News

Chu opens the door to phaseout of wind incentive

Source: Nick Juliano • E&E • Posted: Thursday, March 15th, 2012

A day after the Senate declined to extend an array of federal incentives for renewable energy development, the Obama administration’s top energy official signaled an openness to eventually eliminating support for some wind energy because it is nearly competitive with conventional generation. Energy Secretary Steven Chu said he and other administration officials, including White House energy adviser Heather Zichal, met Tuesday with representatives of the wind industry and other energy sectors on the topic of tax incentives and other subsidies. He said that during the meeting a wind industry official, whom he did not name, expressed a willingness to eventually phase out the production tax credit, even though the industry is aggressively lobbying to have that credit extended beyond its scheduled December expiration.

Senate approves reauthorization bill after grueling floor debate

Source: Jason Plautz • E&E • Posted: Thursday, March 15th, 2012

The Senate voted 74-22 today to clear a two-year bill that would reauthorize U.S. transportation programs in a bipartisan vote, ending months of work and five weeks of floor action.

Stabenow’s green-energy tax break plan falls short

Source: Josiah Ryan and Ben Geman • The Hill • Posted: Wednesday, March 14th, 2012

The Senate on Tuesday rejected plans to extend a host of lapsed or soon-to-expire tax breaks for renewable fuels and power sources.

Wind power credit vote comes up short

Source: PETE ROPER • The Pueblo Chieftain • Posted: Wednesday, March 14th, 2012

A critical federal tax credit for Vestas and other wind-power manufacturers was rejected in the Senate on a 49-49 vote Tuesday that split on party lines with Democrats supporting it and Republicans literally turning thumbs down.

Wind and ethanol groups lament failure of Stabenow’s tax break plan

Source: Hannah Northey • E&E • Posted: Wednesday, March 14th, 2012

Renewable energy supporters said the Senate’s rejection yesterday of a Democratic proposal to extend a host of expiring tax breaks for the wind, solar and bioenergy industries reflects the new “buzz saw partisan politics” currently looming over Congress.

Senate passage of reauthorization expected soon; pressure on House leaders grows

Source: Jason Plautz • E&E • Posted: Tuesday, March 13th, 2012

The foot is on the gas pedal in the Senate as analysts expect a transportation reauthorization bill to finally clear the chamber early this week. That puts all of the momentum with the upper chamber and could force the hand of House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), who is still scrambling to pull together enough votes for a bill that could be tied to his disparate party. The House is out for the week, but members say that doesn’t mean the transportation bill will be out of their minds.

Texas sets wind power records with new grid analysis

Reuters • Posted: Monday, March 12th, 2012

Texas set new records for wind-power output this week using a new transmission analysis tool that allows more wind to flow on power lines from west Texas to power-consuming cities hundreds of miles away, the state grid operator said.

Midwest grid needs upgrades for wind power, but cost-sharing plan draws fire in Mich.

Source: Daniel Cusick, • E&E • Posted: Monday, March 12th, 2012

n the Midwest, as in much of the country, the benefits of clean energy are only as real as the ability to move that power to market. Yet despite concerted efforts at the federal and regional levels to create an “interstate highway system” for electricity to flow across state and even national boundaries, renewable energy providers continue to face roadblocks in getting their power to market.

Senate passage of reauthorization expected soon; pressure on House leaders grows

Source: Jason Plautz • E&E • Posted: Monday, March 12th, 2012

The foot is on the gas pedal in the Senate as analysts expect a transportation reauthorization bill to finally clear the chamber early this week. That puts all of the momentum with the upper chamber and could force the hand of House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), who is still scrambling to pull together enough votes for a bill that could be tied to his disparate party. The House is out for the week, but members say that doesn’t mean the transportation bill will be out of their minds.

Renewable Energy Throws Power Grid Off Balance

Source: Christopher Joyce • NPR News • Posted: Monday, March 12th, 2012

The National Academy of Engineering in Washington, D.C., once asked its members to pick the greatest engineering achievement ever. Their choice? The electrification of the country through what’s known as “the grid.”
Ernest Moniz, director of the Energy Institute at MIT, says they were right on the money.