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Governors' Wind Energy Coalition

July 29, 2021

Top Story

Biden wants to turn America’s auto fleet electric. It’s harder than it seems.

By Juliet Eilperin and Dino Grandoni, Washington Post  •    •  Posted 2021-07-29 15:44:17

Next week, the president, major carmakers and the nation’s largest auto union plan to promise to reach at least 40 percent by then — potentially rising to the 50 percent mark with generous federal investment. The voluntary pledge, which is still under negotiation, highlights the challenge the White House faces as it seeks to translate the president’s bold rhetoric into reality. With United Nations climate negotiations just 3½ months away, the administration is struggling with how to transform the transportation sector, America’s biggest driver of carbon emissions.
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Wind Energy

Why is a big oil company investing huge amounts of money in Wyoming wind?

By Stephen Robert Miller, The Guardian  •    •  Posted 2021-07-29 15:46:28

Some days, the wind rips across Wyoming’s southern plains at 70mph. Cottonwood trees bend, tall grass lies flat and 18-wheel trucks tip over along Interstate 80. It only takes a breeze of about 6mph to get the long white arms of an electricity-generating wind turbine turning, at full speed they can power thousands of homes. As one of the US’s windiest states, Wyoming has enormous potential to help power the country’s green revolution, but renewable energy in the west has long been dogged by a fundamental problem of transmission. Wind and solar farms tend to be located in remote areas separated from populated cities by hundreds of miles of rugged terrain, a tangle of government regulations and resistance from landowners who don’t want power lines buzzing over their yards. [ read more … ]

How Drones Help Workers Inspect Wind Turbines

By Saijel Kishan, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted 2021-07-29 15:45:02

Last summer, at a wind farm close to Washington state’s southern border, an autonomous drone levitated 80 meters to the top of a wind tower and maneuvered along one of its blades. There, just near the tip, it detected a small gash—too small for the naked eye. Had it gone unrepaired, water and ice could have seeped in and frozen once the weather turned colder. That would have expanded the tear, causing more serious damage to the fiberglass blade. [ read more … ]

Senate Infrastructure Bill

Bipartisan infrastructure pact clears key Senate vote after breakthrough in talks

By Tony Romm, Washington Post  •    •  Posted 2021-07-29 15:45:54

The day of breakthroughs began with news of a deal, as a bipartisan bloc of 10 negotiators coalesced around a package to upgrade the nation’s roads, bridges, pipes, ports and Internet connections. The announcement from some of the group’s leaders, including Sens. Rob Portman (R-Ohio) and Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.), capped off a series of frenetic talks that nearly collapsed amid behind-the-scenes battles about the new spending and how to pay for it.
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Democrats Call Infrastructure Bill a Down Payment on Climate

By Coral Davenport and Lisa Friedman, New York Times  •    •  Posted 2021-07-29 15:44:40

The $1 trillion infrastructure deal reached by a bipartisan group of senators on Wednesday would make a significant down payment on President Biden’s ambitious environmental agenda, including the first federal expenditure on electric vehicle charging stations and the largest investment in public transit and clean water systems in the nation’s history. The plan also includes the first federal spending designated for “climate resilience” — to adapt and rebuild roads, ports and bridges to withstand the damages wrought by the rising sea levels, stronger storms and more devastating heat waves that will come as the planet continues to warm. [ read more … ]

Infrastructure deal whittles down climate spending

By Adam Aton, E&E News  •    •  Posted 2021-07-29 15:45:18

Billions of dollars in climate spending have been cut from the bipartisan infrastructure deal. Public transit and electric vehicle spending could be roughly $20 billion lower under the infrastructure deal announced yesterday compared with the bipartisan framework that senators and the White House announced in June.
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States

100% clean power faces litmus test with new Ore. law

By Miranda Willson, E&E News  •    •  Posted 2021-07-29 15:45:37

Oregon Gov. Kate Brown (D) signed one of the nation’s most aggressive clean energy plans into law this week, setting up a stress test for how rapidly utilities can switch to 100 percent carbon-free resources without compromising reliability. With support from companies, labor groups and environmentalists, the plan requires the state’s largest utilities to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 80 percent below a baseline level by 2030, 90 percent below the same level by 2035 and 100 percent by 2040. The timeline is similar to one from President Biden calling for decarbonizing the nation’s electricity sector by 2035. [ read more … ]

Markets

U.S. Refiners Miss Out on America’s Fuel Boom Amid Setbacks

By Gerson Freitas, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted 2021-07-29 15:46:09

mericans are burning through gasoline and diesel like Covid-19 never happened, but U.S. fuel refiners aren’t cashing in as previously expected because of a confluence of headwinds. Refiners are struggling to source cheaper grades of oil and are instead resorting to more expensive imports. Some are paying record amounts to comply with the U.S. biofuel mandate. On top of all that, a glut of jet fuel due to lingering international travel restrictions is curbing what, in pre-pandemic times, would normally be a much bigger source of revenue. [ read more … ]

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