Welcome back! Today's Smart Brevity count: 1,025 words, < 4 minutes.
Onto music: At this moment 20 years ago, Destiny's Child was enjoying an 8-week run atop Billboard's R&B charts with today's intro tune...
President Trump has a dim view of wind power. Analysts for the Energy Department are telling a different story.
Driving the news: Trump used a speech at a Shell petrochemicals plant in Pennsylvania yesterday to revive his attacks against wind energy.
Why it matters: Timing! It comes just days after DOE's latest major analysis of wind technology trends.
What they found: Here are a few big-picture highlights from the granular report from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory analysts...
But, but, but: That doesn't mean wind isn't facing hurdles. Per DOE, the looming phaseout of federal tax credits for new projects is expected to slow the rate of project growth starting in 2021. Other challenges, per the report...
"Expectations for continued low natural gas prices and modest electricity demand growth also put a damper on growth expectations, as do limited transmission infrastructure and competition from natural gas and — increasingly — solar energy."
Crude markets are caught between signs of de-escalation in the U.S.-China trade fight and fresh evidence of a global economic slowdown.
Driving the news: That steep upward line in the chart above shows what happened when Trump delayed new tariffs on $300 billion worth of Chinese imports.
But, but, but: Prices are heading back downward sharply this morning (WTI around $55.49), giving up lots of yesterday's rise, as traders absorb less bullish news. Here's Reuters...
"Oil prices fell on Wednesday on weak economic data from China and Europe and a rise in U.S. crude inventories, partly erasing the previous session’s sharp gains after the United States said it would delay tariffs on some Chinese products."
ICYMI, a group of 29 states and local governments yesterday filed suit against the Trump administration's move to replace Obama-era climate rules for power plants with a more modest alternative.
Why it matters: The litigation, led by New York Attorney General Letitia James, sets the stage for a new federal court battle over the scope of regulators' authority and duty to regulate greenhouse gas emissions under the Clean Air Act.
The big picture: In June, the EPA announced final rules that require states to make coal-fired units more efficient over time, but the rules lack binding CO2-cutting targets.
What they're saying: "My office, and this groundbreaking coalition of states and cities from across the nation, will fight back against this unlawful, do-nothing rule in order to protect our future from catastrophic climate change," James said in a statement.
EPA: Per Bloomberg, "The Trump administration is readying a plan to end direct federal regulation of methane leaks from oil and gas facilities, even as some energy companies insist they don’t want the relief."
Climate: "A Washington Post analysis of more than a century of National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration temperature data across the Lower 48 states and 3,107 counties has found that major areas are nearing or have already crossed the 2-degree Celsius mark," the paper reports.
EV charging: Per Morning Consult, "The International Council on Clean Transportation, in a report released Tuesday morning, said $1.3 billion would be needed to make the necessary additions to home charging for electric vehicles and $940 million for workplace and public charging for the 100 U.S. metro areas with the highest populations."
"People ask how it is possible that America is failing to lead on climate change, even as we rapidly approach a catastrophic transformation of our planet that will wreak irreversible havoc on millions of Americans. The answer: the filibuster."
Who said it: Former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, a Nevada Democrat, writing in the New York Times.
Quick take: The latest of Reid's new calls to end the filibuster in order to pass climate legislation (and more) could help keep the topic on the agenda in the primaries.
Why it matters: While Democratic 2020 hopefuls are releasing energy and climate plans, they depend in part on passing new laws.
Go deeper: The Washington Post looks at where various candidates stand.