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 OurEnergyPolicy and Young Professionals in Energy will be hosting a happy hour on November 5, 6-8 p.m. RSVP and see details on our events page and in the events section below.
Comment in Our Current Discussions!
October Discussion
This is the fourth week of our October discussion on Dr. Ernest Moniz's " Green Real Deal ." Join the conversation by first creating an account or logging in and then posting a comment in the discussion .

We are discussing not only the five principles but the eight elements that the Energy Futures Initiative says are in need of more analysis for a pragmatic response to climate change (see the outer ring in the chart to the right). These elements are where the Green Real Deal becomes more pragmatic. See more details in the framework document .

Featured comments below:
A Framework for Achieving a Deeply Decarbonized Economy, The Green Real Deal, p. 8 .
"As you mention, work is being done at the state and city level. Those changes depend on the state legislatures’ willingness to move against corporate interests.... One of the best and easiest ways to deal with those national/international corporation issues is through the investment community, and that is finally happening...."
- Jane Twitmyer , CACW|Watts
" Ernie’s ‘ Mission Innovation ,” which focused on technological progress and which the United States has the potential to be the world leader deserves mention. When I look at the energy and climate change landscape, I see three roles for public policy: taxation, regulation and innovation." - Mike Lubell , City University of New York
"One the best recommendations in the EFI report that is implementable by government is to dramatically change the Department of Energy since it may not be capable of managing such changes. "
- Andrew Kadak , Kadak Associates, Inc.
"A wise and just transition to a low-carbon economy, moving as fast as is technically and socially possible, must minimize stranded physical assets as well as stranded workers and communities. Such a plan is based on practicality, not ideology."
 Ernest Moniz , Energy Futures Initiative
"You are right to emphasize the problems with ‘stranded’ jobs. That is a national issue, as are saving retirement funds in bankruptcy cases. Those issues certainly must be dealt with as the industries close down their fossil business.. .." - Jane Twitmyer , Principal, CACW|Watts
Correction: Brian Gallagher was quoted last week with an incorrect title. He is Managing Director, Econtonics LLC.
This is our featured discussion for the month of October. Read more about the change to the frequency of our discussions and other updates in our October 2 newsletter .
Ongoing Congressional Discussion
The U.S. House of Representatives Select Committee on the Climate Crisis is requesting information around policies that Congress should adopt to solve the climate crisis and adapt to the impacts of climate change. OurEnergyPolicy staff will provide responses from this discussion to the committee. Here is what OEP experts are saying so far:
1. What policies should Congress adopt to decarbonize the electricity sector, consistent with meeting or exceeding net-zero emissions by med-century?
"Eminent domain for underground transmission lines .... Lots of studies show how much cheaper the transition to renewables will be with a stronger transmission system spreading intermittency across wide geographic areas. "  Troy Helming , PCDO, Arcbyt
James lists these and 6 other action items.
"Some form of the following needs to be initiated as soon as possible:"
S top building any new fossil fuel plants; building new gas plants locks us in to gas for a generation....
– Stop closing existing nuclear power plants that have been relicensed as safe by the NRC.... every time we close nuclear carbon emissions go up because they are replaced by gas, not renewables.
– Build as many wind turbines as possible and site them along Tornado Alley first, where they produce the most power...."
 James Conca , UFA Ventures, Inc.
"The only affordable option to reduce greenhouse releases is a carbon tax. The only politically viable carbon tax is one with a full rebate to every American citizen...." Charles Forsberg , MIT
2. If you recommend a Clean Energy Standard, how should it be designed?
"Y es, recommended with a steady scale-up of mandatory clean energy % of retail kWh sales, but allow energy to be produced outside each state to meet the demand (further stimulating the economics to upgrade the nation’s transmission grid). Allow the market to select the zero-carbon sources (including nuclear) and assign an increasing carbon tax on any generation sources that emit carbon. Use that tax to pay down the national debt."  Troy Helming , Arcbyt
3. How could policies to decarbonize the electricity sector complement a carbon pricing program?

No comments respond to this question so far! Log in to comment and read the discussion prompt for context.
4. How can Congress expedite the permitting and siting of high-voltage interstate transmission lines to carry renewable energy to load centers?
"The Natural Gas Act has made it far less risky to underground NG pipeline infrastructure, by paying property owners a FMV for their subsurface rights. Doing the same for electricity transmission would open up large buckets of capital to underground transmission lines...." Troy Helming , Arcbyt
"I understand that some renewable energy advocates are pushing for changes to liberalize building transmission lines. I would like to disagree.... The National Gas Act is not a good template for new transmission rules. It is in need of major change itself.... "
- Jane Twitmyer , CACW|Watts
Upcoming November Discussion: Critical Minerals
The United States is 75-100% reliant on 24 of the 35 critical minerals designated in a 2018 Department of Interior report , many of which are essential inputs to lithium ion batteries, solar modules, wind turbines, and other clean energy technologies. What are the implications for national security and geopolitical dynamics?

This will be the focus of our upcoming November discussion, which starts next week.
New Publications
 Smart Electric Power Alliance
October 16, 2019
Congressional Research Service
October 9, 2019
Find these new publications and others in the OurEnergyLibrary.
Podcast Spotlight

Colorado, a long-time hub of hiking and skiing, has become the unexpected hub of clean energy commitments. In a swing state often divided over political issues, what makes renewable energy so popular?

For this episode of the  Voices of 100%  series of the  Local Energy Rules Podcast , host John Farrell speaks with Lissa Ray and Monique DiGiorgio about Durango, Colorado’s recent commitment to 100% renewable electricity by 2050. Ray, a climate activist, organized the residents of Durango as the point person for the Sierra Club. DiGiorgio, Managing Director of Local First in La Plata County, rallied local businesses for the cause. Farrell asks the two for lessons learned through their work on Durango’s Ready for 100 campaign, the benefits of making the commitment in rural Colorado, and advice for other organizers looking to do the same.

Listen to the full episode to learn what cities served by rural electric cooperatives can do to strengthen democracy in their community, and explore more highlights and resources, below—including a transcript and summary of the conversation.
Update from Congress

New Legislation

Source: Energy Futures Initiative, The Green Real Deal: A Framework for Achieving a Deeply Decarbonized Economy , 2019, p. 13, compiled using data from the California Independent System Operator.

A detailed review of California's regional attributes found that managing the state’s electric grid even at current levels of intermittent renewables is challenging. In 2017, there were long stretches (between 510 days) of little to no wind generation. Solar production averaged 1.7 TWh in January but reached 3.2 TWh in June, reflecting significant seasonal variation. Wind follows the same seasonal variation. Current energy storage technologies are inadequate to address these weather-related phenomena and cost-effective long-duration storage does not currently exist.
Featured Events
This Week
  • When: Wed, Oct 30, 9-10 a.m.
  • Where: Center for Strategic & International Studies, 1616 Rhode Island Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20036
Our readers in the Washington, D.C. area are invited to join OurEnergyPolicy and Young Professionals in Energy DC for a fall happy hour at Hawk ‘n’ Dove (329 Pennsylvania Avenue Southeast, Washington, D.C. 20003) on November 5, 6–8 p.m. App etizers will be provided and there will be a cash bar. We look forward to seeing you there! Please RSVP via the Eventbrite page.
Anaheim, CA
  • When: Tues-Thurs, Nov 19-21
  • Where: Anaheim Convention Center, 800 W Katella Ave, Anaheim, CA 92802
  • Special Offer: We have a special offer on the ticket price from our partner, the American Energy Society. If you are interested, please contact

To see more upcoming energy events across the country, visit the OEP Events Calendar .
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