The $18.7 billion settlement agreement announced this morning for the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill promises to set off an unprecedented effort to repair the Gulf of Mexico’s marshes, fisheries and deep sea corals, but it will be, at best, only a first step toward restoring the long-ailing ecosystem, the region’s environmentalists say.
The California Independent System Operator, which runs the state’s transmission grid, issued a Flex Alert on Tuesday calling for conservation. The ISO said demand for electricity was expected to peak on Tuesday at 44,700 megawatts – one of the highest levels of the year but still below the expected level of available supply. The Flex Alert was also expected to be in effect Wednesday. The alert Tuesday was the agency’s first heat-related warning since early July 2013, when the grid manager issued alerts on back-to-back days for Northern California, spokesman Steven Greenlee said.
As President Obama prepares to complete sweeping regulations aimed at tackling climate change, at least five Republican governors, including two presidential hopefuls, say they may refuse to carry out the rules in their states. The resistance threatens to ignite a fierce clash between federal and state authorities, miring the climate rules in red tape for years. The fight could also undermine Mr. Obama’s efforts to urge other nations to enact similar plans this year as part of a major United Nations climate change accord.
A developer’s plan to construct a wind energy superhighway across the Midwest hit a roadblock yesterday when Missouri regulators denied the company’s application. The Missouri Public Service Commission voted 3-2 to deny the $2.2 billion high-voltage transmission project, with the majority concluding that Clean Line Energy Partners LLC didn’t satisfy the criteria needed for approval. Commissioner Daniel Hall, one of two who voted in favor of the project, said he hoped the company would refile its application.
Beloved by locals and tourists for its soaring clay bluffs and unspoiled views, this small New England island is heading toward another distinction: home to the nation’s first offshore wind farm. Five towering windmills off the island’s southeast coast are scheduled to begin generating power late next year. The Block Island plan has moved ahead of the Cape Wind project, a much larger turbine farm planned in the waters off Cape Cod in Massachusetts, wind-energy experts said. A contract dispute with local utilities following a slew of legal fights has thrown that 14-year effort into question.
Mayor David Leake said Haymarket did not need the amount of electricity that the power line would bring to the town of 1,900. He said in a public meeting with Dominion that the utility acknowledged the six-mile, 230,000-volt line was “really for one customer, for one need.” That customer is Amazon, Candland said he confirmed after meeting with attorneys for Midwood, which owns property along John Marshall Highway across the street from a new Wal-Mart near Route 15. Amazon already operates one data center on Marshall Highway, and Candland said Prince William economic development officials had asked Midwood to include a data center and a Dominion substation in their proposal to develop property there.
The massive Notrees wind farm just west of Odessa will get a major battery system upgrade in order to help the state electric grid respond to when Texas are using the most energy. North Carolina-based Duke Energy said it will replace the wind farm’s lead acid battery storage system with lithium-ion technology in 2016 for better performance. Duke owns the Notrees Windpower Project that includes 95 wind turbines and generates 153 megawatts of electricity — enough to power 46,000 homes.
Two states recently passed legislation that would require significant increases in renewable electricity generation. On June 8, Hawaii updated legislation setting a 100% renewable portfolio standard (RPS) by 2045. On June 11, Vermont passed a bill creating a 75% RPS by 2032. Both of these RPS target percentages are higher than any other RPS target in the United States.
The Supreme Court’s ruling this week that U.S. EPA should have considered the cost of its Mercury and Air Toxics Standards has reignited a debate about the agency’s practice of counting health “co-benefits” in justifying the economic impacts of its Clean Air Act rules. Industry maintains that practice double-counts health benefits for ancillary reductions of pollutants that aren’t the regulation’s focus. These co-benefits loom large in the proposed Clean Power Plan, which EPA predicts will lead to big reductions in soot and smog, curbing emissions of sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides and particulates along with reducing heat-trapping carbon dioxide.
How a Conservative Billionaire Is Moving Heaven and Earth to Become the Biggest Alternative Energy Giant in the Country
At first, the renewable energy industry had a tough time grasping the scope of the plan. Roxane Perruso, the project’s general counsel, told me she went to an American Wind Energy Association convention where someone asked her how big the farm would be. Being modest, she responded that it was over 2,000 megawatts. “He put his hand on my shoulder, sighed, and said, ‘Oh, sweetheart, I think you’re confused— you must mean 200 megawatts.’” The property was like the Saudi Arabia of wind.