Apr
04
2017

Bipartisan Nuclear Power Bill Advances in U.S. Senate

PACE has written consistently about the need for nuclear power to remain part of the U.S. energy mix, not just for the low cost, reliable electricity it provides, but also for its role in a carbon-constrained future. And while closures to nuclear units in recent months have dimmed the outlook for American nuclear power to some degree, recent bipartisan legislative action in the Senate gives reason for hope.

Recently, the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee voted 18-3 to advance legislation designed to simplify the federal permitting process for new nuclear reactor designs. The legislation, Senate Bill 512, called

Mar
06
2017

Pipeline Benefits Consumers, North Dakota

The Dakota Access Pipeline remains a highly visible, highly controversial energy infrastructure project. As news reports convey, the pipeline project has been hotly contested by environmental groups and Native American tribes who live near the area where it is being built. Meanwhile, the State of North Dakota has supported the pipeline’s construction, believing it to be a safe means of transporting crude oil and a source of massive potential revenue for the state.

Helping to reinforce the state’s position, a new report from the Associated Press has confirmed that the state stands to gain $110 million per year in

Feb
07
2017

Energy Institute of Alabama Names Hardwich Executive Director

Blake Hardwich has been named Executive Director of the Energy Institute of Alabama, Board Chairman Seth Hammett announced yesterday.

“Blake will take the lead in working with elected officials and industry leaders as the Institute advocates for solid, information-based energy policy,” Hammett said. “She has a perfect blend of competence, experience and enthusiasm to do the job. We are lucky to have such a capable and energetic person guiding the day-to-day functions of the Energy Institute of Alabama.”

Hardwich brings extensive experience in business and public policy to the job. Hardwich, who also serves as Special Counsel in the

Feb
01
2017

Bellefonte Nuclear Plant Purchase Welcome News

In past years, PACE has continued to follow developments at Bellefonte Nuclear Plant, a facility originally owned by the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA). The plant’s construction was never completed, leaving a number of options for the utility’s board to consider.

In November, TVA announced that a Washington, D.C.-based company firm, Nuclear Development, had purchased the incomplete facility in northeast Alabama for $111 million. This was welcome news for northeast Alabama, as the purchase will breathe new life into the plant.

According to TVA, Nuclear Development plans to invest an additional $13 billion to bring the plant’s two partially completed reactors

Jan
26
2017

President Outlines ‘America First’ Energy Policy

Shortly after taking office this past Friday, President Trump updated the White House website to outline his “America First” energy policy. If implemented, the plan would roll back overreaching climate regulations and promote energy development, ultimately leading to lower energy prices and reduced dependence on foreign oil.

As part of his campaign and later during his transition, Trump promised to remove restrictions on domestic energy development such as President Obama’s Climate Action Plan and the Waters of the U.S. rule. His administration now predicts that rolling back these regulations could raise the wages of U.S. workers by as much

Jan
16
2017

Indian Point Closure Threatens New York City

Last week, New York Governor Cuomo announced the completion of one of his long awaited goals: closing down the Indian Point nuclear plant. The plant will shut down completely in just four years, leaving many questions about what will fill the gap to keep the power on in New York City. Today, the city receives an incredible one third of its electricity from the plant.

Perhaps most troubling is that there are no current plans to build a new nuclear plant, a coal-fired plant, or pipelines to transport more natural gas from Pennsylvania. (Note that New York State has

Jan
11
2017

Repealing Coal and Methane Rules Priority for Congress

With a new administration taking office later this month, House Republicans have pledged to make repealing the Obama administration’s regulations on coal mining and methane emissions a top priority.

House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) says the Republicans will first plan to work on changing the way the executive branch writes rules and then focus on undoing specific rules. EPA rules that address the coal industry and methane will be at the top of the list.

“While we haven’t yet determined what needs to be repealed first, I expect to start with swift action on at least on the

Jan
04
2017

Nuclear Power At Risk?

There is widespread agreement across the political spectrum that increasing the amount of low-carbon energy on the grid is an important priority for the future of the U.S. and the rest of the world. PACE has argued that nuclear power is an indispensable part of the solution for meeting future power demand. Many climate activists agree. That is why it is concerning to hear that nuclear capacity in the U.S. could actually be decreasing rather than growing.

Environmental Progress, a green advocacy group, announced just last week that at least a quarter and as many as two-thirds of all

Dec
19
2016

States Urge Trump to Scrap Carbon Regulation

It is no secret that many states have grave concerns about the Environmental Protection Agency’s plan to regulate the emission of carbon dioxide, known as the Clean Power Plan. PACE, too, has been critical of the plan’s likely effect on U.S. power generation and electricity prices, testifying to EPA leaders in November of 2015 that the plan is a poor bargain for American consumers. Official remarks from EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy confirmed that the sweeping and costly regulation would not cause any change to the agency’s 26 indicators of climate change.

Now, state leaders are sending a clear message

Dec
16
2016

New Year To Bring Big Decisions About Oklahoma Wind

As 2016 draw to a close, decision makers in Oklahoma continue to grapple with state budget issues. Those discussions include looking closely at all areas of state government, including Oklahoma’s tax credits that help boost wind projects across the state. During these discussions, it is important that Oklahomans and their leaders keep in mind just how beneficial wind projects have become to the state.

In late November, PACE released a new report that outlines the various benefits of the wind industry to Oklahoma. The report, titled Oklahoma Depends on Wind, explains that wind power in Oklahoma is set to