Warren Buffett is synonymous with his hometown of Omaha, Neb., but for a glimpse into the future of his investment empire, look east…to Iowa. In the neighboring Hawkeye State, the Berkshire Hathaway Inc. chairman has sunk billions into wind-farm projects, part of a big gambit on renewable energy by a utility company he acquired in 2000 and has built into one of the country’s largest power suppliers. Through a majority-owned subsidiary, Berkshire Hathaway Energy, Mr. Buffett plans to double the $15 billion already committed to renewable-energy projects through early this year, and he is on the hunt for more utility acquisitions.
Come November 4th, 2014, Colorado voters have a lot more on the line than just selecting their next U.S. Senator. The outcome of this year’s Colorado Senate election has implications not only for the state of Colorado, but for the entire country. Currently, Democrats have control of the Senate with 53 members in comparison to the 45 Republicans. However, if Colorado voters elect Republican candidate Cory Gardner into office, the Republicans will then hold the majority in the U.S. Senate. If voters elect Democrat Mark Udall, the Democrats will maintain control of the U.S. Senate
The U.S. wind power industry continued its modest recovery over the third quarter of 2014, with 419 megawatts of new generation capacity coming online in Texas, Nebraska, Michigan and California. But officials said the quarterly numbers, which reflect a 600 percent increase over the same quarter of 2013 when the industry was emerging from a near-standstill, do not accurately reflect the pace of wind energy development in the United States.
A Senate panel on Tuesday heard the benefits and disadvantages of millions of dollars in state incentives that go to the wind industry. The location of wind farms has been an issue at the Capitol. A measure by Senate Pro Tem Brian Bingman, R-Sapulpa, would have put a moratorium on wind farms east of Interstate 35. The measure was not heard in the Oklahoma House.
The Senate Finance Committee began Tuesday what its chairman said he hoped was a cost-benefit analysis of the current tax incentives available to the wind energy industry. “Our primary goal is to gather information that will give members of the Oklahoma Senate a better understanding of the cost and benefits associated with the current tax subsidy for wind power generation. In advance of this committee meeting research and data collection has already been accomplished to document the costs of subsidizing wind power.
In the wake of the People’s Climate March — and with world leaders descending on the UN to make pledges to reduce greenhouse gas emissions — the city is abuzz with talk about how to move toward cleaner, sustainable energy. On Monday, the Rockefeller Brothers Fund announced plans to divest its millions from fossil fuels.
Four years after comprehensive cap-and-trade legislation stalled out in the Senate, the prospect of carbon pricing is back on the table. With regional carbon markets already up and running in California and the Northeast, and cross-state collaboration explicitly encouraged under U.S. EPA’s Clean Power Plan, more states are examining carbon caps and carbon taxes as a route to lower emissions.
Iowa has emerged as a real powerhouse in the area of wind energy and stands to continue benefiting from its growth. That was the message University of Iowa Provost Barry Butler shared Monday as he discussed the future of wind energy at the Davenport Rotary Club meeting at The Outing Club, Davenport. “Iowa embraced wind in the 1980s and got strong,” he said, adding that was when he got involved in the renewable energy, particularly on the research side.
While Iowa has a range of options to comply with the plan, Turner and Wind’s analysis shows that wind alone can cost-effectively bring Iowa into compliance. Rather than hurting Iowa’s economy, by complying with the Clean Power Plan and furthering our commitment to clean energy we can continue to garner (as Governor Branstad said) “long-lasting benefits and [make] Iowa a competitive economic force not only in the United States but also in the world.”
Federal judges rejected a request Friday from nonprofit electric utilities to reconsider the ruling upholding the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s Order 1000, a landmark rule aimed at spurring upgrades to the electric grid.
The Large Public Power Council had asked the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit to reconsider its August ruling that upheld Order 1000 in its entirety. Order 1000 is among FERC’s largest and most complex rulemakings. It calls for regional coordination in grid planning and for abolishing an incumbent utility’s “right of first refusal” to build a new project, among other reforms. Virtually every aspect of the order was challenged at the D.C. Circuit. That the three-judge panel upheld the rule was a major victory for FERC