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  1. U.S. Senate passes bill that includes measures for dam safety, invasive species control

    A bill passed by the Senate contains measures that helps protect hydroelectric power infrastructure from invasive aquatic species and federal funding to rehabilitate high-hazard dams. Included in the Water Resources Development Act of 2016 -- officially Senate Bill 2848 -- is an authorization for up to $20 million to match state spending on watercraft inspection stations, alongside amendments to the National Dam Safety Program Act and grant money for infrastructure maintenance and improvements. Per Section 3004, the Water Resources Development Act "is amended to direct the Federal Emergency Management Agency to establish a program to provide technical, planning, design and construction assistance grants to nonfederal sponsors (subject to a nonfederal cost-sharing requirement of at least 35%) for rehabilitation of eligible high-hazard potential dams." As defined in the WRDA, "high-hazard" nonfederal dams includes those that are located in states with their own dam safety program; are classified as "high-hazard" by the state in which they are located; have an emergency action plan approved by an applicable state agency; and fail to meet minimum state dam safety standards, thus posing an "unacceptable risk" to the public. Notable in Section 3004 are stipulations that grant money may not be used to perform rehabilitation work on federally-owned dams; to perform routine maintenance and operation; to modify dams to produce hydroelectric power; or to increase the storage capacities of reservoirs. The WRDA also includes a number of measures designed to help contain invasive species like quagga and zebra mussels that have pose a significant threat to both powered and non-powered dam infrastructure. Specifically, the bill expands existing protective measures for the Pacific Northwest's Columbia River Basin by providing federal funding for watercraft inspection stations outside of Idaho, Montana, Oregon and Washington. The legislation also directs state agencies to prioritize programs that would prevent and control invasive species within the Great Lakes, Lake Tahoe Basin and Tillamook Bay estuaries. The Water Resources Act of 2016 was introduced to the Senate by Sen. Jim Inhofe, R-Okla., in April. The bill passed the Senate with a 95-3 vote in favor September 15 and is now awaiting consideration by the House. For more policy and regulation news, visit here .  

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    Tue, 20 Sep 2016

  2. Senate approves 2016 Water Resources Development Act

    The US Senate passed the 2016 Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) by 95 to 3 votes. Senate Environment and Public Works Committee Chairman James M. Inhofe (R-Okla.) introduced the measure on Apr. 25. The American Petroleum Institute applauded the Senate ’s Sept. 15 bipartisan action.

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    Fri, 16 Sep 2016

  3. Congress Seeking Broader Look at Solar Firms, Tax Credits

    Republican leaders of key financial panels in the House and Senate are seeking an expanded review of renewable energy tax credits being received by companies in both the utility-scale and rooftop solar business.  

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    Mon, 19 Sep 2016

  4. Congress seeking broader look at solar power firms, tax credits

    Use of tax credits, yieldcos being explored

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    Mon, 19 Sep 2016

  1. Rousseff out following vote by Brazilian Senate

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    Wed, 31 Aug 2016

  2. Senate -House energy policy bill conference gets under way

    The joint congressional conference on federal energy policy reform legislation formally began on Sept. 8 as Republicans and Democrats from both sides of the Capitol acknowledged that changes are needed and much hard work lies ahead.

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    Thu, 8 Sep 2016

  3. US$20 million authorized to protect Columbia River Basin from invasive species

    According to the Seattle, Washington-based Pacific NorthWest Economic Region (PNWER) Foundation, an invasion of quagga or zebra mussels in the Pacific Northwest would rapidly foul and damage the operations of hydropower plants and other freshwater-related facilities vital to the region’s economy.  

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    Fri, 16 Sep 2016

  4. Moniz: US should review energy security policy to address changes

    It is time for the US to take a fresh, comprehensive look at its energy security policies so they reflect 21st century energy market changes, challenges, and needs, US Energy Sec. Ernest G. Moniz told a US House Energy and Commerce subcommittee.

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    Thu, 15 Sep 2016

  5. US Senate picks members for conference on broad energy policy reforms

    The US Senate named seven of its members on July 12 to confer with a group from the House of Representatives on broad energy policy reform legislation. “This vote is a critical milestone that will allow Congress to begin the first conference on major energy legislation in more than a decade,” said ...

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    Wed, 13 Jul 2016

  6. Energy News: OBAMA LEGACY: Quiet but big changes in energy, pollution

    Mostly unnoticed amid the political brawl over climate change, the U.S. has undergone a quiet transformation in how and where it gets its energy during Barack Obama's presidency, slicing the nation's output of polluting gases that are warming Earth.

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    Tue, 6 Sep 2016

  7. U.S. underwent quiet energy change during Obama tenure

    There are now more than three solar power jobs in the U.S. for every job mining coal

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    Fri, 9 Sep 2016

  8. Bill to bust up California Public Utilities Commission dies

    The cornerstone of an agreement to reform California's battered utilities regulator has died in the final minutes of the legislative session

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    Thu, 1 Sep 2016

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