Posts in Category: Clean Energy

When It Comes to Solar, Its A Tale of Two FERCs

Last Thursday, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) made two important, but vastly different rulings on the future of renewable energy. One of those decisions could be a matter of life or death for solar, wind and other renewable energy jobs across the nation. While FERC rightly and unanimously rejected an attack on net metering

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Adieu Review: NEPA Rollback Undercuts Sensible Environmental Protections

On July 16, 2020, the Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) published its final rule rewriting the requirements for how federal agencies comply with the National Environmental Policy Act, known as “NEPA.” I identified our concerns about the draft rule in a blog entry back in January, and my colleague Ann Mesnikoff testified in front of

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Rolling in the REAP: Rural Energy Funding Renewed

The House of Representatives is quickly working its way through bills to fund the federal government for next year. These are BIG bills, but in these BIG bills are individual programs that bring important resources to people and places. One such program is the Rural Energy for America Program – REAP – which helps farmers

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Bond Pool Not Cool: Murray Bankruptcy Plan Short-Changes Ohioans

With renewable energy close to overtaking coal output, those concerned about the environment have a lot to celebrate. But coal companies often have one last unwelcome gift for the public: mining sites that continue to scar the land and pollute the water. ELPC is leading the way on innovative work meant to ensure that coal

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Crains Detroit Op-Ed: Low oil prices make Enbridge’s tunnel a bad financial bet

Eeny, meeny, miny, mo. Which of the controversial new oil pipeline projects are going to go — away? Let’s start with Enbridge’s antiquated Line 5 oil pipeline with its new safety-related problems, and its proposed costly new tunnel in the Straits of Mackinac. Oil prices have fallen so much that Exxon reported its first quarterly

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Putting the Equity in “Return on Equity”

Utility hearings are many things, but rarely emotional. This one felt different. Last Friday, the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission held a virtual hearing on Xcel Energy’s “Integrated Distribution Plan” – a blueprint for the utility’s electric grid investments over the coming five years. With the pandemic as our backdrop, hearings tend to be an exercise

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Behind the Scenes – A Renewable Energy Policy Victory

Electric utility regulatory issues put many people to sleep. They can be legally dry and technically complicated. However, for ELPC’s clean energy legal and policy wonks, these issues are often truly interesting, and we dig in deep. Most importantly, what ELPC’s team then accomplishes before the courts, legislatures and public utility regulatory commissions really does

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Oil Prices Matter When It Comes to Pipelines

Eeny, meeny, miny, mo. Which of the controversial large oil pipelines are going to go? Some might be on a path to nowhere, financially. Oil prices have fallen so much that Exxon reported its first quarterly loss since 1988 and announced that it will shut down 75% of its oil rigs in the Permian Basin

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Air Quality Matters In a Respiratory Health Global Pandemic

In the the midst of a global public health crisis, most air quality news has been focused on the cleaner air from less vehicle traffic and industrial activity. Sadly, it’s not all good news. What in the world was Hilco thinking in demolishing its coal plant without dust control in the Little Village community in

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With Great Lakes Flooding on the Way, ELPC Working on Climate Solutions

I walked along the Lake Michigan shoreline this weekend. My neighborhood beach is gone, and the water is already lapping up over the rocks onto the walking path and grassy shore. In part due to climate change, Great Lakes water levels are experiencing extremes – mostly much higher, and sometimes lower. Amidst one crisis, worsened

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