Well, that was an interesting weekend. While I was umpiring my own NCAA games and watching Hannah’s in Boston, Hurricane (and now “heavy-rain storm’) Florence was battering the Carolinas. We have a full report in a separate section below. I am doing regular reports that include information from Duke, EEI, EIA, NRECA and others, so please let me know if you are interested and I will add you to the list.
Meanwhile, on Friday, lots of movement in the RFS discussion. Ag economist Scott Irwin of the U of Illinois (generally very favorable to the ethanol folks surprised many when he released a paper that said small refiner exemptions have not had any significant impact of ethanol demand. It echoed another paper also released Friday by Charles River Associates that argued the same point. Finally, Sen Pat Toomey invited EPA chief Andy Wheeler to come to a Pennsylvania refinery. All of this detailed below.
The House is out this week because Wednesday is Yom Kippur – which I will “celebrate” by taking my son Adam for his final on-road driving test at the Motor Vehicle Administration in MD. Talk about a Day of Atonement…that is it. Senate is in tomorrow and Thursday and in fact could vote as early as this week on a water infrastructure package that passed the House last week. And don’t sleep on the vernal equinox – fall hits on Saturday evening.
Exciting Bracewell News: top Interior Department lawyer Ann Navaro (a Wellesley alumni) has joined Bracewell’s Environmental Strategies Group. Navaro has over 25 years of experience working as an attorney and advising senior leadership at federal agencies on environmental and natural resources policies and programs. She has also held senior legal/policy positions at the US Army Corps of Engineers and spent 14 years handling litigation in DOJ’s Environment and Natural Resources Division. Navaro has been involved in some of the most challenging and high-profile policy issues and disputes in environmental and natural resources law, including recent policy shifts to streamline federal permitting, oil and gas leasing in Alaska, Asian carp infiltration in the Great Lakes, Clean Water Act 404 actions, offshore royalty disputes, coal mining, hydropower projects, casino development, offshore sonar use, new oil and gas regulations, and federal takings and constitutional challenges. She will be a great resource for you on these issues so let me know if you are interested in connecting with her.
Finally, this is not about energy, but as you know, as a member of the National Press Club, I help promote Club-sponsored events like luncheons, newsmakers, etc. Given recent issues that have supercharged the SCOTUS nomination hearings, I wanted to mention a great one tomorrow at the Club featuring EMILY’s List President Stephanie Schriock, who will discuss the mid-term election, politics and the role of women this fall. The luncheon starts at 12:30 pm, comments start at 1:00 p.m. and I hope you can attend.
Call with questions. Best,
c. (202) 997-5932
“Since its creation over a decade ago, the RFS has failed to accomplish the originally-envisioned goals of tangible environmental benefits or improved energy independence. Moreover, the RFS has imposed financial harm on motorists, the broader transportation sector, and domestic oil refiners. To achieve RFS compliance, merchant refineries must spend millions of dollars each year on Renewable Identification Numbers (RINs), money which would otherwise go toward needed capital investments and the hiring of additional workers. The RFS picks winners and losers amongst sources of energy, and has named merchant refiners, particularly those in the Philadelphia region, the losers.”
Senator Pat Toomey in a letter inviting EPA chief Andrew Wheeler to visit Pennsylvania refiners to discuss the RFS.
ON THE POD
Bracewell, Chamber Energy Experts Discuss ACE Rule – With EPA announcing its new public hearing for its ACE rule on October 1st, I am resending a great Bracewell PRG explainer podcast with Scott Segal of Commerce Global Energy Institute President Karen Harbert and former Assistant Administrator of the EPA for Air and Radiation, Jeff Holmstead. Karen, Scott, and Jeff discuss the EPA’s proposed Affordable Clean Energy (ACE) Rule, how it compares to the Clean Power Plan, and more.
Ag Economist’s Paper on Ethanol Demand Causes Waves – U. of Illinois Agricultural Economist Scott Irwin has almost always a supporter of the ethanol industry, but he shook up both sides on Friday with a new paper that undercuts the ethanol industry’s long-standing claim that small refiner waivers have hurt demand. Today in FarmdocDaily, Irwin said “analysis of data on ethanol and gasoline consumption in the U.S. shows there is little if any evidence that the blend rate for ethanol has been reduced by SREs. If there has been any ethanol “demand destruction” to date it was very small, perhaps a drop in the ethanol blend rate of a tenth, which equates to only about 140 million gallons of ethanol consumption on an annual basis.” As he said in a tweet on the info, “I just as well say it up front. This ain’t gonna make me any friends in the corn ethanol industry. But this is what the data tells us to date: Hard to detect any physical demand destruction for ethanol due to small refinery exemptions.”
HURRICANE FLORENCE UPDATE
Florence was downgraded to a tropical depression, but it continues to be a dangerous storm. The threat of catastrophic flooding is real. The storm continues to dump record amounts of rain, and streams and rivers are expected to flood even after the storm has passed.
As of 4:00 p.m. EDT on Sunday, approximately 664,000 customers were without power in North and South Carolina. Power outages will continue to fluctuate as flooding moves or limbs and trees continue to fall. Crews are working around the clock to restore power where it is safe and conditions allow. Impacted electric companies are reporting that they already have restored power to more than 1 million customers since the storm began. As the storm progresses, electric companies are reallocating resources strategically to ensure a safe and efficient response.
Other Important Safety Tips for Recovery, Restoration – A few important tips about power restoration and recovery:
- In hard-hit areas, estimated restoration times will be determined after field crews first complete damage assessments. That process could take several days due to road closures caused by severe flooding and storm debris, especially in the coastal areas of both states, limiting travel for crews.
- Never bring a generator indoors, and if rising water threatens your home or you evacuate, turn off your power at the circuit breaker panel or fuse box. Such equipment should be operated only outdoors, and only in well-ventilated areas. Manufacturer instructions should be followed.
- Utilities are asking customers for their patience ahead of what will be a lengthy period of power restoration and recovery from this major storm.
HVACR Units and Flooding – Flooding creates a unique and dangerous power restoration environment. In many cases, crews are not able to gain access to the most heavily damaged and flooded areas until the storm clears and it is deemed safe for them to enter. It is also important for consumers when they return to their homes or businesses. After a flood or storm surge from a hurricane, homeowners must take important safety precautions with regard to their home’s heating and cooling systems. A house or basement exposed to standing water or storm surge can damage your home’s water heater, furnace, boiler, air-conditioning, ventilation, and heat pump system and put your family at risk. The HVACR industry reminds people how to handle flooding and your home’s HVAC systems safely. Here is a full account of things to consider: http://bit.ly/2rg0xky
EEI Can Help With Process Questions – Should you have any questions about the electric power industry’s restoration efforts, our friends at EEI can help with background, historical perspective and details. Their team is closely coordinating with the electric companies impacted by Florence. Check out the EEI Storm Center here to see important information, details and safety tips. You can contact Brian Reil (email@example.com; 508-414-5794) to connect.
EIA Continues to Monitor Power – EIA is monitoring the Hurricane in its Hurricane Florence Electricity Status Report
Electricity: Load forecasts in the east (CPLE, SCEG, SC) show load beginning to recover today as the storm moves west and restoration efforts continue. CPLW and DUK in the west expect lower or similar loads today compared to yesterday.
Generators: Solar generation has declined over the past few days, particularly in CPLE and SCEG. Coal and natural gas generation has varied by balancing authority. One of the McGuire nuclear plant’s two units shut down beginning Friday night for planned maintenance unrelated to Florence. The Brunswick nuclear plant remains offline as of Saturday night.
Customers: As of 10:52 a.m., about 703,000 customers in North Carolina and about 52,000 customers in South Carolina have reported electricity outages, roughly 14% and 2% of the customers in the states, respectively. Outage numbers are falling in some counties and rising in others as the storm moves inland and restoration is underway.
Sutton Power Station and Coal Ash Ponds – The Sutton Power Station in Wilmington saw a minor storm related water overflow in its coal ash pond. Here are the full details from Duke Officials: https://news.duke-energy.com/releases/historic-rains-from-hurricane-florence-cause-water-release-at-sutton-power-plant-in-wilmington-n-c
Historic rains from Hurricane Florence caused the release of stormwater, which may have come into contact with coal ash from a lined landfill, at the company’s Sutton Power Plant in Wilmington. Because of the heavy rainfall amounts, it is difficult to calculate the amount of water that may have reached Sutton Lake, the cooling pond that was constructed to support plant operations.
Inspections today identified a slope failure and erosion in one section of the coal ash landfill, which displaced about 2,000 cubic yards of material and would fill about two-thirds of an Olympic-sized swimming pool. The majority of displaced ash was collected in a perimeter ditch and haul road that surrounds the landfill and is on plant property.
Coal ash is non-hazardous, and the company does not believe this incident poses a risk to public health or the environment. The company is conducting environmental sampling as well.
Site personnel are managing the situation and will proceed with a full repair as weather conditions improve.
Ash basins, which are being excavated, and the cooling pond continue to operate safely.
IN THE NEWS
Navaro Joins Bracewell – Bracewell said that Ann D. Navaro has joined its Washington, DC office as a partner in the Environmental Strategies Group. Navaro has over 25 years of experience working as an attorney and advising senior leadership at federal agencies on environmental and natural resources policies and programs. For the last two years, she has held senior positions at the US Department of the Interior, including most recently as Counselor to the Solicitor. In her distinguished career with the federal government, Navaro has worked on a wide range of issues with federal agencies, including litigation, regulation, legislation and the implementation of environmental and natural resources programs. She has held senior legal and policy positions at the US Army Corps of Engineers and the Department of the Interior. Navaro spent 14 years handling litigation in the Environment and Natural Resources Division at the US Department of Justice, as well as 10 years litigating and overseeing civil works litigation for the Army Corps. Navaro has been involved in some of the most challenging and high-profile policy issues and disputes in environmental and natural resources law, including recent policy shifts to streamline federal permitting, oil and gas leasing in Alaska, Asian carp infiltration in the Great Lakes, Clean Water Act 404 actions, offshore royalty disputes, coal mining, hydropower projects, casino development, offshore sonar use, new oil and gas regulations, and federal takings and constitutional challenges. At Bracewell, Navaro will focus her practice in four areas: (1) development projects, (2) regulatory counseling, (3) policy advocacy and (4) government litigation.
Three Reports Undercut Ethanol Demand Destruction Claim – Three reports on Friday said ethanol demand is not be lost and one of them is the work of Agricultural economist Scott Irwin, who usually supports ethanol views.
Irwin Paper – Today in FarmdocDaily, U. Illinois Ag Economist Scott release a paper on SREs and ethanol demand destruction. To date, Irwin says he cannot find much if any drop based on ethanol blend rates. He added there may be E10 ethanol demand destruction with SREs in the future if price of ethanol goes above price of gasoline. SREs have reduced the demand for E15 and E85 but Irwin says it’s hard to measure since it is so small, but adds further expansion of the demand for higher ethanol blends is not in the cards so long as SREs are granted (and not reallocated). Irwin said “analysis of data on ethanol and gasoline consumption in the U.S. shows there is little if any evidence that the blend rate for ethanol has been reduced by SREs. If there has been any ethanol “demand destruction” to date it was very small, perhaps a drop in the ethanol blend rate of a tenth, which equates to only about 140 million gallons of ethanol consumption on an annual basis.” See the full paper with charts here: https://farmdocdaily.illinois.edu/2018/09/small-refinery-exemptions-and-ethanol-demand-destruction.html
Charles River Paper – Irwin’s views are underscored by another new report released today as well from Charles River Associates that in essence, comes to the same conclusion.
The report from Charles River Associates (CRA), just released, dated September 2018, and entitled, “Economics of Small Refinery Exemptions under the RFS.” You can see the full report here:
Among the noteworthy conclusions of the recent CRA report are the following:
- “This report shows that increased SREs and lower ethanol RIN prices have not caused ethanol demand destruction. This is supported by a review of RIN pricing economics and an analysis of ethanol blend rates, which have continued to increase after SRE announcements.”
- Even outside of the RFS, “There is a significant base level of demand for ethanol blending unrelated to the annual RFS obligations. Drivers of this demand include octane enhancement and serving as oxygenate, as well as direct price competition between ethanol and refined petroleum products.”
- This base level of demand ensures that SREs and normalization of RINs prices have no impact of ethanol demand. Indeed, RINs prices could literally fall to zero without impacting ethanol blend rates.
- CRA continues: “Simply put, changes in D6 RIN prices do not impact ethanol blend rates as long as the RIN price remains above the level needed to support ethanol blending. We demonstrate that actual D6 RIN prices have been above the ‘needed’ RIN prices for the majority of the RFS program’s history. In fact, for the past several months, fuel economics have driven the ‘needed’ RIN price below $0/RIN.”
The conclusion is clear – “Since D6 RIN prices have remained above the “needed” D6 RIN price, there has been no change in incentives for ethanol blending. This is supported by a review of ethanol volumes and blend rates, both of which have been increasing over time.”
Former EIA Analyst Joanne Shore Finds Similar Issues with Demand – Irwin and CRA’s findings are also backed up by similar, recent analysis from Joanne Shore, the long-time former chief analyst for fuels and refining issues at the Energy Information Administration. Her September 11, 2018, conclusion:
“The data show that there is no evidence of domestic biofuel demand destruction from RFS waivers to small refiners. Biofuel demand is robust and increasing, likely as a result of what RFA recognizes in its own analysis: the low price of ethanol relative to gasoline. As numerous studies have indicated, ethanol blending will remain economic, even in the absence of a mandate. These facts strongly suggest that both Congress and the administration can take action to control the cost of the RFS and RINs in a manner that protects refining jobs, without adversely impacting the biofuel sector.”
Toomey Issues Invite to EPA Chief – Speaking of ethanol, Sen. Pat Toomey invited the top EPA official Andy Wheeler to visit the oil refineries in the Philadelphia area. In a letter sent to Wheeler, Toomey wrote that the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), which is a federal mandate requiring gasoline to contain up to ten percent ethanol, is imposing such high costs on refiners that it threatens local employment and the greater Philadelphia economy. Monroe Energy and Philadelphia Energy Solutions (PES), the largest refining complex on the East Coast, are both located in the Philadelphia area and employ a combined 1,600 people. To comply with the RFS, these two refiners must spend hundreds of millions of dollars annually to acquire so-called RINs. High and unpredictable RIN prices threaten the financial well-being of these facilities and jeopardize their high-paying, blue collar jobs. Earlier this year, PES declared bankruptcy in large part due to the unsustainable compliance costs associated with the RFS.
IER Unveils Green Grant Tracker – The Institute for Energy Research released a new grant tracker today called “Big Green, Inc.”, a powerful new research tool that shines a long overdue spotlight on the money that is fueling the massive national environmental lobby. Big Green, Inc. uncovers the scope of the environmental movement’s funding as well as the role this interrelated network of organizations has had on energy policy. Taking the form of a searchable database, Big Green, Inc. tracks 8,821 environmental grants from 2008-2016 adding up to $3.7 billion. This money flowed from ten left-leaning foundations to over 1,500 environmental activist groups spanning all 50 states. The map allows users to track the funding sources across a variety of dimensions including state and year, and identifies the issue areas for which these organizations received money, for example, climate change advocacy, anti-coal initiatives, and political activism.
Energy Funding Passes – Congress passed the FY2019 “Minibus” spending bill Thursday. The funding bill address programs for energy and water programs, including clean energy programs at DOE. The Business Council on Sustainable Energy’s Lisa Jacobson said “the market dynamism and innovation we are seeing in the clean energy sector has come as the result of the partnership between the federal government and clean energy industries and from DOE’s world class research, both pure and applied. Congress recognizes this and continues to fund important clean energy programs and to invest in energy research development and deployment that will help to sustain growth in clean energy markets.” And Clearpath’s Rich Powell added “Congress again sent an undeniable message that lawmakers are serious about keeping the U.S. in the top tier of countries pursuing clean and reliable energy breakthroughs. While steady and sufficient funding is essential, providing important direction and reforms to the DOE to make sure that dollars are well spent is equally vital to spurring energy innovation.”
House Passed Key Senate Advanced Nuke Legislation – And while they were passing legislation, House approval of the Nuclear Energy Innovation Capabilities Act, which would strengthen partnerships between the private sector and government researchers to test and demonstrate the next generation of clean advanced nuclear reactor concepts. The bill, led by Sens. Michael Crapo (R-Idaho), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), Energy and Natural Resources Chairman Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) and others, was approved by the Senate in March and now heads to President Trump, who is expected to sign the legislation. NEICA authorizes the development of a versatile neutron source for advanced reactor testing. Many of the promising new reactor designs currently being developed utilize “fast neutrons,” so the test bed created under NEICA is essential to developing those new fuel designs. A versatile neutron source can also allow accelerated research for all new advanced reactors. It is important to note that this R&D capability is only available for civilian use in Russia, so a domestic U.S. facility is essential to advancing American technologies. “NEICA will create a strong new foundation for global nuclear innovation leadership. By preparing a test bed for our advanced reactor entrepreneurs, we have thrown down the gauntlet to our Russian and Chinese competitors that the United States will not be out-innovated in the technology we invented,” ClearPath Action Executive Director Rich Powell said.
ON THE SCHEDULE THIS WEEK
Electric Cars on Display on National Mall – National Drive Electric Week launched yesterday in Washington on the National Mall near National Gallery of Art (7th Street, NW) with presentations about electric vehicles and the latest models on the National Mall. There will be more events this week.
CSIS Hosts Trade Reps – This afternoon, the CSIS Scholl Chair in International Business is hosting a conversation with six former United States Trade Representatives, who will share wisdom from their own experience and discuss the current global trading system, its institutions, and the prospects for trade in these challenging times. Speakers include Bill Brock, Carla Hills, Micky Kantor, Charlene Barshefsky, Susan Schwab and Ron Kirk.
Forum to Look at Energy Future – The Hoover Institution hosts “MIT-Stanford Energy Game Changers Symposium” tomorrow at 8:45 a.m. Recent progress in energy technology research and development in the United States has been substantial-the past decade has seen dramatic reductions in the costs of emerging technologies alongside similar improvements in energy security and environmental performance. Former US Secretary of State George P. Shultz alongside scientists and engineers from two leading American research universities and DOE national labs will explore the potential for energy “game changers”: inexpensive and abundant clean electricity production, affordable grid energy storage at scale, secure electrochemical fuel manufacturing, less intensive fossil energy through carbon capture, and more.
DOE to Host Energy Storage Forum – The U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) InnovationXLab Energy Storage Summit will take place tomorrow and Wednesday at the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory in Menlo Park, CA. Energy storage is one of the biggest challenges to unlocking the potential from the next generation of transportation and electricity grid technologies. The Summit will showcase the broad array of technical resources available from across DOE’s National Lab complex that can be leveraged by industry to address these challenges.
Senate Enviro to Look at Legislation – The Senate Environment Committee will hold a Business Meeting tomorrow at 9:45 a.m. to consider a bill to establish a compliance deadline of May 15, 2023, for Step 2 emissions standards for new residential wood heaters, new residential hydronic heaters, and forced-air furnaces as well as several other bills.
Heritage Looks at SCOTUS Fall Term – The Heritage Foundation holds a discussion for a Supreme Court Preview of the 2018 Term. The Supreme Court returns October 1st for its 2018-2019 Term, and the justices will tackle of number of important issues. Supreme Court litigators Paul Clement and Joseph Palmore will discuss what is likely to unfold in the next Supreme Court term.
ITIF to Host Clean Energy Forum – The Information Technology & Innovation Foundation will host an expert panel discussion tomorrow at Noon on carbon emissions and clean energy. ITIF Senior Fellow Joe Kennedy, author of the recent report “How Induced Innovation Lowers the Cost of a Carbon Tax,” will moderate a discussion on innovation, carbon taxes and clean energy.
Philly Forum to Look at GHG Neutrality – Tomorrow at Noon in Philly, the Kleinman Center Energy Forum hosts an expert look at greenhouse gas neutrality featuring Oliver Geden, a lead author of the IPCC Sixth Assessment Report.
Harder, LeVine Headline Clean Energy Discussion – The Atlantic Council’s Global Energy Center will host a lively conversation on the future of energy and the role of innovation and new technologies tomorrow at 1:00 p.m. The discussion will feature three leading minds to shine a light on future energy trends. Steve LeVine, a veteran journalist of geopolitics and energy and whose most recent book The Powerhouse is a deep dive into the race to build a super battery; Akshat Rathi, whose award-winning series The Race to Zero Emissions masterfully deconstructs the energy technologies our futures need; and Amy Harder, whose weekly column “Harder Line” reports trends, scoops, and news driving the energy and climate debate, will explore future scenarios for the energy sector.
Senate Committee to Look at Infrastructure Cyber Issues – The Senate Armed Services Cybersecurity Subcommittee will hold a closed-door hearing tomorrow at 2:30 p.m. and will feature testimony from senior energy and homeland security officials, including DOE Assistant Secretary for the Office of Electricity Bruce Walker, DHS assistant secretary for cybersecurity and communications Jeanette Manfra and Kenneth Rapuano, assistant secretary for homeland defense and global security at the Defense Department.
WaPo Mooney Headline WRI Forum – Tomorrow at 3:00 p.m., the World Resources Institute will host a major forum in Washington, DC reflecting on the challenging and important topic of carbon removal. Tailored for a policy audience and featuring leading voices in technology, conservation and the environment, the event will tackle the big questions head on – how can carbon removal help in the fight against climate change? What are the different land management and technological approaches, and how can they be brought to scale in a safe and prudent manner? And finally, what practical steps can U.S. policymakers take to foster action? The event will include a presentation on WRI’s latest research findings on carbon removal followed by a dynamic panel discussion moderated by Chris Mooney, Climate and Energy Reporter at The Washington Post.
CSIS Will Hold Forum Private Sector Sustainable Development – CSIS will hold a forum on Wednesday at 1:00 p.m. role of the private sector in achieving the sustainable development goals. The private sector provides 9 out of 10 jobs in developing countries and has an important role to play in achieving the SDGs and solving global problems. Many private sector actors support the SDGs and have joined the UN Global Compact. At the Addis Ababa Financing for Development conference in 2015, it became clear that it would take trillions not billions of dollars of financing of all types to achieve the SDGs. Private sector participation is critical to strengthening the economies in developing countries, employing the growing youth bulge in Africa, and solving global challenges like migration.
FERC Meeting – FERC Commissioners will meet on Thursday at 10:00 a.m.
Coal Marketing Days Forum Set for PA – S&P Global Platts 41st Annual Coal Marketing Days Conference is set for the Westin in Pittsburgh, PA. This long-standing event attracts a variety of coal suppliers and buyers, coal transport companies, and industry-wide analysts and investors who exchange in-depth knowledge on the current state of the global and domestic coal-producing markets.
Forum to Look at China Sludge – On Thursday at 9:00 a.m., the Wilson Center will host a forum on urban waste policies, pilots and innovation. Chen Meian will open up discussing the challenges low-carbon cities face in reigning in greenhouse gasses, and how her think tank is creating a platform for innovative, bottom-up, clean energy solutions. One of the most successful sludge-to-energy plants in China is in Xiangyang City in a plant run by Dou Wenlong. Mr. Dou will explain how his company has built partnerships with the local government to turn captured methane into CNG for a local taxi fleet. Liu Jinghao will give an overview of national-level drivers creating opportunities for methane recovery from MSW and sludge in China. Finally, Liu Xiao will tell a story of how one low-carbon city pilot is sparking climate action in the MSW industry. The speakers are in the United States participating in a technical research exchange sponsored by the Global Methane Initiative.
Webinar to Look at Smart Grid Changes – The National Journal hosts a webinar on the changes in the U.S. energy grid on Thursday at 11:00 a.m. From changing energy sources and technological advances to government regulations, this webinar will look at what implications could smart grid technology have for government, regulation, and public policy. National Journal Presentation Center analysts Julianna Bradley, Sean Lambert, and Taryn MacKinney, as well as National Journal Energy Correspondent Brian Dabbs, will speak at this in-depth look at the issues surrounding the state of the U.S. energy grid.
Offshore Wind Forum Set for Norfolk – The 2018 Virginia Offshore Wind Executive Summit will be held on Friday in Norfolk at the Hilton Main. The event brings together the supply-chain business community with federal and state government officials to accelerate Virginia’s inclusion of large-scale offshore wind within the state’s energy mix. VA Governor Ralph Northam and Orsted North American President Thomas Brostrom, Dominion Energy, Siemens –Gamesa, US Bureau of Ocean Energy and Management and many others will discuss port infrastructure, supply chain procurement and market opportunities.
Forum to Look at Advanced Nuke Test Reactor – The Global American Business Institute will hold a Capitol Hill briefing on Friday at Noon on the Versatile test reactor. Mr. Donald Wolf – Co-Founder, Chairman of the Board & CEO, ARC Nuclear and Dr. Kemal Pasamehmetoglu – Executive Director, The Versatile Test Reactor, Idaho National Laboratory (INL) will speak.
Heritage to Look at Bloom Energy Challenges – The Heritage Foundation hosts a forum on Friday at Noon featuring University of Delaware Professor and former Delaware State Climatologist David Legates, at a forum on challenges with Delaware’s Bloom Energy. Legates has challenges the fuel cell “promise” of inexpensive, clean energy is that it is actually very expensive and not very clean.
Forum to Preview SCOTUS 2018 – On Friday at Noon, the Federalist Society for Law and Public Policy Studies holds another discussion on “Supreme Court Preview: What Is in Store for October Term 2018. US Solicitor General Noel Francisco will offer opening remarks followed by a panel featuring SCOTUS attorneys John Adams, Tom Goldstein, Jennifer Mascott, and Elizabeth Papez. NBC News Justice Correspondent Pete Williams will moderate.
JHU Forum to Look at Developing World Sustainable Energy Utility – On Friday at 12:30 p.m., Johns Hopkins University hosts a forum on utility models in the energy sector in meeting global economic, environmental and social challenges. Anmol Vanamali of the Vermont Energy Investment Corporation will discuss the Sustainable Energy Utility (SEU) model. There will also be a panel to discuss the impacts on Delaware.
IN THE FUTURE
Forum to Look at Building Policies – Next Tuesday morning at the US Green Buildings Council, DOE, the Environment, New Buildings Institute and several partners are hosting the interactive session, which aims to stimulate collaboration, highlight leading local buildings and policies, and foster knowledge sharing regarding net-zero energy practice and policy.
Baltic Energy Forum Set – The Jamestown Foundation will hold a conference on energy security in the wider Baltic region next Tuesday at the University Club. The conference will address the challenge to European security posed by Russia’s Nord Stream Two natural gas pipeline project as well as discuss Northern Gate, an alternative energy transit corridor championed by Poland that will open up the region to Norwegian gas supplies and U.S. and international LNG shipments, blunting Gazprom’s market monopoly position.
MIT Expert to Talk CCS – The US Energy Assn will hold a forum on carbon capture next Tuesday at 2:00 p.m. featuring MIT Senior Research Engineer Howard Herzog. Herzog will give an overview of the current state of technology and policy related to Carbon Dioxide Capture and Storage (CCS) and cover seven aspects of CCS: (1) the role of CCS in addressing the climate change challenge, (2) a summary of large CCS projects in operation, (3) the current status and future directions for capture technology, (4) the current status and future directions for storage technology, (5) how to view negative emissions, (6) the policies and politics around CCS, and (7) what the future may hold.
CAFE Public Hearing Set for CA, MI, PA – NHTSA and EPA will hold three public hearings on the revisions to the fuels economy standard. The hearing will occur on Sept 25th in Fresno, Sept 26th in Dearborn MI, and Sept 27th in Pittsburgh.
Clean Energy Week Forum Set – The 2018 National Clean Energy Week Policy Makers Symposium will be held on Wednesday at the National Press Club Ballroom. Speakers include Secretary of Energy Rick Perry, EPA Acting Administrator Andrew Wheeler, Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke, FERC Commissioner Neil Chatterjee, Sen. Martin Heinrich, Daines and Murkowski and many more.
Forum to Look at Energy Cybersecurity – RealClearPolitics will hold a forum on energy cybersecurity Wednesday September 26th at 8:00 a.m. at the Newseum. The keynote speaker is Rep. Henry Cuellar of Texas and INGAA’s Don Santa and AGA’s Dave McCurdy will speak.
Forum to Look at Transportation – The Alliance to Save Energy’s 50×50 Commission will hold an event Wednesday, September 26th at 8:30 a.m. in 2255 Rayburn to roll out a new alliance that will unveil its full suite of policy recommendations on Capitol Hill to encourage policymakers to better prepare for the coming transformation. The Commission is a group of business, government, and civil society leaders that has been working to develop a pathway to capitalize on the opportunities of a rapidly changing industry by setting an ambitious goal of cutting the U.S. transportation sector’s energy use by 50% by 2050 while meeting future mobility needs. The Commission will unveil. Keynote speakers will include Rep. Debbie Dingell (D-MI) and Pittsburgh Mayor William Peduto. The event looks at the key shifts in the industry, why their organization is participating in the Commission, and the importance of cohesive policies in securing the Commission’s vision of the transportation future.
Border Energy Forum Set for San Antonio – The North American Development Bank (NADB) will host the XXIII Border Energy Forum in San Antonio on September 26th and 27th at the Hilton San Antonio. This forum brings together local and state officials, private sector developers, academics, large commercial users, and energy experts from the U.S. and Mexico. NADB’s unique position as the only U.S.-Mexico binational development bank, has provided the Bank the opportunity to be involved in some of the most relevant clean energy projects developed in the last five years in the region. NADB has financed close to $1.5 billion for 35 projects with total costs of $5.2 billion. Roughly, 2,548 MW of new generation capacity is being installed along the border. The forum will center the dialogue on energy prosperity, innovation, financing, the future of energy markets, and crossborder opportunities along the U.S.-Mexico border, and how to continue building partnerships to advance both countries energy goals that ultimately improve economic development and protect the environment.
Forum to Look at Cyber Resilience – The US Energy Assn will hold a forum on Thursday, September 27th at 10:00 a.m. on cyber resilience in the energy sector. Speakers from Marsh & McLennan Companies will present, including Paul Mee, North America Cyber Lead, Oliver Wyman, and Matt McCabe, Assistant General Counsel on Cyber Policy, will discuss how they work with companies in the energy sector to prevent, protect against, mitigate, respond to, and recover from cyber-attacks, thus helping them build true cyber resilience.
Forum to Look at Carbon Tax Study – REMI will host a carbon tax discussion at its Washington, DC policy luncheon on Thursday September 27th with guest presenter Scott Nystrom, a Director at FTI Consulting, Inc. Alliance for Market Solutions commissioned FTI Consulting to evaluate the economic, fiscal and emission effects of a national revenue-neutral carbon tax. The study’s authors applied this tax at the point of extraction or import, and simulated the implications of raising the cost of fossil fuels on the national, state, and industry levels. Nystrom, a co-author on the report, will review the proposal and the potential implications for the U.S. and state economies and major industries. He will also describe the methodologies behind the analysis of a revenue-neutral carbon tax.
Conservatives to Discuss Nuclear – Experts from the Breakthrough Institute, The Heritage Foundation, the ClearPath Foundation and R Street will hold a forum on Thursday September 27th at 3:00 p.m. looking at innovation and reform to the nuclear industry. After many years of failed attempts, a new path to an economically competitive domestic nuclear industry is close at hand. Nuclear micro-reactors (10 MW and smaller) allow for safe operation with radically simplified designs, making the case for far-reaching licensing and regulatory reform much stronger. Policy elements needed for a better future include licensing reforms at the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, extending the duration of federal purchase power agreements, and supporting construction of new fast reactors and advanced nuclear fuels.
Group to Honor Clean Energy Champs – On Thursday, September 27th at 5:00 p.m. at the Capitol Hill Club, Citizens for Responsible Energy Solutions (CRES) will recognize its 2018 Clean Energy Champions. They include Sens. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) and Tim Scott (R-SC), Reps Elise Stefanik (R-NY) and Tom Reed (R-NY) and Govs. Larry Hogan (R-MD) and Gary Herbert (R-UT).
EPA to Host ACE Hearing in Chicago – The EPA will host a single public hearing on its proposed replacement for the Clean Power Plan in Chicago on Monday October 1st at the Ralph H. Metcalfe Federal Building. The building is the home of EPA’s Region 5 headquarters.
Cato Hosts Public Transit Debate – On Monday October 1st, the Cato Institute holds a Capitol Hill forum on the Federal role in public transit. Cato’s Randall O’Toole and Jarrett Walker will debate.
Ideas Forum Set for DC – The Atlantic Council and Aspen Institute are hosting the Atlantic Festival on October 2-4th at Sidney Harman Hall n DC. Atlantic editor Jeffery Goldberg, former Secretary of State Sen. John Kerry and NYT reporter/author Mark Leibovich are among the numerous speakers. In its 10th year, Washington Ideas has become The Atlantic Festival. The conference always includes in-depth interviews with some of today’s biggest thinkers and leaders in technology, politics, business and the arts, we will illuminate new ideas, and grapple with the most consequential issues of our time.
SEJ in Flint – The Society of Environmental Journalism holds its annual conference on October 3-6th in Flint. Of course, Bracewell hosts its annual event on Thursday October 4th.
ClearPath, EPIC, ACCF host Forum on R&D Investments – On October 10, The Energy Policy Institute at the University of Chicago (EPIC), in partnership with ClearPath and the American Council for Capital Formation, will hosting discussions on lessons gleaned from research and practical experiences. The conversations will provide insight into how to translate research findings into actionable policy and industry approaches that can drive clean energy innovation.
Forum to Look at Wood – In recognition of National Forest Products Week, the Environmental and Energy Study Institute (EESI) hosts an innovative class of structural wood building materials. This briefing will bring together experts to tell the emerging story of the U.S. mass timber industry and how to capitalize on its potential. Speakers will include Sen Angus King.
Shale Insight Set For Pittsburgh – Shale Insight 2018 is set for Pittsburgh on October 23-25. The Marcellus Shale Coalition (MSC) hosts the event along with the Ohio and West Virginia Oil & Natgas Assns. SHALE INSIGHT™ offers insightful pre-conference workshops, technical and public affairs sessions, national keynote addresses, and high-powered networking sessions will provide attendees, sponsors, and exhibitor’s unprecedented access to the industry’s most influential leaders and innovators. You can see the agenda HERE.