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Governors' Wind Energy Coalition

August 16, 2021

Top Story

In the West, a Connection Between Covid and Wildfires

By Winston Choi-Schagrin, New York Times  •    •  Posted 2021-08-16 15:54:20

Exposure to wildfire smoke during last summer’s wildfire season could be associated with thousands of additional coronavirus infections as well as hundreds of deaths, potentially causing an even greater challenge to public health officials in Washington, Oregon and California, a new study has found. Wildfire smoke contains high levels of the smallest, most dangerous type of soot known as PM 2.5. Researchers at Harvard University estimated that there were nearly 20,000 extra coronavirus infections and 750 Covid-19 deaths associated with exposure to wildfire smoke between March and December 2020 in the American West. The paper was published Friday in the journal Science Advances. [ read more … ]

Biden Administration

Biden’s pro-car, pro-gasoline moves leave green allies fuming

By BEN LEFEBVRE, CATHERINE BOUDREAUand TANYA SNYDER, Politico  •    •  Posted 2021-08-16 15:54:42

resident Joe Biden is pushing ambitious plans for tackling climate change by weaning the U.S. off fossil fuels — but he’s also taking short-term actions that would make it cheaper and more convenient for Americans to keep driving their gasoline-powered cars. The White House’s latest moves include imploring OPEC and Russia to increase oil production in the name of lowering fuel prices, as well as championing a trillion-dollar infrastructure deal loaded with money for new and wider highways. The Biden administration has also declined to block a series of oil pipeline projects — despite killing Keystone XL — and has greenlit drilling on leased federal land at a faster rate than former President Donald Trump’s agencies had. [ read more … ]

The other two-track approach

BY MATTHEW CHOI, Politico  •    •  Posted 2021-08-16 15:55:20

 The White House is baffling some environmentalists and Republicans over the contrast between its climate ambitions with what appears to be major concessions to fossil fuels. The administration requested OPEC+ increase its oil output to alleviate gas prices at home and greenlit drilling on federal lands at a faster rate than the Trump administration. The bipartisan infrastructure deal also contains big investments for priorities supported by the fossil fuel industry, including carbon capture and highway expansion. [ read more … ]

Biden wants a national efficiency standard. Would it work?

By Lesley Clark, E&E News  •    •  Posted 2021-08-16 15:55:02

But his administration has not offered details on the energy efficiency part, and it’s unlikely to be included in the Senate version of a clean electricity standard (CES) — now called a clean electricity payment program — that supporters hope to include in the sweeping $3.5 trillion Democratic budget resolution unveiled last week. The omission is frustrating advocates who say an efficiency standard could help slash emissions significantly and reduce the demand for energy. [ read more … ]


Amid Extreme Weather, a Shift Among Republicans on Climate Change

By Lisa Friedman and Coral Davenport, New York Times  •    •  Posted 2021-08-16 15:55:41

After a decade of disputing the existence of climate change, many leading Republicans are shifting their posture amid deadly heat waves, devastating drought and ferocious wildfires that have bludgeoned their districts and unnerved their constituents back home. Members of Congress who long insisted that the climate is changing due to natural cycles have notably adjusted that view, with many now acknowledging the solid science that emissions from burning oil, gas and coal have raised Earth’s temperature. [ read more … ]


Oil Giants Turn to Startups for Low-Carbon Energy Ideas

By Sarah McFarlane, Wall Street Journal  •    •  Posted 2021-08-16 15:56:00

Some of the world’s biggest oil companies are turning to startups to help plot their future. The moves come as several big oil companies work to reduce their dependence on fossil fuels and expand their low-carbon activities, partly in response to growing pressure from investors and governments to cut emissions. [ read more … ]


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