U.S. Energy News

In bipartisan moment, FERC opens door to carbon pricing

POLICY: The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission says it will consider grid operators’ requests for carbon pricing, a rare moment of bipartisan cooperation on climate policy. (E&E News)

SUPREME COURT:
• Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett’s responses on climate change have generated controversy because they align with language frequently used by politicians who oppose regulating emissions. (New York Times)
• Judges have often acknowledged the reality of climate change, including recently appointed Justice Brett Kavanaugh, who said in 2016 that there is a “moral imperative” to address the crisis. (E&E News, subscription)

***SPONSORED LINK: The University of Minnesota Law, Policy, and Business Conference on Equity and Electrification of Transportation, Friday, October 23, from 10 am – 2:30 pm, will discuss broader reforms to our transportation systems through the lens of law, policy, and business. Register here. ***

OVERSIGHT:
• Energy Secretary Dan Brouillette cancels public appearances in Pennsylvania after two members of his security detail test positive for COVID-19. (CNN)
• EPA administrator Andrew Wheeler’s public calendar has not been updated since May, an oversight that staff blame on the pandemic. (E&E News, subscription)

COAL:
• After making it a centerpiece of his 2016 campaign, President Trump has all but stopped even mentioning coal in 2020. (E&E News)
Oregon’s only coal-fired power plant permanently closes, 20 years ahead of schedule. (OPB News)
A lawsuit alleges the Energy Department’s National Coal Council operates in secret in violation of federal law, serving the interests of the coal industry. (Bloomberg Law, subscription)
• COVID-19 is making life even harder for Appalachian miners living with the terminal condition known as black lung disease. (PRI’s The World) 

OIL & GAS:
• A new report finds global methane emissions have increased 32% this year despite a slowdown in oil and gas production. (The Hill)
• Analysts expect a sharp increase in propane demand this winter as homeowners and businesses seek ways to heat outdoor spaces. (Bloomberg)

SOLAR: An Arkansas school district invests in solar panels and energy efficiency upgrades and starts putting the savings into teacher salaries. (E&E News)

WIND:
• Offshore wind advocates are concerned the federal agency tasked with permitting projects is underfunded and understaffed, causing further delays in moving projects forward. (Utility Dive)
• The share of electricity generation in Texas coming from wind power continues to grow, increasing 11% last year compared to 2018. (Renewables Now) 

ELECTRIC VEHICLES: Renault announces a compact electric SUV for European markets with up to 140 miles of range that will sell for the equivalent of $12,000. (Electrek)

CLIMATE:
• A recent survey finds nearly 4 in 5 adults in Virginia say they are interested in news about how climate change affects their communities. (Energy News Network)
• A climate report by New Jersey environmental officials says the state must make massive cuts in fossil fuel use within the next several years to meet its mid-century emissions goals. (NJ Spotlight)
• Officials representing Native American tribal nations tell federal lawmakers they rarely get federal help fighting climate impacts because they are forced to compete for grants against wealthier states. (E&E News Daily, subscription)

POLITICS: The Biden campaign responds to six questions about climate policy. (Vox)

COMMENTARY:
• Virginia needs to update its statewide building code to protect residents from high energy costs and climate change, a Sierra Club volunteer writes. (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
A former California judge says it’s time for state leaders to address the consequences of climate change, rather than simply hoping to stop it. (RealClearEnergy)

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