Category Archives: Electricity Costs

Energy News for week ending January 8, 2021

Will he or won’t he sign | Mayflower Sees More Savings | Giant Jenga

Happy Friday folks.

Welcome to the first 2021 edition of the Northeast Energy News.

The big question – which at the writing of this newsletter remains open – is will Governor Baker sign the Climate Bill (and several others) into law or not. Many organizations are speaking out in support. We have a whole section of articles on the climate bill below and most look at it from different angles.

Today, Mayflower Wind announced additional savings for customers of Massachusetts’ three largest electric utilities coming from the federal Investment Tax Credit. OffshoreWind.biz says it best, Mayflower Wind Electricity Users Stand to Save USD 500 Million.

We love new technology and had a toss-up between the Washington Post article on how researchers are converting carbon dioxide into jet fuel. But the giant Jenga won out. From IEEE Spectrum Gravity Energy Storage Will Show Its Potential in 2021.

That’s the recap for this week. As always enjoy the weekend and stay safe.

Massachusetts Climate Bill

Massachusetts Enshrines Net-Zero Emissions by Midcentury in Bill, Greentech Media

Natural Gas Power Reliance Factors Heavily in Massachusetts Net-Zero Actions, Power Magazine

Climate Roadmap Bill Sent To Baker’s Desk, State House News Service via WBUR

Massachusetts climate legislation is ‘roadmap’ to decarbonization, say clean energy groups, Utility Dive

Massachusetts lawmakers deal blow to Springfield biomass project, MassLive

Here’s a look at the winners and losers in the state’s far-reaching climate bill, Boston Globe

Climate bill would clear up solar tax confusion, CommonWealth Magazine

Noting 2018 Gas Explosions, Area Legislators Add Safety Provisions to Climate Change Bill, WHAV

Climate Change

How Trump Tried, but Largely Failed, to Derail America’s Top Climate Report, New York Times

Researchers unveil new method for converting carbon dioxide into jet fuel, Washington Post

Plans Show Larger Role for Nature in Fight Against Carbon, State House News Service

Study: Warming already baked in will blow past climate goals, AP News

U.S. Disaster Costs Doubled in 2020, Reflecting Costs of Climate Change, New York Times

New Bedford launches climate action plan for not just the city, but also residents, South Coast Today

Renewables/RGGI/TCI

Subsidies a Bone of Contention as Renewable Energy Producers Seek Federal Ruling, CT Examiner

Boston’s ready to join dozens of other municipalities in renewable-energy push, Boston Globe

The 10 Ways Renewable Energy’s Boom Year Will Shape 2021, Bloomberg Green

Can a city truly be 100% renewable? It’s complicated., Grist

Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority touts renewable energy initiatives, Transportation Today

Wind

Mayflower Wind Electricity Users Stand to Save USD 500 Million, offshorewind.biz

Offshore wind developer wants to hear from N.J. recreational fishermen, app.com

As Rumors Swirl Of Large-Scale Turbine Farm, Fishermen Worry About Rapid Pace Of Wind Development, Maine Public

South Fork OWF Draft EIS Out, Offshorewind.biz

Solar

EGEB: A new community solar marketplace launches in the US, Electrek

Vermont public-private partnership turns unused corn silage land into 2.2-MW solar array, Solar Builder

Seeking to avoid Sununu veto, Republicans push narrow expansion of net metering for cities, Concord Monitor

Woolwich board approves 30-acre solar project, Press Herald

Efficiency/Storage

Gravity Energy Storage Will Show Its Potential in 2021, IEEE Spectrum

Vermont’s State House first in nation with battery backup power, Vermont Biz

Nuclear

First-in-the-nation tax on spent nuclear fuel aimed at helping Indian Point communities, lohud.com

New nuclear plant could rise at site of former one in NJ, AP News

In the New Mexico desert lies an answer to Indian Point’s nuclear waste problem, The Leader

Market/Grid/Policy/Prices

1st Circuit asked to stop hydropower corridor construction, Power Grid International

New England begins work on FERC Order 2222 compliance, but system impact is unclear, Utility Dive

PSE&G expected to bring smart meters to New Jersey, NJ Spotlight

President Biden’s Vision for the Power Sector, T&D World

Public Advocate Calls For Exempting Low-Income Mainers From Electricity Tax, Maine Public

Opinion

Baker is wrong to subsidize wood burning, CommonWealth Magazine

We Already Have the Key to a Clean Energy Economy. We’re Just Not Using It, Greentech Media

What Matters for Electrification?, Energy Institute at Haas

Climate science demands a halt to Killingly power plant, CT Mirror

Mass. Is Going On A Greenhouse Gas Diet. So Should Every Other State In The Northeast, WBUR

Leave a comment

Filed under Climate Change, Electricity Costs, New England Energy News, Northeast Energy News, offshore wind, solar

Energy news for week ending November 6, 2020

Survive the transition? | New referendum | Seaweed to the rescue

Happy warm and sunny Friday!

It’s been a very interesting week politically so let’s distract ourselves with a bit of energy news.

Up first is a story from Grist about Massachusetts’ look into the future of the natural gas industry. While we covered this in last week’s edition, there are a few more insights in this story. “Massachusetts may be a climate leader in the U.S., with a goal to reduce economy-wide emissions in the state to net-zero by 2050, but it will face a major obstacle along the way: More than 1.3 million of its households make it through those cold New England winters by burning natural gas. Roughly one-third of the state’s emissions come from the fuels burned in buildings for heating, hot water, and cooking. Now the state is responding to pressure from its attorney general, Maura Healey, to take a look at what the path to net-zero in the building sector might look like, particularly for the gas companies whose entire reason for existing could be eliminated in the process. Last week, the Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities (DPU) officially opened a new proceeding to start guiding utilities into a decarbonized future while protecting their customers. As the number of people using the gas system shrinks over time, the cost of maintaining reliable service for remaining ratepayers could balloon. ‘It’s a really complicated set of issues as you look at what’s going to be happening on the gas side as people peel off,’ said Susan Tierney, a senior advisor and energy expert at the Analysis Group, an economic consulting firm. ‘There’s real trade-offs about affordability of supply, safety of service.’…Audrey Schulman and Zeyneb Magavi, co-executive directors of the Massachusetts–based environmental nonprofit HEET, applauded the new inquiry, but they are concerned that the process it outlines will result in a one-sided picture of what’s possible, and could stymie more creative solutions.”

The fight in Maine against the New England Clean Energy Connect project hasn’t ended. From the Press Herald, “A new referendum drive aimed at stopping a 145-mile hydropower transmission corridor in western Maine is underway. The Maine secretary of state on Friday provided the paperwork necessary for signature collection to begin, and referendum supporters plan to be at polling places with petitions on Election Day. ‘With a decision this important, Mainers deserve to be heard, but so far during the permitting process, their overwhelming opposition to this project has fallen on deaf ears,’ said Tom Saviello, a former state lawmaker who opposes the project. It would be the second referendum targeting Central Maine Power’s $1 billion New England Clean Energy Connect, which aims to serve as a conduit for up to 1,200 megawatts of Canadian hydropower to reach New England. The project would be fully funded by Massachusetts ratepayers, but the entire region would benefit through reduced greenhouse emissions and stabilization of energy prices, supporters say. Critics say the benefits are overstated and that the project would spoil part of Maine’s North Woods.”

Last up this week is an interesting story from the Wall St. Journal about a new way to help stem methane emissions. “Cows Make Climate Change Worse. Could Seaweed Help? Scientists have spent years coaxing a fussy red seaweed called asparagopsis into cultivation. Their plan: to feed the underwater plant to cows and sheep in an effort to make the animals less environmentally destructive. The belching and flatulence of livestock release large quantities of methane and make up around 4% of global greenhouse-gas emissions, according to data from the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization. That’s equivalent to the amount contributed by Japan and Germany combined. Seaweed alters bovine digestion, reducing the methane an animal produces by 80% or more, according to scientists at the University of California, Davis, and Australia’s national science agency. It is one of the plants and chemicals that meat and dairy businesses are experimenting with to reduce their contribution to global warming.” And if you’re looking for ways to cut back on your beef and lamb intake, the Bangor Daily News offers up this alternative, How to hunt and prepare squirrel meat.

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

Efficiency/Storage

Study: Long Island’s smallest power plants could be replaced by trailer-sized batteries, Newsday

New York City Becomes The Most Energy Efficient City In ACEEE Scorecard 2020, Construction Review

Revamped Energy Efficiency Programs Are the Key to Deep Carbon Reductions, Greentech Media

New York Housing Authority announces new bold commitment to electrification, Greenbiz

Efficiency meets style in this net-zero home in Jamestown, Rhode Island Monthly

Climate Change/Renewables/RGGI

Hydrogen is having a moment, and power generation is leading the way, Utility Dive

The State of Carbon Capture, Removal and Utilization, Greentech Media

Cows Make Climate Change Worse. Could Seaweed Help,? Wall St. Journal

Look Ahead, Vermont: Global Warming Solutions Act takes first steps as Climate Council appointees named, Brattleboro Reformer

Environmental groups press Murphy to reject regional anti-pollution pact. They say it’s not bold enough, NJ Spotlight

Maine regulators deny requests to reconsider renewable energy projects, Bangor Daily News

Voters give non-binding ballot questions on renewable energy, open-door government widespread support, Hampshire Daily Gazette

Museum of the Earth unable to promote climate change exhibit amid 2020 election, Ithaca Voice

Local elections are changing America’s energy mix, one city at a time, The Verge

Are renewable energy targets useful? Analysts dispute new study questioning their value, Utility Dive

If true geothermal arrives here, it’ll have to be around Conway, Granite Geek

Latest Rhode Island Green Report Card Gives Statehouse an ‘Incomplete and Lacking Leadership,’ EcoRI

A Bipartisan Climate Policy? It Could Happen Under a Biden Administration, Washington Veterans Say, Inside Climate News

Wind

First offshore wind farm goes offline: An industry warning,? E&E News

Shipbuilding on the ballot? Offshore wind sees an opening, E&E News

Rhode Island in Position for Offshore Wind Power Grab, EcoRI

Solar

New firm will optimize performance of New England solar projects, Vermont Biz

Farmington approves land lease for solar project, Sun Journal

EVs

Patchogue Village purchases first electric car, Long Island Advance

Nuclear

Shipping industry should consider nuclear option for decarbonizing: experts, S&P Global Platts

Holtec accelerates US NRC design certification for SMR-160, Nuclear Engineering International

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Can gas utilities survive the energy transition? Massachusetts is going to find out., Grist

Gas workers call on lawmakers to improve safety, Salem News

In effort to curb emissions, state regulators probe the future of natural gas in Massachusetts, Boston Globe

Gas supply rates rise for Eversource customers; increase driven by market forces, not purchase of former Columbia Gas, MassLive

Tennessee Gas and contractor to pay $800,000 in penalties, repairs over controversial natural gas project in Otis State Forest, MassLive

Final order on Eversource gas rates announced, WickedLocal Hanover

Cold Weather Thaws Natural-Gas Prices, Wall St. Journal

Thousands in Derby, Ansonia lose natural gas service, Stamford Advocate

St. Albans meadery converting to 100% renewable natural gas to fight climate change, Burlington Free Press

Market/Grid/Policy/Prices

Opponents of CMP hydropower corridor launch new referendum drive, Press Herald

PURA Opts for Existing Programs Over Shutoff Moratorium, CT Examiner

CMP hydropower project wins key permit, likely to start construction soon, Bangor Daily News

Trump ousts Chatterjee, taps Danly to lead FERC, Utility Dive

Eversource: Tropical Storm Isaias restoration topped $275 million, still counting costs, CT Insider

Larger, vertically-integrated utilities better prepared to face cyber threats, says Moody’s, Utility Dive

Massachusetts Blazes Its Own Trail on Distributed Energy Policy, Greentech Media (subscriber content)

National Grid’s Massachusetts president to retire, Boston Globe

MASSCAP, Action Inc. launch heating help awareness campaign, Wicked Local Gloucester

Eversource Proposes Rate Increase In CT, Cites Generation Costs, Patch.com

Eversource submits proposal for winter rate increase, says they won’t profit, Fox 61

‘Totally worth it’: Chatterjee speculates DER order, carbon pricing are behind Trump ousting him, Utility Dive

Opinion

Maine Voices: New plan to kill CMP corridor will have unintended consequences, centralmaine.com

How to Overcome Barriers to Community Microgrids, Microgrid Knowledge

Give community power a chance, by Mary Ewell, Keene Sentinel

Tree Talk: Renewable wood energy, Sun Journal

Op-Ed: NJ needs to rethink Energy Master Plan, prioritize affordable energy, NJ Spotlight

We don’t have to wipe out farmland to grow solar energy in N.J. | Opinion, NJ.com

Pull plug on destructive Quebec hydropower proposal, Albany Times Union

Leave a comment

Filed under Climate Change, Electric Grid, Electricity Costs, New England Energy News, Northeast Energy News, offshore wind, solar

Energy News for week ending October 23, 2020

Here to Stay | Save Billions | Construction this Year

Happy Friday folks.

We start this week’s energy news recap with a story from Greentech Media, “From Pilot to Permanent: Green Mountain Power’s Home Battery Network Is Here to Stay. The Vermont utility now controls several thousand Tesla Powerwall batteries sited in customers’ homes. The results have been promising. Utility pilot projects aren’t famous for being standout financial successes. Usually, the goal is to verify a technology in the field before attempting broader deployment. Sometimes nothing follows the pilot. Vermont utility Green Mountain Power not only verified the efficacy of residential batteries for meeting grid needs, but it also saved its customers millions of dollars with them. Now, that program has been ratified by the state’s Public Utility Commission as a permanent residential storage tariff, which means battery installations — and utility savings — will continue to rise.”

Speaking of savings, according to a new study, a big push to renewables could save Americans a lot of money. From The Guardian, “Aggressive push to 100% renewable energy could save Americans billions – study. An aggressive push towards 100% renewable energy would save Americans as much as $321bn in energy costs, while also slashing planet-heating emissions, according to a new report. Joe Biden, the Democratic presidential nominee, has vowed to eliminate greenhouse gases from the US power grid within 15 years and essentially zero out emissions by 2050, a plan assailed by Donald Trump as costly and detrimental to the American economy. But a new analysis by Rewiring America, an energy policy organization, finds that households would benefit financially from a complete switch to clean energy sources such as solar and wind. More than 40% of energy emissions are determined by appliances in and around the home, according to the report, such as heating, electricity, refrigeration and car use. Should all of these related factors be fully electrified and sourced from clean energy, households could save as much as $321bn in energy costs, the report finds, or up to $2,500 a household a year. Households would be faced with the upfront costs of installing solar panels and electric devices such as stovetops and heat pumps, but Rewiring America says strong government assistance for renewables would help deliver long-term savings.

Each week there seems to be something new going on with the NECEC project in Maine. This week, the State House News Service reports we can expect to see action. “Utility Sees Maine Transmission Project Construction This Year. Utility company executives behind the project that would deliver clean power from Hydro-Québec to the Massachusetts and New England power grid said Wednesday construction should start before the end of 2020, about a year later than the company once projected. New England Clean Energy Connect, a 145-mile transmission project of Central Maine Power Company, is expected to link the electrical grids in Quebec and New England to provide cleaner and more reliable hydropower directly to a converter station in Lewiston, Maine, and into the regional grid. Bay State utilities and Gov. Charlie Baker’s administration chose the project to help Massachusetts meet its statutory requirements to increase renewable energy supplies. During an earnings call for CMP parent company Avangrid on Wednesday morning, CEO Dennis Arriola said the project is ‘on track to start construction in Q4 2020, once we receive the approval of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, which we expect by the end of this month.’”

That’s the recap for this week. Have a great weekend, and as always, stay safe.

Efficiency/Storage

NRDC Sues US Department Of Energy Over Efficiency Standards Process Changes, CleanTechnica

From Pilot to Permanent: Green Mountain Power’s Home Battery Network Is Here to Stay, Greentech Media

Looking towards a net-zero future, Burlington considers requiring all-electric buildings, VT Digger

The town that built back green, Washington Post

Climate Change/Renewables/RGGI

Aggressive push to 100% renewable energy could save Americans billions – study, The Guardian

In the nation’s asthma capital, plans to burn wood for energy spark fury, Boston Globe

BDCC drops biomass project, Brattleboro Reformer

In defense of the sturgeon, green group wants to put brakes on Canadian hydropower plan for the Hudson, lohud.com

New York City Is About to Get an Injection of Tidal Power. Is This Time Different?, Greentech Media

Geothermal energy is poised for a big breakout, Vox.com

Belching Cows and Endless Feedlots: Fixing Cattle’s Climate Issues, New York Times

Promise or Peril? Importing Hydropower to Fuel the Clean Energy Transition, The Revelator

Keene’s future energy plan put before public, Sentinel

FERC commissioner: Listen to the scientists, Rutland Herald

Cease-and-desist order sought, Ellsworth American

New York Reforms Clean Energy Standard, Power Magazine

Wind

So, What Exactly Is Floating Offshore Wind?, Greentech Media

Wind Energy Hub Project in Cortlandt Withdrawn by Developers, The Examiner

Democrats push expansion of offshore wind, block offshore drilling with ocean energy bill, The Hill

Vineyard carries out cable corridor research, ReNews

Scores more wind turbines proposed for Long Island’s South Shore, Newsday

Solar

Maffei looks to reduce solar project, Hometown Weekly (Norfolk, MA)

Regulators Approve N.H.’s First Large Solar Array, Planned By NextEra In Fitzwilliam, NHPR

Ellsworth will buy all its electricity through local 11,000-panel solar project, Bangor Daily News

Borrego Solar Expands Maine Distributed Solar Portfolio, Solar Industry Magazine

Clifton Park residents oppose solar array, Times-Union

South Burlington to add solar array to Market Street complex, WCAX

SunBug Solar Announces Solar Tech Meets Tradition on A Monson Family Farm, Massachusetts Newswire (press release)

EVs

Auto Makers Grapple With Battery-Fire Risks in Electric Vehicles, Wall St. Journal

GM to Plan Third Electric-Vehicle Plant in Big Plug-In Bet, Bloomberg

An Electric Car With Swedish Roots, and a Rebellious Streak, New York Times

Nuclear

MIT Validates Science Behind New Nuclear Fusion Reactor Design, Greentech Media

Nuclear Panel Says ‘Logjam’ Is Baked Into Their Voting Rules, WCAI

Schumer & Gillibrand Call for Nuclear Regulatory Commission Before Transfer, Kings County Politics

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Fuel oil prices flirt with 16-year low in Maine as the heating season approaches, Press Herald

Market/Grid/Policy/Prices

Hydro contract ruling offers clarity in clean energy law, State House News Service via WWLP

Utility Sees Maine Transmission Project Construction This Year, State House News Service

CMP Spinoff Company Gets Final Approval, Maine Public

First Transmission Project Moves Forward Under NY Renewable Energy Growth Act, T&D World

It’s not just your perception, weather-related power outages are increasing, News Center Maine

At PURA hearing, customers get their turn to criticize Eversource and UI over outages caused by Isaias; power companies face fines, Hartford Current

Towns Ask N.H.’s Public Utilities Commission For Regulations That Would Enable Community Power, NHPR

Gas generators ask FERC to apply PJM MOPR logic to NYISO, Utility Dive

The lockdown increased NH electricity use – wait, increased it?!?, Granite Geek

So, What Exactly Are Virtual Power Plants?, Greentech Media

Opinion

When it comes to solar geoengineering, we’re still very much in the dark, Boston Globe

Most N.E. governors want the power grid to change (guess which one doesn’t?), Granite Geek

Fossil fuels endanger communities of color | Opinion, NJ.com

Ben Edgerly Walsh: Gov. Scott has failed to demonstrate leadership on climate crisis, Brattleboro Reformer

The Impact of New York’s Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act, Bloomberg Law

Leave a comment

Filed under Climate Change, Electric Grid, Electricity Costs, Energy Efficiency, hydro, New England Energy News, Northeast Energy News, offshore wind, solar

Energy News for week ending October 16, 2020

Interference | Reform Needed | Recharge

Happy Friday folks.

Busy day – no time for a deep recap.

Here are a few stories to which we’d like to call your attention.

Avangrid accuses NextEra of interference with Maine transmission project, S&P Global

Governors Demand More From Region’s Power Grid Operator, State House News via WWLP

This breakthrough battery recharges itself for limitless energy, Fast Company

Have a great weekend, and as always, stay safe.

Efficiency/Storage

To batteries and beyond: In a high-renewables world, pumped hydro storage could be ‘the heavy artillery,’ Utility Dive

Here’s a story about the state’s energy efficiency push that doesn’t use “negawatt”! (Such self-restraint), Granite Geek

Sustaining Utility Natural Gas Efficiency Programs in a Time of Low Gas Prices, ACEEE Report

The Dakota Got a C: How 50 New York Buildings Scored on Their Energy-Efficiency Report Cards, Curbed.com

Statewide energy efficiency program’s goal is to do more with less, Concord Monitor

Climate Change/Renewables/RGGI

Coronavirus Pandemic Speeds Shift to Cleaner Energy, Wall St. Journal

Eversource Sets Ambitious Goal Of Carbon Neutrality By 2030, Business West

Environmentalists and Dam Operators, at War for Years, Start Making Peace, New York Times

Mass. Lost Ground On Emissions Reductions In 2018, New Report Says, State House News via WBUR

National Grid Launches its Renewables Arm to Focus on Solar, Wind, and Storage, Environment and Energy Leader

Cape Commission: All towns need a Climate Action Plan, Cape Cod Times

Portland ‘Green New Deal’ referendum: Housing fix or Trojan horse,? Maine.biz

Carbon Mitigation Taskforce presents plans for a more eco-friendly UMass, The Daily Collegian

Climate Crisis Will Deepen Disparities and Inequities, EcoRI

NJ to push for public backing on climate action with new regulations, NJ Spotlight

The Impact of New Jersey’s New Environmental Justice Law, Waste 360

No gas-powered cars, no heating oil for homes. Climate report calls for major action, NJ Spotlight

New York expands state clean energy standard, moves to boost renewables use in the Big Apple, Utility Dive

New York Gives Big Boost to Renewable Energy, NRDC Blog

Wind

BOEM needs staffing help with offshore wind permitting regardless of election results, experts say, Utility Dive

Coordinated OSW Tx a ‘Perishable’ Chance for US, RTO Insider

OSW Growth to Test New York’s Transmission Grid, RTO Insider

Mayflower Wind intends to recruit workers from Shell, Renews.biz

Massachusetts to Gauge Offshore Wind Supply Chain, OffshoreWind.biz

Solar

Solar project at former Hopatcong municipal landfill to be unveiled, NJ Herald

Views and birds among the concerns over Saddleback’s new lodge and solar farm plans, Sun Journal

Presque Isle Council amends marijuana rule, OKs solar energy farm, The County

Developer halts Unity Island solar farm after community concern, Buffalo Business First

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Leaders mark ‘new beginning’ with Eversource, Eagle Tribune

The Controversial Natural Gas Compressor In Weymouth, Explained, WBUR

Researchers find elevated radiation near U.S. fracking sites, Reuters

CT regulators stall pipeline to controversial power plant site, New Haven Register

North Bergen calls for the closure of Ridgefield power plant, Hudson Reporter

State looks to help people still burning coal for heat to change their ways, VT Digger

Faulty fuel tanks — and a new state law — are blocking heating oil deliveries to hundreds, VT Digger

National Grid presents options for Aquidneck Island’s energy future, Uprise RI

With Bankruptcies Mounting, Faltering Oil and Gas Firms Are Leaving a Multi-billion Dollar Cleanup Bill to the Public, Desmog Blog

Market/Grid/Policy/Prices

Governors Demand More From Region’s Power Grid Operator, State House News via WWLP

Regional governors call for power grid reform, Bennington Banner

FERC’s Glick blasts fellow commissioners for intruding on New York’s resource mix decisions, Utility Dive

Four Types of Scandals Utility Companies Get Into With Money From Your Electric Bills, ProPublica

How Trump grid orders ran aground, E&E News

‘The project is idiotic’: East Boston residents encourage city authorities to derail substation proposal, Boston Globe

NYPA, Environmental Justice Groups to Work Together on Peaker Plant Replacements, Greentech Media

Pennsylvania to be a testing ground for how utilities manage distributed energy, Utility Dive

Avangrid accuses NextEra of interference with Maine transmission project, S&P Global

CMP parent says top competitor is illegally obstructing $1B corridor project, Bangor Daily News

Utility shutoff notices begin going out to Granite Staters, WMUR

Moratorium on utility disconnections set to expire Thursday, VT Digger

Murphy asks NJ utilities to extend coronavirus shutoff moratorium, app.com

Electricity Maine lawsuit approaches settlement, but state probe continues, Press Herald

Lack of support stalls Maine lawmaker’s push for consumer-owned power, Press Herald

UAlbany, utility firms team up to predict outage-causing storms, Times Union

Opinion

Our View: A final break from Columbia Gas, Eagle Tribune

After Isaias, a call to “take back our grid,” The Day

Legislature needs to act on transportation electrification, CommonWealth Magazine

Ben Edgerly Walsh: Governor fails to lead on climate action, VT Digger

Events

NEWIEE’s Boston Chapter: Massachusetts Energy and Environment Legislative Leaders Update, October 28, 2020

EBC Second Annual New Hampshire Offshore Wind Webinar: Offshore Wind in the Gulf of Maine, October 28, 2020

NECBC’s 28th Annual Executive Energy Conference, 2-Day Webinar, November 12-13, 2020

2020 Virtual New England Energy Summit, NEPGA and the DuPont Group, November 16, 23 and 30, 2020

CEO Viewpoints on the Future of Energy, “The Future of Energy is Decarbonization, Webinar, CT Power & Energy Society, November 18, 2020

NEWIEE’s Virtual Annual Meeting and Fall Fete 2020: DEI Sparkposium, November 19, 2020

Leave a comment

Filed under Climate Change, Electric Grid, Electricity Costs, hydro, New England Energy News, Northeast Energy News, offshore wind, solar

Energy News for week ending October 9, 2020

Ludicrous…Propaganda | Hard 2021 | Radiative Cooling

Happy Friday folks.

We have quite a few stories below about CT’s new legislation aimed at requiring utilities to pay up if power isn’t restored after 96 hours among other penalties and incentives. This article won the headline war though, Electric rate hikes as a result of new law? ‘Ludicrous…propaganda.’ (Middletown Press)

With election day fast approaching, things are heating up in Maine over the Clean Energy Connect power line. Despite this story from the Press Herald New England Clean Energy Connect may start construction in November, despite opposition, there is this report from the Bangor Daily News CMP could have hard 2021 in Augusta as legislative hopefuls turn against corridor.

For a new technology story this week, we alert you to Bringing the chill of the cosmos to a warming planet “Scientists are tapping into a law of physics to create cooling systems that work without special fuel or electricity.” (Washington Post)

That’s the recap for this week. Enjoy the long weekend, and as always, stay safe.

Efficiency/Storage

GMP energy storage program saves customers millions, WCAX

Once shut out, Maine cannabis industry now eligible for sustainable energy grants, Press Herald

Will the Distributed Energy Revolution Leave Renters Behind?, Greentech Media

Climate Change/Renewables/RGGI

RI Updates 2030 Load and Renewables Forecast, RTO Insider

DOE study: Solar-hydro projects could power 40% of world, E&E News

National Grid sees hydrogen as a lynchpin, joins utilities targeting net zero carbon by 2050, Utility Dive

Boston near top in new clean energy scorecard, WHDH

Coalition: Avoided Deaths, Asthma Cases Underscore Need for TCI, State House News Service

Transportation and Climate Initiative gets corporate push, Worcester Business Journal

Can the US Catch Up in the Green Hydrogen Economy,? Greentech Media

MBTA embracing renewable energy, CommonWealth Magazine

Bringing the chill of the cosmos to a warming planet, Washington Post

Job losses in renewables sector total 75,669; clean energy losses at 477,862: report, S&P Global

Wind, solar smash records. But analysts worry it won’t last, E&E News (subscriber content)

Long-delayed Trump administration study finds that climate change threatens polar bears, Washington Post

Is Wave Energy Ready to Climb Out of the ‘Valley of Death’?, Greentech Media

Second wave: Ocean Power Technologies’ power-grid plan sank, but it grabbed life preserver by switching focus to niche offshore systems, ROI-NJ

Jaffrey’s MilliporeSigma unveils new $14.4M wastewater treatment plant, Keene Sentinel

Wind

UMaine continues to develop floating concrete wind turbine, WBAI TV

European developers build out dominance in US offshore wind race, S&P Global

Ørsted to Host Three Virtual Open Houses: Offer Updates on the Progress of the Ocean Wind Offshore Wind Project, tapinto.net

Solar

Plymouth Planning Board considers solar fields on bogs, Wicked Local Plymouth

Company eyes solar farm at New England Dragway, seacoastonline.com

Marsh Sanctuary alleges special treatment for proposed Mount Kisco solar farm, Westchester and Fairfield County Business Journals

Oregon solar company eyes two projects in Rutland Town, Rutland Herald

EVs

Vermont offering up to $5,000 towards purchase of energy efficient used car, St. Albans Messenger

New kind of ride in Beverly, Beverly officials charged up about first electric school bus, Salem News

Electric Trash Trucks Are Coming Quietly to Your Town, Wall St. Journal

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Lynch: FBI To Investigate Possibility of Cyberattack At Weymouth Compressor, WBUR

Weymouth officials, residents want to see gas company’s emergency plan, Patriot Ledger

State approves $56 million settlement with Columbia Gas for Merrimack Valley gas explosions, Boston Globe

Nuclear

Bill Gates-backed nuclear fusion pioneer: ‘We can fill the gaps left by wind and solar,’ Recharge

Market/Grid/Policy/Prices

Grid operator calls for ‘net carbon pricing,’ CommonWealth Magazine

R.I.’s Climate Crisis Means Higher Energy Bills and Less Work, EcoRI

After a summer of widespread outages and rising rates, anger at utility companies explodes on the campaign trail, Hartford Courant

Massachusetts City Plans “Microgrid without Borders,” Microgrid Knowledge

CT Utility Reform Bill Passes: Here’s What It Means For Customers, Patch.com

A new bill requires Connecticut utility companies to pay up when the power is out for an extended period. Here are 7 ways it affects customers., Hartford Courant

Electric rate hikes as a result of new law? ‘Ludicrous…propaganda,’ Middletown Press

New England Clean Energy Connect may start construction in November, despite opposition, Press Herald

CMP could have hard 2021 in Augusta as legislative hopefuls turn against corridor, Bangor Daily News

Five First Nations file brief with DOE opposing New England Clean Energy Connect, Energy Central

Mayor: Plan will lower residents’ electric bills, Eagle Tribune

Inside the Utility Company Lobbying Blitz That Will Hike Electric Bills, ProPublica

How to Prepare for Increased Energy Disruptions Due to Extreme Weather, NY1

Power-buying policy still an open question in NJ, NJ Spotlight

Opinion

Opinion: A clean energy future for Connecticut, CT Post

NY needs clean renewable energy like Québec hydropower, Altamont Enterprise

Maine Voices: Canada’s ‘Atlantic Loop’ power grid could bring big value to Maine, CentralMaine.com

Leave a comment

Filed under Climate Change, Electric Grid, Electricity Costs, Energy Efficiency, New England Energy News, Northeast Energy News

Energy News for week ending October 2, 2020

Compressor Shut Down Again | The Blob | Driven Out

Happy Friday folks.

Here are a few articles that piqued our interest this week:

Feds warn of ‘serious harm’ without compressor fixes, Herald News

‘The Blob’: Low-oxygen water killing lobsters, fish in Cape Cod Bay, Cape Cod Times

Coalition of solar advocates say Massachusetts pro-utility legislation would drive out independent solar installers, Solar Power World

Have a great weekend, and as always, stay safe.

Efficiency/Storage

Governor Phil Scott signs S.337 which directs funding to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in thermal energy and transportation sectors, VT Digger

Want lower utility bills? Companies to push customers to use less gas, electricity, NJ Spotlight

GMP program cuts costs, reduces carbon, Rutland Herald

Climate Change/Renewables/RGGI

It’s Time to Stop Confusing Key Climate Terms, Bloomberg Green

Wolf vetoes bill that would keep Pennsylvania out of RGGI, State Impact PA (NPR)

‘The Blob’: Low-oxygen water killing lobsters, fish in Cape Cod Bay, Cape Cod Times

Wind

US funds Maine offshore wind roadmap, ReNews

Trump’s Offshore Oil Ban to Halt Coastal Wind Farms Too, Bloomberg via GCaptain.com

Solar

Coalition of solar advocates say Massachusetts pro-utility legislation would drive out independent solar installers, Solar Power World

Study: Solar projects driving down home values in R.I. suburbs, Providence Journal

Supporters and foes of Greene County solar farm speak out, Times Union

U.S. solar generation grows 22.2% even through coronavirus pandemic, Solar Power World

Power company throws shade on solar plans for new school, Harvard Press

EVs

Ninety Percent of U.S. Cars Must Be Electric by 2050 to Meet Climate Goals, Online EV

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Lynch: FBI Asked to Explore Possible Cyberintrusion at Compressor, State House News Service

Second ‘Unplanned’ Gas Release At Weymouth Compressor This Month, WBUR

Feds warn of ‘serious harm’ without compressor fixes, Herald News

Enbridge Agrees To Pause Weymouth Compressor Station Startup, WBUR

Weymouth gas compressor on pause as feds order investigation, Patriot Ledger

Daily on Energy: Unions look to keep natural gas and nuclear in Biden energy plan, Washington Examiner

Officials: Columbia Gas caused recent gas leak, Eagle Tribune

Eversource Energy expects state OK for Columbia Gas acquisition next week, MassLive

Nuclear

New radiation monitor installed near Seabrook nuke plant, Seacoast Online

Plymouth: Update on the Decommissioning of Pilgrim with Duxbury’s Nuclear Advisory Committee, WATD

PSEG applies to keep $300M annual subsidies for South Jersey nuclear plants, NJ Spotlight

Lowey secures $3.2 million for Town of Cortlandt as Indian Point shuts down, Mid-Hudson News

Compact Nuclear Fusion Reactor Is ‘Very Likely to Work,’ Studies Suggest, New York Times

Market/Grid/Policy/Prices

Southern Maine Group Seeks To Launch Petition Drive Aimed At Creating A Consumer-Owned Utility, Maine Public

Backers of consumer-owned power utility move to put question on Maine ballot, Press Herald

Coronavirus Has Propelled Us Into the Future of Energy Spending, Bloomberg Green

Despite Dead DOE Rule, Grid Resiliency Persists as a Major Concern, Power Magazine

CT House of Representatives passes Energy bill targeting utility companies’ response to Tropical Storm Isaias, Fox 61

Millions of Americans risk losing power and water as massive, unpaid utility bills pile up, Washington Post

Opinion

U.S. Energy Secretary: New England needs natural gas for energy choice, cost reduction, MassLive

Outside of a Small Circle of Friends . . . at ISO New England, In Depth NH

Building out our energy infrastructure can help speed economic recovery, The Hill

Leave a comment

Filed under Climate Change, Electricity Costs, Energy Efficiency, New England Energy News, Northeast Energy News, nuclear, offshore wind, solar

Energy News for week ending September 25, 2020

Left Behind | 2nd Highest | Is it a win?

 

Happy Friday folks.

Here are a few articles that piqued our interest this week:

Have a great weekend, enjoy the beautiful weather, and as always, stay safe.

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

Needham Small Businesses Get Energy Efficient Boost, Patch.com

New York offers $50m to boost energy efficiency of buildings, Energy Live News

With PSE&G’s new $1B efficiency program, New Jersey takes early moves toward new utility business model, Utility Dive

Some Mass. Communities Left Behind By Energy Efficiency Program, Study Finds, NBC Boston

New York sets minimum 3-year term for new load management programs to drive more energy storage, Utility Dive

New York Regulators Approve Demand Response Change to Spur Storage, Microgrid Knowledge

Trump administration moves closer to ensuring many furnaces, water heaters keep wasting gas, ACEEE Blog

House backs bill to boost ‘clean energy,’ enhance efficiency, Washington Post

‘Button Up NH’ home weatherization workshop goes virtual, Seacoastonline.com

 

Climate Change/Renewables/RGGI

Is New England’s Biggest Renewable Energy Project Really a Win for the Climate?, The Revelator

Environmentalists split in their opposition to New England’s latest power transmission line, Hartford Courant

Panelists: Keep heat on emissions and energy bills, Taunton Gazette

Climate change since 2000 will cut U.S. growth over next 30 years – CBO, Reuters

Coastal study reveals Falmouth spots vulnerable to climate change, Cape Cod Times

Climate Disruption is Now Locked In. The Next Moves Will Be Crucial., New York Times

Senate overrides veto of Global Warming Solutions Act, making it law, VT Digger

WoodMac: Energy Sector Faces ‘Darwinian Challenge’ to Tame Climate Change, Greentech Media

John Kerry takes the climate change fight to Wall Street, Boston Globe

Ginsburg death leaves ‘no environmental voice’ on bench, E&E News

Springfield Councilor Jesse Lederman submits petition opposing favorable biomass legislation, MassLive

 

Wind

Falmouth Conservation Commission Approves Testing For Undersea Cables, Falmouth Enterprise

UMass Dartmouth wind turbine comes down after stormy history, South Coast Today

FISHING REPORT: Wind farm studies yield food for thought, Providence Journal

New London argues State Pier project will need local approvals, The Day

 

Solar

Solar Dominates Maine’s Largest Renewables Procurement on Record, Greentech Media

Vermont solar industry concerned about net metering reduction, Times Argus

 

EVs

The Age of Electric Cars Is Dawning Ahead of Schedule, New York Times

Electric Car Sharing Program Receives MassCEC Award, (press release) Alt Energy Mag

BPU Moves to Increase Electric Vehicle Infrastructure in NJ, New Jersey Business Magazine

MAPC receives grant for electric school bus expansion, Wicked Local Cambridge

 

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Markey, Warren join call for compressor shutdown, Gloucester Times

Feds Give Weymouth Natural Gas Compressor Station Final Green Light To Begin Operations, WBUR

Columbia Gas donating $10M to area nonprofits, Eagle Tribune

 

Nuclear

Proposed nuclear decommissioning bill carries big bonus for Vernon, Brattleboro Reformer

Nuclear Regulatory Commission: Gas pipeline rupture wouldn’t pose danger for Indian Point, Lowhud.com

 

Market/Grid/Policy/Prices

Massachusetts residents see 2nd highest utility bills in United States, new study shows, MassLive

Prep Your Tech for Power Outages and Other Emergencies, Wall St. Journal

Pollution Payday: Analysis of executive compensation and incentives of the largest U.S. investor-owned utilities, (Eversource) Energy and Policy Institute

New electricity agreement will save Plymouth residents millions of dollars, Wicked Local Plymouth

 

Opinion

Utilities aren’t rewarded for saving money. FERC now has a chance to fix this, Utility Dive

OPINION: Local and state initiatives are how to address climate change, Herald News

Leave a comment

Filed under Climate Change, Electric Grid, Electricity Costs, Energy Efficiency, New England Energy News, Northeast Energy News, offshore wind

Energy News for week ending September 11, 2020

High Energy Burden | Big Oil Goes Green | Where are the yeses?

Happy Friday folks.

Busy day and week. So I need to keep this short.

I direct your attention to these two articles:

67% of low-income households face high energy burden: ACEEE, Utility Dive

Oil Major BP Gives a Taste of How It Will Go Green, WSJ

One more interesting article to share, which was a result of yesterday’s MIT CEEPR event that featured former Energy Secretary Moniz.

From Axios:

Amy: What is the state or region that you think will have the most difficult time transitioning to a clean-energy economy? Why?

Moniz:

New England. Moniz then went on to say that that region has in recent years opposed new and existing energy infrastructure, like natural-gas pipelines, hydropower and nuclear power plants that could help reduce emissions.

“There are a lot of nos. Where are the yeses? … If we are going to go to low carbon, where is it all going to come from? It’s not all going to come from offshore wind. That’s why we need pragmatic, realistic solutions.”

That’s the recap for this week. Have a great weekend and as always, stay safe.

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

67% of low-income households face high energy burden: ACEEE, Utility Dive

NYISO allows full participation for energy storage in wholesale power markets, Utility Dive

FERC Order May Undermine Renewables, Energy Storage in New York’s Capacity Markets, Greentech Media

How to Keep Firefighters Safe From Batteries, Greentech Media

 

Climate Change/Renewables/RGGI

Utilities Look to Green Hydrogen to Cut Carbon Emissions, Wall St. Journal

AWEA Introduces New Trade Group, the American Clean Power Association, Greentech Media

FERC details carbon pricing conference as groups blast renewables, consumer and women exclusions, Utility Dive

Amid a Pandemic, Green Electricity Charts a Course Forward, S&P Global Market Intelligence

United in Science report: Climate change has not stopped for COVID19, UN Environment Programme

Federal report warns of financial havoc from climate change, Boston Business Journal (subscriber content)

Oil Major BP Gives a Taste of How It Will Go Green, WSJ

House to probe US lag on leveraging clean energy for COVID-19 recovery, consider bipartisan energy bill, Utility Dive

FERC rejection of NYISO renewables plan could prompt state-managed capacity market, advocates say, Utility Dive

 

Wind

Coalition, including UMass Dartmouth, backs expanded research of offshore wind, Herald News

Vineyard Wind partners with Nantucket for support, Cape Cod Times

Floating Offshore Wind Turbines Blast Off, With Help From US Taxpayers, CleanTechnica

Study Finds Offshore Wind and Lobstering Can Coexist, EcoRI

Offshore Wind in NJ Gets Boost, But Lawmakers Demand a Halt to One Project, NJ Spotlight

Wind Farm Benefits Package Totals $29 Million for East Hampton Town, East Hampton Star

 

Solar

US Solar Market Performed Better Than Expected During Pandemic’s Worst Months, Greentech Media

Final approval given by the Town of Glocester for new solar project, WPRI

U.S. Solar Market Insight, SEIA

 

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Weymouth compressor station starts testing, Patriot Ledger

Natural gas lobby charts course for fuel in carbon-constrained world, Washington Examiner

Natural Gas Is the Rich World’s New Coal, Bloomberg

 

Nuclear

Nuclear Energy Among the Least Popular Sources of Power in the U.S., Polling Shows, Morning Consult

So, What Exactly Are Small Modular Nuclear Reactors?, Greentech Media

 

Market/Grid/Policy/Prices

Maine Microgrid Project Lands USDA funding, Microgrid Knowledge

Obama energy secretary on blackouts, campaign scrutiny, Axios

PURA holds a final hearing for public comment on energy bill ratehikes, Fox 61

Leave a comment

Filed under Climate Change, Electric Grid, Electricity Costs, New England Energy News, Northeast Energy News, offshore wind, solar

Energy News for week ending August 7, 2020

Path to Survival | One Billion Dollars | Clean Peak

Happy Friday folks.

We start this week’s recap with a story from Greentech Media, “Massachusetts Pilot Project Offers Gas Utilities a Possible Path to Survival. Utility Eversource is partnering on Boston-area district geothermal pilots as the state contemplates a gas-free future for buildings. In June, Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey asked the state’s Department of Public Utilities to open an investigation into the future of natural-gas companies in the state…The attorney general’s office asked utility regulators to explore the potential for a range of alternatives to decarbonize heating, including building electrification, energy efficiency and ‘geothermal network applications.’ The last option is a nod to work by the Cambridge, Massachusetts-based nonprofit Home Energy Efficiency Team (HEET) to advance a concept called the GeoMicroDistrict, which would see heat pumps in individual buildings transferring thermal energy between a shared district water loop and their own heating and cooling distribution systems. In such a system, gas companies could deliver thermal energy instead of gas — minus the carbon, says Audrey Schulman, HEET’s co-executive director.”

Next we shift to NY news with this story from Grist, “New York is spending $1 billion to help residents conserve energy — and lower their bills. As summer heat waves converge with a surging pandemic and an impending economic collapse, energy-efficient homes are becoming particularly critical to Americans’ well-being. Millions now face tough choices when it comes to energy usage: The longer they stay home to stay safe from both scorching heat and COVID-19, the higher their utility bills climb. New York’s state government, for its part, is eyeing a long-term solution to this conundrum. The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority is collaborating with the region’s investor-owned utilities to provide clean and energy-efficient solutions to more than 350,000 low-to-moderate income households throughout the state. The collaboration aims to more than double the number of lower-income households that have access to services like voluntary electric load reduction, as well as better insulation and air sealing for more efficient cooling and heating, according to an announcement from Governor Andrew Cuomo’s office last week. The initiative will also provide education and community support programs to connect these upgrades to the households most in need.”

For the last highlight of this week we look to a State House News story brought to us by MassLive. “New program aims to sub in clean power during peak energy periods. The Baker administration rolled out the final regulations Tuesday for a first-in-the-nation financial incentive program that aims to promote clean energy generation to supply power when demand on the grid is at its highest, and officials said it will help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and save ratepayers money. The clean peak energy standard would require every retail electric supplier with a contract signed or extended since the start of 2019 to provide a minimum percentage of its kilowatt-hour sales to end-use customers in Massachusetts from ‘clean peak’ resources — renewables, energy storage systems or ‘clean energy technologies that can supply electricity or reduce demand during seasonal peak demand periods.’ The idea is to address periods of the greatest demand on the electric grid — when power generators sometimes turn to dirtier fossil fuels.”

Have a great weekend and as always, stay safe.

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

New York is spending $1 billion to help residents conserve energy — and lower their bills, Grist

Mandated energy efficiency scores would influence home buying: ACEEE, Utility Dive

Mass. launches financing program for business energy projects, Worcester Business Journal

As grant-funded lighting project nears end, town struggles to meet long-term energy goals, Harvard Press

 

Climate Change/Renewables/RGGI

CT’s long road to replace nuclear power with wind and solar, Middletown Press

Report suggests increasing pumped storage could cut electric costs and carbon emissions, Water Power Magazine

Who Will Own the Hydrogen Future: Oil Companies or Power Utilities?, Greentech Media

Report: Climate Change Raises Flood Risks For Superfund Sites In N.H., Elsewhere, NHPR

Report: ‘Total decarbonization’ would create 25M jobs, E&E News

The Worst-Case Scenario for Global Warming Tracks Closely With Actual Emissions, Inside Climate News

New program aims to sub in clean power during peak energy periods, State House News via Taunton Daily Gazette

Massachusetts lawmakers in climate policy bill conference committee snuff out carbon emissions, State House News Service via MassLive

Which states are making the most progress on emissions? Not the ones you think., Grist

Investors launch climate plan to get to net zero emissions by 2050, Reuters

Hurricane, Fire, Covid-19: Disasters Expose the Hard Reality of Climate Change, New York Times

Rising temperatures will cause more deaths than all infectious diseases – study, The Guardian

How falling solar costs have renewed clean hydrogen hopes, MIT Technology Review

 

Wind

Massachusetts puts grid backbone on the back burner, 4C Offshore

CT’s largest ever renewable energy investment nears final approval, Hartford Business Journal

URI Researcher to Map Commercial Fishing Activity to Reduce Conflict Between Industry and Energy Projects, EcoRI

Floating Offshore Wind on Cusp of Unlocking Big Source of Finance, Experts Say, Greentech Media

U.S. Offshore Wind Needs to Clear a Key Hurdle: Connecting to the Grid, Scientific American

Offshore wind report forecasts $1.7B of revenue from new federal lease auctions by 2022, Utility dive

GE plans to give offshore wind energy a supercomputing boost, The Verge

Maine’s $100M Floating Offshore Wind Project Finds Major Backers: RWE and Mitsubishi, Greentech Media

 

Solar

Newark launches $10 million project to install solar panels, other energy efficiency upgrades, Newark Post

 

EVs

GM, EVgo to install 2,700 electric-vehicle charging stations, Detroit News

Global Electric Vehicle Cords Top 1 Million, Bloomberg

A new kind of command car at Kennebunk Fire Department, Press Herald

 

Nuclear

Smaller Nuclear Plants May Come With Less Stringent Safety Rules, NPR

 

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Massachusetts Pilot Project Offers Gas Utilities a Possible Path to Survival, Greentech Media

Gas safety legislation stalls on Beacon Hill, Salem News

As natural gas bans go national, can cities fill the gap?, E&E News

How climate and business woes are sinking a natural-gas project, Axios

Oil and Gas Groups See ‘Some Common Ground’ in Biden Energy Plan, New York Times

 

Market/Grid/Policy/Prices

Opponents debate merits of Maine hydro project, Codcast CommonWealth Magazine (audio)

Maine’s high court wrestles with lawsuit holding major implications for CMP corridor, Bangor Daily News

Eversource faces the wrath of Connecticut officials as more than 600,000 remain without electricity cut by Tropical Storm Isaias, Hartford Current

Storm recovery upsets Norwich Public Utilities cost-cutting efforts, The Day

Municipalities who own power plants not zapped by electricity price hikes, WTNH (CT)

After a week of complaints, utility regulators temporarily pull plug on Eversource rate hike, CT Mirror

New Jersey’s PSEG Seeks to Sell Merchant Fossil, Solar Fleet, Greentech Media

New York And Connecticut Call For Probes Into Utility Companies’ Response To Isaias, NPR

Con Edison seeks approval to offer access to green power, Queens Gazette

Eversource: Some rate relief approved for electric customers, MassLive

 

Opinion/Editorial

Getting rid of fossil fuels in buildings, CommonWealth Magazine

The Importance of Microgrids for Marginalized Communities, Microgrid Knowledge

House takes baby steps on climate change, CommonWealth Magazine

Columnist Marty Nathan: Legislature’s opaque process hurts climate fight, Daily Hampshire Gazette

Why the CMP corridor is a bad deal for Maine and the climate, Maine Beacon

Best climate change policy you’ve never heard of, CommonWealth Magazine

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Climate Change, Electric Grid, Electricity Costs, Energy Efficiency, New England Energy News, Northeast Energy News, offshore wind

Energy News for week ending July 17, 2020

Net Metering Petition Dismissed | Double Capacity | We’re Still on Top

Happy Friday.

This week’s big news came out on Thursday when FERC dismissed a petition to declare solar net metering policies illegal. From Greentech Media, “The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission on Thursday unanimously rejected a plea to declare all state solar net-metering policies illegal, a victory for solar industry groups and state policymakers. All four FERC commissioners voted to dismiss the April petition from the New England Ratepayers Association (NERA), which argued that FERC, not states, should have jurisdiction over sales of electricity from customer-sited generators like rooftop solar. ‘We find that the petition does not identify a specific controversy or harm that the commission should address in a declaratory order,’ FERC Chairman Neil Chatterjee said in Thursday’s FERC open meeting. NERA, a New Hampshire-based 501(c)(4) organization that hasn’t disclosed its backers, said FERC should take up the group’s legal argument to assert federal jurisdiction over net metering regulations in 41 states that ‘overcompensate distributed generators at the expense of all other electricity consumers.’”

Sticking with solar, in Massachusetts this week the State House News Service via WBUR reports, “New State Rules Aim To Double Solar Power Capacity. Industry groups on Wednesday largely welcomed the updated regulations that the Baker administration filed for a solar energy development program, saying the new rules will help the state meet its climate goals and help the solar industry as it deals with the fallout from the coronavirus pandemic, but some also said the update does not go far enough. The updated regulations for the state’s Solar Massachusetts Renewable Target (SMART) incentive program, which is designed to facilitate solar projects by ensuring financing, double the program’s capacity, expand eligibility criteria for low-income solar projects and encourage the adoption of energy storage technology.” The regulations took effect Wednesday.

Last story for this week is new “old news.” From Wallethub, “2020’s Most & Least Energy-Expensive States. In the U.S., energy costs eat between 5 and 22 percent of families’ total after-tax income, with the poorest Americans, or 25 million households, paying the highest of that range. And lower energy prices don’t necessarily equate to savings. Where we live and how much energy we use are a big part of the equation. While commercial and industrial electricity use have declined in 2020 due to business closures during lockdowns, residential electricity use has actually increased, which means many people will be forking over larger checks to their power companies. To better understand the impact of energy on our finances relative to our location and consumption habits, WalletHub compared the total monthly energy bills in each of the 50 states and the District of Columbia. Our analysis uses a special formula that accounts for the following residential energy types: electricity, natural gas, motor fuel and home heating oil.” The results for the Northeast, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and New Hampshire are the top 4 most expensive states. Maine comes in at six and Vermont is 11th.

That’s the recap for this week. Have a great weekend and as always, stay safe.

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

‘Enormous Step’ for Energy Storage as Court Upholds FERC Order 841, Opening Wholesale Markets, Greentech Media

US, Canadian gas utilities’ energy efficiency investments grow to $1.47B, S&P Global

Eversource puts in place new safety guidelines for energy efficiency services, Daily Energy Insider

Net Zero as the New Standard, Commercial Property Executive

Energy storage, tick disease and antique snowmobile bills signed into law, Concord Monitor

Become More Energy Efficient And Save Money, WWLP MassAppeal

 

Climate Change/Renewables/RGGI

Biden unveils ambitious plan to reach 100% clean electricity by 2035, pour trillions into green energy, ABC News

Never let a good crisis go to waste, CT Mirror

This Al Gore-supported project uses AI to track the world’s emissions in near real time, Fast Company

Global Methane Emissions Reach a Record High, New York Times

Trump to Weaken Environmental Rules to Speed Infrastructure Permits, New York Times

Boston has already experienced some of the nation’s worst tidal flooding — and it’s going to get much worse, study finds, Boston Globe

Siberian heat streak and Arctic temperature record virtually ‘impossible’ without global warming, study says, Washington Post

Key trends to disrupt the US renewables market in the next six months, Smart Energy International

How the ‘15-Minute City’ Could Help Post-Pandemic Recovery, Bloomberg City Lab

Six Places Doing It Right, Politico

Tidal energy may help remote communities integrate more renewable energy, techxplor.com

UMass Lowell receives grant to support clean energy, Lowell Sun

 

Wind

Wind Port project, where towering turbines could be made, looks like game-changer for Garden State, renewable energy companies, ROI NJ

‘We’re here for the people,’ Observer Today (NY)

New Road Map for Murphy Administration’s Offshore Wind Ambitions, NJ Spotlight

 

Solar

FERC Unanimously Dismisses Effort to Undermine Solar Net Metering, Greentech Media

New State Rules Aim To Double Solar Power Capacity, State House News via WBUR

Massachusetts Finalizes Distributed Solar Rules With Fewer Restrictions on Land Use, Greentech Media

 

EVs

The Energy 202: More than a dozen states unite to boost electric trucks, Washington Post

Next Up for Electrification: Heavy-Duty Trucks and Construction Machinery, Greentech Media

Electric cars got crushed in 2020, but next year could be their best, Quartz.com (subscriber content)

Where do electric vehicles fit in energy grid management,? Automotive World Today

 

Nuclear

Democrats split on Trump plan to use development funds for nuclear projects, The Hill

 

Gas

Public resistance and high costs are canceling pipelines across the country, Philadelphia Inquirer

The Natural Gas Divide, grist.org

 

Market/Grid/Policy/Prices

Connecticut to Look at Resilience, Renewables & NWAs in Grid Modernization Proceeding, Microgrid Knowledge

Hydro-Québec sweetens 1,200-MW transmission line deal with Maine, S&P Global

Top 3 trends shaping the future power utility sector, Smart Energy International

2020’s Most & Least Energy-Expensive States, Wallet Hub

Former MassCEC chief takes CEO role at Burlington power company, Boston Business Journal

Eversource Energy : Delivers Summer Electricity Savings to Customers in Eastern Massachusetts, Market Screener

 

Opinion

Activists Not Only Slow Oil Pipelines, But Also Power Lines Needed For Renewable Energy, Forbes.com

Our racist fossil fuel energy system, Boston Globe

Rhetoric vs. Reality: The Myth of “Renewable Natural Gas” for Building Decarbonization, earthjustice.org

Holding on to power, Why storage is a crucial part of the state’s new energy vision, NJBiz

Leave a comment

Filed under Climate Change, Electricity Costs, Energy Efficiency, New England Energy News, Northeast Energy News, solar