Ben Geman
Ben Geman
Energy reporter w/@Axios. Former stops incl. National Journal, The Hill, E&E, Boston Phoenix (RIP). I tweet about running too. Tips/feedback: ben@axios.comSource
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Manchin presses Biden on U.S. output amid OPEC+ cut

Manchin presses Biden on U.S. output amid OPEC+ cut

Senate Energy Committee chair Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) is urging President Biden to marshal executive powers to help boost U.S. oil production following the OPEC+ move to cut output. Driving the news: Manchin, in a new letter, calls the OPEC+ move "reckless" and a revenue boost for Russian President Vladimir Putin's regime. But he also argues Biden should not look to tap more barrels from authoritarian states. "I am disheartened by reporting which suggests OPEC+’s actions may drive your administration to seek to unlock sanctioned oil production from Iran or Venezuela," Manchin writes. The...

Oct 12
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2030 is the new 2050 for emissions-cutting pledges

2030 is the new 2050 for emissions-cutting pledges

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/AxiosPledges to end net emissions by midcentury are now commonplace for big countries and companies, but several looming summits are putting a fresh focus on a much closer horizon.Driving the news: U.S. officials intend to unveil a 2030 greenhouse gas emissions-cutting target under the Paris deal by April 22 — the date of a big summit Biden is hosting.Where it stands: John Kerry, President Biden's climate envoy, used a multilateral meeting Tuesday to call for countries to show "concretely" how they'll meet those midcentury pledges with nearer-term steps.The...

March 24, 2021
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Scoop: Wall Street titan joins John Kerry's climate team

Scoop: Wall Street titan joins John Kerry's climate team

Mark Gallogly (second from left). Photo: Alex Wong/Getty ImagesMark Gallogly, a Wall Street veteran and big-dollar Democratic donor, is joining John Kerry’s international climate team, people familiar with the matter tell Axios. Why it matters: Hiring someone with Gallogly’s experience is an indication Kerry plans to leverage markets and investing strategies to address climate change. Gallogly is the highest-profile New York investor to sign on to the Biden administration.The big picture: "We need to be working hand in hand with the private and public sector to provide the finance, which...

March 2, 2021
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How Biden's clean-energy jobs transition could work in fossil fuel hubs

How Biden's clean-energy jobs transition could work in fossil fuel hubs

A lots of potential for regions with a high share of fossil fuel jobs to benefit from wind and solar development — with the right policies in place.Why it matters: The idea of a "just transition" in the energy sector is discussed a lot in climate policy plans, including President Biden's recent .The big picture: The paper finds "impressive overlap between where fossil fuel jobs are now and where renewable energy generation could be."How it works: Brookings analyzed county-level employment to construct a map of these "fossil fuel hubs."The intrigue: They find that of the 155 congressional...

February 24, 2021
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Takeaways from Biden's sweeping order on climate change

Takeaways from Biden's sweeping order on climate change

Illustration: Aïda Amer/AxiosPresident Biden's mammoth on climate policy weighs in at over 7,500 words and resists any single narrative, but I've got a few initial takeaways.Why it matters: The order aims to marshal the entire federal government behind new initiatives, so that means agencies that may not have the muscle memory or expertise of the resource and environmental branches like EPA and DOE.Time, part 1: Executive orders are largely statements of intent to make and enact policy (though the oil leasing freeze is more immediate, so more on that in a moment). So whether this succeeds...

January 28, 2021
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Yellen says Biden is "fully supportive" of carbon pricing

Yellen says Biden is "fully supportive" of carbon pricing

Photo: Alex Wong/Getty ImagesJanet Yellen, President Biden's nominee to run the Treasury Department, has made clear to senators that her boss supports carbon pricing, but how that backing translates to policy is unknown. Driving the news: "I am fully supportive of effective carbon pricing and I know that the President is as well," Yellen to Senate Finance Committee members' questions published Thursday.What we don't know: What that "enforcement mechanism" might mean. Carbon pricing typically refers to taxes or emissions trading systems.Background: Yellen is on record supporting a that would...

January 22, 2021
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BP makes billion-dollar offshore wind play

BP makes billion-dollar offshore wind play

Photo: Lance King/Getty ImagesBP is making its first move into offshore wind via a new deal and partnership with Norway-based Equinor, which is developing big U.S. projects.Driving the news: BP is paying Equinor $1.1 billion for a 50% stake in wind farms Equinor is developing off the coasts of New York and Massachusetts. The oil-and-gas companies — which are both making more moves into renewables — also announced a "strategic partnership" to jointly pursue other U.S. offshore projects.Why it matters: It's a sign of BP's pledge to speed up its diversification into low-carbon technologies and...

September 10, 2020
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Chevron's venture capital arm buys stake in nuclear fusion startup Zap Energy

Chevron's venture capital arm buys stake in nuclear fusion startup Zap Energy

Photo Illustration: Walid Berrazeg/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty ImagesChevron is making a Series A investment in the three-year-old nuclear fusion startup Zap Energy, marking the latest foray by an oil-and-gas giant into companies outside a core business.Why it matters: It's the first nuclear power investment from Chevron Technology Ventures, the company's in-house VC arm that's spreading money around a range of energy technologies.The size of the investment was not disclosed. Seattle-based Zap has also received Energy Department funding.The big picture: If — if! — decadeslong efforts...

August 13, 2020
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Poll: A majority of Pennsylvanians oppose fracking

Poll: A majority of Pennsylvanians oppose fracking

Photo: Erik McGregor/LightRocket via Getty ImagesFifty-two percent oppose fracking in a of registered voters in Pennsylvania, while 48% favor the oil-and-gas extraction method, a finding within the poll's margin of error.The big picture: Pennsylvania is a key swing state where natural gas development is a major industry, and President Trump's campaign has sought to turn Joe Biden's energy plans into a political liability.Where it stands: The Trump campaign has inaccurately said Biden would pursue an outright ban on fracking. However, Biden's platform does call for new restrictions on...

August 10, 2020
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A climate opening for Joe Biden

A climate opening for Joe Biden

Voters trust Democrats to address climate change and clean energy far more than Republicans, and there's majority support for multitrillion-dollar investments to massively expand emissions-free fuels, new polling shows.What they found: The from the lefty think tank Data for Progress shows an advantage for Democrats on those topics that's far outside the margin of error, compared to the more even split on jobs and the economy.What they're saying: "[C]limate change presents especially favorable terrain upon which the Democratic Party can engage their Republican counterparts," a memo alongside...

June 8, 2020
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