News

Moniz expects clean-tech funding boost from Congress

Source: Christa Marshall, E&E reporter • Posted: Friday, April 15th, 2016

Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz today said he expects Congress will provide a significant increase in clean technology funding as part of a broad plan to address climate change, despite a lukewarm response in Congress to the proposal. Appropriations bills that advanced this week in both chambers of Congress fell short of the administration’s request on Mission Innovation, a global plan to address climate change by doubling spending on clean energy research and development over five years.

Gov. Branstad joins MidAmerican Energy in Announcing $3.6 Billion Investment in Additional Wind Generation Capacity

Source: By Office of Governor Terry Brastad • Posted: Friday, April 15th, 2016

Branstad said he is proud of MidAmerican Energy’s long-standing and ongoing commitment to clean energy, which has helped make Iowa a national leader in renewable energy. “This project puts Iowa on track to be the first state in the nation to generate more than 40 percent of its energy needs from wind power – far ahead of any other state. Today, Iowa is the only state to have crossed the 30 percent mark,” he said. “We welcome this opportunity to expand Iowa’s renewable energy and thank MidAmerican Energy for making this investment in our great state. Every wind turbine you see in Iowa means income for farmers, revenue for counties and jobs for Iowa families.”

MidAmerican Energy pours $3.6B more into wind

Source: By Donnelle Eller, Des Moines Register • Posted: Friday, April 15th, 2016

Warren Buffett’s MidAmerican Energy Co. is planning a $3.6 billion wind farm in Iowa with a capacity of 2,000 megawatts, the biggest economic development project in state history. The Wind XI project won’t increase customer rates and will help the state get more than 40 percent of its electricity from wind resources, Iowa Governor Terry Branstad said in a statement from the company Thursday. MidAmerican is seeking approval for the wind farm with the state’s Utilities Board.

Buffett’s MidAmerican to Build $3.6 Billion Iowa Wind Farm

Source: By Joe Ryan, Bloomberg • Posted: Friday, April 15th, 2016

Warren Buffett’s MidAmerican Energy Co. is planning a $3.6 billion wind farm in Iowa with a capacity of 2,000 megawatts, the biggest economic development project in state history. The Wind XI project won’t increase customer rates and will help the state get more than 40 percent of its electricity from wind resources, Iowa Governor Terry Branstad said in a statement from the company Thursday. MidAmerican is seeking approval for the wind farm with the state’s Utilities Board.

Report: Rural Michigan landowners net millions from wind farms

Source: BY Andy Balaskovitz, Midwest Energy News • Posted: Thursday, April 14th, 2016

Wind energy development is leading to increased tax bases for some Michigan counties and millions of dollars for rural landowners in the form of land lease payments, according to an industry report. The American Wind Energy Association says those payments to Michigan landowners totaled $4.6 million in 2014. Nationwide, AWEA reports that wind farms now pay $222 million a year to rural landowners, with $70.7 million of that across 12 Midwest states, according to its 2015 U.S. Wind Industry Market Report released today.

Wind jobs growing with passage of tax credit, industry says

Source: Daniel Cusick, E&E reporter • Posted: Thursday, April 14th, 2016

A Colorado turbine factory owned by Danish energy giant Vestas Wind Systems A/S was the backdrop for the U.S. wind energy sector’s annual report for 2015, a year marked by a 20 percent increase in wind energy employment. American wind power supported a record 88,000 jobs at the beginning of 2016, with major firms like Vestas, General Electric Co. and Siemens AG at the core of a U.S. supply chain that now extends across all 50 states and has helped revive rural economies from Texas to Maine.

Experts see ‘more of the same’ on energy next year

Source: Geof Koss, E&E reporter • Posted: Thursday, April 14th, 2016

During the discussion sponsored by the American Petroleum Institute, former Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.), ex-White House energy aide Heather Zichal, American Action Forum President Douglas Holtz-Eakin and API Vice President of Regulatory and Economic Policy Kyle Isakower signaled low expectations for a new president and the next Congress.

Senate avoids controversial riders in energy and water bill

Source: Hannah Hess, Geof Koss and Christa Marshall, E&E reporters • Posted: Thursday, April 14th, 2016

Appropriators in both chambers advanced energy and water spending bills yesterday, with senators choosing to avoid contentious policy riders, while members of the House incorporated thousands of special requests from members. This afternoon, the Senate Energy and Water Development Appropriations Subcommittee approved a $37.5 billion fiscal 2017 spending bill for the Department of Energy and the Army Corps of Engineers, which Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) said was a $355 million increase over the current year.

Senate plots return to energy reform bill without Flint aid

Source: Geof Koss, E&E reporter • Posted: Thursday, April 14th, 2016

Months of negotiations over the Senate energy reform package yielded a surprise agreement yesterday to bring the measure back to the floor as early as next week, after lawmakers decided to put off fights on offshore drilling and money for Flint, Mich. Under a unanimous consent agreement last night, Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) will determine the timing for debate on amendments and the overall legislation.

Senators Reach Deal to Act on Comprehensive Energy Bill

Source: By CORAL DAVENPORT, New York Times • Posted: Thursday, April 14th, 2016

Senators on Wednesday reached a deal to act on a comprehensive energy bill as soon as this week, breaking a three-month partisan standoff over the tainted water scandal in Flint, Mich.
The bill, sponsored by Senator Lisa Murkowski, Republican of Alaska and chairwoman of the Senate Energy Committee, and Senator Maria Cantwell of Washington, the panel’s ranking Democrat, has broad bipartisan support and is expected to easily pass the Senate.