Jul
25
2018

A Record-Setting Summer in Texas

Many eyes are on Texas this summer. Some are watching the Houston Astros to see if a repeat of the 2017 season is possible; currently they are leading the American League West by 6 games and occupy the number 2 spot in USA Today’s Power Rankings. I cannot report similar good news for the Atlanta Braves, although hope springs eternal.

However, those lucky enough to have a professional or avocational (yes, that is a word) connection to the energy industry are collecting a different set of stats by following the state’s roller coaster of summer peak temperatures and power prices.

May
17
2018

DOE's Hard Work and Always-On, Clean, Affordable Power

While media attention focuses on events at one end of Pennsylvania Avenue, federal agencies and dedicated employees all over the country are quietly making progress on energy issues. This week, PACE takes a look at just one week’s output of good news from the Department of Energy. Sec. Rick Perry believes in all of the above, while championing renewable energy, and his philosophy shines through in work done each day by DOE divisions and partners.

On May 15, DOE announced a sizable grant of $72 million to “advance high-temperature concentrating solar power (CSP) technologies,” continuing U.S. leadership in the space.

May
08
2018

TVA Generation Mix: Celebrating Wins for Consumers

This past weekend, the Chattanooga Times Free-Press published an article updating readers on the Tennessee Valley Authority’s multi-year program to transition its generation mix. Nearly a decade ago, in 2011, a lawsuit by environmental groups led to a settlement agreement. TVA has lived up to the agreement by taking sweeping actions to reduce emissions while providing affordable and reliable power to a growing population.

To be sure, TVA looks different today than it did in 2011. Over the past seven years, the utility has shut down 33 coal units and updated other coal units to reduce emissions. It has also

Mar
16
2018

Springing Forward on Fuel Diversity

With spring come spending bills, and this year Congress has the chance to support energy diversity across the board. In the FY18 omnibus, and a series (hope springs eternal) of appropriation bills for FY 2019. There are also talks of a fix-it tax package. In short, there are many opportunities for lawmakers to support a robust, diverse fuel mix now and in the future.

Rep. Larry Bucshon, M.D. (R-IN) has introduced legislation, the “Electricity Reliability and Fuel Security Act” that seeks to establish a 30 percent tax credit, for only a five-year period, for the fixed operation and maintenance expenses

Oct
31
2017

Put Infrastructure Back on the Front Burner

Today PACE welcomes a guest blog from our Board Chairman, Cline Jones. Cline is the Executive Director of the Tennessee River Valley Authority and its associated organization, the Tennessee-Cumberland Waterways Council.

As the calendar pages turn, and the end of 2017 draws near, it’s timely to assess progress on one of our country’s most important goals – maintenance and improvement of infrastructure.

The Tennessee River Valley Association (TRVA) and the Tennessee-Cumberland Waterways Council (TCWC) bring together business and industry, transportation, financial services, education, chambers of commerce, all levels of government and many other stakeholders. Our

Oct
18
2017

Oktoberfest and the Energiewende

Continuing the October theme established in our blog earlier this week and taking a small vacation from covering the U.S. energy policy landscape, today PACE brings you an update on Germany’s Energiewende, or energy transition. PACE has covered this before, noting how artificial timelines, weather, and economics can prove troublesome for even the best-laid plans, and noting the costs to consumers.

Energiewende has been winding its way through German politics and energy policy for the past two decades. The plan currently aims to cut carbon emissions 40 percent by 2020 and 95 percent by 2050.

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Oct
12
2017

Climate Policy Swings and Balloons

As anticipated since just after the November 2016 election, the Trump Administration, through Environmental Protection Agency Administrator (EPA) Scott Pruitt, has officially released documents that set the stage for repeal of the Clean Power Plan. PACE welcomes this move. The original CPP, especially its approach to existing plants, failed to adequately consider how the CPP would raise electricity costs and create lasting impacts on consumers. It deserved the nickname PACE and countless other groups gave it – a carbon reduction mandate.

Creation of the original CPP was complex and lengthy. It sprang into public view June 2013,

Jan
02
2017

New Year Offers Restart for American Energy

There can be little doubt that 2017 will witness one of the most dramatic ground shifts in American policy in recent history. The election of Donald Trump, victories by Republicans in both the U.S. House and Senate, and geopolitical pressures that continue to mount are all conspiring to create a new political landscape in our nation. We know with certainty that this administration will be markedly different than the last one, but will it be like any other? Or will it be completely uncharted territory? And most important from our point of view, what will this new landscape mean for