Energy News for week ending February 23, 2018

Extension Cord | Charge it up | Backbone granted

Good Friday afternoon.

As most of you are aware, after last week’s Northeast Energy News was published, MA DOER announced that officials would enter into negotiations with another project while giving Northern Pass until March 27 to overturn the decision of the NH siting board. From CommonWealth Magazine, “While contract talks with Northern Pass continue, the state’s three electric utilities will also begin negotiating power supply contracts with New England Clean Energy Connect, a partnership of Central Maine Power and Hydro-Quebec that the update referred to as “the next best project.” However, some folks in Maine aren’t happy with that idea and want to protect their scenery. One Maine letter writer to the Ellsworth American, says, “Put your wind turbines in the Berkshires and build power dams on the Connecticut River. Leave us alone!

Today, the Wall Street Journal followed up with a story titled, “New England Has a Power Problem.” It offers a synopsis of all of the challenges and differing opinions that demonstrate how difficult it is to site energy projects in New England. With respect to Northern Pass they write, “But in woodsy New Hampshire, the idea of turning part of the state into an extension cord for Massachusetts has long been controversial. New Hampshire’s Site Evaluation Committee voted the project down this month, citing concerns including a negative impact on tourism and property values.”

This week MassPIRG released its report, “Plugging In: Readying America’s Cities for the Arrival of Electric Vehicles.” From the Gloucester Times, “Electric vehicles will become more mainstream and as that happens drivers will need the infrastructure — mainly charging stations — to support them, according to a MassPIRG report publicized Wednesday that estimated there will be 24,000 electric vehicles in Boston by 2030. The state has a goal of reaching 300,000 electric vehicles on the road by 2025…Cities should make chargers available for people who don’t have driveways or garages, government should encourage sharing of electric cars and bikes, and data about charging stations should be shared to enable drivers to find an open plug-in, MassPIRG recommended.”

North American Wind Power writes that getting ready for offshore wind took a step forward this week with FERC’s decision to give Anbaric Development Partners (ADP), “the right to develop a shared transmission system in support of Massachusetts offshore wind. The FERC decision grants ADP the authority to solicit customers and sell transmission rights to a 2 GW-2.4 GW offshore wind transmission system in southern New England called the Massachusetts Ocean Grid. FERC’s approval of the application allows ADP to offer its backbone transmission system to offshore wind developers that currently hold federal leases, as well as future lease holders, says ADP.”

As always, be sure to check out Northeast Energy News for more stories and events. Have a great weekend.
 

Northern Pass/83D RFP

BIA endorses Northern Pass, says project’s rejection turning businesses from NH, The Union Leader

National Grid Applauds Mass. Review Of Northern Pass, Citizentribune

New England Has a Power Problem, Wall Street Journal (subscriber content)

Maine project picked as backup for Mass. renewable energy contract, SouthCoastToday.com

Mass. Taps Maine Transmission Line As Clean Energy Supplier If Northern Pass Falls Through, New England Public Radio

Baker selects backup for Northern Pass, CommonWealth Magazine

Mass. Picks Avangrid Project as Northern Pass Backup, RTO Insider

Eversource to seek Northern Pass reconsideration, CommonWealth Magazine

 

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Connecticut Natural Gas ordered to pay $1.5 million fine for pipeline safety violations, Litchfield County Times

Blackouts, Higher Costs a Proven Risk Without New Natural-Gas Pipelines, NJ Spotlight

Sen. Rosenberg calls for Western Mass hearing on $24 million Columbia Gas pipeline plan, MassLive.com

Can Updated Tax Credits Bring Carbon Capture Into the Mainstream?, Greentech Media

Mass. Is Stalling Pipeline Permit, Enbridge Unit Tells DC Circ., Law360

How General Electric gambled on fossil fuel power, and lost, Reuters

A New Massachusetts ‘Sustainable Energy’ Coalition Is Really A Front For Gas Interests, Huffington Post

 

Renewables/Climate Change/RGGI

Lobbyists’ valentines ask Baker to ‘break up’ with non-renewable energy, Daily Free Press

Sidney residents voice concerns over installation of gas pipeline, Kennebec Journal & Morning Sentinel

Renewing Berlin through renewable energy: Obstacles remain as city expands its power portfolio, The Union Leader

Connecticut proposes “40% by 2030” renewable energy mandate, replacing net metering, pv magazine USA

Scientists: Rhode Island is sinking and sea levels continue to rise, WPRI 12 Eyewitness News

NH House backs bill to limit renewable energy incentives, New Hampshire Business Review

 

Wind

ISO-NE Study Finds Wind ‘Spillage,’ Price Separation, RTO Insider

Feds OK Next Step In Massachusetts Offshore Wind Transmission System, North American Windpower

Wind industry sues LePage administration over order halting permits, Press Herald

It generates power and cuts emissions, but is Lynn’s wind turbine making any money?, Item Live

 

Solar

City Council moves closer toward solving solar farm ordinance, The Reminder — Agawam

A solar panel on every roof in the US? Here are the numbers, Ars Technica

Solar import tariff: pain without benefit, New Hampshire Business Review

US solar industry lost nearly 10000 jobs in 2017, The Union Leader

Massachusetts’ SMART Program Awards Sunpin 20-Year Feed-In-Tariff Contract in Western Massachusetts, NA Clean Energy

Advocates for home solar projects slam decision by ‘out-of-control’ PUC, Press Herald

South Shore MBTA lots to get solar canopies, Patriot Ledger

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

For Salem, it pays to be green, Wicked Local

Driving the Market for Heat Pumps in the Northeast, Natural Resources Defense Council

Framingham Co. Completes $3.7M Scotland Energy Savings Project, Patch.com

Trump Administration Energy Efficiency Delay Ruled Illegal, Natural Resources Defense Council

Tonight, Science Cafe will tell you about energy efficiency, and maybe save you some money, Concord Monitor

Energy efficiency is leaving low-income Americans behind, Grist

Federal judge rules against Trump administration, forcing Dept. of Energy to enact energy efficiency standards set under Barack Obama, MassLive

House committee chooses energy efficiency over rebates, NH Business Review

FERC order opens ‘floodgates’ for energy storage in wholesale markets, Utility Dive

Energy Storage Gets Biggest Boost in Years. Thank you FERC, Microgrid Knowledge

Details on the 14 Massachusetts Community Microgrid Projects that Won Funding, Microgrid Knowledge

 

Nuclear

Latest Pilgrim inspection finds no violations, Cape Cod Times

Seabrook nuke plant’s seismic monitor not triggered by earthquake, Seacoastonline.com

Indian Point reactor automatically shuts down again, feds investigating, The Journal News | LoHud.com

Nuclear Reactors Could Run as Long as 80 Years Under Trump Plan, Bloomberg

Controversial nuclear bill advances, now with green subsidies adding to cost increases, NorthJersey.com

 

Electric Vehicles

Homeowners Get New Tesla Batteries in Utility Trial, Renewable Energy News

Electric car growth influenced by state of charging infrastructure, Gloucester Times

 

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

Electricity Customers Didn’t Save Money With Retail Sellers, WABI 5

LIPA, National Grid claims to ‘governmental immunity’ for Sandy damage rejected by state Court of Appeals, amNY

LaFleur warns against PJM plan altering ‘fundamental’ energy market mechanics, Utility Dive

‘Boarded-up’ National Grid windows come under fire from Niagara Street neighbors, Buffalo News

Trump again will try to cut energy assistance to the poor, Patriot Ledger

Blockchain Could Change Everything for Energy, Renewable Energy World

New use for old mine shafts — power generators using gravity, Digital Journal

Heating assistance programs struggling to keep up with demand on South Shore, Patriot Ledger

EPA moves to reject CT complaint over Brunner Island plant emissions, Utility Dive

 

Editorial/Opinion

Don’t let New England region run out of gas, The Day

Maine whiffed on big chance to study electricity ripoff, Bangor Daily News

Kate Epsen: For alternatives to Northern Pass, just look around, Union Leader

Utility consumers need to be heard in Western Massachusetts (Guest viewpoint), MassLive

Letter: Steven E. Miller: New England has no gas pipeline crisis, The Providence Journal

Eversource, ever unclear, Cape Cod Times

High energy costs put northeastern US economy at risk, The Hill

Letter: Christian Roselund: Wind can meet region’s energy needs in time, The Providence Journal

Your Turn: Central Mass. can lead 100-percent renewable transition, Worcester Mag

Our view: States could work together to optimize offshore wind energy, Press of Atlantic City

Storage, not new pipelines, is the answer, CommonWealth Magazine

Winter costs make region cold for business, CommonWealth Magazine

With more control, communities choose clean energy, CommonWealth Magazine

Senate Energy Bill: Christmas for Special Interests, AIM blog

Charging Past Failure: A Plan For More Effective Electric Vehicle Powering, The Energy Collective

To slow climate change, the US needs to address nuclear power’s dismal economics, The Conversation

Viewpoint: Mass. offshore wind process can be improved, Boston Business Journal

Don’t give up the fight to protect Maine’s scenery, The Ellsworth American

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Filed under hydro, Natural Gas Pipelines, New England Energy News, Northeast Energy News, offshore wind

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