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Governors' Wind Energy Coalition

July 10, 2022

Top Story

‘A ‘Wow’ moment’: US renewable energy hit record 28% in April. What’s driving the change?

By Elizabeth Weise, USA TODAY  •    •  Posted 2022-07-10 15:53:51

The amount of electricity generated by renewable resources hit a record 28% in April, a breakthrough number that shows how important renewable energy has become in U.S. energy markets. “It’s a ‘Wow’ moment,” said Peter Kelly-Detwiler, an energy analyst and author of “The Energy Switch,” a recent book about the transition to a carbon-free energy economy. [ read more … ]

Solar Energy

Electric buses to tap solar power using new method for D.C. region

By Gaya Gupta, Washington Post  •    •  Posted 2022-07-10 15:54:14

The microgrid will use energy that originates from solar panels at a bus depot rather than the traditional electricity grid — the process used by most transit agencies with electric buses. The transition comes as jurisdictions across the country are looking to electrify their bus fleets to battle climate change and amid financial windfalls from last year’s infrastructure law, which includes $109 billion for transit. [ read more … ]


The silver lining for EPA in Supreme Court climate ruling

By Jean Chemnick, E&E News  •    •  Posted 2022-07-10 15:55:29

Red-state and coal industry petitioners achieved their primary goal in challenging the long-defunct Clean Power Plan. The court’s decision ensures that for the foreseeable future, EPA will not interpret its Clean Air Act authority as allowing for a rule that shifts generation from fossil fuels to renewables energy. It also guarantees that EPA will write its rules, like the two draft regulations for power plants due out early next year, under a cloud of legal uncertainty that is likely to limit their scope. But the high court’s ruling did not address a bid by the Trump administration’s EPA to limit future administrations to rules that require only a handful of heat-rate improvements at individual fossil fuel power plants. Analyses have shown that such a limit could actually add to emissions by lengthening the useful life of some coal-fired power plants. [ read more … ]

Supreme Court takes aim at agency power

By Pamela King, E&E News  •    •  Posted 2022-07-10 15:56:09

“I’m so struck by the aggressiveness and recklessness of the Supreme Court today, that they have taken a lot of settled regimes and broken them, and they don’t seem to care,” said Georgetown University law professor Lisa Heinzerling. “The chaos and the human harm coming from their decision in Dobbs is terrible, and they don’t seem to mind,” she continued, referring to the court’s decision last month to overturn its landmark 1973 abortion ruling Roe v. Wade. “That, I guess, I would apply to the government too. I think they’re breaking it.”
[ read more … ]

Supreme Court ruling shakes up 5th Circuit nuclear case

By Niina H. Farah, E&E News  •    •  Posted 2022-07-10 15:54:44

Texas’ Republican Attorney General Ken Paxton is looking to extend the implications of the Supreme Court’s landmark climate ruling in West Virginia v. EPA  to the federal government’s jurisdiction over nuclear waste storage. The justices’ argument that EPA had violated the “major questions” doctrine in its 2015 greenhouse gas regulation for power plants also applied to Texas’ federal appeals court challenge to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s authority to issue a license for a private facility to store radioactive waste in the Permian Basin, Paxton argued in a court filing this week. The legal doctrine states that Congress has to clearly delegate authority to federal agencies to act when they are seeking to draft rules that are politically and economically significant.
[ read more … ]


How Utah Olympic bid could bolster shift to clean energy

By Jason Plautz, E&E News  •    •  Posted 2022-07-10 15:55:13

Two decades after hosting the Winter Olympics, Salt Lake City is vying to bring the event back to Utah, with major implications for the state’s electricity mix. This time, the city will have to meet a pressing new demand from the International Olympic Committee (IOC): run a two-week, snow-based international sporting event and leave the climate better off than before.
[ read more … ]


Hope dims that U.S. can meet 2030 climate goals

By Benjamin Storrow, ER&E News  •    •  Posted 2022-07-10 15:55:52

Nearly everything needs to go right for America to reach the climate targets set by President Joe Biden. So far, very little has. The Supreme Court has limited EPA’s authority to craft greenhouse gas regulations for power plants. A major legislative push ended in failure after running into opposition from Sen. Joe Manchin, a conservative Democrat from West Virginia. And the political landscape has been dramatically altered by a runup in energy prices, with gasoline prices briefly averaging $5 per gallon last month. [ read more … ]


Legal challenges loom for reinstated EJ tool

By Kelsey Brugger. E&E News  •    •  Posted 2022-07-10 15:56:31

EPA Administrator Michael Regan made a surprise appearance at a recent enforcement meeting to implore his agents to use a revived environmental justice tool that the Trump administration had killed. He talked up supplemental environmental projects, or SEPs, a program that allows violators of environmental crimes to fund a green project like a solar installation or air pollution monitors in exchange for a lesser fine. “EPA believes that supplemental environmental projects (SEPs) are a valuable enforcement tool and is pleased that they are once again a part of EPA’s enforcement program,” a spokesperson said in an email when asked about the meeting. “They have been an important component of the EPA’s enforcement program for over 30 years.” [ read more … ]

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