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Working to Secure Maine's Energy Future

January 12 -- Another session of Congress is underway, and there are all sorts of developments in the Senate, including a new Republican majority, new committee assignments, and new chances to work together.

As a new member of the Energy and Natural Resources Committee, I’ll have the opportunity to fight for a more secure energy future for Maine, work hard to protect its beautiful and substantial natural resources, encourage a cleaner, more focused national energy policy, and promote cooperation in changing global environments such as the Arctic region. >>View Article

State Official: PA Will Benefit from Embracing Clean Power

January 12 -- While the Environmental Protection Agencies proposal to curb carbon pollution may be a difficult pill for coal supporters to swallow, one state leader is convinced the benefits outweigh the costs. About 40 percent of Pennsylvania's electricity comes from coal, and the Clean Power Plan calls for the state to reduce carbon emissions from coal power plants 32 percent by the year 2030.

State Treasurer Rob McCord admits there are costs and concerns to be addressed, but says there's much to gain by embracing the goals of the plan. >>View Article

Moving Forward or Backward on Climate Change -- Our Choice

January 12 -- Last week, we saw two big announcements from California: the start of construction on the first high-speed rail project in the U.S. and a new goal for renewable energy — 50 percent by 2030.

At the same time, Republicans continue their obsession with approving the Keystone XL pipeline. Among their spurious reasons for making it a top priority are the 42,000 jobs it will create, a number many people take issue with. While around 2,000 direct jobs are expected during the brief construction period — even if all the indirect jobs add up to their number — that's nothing compared to the 100,000 California's high-speed rail will create, sustained over the 14 years it takes to build the network. >>View Article

ALEC Doesn't Reflect Business Support for Climate Action

January 12 -- In the past few months, companies such as Microsoft, Google, Facebook, Yelp, Yahoo, and Occidental Petroleum have said they will no longer be members or supporters of the American Legislative Exchange Council or ALEC, an organization of more than 2,000 conservative state lawmakers and corporations. These companies join about 90 others that have cut their ties to ALEC. >>View Article

Cancelled Cape Wind Contracts a Blow to New Bedford Port

January 12 -- The development of a terminal at New Bedford’s port – after $113 million in state investments – suffered a blow when Cape Wind lost two electricity contracts after it failed to obtain financing for its $2.8 billion wind project by a Dec. 31 deadline.

Officials for Cape Wind and Massachusetts Clean Energy Center, the quasi-public agency set up to manage the South Terminal, said the decisions by National Grid and NStar to cancel contracts to buy electricity from Cape Wind did not fatally wound their projects. But you have to wonder. >>View Article

Wind Power Saved Electricity Consumers During Last Year's 'Polar Vortex,' Trade Group Says

January 9 -- With temperatures plunging again, the wind industry’s trade group said last year’s “polar vortex” was tempered for consumers by the availability of wind energy.

The American Wind Energy Association said its analysis shows electricity consumers saved $1 billion when utilities shifted to wind power as natural gas spot prices escalated during a cold snap in January 2014. >>View Article

Britain's Renewable Energy Sector is Surging

January 9 -- The UK's renewable energy sector is quietly booming and much of the gains are being driven by a single technology — solar panels.

Back in 2006 only 4.6% of the UK's electricity was generated from renewable sources. That compared unfavourably to a European average of 14%. >>View Article

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