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Governors' Wind Energy Coalition

April 1, 2021

Top Story

Biden’s Big Bet: Tackling Climate Change Will Create Jobs, Not Kill Them

By Coral Davenport, Noam Scheiber and Lisa Friedman, New York Times  •    •  Posted 2021-04-01 10:01:19

President Biden traveled to Pittsburgh to try to make the opposite case: that the workers Mr. Trump was appealing to have more to gain from combating climate change than to lose. It is going to be a tough bet. To Mr. Biden, a $2 trillion infrastructure plan is about creating union jobs, hundreds of thousands of them, in wind and solar power, electric cars and road- and bridge-building. Even those more basic infrastructure projects would have a climate angle: the new roads and bridges would be built to withstand the high waters and brutal storms of a changing climate. [ read more … ]

Wind Energy

World’s Biggest Wind Farm May Be Answer to Korea’s Net-Zero Dream

By Heesu Lee and Will Mathis, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted 2021-04-01 09:59:28

The 48.5 trillion won ($42.8 billion) wind farm, to be built over the next decade off the southwest coast of the country, would generate up to 8.2 gigawatts of power, one of a catalog of grand projects the government wants to roll out with private sector backing to meet its ambition of becoming carbon neutral by 2050. It’s a momentous challenge. South Korea’s industrial ascent since the 1960s has made it one of the world’s top 10 energy users, with electricity consumption per capita ahead of both Japan and Germany. And two thirds of that comes from fossil fuels. Renewable energy accounted for only 6.5% of South Korea’s generation in 2019, with nuclear making up the balance. [ read more … ]

Battery Storage

To Avoid Blackouts, California’s Installing More Big Batteries Than All of China

By David R Baker, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted 2021-04-01 10:02:07

With summer’s heat approaching, California’s plan for avoiding a repeat of last year’s blackouts hinges on a humble savior – the battery. Giant versions of the same technology that powers smart phones and cars are being plugged into the state’s electrical grid at breakneck speed, with California set to add more battery capacity this year than all of China, according to BloombergNEF. [ read more … ]

Clean Energy Standard

Biden’s infrastructure plan aims to turbocharge U.S. shift from fossil fuels

By Steven Mufson and Juliet Eilperin, Washington Post  •    •  Posted 2021-04-01 10:00:14

The linchpin of Biden’s plan, which he detailed in a speech Wednesday in Pittsburgh, is the creation of a national standard requiring utilities to use a specific amount of solar, wind and other renewable energy to power American homes, businesses and factories. The amount would increase over time, cutting the nation’s use of coal, gas and oil over the next 15 years. While 30 states and the District of Columbia already direct their utilities to include some portion of renewable energy, Biden’s strategy would amount to the most sweeping federal intervention in the electricity sector in generations. [ read more … ]

Transmission

Biden’s Big Infrastructure Plan Would Further Boost Renewable Energy

By Russell Gold, Wall Street Journal  •    •  Posted 2021-04-01 10:01:39

President Biden’s $2.3 trillion infrastructure plan would supercharge an already booming clean-power sector by expanding subsidies and addressing key bottlenecks impeding the shift to a greener grid. The plan, unveiled Wednesday, calls for the creation of a new tax credit to support the construction of high-voltage transmission lines, a major roadblock for the build-out of renewable energy. It also proposes a 10-year extension of wind, solar and battery tax credits, which are currently set to be phased out in coming years. [ read more … ]

EVs

Biden’s Push for Electric Cars: $174 Billion, 10 Years and a Bit of Luck

By Niraj Chokshi, New York Times  •    •  Posted 2021-04-01 10:00:33

The $2 trillion infrastructure plan that he unveiled on Wednesday is aimed at tackling climate change in part by spending up to $174 billion to encourage Americans to switch to cars and trucks that run on electricity, not gasoline or diesel. That is a large investment but it might not be enough to push most Americans toward E.V.s. Despite rapid growth in recent years, electric vehicles remain a niche product, making up just 2 percent of the new car market and 1 percent of all cars, sport-utility vehicles, vans and pickup trucks on the road. They have been slow to take off in large part because they can cost up to $10,000 more than similar conventional cars and trucks. Charging E.V.s is also more difficult and slower than simply refilling the tank at far more prevalent gas station [ read more … ]

‘Chargers Everywhere’: Biden Maps $174 Billion Path for EV Boom

By Keith Laing and Ari Natter, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted 2021-04-01 10:02:36

The U.S. auto industry sees President Joe Biden’s infrastructure package as accelerating a global shift toward electric vehicles, thanks to the $174 billion proposed for charging stations, planned consumer rebates for American-made EVs and a pledge to electrify the government’s fleet. The proposal, which requires congressional approval, is likely to be targeted by progressives as too little in scope and by Republicans as unfairly using taxpayer funds to help the alternative energy sector while harming others, such as the oil industry. Market researchers, oil-energy advocates and other critics warn that it may not be enough to make a dent in the sale of gas guzzlers in the U.S. any time soon. [ read more … ]

NAS: U.S. fuel efficiency policy ‘rapidly becoming outdated’

By Alex Guillén, Politico  •    •  Posted 2021-04-01 10:03:13

Congress and federal agencies should take steps to foster the growth of electric vehicles, including updating a 46-year-old fuel economy law and expanding tax credits and other purchase subsidies, according to a Wednesday report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine. [ read more … ]

Clean Energy Policy & Politics

It’s green and new. But Biden’s deal aims for the center

By Adam Aton, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2021-04-01 16:19:56

“It’s a once-in-a-generation investment in America, unlike anything we’ve seen or done since we built the interstate highway system and the space race decades ago,” Biden said. “In fact, it’s the largest American jobs investment since World War II.” That’s more than just symbolism. Biden has scaled back his climate plans from when he was a candidate stumping in President Franklin Roosevelt’s Warm Springs, Ga., retreat. He’s proposing to spend less money, less quickly. That’s already turning off progressives, and it could put Biden’s own climate goals — already the minimum needed to avoid catastrophic warming, scientists say — further out of reach. [ read more … ]

Biden’s Infrastructure Plan Meets Skepticism, Signaling Fight to Come

By Emily Cochrane, New York Times  •    •  Posted 2021-04-01 10:00:52

Republicans on Capitol Hill began lining up on Wednesday against President Biden’s $2 trillion infrastructure plan and the tax increases he proposed to finance it, even as some Democrats suggested that the package was insufficient to address the country’s aging infrastructure and vulnerabilities to climate change. While most Democrats showered praise on Mr. Biden for the expansive package, the critiques from members of both parties illustrated that infrastructure legislation, once seen as a promising area of bipartisan compromise, is unlikely to sail through this Congress with widespread support from both sides. [ read more … ]

For Climate Progressives, Biden’s $2.25 Trillion Isn’t Enough

By Leslie Kaufman and Brian Eckhouse, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted 2021-04-01 09:59:06

“Today I find myself caught between two truths,” said Varshini Prakash, executive director of the youth climate activist group the Sunrise Movement. “This infrastructure plan is a historic step forward that would not have been possible without us,” she said, referring to fellow young protesters and advocates of the Green New Deal. And yet, “so much more is needed to reach the scale of what is necessary to truly transform this country to stop the climate crisis.” [ read more … ]

 

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