Hope it was a Happy Fathers’ Day and Summer Solstice yesterday (officially at 12:39 p.m.). It was the longest daylight of the year with sunrise at 5:43 a.m. with the daylight lasting 14 hrs, 53 mins and 54 secs until 8:37 p.m. I spent all of those daylight hours with Hannah and Olivia refereeing lacrosse in Richmond and then heading to Kings Dominion on the way home to avoid traffic for some serious rollercoaster riding. Meanwhile, my wife was at Firefly Festival in Delaware all three-plus days, making the weekend even more awesome because I ate whatever I wanted and stayed up late watching stupid (I mean awesome) movies. All-the-while, I was getting weather and concert-going reports such as the smell during Sublime and Snoop Dog performance (if you know what I mean), among many other great insights into the minds and souls of four-day festival goers (muddy, drunk/high, smelly).
A Father’s Day with the remote also meant watching as much golf as I could, especially at the end of Sunday. With the west coast US Open venue, it was great to catch the end after a tough day of rollercoasting. It great to see Jordan Spieth take his second consecutive major while difficult to watch Dustin Johnson let a win, then a tie slip away. I for One was hoping for a ties as that would have led to watching more golf today. And can’t leave sports without shoutouts to Golden State, The Blackhawks and the Nats Max Scherzer, who was one-strike and an elbow away from a perfect game only to “settle” for a no-hitter.
This week remains busy as we start the run up to July 4th week. First, it is the last week of the SCOTUS term which means since we haven’t seen any Mercury decision this morning that it will likely arrive on Thursday. Second, it Is energy week the House with a full slate of legislation headed to the floor including bipartisan TCSA Reform, Rep. McKinley’s coal ash and Chairman Whitfield’s Ratepayer Protection bill, which pauses EPA’s GHG rule until the courts ruled on its legality. As well, the EPA/Interior spending bill is expected on the floor likely leading to lots of amendments and late nights.
In the hearing rooms, Senate Environment has UMW’s Gene Trisko and Black Chamber President Harry Alford tomorrow on the GHG rule impacts on businesses, while House Foreign Affairs looks into crude exports and Senate Homeland security Has former OIRA head Susan Dudley on drafting regulations. On Wednesday House Science hits the EIA analysis of the GHG rule while House resources looks at a GAO report on BLM mismanagement of wind and solar reclamation bonds. Finally Thursday, after last week’s work at the House Energy & Commerce panel on Health, GMO labeling returns at an House Ag panel to focus on the Pompeo legislation and states’ rights issues and the Senate Foreign Relations Committee looks into the Iran Nuclear discussions which hit a deadline at the end of June. Remember, last week, a number of US leaders went to Paris to support regime change and limits on any Iran Nuclear deal.
Finally, some other interesting event s in DC this week, including a Washington Post forum tomorrow on innovation/technology featuring Southern CEO Tom Fanning and others, a Wednesday forum from the House Natural Gas Caucus featuring Cabot’s George Stark, a Thursday POLITICO Panel on the environment and youth featuring former Speaker Newt Gingrich and our friend Elana Schor and Friday, the Center for New American Security’s Annual Conference featuring a bunch of great panels/speakers on Iran, crude exports, oil security and many other topics.
Speaking of SoCo’s Fanning, he also headlines ACORE hosts it 12th annual REFF-Wall Street 2015 on Wednesday and Thursday at The Grand Hyatt in New York City. REFF-Wall Street is the premier renewable energy financing event in the U.S.
IN THE NEWS
EPA Release Heavy Duty Truck Rule – EPA and DOT released fuel efficiency standards for medium- and heavy-duty trucks, which they said would cut 1 billion metric tons of carbon when they take full effect. The Phase 2 standards cover the 2021 to 2027 model years, and build upon a previous standard for trucks with model years between 2014 and 2018, would aim to cut emissions from combination tractors – large freight vehicles – by 24%, compared with the previous standard, by 2027. It would also seek a 16% reduction for pick-up trucks, light vans and vocational vehicles, compared with the Phase 1 standard, on the same timeline. Officials touted the economic benefits of the rule saying increased fuel efficiency has produced major dividends for the national economy and for energy security. They said new tractor trailers would cost $10,000 to $12,000 more under the new standards, but owners would recoup that investment in two years.
SAFE Touts Energy Security Over Emissions – While most were focused on GHG emissions, SAFE Said that the rule is really an oil security issue. They said the rule marks a critical step in the effort to reduce the United States’ dependence on oil. Gen. James Conway, former Commandant of the U.S. Marine Corps said “Increasing the efficiency of a sector of the economy that is such a large and growing oil consumer will strengthen our national security, give our armed forces more flexibility, and make our servicemen and women less likely to go into harm’s way,” Last week, Adml. Dennis Blair penned a letter to the New York Times saying the truck rule will really curb our oil appetite and strengthen American security.
DTF: New Fleet is Already Cleaner – The Diesel Technology Forum says more clean diesel trucks are already on the road. DTF released new research that shows emissions are going down and fuel savings and greenhouse gas emissions benefits are going up in the nation’s commercial trucking fleet as more truckers invest in new technology clean diesel engines. The new fleet is a growing portion of the total diesel commercial truck population with more than 37% of all US diesel medium- and heavy-duty commercial trucks registered now equipped with newer technology clean diesel engines – those manufactured in Model Year 2007 or newer that have near zero particulate emissions. And nearly 22% of all diesel trucks in operation are now the newest clean diesel technology (2010 and later model year) that are also near zero emissions in nitrogen oxides.
Big Fleets, Manufacturers Weigh In – An alliance of the country’s largest names in trucking said today that they look forward to working with Federal regulators on the Obama Administration’s Notice of Proposed Rule Making (NPRM) for the second phase of national fuel efficiency and greenhouse gas emission standards for heavy-duty vehicles. Noting the success of Phase I standards finalized in 2011, the group said it is supportive of a process to achieve substantial environmental and economic benefits by reducing GHG emissions, improving fuel efficiency and delivering fuel cost savings for fleets. WM CEO David Steiner said: “Our hope with the Phase II rule is that we can continue our investment in a natural gas collection fleet that has proven to be good for our customers and communities, good for the environment and good for business. We have eliminated the use of 8,000 gallons of diesel fuel per year with each of our more than 4,000 natural gas trucks. Each truck eliminates nearly all particulate emissions, significantly reduces smog-forming NOx emissions and cuts GHG emissions by over 20 percent.”
SAFE Announces Energy Tech Prize Finalists – Speaking of SAFE, they announced four semifinalists for its 2015 Energy Security Prize, awarding a total of $175,000 to companies whose innovations are poised to advance American energy security by helping to end the United States’ dependence on oil. One of the companies, Peleton has a technology that will be helpful in addressing the new Heavy-duty truck rule Just released by EPA. The winner of the 2015 Prize will receive $125,000, the first runner up $35,000 and the second runner up $15,000. The four semifinalists are FreeWire Technologies, Momentum Dynamics, Peloton Technology, and SeaChange Group. Videos of the semifinalists can be viewed at secureenergy.org/prize. These four semifinalists were selected by two rounds of judging by expert panels comprised of industry leaders, energy and transportation specialists, and academics. This year’s three finalists will be announced in the days leading up to the Energy Security Prize awards ceremony, to be held in Charleston, S.C. on July 31. Partners CNBC and Clemson University will join SAFE in Charleston to announce the grand prize winner, runner up, and second runner up of the 2015 Prize at an event featuring leaders in the fields of business, policy, and national security, celebrating these technologies and selecting those with the greatest potential to transform the way the world moves goods and people.
FreeWire Technologies’ Mobi electric vehicle (EV) charger helps eliminate the “charge rage” facing areas with high EV adoption and insufficient charging capacity. Mobis decouple infrastructure from parking spots by using repurposed EV batteries to deliver power via a fully motorized platform. Each Mobi, with its 40 kilowatt-hour capacity, can top off up to four vehicles in the morning, recharge, and be ready to power additional EVs in the afternoon.
Momentum Dynamics seeks to take DC fast charging for electric vehicles to the next level, pioneering a wireless charging system designed for the workplace and public locations like shopping centers and restaurants. Their unique 25-kilowatt wireless charging pad delivers power via magnetic induction ten times faster than home-based plug-in chargers, overcoming barriers to EV adoption by allowing EVs to charge frequently, quickly and automatically.
Peloton Technology aims to increase safety, efficiency, and profits for America’s trucking fleets with its Truck Platooning System, which wirelessly links pairs of tractor-trailers. These two-truck “platoons” share collision avoidance radar and other sensors, braking automatically and nearly instantaneously, allowing trucks to travel at closer distances, providing aerodynamic fuel savings of up to 10 percent for both vehicles. A cloud-based network operations center improves driver awareness and dynamically manages platooning to ensure it is only done under appropriate conditions.
SeaChange Group is tackling an important opportunity for oil displacement: maritime vessels, locomotives and off-road equipment. Using the primary byproduct from biodiesel production, glycerol, SeaChange has created a fuel blend to markedly reduce oil use and emissions from all manner of seafaring vessels (to start) while eliminating the need for costly add-ons such as exhaust scrubbers. On top of the environmental and health benefits, SeaChange’s Eco-Hybrid™ fuel is cheaper than regular diesel. The company is currently testing the new fuel at sea and producing 1,000 gallons daily with its pilot processor.
Stakeholders come to Major Agreement on Commercial HV AC DOE rule – The Appliance Standards Awareness Project (ASAP), the Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute (AHRI), and the American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy (ACEEE) today applauded the success of the Commercial Package Air Conditioners and Commercial Warm Air Furnaces Working Group, established by the Department of Energy on April 1, to negotiate conservation standards for these products. After six meetings, the working group, comprised of industry, energy efficiency and environmental advocates, contractors and agency representatives, including AHRI and ASAP, reached consensus and provided recommendations for energy conservation standards, test procedures, and metrics. AHRI’s Steve Yurek: “Bringing stakeholders together to develop a rule that is both effective and achievable is the best way to ensure that our members’ products and equipment provide consumers and businesses with comfort, safety, and productivity while helping the nation achieve its energy reduction targets.” The committee was tasked with addressing rules for the energy efficiency of commercial package air conditioners and heat pumps (specifically, air-cooled with rated cooling capacities greater than or equal to 65,000 Btu per hour and less than 760,000 Btu per hour split and package AC and HP) and commercial warm air furnaces, as authorized by the Energy Policy and Conservation Act (EPCA) of 1975, as amended. The scope excluded package terminal air conditioners and heat pumps (PTAC/PTHP), single package vertical units (SPVU), computer room air conditioners (CRAC), and variable refrigerant flow (VRF) systems.
VT Asst AG Weighs in on States Rights, GMO Labeling – In testimony at the House Energy & Commerce Committee late last week, told representatives that the federal draft legislation would prematurely derail Vermont’s GMO labeling law and end any GMO labeling efforts by states. Daloz told the committee that the state is simply providing consumers with information. “It’s not a warning. It’s a notification. There was tremendously strong demand in Vermont for this labeling bill. The legislature found that giving consumers this information enables them to make a choice similar to calorie counts. This is the state simply providing information for consumers.” Vermont Rep. Peter Welch questioned what their problem is with allowing labeling. “It’s a consumer right to know issue. I agree with my colleagues that a national standard would be good. But there is no national standard in this bill. It’s a voluntary labeling, which means there will be no labeling what-so-ever. If GMO’s are so safe, and I’m not here to challenge that assertion, but if they’re so safe why not label? Why would anyone be afraid of so labeling those products so that consumers would have a right to know?”
Blog Says GMO Legislation Limits States, Undermines Public Opinion – EWG’s Scott Faber wrote a blog just prior to the hearing saying the new version of H.R. 1599 – dubbed the Deny Americans the Right to Know or “DARK” Act – is a radical overreach that does not simply deny consumers the right to know what’s in their food or how it is grown, but also denies state and local governments the right to protect farmers and rural residents from the environmental impacts of GMO crops. Faber said the legislation doubles down on efforts to blocks states from requiring GMO labeling. The new version also block states from regulating how GMO crops are produced. Faber added it is especially shocking in light of new polls by the Mellman Group andConsumers Union that show 9-in-10 Americans want mandatory GMO labeling – regardless of age, income, education, race or even party affiliation. Consumers simply want the right to know what’s in their food and how it was grown – a right held by consumers in 64 other nations.
ON THE SCHEDULE THIS WEEK
DOE Hosts Sustainable Transpo Day – Today is Sustainable Transportation Day, an afternoon on the grounds of the Forrestal Building in D.C., with the Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy’s (EERE’s) Bioenergy Technologies Office, Fuel Cell Technologies Office, and Vehicle Technologies Office. You can meet with federal staff, EERE leadership, and stakeholders from the public sector and private industry. Enjoy exhibits such as the Green Racing Simulator—a one-of-a-kind racing game that brings together sustainable transportation and arcade thrills; the first Washington, D.C. visit of the 12.2 mpg Freightliner SuperTruck; and a unique opportunity to see some of the world’s first commercial fuel cell electric vehicles. EERE wil also discuss its strategic investments in sustainable transportation research, development, and demonstration projects are improving vehicle efficiency, advancing the use of alternative fuel vehicles, and lowering production costs of advanced biofuels and hydrogen.
Wilson Report Focus On Climate, Security Issues – Today at 3:00 p.m., the Wilson Center for Scholars will convene leaders from the development, diplomatic, and security communities and the report’s coauthors for the U.S. launch of a “New Climate for Peace.” The high-level interagency panel will explore how these climate-fragility challenges are changing the way the United States and its partners work, and will also identify opportunities for joint action to address them. The ultimate “threat multiplier,” climate change is increasing the challenges facing the U.S. development, diplomatic, and security communities. “A New Climate for Peace: Taking Action on Climate and Fragility Risks,” an independent report commissioned by the members of the G7, identifies seven compound climate-fragility risks that pose serious threats to stability in the decades ahead. Based on a thorough assessment of existing policies, the report recommends that the G7 take concrete actions to tackle climate-fragility risks and increase the resilience of states and societies.
Bay, Clark, Moeller Headline Utility Commissioners Education Forum – The 20th Annual Education Conference of the Mid-Atlantic Conference of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (MACRUC) will be held today through Wednesday at the Williamsburg Lodge in Virginia. Speakers will include former Senator/Governor Evan Bayh, FERC Commissioners Norman Bay, Tony Clark and Philip Moeller, NARUC President and Florida PSC Chair Lisa Edgar, Dominion CEO Tom Farrell, PSE&G President Ralph LaRossa, and American Water Works CEO Susan Story.
Energy CyberSecurity Forum Set for Houston – The 3rd Annual Cyber Security for Oil and Gas Summit will be held in Houston today through Wednesday. The event brings together the oil and gas industry to address critical concerns and trends with regard to the development of cyber security practices. The complex nature of cyberattacks and those specifically levied against the oil and gas industry have been increasing over the years and while the industry is well prepared, continuous improvement is always necessary to maintain an edge on the nefarious actors working against the industry.
Bio Energy Event, DOE Conference Set – Tonight, Leaders in Energy will host bioenergy and clean energy professionals to discuss the evolving bioeconomy and renewable fuels. Topics will include the renewable fuels standard, how bioenergy resources can be produced in sustainable ways, utilizing algae as a way to produce products and capture carbon, and employment and career opportunities in the bioenergy sector. This event will take place on the evening before the U.S. Department of Energy, Bioenergy 2015 Conference tomorrow and Wednesday at the DC Convention Center. The DOE Bioenergy 2015 conference is the 8th annual conference and will look at opportunities in the changing energy landscape. The Clean Energy Research and Education Foundation co-hosts this year’s conference, which will focus on opportunities and challenges in our current highly dynamic energy ecosystem. Each year, approximately 600 participants attend the conference, including key stakeholders from the bioenergy industry, Congress, national laboratories, academia, and the financial community.
WP host Answers Forum with Moniz, Fanning, Others – Tomorrow morning, The Washington Post will host business leaders, elected officials, government innovators, tech pioneers and scientists from around the country at a forum to discuss and debate what’s working in their cities, states and businesses when it comes to producing, delivering, securing and conserving energy. The event, the third live event in The Washington Post’s America Answers series, will look at technologies, policies and programs related to clean energy, batteries and energy storage, the grid, energy efficiency, innovations in oil and gas and more. Speakers with include Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz, Southern Company CEO Tom Fanning, Hawai’i Gov. David Ige, Phoenix, AZ Mayor Greg Stanton, former Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour, former EPA head Carol Browner, and several others.
API to Release New Policy Study – The American Petroleum Institute’s (API) President/CEO Jack Gerard will host a briefing tomorrow morning at the St. Regis Hotel’s Astor Ballroom to release a new policy study conducted by industry experts Wood Mackenzie. A panel of leading energy stakeholders will discuss the importance of an all of the above approach to U.S. energy policies and a pro-growth strategy for our energy future leading up to the 2016 elections. Panelists will include Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council President Karen Kerrigan, American Association of Blacks in Energy (AABE) President Paula Jackson, Vets4Energy National Liaison Rear Admiral Don Loren, USN (RET.) and LIUNA General President Terry O’Sullivan.
House Science Tackles EIA Report on GHG Plan – The House Science Committee will hold a hearing tomorrow on the recent EIA report that focused on the Administration’s Clean Power Plan. EIA’s Howard Gruenspecht is expected to testify with several others.
Senate Environment to Look at GHG Impacts on Energy Costs – The Senate Committee on Environment Subcommittee on Clean Air and Nuclear Safety will hold a hearing tomorrow at 2:00 p.m. on EPA GHG regulations and their impact on energy costs for American businesses, rural communities and families.
Inhofe Headline Social Cost of Carbon Event – The Heritage Foundation host a forum tomorrow at 2:00 p.m. in its Allison Auditorium for a discussion on the social cost of carbon, and the science, policy, and politics of carbon regulation. The Administration is forcefully pushing its carbon regulations with the quantitative basis for these rules being the social cost of carbon (SCC). Heritage research shows the models used to calculate the SCC can support encouraging CO2 emissions rather than actually restricting them. Other quantitative measures of CO2 policy, such as the likely impact on world temperatures, provide little support for any of the policies offered to date. Ignoring this evidence, the Obama Administration appears resolute in its stance to promote its policy goals – even at the detriment of those adversely impacted by these misguided policies. Keynote speaker will be Senate Environment Committee Chair Jim Inhofe. There will also be a panel discussion hosted by our friend David Kreutzer of Heritage.
Cato Forum to Look at Oil, Gas Renaissance – The Cato Institute will hold a forum tomorrow at 1:00 p.m. in 2168 Rayburn on sustaining the American energy renaissance in oil and gas. Directional drilling, horizontal drilling, hydraulic fracturing, and radical new advances in offshore platform technology and global positioning software have revolutionized both onshore and offshore oil and gas production. These advances have required considerable capital investment that would have been less likely in a nation constrained by a cap-and-trade or carbon-tax system. The event will feature Petroleum Geologist Ned Mamula, formerly with the U.S. Geological Survey, MMS and the CIA, and Cato’s Pat Michaels,
Senate Enviro to Look at GHG Costs on Businesses – The Senate Environment Committee’s Subcommittee on Clean Air and Nuclear Safety will hold a hearing tomorrow at 2:00 p.m. on the impacts of EPA’s proposed Carbon Regulations on Energy Costs for American Businesses, Rural Communities and Families. Witnesses will include Industrial Energy Consumers of America President Paul Cicio, NY DEC Commissioner Joseph Martens, UMWA’s Gene Trisko, Harvard Med School instructor Mary Rice and National Black Chamber of Commerce President Harry Alford.
Senate Foreign Relations to Look at Crude Exports – The Senate Foreign Relations Committee’s Subcommittee on Multilateral International Development, Multilateral Institutions, and International Economic Energy, and Environmental Policy will hold a hearing tomorrow at 2:45 p.m. on American energy exports and opportunities for allies and national security. Witnesses include former White House official Bob McNally, David Gordon of the Center for a New American Security and Jamie Webster of IHS Energy.
Coal Council Exec to Discuss CCS Report – USEA will host Janet Gellici, Executive Vice President & COO of the National Coal Council tomorrow at 2:00 p.m. to discuss a recently completed a report for the U.S. Secretary of Energy that provides recommendations on how to accelerate the deployment of CCS technologies. The U.S. Department of Energy is a world leader in the development of CCS technology. The DOE CCS/CCUS program, however, has not yet achieved critical mass. There is a need for a substantial increase in the number of large scale demonstration projects for both capture and storage technologies before either system even approaches commercialization.
SoCo Fanning Headlines REFF Wall Street – ACORE hosts it 12th annual REFF-Wall Street 2015 on Wednesday and Thursday at The Grand Hyatt in New York City. REFF-Wall Street is the premier renewable energy financing event in the U.S. Attendees of this event include CEOs and other senior company officials, lenders, investors, investment bankers, private equity investors, venture capitalists and other top transactional professionals in renewable energy finance. The event draws an especially senior audience, comprising of over 600 senior decision makers, financiers and professionals in the renewable energy finance field. Southern Company CEO Tom Fanning will headline a list of speakers that also includes DOE EERE’s David Danelson and former EERE head Cathy Zoi.
ACCO Holds Climate Strategies Forum – On Wednesday to Friday, the Association of Climate Change Officers will hold its Climate Strategies Forum’s at the Washington Marriott. The event is ACCO’s primary conference offering half-day training sessions for credit applicable to the Climate Governance Certificate under the CCO CertificationTM program. The Forum also features a suite of keynote conversations, a Women’s Climate Collaborative speed mentoring session, CCO Roundtable sessions, networking events, a tools and methodologies showcase and a tabletop exhibition.
Sen. Gardner to Headline ASE Event – The Alliance to Save Energy will have an intimate Policy Perspectives discussion with Senator Cory Gardner on Wednesday at 8:45 a.m. at Bobby Van’s Steakhouse. Gardner has served in both the House and the Senate and is a national leader on energy efficiency initiatives.
DOE Innovation Competition Set – On Wednesday at the Pew Charitable Trusts, the DOE’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy National Clean Energy Business Plan Competition (NCEBPC) will hold its national competition on the new technologies highlighted. This year, student-led teams competed in five DOE-sponsored regional competitions by submitting business plans for innovative clean energy technologies. Each regional winner received a DOE-sponsored prize. The NCEBPC culminates in the annual National Competition, which brings together public, private, and nonprofit sector stakeholders. On Wednesday, regional finalists and runners-up will showcase their technologies, NCEBPC alumni will discuss the paths they have taken since participating in the competition, and finalists will compete for the National Prize. Five regional finalists will pitch their business plans to an esteemed panel of judges, industry leaders, and audience members. The winning team will take home the DOE National Prize of $50,000 and various in-kind services.
Book Forum to Look at Energy, Economy – The Wilson Center will hold a book forum on Wednesday at 10:00 a.m. featuring UK economic Professors Stacy Closson and Evan Hillebrand. In the book, they forecast the most significant drivers of global economic growth over the next forty years. The authors discuss eight scenarios they have modeled of possible global futures, emphasizing the interconnectedness of energy prices, economic growth, and geopolitics. They will discuss the probability of each scenario and share their conclusions.
House Science Panel to Look at EIA GHG Report – The House Science Committee’s Subcommittee on Environment and Subcommittee on Energy Hearing will hold a hearing on Wednesday at 10:00 a.m. looking at the EIA report on the EPA’s Clean Power Plan. Witnesses include EIA Deputy Administrator Howard Gruenspecht, Chamber climate expert Stephen Eule, pro-climate policy gadfly Susan Tierney, Senior Advisor and Heritage senior statistician and researcher Kevin Dayaratna.
House to Look at GAO Report on Mismanagement – The House Natural Resources Committee’s Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations will convene an oversight hearing on Wednesday on a new GAO report documenting BLM’s mismanagement of wind and solar reclamation bonds.
Whitman to Be Featured at Young Professional Energy Event – On Wednesday at 12:30 p.m., Young Professionals in Energy will hold a meet and greet with former New Jersey Governor and U.S. EPA Administrator Christine Todd Whitman for an informal and off-the-record lunchtime gathering. Governor Whitman will talk about her role co-chairing the pro-nuclear group, Clean and Safe Energy Coalition (CASEnergy).
BPC to Look at Energy Efficiency Standards – On Wednesday at 2:00 p.m., the Bipartisan Policy Center will hold a forum on four decades of appliance energy efficiency standards. The forum will look at what has been accomplished and the more that 20 pending rules at DOE may be headed. DOE’s Appliance Efficiency Standards, dating back to 1979, currently cover products accounting for approximately 90% of home energy use and 60% of commercial building energy use. Although the program has had its challenges over the years, existing standards are expected to cumulatively save 70 quadrillion British thermal units (BTUs) of energy and lead to consumer savings approaching $1 trillion by 2020. As “smart grid” technology, new utility business models, and other opportunities arise to enable appliances to communicate and interact with the grid, new opportunities and challenges for efficiency standards are likely to emerge. The event will feature a panel discussion to explore what efficiency standards have accomplished, what the future could bring, and what Congress should have in mind as it considers new energy legislation. Speakers include Robert McArver of the Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers and ACEEE’s Steve Nadel.
House Natural Gas Caucus to Host Forum – The House Natural Gas Caucus will host a forum on Wednesday at 3:30 p.m. looking at the importance of infrastructure to the demand coming from new natural gas power plants. Speakers will include Cabot’s George Stark, a member company representative from INGAA and LIUNA’s Dave Mallino. They also may have a panelist from the Congressional Research Service to go over the natural gas infrastructure reform bills introduced this Congress.
Solar Foundation to Hold Solstice Event – Speaking of Summer Solstice, every June, the Solar Foundation (TSF) hosts its Summer Solstice, a celebration of solar energy and the beneficial role it plays across many aspects of our society. We will be returning to the most incredible rooftop in downtown Washington, D.C. to roll out the “yellow carpet” in recognition of all things solar. With their admission, this year’s Solstice guests will be treated to great food and drinks, barefoot bocce ball, electrifying beats, amazing twilight views of the Capital’s skyline, and the company of many of the most eclectic personalities in solar! The evening will also play host to the presentation of the 2015 Solar Foundation Awards, honoring the year’s preeminent solar heroes.
Gingrich to Lead POLITICO Forum Discussion on Youth, Environment – POLITICO will host a cutting-edge conversation on Thursday morning at the Hamilton exploring how millennials are impacting the future of environmental sustainability. Panelists will look at whether millennial lifestyle choices and technology is making cities more sustainable as well as how young voters are impacting environmental politics. Panelists include former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, Millennial Action Project President and Founder Steven Olikara, POLITICO Magazine Editor Garrett Graff and our friend Elana Schor, who covers energy for POLITICO.
Energy Breakfast Focused on Utility of Future – ICF International will hold its Energy and Environment Breakfast on Thursday at the National Press Club, featuring one of the top U.S. utilities and one of its leading regulatory thinkers for a discussion on the utility of the future. Much discussion has surrounded distributed energy resources such as rooftop solar, storage, and demand side management (DSM). Some regions are considering the best ways to reform the distribution system, perhaps by turning its operation over to a nonprofit entity—for example, a regional transmission organization (RTO) at the distribution level—and allowing third parties to use the system to offer an innovative set of energy services to customers. Speakers will include Garry Brown, Former Chair and Commissioner of the NY PSC and Mark Webb, General Counsel, and Chief Risk Officer of Dominion
BPC Event to Feature Udall, Shimkus on TSCA – On Thursday, the Bipartisan Policy Center hosts a bicameral, bipartisan dialogue where Sen. Tom Udall (D-NM) and Rep. John Shimkus (R-IL) provide their views on why the Toxic Substance Control Act (TSCA) needs updating, and what the next steps are toward modernizing this important law. Udall and Shimkus will join a Bridge-Builder discussion about the nation’s chemical safety law. At nearly 40 years old, TSCA has been rendered ineffective by court decisions and is in need of serious reform. This year, it just might get one. Both the House Energy and Commerce Committee as well as the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee have reported bipartisan bills. BPC’s Bridge-Builder Series highlights the institutions and individuals who are crossing party lines and developing solutions to the critical challenges facing our country.
IEA to Present Medium-term Gas Report – On Thursday at 10:00 a.m., the CSIS Energy and National Security Program will host Laszlo Varro, Head of Gas, Coal & Power Markets Division at the International Energy Agency (IEA), to present the IEA’s Medium-Term Gas Market Report 2015. The annual report, which gives a detailed analysis and five-year projections of natural gas demand, supply and trade developments, examines the interaction of increased gas demand in light of substantial price drops while the upstream sector is suffering amid large capital expenditure cuts. The impact on global gas markets of Russia’s strategic shift in its gas export policy and the rising tide of liquefied natural gas supplies are also given special consideration. The Medium-Term Gas Market Report is part of a series of annual reports the IEA devotes to each of the main primary energy sources: oil, gas, coal, renewable energy and energy efficiency.
House Ag Panel Looks at GMO Labeling – Following last week’s hearing the House E&C Health Subcommittee, the House Ag Committee will revisit the GMO Labeling Issues. The hearing will look at a new draft of the “Deny Americans the Right to Know” (DARK) Act which would not only preempt state laws that require labeling of food containing genetically engineered ingredients but would also strip away the right of local government to regulate GMO crops. EWG’s Scott Faber says the effort will keep consumers in the dark by also blocking state efforts to protect farmers and rural residents from dangerous herbicides used with GMO crops. “The American people have a right to know what’s in their food,” said Dr. John Boyd, Jr., founder and president of the National Black Farmers Association. “As a farmer, I grow both GMO and non-GMO crops, and know that labeling would not hurt my bottom line. I firmly believe that no matter where people buy their groceries, they should be given basic information about the presence of GMOs in their food.” Earlier this month the Mellman Group released a poll, funded by Just Label It, showing that nearly 90% of Americans – regardless of party affiliation, age, race or education – want mandatory GMO labeling.
Senate Foreign Relations to Look at Iran Deal – The Senate Foreign Affairs Committee will take a drive into discussions surrounding Iran Nuclear deal on Thursday at 10:30 a.m. Witnesses will include David Albright of the Institute for Science and International Security, CFR’s Ray Takeyh and MIT’s Jim Walsh
Forum to Look at Green Finance Tools – The Center for Climate and Energy Solutions (C2ES) is hosting a forum at GWU’s Lerner Hall on Thursday morning looking at states and companies deploying new tools like green bonds, clean energy banks, energy service companies and more to pay for improved energy technology and infrastructure. Speakers will looking into progress, scalability, past efforts and what financial tools can spur clean energy and efficiency upgrades. They include Robert Martineau of the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation, Pennsylvania Deputy Treasurer Keith Welks, Treasury, JPMorgan Chase’s Granville Martin, Anna Pavlova of Schneider Electric, Citi’s Bruce Schlein and Bob Perciasepe, President, Center for Climate and Energy Solutions (C2ES).
CHP Webinar to Look at Markets – The Combined Heat and Power Association will hold a Webinar on Thursday at Noon to look at U.S. Energy Markets and the CHP Market in Particular. The webinar will look at the broader US energy market trends and their international, national, and regional trends. Speakers will specifically discuss upcoming U.S. energy legislation, the U.S. energy market and its influence to the international energy landscape, current CHP market trends from the CHP Installation Database, market drivers for continued CHP development, and the micro affects regional energy providers may experience.
Cato Offers Skeptical Look at Ozone Science – On Thursday at 4:00 p.m. the Cato Institute will hold a forum on the new EPA Ozone regulation. The EPA’s most costly air-pollution and global-warming regulations are justified by the belief that small particles in outdoor air, like soot and dust, kill people. Based upon internal EPA documents and original research, Steven Milloy, publisher of the widely read blog JunkScience.com, will demonstrate that the agency’s belief does not pass scientific muster. As has been the case with climate change research, the dangerous liaison between regulatory agencies and academia has again resulted in a substantial distortion of reality. Please join us for a probing critique of science in service to regulatory overreach. The event will feature Steven Milloy, Founder, JunkScience.com and be moderated by Pat. Michaels.
National Security Conference Set – The 2015 Center for New American Security Annual Conference will be held on Friday at the JW Marriott Hotel in Washington, D.C. CNAS’s annual national security conference will feature keynote addresses and discussion topics designed to chart a course for the next administration and beyond. Lots of great speakers, including a great panel on any Iran Nuclear Deal that features Sen. Tom Cotton and former State Dept Amb. Nicholas Burns.
IEA Leader to Discuss World Energy Outlook on Climate – On Friday at 9:00 a.m., the CSIS Energy and National Security Program is hosting Dr. Fatih Birol, Chief Economist and incoming Executive Director of the International Energy Agency (IEA), to present the IEA’s World Energy Outlook 2015 Special Report on Energy and Climate Change. The special report presents a detailed first assessment of the energy sector impact of known and signaled national climate pledges for the climate change meeting in Paris in December 2015 (COP21). Additionally, it proposes a bridging strategy to deliver a near-term peak in global energy-related greenhouse-gas emissions, based on five pragmatic measures that can advance climate goals through the energy sector without blunting economic growth. Lastly, it highlights the urgent need to accelerate the development of emerging technologies that are, ultimately, essential to transforming the global energy system into one that is consistent with the world’s climate goals, and recommends four key pillars on which COP21 can build success from an energy sector perspective.
Stanford Forum to Look at Enviro Capital Issues – Next Tuesday, the Nature Conservancy and the Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment, in cooperation with their Natural Capital Project partners, the World Wildlife Fund and the University of Minnesota, are holding a forum at RFF at 9:00 a.m. on Integrating natural capital into decisions. The event will feature leading academics and practitioners in the field of ecosystem services as well as experts from the public and non-profit sectors, addressing core sustainability challenges of the 21st century. Speakers and panelists will highlight the latest advances in the science and practice of using ecosystem services to inform decisions. The discussion will provide insights into how this information can best be used by government agencies, multilateral institutions, and the broader sustainable development community to structure and implement policies that are simultaneously sound from environmental and economic perspectives. A panel of leading experts, including authors from a recently published Special Feature of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences on “Nature as Capital,” will discuss key components of bringing natural capital considerations into mainstream decision making on issues such as agriculture, energy, infrastructure, urban planning, finance and national security. Speakers will include former Bush Interior official Lynn Scarlett, USDA Research under secretary Ann Bartuska, WWF’s Tom Dillon, IADB’s Michele Lemay and Mary Ruckleshaus of the Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment
Cato Forum to Look at Free Markets, Energy – The Cato Institute will hold a forum on the case for free markets in energy next Tuesday in its Hayek Auditorium. Since the 1970s, however, more libertarian voices have been heard on these issues. IER founder and CEO Rob Bradley, who has been involved with free-market energy policy since its inception, will discuss the history of libertarian thinking on past energy policy and its relevance for current policy debates.
Forum to Look at Nat Gas Issues in Europe – The Institute of World Politics will hold a forum on Tuesday, June 30th at 1:00 p.m. featuring a lecture on rival gas pipelines for Europe. The event will feature Vilen Khlgatyan, Vice Chairman, Political Developments Research Center. In recent years, the competition for supplying Europe with natural gas has heated up once again and has taken a more urgent course due to the conflict in Ukraine. Two pipeline routes are vying for dominance and are backed by different states with their own geopolitical considerations. In December 2014, it was announced that Russia’s Gazprom would re-route its proposed South Stream Pipeline to the Turkish-Greek border via the Black Sea and Turkey. Likewise, the U.S.-backed Nabucco pipeline was sidelined by the less ambitious and costly Trans-Anatolian Pipeline and Trans-Adriatic Pipeline, which will see Azerbaijani gas and potentially Iranian and Turkmen gas cross Turkey to reach markets in Greece, the Balkans and Italy. Both pipelines have their advantages and disadvantages. This lecture will consider the economics and geopolitics of the rival pipelines and what’s at stake for the concerned parties. Khlgatyan is Vice-Chairman of Political Developments Research Center (PDRC), a think tank based in Yerevan, Armenia. He specializes in the geopolitics of energy, non-kinetic warfare, and the post-Soviet region with an emphasis on the Caucasus.
USEA Forum to Look at Modeling – The US Energy Association will hold a forum Tuesday, June 30th at 2:00 p.m. on MIT’s global models that are project energy and climate issues. Using a projection modeling system developed by MIT’s Joint Program on the Science and Policy of Global Change, the Integrated Global System Model (IGSM), we provide an integrated assessment of how human activities, given our current development path, are interacting with complex Earth systems and ultimately affecting the natural resources on which we depend. In the first part of the presentation (lead by Dr. Erwan Monier), we introduce the IGSM, and describe the capabilities of the modeling system to simulate the uncertainty in the future climate response to anthropogenic emissions of greenhouse gases and aerosols. In the second part of the presentation (lead by Dr. Sergey Paltsev), we provide an integrated economic and climate projection of the 21st century–not a prediction, as the future will ultimately be determined by actions taken over the next decades that are intended to stabilize our relationship with the planet. We incorporate the emissions targets currently proposed by the international community to address the challenges of climate change.
Congressional Renewable Energy Forum, Expo Set – The 18th Annual Congressional Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Technology EXPO and Policy Forum will be held on Thursday, July 9th in the Cannon House Office Building. The exhibits will be in Cannon Caucus Room (Cannon 345) while the Policy Forum will be in 334 Cannon. The event brings together close to 50 businesses, trade associations, and government agencies to showcase renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies and is Co-Hosted by the House and Senate’s Renewable Energy & Energy Efficiency Caucuses, as well as the Sustainable Energy Coalition.
Company to Highlight Data Destruction Method – On July 9th on Capitol Hill, Phiston Technologies will be leading a discussion and technology demonstration of their High Security Data Storage Media Destruction machines. They will encourage people to bring old computer hard drives, solid state drives, cell phones, CDs/DVDs and ID cards and we will destroy them safely in seconds. The event will be in 210 Cannon.
Senate Energy to Look at Nuclear Issues – On August 4th the Senate Energy Committee will hold a hearing to discuss the back-end of the nuclear fuel cycle and related legislation.
GenForum Set For Columbus – ICF International Natural Gas VP Leonard Crook will kick-off the one-day GenForum/POWER-GEN event August 18th on natural gas generation in Columbus, Ohio. Crook will offer an overview of the recent rise of natural gas-fueled power generation over the years at the expense of coal-fired power plants. GenForum is organized by PennWell’s GenerationHub. The event is scheduled at the Greater Columbus Convention Center. GenForum leads into PennWell’s POWER-GEN/Natural Gas conference, scheduled for Aug. 18-to-20 at the same convention center.