News

Kerry may soon launch bill produced in weekly talks

Source: Jean Chemnick and Nick Juliano, E&E reporters • Posted: Thursday, May 10th, 2012

One of the chief architects of an ultimately failed attempt to move climate change legislation through the Senate during the last Congress is mulling a less ambitious approach that may have a chance of passing during a lame-duck session.
Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) has met regularly with interested lawmakers most Tuesdays to discuss the next steps for energy policy in a post-cap-and-trade environment, and he said they may be ready to unveil a product of those discussions later this year.

As consumers push back against smart meters, utilities stall upgrade plans

E&E • Posted: Thursday, May 10th, 2012

Customer backlash over new technology for measuring power usage is slowing utilities’ efforts to upgrade their networks.

Speculation rampant on second-term Obama Cabinet, but he may choose stability

Source: Elana Schor, E&E reporter • Posted: Thursday, May 10th, 2012

If history is any guide, President Obama’s Cabinet is in line to lose at least one of its top energy and environmental members should he win a second term this fall.

Leaked memo on anti-wind campaign disputed

Source: Jean Chemnick, E&E reporter • Posted: Thursday, May 10th, 2012

Another day, another squabble about a right-leaning policy memo. This time the disputed document is a 10-page strategy memo appearing to detail an expensive and ambitious campaign targeting the wind energy industry. The memo, circulated by the watchdog group the Checks and Balances Project, calls for opponents of wind power to engage in messaging and media outreach efforts that “appear as a ‘groundswell’ among grass roots.”

When the Wind Whispers, Whose Name Does it Call?

Source: MATTHEW L. WALD, New York Times • Posted: Wednesday, May 9th, 2012

Acciona, a big renewable energy company based in Spain, says it is naming its new 32-megawatt wind farm in Oklahoma “Big Smile.” The name is an oblique reference to an Acciona employee who died last year, the company says. That makes the wind farm one of the few in the United States not named for its location or a nearby geographic feature. Google lists 102 operating wind farms of 120 megawatts or more in this country, plus two under construction and 24 proposed, none of which are named after anyone, although some bear the name of a town that was named after a person long ago.

Sprawling Ariz. project advances despite industry uncertainty

Source: Scott Streater, E&E reporter • Posted: Wednesday, May 9th, 2012

The Bureau of Land Management is nearing approval of what would become Arizona’s largest wind farm, covering nearly 50,000 acres of federal land, that supporters say could spark more commercial-scale wind power development. Houston-based BP Wind Energy North America Inc.’s proposed 500-megawatt Mohave County Wind Farm in northwest Arizona would string together as many as 283 wind turbines across nearly 39,000 acres of BLM land and nearly 9,000 acres of Bureau of Reclamation land. The wind farm would have the capacity to produce enough electricity to power as many as 175,000 homes in Arizona, Nevada and California.

Obama puts wind credit on his congressional ‘To Do List’

Source: Emily Yehle, E&E reporter • Posted: Wednesday, May 9th, 2012

President Obama will call on Congress today to extend a crucial tax credit for the wind industry, as part of a broader “To Do List” that will provide the foundation for Obama’s message on job creation in the coming months. The list — which Obama officially will unveil today in a speech at 1:25 p.m. — consists of five actions that the White House contends “will create jobs and help restore middle class security.” None of the proposals are new, but they come as Republicans and the White House spar over job creation during an election year.

Heartland faces a mutiny amid furor over billboard campaign

Source: Evan Lehmann, E&E reporter • Posted: Tuesday, May 8th, 2012

The Heartland Institute’s failed billboard campaign attacking the existence of climate change is driving a surge of corporate donors to abandon the group and prompting a mutiny among its Washington-based staff, which is decamping for less volatile surroundings, according to sources.

Campaign ties global warming believers to ‘murderers and madmen’

Source: Jean Chemnick, E&E reporter • Posted: Monday, May 7th, 2012

The craggy face of the “Unabomber,” Ted Kaczynski, stares at Chicago drivers from a billboard over the Eisenhower Expressway.”I still believe in global warming. Do you?” is the question that appears next to the murderer’s 1995 booking photo.The digital billboard, which appeared yesterday, is the latest effort by the Heartland Institute, a conservative Chicago think tank, to discredit the scientific underpinnings of man-made climate change ahead of its annual conference in Chicago this month.

On Our Radar: Birds and Wind Turbines

Source: By THE NEW YORK TIMES • Posted: Monday, May 7th, 2012

American Bird Conservancy. An interactive map shades areas where wind power is likely to pose an elevated risk to birds.