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Governors' Wind Energy Coalition

December 18, 2020

Top Story

Dominion takes ‘monumental step’ on offshore wind

By Arianna Skibell, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2020-12-17 14:47:25

Dominion Energy Inc. yesterday began construction on a $500 million marine installation vessel that could be pivotal to developing the U.S. offshore wind market, analysts say. “This is a monumental step for the offshore wind industry in America,” Robert Blue, Dominion Energy’s president and CEO, said in a statement. Installation vessels are a crucial component for erecting offshore wind turbines, according to a recent Government Accountability Office report. Developers are projected to require hundreds of them to meet state targets for offshore wind energy production. [ read more … ]

Wind Energy

Largest wind farm in New Mexico to begin generating power

By SUSAN MONTOYA BRYAN, Associated Press  •    •  Posted 2020-12-17 14:44:47

Work is done on a massive wind farm in eastern New Mexico that Xcel Energy officials said Wednesday will move the utility closer to its goal of being carbon-free by 2050 and help cement the Western state’s position when it comes to renewable energy generation. The 240 turbines that make up the Sagamore Wind Project near the New Mexico-Texas border will be going online at the end of the month following final testing.
[ read more … ]

Clean Energy

Inside one firm’s 100% clean electricity crystal ball

By Peter Behr, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2020-12-17 14:46:33

“Zero by 2035.” It takes just two words and a date to state President-elect Joe Biden’s goal for eliminating carbon emissions from the U.S. electric grid. How to do it is something else entirely.
Drafting a blueprint to meet state clean energy goals in a single region took two complex computer programs, running in tandem, to crunch thousands of future scenarios at Energy and Environmental Economics Inc. (E3), a San Francisco research firm. [ read more … ]

States

Inslee unveils climate proposals ahead of full budget plan

By Rachel La Corte, Associated Press  •    •  Posted 2020-12-17 14:47:50

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee (D) on Tuesday announced several climate-related proposals for the next legislative session, including fully reinstating a plan to cap carbon pollution in the state.
“We can fight climate change, and we can create good-paying jobs by transitioning to a cleaner energy economy,” Inslee said at a news conference announcing his plan. “We know these actions are required now. We cannot kick this can down the road anymore.” [ read more … ]

New Mexico land commissioner ends freshwater sales for oil and gas

By Associated Press  •    •  Posted 2020-12-17 14:48:22

The New Mexico State Land Office announced Tuesday that it will be halting the practice of allowing freshwater to be pumped from state trust land and sold for use in oil and gas development. Land Commissioner Stephanie Garcia Richard detailed the shift in policy in a letter to companies that hold easements that grant access to trust land for pumping fresh water. Under the change, existing easements will not be renewed once they expire, and no new easements will be issued. [ read more … ]

Warming takes toll on Montanans’ health — study

By Daniel Cusick, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2020-12-17 14:49:08

Montana prides itself as a vibrant outdoorsy state, a place where ranchers, lumberjacks, hikers and miners toil under the summer sun, then take refuge for months during long brutal winters.
But Big Sky Country is taking a health hit from climate change, challenging its reputation for hardiness and vitality, experts say in a new study. [ read more … ]

The Transition

Biden taps N.M. Rep. Deb Haaland for Interior secretary

By Michael Doyle, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2020-12-17 14:45:03

President-elect Joe Biden will nominate New Mexico Rep. Deb Haaland (D) to serve as Interior secretary. If confirmed by the Senate, the 60-year-old avowedly progressive lawmaker will be the first Native American to head the sprawling department whose responsibilities range from tribal affairs to the management of some 500 million acres of public land. A member of the Laguna Pueblo tribe, Haaland has posted a green record during her single House term representing an Albuquerque-based congressional district. She was comfortably reelected last month 58% to 42%.
[ read more … ]

Biden picks top North Carolina environmental official to run EPA

By Brady Dennis, Steven Mufson and Juliet Eilperin, Washington Post  •    •  Posted 2020-12-17 14:45:20

President-elect Joe Biden will choose to nominate Michael S. Regan, who heads the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality, as the next Environmental Protection Agency administrator, according to two individuals who spoke on the condition of anonymity because it has not yet been formally announced. He would play a central role in realizing Biden’s promises to combat climate change, embrace green energy and address environmental racism. As administrator of the EPA, he would be responsible for crafting fuel-efficiency standards for the nation’s cars and trucks, overseeing emissions from power plants and oil and gas facilities, and cleaning up the country’s most polluted sites. [ read more … ]

Climate stars surround Biden. Where does EPA fit in?

By Jean Chemnick, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2020-12-17 14:48:43

President-elect Joe Biden has picked superstars to advance his global warming agenda. The expected appointment this week of former EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy to oversee Biden’s domestic climate policy comes after he tapped former Democratic presidential nominee and Secretary of State John Kerry to represent his climate priorities abroad.
[ read more … ]

Biden’s Twin Climate Chiefs, McCarthy and Kerry, Face a Monumental Task

By Coral Davenport and Lisa Friedman, New York Times  •    •  Posted 2020-12-17 14:50:05

One of President-elect Joseph R. Biden’s loftiest campaign pledges was to reimagine the federal government to enforce new climate policies everywhere he can, while reclaiming the global climate leadership role abandoned by President Trump — objectives with few precedents and many barriers. His choice this week of Gina McCarthy to lead a new White House office on climate policy firms up his strategy for achieving them, both domestically and on the world stage. [ read more … ]

Grid

Huge federal hack ripples across energy industry

By Christian Vasquez, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2020-12-17 14:47:11

Electric utilities are grappling with the fallout from one of the most significant cyber intrusions in years, as the far-reaching impact of a sophisticated hacking campaign comes into sharper focus. Four days after the supply chain cyberattack on IT service provider SolarWinds was revealed, details on its global victims — from federal agencies to oil and electricity companies — are still emerging [ read more … ]

FERC

Will Biden inherit a politicized FERC?

By Arianna Skibell, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2020-12-17 14:46:01

President Trump’s demotion last month of Neil Chatterjee, the former chairman of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, is raising a key question: Has the agency been politicized? Chatterjee’s unseating was viewed by many as a retribution for his comments supportive of climate action and his refusal to go along with the Trump administration’s governmentwide ban on diversity training events. Such an act by a sitting president against the head of an independent agency is rare, if not unprecedented, observers said. [ read more … ]

EVs

This Is the Dawning of the Age of the Battery

By Nathaniel Bullard, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted 2020-12-17 14:45:35

The lithium-ion battery that billions of people carry daily in their mobile phones is a Nobel Prize-winning scientific achievement. We’ve been living in the age of the lithium-ion battery ever since the 1990s via our camcorders, laptops, smart watches, and drones. In the last decade, these little batteries have started to transform the transport and electricity sectors as surely as they did consumer electronics. New data shows how far batteries have come in a short time, and hint at how much further they’ll go. [ read more … ]

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