Granholm pitches ‘Race to Top’ grant program for states

Source: Nick Juliano, E&E reporter • Posted: Tuesday, January 22nd, 2013

Former Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm, who is said to be in the running to take over the Department of Energy if Steven Chu resigns, captivated a crowd of DOE staff and outside stakeholders with a pitch to promote clean energy deployment with a state-based competition modeled on the popular education program “Race to the Top.” Granholm’s pitch came at DOE’s “All Stars” event Saturday afternoon that featured a series of presentations from energy experts modeled off TED talks.

Climate nabs spotlight at Green Ball

Source: Whitney Blair Wyckoff, E&E reporter • Posted: Tuesday, January 22nd, 2013

Vice President Joe Biden last night urged environmentalists to “keep the faith” on climate issues as he made a surprise appearance at the Green Inaugural Ball. President Obama is committed to tackling the issue during his second term, Biden said to roaring applause at the event, hosted by the National Wildlife Federation at Washington, D.C.’s Newseum.

Obama pledges U.S. leadership on climate

Source: John McArdle and Jennifer Yachnin, E&E reporters • Posted: Tuesday, January 22nd, 2013

President Obama prominently featured climate change — calling out skeptics and calling for America to lead a worldwide transition to new energy technologies — in his inaugural address today. While this second address on the steps of the Capitol was about 300 words shorter than his first, Obama spent a great deal more time today on energy and environmental issues in a speech meant as a call to action on the current challenges facing America.

Obama’s Chance for a Fresh Start on a Climate-Smart Energy Quest

Source: By ANDREW C. REVKIN, New York Times • Posted: Tuesday, January 22nd, 2013

It was heartening to see President Obama include an ample reference to the importance of climate-smart energy policies in his short inaugural address today. The speech is presumably a sketch of what’s to come in the State of the Union message and policy initiatives this year.

Despite dawn of a new term, forecast cloudy for energy and enviro issues

Source: Nick Juliano, Jean Chemnick and Phil Taylor, E&E reporters • Posted: Tuesday, January 22nd, 2013

The inauguration is over, and a new Congress is getting organized this week. So time to get to work, right?
Not so fast, at least when it comes to the plethora of pending energy and environmental issues — from power plant rules to pipeline permits — that are awaiting action in President Obama’s second term and will draw intense scrutiny on Capitol Hill.

Climate Change Given Prominence in Obama’s Address

Source: By RICHARD W. STEVENSON and JOHN M. BRODER, New York Times • Posted: Tuesday, January 22nd, 2013

President Obama made addressing climate change the most prominent policy vow of his second Inaugural Address on Monday, setting in motion what Democrats say will be a deliberately paced but aggressive campaign built around the use of his executive powers to sidestep Congressional opposition. “We will respond to the threat of climate change, knowing that failure to do so would betray our children and future generations,” Mr. Obama said, at the start of eight full sentences on the subject, more than he devoted to any other specific area. “Some may still deny the overwhelming judgment of science, but none can avoid the devastating impact of raging fires, and crippling drought, and more powerful storms.”

Under Obama, Spain’s Solar, Wind Energy Companies Invest Big In U.S.

Source: Daniel Basteiro, Huffington Post • Posted: Monday, January 21st, 2013

“We’ve got to make sure we’re building sources of energy for the future, not just thinking about next year, but 10 years from now, 20 years from now,” President Barack Obama said last fall during the second presidential debate, before a skeptical Mitt Romney. “That’s why we’ve invested in solar and wind power, biofuels and energy-efficient cars.”
These words sounded like celestial music to Spanish energy companies, and Obama’s reelection has been cause for celebration here. Spanish companies have been leading developers of solar and wind power, and have invested billions of dollars in the U.S. in recent years. With America’s push to develop the clean energy even further, there is an opportunity to greatly increase Spain’s output in these sectors, beyond regional partners like Latin America.

Japan to start building world’s biggest offshore wind farm this summer

RT • Posted: Monday, January 21st, 2013

Japan is to start building its ambitious wind farm project off the Fukushima coast in July. The farm is expected to become the world’s largest and produce 1GW of power once completed in 2020. The power-generating facility will be built 16 kilometers off the coast of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, which was critically damaged by an earthquake and tsunami in March 2011.

Wind hit installation record as developers raced to claim tax credit — report

Source: Nick Juliano, E&E reporter • Posted: Monday, January 21st, 2013

Last year was a banner year for the wind industry as developers raced to complete projects ahead of the then-looming expiration of a key tax incentive, according to new research released today. About 13,200 megawatts of new wind capacity was installed in 2012, with more than 40 percent of those installations coming in December, according to the analysis by Bloomberg New Energy Finance, a nonpartisan research firm that maintains a database of transactions and projects in wind, solar and other clean energy sectors. The record pace of installations was spurred by the potential expiration of the production tax credit (PTC), which Congress ultimately extended Jan. 1 as part of the broader “fiscal cliff” legislation.

Bechtel tapped to build N.J. offshore transmission line

E&E • Posted: Friday, January 18th, 2013

A Google Inc.-backed project has hired the contracting firm that constructed the Hoover Dam to build the first part of an offshore transmission system off the coast of New Jersey. Bechtel Corp. is slated to start building the project in 2016. Project developer Atlantic Grid Development LLC’s entire plan would link 7,000 megawatts of offshore wind turbine capacity to shore. It would carry as much as 3,000 MW of power to 1 million households by 2019 (Greenwire, Jan. 15). Called the New Jersey Energy Link the system is slated to cost $1.8 billion, the developer said in a statement.