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

Jan
09
2018

Baby, It's Cold Outside

The great majority of U.S. citizens east of the Mississippi have engaged in popular January 2018 conversations – first, “it is so, so [insert profanity of choice] cold outside.” In the greater D.C. metropolitan area, that is quickly followed by “why are the [choose another profanity] schools closed AGAIN?” Involuntary confinement to home offices has allowed energy policy observers to freely opine on the impacts of winter storms and the deep-freeze. Articles and blogs are piling up like …

While “Deep Freeze 2018” (there isn’t yet a catchy “Polar Vortex” phrase for this event, and “snow bomb” doesn’t apply

Jan
04
2018

Kicking Off 2018 and Examining the Energy Playbook

Now that the universe is properly aligned, with the University of Georgia once again playing for the national college football title, PACE has great hopes for 2018. Should that sense of optimism extend to Washington, D.C. and progress for energy consumers? This early in the year, there are more questions than answers.

First, of course, Congress and the Administration have to settle out how to pay the bills. A series of short-term spending Continuing Resolutions for FY2018 runs out soon, and until a solution is reached, there’s not enough oxygen to fully undertake other important discussions on tax extenders,

Oct
17
2017

October 2017:

Although October hasn’t been officially named “Reliability Month,” it might as well have been, owing to all the recent news bearing on how our country will generate power in the future.

In Texas, a merchant power company announced the closure of two large coal-fired plants, totaling over 2300 MW of capacity across 4 units, along with a mine that supports one of the plants. The company said that the plants fell victim to “an oversupplied renewable generation market, and low natural gas prices.”

Beltway coverage focused on Texas’ lost capacity and laudatory comments from the

Oct
03
2017

Lessons on America's Power Supply Formula

The utility industry, the federal government and numerous NGOs are on the ground helping our 3.4 million fellow citizens in Puerto Rico. The Salvation Army is on the front lines and collecting much-needed donations. Our concern also extends to the victims and families impacted by the terrible events in Las Vegas.

In the wake of the hurricane trifecta of Irma, Harvey, and Maria, more Americans than usual may be thinking about power supply. Luckily, so are leading voices in Washington, D.C. and around state capitols. An already healthy debate about what sources our country uses to generate electricity, and

Aug
28
2017

Back to School with DOE's New Electricity Markets Report

The Texas coastal community, including Houston, continues to suffer the devastating effect of Hurricane Harvey. To help the relief effort, consider donating $10 to the Red Cross by texting 90999 or giving to the Salvation Army of Houston.

All over Northern Virginia, it’s time to head back to school. Adults, too, have that sense of renewal and a bit of excitement. It’s also nearly time for Congress to return and handle some weighty issues such as the debt ceiling, annual appropriations, and healthcare. With those tests ahead, it seems likely that energy policy will be just an

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