Mayor Bill de Blasio wants to increase the solar power capacity of city-owned buildings five-fold from what it is now, mayoral aides said Wednesday. The push comes as part of an ambitious plan to cut greenhouse gas emissions in the country’s most populous city by 80 percent by 2050. De Blasio plans to make the announcement in his State of the City address Thursday in the Bronx.
California lawmakers expressed concerns in a letter Thursday that allowing a utility of Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc. to join the state’s power grid may undermine the state’s clean energy goals by connecting it to coal plants. Adding Berkshire Hathaway Energy’s PacifiCorp utility to the grid run by California Independent System Operator Corp. would bring with it states “heavily invested in coal and other high greenhouse gas emitting resources,” according to the letter to California Governor Jerry Brown. It was signed by six state lawmakers including Democratic State Senate President Pro Tempore Kevin De Leon and Speaker-Elect of the State Assembly Anthony Rendon.
President Obama will ask Congress to set a $10-per-barrel oil tax to help invest in clean transportation infrastructure, the White House announced today. In a preview of the president’s fiscal 2017 budget, which will be released Tuesday, the White House outlined a plan to make oil companies pay fees that would then be used to invest in enhanced transportation options like low-carbon technologies and intelligent transportation infrastructure.
The Obama administration yesterday urged the Supreme Court to reject a bid to halt U.S. EPA’s Clean Power Plan, calling the appeal to the high court “extraordinary and unprecedented.” In a document sent to the high court, the administration’s solicitor general, Donald Verrilli, ticked off a number of arguments as to why the justices shouldn’t step in to freeze the regulation aimed at slashing power plants’ greenhouse gas emissions.
President Obama’s budget request to Congress will include a new fee on oil companies, requiring them to pay $10 to the federal government for every barrel of oil they produce, the White House said on Thursday. The money, which could bring in up to $32 billion in new federal revenue annually, would be spent on a variety of transportation and infrastructure projects, including bridges and highways, high-speed rail and research on advanced vehicles such as electric and self-driving cars.
Democrats today blocked a pair of procedural votes to end debate on the Senate’s bipartisan energy bill, buying time to continue negotiations over federal aid to help the town of Flint, Mich., recover from its lead-contaminated drinking water crisis. The Senate rejected cloture on the substitute amendment to the bill, as well as the underlying bill (S. 2012), on 46-50 and 43-54 roll call votes, respectively.
Senate Democrats on Thursday blocked the first bipartisan energy bill in almost a decade after majority Republicans balked over sending hundreds of millions of dollars in emergency aid to Flint, Michigan, to fix and replace the city’s lead-contaminated pipes. The impasse hardened an increasingly partisan response to the water crisis in Flint as Democrats press for swift help for a majority African-American city of 100,000 and point to the past, rapid response of Republicans to natural disasters in Texas and Florida. Republicans maintained that it was premature to send money until Michigan figures out what it needs and wrong to stall the energy bill.
The nine-state Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative is continuing to weigh linking its cap-and-trade system with other states that will use carbon markets to comply with federal climate change regulations. RGGI officials yesterday heard a range of views from companies and advocates invested in the program. They ranged from enthusiastic proponents of carbon trading who say the system should set an example for other states to more wary environmental groups worried that expanding trading could water down the program’s climate benefits.
Study finds renewable energy is the most affordable way to comply with the Clean Power Plan. Renewable energy accounts for virtually all of the new generation additions in the lowest-cost solution for complying with Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Clean Power Plan (CPP), according to new economic modeling using a Department of Energy tool.
Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign Tuesday rolled out a plan to increase building energy efficiency standards as a way to cut emissions and save on energy costs. The plan, her campaign said Tuesday, looks to improve building codes, provide more information about buildings’ energy usage and expand appliance energy labeling as ways to reduce energy consumption.