Energy News for week ending April 7, 2017

Welcome to this week’s edition of New England Energy News.

Let’s start with a State House News Service article on Wicked Local that reports that Massachusetts greenhouse gas emissions are down 21 percent compared to 1990. State law requires emissions by 2020 that are 25 percent lower than 1990 levels, and emissions in 2014 were 21 percent below 1990 levels, according to the Department of Environmental Protection. In his article, Michael Norton notes that the greenhouse gas debate is clouded by many factors, including a switch in the policy posture towards energy from the Obama to Trump administrations, the cost and availability of reliable renewable energy resources, natural gas dependence and infrastructure, the pace of the energy storage market development, and plans to close Pilgrim Nuclear Station in 2019.

This week Vox.com gives us a beginner’s guide to the 100 percent renewable energy debate. They say, “it’s not about whether to go to zero carbon, but how to get there.” And, that’s where the dispute comes in. “On one side are those who say we should transition to an electricity system powered entirely by renewables. On the other side are those who say that the primary goal should be zero carbon, not 100 percent renewables…so that in addition to wind, solar, and the rest of the technologies…we’re also going to need a substantial amount of nuclear power and fossil fuel power with carbon capture and sequestration.” Interesting debate. Check it out.

In NH, the Union Leader looks at “Dueling plans to deliver more power.” The article gives a side-by-side comparison of Northern Pass and National Grid’s proposed transmission line dubbed the Granite State Power Link. From timing, to cost savings, to rights of way and delays – the article gives a concise look at the two projects and what comes next for each.

Have a great weekend and if you can, find some time to watch The Masters Golf Tournament. Even if you’re not into the sport, the beautiful course, flowers, trees and birds chirping in the background will give you a nice taste of the spring weather that’s on the way.

Natural Gas/Pipeline

Natural gas price spike hikes New England power prices: report, Platts

Lifeline or Pipedream? EBA Panels Debate Need for More Gas in NE, RTO Insider

Lynch requests suspension of Weymouth compressor project, Wicked Local Weymouth

Rehoboth selectmen draft letter to state opposing compressor station, The Sun Chronicle

Rehoboth voters say ‘no’ to compressor station, WPRI 12 Eyewitness News

Eversource averts strike by gas workers, The Boston Globe

Eversource to Continue Expanding Natural Gas Infrastructure for Norwich Customers, Patch.com

Officials: Construction caused gas-line rupture in Providence, The Providence Journal

Natural-Gas Leak Puts Pressure on Fossil-Fuel Projects, ecoRI news

FERC OKs Atlantic Bridge Construction Despite Challengers, Natural Gas Intelligence

Conservation groups urge Baker to oppose new pipelines, Amherst Bulletin

Maine suspends plans for new LNG peakshaver, Argus Media

PUC Staff Recommends Against Subsidizing LNG Storage Projects—LePage Disagrees, FreePress Online

Renewable Energy

A beginner’s guide to the debate over 100% renewable energy, Vox.com

New England states take fresh look at carbon fee, E&E News

Turbine neighbors are fed up, Ricentral.com

Portland lags on solar nationally but sees opportunity for growth, Environment Maine

State approves Ludlow solar array, Vermont’s largest, Mountaintimes

It’s not so easy buying green power for your home, The Boston Globe

Going green in Seymour with solar energy program, New Haven Register

Comptroller: Offshore wind farm to cost ratepayers $1.62B, Newsday

Clean Energy Center identifies Bay State ports for wind industry, SouthCoastToday.com

Giant Vermont solar array may curtail other, cheaper renewable energy projects, Watchdog.org

Wind energy studies reveal congregations of right whales south of Islands, Wind Energy News

Ambri’s Battery Storage Technology is Heating Up, Breaking Energy

Energy Efficiency

US State Attorneys To Sue Trump Administration Over Energy Efficiency Standards, CleanTechnica

Charlestown receives ‘Energy Champion’ designation, The Westerly Sun

HVAC Systems Help Take a Connecticut House to Zero Energy, Builder Magazine

Leading States and Utilities Achieve Substantial Natural Gas Energy Efficiency Savings, Energy Collective

Energy-efficiency funding targeted in NH House budget measure, New Hampshire Business Review

Alliance to Save Energy urges Congress to advance energy efficiency bills, Daily Energy Insider

Local Climate Change Task Force gets a lesson in lobbying, Wicked Local Boxford

Suburban Edge Commission meets in Shrewsbury to discuss energy efficiency, Wicked Local Sudbury

Nuclear

The United States’ nuclear-power slump, Washington Post

Millstone No Dead Weight for Dominion, Says Opponents’ Study, RTO Insider

Report: Connecticut nuclear support legislation would cost $300M a year, Utility Dive

Group says Millstone bill would do nothing but enrich owners, New Haven Register

Stop The Millstone Payout advertisement focuses on Connecticut senior citizens, New Haven Register

Seabrook taxpayers still subsidizing water, sewer costs, The Daily News of Newburyport

Vermont Yankee water plan poses ‘minimal’ risks, feds say, vtdigger.org

State gives tribes role in sale of Vermont Yankee, Commons

Natalie Hildt Treat is new C-10 director, Newburyport Daily News

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

Massachusetts greenhouse gas emissions down 21 percent compared to 1990, Wicked Local

Advocates fighting electricity price hike, South Coast Today

No Delay – Trial-Like Hearings on Northern Pass Set To Begin Next Week, InDepthNH

Coastal commerce impacts tacked in new report, Fall River Herald News

Dueling plans to deliver more power, The Union Leader

National Grid proposes 1200 MW Canada-New England transmission line, Utility Dive

Selectmen sign non-disclosure agreement with Eversource, MetroWest Daily News

Harwich Selectmen Withhold Action On Utility Spraying, Cape Cod Chronicle

Power company scooping up land for new Chester-Pittsfield line, Bangor Daily News

How Connecticut’s nuclear bill could open a new front in the plant subsidy debate, Utility DIVE

The top 5 states for utility grid modernization and business model reform, Utility DIVE

Schneider Electric completes Massachusetts microgrid project with Duke Energy and REC Solar, PVTech

Editorial/Opinion

Kill the Access Northeast pipeline, CommonWealth magazine

Natural gas shouldn’t be the boogie man, CommonWealth Magazine

Nuclear Power Is Worth Saving, Bloomberg

Fight Eversource’s spraying on rights of way, Martha’s Vineyard Times

Sandra Levine: Cleaning up Vermont Yankee, vtdigger.org

Judd Gregg: Nuclear power presents opportunity for Trump, The Hill

Nuke plant’s champion downplays the dangers, Nantucket Island Inquirer

Dana Barlow: Steep energy prices batter R.I. companies, The Providence Journal

Forum: Let’s replace, not subsidize, Millstone Power Station, New Haven Register

My Turn: Tilting at windmills on energy prices, Concord Monitor

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