Search Results for renewables
66 item(s) were returned.
Discussion

DOE Forging Ahead with Loan Guarantees

Author(s): OurEnergyPolicy.org
Administrator
OurEnergyPolicy.org
Date: April 10, 2012 at 7:42 AM

Last week, DOE announced plans to continue its provision of loan guarantees for approved renewable energy projects. The announcement comes seven months after the controversy surrounding the agency’s loan to Solyndra, the California-based solar manufacturer which filed bankruptcy after receiving a $535 million DOE loan guarantee. Solyndra’s loan guarantee was administered under a program authorized by Section 1705 of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, which elapsed in September 2011. The new loans will be directed under a program created by section 1703 of the Energy Policy Act of 2005. The Section 1703 program has $34 billion in… [more]

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Are Renewables Becoming Competitive?

Author(s): OurEnergyPolicy.org
Administrator
OurEnergyPolicy.org
Date: April 6, 2012 at 8:36 AM

Historically, widespread uptake of renewable energy has been limited by relatively high costs as compared to traditional energy sources. A 2011 IEA report argued that “renewable energy … is becoming cost-competitive in an increasingly broad range of circumstances, in some cases providing investment opportunities without the need for specific economic support.” Several recent trends, and recently announced business ventures, seem to support the IEA’s finding that some renewable energy sources are approaching cost-competitiveness. Prices for distributed solar have plummeted recently – due largely to economies of scale, government support and policy-driven demand – leading in 2011 to a record 1,855… [more]

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Lomborg: Wind Energy “A Very Poor Choice”

Author(s): OurEnergyPolicy.org
Administrator
OurEnergyPolicy.org
Date: April 4, 2012 at 7:47 AM

A recent op-ed by noted academic Bjorn Lomborg questions the idea that renewable energy – wind, in particular – is up to the task of mitigating climate change. Renewables are not cost-competitive with traditional energy sources, he argues; and because renewables are intermittent and must be backed-up by base-load or peaker power plants, their true costs per kWh is often understated and their CO2 reduction potential overstated. Much of Lomborg’s argument focuses on the UK’s plan for a 20% reduction in CO2 by 2020 that, according to the op-ed, would require that wind account for 31% of the country’s electricity… [more]

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Tax Breaks for Oil Companies

Author(s): OurEnergyPolicy.org
Administrator
OurEnergyPolicy.org
Date: March 30, 2012 at 7:25 AM

A Senate bill that would have cut $24 billion in tax breaks to oil companies over 10 years was blocked by Republicans yesterday. The bill, endorsed by President Obama hours before the vote, would have used $11.7 billion of the $24 billion to extend renewable energy tax credits and fund clean energy initiatives. The remainder would have gone toward deficit reduction. Critics of the bill have said that it would do nothing to reduce gas prices. Would legislation like this impact gas prices in the short- to medium-term? Should the U.S. remove subsidies from one industry in order to subsidize… [more]

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Rare Earth Minerals and Clean Energy

Author(s): OurEnergyPolicy.org
Administrator
OurEnergyPolicy.org
Date: March 19, 2012 at 10:01 AM

Last week The Economist called attention to growing demand for rare earth minerals, their importance in clean energy technologies, and rising tension over their global supply. Two of these minerals – dysprosium and neodymium – are essential components of the magnets used in wind turbines and electric motors. According to The Economist, for these technologies to play the role expected of them in reducing CO2 emissions, world supply of neodymium and dysprosium would need to increase “more than 700% and 2,600% respectively during the next 25 years.” China, which produces around 90% of the world’s rare earth minerals, has recently… [more]

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House Considering Small Hydropower Support

Author(s): OurEnergyPolicy.org
Administrator
OurEnergyPolicy.org
Date: March 7, 2012 at 8:26 AM

H.R. 2842, the Bureau of Reclamation Small Conduit Hydropower Development and Rural Jobs Act of 2011, has been referred to the House of Representatives. The bill, introduced by Rep. Scott Tipton (R-CO), would call on the Bureau of Reclamation to develop small conduit hydropower at Bureau facilities. The bill would require that power privilege leases be offered to local irrigation districts or water users associations. The bill would prohibit altering existing water management and altering existing small conduit projects or outlays. “At a time when our country needs to focus on domestic energy production and job creation, hydropower can play… [more]

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Clean Energy Standard Act of 2012 Introduced

Author(s): OurEnergyPolicy.org
Administrator
OurEnergyPolicy.org
Date: March 2, 2012 at 8:00 AM

Senate Energy & Natural Resources Chairman Jeff Bingaman (D-NM) has introduced the Clean Energy Standard Act of 2012, which would require electric utilities to derive increasing percentages of their supply mix from low-CO2 sources. The bill would take effect in 2015, and would require that by 2035 84% of power from large utilities come from low-CO2 sources. Sources eligible under the legislation include: renewables, such as wind and solar, “qualified” renewable biomass and waste-to-energy, hydropower, natural gas, and nuclear. Facilities with CO2 capture and storage, and some combined heat and power facilities, are also eligible. The bill establishes a market-based… [more]

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Obama’s FY2013 Budget Heavy on Energy R&D, Renewables, Efficiency

Author(s): OurEnergyPolicy.org
Administrator
OurEnergyPolicy.org
Date: February 16, 2012 at 8:00 AM

President Obama sent his requested FY2013 budget to Congress Monday, and requested, among other energy-related items, significant increases to energy R&D, renewable energy investments, and energy efficiency programs. From the request: “In light of the tight discretionary spending caps, this increase in funding is significant and a testament to the importance of innovation and clean energy to the country’s economic future.” Among the energy-related budget requests: $27.2 billion to the Department of Energy, a 3.2% hike over FY2012 $5 billion for DOE’s Office of Science $2.3 billion for DOE’s Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy office – a 29% increase –… [more]

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Coal Companies Shuttering Mines on Low U.S. Demand

Author(s): OurEnergyPolicy.org
Administrator
OurEnergyPolicy.org
Date: February 9, 2012 at 7:59 AM

Alpha Natural Resources, the nation’s third-largest coal producer, has announced that it will “close four mines in Kentucky and West Virginia and idle two more over the next 12 months.” [E&E ClimateWire (sub. req.)] 152 Alpha employees will lose their jobs, while another 182 will be offered reassignment. The coal industry has been challenged recently by low natural gas prices and new federal clean air regulations. These factors have compelled some electric utilities to close their coal-fired power plants, or to switch them to natural gas or other, cleaner coal sources. Utilities such as FirstEnergy, Duke Energy, and American Electric… [more]

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Renewable Energy Finance

Author(s): Elias Hinckley
Partner
KL Gates
Date: January 25, 2012 at 10:08 AM

In the State of the Union President Obama renewed his commitment to the widespread adoption of renewable power as a critical piece of America’s energy and economic future.  In last year’s speech he included a proposal to have 80 percent of US electricity come from renewables by 2035. Even making incremental steps towards these goals requires better access to financing for these renewable energy projects.  Energy projects, and particularly renewable energy projects, require a lot of money to build. There appear to be 3 key challenges for a renewable energy company to access capital in today’s market. (1) Low natural… [more]

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