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Natural gas and market forces are the largest influence on the retirement of coal-fired power plants, a long-awaited Department of Energy study concluded.
The study, released late Wednesday night, proposes slashing certain regulations, including reducing permitting requirements at coal-fired power plants, to make it easier for nuclear and coal plants to keep operating.
While the study does not issue an all-out attack on renewable energy, as many advocates feared following Secretary Rick Perry's aggressive April memo ordering the study, it downplays renewables' reliability benefits to the grid and suggests price changes to wind and solar. A draft of the study from DOE staff, leaked earlier this month, concluded that renewable energy is not a threat to grid reliability.
In response, Janet Redman, U.S. policy director at Oil Change International, released the following statement:
"The Department of Energy's grid study does little more than reveal the Trump administration's pro-fossil fuel bias and anti-regulation agenda.
"Trump and his dirty DOE refuse to face the facts—thanks to growth in renewable energy and efficiency, America's demand for electricity is flatlining, and clean energy options like solar and wind power are outperforming dirty energy like coal. Yet, this study ignores those facts and calls for fast-tracking coal-fired power plants, fracked gas pipelines and other dirty projects that would lock in climate pollution for decades. The DOE needs to pull its head out of the sand.
"Instead of embracing the clean energy future that Americans want, the Trump administration is looking backwards. Propping up a dirty energy system of the past at the expense of renewables makes the nation's energy grid more polluting and American families less secure."
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With more than half the global population under some form of lockdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic, sustainable habits can easily fall by the wayside. But we can still fight off the virus and keep our green habits.
The global coronavirus pandemic has thrown our daily routine into disarray. Billions are housebound, social contact is off-limits and an invisible virus makes up look at the outside world with suspicion. No surprise, then, that sustainability and the climate movement aren't exactly a priority for many these days.
We don't have to abandon our green habits during the crisis, but some might have to be adapted for the foreseeable future as we continue to learn about COVID-19 and how this new disease spreads.
By Derrick Z. Jackson
As much as hurricanes Katrina and Maria upended African American and Latinx families, the landfall of the coronavirus brings a gale of another order. This Category 5 of infectious disease packs the power to level communities already battered from environmental, economic, and health injustice. If response and relief efforts fail to adequately factor in existing disparities, the current pandemic threatens a knockout punch to the American Dream.
'We Need People's Bailout, Not Polluters' Bailout': Climate Groups Move to Preempt Big Oil Giveaway Amid Pandemic
By Andrea Germanos
A coalition of climate organizations strongly criticized President Donald Trump's in-person Friday meeting with the chief executives of some of the biggest fossil fuel companies in the world, saying the industry that fueled climate disaster must not be allowed to profiteer from government giveaways by getting bailout funds or preferred treatment during the coronavirus pandemic.