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By David Giambusso and Scott Waldman
Good morning! Only POLITICO New York Pro subscribers receive an enhanced version of this email at 5:30 a.m. each weekday. If you'd like to receive it, along with a customized real-time news feed of New York energy policy news throughout the day, please contact us at email@example.com and we'll set you up for trial access. Thank you for reading.
PSC TO VOTE ON ENERGY HIGHWAY TRANSMISSION PROJECT — POLITICO New York’s Scott Waldman: The Public Service Commission is scheduled to vote Thursday on a major piece of the Cuomo administration's Energy Highway program — a more than $1 billion plan to build new transmission lines that would run through the Hudson Valley. In September, the Department of Public Service released a report that found additional transmission lines were needed in the Hudson Valley to eliminate congestion on the state’s electrical grid. http://politi.co/1P82sxh
--The Wall Street Journal looks at the plan through the eyes of a Columbia County farmer who will have new transmission lines on his land. http://on.wsj.com/228FDki
CUOMO ORDERS PROBE INTO INDIAN POINT OVER SHUTDOWNS — POLITICO New York’s Scott Waldman: Gov. Andrew Cuomo has ordered the state Public Service Commission to conduct an investigation into the operations and safety protocols of the Indian Point nuclear facility because it has had 13 unplanned shutdowns in the last three years.http://politi.co/1m8BYly
LIPA APPROVES BUDGET, WITH CONSTERNATION — Newsday’s Mark Harrington: “The LIPA board on Wednesday passed the authority’s $3.37 billion 2016 budget, which included the first of three rate increases over the next three years. But in a rare move, three trustees voted not to approve it, citing issues with Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo’s LIPA Reform Act. http://nwsdy.li/228SQtn
** A Message from Nuclear Matters: Providing more than 61 percent of New York’s carbon-free electricity, nuclear energy plants play a vital role in achieving our clean-energy and carbon-reduction goals. New York’s nuclear energy fleet supports about 18,000 jobs and provides $2.5 billion to the state’s GDP. Learn more at NuclearMatters.com. **
SOLARCITY TO GET BOOST FROM CONGRESSIONAL BUDGET DEAL — Buffalo News’ Jerry Zremski: “Buffalo’s burgeoning SolarCity development got a big boost from Congress on Wednesday in the form of a tax and spending deal that would extend the solar energy investment tax credit for five years while allowing businesses to claim the tax break more quickly. http://bit.ly/1Zd3wEY
RENEW NY KICKS OFF — POLITICO New York’s David Giambusso: Several hundred people, including environmental lobbyists and Harlem activists, filled the First Corinthian Baptist Church Wednesday night to officially launch NY Renews, a coalition of environmental groups whose goal is to push for climate change laws. http://politi.co/228S93j
AROUND NEW YORK:
--New York’s increasing reliance on natural gas means there will be a strong market for pipelines for years to come, according to the developer of a $5 billion pipeline proposed for the region. http://politi.co/1TQTjKx
--A South Korean biodiesel manufacturer sued a Saratoga Springs biofuels trading firm over a $5 million deal that went wrong. http://bit.ly/1MhQj4j
--The Times Herald-Record editorial board wants the state Department of Environmental Conservation to handle the review of the Pilgrim pipeline, not the Thruway Authority. http://bit.ly/1P9iB7r
HELLO THURSDAY: Let us know anytime if you have tips, story ideas or life advice. We're always here at firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com. And if you like this letter, please tell a friend and/or loved one. Here’s a handy sign-up link: politi.co/1UqoEoB
DEMS GET GREEN TAX BREAK OUT OF CRUDE EXPORT — Reuters’ Timothy Gardner: “For many energy-minded Democrats, the massive deal on the U.S. government spending bill was less about a loss of the long-standing ban on crude oil exports than big gains for solar and wind power. Tax breaks for green energy have for years been like a neglected child, often included at the last minute in end-year legislation or left to expire and then extended for a year or two, sometimes retroactively. http://reut.rs/1O7fM1H
NUCLEAR PUSH STRENGTHENS AFTER PARIS — Opinion for The Guardian by Naomi Oreskes: “There is also a new, strange form of denial that has appeared on the landscape of late, one that says that renewable sources can’t meet our energy needs. Oddly, some of these voices include climate scientists, who insist that we must now turn to wholesale expansion of nuclear power.” http://bit.ly/1UBvN5n
CLIMATE CHANGE REDUCING FISH STOCKS — NPR’s Clare Leschin-Hoar: “For anyone paying attention, it's no secret there's a lot of weird stuff going on in the oceans right now. We've got a monster El Nino looming in the Pacific. Ocean acidification is prompting hand wringing among oyster lovers. Migrating fish populations have caused tensions between countries over fishing rights.” http://n.pr/1TQSsJY
SOLAR BINGE — Bloomberg’s Alex Nussbaum: “The solar industry is on a building binge. Top manufacturers are adding almost 7 gigawatts of factory capacity, comparable to the energy produced by seven nuclear reactors, as they anticipate global demand will continue to rise.” http://bloom.bg/1IVBBVK
ON SCOTTISH WIND FARM, TRUMP’S A LOSER — The New York Times: “Britain's Supreme Court on Wednesday ruled unanimously against tycoon and U.S. presidential contender Donald Trump in his battle to stop an offshore wind farm near his upscale Scottish golf resort. Trump claims the 11-turbine project, approved by the Scottish government in 2013, will spoil the view from his golf course near Aberdeen in eastern Scotland.” http://nyti.ms/228UTxx
--Oil falls off: A continued glut snapped a winning streak for oil Wednesday, the Wall Street Journal reports.
“Light, sweet crude for January delivery fell $1.83, or 4.9%, to $35.52 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, the lowest settlement since February 2009. Brent, the global benchmark, fell $1.26, or 3.3%, to $37.19 a barrel on ICE Futures Europe, the lowest level since December 2008.” http://on.wsj.com/228TeYO
--Natural gas is in a tailspin due to continued warm weather.
“Prices for the front-month January contract settled down 3.2 cents, or 1.8%, at $1.79 a million British thermal units on the New York Mercantile Exchange. That is the lowest settlement since March 24, 1999.” http://on.wsj.com/228TpmP
** A Message from Nuclear Matters: Some of America’s existing nuclear energy plants face early closure due to current economic and policy conditions. Providing more than 62% of America’s carbon-free electricity, existing, state-of-the-art nuclear energy plants play a vital role in achieving our clean-energy and carbon-reduction goals.
In New York, nuclear energy plants provide 31 percent of the state’s electricity and 61 percent of our carbon-free electricity. The existing nuclear energy plants in New York also support about 18,000 jobs and provide $2.5 billion to the state’s GDP.
If we want to keep New York working, we need policies that will keep New York’s state-of-the-art nuclear energy plants working for all of us. Join us at NuclearMatters.com **
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