After a meeting of Senate Democrats, party leaders on Thursday said they had abandoned hope of passing a comprehensive energy bill this summer and would pursue a more limited measure focused on responding to the gulf oil spill and tightening energy efficiency standards.EERE News: California Team to Receive up to $122 Million for Energy Innovation Hub to Develop Method to Produce Fuels from Sunlight
Senator John Kerry of Massachusetts, a champion of comprehensive climate change legislation, called the new goal “admittedly narrow.”
At a news conference, the majority leader, Harry Reid of Nevada, blamed Republicans for refusing to cooperate. “We don’t have a single Republican to work with us,” Mr. Reid said.
Democrats said they would continue to pursue broader climate change legislation.
As part of a broad effort to achieve breakthrough innovations in energy production, U.S. Deputy Secretary of Energy Daniel Poneman today announced an award of up to $122 million over five years to a multidisciplinary team of top scientists to establish an Energy Innovation Hub aimed at developing revolutionary methods to generate fuels directly from sunlight.Solar Novus Today - "Ten Million Solar Roofs" Bill Approved by US Senate Committee
The Joint Center for Artificial Photosynthesis (JCAP), to be led by the California Institute of Technology (Cal Tech) in partnership with the U.S. Department of Energy's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab), will bring together leading researchers in an ambitious effort aimed at simulating nature's photosynthetic apparatus for practical energy production. The goal of the Hub is to develop an integrated solar energy-to-chemical fuel conversion system and move this system from the bench-top discovery phase to a scale where it can be commercialized.
The Senate energy committee today approved, 13 to 10, a bill by Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) to encourage the installation over 10 years of 10 million solar systems in American homes and businesses.
As part of a broader effort to transform the energy system in the United States, the measure would create hundreds of thousands of new jobs and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. It would authorize $250 million for competitive grants in 2012 and additional funding through 2021.
Along with existing incentives, the program could meet and exceed the goal of installing 10 million solar systems over a 10-year period, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. The legislation would help finance the installation of up to 40,000 megawatts of new solar energy. In the process, the cost of generating solar power would fall and the United States would become the world’s leading market for electricity generated from the sun.