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Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public Radio

While the U.S. is withdrawing from the Paris Climate Accord, states like Connecticut are still committed to reducing their carbon emissions. Offshore wind power is one way.

This hour, we take a look at proposals to bring wind energy to Connecticut. How will the Trump administration’s inaction on renewables impact this emerging industry in our region?

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As Connecticut Releases Electric Vehicle Roadmap, Some Question Its Direction

Oct 31, 2019
Adam Moss / Wikimedia Commons

A long-awaited state report on electric vehicle policy options was released the same week the state also reduced rebates.

The timing couldn’t have been more curious. 

Northeast Heating Oil Industry Looks To Biodiesel To Reduce Carbon Emissions

Oct 1, 2019
Joe Mabel / Creative Commons

The Northeast heating oil industry plans to begin pressing New England states to mandate certain standardized levels of biodiesel content in home heating oil.

At an industry summit in Rhode Island on Sept. 19, member companies of the New England Fuel Institute and related companies voted unanimously in favor of a resolution to work toward a 15% reduction in carbon emissions by 2023, 40% by 2030, and net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.

This story is Part 3 in a series on the future of nuclear power. Part 1 is here. Part 2 is here.

The future of fusion energy is right around the corner. You’ll find it off Massachusetts Avenue, on Albany Street in Cambridge. It’s on the campus of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, in an old, low-rise, brown brick building once owned by Nabisco.

Part 1 in a series on the future of nuclear power. Part 2 is here.

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Future? In Massachusetts, nuclear power is history.

Connecticut, Rhode Island Vie For Roles In Emerging Offshore Wind Industry

Sep 12, 2019
Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public Radio

When Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont signed legislation last June authorizing up to 2,000 megawatts of offshore wind development, the new law signaled big ambitions.

“Connecticut should be the central hub of the offshore wind industry in New England,” Lamont proclaimed at the time. 

Frankie Graziano / Connecticut Public Radio

Governor Ned Lamont signed the third executive order of his administration Tuesday, setting an ambitious environmental goal, a zero carbon energy grid by 2040.

Jesse Steinmetz / New England News Collaborative

A new natural gas-fired power plant is slated to open in the Hudson Valley in 2020. The plant is only a few miles from the border with Connecticut, and from several schools. That has some residents in both states concerned.

Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public Radio

State Attorney General William Tong is directing his staff to provide “any assistance we can” in an ongoing investigation into questionable conduct and purchases at the Connecticut Port Authority.

Can The U.S. Offshore Wind Industry Survive Without A Federal Tax Credit?

Aug 26, 2019
Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public Radio

The Trump administration’s decision to delay the Vineyard Wind project will impact the offshore wind developer’s ability to take advantage of a big federal tax credit that expires in December.

Democratic lawmakers say the administration’s decision was a political move to stall the project and could endanger the future growth of the industry. Lawmakers are scrambling to pass legislation to get the tax credit extended.

But some industry observers say offshore wind may be able to survive just fine without it. 

Sources: Vineyard Wind Decision Delayed Until December 2020

Aug 18, 2019
Nadine Sebai / The Public's Radio

Final approval for the Vineyard Wind Project will likely not happen for at least another 18 months, according to information received from multiple sources by The Public’s Radio. This means the country’s first large scale offshore wind farm won’t begin construction in time to take advantage of a lucrative federal tax credit that expires at the end of the year. 

Fishing For A Living Is Dangerous. Will Offshore Wind Farms Make It Worse?

Jul 30, 2019
Daniel Farnham on the Megan Marie, which is undergoing a maintenance check involving fixing rust patches on the boat caused by salt water and harsh winds.
Nadine Sebai / The Public's Radio

New England commercial fishermen have one of the most dangerous jobs in the country. Now, they’re worried new offshore wind farms will make things worse. Construction is set to begin this year on the country’s first large scale offshore wind project. Most of the attention has focused on jobs and the economy, but the fishermen say they’re also worried about safety. 

Annie Ropeik / New Hampshire Public Radio

Eversource has officially pulled the plug on the Northern Pass transmission line.

The utility filed a notice with the federal Securities and Exchange Commission late Thursday, a spokesman says, “reflecting our conclusion that Northern Pass has unfortunately been brought to an end.” 

Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public Radio

Port Authority Board Chair Bonnie Reemsnyder announced Wednesday she is stepping down, after Governor Ned Lamont called for her resignation. It’s just the latest trouble at the agency responsible for promoting investment in Connecticut’s three deepwater ports.

Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public Radio

Evan Matthews, head of the quasi-public agency responsible for promoting investments in Connecticut’s three deepwater ports, has been placed on administrative leave. 

The news comes as the state continues work to finalize a $93 million public-private investment in New London’s State Pier. 

Keith Phaneuf / CT Mirror

The governors of Connecticut, Rhode Island and Massachusetts say they’re looking forward to closer cooperation on transportation, renewable energy initiatives and perhaps on purchasing services like IT and healthcare.

Ned Lamont invited his fellow governors Gina Raimondo and Charlie Baker for an informal conference at Eastern Connecticut State University in Willimantic Tuesday. 

Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public Radio

This hour we take a look at some of the environmental bills the Connecticut General Assembly passed this legislative session, including a new commitment to offshore wind power. We learn what this renewable energy source means for the state’s power grid—and its economy.

And we take a look at one essential component behind offshore wind power, a group of special metals called “rare earth elements”. What does the availability—and environmental impact—of harvesting these materials mean for our energy future?

Frankie Graziano / Connecticut Public Radio

For the past two years, lawmakers have directed more than $100 million earmarked for energy efficiency upgrades to instead, be swept into the state’s general fund.

Last week’s budget agreement got rid of those funding sweeps, but it was unable to reverse a more than $50 million diversion scheduled for July.

Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public Radio

A measure to boost Connecticut’s investment in offshore wind sailed through the state Senate this week. The bill could shift up to 2,000 megawatts of Connecticut’s power to offshore wind by 2030.

Connecticut Takes A Major Step Into Offshore Wind

Jun 4, 2019
The Block Island Wind Farm off the coast of Rhode Island in October, 2016.
Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public Radio

Connecticut is a governor’s signature away from getting into the offshore wind game, catching up with neighboring states on what is widely considered to be one of the most promising renewable energy sources for the U.S.

"A Big Fugazi": Why Fishermen Still Can't Get Behind Offshore Wind

May 21, 2019
Ken Schneider.
Nadine Sebai / The Public's Radio

In Ken Schneider’s 40-year fishing career, he’s fished for pretty much everything that’s out in the Mid-Atlantic.

Now, at 60 years old, Schneider spends most of his time hunting for lobster. On this day, he’s making some extra cash building a boat deck at Leonard’s Wharf in New Bedford before his next fishing trip. He takes his son with him sometimes.

Trevor Lloyd-Evans certainly looks like a naturalist. On a walk through the woods in Plymouth, he sports a white beard, thick wool sweater and a pair of binoculars around his neck. The ornithologist with the Manomet Center‘s Landbird Conservation Program is demonstrating his calling, too, pointing out cardinals, blue jays and Carolina wrens and imitating their unique chirps.

The discharge canal at Pilgrim, where water used for cooling at the plant is released back into Cape Cod Bay.
Robin Lubbock / WBUR

The Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station in Plymouth pumps about a half-billion gallons of water from Cape Cod Bay into the plant every day. The water cycles continuously, passing through the plant’s condenser, and returning to the bay about 10 minutes later — and 30 degrees warmer.

If it's been a few years since you shopped for a lightbulb, you might find yourself confused. Those controversial curly-cue ones that were cutting edge not that long ago? Gone. (Or harder to find.) Thanks to a 2007 law signed by President George W. Bush, shelves these days are largely stocked with LED bulbs that look more like the traditional pear-shaped incandescent version but use just one-fifth the energy.

Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public Radio

Renewable energy projects have been growing across New England in recent years. And while offshore wind and grid-scale solar have gotten lots of the attention -- a smaller, more community-oriented way of getting power has been steadily taking hold: “shared clean energy.”

The Block Island Wind Farm off the coast of Rhode Island in October, 2016.
Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public Radio

Connecticut has joined nine states for a landmark agreement to reduce carbon emissions from transportation in the Northeast region.

This hour, as the federal government backs away from fighting climate change, what role can states play?

Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public Radio

A new operator has been selected to run a key port in New London. The management shakeup at State Pier comes with an eye toward capitalizing on the growing market for offshore wind energy.

Millstone Power Station

Connecticut’s only nuclear plant has won a bid to provide customers with electricity over the next decade. The award comes at a time when offshore wind and solar energy continue to grow.

PURA Chair Katie Dykes Named DEEP Commissioner

Dec 27, 2018
Katie Dykes on Connecticut Public Radio's Where We Live in 2015 when she was deputy commissioner of the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection.
Chion Wolf / Connecticut Public Radio

In naming Katie Dykes as commissioner of the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, Gov.-elect Ned Lamont has chosen a person who is well known at DEEP.

A U.S. district judge has issued an order blocking construction of the controversial transnational Keystone XL Pipeline until the State Department conducts further study of its impact on the environment.

Judge Brian Morris' 54-page order, issued late Thursday, overturns the Trump administrations's approval last year of the proposed 1,179-mile pipeline and at least temporarily prevents it from being built.

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