The Commerce and Job Development Subcommittee on Energy and Emerging Markets on Wednesday voted 11 to 10 to amend House Bill 298, which aims to revoke the Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Portfolio Standard (REPS). REPS mandates North Carolina’s utilities to obtain renewable energy power and energy efficiency savings of 3% of prior-year electricity sales in 2012, 6% in 2015, 10% in 2018, and 12.5% in 2021. REPS legislation was passed in 2007 and allow costs to be recovered through the ratebase at capped rates: $12 for residential customers in 2012; $150 for commercial customers; $1,000 for industrial customers.
Attacks on state renewable energy deployment policies continue in at least twenty-twostates. However the news is not all bad with a near equal balance of states presenting opportunities to expand, strengthen or improve existing renewable energy policies. For fellow energy policy wonks out there, the North Carolina Solar Center posted this handycompendium of all state-level renewable and clean energy legislative developments taking place in 2013.
Silent-running electric cars sneak up on you on street corners and parking lots. Are they also creeping up on a U.S. car market? Some industry analysts think so. While headlines have been blaring bad news about electric vehicles, they say, EVs have been making quiet progress. There have been strides made, they say, in battery technology, infrastructure and consumer confidence. And, they add, EVs are showing up in company fleets, and electric cars with gas-power backup — known as plug-in hybrids — are exceeding expectations.
Global warming isn’t just an issue for Democrats, according to a report released yesterday by George Mason and Yale universities. Sixty-two percent of self-identified Republicans and GOP-leaning independents said in a national survey that the United States should or probably should take action to address climate change despite uncertainties, the report says
State House lawmakers are moving ahead with a proposal to freeze and repeal the state’s renewable energy standards. The measure, House Bill 298, passed a House Commerce subcommittee 11-10 on Wednesday. Reps. Ruth Samuelson, R-Mecklenburg, and Tom Murry, R-Wake, joined Democrats in voting against it.
Oil and gas giant BP PLC has put its wind power operations in the United States up for sale, abandoning most of its renewable energy efforts.
Two new studies conclude that marrying Wyoming’s largely untapped wind power potential with Colorado’s growing energy demands would create thousands of jobs and generate billions of dollars in economic activity in both states. The two studies, both commissioned by the Wyoming Infrastructure Authority (WIA), are part of a broader effort by the authority to gauge the state’s wind power potential and the economic benefits of transporting wind-generated electricity to neighboring states.
Establishing a New England market to buy renewable energy seemed a laudable goal when governors committed last year to bulk purchases of wind and solar power to knock down the price while reducing the region’s reliance on fossil fuels. Consumers could benefit from price stability, even from costlier wind and energy power. But putting together details about what types of renewable energy the six states will buy in the groundbreaking deal is snared in a patchwork of rules, state laws and disagreements over how even to define alternative energy.
Jeff Bingaman, a New Mexico Democrat who retired as chairman of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee in January, is going to Stanford Law School on a one-year fellowship to specialize in renewable energy, as Stanford becomes a kind of energy-in-exile center.
Legislatures in half the states that require electric utilities to buy renewable energy are considering proposals to roll back those mandates. The policies have helped fuel a huge expansion of U.S. solar and wind capacity in recent years. Now debates are arising, especially in Republican-held statehouses, about whether they increase costs for customers.