Jennifer Granholm, former governor of the auto-manufacturing mecca in Michigan, became the United States secretary of energy on February 25. Granholm now oversees a revamped agency that includes energy-justice advocate Shalanda Baker in a key role and other clean-energy doers in high places. Is this a downpayment on President Joe Biden's promise to reach carbon-neutral electricity in 14 years? It just might be, and Biden's White House team reinforces the idea.
For four years, federal stimulus and standards pushed money backward toward fossil fuels. Since January, a new president whose party controls Congress has signaled that federal capital will rush toward the sector. But Congressional lawmaking support looks breakable. What can a clean-energy leader expect and do?
Look behind the dominant curve, on which solar power becomes cheaper to supply while corporate commitments, voters' priorities and scientific data goose demand for solar. You'll see that too many people find themselves locked out of the solar market or barred from influencing its direction. Two speakers challenged Yale audiences to expand the curve's cone of inclusion.
Our partners at the Yale Program on Climate Change Communication and George Mason University turn up more evidence that American voters demand forward motion on carbon reduction. Their new voter survey finds two-thirds of respondents convinced that legislators should prioritize investment in fossil-free energy.
Our current energy system does not distribute power equally. Just as power generation has been centralized in our energy system, power and influence have been centralized in our political system. This frequently leaves behind or leaves out the insight and needs of people of color, poor people, and indigenous people in key situations. One needs only to recall how Hurricane Maria left so many US citizens in Puerto Rico without power for nearly a year. How can we rethink our current energy system to enable reliable, locally produced, and locally controlled energy? How can we do this without replicating the current structures of power and control, but in service of humanity to those most vulnerable? Hear from Revolutionary Power: An Activist's Guide to the Energy Transition author Shalanda Baker as she discusses her playbook for the energy transformation. She has crafted a step-by-step analysis of the key energy policy areas that are ripe for intervention. Baker tells the stories of those who have been left behind in our current system and those who are working to be architects of a more just system. She draws from her experience as an energy-justice advocate, a lawyer, and a queer woman of color...
Energy without emissions causes more job creation and less climate risks. To expand across the recovering nation, energy needs to come with priorities, prices and placements that emphasize justice for people who have lived with systematic racism. In this summary and exploration, scholar Dan Kammen lays out the case for a justice-driven recovery. CBEY will explore this case more fully with Shalanda Baker and other scholars later this month.
Equinor Strategy Summit, Norway, 2019 – Executives of Equinor (formerly known as Statoil) were holed up in a room drinking hot chocolate after a day of skiing. Strategy staff members presented them with a list of unidentified companies (“Company 1,” “Company 2,” “Company 3”) along with historical and projected returns. One had 10% return ambitions; another roughly the same, etc. The executives were asked: Which companies do you think these are? Shell? Ørsted? Exxon? What happened next remains a mystery; but, according to Michael Wheeler, Equinor’s Principal of Corporate Strategy, who told the tale at a conference last year, the...