Energy News for week ending June 15, 2018

Deepwater wins again | DAC can work, but… | Pricing Carbon | Save the bees

 

Good Friday Afternoon.

The awarding of offshore wind contracts continued this week, with Connecticut selecting a proposal from Deepwater Wind. From Renewables Now, “Regulators in Connecticut have selected a proposal by Deepwater Wind to supply 200 MW of offshore wind power to the state, it was announced on Wednesday…The Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) said in a press release that 824,830 MWh of power will be sourced from the Revolution Wind complex between Montauk, New York, and Martha’s Vineyard in Massachusetts, which could be later paired with FirstLight Power’s 1,168-MW Northfield Mountain pumped-storage facility to allow it to act like a baseload resource. Construction works on the project could start in 2022, with completion targeted in 2023…”

This week, Dave Roberts at Vox.com looks at the pitfalls and possibilities of pulling carbon dioxide out of the air in what’s known as “Direct Air Capture” or DAC. His piece is long and detailed but worth a read. In general he concludes, “DAC itself is a bit of a Swiss army knife, useful in virtually any decarbonization scenario, so the technology seems likely to find a way forward one way or another. In the end, DAC, like most clean energy technologies, is neither a silver bullet nor bull [sugar honey ice tea]. It’s just a promising development in a world that needs all the promising developments it can get.” (My apologies to Mr. Roberts for that edit — but one needs to get past email filters…)

The Massachusetts Senate this week approved an energy bill that Bruce Mohl at Commonwealth Magazine writes, contains, “what is essentially carbon pricing but called it a “market-based compliance mechanism” instead. Massachusetts, as part of the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, already puts a price on carbon in electricity generation, but the Senate bill would extend that approach to the rest of the economy, including transportation.” Mohl notes that the legislation is supported by National Grid, which released a white paper in which, “The utility said most of the emissions reductions to date have come in the electric generation sector. While progress there needs to continue, Grid said, the bulk of future reductions will need to come in the transportation and heating sectors, where progress has been minimal.”

The last tidbit for this week comes from the News and Observer in New York where Governor Cuomo has a bill waiting on his desk that “will encourage solar farm operators to incorporate bee-friendly vegetation on their properties…the measure would require state agricultural to create new standards for solar energy farms including guidelines for vegetation that attract and protect bees and other pollinating species.”

You can find more events at Northeast Energy News. Have a great weekend.

 

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

End of the ‘gas rush?’ Renewables, storage reaching cost parity, report finds, Utility Dive

Eversource seeks to revive New England Access Northeast natgas pipe, Reuters

LaFleur defies FERC majority, will consider broad climate impacts of pipelines, Utility Dive

Gas pipeline developers to press build-out hopes in New York, New England, Platts

PUC allows contentious Mariner East 1 pipeline to restart, philly.com

Weymouth: Officials Challenge Waterways Permit for Proposed Compressor Station in Federal Court, WATD-FM

Assessing the Aftermath of Marshall County Pipeline Explosion, The Intelligencer

A Community Cracked Open by Fracking, New York Times

Court rejects fracking company’s appeal in “rule of capture” decision, State Impact

 

Renewables/Climate Change/RGGI

Sucking carbon out of the air won’t solve climate change, Vox

Pope Tells Oil Executives to Act on Climate: ‘There Is No Time to Lose,’ New York Times

Senate bill would ramp up clean energy development, CommonWealth Magazine

Global Investment in Wind and Solar Energy Is Outshining Fossil Fuels, Wall St. Journal

Quasi-public state agency wired $94K to cybercriminal, audit finds, Boston Business Journal

Energy Department Selects Six Awardees for $6.7 Million in Marine Energy Funding, (press release), energy.gov

Wind and fuel cell power backed by state, CT Post

Andover board Oks energy section for Town Plan, Chester (VT) Telegraph

Putting a price on carbon gains momentum in Mass., CommonWealth Magazine

Sen. Jeb Bradley and Rep. Herb Richardson: Homegrown renewable energy gets boost from legislation, Concord Monitor

Sununu May Veto Net Metering Expansion, Biomass Bill, New Hampshire Public Radio

UMass Amherst Surges in Rankings for Sustainable Universities, Moving up to No. 9 in the Nation, UMass Amherst

 

Wind

Connecticut taps Deepwater Wind for 200 MW of offshore wind, Renewables Now

As Maine shifted priorities, southern New England seized on offshore wind, Portland Press Herald

Administration looks offshore for wind energy boom, Washington Examiner

Connecticut joins the offshore wind rush, Connecticut Mirror

New report touts Maine’s potential for offshore wind, Windpower Engineering

Wind company vacates its office space in Parishville, National Wind Watch

Next Offshore Wind in U.S. Can Compete With Gas, Developer Says, Bloomberg

Regulators apply brakes to offshore wind power project led by UMaine, Press Herald

Maine PUC to review draft terms sheet for Maine Aqua Ventus offshore wind project, Daily Energy Insider

 

Solar

Lawmakers: Make solar farm sites friendly to bees, News & Observer

Dozens of Lawmakers Object Solar Program’s Details, Banker & Tradesman

Report: Massachusetts expects steep drop in solar installations in 2018, MassLive.com

Hopkinton neighbors oppose solar panels off scenic road, MetroWest Daily News

New US Solar Record — 2.155 Cents Per kWh! (+ 400 MWh of Energy Storage), CleanTechnica

Incentives Drive U.S. Solar Into Higher Gear: Five Key Findings, Solar Industry

This passive-energy lake house unites multiple generations under one roof, Inhabitat

Developer plans second solar project in Bennington, VTDigger

Hopkinton select board mulls solar installation on landfill, Concord Monitor

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

Providence Details Energy Efficiency Success—and Recommits, NRDC

Home Energy Audit May Be Coming Soon—and Why Your Home May Not Measure Up, Realtor.com

Backed by Bill Gates and Jeff Bezos, Breakthrough Energy Ventures places first bets on power storage, GeekWire

Vermont establishes new energy efficiency program, WRAL

The Higher Efficiency State: Massachusetts or California?, Renewable Energy World

 

EVs

Postcard from the Future: Latest on How States are Preparing the Grid for Electric Vehicles, Microgrid Knowledge

 

Nuclear

Nuclear plant gets good report, Cape Cod Times

FERC Commissioners Agree: No Grid Emergency Exists to Justify Coal, Nuclear Bailout,

Greentech Media

Nuclear power getting more bailouts as natural gas crowds energy market, Politico

NRC Staff Holds Public Hearing On Indian Point Nuclear Power Performance, Scarsdale Daily Voice

 

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

Massachusetts utilities conclude contract negotiations to import hydro, Utility Dive

National Grid settlement curbs rate increase, ups grid mod in Rhode Island, Utility Dive

ISO-NE implements ‘pay-for-performance’ capacity market incentives, Utility Dive

Consumer Advocate: PUC Should Close Two Cases Eversource Wants Revisited, InDepthNH.org

Power Companies’ Mistakes Can Cost Billions. Who Should Pay?, New York Times

Microgrids Benefit from New Jersey’s Push for More Renewables and Energy Storage, Microgrid Knowledge

New 785MW electric plant in Oxford comes online, New Haven Register

New England fully integrates demand response into wholesale markets, Utility Dive

New Mansfield Electric Department generator to curb costs, WickedLocal

Overheard at New England Energy Conference and Exposition 2018, RTO Insider

Baker gets a ‘C’ on environmental report card, Gloucester Daily Times

New York State Public Service Commission : National Grid LI to Pay $1.98 Million to Settle Gas Explosion Investigation, WRAL

 

Editorial/Opinion

On clean energy, we need a 7th inning stretch, CommonWealth Magazine

No 7th inning stretch needed, just clean energy home runs, CommonWealth Magazine

Conservation Law Foundation — less steward and more bully, Boston Globe

If Nuclear Power Is So Safe, Why Are We So Afraid Of It?, Forbes.com

To meet demand for rural power, communities can look to nuclear energy, CNN

Clouds over Mass. solar industry, CommonWealth Magazine

Biomass supports NH families, New Hampshire Union Leader

Keeping nuclear plants in the mix, Boston Globe

Roberta Pevear: Seabrook is an accident waiting to happen, Concord Monitor

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

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