News

Researchers detail latest in storage, renewables research

Source: Christa Marshall, E&E reporter • Posted: Monday, June 13th, 2016

House lawmakers will consider technologies this week that could, in theory, turn solar and wind into baseload power and create an alternative to biofuels without the need for farmland. The House Science, Space & Technology Subcommittee on Energy will hear from scientists working on solar fuels, electricity storage and advanced materials. The purpose of the hearing is to examine the “overall status” of research on the technologies in the United States, said a committee spokeswoman.

Sit-down aims to smooth pre-conference tension

Source: Geof Koss, E&E reporter • Posted: Monday, June 13th, 2016

Senate Energy Chairwoman Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) said Thursday that she was optimistic the huddle with ranking member Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.) and the pair’s House counterparts on the Energy and Commerce Committee, Chairman Fred Upton (R-Mich.) and ranking member Frank Pallone (D-N.J.), would help clear the air over the conference, “Our staffs have been working to try to pull some things together, but it doesn’t happen till we get everyone sitting down,” she said. Democrats have taken a dismal view of the House’s revised energy bill over the inclusion of multiple bills that have drawn veto threats from the White House.

Coal Production Plummets to Lowest Level in 35 Years

Source: By CLIFFORD KRAUSS, New York Times • Posted: Monday, June 13th, 2016

Coal production in the United States is plummeting to levels not seen since a crippling coal strike 35 years ago, according to a report released by the Energy Department on Friday. The coal industry in recent years has been plagued by bankruptcies as power utilities increasingly moved to replace coal with cheap natural gas and renewable sources, like solar and wind energy. Coal was once the dominant source of the nation’s electricity generation, but consumption of the fossil fuel has declined by nearly a third since its peak in 2007.

House passes resolutions opposing carbon, oil tax

Source: Ariel Wittenberg and Amanda Reilly, E&E reporters • Posted: Monday, June 13th, 2016

The House passed resolutions late last week targeting policies meant to address climate change and promote renewable energy that Republicans say would drive up energy prices. One of the resolutions would express a sense of Congress that a carbon tax would be “detrimental” to the American economy, and the other opposes President Obama’s budget proposal for a $10.25-per-barrel oil fee

Renewables Will Top Gas as Biggest U.S. Power Producer in 2031

Source: By Naureen Malik, Bloomberg • Posted: Monday, June 13th, 2016

Renewables will overtake natural gas as the dominant source of electricity generation in the U.S. in 2031, even without subsidies as wind and solar costs plunge, a Bloomberg New Energy Finance analysis showed. This U.S. shift will be driven by $745 billion in investments in renewables through 2040, outstripping the projected $95 billion that will be spent on building new fossil-fuel plants, said Elena Giannakopoulou, lead economist at BNEF. Solar and wind capacity will become cheaper than gas or coal without any incentives after 2020.

Apple becomes an energy company

Source: Hannah Northey, E&E reporter • Posted: Monday, June 13th, 2016

Savvy technology giant Apple Inc. is now focusing its expertise on selling excess renewable energy back into the country’s electric grid. Apple has created a subsidiary, Apple Energy LLC, that’s seeking federal permission to sell power at wholesale and provide grid services in California, the Midwest, New England and the Southwest, according to the company’s filing with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.

Donald Trump Supported Addressing Climate Change Before Calling It a ‘Hoax’

Source: By Justin Worland, Time • Posted: Monday, June 13th, 2016

Trump’s 2009 stance came in the form of an open letter to President Barack Obama and Congress published in the New York Times. The letter, first reported by Grist, was signed by Trump and other prominent business leaders in advance of the 2009 Copenhagen climate talks that most experts agree ended in failure. Trump’s children—Eric, Ivanka and Donald Jr.—all joined the letter as well.

Oil demand boosted as global refinery capacity to reach record

Source: BY HENNING GLOYSTEIN, Reuters • Posted: Monday, June 13th, 2016

Oil demand is set to surge in the short-term as refining capacity hits a record, yet the gains may not hold as a flood of fuel gluts the market, eroding profit margins and eventually forcing refiners to cut runs and crude orders. Data on Thomson Reuters Eikon shows that available global capacity to refine oil into fuels like gasoline, diesel, or jet and shipping fuel, will reach 101.8 million barrels per day (bpd) in August, the highest on record, and up from about 97.25 million bpd in March.

BOEM’s Hopper, API’s Milito discuss future of offshore energy development 

Source: Monica Traumi, E&E • Posted: Friday, June 10th, 2016

During today’s E&ETV Event Coverage of Capitol Hill Ocean Week 2016, panelists discuss the current and future financing, policy and planning dynamics of offshore energy. Panelists include Abigail Ross Hopper, director of the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management at the Department of the Interior; John Weber, executive director of the Northeast Regional Ocean Council; Erik Milito, group director of upstream and industry operations at the American Petroleum Institute; and Nancy Sopko, manager of advocacy and federal legislative affairs at the American Wind Energy Association.

U.S. Offshore Wind: Mid-Year Update

Source: By Hayden Baker, James Wrathful, Sullivan & Worcester JDSupra • Posted: Friday, June 10th, 2016

Several speakers at the recent American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) annual conference in New Orleans lauded the positive impact of Congress’s extensions of the production tax credit (PTC) and investment tax credit (ITC) in December 2015. As they noted, these extensions position wind energy for a period of unprecedented stability and growth—at least for the onshore wind sector.