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Steve Clemmer

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About the author: Steve Clemmer is the director of energy research and an expert on the economic and environmental benefits of implementing renewable energy technologies and policies at the state and national levels. He holds a master’s degree in energy analysis and policy from the University of Wisconsin. See Steve's full bio.

Master Limited Partnerships: Lowering Financing Costs for Renewable Energy Projects

On April 24, Senators Coons (D-DE), Moran (R-KS), Stabenow (D-MI) and Murkowski (R-AK) introduced the Master Limited Partnerships (MLP) Parity Act, a bipartisan bill that would give renewable energy projects access to billions of dollars of lower cost capital that has been available to the fossil fuel industry for decades. Read More

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Renewables are Ramping Up to Notable Levels in the U.S.

UCS has just released a new report that I co-authored called Ramping up Renewables: Energy You Can Count On. It shows that renewable energy is already providing more clean, reliable electricity in the United States and around the world than many people thought possible just a few years ago. It also shows that we have the tools to accommodate considerably more wind and solar in the U.S. electricity system, as well as reach much higher levels in the future. Read More

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PTC Extension Already Making a Big Difference for Wind

Many people expected 2013 to be a slow year for the wind industry as Congress let the federal production tax credit (PTC) expire at the end of 2012 before approving a one-year extension as part of the fiscal cliff deal a few days later. While wind development is unlikely to come anywhere near the record setting 13,124 MW installed in the U.S. in 2012, there are early signs that 2013 could be much better than expected. Read More

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Congress Prevents Wind Industry from Falling Off Cliff

I’m pleased to report that it didn’t take long to achieve one of my new year’s resolutions for Congress – extending the federal tax credits for wind power and other renewable energy sources. The deal to avert the so-called “fiscal cliff” that passed the Senate and the House yesterday, and is expected to be signed by the President, includes an important extension of federal tax credits for wind and other renewable energy projects that begin construction in 2013. This will temporarily help the wind industry from going off its own cliff. Happy New Year indeed! Read More

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Michigan’s Neighbors Show Increasing Renewable Electricity Standard is Affordable

As Michiganders prepare to head to the polls in less than two weeks to cast their vote on Proposal 3, which would increase the state’s renewable electricity standard from 10 percent by 2015 to 25 percent by 2025, the cost of meeting the higher standard is one of the most important issues on their minds. The experience of other states that have adopted similar standards should help dismiss the extreme scenarios that fossil fuel interests are presenting to the public. Read More

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U.S. Renewable Electricity Future Is Within Reach

In June, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) released a groundbreaking new study showing that the United States could generate 80 percent of its electricity from renewable energy by 2050 with commercially available technologies, while meeting electricity demand in every hour of the year and every region of the country. Read More

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EIA’s Analysis of Bingaman Clean Energy Standard Underestimates Role of Renewable Energy

On May 2, the Energy Information Administration (EIA) released a new analysis of The Clean Energy Standard Act of 2012, proposed by Sen. Bingaman (D-NM), which greatly underestimates the potential contribution of renewable energy while making overly optimistic projections for nuclear power. The so-called “clean” energy standard (CES) would require electric utilities to gradually increase their power supply from low- and no-carbon sources from 24 percent in 2015 to 84 percent in 2035. More details on the bill, along with several improvements, are discussed in a separate UCS blog. Read More

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On the Road to Clean Energy in Germany: Lessons for the United States – Part 3

The third stop on our renewable energy tour of Germany was the state of North-Rhine Westphalia— the industrial, steelmaking, and coal mining center of the country—where we learned about the economic and social ramifications of Germany’s transition away from coal to renewable energy, and what lessons might be applied to the U.S. Read More

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