The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency today announced that Randolph, Neb., is one of 25 communities that will receive technical assistance to pursue development strategies that advance clean air, clean water, economic development and other local goals.
EPA selected the communities from among 76 applicants to the Building Blocks for Sustainable Communities program. In 2017, EPA staff and national experts will conduct one to two-day workshops to help the community address development-oriented issues. “Use Energy Efficiently and Provide Renewable Energy” is one of Building Blocks’ eleven goal areas. The city has also hired a community development professional to help build a 21st century sustainable community strategy.
As the solar energy industry gears up to add more electricity-generating capacity than any other source this year, a new Pew Research Center survey finds that almost nine-in-ten U.S. adults (89%) favor expanding use of solar power, while only 9% oppose it. That sentiment bridges the partisan divide, with large majorities from across the political spectrum favoring more use of this alternative source. Planned large-scale solar farms are expected to add 9.5 gigawatts of electricity-generating capacity, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), a government agency that collects and analyzes information about the energy industry. Continue reading.
By Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Gina McCarthy
The trend toward investment in renewables and energy efficiency is unfolding all
Electricity generated from renewables is expected to grow by 9% in 2016 alone;
Utilities are investing $8 billion a year in energy efficiency, a four-fold increase from just eight years ago, and more companies than ever are leveraging EPA’s ENERGY STAR platform;
States are leading the way—29 states have adopted mandatory renewable portfolio standards, and an additional eight states have voluntary renewable goals. Twenty-three states have mandatory energy efficiency provisions and 10 states have implemented market-based trading programs to reduce greenhouse gas emissions; and
The private sector is also stepping up. Google, Apple, Goldman Sachs, Walmart, and Unilever – and other large U.S. companies are choosing to cut emissions and committing hundreds of billions of dollars to finance clean energy innovation.
Every year, EPA hosts a nationwide competition among buildings to help organizations save energy, save water, and fight climate change with help from EPA’s ENERGY STAR and WaterSense programs. This year, it’s back with a fun, new twist. Join the BOOTCAMP and see how much you can save in 90 days!
Click here for BOOTCAMP details, including registration information and important dates. Register by July 19, 2016.
Battle of the Buildings Bootcamp Training Kits. Download themhere.
U.S. authorities have asked the German carmaker Volkswagen to produce electric vehicles in the United States as a way of making up for its rigging of emission tests, the German newspaper Welt am Sonntag reported.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is currently in talks with Volkswagen with the aim of agreeing on a fix for nearly 600,000 diesel vehicles that emit up to 40 times legal pollution limits.
It would be irresponsible for Nebraska to punt the design of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Clean Power Plan for Nebraska to the federal government. There are those who want to fight it or just wait for the federal government to impose a plan rather than determine how we can use it to our advantage. That’s like punting right after receiving the kickoff rather than giving your offense a chance to score. We wouldn’t do that in football, and we shouldn’t do it with EPA’s Clean Power Plan. Instead, the state of Nebraska should create its own compliance plan — one that takes advantage of opportunities that can benefit us.
On Monday, President Barack Obama released the final version of the Clean Power Plan, designed to decrease greenhouse gas emissions from U.S. power plants. The plan would increase regulations to limit the amount of carbon power plants can emit. Specifically, the Environmental Protection Agency’s plan calls for the United States to cut its C02 emissions by 32 percent from 2005 levels by 2030, stricter than the 30 percent in last year’s version.
Democrats laud the plan as a boon for the environment, while Republicans decry it as expensive, anti-industry and harmful to jobs and the economy. In Nebraska, Gov. Pete Ricketts has come out against it, saying he’s concerned it would be a burden and costly to residents.
Today at the White House, President Obama and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Gina McCarthy will release the final Clean Power Plan, a historic step in the Obama Administration’s fight against climate change.
Excerpts from the White House Fact Sheet: The Clean Power Plan establishes a Clean Energy Incentive Program that will drive additional early deployment of renewable energy and low-income energy efficiency. Under the program, credits for electricity generated from renewables in 2020 and 2021 will be awarded to projects that begin construction after participating states submit their final implementation plans. The program also prioritizes early investment in energy efficiency projects in low-income communities by the Federal government awarding these projects double the number of credits in 2020 and 2021. Taken together, these incentives will drive faster renewable energy deployment, further reduce technology costs, and lay the foundation for deep long-term cuts in carbon pollution.
Low Income Solar: Last month, the White House announced a new initiative to increase access to solar energy for all Americans, in particular low-and moderate income communities, and build a more inclusive workforce. The initiative will help families and businesses cut their energy bills through launching a National Community Solar Partnership to unlock access to solar for the nearly 50 percent of households and business that are renters or do not have adequate roof space to install solar systems and sets a goal to install 300 megawatts (MW) of renewable energy in federally subsidized housing by 2020. Through this initiative housing authorities, rural electric co-ops, power companies, and organizations in more than 20 states across the country committed to put in place more than 260 solar energy projects and philanthropic and impact investors, states, and cities are committed to invest $520 million to advance community solar and scale up solar and energy efficiency for low- and moderate- income households. The initiative also includes AmeriCorps funding to deploy solar and create jobs in underserved communities and a commitment from the solar industry to become the most diverse sector of the U.S. energy industry.
Still from the White House Video announcing the Monday release of the final version of the Clean Power Plan.
Early Sunday morning, the White House shared a video message narrated by President Obama that announced the Monday release of the final version of the Clean Power Plan.
Under the plan, the EPA will adopt a rule that regulates carbon pollution from existing power plants for the first time, and in the video, Obama called it “the biggest, most important step we’ve ever taken to combat climate change.”
The Obama administration plans to offer new incentives for solar and wind energy in its plan to cut power-plant emission as a way to counter delaying the initial deadline by two years, a person familiar with the rule said.
The renewable incentives will allow deeper cuts in carbon emissions in the long term while giving more flexibility to states that must implement the rule, said the official who sought anonymity before an official announcement.