Calif. gives money to swap clunkers for electric vehicles and other clean cars 

Source: Anne C. Mulkern, E&E reporter • Posted: Friday, May 29th, 2015

California is giving money to residents who get rid of polluting cars and buy ones that use less gasoline or no gasoline at all. The Golden State yesterday launched a pilot program advancing the effort. It’s funded by $4.8 million in proceeds from California’s cap-and-trade program for carbon emissions. By state law, that money must be used on endeavors that further the goals of climate law A.B. 32. Under the new program, a low-income family could receive as much as $12,000 toward the purchase of an electric car. Residents in areas considered disadvantaged also qualify.

Bipartisan set of governors urge Congress to pass policy certainty ASAP to avoid job loss

Source: By AWEA • Posted: Friday, May 29th, 2015

“These tax credits have made possible the robust growth of the American wind industry and thousands of renewable energy jobs in recent years, with substantial economic returns to our states and the nation,” the governors’ letter reads. “But these gains are at risk today because ongoing federal policy uncertainty continues to hamper the further development of the nation’s wind industry.” After adding 23,000 jobs in 2014, American wind power continues to ramp up in 2015, gaining momentum over the first quarter of the year with $23 billion worth of new wind projects under development.

Cape Wind seeks more time to restart stalled wind farm

Source: By Jack Newsham, Boston Globe • Posted: Friday, May 29th, 2015

Cape Wind has asked state regulators for more time to revive its stalled project after the state’s two major utilities backed out of buying power from the proposed offshore wind farm.
The wind farm’s developer was supposed to begin construction by May 1, but just before the deadline, it asked the Massachusetts Energy Facilities Siting Board for a two-year extension. Cape Wind Associates LLC said it needs additional time to work through the mountains of litigation facing the project, while trying to persuade the two utilities to reactivate contracts critical to financing the $2.6 billion construction.

Sales of energy storage batteries take off as utilities try to smooth power demands on the grid 

Source: Daniel Cusick, E&E reporter • Posted: Friday, May 29th, 2015

Electric utilities, once happy to provide nonstop power to all of their customers all of the time, are beginning to warm to the idea of socking power away for another day.Thanks to rapid technological advances and market shifts, large utilities like Duke Energy of North Carolina, Consolidated Edison of New York and Southern California Edison are investing tens of millions of dollars in the development and deployment of commercial-scale energy storage facilities. New data released this morning by GTM Research and the Energy Storage Association show that U.S. utilities and other firms installed 5.8 megawatts of energy storage in the first quarter of 2015, an 18 percent increase from the same quarter in 2014.

Solar Shines as Sellers Sometimes Pay Buyers to Use Power

Source: By Naureen Malik, Bloomberg • Posted: Thursday, May 28th, 2015

Move over, shale. The sun is now the fastest-growing source of U.S. electricity. Solar power capacity in the U.S. has jumped 20-fold since 2008 as companies including Apple Inc. use it to reduce their carbon footprints. Rooftop panels are sprouting on homes from suburban New York to Phoenix, driven by suppliers such as SolarCity Corp. and NRG Energy Inc.

Governors urge Congress to renew wind energy tax credit 

Source: Daniel Bush, E&E reporter • Posted: Thursday, May 28th, 2015

Two prominent wind energy supporters are reviving the industry’s campaign to renew the federal production tax credit that expired last year. In a letter to top lawmakers in the House and Senate, Govs. Jay Inslee (D) of Washington and Terry Branstad (R) of Iowa, who lead the Governors’ Wind Energy Coalition, called for a “multi-year” extension of the PTC, which provides wind energy developers with a rebate of 2.3 cents per kilowatt-hour for the first 10 years of a wind farm’s existence. The tax credit was briefly renewed and then allowed to expire at the end of 2014.

Governors Urge Congress To Expedite PTC, ITC Extension 

Source: by NAW Staff • Posted: Thursday, May 28th, 2015

The chairman and vice chairman of the bipartisan Governors’ Wind Energy Coalition sent a letter to House and Senate leadership today urging Congress to approve a multiyear extension of the production tax credit (PTC) and investment tax credit (ITC) as soon as possible. Washington Gov. Jay Inslee and Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad told congressional leaders that the recent Wind Vision report emphasized the importance of near-term policy support to prevent an industry slowdown and the loss of manufacturing to foreign markets. Without policy support, wind deployment will be minimal and the domestic wind manufacturing sector will likely wither.

Bipartisan set of governors urge Congress to pass policy certainty to avoid job loss

Source: By Michelle Froese, Windpower Engineering • Posted: Thursday, May 28th, 2015

“This bipartisan letter is a reminder that the nation’s governors are on the front line of the nation’s energy future and have a vital role in planning states’ future,” said American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) CEO Tom Kiernan. “They see first-hand how investing in the wind resources in their states benefit local economies and create opportunities for job growth. To them the decision to extend these incentives is more of an economic one than a political one. We look forward to working with all the governors to maximize the benefits of wind power to their states.”

Former state energy regulator vows to fight Clean Power Plan from inside Congress

Source: Emily Holden, E&E reporter • Posted: Wednesday, May 27th, 2015

While Republicans in Congress strategize about how to gut carbon regulations for power plants, at least one among them has had some direct exposure to the critical choices states will have to make if U.S. EPA’s Clean Power Plan moves forward. Rep. Kevin Cramer, 54, was one of North Dakota’s electricity regulators for nine years before being elected to the state’s only House seat. His successors back home will have to help craft plans to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the state’s power sector while keeping electricity affordable and reliable.

Cities play critical — but unclear — role in EPA’s Clean Power Plan 

Source: Scott Detrow, E&E reporter • Posted: Wednesday, May 27th, 2015

There’s no question that when it comes to complying with U.S. EPA’s looming regulations requiring the power sector to cut its greenhouse gas emissions by 30 percent, cities will need to play a major role. After all, as a recent report from the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy pointed out, two-thirds of the world’s energy consumption — and three-quarters of its greenhouse gas emissions — occurs in cities or broader urban areas.