Last week the White House issued an Executive Order calling for 40 GW of new CHP capacity by 2020:
The Executive Order on Accelerating Investment in Industrial Energy Efficiency (also known as combined heat and power (CHP) or cogeneration) calls for federal agencies (including the Departments of Energy, Commerce and Agriculture), States, industrial companies and utilities to coordinate policies to encourage investment in CHP facilities with a goal of achieving 40,000 MW of new CHP generating capacity in the U.S. by 2020. Among other provisions, the Order calls for (i) set asides for CHP under emissions allowance trading program state implementation plans, grants, and loans and (ii) recognition of the emissions benefits of highly efficient energy generation technologies like CHP to provide compliance options under power and industrial sector regulations. By one estimate, this could create $40 billion to $80 billion in new capital investment in U.S. manufacturing facilities.
*Combined heat and power (CHP), also known as cogeneration, is an efficient, clean and reliable means of generating power and thermal energy (such as steam) from a single fuel source, including natural gas, coal, biogas and biomass.
Tuesday's Wall Street Journal included an editorial by Robert Bryce titled "Wind Power Won't Cool Down the Planet," claiming that wind power does not reduce carbon pollution, based on fossil fuel industry studies. In response to Bryce's editorial, Renewable Northwest Project has released a statement from Ken Dragoon, RNP research director, countering Bryce's claims with facts from independent sources. (http://www.rnp.org/index.php?q=node/1001)
American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) has also issued a similar statement. http://awea.org/newsroom/pdf/08-27-10-Wind_and_emissions_response.pdf.
The Wind and Solar Power Industries Now Employ Twice the Number of Workers in the U.S. as the Coal Mining Industry
In the midst of an unprecedented amount of bad news surrounding the economy, the robust growth in employment in the wind and solar energy sectors has been receiving a lot of attention. Wind industry jobs have increased 70% over the past year, totaling 85,000 in 2008. These 85,000 jobs in the wind industry include some 13,000 manufacturing jobs, many of which are being filled by workers who lost jobs in other manufacturing industries, like the steel industry. Similarly, the solar industry employs more than 80,000 workers in the U.S.
CNNMoney.com ran an article earlier this week noting that the wind industry now outstrips the coal mining industry in number of workers. The article, “Wind Jobs Outstrips Coal,” noted that the coal mining and extraction industry employs about 81,000 workers. According to a 2007 U.S. Department of Energy report cited in the article, these numbers have been steady in recent years, but are down nearly 50% since 1986. Estimates for the total direct employment in the U.S. coal industry range from 136,000 to 174,000 workers, and includes those who mine coal, haul it by rail, barge and truck, and who operate and maintain coal-fired power plants. Thus, the solar and wind energy sectors have quickly caught up the coal industry in terms of overall employment and will soon surpass the coal industry in total employment.
These facts demonstrate the potential of renewable energy to lead the country’s economic recovery when you consider that renewable energy currently supplies a tiny portion of the nation’s electricity supply—about 3 percent—compared to coal, which supplies about 50 percent of our electricity.
The California Public Utility Commission issued a draft decision on October 29th authorizing the use of unbundled and tradable renewable energy certificates (“RECs” or “TRECs”) for compliance with California’s RPS.Continue Reading...
The Portland Business Journal is reporting that Portland General Electric Company received 38 offers in its April 2008 RFP totaling up to 3000 MW in renewable energy.
http://portland.bizjournals.com/portland/stories/2008/09/01/story5.html PGE's RFP called for 218 MWs of energy to begin generating electricity between 2009 and 2014. Based on this response from bidders, PGE stated that it expects to meet its 2015 deadline of 15 percent renewable energy early. Oregon's renewable portfolio standard (RPS) requires utilities subject to the RPS to achieve 25 percent renewables by 2025.
Oregon Public Utility Commission Gives Green Light to Third-party Ownership Model for Distributed Generation
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