New York proposes 2,400 MW of offshore wind by 2030

NOTE TO READERS: U.S. Energy News will not be publishing on Monday in observance of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. We will return on Tuesday, January 17. WIND: New York’s governor announces plans for up to 2,400 megawatts of offshore wind power by 2030, including a 90 megawatt project already under development. (Reuters)

ALSO:
• Ten North Carolina legislators send a letter asking Donald Trump’s incoming administration to shut down a nearly completed wind farm, alleging the “political correctness” prevented the Pentagon from opposing the project. (Associated Press)
• MidAmerican Energy announces the sites of two new wind farms in Iowa.

Feds recommend increasing royalties on coal mined on public land

COAL:
• A year-long Interior Department report on the federal coal leasing program recommends that the royalty rate on coal mined from public land be increased, but the ultimate decision will be made by Donald Trump’s administration. (The Hill)
• A bill introduced in Kentucky would give state utilities burning Kentucky coal a tax credit of $2 per ton of coal purchased. (Platts)
• A federal judge orders the U.S. EPA to determine whether actions taken under the Obama administration directly resulted in coal industry job losses. (The Intelligencer/Wheeling News-Register)

PIPELINES:
• Protests over the Dakota Access Pipeline are transitioning to local efforts in multiple states. (Associated Press)
• Enbridge Inc. could face a tough legal challenge should it fight to keep a 64-year-old pipeline on tribal lands in Wisconsin after a Native American tribe voted against renewing land use agreements.

Over 630 companies ask Trump to uphold climate policies

CLIMATE: Over 630 companies send a letter urging Donald Trump’s administration to uphold the Paris Climate Agreement and increase investments in renewable energy, saying “failure to build a low-carbon economy puts American prosperity at risk.” (Huffington Post)

EMISSIONS: Colorado’s governor scraps the idea of using an executive order to cut in greenhouse gas emissions from state power plants by one-third after criticism from Republicans. (Associated Press)

***SPONSORED LINK: Connect with more than 650 of the region’s best and brightest at MEEA’s 2017 Midwest Energy Solutions Conference, February 22-24 in Chicago, featuring unparalleled networking, insightful panels and more. Register today!***

CAP-AND-TRADE: The governor of California announces a plan to solidify the state’s cap-and-trade program using a two-thirds vote in both houses of the state legislature. (Los Angeles Times)

REGULATION: Arizona Rep. Raul Grijalva urges fellow Democrats to defend a coal mining rule and a regulation on methane leaks at oil and gas wells, saying repealing them would be “for the sole benefit of the oil, gas and coal industries.”

Obama: The trend toward clean energy is irreversible

RENEWABLE ENERGY:
• President Obama writes an article in the journal Science defending his administration’s energy policies, saying “the trend toward clean energy is irreversible.” (Washington Post)
• States’ renewable energy standards could save $97 billion through health and environmental benefits, more than making up for the costs of investing in renewables, according to a recent study. (EnergyWire)

CLEAN TECH: Student-led startups compete to win investment funding from a Chicago-based clean tech accelerator. (Midwest Energy News)

***SPONSORED LINK: The Smart Cities International Symposium, January 24-25 in Chicago, examines the latest technology advances and business models for the 21st Century connected city. Explore implementation strategies, case studies, and the successful financing of key initiatives.

Report: U.S. to become net energy exporter by 2026

OIL & GAS: The U.S. is projected to become a net exporter of energy by 2026 due to rising natural gas exports and falling petroleum imports, while greenhouse emissions are not expected to change radically, according to a new report. (Reuters/Climate Central)

ALSO:
• The Koch brothers are quietly courting minorities as they plan for a fossil fuel resurgence under Donald Trump. (New York Times)
• A fire burns for about four hours on an oil production platform in the Gulf of Mexico before being extinguished. (Associated Press)

***SPONSORED LINK: The Smart Cities International Symposium, January 24-25 in Chicago, examines the latest technology advances and business models for the 21st Century connected city. Explore implementation strategies, case studies, and the successful financing of key initiatives.

Battery cell production begins at Tesla Gigafactory

ELECTRIC VEHICLES:
• Tesla and Panasonic start mass producing lithium-ion battery cells at Tesla’s giant Gigafactory in Nevada, promising to hire “several thousand” workers. (Los Angeles Times, Huffington Post)
• Chinese-backed electric vehicle company Faraday Future unveils a new high-speed car but the company’s future remains unclear. (Greentech Media)

SOLAR: Two prominent solar industry groups merge to form a committee-style body called the Solar Energy Finance Association, which will become part of the Solar Energy Industries Association. (Greentech Media)

***SPONSORED LINK: The Smart Cities International Symposium, January 24-25 in Chicago, examines the latest technology advances and business models for the 21st Century connected city. Explore implementation strategies, case studies, and the successful financing of key initiatives.

DOE revokes millions in funding for a New Jersey wind project

WIND:
• The Department of Energy is revoking millions in funding for a wind project off the New Jersey coast, after developers missed a key deadline to have a power purchase agreement in place. (Associated Press)
• Environmentalists are concerned that Donald Trump’s administration could interfere with two proposed wind projects off the coast of Long Island. (WSHU)

CLIMATE: It could take years for Donald Trump to reverse many of the energy and climate regulations enacted by President Obama. (The Hill)

***SPONSORED LINK: The Smart Cities International Symposium, January 24-25 in Chicago, examines the latest technology advances and business models for the 21st Century connected city. Explore implementation strategies, case studies, and the successful financing of key initiatives.

State attorneys general tell Trump to keep Clean Power Plan

CLEAN POWER PLAN: A group of Democratic state attorneys general advise Donald Trump not to repeal the Clean Power Plan, telling him the decision would lead to an inevitable lawsuit. (The Hill)

WIND: President-elect Donald Trump sent a series of letters to Scotland’s former first minister, alleging wind farms would “ruin” the country’s coasts. (The Hill)

***SPONSORED LINK: Connect with more than 650 of the region’s best and brightest at MEEA’s 2017 Midwest Energy Solutions Conference, February 22-24 in Chicago, featuring unparalleled networking, insightful panels and more. Register today!***

SOLAR:
• Panasonic Corp is investing over $256 million in a Tesla Motors plant that will make solar cells in New York. (Reuters)
• Vermont’s major electric company is pushing for economical batteries to store energy from wind farms and solar panels.

Arizona regulators vote to end net metering

NOTE TO READERS: U.S. Energy News is taking a break for the holidays. The daily email digest will return on Tuesday, January 3. Thanks for reading! SOLAR:
• Arizona utility regulators vote to end net metering for new solar customers in the state. (Arizona Republic)
• Solar was the top source of new capacity on the U.S. electric grid in 2016, according to a recent report.

Energy Department’s ‘revolution’ faces uncertain future

RENEWABLE ENERGY: How the Department of Energy has “really changed the world” over the last eight years when it comes to energy. (Washington Post)

ALSO:
• A lack of new transmission lines is stifling renewable energy projects in Maine. (Portland Press Herald)
• A city in northern Michigan votes to become the second in the state to adopt a goal of 100 percent renewable energy to power city services, such as streetlights, a wastewater treatment plant and government buildings. (Midwest Energy News)
• Advocates see a mixed bag on clean energy policy as legislatures in Michigan, Illinois and Ohio close out 2016. (Midwest Energy News)
• A program in Maryland is making it easier for owners of large office buildings and warehouses to pay for renewable energy projects.