SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — The potential for renewable energy development in the Southwest is tremendous, but two top officials in President Barack Obama's administration said Monday much work needs to be done to meet the challenges of exporting that power to market.
Interior Secretary Sally Jewell and Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz were among dozens of state and tribal officials who met in Santa Fe as part of the administration's effort to develop recommendations regarding the transmission, storage and distribution of energy.
Jewell and Moniz said one of the biggest challenges has been working across state lines and Native American jurisdictions to site and permit transmission and pipeline projects. They pointed to the $2 billion SunZia project between New Mexico and Arizona as one example.
Despite Republican opposition to Department of Energy backing for green energy projects, a number of GOP governors are lobbying strongly to get electric car maker Tesla to build its battery ‘gigafactory’ in their states, presumably bringing thousands of jobs with it, National Journal reports.
Three Atlantic Ocean areas off North Carolina will be made available for offshore wind energy development, the Interior Department announced Monday, including one that was placed farther out to sea to avoid being seen from Kitty Hawk and from another historic site on the Cape Hatteras National Seashore.
The areas to be open to leasing total nearly 308,000 acres: the 122,405-acre Kitty Hawk area situated 24 miles off the coast, and two others located 10 and 15 miles off Wilmington, respectively, near the border with South Carolina.
The Wyoming Industrial Siting Council has given unanimous approval for a proposal to build what could be the largest land-based wind farm in the country -– Power Company of Wyoming’s Chokecherry and Sierra Madre project -- which would have up to 1,000 turbines generating up to 3,000 megawatts of electricity, the Casper Star-Tribune reports.
Because publicly-funded transmission lines have brought the cost of wind-generated power down, Austin Energy is charging only 1 cent per kilowatt hour extra to customers who want to use the GreenChoice program and get their electricity from wind sources, StateImpact Texas reports.
SolarCity Corp. is sticking with its strategy of installing more rooftop solar despite the cost: The company said in the second quarter it added 107 megawatts but its loss increased to $47.7 million, Bloomberg reports.
Thirty two projects to reduce geothermal energy costs – including research and development as well as mapping – will get up to $18 million from the Department of Energy, geothermal technology office chief Doug Hollett announced Wednesday, The Hill reports.
The Minnesota Public Utilities Commission – having agreed that an original proposal of 10 cents a kilowatt-hour was too low -- is expected to decide Thursday how much Xcel energy will have to pay for electricity generated by community solar gardens, E&E reports.
The power substation in San Jose where a sniper attack last year raised concern about the security of the country’s grid has been breached again, according to Pacific Gas and Electric, which said thieves cut through a fence and stole some equipment, The New York Times reports.
A corn ethanol plant at the Port of Indiana-Mount Vernon, which Valero Energy Corp. bought in March, has restarted, FuelFix reports. It is expected to boost the company’s output to 1.3 billion gallons a year, making Valero the country’s third-largest ethanol producer.
Oil looks set to finish out the week higher in the wake of another positive piece of data on the U.S. economy, news of an unexpected rise in consumer confidence. West Texas Intermediate crude for October delivery was up 66 cents to $95.21 a barrel on the Nymex, while in London Brent crude settled 35 cents higher to $102.81, Bloomberg reports.
Fighting in Tripoli may have been escalating, but in the east of Libya, the key oil port of Es Sider is once again getting a flow of crude from oilfields after exports there resumed last week following a one-year hiatus, an official told The Wall Street Journal.
Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La., listed her parents’ home in New Orleans as her address in filing last week to qualify for the ballot in Louisiana, prompting some critics to question her residency status, The Washington Post reports.
Clean Air Act violations for the release of phosgene, methyl chloride and oleum at a West Virginia facility between 2006 and 2010 will cost DuPont $1.3 million in fines, the Environmental Protection Agency and the Justice Department said in announcing a settlement, The Hill reports.
A project to build a big $25 billion water tunnel system in Northern California poses water quality problems to the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta and a possible threat to smelt and salmon, the Environmental Protection Agency said in a letter accompanying comments posted online, the Los Angeles Times reports.