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Governors' Wind Energy Coalition

April 19, 2022

Top Story

The Renewable-Energy Revolution Will Need Renewable Storage

By Matthew Hutson, The New Yorker  •    •  Posted 2022-04-19 15:31:15

The German word Dunkelflaute means “dark doldrums.” It chills the hearts of renewable-energy engineers, who use it to refer to the lulls when solar panels and wind turbines are thwarted by clouds, night, or still air. On a bright, cloudless day, a solar farm can generate prodigious amounts of electricity; when it’s gusty, wind turbines whoosh neighborhoods to life. But at night solar cells do little, and in calm air turbines sit useless. These renewable energy sources stop renewing until the weather, or the planet, turns. [ read more … ]

Wind Energy

N.Y. utility’s $1B plan targets offshore wind’s grid problem

By David Iaconangelo, E&E News  •    •  Posted 2022-04-19 15:32:15

One of New York’s biggest utilities is asking regulators for permission to build a $1 billion grid hub that connects massive volumes of offshore wind to an old fossil fuel site, underscoring a challenge facing emissions plans that envision a surge in renewables. Known as the Brooklyn Clean Energy Hub, the plan was presented by Consolidated Edison Inc. to the state Public Service Commission (PSC) last week. It seeks to resolve what energy officials in New York and other East Coast states have identified as a looming obstacle to their climate goals: a lack of grid interconnection points for offshore wind. [ read more … ]

Solar Energy

Probe Threatens Southeast Asia’s Role as U.S.’s Top Solar Supplier

By Niharika Mandhana, Wall Street Journal  •    •  Posted 2022-04-19 15:31:57

For the past five years, Southeast Asia has ranked as America’s top source of solar panels from abroad, driven in large part by Chinese manufacturers who expanded into the region after the U.S. in 2012 imposed duties on exports from China. A new U.S. probe has cast a shadow over that growth run. Washington wants to know how much China-made material is used in solar panels shipped from Malaysia, Vietnam, Thailand and Cambodia—countries that accounted for 85% of American imports last year. It is investigating whether producers do small-time processing in these countries to skirt tariffs while reaching back into China-based supply chains for critical components.  [ read more … ]

Nuclear Energy

U.S. Is Set to Launch a $6 Billion Effort to Save Nuclear Plants

By Ari Natter, Bloomberg News  •    •  Posted 2022-04-19 15:30:53

The Energy Department is expected to provide details as soon as Monday on a $6 billion program aimed at keeping uneconomical nuclear plants in service, providing a lifeline to an industry that’s seen a raft of early reactor retirements driven by competition from cheaper power sources.  The program, funded through the $550 billion infrastructure bill signed into law last year, will let owners and operators of commercial nuclear reactors apply for credits for plants that are likely to shut down for economic reasons if the closures would lead to higher emissions. The agency is set to issue a guidance document this week detailing the application process. [ read more … ]

States

Put it in the books

BY MATTHEW CHOI, Politico  •    •  Posted 2022-04-19 15:31:40

Pennsylvania will be publishing the regulation entering the state into the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative this Saturday, according to a court document published Monday . That would put the state on track to start levying a price on carbon for power sector polluters starting July 1, though further legal challenges to the state’s participation are widely expected. Pennsylvania would be the first major energy-producing state to join the initiative.
[ read more … ]

Biden Administration

How mining for clean energy could undermine Biden’s EJ goals

By Jael Holzman, Scott Waldman, E&E News  •    •  Posted 2022-04-19 15:33:02

The Biden administration has said it is activating all the levers of government to advance environmental justice for people of color. However, one of President Joe Biden’s own policies for climate action might challenge his commitment to racial equity. Earlier this month, Biden invoked a wartime law to free up federal funds for domestic mining activities for five metals sought by manufacturers of zero-carbon energy products: lithium, cobalt, nickel, graphite and manganese. It was a move that, if successful, could help open mines across the country to support the production of electric vehicles and other technologies that are needed to reduce the country’s use of fossil fuels. [ read more … ]

Inside Biden’s sparsely staffed, high-pressure environmental shop

By Robin Bravender, Kelsey Brugger, E&E News  •    •  Posted 2022-04-19 15:32:45

President Joe Biden has promised ambitious policies that promote renewable energy, advance environmental justice and slash greenhouse gas emissions. At the nexus of it all: a tiny environmental policy shop that Biden promised to elevate but remains woefully understaffed. The Council on Environmental Quality is a Nixon-era office whose primary mandate is to oversee the National Environmental Policy Act, a 1969 law that requires federal agencies to blunt the environmental impacts of projects like building new highways, renewable energy projects on public lands and the construction of federal buildings. [ read more … ]

Off-Topic

Scott Pruitt wants to come back to D.C. Will Trump help?

By Robin Bravender, Timothy Cama, E&E News  •    •  Posted 2022-04-19 15:30:27

Heading EPA didn’t work out for Scott Pruitt. Now he’s hoping to mount a political comeback with a run for the U.S. Senate. Pruitt, who served as former President Donald Trump’s first EPA administrator until he left the agency under a cloud of ethics scandals, filed paperwork last week to run as Oklahoma’s next senator. [ read more … ]

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