News

Gov. Mary Fallin proposes tax on Oklahoma wind production

Source: By Paul Monies, The Oklahoman • Posted: Wednesday, February 8th, 2017

Oklahoma would become the second state to impose a tax on wind power, and its tax would be the nation’s highest, under a proposal announced Monday by Gov. Mary Fallin. In her executive budget, Fallin proposed a 0.5 cent per kilowatt hour tax on electricity from wind generation. She also wants to sunset existing tax incentives for the wind industry earlier than planned.

Repeal without replace: a dangerous GOP strategy on Obamacare and climate

Source: By Dana Nuccitelli, The Guardian • Posted: Wednesday, February 8th, 2017

House Republicans have introduced a bill to rewrite the Clean Air Act. The bill, which has 114 co-sponsors (all Republicans), would revise the Clean Air Act such that: The term ‘air pollutant’ does not include carbon dioxide, water vapor, methane, nitrous oxide, hydrofluorocarbons, perfluorocarbons, or sulfur hexafluoride. This change would kill the EPA regulation of carbon pollution that’s a key component of the Clean Power Plan.

Energy lobbyist expected to land key White House slot

Source: Robin Bravender, E&E News reporter • Posted: Wednesday, February 8th, 2017

President Trump is expected to hire an energy lobbyist with executive branch experience and deep ties to Capitol Hill Republicans for a top White House energy post. Mike Catanzaro, a lobbyist at CGCN Group whose résumé also includes stints at the White House and U.S. EPA, is expected to soon sign on as special assistant to the president for energy and environmental issues in the White House National Economic Council, according to two sources close to the Trump administration. He’d take a post that’s expected to be one of the most influential energy positions in the Trump administration.

Even Trump can’t dismiss the success of renewables

Source: By Martin Wright, The Guardian • Posted: Wednesday, February 8th, 2017

What impact will the climate-sceptic, coal enthusiast President Trump have on the prospects for renewable energy? How will Brexit affect the UK’s renewable sector? And what’s driving the growth of clean energy in Asia? These were key questions for participants at a Guardian roundtable on the future of wind and solar power, supported by Julius Baer.

GOP Senior Statesmen Making Push for a Carbon Tax

Source: By CATHERINE LUCEY AND JULIE PACE, The Associated Press • Posted: Wednesday, February 8th, 2017

A group of Republican senior statesmen is pushing for a carbon tax to combat the effects of climate change, and hoping to sell their plan to the White House. Former Secretary of State Jim Baker is leading the effort, which also includes former Secretary of State George Shultz. In an opinion piece published Tuesday night in The Wall Street Journal, they argued “there is mounting evidence of problems with the atmosphere that are growing too compelling to ignore.” The group will meet Wednesday with White House officials, including Vice President Mike Pence, senior adviser Jared Kushner, and Gary Cohn, director of the National Economic Council. Ivanka Trump is also expected to attend, according to a person familiar with the plans. The person was not authorized to discuss the meeting publicly and insisted on anonymity.

How Germany Hammers Down Renewable Energy Costs: QuickTake Q&A

Source: By Weixin Zha, Bloomberg • Posted: Wednesday, February 8th, 2017

Germany’s pioneering turn toward clean energy is approaching another milestone with a new round of auctions for wind power expected to push the price of electricity from renewables to record lows. Rules for tenders in the next contest were implemented to bring wind and solar growth under control after capacity outpaced the German grid’s ability to absorb new flows of power and burdened consumers with higher costs. The auctions will test whether Europe’s industrial engine, which still produces more power from coal than renewables, can achieve its climate commitments.

Utah solar industry gives up fight over tax credit for rooftop installs

Source: By EMMA PENROD  The Salt Lake Tribune • Posted: Tuesday, February 7th, 2017

Utah State lawmakers and officials from Utah’s solar industry have reached an agreement for phasing out tax credits for residents installing rooftop arrays, partly by increasing those incentives while they are still available. Many said they have mixed feelings about the compromise to eliminate the tax breaks by 2021, which emerged this week on Capitol Hill and is now headed to a House floor debate.

Solar Energy Created 1 In 50 New U.S. Jobs. Now It’s Bracing For Trump Cuts.

Source: By Alexander C. Kaufman, Huffington Post • Posted: Tuesday, February 7th, 2017

President Donald Trump promised to spur a hiring renaissance after he won election last year by bulldozing regulations he says stymie economic growth. Yet he has vowed to strip tax incentives from an industry that, according to figures released Tuesday, created one out of every 50 new jobs in the United States last year, up from 1 in 83 a year earlier. The solar industry, by all accounts, is booming, according to the new National Solar Jobs Census, an annual report released by the nonpartisan Solar Foundation. Solar energy companies employed 260,077 workers in 2016, an increase of more than 51,000 jobs. That’s slightly more than the natural gas industry, and more than double the coal business.

U.S. solar jobs grew 25 percent last year

Source: By Nichola Groom, Reuters • Posted: Tuesday, February 7th, 2017

Jobs in the U.S. solar industry grew 25 percent last year to include more than 260,000 workers, according to a report by sector advocacy group the Solar Foundation on Tuesday.
Solar’s dramatic jobs growth, including its largest annual percentage gain in the six years the Solar Foundation has tracked the data, is a key benefit renewable energy advocates hope will convince President Donald Trump to maintain federal support for solar power.

Did You Know Your Favorite Products Are Built With Wind Power?

Source: By Hannah Hunt, Morning Consult • Posted: Tuesday, February 7th, 2017

From Facebook data centers to Tide laundry detergent, America’s favorite brands increasingly have one thing in common: a pledge to transition to 100 percent renewable energy, and they’re choosing wind as a low-risk, reliable solution. A few years ago, Fortune 500 companies started making remarkable shifts in the way they powered their stores, factories and data centers — they took matters into their own hands and began directly buying renewable energy.