U.S. cities and towns made deals for a record 3.7 gigawatts of renewables in 2020

U.S. cities and towns made deals for a record 3.7 gigawatts of renewables in 2020

Energize Weekly, April 7, 2021 Cities and towns across the U.S. installed or purchased a record 3.7 gigawatts of renewable energy capacity in 2020, a 23 percent increase over 2019, according to the clean energy consultant, RMI. The RMI analysis was based on data from the Local Government Renewables Action…

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Nebraska utility could slash emissions at little or no added cost, studies show

by Karen Uhlenhuth, March 29, 2021 Nebraska’s largest electric utility could dramatically reduce carbon emissions over the next three decades at little or no cost to ratepayers, according to a pair of recent reports prepared for the utility’s board of directors. The path — and cost — of completely eliminating emissions…

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Georgia Power Issues Sustainability Bond: First for a US Utility

MARCH 1, 2021 BY EMILY HOLBROOK Georgia Power has announced its first sustainability bond, and the first sustainability bond for a domestic utility in the United States. Bond proceeds will be allocated to fund the company’s environmental, renewable, and social initiatives. The 3.25% coupon represents the lowest 30-year coupon for a publicly traded bond ever…

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Xcel Energy plans to transform its Colorado grid, boosting renewables and closing coal plants

Xcel Energy plans to transform its Colorado grid, boosting renewables and closing coal plants

Energize Weekly, March 3, 2021 Xcel Energy – in one of the country’s most sweeping initiatives to reconfigure a gird – has announced an $8 billion plan to double its renewable energy generation and storage in Colorado, add transmission and close all its coal-fired power plants in the state by…

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117th Congress opens to new energy, environment fights

Nick Sobczyk, Geof Koss and Kelsey Brugger, E&E News reporters; Monday, January 4, 2021 The 117th Congress opened to an uncertain political landscape yesterday, with a tight vote for the House speakership and with Senate control still up in the air. Lawmakers face fresh fights on energy and environmental issues, particularly climate change, but…

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Coal continues its decline in the U.S. and Europe and its rise in Southeast Asia and India

Coal continues its decline in the U.S. and Europe and its rise in Southeast Asia and India

Energize Weekly, December 9, 2020 Coal mining and coal-fired electricity generation in the U.S. and Europe continues to decline, but in Asia, coal-fired demand is projected to increase through 2030 thanks to national policies and Chinese financing. In the U.S., coal mine production capacity fell in 2019 to 590 million…

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Voters weigh in on local and state energy issues from renewable energy to oil and gas taxes

Voters weigh in on local and state energy issues from renewable energy to oil and gas taxes

Energize Weekly, November 11, 2020 Election returns on state and local energy issues were both literally and figuratively all over the map last week on issues ranging from renewable energy to oil and gas taxes. Voters in Alaska rejected a tax on oil operations while the industry was denied a…

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A Biden plan would speed a clean energy transition, but have limited impact on oil

A Biden plan would speed a clean energy transition, but have limited impact on oil

Energize Weekly, October 28, 2020 As Election Day nears, analysts are starting to focus on what the administration of front-running Joe Biden will mean for energy and find it could accelerate the decline of coal, stabilize near-term oil markets, as well as boost renewables and new jobs. A Biden administration,…

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Fossil fuel demand drops in 2020 with a limited rebound in 2021, IEA says

Fossil fuel demand drops in 2020 with a limited rebound in 2021, IEA says

Energize Weekly, October 21, 2020 The global pandemic will cut worldwide energy demand 5 percent in 2020 and result in an 18 percent decline in energy investment, according to International Energy Agency (IEA) forecasts. If the novel coronavirus is brought under control in 2021, energy demand will return to its…

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Utilities are pledging zero-carbon emissions, but “the math doesn’t yet add up”

Utilities are pledging zero-carbon emissions, but “the math doesn’t yet add up”

Energize Weekly, September 30, 2020 A growing number of investor-owned utilities (IOUs) have pledged to sharply reduce their carbon emissions or even cut them to zero, but two studies have found a gap between the pledges and those utilities’ performance. Forty-three of the country’s 55 IOUs have emission-reduction targets, and…

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Technologies to bring economies to zero carbon emissions still lacking, IEA says

Technologies to bring economies to zero carbon emissions still lacking, IEA says

Energize Weekly, August 12, 2020 Many countries have announced ambitious climate goals to bring their economies to net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, but the technologies needed to cut emissions in areas like shipping and steelmaking don’t exist and may take decades to bring to market, according to the International Energy…

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Energy a big focus for Virginia legislature which passes sweeping clean energy bill

Energy a big focus for Virginia legislature which passes sweeping clean energy bill

Energize Weekly, February 26, 2020 The Virginia legislature, on a pair of razor-thin votes, has passed a sweeping energy bill that will bolster renewable generation, energy storage and efforts to set a carbon dioxide cap and trade program. While the Clean Economy Act was the most far-reaching and visible piece…

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Global carbon emissions flat in 2019 as the U.S. leads the way in CO2 cuts

Global carbon emissions flat in 2019 as the U.S. leads the way in CO2 cuts

Energize Weekly, February 19, 2020 Global carbon emissions slowed in 2019 after two years of growth as increases in developing nations were offset by a sharp drop in power sector emissions in developed countries led by the U.S., according to the International Energy Agency (IEA). The worldwide emissions of carbon…

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New York Mayor de Blasio seeks to end the use of oil and gas in large buildings

New York Mayor de Blasio seeks to end the use of oil and gas in large buildings

Energize Weekly, February 12, 2020 New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio is taking aim at fossil fuels seeking to end the use of natural gas and oil in large buildings and banning the development of oil and gas infrastructure in the city. Other initiatives include switching the municipal feet…

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Last coal-fired plant in New York to close, New England plants not far behind, EIA says

Last coal-fired plant in New York to close, New England plants not far behind, EIA says

Energize Weekly, February 12, 2020 New York State’s last coal-fired power plant is set to close as early as mid-March and coal-fired power is headed in the same direction in New England, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA). “As many of the coal-fired power plants in New England…

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Climate change threatens profitability of investor-owned utilities, Moody’s says

Climate change threatens profitability of investor-owned utilities, Moody’s says

Energize Weekly, January 29, 2020 From heat to humidity to severe storms investor-owned utilities across the U.S. will face particular regional climate change hazards, according to an analysis by Moody’s Investors Services. A utility in the Southeast, such as Duke Energy, could face risk from heavier storms, floods and storm…

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Tri-State, facing economic, political pressures, moves to close its last two coal-fired plants

Tri-State, facing economic, political pressures, moves to close its last two coal-fired plants

Energize Weekly, January 15, 2020 Under pressure from market forces, dissatisfied members and environmental policies, the Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association announced it will close the last two coal-fired plants it operates and move to add more renewable energy. Tri-State said that it will close its Escalante Station, in Prewitt,…

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U.S. greenhouse gas emissions fell in 2019, but face a future bump from oil and gas

U.S. greenhouse gas emissions fell in 2019, but face a future bump from oil and gas

Energize Weekly, January 15, 2020 The burgeoning U.S. oil and gas and petrochemical sectors are set to add greenhouse gas emissions over the next five years – even as they decline for the power sector, according to two analysis of the country’s emissions. In 2019, U.S. greenhouse gas emissions fell…

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Companies join global effort to set science-based emission targets for their operations

Companies join global effort to set science-based emission targets for their operations

Energize Weekly, December 11, 2019 Nearly 700 companies around the world are moving to adopt “science-based targets” for reducing their greenhouse gas emissions with 40 percent already having plans in place, according to the non-profit and governmental groups sponsoring the initiative. The Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) – a collaboration…

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Energy-related CO2 emissions in U.S. rise in 2018 for the first time in five years

Energy-related CO2 emissions in U.S. rise in 2018 for the first time in five years

Energize Weekly, December 4, 2019 Carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from energy-related activities in 2018 rose in the U.S. for the first time in five years, posting a 2.7 percent annual increase to 5.27 billion metric tons, according to the federal Energy Information Administration (EIA). Driving the increase were higher emissions…

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International action has been insufficient to curb GHG, drastic action needed, the UN says

International action has been insufficient to curb GHG, drastic action needed, the UN says

Energize Weekly, December 4, 2019 The gap between international efforts to curb greenhouse gases (GHG) and the growing emissions has grown so large that dramatic reductions over the next decade are needed to avoid the worst impacts of climate change, according to a United Nations (UN) report. Under the 2015…

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Climate and energy policies around the world are falling short in meeting goals, IEA says

Climate and energy policies around the world are falling short in meeting goals, IEA says

Energize Weekly, November 20, 2019 Even if all the commitments made by countries to cut carbon emissions and provide dependable energy were enacted, the world would still fall far short of having clean, reliable energy in 2040, according to the International Energy Agency (IEA). The IEA placed all those emission and energy…

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IMF calls for $75-a-ton carbon tax, says current carbon-cutting measures are inadequate

IMF calls for $75-a-ton carbon tax, says current carbon-cutting measures are inadequate

Energize Weekly, October 23, 2019 An International Monetary Fund (IMF) analysis says that a $75-a-ton tax on carbon emissions or a comparable fiscal policy needs to be in place by 2030 to limit global warming to 2 degrees centigrade, though it will lead to sharp increases in electricity and gasoline…

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New England must increase renewables deployment almost eightfold to meet 2050 target

New England must increase renewables deployment almost eightfold to meet 2050 target

Energize Weekly, October 16, 2019 New England will have to increase the pace of renewable energy generation installations by four to eight times to meet 2050 goals to cut carbon emissions, according to a study by the Brattle Group, an economic and regulatory consultant. The region has a goal, as…

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Climate-driven weather events pose a risk to municipal bonds, commercial real estate and utilities, BlackRock says

Climate-driven weather events pose a risk to municipal bonds, commercial real estate and utilities, BlackRock says

Energize Weekly, April 24, 2019 Among the economic threats posed by climate change are risks to municipal bonds, commercial real estate investments and the utility sector, according to an analysis by BlackRock and the Rhodium Group. “Our work with Rhodium Group shows a rising share of U.S. metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs) will…

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Carbon emissions in heavy industry and transport could be could to zero by 2060, study says

Carbon emissions in heavy industry and transport could be could to zero by 2060, study says

Energize Weekly, November 28, 2018 Heavy industry carbon emissions—less of a focus and harder to curb than the power sector’s—could be reduced to zero by 2060 at cost of just a fraction of global Gross Domestic Product (GDP), according to a new study by the nonprofit Energy Transitions Commission. The…

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2017 saw upending events in the utility sector as long-term trends showed staying power

Energize Weekly, January 3, 2018 The utility industry faced a tumultuous 2017 with big policy initiatives from Washington and strong underlying trends continuing to challenge the sector. Many of the year’s big stories came from the Trump administration, but markets and corporate decisions also played a big role in defining…

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