The $45.9 billion spent makes it “almost certain” that annual investment in renewables and energy-smart technologies will fall for the second consecutive year from $281 billion in 2012, Bloomberg New Energy Finance said in a statement. Investment in the quarter was 20 percent lower than the same period last year as spending in China, the U.S. and Europe fell. The U.S. saw the largest decline, sliding 41 percent to $5.5 billion, according to the London-based research company.
The state’s largest public power district on Friday rejected a resolution to more heavily invest in wind energy. Pro-wind forces say that the Nebraska Public Power District Board blew it, not only because wind energy is cheaper now, but also because it would increase economic development in shrinking rural areas. “Instead of being there for its customer-owners, NPPD decided to continue to send millions of Nebraskans’ energy dollars to Wyoming to fuel its big coal plants rather than investing in local, clean, affordable wind energy,” said Ken Winston of the Sierra Club of Nebraska. But the head of NPPD said that the utility has an excess of electric-generating capacity, and it didn’t make sense to add to that.
Fickle West Texas breezes are pushing wind power generators to the state’s 367-mile coast. Texas pulled ahead last decade in the U.S. race to develop wind power thanks to the hardy gusts sweeping across its vast prairies and energy-friendly landowners. Now it’s seizing the lead in building turbines along its shoreline as developers find the slower but steadier air currents there translate to bigger profits.
The nascent offshore wind industry in the United States has faced its share of hiccups and stumbles over the last decade but lately has shown signs of progress. Now industry officials say the ongoing government shutdown could deliver another blow to its development. The industry relies on the federal government in several respects. Most utility-scale installations are planned for federal waters, where the Interior Department oversees lease sales and permitting. The Department of Energy has offered millions of dollars’ worth of grants to companies that are contingent on congressional appropriations over the next several years. And developers are hoping to qualify for lucrative tax credits set to expire Dec. 31 — without which facilities risk being unprofitable.
Dominion Virginia Power has won approval of its $1.6 million bid to lease nearly 113,000 offshore acres for wind power development. But the federal government shutdown is holding up finalizing the lease, the company said Wednesday.
The number of large-scale projects to capture and bury carbon dioxide has fallen to 65 from 75 over the past year, a worldwide survey has found, despite a consensus among scientists and engineers that the so-called carbon capture and sequestration, known as C.C.S., will be essential to meet international goals for slowing the buildup of climate-changing gases. The survey was released Thursday in Seoul, South Korea, by the Global CCS Institute, which is based in Canberra, Australia. Since the previous survey a year ago, five projects have been canceled, one reduced in size and seven postponed, while three have been added, the report said.
If you live in Nebraska, chances are you have cursed the wind at some point in your life. Whether it has ruined a good day of fishing, blown your neighbor’s leaves onto your front lawn or just messed up your hair on your way to work or church — we’ve all done it. And if you’re a farmer or rancher like me, it’s a safe bet you cuss the wind on a regular basis when you try to put up hay or irrigate your crops. The bad news is the wind isn’t going away anytime soon. The good news is it’s about to transform our great state.
The offshore wind industry is finally showing signs of progress in the United States. The Department of the Interior completed its second offshore wind lease auction for acreage off the coast of Virginia in early September, and the nation’s first grid-connected offshore wind turbine, a small prototype created by the University of Maine, started spinning off the Northeast coast this spring.
More than 400 Democrats from around the country are urging the White House to reconsider U.S. EPA’s proposal for regulating greenhouse gas emissions from new power plants. The current and former politicians wrote President Obama a letter today as part of the CoalBlue Project, a group meant to boost and highlight Democratic support for the coal industry.
Heather Zichal’s departure from the White House comes near the beginning of a years-long effort to shepherd complicated climate policies through a bevy of federal agencies overseen by administration newcomers, now central to the success of President Obama’s climate plan.