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NEWS
Tim Wheeler | March 25, 2013
Some Annapolis lawmakers have gotten in the Easter spirit a little early.  A bill that would curtail millions in renewable-energy subsidies for mostly out-of-state paper mills comes to the Senate floor Monday, after being killed last week and then revived with a special deal for Maryland's only paper-making plant. The bill, SB684 , pushed by environmentalists, would phase out the ability of paper facilities to cash in on Maryland's renewable energy law by burning "black liquor," a tarry byproduct of the pulping process, and other wood waste to power their operations.
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BUSINESS
By Natalie Sherman and The Baltimore Sun | October 2, 2014
A 20-group coalition on Thursday called on state regulators to reject a proposed merger between Chicago energy giant Exelon Corp. and Pepco Holdings Inc., citing Exelon's track record on the environment and fears the deal would give it too much power in the state. Exelon, the parent company of Baltimore Gas and Electric Co., ComEd and PECO, in April announced a $6.9 billion deal to acquire the smaller Washington-based utility company, which owns Delmarva Power and Atlantic City Electric as well as Pepco.
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NEWS
March 6, 2014
Maryland citizens who enjoy preserved farmland and open space should oppose legislation in the General Assembly that would take land out of agricultural preservation and allow commercial solar or wind power infrastructure to be built there. When the Maryland legislature created the state's farmland preservation program in 1977 it had a mission that should remain unchanged: To preserve good land for farmers and preserve open space for all Marylanders to enjoy. The proposed legislation embraces alternative energy, and there's nothing wrong with that.
NEWS
August 4, 2014
How would you like to receive a quarterly check from the federal government? Most taxpayers would surely be happy with such an arrangement. But here's the really good part: What if by accepting that check you were also helping your country reduce a form of air pollution that is a threat to human health and responsible for climate change while simultaneously developing a rational, sustainable energy policy? That sounds too good to be true, but remarkably, it may not be. Under The Healthy Climate and Family Security Act introduced last week by Maryland Rep. Chris Van Hollen, companies that drill for oil and gas or mine for coal would have to purchase through auction a permit to do so. Not a dime of the resulting revenue would be kept by the government but would simply be forwarded as checks to every man, woman and child.
BUSINESS
By Hanah Cho, The Baltimore Sun | September 14, 2010
Constellation Energy Group is amassing a client list as diverse as spicemaker McCormick & Co., the New York Stock Exchange, the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum and the Denver International Airport. The Baltimore energy company put up solar panels on McCormick's Hunt Valley distribution center and spice mill and is working on a second project at its Belcamp plant. Constellation is selling "renewable energy certificates" to the stock exchange and baseball museum. And Constellation plans to announce today the development of a 4.4-megawatt solar facility at the Denver airport, enough to power 634 homes a year.
NEWS
By James McGarry | February 16, 2011
In his State of the Union address, President Barack Obama channeled the spirits of John F. Kennedy, Ronald Reagan and Henry Ford all rolled into one in his call for America to innovate its way into future economic competitiveness. Among his bold ideas for how the U.S. can meet its upcoming challenges was the diversification of our energy portfolio, and in particular the development of our renewable energy capacity. The onus now falls on Congress to develop an equally bold plan to see that challenge through.
NEWS
March 26, 2011
Last week, the Maryland state Senate passed a bill to allow trash incineration to be treated as a Tier 1 renewable energy source, equating it with wind and solar power. That is far from true. Incinerators are expensive and dirty and encourage waste. Burning our trash costs more and produces fewer jobs than recycling or composting systems. And incinerators have minimum guaranteed waste flows, which means that communities have to pay whether they produce trash or not. This tends to result in a lot of compostable and recyclable material being burned, producing noxious pollutants instead of reducing waste.
EXPLORE
June 9, 2011
As a longtime resident of Columbia, I continue to be disturbed by the failure of this town and of Howard County — government and individual citizens alike — to implement widespread use of renewable energy sources such as solar. Procrastination globally is producing dire consequences, leaving no aspect of the biosphere immune. I sincerely hope that the underlying positive and undespairing spirit that once imbued Columbia has not dissipated to an immateriality. I hope that the once-prevalent intelligentsia who formerly inhabited our city has not grown too old or jaded, and that it is being replaced by younger generation of intellectuals with similar concerns regarding the planet Earth.
BUSINESS
By Lorraine Mirabella, The Baltimore Sun | January 31, 2014
Clean Currents, a Silver Spring-based provider of renewable energy for residents and businesses, said Friday it has stopped serving customers after rising wholesale electricity prices in the recent cold snap caused the company to default on payments to its supplier, electricity grid operator PJM Interconnection. Customers, including 6,000 residential and 2,000 commercial, will not see interruptions in service, said Gary Skulnik, co-founder and president. Customers will be returned to their utility service effective immediately and will see the change reflected on one of the next two bills.
EXPLORE
By Katie V. Jones | October 23, 2011
The town of Sykesville is hoping nature and its power will be the answer to some of its power problems. Whether it be geothermal, wind or solar power, town officials are collecting bid proposals to create a renewable energy source for the town's use at the Public Works Building, the Sykesville Police Station and the Sykesville Town House. Tapping a renewable energy source is an idea town officials have been talking about for the past six years, according to town manager Matt Candland.
FEATURES
By Scott Dance, The Baltimore Sun | June 24, 2014
The owner of a planned power plant in Fairfield faces millions of dollars in fines and has been ordered to halt construction because company officials didn't buy enough emissions credits to offset air pollution the facility is expected to emit, according to state officials. Maryland Department of the Environment officials could fine Energy Answers International, the New York-based company that is building the plant, more than $8 million for the violation — $25,000 for each day since it began construction last August.
FEATURES
By Timothy B. Wheeler, The Baltimore Sun | May 30, 2014
A proposed natural gas export facility in Southern Maryland moved closer to reality Friday, but state regulators ordered the terminal's owner to include more safety and environmental protections for the controversial project, and to donate $48 million to promote clean energy in the state and to help low-income Marylanders pay their power bills. The Maryland Public Service Commission authorized Dominion, an energy company based in Richmond, Va., to build a 130-megawatt generating station at its existing Lusby import terminal.
NEWS
May 3, 2014
One can always hear a great "spin" in a story, particularly when the authors are activists for a cause. I refer to the commentary concerning wind turbines in Somerset County ( "A wind-win situation," April 21). Authors Tom Vinson and Bruce Burcat are paid individuals whose job is to promote wind and renewable energy regardless of some factual information. First, the $200 million dollar project is a number that has somehow appeared with little actual data behind it. Sounds good though.
NEWS
By Cheryl Casciani | March 14, 2014
So, how about this weather? This question is often just small talk, but conversation about the recent weather has not been simple idle chatter. While Baltimore was bundled up against the frigid "polar vortex," Alaska saw record high temperatures. While Atlanta was virtually shut down in an unusual winter storm, California experienced a severe drought. Scientists predict climate change will mean more extreme weather - longer droughts, bigger storms and more extreme hot and cold temperatures.
NEWS
March 6, 2014
Maryland citizens who enjoy preserved farmland and open space should oppose legislation in the General Assembly that would take land out of agricultural preservation and allow commercial solar or wind power infrastructure to be built there. When the Maryland legislature created the state's farmland preservation program in 1977 it had a mission that should remain unchanged: To preserve good land for farmers and preserve open space for all Marylanders to enjoy. The proposed legislation embraces alternative energy, and there's nothing wrong with that.
BUSINESS
By Lorraine Mirabella, The Baltimore Sun | January 31, 2014
Clean Currents, a Silver Spring-based provider of renewable energy for residents and businesses, said Friday it has stopped serving customers after rising wholesale electricity prices in the recent cold snap caused the company to default on payments to its supplier, electricity grid operator PJM Interconnection. Customers, including 6,000 residential and 2,000 commercial, will not see interruptions in service, said Gary Skulnik, co-founder and president. Customers will be returned to their utility service effective immediately and will see the change reflected on one of the next two bills.
NEWS
January 9, 2014
As a longtime educator and Rodgers Forge resident, I was excited to read in Nov. 11 article by Jon Meoli that Dumbarton Middle School in Towson will get a renovation. Yet I was shocked that solar panel roofs weren't an integral part of the initial plan of the firm, Smolen Emr Ilkovitch Architects. Maryland and Baltimore County will spend $27.5 million in taxpayer money on this renovation. By installing solar panel rooftops, we will have a rare chance to do many good things at once: making renewable electricity a priority in a celebrated public school, ensure cost savings in ongoing school operating costs, and offer hopeful 21st century experiential learning opportunities for students.
NEWS
By Erin Cox and Timothy B. Wheeler, The Baltimore Sun | July 24, 2013
The O'Malley administration's aggressive new plan to fight climate change calls for Maryland residents to further cut their energy use or face higher monthly utility bills. The plan, to be released Thursday by Gov. Martin O'Malley, also requires that more of the state's electricity come from renewable sources by 2020. Maryland's goals for reducing greenhouse gases are among the most ambitious in the nation. The plan requires stricter measures than previously proposed to meet the requirement set by the General Assembly in 2009 to cut carbon emissions that scientists say drive climate change.
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