Natural gas and its role in the U.S.’s move toward energy independence and lower-carbon energy production featured in tonight’s presidential State of the Union address, although the President avoided the Keystone issue directly. Last year, one of the major energy- and environment-focused quotes, if you’ll recall, went like this: “I urge this Congress to get together, pursue a bipartisan, market-based solution to climate change, like the one John McCain and Joe Lieberman worked on together a few years ago. But if Congress won’t act soon to protect future generations, I will.” As pledged then, absent legislative action the president took regulatory action.The Environmental Protection Agency did propose new limits on greenhouse gas emissions at new power plants, and pledged to propose rules for existing power plants in 2014.  Of course California also came on line with its market independent of Washington. Let’s see where policy plays out this year. Progress toward market link-ups? Congress? The White House? Both? Neither?

Quote of the Day:

“Today, America is closer to energy independence than we’ve been in decades. Congress can help by putting people to work building fueling stations that shift more cars and trucks from foreign oil to American natural gas.”

–U.S. President Barack Obama in the 2014 State of the Union Address.

Lead Stories

Obama touts natural gas in speech
Politico
President Barack Obama used his State of the Union speech to underscore the role of natural gas in transitioning to a lower-carbon nation, the White House indicated tonight.
http://jlne.ws/MddmGa

SOTU: Full Speech
http://jlne.ws/1jGPI3i

Obama Stresses Commitment to Energy in State of the Union Address
Fox News
President Obama stressed a commitment to energy in his State of the Union address.
http://jlne.ws/1hL1mWW

Has Obama Kept Promises on Climate Since Last State of the Union?
National Geographic
In his State of the Union address a year ago, President Barack Obama promised that he would begin tackling climate change, whether or not Congress wanted to cooperate.
http://jlne.ws/1ll7xGP

State of the Union Preview: Energy and the Environment
US News & World Report
It’s time for State of the Union Bingo: Energy and Environment edition.One year after President Barack Obama made investment in clean energy and climate change initiatives signature parts of his 2013 State of the Union address, and six months after he rolled out his Climate Action Plan, top energy and environmental policy experts offered their predictions to U.S. News & World Report on which items will make it into Obama’s 2014 address Tuesday night.
http://jlne.ws/1flCAgp

Republican Bill to Block Obama on Climate Clears Panel
Bloomberg
As President Barack Obama is set to highlight measures he can take without Congress, Republican lawmakers are already trying to unravel rules aimed at combating climate change before they are finalized.
http://jlne.ws/1b2jmLb

Keystone Opponents Use Rail Constraints to Urge Rejection
Bloomberg
Environmentalists are making an unusual argument in their attempt to stop the Keystone XL pipeline: that trains can’t move all the oil out of Canada.
http://jlne.ws/1mU2Dw1

Unfazed by environmental challenges, coal industry mounts PR assault
The Christian Science Monitor
Social benefits of carbon outweigh costs at least 50 times, according to new coal industry report. But even coal’s friends say it should push to clean up its fuel.
http://jlne.ws/1fuvi8h

EU green energy law is flawed- adviser to EU top court
Reuters
Part of a law to promote green energy violates the treaties underpinning the European Union, an adviser to the highest EU court found on Tuesday, stoking political debate about subsidies for renewable power.
http://jlne.ws/1fl3nJQ

COP President Aims To Plug Knowledge Holes In Amazon Nations
Ecosystem Marketplace
Peru this year will host both the year-end climate talks and the April Katoomba Meeting – and with good reason. The country’s economy and culture flow from both the Amazon rainforest and the Andean mountains, and it’s a world leader in the creation of financing mechanisms designed to keep those living ecosystems going. But the country’s Environment Minister – who is also acting as President of the 20th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP 20) in Lima – says even the people of this forward-thinking nation don’t really understand the interplay between their economy and their ecology.
http://jlne.ws/1flhWx1

Institutional investors keep weary eye on climate change
GreenBiz.com
To achieve the goal of keeping global temperature increases under 2 degrees Celsius, $36 trillion in global clean energy investment will have to occur by 2050, a 2012 International Energy Agency report stated. That amount averages out to approximately $1 trillion per year. However, according to research by Bloomberg New Energy Finance, only $281 billion was invested globally in clean energy in 2012.
http://jlne.ws/1fajR6L

Why CFOs are sustainability’s surprising new superheroes
GreenBiz.com
It’s a bird . . . It’s a plane . . . No, it’s a CFO — the new sustainability superhero! CFOs are emerging as the new superheroes of the sustainability world. Their unique perspectives, skills, tools and roles empower them to advance corporate sustainability in the rapidly changing marketplace.
http://jlne.ws/1dMgbEn

Events

Webinar: Prospects for a New Carbon Market: Cap-and-Trade Under Clean Air Act Section 111(d)
EMA
January 29, 2014
Click here for more information and to register.

Climate Leadership Conference
Association of Climate Change Officers
February 24-26, 2014
San Diego, CA
climateleadershipconference.org/

The Microgrid, Distributed Energy, and Renewables: How They Work Together
February 25, 2014
New York
http://jlne.ws/1hTnxNR

Round Table: California Clean Energy Markets and Policy Strategies
EMA
February 28, 2014
San Francisco,CA
Click here for more information and to register.

Navigating the American Carbon World (NACW) 2014
March 26-28, 2014
San Francisco, California
www.nacw2014.org

GLOBE 2014
13th Biennial Conference and Trade Fair on Business and Sustainability
March 26-28, 2014
Vancouver, British Columbia
http://jlne.ws/1cAETLI

Carbon

ESAA fears carbon penalties
Climate Spectator/The Australian
The Energy Supply Association of Australia has said the coalition’s Direct Action policy needs to include credits for businesses should it impose penalties for not meeting carbon emissions targets, according to The Australian.
http://jlne.ws/1frB8Y8

Blue Chip Companies are Engaged: ClimeCo Witnesses Renewed Interest in Voluntary Carbon Offsets and Cap-and-Trade
Press Release
ClimeCo forecasts blue skies for cap-and-trade growth, as Fortune 500’s and blue chips precipitate high offset commodity transactions in 2014.
http://jlne.ws/1flj6Zo

Natural Gas/Coal/Alternative Fuels

Brazil Importing U.S.-Made Ethanol for Second Time This Year
Bloomberg
Brazil, the world’s second-largest ethanol producer, is importing the biofuel from the U.S. for the second time this year as most mills shut for the season at the end of the sugar-cane harvest.
http://jlne.ws/1bwA9CX

Siemens doubts shale threat to wind
The Australian
Siemen’s wind power chief says US shale-driven price drops in world gas prices will not last, and wind will become more competitive with good prospects in Australia, The Australian reports.
http://jlne.ws/LlGbQR

Power

Siemens grows European offshore wind market lead over Vestas
Reuters
German engineering group Siemens extended its lead over Danish wind turbine rival Vestas last year, growing its market share in the European offshore wind sector to 60 percent, industry figures showed on Tuesday.
http://jlne.ws/1b5NjXN

Giant Vestas wind turbine swings into gear
Business Green
Vestas has switched on the world’s most powerful wind turbine for the first time, ahead of full production starting in 2015.
http://jlne.ws/1go5Xlc

Renewable Subsidies Fuel Power-Market Crisis, French Study Finds
Bloomberg
Subsidies for renewable energy are partly to blame for Europe’s electricity market “crisis” and should be revised, according to a French study.
http://jlne.ws/1e5lvZo

US solar jobs rise 20%
Climate Spectator
US solar jobs grew 19.9 per cent to 142,698 last year against a national employment uptick of 1.9 per cent, according to the US Solar Foundation’s National Solar Jobs Census 2013.
http://jlne.ws/1aFY8VZ

Reports

California Carbon Market Watch: A Comprehensive Analysis of the Golden State’s Cap-and-Trade Program,Year One (January 8, 2014)
EDF
http://jlne.ws/1agCk0M

Assessing Corporate Emissions Performance Through the Lens of Climate Science (December 2013)
Climate Counts and Center for Sustainable Organizations
http://jlne.ws/1kZFzuA

Use of internal carbon price by companies as incentive and strategic planning tool (Posted December 11, 2013)
CDP
http://jlne.ws/1dspD1J

OECD: Effective carbon prices (November 4, 2013)
http://jlne.ws/176gahP

Global 500 Climate Change Report 2013 (Posted September 12, 2013)
CDP
http://bit.ly/16mBo8p

The Future of China’s Power Sector (posted August 27, 2013)
Bloomberg New Energy Finance
http://bit.ly/14Bk1k2

U.S. Energy Sector Vulnerabilities to Climate Change and Extreme Weather (Posted July 14, 2013)
U.S. Dept. of Energy
http://bit.ly/12z1YK5

Turn down the heat: climate extremes, regional impacts, and the case for resilience (Posted June 19, 2013)
World Bank
http://bit.ly/14KrLza

View all reports >

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