Democrats fall short in bid for majority despite favorable map

Source: Jennifer Yachnin, E&E News reporter • Posted: Wednesday, November 9th, 2016

New York Sen. Chuck Schumer (D), who won a third term last night by 43 points, is poised to take over as Senate minority leader from retiring Sen. Harry Reid (D-Nev.). And given Trump’s upset victory in the presidential race and the Republicans’ enduring majority in the House, Schumer will soon become the most important Democrat in the country.

GOP picks up governorships despite N.C. nail-biter

Source: Manuel Quiñones, E&E News reporter • Posted: Wednesday, November 9th, 2016

North Carolina Republican Gov. Pat McCrory, a former Duke Energy Corp. executive, has lost re-election in one of the country’s closest races. Democratic Attorney General Roy Cooper won by 4,772 votes. McCrory’s loss is a notable defeat for the GOP in an election in which other vulnerable party incumbents pulled through.

Trump win rocks energy world

Source: Robin Bravender, E&E News reporter • Posted: Wednesday, November 9th, 2016

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) is heading Trump’s transition operation, with the assistance of veteran Republican energy policy experts. Trump’s transition team is expected to dramatically increase staffing as it prepares a policy agenda for the administration and works to fill top executive branch jobs. Lobbyist and longtime congressional energy aide Mike Catanzaro is among those helping with the transition. Energy lobbyist Mike McKenna is leading the Energy Department transition team; climate change skeptic Myron Ebell of the Competitive Enterprise Institute is heading up the EPA transition team; and former George W. Bush administration Interior official David Bernhardt is working on the Interior transition.

Oregon firm developing airborne wind energy system

Source: By Eric Mortensen, Capital Press • Posted: Tuesday, November 8th, 2016

Sean Mish, director of systems integration for eWind Solutions, displayed the Wilsonville, Ore., company’s tethered kites during a Portland technology show in September 2016. The kites spin electrical generators as they deploy. The company markets them to farmers, who would sell the power to utilities. eWind Solutions won a $600,000 USDA grant to advance its work.

Nebraska conference touts benefits of wind and solar energy

Source: By Cole Epley, Omaha World Herald • Posted: Tuesday, November 8th, 2016

Tim Burke, president and chief executive of the Omaha Public Power District, said that even though the utility just closed down a major source of carbon-free electricity production at its Fort Calhoun nuclear power plant, ratepayers can expect to have additional clean energy to backfill a portion of its lost capacity. The Calhoun shutdown “begins our transformation in a new energy marketplace,” Burke said.

Wyo.’s trifecta — coal, oil and gas — all fall down

Source: Pamela King, E&E News reporter • Posted: Tuesday, November 8th, 2016

“We’re just trying to find funds wherever we can,” Robert Tranas, executive director of the children’s center. “We know it’s not looking any better for state funding or local for the foreseeable future. It’s got us all holding our breath and wondering how this is going to work out.”

Denmark’s DONG Energy to Get Out of Oil and Gas Business

Source: By Nikolaj Skydsgaard and Jacob Gronholt-Pedersen, Reuters • Posted: Tuesday, November 8th, 2016

Danish energy group DONG Energy plans to quit the oil and gas business to focus solely on offshore wind power, adding to billions of dollars of North Sea oil and gas assets already up for sale. DONG said last month it would sharpen its focus on wind power and could shed its oil and gas business, having hired JP Morgan to review the assets.

Wind power splits small towns, may tip tight gubernatorial race

Source: George Cahlink, E&E News reporter • Posted: Tuesday, November 8th, 2016

Environmentally minded residents who moved here for the region’s bucolic beauty worry the turbines will destroy the area’s pristine ridge. Opponents say the Spanish developer, Iberdrola Renewables, is trying to buy them off with promises of millions of dollars in payments over the next two decades to the towns and their full-time residents. But backers fret the towns will pass on a unique chance to shore up local finances and also lower their own tax bills. They also say wind power is a must if the state is to meet one of the nation’s broadest mandates for shifting from fossil fuels to renewable energy.

Ascendant Schumer seen as green-tinted pragmatist

Source: Geof Koss and George Cahlink, E&E News reporters • Posted: Tuesday, November 8th, 2016

Following Reid’s 2015 announcement that he would retire at the end of this Congress, Schumer quickly locked down the support to ascend into the Democratic leader slot, leapfrogging the chamber’s No. 2 Democrat, Dick Durbin of Illinois, in the process. While environmentalists praise Reid as an “absolute rock” on environmental and clean energy policy during his 10-year tenure as Senate Democratic leader, Schumer has played a less visible role on these issues.

Lame duck: blockbuster session or just lame?

Source: Geof Koss, E&E News reporter • Posted: Monday, November 7th, 2016

Also on the lame-duck agenda is bipartisan efforts to reconcile the House and Senate’s competing energy bills, which, if fruitful, would result in enactment of the first major energy bill since 2007. Senate conferees last month sent the House a compromise proposal, and discussions are expected to step up once members return next week