Author: DCSEU Staff Published: 10/18/2021 DCS
Author: DCSEU Staff Published: 10/18/2021 DCS
Author: MCGB Staff Published: 10/12/2021 Montgomery County Green Bank
On August 17, the Montgomery County Green Bank, along with partners at Groundswell, the Housing Opportunities Commission of Montgomery County, Sunlight General Capital, SunCatch Energy, Pepco, and local officials celebrated the installation of solar panels at Paddington Square Apartments in Silver Spring, MD. This project is Montgomery County’s first community solar project built to serve low- and moderate-income households by specifically setting aside subscriptions to provide more accessible and affordable options for renewable energy.On August 21, The Green Bank, alongside Montgomery College and the Community Solar at Paddington Square project development team, hosted an informational and educational event for residents and community members to learn more about community solar and job opportunities in the field.
Groundswell Subscriptions for Community Solar at Paddington Square
Groundswell subscriptions for Community Solar at Paddington Square are now available to renters and homeowners who are Pepco Maryland subscribers. Subscribers are eligible to receive solar energy produced in Maryland starting Fall 2021. Sign up today to support better solar access in Montgomery County, MD.
First Community Solar Project Launched in Montgomery County
New Deal Highlights Successful EV Strategy for Condominium
Helping Homeowners Achieve Energy Efficiency
Introducing the Green Bank’s Communications and Community Engagement Manager: Tyniah McDuffie
Author: Rachel Frazin Published: 10/12/2021 THE HIILL
Author: White House Staff 10/1//2021 The White House
Cyber threats can affect every American, every business regardless of size, and every community. That’s why my administration is marshalling a whole-of-nation effort to confront cyber threats.
I am committed to strengthening our cybersecurity by hardening our critical infrastructure against cyberattacks, disrupting ransomware networks, working to establish and promote clear rules of the road for all nations in cyberspace, and making clear we will hold accountable those that threaten our security. In May, I issued an executive order to modernize our defenses and position the Federal government to lead, rather than lag, in its own cybersecurity. By using the power of Federal technology spending, we are improving the software available for use to all Americans. Our 100-day action plan to improve cybersecurity across the electricity sector has already resulted in more than 150 utilities serving 90 million Americans committing to deploy cybersecurity technologies, and we are working to deploy action plans for additional critical infrastructure sectors. Both the public and private sectors have a role to play in strengthening cybersecurity, which is why we also issued a National Security Memorandum outlining the cybersecurity practices that responsible owners and operators of critical infrastructure should put in place and brought together leading American executives to expand public-private cooperation on cybersecurity.
We are also partnering closely with nations around the world on these shared threats, including our NATO allies and G7 partners. This month, the United States will bring together 30 countries to accelerate our cooperation in combatting cybercrime, improving law enforcement collaboration, stemming the illicit use of cryptocurrency, and engaging on these issues diplomatically. We are building a coalition of nations to advocate for and invest in trusted 5G technology and to better secure our supply chains. And, we are bringing the full strength of our capabilities to disrupt malicious cyber activity, including managing both the risks and opportunities of emerging technologies like quantum computing and artificial intelligence. The Federal government needs the partnership of every American and every American company in these efforts. We must lock our digital doors — by encrypting our data and using multifactor authentication, for example—and we must build technology securely by design, enabling consumers to understand the risks in the technologies they buy. Because people – from those who build technology to those to deploy technology – are at the heart of our success.
This October, even as we recognize how much work remains to be done and that maintaining strong cybersecurity practices is ongoing work, I am confident that the advancements we have put in place during the first months of my Administration will enable us to build back better – modernizing our defenses and securing the technology on which our enduring prosperity and our security rely.
Author: US DOE Staff Published: 10/8/2021 SETO
2025 Milestone Will Play a Key Role in Achieving Justice40 Goals and Create $1 Billion in Energy Savings
WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) today announced a new National Community Solar Partnership (NCSP) target: to enable community solar systems to power the equivalent of five million households by 2025 and create $1 billion in energy bill savings. Reaching these milestones will help achieve the Biden-Harris Administration’s goals of achieving 100% clean electricity by 2035 and ensure that all Americans can reap the benefits of renewable energy while building community wealth and resiliency.
“Community solar is one of the most powerful tools we have to provide affordable solar energy to all American households, regardless of whether they own a home or have a roof suitable for solar panels,” said Secretary Jennifer M. Granholm. “Achieving these ambitious targets will lead to meaningful energy cost savings, create jobs in these communities, and make our clean energy transition more equitable.”
There is enough solar installed to power 19 million households across the United States. Despite this unprecedented deployment, many Americans still lack access to affordable solar electricity, including many renters, homeowners who lack affordable financing options, and those without suitable roof conditions. Community solar is a form of energy generation where members subscribe to a portion of a solar array, usually located near their community. As the solar array produces energy, subscribers receive a portion of the revenue from the energy produced, typically as savings on their monthly electric bill — a critical factor for low-income and disadvantaged communities whose energy burden is three times higher than for non-low-income households.
There is enough community solar installed in the U.S. today to power 600,000 households—achieving DOE’s new NSCP target would mean an increase of more than 700% in the next four years. The recently released Solar Futures Study report from DOE and National Renewable Energy Laboratory shows how solar can play a major role in a decarbonized grid.
The NCSP is a DOE initiative led by the Solar Energy Technologies Office, in collaboration with the NREL and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. The partnership includes a coalition of community solar stakeholders, such as state, local and tribal governments, solar developers, and community-based organizations, working to expand access to affordable community solar to every American household. Partners leverage peer networks as well as technical assistance funding and resources to overcome the persistent barriers to expanding community solar access with a focus on those in underserved communities. As of September 2021, NCSP had over 650 members from over 440 partner organizations.
The Sharing the Sun report released by NREL in collaboration with NCSP shows that community solar can lead to substantial bill savings—from 5 to 25%. Achieving $1 billion in cost savings would mean that, on average, community solar projects would provide a 20% bill savings. This target, along with other potential solutions for equitable community solar deployment, was informed by NCSP stakeholders in a recent request for information.
To achieve these new targets, DOE is offering free, on-demand technical assistance to NCSP partnership members. Technical assistance provides personalized support to organizations deploying community solar to help them accelerate implementation, improve the performance of their program or project, and build capacity for future community solar development. NCSP has already distributed $1 million for technical assistance and hopes to provide $2 million in the next year.
Author: AGOA CSO Network Secretariat Published: 10/7/2021 FDA
Author: DCSEU Staff Published: 10/5/21 DCSEU
Author: John Karanja Published: 10/4/2021 MELANIN SOLAR
Whive IO, is an open-source blockchain protocol that extends the Bitcoin blockchain through enabling Trustless Rewards for Engineering Sustainable Solutions.
Melanin Solar enables communities to produce their own solar energy for consumption and sell excess energy through a peer-to-peer model to under-served neighbors.
This will enable the deployment and distribution of efficient solar micro-grid eco-systems across Africa.
We are doing this by building out Africa’s distributed solar energy infrastructure which includes a set of tools, protocols and applications.
At the same time through our Academy we intend to reduce the huge shortage of engineers; who can be leveraged to develop, deploy and maintain our solution across Africa which has a high pool of potential talent with its huge youthful population.
Whive IO, is an open-source blockchain protocol that extends the Bitcoin blockchain through enabling Trustless Rewards for Engineering Sustainable Solutions.
Building on the success of Bitcoin the World’s most secure blockchain, the Whive community has set out to build a cryptographically secure blockchain protocol and Auxiliary Chain(AuxChain) that shall allow for building applications that trustlessly reward sustainable solutions.
The Whive Protocol is built with game-theory that rewards machines operating in regions in the World with high solar reliability indices(SRIs)!
Thus, the protocol shall incentivize engineers in the developing World to contribute to developing sustainable solutions to challenges facing their community using the following Engineering disciplines:
The Whive protocol shall be supported by a suite of software tools built to incentivize multiple third-party individuals and institutions to collaborate together to execute and achieve this vision.
The Whive protocol is designed to unlock the potential of sustainable resources such as Solar Energy by enabling a distributed economy that is interoperable with the mainstream economy.
The Whive Protocol is being built, tested and deployed by a community of individuals and organizations around the World.
Introducing the Whive Protocol
Whive, is an open source & peer-to-peer blockchain protocol that is incentivizing the building of sustainable distributed solar energy solutions through Trustless Rewards
The solar energy market is under developed and has a potential market capitalization of more than $10 Trillion globally
The Whive protocol seeks to empower energy poor communities to actualize this potential by using Blockchain based tokenization and distributed computing to trustlessly reward Solar Energy adoption
The Whive protocol’s mining is biased towards smaller mobile computing devices built on the ARM architecture to encourage fast & sustainable growth of the solar energy sector
Mining of Whive Rewards ends in the year 2040 ensuring maximum distribution of solar micro-grid ecosystems across the World
18,500,000+ Whive Rewards can be claimed by Bitcoiners hodling 1 or more bitcoins starting February 2021, learn more at https://whive.io/claim
The protocol ensures that engineering machine-based distributed solar energy solutions using blockchain is highly rewarded algorithmically without human intervention
Transactions are recorded immutably on a transparent & public Blockchain accessible in real-time on the explorer linked below http://explorer.radi.network
Author: EDA Staff Published: 10/4/2021 EDA
Ready to submit your application for the American Rescue Plan Build Back Better Regional Challenge and still have questions? View our new Build Back Better Regional Challenge Office Hours webinar, the October 1 Build Back Better Regional Challenge panel discussion, and our updated FAQs, including important information about procurement restrictions and match funding requirements for proposed Phase 2 projects.
The Build Back Better Regional Challenge is designed to assist communities nationwide in their efforts to build back better by accelerating the economic recovery from the coronavirus pandemic and building local economies that will be resilient to future economic shocks.
EDA invites eligible applicants to form regional coalitions to apply for funding to implement a collection of three to eight distinct but related projects in their region, in coordination with industry and community partners, and aligned around a holistic vision to build and scale a strategic industry cluster. Applicants should identify one key coordinating lead institution per regional cluster to lead the concept and projects into the implementation phase, while fostering collaboration and coordinating resources to ensure these investments have the greatest economic impact on our communities, regions, and the nation.
Coalition members eligible to apply for investment assistance for their region include a(n):
Individuals or for-profit entities are not eligible.
Phase 1 deadline:
October 19, 2021
Phase 2 deadline:
March 15, 2022
Author:Rachel Frazin Published: 10/1/21 THE HILL
Five Midwest states announced Thursday that they will work together to increase the deployment of electric vehicle charging stations.
A memorandum of understanding signed by the governors of Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota and Wisconsin says the states will form the Regional Electric Vehicle Midwest Coalition, or “REV Midwest.”
The state leaders said in a statement that the agreement is aimed at “competitively” positioning the region for federal funding opportunities and that the ultimate goal is to add jobs, lower emissions and improve public health.
“Our partnership will enable the Midwest to lead on electric vehicle adoption, reduce carbon emissions, spur innovation, and create good-paying jobs,” she added.
The governors their first goal is to focus on “interstate and regionally significant commercial corridors.”
Indiana is the only state in the group with a GOP governor.
The effort comes amid congressional efforts to bolster electric vehicle charging. The Senate-passed bipartisan infrastructure bill that’s awaiting a final vote in the House includes $7.5 billion for electric vehicle charging, as well as $5 billion that would be distributed to states to spend on electric vehicle charging.
Author: Nick Sobczyk Published: 10/1/21 E&E DAILY
Senate Energy and Natural Resources Chair Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) at the Capitol yesterday.
Democratic infighting on Capitol Hill this week underscores how difficult it will be to get the biggest climate bill in U.S. history across the finish line.
Climate policy has emerged as one of the toughest challenges in striking a deal on Democrats’ reconciliation package, with a chasm between Energy and Natural Resources Chair Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) and much of the rest of the party.
That divide crystallized yesterday after POLITICO reported a July 28 memo signed by Manchin and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) specifying a $1.5 trillion top line for reconciliation — much lower than House Democrats’ $3.5 trillion package — and the inclusion of natural gas, coal and carbon capture in clean energy tax policies (Greenwire, Sept. 30).
Manchin’s stance is threatening to derail the proposed Clean Electricity Performance Program (CEPP) that would likely be central to meeting President Biden’s emissions goals, frustrating Democrats who see reconciliation as one of the last chances to address climate change before it’s too late.
“It’s not anything that you can really negotiate away,” Select Committee on the Climate Crisis Chair Kathy Castor (D-Fla.) said in an interview yesterday. “We either follow the science, or we condemn ourselves to higher costs and more catastrophes.”
The leaked document, which Manchin confirmed to reporters yesterday, inserted another twist into the ongoing fight in the House over the bipartisan infrastructure bill. It was initially scheduled for a vote yesterday, but progressives planned to sink it without a deal with Manchin and fellow moderate Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) on reconciliation. The vote was delayed after talks that dragged into yesterday evening.
The document includes several climate-related stipulations, namely that Manchin’s committee be charged with writing any clean energy standard and that if clean energy tax breaks are extended, fossil fuel tax benefits should be preserved.
Climate spending, it says, should be “fuel neutral,” and carbon capture and storage should allow natural gas and coal to “feasibly qualify” for energy tax policies. Manchin is also doubling down on his concerns with the CEPP, which he laid out in detail this week during an Energy and Natural Resources hearing (Greenwire, Sept. 28).
“I am just not for giving public companies, who have shareholders, public dollars for free when I know they’re going to be very profitable at the end whatever we do,” Manchin told reporters outside the Capitol yesterday.
“I’d love to have carbon capture, but we don’t have the technology because we really haven’t gotten to that point,” Manchin added. “And it’s so darn expensive that it makes it almost impossible.”
But House Democrats scoffed at the idea that coal and natural gas would get a place in a climate policy, even if some acknowledged a potential role for carbon capture.
“To those of us in the real world, coal and natural gas are not clean. They’re just not,” Rep. Jared Huffman (D-Calif.) told reporters. “So let’s stop pretending, and let’s get real.”
Castor similarly said, “That’s not clean energy,” when asked about the role of natural gas and coal. “You could include carbon capture with guard rails that you’re still meeting the clean energy goals, that you’re reducing carbon pollution and greenhouse gas pollution,” she added.
The House reconciliation bill, as currently written, includes $150 billion for the CEPP, essentially a clean energy standard redesigned to fit the budget process, and billions more for electric vehicles, the grid and a federal green bank.
The CEPP would offer grants to power providers that increase their share of clean generation by 4 percent each year and fine those that do not. The emissions threshold for what qualifies as clean power would be 0.1 metric ton of carbon dioxide equivalent per megawatt-hour, ruling out natural gas and coal without carbon capture.
That structure could change as negotiations with Manchin continue, Rep. Paul Tonko (D-N.Y.), who chairs the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Environment and Climate Change, said this week. “But I want to keep it as strong as possible,” Tonko said.
Sen. Tina Smith (D-Minn.), one of the program’s architects, and other Democratic senators have been lobbying Manchin on the CEPP for weeks. Smith said she and Manchin “continue to have conversations” about the CEPP, but she also warned that negotiations would ultimately have to please all 50 members of the Senate Democratic caucus.
“I just keep reinforcing to everybody that we have to come up with an agreement that 50 senators can agree with, not just one or two,” Smith said yesterday. “I’m looking for strong climate provisions across the board,” she added.
Another key negotiator with Manchin is Finance Chair Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), who is pushing a broad clean energy tax plan that includes a repeal of fossil fuel subsidies. Wyden said yesterday that he and the West Virginia Democrat are “having a number of conversations with respect to energy issues.”
For House progressives, the CEPP and other climate provisions will likely be key to their support for whatever agreement leadership can strike with Manchin and Sinema, but it remains unclear where, exactly, they would draw a line.
For the most part, they’ve left the door open to changes in overall spending, means testing for electric vehicle tax credits and even potentially shortening the duration of funding for some programs to bring down the top line.
“I’ve got to get the things that are critical for clean energy and climate, and there can’t be funny business,” Huffman said.
In the Senate, Manchin’s colleagues have refrained from chiding him publicly as negotiations continue. That’s not to mention Sinema, who has been more publicly opaque about her negotiating position and who issued a statement yesterday saying she would “not support a bill costing $3.5 trillion.”
But Sen. Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.), a member of ENR who has been pushing for the CEPP, quoted a 2009 op-ed by the late West Virginia Democratic Sen. Robert Byrd in a tweet yesterday.
“To be part of any solution, one must first acknowledge a problem. To deny the mounting science of climate change is to stick our heads in the sand and say deal me out,” Byrd wrote as lawmakers debated the Waxman-Markey cap-and-trade bill. “West Virginia would be much smarter to stay at the table.”
Byrd, Heinrich said, “was onto something.”
Reporters Geof Koss and George Cahlink contributed.
Author: SETO Staff Published: 9/28/21 SETO
Author: FDA Staff Published: 9/27/21 The Foundation for Democracy in Africa
Author: James Wright Published: 99/27/21 WI
D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser announced Monday that the city’s ticket amnesty program has been extended to Dec. 31.
Bowser said the program, which was set to end Thursday, allows motorists to pay, without penalty, any outstanding tickets for parking, photo enforcement and minor moving violations.
“As the District continues to recover from the pandemic, we know this is a program that is helping residents — many who have had to make difficult decisions — get a fresh start and get back on track,” the mayor said. “Whether it’s the Ticket Amnesty Program or STAY DC, we are encouraging all residents in need of financial assistance to apply for these programs today.”
D.C. Deputy Mayor of Operations and Infrastructure Lucinda Babers said under the program, tickets owed “since the beginning of time” can be paid. Plus, eligible drivers only have to pay original ticket amounts, with any penalties waived.
However, starting on Jan. 1, penalties for late payments will be reinstated.
Since the program’s launch on June 1, more than 32,000 drivers have settled $4 million worth of tickets. Residents and non-residents facing financial hardship can contact the Office of the Chief Financial Officer’s Central Collection Unit for payment options.
Author: Emma Newburger Published: 9/27/21 CNBC
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Michael Regan testifies before a Senate Appropriations Committee Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies Subcommittee hearing on the EPA’s budget request on Capitol Hill in Washington, June 9, 2021.
The Environmental Protection Agency is sharply curbing the use and production of hydrofluorocarbons, the climate-warming chemicals widely used in air-conditioning and refrigeration.
The move is the Biden administration’s first major regulatory action to reduce domestic greenhouse gas emissions. It’s also the first time the federal government has set national standards on hydrofluorocarbons, or HFCs, which are thousands of times more potent than carbon dioxide at heating up the planet. The EPA said the rule could avoid up to 0.5 degrees Celsius of global warming by the end of the century.
The agency’s rule is expected to reduce the equivalent of 4.7 billion metric tons of carbon dioxide by mid-century, or roughly three years’ worth of emissions from the country’s power sector at 2019 levels, according to estimates from the EPA.
Such a reduction would help the Biden administration’s pledge to curb U.S. emissions by in half by 2030 and reach a net-zero economy by 2050. The president issued an executive order in January that requested Congress to ratify the 2016 Kigali Amendment to the 1987 Montreal Protocol, which aims for the phase-down of HFCs.
White House climate adviser Gina McCarthy on Wednesday called the agency’s rule a victory for combatting climate change and securing U.S. jobs.
“As we move in this direction, we are also opening up a huge opportunity for American industries,” McCarthy said during the briefing. “Reducing HFCs is a huge climate success story.”
Some U.S. manufacturers have already moved to more climate-friendly refrigerants, and some major chemical companies have supported the EPA’s proposal to phase down HFCs, including The Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute, a trade group that represents manufacturers of heating and cooling equipment.
EPA Administrator Michael Regan said the new limits will help the country transition to more energy-efficient cooling technologies while creating new jobs.
“This action reaffirms what President Biden always says: When he thinks about climate, he thinks about jobs,” Regan said during the briefing. “His administration knows that what’s good for the environment is good for the economy.”
Author: Laura Davison, Ari Natter and Jennifer A Douhy Published: 9/24/21 Bloomberg
“It’s projected that making polluters pay — when combined with clean energy tax credits — would lower the cost of clean electricity for Americans,” Senate Finance Committee Chairman Ron Wyden said in a statement to Bloomberg News Friday. “I’ve worked on this for years, and have continued to develop the proposal as part of my menu of options for the caucus.”
A “substantial portion” of the revenue generated from a carbon tax would be disbursed to Americans in the form of cash payments, Wyden said. That could help increase public support for the tax, but would also mean less money to offset the cost of the up-to-$3.5 trillion so-called reconciliation bill.
That bill, incorporating the bulk of President Joe Biden’s long-term economic agenda, includes overhauling climate investment and directing money into health and education programs. Negotiations on are ongoing on Capitol Hill.
The New York Times earlier reported Wyden’s plans to pursue a carbon tax.
Momentum for such a levy is growing as a way to address climate change. And economists have long favored a carbon tax as a straightforward approach to putting a price on the greenhouse-gas emissions.
Advocates say it would encourage companies and consumers to pollute less. The American Petroleum Institute, the oil-industry trade group that counts Exxon Mobil Corp. among its members, and the Chamber of Commerce have both endorsed a price on carbon, which could take the form of a levy.
But industry supporters generally want the carbon tax imposed as a substitute for existing regulations on greenhouse gases — a tradeoff that is unlikely to be part of the plan Democrats are assembling.
Though several Senate supporters have been eyeing the reconciliation bill as a potential pathway for the tax measure for more than a year, it’s gained momentum over the last several weeks, according to a person familiar with negotiations on the issue. The tax is appealing because of its role as a potential revenue-raiser, but lawmakers are also working to ensure that a significant chunk of the proceeds goes back to middle- and low-income families.
A carbon tax could draw more support as a way to replace other revenue raisers, assuage moderates’ concerns about the size of the package and give the Biden administration tangible proof of robust U.S. plans to slash greenhouse-gas emissions before a critical UN summit in five weeks.
Still, a tax that could increase the costs of driving, flying and consumer goods is likely to face stiff political resistance from some quarters, and Republicans previously have voted against the concept of placing a tax on carbon dioxide. Some moderate Republicans, including Lisa Murkowski of Alaska and Mitt Romney of Utah have signaled they are receptive to the idea.
GOP opposition wouldn’t be able to nix the proposal, because Democrats aim to pass the tax-and-spending bill on a party-line vote. Still, Democrats have tight majorities in both chambers, meaning that they need nearly every member in the House and all 50 caucus members in the Senate to support the legislation.
Senator Joe Manchin, a moderate Democrat who represents coal-reliant West Virginia, would be a key consideration in the drafting of a carbon tax. Manchin has been non-committal on the issue, but voted with members of his party on a messaging amendment earlier this year in support of such a tax.
Supporters argue that a domestic carbon tax would have to be paired with a levy on imports — known as a carbon border adjustment tax — to protect U.S. workers in energy-intensive industries and to ensure that companies don’t shift manufacturing out of the U.S. to nations with lax environmental regimes.
National Climate Advisor Gina McCarthy Bloomberg in July that while “it’s not off the table,” there are strategies other than a carbon border adjustment tax that may be more beneficial. Even so, U.S. Special Presidential Envoy for Climate John Kerry on Wednesday dangled the prospect of a tariff on carbon-intensive imports if other nations don’t limit their emissions and reliance on coal-fired power to fuel cheap manufacturing.
Author: DC Gov. Staff Published: 9/27/21 WI
Author: Austin R. Cooper, Jr. Editor Published: 9/27/21 Word In Black WI