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Chris Nelson

Can Solar Catch Up to Wind in South Dakota?

South Dakota is a national leader in the proportion of its electricity mix coming from wind energy. CEFF spoke to South Dakota Public Utilities Commission Vice Chairman Chris Nelson about the status of clean energy in the state. He contends that the rise of wind in the state is traceable to federal incentives and a business-friendly policy landscape, and argues that solar may be better positioned for future growth.
New York skyline

New York City / Daniel Mennerich / CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Data Disclosure and Scenario Analysis: Calls for Action Take Center Stage at Sustainable Investment Forum 2019

A conference convening 450 investment professionals, 40 speakers and more than 30 sponsors, Sustainable Investment Forum 2019 sparked debate and introspection among its attendees. The event focused on the importance of climate resilience, climate-aligned investment and how the financial sector can play its part to ensuring a swift global energy transition.

The Future of Small-Scale Aggregation Deals: New Frameworks and Developments from the Renewable Energy Markets Conference

A panel discussion about new forms of VPPA aggregation formed a focal point for this year’s Renewable Energy Markets conference in San Diego. Now, some companies are taking shares of VPPA projects rather than bilaterally contracting to build one strictly for their own renewable energy demand. The talk explored the ins-and-outs of such deals, and provided some pointers for constructing one.
Smokestacks

Lowell, MA / Curran Kelleher / CC BY 2.0

Startup Opus 12 Pilots Carbon Conversion Technology

What if excess carbon in the atmosphere could be converted to more useful forms? That’s the ultimate goal of carbon conversion companies such as Opus 12, a startup in Berkeley, California. Making stuff out of carbon dioxide could be a trillion-dollar industry by 2030, and it creates an economic incentive to start removing carbon from the atmosphere sooner rather than later, which is a critical piece of most scenarios for limiting global warming to 2 degrees Celsius.
Traffic on a street in Hunan Province, China

Traffic in Changsha, Hunan Province, China / Jakob Montrasio / CC BY 2.0

What Can the United States Learn From China’s Robust EV Development?

Although China’s conventional auto industry has never matched that of nations like Germany, Japan or the United States, the nation has managed to outpace rivals in the production and adoption of electric vehicles (EVs). Last year, the majority of all the world’s electric cars were sold in China. China’s electric vehicle purchases exceeded U.S. sales by 2015 and in 2018, over 1.1 million electric cars were sold in the country.
Greta Thunberg at New York City climate strike

Climate activist Greta Thunberg at New York City's Climate Strike in September 2019. (AP Photo/Eduardo Munoz Alvarez.)

Part V: Building the Low-Carbon Future

The policies explored in this series, taken together and adopted at national scale, would allow the United States to do its part in limiting global warming to 1.5°C. Can it be done? The final installment of “Look to the States” concludes with an outlook and some tools — drawing once more from state-level successes — for putting a decarbonization plan into practice.
Perspectives from State Experts
Photo of Dylan Voorhees

Dylan Voorhees / Photo courtesy of Natural Resources Council of Maine

Maine Prepares for Policy Shift Toward Clean Energy

Maine’s renewable energy landscape is poised for big changes. Legislation passed into law in June establishes greenhouse gas emission reduction targets and an ambitious renewable portfolio standard. In this interview, Dylan Voorhees, climate and clean energy director of the Natural Resources Council of Maine, explains what the new laws mean for the state, and what brought about the shift in policy.
David Campell

Photo courtesy of David Campbell.

Cost-Competitive Renewables Poised to Grow in Deregulated Texas Market

Texas offers an instructive case study for the growth of renewable energy. Most of the state’s electricity is delivered through the deregulated Electric Reliability Council of Texas market. The state has long since surpassed its mandated renewable portfolio standard, so market dynamics dictate the ongoing pace of renewables growth. Nonetheless, Texas is by far the country’s largest wind power generator and is slated to see major growth in solar capacity as well.