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Energy and Environment Reporting for Texas

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How New Transmission Lines Are Bringing More Wind Power to Texas Cities

We’re all going to be paying for it, so you might be glad to know that a new set of transmission lines to bring wind power from the Panhandle and West Texas to folks in North and Central Texas appear to be off to a good start. According to a new federal analysis this week, [...]

As Renewables Grow in Texas, Battles Over Fees and Subsidies Emerge

In the coming years, the federal government wants Texas to reduce its carbon emissions by about 40 percent. With a goal like that, you might expect to see more programs aimed at promoting renewable energy in Texas. But something like the opposite appears to be happening. Donna Nelson, chair of Texas’ Public Utility Commission, asked last [...]

It’s a Bird! It’s a Plane! No, It’s an Airborne Wind Turbine!

Imagine a blimp, like the one you might have looked up at in awe when you were a kid. Now, imagine that blimp cut into a cylindrical shape, with a wind turbine in the middle. It’s called the Buoyant Airborne Turbine (BAT), and it’s what Altaeros Energies imagines will be the future of wind energy. By [...]

Texas Wind Power Breaks Another Record

Another record was set for wind power generation this week, according to the group that manages much of the state’s power. The Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) says Wednesday evening, wind power generation on the grid reached10,296 megawatts (MW), or enough to power 5 million Texas homes during times of regular demand. That beat [...]

What Do Plane Flights and Wind Farms Have in Common? Turbulence

Turbulence is a menace to more than just airplane passengers. As wind power grows in Texas and beyond, its impact on wind turbines is becoming a challenge for energy generation. In a recent study released by the University of Texas at San Antonio, mechanical engineering professor Kiran Bhaganagar found that placing  turbines too closely together in a [...]

New Year Brings Good and Bad News For Texas Wind Power

Mose Buchele/StateImpactWind turbines in West Texas help produce record amounts of electricity for the state. By New Year’s Day, the network of transmission lines that comprise Texas’ “Competitive Renewable Energy Zone” [CREZ] will be fully operational, bringing electricity from wind turbines in West Texas and the Panhandle to points east. Many of the lines are [...]

Five Things You Should Know About Energy in Texas

Texas is the nation’s leader in oil, natural gas, and wind production. But what parts of the state are doing the heavy lifting when it comes to energy? Last week, StateImpact Texas used data from the Railroad Commission of Texas and thewindpower.net to answer that question. We created maps that showed how much oil, natural [...]

Mapped: Wind Energy in Texas

Drive west from Austin or Dallas-Fort Worth towards cities like Midland, Amarillo, or El Paso, and you’re bound to see your share of wind turbines dotting the landscape. That’s because Texas leads the nation in wind capacity, and more wind farms are on the way. That’s reflected in this map, which shows each county’s annual wind [...]

StateImpact Texas Hits the Road: Miles and Miles of Texas

With Plenty of Turbines and Pumpjacks Along the Way Over a thousand miles later, StateImpact Texas has returned from our first “Road Show,” a journey that took us from Austin to Midland-Odessa, then to Marfa, and back. Along the way, we heard stories of the drought, the drilling boom, and what everyday Texans think about [...]

Largest Federally-Owned Wind Farm to Open Near Amarillo

Texas leads the nation in wind energy production and capacity. Now the federal government is getting in on the action in an effort to clean up its carbon-emitting act. The Department of Energy announced this week that Texas will be the home of the country’s largest federally-owned wind farm. The farm will be built at the [...]

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