This week’s unprecedented attack on Members of Congress at their charity baseball practice laid low one of the most well liked members, House Majority Whip Steve Scalise. He still is in critical condition undergoing additional surgery but is expected to fully recover. During his recovery, it is clear he will certainly be missed, because no matter your political viewpoint, his positive approach and personality makes it hard not to like and listen to him. In his role as Whip, he is charged with keeping his side of the aisle in line and gathering votes necessary to pass the agenda. Yet, he always seems to do his work as a gentleman and with his Southern charm.
One commentator recalled a story this week that exemplified his winning approach. At a tense Energy and Commerce hearing a few years back, Scalise and fellow Louisianan Lisa Jackson, then the head of the EPA, traded warm words before Scalise went on to interrogate her about EPA’s regulations harming the oil producers he represents. But the commentator also went on to share that Scalise also cared deeply about his state, recalling the Congressman holding up a photo of an oil-soaked pelican during the BP spill hearings.
Much of what he has been working on as his personal versus leadership agenda are the regulatory overreach actions by the previous administration. Much of the regulations on his agenda are being addressed by the new Administration and through Congressional Review Act (CRA) action by Congress which he helps lead. He has already made a huge difference for his state and its principal industry. He should be very proud of his accomplishments, and those of us who know his work, wish him a speedy recovery and quick return to the Congress.
Here is a recent photo courtesy of Bloomberg of Congressman Scalise taking Members of Congress on a Congressional Tour offshore Louisiana.
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ENERGY POLICY NEWS
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ENERGY TAX NEWS
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RENEWABLE ENERGY NEWS
FROM THE CHART ROOM
Wind And Solar In March Accounted For 10% Of U.S. Electricity Generation For First Time
For the first time, monthly electricity generation from wind and solar (including utility-scale plants and small-scale systems) exceeded 10% of total electricity generation in the United States, based on March data in EIA’s Electric Power Monthly. Electricity generation from both of these energy sources has grown with increases in wind and solar generating capacity. On an annual basis, wind and solar made up 7% of total U.S. electric generation in 2016.
Electricity generation from wind and solar follows seasonal patterns that reflect the seasonal availability of wind and sunshine. Within the United States, wind patterns vary based on geography. For example, wind-powered generating units in Texas, Oklahoma, and nearby states often have their highest output in spring months, while wind-powered generators in California are more likely to have their highest output in summer months. Monthly solar output is highest in the summer months, regardless of location, because of the greater number of daylight hours. About half of all utility-scale solar power plants in the United States use some form of sun-tracking technology to improve their seasonal output. Based on seasonal patterns in recent years, electricity generation from wind and solar will probably exceed 10% of total U.S. generation again in April 2017, then fall to less than 10% in the summer months. Since 2014, when EIA first began estimating monthly, state-level electricity generation from small-scale solar photovoltaic systems, combined wind and solar generation has reached its highest level in either the spring or fall. Because these seasons are times of generally low electricity demand, combined wind and solar generation also reached its highest share of the U.S. total during these times of year.
Based on annual data for 2016, Texas accounted for the largest total amount of wind and solar electricity generation. Nearly all of this generation was from wind, as Texas generates more wind energy than any other state. As a share of the state’s total electricity generation, wind and solar output was highest in Iowa, where wind and solar made up 37% of electricity generation in 2016. In addition to Iowa, wind and solar provided at least 20% of 2016 electricity generation in six other states. In almost all states, wind makes up a larger share of the state’s total electricity generation than solar. Among the top dozen states, only California and Arizona had more solar generation than wind in 2016. Three states in the top 12—Iowa, Kansas, and North Dakota—had no generation from utility-scale solar plants in 2016 and relatively little output from small-scale solar photovoltaic systems.
For more information, visit the EIA website.
Michael Best Strategies’ Energy Team
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