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Governors' Wind Energy Coalition

January 14, 2021

Top Story

Iowa capital adopts first-of-a-kind clean energy plan

By Jeffrey Tomich, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2021-01-13 16:20:47

Iowa’s capital has adopted what is thought to be the strongest clean electricity goal of any U.S. city — to run on renewable energy around the clock by 2035. The Des Moines City Council voted unanimously Monday night to adopt a resolution to establish the 24/7 clean energy goal, which aligns with President-elect Joe Biden’s climate plan to eliminate carbon emissions from the U.S. power sector in the same time frame. The resolution requiring around-the-clock clean energy passed despite some earlier pushback by some council members and a warning by utility MidAmerican Energy last month that achieving the goal would lead to steep increases in electricity rates. [ read more … ]

Wind & Solar Energy

Wind, solar to make up 70% of new US generation in 2021 while batteries gain momentum: EIA

By Emma Penrod, Utility Dive  •    •  Posted 2021-01-13 16:20:32

Wind and solar will represent more than two-thirds of new energy production to come online in 2021, while battery storage capacity is set to quadruple over the next year, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA). Two-thirds of new solar projects are now built in tandem with energy storage, according to Sam Newell, a principal analyst for The Brattle Group. [ read more … ]

Clean Power Plan

Trump leaves ‘banana peel’ for Biden climate team

By Jean Chemnick, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2021-01-13 16:22:16

Two years ago, EPA officials proposed relaxing Obama-era carbon regulations on new power plants after arguing that the rules relied on unready technology and would cripple the coal-fired power industry. Then in a surprise move yesterday, the agency posted a final rule that does nothing to change those regulations. Instead it doubles down on an issue that was raised only in a footnote in the December 2018 proposal: whether EPA should create a new metric for which industrial sectors contribute to climate change enough to trigger regulation.
[ read more … ]

The Transition

How the Supreme Court could upend Biden’s green agenda

By Jeremy P. Jacobs and Pamela King, E&E News reporters  •    •  Posted 2021-01-13 16:22:58

Federal courts could stand in the way of President-elect Joe Biden’s efforts to undo the Trump administration’s environmental rollbacks and stymie any efforts to take bold climate action, legal experts say. Biden’s team will need to quickly develop a nimble courtroom strategy, first deciding what to do about the dozens of Trump environmental rules currently tied up in litigation. And the incoming administration will have to tread carefully in promulgating any new, far-reaching climate regimes, recognizing that it faces a court system with more than 230 Trump appointees — including a new 6-3 conservative majority on the Supreme Court. [ read more … ]


Covid-19 Took a Bite From U.S. Greenhouse Gas Emissions in 2020

By Brad Plumer, New York Times  •    •  Posted 2021-01-13 16:21:47

America’s greenhouse gas emissions from energy and industry plummeted more than 10 percent in 2020, reaching their lowest levels in at least three decades as the coronavirus pandemic slammed the brakes on the nation’s economy, according to an estimate published Tuesday by the Rhodium Group. The steep drop, however, was the result of extraordinary circumstances and experts warned that the country still faced enormous challenges in getting its planet-warming pollution under control. In the years ahead, United States emissions are widely expected to bounce back once the pandemic recedes and the economy rumbles back to life — unless policymakers take stronger action to clean up the country’s power plants, factories, cars and trucks. [ read more … ]


Group unveils path to 100% EV sales by 2030

By Maxine Joselow, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2021-01-13 16:22:33

A clean transportation lobbying group yesterday rolled out an action plan that it says would help the United States reach 100% electric vehicle sales by 2030. The policy platform from the Zero Emission Transportation Association outlines the most significant steps that President-elect Joe Biden and the 117th Congress can take to phase out sales of fossil fuel-powered vehicles within the next decade. Chief among those steps are expanding the federal EV tax credit, investing $30 billion in EV charging infrastructure and setting aggressive new clean car standards. [ read more … ]

GM venture takes aim at EV frontier: Delivery vans

By David Ferris, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2021-01-13 16:20:16

The next red-hot center of the electric vehicle market isn’t tough pickup trucks or sedans that go by at a blur. It’s big boxes that deliver boxes. That became clear yesterday, when General Motors Co. CEO Mary Barra used her keynote address at a big consumer electronics show to unveil an electric delivery van, and a little sidekick that shuttles parcels from the curb. The offerings are part of a new GM business unit called BrightDrop, which will launch America’s largest automaker into the realm of commercial logistics that most people associate with companies like FedEx Corp. and Inc. News of the venture sent GM’s stock soaring to record highs.
[ read more … ]

Climate Change

Why climate critics were sidelined in Trump’s final days

By Scott Waldman, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2021-01-13 16:21:11

A last-ditch effort by climate critics to cement their views in the public record fell apart yesterday after two of their own were summarily dismissed by White House officials. The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) removed climate denialist David Legates yesterday after it was revealed that he attempted to publish cherry-picked and incomplete claims about global warming. Legates, along with NOAA chief scientist Ryan Maue, were “relieved of duties” at the White House after it was revealed they were part of an effort to publish a series of flyers that blamed climate change on solar energy and natural variability, among other misleading assertions. [ read more … ]


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