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Governors' Wind Energy Coalition

March 7, 2021

Top Story

Sources: Vineyard Wind decision expected soon

By Benjamin Storrow and Heather Richards, E&E News reporters  •    •  Posted 2021-03-07 14:39:35

The Interior Department is nearing a decision on the first large offshore wind facility in the United States, a verdict that could become a landmark for President Biden’s climate agenda. Sources said the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management could announce a final environmental review of the project as early as this week. [ read more … ]

Wind Energy

Wind Power Was Thriving in Texas. Then Came the Freeze.

By Russell Gold, Wall Street Journal  •    •  Posted 2021-03-07 14:36:04

The Texas wind industry suffered a devastating financial blow during last month’s electricity crisis, which hit roughly half of the state’s wind farms and may force some to seek bankruptcy protection or relinquish control to Wall Street. With ample breezes and open spaces, the Lone Star State has become the biggest producer of wind power in the U.S. It now derives roughly 23% of its power on an annual basis from the renewable energy source. [ read more … ]

Democrats look to expand rural wind

By MATTHEW CHOI AND KELSEY TAMBORRINO, Politico  •    •  Posted 2021-03-07 14:37:34

Sens. Amy Klobuchar (Minn.) and Michael Bennet (Colo.), along with Rep. Earl Blumenauer of Oregon, are introducing legislation today to expand the small wind investment tax credit in a bid to help small businesses and farmers offset the costs of developing small, distributed wind systems. The Rural Wind Energy Modernization and Extension Act would nix the existing 100-kilowatt nameplate capacity limit and replace it with a maximum wind turbine size of 10 megawatts. [ read more … ]

Biden Administration

McCarthy: Regulation alone won’t meet 2030 climate goals

By Jean Chemnick, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2021-03-07 14:40:20

Climate adviser Gina McCarthy said yesterday that the White House is looking at new ways to meet its anticipated carbon goals for 2030, an indication that regulations alone won’t drive down emissions fast enough. In virtual remarks to CERAWeek by IHS Markit, an energy industry conference, the former EPA administrator said that while climate rules on power plants and cars will play a role in phasing down emissions, “it’s really important for this not to just be looked at as a regulatory challenge.” [ read more … ]

Biden eyes quick bill movement after bipartisan huddle

By Nick Sobczyk, Kelsey Brugger and Timothy Cama, E&E News reporters  •    •  Posted 2021-03-07 14:38:04

President Biden last week sat down with lawmakers from both parties to hash out a cornerstone of his campaign promise: the infrastructure piece of Build Back Better. In the Oval Office — flanked by Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg, Vice President Kamala Harris, and members of the House Infrastructure and Transportation Committee — the president told reporters beforehand the group would explore “what we’re going to do across the board to lead the world in infrastructure.”

[ read more … ]

Deputy secretary pick vows action on grid, minerals

By Jeremy Dillon, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2021-03-07 14:38:27

President Biden’s pick for Department of Energy deputy secretary breezed through a confirmation hearing yesterday, with commitments to address transmission and critical mineral concerns.
David Turk is poised to receive bipartisan support after lawmakers on the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee appeared to welcome his responses and lengthy energy experience. [ read more … ]

A new kind of climate expert enters CEQ

By Benjamin Storrow, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2021-03-07 14:40:42

In early December, Jane Flegal was asked for her “optimal policy mix” to address climate change. Flegal was a program officer with the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation at the time, a position from which she was able to steer money to many of America’s preeminent climate researchers, nonprofits and advocacy groups.
[ read more … ]

Blackout

State regulators don’t back $16B fix

By Edward Klump, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2021-03-07 14:36:56

Texas regulators chose not to revise wholesale prices in the state’s main power region despite a market monitor’s report that a power crisis last month led to $16 billion in excessive charges. Arthur D’Andrea, chairman of the Public Utility Commission of Texas, said parties made decisions about prices in real time based on information available to all market participants. [ read more … ]

$16B error? Watchdog, ERCOT pitch power grid changes

By Edward Klump, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2021-03-07 14:39:59

Texas’ power crisis has no shortage of eye-popping numbers, and yesterday brought another one: $16 billion. That’s how much was charged incorrectly as extreme winter weather last month threw Texas electricity prices into turmoil, according to an independent market monitor. Potomac Economics said the Electric Reliability Council of Texas shouldn’t have held prices at an inflated level during Feb. 18 and part of Feb. 19. [ read more … ]

Markets

Gasoline Heads Toward $3 in U.S. For First Time in Six Years

By Jeffrey Bair, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted 2021-03-07 14:39:16

A record plunge in gasoline stockpiles last week is threatening to raise pump prices across America above $3 a gallon for the first time in six years. Inventories fell by 13.6 million barrels — the most in weekly data that goes back to 1990 — after a deep freeze paralyzed much of the Gulf Coast refining sector, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Demand for the fuel meanwhile rose by the most since May. [ read more … ]

EVs

Electric Vehicles Are the U.S. Auto Industry’s Future—If Dealers Can Figure Out How to Sell Them

By Nora Naughton and photographs by Whitney Curtis, Wall Street Journal  •    •  Posted 2021-03-07 14:35:32

Car dealer Brad Sowers is spending money to prepare for the coming wave of new electric models from General Motors Co. But when he considers how many plug-in Chevy Bolts he sold last year—nine, out of the nearly 4,000 Chevrolets sold at his Missouri dealerships—it gives him pause. “The consumer in the middle of America just isn’t there yet,” when it comes to switching to electric vehicles, he said, citing the long distances many of his customers drive daily and a lack of charging infrastructure outside major cities. [ read more … ]

GM Looking to Build Second Battery Factory in U.S.

By Ben Foldy and Mike Colias, Wall Street Journal  •    •  Posted 2021-03-07 14:37:15

General Motors Co. GM -1.22% is looking to build a second battery factory in the U.S. with joint-venture partner LG Chem Ltd. 051910 4.51% , the latest move in the Detroit auto maker’s efforts to expand its investment in electric vehicles. A GM spokesman confirmed to The Wall Street Journal that the companies are exploring building a second battery-cell plant and said a decision could come in the first half of this year. GM and LG are close to completing a decision to locate the plant in Tennessee, said people familiar with the matter. A final selection hasn’t yet been made, the people said. [ read more … ]

German carmakers battle to save the internal combustion engine

By Joshua Posaner, Politico  •    •  Posted 2021-03-07 14:38:48

 The German car industry has launched a preemptive PR campaign to keep gasoline and diesel cars around as long as possible. The fear is that the European Commission’s upcoming push to set tougher emissions rules for cars and trucks — called Euro 7 — will lead to Brussels announcing the end of internal combustion engine vehicles. [ read more … ]

 

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