A great deal of progress has been made in decarbonizing the power sector through deployment of clean electricity generation technologies such as wind and solar. But other technologies essential to our efforts to combat climate change, such as geothermal heat pumps, which are critical to decarbonizing buildings (which represented 32 percent of 2019 greenhouse gas emissions in New York State) are only beginning to be deployed at scale. Additional actions in 2023 to unlock deployment of geothermal technologies are essential to meet our goals.… More
New England states unite to build new offshore wind HVDC transmission, seek DOE funding
Four New England States – Connecticut, Massachusetts, Maine, and Rhode Island – recently submitted a concept paper to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) proposing to build up to three new high voltage direct current (HVDC) transmission lines and related onshore system upgrades to support the injection of new offshore wind resources in New England.
Onshore and offshore transmission constraints are a major barrier to the successful deployment of large-scale offshore wind along the Atlantic coast.… More
Maine Signals Readiness for Commercial-Scale Floating Offshore Wind
The State of Maine recently published the final version of its Maine Offshore Wind Roadmap, sending a strong market signal that the state is increasingly ready for commercial-scale floating offshore wind development in the Gulf of Maine. The Roadmap, which I first wrote about in November, makes a series of recommendations to advance commercial scale-floating offshore wind in Maine, including that the state establish an offshore wind procurement target and strategy (“coordinated regionally to achieve cost effective deployment”) prior to BOEM’s lease sale in the Gulf of Maine,… More
DOE Releases Draft Study Calling for More Interregional Transmission
On February 24, 2023, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) released for public comment a draft of its National Transmission Needs Study (“Needs Study”), which endorses boosting overall transmission capacity—and transmission between grid regions in particular. The final Needs Study, expected this summer, could have significant implications for federal transmission planning and permitting, including by informing the potential designation of National Interest Electric Transmission Corridors.… More
The National EV Charging Network is Preparing for Takeoff
On February 15, 2023, the Biden-Harris Administration announced the next steps in its plans to create a national EV charging network. This included establishing minimum standards for federally funded EV infrastructure, publishing an implementation plan for the Build America and Buy America EV charging requirements, and announcing that applications will soon open for $700 million in discretionary grant program funding.
Standards for Federally Funded EV Charging Infrastructure
Federal Highway Administration published its final rule establishing regulations setting minimum standards and requirements for projects funded under the NEVI and other federal funding programs. … More
Accelerating Electric Vehicle Adoption in 2022
This past year represents a real turning point in the transition to electric vehicles, demonstrated by new major incentives and regulatory activities at both federal and state government levels and several notable accomplishments in the private sector. First, the U.S. government approved EV Infrastructure Deployment Plans for all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico with an estimated $4.155 billion in funding going to states in the next five years to build out EV infrastructure.… More
CEQ Issues NEPA Climate Guidance
The new year brings new NEPA (interim) guidance on climate change. It recommends several ways that federal agencies should consider climate change impacts for projects subject to NEPA review. The guidance is effective immediately but is subject to a 60-day comment period that could lead to revisions. Comments on the guidance are due to CEQ on March 10, 2023.
All projects that are federally funded or need federal permits,… More
Monitoring, Reporting, and Verification: Why the Carbon Dioxide Removal Industry Can Expect—and Could Benefit from—Increased Oversight
Carbon dioxide removal (CDR), or the range of technologies and processes for removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and oceans, promises to be a major part of US and global climate strategy in the coming decades. Recent governmental actions have created significant financial incentives for the rapidly growing CDR sector.
Given the heightened importance of CDR technologies, some regulators and members of the public are calling for a broader range of measures to ensure that CDR projects are accurately monitored,… More
EPA’s Proposed RFS Rule: Impacts on Biogas and RNG
Last month’s proposed rulemaking for the Renewable Fuel Standard (“RFS”) from the Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) proposed significant changes to the RFS Program, which we summarized in a prior post. One of the major changes in the proposed rule is its treatment of biogas and renewable natural gas (“RNG”): the rule would open up new potential RIN generation from biogas through changes to the eRIN program and the establishment of RNG as a biointermediate. … More
U.S. DOE Announces $3.5 Billion to Accelerate Direct Air Capture Commercialization
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) recently announced a $3.5 billion funding opportunity to create regional Direct Air Capture (DAC) Hubs. The DAC Hubs program is one of four new programs announced by the Biden-Harris administration aimed at building “a commercially viable, just, and responsible carbon dioxide removal industry,” in the U.S. with funds from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (BIL).
Under the DAC Hubs program,… More