Energy Secretary: ‘All of the Above’ Is Climate-Friendly

WASHINGTON, DC - APRIL 09: Secretary of Energy nominee Ernest Moniz arrives for testimony before the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee April 9, 2013 in Washington, DC. Moniz, a nuclear physicist, testified before a full committee hearing on his pending nomination. 
National Journal
Ben Geman
Feb. 26, 2014, 6:59 a.m.

En­ergy Sec­ret­ary Ern­est Mon­iz is par­ry­ing with en­vir­on­ment­al­ists who re­cently called the White House’s “all of the above” en­ergy strategy a loser for the cli­mate.

His com­ments Wed­nes­day are part of ad­min­is­tra­tion ef­forts to de­fend the dual White House fo­cus on ex­pan­ded oil and gas pro­duc­tion along­side the green-en­ergy sources that act­iv­ists em­brace.

But Mon­iz, speak­ing at an En­ergy De­part­ment con­fer­ence just out­side Wash­ing­ton, told the audi­ence he wanted to be “very clear” about what the phrase is about.

“It starts with a com­mit­ment to mov­ing to a low-car­bon fu­ture. It is with­in that com­mit­ment that we are look­ing to de­vel­op the tech­no­lo­gies, for ex­ample, that al­low all of our fuel sources to be com­pet­it­ive in the dif­fer­ent mar­ket­places that we will see in the dif­fer­ent parts of our coun­try and in dif­fer­ent parts of the world,” he said.

“There is not go­ing to be one low-car­bon solu­tion. There are go­ing to be mul­tiple low-car­bon solu­tions. We need all the ar­rows in the quiver, and that is why we will con­tin­ue to in­vest across the board in our dif­fer­ent fuels and, of course, ef­fi­ciency and oth­er tech­no­lo­gies,” Mon­iz ad­ded.

He spoke at a con­fer­ence hos­ted by the de­part­ment’s Ad­vanced Re­search Pro­jects Agency-En­ergy pro­gram, which funds re­search in­to break­through tech­no­lo­gies.

Mon­iz said his re­cent travels high­light what’s meant by “all of the above,” and touted ef­forts to use fossil fuels more cleanly. He noted his vis­it to a Mis­sis­sippi coal-fired power plant un­der con­struc­tion that will cap­ture car­bon emis­sions to be used in en­hanced oil re­cov­ery, ded­ic­at­ing a huge sol­ar-power pro­ject that re­cently came on­line in Cali­for­nia, vis­it­ing shale drilling areas in Texas but also ex­plor­ing ef­fi­ciency ef­forts in San Ant­o­nio, and more.

Mon­iz was also in Geor­gia this month tout­ing the fed­er­al-loan guar­an­tees for a pair of nuc­le­ar re­act­ors that South­ern Com­pany is build­ing.

Else­where in his re­marks, Mon­iz gave a brief pre­view of the pro­posed fisc­al year 2015 En­ergy De­part­ment budget that the White House will un­veil next week.

“Bluntly, the ‘15 budget year is go­ing to be more dif­fi­cult than the ‘14 budget year,” he said, not­ing that the spend­ing caps in the re­cent Cap­it­ol Hill budget deal that Demo­crat­ic Sen. Parry Mur­ray and GOP Rep. Paul Ry­an struck.

But des­pite that caveat, Mon­iz said the green-en­ergy por­tion of the budget will be a pri­or­ity.

“Without … say­ing too much, there is no reas­on to be­lieve that the pri­or­ity for this clean-en­ergy agenda will be any dif­fer­ent, and per­haps it will turn out a little bit bet­ter than some oth­er parts of the budget next week,” he said.

Mon­iz’s wide-ran­ging speech fo­cused on sev­er­al of his pri­or­it­ies for the de­part­ment, in­clud­ing the de­part­ment’s loan-guar­an­tee pro­gram, which has drawn strong GOP cri­ti­cism in re­cent years over the fail­ure of the sol­ar-pan­el com­pany Solyn­dra and some oth­er flops.

He noted that in the main, the $30 bil­lion loan port­fo­lio — which in­cludes a num­ber of green power-gen­er­a­tion pro­jects and loans to auto­makers for green-car de­vel­op­ment — is per­form­ing well.

“Any ra­tion­al view of that port­fo­lio is that it has been a ma­jor suc­cess in do­ing ex­actly what it … is de­signed to do in terms of first-movers of tech­no­lo­gies at com­mer­cial scale,” Mon­iz said.

The de­part­ment has an ad­di­tion­al $40 bil­lion-plus in loan-guar­an­tee au­thor­ity re­main­ing. “We are look­ing to de­ploy that … across the board. Ad­vanced vehicles, nuc­le­ar, fossil, re­new­ables,” Mon­iz said.

Ini­tial ap­plic­a­tions for up to $8 bil­lion worth of loan guar­an­tees for fossil-en­ergy pro­jects that curb or trap car­bon emis­sions are due Fri­day.

Mon­iz told re­port­ers that a so­li­cit­a­tion for ap­plic­a­tions for re­new­able en­ergy pro­jects will be re­leased “re­l­at­ively soon,” but he did not provide a spe­cif­ic time frame. “I am not talk­ing the end of the year,” he said.

What We're Following See More »
THROUGH THE ELECTION
Brazile Replacing DWS on an Interim Basis
27 minutes ago
THE LATEST

Donna Brazile, the longtime Democratic strategist and political commentator, is replacing Debbie Wasserman Schultz as head of the Democratic National Convention, at least until the November elections.

Source:
OUTLIER OR TREND?
New Polls Show Big Bounce for Trump
38 minutes ago
THE LATEST

According to a new CNN/ORC poll, Donald Trump emerged from the GOP convention "ahead of Hillary Clinton in the race for the White House, topping her 44% to 39% in a four-way matchup including Gary Johnson (9%) and Jill Stein (3%) and by three points in a two-way head-to-head, 48% to 45%. That latter finding represents a 6-point convention bounce for Trump, which are traditionally measured in two-way matchups." Meanwhile, a Morning Consult poll shows Trump leading by four points nationally. He had been down two points in the same poll a week ago.

Source:
AVOIDING CLINTON OR PREFERRING TO CAMPAIGN?
Some Dems in Tight Races Elect to Skip Convention
38 minutes ago
THE DETAILS

As the Democratic National Convention gets underway today in Philadelphia, some prominent Democratic candidates for U.S. Senate are nowhere to be found. "At least four candidates in major races are opting out, including Russ Feingold, who is challengingSen. Ron Johnson in Wisconsin; Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick, who is taking on Sen. John McCain in Arizona; Missouri Secretary of State Jason Kander, who is running against Sen. Roy Blunt; and Catherine Cortez Masto, who is battling Rep. Joe Heck in Nevada for the seat vacated by retiring Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid." The candidates have stated their decisions aren't motivated by a desire to avoid being tied to the Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton.

Source:
PRIME TIME ADDRESS
Bloomberg to Endorse Clinton This Week
3 hours ago
THE LATEST

Michael Bloomberg will endorse Hillary Clinton this week in a prime-time speech. "The news is an unexpected move from Mr. Bloomberg, who has not been a member of the Democratic Party since 2000; was elected the mayor of New York City as a Republican; and later became an independent. But it reflects Mr. Bloomberg’s increasing dismay about the rise of Donald J. Trump and a determination to see that the Republican nominee is defeated."

Source:
MOST WILL BE BOUND IN 2020
Democrats Vote Major Changes to Superdelegate System
3 hours ago
THE DETAILS

"The Democratic Rules Committee voted overwhelmingly in favor of a major shift in the superdelegate system Saturday night after a deal was reached between" the Clinton and Sanders camps. "The committee approved nearly unanimously an amendment that preserves the existing superdelegate role for elected U.S. lawmakers and governors, but will bind the remaining superdelegates — roughly two-thirds — to primary and caucus results."

Source:
×