Tag Archives: Sierra Club

The $9 trillion dollar man

By John Weaver, PV Magazine

A presidential candidate is pushing $300 billion per year of U.S. government investment – with hopes to pull in a complementary $600 billion per year in private investment – to aim for $9 trillion in investment over the course of a decade. Sounds like a lot of money until we think about the United States subsidizing fossils to the tune of $649 billion a year, and estimates that the U.S. gross domestic product could fall by 10% – more than $2 trillion per year – due to costs associated with climate change. Jay Inslee has introduced his Evergreen Economy Plan as part of his presidential election campaign. The plan has five major planks that include many individual legislative actions. Read more here.

FEDERAL LEGISLATION

U.S. Green Bank Act of 2019 Would Provide $10 Billion+ of Capital to State and Local Green Banks, Coalition for Green Capital. The Green Bank Act of 2019 would inject billions of dollars into the U.S. economy to accelerate clean energy deployment, grow clean energy businesses, and deliver affordable clean energy to all Americans. The members of the global Green Bank Network and the American Green Bank Consortium have already shown that public investment in clean energy deployment drives greater total investment, job growth and lower energy costs. The bill creates a new USGB as a wholly owned corporation of the U.S. government, housed within Treasury. It would be capitalized through the issuance of federal Green Bonds.

ADDITIONAL RECOMMENDED READING

RESEARCH

GREEN BUILDING

Cambria Hotel Omaha Downtown: Cambria Hotels Celebrates Its First Hotel To Open In The Cornhusker State, Choice Hotels International Announcement. The LEED Silver Certified hotel incorporates a number of eco-friendly features throughout the building, including a solar array on the roof, a salt water pool that reduces chemical usage, Tesla and electric vehicle charging stations, and locally-sourced, recycled building materials.

Additional Nebraska LEED Certified Projects, US Green Building Council

First Ever Drive Electric Earth Day A Success – Plus More Green Transportation News

The first ever Drive Electric Earth Day was celebrated with 188 events in 44 US states and 5 countries! Read the press release about the week, and check out some great photos of people enjoying the events. Drive Electric Earth Day and National Drive Electric Week are presented by Plug In America, Sierra Club and the Electric Auto Association.

National Drive Electric Week will be held September 14 – 22, 2019. Nebraska events will be posted on Nebraskans for Solar’s and allied organizations’ calendars closer to that date. Mark your calendars for this annual celebration and plan to join other local EV enthusiasts to talk about driving electric.

If you’re thinking of organizing or helping at an event, join National Drive Electric Week organizers for a webinar: Organizing A Great 2019 Event on Friday, May 31, 2019 at 12 pm CDT.

MORE GREEN TRANSPORTATION NEWS PUBLISHED BY THE OMAHA WORLD-HERALD

Clean energy groups bring models to a modeling fight

By William Driscoll, PV Magazine

In states with a weak renewables standard, or none at all, a key battle over an electric utility’s solar deployment plan is fought in a regulatory proceeding triggered by the utility’s filing of an integrated resource plan (IRP)—at least in the 33 states that require utility IRPs.

In theory, to develop an IRP, a utility uses an optimization model that spits out the least-cost mix of future generation resources to meet projected demand, plus a reserve margin.  As prices for solar, wind, and storage fall, you would expect to see these plans reflecting an increasing percentage of renewable generation. Yet a utility controls the inputs to the model, and selects which scenarios to consider, so it can skew the model results in ways that disadvantage solar and other clean energy resources. Read more here.

Photo Credit: Rob Davis, Fresh Energy 

Understanding IRPs: How Utilities Plan for the Future, AEE Blog

William Driscoll, MPA, JD, is an energy and environmental policy analyst who has worked primarily for the United States Environmental Protection Agency via the firm ICF Consulting.
More articles from William Driscoll

“Paris to Pittsburgh” Now Available on National Geographic’s Website

National Geographic Documentary Produced in Partnership
With Bloomberg Philanthropies

Spotlighting the cities, states, businesses and citizens taking action, Paris to Pittsburgh explores the very real social and economic impacts of climate change-fueled disasters, from America’s heartland to the nation’s coastlines. The film features voices from local leaders as well as everyday Americans presenting the stories behind climate-related recovery and resiliency, as well as innovative efforts to reduce carbon emissions, including boomtowns formerly reliant on coal such as Pittsburgh. Other locations featured in the film include Puerto Rico, California, Iowa, Florida and New Jersey. Click top image to begin watching the film. 

About Bloomberg Philanthropies
Bloomberg Philanthropies has committed more than $260 million to move the nation towards clean energy and tackle climate change. The Bloomberg-backed
Beyond Coal initiative, which aims to secure the retirement of half the nation’s coal fleet, has already led to the closure or phasing out of 270 coal-fired power plants and helped to prevent more than 5,550 premature deaths per year. Additionally, Bloomberg Philanthropies supports sustainability in cities around the globe through C40, a network of more than 90 global megacities, and other programs including the American Cities Climate Challenge, a $70 million accelerator program to provide 20 cities with powerful new resources to help them meet – or beat – their near-term carbon pollution goals.

Paris to Pittsburgh Website
National Geographic Resources
Renewable Energy
Climate Action

Save the Date! Nebraskans for Solar’s Earth Month speaker will be Mary DeMocker, author of The Parents’ Guide To Climate Revolution: 100 Ways To Build A Fossil-Free Future, Raise Empowered Kids, and Still Get A Good Night’s Rest.
Click here for details and to RSVP.

Omaha utility’s carbon intensity goal obscures ongoing fossil fuel use

Written by Karen Uhlenhuth, Midwest Energy News

The carbon intensity goal passed on a 6-2 vote. The goal could change if the board revisits the issue after January, when newly elected board members — including three clean energy supporters — are seated. A debate about carbon intensity also surfaced recently in Iowa, where
MidAmerican Energy won regulatory approval last week for a 591-megawatt wind farm known as Wind XII. In its application, the utility’s president and CEO, Adam Wright, noted that the project would lower the utility’s carbon intensity to about 638 pounds per net megawatt-hour, compared to 1,839 pounds per megawatt 15 years ago, before it began investing in wind energy. “The carbon intensity, even if it’s calculated correctly, doesn’t mean they’ve reduced their emissions that much,” said Paul Chernick, an attorney representing the Sierra Club in the case.
Read the entire article here.

Pat Hawks / Flickr / Creative Commons Image

Related News Stories

CARBON CAPTURE RESEARCH
DOE spent more than $500M on dead projects, E&E News
Nearly half the $2.7 billion in fossil research money spent by the Department of Energy over the last seven years supported nine carbon capture demonstration projects, the majority of which were canceled or withdrawn.

Reinventing Power: America’s Renewable Energy Boom

Click image to watch trailer. 

Reinventing Power: America’s Renewable Energy Boom is a new documentary from the Sierra Club in which people across the U.S. tell their own stories about how solar and wind have changed their lives and benefitted their communities.

Over 50 minutes long, this film explores issues of community access and energy equity; lost jobs and newfound opportunities; economic diversification and household security; reshaping our energy sector and redefining power. – Transit Pictures, film producer

Do you want to host a watch party? Contact Sumer.Shaikh@sierraclub.org. All the tools you need are below:
Discussion guide
Host guide

Check the fact sheets below to learn more about how clean energy supports our economy, health and energy grid.
Clean Energy Economy
Clean Energy Health
Clean Energy Reliability

Additional Recommended Reading
This new doc shows how renewable energy recharges communities, Fast Company

Thank you to everyone who attended our January event at UNO’s Community Engagement Center!

Many thanks to everyone who turned out for last evening’s event, Nebraskans for Solar’s Third Solar Group Buy Roundtable: to our co-sponsoring groups, Green Bellevue and Sierra Club; and to our presenters, discussion leaders, and audience participants who, together, created an excellent educational opportunity.

Wyndle Young, OPPD Projects Director, Customer Initiatives, discussed the following topics:

  1. Update of OPPD’s Distributed Generation Manual. Final revision to be announced.
  2. The ConnectDER: OPPD reviewed the innovative device, and on July 1, 2017, accepted it for use for certain Distributive Energy Resources including solar installations. See OPPD document link, below.
  3. Renovation of the Distributed Generation portion of OPPD’s website. Final revision to be announced.
  4. OPPD’S Community Solar Development. See information, below.

David Holtzclaw, owner of Transduction Technologies, summarized the step-by-step process for a business or homeowner to install a solar PV system. A Q&A followed during which he was joined by Jeff Bergrenn from GenPro Energy Solutions and Michael Shonka, owner of Solar Heat and Electric, as well as Solar Ambassadors, people who have installed a PV system and are willing to serve as resource persons to others in the group.

Attendees were provided a list of FAQ’s prepared by solar installers, which will be available at future events. Everyone was asked for their recommendations for future speakers and topics.

RESOURCES DISCUSSED AT THE MEETING 

Solar, Energy Conservation & Incentives

Community Solar
“In response to customer interest in solar-powered generation, OPPD is evaluating the potential for a community solar energy project. OPPD will continue to assess solar programs, while balancing our mission to provide affordable, reliable and environmentally sensitive energy services to our customers.” – OPPD’s Integrated Resource Plan
OPPD’s Community Solar Update, by Jeff Karloff, Division Manager, Production Engineering, Fuels and Renewables. December 14, 2017 Board of Directors Meeting.
Presentation Slides

Proposal Details

  • Locations considered
    I-80 rest area near Gretna
    City of Fort Calhoun
    Bellevue landfill
  • Ten developers over 100 proposals
  • Electrical interconnection costs will be added to RFP prices

New Poll Shows Nebraskans Overwhelmingly Prefer a Clean Energy Future

Sierra Club Press Release

Omaha, NE — [September 19th], the Sierra Club released a poll detailing Nebraskans’ attitudes on the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline and transitioning to 100 percent clean, renewable energy. The poll, conducted by Public Policy Polling (PPP), found that 58 percent of Nebraska voters believe clean, renewable energy projects like wind and solar will benefit the state more than investing in fossil fuel projects like the Keystone XL pipeline. The poll also found that an overwhelming majority of Nebraska voters (66 percent) support moving their state to generate 100% of its energy from clean, renewable sources. Click here to continue reading.

Poll: Nebraska Survey Results

Local church leads way in clean energy

The St. Louis American  St. Louis church

The strong clean energy leadership of the New Northside Missionary Baptist Church in St. Louis is the focus of a video released by the Sierra Club for Netroots Nation 2016, which took place last week in St. Louis. The conference [draws]  thousands of bloggers, newsmakers, social justice advocates, labor and organizational leaders, grassroots organizers and online activists from across the country . . . “I wanted this church to be a leader in the African-American community with regard to practicing sustainable stewardship by using the resources that we have,” said Rev. Rodrick Burton, pastor at New Northside Missionary Baptist Church in St. Louis. Read more.

YouTube Video: Working Together for Clean Energy in St. Louis

South Sioux City embraces electric cars, wind, solar options

South Sioux City senior code official Kent Zimmerman demonstrates the electric-car charging station in front of City Hall on Friday. The northeast Nebraska city has four electric cars, part of its push to use more renewable energy. Photo by Justin Wan, Sioux City Journal

South Sioux City senior code official Kent Zimmerman demonstrates the electric-car charging station in front of City Hall on Friday. The northeast Nebraska city has four electric cars, part of its push to use more renewable energy. Photo by Justin Wan, Sioux City Journal

By Mike Bell, Sioux City Journal

Excerpt
SOUTH SIOUX CITY, Neb. / Mayor Rod Koch was upbeat on the city’s drive to be green, which he described not only as money-smart but also ahead of the curve. “With all the regulations and changes Washington’s making on coal, we’re seeing the writing on the wall – we’re trying to get in a better position for the future, and the future is wind and solar,” Koch said . . . The city has set aside 21 acres of land — on C Avenue south of East 48th Street, between South Sioux City and Dakota City — for a future solar farm that could be operational in 2016. The city is receiving bids from private companies that would build, own and install solar panels. The farm would provide 3 megawatts of solar power for the city.

Read more here.

ADDITIONAL RECOMMENDED READING
South Sioux City to buy electric capacity from Lincoln utility, by Dave Dreeszen, Sioux City Journal