NewEnergyNews: 12/01/2016 - 01/01/2017

NewEnergyNews

Gleanings from the web and the world, condensed for convenience, illustrated for enlightenment, arranged for impact...

While the OFFICE of President remains in highest regard at NewEnergyNews, this administration's position on climate change makes it impossible to regard THIS president with respect. Below is the NewEnergyNews theme song until 2020.

The challenge now: To make every day Earth Day.

YESTERDAY

  • TODAY’S STUDY: Proven – New Energy Is NO Threat To The Power System
  • QUICK NEWS, June 26: What Climate Change Really Means; New Energy Now Bigger Than Nuclear; The Rump Angers Iowa With Ignorant Wind Remarks
  • THE DAY BEFORE

  • Weekend Video: Al Franken Explains Climate Science To Secretary Perry
  • Weekend Video: John Oliver On Coal Jobs Absurdishness
  • Weekend Video: Coal King Sues John Oliver For Defamation
  • THE DAY BEFORE THE DAY BEFORE

  • FRIDAY WORLD HEADLINE-Al Gore On The Morality Of The Climate Fight
  • FRIDAY WORLD HEADLINE-Solar In Latin America Can Boom
  • FRIDAY WORLD HEADLINE-Scotland Buys Into Kite Wind
  • FRIDAY WORLD HEADLINE-Tesla Eyes The China EV Market
  • THE DAY BEFORE THAT

    THINGS-TO-THINK-ABOUT THURSDAY, June 22:

  • TTTA Thursday-What Does Exxon’s Carbon Tax Mean?
  • TTTA Thursday-The Rump Flails Factlessly At Wind
  • TTTA Thursday-New Energy To Get Bigger And Cheaper
  • TTTA Thursday-EVs To Be Cost-Competitive By 2025
  • AND THE DAY BEFORE THAT

  • ORIGINAL REPORTING: The Big Bonus From Plugging Cars In
  • ORIGINAL REPORTING: What About Nuclear?
  • ORIGINAL REPORTING: A Renewables Mandate To Beat The Peak
  • THE LAST DAY UP HERE

  • TODAY’S STUDY: Global New Energy Now
  • QUICK NEWS, June 20: What Power Mix Will Beat Climate Change (Part 1)?; What Power Mix Will Beat Climate Change (Part 2)?; New Energy Is NO Threat To U.S, Grid
  • --------------------------

    --------------------------

    Anne B. Butterfield of Daily Camera and Huffington Post, f is an occasional contributor to NewEnergyNews

    -------------------

    Some of Anne's contributions:

  • Another Tipping Point: US Coal Supply Decline So Real Even West Virginia Concurs (REPORT), November 26, 2013
  • SOLAR FOR ME BUT NOT FOR THEE ~ Xcel's Push to Undermine Rooftop Solar, September 20, 2013
  • NEW BILLS AND NEW BIRDS in Colorado's recent session, May 20, 2013
  • Lies, damned lies and politicians (October 8, 2012)
  • Colorado's Elegant Solution to Fracking (April 23, 2012)
  • Shale Gas: From Geologic Bubble to Economic Bubble (March 15, 2012)
  • Taken for granted no more (February 5, 2012)
  • The Republican clown car circus (January 6, 2012)
  • Twenty-Somethings of Colorado With Skin in the Game (November 22, 2011)
  • Occupy, Xcel, and the Mother of All Cliffs (October 31, 2011)
  • Boulder Can Own Its Power With Distributed Generation (June 7, 2011)
  • The Plunging Cost of Renewables and Boulder's Energy Future (April 19, 2011)
  • Paddling Down the River Denial (January 12, 2011)
  • The Fox (News) That Jumped the Shark (December 16, 2010)
  • Click here for an archive of Butterfield columns

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    Some details about NewEnergyNews and the man behind the curtain: Herman K. Trabish, Agua Dulce, CA., Doctor with my hands, Writer with my head, Student of New Energy and Human Experience with my heart

    email: herman@NewEnergyNews.net

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      A tip of the NewEnergyNews cap to Phillip Garcia for crucial assistance in the design implementation of this site. Thanks, Phillip.

    -------------------

    Pay a visit to the HARRY BOYKOFF page at Basketball Reference, sponsored by NewEnergyNews and Oil In Their Blood.

  • ---------------
  • TODAY AT NewEnergyNews, June 27:

  • TODAY’S STUDY: 100% New Energy Can Work
  • QUICK NEWS, June 27: Now Is The Time, We Are The Ones; The Many Other Ways To Use Solar; New Energy Is The New Way To Run The Grid

    Saturday, December 31, 2016

    Seth Meyer Talks Trump And Climate Change

    It looks like the incoming administration will make the fight against climate change more complicated but don't panic until the difference is clear between the political noise and where the money goes.From Late Night With Seth Meyers via YouTube

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    The Ice Goes On Melting

    Ice has no politics, no vested interests, and no political ambitions. From the Wall Street Journal via YouTube

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    Lots Of Bells Will Be Ringing…

    …Because every time a bell rings an angel gets its wings and a whole lot of angels headed for the Pearly Gates this year. From la Longoria via YouTube

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    Friday, December 30, 2016

    New Energy In The World, 2016 – India

    From Climate Reality via YouTube

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    New Energy In The World, 2016 – Brazil

    From Climate Reality via YouTube

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    New Energy In The World, 2016 – Nigeria

    From Climate Reality via YouTube

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    New Energy In The World, 2016 – South Korea

    From Climate Reality via YouTube

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    Thursday, December 29, 2016

    The 2016 Energy Story That Trumps All Others

    Top Energy Issues For 2016-2017: One Theme Trumps All Others

    Ken Silverstein, December 27, 2016 (Forbes)

    “For 2016, one energy story trumps all others: the election of Donald Trump...[which runs totally counter to the preceding eight years and the policies of] President Obama. 2017 will, no doubt, give us a glimpse into whether the nation is on an irreversible course to greener fuels…whether the nation will take deliberate aim at cutting its carbon emissions…whether that will be a byproduct of the undeniable shift from coal-to-natural gas…[and what role the courts will play] in Trump’s radically different energy vision…[It will also reveal how the President-elect will put unemployed coal miners to work and what] happens to the green rush [for] more wind and solar…” click here for more

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    Solar Outgrowing NatGas And Wind

    Solar Looks to Outpace Natural Gas and Wind; Although final totals are not quite in, estimates indicate more solar capacity was added in 2016 than for its rivals

    Bobby Magill, December 27, 2016 (Climate Central via Scientific American)

    “…For the first time, more electricity-generating capacity from solar power plants is expected to have been built in the U.S. in 2016 than from natural gas and wind…Though the final tally won’t be in until March, enough new solar power plants were expected to be built in 2016 to total 9.5 gigawatts of solar power generating capacity, tripling the new solar capacity built in 2015…[That will] exceed the 8 gigawatts of natural gas power generating capacity and the 6.8 gigawatts of wind power slated for construction this year. No new coal-fired power plants were planned in 2016…Though U.S. solar power generation was expected to have grown by 44 percent in 2016 and is expected to grow more than 30 percent in 2017, it will still provide around 1 percent of the nation’s electric power…” click here for more

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    Oil Giants Sell Tar Sands, Bet Big On Ocean Wind

    One Oil Giant is Betting Big on Wind Energy; Statoil's sale of Canadian oil sands assets to invest in wind energy is a sign of where energy investments are headed.

    Travis Hoium, December 22, 2016 (Motley Fool)

    “Oil and gas giants are starting to take a lot more interest in renewable energy…and it could mean a huge shift in direction…The latest sign of change was Statoil, the $59 billion oil giant, selling its…[Alberta oil sands assets] and then winning a wind lease off the coast of New York…This will leave Statoil with no oil sands assets anywhere in the world, a shift from a few years ago when oil sands was viewed as a big growth driver for the oil industry…[Statoil’s winning bid for the New York] lease was $42.47 million…[T]he space could accommodate over 1 GW of wind projects, which would likely cost in excess of $2 billion, although the initial plan will be to build 400 MW to 600 MW…[It adds to Statoil's offshore wind assets in the U.K., Scotland and Germany…French oil company Total is another big oil company that's investing in renewables, although it's focusing on solar through its majority-owned subsidiary SunPower…” click here for more

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    Telling The Climate Story Smarter

    How to revolutionize climate change storytelling

    Anya Khalamayzer, December 29, 2016 (GreenBiz)

    “Climate change storytelling is undergoing a major transition, gaining the attention of politicians, countries and corporations around the world. However, with climate deniers newly emboldened and the upcoming Trump administration threatening to turn back environmental progress, will climate change keep capturing our imagination?...[The Emmy Award-winning “Years of Living Dangerously” is proving it can. The show] brings together celebrities, politicians, business leaders and individuals impacted by climate change to dive deeper into angles of the story than one feature film can capture…

    …[The big ensemble of people shows] that climate change is happening now, affecting people in the U.S., and there are thousands of people trying to combat it and plan for it…[It shows] solutions to climate change are getting better in the form of technological developments and the falling cost of solar and wind energy…[It also shows that if] you want people to act, you don’t just throw a bunch of data at them. You get them emotionally engaged…[and it shows there] are real grassroots solutions that people can get involved in…” click here for more

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    Wednesday, December 28, 2016

    ORIGINAL REPORTING: Wind Moving Into The Market

    Declining prices, stable outlook drive utilities, large companies to wind power; Power providers are looking to the resource as a hedge against natural gas prices and future environmental regulations

    Herman K. Trabish, April 21, 2016 (Utility Dive)

    Editor's Note: Wind's record growth continues.

    Natural gas is the new leader in the electric power mix but there is a growing realization among utilities in some regions of the country that it may not be the best bet on cost over the long term. While gas prices are near historic lows today, few analysts believe they will stay that way. And with a growing global consensus around climate action, many companies expect further regulations on fossil fuels. Set against those doubts is a period of relative stability for large-scale renewable energy, particularly wind. The industry says it has cut installed costs 66% since 2009, and expects them to keep falling. All that has made new investments in wind energy particularly appealing to many utilities, especially those in the center of the country.

    Xcel Energy Colorado had a U.S. utility-leading 6,545 MW of wind capacity on its system at the end of 2015 and was also the eighth biggest holder of new wind capacity last year with 350 MW. Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Energy (BHE) has 5,525 MW it its portfolio, ranking it second in total system wind, and its 4,375 MW of owned capacity makes it first in direct wind ownership. Wind energy provided 4.7% of U.S. electricity in 2015, the most of any non-hydro renewable resource. Renewables met 13.7% of the nation’s electricity demand, with hydro leading at 6%. Wind topped the list of new capacity for 2015, providing 41%. Solar was second, with 28.5%, and natural gas was third, with 28.1%. The U.S. wind industry installed 8,598 MW of new capacity across 20 states in 2015, an annual growth rate of 12.3%. It was the industry’s third biggest year ever, a 77% increase over 2014…

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    ORIGINAL REPORTING: How Hawaii Can Get To 100% New Energy

    Inside Hawaiian Electric's new plan to get to 100% renewables; LNG, the NextEra merger and the role of DERs are the major sticking points emerging from the utility's new power supply plan

    Herman K. Trabish, April 14, 2016 (Utility Dive)

    Editor’s Note: Since this piece ran, regulators blocked the HECO-Next Era merger and the utility has begun rethinking its long term plan.

    The Hawaiian Electric Companies (HECO) Power Supply Improvement Plan (PSIP), filed April 1, is their third attempt at a roadmap to detail how the utility will comply with Hawaii's historic Act 97, which mandated that the state shift to 100% renewable electricity generation by 2045.In an interview with Utility Dive, Colton Ching, HECO's vice president for energy delivery, said the new plan will help his utility end its current reliance on fossil fuels (especially fuel oil) for electricity generation and change the paradigm so that renewables do not supplement the system but are the entire energy system with a diverse portfolio of renewables.

    Overall, the two-volume, 1,200-plus page filing (docket 2014-0183) calls for Hawaii’s 2045 electricity generation mix to be composed of 16.1% distributed solar, 10.2% utility-scale solar, 33.4% onshore and offshore wind energy, 26.9% biofuels, 6.5% geothermal energy, 6.5% waste and biomass, and 0.4% hydropower. The utility intends to exceed Act 97 requirements by getting to 100% renewables for Molokai and Lanai by 2030 and by 2040 for Maui and Hawaii Island. Achieving those levels of renewable penetration will allow it to meet the 70% system-wide renewables target by 2040 while it scales Oahu, the most populous island, up to 100% renewables. The question of whether it emphasizes distributed generation adequately and is transparent enough remains to be decided…

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    ORIGINAL REPORTING: The SoCal NatGas Leak And Hollywood Lights

    Will LA's historic gas leak knock Hollywood's lights out this summer?; California energy agencies warn of blackouts stemming from the record gas leak at Aliso Canyon

    Herman K. Trabish, April 18, 2016 (Utility Dive)

    Editor’s Note: The natgas supply to Southern California remains compromised and the region’s utilities have begun moving to fill gaps in the summer and winter electricity supply with energy efficiency and distributed energy resources.

    The day the lights go out in Hollywood may be coming, the top California energy agencies say. As a result of the worst natural gas leak in U.S. history at the Aliso Canyon natural gas storage facility, electricity supply in the Los Angeles region could be threatened during peak demand periods, according to reports prepared by California utility regulators, the grid operator, the state energy office and the city's municipal utility. The leak reduced Aliso Canyon's gas stores to less than 20% of its capacity, which could spell trouble for the 17 natural gas generators served by the facility if electric demand is high, according to the Aliso Canyon Risk Assessment Technical Report. That report, prepared by analysts at the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC), California Energy Commission (CEC), California Independent System Operator (CAISO), and the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP), warned that "curtailments could interrupt service and affect millions of electric customers.”

    In response, the four California agencies released an Action Plan to preserve reliability in the Los Angeles area. It proposes 18 mitigation measures for the issues identified in the technical assessment, but critics say the plan fails to pose the hard questions about whether California has, in pursuit of eliminating coal and adding renewables to its grid, become too reliant on natural gas.The plan classifies the mitigations in five categories: efficient use of Aliso Canyon; tariff changes to drive more efficiency from large gas consumers on the system; better operational coordination; LADWP-specific measures; and general electricity and gas efficiency measures. Some will entail costs and some will require regulatory approval. One has caused a debate that must be resolved in the near term. Another has sparked a conversation that Californians may be having on for years…

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    NO QUICK NEWS

    Tuesday, December 27, 2016

    TODAY’S STUDY: The Way To A Price On Carbon

    Swapping The Corporate Income Tax For A Price On Carbon

    Catrina Rorke, Andrew Moylan and Daniel Semelsberger, December 23, 2016 (R Street0

    Introduction

    The corporate income tax and domestic carbon policy are two areas of concern in dire need of reform. In both cases, protracted political infighting has inhibited progress on legislative solutions. The tax code remains as voluminous and convoluted as ever. The outgoing administration spent eight years expanding its authority to reduce greenhouse gas emissions without ever receiving congressional authorization.

    Progress on tax reform has been stymied by clear revenue needs. Though there is growing consensus on the need to reduce the U.S. corporate income tax, the available policy tools to achieve that goal – such as a European-style Value Added Tax or broad-based taxes on consumption—remain politically unpopular. Meanwhile, political fissures and a lack of motivation to find bipartisan agreement continue to block progress on greenhouse gas emissions.

    Though it would no doubt be politically adventurous, there is a way to pair these two policy areas to yield an economically optimal tradeoff: an orchestrated swap of existing taxes on stuff we like for new taxes on stuff we don’t. This swap could take any number of forms. Policy analysts and advocacy groups have in the past advanced proposals to use the proceeds from a tax on carbon emissions to reduce taxes on labor, on capital or on some combination thereof.

    Despite the political baggage associated with the climate debate, lawmakers could soon discover—as they attempt to slay the corporate tax code’s many sacred cows—that a price on carbon just might be the easiest way to finance substantial tax reform. Moreover, the combination of a price on carbon with deep reductions in corporate tax rates would reduce government interference in the private market and in the energy market, in particular.

    Given the salience of those goals, this paper proposes a politically feasible and revenue-neutral plan to use a price on carbon emissions to eliminate the U.S. corporate income tax completely.

    Trading Carbon For Capital

    The economic literature suggests that taxes on capital, which are broadly distributed throughout the tax code, are the most distortionary form of taxation. Efforts to reduce taxes on capital thus rank among the best ways to induce economic growth. Alas, systematically ferreting out the many ways the existing rules tax capital would require radical changes to the code and a lengthy period of transition, and likely would prove politically impossible.

    A simpler approach to achieve many of the same goals would be to eliminate the corporate income tax. Of course, this idea would face political challenges of its own, given that the corporate income tax is quite popular. Roughly 70 percent of Americans say they want companies to “pay their fair share” of the tax burden.1 President Barack Obama marshalled this sentiment earlier this year, when his Treasury Department proposed a set of rules to combat corporate tax inversions, suggesting companies that incorporate abroad are “gaming the system” at the expense of the middle class.

    What isn’t controversial among tax policy economists is that the corporate income tax is highly distortionary, costing roughly $140 billion annually in compliance costs. It’s also highly inefficient. Though the United States has the highest nominal corporate rate among Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development nations, the corporate tax manages to bring in just 10 to 12 percent of federal tax revenue. Moreover, as demonstrated in a prior R Street policy short, the burden of taxes on corporate income actually falls on a combination of employees, customers and shareholders.3

    The good news is that broad bipartisan agreement for corporate tax reform has been building for several years. This appears to be, at least in part, a consequence of mounting evidence that exceedingly high U.S. corporate taxes are pushing jobs, investments and companies themselves overseas. The wave of inversions—in which U.S. companies move their legal domiciles to lower-tax nations—has brought attention to the problem, while the lingering lackluster recovery from the last recession is seen to reflect underinvestment in the domestic workforce…

    Corporate Income Tax Repeal…Carbon Tax Receipts…Pro-Growth Design…

    Tax Swap Summary

    In this paper, we have elucidated a path to eliminate the corporate income tax outright and instead impose a direct price on carbon. This is a combination specifically designed to promote economic growth and strengthen domestic job creation. It requires conceding two points. First, the corporate income tax—politically popular though it may be—is paid by workers, customers and investors, not by companies themselves. Second, price signals and market forces will go further at lower cost to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the energy economy.

    It is no understatement to say that eliminating the burden of the corporate income tax would be a huge boon to job creation, income growth and investment. While most tax reform proposals suggest modest reductions in the corporate rate to better align it with the tax rates of OECD nations, outright elimination of the corporate income tax is a more radical approach that would establish the United States—with clear rule of law, a well-trained workforce and abundant intellectual and natural resources—as the ideal place to do business. High U.S. corporate taxes have fueled an exodus to lower-tax jurisdictions like Ireland and others. Eliminating the corporate income tax would reverse that exodus immediately

    This revenue-neutral swap must also be used to shrink the footprint of government in the energy sector. In the absence of congressional legislation to address greenhouse gas emissions, the executive branch and the states have proliferated a number of policies that take the place of a comprehensive national plan. We expect that a robust price on carbon at the federal level justifies not just rolling back redundant federal policies, but also would encourage states to abandon efforts to create a patchwork of carbon policies.

    This would mean backing away from interstate carbon credit trading programs like the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative and iterative policies that mandate certain percentages of energy come from renewable sources. At a minimum, we expect that systems that trade in carbon credits will no longer be binding; the federal price on carbon will be more significant and durable than the carbon markets have been. In an ideal scenario, we would eliminate state policies that make investments and energy trade across the states more difficult.

    This revenue-neutral swap also would serve as an excellent model for other nations. Policies like the European Union Emissions Trading System are perfect examples of overdesigned and unsuccessful carbon policies. Directly pricing emissions is an elegant approach that leaves all further decision-making on pathways, investments and innovation to a private sector that would be motivated by a predictable price signal. Directly pricing emissions also allows, as we see here, significant changes in existing tax structures that hold back growth.

    Expectations across the carbon pricing literature suggest that a carbon tax with an increasing rate of taxation would bring in higher levels of receipts year-over-year until emissions reductions outweigh rate increases and receipts begin to drop. It is a feature, not a bug, of a carbon tax that it eventually would take in no revenue. A carbon price is a policy specifically designed to put itself out of business. By setting the benchmark that lower taxes are wise policy and that specific policy outcomes can be achieved while simultaneously shrinking the government’s footprint, this proposal could serve as a model for policies that reduce the size of government broadly.

    Conclusion

    It is possible to achieve dramatic reform in the corporate income tax structure and in our approach to carbon emissions simultaneously. Of course, this proposal has its limits. Corporate income taxes remain popular, and calls to make sure companies “pay their fair share” will make it difficult to enact such ambitious policy change. A direct price on carbon emissions remains unpopular on the center-right and the center-left remains focused on a regulatory commandand-control model to reduce emissions. It will be difficult to break through these walls of opposition.

    Moreover, this proposal only goes so far. Broad reductions in taxes on capital across the tax code would do the most to spur domestic investment. This version of a carbon price addresses only emissions related to energy usage, an area in which the private sector has had dramatic success even without government policy. To address the many diverse sources of emissions would require policy changes outside the scope of this proposal.

    We posit the proposed tax swap’s greatest strength is that it accepts that we simply don’t know how to shape investment in the corporate sector or how to dictate carbon emission reductions in the energy sector. By curbing the influence of special interests to dictate corporate tax structures and the constantly expanding regulatory state, we can leave decision making about the future of the economy to the markets, not the limited imagination of bureaucrats. This will make the United States a better place to do business.

    Finally, the proposal outlined in this paper relies on simplistic back-of-the-envelope constructions to pursue an interesting idea: eliminating the corporate income tax and the abundant energy regulatory burden. We hope this proposal inspires efforts to model this exchange with far greater granularity, particularly to explore the extent to which corporate income tax elimination will be self-financing and to identify a carbon price that would ensure revenue neutrality

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    QUICK NEWS, December 27: State Policies And Low Costs Will Sustain The U.S. Climate Fight (Part 1); State Policies And Low Costs Will Sustain The U.S. Climate Fight (Part 2); New Energy And NatGas Are 93% of 2016 U.S. Power Growth

    State Policies And Low Costs Will Sustain The U.S. Climate Fight (Part 1) States Will Lead on Climate Change in the Trump Era

    Editorial Board, December 26, 2016 (NY Times)

    “State governments will serve as an important bulwark against any attempt by President-elect Donald Trump to roll back the progress the United States has made in addressing climate change…Over the last decade or so, most states have reduced their greenhouse gas emissions by promoting energy efficiency and renewable fuels. These trends should continue as clean energy costs continue to decline and, in some parts of the country, fall below the cost of dirtier fuels like coal…[B]etween 2000 and 2014, 33 states and the District of Columbia cut carbon emissions while expanding their economies…That list includes red states run by Republican legislatures, like Alaska, Georgia, Tennessee and West Virginia…It’s hard to know how Mr. Trump will change climate policy, but it is almost certain that he won’t advance it…The people he has chosen to lead the Environmental Protection Agency, the Department of Energy and the Department of Interior — the three agencies with the greatest influence on energy policy — have either denied or expressed skepticism that human activity is causing global warming, something that virtually all scientists agree on…[But in] some states, including Iowa, Illinois, Kansas, Nebraska and parts of Texas, new wind turbines can generate electricity at a lower cost, without subsidies, than any other technology…” click here for more

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    State Policies And Low Costs Will Sustain The U.S. Climate Fight (Part 2) States Will Lead on Climate Change in the Trump Era

    Editorial Board, December 26, 2016 (NY Times)

    “…[Many people expect President-elect Trump to walk away from President Obama’s commitments under the Paris climate agreement and get rid of or weaken the E.P.A.’s Clean Power Plan, which requires states to lower carbon emissions from the electricity sector. He and his appointees might also try to water down fuel economy regulations for cars and trucks, and cut clean energy tax incentives and research spending…States could blunt much of that damage…California and New York plan to cut greenhouse gas emissions to 40 percent below 1990 levels by 2030. Hawaii hopes to get all of its electricity from renewable sources by 2045…[and many other states have slightly more modest goals]…Cheap natural gas, which has increasingly replaced coal as a fuel source, has had a lot to do with this progress, but so has the drop in the cost of wind and solar power — 41 percent in the case of land-based wind turbines and 64 percent for solar, between 2008 and 2015…

    …The cost of batteries has dropped by almost three-fourths…[In some states, new wind turbines] can generate electricity at a lower cost, without subsidies, than any other technology…Solar panels have not reached that point yet in the United States, but developers of big solar installations in [some] countries…have signed contracts to sell electricity for much less than conventional fossil fuel plants charge…States are also beginning to put a price on carbon emissions to increase the cost of older fuels and encourage cleaner sources of energy, which Congress has refused to do…Lawmakers, environmental groups and individuals who care about climate change ought to fight every effort to take the country backward on this issue. But it will be just as important for them to support states that are trying to advance the cause.” click here for more

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    New Energy And NatGas Are 93% of 2016 U.S. Power Growth Solar, natural gas, wind make up most 2016 generation additions

    December 19, 2016 (U.S. Energy Information Administration)

    “Electric generating facilities expect to add more than 26 gigawatts (GW) of utility-scale generating capacity to the power grid during 2016. Most of these additions come from three resources: solar (9.5 GW), natural gas (8.0 GW), and wind (6.8 GW), which together make up 93% of total additions. If actual additions ultimately reflect these plans, 2016 will be the first year in which utility-scale solar additions exceed additions from any other single energy source…This level of [utility-scale solar] additions is substantially higher than the 3.1 GW of solar added in 2015 and would be more than the total solar installations for the past three years combined (9.4 GW during 2013-15)…Most capacity additions over the past 20 years have been natural gas-fired units. About 8 GW is expected to be added this year, slightly above the 7.8 GW average annual additions over the previous five years…Additions of wind capacity are expected to be slightly lower than in 2015, when 8.1 GW of wind made up by far the largest portion of 2015 capacity additions. Wind capacity additions in 2016 are expected to total 6.8 GW…Tennessee Valley Authority's Watts Bar 2 nuclear facility in southeastern Tennessee, with a summer nameplate capacity of 1.1 GW…will be the first new nuclear reactor brought online in the United States in 20 years…” click here for more

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    Monday, December 26, 2016

    The Wealth Of The Sun

    Saudia Arabia is finally looking up to the sun instead down for oil to discover its real wealth.From Climate Reality via YouTube

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    The Gift Of Wind

    The planet’s gift to Argentina is wind. From Climate Reality via YouTube

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    The Power Of Solar

    In Thailand, the power of the sun is “divine” light. From Climate Reality via YouTube

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    Saturday, December 24, 2016

    Bill Maher Talks Trump

    “The appointments are from Opposite-Land…He’s just f**king with people…” and, near the very end, “…the environment…is the most important issue…” From ATTN: via YouTube

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    CA Gov Jerry Brown Talks Trump

    This one is long but the next video is a Christmas song so take some time for it. From the American Geophysical Union via YouTube

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    A Christmas Carol To Hillary Clinton

    From Popular Videos via YouTube

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    Friday, December 23, 2016

    New Energy In The World, 2016 – Russia

    From Climate Reality via YouTube

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    New Energy In The World, 2016 – Germany

    From Climate Reality via YouTube

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    New Energy In The World, 2016 – Iran

    From Climate Reality via YouTube

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    New Energy In The World, 2016 – China

    From Climate Reality via YouTube

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    Thursday, December 22, 2016

    Climate Change And The Power Of Images

    The role of visual images in communicating climate change

    Peter Makwanya, December 19, 2016 (NewsDay)

    “…[Images and representations play a critical role in enhancing climate change knowledge and understanding…[and are] powerful ways of facilitating the climate story…[Whether horrific or plain, they] influence our thinking and shape our emotions towards how we feel about climate change…While horrific images have the power to change human behaviour, they also can raise awareness and inspire people to engage in concrete climate action. Climate action is the underlying factor in sustainable mitigation and adaptation activities…They also help us interrogate the way we engage in climate change issues, in terms of guidance, application and facilitation…

    Images can help communicate climate issues, not in the abstract sense, but in concrete and real terms…[and they] can capture people’s attention and spur them to act…[They also] help to enforce a sense of urgency in changing people’s behaviours, attitudes and perceptions, as well as some deeply entrenched myths and beliefs…The endorsement of climate change action by politicians and celebrities could help show that climate change is a serious issue that requires immediate attention…[and] promote both external and internal motivation of how best to deal with the climate change phenomena…When used well, climate change visuals and images can work as part of a bigger communication strategy…” click here for more

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    Everybody Wants New Energy

    Republicans and Democrats alike want more clean energy; A new report finds strong support for clean energy, international climate agreements, and cutting carbon pollution - across the political spectrum

    John Abraham, 20 December 2016 (UK Guardian)

    “…Conventional wisdom – and in fact the seemingly obvious message from this past election – is that…[if] you want to get elected as a conservative, you have got to be anti-science…[But a study from Yale and George Mason Universities found almost] 70% of registered voters in the U.S. believe that their country should participate in international agreements to limit global warming. Only 1 in 8 registered voters believe the U.S. should not…Similarly, 70% of respondents support limits on carbon dioxide…American voters are more knowledgeable about energy and the energy economy than is the president elect…More than half of voters understand that transitioning to newer and cleaner fuels will improve economic growth and create new jobs…[Only a] small minority believe that transitioning to a clean-energy system will hurt the economy. Furthermore, a majority support exploring clean and renewable energy on public lands by a very large margin…” click here for more

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    Wind Price Now Beating NatGas

    Wind energy cheaper than natural gas in some circumstances

    Heather Richards, December 21, 2016 (Casper Star-Tribune)

    “…Federal regulators approved transmission lines that will carry the electricity generated at [the 1,000-turbine Chokecherry and Sierra Madre wind farm in the plains of southern Wyoming] across state lines…[about the same time researchers concluded that in] some regions of the country, wind is now cost-competitive with natural gas, which is one of the cheapest and most reliable electricity fuel sources in the U.S…Renewable energy projects have become an increasingly viable way to meet electricity demand in the United States and are rapidly encroaching on the domain of coal and natural gas…Thanks to advancing technologies, everything from turbine blades to battery storage is cheaper and more efficient, according to Lazard 9.0…[L]and-based wind costs are between $32 and $62 per megawatt hour, compared with a combined-cycle natural gas plant, which would cost between $48 and $78 per megawatt hour…” click here for more

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