Apr
20
2018

Springtime in D.C. - Cold, Sunny, Chance of Hearings and Orders

PACE got a taste of warm weather, sunshine and BBQ last week, visiting with Cobb EMC, a progressive urban/suburban electric cooperative just outside Atlanta that serves over 200,000 meters. Cobb’s board and leadership team are responding adeptly to consumer demand for renewable energy by making significant investments in utility-scale solar. PACE also visited the Southern States Energy Board (we joined SSEB earlier this year) to discuss energy and environmental issues that are top-of mind to the elected officials in SSEB’s sixteen state, two territory membership.

Returning to D.C., I found that with Easter recess in the rearview mirror, the springtime

Mar
01
2018

Time to Build Energy Infrastructure

Several key congressional committees chose to focus on Infrastructure this week. This makes sense, as practical chances for moving a comprehensive infrastructure package are likely to run out of fuel around July 31, as lawmakers kick over into re-election gear.

President Trump set forth a $1.5 trillion infrastructure plan a few weeks ago but it is having trouble getting traction, in part because it only called for $200 billion in federal spending. Stacked up against the visible needs to overhaul nearly every category of infrastructure, from roads to broadband to water systems, that seems too little.

It’s not appropriate to

Nov
23
2017

PACE is Thankful for Progress in 2017

Borrowing from David Letterman, PACE has assembled a Top 10 list of energy policy developments, people and institutions that energy consumers can give thanks for this year. In no particular order:

Renewed efforts to (safely and in an environmentally friendly manner) explore, map and perhaps one day develop our country’s abundant natural resources. Rollback of WOTUS and the Clean Power Plan. Introduction of multiple model lines of affordable, versatile electric vehicles for commuters and commercial uses. The open and vigorous discussions of reliability/resilience, how America’s power mix is changing, and what it should look like in the future. “Energy Dominance”

Oct
10
2017

D.C. Energy News, Inside and Out

During Columbus Day week, the U.S. House of Representatives will be in session, although the Senate is on recess. With very few legislative days left in this first session of the current Congress, the most significant activity on energy will take the form of nominations and hearings looking ahead at 2018 issues. I’ve been lucky to split time the last 4 weeks (commercial flights only!) between D.C. and states far outside the beltway, getting a small glimpse of how D.C. news plays in the real world.

The constant meme about the lack of key figures in the

Sep
06
2017

PURPA: What Lies Ahead for Consumers?

Yesterday’s House Energy Subcommittee hearing on the Public Utilities Regulatory Policy Act of 1978 (PURPA) provided enough sparks to warrant further coverage in our second blog this week. Will those sparks start a fire of activity at FERC, in Congress, or in state legislatures preparing for 2018 sessions?

Decades ago, renewable energy was an infant industry. The nation was stunned by the Arab oil embargo and envisioned running out of commonly-used generation and transportation fuels. In the late 1970s, Congress reacted with several sweeping statutes, including PURPA, that still impact today’s energy industry and consumers.

PURPA attempted to ensure

Sep
04
2017

D.C. Update: Energy Playbook and Rosters

The Texas and Louisiana coasts continue to suffer post-Harvey. Donations to the Salvation Army to support relief efforts can be made:

· Online at helpsalvationarmy.org.

· By calling 1-800- SAL-ARMY.

· By texting STORM to 51555.

Congress returns today, facing a bevy of high-profile issues, now potentially even more complicated by the need to assemble a massive federal aid package (Texas Governor Greg Abbott has floated $180 billion) in the wake of Hurricane Harvey. Still, we can report some energy developments, and look at more coming down the field. As many of us welcome the