How Kansas City became the EV mecca of the Midwest

Source: Camille von Kaenel, E&E reporter • Posted: Thursday, August 4th, 2016

Graham Goodman, a 33-year-old chemist, bought a used all-electric Nissan Leaf last fall in preparation for a tightening budget and growing family. In May, he stepped out of the hospital where he had just visited his wife and newborn to unplug his car from its charging station and go home. “I’m a former Marine, so it also feels like this tiny patriotic act I can do,” said Goodman, pointing to the U.S. Marine Corps eagle sticker on the back of the car. His Missouri license plate: PLUGD-N.

Mercedes Debuts World’s First Fully Electric Big Rig

Source: By Lorraine Chow, EcoWatch • Posted: Thursday, August 4th, 2016

The new Mercedes-Benz Urban eTruck has an electrically driven rear axle and is powered by three lithium-ion battery modules. The zero-emission vehicle has an admissible total weight of up to 26 tonnes with a range of 200 kilometers (124 miles). Although the range is on the low side, the model here is still a prototype. And, as Engadget pointed out, the “Urban” prefix implies that it’s meant for use in the cities instead of, say, cross-country hauls.

Calif. issues first-in-U.S. compliance plan

Source: Anne C. Mulkern, E&E reporter • Posted: Thursday, August 4th, 2016

California’s landmark cap-and-trade program for carbon emissions and proposed amendments to extend that system will be used to comply with U.S. EPA’s Clean Power Plan, the state said yesterday. The Golden State is the first in the country to publish a draft blueprint for fulfilling the federal agency’s mandate, aimed at cutting existing power plant emissions, said Stanley Young, spokesman for the California Air Resources Board.

Enviros hail ‘a landmark moment’ for Mass. clean energy

Source: Daniel Cusick, E&E reporter • Posted: Thursday, August 4th, 2016

Clean energy advocates yesterday hailed Massachusetts’ adoption of the nation’s most ambitious offshore wind energy law, one requiring utilities to contract for 1,600 megawatts of power from offshore turbines by 2027. “The Massachusetts Legislature hit a home run tonight,” Catherine Bowes, senior manager for climate and energy at National Wildlife Federation’s Northeast Regional Center, said in a statement following the Sunday passage of the long-negotiated energy measure, which also calls for significant increases in Canadian hydropower imports.

Letter to NYT Editor: Making the Transition to Renewable Energy

Source: By MICHAEL GOGGIN, AWEA • Posted: Wednesday, August 3rd, 2016

“Embrace of Renewables Has a Hidden Cost,” by Eduardo Porter (Economic Scene column, July 20), perpetuates the myth that nuclear and renewable energy are competitors. In reality, cheap natural gas is causing nuclear’s woes because fossil fuel power plants set prices in electricity markets, not wind or nuclear. Cheap fossil fuels have a 500 times larger effect than wind on setting the prices received by nuclear plants, according to the country’s largest electricity market monitor. Mr. Porter does note: “The economics of nuclear energy are mostly to blame. It just cannot compete with cheap natural gas.” But he still blames renewables.

In Tesla and SolarCity Deal, a Glimpse of Musk’s Clean-Energy Aspirations

Source: By LESLIE PICKER and BILL VLASIC, New York Times • Posted: Wednesday, August 3rd, 2016

In the face of questions about debt, widening losses, governance and strategic logic, Tesla Motors and SolarCity announced a $2.6 billion stock merger on Monday. Now, it is up to Elon Musk to persuade the shareholders of the two companies — he founded both — that the deal makes sense. The transaction requires the approval this year of a majority of shareholders from both Tesla and SolarCity, excluding Mr. Musk and other insiders.

Massachusetts Legislature passes renewable energy compromise bill

Source: By Shira Schoenberg, Springfield (Mass) Republican • Posted: Wednesday, August 3rd, 2016

The Massachusetts Legislature late Sunday night sent to Gov. Charlie Baker a compromise energy bill that, while less broad than some senators had hoped, would require the state to purchase significantly more energy from offshore wind and other renewable sources. “I don’t think that where we ended up is nearly as strong as where the Senate was,” said State Sen. Ben Downing, D-Pittsfield, Senate chairman of the Committee on Telecommunications, Utilities and Energy. “But both the administration and the House had a far narrower view, and that made for a rather difficult negotiation.”

Alexander asks EPA to scrap award program for wind

Source: Hannah Hess, E&E reporter • Posted: Wednesday, August 3rd, 2016

Sen. Lamar Alexander today urged U.S. EPA to scrap a proposed voluntary program to award states for “zero-emitting” renewable energy projects, including wind, under the Clean Power Plan. The Tennessee Republican, who has waged war against federal support for wind energy, wrote to EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy to express serious concern about the Clean Energy Incentive Program that the agency proposed earlier this summer

Trump bashes renewables, promises to feed coal execs

Source: Dylan Brown, E&E reporter • Posted: Wednesday, August 3rd, 2016

Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump said yesterday he had hope for solar energy, but not yet and not at the expense of natural gas and coal.The billionaire reality television star also derided wind power as a bird-killing eyesore during a campaign stop in Harrisburg, Pa. “Everything has its place. Solar absolutely has its place. I think solar is going to be good as time goes by, but right now they have not perfected it,” Trump said.

Trump: Wind power ‘kills all your birds’

Source: By Timothy Cama, The Hill • Posted: Wednesday, August 3rd, 2016

Donald Trump bashed renewable energy sources Monday night, saying solar power doesn’t work well and wind turbines kill birds. The GOP presidential nominee has stated his preference for coal and natural gas, and has previously said that solar power is unreliable and wind turbines are unsightly and harmful to wildlife.