Energy News for week ending February 8, 2019

Compressor Station Opposition | FERC Twitter Spat | Waste for Good

 

Hi all. Happy Friday afternoon.

Given that so much has been written about the Green New Deal, we’re going to focus on a few other stories today.

The compressor station controversy in Weymouth continues to grow since it received approval on its air quality permit. From sit-ins at the Governor’s office to protests at the State House, this is a story that keeps on going. The Patriot Ledger reports that, “A group of physicians is challenging the findings of a state-ordered report on Weymouth’s proposed 7,700- horsepower natural-gas compressor station, arguing that the facility would pose “an unacceptable health risk to the surrounding community.” Greater Boston Physicians for Social Responsibility released a report Thursday rejecting the findings of a health-impact assessment that the Metropolitan Area Planning Council conducted on the compressor station proposed by Algonquin, a subsidiary of Spectra Energy-Enbridge. The report, released last month, concluded that the facility would be unlikely to affect health and noise in the area…” To add further to the controversy, WBUR reports that “Metropolitan Area Planning Council (MAPC) Executive Director Marc Draisen told WBUR that his agency does not support construction of the compressor station in North Weymouth, citing concerns about climate resilience and public safety. The surprising comments come about a month after the MAPC released its Health Impact Assessment (HIA) concluding that emissions from the compressor station are ‘not likely to cause health effects’ to the surrounding community.”

Considering this guy was nominated by Donald Trump, it’s hard to believe he finds anything on Twitter surprising. From Bloomberg, “The top U.S. energy regulator is chastising his colleagues in a very public Twitter dispute that shines a light on the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s inner workings. ‘I do not discuss the commission’s internal deliberations with the public,’ FERC Chairman Neil Chatterjee said Tuesday on Twitter. ‘Doing so would be highly inappropriate.’ Chatterjee was responding to an earlier tweet from the agency’s two Democratic commissioners. Richard Glick and Cheryl LaFleur said they were ‘disappointed that the commission failed to act’ on an offshore wind project’s request for an important waiver.” Considering what else comes out of Washington, their tweets seemed pretty tame to me.

Speaking of garbage, Utility Dive brings us a story of a local company doing something positive with food waste. “Up a steep dirt road in Haverhill, Massachusetts, past a set of old farm buildings, sits one of the newest anaerobic digesters in the country. It’s the fourth facility of its kind from Vanguard Renewables, with many more on the way…Vanguard’s ‘farm-powered’ model is designed to come with automatic community benefits. While Hanselman said the six-year-old company’s original plan was to focus on energy production, their scope has since expanded to include much more. A small adjacent building contains a 1 MW engine capable of generating up to 7,700 MWh of electricity per year from the resulting methane. In addition to a 20-year power purchase agreement with the city of Haverhill, Vanguard is providing free heat to the multigenerational family business — Crescent Farms — that hosts it on their land. The AD facility also handles all of their manure, creates enough liquid fertilizer for them to swear off synthetic material entirely and makes an animal bedding byproduct that has reportedly led to higher quality milk yields among the cows.”

That’s it for this week’s recap. Have a great weekend!

 

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Doctors’ group challenges report on Weymouth compressor station, Patriot Ledger

The Fight Against A Gas Line Project In Weymouth Is Fought Every Day In Charlie Baker’s Lobby, WGBH

Proposed Weymouth Compressor Station Draws More Opposition, WBUR

Columbia Gas Fined $75,000 For Spikes In Pipeline Pressure Years Before Merrimack Valley Explosions, WBUR

Senate panel gets look at bill that would ban new oil and gas pipelines, VT Digger

Proposed $700M Killingly power plant clears key hurdle, Hartford Business Journal

Nearly 200 National Grid customers in Cranston affected by gas main break, WJAR

Aquidneck Island gas emergency causes 300 to seek unemployment benefits, Providence Business News

5 Newport restaurants sue National Grid, Enbridge over gas outage, Providence Journal

United States : Raimondo Discusses Relief Efforts for Newport County Gas Customers, MarketWatch

State Division of Public Utilities launches investigation into Newport gas outage, Providence Journal

Nearly 200 National Grid customers in Cranston affected by gas main break, WJAR

 

Renewables/Climate Change/RGGI

Green New Deal resolution calls for 100% zero-carbon power within 10 years, Utility Dive

Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker urges Congress to address climate change, MassLive

Inside Vanguard Renewables, the Northeast’s biggest food waste recycler, Utility Dive

Green New Deal won’t call for end to fossil fuels, Politico

A Small New York Town Plans a Profitable, 100% Renewable Energy Future, Greentech Media

Climate change may result in loss of lake ice in coming years, WGME

Climate Change Could Mean Increased ‘Weather Whiplash’, WAMC

 

Wind

Price heads new study commission on impact of offshore wind turbines, Westerly Sun

FERC passes on Vineyard Wind emergency request for ISO-NE auction delay, Utility Dive

Twitter Spat Erupts as FERC Chair Scolds Colleagues for Post, Bloomberg

DOE to provide $28M for floating wind turbine technologies, Daily Energy Insider

State: Vineyard Wind can seek local permits for cable, Cape Cod Times

Ørsted divests 50% of South Fork, Revolution Wind and two New England offshore wind lease areas, Windpower Engineering

National Grid contract with Orsted would save customers $90 million over 20 years, Providence Journal

Vineyard Wind, backed by Baker, plays power politics, CommonWealth Magazine

Charlie Baker defended wind power after a Republican congressman questioned him on Capitol Hill, Boton.com

National Grid Seeks Approval For Revolution Wind Project, USA Patch

Offshore Wind Firm Seeks to Disrupt New England Power Auction, Bloomberg L.P.

Falmouth Wind Turbines : “A Green New Deal in Profile” WSJ, USA Patch

 

Solar

Ameresco develops 110-kW rooftop solar project at Rhode Island College, Solar Power World Online

Watertown Requires Solar Panels On New Buildings, And Massachusetts Considers Following Suit Statewide, WGBH

Neighbors sue to block Lewiston solar project, Buffalo News

Massachusetts opens revenue stream to advance solar-plus-storage, Utility Dive

Standard Solar Building 4.2 MW System For R.I. Town, Solar Industry

Battery-Backed Solar Breaks Into Grid Long Seen as Off Limits, Bloomberg L.P.

Boatyard, solar farm among Norwalk options for Manresa Island, The Hour

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

Rollback of light bulb standards would cost consumers billions — $100 per household each year, aceee.org

New Massachusetts energy efficiency plan to push storage, heat pumps and ‘demand response’, MassLive

New Milford looks to make buildings energy efficient, New Milford Spectrum

 

Nuclear

Nukes can have small role in Green New Deal, backers say, Utility Dive

Cory Booker — and his full-throated support of nuclear energy — enters the presidential race, Grist

State reassures skeptics on decommissioning, Brattleboro Reformer

Legislators pitch a bill to rescue Pennsylvania’s nuclear plants, Pittsburgh Gazette

Trump Uranium Quota Could Shutter Nuclear Plants, Trade Group Warns, US News and World Report

Nuclear waste burial fund grows to $43 billion, but DOE has not buried an ounce of spent fuel, Orange County Register

NRC sets meeting on nuclear plant license extension, Seacoast Online

 

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

Sunrun Wins Big in New England Capacity Auction With Home Solar and Batteries, Greentech Media

New England’s electric auction closes with adequate resources for 2022-2023, Vermont Biz

Power Authority board approves economic development incentives to create jobs in Western New York, WNYPapers.com

CMP sweetens the pot for new transmission corridor, Press Herald

Transmission constraints impede incremental Quebec-to-US power deliveries, S&P Global Platts

Utilities may outperform again in 2019, despite high valuations, Bloomberg L.P.

Eversource seeks another rate hike, WTNH

Seacoast Reliability Project gets final approval, Seacoastonline.com

Consumer advocates, saying regulations have failed, seek to shut residential electric supply market, Hartford Courant

 

Editorial/Opinion

Viewpoint: Mass. needs comprehensive climate action now, Boston Business Journal

When they talk of wind turbine ills, Falmouth residents are not just making it up, Boston Globe

An Energy Wish List for Congress, New York Times

Carbon tax folly for NH: Will the enviros now embrace nuclear?, New Hampshire Union Leader

Dan Haar: Electricity sellers pick wrong guy for a fight, Connecticut Post

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