TOP THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW FOR AUGUST 15
Vestas Layoffs. Despite hopes that an agreement can still be reached before the end of the year, wind companies are preparing for the scheduled elimination of the Production Tax Credit (PTC) for wind energy. The latest announcement came yesterday from Pueblo, Colorado where Vestas Wind Systems cut the workforce at its tower manufacturing facility there by 20 percent. White House officials are continuing to list renewing the PTC as their “top priority;” will Congress act when members return in 25 days?
22,600 New Michigan Jobs. The BlueGreen Alliance joined with the United Auto Workers, United Steelworkers and National Wildlife Federation Monday to highlight the 22,600 new jobs that will be created in Michigan thanks to the new 54.5 mile per gallon auto efficiency standards. Read our press releases (from Grand Rapids and Lansing) and Michigan-specific fact sheet on our website.
Not Another Day of This! Although they’re used to heat, Phoenix, AZ has had nine straight days of temperature exceeding 110 degrees. That’s enough to make anyone testy.
National and International Blue-Green
In addition to the job losses mentioned above, other media coverage related to the potential loss of the Production Tax Credit (PTC) for wind energy includes:
- Earth Techling: On Wind, Obama Sees A Clean Energy Winner
- Recharge: US study shows huge scale of looming wind oversupply
- Des Moines Register (IA): Wind credit likely to stay
- Bismark Tribune (ND): Tax credit loss makes ND wind jobs uncertain
- Oregonian (OR): Wind power makes gains in Oregon but future growth is uncertain, report says
- Register Guard (OR): EDITORIAL: Renew wind power credits
The Department of Energy released the “2011 Wind Technologies Market Report” this week. CleanTechnica has more on the report that found wind power “accounted for a ‘remarkable’ 32 percent of all new electric capacity in 2011." More state-specific articles about the report are available below in the state section. Also, check out the BGA blog for more on that.
BGA partner the United Association of Plumbers and Pipefitters (UA) announced a joint effort with an Australian union to combat climate change and secure good, green jobs. See our blog here.
Overall U.S. industrial production increased 0.6 percent in July. Bloomberg states this increase was “propelled by a pickup in motor vehicle output and a rebound in utility use during the hottest month on record.”
The Chicago Tribune reports several flame retardant manufacturers are “reviewing their advocacy efforts” including their membership in the Citizens for Fire Safety Institute following the paper's investigative series on the chemicals.
A new poll, reported by the Ottawa Citizen, says only two percent of Canadians do not believe in climate change.
New data is showing the ice in the Artic is disappearing at a 50 percent higher rate than expected. The Guardian has more about the study that determined “summer ice coverage could disappear in about a decade in the Artic.”
E&E News says several industry groups are asking U.S. Court of Appeals to reconsider their earlier decision to uphold the Environmental Protection Agency’s authority to regulate greenhouse gas emissions.
The Hill reports the Department of Energy is planning to spend $8 million on seven projects working to create “stronger and lighter materials for vehicles.”
The Boston Globe states Congressman Paul Ryan’s “attempts to take advantage of the stimulus funds [in his home state] even after he voted against them was more expansive than previously reported.”
In an exclusive interview, Johnson & Johnson told the Associated Press it is working to remove “potential cancer causing” chemicals from all of its adult toiletries and cosmetic products.
To the States
Several local news organizations are taking a look at what the Department of Energy’s "2011 Wind Technologies Market Report” has to say about wind power their state, including:
- KQED (CA): California Building Wind Power Faster Than Any Other State
- Des Moines Register (IA): DOE: Iowa’s wind energy industry among the fastest-growing in country
- Rock River Times (IL): Report: Illinois wind energy production surges
- NewsOK (OK): Oklahoma wind power ranks in top 10, federal report says
- Oregonian (OR): Wind accounts for 10.5 percent of electricity generated in Oregon
- Associated Press (SD): SD Wind Can Generate 22 Percent Of Electricity
A survey reported by the Long Beach Business Journal found continued strong support for California’s AB 32 measure.
Big Island Now reports Hawaii has agreed to partner with China on clean energy investment and deployment.
A new solar manufacturing facility is bringing 305 jobs to Shelby, North Carolina, WSOC reports.
The Sante Fe New Mexican says the New Mexico Public Regulation Commission approved a request to allow utilities to list the cost of renewable energy as a line item on bills.
According to the Peninsula Clarion, renewable energy use is increasing in Alaska’s Kenai Peninsula.
Los Angeles Times: Obama, Romney talk energy in battleground states
Public News Service: Millions Ask EPA to Follow Through on Pollution Limits
Washington Post: Do Paul Ryan and Mitt Romney disagree on climate change?
3TV Phoenix (AZ): LEAF program helps students prepare for jobs of the future
Politico (FL): Cliff Stearns trailing newcomer in Florida primary
Pacific Business News (HI): Financing biggest challenge for renewable energy projects
Des Moines Register (IA): USDA funds 9 renewable energy products in Iowa
Politico (FL): Incumbents hit hard in Florida primary
Midwest Energy News (MI): In Michigan, automakers plan road to the future
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel (WI): City project helps cut energy costs