May 29, 2020

When It Comes to Climate and Clean Energy, “Just Say No” Has Become Too Popular

Monday, in the parlance of Washington policy and journalism, was scheduled to be a potential day of breakthrough in the work to achieve action on the warming climate. Senators John Kerry (Mass.), Lindsey Graham (S.C.) and Joe Lieberman (Conn.) had announced that they’d come to consensus on what a bipartisan energy and climate policy fit for the 21st century looked like. The results were to be unveiled at a news briefing that had global import. …

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When Tea Party and Environmentalism Meet

Quick. Who said this? A leader of the Tea Party or an extremist environmentalist? “You make a tragic mistake characterizing the new grassroots environmental movement blossoming in the resistance to the horrific idea of burning the life on planet earth whether it be trees, whales or crops for fuel  as “blowback.” Unless you mean blowback to the corporate funded environmental movement and their paid lobbyists, marketers, and “experts.” The public clearly understands the physics of …

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Cape Wind Awaits Federal Approval

As the 40th anniversary of Earth Day draws closer, wind energy developers in Massachusetts are awaiting word from Interior Secretary Ken Salazar about a permit to proceed. Cape Wind, which wants to build the nation’s first offshore wind farm near Nantucket, earlier this month reached agreement with Siemens to purchase 130 turbines, a move praised by Massachusetts Democratic Governor Deval Patrick and Ian Bowles, the Massachusetts secretary of Energy and Environmental Affairs. It’s difficult to …

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Blocking Wood Biomass, Blocking Coal in Michigan — Does it Make Sense?

Eartha Jane Melzer, one of the reporters in Michigan whose work merits close attention, posted a piece a week ago on Michigan Messenger that described the legal work the Sierra Club and the Natural Resources Defense Council are doing to block a big new coal-fired power plant in Bay City. Here is one of the important events associated with the transition to the clean energy economy. On one hand environmental organizations are pursuing legal suits …

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“Precedent Setting Achievement”

The director of the Michigan Department of Energy, Labor, and Economic Growth last week lauded Traverse City Light & Power for pursuing a renewable energy strategy that fits northwest Michigan’s reputation as a green region, and “complements all the assets and progressive trends this region represents”. Stanley “Skip” Pruss, who is one of Governor Jennifer Granholm’s closest advisors and a nationally known clean energy leader, also supported the utility’s proposal to generate a portion of …

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Grassroots Resistance to Clean Energy Projects

A few months ago I became a communications adviser working several hours per week with Traverse City Light & Power, a small municipal utility in my home region that has proposed to acquire 30 percent of its power by 2020 from local renewable resources. In pursuit of that goal TCL&P has purchased 10 mw of wind power from a windfarm in McBain, Michigan 50 miles south. It also purchased 2 mw of landfill gas generation …

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