Fights over who should pay for power lines may become much easier to solve.
New high-power transmission lines have to run a regulatory gauntlet to get approved. One of the biggest barriers, however, isn’t about whether the line can be built but who will pay for it. That has turned out to be a much knottier problem than you might think. A decision by the D.C. Circuit on Friday, …CONTINUE READING
Wildfires Are Ravaging California. Can Electric Utilities Take the Heat?
In recent years, California has experienced its largest and deadliest wildfires in history, resulting in hundreds of fatalities and more than $50 billion in damage. The confluence of rising temperatures, less rainfall, and strong winds signal that the annual “wildfire season” is here to stay, and will continue to proliferate. Every year, thousands of Californians …CONTINUE READING
Uncertainty is the New Normal
The novel coronavirus’s impact on our energy system is (understandably) not top of mind for most people right now. But the pandemic and its economic fallout have important implications for some of the most pressing energy issues today including the green transition, energy justice, and even the fate of bankrupt investor-owned utility PG&E in Northern …CONTINUE READING
EPA Shouldn’t Roll Back Coal Power Plant Emissions Standard, Conclude Experts in Electrical Grid Management and Pollution Control Technology Innovation
Emmett Institute Faculty File Two Comment Letters on Behalf of Experts, Demonstrating Flaws In Proposed Rollback of New Source Performance Standard for New Coal-Fired Power Plants
In 2015, EPA set greenhouse gas emissions standards for new coal-fired and natural gas-fired power plants under the Clean Air Act’s New Source Performance Standards program, Section 111(b) of the Act. These standards ensure that new plants can be built only if they incorporate state-of-the-art emissions controls. Unfortunately, in late 2018, the Trump Administration EPA proposed …CONTINUE READING
Legally deficient? Arbitrary? Disguised special interest favors? All par for the course in this Administration.
You couldn’t ask for a more typical example of the Trump Administration at work. Nuclear and coal plants are being closed across the country, unable to compete with cheap natural gas and increasingly cheap renewables. In a desperate effort to support the coal industry, Trump wants to force consumers to subsidize these plants. It’s not …CONTINUE READING
Michael Wara posted previously about Rick Perry’s proposal to subsidize coal and nuclear. In its current incarnation, the proposal is aimed purely at ISOs and RTOs that operate capacity markets, which largely means a single entity, PJM. Why the focus on PJM? Oh, I guess I had better explain. OK, to start with, what did …CONTINUE READING
Guest Blogger Michael Wara: The Trump Administration Moves to Guarantee Profits for Coal-fired and Nuclear Power Plants
Finally, something anti-regulation conservatives and pro-environment progressives can agree on: dislike of the Sec. Perry’s Resilience and Reliability NOPR
The gloves came off last week when it comes to the Trump Administration’s attempts to subsidize coal in U.S. electricity markets. On Friday, Energy Secretary Rick Perry formally requested that the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission guarantee profits for both new and existing coal fired and nuclear power plants. While Sec. Perry doesn’t have the power …CONTINUE READING
The cheapest new power today: gas, wind, solar. Almost never coal.
What’s the cheapest way to add power to the grid where you live? Unless you live near Lake Superior, the answer isn’t coal — not even in West Virginia or Kentucky. Beyond that, the exact answer depends on just what you means by cheap. A major study from UT Austin digs deep into this question. …CONTINUE READING
Make infrastructure a top priority for the new Congress
There’s actually one policy that Clinton and Trump agree on: the need for a massive investment in infrastructure. However the election comes out, that should be a top legislative priority, combining economic, safety, and environmental benefits – and political benefits for the next President because of its popularity. It would help get the country moving …CONTINUE READING
Guest Bloggers Alice Kaswan and Kirsten Engel: Untapped Potential: Emissions Reduction Initiatives Beyond Clean Power Plan Are Warranted, Workable
New Report Analyzes Potential for Further Emissions Reduction from Existing Sources
Guest post by Alice Kaswan (University of San Francisco School of Law), Kirsten H. Engel (University of Arizona School of Law) It’s been a month since the D.C. Circuit heard oral arguments on the Clean Power Plan, and the nation is in wait-and-see mode. But our report, Untapped Potential: The Carbon Reductions Left Out of …CONTINUE READING