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  • Monday, November 5, 2018

    Where The Nation Is On New Energy

    Where Americans (Mostly) Agree on Climate Change Policies, in Five Maps

    Nadja Popovich, November 1, 2018 (NY Times)

    Americans are politically divided over climate change, but there’s broader consensus around some of the solutions…A majority of Americans in almost every county support requiring electric utilities to produce at least 20 percent of their power from wind, solar and other renewable sources…[According to new Yale data,] more than two dozen states – including Hawaii, Texas and New York – have some sort of renewable energy requirement on their books, though many fall short of the 20 percent mark…

    Americans also overwhelmingly support funding research into renewable energy (nationally, 85 percent say they are in favor) and providing consumers with energy-saving tax incentives (82 percent say the same)…Support for wind and solar energy cuts across political divides…[because it is about more than climate change, and can be cheaper, cleaner, or better for human health…The geography of support for expanding offshore drilling looks more political. Counties that voted Republican in the 2016 presidential election generally view offshore drilling more favorably…The idea is popular along the Gulf Coast of Texas and Louisiana, a major offshore drilling hub. Counties along the Atlantic and Pacific coasts tend to be less enthusiastic…

    Last year, the Trump administration moved to open up nearly all United States waters to drilling, but governors from many coastal states raised concerns…Ryan Zinke, secretary of the Interior, announced that Florida would be exempt from the administration’s plan after meeting with the state’s Republican governor, Rick Scott. In defending his decision, Mr. Zinke cited widespread political opposition in Florida and a ban on drilling in state waters. Governors from South Carolina, New Jersey, Oregon, California, and more than half a dozen other states requested similar exemptions. New Jersey and California took action to block offshore drilling in state waters, too…

    …[A] majority support for a tax on carbon dioxide pollution…[if] revenue from taxing carbon emissions would be used to reduce other taxes, an idea favored by some conservatives. But this may not be the form a carbon tax proposal takes in the real world…[A real-world policy debate over carbon pricing would bring] millions of dollars of pro- and con- advertising…and politicians will support or savage the proposal…[That could shift] public opinion…On Tuesday, voters in Washington state will decide whether to approve the country's first fee on carbon emissions. The state’s proposal would use revenue to support clean energy and infrastructure projects, among other environmental concerns.” click here for more

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