Capitol Comments

According to an article in the San Jose Mercury-News, the California Public Utilities Commission (PUC) is close to approving a requirement for the state's largest utilities to buy 1.3 megawatts of energy storage by 2020 to help improve upon the intermittent nature of renewable energy resources like solar and wind. The directive would be the first of its kind in the country and would provide enough storage capacity to power nearly 1 million homes.

From the sunny Southwest to the Southeast, rate disputes are continuing in states over net metering policies that utilities argue are too generous for participants  and do not adequately cover customer infrastructure costs. Staff at the Arizona Corporation Commission recently recommended changes to its existing net metering program that would add $3 to $16 to a...

Today, the Army Corps of Engineers and EPA announced in a blog post that the agencies were jointly sending a draft rule to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) intended to clarify where the jurisdictional oversight of the federal Clean Water Act begins and ends. At issue, is the draft rule's attempt to define the "waters of the United States" and the application of federal law.

According to several news accounts, the EPA is expected to release an updated rule - perhaps by next Friday - that would tighten greenhouse gas emissions from new fossil fuel power plants. Although few details are available, many utility and clean air observers expect the rule to phase in the required use of carbon capture and...

The Department of Interior notified dozens of state treasurers on Monday that refunds totaling $110 million would be coming back to their coffers after a reversal of the Administration's decision to withhold royalty payments required by the Mineral Leasing Act (MLA). Last spring, a decision was made by Interior and the Office of Management and Budget to treat MLA payments owed to 34 impacted states as a “federal expenditure” subject to the parameters of the Sequester and the 2011 Budget Control Act. That decision received significant bipartisan opposition from many in Congress and the Western Governors Association.