Category Archives: New England Energy News

Energy News for week ending December 7, 2018

We are in Trouble | Transfer Approved | Plenty of Capacity

TGIF! Let’s get to it.

From the Washington Post, “Global emissions of carbon dioxide are reaching the highest levels on record, scientists projected Wednesday, in the latest evidence of the chasm between international goals for combating climate change and what countries are doing. Between 2014 and 2016, emissions remained largely flat, leading to hopes that the world was beginning to turn a corner. Those hopes appear to have been dashed. In 2017, global emissions grew 1.6 percent. The rise in 2018 is projected to be 2.7 percent…’We are in trouble. We are in deep trouble with climate change,’ United Nations Secretary General António Guterres said this week at the opening of the 24th annual U.N. climate conference, where countries will wrestle with the ambitious goals they need to meet to sharply reduce carbon emissions in the coming years.”

Some good news in what’s expected to be a trend with nuclear plants across the country, VPR reports, “State utility regulators have approved the transfer of the closed Vermont Yankee nuclear plant to NorthStar, a demolition company that has has (sic) committed to decommissioning the plant decades earlier than previously planned. The Vermont Public Utility Commission said a main benefit of NorthStar’s plan was that decommissioning will begin no later than 2021. The current owner of the Vernon plant, the Entergy Corporation, had planned to delay cleanup of the site until at least 2053.”

Last news highlight for this week comes from the north of the border. The Portland Press Herald reports, “Hydro-Quebec officials say opponents of a transmission line through western Maine are wrong when they say the company’s plan to send hydropower to Massachusetts won’t provide abundant clean energy to New England…The utility’s officials said Thursday that the company has enough capacity to ensure that the electricity sent south is clean and produced with none of the carbon emissions blamed for global warming. “We have excess (hydropower) energy in Quebec that we can’t get out,” Serge Abergel, director of public affairs for Hydro-Quebec, told the editorial board of the Portland Press Herald…But Dylan Voorhees, clean energy director for the Natural Resources Council of Maine, disputed Abergel’s claims. He’s concerned that Hydro-Quebec could engage in a practice called greenwashing, in which a utility buys power from highly polluting generators such as coal plants when that electricity is cheap, then uses it to fulfill their own contracts rather than using their own clean hydropower. That would negate the environmental advantages of transmitting hydropower to Massachusetts.”

That’s it for this afternoon. Have a great weekend and we’ll be back in your inboxes next Friday.

 Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Berkshire Gas agrees to half its proposed rate hike, Berkshire Gas

Changing fuel prices impact household heating market, Connecticut Post

Portland Xpress pipeline project gets FERC environmental OK, Seeking Alpha

Berkshire Gas moratoriums in Franklin and Hampshire counties to continue indefinitely, MassLive

Algonquin Power to buy Enbridge Gas New Brunswick for C$331M, Seeking Alpha

Environmentalists slam Murphy for inaction on pipelines, NJtoday.com

Coal Is On The Way Out — Natural Gas Is Next, CleanTechnica

 

Lock Out

House, in informal session, passes Grid legislation, CommonWealth Magazine

Emotions high at National Grid lockout hearing, Lowell Sun

National Grid takes pounding on Beacon Hill, CommonWealth Magazine

 

Merrimack Valley

Columbia Gas targeting last few hundred customers in Lawrence area still without service, Boston Globe

Politicians call for gas execs to resign after disaster, Western Mass News

Columbia Gas-Repaired Furnace Sends Family To Emergency Room, USA Patch

‘I Don’t Feel Safe’: Lawrence Woman Injured by Stove Issued After Merrimack Valley Gas Explosions, NECN

With more plumbers, could Lawrence have seen faster gas service?, Boston Globe

 

Renewables/Climate Change/RGGI

‘We are in trouble.’ Global carbon emissions reached a record high in 2018., Washington Post

Environment: Hot, dry summers have killed trees covering nearly 50,000 forest acres, Providence Journal

On Senate Floor: Shaheen Underscores Impact of Climate Change on Granite State Environment, Wildlife & Economy, NHLaborNews.com

The Energy 202: Carbon emissions were flat only two years ago. Not anymore., Washington Post

Connecticut Preps for Weather Extremes, Flooding Highlighted in Climate Report, Government Technology

How Climate Change Is Already Affecting Infrastructure In N.H., New Hampshire Pubic Radio

Climate change already reshaping South Shore coastline, Patriot Ledger

 

Wind

Biologist’s goal: wind turbines that kill fewer bats and birds, Boston Globe

NJ Begins Strategic Planning for Murphy’s Offshore-Wind Goals, NJ Spotlight

Feds Gathering Public Input on Vineyard Wind Environmental Impact Report, CapeCod.com

Aroostook wind power backers see opportunity if western Maine transmission line fails, The County

State reviewing application for wind farm in Hancock County, National Wind Watch

Vineyard Wind draft report released, Energy Central

Wind Farm Near Martha’s Vineyard In Jeopardy, The Independent

 

Solar

Governor pushes for solar in low-income areas, New Hampshire Union Leader

Consortium turning former brownfields into solar farms, Westerly Sun

Brushy Brook solar hearing concludes; decision in January, Westerly Sun

Watertown passes new solar requirement, Wicked Local Watertown

Salem Receives Award For Solar Efforts, USA Patch

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

Harvard Reveals Its Ultra-Energy-Efficient Center for Green Buildings and Cities, Architectural Record

Westwood’s Thomas Philbin Among “Leading By Example” Recipients, USA Patch

Eversource and Wesleyan University Announce New Energy Efficiency Partnership, NA Clean Energy

U.S. energy storage storm grows in strength, pv magazine international

What Long Duration Energy Storage Is & Why It Kills Coal, CleanTechnica

‘Sun in a box’ would store renewable energy for the grid, TechXplore.com

 

EVs

1M EVs in the US ‘a step in our journey’ to combat climate change, Utility Dive

Trump administration says it will end electric car tax credit in the strangest way, Electrek

America’s Power Grid Isn’t Ready for Electric Cars, CityLab.com

 

Nuclear

Vermont Yankee Transfer Approved, NorthStar Will Decommission Plant, VPR

PURA maintains “at risk” status for Millstone, Hartford Business Journal

Pennsylvania State Lawmakers Call to End the ‘Epidemic’ of Nuclear Power Plant Closures, Greentech Media

 

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

Clean energy technologies threaten to overwhelm the grid. Here’s how it can adapt., Vox.com

Canadian hydropower supplier says it has plenty of capacity for N.E., Portland Press Herald

CMP Says It Won’t Pass Costs to Customers for Billing Snafu, U.S. News & World Report

Cape Light Compact Announces Winter Electric Pricing, Cape Cod

Policymaker of the Year: Kevin McIntyre, FERC, Utility Dive

Seacoast Reliability Project continues to clear hurdles, Seacoastonline.com

CMP power line supporters make their case to Somerset County commissioners, Kennebec Journal

Connecticut standard electric rates to jump $12 to $16, Westport News

Eversource Energy reaches new contract with two Connecticut unions, New Haven Register

Reinventing the power grid in coastal Maine – well, sort of, Concord Monitor

FERC vacancy allows Democrats to win rare battle over ISO-NE market rules, Utility Dive

Non-Wires Alternatives: How Much, How Soon for Connecticut?, Microgrid Knowledge

My Car, Your Home, a Microgrid and the Future, Microgrid Knowledge

 

Editorial/Opinion

Hassan bears down: Good points on gas explosion, New Hampshire Union Leader

Columnist Marty Nathan: Climate change demands straight talk, Daily Hampshire Gazette

OP-ED: Nautilus would put NJ at forefront of offshore wind industry, NJBIZ

Eversource project endangers children, the environment, Seacoastonline.com

Leave a comment

Filed under Climate Change, Electric Grid, hydro, New England Energy News, Northeast Energy News, nuclear, offshore wind, Vermont Yankee Closing

Energy News for week ending November 30, 2018

Trailers Removed | Bill to end moratorium? | RI goes big | Enough power

 

Happy Friday afternoon. This week we’re focused on good news.

From the Eagle Tribune, “The process of removing travel trailers placed on the South Common for local gas disaster victims started Thursday morning. Mayor Daniel Rivera said some of the trailers are now being sent to California, where 88 people have been killed and thousands have been left homeless, their homes destroyed by wildfires. The travel trailers were brought to the Merrimack Valley in mid-October after thousands of local residents were left without natural gas for heat and cooking a month earlier…Columbia Gas, the utility provider, is hoping to have gas restored to everyone affected by Dec. 16…Rivera described the removal of the trailers “as definitely a good sign.” “It means there are more people back at home with heat and hot water,” he said.

Over the past few weeks we’ve had a number of stories about how the moratorium on anything but emergency gas repairs has created havoc for some businesses and homeowners. The good news today comes from the Boston Business Journal that, “Lawmakers on Beacon Hill are set to review a bill sponsored by Gov. Charlie Baker that could spur the department of public utilities to lift its moratorium on non-emergency natural gas work throughout the commonwealth. Baker introduced the bill, titled “An Act to Ensure the Safety and Soundness of the Commonwealth’s Natural Gas Infrastructure,” on Nov. 20. Both the House and Senate have referred it to the committee on telecommunications, utilities and energy, which meets Tuesday.

From SolarIndustryMag.com we have this story, “The U.S.’ Smallest State Has Big Renewable Energy Ambitions. ‘Though she be but little, she is fierce.’ A line from Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream or an appropriate description for the State of Rhode Island? Judging by its milestones in the renewable energy industry, the smallest state in the U.S. is living up to this mantra.”

Last for this week is story from MassLive that should warm all of our hearts, er homes, New England will have enough electricity to meet peak winter demands, ISO New England, which manages the power grid for the region, said Wednesday…Starting this winter, ISO New England will maintain a forecast of the region’s energy needs looking out 21 days. And it will use market incentives, so energy providers are paid more for sending gas to where ISO New England believes the gas will do the most good. ISO said it’s also working with utilities to reduce demand when the grid is under stress.”

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

 

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Berkshire Gas moratorium continues indefinitely, The Recorder

Invenergy: Loss of New England capacity contract won’t affect proposed gas plant, Utility Dive

Compressor opponent questions lack of outreach, Weymouth.wickedlocal.com

Fore River residents raise questions about compressor station study, Patriot Ledger

Hingham: Officials Approve Intervener Status for Gas Compressor Station (Audio Story), WATD-FM

Connecticut utility regulators tentatively approve settlement agreement in Yankee Gas rate case, New Haven Register

The World Needs to Quit Coal. Why Is It So Hard?, New York Times

New England gas plants sold to private equity firm, Boston Globe

Two U.S. pipelines rack up violations, threaten industry growth, Reuters

City of Northampton opposes natural gas pipeline project in Agawam, MassLive

Residents at forum decry Longmeadow Country Club deal with Tennessee Gas Pipeline Co., MassLive

 

Lockout

Baker bill could help lift gas moratorium as National Grid lockout drags on, Boston Business Journal

Developers push for relief from the natural gas moratorium, Boston Globe

Grid, locked-out workers appear far apart, CommonWealth Magazine

National Grid rebuffs union’s counter-proposal as sides prepare to meet, Boston Business Journal (subscriber content)

 

Merrimack Valley

Trailers removed as need for shelter declines, Eagle Tribune

Lawmakers Follow Up on Lack of Inspectors in Merrimack Valley Prior to Explosions, NECN

Gas Company Offers Holiday Feast To Those Affected By Pipeline Disaster, NPR

Columbia Gas says Merrimack Valley residents should be back in homes by Christmas, MassLive

Ed Markey vows to change federal gas regulations in wake of Merrimack Valley explosions, MassLive

Family of man killed in gas explosion testifies at hearing; lawmakers aggressive in questioning company leaders, Eagle Tribune

Rivera: Columbia Gas should be disbanded, CommonWealth Magazine

Hearing Date Set For Lawsuits Against Columbia Gas, Patch.com

 

Renewables/Climate Change/RGGI

Report warns of coastal impact for New England, Salem News

Emissions battle ensnares link to Canadian hydropower, E&E News

A Carbon Tax Wave? 7 States Considering Carbon Pricing to Fight Climate Change, Inside Climate News

Bipartisan group of lawmakers propose landmark carbon tax, The Hill

The U.S.’ Smallest State Has Big Renewable Energy Ambitions, Solar Industry

Let’s Re-Design Wholesale Market Rules To Reap The Benefits of Solar and Wind: Report, Microgrid Knowledge

 

Wind

Vineyard Wind given more time to meet fishermen’s concerns, Cape Cod Times

Upwind wind farms can reduce the energy production of downwind neighbor turbines, NSF.gov

Ørsted Raises Offshore Wind Target To 15 Gigawatts By 2025, CleanTechnica

Rhode Island Wind-Power RFP Attracts Six Times the Requested Demand, Engineering News Record

 

 

Solar

Massachusetts accepts first applications for new solar SMART incentives, MassLive

BlueWave withdraws solar array proposal in Webster, Telegram.com

Solar Project Completed On Former East Providence Landfill, Solar Industry

Tiverton taps brakes on solar development, Newport Daily News

Easthampton gives final OK to large solar farm off Park Street, MassLive

Farmington planning board approves solar project, Kennebec Journal

Local solar nonprofit seeks to innovate energy assistance, Brainerd Dispatch

New Jersey hits milestone for installation of solar energy projects, Daily Energy Insider

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

Weymouth middle school project aims for efficiency, resiliency, Patriot Ledger

Energy efficiency rate to decrease for most home electric bills, VTDigger

US Energy Industry Urges Congress To Fix ITC Eligibility For Energy Storage, CleanTechnica

Energy efficiency can save the world — if we can figure out how to pay for it, Utility Dive

New Hampshire settlement moves ‘cutting-edge’ utility BTM storage pilot forward, Utility Dive

 

EVs

Are regulators hindering EV acceleration?, Utility Dive

GM cuts jobs, ends models amid shift to electric and autonomous cars, Utility Dive

 

Nuclear

Connecticut Likely to OK Millstone for Zero-carbon RFP, RTO Insider

Fight brewing over prospect of nuclear power plant shutdowns, AP News

Plymouth seeks extended benefits as Pilgrim closes, Cape Cod Times

Ammonia Spill At Seabrook Nuclear Power Plant Declared ‘Unusual Event’, CBS Boston / WBZ-TV

A Growing Number Of States Are Rushing To Save Their Nuclear Plants, The Daily Caller

Nuclear panel questions cask life span, Cape Cod Times

Holtec eyes acquisition of Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station, Daily Energy Insider

A Bill Gates-backed energy company is developing what could be a game-changing nuclear reactor, Business Insider

 

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

Region’s electricity market in trouble, CommonWealth Magazine

Smart meter deployments slow as questions emerge over cost effectiveness, saturation, Utility Dive

ISO-NE anticipates adequate winter resources, but sees 4 possible challenges, Utility Dive

New England power grid expected to meet winter demand, MassLive

Grid able to generate ample electricity this winter, but don’t expect bills to go down, Concord Monitor

Committee begins Seacoast Reliability Project debate, Foster’s Daily Democrat

Energy priorities shift as a new administration takes hold, Portland Press Herald

Shuttered Brayton Point assessed value drops more than 75 percent, Herald News

Newton Signs Historic Green Energy Contract: Mayor, USA Patch

Salisbury to roll out community choice electricity program, Newburyport Daily News

Connecticut-based Eversource Energy launches improved outage map, New Haven Register

 

Editorial/Opinion

Letter to the editor: CMP power corridor project does too much damage, should be rejected, Portland Press Herald

Our region needs the Seacoast Reliability Project, Seacoastonline.com

Maine Compass: Carbon tax best way to slow down climate change, Kennebec Journal

Boston, too, needs to do more on climate change, CommonWealth Magazine

We need a Green New Deal in Massachusetts, CommonWealth Magazine

LETTER: Maintain conservative nuclear cleanup standards, Wicked Local Plymouth

Don’t curb gas utilities; clean them up, Boston Globe

Leave a comment

Filed under Climate Change, New England Energy News, Northeast Energy News, offshore wind, Pilgrim Closing

Energy News for week ending November 16, 2019

Multiple Breakdowns | Panicky Trading | Key Errors | Floatovoltaics

 

Happy Friday afternoon. This week’s energy news is loaded with stories. Here are a few highlights:

 

One of many stories coming out of the Merrimack Valley incident this week is an NTSB report urging new safety measures. From USA Today, “Columbia Gas of Massachusetts did not use a professional engineer to draw up plans to replace old cast-iron gas mains in the Merrimack Valley in September — a factor, federal authorities say, that could have contributed to the explosions that killed one person and injured at least 21 others. That’s one conclusion from an urgent safety report issued by the National Transportation Safety Board Thursday. Massachusetts, like many states, exempts utility companies from state licensing laws for engineers. The NTSB now recommends that Massachusetts end the practice.”

 

Sticking with gas for a minute, in some not-so-good news for a region that relies heavily on natural gas for heating and electricity generation, from CNBC.com, “Natural gas prices surged to a more than four-year high in panicky and volatile trading Wednesday, after the latest cold weather forecasts raised fears that the U.S. is heading for a potentially colder-than-expected winter with too little gas supply…Prices also rose across futures contracts that that would cover the winter months through March, indicating that prices could be pressured all winter by dwindling supply, which is at a 15-year low for this time of year.”

 

In a bit of an Emily Litella moment (from SNL of years past) and perhaps some good news, the Washington Post reports, “Scientists behind a major study that claimed the Earth’s oceans are warming faster than previously thought now say their work contained inadvertent errors that made their conclusions seem more certain than they actually are…As a result, the findings suffer from too much doubt to definitively support the paper’s conclusion about how much heat the oceans have absorbed over time.” Their earlier results, if you recall, suggested there is less time than previously thought to curb greenhouse gas emissions.

Last story for this week is an unusual request for an energy project in Central Mass. From Telegram.com, “A Millbury-based solar energy company has floated the idea of covering 24,000 surface acres of Quabbin Reservoir with a floating photovoltaic solar array capable of producing 1 megawatt of power. In his letter, Mr. Strzelecki said he is exploring any interest in developing a floating solar farm at Quabbin, describing floating solar arrays as ‘the future of renewable energy.’…The letter states that such an array, covering 24,000 of the reservoir’s 25,000 acres, would ‘put the Quabbin back in the energy-producing business since the Winsor Dam was put out of commission nearly 30 years ago.’ Mr. Strzelecki’s letter pointed out that “floatovoltaics” benefit from the cooling effect of water as well as being shade-free. Mr. Clark said he discussed the letter with John Scannell, director of the Division of Water Supply Protection, who was dismissive of the idea.”

 

Enjoy the weekend and have a Happy Thanksgiving. We’re taking next Friday off for the holiday.

 

Merrimack Valley

Multiple breakdowns led to natural gas explosions in Merrimack Valley, NTSB says, USA Today

As Merrimack Valley Appliances Are Replaced, Some Residents Want More Energy Efficiency, WGBH

Officials talk safety in anticipation of colder temps, Eagle Tribune

Massachusetts lawmakers ask President Donald Trump to declare disaster in Merrimack Valley after gas explosions, MassLive

Lawmakers to hold oversight hearings on gas explosions, Eagle-Tribune

Lawsuits In Gas Disaster Could Face Hurdle In Obscure State Protections For Utilities, WGBH

For Returning Gas Explosion Victims, Home Isn’t Always Sweet, USA Patch

After AG’s Guidance, Confusion Lingers For Landlords, Tenants, Patch.com

 

Lockout

Political leaders under pressure to fix gas crisis as developers panic, Boston Business Journal (pay wall)

Worcester Rep. O’Day files bill to force National Grid to continue health insurance for locked out workers, Telegram

Gas hookup moratorium putting chill on housing, real estate, Lowell Sun

Plans for gas oversight hearings, lockout bill taking shape, Sentinel and Enterprise

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Natural gas jumps to 4-year high in panicky trading as snow, cold push across US, CNBC

Charlton residents hear details of proposed $100M LNG plant, Worcester Telegram

Pipeline peril: Natural gas explosions reveal silent danger lurking in old cast iron pipes, CBS News

No penalties for 90% of pipeline blasts, E&E News

Climate activists get involved in Agawam pipeline debate, MassLive

Hingham mulls applying for ‘intervenor status’ on Weymouth compressor station, Hingham.wickedlocal.com

Power plant opponents celebrate another victory as case moves into final months, The Valley Breeze

Potential for wetlands disturbance draws ire from opponents of Williams Transco compressor station, Central Jersey

Environmentalists call on Murphy to halt fossil fuel projects, NJTV

Oxford power plant is commissioned, Connecticut Post

 

Renewables/Climate Change/RGGI

What Will Maine’s Clean Energy Future Look Like Under New Leadership?, Maine Public

Scientists acknowledge key errors in study of how fast the oceans are warming, Washington Post

Environmental groups hope Democrat gains will spur climate action, VTDigger

Green jobs growing across Central Mass., Telegram

ReEnergy shuts down Fort Fairfield biomass plant, Mainebiz

Ratepayer group asks FERC to nullify state’s biomass subsidy law, New Hampshire Union Leader

Storm Surge brings professor to discuss climate change, Daily News of Newburyport

Confronting Climate Change, Fishermen Collect Data on Changing Oceans, Cape and Islands NPR

 

Wind

7 big turbines rise in Johnston — biggest onshore wind farm in R.I. | video, Providence Journal

Agencies earn right to challenge wind farm studies, National Wind Watch

Motion To Intervene On Turbine Appeal Denied, Falmouth Enterprise

Arkwright hears complaints about turbine sounds, The Observer Today

Former Massachusetts Coal Plant Transitioning To Offshore Wind Support Center, North American Windpower

National Offshore Wind Consortium Announces Roadmap to Accelerate Offshore Wind Industry, NYSERDA

New Jersey in Right Place to Reap Benefits of Emerging Offshore-Wind Sector, NJ Spotlight

Providence zoning board to consider 3 new 364-ft. turbines at waterfront, Providence Business News

BOEM releases potential lease plots for NY offshore wind, South Coast Today

 

Solar

State throws cold water on idea of floating solar array on Quabbin Reservoir, Telegram.com

Local solar nonprofit seeks to innovate energy assistance, Brainerd Dispatch

Cabot Corporation and SunPower Announce Helix® Solar-Plus-Storage Agreement, MarketWatch

Three Solar Projects Completed For Town Of Ashland, Massachusetts, Solar Industry

Falmouth town meeting rejects moratorium on solar permits, Cape Cod Times

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

Barrier to Energy Storage in New York?, Microgrid Knowledge

The Forecast on Energy-Efficient Cooling Just Got a Bit Sunnier, PBS

 

EVs

School Districts Rolling Out Electric Buses as Economics Improve: ‘It’s Time to Switch,’ Greentech Media

Tesla, GM, ChargePoint and other EV interests press Congress to continue federal tax credit, Utility Dive

 

Nuclear

Holtec Files Request to Acquire Pilgrim Nuclear Plant by End of 2019, Cape Cod Today

Natural Gas is Undermining Pennsylvania’s Nuclear Plants—And That’s Bad News for the Climate, Union of Concerned Scientists

Report: New England’s Nuclear Plants Will Be Key To Fighting Climate Change, New Hampshire Public Radio

Cost of US nuclear generation at ten-year low, World Nuclear News

 

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

Rules Protecting N.H. Residents From Winter Utility Disconnection Kick In Today, Valley News

Maine DEP tells CMP its application for 145-mile power line is incomplete, Sun Journal

CT electric generation rates on the rise, Hartford Business Journal

National Grid brass declines invite to discuss gas concerns in Leominster, Sentinel & Enterprise

Visual impact of Seacoast power project to be presented, Seacoastonline.com

Governors push fed on grid modernization, Lowell Sun

Lessons From FERC Staff Reversal In Footprint Power, Law360

Can the Electricity Industry Seize Its Resilience Moment?, Greentech Media

New England Talks Energy Security, Public Policy, RTO Insider

Cannabis Growers Eye Microgrids to Cut Energy Bills, Greentech Media

FERC chair warns of retroactive ratemaking in ISO-NE order, S&P Global Platts

To scare crows in North Adams, National Grid is bringing in a propane cannon that shoots sound, MassLive

NE governors push feds on grid modernization, Lowell Sun

LIPA seeks 2.4% hike in customer delivery charge, Newsday

Utility smart meter installations worry Rockland and Westchester homeowners on privacy, LoHud.com

The Hail Mary plan to restart a hacked us electric grid, Wired

 

Editorial/Opinion

Editorial: Baker, Walsh must step in on National Grid talks, Boston Business Journal (paywall)

To fight climate change, environmentalists say yes to nuclear power, Boston Globe

Nuclear waste dilemma, The Day

Maine Voices: Start listening, folks: All-out effort needed to prevent climate disaster, Portland Press Herald

For a safe, secure new U.S. energy grid, Lowell Sun

George Smith: 2019 may be Maine’s year for clean energy, Kennebec Journal

GUEST OPINION: Energy Advisory Committee, past and future, Daily News of Newburyport

Ørsted, Deepwater Wind: Are Offshore Wind Mergers Good for us?, Union of Concerned Scientists

Leave a comment

Filed under Climate Change, Natural Gas Pipelines, New England Energy News, Northeast Energy News, offshore wind, Pilgrim Closing, solar

Energy News for week ending November 9, 2018

Write off | LNG in Central MA | A gas leak every mile | About Face

Happy Friday afternoon. Be careful heading home or out this evening. We have a flash flood watch from 5:00 PM today until 3:00 PM Saturday for many parts of New England.

We start this week with three natural gas stories. First, from Jon Chesto at the Boston Globe, Eversource writes off its investment in Access Northeast because of Columbia Gas disaster, “When fires and explosions rocked Lawrence-area homes and businesses in September, the Columbia Gas incident was bound to hurt the already-tenuous political stature of the natural gas industry around here. Now, Eversource Energy is paying a price for the damage to the industry’s reputation: $32.9 million. That’s the pretax value of Eversource’s 40 percent stake in the proposed Access Northeast pipeline expansion project. Eversource just wrote off the full amount. The company hasn’t officially given up on Access Northeast. But the utility’s accountants have decided, at least for now, that its share in the project is worthless. The reason? Eversource blamed the Merrimack Valley gas disaster, in a document filed Tuesday with the Securities and Exchange Commission, even though the incident didn’t take place in Eversource’s gas service territory.”

While Eversource may have temporarily given up on Access Northeast, the Merrimack Valley disaster is not stopping Liberty Energy Trust of Pennsylvania from proposing a $100M LNG plant in Charlton, MA. From the Worcester Telegram, “On the fiercest of cold days this winter, thousands of Massachusetts residents will rely on the liquid form of natural gas for heat, and they likely won’t care where it comes from or how it gets to them, as long as it keeps their homes warm. Behind the scenes, though, utility companies take note every time a gigantic tanker ship carrying liquefied natural gas (LNG) docks at the Distrigas terminal in Everett. The imported LNG, arriving from places like Trinidad and Russia, helps offset their natural gas supplies, but, with no power over the domestic and international markets, they worry about relying solely on overseas fuel. To assure reliability, the companies say, the state must find ways to create its own sources for LNG. Charlton could emerge as an option…Liberty Energy Trust has proposed construction of a more than $100-million LNG plant — operating under the name Northeast Energy Center LLC — on roughly 25 acres of a 220-acre wooded site at 249 Sturbridge Road (Route 20).”

USA Today brings us our third natural gas story, A gas leak every mile: Google Street View cars find problems that utilities don’t “In older American cities like New York and Boston, there can be as many gas leaks as there are miles of road. How do we know? Because Google drove those city streets – and mapped every leak. In some communities, those funny-looking Google Street View cars driving around taking pictures of houses and storefronts are also sniffing for natural gas – part of an effort to detect and fix leaks before they become bigger problems.”

Last for this week is a blog post from the Union of Concerned Scientists, which this week, basically did a 180 on their view of nuclear power. “Last month the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) issued a sobering report. Based on the most up-to-date scientific evidence, the report warns that we are rapidly losing any appreciable chance of meeting the Paris climate agreement goal of keeping temperature increases to “well below” 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels. The report also makes clear that if we fail to meet this goal, the consequences will not only be severe, but they will be experienced sooner than expected…These sobering realities dictate that we keep an open mind about all of the tools in the emissions reduction toolbox—even ones that are not our personal favorites. And that includes existing nuclear power plants in the United States, which currently supply about 20 percent of our total electricity needs and more than half of our low-carbon electricity supply…Factoring all of these considerations in, our new report calls for proactive policy to preserve nuclear power from existing plants that are operating safely but are at risk of premature closures for economic reasons or to ensure that lost nuclear capacity is replaced with carbon-free sources.”

That’s it for this week’s recap. Have a great weekend and please be sure to take a moment to give thanks to our veterans.

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Eversource writes off its investment in Access Northeast because of Columbia Gas disaster, Boston Globe

States raise Exelon market power concerns over Mystic cost recovery proposal at FERC, Utility Dive

Fossil fuel money crushed clean energy ballot initiatives across the country, Vox

Natural Gas is Undermining Pennsylvania’s Nuclear Plants—And That’s Bad News for the Climate, Union of Concerned Scientists

Power plant opponents celebrate another victory as case moves into final months, Valley Breeze

$100M LNG plant proposed on Route 20 in Charlton, Worcester Telegram

A gas leak every mile: Google Street View cars find problems that utilities don’t, USA Today

US and British steelworkers’ union call on National Grid to end the lockout in Massachusetts, Morning Star

 

Merrimack Valley

Columbia Gas Pledges To Promote Energy Efficiency In Affected Merrimack Valley Homes, WBUR

Baker, Rivera warn ‘frustration’ will continue, Eagle Tribune

20,000 Thanksgiving meals planned for gas-deprived residents, Eagle Tribune

Drinking with the Merrimack Valley recovery workers who live on an old cruise ship in Southie, DigBoston.com

Tenants Affected By Gas Explosions Can Withhold Rent: AG, USA Patch

Feds open criminal investigation into Merrimack Valley gas disaster, Eagle-Tribune

Columbia Gas filing hints at future rate hike, Eagle-Tribune

 

Renewables/Climate Change/RGGI

Governors could drive the next wave of climate change action, Vox.com

The Elections, and What They Mean for Climate, Energy, and Science, Union of Concerned Scientists

N.H. Missing From State Coalition Opposing Clean Power Plan Rollback, New Hampshire Public Radio

On climate change, Trump disavows his own scientists, government, Axios.com

Carbon Pricing Winning Issue in Mass. Legislative Races, ClimateXChange

 

Wind

Fishermen ask for more time to study wind impact, South Coast Today

Disabled and disassembled: Blades removed from Applied Materials turbine, Gloucester Times

Market forces buffeting future of wind power in Maine, Portland Press Herald

New York offers 800MW offshore prize, reNews

Offshore wind giant with plans in A.C. closes $510M deal with competitor, Press of Atlantic City

Yarmouth, Barnstable react to status of wind farm cable review, Cape Cod Times

SCC reluctantly approves Dominion offshore wind test, The Virginian Pilot

Minorities need a place at table for wind employment, Andrade says, South Coast Today

 

Solar

Midterm Election Brings Victory And Defeat To Clean Energy Industry, Solar Industry

Town of Ashland and Ameresco Celebrate Completion of Three Municipal Solar Projects, Business Journals

Solar industry lights up over Republican governor’s win in Massachusetts, Washington Examiner

Salem State University Tripling On-Site Solar Through Massachusetts Grant, Solar Industry

Solar farm back on Ware Planning Board agenda after denial, MassLive

Harvesting renewable energy from the sun and outer space at the same time, Science Daily

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

New England moves to open the market for battery storage, pv-magazine-USA.com

Ahead of biggest energy storage rule change yet, US’ transmission network operators open up markets, Energy-storage.news

Cape Light Compact Files Three-Year Energy Efficiency Plan, CapeCod.Com

Massachusetts grants help get energy storage projects off the ground, MA Clean Energy Center

EIA: Reduced electric demand has halved carbon emissions in power sector, ACEEE

 

EVs

Electric Vehicles Are Coming, And New England And California Better Watch Out, Forbes.com

Car Battery Pioneer Says New Breakthrough Will Lower Cobalt Use, Bloomberg

 

Nuclear

Millstone Unit 2 is shut down for repairs, The Day

Seabrook nuclear plant refueling boosts local businesses, Newburyport Daily News

Environmental group: Keep open nuclear power plants, Axios.com

 

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

ISO New England unveils new initiatives to enhance winter reliability, Utility Dive

Canada, New England Talk Trade, Politics and Clean Energy, RTO Insider

PUC won’t decide CMP’s $950M transmission line project until March, Mainebiz

Eversource misses window for herbicide spraying on Cape, Cape Cod Times

ISO-NE frets over reliability as winter approaches, Vermont Biz

States raise Exelon market power concerns over Mystic cost recovery proposal at FERC, Utility Dive

State tells CMP its application to build 145-mile power line incomplete, Kennebec Journal

CMP power line opponents plead case to Somerset County commissioners, Kennebec Journal

National Grid electric bills going up, Boston Globe

Company thinks Eversource customers can lower energy costs with online auction, New Hampshire Union Leader

National Grid unveils $250M corporate venture capital arm, TechCrunch

 

Editorial/Opinion

Are Trojan horses full of windmill parts destined for New London?, The Day

Why We’re Taking a Hard Look at Nuclear Power Plant Closures, Union of Concerned Scientists

Pipeline peril: Natural gas explosions reveal silent danger lurking in old cast iron pipes, USA Today

Ansley Bloomer: Never a better time to heat with wood, VTDigger

LETTER: Seabrook plant should share more information, Daily News of Newburyport

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Filed under Natural Gas Pipelines, New England Energy News, Northeast Energy News, nuclear

Energy News for week ending November 2, 2018

Offshore Wind Impacts | Delay Granted | New Flow

 

Happy Friday afternoon folks. Here’s a snapshot of what we’ve been reading this week.

 

From WorkBoat.com, “A four-year study of planned wind energy areas off the East Coast found that building and operating offshore wind energy arrays could affect some of the region’s most commercially valuable fish species. The report by scientists with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration was written to help the federal Bureau of Offshore Energy Management to evaluate development plans for eight offshore wind energy leases issued by the agency…High on the list of potential impacts are habitat for black sea bass and Atlantic cod, which use patches of gravel and rougher bottoms on the largely sandy outer continental shelf. Sea scallops, the highest dollar value species on the East Coast, are found in all the WEAs with the most significant overlaps in New England, according to the report. Surf clams and ocean quahogs – harvested for canned chowder, frozen clam products and other processed seafood – are found in most of the WEAs. Advocates for the sea clamming fleet have insisted BOEM needs to set minimum distances of two nautical miles between wind turbine towers or their boats will effectively be shut out of fishing those areas.”

 

The Worcester Telegram via the State House New Service reports that “Environmental activists in Maine are celebrating a decision by regulators in that state to delay consideration of the transmission line project that Massachusetts officials are counting on to deliver hydropower from Canada. Intervenors in the Central Maine Power Company transmission line case before the Maine Public Utilities Commission asked the panel this week to suspend hearings, citing documents recently submitted by the company that ‘are highly relevant to critical issues in the proceeding and contradict statements in the record that have been made by CMP.’…Sue Ely, a Natural Resources Council of Maine attorney, said the delay was ‘a welcome acknowledgment that this process has been moving too fast for a thorough analysis of this massive, incredibly complex and flawed project.’”

 

You know we love to bring you news of new energy technologies so the last tidbit for this week comes from Science. “Batteries already power electronics, tools, and cars; soon, they could help sustain the entire electric grid. With the rise of wind and solar power, energy companies are looking for ways to keep electrons flowing when the sun doesn’t shine and the wind ebbs. Giant devices called flow batteries, using tanks of electrolytes capable of storing enough electricity to power thousands of homes for many hours, could be the answer. But most flow batteries rely on vanadium, a somewhat rare and expensive metal, and alternatives are short-lived and toxic. Last week, researchers reported overcoming many of these drawbacks with a potentially cheap, long-lived, and safe flow battery. The work is part of a wave of advances generating optimism that a new generation of flow batteries will soon serve as a backstop for the deployment of wind and solar power on a grand scale.”

 

Have a great weekend! Oh, and don’t forget to “fall back” and replace your smoke and carbon monoxide detector batteries.

 

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Burrillville power plant project dealt another blow, Providence Journal

The Energy 202: Why New York’s new climate lawsuit against ExxonMobil is different, Washington Post

Gas pipes damaged in Mass. with alarming frequency, Boston Globe

Pro-offshore oil group chaired by LePage is run by energy lobbyists, Portland Press Herald

Regulators order work stopped on pipeline that exploded near Monaca last month, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

NJ Senate approves bill to ban fracking waste, NJBiz

Gas Explosions Take Center Stage In Congressional Debate, USA Patch

Council slams gas-safety hearing no-shows, Boston Herald

Coal’s Next Big Thing Could Be the Mini Power Plant, Bloomberg Environment and Energy

 

Lockout

National Grid lockout’s big financial impact, Sentinel & Enterprise

Lawmakers revive bill to pressure National Grid, CommonWealth Magazine

Quincy council says National Grid lockout costing city, Patriot Ledger

 

Merrimack Valley

Columbia Gas says pipeline work completed ahead of schedule, Business Journals

Attorney General Calls 1-Month Gas Restoration Delay ‘Unacceptable’, NECN

‘There’s no end in sight,’ Eagle Tribune

Hundreds of Lawrence residents beg Columbia Gas for service, answers, Boston Herald

Columbia Gas parent company faces criminal investigation over gas explosions, fires, Eagle Tribune

Lawrence disaster estimated at $800 million and counting, Boston Globe

 

Renewables/Climate Change/RGGI

Exxon Mobil Is Hit With Its Most Important Climate Lawsuit Yet, Seeking Alpha

As price of climate change climbs, consider how much we could save, Portland Press Herald

To document climate change, Kate Olson went to Maine’s expert witnesses, Portland Press Herald

Warming waters worry Maine’s lobstermen, Reuters

Lamont, Bysiewicz and Murphy promote support for renewable energy in Cheshire, The Hour

 

Wind

Report maps potential environmental impacts of offshore wind energy, Workboat

New London, labor and environmental leaders tout offshore wind’s potential, The Day

7 turbines will be state’s largest shore wind farm, Johnston Sun Rise

Day-long dialogue between fishing, wind industries nets some progress, Southcoasttoday.com

The Country’s Most Valuable Fishing Port Gears Up For Wind Energy, WGBH

 

Solar

Want to nudge others to install solar? Actions speak louder than words, Phys.org

Eliot begins installation of new solar array, Seacoastonline.com

Brownfields Grant To Help Build Solar Farm On Gravelly Road In SK, USA Patch

Growing Exponentially, Floating Solar Opens Up New Horizons for Renewable Energy: Report, (press release) World Bank

 

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

New generation of ‘flow batteries’ could eventually sustain a grid powered by the sun and wind, Science

Judge rejects claims state official illegally raided energy efficiency funds to balance budget, New Haven Register

1.8 Million Clean Energy Workers Employed In Top 50 American Metro Areas, CleanTechnica

ISO New England Lays Out Its Energy Storage Market Integration Plans, Greentech Media

ISO-NE looks to incorporate storage into real-time energy markets, Utility Dive

Connecticut can use efficiency funds to cover budget shortfall, federal court rules, Utility Dive

ISO New England: Customer Readiness Webpage Now Available on Energy Storage Device Project, Energy Central

 

Nuclear

Entergy reduces workforce to 24, VTDigger

No decision from state yet about Vermont Yankee, The Recorder

Pilgrim’s nuclear waste to be moved to higher ground, southcoasttoday.com

Billionaires Chase ‘SpaceX Moment’ for the Holy Grail of Energy, Bloomberg

 

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

Regulators grant delay on transmission line sought to bring hydropower to Massachusetts, Telegram

Electricity Reseller Fights To Keep Antitrust Suit Alive, Law360

Maine PUC Move Poses Hurdle for NECEC, RTO Insider

PUC cancels next week’s hearings over CMP’s transmission project, Mainebiz

Connecticut Explores its Energy Future at CPES Event, RTO Insider

Eversource seeks $3.5M tax rebate from Portsmouth, Seacoastonline.com

Lawmaker says utilities should fix billing issues sooner, Bristol Press

 

Editorial/Opinion

How workers, local unions can take the lead on climate change | Opinion, NJ.com

Renewable energy inspires awe and hope, Johnston Sun Rise

Maine doesn’t need CMP transmission line, Kennebec Journal

Merrimack Valley tragedy offers climate change opportunity, CommonWealth Magazine

National Grid workers sit idle while out-of-state workers struggle to restore power in the Merrimack Valley, Boston Globe

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Filed under New England Energy News, Northeast Energy News, offshore wind, solar

Energy News for week ending October 26, 2018

It’s a nuisance | 47,000 Ticks | Precipitation Reducers

 

Happy Friday afternoon. Let’s get to the news.

Given it’s a cross border issue it will be interesting to see how this one works out…From the Cape Cod Times, “After years of hearing complaints of noise, headaches and sleep deprivation, the Bourne Board of Health declared Wednesday that the four wind turbines across the town border in Plymouth are negatively affecting public health…The board will communicate to the Plymouth Board of Health its determination that the turbines are a nuisance to the residents of Bourne and interfering with the health and enjoyment of life and property, per the town’s nuisance law. A letter also will be sent to the Plymouth Planning Board, Board of Selectmen and Zoning Board of Appeals, which is responsible for licensing of the turbines.”

OK – so this next story is pretty gross. It’s been on local news as well. But it’s a story that must be shared. From the New York Times, “47,000 Ticks on a Moose, and That’s Just Average. Blame Climate ChangeBetween 2014 and 2016, Dr. Pekins counted ticks on moose calves at two locations in New Hampshire and Maine. He wanted to see how the moose were faring, given that climate change has been delaying snow’s arrival in New England’s winters. The longer-lasting warmth gives the ticks a leg up as they glom onto the moose, their preferred hosts, in the fall. They then feed through winter and hop off in the spring to lay eggs…three consecutive years of tick outbreaks ‘arguably reflects a host-parasite relationship strongly influenced by climate change at the southern fringe of moose habitat.’…While large numbers of ticks, literal bloodsucking parasites, aren’t great for adult moose, they’re especially bad for moose calves, which can die from the onslaught.”

Last for this week, from an unusual source for us, The Claims Journal, we learn, “With the United States being pummeled over the last couple of years with several high-category, high-damage hurricanes, the University of Delaware’s Cristina Archer recently published a paper that discovered an unexpected benefit of large-scale offshore wind farms: they lessen the precipitation caused by these devastating storms.”

Have a great weekend and Go Sox!

 

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Grid spending stable, but hookups, leak repairs down, CommonWealth Magazine

Mass. Natural Gas Explosions Highlight Tension Between Recovery and Long-Term Efficiency Goals, Greentech Media

National Grid, locked-out gas workers remain at odds, Boston Globe

Rehoboth selectmen approve natural gas pipeline moratorium, Sun Journal

Tennessee Gas seeks federal OK for Agawam pipeline, compressor, MassLive

Lawmakers revive bill, eye National Grid hearing, Lowell Sun

Grid, steelworkers busy away from negotiating table, CommonWealth Magazine

National Grid, locked-out gas workers remain at odds, Boston Globe

 

Merrimack Valley

Columbia Gas pushes back deadline to restore service to those affected by explosions, Boston Business Journal

After Mass. gas explosions, a race to replace nearly 45 miles of aging pipeline before winter sets in, Washington Post

Nearly 36 Miles Of Pipeline Replaced After Merrimack Valley Explosions, WBUR

AG blasts Columbia Gas for recovery failings, Eagle Tribune

Columbia Gas accused of relying on ‘comprised’ pipeline in new class action lawsuit filed on behalf of Merrimack Valley explosions victims, MassLive

With Temperatures Dropping, Mass. Residents Still Lack Heat Weeks After Gas Fires, NPR

 

Renewables/Climate Change/RGGI

Minnesota, New York lead on shared renewables, California, Connecticut fall short, Utility Dive

47,000 Ticks on a Moose, and That’s Just Average. Blame Climate Change., New York Times

‘Leaf peeping’ is huge in New England. Will climate change alter tourism?, PRI

Climate Scientists Spar With Energy Subsidy Opponents At Portsmouth Conference, New Hampshire Public Radio

Sustainable Sours, Biomass Magazine

Military invests $133.5M in renewables, microgrid technology, energy efficiency at JBSA, The Business Journals

Climate Change Top of Mind at Vermont Conference, RTO Insider

Mass. clean energy firms grow headcount amid green tech boom, The Business Journals

Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, Boston and DC join Bloomberg climate challenge winners, Smart Cities Dive

Energy Transition to Reach ‘Point of No Return’ by 2035, Greentech Media

The state of clean energy innovation in Boston, Boston Business Journal

 

Wind

Bourne health board declares Plymouth turbines a nuisance, Cape Cod Times

Study: Offshore Wind Farms Can Reduce Hurricane Precipitation, Claims Journal

It’s all upbeat in New Jersey’s offshore-wind update despite cost, NJ Spotlight

Vineyard Wind signs $9m lease with New Bedford facility, CommonWealth Magazine

These huge new wind turbines are a marvel. They’re also the future., Vox.com

Vineyard Wind signs $9 million lease at New Bedford commerce pier, MassLive

Cape Cod landing for offshore wind cable approved by Barnstable, MassLive

Grupo Bimbo, Invenergy sign virtual PPA wind deal in US, Recharge

Offshore Wind in 2018: Four Takeaways, Union of Concerned Scientists

Federal regulators move forward with offshore wind leases off Massachusetts and California, Utility Dive

 

Solar

Advocates warn New Jersey solar market could collapse again, Utility Dive

MIT-Yale team spots revelation in Connecticut solar market, News-Times

DOE awards $53M for new solar research projects: chart, Utility Dive

UMass Amherst again a top ‘green college’, Daily Hampshire Gazette

GE Solar Completes Projects For CT’s Manchester Community College, Solar Industry

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

ISO-New England Offers Preview of Pending Energy Storage Market Changes, Renewable Energy World

New York energy storage: destination clear, road unsure, Utility Dive

How Are You Liking All The New LED Streetlights In Milford?, USA Patch

 

Nuclear

Trump signals opposition to nuclear waste site in Nevada despite his budget proposals to fund it, Washington Post

Pilgrim nuclear plant to move waste to higher ground, Boston Globe

Buyer, watchdog group at odds on timing of Vermont Yankee sale, VTDigger

 

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

CMP’s Proposed Transmission Line: An ‘Ugly Brown Monster’ Or A Clean Energy Boost?, Maine Public

UNH professor Tom Haines explores sources of fuel and how they can change, Portland Press Herald

ISO-NE, generators spar over fuel security at FERC, Utility Dive

LePage made secret trip to Spain to meet with leaders of CMP’s parent company, Portland Press Herald

CMP nixes overhead crossing of scenic Kennebec Gorge in bid to win over critics, Mainebiz

Lights out: CMP to reimburse Fairfield $14,000 for missing streetlights, Kennebec Journal

Many testify against, some for CMP transmission line project, Kennebec Journal

New England power grid operators learned lessons from last year’s cold snap, Portland Press Herald

Issues in the governor’s race: Energy policy, Portland Press Herald

Iso New England Learns Lessons From Deep Freeze Last Winter, Valley News

National Grid forecasts lower winter energy bills for upstate customers, The Post-Star

Concern over proposal to divert million gallons a day from Norwalk River, The Hour

 

Editorial/Opinion

Regional grid operator too protective of industry, CommonWealth Magazine

Don’t believe all the RGGI hype, CommonWealth Magazine

Why support renewables?, The Republican Journal

Column: We should prepare now for the next utility emergency, Eagle-Tribune

Editorial: Gas pipeline limits create potential crisis, Boston Herald

Issues in the governor’s race: Energy Policy, Press Herald

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

Energy News for week ending October 19, 2018

More Wind off Mass. | Price Volatility this Winter | Say it isn’t so!

 

Happy Friday afternoon. Let’s get to the news

From MassLive, “Nearly 400,000 acres of the Massachusetts Wind Energy Area will be up for grabs in December, as the Trump administration holds its next offshore wind auction, officials announced this week. U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke revealed Wednesday that the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management will auction off 388,569 acres located on the Outer Continental Shelf offshore Massachusetts on Dec. 13. A total of 19 companies — including Deepwater Wind New England, LLC, Mayflower Wind Energy LLC, and Northeast Wind Energy, LLC, among others — have qualified to take part in the auction, according to the agency’s final sale notice.”

According to S&P Global Platts, “Regional pipeline constraints in New York City, Boston and Los Angeles increase the risk of energy market price volatility this coming winter, the US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission said Thursday… New England continued to be a potential trouble spot, amid growing gas dependence for home heating and generation and constrained pipeline capacity, FERC staff said. Two rule changes could help, however, said John Sillin of FERC’s enforcement office. ISO-NE is integrating price-response demand into the daily energy market and adding pay-for-performance capacity market incentives… Reflecting on the New England market, Commissioner Richard Glick suggested a need to look at more demand-side management to ‘squeeze more out of the market … if we’re not going to get more pipelines for one reason or another.’”

And last for this week, please say it isn’t so! From Nature, “Extreme weather caused by climate change can have devastating effects — and it turns out that not even beer is safe. More frequent droughts and heat waves in the twenty-first century will reduce global production of barley, finds a study published on 15 October in Nature Plants. In turn, it finds, this will decrease the supply of beer and drive up prices, even under best-case-scenario models of climate change… If people ‘want to drink beer when we watch football, then we have to do something’ …”

Have a great weekend.

 

Merrimack Valley

Columbia Gas says it has paid out $20M for gas explosion claims, Boston Business Journal

Locked-out Grid workers cleared to help in Merrimack Valley, Newburyport Daily News

Columbia Gas reverses policy, will not reclaim temporary heat sources from homes, Eagle Tribune

Massachusetts DPU halts statewide pipeline work by Columbia Gas, MassLive

NTSB: Columbia Gas ignored critical pressure sensor, Eagle-Tribune

Columbia Gas launches plan to support businesses impacted by gas disaster, MassLive

After Merrimack Valley explosions, natural gas comes under sharp scrutiny, Boston Globe

Merrimack Valley explosions intensify calls to wean state off gas, Boston Globe

A Month Later, Crisis In Merrimack Valley Continues, WGBH

US Sens. Elizabeth Warren, Ed Markey request info on homes damaged, residents displaced by Merrimack Valley gas explosions, MassLive

 

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Ceremony to commission controversial Oxford power plant, Middletown Press

Oxford power plant is commissioned, The Advocate

Environmentalists look to cut fossil fuel usage, National Wind Watch

Generation: Despite headwinds, natural gas reliance set to grow in much of US, Utility Dive

Can Non-Pipeline Alternatives Curb New York’s Rising Natural Gas Demand?, Greentech Media

Quincy council summons National Grid president amid lockout, Patriot Ledger

 

Renewables/Climate Change/RGGI

Natick Awarded Grant for Municipal Clean Energy Projects, USA Patch

City Council seeks legal opinion on permits for controversial East Springfield biomass power plant, MassLive

Environmentalists look to cut fossil fuel usage, The Telegraph

Democratic lawmakers push renewable energy strategy, New Hampshire Union Leader

RGGI regulating power imports could happen, experts say, carbon-pulse.com

NYISO Proposes Border Pricing Plan for Carbon, RTO Insider

UMass Amherst Again Ranked among Top 50 Green Colleges by Princeton Review, UMass Amherst

Officials push for ‘green’ power projects for Woonsocket, Woonsocket Call

EPA program will prioritize renewable energy projects in Mass., Boston Business Journal (subscriber content)

U.S. greenhouse emissions fell in 2017 as coal plants shut, Reuters

Climate change is about to make your beer more expensive, Nature

Mass. clean energy firms grow headcount amid green tech boom, Boston Business Journal (subscriber content)

Walsh Outlines Plan To Protect Boston Harbor From Flooding, WBUR

Campaign Countdown: Vermont’s energy future, WCAX

 

Wind

Trump administration to hold Massachusetts offshore wind auction in December, Masslive

What New England Can Learn From Kansas About Creating A Wind Energy Economy, WNPR

Offshore wind CEO bullish on American market, Axios

Report: Moving disputed Falmouth turbine would cost $3M, Cape Cod Times

What’s next for Falmouth turbines?, Cape Cod Times

Tug Hill alliance grows, secures funds for wind farm review, National Wind Watch

Denton pitches wind turbine on City Hall, Seacoastonline.com

Relocation of Falmouth turbine could net town $5.7M, Cape Cod Times

New Site Proposed For Wind 2 At Wastewater Treatment Plant, Falmouth Enterprise

 

Solar

Residents express few concerns at public hearing on Farmington solar project, Kennebec Journal

Norwich tinkerer takes on do-it-yourself solar energy system, The Day

Wind & Solar Account for At Least 20% Of Electricity In 10 States, CleanTechnica

Bill threatens growth of state solar farms, Republican American

New York State Invests $40 Million in Solar Energy and Storage Projects, Energy Manager Today

Residential outcry causes Pittsfield ZBA to delay vote, continue hearing next month on 25-acre solar proposal, Berkshire Eagle

What a New Order Means for Community Solar and Storage in Massachusetts, Greentech Media

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

Massachusetts Retains Top Spot on ACEEE State Energy Efficiency Scorecard, ACHR News

MA Ranked 5th Most Energy Efficient State in U.S., GoLocalWorcester

NH gets mixed reviews on energy efficiency, New Hampshire Business Review

RI is 4th Most Energy Efficient State in U.S., GoLocalProv

Bringing Energy Storage to Energy Markets, Union of Concerned Scientists

 

EVs

Electric Vehicles: The Swiss army knife of the grid, Utility Dive

A Microgrid for Every Electric Bus Stop in Martha’s Vineyard Town, Microgrid Knowledge

 

Nuclear

NRC approves Vermont Yankee sale, Brattleboro Reformer

NRC allows spending $20M on Vt. Yankee spent fuel, The Recorder

After federal OK, one hurdle remains for Vermont Yankee transfer, Keene Sentinel

Entergy targets post-shutdown savings at Pilgrim after key NRC approval, Nuclear Energy Insider

 

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

US FERC winter outlook flags risk of volatility in NYC, Boston, Los Angeles, S&P Global Platts

Utility to run line under Kennebec Gorge, CommonWealth Magazine

Gloucester signs new electricity provider, Gloucester Times

On eve of hearing, business and labor groups say they back CMP power line through western Maine, Portland Press Herald

Report challenges environmental benefits of CMP project, Portland Press Herald

Great Bay Towns Turn Out Against Transmission Line, New Hampshire Public Radio

Seacoast Reliability Project decision expected by early December, Seacoastonline.com

Norwalk Harbor Commission turns to consultant on Eversource cable route, The Hour

Quincy council subpoenas National Grid president, Patriot Ledger

Powerline from Canada through NH, eyed for Mass. clean energy, not dead yet, MassLive

Conn. company is accused of overcharging more than 100K Mass. residents for electricity, Boston Globe

NY regulators weigh proposals to enhance distributed generation, Utility Dive

US FERC`s LaFleur says some power grid security interventions `commercially motivated,’ Energy Central

 

Editorial/Opinion

Want Boston To Be A Carbon-Neutral City? Raise Energy Efficiency Standards For Buildings, WBUR

We need more, not less, competition for offshore wind, CommonWealth Magazine

Letter: Sununu has been a stumbling block to offshore wind, Eagle-Tribune

Letter to the editor: Renewable electricity worth some sacrifices, Portland Press Herald

Efficiency is the most affordable energy solution, by Nancy Gillard, Keene Sentinel

National Grid lockout puts profit first, workers and safety last, Boston Globe

Baker, DeLeo need to step up on climate change, CommonWealth Magazine

In an era of climate urgency, we need a carbon tax, Boston Globe

Vehicle emissions rollback shouldn’t stop utilities from investing in electric vehicles, Utility Dive

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Filed under Climate Change, New England Energy News, Northeast Energy News, nuclear, offshore wind