Archive: Environmental

Source: Creative Commons

Six Forces Disrupting the Power Sector

Multiple disparate trends could forcefully reshape power systems around the world. As electricity markets transform, technologies advance, industries converge, consumption patterns change, environmental

Hope Creek_PSEG Nuclear

PSEG’s Izzo Blasts Power Company Opposition to Revived New Jersey Nuclear Subsidy Bill

Public Service Enterprise Group (PSEG) President and CEO Ralph Izzo gave NRG Energy a tongue-lashing for its pointed opposition of subsidies for PSEG’s two New Jersey nuclear power plants. The tense moment at a January 25 legislative hearing that sought to revive the measure is illustrative of a growing chasm within the power sector about the […]

New York. Dynegy and NRG Energy in October 2016 also filed a similar suit in federal court seeking to block New York's Clean Energy Standard, an incentive program approved by the New York Public Service Commission in August 2016 that would use ZECs to help three of that state’s nuclear power plants—R.E. Ginna in Ontario, Nine Mile Point in Oswego, and FitzPatrick in Scriba—remain economic over the next decade. The program requires owners of eligible ZECs to enter into long-term contracts with the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA). Under those contracts, the owners sell the zero-emissions attributes associated with power produced by the plants. Starting in April 2017, New York load-serving entities will be required to buy various amounts of ZECs from NYSERDA each year.

The measure has been opposed by environmental and citizen groups, which say it would result in a $965 million dollar increase in rates. Supporters of the measure argue—citing a Brattle Group study—that electricity consumers in New York would be subject to about $15 billion of additional electricity costs over the next 12 years if the nuclear plants were to close. However, the plan has been seemingly stalled by the New York General Assembly, which recently added a moratorium to its budget bill suspending implementation of the New York ZEC program through December 2018—or at least until state officials appear before the legislature to explain the PSC's controversial decision to approve the ZECs.

R.E. Ginna Nuclear Power Plant. Courtesy: Exelon Corp.

Challenge to N.Y. Nuclear Subsidies Will Go to Trial

A lawsuit challenging subsidies for New York’s nuclear plants will head to trial after the state’s  Supreme Court rejected motions to dismiss it. The measure deals a small setback for Exelon Corp., whose subsidiaries own the R.E Ginna and Nine Mile Point nuclear plants in upstate New York. Defendants in the lawsuit also include Entergy […]

Muscatine (Iowa) Power and Water coal-fired power plant

SCOTUS Sends Controversial WOTUS Rule into More Legal Limbo 

The U.S. Supreme Court unanimously reversed and remanded a rule the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers rolled out in 2015 that asserts federal authority over small bodies of water with a broader definition of the statutory term, “waters of the U.S.” (WOTUS). In a ruling for National Association of […]


Don’t Let EPA Stall on Clean Power Plan, 17 States Tell Federal Court

The Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) recent request that the D.C. Circuit hold a case challenging the Clean Power Plan in additional abeyance until it concludes rulemaking has been strongly opposed by 17 states and several cities. The EPA, in its latest 30-day court-required status report filed on January 10, asked the federal court for continued […]

Smog over Almaty city, Kazakhstan Courtesy: Igors Jefimovs/Commons

New York and Connecticut Renew Interstate Smog Fight in New Lawsuit

New York and Connecticut on January 17 filed suit to force the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to curb ground-level ozone blowing in from Illinois, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and West Virginia with federal implementation plans (FIPs) issued under the “Good Neighbor Provision” of the 2008 National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS). The two states allege in their […]


European Parliament Adopts Measure to Hike EU Renewables Target to 35% by 2030

 A draft law backed by the European Parliament on January 17 proposes to raise the European Union’s (EU’s) renewable targets to 35% by 2030—substantially higher than a 27% target proposed by the European Commission and EU Council. Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) voted 492–88 (with 107 abstentions) to increase the share of renewable sources […]

A consortium led by Mainstream Renewable Power ordered 157 Siemens SWT-2.3-108 wind turbines for three projects in South Africa in February 2016. The 140-MW Khobab wind farm and the 140-MW Loeriesfontein 2 wind farm are both located in the Namakwa District Municipality, and the 80-MW Noupoort wind farm is located in Umsobomvu Local Municipality. Courtesy: Siemens

Report: Clean Energy Investments Hit $333.5 Billion in 2017

Though some countries, including the U.S., have moved to support coal-fired power generation over the past year, investments in renewable energy continued to rise, according to a new report from Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF). The research group on January 16 said global investment in clean energy such as wind and solar reached about $333.5 […]

In a joint press briefing on January 10, U.S. President Donald Trump and Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg talked to reporters briefly about the Paris Agreement, the environment, and its impact on their countries’ economies.

VIDEO: Trump Says U.S. Could Re-Enter Paris Agreement, Praises Norway’s Hydropower

In a press briefing held with Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg on January 10, President Donald Trump said that U.S. could “conceivably” re-enter into global climate change mitigation efforts under the Paris accord. While he has “no problem” with the accord itself, he felt the agreement negotiated by the Obama administration treated the U.S. unfairly, […]

Proposition 65 Warning

Updates to California’s Proposition 65 Warnings Will Affect Oil Industry Nationwide

Despite recent regulatory reforms relieving the oil industry of certain federal requirements, many oil and gas companies, refineries, and pipeline facilities operating in California are not immune from state regulatory requirements, including some new regulations that become effective August 30, 2018. Even if companies think they are in compliance, they should check again to make […]