U.S. Energy News

International petition ask Gates Foundation to divest from fossil fuels

FOSSIL FUEL DIVESTMENT: In less than 24 hours, more than 60,000 readers have signed the Guardian newspaper’s petition asking the world’s largest charities – the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and Wellcome Trust – to divest from fossil fuels. (Guardian)

EPA EMISSIONS RULE: A Harvard law professor who taught President Obama says the EPA lacks the statutory and constitutional authority to force states to implement plans to cut carbon emissions at existing power plants. (The Hill)

FEDERAL INCENTIVES: House Republicans are using their budget proposal to push cuts to renewable energy incentives and climate change programs in favor of increasing domestic oil and natural gas production. (The Hill)

CARBON TRADING:
• The cost for power plants in New York to emit greenhouse gases hit an all-time high last week under the nine-state Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, bringing in $32 million in proceeds. (Albany Times Union)
• The full results of the February joint auction of carbon allowances sold in California and Quebec’s cap-and-trade program were released Tuesday, showing California raised $630 million and Quebec $150 million. (Climate Central)
• A Duke University think tank suggests states adopt “common elements,” allowing them to participate in cross-state carbon trading to reduce power-sector emissions. (ClimateWire)

SOLAR: The Colorado River Indian Tribes have asked a federal judge to block construction of a 6-square-mile solar project near Blythe, California, until a legal challenge to the project’s approval over sacred lands and artifacts is resolved. (The Press-Enterprise)

ALSO: The sun could soon provide 90 percent of the power for municipal buildings and schools in Rocky Hill, Connecticut, under a lease-purchase agreement negotiated with SolarCity to install 16 acres of ground-mounted solar panels. (The Hartford Courant)

WIND: In April, Google X will begin flying 84-foot-long airborne wind turbines, enormous kite-like turbines previewed at Austin’s innovation fest South by Southwest. (International Business Times)

ALSO: Four of the five New Hampshire towns chosen by a Portuguese developer for a proposed new wind energy facility voted for restrictions for the project or expressed outright opposition. (New Hampshire Union Leader)

HYDRO: A bill in Maine to classify hydro as renewable power at facilities generating more than 100 megawatts will be considered at a public hearing Thursday. (The Ellsworth American)

OIL & GAS: Secretary of the Interior Jewell outlined Tuesday a regulatory agenda to curb venting and flaring, regulate hydraulic fracturing and boost the power of blowout preventers in oil and gas development on public lands and waters. (Fuel Fix)

UTILITIES: Atlanta-based utility giant Southern Co. wants to open an energy innovation center, expand into the hydrogen business and capitalize on the evolution of the Nest thermostat. (EnergyWire)

NEW HAMPSHIRE: Windham, Massachusetts, is now powered 100 percent by renewables, thanks to a new contract with New York-based ConEd Solutions. (Eagle-Tribune)

MINNESOTA: Bills that have risen to the top in Minnesota’s split legislature include a push for a high renewable energy standard and another intended to clip state agency oversight of EPA carbon rules. (Midwest Energy News)

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