Rob Cowin

Director of gov't affairs, Climate & Energy

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Rob Cowin creates and implements legislative campaigns to support UCS efforts on clean energy, global warming, and nuclear safety issues. See Rob's full bio.

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Photo: Leaflet/Wikimedia Commons

Congress Must Lead with National Energy Standards to Save the Climate

It’s well past time for a national standard for low-carbon electricity.  In order to avoid the worst impacts of climate change we must rapidly decarbonize our power sector while rapidly electrifying as much of the transportation, industry, and buildings sectors as possible.  That means adding a lot more carbon-free electricity generation as quickly as possible, and renewables are by far our cheapest option.  A national standard for low-carbon electricity is our best opportunity to accelerate clean energy deployment without costs to ratepayers or taxpayers.

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Photo: Leaflet/Wikimedia Commons
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Three Climate Priorities the New Congress Can Actually Deliver On

What can actually get done right now? Read more >

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Photo: Hancock County Wind Center

McNamee on FERC Harmful to Kansas and Iowa Wind Industries and Rate-Payers

There’s a little known independent federal agency whose decisions could have big impacts on states like Kansas and Iowa.  It’s called the Federal Electricity Regulatory Commission (FERC).  FERC makes decisions that affect electric power markets and approval (or rejection) of applications to build interstate electric transmission lines that are essential for the continued growth of the thriving wind industries in these states.  But the independence of this agency is being threatened by the Trump Administration with the potential confirmation of Bernard McNamee for FERC Commissioner; a Trump politico who has no regulatory experience or experience in the electric utility industry and is an avowed critic of wind power and renewables.

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Photo: Hancock County Wind Center
Photo: Drenaline/Wikimedia Commons
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Forget the Trump Bailout—Here’s a Real Solution for Nuclear and the Climate

The Trump Administration’s proposal is a bad idea predicated on a made-up problem. Here’s a better approach. Read more >

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Energy storage experts from across the country meet with UCS staff to discuss the role of the federal government in supporting energy storage. Photo: UCS

Energy Storage Should Be an Urgent National Priority

Imagine if the US had these three things: access to unlimited electricity from clean sources everywhere in the country, an electricity grid impervious to outages and electricity prices that were even cheaper than they are today.  These aspirations can become reality with advancements in energy storage.

This technology was developed right here in the good ole’ US of A, but unfortunately, the US is now falling behind other countries in this increasingly lucrative global market, and our outdated electric grid is growing more vulnerable to increasing threats like cyber-attacks and extreme weather.  So how do we regain our leadership in this critical technology, and how can we increase the development and deployment of energy storage here at home?  The answer is innovation.

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Photo: UCS
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