Heather Zichal eloped last month in Croatia, where she also biked about 30 miles per day, went sailing and chatted up winemakers about global warming’s toll on their industry. Zichal, who resigned late last year as President Obama’s top climate and energy adviser, called the trip a badly needed break after a six-year marathon that started on the campaign trail and ended with a top White House post.
Wind power is a growing part of the energy mix in the United States. And along with that growth, there are new job opportunities for people to install and repair the 30-story-tall wind turbines. But as Wyoming Public Radio’s Stephanie Joyce reports, a unique skill set is required — the fearlessness of a pro rock climber along with the know-how of a skilled mechanic.
“This is the year it happens,”Deepwater Wind CEO Jeff Grybowski said at the conference. “We are nine months away from the installation of our first foundations.” Deepwater’s Block Island Wind Farm, which is fully permitted and approved, will operate five wind turbines off the coast of Rhode Island. Massachusetts-based Cape Wind plans to lay foundations in late 2015. The project, which will be the first utility-scale offshore wind project in the U.S., began development more than a decade ago. Over the years it has faced opposition from the Kennedys to the Koch brothers, at basically every stage in the process.
Wind energy is generating most of the dollars being invested in renewable energy in Michigan, according to a study released by the Pew Charitable Trust on Thursday, Oct. 23. More than $2 billion was invested in renewable energy between 2009 and 2013, according to the study, which examined the impact of Michigan’s 2008 Clean, Renewable, and Efficient Energy Act, which required state utilities to produce 10 percent of their power via renewable energy.
European Union leaders agreed on a set of long-term targets on energy and climate change in the early hours of Friday, agreeing to financial sweeteners and weakening some objectives in order to get a deal. The 28 leaders haggled for hours before clinching an agreement that they hope will set the tone ahead of global climate negotiations in Paris next year. “It was not easy, not at all,” conceded the European Council President, Herman Van Rompuy after the talks ended. “But we managed to reach a fair decision. It sets Europe on an ambitious yet cost-effective energy path.”
Warren Buffett is synonymous with his hometown of Omaha, Neb., but for a glimpse into the future of his investment empire, look east…to Iowa. In the neighboring Hawkeye State, the Berkshire Hathaway Inc. chairman has sunk billions into wind-farm projects, part of a big gambit on renewable energy by a utility company he acquired in 2000 and has built into one of the country’s largest power suppliers. Through a majority-owned subsidiary, Berkshire Hathaway Energy, Mr. Buffett plans to double the $15 billion already committed to renewable-energy projects through early this year, and he is on the hunt for more utility acquisitions.
Come November 4th, 2014, Colorado voters have a lot more on the line than just selecting their next U.S. Senator. The outcome of this year’s Colorado Senate election has implications not only for the state of Colorado, but for the entire country. Currently, Democrats have control of the Senate with 53 members in comparison to the 45 Republicans. However, if Colorado voters elect Republican candidate Cory Gardner into office, the Republicans will then hold the majority in the U.S. Senate. If voters elect Democrat Mark Udall, the Democrats will maintain control of the U.S. Senate
The U.S. wind power industry continued its modest recovery over the third quarter of 2014, with 419 megawatts of new generation capacity coming online in Texas, Nebraska, Michigan and California. But officials said the quarterly numbers, which reflect a 600 percent increase over the same quarter of 2013 when the industry was emerging from a near-standstill, do not accurately reflect the pace of wind energy development in the United States.
A Senate panel on Tuesday heard the benefits and disadvantages of millions of dollars in state incentives that go to the wind industry. The location of wind farms has been an issue at the Capitol. A measure by Senate Pro Tem Brian Bingman, R-Sapulpa, would have put a moratorium on wind farms east of Interstate 35. The measure was not heard in the Oklahoma House.
The Senate Finance Committee began Tuesday what its chairman said he hoped was a cost-benefit analysis of the current tax incentives available to the wind energy industry. “Our primary goal is to gather information that will give members of the Oklahoma Senate a better understanding of the cost and benefits associated with the current tax subsidy for wind power generation. In advance of this committee meeting research and data collection has already been accomplished to document the costs of subsidizing wind power.