The Department of Energy has recently completed interagency work on its Quadrennial Energy Review, which will focus on infrastructure needs, and plans to release the document by the end of this month, Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz said today. Among other areas, the review will focus on the needs of the electric grid to improve security and reliability as well as problems associated with methane emissions from natural gas pipelines and storage facilities, Moniz said.
President Obama’s new spending wish list underscores his plans to plow ahead with ambitious and costly climate, energy and infrastructure policies — and sets the stage for another year of fierce budget battles with congressional Republicans.
The budget proposes a nearly $800 million increase over current funding for DOE’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, which funds research and development into wind and solar power, biofuels, and energy-saving technologies, among other areas.
President Barack Obama’s fiscal 2016 budget proposes boosting funding for clean energy by 7 percent and a new $4 billion fund to encourage U.S. states to make faster and deeper cuts to emissions from power plants, officials said Monday. Obama’s budget also calls for the permanent extension of the Production Tax Credit, used by the wind industry, and the Investment Tax Credit, used by the solar industry, the officials said.
The budget request released yesterday — which again seeks to make renewable energy credits permanent and refundable while eliminating a variety of tax breaks for the oil, gas and coal industries — faces even longer odds of becoming reality with Republicans now in unified control of Congress. But it highlights a continued commitment on the part of the administration to an aggressive shift in the tax code that will color negotiations between the Capitol and White House for the remainder of the year.
An overwhelming majority of the American public, including half of Republicans, support government action to curb global warming, according to a poll conducted by The New York Times, Stanford Universityand the nonpartisan environmental research group Resources for the Future.
New Mexico Land Commissioner Aubrey Dunn has put the brakes on a $2 billion transmission project that would carry electricity generated by renewable resources in New Mexico and Arizona to markets across the West. Dunn announced late Wednesday that he was issuing a 60-day suspension after meeting with the developers. That delay will give his office more time to review the project before any further development affects state trust lands, he said.
A proposed wind farm that would string together 1,000 turbines across nearly 220,000 acres of public and private lands in southeast Wyoming has reached another regulatory milestone, with the Interior Department greenlighting a series of infrastructure projects that move the Chokecherry and Sierra Madre Wind Energy Project closer to construction.
And the last point, and perhaps the most obvious, is that we’re pursuing wind resources because it is a proven technology that can address federal environmental policies. It’s a key element in our balanced approach to a resource technology mix. Wind resource investment has been good for our customers, it’s good for the environment, and it’s certainly been good for the state of Iowa. That’s why Berkshire Hathaway sees it as a good investment.
But Massachusetts has spent $113 million on a new port facility in New Bedford built specifically to cater to offshore wind farms, bolstering widespread community support for the strategy. The city’s location near two federal areas off the coasts of Massachusetts and Rhode Island slated for wind development also buoys residents’ hopes. Says Mayor Jon Mitchell: “The arrival of the offshore wind industry in America, and especially the Northeast, is inevitable. And when it comes, New Bedford will be ready.”