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Governors' Wind Energy Coalition

February 14, 2022

Top Story

Renewables backlog plan for PJM region met with mixed reviews

By Miranda Willson, E&E News  •    •  Posted 2022-02-14 14:57:37

The largest U.S. grid operator advanced a plan last week to ease bottlenecks holding back thousands of solar and wind projects, but critics say it means future projects may face even longer delays. The plan from PJM Interconnection LLC seeks to address a surge of requests from renewable energy developers waiting to connect their projects to the grid system. [ read more … ]

Climate

The Great Climate Backslide: How Governments Are Regressing Worldwide

By Bloomberg News  •    •  Posted 2022-02-14 14:58:59

At the conclusion of COP26 in November, summit chairman Alok Sharma praised the “heroic efforts” by nations showing they can rise above their differences and unite to tackle climate change, an outcome he said “the world had come to doubt.”  Turns out the world was right to be skeptical.  Three months on, a toxic combination of political intransigence, an energy crisis and pandemic-driven economic realities has cast doubt on the progress made in Scotland. If 2021 was marked by optimism that the biggest polluters were finally willing to set ambitious net-zero targets, 2022 already threatens to be the year of global backsliding.  [ read more … ]

Judge blocks key Biden climate metric

By Niina H. Farah, E&E News  •    •  Posted 2022-02-14 14:56:42

A federal judge last week barred the Biden administration from using a contested measure of the societal risks of climate change. Judge James Cain of the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Louisiana issued a preliminary injunction preventing federal agencies from using the social cost of carbon after finding that the metric’s application had increased regulatory costs for red states. The social cost of carbon puts a dollar value on a metric ton of greenhouse gas emissions and is used in rulemakings to determine the potential benefits of controlling releases of carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide. [ read more … ]

With climate bill stalled, Democrats push EJ agenda

By Emma Dumain, E&E News  •    •  Posted 2022-02-14 14:58:21

House Natural Resources Chair Raúl Grijalva is ready to put his party’s signature environmental justice legislation back in the spotlight. On Tuesday, the Arizona Democrat will convene the first hearing since late 2020 on the “Environmental Justice for All Act,” which would provide more protection for communities and individuals affected by pollution and environmental safety hazards. [ read more … ]

States

Memory of Deadly Freeze Looms Large in Texas Oil-Regulator Election

By Joe Carroll and Sergio Chapa, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted 2022-02-14 14:59:26

When Texans cast their ballots this election cycle, they won’t just be choosing candidates: They’ll be broadcasting whether they think the sitting politicians during last year’s deadly freeze share any of the blame. The battle to join the Texas Railroad Commission—which, despite its name, is one of the world’s most powerful energy regulators—is now under way. The race is the closest thing yet to a referendum on the handling of a historic storm that killed more than 200 people and paralyzed the second-largest U.S. state for almost a week. [ read more … ]

EVs

Who wants Biden’s EV-charging money? Everybody

By David Ferris, E&E News  •    •  Posted 2022-02-14 14:57:15

Last week, the Biden administration kicked off the process of spending a historic $7.5 billion on electric vehicle charging. The goal is nothing less than “building the necessary infrastructure for drivers across America,” Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm said in a statement. Americans, it turns out, are chock-full of ideas for how to spend that money, with demands so large and diverse that $7.5 billion starts to look like the thinnest of down payments.
[ read more … ]

Sticking With Gas-Guzzlers Over EVs Could Delay Postal Upgrade

BY Jennifer A Dlouhy, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted 2022-02-14 14:57:01

The U.S. Postal Service is expected in coming days to reaffirm its plan to pay Oshkosh Corp. as much as $6 billion over 10 years to replace an aging fleet of red-white-and blue delivery vans with mostly gasoline-powered models instead of climate-friendly electric vehicles.  The service insists it’s the cheapest alternative. But its analysis is based on assumptions that critics and even other government agencies say are unrealistic, such as gasoline at $2.19 a gallon and charging stations that cost roughly $20,000 per facility. And those assumptions will form the bullseye of expected legal challenges that could stop Oshkosh’s assembly lines before they even start. [ read more … ]

U.S. Electric Mail Truck Push Stalls Without More Funding

By Devin Leonard, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted 2022-02-14 14:58:39

We all know the tribulations of the U.S. Postal Service. It’s losing billions of dollars a year, even as it’s delivering record numbers of packages, to say nothing of mail-in ballots, while struggling with Covid-related absences. Ben Franklin would be awed. Then there’s something else that’s hardly classified information: the woeful state of the agency’s delivery vehicles. The USPS operates a fleet of 228,000 trucks and vans, one of the world’s largest. Many of them have been on the road for more than a quarter of a century and lack basic safety functions such as automatic brakes and driver air bags. And their fuel efficiency is at a level that keeps climate activists awake at night. They get about 10 miles per gallon of gas — worse than a Humvee. [ read more … ]

Hydrogen Cars and Buses Seize the Spotlight at Beijing’s Winter Olympic Games

By Bloomberg News  •    •  Posted 2022-02-14 14:59:42

When Beijing hosted the 2008 Summer Olympic Games, it used the global spotlight to showcase the then-emerging technology of electric vehicles. Since then, EVs have moved from the fringe to the mainstream. China is the world’s biggest EV market, accounting for just over half of global sales in 2021. Worldwide, sales are forecast to top 10 million this year, and EV leader Tesla is the world’s most valuable automaker. So what does it say that China is now using the Winter Olympics to promote advances made in hydrogen-powered vehicles? [ read more … ]

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