Energy News for week ending July 26, 2019

RIP Northern Pass | Market Imperiled | Accosted, harassed and screamed at

 

Good Friday afternoon.

Here’s what’s happening in this week’s energy news.

We begin in New Hampshire where NHPR reports, “Eversource has officially pulled the plug on the Northern Pass transmission line. The utility filed a notice with the federal Securities and Exchange Commission late Thursday, a spokesman says, ‘reflecting our conclusion that Northern Pass has unfortunately been brought to an end.’ The filing notifies shareholders that the company sees no way forward for its signature project, which it spent nearly a decade promoting. The decision comes after the New Hampshire Supreme Court last week affirmed state regulators’ rejection of the project. Eversource says it spent $318 million trying to get the controversial power line built. Their SEC filing says they’re writing off about $200 million of that after taxes, equal to about 64 cents per share of the company’s stock. A company spokesman says the write-off will have no direct effect on customers or electric rates.”

Moving south to Massachusetts, Greentech Media tells us, “Massachusetts Storage Market Imperiled by Requirement to Buy New Utility Meters. Massachusetts rolled out a new incentive last year to spur solar and energy storage adoption, but installers are worried that a technical requirement could foil the goals of the program. The Solar Massachusetts Renewable Target (SMART) pays residential and commercial customers for solar electricity production. The program is intended to add another 1,600 megawatts of distributed solar capacity, forming a core pillar of Governor Charlie Baker’s ambitious clean energy agenda…To qualify, though, customers have to pay for a new utility meter to measure their production, and that can cost hundreds of dollars. Some types of solar-plus-storage configurations drive the price up even further. The extra cost eats into the incentive dollars that are supposed to pay for clean, dispatchable electricity, a group of installers argued in a June 21 letter to DOER, which designed the program.”

For sure the Cape saw some highly unusual weather this week and there was some serious damage to the distribution infrastructure. Evidently that made some folks in Chatham ah, a little bit, shall we say, crazy. From Boston.com, “As thousands remained without power on Cape Cod Wednesday following Tuesday’s severe storm that spawned two tornadoes, some Chatham residents apparently lost their patience. Chatham police took to Facebook Wednesday afternoon to remind residents to leave the 30 utility crews working throughout town alone. ‘It has come to our attention that some utility work crews have been accosted, harassed and screamed at by citizens demanding that power to their home be turned on,’ police said. Police noted that the repair work, including untangling wires stuck in trees, ‘requires a safe and methodical process.’ ‘They are making good headway and working hard,’ police said. ‘Please let them do their work so they can get us powered back up as soon as possible.’” The good news is that, “Numerous residents in the comments thanked the utility workers and emergency personnel, and expressed dismay at the behavior mentioned in the post.” The better news reported by Cape Cod Today is that, “Eversource to Complete Cape Cod Restoration Ahead of Schedule.”

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

 

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Southbridge hires lawyer to address LNG plant proposed in Charlton, Telegram.com

Gas company misses deadline for testing soil at Weymouth site, Wicked Local Weymouth

Holyoke City Council committee mulls resolution to increase natural gas service capacity, MassLive

National Grid Isn’t Providing New Gas Hookups in New York, WSJ.com

Compressor TV ad urges governor to oppose facility, Wicked Local

U.S. Cities Might Release More Methane Than Previously Thought, Scientific American

New Poll: New Yorkers Reject the Williams Pipeline, nrdc.org

National Grid faces possible penalty on non-compliance of NY safety rules, Reuters

 

Renewables/Climate Change/RGGI

Push on Beacon Hill for 100% renewable energy by 2045, Telegram.com

Energy chief says net-zero carbon goal under review, Taunton Gazette

US Cities Boost Clean Energy Efforts but Few on Track to Meet Climate Goals, ACEEE

Groton man seeking to ship boulders from New London’s State Pier to protect against the rising sea challenges Connecticut over wind energy deal, Hartford Courant

Clean energy report highlights Lexington’s renewable schools project, Wicked Local Lexington

As Temperatures Soar During Heat Wave, So Will CO, Scientific American

Weekend Energy Use Neared N.E. Megawatt Record, ECO RI

State government seeks community input on major transport and climate initiative, Worcester Mag

Push on Beacon Hill for 100% renewable energy by 2045, Telegram & Gazette

House Passes $1B Plan for Local Climate Change Projects, U.S. News & World Report

 

Wind

Mass. delegation pushing to advance vineyard wind, Herald News

Pacheco raises concerns on offshore wind pricing, CommonWealth Magazine

Ørsted to develop offshore wind manufacturing hub to service East Coast, Utility Dive

Hancock County reaches settlement over wind farm payments it said were too small, Bangor Daily News

Wind turbine company opens Rhode Island HQ, Materials Today

Wind victory comes at just the right time for Eversource, Boston Globe

Building Smart Offshore Wind Power, nrdc.org

New York passes its Green New Deal, announces massive offshore wind push, Ars Technica

U.S. Offshore Wind: From ‘Nice To Have’ To ‘Need To Have’, NRG Wind Project

Baker should tip hand on offshore wind price gap, group says, Taunton Daily Gazette

After Years Of Planning, Cuomo Green Lights Wind Farm Off Montauk, USA Patch

 

Solar

Key Committee Approves Bills That Require Solar Panels On New Massachusetts Buildings, ECO RI

National Grid increases partners for virtual power plant project, Smart Energy

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

Massachusetts Storage Market Imperiled by Requirement to Buy New Utility Meters, Greentech Media

Northeastern States Primed to Be the Next Major Energy Storage Market, Greentech Media

In Support of a National Energy Efficiency Resource Standard, nrdc.org

High-performance flow batteries offer path to grid-level renewable energy storage, Science Daily

Private Equity Wants In on Energy Storage Revenues, Greentech Media

 

EVs

Clean energy report highlights Concord’s electric school bus program, Wicked Local

New York expands access to EV charging incentives, blocks Tesla from qualifying, Utility Dive

 

Nuclear

Ohio Law Bails Out Nuclear Power Plants By Eliminating Clean Energy Standards, U.S. News & World Report

 

Market/Grid/Policy/Prices

Eversource Pulls Plug On Northern Pass After N.H. Supreme Court Rebuke, NHPR

‘Accosted, harassed and screamed at’: Chatham police told residents to stop bothering utility crews attempting to restore power, Boston.com

Eversource to Complete Cape Cod Restoration Ahead of Schedule, Cape Cod Today

Maine regulators blast utility rate hike, customer service ‘deficiences’ in local op-ed, Utility Dive

Lexington rep’s utility assessment hike to fuel bigger DPU budget, Wicked Local Lexington

New York researchers collaborate to develop a cleaner, more reliable power grid, Windpower Engineering and Development

Study: Municipal electric utilities greener, have lower costs, WB Journal

Incentives to save energy, Eagle-Tribune

Harvesting hybrid solutions from performance-based rates: ‘Not all or nothing’, Utility Dive

Energy chief says net-zero carbon goal under review, Herald News

 

Editorial/Opinion

Feds shouldn’t stymie Mass. wind power, Boston Globe

The Case for Switching From Natural Gas Hookups to Heat Pumps, Greentech Media

Recognizing work of Columbia Gas employees, Eagle-Tribune

Time for true regional approach in building our electricity future, Foster’s
Daily Democrat

Letter: We don’t need more gas pipeline, Telegram

Letter: NH ready to be fossil-free, Monadnock Ledger-Transcript

Letter: We all have to breathe Killingly’s air, The Bulletin

Wind farm planners have done due diligence, Cape Cod Times

Opinion | Air conditioning is making the world a hotter place, Mint

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Filed under Climate Change, Electric Grid, Natural Gas Pipelines, New England Energy News, Northeast Energy News, offshore wind

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