What has been a small transition operation is slated to expand quickly now that Trump has clinched the presidency, and team members will soon be dispatched into federal agencies to interview officials, gather information and prepare detailed policy agendas. Meanwhile, shortlists of names for top Cabinet posts are being compiled, and interest groups, members of Congress and others will continue to press their preferences for key jobs.
The upcoming political shift may also dim prospects for the energy conference committee, which is aiming to strike a deal on what would be the first new major reform law in a decade. Before the election, ClearView Energy Partners LLC recently said there was a 60 percent chance that negotiators would come up with a compromise similar to the Senate’s version, S. 2012.
The stage is set for Clean Line Energy Partners LLC and landowner opponents to clash again before Missouri regulators over the $2.2 billion Grain Belt Express transmission project. But both sides know the fate of the 800-mile high-voltage line through Missouri may ultimately rest on the outcome of court challenges involving a different transmission line already approved by the Public Service Commission.
European renewable stocks fell sharply on Wednesday after Donald Trump won the U.S. presidential election, hit by fears over his aim to promote oil and gas drilling and revive the U.S. coal mining industry. Shares in Vestas, the world’s biggest wind turbine maker, plunged 10 percent in early trade in Europe, while German peer Nordex traded 6 percent lower. Spain’s Gamesa, which is being merged with Siemens, and Portugal’s EDP Renovaveis traded 3.4 and 5.3 percent lower, respectively.
Shares in Vestas Wind Systems A/S plunged after U.S. voters unexpectedly propelled Republican nominee Donald Trump to the presidency, sparking concern that the renewable energy industry will face political headwinds in the future. The world’s biggest maker of wind turbines fell as much as 14 percent and traded 6.6 percent lower at 440.20 kroner as of 10:22 a.m. in Copenhagen. The Danish company already lost ground last week as U.S. polls started to tighten, bringing this year’s declines to about 10 percent.
New York Sen. Chuck Schumer (D), who won a third term last night by 43 points, is poised to take over as Senate minority leader from retiring Sen. Harry Reid (D-Nev.). And given Trump’s upset victory in the presidential race and the Republicans’ enduring majority in the House, Schumer will soon become the most important Democrat in the country.
North Carolina Republican Gov. Pat McCrory, a former Duke Energy Corp. executive, has lost re-election in one of the country’s closest races. Democratic Attorney General Roy Cooper won by 4,772 votes. McCrory’s loss is a notable defeat for the GOP in an election in which other vulnerable party incumbents pulled through.
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) is heading Trump’s transition operation, with the assistance of veteran Republican energy policy experts. Trump’s transition team is expected to dramatically increase staffing as it prepares a policy agenda for the administration and works to fill top executive branch jobs. Lobbyist and longtime congressional energy aide Mike Catanzaro is among those helping with the transition. Energy lobbyist Mike McKenna is leading the Energy Department transition team; climate change skeptic Myron Ebell of the Competitive Enterprise Institute is heading up the EPA transition team; and former George W. Bush administration Interior official David Bernhardt is working on the Interior transition.
Sean Mish, director of systems integration for eWind Solutions, displayed the Wilsonville, Ore., company’s tethered kites during a Portland technology show in September 2016. The kites spin electrical generators as they deploy. The company markets them to farmers, who would sell the power to utilities. eWind Solutions won a $600,000 USDA grant to advance its work.
Tim Burke, president and chief executive of the Omaha Public Power District, said that even though the utility just closed down a major source of carbon-free electricity production at its Fort Calhoun nuclear power plant, ratepayers can expect to have additional clean energy to backfill a portion of its lost capacity. The Calhoun shutdown “begins our transformation in a new energy marketplace,” Burke said.