Tuesday's energy & environment stories

Amy Harder, author of Generate
Jul 14, 2020 - Energy & Environment

Appeals court rules Dakota Access Pipeline can continue operating

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The controversial Dakota Access Pipeline will remain operating (for now) after a federal appeals court on Tuesday granted the company's stay order as part of a broader legal and permitting fight over the project, per Reuters.

Why it matters: It's the latest twist in a series of lawsuit battles over pipelines that have become a proxy for a national debate on energy and climate change.

Go deeper: Court orders temporary shutdown of Dakota Access Pipeline

Trump to announce revision to environmental law that protects minority communities

President Trump. Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

President Trump is reportedly planning to announce an overhaul to a law on Wednesday that could prevent low-income and minority communities from voicing concerns about projects that could pollute their neighborhoods, The Washington Post writes.

Why it matters: Trump is expected to argue that the National Environmental Policy Act, signed into law by President Nixon in 1970, would create jobs by making it easier for his administration to build infrastructure including highways, pipelines and chemical plants. The Post notes that such projects pose major environmental threats.

Ben Geman, author of Generate
Updated Jul 14, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Biden unveils $2 trillion clean energy and infrastructure plan

Joe Biden expanded his energy and climate plans Tuesday with a call for spending $2 trillion over four years on climate-friendly infrastructure — a proposal the campaign is casting as part of a wider economic recovery package.

The latest: "Look, these aren’t pie in the sky dreams," Biden said in a speech outlining the proposal on Tuesday. "These are actionable policies that we can work on right away."

Ben Geman, author of Generate
Jul 14, 2020 - Energy & Environment

States team up in push for electric heavy vehicles

16th Street Mall busses in Denver. Photo: RJ Sangosti/MediaNews Group/The Denver Post via Getty Images

A new pact to speed deployment of zero-emission trucks, vans, buses and other big vehicles that move lots of people and objects around was unveiled by 15 states plus D.C. this morning.

Why it matters: The new "memorandum of understanding" is non-binding, but it sets aggressive targets, and provides a template for working together on emissions from industries that often operate across state lines.

Ben Geman, author of Generate
Jul 14, 2020 - Energy & Environment

Electric vehicle companies are reeling in cash without producing a car

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

These are heady days for electric vehicle companies, with a lack of actual car production becoming a popular norm.

Why it matters: The capital infusion is the latest in a busy stretch of deals and market moves that suggest private investors and equity markets see big potential in technologies that now represent a tiny slice of the global vehicle fleet.

Ben Geman, author of Generate
Jul 14, 2020 - Energy & Environment

Offshore wind surge powers renewable capacity despite coronavirus

Reproduced from BloombergNEF; Chart: Axios Visuals 

A big rise in offshore wind power deals pushed global investment in new renewable power capacity in the first half of 2020 above the same period last year, new data shows.

Why it matters: It signals how the renewables sector as a whole has proven rather resilient to the pandemic, despite some declines in onshore wind and solar investment, BloombergNEF analysts said.

Ben Geman, author of Generate
Jul 13, 2020 - Economy & Business

Low oil prices still spell financial danger for many producers

Data: Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City; Chart: Axios Visuals

Oil patch bankruptcies are piling up and prices are still in the financial danger zone for a significant amount of producers despite some recovery, per a Kansas City Fed survey.

Why it matters: The finding from the bank — whose region includes the producing states of Oklahoma, Wyoming and Colorado — underscores the sector's peril.

Amy Harder, author of Generate
Jul 13, 2020 - Energy & Environment
Column / Harder Line

How Europe’s green pandemic recovery will push the rest of the world

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Europe, long the most progressive continent when it comes to tackling climate change, is doubling down on this ambition to revive pandemic-ravaged economies.

Why it matters: The European Union is the world’s third-largest emitting region after the U.S. and China, but it’s not just that. These plans will push global corporate behavior and prod other governments by creating either templates to follow or protectionist battles (or both).