Energy News for week ending January 13, 2017

Happy Friday the 13th! So what do you think your energy use is equivalent to in toasters? According to an article in GeekWire, Nathan Myhrvold explains, “Each American draws an average of 11 kilowatts of electrical power, which translates to having 11 toasters working all day, every day…In comparison, the global average is 2.5 kilowatts (or 2.5 toasters)…Africa is at 800 watts, which isn’t quite a toaster’s worth, but equivalent to a coffeemaker.” He adds that, “In the decades ahead, the whole world wants to have 11 toasters’ worth of electricity.” Myhrvold uses this interesting illustration to make the case that in order to meet this growing demand we need to invest in “next-generation technologies aimed at making fission-generated power safer and easier to manage” such as TerraPower, which has developed a “new type of nuclear reactor that makes use of depleted uranium and can sustain the fission process indefinitely.”

In other news, Bruce Mohl of CommonWealth Magazine reminds us that renewables aren’t cheap by comparing the cost of renewables-based residential electricity supply options with utilities’ basic-service offerings. And, while you’re on the CommonWealth Magazine site, be sure to read Gordon van Welie’s piece titled, “Grid in the balance.” There’s no sugar coating here – just plain facts about “suboptimal solutions” that may be required without infrastructure development. Speaking of which, we included an article from Utility DIVE in which Dominion has said blackouts will be the norm for a Virginia peninsula later this year because of coal plant closings and opposition to bring electricity to the area via a transmission line from a nearby nuclear plant. Hmmm. Perhaps they could use the TerraPower solution?

One last note for this week, Massachusetts comes in first again in another positive analysis – it’s the most friendly state for rooftop solar (Greentech Media).

Have a great weekend.

Natural Gas/Pipeline

National Grid: West Roxbury gas metering and regulating station is operational, Wicked Local West Roxbury

Eversource appeals state’s pipeline ruing to NH Supreme Court, Concord Monitor

Tough Road Seen For Access Northeast, LNG Storage, Too, Natural Gas Intelligence

Gas leak stopped at Spectra Energy Weymouth station, The Boston Globe

Gas leak heightens concerns over proposed Weymouth project, The Patriot Ledger

Spectra says pipeline unaffected by frozen valve in Weymouth, The Patriot Ledger

Weymouth mayor calls for changes at metering station after release, Patriot Ledger

Invenergy Identifies Johnston As Water Supplier For Burrillville Power Plant, Rhode Island Public Radio

Invenergy’s John Niland delivers false information at Woonsocket City Council meeting, RI Future

Local Pipeline Leaks Source of Climate Emissions, ecoRI news

Renewable Energy

Solar farms proposed for two central Maine towns, Press Herald

Vermont’s newly-elected GOP governor backs 90% RPS, Utility DIVE

Renewables not cheap, CommonWealth Magazine

New York sets bar high for offshore wind, UPI.com

Offshore investment ‘up’ 40%, reNews

Deepwater Wind pitches 120 MW Maryland offshore wind project, Electric Light & Power

John Kerry Says Clean Energy Will Yield Job Growth, Survival, Fortune

Eversource gets approval to build more solar plants in Massachusetts, wwlp.com

Cuomo Pledges to Lead on Climate, Cut RGGI Cap 30% by 2030, Natural Resources Defense Council

RGGI Report: Less pollution drives billions in health gains, Natural Resources Defense Council

Planners approve $45M solar farm, Cranston Herald

Connecticut’s Commercial Solar Pipeline Is Huge. But Will It Get Built?, (paywall) Greentech Media

New Milford Town Council approves payment deal for solar project, Danbury News Times

Report: Solar installations eating up Connecticut farmland, New Haven Register

Westerly considering solar partnership to reduce energy costs, The Westerly Sun

Maine regulators approve biomass subsidies split across 4 plants, Biomass Magazine

Solar company gets Athol’s blessing, with contingency, Going Green

Montpelier capital city to vote on ‘net zero’ options, Penn Energy

The States Most Friendly to Rooftop Solar, Ranked, Greentech Media

Sunrun forms strategic partnership with National Grid, PV-Tech

Eversource’s proposed 3.3-megawatt solar array in Lee up for public review, Berkshire Eagle

RGGI to offer 14.4 mln allowances in Mar. 8 auction, Carbon Pulse

Energy Efficiency

Weatherization Efforts Set in 14 Vermont Towns, Valley News

Investigation Indicates Lax Oversite of Quasi-State Energy Program, MainePublic.org

Obama Makes the Case for His Clean Energy Legacy, Scientific American

Nuclear

Millstone’s annual economic impact in state put at $1.3 billion, The Day

NRC starts review process for proposed Vt. Yankee sale, The Recorder

Former state regulator now an Entergy ally, Commons

Nathan Myhrvold explains why the nuclear power option is needed…with toasters, GeekWire

Climate change is fueling a second chance for nuclear power, PRI

Indian Point closing will end Entergy era in Northeast, Rutland Herald

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

Eversource plan concerns history advocates, Seacoastonline.com

Busy year for Footprint as project wraps up, Salem News

What’s Next for Energy Storage Policy? Watch Massachusetts, Microgrid Knowledge

Maine Power Company Deploying Drones to Respond to Power Outages, (video) NECN

What electric utilities can learn from the Vermont hacking scare, Utility DIVE

Energy giants, businesses among top Sununu inaugural donors, Eagle-Tribune

Bill requiring municipal approval of transmission lines proposed, The Union Leader

Sununu Sets Sights on Lowering NH’s Electric Bills — But Getting There Won’t Be Easy, New Hampshire Public Radio

Electric costs increasing in Wallingford for next six months, Meriden Record-Journal

Emera Initiates Energy Solicitation for Atlantic Link Transmission Project, Yahoo Finance

Dominion: Lack of transmission, coal shutdowns bring blackouts to Virginia peninsula, Utility DIVE

Death of Brayton Point leaves uncertain tax picture in Somerset, Herald News

Editorial/Opinion

Grid in the balance, CommonWealth magazine

As I See It: Making a case for natural gas, Worcester Telegram

Cummington: Contradance to benefit Pipe Line Awareness Network, Berkshire Eagle

Three Signs Of Hope In The U.S. For Energy Efficiency And Renewables in 2017, Forbes

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