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Governors' Wind Energy Coalition

December 17, 2020

Top Story

To Cut Emissions to Zero, U.S. Needs to Make Big Changes in Next 10 Years

By Brad Plumer, New York Times  •    •  Posted 2020-12-16 14:55:03

If the United States wants to get serious about tackling climate change, the country will need to build a staggering amount of new energy infrastructure in just the next 10 years, laying down steel and concrete at a pace barely being contemplated today. That’s one conclusion from a major study released Tuesday by a team of energy experts at Princeton University, who set out several exhaustively detailed scenarios for how the country could slash its greenhouse gas emissions down to zero by 2050. That goal has been endorsed by President-elect Joseph R. Biden Jr., as well as numerous states and businesses, to help avoid the worst effects of global warming. [ read more … ]

Wind Energy

Plan for first N.C. offshore wind farm goes to Interior

By David Iaconangelo, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2020-12-16 14:57:04

Avangrid Inc. has submitted plans to the Interior Department for the first offshore wind project off the coast of North Carolina, pushing the industry south into hurricane-prone waters. The first phase of the Kitty Hawk offshore wind project would produce 800 megawatts of power from turbines sited 27 miles off of North Carolina’s Outer Banks, a tourist hub. Avangrid, an energy holding company based in Connecticut, is aiming to build as much as 2,500 MW in the lease area between 2021 and 2030. That would be enough electricity to light up 700,000 homes. [ read more … ]


Air pollution a cause of UK girl’s death, finds global landmark ruling

By Emma Reynolds, CNN  •    •  Posted 2020-12-16 14:55:21

A 9-year-old girl who died after an asthma attack is thought to be the first person in the world to have air pollution listed as a cause of death in a landmark coroner’s ruling. Ella Kissi-Debrah lived in Lewisham, southeast London, near one of the UK capital’s busiest roads, the South Circular. She died in hospital in February 2013 after suffering a cardiac arrest from which she could not be resuscitated, the coroner reported on Wednesday. The girl suffered from severe asthma that caused episodes of cardiac and respiratory arrest, and frequent emergency hospital admissions over three years.
[ read more … ]

Study: 5 ways to hit Biden’s net-zero emissions target

By Miranda Willson, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2020-12-16 14:55:58

The United States can achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions economywide by 2050 without spending more than usual on energy and while seeing a net increase in energy jobs, according to a new study from Princeton University researchers. The study gives credence to President-elect Joe Biden’s clean energy plan, which calls for net-zero emissions by 2050 nationally. With net-zero emissions, energy use would have to be carbon free, or any greenhouse gases would have to be offset elsewhere through mechanisms like carbon storage in forests. [ read more … ]

The Transition

Mary Nichols, fading as EPA contender, talks civil rights

By Maxine Joselow, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2020-12-16 14:58:09

Former Governor Schwarzenegger made a surprise appearance at the event to advocate for Nichols return to EPA, where she served as assistant administrator for air and radiation under President Clinton. “I always thought the world of you,” the former California governor told Nichols. “And the great thing always is that I’m a Republican. But I never felt like I was dealing with a Democrat. I always thought that you and I were interested in one thing, which was to improve things.” [ read more … ]

Biden to name Granholm as energy secretary

By Will Englund, Juliet Eilperin and Dino Grandoni, Washington Post  •    •  Posted 2020-12-16 14:55:39

President-elect Joe Biden is nominating Jennifer Granholm, the former governor of Michigan who has been a strong voice for zero-emissions vehicles, as secretary of energy, two people familiar with the process said Tuesday. Granholm, 61 and currently an adjunct professor of law at the University of California at Berkeley, has argued that the United States risks being left behind by other countries if it doesn’t develop alternate energy technologies. Her pick is a clear sign that Biden wants the department to play an important role in combating climate change.
[ read more … ]

Biden picks Jennifer Granholm to lead DOE

By Lesley Clark, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2020-12-16 14:54:43

Former two-term Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm, who embraced renewable energy as the governor of a Rust Belt state, will be nominated Energy secretary as President-elect Joe Biden prepares to cast the Department of Energy as a key player in his bid to tackle climate change, sources say. Granholm, a Biden adviser who was also mentioned as a possible domestic climate policy czar in the Biden administration, gives the incoming president an experienced political hand who has worked with Democrats and Republicans. She’s pitched climate change solutions to skeptical audiences, including autoworker unions. And she passes muster with restive green groups, which pushed Biden to reject any candidate with ties to the fossil fuel industry. [ read more … ]

Gina McCarthy couldn’t say no to Biden

By Scott Waldman and Jean Chemnick, E&E News reporters  •    •  Posted 2020-12-16 14:57:26

Gina McCarthy, who used her tenure as EPA administrator to build some of the most ambitious climate policies in American history, only to see them evaporate during the Trump administration, will be the top climate adviser to President-elect Joe Biden. Her appointment was confirmed by two sources close to the transition last night. [ read more … ]

Climate Change

Macron wants to add climate goals in constitution

By Associated Press  •    •  Posted 2020-12-16 14:58:41

French President Emmanuel Macron announced a referendum to add the fight against climate change and the need to preserve the environment into the French Constitution. Speaking Monday to a citizen’s group in charge of making proposals on climate-related issues, Macron proposed a change in the constitution that requires a parliamentary vote and then a referendum. [ read more … ]


Wyo. governor: Biden oil ban would be ‘devastating’

By Heather Richards, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2020-12-16 14:56:23

President-elect Joe Biden’s plans to cut oil and gas development on public lands as part of a path to net-zero emissions by 2050 and a clean energy economy could come at a $300 billion cost to Western states, according to the governor of one of those oil-rich states. In a study funded by the Wyoming Legislature, state officials analyzed the potential effect on energy production and state revenue if Biden ends the oil and gas program on federal lands, as he pledged to do during his campaign. [ read more … ]


EV battery prices cross ‘historic milestone’

By David Iaconangelo, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2020-12-16 14:56:48

The price of lithium-ion batteries fell for the first time this year to levels that would allow automakers to produce electric vehicles for the same cost as gas cars, according to an analysis this morning by market researcher BloombergNEF. Clean energy analysts have long cited $100 per kilowatt-hour as the crucial price point for lithium-ion battery packs used in EVs. That threshold may have been eclipsed this year in an isolated number of cases involving electric buses and commercial vehicles sold in China, BloombergNEF said. [ read more … ]

Electric Cars Closing In on Gas Guzzlers as Battery Costs Plunge

By David R Baker, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted 2020-12-16 14:57:48

Electric vehicles may cost about the same as their gas-guzzling brethren in just three or four years — and only get cheaper from there, according to a new report from BloombergNEF. Electric cars and buses, which are key to fighting global warming, have long been saddled with bigger up-front costs than those burning gasoline or diesel, due to the cost of batteries. But researchers say that price premium will disappear once battery packs reach $100 per kilowatt-hour — a tipping point BNEF expects to occur in 2023, according to its 2020 Battery Price Survey. [ read more … ]

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