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EGEB: Joe Biden’s climate task force wants emissions-free power by 2035

In today’s Electrek Green Energy Brief (EGEB):

  • Joe Biden’s unity task force has proposed broad environmental recommendations to aid his presidential bid.
  • Energy Transfer LP says it’s not going to shut down the Dakota Access pipeline, defying a court ruling.
  • Edmonton International Airport in Alberta, Canada, is to get the largest solar farm out of any airport in the world.

The Electrek Green Energy Brief (EGEB): A daily technical, financial, and political review/analysis of important green energy news.

Biden’s climate plan

Former vice president and Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden has a climate unity task force made up of his supporters and Senator Bernie Sanders’ (D-VT) supporters. Green New Deal advocate Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) and former secretary of state John Kerry lead the group. The Biden-Sanders task force has come up with a series of broad environmental recommendations.

On Wednesday, the group proposed the following, according to the Hill:

The task force’s broad plan includes a goal of eliminating carbon pollution from power plants by 2035, achieving net-zero emissions for all new buildings by 2030, and making energy-saving upgrades to as many as 4 million buildings and 2 million households within five years.

The plan also calls for a significant investment in renewable energy, including installing 500 million solar panels and manufacturing 60,000 wind turbines.

The group recommends the adoption of ‘strong standards’ for clean cars and trucks and the transition of all school buses to American-made, zero-emission alternatives within five years.

Dakota Access Pipeline’s owner defies court

On July 6, the US District Court for the District of Columbia ordered the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) to be shut down and drained by August 5. The court ordered that the government conduct a rigorous environmental review. But DAPLS’s Dallas-based owner, Energy Transfer LP, refuses to do so.

The DAPL is a 1,172-mile-long oil pipeline that runs from North Dakota to Illinois. The government will examine the risk DAPL poses to the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, which has been fighting the pipeline since 2016.

Incredibly, in defiance of the ruling, Energy Transfer’s spokesperson Vicki Granado said in an email to Bloomberg:

We believe [Judge James E. Boasberg] exceeded his authority and does not have the jurisdiction to shut down the pipeline or stop the flow of crude oil.

So what’s next? Bloomberg explains:

Energy Transfer has multiple routine options for fighting the order in court. It’s asking the US District Court for the District of Columbia to suspend the decision, and it’s pursuing an appeal. If those efforts fail, it can ask the US Supreme Court to step in.

If Energy Transfer opts to bypass those traditional routes and instead simply refuses to shut down the pipeline, the district court could hold the company in contempt. An outright violation of a court order could result in fines or jail time.

Edmonton Airport’s giant solar farm

Edmonton International Airport in Alberta, Canada, is working on an agreement with Germany’s Alpin Sun to develop Airport City Solar, a 627-acre, 120-megawatt solar farm in a field next to the airport. Edmonton Airport claims it would be the largest solar farm at an airport in the world.

According to CBC:

  • The solar farm will consist of about 340,000 solar panels.
  • The facility will produce enough electricity to power 27,000 to 28,000 homes.
  • The area, 627 acres, will equal roughly 313 CFL football fields,
  • Construction will employ 120 workers for a year, with up to 250 workers at its peak.
  • The 120-megawatt facility will generate approximately 200,000 MWh per year.
  • Alpin Sun estimates that annual production of 200,000 MWh will result in an annual offset of an estimated 106,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide.

Construction is expected to begin in early 2022. Tom Ruth, Edmonton International Airport president and CEO, said:

The project will ‘create jobs, provide sustainable solar power for our region, and show our dedication to sustainability.’

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Michelle Lewis is a writer and editor on Electrek and an editor on DroneDJ, 9to5Mac, and 9to5Google. She lives in St. Petersburg, Florida. She has previously worked for Fast Company, the Guardian, News Deeply, Time, and others. Message Michelle on Twitter or at Check out her personal blog.