Please add the Governors' Wind Energy Coalition to your address book for uninterrupted delivery
View this email in a web browser.
Governors' Wind Energy Coalition

June 6, 2014

Obama’s pick to lead FERC fends off critics, piques more questions

Hannah Northey, E&E reporter  •    •  Posted 2014-06-06 07:05:38

President Obama’s pick to lead the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission shot back at critics — and tried to soothe Republican skeptics — in documents submitted this week to the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee defending his handling of mergers and enforcement cases. But while Norman Bay appears to have found allies on the panel of 12 Democrats and 10 Republicans, at least one top GOP member said his answers raise more questions. [ read more … ]

Buffett’s $26 Billion Power Bet in West Seen Paying Off

By Lynn Doan and Naureen S. Malik, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted 2014-06-06 07:05:57

The move would be a game-changer for the renewables that Berkshire Hathaway Energy Co. has accumulated over the past decade, including two of the world’s largest solar farms, and for other clean-power producers, according to those who trade in the region’s markets. Berkshire’s plants stand to run for longer periods of time, and its NV Energy Inc. and PacifiCorp utilities will save as much as $63.9 million annually by 2017, Energy and Environmental Economics Inc. reports show. “It would be huge if all 38 balancing authorities joined,” Sean Breiner, a market design analyst for San Ramon, California-based energy trader Viasyn, said by telephone June 2. “Instead of having these balkanized regions, you’d have resources from Idaho to Wyoming all flowing into one kind of large spot market.” [ read more … ]

Buffett to unite Western power plants

E&E  •    •  Posted 2014-06-06 07:06:16

Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc. plans to merge $26 billion in Western power plants, transmission lines and wind farms into a single market that would better manage supply and demand fluctuations and save utilities millions. With California’s grid monitor, the new, united system could transmit electricity across seven states. Pending approval from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, beginning Oct. 1, the market would match hourly generator bids to supply, demand and transmission changes every five minutes. [ read more … ]

Regulators wrestle with complex metric at heart of EPA rule

Jean Chemnick, E&E reporter  •    •  Posted 2014-06-06 07:06:39

But as the sound bites flew all around them, state regulators who are tasked with implementing the EPA rule kept their heads down and crunched numbers, trying to comprehend what proposed near- and long-term emission targets meant to their states. Theirs was not an easy lift. EPA’s formula at the heart of the proposal is complicated. [ read more … ]

State renewable energy mandates raise power prices by only tiny amounts so far — study

Daniel Cusick, E&E reporter  •    •  Posted 2014-06-06 07:07:02

Electricity ratepayers in states with renewable portfolio standards (RPSs) have seen their power bills increase slightly as utilities and other power providers work to incorporate more wind, solar and biomass energy into their fuel mixes. But the overall incremental increase in rates has been modest, averaging roughly 1 percent of what would have occurred had the RPS programs not existed, according to new findings from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. [ read more … ]

Editorial: Minnesota leads in reducing emissions

Minneapolis Star Tribune Editorial Board  •    •  Posted 2014-06-06 07:07:19

What Minnesota presents the nation is a pilot project of sorts, demonstrating the advantages of reducing power plant emissions. The Obama plan allows states considerable flexibility in choosing how to meet the new 2030 emission goals. Rather than seeking ways to resist the EPA order via Congress or the courts, other states should examine the benefits Minnesota is already deriving. [ read more … ]

Former Duke CEO rejects talk of ‘world ending’ under new EPA rule

Hannah Northey, E&E reporter  •    •  Posted 2014-06-06 07:07:37

“There’s been a lot of people saying the world’s coming to an end. I don’t think the world’s coming to an end,” Rogers told attendees at the 24th Annual Conference for Energy Storage in Washington, D.C. “I think we’ll find a way to adopt and adapt to the EPA regulations, and quite frankly, they’re not perfect.” The industry, he said, “gets where it’s going,” but may not be moving fast enough. “If you’ve noticed, with the announcement of the EPA rule, you’ve really heard very little pushback from the power sector. You’ve heard a lot from the coal industry,” he said. Utilities “understand the age of their coal plants, and in a sense, this new regulation recognizes the inevitability of shutting down old coal plants.” [ read more … ]

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