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Governors' Wind Energy Coalition

December 4, 2022

Top Story

The Texas Group Waging a National Crusade Against Climate Action

By David Gelles, New York Times  •    •  Posted 2022-12-04 10:38:59

“Just as the tobacco industry had front groups and the opioid industry had front groups, this is part of the fossil fuel disinformation playbook,” said David Michaels, an epidemiologist at the George Washington School of Public Health who has studied corporate influence campaigns. “The role of these so called policy organizations is not to provide useful information to the public, but to promote the interests of their sponsors, which are often antithetical to public health.” [ read more … ]

Wind Energy

Wind energy industry struggles to find qualified workers: NREL

By Diana DiGangi, Utility Dive  •    •  Posted 2022-12-04 10:39:20

A lack of early-career experience opportunities for potential wind energy workers is driving a “workforce gap,” according to two studies from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory. Wind energy workers are in particular demand as government at all levels increasingly moves toward zero-emissions goals. NREL’s reports, which suggest possible solutions such as cooperative education and apprenticeships, said 83% of the potential wind energy workforce has had “some or great difficulty” finding job opportunities in the industry. At the same time, 68% of wind energy employers had faced “some or great difficulty” finding qualified applicants. 
[ read more … ]

Solar Energy

Chinese Solar Manufacturers Dodged U.S. Tariffs, Probe Finds

By Yuka Hayashi, Wall Street Journal  •    •  Posted 2022-12-04 10:39:39

Four leading Chinese solar-cell manufacturers circumvented U.S. tariffs by routing some of their operations through Southeast Asia, a Commerce Department investigation found. The preliminary findings from the closely watched probe—disclosed Friday—are likely to accelerate importers’ race to find alternative sources either domestically or from other places abroad to meet soaring demand for solar panels. The investigation began in March and prompted uncertainty over solar-parts imports, leading to the cancellation of solar projects across the U.S. and intervention by President Biden to ease pressure on the industry. [ read more … ]

Biden admin moves to extend solar tariffs on Asian producers

By David Iaconangelo, E&E News  •    •  Posted 2022-12-04 10:40:38

The Commerce Department has found that major Chinese-based manufacturers are skirting import tariffs via their factories in Southeast Asia, a preliminary ruling that sent shock waves through the U.S. solar industry and clean energy advocates. The draft finding released Friday could culminate in wide-ranging tariffs on solar panels and cells exported to the United States from four Southeast Asian countries — Cambodia, Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam. Those countries have accounted for as much as 80 percent of all U.S. solar imports, according to trade groups. [ read more … ]

States

Will ruling end decade of uncertainty for Wisconsin solar?

By Jeffrey Tomich, E&E News  •    •  Posted 2022-12-04 10:41:28

Wisconsin regulators finally answered Thursday a question hanging over the state’s rooftop solar market for a decade. The Public Service Commission ruled 2-1 that a solar installer shouldn’t be considered a public utility if it owns solar panels on a Stevens Point, Wis., home and sells power to the family of four that lives there. But in taking a position in a long-running dispute between utilities and the solar industry, the PSC prompts a new question: Does the ruling apply narrowly to just one home in central Wisconsin, or does it open the market for third-party-owned solar across the state?
[ read more … ]

Kris Kobach is back — and climate policy is a top target

By Adam Aton, Lesley Clark, E&E News  •    •  Posted 2022-12-04 10:41:56

An old nemesis for Democrats is poised to become a new headache for climate action. Kris Kobach, the hard-line Republican who built a national profile as Kansas secretary of state for his own-the-libs approach to politicking, has revived his career after back-to-back losses left him out of office and estranged from many GOP power brokers. Elected last month as attorney general by the narrowest margin of any Kansas statewide candidate this year, Kobach is promising to transform the Sunflower State into the courtroom equivalent of Texas: the leading edge of conservative resistance to the Biden administration.
[ read more … ]

Inflation Reduction Act

Biden’s Climate Bill Is a Put Option on Automakers’ Big EV Bets

By David Welch, E&E News  •    •  Posted 2022-12-04 10:40:22

Investors often use a term to describe the role the Federal Reserve plays as a backstop when markets crash: The “Fed put” refers to the central bank being willing to intervene and offer a form of insurance that downside risk is covered. Considering what General Motors is saying about its electric vehicles, the company seems to view the Inflation Reduction Act that President Joe Biden signed into law in August as a sort of put that protects the big investments it’s making in battery and EV production. Well before the IRA passed, GM vowed to have the capacity in place to build 1 million EVs in North America by mid-decade.
[ read more … ]

EPA

How EPA beat the White House on estimating climate damage

By Jean Chemnick, E&E News  •    •  Posted 2022-12-04 10:42:26

EPA’s surprise move last month to propose its own estimates for the societal cost of carbon and other greenhouse gases is a potential end-run around the delays and litigation that have plagued a parallel White House process for almost two years. The agency quietly released its so-called social cost of greenhouse gas estimates Nov. 11, alongside a long-awaited draft rule for oil and gas methane emissions. It took climate economists off guard because EPA was never expected to take the lead on establishing the metric, which is used in federal rules to estimate the damage of every additional ton of climate pollution that’s released into the atmosphere. [ read more … ]

EVs

Biden won’t ask Congress to tweak climate law

By Robin Bravender, E&E News  •    •  Posted 2022-12-04 10:40:58

The rollout of the climate law — whose passage marked a major victory for the Biden administration — was a major discussion topic during French President Emmanuel Macron’s state visit this week. During a joint press conference with Macron on Thursday, Biden said there are “obviously going to be glitches” and a “need to reconcile changes” in a law of that magnitude. Biden said there are “tweaks that we can make,” and Macron said France and the United States would work to “re-synchronize” their policy goals moving forward. [ read more … ]

Biden expects climate law ‘tweaks’ to appease allies

By Robin Bravender, E&E News  •    •  Posted 2022-12-04 10:42:46

President Joe Biden suggested there will be changes to how a massive new climate and clean energy law is implemented following criticisms from European allies. During a joint press conference Thursday with French President Emmanuel Macron, Biden said there are “obviously going to be glitches” and a “need to reconcile changes” in a law of that magnitude. The law, known as the Inflation Reduction Act, includes nearly $370 billion for climate and clean energy programs over the next decade. “There’s tweaks that we can make,” Biden said. “It was never intended, when I wrote the legislation, it never intended to exclude folks who were cooperating with us.” [ read more … ]

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