confirmation hearing. The 48-year-old judge has evaded direct questions about her views on rising temperatures from three senators over a marathon hearing that is all but assured to send her to the nation’s highest court for a lifetime appointment.
[ read more … ]


U.S. Oil Production Has Already Passed Its Peak, Occidental Says

By Kevin Crowley, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted 2020-10-15 15:04:31

America’s oil production will never again reach the record 13 million barrels a day set earlier this year, just before the pandemic devastated global demand, according to Occidental Petroleum Corp. “It’s just going to be too difficult to replace the 2 million barrels a day of production that we’ve lost, and then to further grow beyond that,” Chief Executive Officer Vicki Hollub said Wednesday at the Energy Intelligence Forum. “Over the next three to four years there’s going to be moderate restoration of production, but not at high growth.” [ read more … ]

First Energy

Bribery Probe Into a Nuclear Plant Bailout Examines Facilities’ Owner

By Katherine Blunt and Andrew Scurria, Wall Street Journal  •    •  Posted 2020-10-15 15:01:26

A criminal investigation into an alleged bribe to secure a bailout of troubled nuclear plants in Ohio is looking at the energy company that prosecutors say supplied some of the money and now owns the facilities, according to people familiar with the matter. Federal prosecutors have subpoenaed Energy Harbor Corp., asking executives to turn over documents and communications as part of an investigation into whether anyone associated with the company understood that payments made by it were part of an alleged pay-to-play arrangement, rather than a legal lobbying effort, the people said. [ read more … ]

Campaign 2020

Mary Nichols may be EPA’s next boss. Here’s her vision

By Maxine Joselow, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2020-10-15 15:07:30

California Air Resources Board Chair Mary Nichols yesterday outlined her vision for EPA over the next four years. And it starts with science. Nichols — who is widely viewed as a candidate for EPA administrator should Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden defeat President Trump — described her plans for the agency during a virtual event hosted by American University and the American Lung Association. [ read more … ]

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