A president's priorities become clearer at budget time, even if Congress eventually rearranges things entirely. And that's true about the place of energy and climate change in President Bush's spending plan for next year.
Coal and nuclear power see big boosts in the 2009 Energy Department budget request sent to Congress Monday, and Mr. Bush is again calling for oil drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. The budget favors nuclear and "clean coal" options over renewable power sources, McClatchy Newspapers noted.
A coalition of conservation groups is threatening to sue the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for issuing an opinion allowing a proposed wind turbine facility on ecologically sensitive Shaffer Mountain to mitigate damage it would do to a maternity colony of endangered Indiana bats.
One of the Magic Valley's largest energy projects crossed a significant hurdle Friday with the release of a draft environmental analysis of its effects. The next step requires your help.
The Democratic president said a cap-and-trade program, in which companies buy and sell carbon dioxide allowances, is "not the only way" to cut greenhouse gases.
"I'm going to be looking for other means to address this problem," Obama said.
U.S. banks had looked forward to a huge "cap-and-trade market" a system where companies would buy and sell the right to emit gases blamed for warming the planet. Many hired carbon traders, picked up assets, and trained members of energy desks to deal in emissions markets.
But prospects for a broad U.S. carbon market have dimmed. U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham, a Republican working on a compromise climate bill, declared economy-wide cap-and-trade "dead" this month.
The controversial Energy Department loan program that backed a now-bankrupt solar panel maker could nearly double in size by the month's end.
The Department of Energy has until Sept. 30 to give 14 companies final approval for loan guarantees totaling over $9 billion.
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has awarded Northern Power, a subsidiary of Distributed Energy Systems Corp. (Nasdaq: DESC - News), a Phase 2 Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant to continue development of key modular construction technologies necessary to build 5-megawatt to 8-megawatt wind turbines. In announcing the $750,000 award, Northern Power said the project builds on a Phase 1 SBIR design study recently completed by the company, which confirmed the viability of these enabling, modular construction approaches.
This Summer, three decades of underinvestment and looting of the U.S. electrical industry grid system came home to roost. A week-long blackout in New York City, calls for "voluntary" conservation, the shutting off of power to large industrial enterprises, and lowering of voltages across the nation, were all evidence of the wreckage that has been made of this most critical infrastructure.
Texas billionaire and wind energy developer Boone Pickens said at a hearing in Washington Tuesday that the U.S. is exporting about $700 billion a year to feed its oil addiction, as he joined the call from energy leaders to use nuclear, natural gas, coal, wind, biofuels and solar to wean the country off imported crude.
According to the Department of Energy, an investment of $60 billion in new transmission capacity is needed between now and 2030 to enable wind power to supply 20% of U.S. electricity.
Muskegon County's effort to "go green" is running up against an unlikely foe: the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, which says the county's proposal to erect wind turbines would endanger birds.
County officials are considering installing three commercial-size turbines on a capped landfill at the county's massive wastewater site.
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service officials have written a letter opposing the proposed project.
The House passed a $54 billion tax package Wednesday that Democratic backers said would help relieve dependence on imported oil while easing the economic strain on parents, homeowners and businesses. ...The measure would provide some $17 billion in tax incentives for renewable energy sources like wind and solar power, carbon capture and sequestration projects, plug-in cars and technology for green buildings. It would also create a new category of tax credit bonds to finance state and local government initiatives to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
The final sticking point came over Grassley's insistence that the pension bill contain a package of tax cut extensions such as the research-and-development tax credit, a credit for hiring workers off welfare, and a credit to promote wind energy. Frist and House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Bill Thomas (R-California) wanted to use those tax credits to entice Senate Democrats to vote for their permanent estate tax cut. Grassley tried to force a showdown Thursday night, calling a public meeting of negotiators and daring House Republicans to vote to strip out the tax measures.
Instead, House Republicans boycotted the meeting. Then GOP leaders effectively shut down negotiations and took the pension bill to the House floor without the tax measures, infuriating Grassley.
The U.S. wind industry installed just over 1,200 megawatts (MW) of wind power in the third quarter, and about 3,360 MW on the year so far, the wind industry trade group said Tuesday. ...uncertainty over government policies has many leading wind developers holding off on scheduling projects for 2013, AWEA said.
Salazar's decision to issue a so-called "record of decision" for the project in April still faces a slew of legal challenges and the Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities is in the middle of a review of the project's cost effectiveness.
A decision from the state board is expected by November.
U.S. lawmakers said they may consider extending and then phasing out the main tax break for producing wind energy.
Representative Patrick Tiberi, an Ohio Republican, said today he wanted to hear from the wind-energy industry about how such a phase-out might work.
Under increasing public pressure over its decision to temporarily halt all new solar development on public land, the Bureau of Land Management said Wednesday that it was lifting the freeze, barely a month after it was put into effect.
The bureau had announced on May 29 that it was no longer processing new applications to build solar power plants on land it oversees in six Western states after federal officials said they needed first to study the environmental effects of solar energy, a process that would take two years.
But amid concerns from the solar power industry, members of Congress and the general public that the freeze would stymie solar development during a particularly critical time for energy policy, the bureau abruptly reconsidered.
U.S. power sales have plunged in the past six months on the back of an unprecedented demand decline that was caused by sharp contractions in the economy, and recovery is not anticipated until the 2010 to 2015 period, an analysis from Edinburgh-based Wood Mackenzie shows.
"The power industry is headed into the ‘Perfect Storm' low-price operating environment, which will likely get worse before it gets better."
The area to be leased is about the size of Delaware. Included are 125 square miles off the coast of Maryland, 161 square miles off Delaware and 176 square miles off Virginia. Leases will also be auctioned off the coast of New Jersey and Rhode Island, but the lion's share - 1,161 square miles - is off Massachusetts. The auction is planned before the end of this year; an exact date hasn't yet been set.
"The increasing golden eagle mortality at Pine Tree clearly points to wind turbines built in the wrong location," said Ileene Anderson, a biologist with the Center for Biological Diversity. The utility needs to redesign its 250-megawatt Pine Tree network and Kern County needs to put a moratorium on construction of nearby wind farms to prevent deaths, Anderson said.
he United States Department of Energy issued a proposal yesterday that could reopen the way for a 190-mile high-voltage transmission line through central New York that state and local officials tried to block last year.
The department declared a multistate area from West Virginia to upstate New York a "National Interest Electric Transmission Corridor," where congestion of existing power lines makes the electricity grid unreliable and subject to blackouts.