This Week in Energy
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New Webinar
Webinar Recording
Watch last week's webinar on-demand: Energy Challenges and Priorities Facing the States. We're glad that John Rhodes (NYSERDA) & Kyle Kimball (ConEdison) were able to join us for a great discussion! Also see Twitter thread covering the event.
Ongoing Discussion
By Dr. Anna Broughel (Tetra Tech)
and Dr. Dawud Ansari (DIW Berlin)
"Texas’ freeze and the consequent human suffering have left the country in shock. While the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) has announced its return to normal operations, the nation, and its experts are busy assessing the damage, looking for perpetrators, and finding ways to move forward. The blackouts and the price spikes have exposed systemic vulnerabilities in Texas’ current energy system & its unpreparedness to respond to adverse weather conditions.

Pundits have been quick to throw blame at individual technologies (renewables, thermal power plants, or nuclear power), players (power plant owners, ERCOT, policymakers, or the Texas Public Utilities Commission), or market structures (laissez-faire vs. regulated). However, Texas’ power sources across the board failed, and California—a state with a fundamentally different market approach—experienced similar blackouts. Thus, it is not just any one actor that should be held responsible but the energy system as a whole...." Read more.
Read 7 comments from our experts, including the one below:
"Diversity in our mix of energy sources is the most important aspect of avoiding such serious outages as demonstrated in California and Texas. Continuing to discount baseload generation to maximize the use of renewable sources will only make a repeat of such outages more likely...." - Thomas Adams, Executive Director, American Coal Ash Association 
Publications in the OurEnergyLibrary
If you would like to be updated on even more recently added publications, sign up for the OurEnergyLibrary Monthly Digest. See our first edition for an example!
Center for Strategic & International Studies
March 11, 2021
Information Technology & Innovation Foundation
March 8, 2021
Environmental Defense Fund
March 2, 2021
Find these publications and others in the OurEnergyLibrary.
Ongoing Discussion
Comment in our ongoing online discussion on long-duration energy storage, following up from our February 24 webinar.
"The best long-term storage to backup wind and solar is hydrogen. Not only can it be converted back to A.C., but it can be marketed as transportation fuel, and as process fuel. The down side of hydrogen storage is the low efficiency going from electric to hydrogen and back to electric, nevertheless, a Fuel Cell Electric auto can be fueled in a few minutes and can have ranges in excess of 300 miles."
- Michael Fluss, Visiting Scientist, UC Berkeley
"[Hydrogen is] viable for long-term storage, and it certainly does have other uses. But it’s low round-trip efficiency for storage is a serious limitation. If we... were just using hydrogen as a cheap way to meet peak load, the round trip efficiency wouldn’t be a concern. But if most of our energy is going to be coming from wind and solar, the low round trip efficiency with hydrogen is a big deal."
- Roger Arnold, Systems Architect, Silverthorn Engineering
Congressional Update

Featured New Legislation

Thurs, March 11 - Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) - the UNSHACKLE Act, as well as 5 standalone bills to reform the National Environmental Policy Act.

Wed, March 10 - Rep. David B. McKinley (R-WV) - the Carbon Capture Modernization Act (H.R.1761).

Wed, March 3 - Rep. Dusty Johnson (R-SD) - the Adopt GREET Act (H.R.1637).

See more in next week's newsletter.
Ongoing Discussion
OurEnergyPolicy is calling for guiding principles for sound energy policy in an ongoing initiative including last month's webinar. Make your voice heard in our online discussion. Here is one comment from one of our experts:
"...1) Measure change, not where we are. Look for momentum, not position. If wind and solar have been getting cheaper for a decade, act as if they are likely to keep getting cheaper. Use leading, not trailing indicators....
2) Facilitate the compensation of parties who are being stranded using some of the profits of replacing outmoded coal with cheaper wind to help communities that relied on the coal plan keep their schools open. View rapid energy change as a very positive and profitable trend, but also recognize that it creates a risk that will generate backlash, and insure that risk." - Carl Pope, Former Executive Director, Sierra Club
Featured Energy Events
  • When: Wed, March 17, 3:30-5 p.m. Eastern Time

  • When: Mon, March 22, 12-1 p.m. Eastern Time

  • When: Wed, March 24, 12-1 p.m. Eastern Time

  • When: Wed, March 24, 5-6 p.m. Eastern Time
Visit our Events Calendar to see more events from organizations across the country.
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