"August 21 News: Vestas To Outline Plan For Widespread Layoffs In Colorado Due To Wind Tax Credit Uncertainty"
Vestas Wind Systems A/S (VWS), the world’s biggest wind-turbine maker, is likely to give details this week of its plan to cut as many as 1,600 jobs mainly in Colorado amid a standoff in Congress over a tax break for the industry. [Businessweek]
Chief Executive Officer Ditlev Engel said in January that U.S. jobs would be scrapped “for sure” unless Congress extends the production tax credit, or PTC, which expires at the end of 2012. He may provide more details Wednesday when the Aarhus, Denmark-based company reports earnings for the first half of 2012. Gamesa Corp. (GAM) Tecnologica SA and other manufacturers in the industry also have announced layoffs.
Some Republicans in Congress such as Representative Mike Pompeo of Kansas are blocking President Barack Obama’s effort to extend the program, saying the companies can prosper without the PTC. He favors ending all energy tax credits. As many as 37,000 U.S. jobs could be lost if the credit isn’t renewed, according to the Washington-based American Wind Energy Association.
The departure of the Arctic-bound rig is a sign of Shell’s confidence that the company soon will be able to launch drilling in the area, despite setbacks that have shortened its window for oil exploration. [Fuel Fix]
Oil prices rose Tuesday ahead of the release of Federal Reserve minutes from last month’s meeting that will give traders clues as to the intentions of the U.S. central bank’s policymakers. [Washington Post]
Radio ads launched Monday in Colorado and Iowa tout the president’s clean-energy policies as job-creating while casting GOP vice-presidential candidate Paul Ryan’s budget plan as disastrous for that sector. [The Hill]
Butterfly populations in Massachusetts have shifted north over the past two decades likely in response to climate change, new research shows. [Live Science]
Spanish researchers have discovered a novel way of removing carbon from the atmosphere – urine. [TG Daily]
The Geothermal Energy Association is working with California energy authorities to help restart the flow of state utility power purchase agreements made with geothermal electricity generators, after close to a year’s doldrums. [Renewable Energy World]
The average annual temperature in the Pacific Northwest has increased 1.5 degrees Fahrenheit since 1920, and is projected to increase an additional 3.6 to 7.2 degrees or more by the end of the century, according to the Climate Impacts Group at the University of Washington. What might that mean for plant and animal communities? [Seattle Times]
The German government’s decision to phase out all of the nation’s nuclear power plants following the 2011 Fukushima disaster has led to an increase in coal-burning within Europe’s largest economy. [Yale Environment 360]