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Can Electric Markets Ever Be Truly Free?

Author(s): OurEnergyPolicy.org
Administrator
OurEnergyPolicy.org
Date: December 28, 2011 at 8:28 AM

Earlier this month Sean Casten published an op-ed on Grist.com arguing that “further deregulation of electricity markets is a good and necessary thing”, but that “full and total deregulation of electricity markets is probably impossible, and certainly amoral.” Casten argues that “parts of the electric system warrant full deregulation, while other parts would be better suited to fully regulated economic models.” Certain aspects of electricity markets, for example the “last mile” of transmission, impose natural barriers to new market entrants in a truly free market, he says, thereby undermining the market’s efficiency. Further, Casten argues, in truly free electric markets,… [more]

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Outcomes from Durban

Author(s): OurEnergyPolicy.org
Administrator
OurEnergyPolicy.org
Date: December 27, 2011 at 8:55 AM

The UN climate change summit in Durban, South Africa, wrapped earlier this month with two notable accomplishments: a pledge to create a new international treaty to replace the Kyoto Protocol in 2020, and the creation of a multi-billion dollar fund to help developing nations adapt to the effects of climate change. Some have expressed disappointment in Durban’s outcomes, and have pointed to the challenges inherent to the current UN negotiating framework. Among the challenges: asking national environmental ministers to hammer out an international framework that must go well beyond environmental concerns to be effective, and the tiered system of “developed”… [more]

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Wind Tax Credit Expiring

Author(s): OurEnergyPolicy.org
Administrator
OurEnergyPolicy.org
Date: December 26, 2011 at 8:40 AM

The production tax credit (PTC) for wind energy is currently set to expire December 31st, 2012. The credit is currently 2.2¢ per kWh created by wind. The average price of electricity nationwide is 11¢ per kWh. A study released recently by the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) states that without an immediate PTC program extension, wind energy “jobs will drop by nearly half, from 78,000 in 2012 to 41,000 in 2013.” According to the report, an extension of the program through 2016 could create nearly 17,000 wind industry jobs. Denise Bode, AWEA’s CEO, has stated that “these jobs could vanish if Congress allows… [more]

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DOE Weatherization Program Targeted in Coburn’s Wastebook

Author(s): OurEnergyPolicy.org
Administrator
OurEnergyPolicy.org
Date: December 23, 2011 at 8:17 AM

Senator Tom Coburn (R-OK) has released the 2011 Wastebook, his annual “guide to some of the most wasteful and low priority government spending”. Among the report’s targets is DOE’s Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP), a program that improves the energy efficiency of low-income family homes. Among the criticisms of the program highlighted by Senator Coburn: The DOE Inspector General found in a 2010 survey that the program suffered from poor workmanship, inflated contractor and material costs, and substandard home inspections to a level that “put the entire program at risk.” WAP-funded job training programs are sometimes unable to place trainees in… [more]

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EPA Announces MACT Rules

Author(s): OurEnergyPolicy.org
Administrator
OurEnergyPolicy.org
Date: December 22, 2011 at 8:32 AM

On December 21st, 2011 the EPA announced its newly proposed MACT Rules, placing stringent requirements on mercury and toxics emissions from power plants. The new rules were issued under the authority of the Clean Air Act, and are expected to heavily impact existing and new coal-fired power plants. According to AP, EPA “has estimated that 14.7 gigawatts — enough power for more than 11 million households — will be retired from the power grid in the 2014-15 period when the rules take effect.” The rules have received a great deal of criticism, ranging from the anticipated impacts on industry and employment to EPA’s “methodology… [more]

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ExxonMobil’s 2012 Outlook for Energy

Author(s): OurEnergyPolicy.org
Administrator
OurEnergyPolicy.org
Date: December 21, 2011 at 8:35 AM

ExxonMobil recently released its 2012 Outlook for Energy: A View to 2040, a report forecasting energy trends out for the next several decades. Among the projections highlighted in ExxonMobil’s announcement: “Global energy demand is expected to rise by about 30 percent from 2010 to 2040, [but] demand growth would be approximately four times that amount without projected gains in efficiency.” “ExxonMobil sees advanced hybrid vehicles accounting for 50 percent of the cars people will drive in 2040, compared to about 1 percent today. This, plus improved fuel economy in conventional vehicles, will cause demand for energy for personal vehicles to… [more]

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Keystone XL Pipeline Debate Heats Up

Author(s): OurEnergyPolicy.org
Administrator
OurEnergyPolicy.org
Date: December 20, 2011 at 8:17 AM

Earlier this year, the Obama Administration announced that it would be delaying its decision on the Keystone XL pipeline until after the 2012 election, drawing criticism from some pipeline proponents. In negotiating the FY2012 spending bill, the House and Senate have included language that would require the Administration to decide on the pipeline within 60 days. Republican lawmakers have made the Keystone XL pipeline issue a centerpiece of the spending negotiations. Senator Charles Schumer (D-NY) described his party’s spending-debate concessions on this issue as “giving the sleeves off a vest” because the State Department has said that they will withhold… [more]

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Third Way

Author(s): OurEnergyPolicy.org
Administrator
OurEnergyPolicy.org
Date: December 19, 2011 at 10:11 PM

Third Way is the leading think tank of the moderate wing of the progressive movement. We work with elected officials, candidates, and advocates to develop and advance the next generation of moderate policy ideas. Since our launch in 2005, our policy and communications products as well as our issue trainings have been used extensively in the House and Senate, by governors and by candidates ranging from Barack Obama to those running for Congress.

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TelCoa

Author(s): OurEnergyPolicy.org
Administrator
OurEnergyPolicy.org
Date: at 10:09 PM

TelCoa is a non-profit organization that brings together a diverse array of organizations, companies, and individuals with the common interest of promoting awareness and adoption of existing and emerging telework and telecommuting applications including virtual contact center services. The coalition’s mission is summed up in its tag line, “Enabling virtual, mobile and distributed work through research, education, technology and legislation.”

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Southern States Energy Board

Author(s): OurEnergyPolicy.org
Administrator
OurEnergyPolicy.org
Date: at 5:06 PM

The Southern States Energy Board is an interstate compact, comprised of governors and state legislators from sixteen southern states, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The Board’s mission is to promote economic development and enhance the quality of life in the South, through innovations in energy and environmental programs, policies and technologies.

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