Biden Climate Agenda Now Hinges on Rules Exposed
Natter and Jennifer
A Dlouhy December 19, 2021
President Joe Biden will need to rely far more on regulation to meet
his promise to cut greenhouse gas emissions in half by 2030, after his
roughly $2 trillion economic plan and its crucial climate provisions
suffered a potentially fatal setback in Congress.
tax-and-spending bill rejected Sunday by West Virginia Democratic
Senator Joe Manchin included a record $550 billion for climate
measures, including a slew of tax credits for clean energy generators,
the nuclear power industry and the makers of electric vehicles. As
passed by the House, the Build Back Better bill included a first-time
fee on the emission of methane from oil and gas operators.
a big setback,” Kevin Book, managing director of research firm
ClearView Energy Partners, said of the bill’s likely failure in an
2022 Is a Year to Call Out Greenwashing in China
Europe’s Energy Prices Soar as a Deep Freeze Arrives
may still be possible for Biden to fulfill the U.S. pledge to pare
greenhouse gas emissions 50% to 52% by the end of the decade without
the legislation -- but it won’t be easy and it will require a rapid,
aggressive ramp up in federal regulation targeting greenhouse gas
emissions from every sector of the economy. And even then, regulations
can be challenged in court or rolled back by succeeding
Book’s group, in a research note Sunday, said it would “not yet bet
against” legislation being passed to provide long-term green power tax
credit extensions though they may be reduced in duration and scope.
Still, the Washington-based group said the White House was likely to
respond by utilizing other means to accelerate a green transition
including regulations and “federal government ‘superpowers’” that
include closing federal lands to drilling, export finance and
government procurement of clean energy as well as financial
requirements for disclosure and insurance.
Biden administration is already moving to impose more stringent limits
on car and truck emissions, cap methane leaks from oil wells and clamp
down on greenhouse gases from power plants. It is also developing a
slew of new efficiency standards that would limit energy usage for
common household appliances.
Read more: Green Stocks Drop on Rejection of U.S. Bill With Record
world’s biggest solar module maker, Longi Green Energy Technology Co.,
fell as much as 2.3% Monday in Shanghai, while Trina Solar Co. tumbled
6.1%. Japanese solar cell equipment producer NPC Inc., which gets
about 23% revenue from the U.S., slipped as much as 3.7%, and Korean
solar manufacturer Hanwha Solutions Corp. dropped 1.9%.
bipartisan infrastructure bill signed into law earlier this year
included billions for climate. But not nearly on the scale in the
Build Back Better act that Democrats were hoping to pass through a
procedure that avoids a filibuster but requires the support of the
passed by the House in November, the Build Back Better bill would have
barred oil drilling in most U.S. waters and Alaska’s Arctic National
Wildlife Refuge, but analysts said the most impactful climate measure
was some roughly $300 billion to expand tax credits for renewable
power, biofuels, energy efficiency and electric vehicles. The bill
also included an increase in tax credits for power plants and other
facilities that employ carbon capture technologies, and new tax
credits for energy storage, transmission projects and hydrogen
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highlights: an expansion of a $7,500 tax credit for consumers who
purchase electric vehicles, along with a $4,500 bonus for cars made
from unionized domestic plants that was seen benefiting Ford
Motor Co. and General
Motors Co., and nearly $6 billion for the U.S. Postal
Service purchase of electric mail trucks and charging infrastructure,
a move traders have seen as positive for Loveland, Ohio-based electric
vehicle manufacturer Workhorse
Representative Sean Casten, a Democrat from Illinois, lamented on
Sunday opposition to the bill in the evenly divided Senate by all the
Republicans and Manchin. He called them “51 senators who don’t give a
damn about climate, even as climate-fueled disasters are costing the
U.S. ~$2 billion in damages every single week we delay action.”
Vows to Fight
Supporters vowed to continue the fight. Senate Finance Chairman Ron
Wyden in a statement floated the idea of a package focused on child
tax credits and renewable energy incentives along with provisions to
lower healthcare and prescription drug costs.
“Failure is not an option here,” Wyden said. “This is our last chance
to prevent the most catastrophic effects of the climate
crisis.”Renewable energy companies that had been counting on long-term
extensions of the tax credits also pledged to keep pressing.
is not over,” Gregory Wetstone, president of the American Council on
Renewable Energy, said in a statement Sunday. “We will be working with
Congress to find a way forward and deliver the clean energy future
Americans want and deserve. Failure is not an option.”
Likewise, Erin Duncan, vice president of congressional affairs at the Solar
Energy Industries Association, said “this is not the end of
“There have been many twists and turns in this legislation,” Duncan
said in a statement. “We will continue to advocate aggressively for
policies that deliver jobs and clean energy to every state across
With assistance by Brian Eckhouse, Will Wade, Luz Ding, and Dan
EVs to Account for 30% of China Market Next Year, Lotus
December 14, 2021, 10:58 PM PST
More intelligent features will help drive
sales, Feng says
Automaker aims to complete latest
fundraising by March
Electric vehicles will grab a larger share of China’s auto market
next year as carmakers add more intelligent features, according to
Group Lotus Chief Executive Officer Feng Qingfeng.
will be the brightest spot in China’s auto market next year and likely
account for 30% of new auto sales or higher,” Feng said in an
interview in Beijing Wednesday. “Another explosive driving force is
that the intelligence level of EVs will see great advancement next
year -- understanding consumers better and being able to make more
Tech, which develops cars for the Lotus brand, is tapping the
potential for sports cars in the world’s biggest auto market against a
small pool of competitors including Porsche
Automobil Holding SE and BMW
AG. New energy vehicles, which include plug-in hybrids and
electric cars, accounted for just under 13% of China’s auto market in
the first 11 months of this year.
all-electric Lotus Evija hyperecar.
2022 Is a Year to Call Out Greenwashing in China
Europe’s Energy Prices Soar as a Deep Freeze Arrives
Tech, which began building its global headquarters in the Chinese city
of Wuhan in August, has completed construction of its plant in the
city, with mass production slated to start at the end of 2022, Feng
The company has been working on
preliminary plans for an initial public offering in the U.S. or Hong
Kong as soon as 2023. It aims to complete its latest funding round of
between $400 million to $500 million by March, valuing the company at
between $5 billion to $6 billion, Feng said.
Lotus is part of the auto empire of Li Shufu, who founded Zhejiang
Geely Holding Group Co. and has long held ambitions of
developing top-end sports cars. The unit plays an important role in
the group, which offers diverse products ranging from affordable
mass-market vehicles to the ultra-luxury racing cars made by Lotus.
Building on Chinese drivers’ appetite for high-performance sports
cars, half of Lotus’s sales may come from China in five years, when
annual global deliveries are forecast to reach about 120,000 to
150,000 units a year, Feng said earlier.
With assistance by Ying Tian
Energy & Science
The World Is Burning the Most Coal Ever to Keep The Lights On
December 16, 2021
world likely will generate more electricity from the dirtiest source
this year than ever before, indicating just how far the energy
transition still needs to run in the fight against climate change.
Coal-fueled generation is set to jump 9% from last year, according to
Energy Agency report released Friday. That U-turn from the
declines of the previous two years threatens the world’s trajectory to
reach net-zero emissions by 2050, the organization said.
U.S. and European Union had the biggest increases in coal use at about
20% each, followed by India at 12% and China -- the world’s largest
consumer -- at 9%, the IEA estimated. The comeback is being driven by
economic recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic, which is outpacing the
ability of low-carbon energy sources to maintain supply.
is the single largest source of global carbon emissions, and this
year’s historically high level of coal power generation is a worrying
sign of how far off track the world is in its efforts to put emissions
into decline toward net zero,” IEA Executive Director Fatih Birol
Record natural gas prices have increased reliance on other sources,
including coal, and amplified calls for faster investments in
renewables. Power prices in Europe have more than tripled in the past
six months, and it’s become more profitable to burn coal than gas.
Still, utilities have struggled to get their hands on it even as China
and the U.S. boost
Carbon-dioxide emissions from coal in 2024 are now predicted to be at
least 3 billion tons higher than in a scenario reaching net-zero by
2050, the report said. The IEA expects peak coal to occur next year at
8.11 billion tons, with the biggest production increases coming from
China, Russia and Pakistan.
is increasing its vast coal use as other regions reduce it
Source: IEA Coal 2021 report
Paris-based IEA said in May that development of new oil, gas and coal
sources must stop this year if the world is to meet emissions targets
in line with the Paris Agreement. Climate campaigners were dismayed in
November when a key aspiration of the United Nations’ COP26 climate
summit in Scotland was watered
down to produce a pledge to “phase down” -- rather than
“phase out” -- coal use. U.S. President Joe Biden’s administration
since has halted federal
aid to new fossil-fuel projects abroad.
banks have pledged to
phase out their financing of coal, though activists want to see
greater urgency. This year, coal demand as a whole -- for power
generation as well as cement and steel production -- is set to rise by
6%, the IEA said.
demand could set a record next year, depending on economic growth and
weather patterns, the agency said. One Australian exporter predicts strong
demand for at least two more decades.
Regional disparities in use are playing out globally as Europe shuts
down coal power stations while China and India step up production. The
European Union ramped up its climate pledge in July, targeting a 55%
drop in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030, relative to a 1990 baseline,
with a transition to cleaner sources at the center. It’s a tough
target, especially considering that countries such as Poland and the
Czech Republic primarily power themselves with coal and lignite.
now, China accounts for about half of global coal production and needs
to meet rising domestic demand. The government has pressured miners
to reduce prices and lower the cost of burning coal during this year’s
energy crisis, which triggered blackouts and rationing in the country.
is disappointing that coal power may hit an all-time high in the very
same year that countries agreed to phase it down,” said Dave Jones,
global program lead at climate think-tank Ember. “Coal power will
inevitably begin to decline soon: China has committed to phasing down
coal from 2025, while India’s huge renewables target should remove the
need for more coal.”
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