Tuesday, November 30, 2021


Minority-owned Southern businesses get back on their feet post-pandemic with a fund's help; President Biden says don't panic over the new COVID variant; and eye doctors gauge the risk of dying from COVID.


U.S. Senate is back in session with a long holiday to-do list that includes avoiding a government shutdown; negotiations to revive the Iran Nuclear Deal resume; and Jack Dorsey resigns as CEO of Twitter.


South Dakota foster kids find homes with Native families; a conservative group wants oil and gas reform; rural Pennsylvania residents object to planes flying above tree tops; and poetry debuts to celebrate the land.

Biden Could Face Uphill Battle in Utah Over Clean-Energy Plan


Wednesday, September 15, 2021   

SALT LAKE CITY - President Joe Biden's $150 billion clean-energy plan aims to rid almost half the power grid of carbon-based fuels by 2035, but conservation groups say his proposal will likely see resistance from Utah and other energy-producing states.

The plan, which goes before the U.S. House Energy and Commerce Committee this week, would reduce the use of coal and natural gas to cut carbon emissions and develop a green-energy economy.

Scott Williams, executive director of environmental watchdog Healthy Environment Alliance (HEAL) of Utah, said losing Utah jobs in coal and gas production could be a major barrier to implementing the plan's changes.

"[In] states where coal mining and oil and gas exploration are a significant part of the economy, like Utah and Wyoming," he said, "there's much less of an appetite to impose regulatory requirements on the power companies."

Biden's program would provide financial incentives to energy suppliers for increasing the amount of clean electricity supplied to customers each year. Most Republicans oppose the plan so far, saying it costs too much.

Williams said he believes Utah regulators and policymakers need to rethink their own incentives for power producers.

"Their primary charge in doing that is to provide power to customers at the lowest possible rate," he said, "although they are also charged to consider other societal benefits."

Sandy Bahr, director of the Sierra Club's Grand Canyon Chapter, said climate change is here now, and waiting around to deal with it is not an option.

"We should be getting more of our electricity from solar," she said. "We definitely need to move rapidly in that direction. What the president is proposing fits in well with the direction that is needed - not just for the West, but for all of us who live on this side."

Biden's Build Back Better plan also includes funding electric-grid improvements, decarbonizing federal buildings and vehicle fleets, providing rebates for energy-efficient homes and appliances, and subsidizing solar projects in low-income communities.

get more stories like this via email
The proposed Western Riverside County Wildlife Refuge is key habitat to the federally endangered Quino checkerspot butterfly. (Eric Porter/U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service)


HEMET, Calif. -- Public-lands groups are asking Congress to support the proposed Western Riverside County Wildlife Refuge, a 500,000-acre swath …

Social Issues

PRINCETON, Minn. -- President Joe Biden is expected to visit Minnesota today to tout passage of the new federal infrastructure bill. Those working …

Health and Wellness

AUGUSTA, Maine -- Advocates for access to mental-health services are holding a Behavioral Health Summit today at the Augusta Civic Center. They are …

Experts say eye exams do more than just help patients find the right prescription for glasses. (Dario Lo Presti/Adobestock)

Health and Wellness

CARSON CITY, Nev. -- Eye exams can help determine your risk of dying from COVID, according to experts, because optometrists are often the first …

Health and Wellness

FRANKFORT, Ky. -- In a few weeks, Kentucky lawmakers will convene the General Assembly, and health advocates are calling for new policies to address …

Conservationists say the Recovering America's Wildlife Act could support improvements to water quality in the Ozarks, including the Buffalo National River. (Adobe Stock)


ST. JOE, Ark. -- More than a decade of restoration efforts in a section of Northern Arkansas' Ozark National Forest have led to 40 new species of …

Social Issues

SANTA FE, N.M. -- The New Mexico Legislature will consider three possible redistricting maps for the House and Senate when it meets for a special …

Social Issues

HOUSTON, Texas -- Minority-owned businesses across the South are benefitting from a program designed to help them get back on their feet post-…


Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021