The scientists’ work for Exxon was featured in an award-winning 2015 investigation by InsideClimate News that explored the company’s shift from climate research to climate denial and was mentioned in a video played as the hearing opened. “In order to understand and confront the crisis we are facing, we must recognize the disastrous deception that brought us to the brink,” committee chairman Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.) said. Read more here.
The largest owner of wind energy projects in the U.S. has two projects in the pipeline in Nebraska that will more than triple the capacity of its installed wind here in the next 2½ years. Read the entire storyhere.
The Sholes Wind Energy Center in Wayne County will mark OPPD’s first contract with NextEra, which is also working on a 90-megawatt project in Webster County in southern
Nebraska . . . The Omaha electric utility plans to make another wind energy addition this year as it seeks to replace a portion of the capacity lost when it shut down the nuclear plant at Fort Calhoun last year.Read the entire news story here.
Photo: The Grande Prairie wind farm, the largest wind project in Nebraska history, will eventually generate more than 818 megawatts, almost twice the output of the Fort Calhoun nuclear plant, which closed last year. Credit: Megan Farmer / The World-Herald
Also published by the Omaha World-Herald
Editorial: New Facebook data center is a major win for Nebraska and Sarpy County Sarpy is building a notable reputation for its ability to host these large information-handling facilities. Yahoo, Fidelity, Cabela’s and Travelers all have operations there. The Facebook announcement puts an exclamation point on Sarpy County’s data-center success . . . Tim Burke, OPPD’s chief executive officer, says additional companies have expressed interest in possible expansion projects since the utility adopted a new rate structure in January allowing large electricity users to tap renewables for all of their energy needs. The Facebook project, in other words, points to more possible development to come.
A seven-member bipartisan committee voted unanimously to recommend that the Legislature authorize the plan, said State Sen. Ken Haar of Malcolm, one of the co-chairs of the committee. The plan should address a wide range of topics related to improving efficiency in transportation and irrigation as well as increased development of renewable energy. It also recommends further study of carbon and methane capture, next-generation nuclear technology and smart grid systems, as well as exploring changes to how the Nebraska Environmental Trust awards monetary grants. Read more.
Written by Duane Hovorka, Executive Director of the Nebraska Wildlife Federation. Published by TheOmaha World-Herald.
On Nov. 4, the Paris climate change agreement went into effect. The agreement was signed by 193 nations, representing 95 percent of the world’s carbon pollution, and so far 111 nations have ratified the agreement . . . American technology and ingenuity should be leading the world into the clean energy future envisioned by the Paris Agreement. That leadership, and the economic benefits that will result, is much more likely to happen if the U.S. remains part of the agreement than if we walk away. Read morehere.
In particular, he talked about the need to continue supporting renewable fuels and the bio-based industry. A new report says that industry contributes $393 billion to the economy, he said, adding that it has helped rural areas recover from the Great Recession by supporting 4.2 million jobs. The administration, he said, has tried to shift rural areas from an extraction economy to something that is more sustainable. “This is really about taking the natural resource advantage that we have in rural America and expanding its capacity,” he said. “For far too long we relied simply on production agriculture and exports to support the rural economy.” Read morehere.
Excerpt With some significant wind farms recently coming on line and others in the works, Nebraska is on track for more than 1,300 megawatts of wind energy capacity by 2017. That’s still far below that of Iowa and many other states, but it’s nearly triple what Nebraska had just two years ago, said John Hansen of the Nebraska Farmers Union. “It’s the biggest development spurt we’ve had, a significant amount of additional wind power,’’ said Hansen, whose organization co-sponsored the eighth annual Nebraska Wind and Solar Conference . . . Representatives of the state’s major public utilities Thursday touted their recent efforts to boost their renewable energy portfolios, spurred in part by anticipation of the emission limits contained in the Obama administration’s Clean Power Plan.