New York Times: China Raises Its Targets for Renewable Energy

As China steps up its efforts to tackle climate change, the government is sharply lifting its targets for renewable energy.

China now wants to generate 150 to 200 gigawatts of electricity using solar power by 2020, possibly quadrupling the previous target. China also wants to sharply lift its wind power targets to 250 gigawatts by the same year.

Guardian: Greenpeace Exposes Skeptics Hired to Cast Doubt on Climate Change

An undercover sting by Greenpeace has revealed that two prominent climate skeptics were available for hire by the hour to write reports casting doubt on the dangers posed by global warming.

Posing as consultants to fossil fuel companies, Greenpeace approached professors at leading U.S. universities to commission reports touting the benefits of rising carbon dioxide levels and the benefits of coal. The views of both academics are well outside mainstream climate science.

The findings point to how paid-for information challenging the consensus on climate science could be placed into the public domain without the ultimate source of funding being revealed.

Vox's David Roberts: Carbon Emissions Dipped in 2015. But Don't Celebrate Just Yet

A new study in Nature Climate Change reports that worldwide carbon dioxide emissions likely dropped in 2015, the first time that's ever happened without the help of a global economic crisis.

That's definitely noteworthy. And there are some interesting underlying reasons for the drop, mainly regarding shifts in China's energy habits, which we'll get to in a sec.

The trouble is that a number of media outlets, including the New York Times, have gone even further, suggesting that global carbon emissions might finally be peaking for good in 2015. That is very, very unlikely. And don't take my word for it: At least one of the study's authors, Corinne Le Quéré of the University of East Anglia, has flat-out said it's very unlikely.

Midwest Energy News: Why No News Is Good News for Iowa Net Metering Supporters

Nearly two years into an examination of the state's policies towards distributed generation, the Iowa Utilities Board has signaled that it sees no reason at this point to make any major changes.

And no news, in this case, is good news, in the views of some of the state's clean-energy promoters.

“I think it's a positive order and potentially a model for thoughtful, data-driven distributed generation policy,” said Josh Mandelbaum, a staff attorney in Des Moines for the Environmental Law and Policy Center.

San Diego Tribune: Edison Fined $16.7M Over Warsaw Meeting

Southern California Edison was fined almost $17 million for violations related to a meeting in Poland, where a company executive and the state’s former top utility regulator sketched out deal points in secret to divide costs for the failure of the San Onofre nuclear plant.

The California Public Utilities Commission imposed the penalty after a discussion that lasted just over five minutes.

The commission did not address whether to reopen the settlement deal -- approved by the commission before the secret meeting was revealed -- which assigns utility customers 70 percent of the $4.7 billion in shutdown costs.