Doug Vine

Projecting and Accelerating U.S. Greenhouse Gas Reductions

Projecting and Accelerating U.S. Greenhouse Gas Reductions

September 2017

Download (PDF)

More than 190 nations representing more than 95 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions offered “nationally determined contributions” (NDCs) to the Paris Agreement reached in December 2015. The NDC submitted by the Obama administration on behalf of the United States is an economy-wide target to reduce net greenhouse gas emissions 26 to 28 percent below 2005 levels by 2025. The Trump administration is now weighing whether to “suspend, revise, or rescind” policies to help meet this goal, and has announced its intent to withdraw from the Paris Agreement. President Trump has also suggested the possibility of “re-entry” under revised terms; one option may be a recalibrated U.S. NDC. Analyses suggest that even with some key climate policies rolled back, U.S. emissions in 2025 could range from 14 percent to 18 percent below 2005 levels. In the absence of additional federal policy, stronger action by states, cities and companies can help reduce emissions further. The brief looks at progress in reducing U.S. emissions, how existing and proposed policies may affect emissions through 2025, and additional steps that can achieve stronger reductions.

Doug Vine
Doug Vine
0

New York State Response to Economic Challenges of the Existing Nuclear Fleet

New York State Response to Economic Challenges of the Existing Nuclear Fleet

August 2017

Download (PDF)

Since late 2012, five power companies retired six nuclear reactors in the United States. Across the country, an additional seven reactors are scheduled to be closed by 2025, including two at the Indian Point Energy Center in Buchanan, New York. If this trend continues or accelerates, there could be serious climate implications. Nuclear power supplies 20 percent of total U.S. electricity production, but it supplies 57 percent of zero-carbon electricity. As all recent U.S. nuclear retirements have led to increased fossil fuel-fired generation, any additional loss of nuclear generating capacity could be expected to increase carbon dioxide emissions. Preserving the existing U.S. nuclear reactor fleet for as long as possible is a critical element in the transition to a low-carbon future.

Doug Vine
0

Emissions Implications of Nuclear Retirements

Emissions Implications of Nuclear Retirements

August 2017

Download (PDF)

Since late 2012, five power companies retired six nuclear reactors in the United States. Across the country, an additional seven reactors are scheduled to be closed by 2025, including two at the Indian Point Energy Center in Buchanan, New York. If this trend continues or accelerates, there could be serious climate implications. Nuclear power supplies 20 percent of total U.S. electricity production, but it supplies 57 percent of zero-carbon electricity. As all recent U.S. nuclear retirements have led to increased fossil fuel-fired generation, any additional loss of nuclear generating capacity could be expected to increase carbon dioxide emissions. Preserving the existing U.S. nuclear reactor fleet for as long as possible is a critical element in the transition to a low-carbon future.

Doug Vine
0

Microgrids: What Every City Should Know

microgrids-cities-cover

Microgrids: What Every City Should Know

June 2017

Download (PDF)

Cities are at the forefront of the national conversation about climate change. Increasingly, elected officials and city residents are finding ways to deploy more clean energy and reduce their carbon footprints. They are also looking for ways to reduce the risks that climate change poses to life and property, both today and into the future. Microgrids can help cities and businesses increase resilience, reduce emissions, and achieve other policy goals such as brownfield redevelopment or smart city implementation. This brief seeks to introduce microgrids as a potential solution to local challenges, describe current financial and legal barriers, and outline the role that local governments can play. A deeper exploration of several of these issues is available in the C2ES report “Microgrid Momentum: Building Efficient, Resilient Power.” 

Key Takeaways

  • Microgrids currently provide a tiny fraction of U.S. electricity, but their capacity is expected to more than double in the next three years.
  • Each microgrid’s unique combination of power source, customer, geography, and market can make financing these projects a challenge.
  • Microgrids offer cities the opportunity to deploy more zero-emission electricity sources.
  • Microgrids can make use of energy that would otherwise be lost.
  • Local governments can support micro grid technologies by setting the policy environment, supporting project development, and participating in development of projects.
Amy Morsch
Doug Vine
0

Microgrid Momentum: Building Efficient, Resilient Power

Microgrid Momentum:
Building Efficient, Resilient Power

March 2017

By Doug Vine, Donna Attanasio, and Ekundayo Shittu

Download (PDF)

Summary

Microgrids are not a traditional or typical infrastructure investment for utilities, nor has the existing electric power industry been structured to facilitate development of microgrids by non-utilities. This research paper seeks to identify financial and legal barriers to the development of microgrids and provide recommendations for overcoming them. 

Key Takeaways

  • Microgrids currently provide a tiny fraction of U.S. electricity, but their capacity is expected to more than double in the next three years.
  • Each microgrid’s unique combination of power source, customer, geography, and market can make financing these projects a challenge.
  • States can play a key role in facilitating microgrid development.
  • A clearer legal framework is needed to define a microgrid, and set forth the rights and obligations of the microgrid owner with respect to its customers and the macrogrid operator.
  • Franchise rights granted to utilities may limit microgrid developers’ access to customers.
  • Linear programming models can help microgrid project developers or energy managers tailor their proposed projects.
  • Greater dialogue among all stakeholders is needed to develop supportive frameworks and policies.

Video

Watch our March 8, 2017 discussion at Geoge Washington University.

 
Donna Attanasio
Doug Vine
Ekundayo Shittu
0

Key Insights for Valuing and Preserving the Benefits of Nuclear Energy

Key Insights for Valuing and Preserving the Benefits of Nuclear Energy

September 2017

Download (PDF)

C2ES held a Solutions Forum in July 2017 in Carmel, Indiana, focusing on challenges facing nuclear energy and various approaches to preserving the existing fleet of generation. Three panels comprising business, government, power market, think tank, and other experts shared their first-hand experiences around the existential crisis facing the U.S. nuclear fleet. Discussions focused on state approaches, federal actions, and overcoming operational and market challenges to nuclear energy. Nearly 50 participants were involved in the event at Midcontinent Independent System Operator (MISO) headquarters.
 

Doug Vine
0

Recommendations for Maryland's Greenhouse Gas Reduction Plan

Recommendations for Maryland's
Greenhouse Gas Reduction Plan

December 2015

By Todd McGarvey, Timothy Markle, and Doug Vine

Download the Brief (PDF)

Amid the more well-known national-level activity, U.S. states are demonstrating serious climate action. In the past 15 years, 18 states have set greenhouse gas emission reduction targets through legislation or executive orders. Efforts in some of these states have faded as proactive governments have been replaced with less climate-friendly administrations. However, eight states (California, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, Oregon, Vermont and Washington) remain committed to their greenhouse gas reduction targets and stand out as leaders. These sub-national efforts (including programs and plans announced by U.S. businesses) are critical to the United States meeting its international climate commitments, as analysis has shown that current and announced federal policies fall around 6 to 9 percent short of its 2025 target.
 

Doug Vine
Timothy Markle
Todd McGarvey
0

Maryland's Post-2020 Greenhouse Gas Reduction Target Setting

Maryland's Post-2020 Greenhouse Gas Reduction Target Setting

November 2015

by Doug Vine

Download the Fact Sheet (PDF)

Maryland’s target to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 25 percent from 2006 levels by 2020 is ambitious and has put it in the company of leading states. As 2020 nears, it
is becoming increasingly clear that Maryland will likely achieve this goal. However, the challenges associated with climate change extend well beyond 2020, and with the target date fast approaching, the question arises of what the state’s post-2020 goals should be.

Doug Vine
0
Syndicate content