Hola, Spinach lovers, and happy 2013! Welcome back from the eggnog-induced stupor that was December, and welcome to….January. As my friend TheGreenLight mentioned, we’re kicking off the new year by wrapping up the old one, with a recap of some 2012 highlights and a look ahead to what we can expect in the year to come.
There’s plenty to discuss and recap, but I wouldn’t be a true Washingtonian if I didn’t talk about the fiscal cliff (I was born in D.C., I can’t help it.) While Congress and POTUS kept us on the edge of our seats, the deal they ultimately reached did have a few winners in it – hard to believe, I know. Two of the biggest wins out of the deal were wind and biodiesel – although tax credits for renewable energy were called into question along the way, they were ultimately preserved. Averting the fiscal cliff also prevented massive budget cuts for agencies like EPA, which would likely have cut down on research & development programs as a result. Those cuts could still happen when re-negotiation begins, but are at least – for now – delayed.
Considering the extreme weather events which characterized 2012 (and which I have a sneaking feeling my friend El Nino will follow up on), it’s encouraging to see (some?) effort on the part of both parties to encourage continued growth of the renewable energy sector as climate change becomes more of a daily reality for millions of people worldwide. That said, many are criticizing Congress and POTUS for not going after approximately $4 billion in subsidies to oil and fossil fuels that were preserved in the deal as well. But there’s always 2013….