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.
Obama touts natural gas in speech
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.
SOTU: Full Speech
Obama Stresses Commitment to Energy in State of the Union Address
President Obama stressed a commitment to energy in his State of the Union address.
Has Obama Kept Promises on Climate Since Last State of the Union?
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.
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.
Republican Bill to Block Obama on Climate Clears Panel
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.
Keystone Opponents Use Rail Constraints to Urge Rejection
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.
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.
EU green energy law is flawed- adviser to EU top court
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.
COP President Aims To Plug Knowledge Holes In Amazon Nations
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.
Institutional investors keep weary eye on climate change
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.
Why CFOs are sustainability’s surprising new superheroes
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.
Webinar: Prospects for a New Carbon Market: Cap-and-Trade Under Clean Air Act Section 111(d)
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
The Microgrid, Distributed Energy, and Renewables: How They Work Together
February 25, 2014
Round Table: California Clean Energy Markets and Policy Strategies
February 28, 2014
Click here for more information and to register.
Navigating the American Carbon World (NACW) 2014
March 26-28, 2014
San Francisco, California
13th Biennial Conference and Trade Fair on Business and Sustainability
March 26-28, 2014
Vancouver, British Columbia
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.
Blue Chip Companies are Engaged: ClimeCo Witnesses Renewed Interest in Voluntary Carbon Offsets and Cap-and-Trade
ClimeCo forecasts blue skies for cap-and-trade growth, as Fortune 500’s and blue chips precipitate high offset commodity transactions in 2014.
Natural Gas/Coal/Alternative Fuels
Brazil Importing U.S.-Made Ethanol for Second Time This Year
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.
Siemens doubts shale threat to wind
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.
Siemens grows European offshore wind market lead over Vestas
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.
Giant Vestas wind turbine swings into gear
Vestas has switched on the world’s most powerful wind turbine for the first time, ahead of full production starting in 2015.
Renewable Subsidies Fuel Power-Market Crisis, French Study Finds
Subsidies for renewable energy are partly to blame for Europe’s electricity market “crisis” and should be revised, according to a French study.
US solar jobs rise 20%
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.
California Carbon Market Watch: A Comprehensive Analysis of the Golden State’s Cap-and-Trade Program,Year One (January 8, 2014)
Assessing Corporate Emissions Performance Through the Lens of Climate Science (December 2013)
Climate Counts and Center for Sustainable Organizations
Use of internal carbon price by companies as incentive and strategic planning tool (Posted December 11, 2013)
OECD: Effective carbon prices (November 4, 2013)
Global 500 Climate Change Report 2013 (Posted September 12, 2013)
The Future of China’s Power Sector (posted August 27, 2013)
Bloomberg New Energy Finance
U.S. Energy Sector Vulnerabilities to Climate Change and Extreme Weather (Posted July 14, 2013)
U.S. Dept. of Energy
Turn down the heat: climate extremes, regional impacts, and the case for resilience (Posted June 19, 2013)