Category Archives: solar

Energy News for week ending February 16, 2018

Foreseeing Trouble | Ugly toll | Five new spots to fish

As the late great Tom Petty said, “The waiting is the hardest part.” Ah yes, after delaying the decision for a week, we find ourselves waiting again for MA DOER and company to let us know if they are going to stick with Northern Pass or move on to another or other proposals. The delay is causing all sorts of speculation (InDepthNH) and consternation (NHPR).

Love may have been in the air for many on Wednesday, but according to Platts, all ISO New England saw was “trouble” without investment in fuel security. From the article, “The report noted the cold snap that gripped the region from December 26 through January 7 featured “constrained pipeline capacity, substantially higher natural gas and wholesale electricity prices,” which prompted the dispatch of oil- and coal-fired generation to meet demand, but “oil supplies at plants around the region began to rapidly deplete … signficiantly (sic) increasing the reliability risk to the system.” “In the coming years as more oil, coal, and nuclear leave the system, keeping the lights on in New England will become an even more tenuous proposition,” the report states.

Speaking of fuel security, the Boston Globe editorial board laid into just about everyone with a full page editorial on Tuesday about the region bringing in Russian gas, the implications of the same, and the lack of movement on other alternatives (i.e. a new gas pipeline). Here’s a small sample, “But apart from its geopolitical impact, Massachusetts’ reliance on imported gas from one of the world’s most threatened places is also a severe indictment of the state’s inward-looking environmental and climate policies. Public officials, including Attorney General Maura Healey and leading state senators, have leaned heavily on righteous-sounding stands against local fossil fuel projects, with scant consideration of the global impacts of their actions and a tacit expectation that some other country will build the infrastructure that we’re too good for.”

Last for this week is a story from Renewable Energy World with an accompanying video from the American Wind Energy Association about how the Block Island Wind Farm has been a boon for the local fishing industry. At first there were worries, the article notes, but “after 6 months, their worries were starting to be alleviated and after just one year, they were completely gone. According to Chris Hobe, who has been fishing on the island since 1979, ‘within six months you had seed mussels,’ he said in a webcast announcing the release of the footage. After one year those seed mussels had turned into a deep, thick coating of mature mussels, on which smaller fish feed, attracting the fish that feed on them and on and on up the food chain.” In the video one man notes that because of the artificial reef created by the turbines there are five new fishing spots that didn’t exist before.

Then there is this, “Another added bonus according to Hobe was the increased tourism that the turbines attracted. On a whim, his company offered to take the general public on tours around the turbines so they could see them up close. He never imagined the interest that would draw. By the end of the 2017 summer season, Hobe said his company had stopped offering fishing excursions and was just doing sightseeing tours.”

As always, be sure to check out Northeast Energy News for events. Have a great weekend.
 

83D

Utilities find no common ground on N. Pass, CommonWealth Magazine

Decisive action needed on Northern Pass, CommonWealth Magazine

As Mass. Debates Northern Pass Deal, Sununu Says Project Was ‘Railroaded’, New Hampshire Public Radio

Northern Pass rejection would have repercussions for Hydro-Québec’s future, The Globe and Mail

Massachusetts utilities to continue Northern Pass negotiations after rejection by NH regulators, Press Herald

Maine Gov. LePage Indicates Mass. May Have Already Moved On From Northern Pass, InDepthNH.org

VELCO and National Grid make key agreements for Granite State Power Link, Vermont Biz

 

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Gas pipeline opponents urge Baker to ‘break up’ with industry, Boston Metro

Energy CEO Says Fracking Build-out in New York Not Over, Wants Regulators to ‘Lay Down and Approve Every Pipeline’, DeSmog

Only Half of Proposed Burrillville Plant’s Power Sold, ecoRI news

Compressor Station Permit Appeal Could Be Heard In Summer, Patch.com

Fracking tied to reduced songbird nesting success, Science Daily

Ocean State Officials Pledge to Halt Offshore Drilling, ecoRI news

Ocean State’s Fossil-Fuel Hypocrisy Does Nothing to Address Climate Change, ecoRI news

Constitution Asks FERC to Rehear New York Permit Denial, RTO Insider

 

Renewables Policy/Climate Change/RGGI

US Renewable Energy Generation Now ‘Within Striking Distance’ of Nuclear, Greentech Media

Healey unveils new renewable energy targets, CommonWealth Magazine

Pacheco: Citizens will demand omnibus clean energy bill, Sentinel and Enterprise
Senate committee advances ambitious Massachusetts clean energy bill, ‘matching the urgency of climate change,’ MassLive

Connecticut wants to boost renewables goal to 40% by 2030, Utility Dive

Is clean energy moving ahead fast enough in Western Massachusetts?, MassLive.com

EPA’s Scott Pruitt touts renewable energy in New England, Washington Examiner

Virginia House votes to prohibit cap-and-trade, RGGI linkage, Carbon Pulse

Think tank report pans Vermont carbon tax plan, Bennington Banner

 

Wind

AWEA Releases Underwater Footage of Block Island Wind Farm’s Artificial Reef, Renewable Energy World

Falmouth deal eases wind turbine debt, Cape Cod Times

Town of Yates passes more restrictions on wind energy projects, Buffalo News

The Launch of a US Offshore Wind Industry, Renewable Energy World

FERC advances transmission line to serve Massachusetts’ offshore wind industry, Utility Dive

What’s Happening With Maine Wind Power?, North American Windpower

Vineyard Wind wins state nod for undersea transmission cable, MassLive.com

Those Living Close To Wind Turbines Generally View Wind Power Positively, CleanTechnica

 

Solar

Vermont’s solar market fell 50% in 2017 (w/chart), pv magazine

A Powerful Mix of Solar and Batteries Is Beating Natural Gas, Bloomberg

‘It’s so high it’s punitive’: Residents angered by local tax hike on home solar panels, Bangor Daily News

Solar Projects In Connecticut Face Local Pushback, New England Public Radio

Solar is again the flashpoint in CT’s new energy strategy, Hartford Business

Solect Energy Sees Acceleration in Solar Adoption by Massachusetts Municipalities, Schools and Nonprofits, pv magazine USA

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

Alliance to Save Energy proposes changes in electricity pricing structures, Daily Energy Insider

Maryland is first state to launch energy storage tax credit, Utility Dive

Greensmith Energy Storage Technology Selected to Deliver Reliable Solar Power in Massachusetts, Power Magazine

49 Groups’ (Energy Efficiency) Love Letter to Gov. Cuomo, Natural Resources Defense Council

The Most Important Energy Efficiency Program You’ve Never Heard Of, Energy Collective

Lawmakers Want To Restore Energy Efficiency Funds, But Don’t Know Where To Find The Money, Hartford Courant

Energy-efficient encryption for the internet of things, The MIT Tech

Eversource News: Eversource and Lindt Chocolate Announce Landmark Energy Efficiency Partnership, North American Clean Energy

 

Nuclear

NRC: Lessen nuclear plant exemptions, Cape Cod Times

Keating pushes for nuclear plant decommissioning, Martha’s Vineyard Times

Quake rattles anti-nuclear activists in N.H., Boston Herald

Nuke critics can testify in Vermont Yankee case, Brattleboro Reformer

 

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

New Year’s Cold Snap Still Affecting People’s Pocketbooks in Western Mass, Valley Advocate

ISO New England foresees trouble without investment in fuel security, Platts

Trump Budget Backs Nuclear, Coal; Cuts Funding for Renewables, Power Magazine

Powelson: Input from PJM, ISO-NE states critical to FERC resilience docket, Utility Dive

Is the third pillar of electricity delivery preventing the building of the first two?, Utility Dive

Federal tax cut more than reverses Eversource rate increase in Massachusetts, Daily Energy Insider

Grid operations technologies protected customers from the bomb cyclone, Utility Dive

Lawmaker Accuses Eversource of Giving Consumers Misleading Billing Information, Hartford Courant

DC Circuit Remands FERC Decision Upholding ISO-NE FCM Rules Locking in Prices for New Entrants, Lexology

House coalition wants reversal of energy funds raid, Hartford Business

Local officials call National Grid’s response to October storm ‘inadequate’, Eagle-Tribune

National Grid seeks OK for New York power grid rebuild, Electric Light & Power

Selectmen pressure Eversource to undertake long-sought sidewalk work, Cape Cod Times

 

Editorial/Opinion

Our Russian ‘pipeline,’ and its ugly toll, Boston Globe

Forget Quebec, look offshore for power, CommonWealth Magazine

Beware the Coalition for Sustainable Energy, CommonWealth Magazine

Letter to the Editor: Proposed Burrillville power plant a step in the wrong direction, Herald News

Viewpoint: Need for Mass. clean transportation policy, Boston Business Journal

NJ needs clean energy now! Dump the carbon-trading scheme | Opinion, NJ.com

My Turn: David Spigelmyer: Rolling blackouts, skyrocketing costs, The Providence Journal

Indian Point power plant can withstand earthquakes: Letter, Poughkeepsie Journal

Just another routine day for NH ratepayers, NH Business Review

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

Energy News for week ending February 9, 2018

New push for pipelines | 2 GWs Solar | Pot Efficiency | Shark skin

 

Happy Friday folks.

I know today we’re all anticipating the decision from DOER and company on whether Massachusetts should continue to pursue a contract with Northern Pass given its permit denial by the NH siting board last week. While we wait, here is some other news.

This week saw the announcement about the formation of a new group aimed at supporting increased capacity of natural gas in Massachusetts. According to an article by Jon Chesto in the Boston Globe, “The group is getting funding from Eversource, National Grid, and Enbridge — the three companies behind the Access Northeast pipeline expansion project in New England.” Called the Mass Coalition for Sustainable Energy, the group, whose members include the Associated Industries of Massachusetts, the Mass. Business Roundtable, the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce, The Western Mass Economic Development Council and others, “sent a letter to House Speaker Robert DeLeo, Senate President Harriette Chandler, and Governor Charlie Baker, urging them to promote policies to expand the state’s natural gas supplies and buttress the electricity grid.”

There was good news and bad news for solar this week. Mary Serreze over at MassLive reports that “The Baker-Polito administration announced this week that Massachusetts now has more than 2 gigawatts of solar power installed in 78,646 projects across the state — enough to power around 1.4 million homes.” On the downside, Greentech Media reports that “a slowdown in established solar markets all contributed to an overarching 3.8 percent cutback in solar jobs over the past year, according to The Solar Foundation’s latest National Solar Jobs Census. Between 2016 and 2017, the industry lost 9,800 jobs, marking the first drop ever recorded in the National Solar Jobs Census since it started collecting data in 2010.” They further report that Massachusetts lost 24 percent of its solar jobs during that time frame.

It’s certainly interesting to watch new industries unfold in Massachusetts. Take this MassLive article about how the Baker Administration told Massachusetts marijuana regulators that they “should lay out specific energy efficiency and environmental standards as a condition of a pot license.” In a letter to the Cannabis Control Commission, Tori Kim, wrote, “’Experience from other states has shown that the energy usage of marijuana establishments, especially large-scale, indoor facilities engaged in cultivation, is extraordinarily high.’ That means the new industry could come with a big carbon footprint, and ‘corresponding negative effects’ on the state’s goals to fight global warming.”

For the energy innovation news of the week, we offer this from Phsy.org, “A team of evolutionary biologists and engineers at Harvard University, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of South Carolina, have shed light on a decades-old mystery about sharkskin and, in the process, demonstrated a new, bioinspired structure that could improve the aerodynamic performance of planes, wind turbines, drone and cars…These shark-inspired vortex generators achieve lift-to-drag ratio improvements of up to 323 percent compared to an airfoil without vortex generators…You can imagine these vortex generators being used on wind turbines or drones to increase the efficiency of the blades.”

As always, be sure to check out Northeast Energy News for  events. Have a great weekend.
 

Northern Pass

Healey to Baker: Don’t leave N. Pass decision to utilities, CommonWealth Magazine

State’s 3 utilities will decide fate of N. Pass, CommonWealth Magazine

Flop of Northern Pass project raises a question: Is our energy plan being short-circuited?, Boston Globe

AG Healey Calling For DOER To Be More Transparent About Northern Pass, WBUR

Plymouth Is Latest To Try Blocking Big Energy Projects With Local Ordinance, NHPR

After Northern Pass decision, Vermont company to help Massachusetts clean energy goals, Concord Monitor

Competing Power Projects Await Mass. Decision On Northern Pass Deal, NHPR

Mass. officials to review decision on Northern Pass bid, The Union Leader

AG Healey Calling For DOER To Be More Transparent About Northern Pass, WBUR

Eversource vows to appeal NH Northern Pass rejection, Utility Dive

Northern Pass opponents celebrate win, WCAX

Utility Markets, Business Leaders Reeling From Surprise Defeat For Northern Pass, New Hampshire Public Radio

 

 Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

$340M gas pipeline planned along Route 101, Seacoast Online

EIA: Low prices, rising production to boost gas generation through 2050, Utility Dive

Opponents, supporters react to Trump’s offshore drilling plan, Cape Cod Times

Massachusetts delegation raises concern over sanctions, Russian gas shipments, Boston Globe

Natural gas bills rising as temperatures drop, Western Mass News

Appeal of compressor station permit will likely go forward this summer, Patriot Ledger

South Windsor Town Council Unanimously Approves A Fracking Waste Ban, Hartford Courant

Invenergy show cause hearing nixed by EFSB, Ricentral.com

Pipeline advocates renew calls for expansion, Barnstable Patriot

FERC’s Powelson Sees No Shift in Natural Gas Pipeline Policy, Natural Gas Intelligence

New England’s lack of gas lines causes billion of gallons of oil to be burned, Kallanish Energy

Connecticut Natural Gas ordered to pay $1.5 million fine for pipeline safety violations, New Haven Register

Expanded access to natural gas goal of new coalition, The Salem News

Mass. business groups push natural gas, CommonWealth Magazine

 

Renewables/Climate Change/RGGI

How Ready Is Boston For Future Floods?, WGBH

UMaine Defends Itself After Report Questions Integrity Of Bidding Process, MainePublic.org

Raimondo Says State Is Making Progress on Clean Energy Goal, US News and World Report

Harvard sets goal to go fossil fuel-free by 2050, Penn Energy

NECA Panelists Talk Carbon Pricing, Northern Pass, RTO Insider

Northeast Cap-And-Trade Turns 10: A RGGI Report Card, Law360

New RI Renewable-Energy Goal for This Summer, ecoRI news

Markets Offer Solutions to New England Energy Challenges, Environmental Defense Fund

Rhode Island to issue 400 MW renewable energy solicitation, pv magazine USA

Wastewater plant to turn sludge into renewable energy, The Brown Daily Herald

Some tips to help you navigate the renewable energy jungle, Press Herald

Can A Carbon Price Really Catch On?, New England Public Radio

 

Wind

Using shark scales to design better drones, planes, and wind turbines, Phys.org

Falmouth to Hire Consultant for Help in Dismantling Wind Turbine, Cape Cod Today

Rhode Island Prepares for 400-MW Clean Energy Tender; Offshore Wind Welcome, Renewable Energy World

Maine Wind Energy Update, lexocology.com

Maine’s governor wants to gut fast-tracked wind permits, Penn Energy

What Will The Neighbors Say About A Wind Turbine?, publicnow.com

New York’s $6 billion plan for offshore wind shows that oil drilling really is on the way out, Business Insider

Nine states form multi-state alliance to charge for carbon pollution, The Keene Sentinel

One Square Mile: New Bedford’s Gamble On Offshore Wind Energy, Rhode Island Public Radio

Trump Wants Offshore Drilling, but States Are Choosing Wind Energy, Scientific American

Wind project concerns will all be addressed, Cape Cod Times

 

Solar

Baker: Massachusetts now has 2 gigawatts of solar capacity, MassLive

Agawam City Council considers creating special permits for potential solar farm owners, The Reminder

National energy company to build arrays on old Somerset landfill, Herald News

Massachusetts lost more than 20% of its solar jobs last year, Boston Globe

The US Solar Industry Records First Year of Job Losses, Greentech Media

Connecticut Solar Companies Pinched By New Tariffs On Foreign Panels, Hartford Courant

Solar power increases 1000% in New York in six years because of pro-renewables government, Solar Power World

Solar charge angers Chelmsford legislative reps, Wicked Local Chelmsford

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

Warning of high power costs of marijuana, Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker’s administration recommends energy standards, MassLive.com

Hopes high for Nantucket Ice Bear, Cape Cod Times

Energy efficiency can clean the air we breathe (third part of video series), ACEEE

Compound Could Transform Energy Storage for Large Grids, Renewable Energy World

New York could be headed for the country’s most ambitious energy storage goal, Utility Dive

National Grid Announces 2018 Energy Efficiency Community Initiative Participants, GlobeNewswire (press release)

Weatherize Rockland program earns high praise from state’s Efficiency Maine, PenBayPilot.com

Report: More efficiency investment could save Dominion Virginia customers $1.7B, Utility Dive

Bristol-area residents share ideas about school energy efficiency, Addison County Independent

 

Nuclear

NextEra Sues NEI, Citing Efforts to ‘Distort Electric Energy Markets’, Greentech Media

Reprieved New York plant drives local investment, World Nuclear News

SMRs a ‘game-changer’ for troubled US nuke industry, DOE tells Congress, Utility Dive

Still a work in progress, nuclear subsidy bill held in committee, NJSpotlight.com

Nuclear future on a smaller scale, Stars and Stripes

Millstone critical for Connecticut, say regulators, World Nuclear News

NRC: Lessen nuclear plant exemptions, Cape Cod Times

DEEP approves Millstone electric bidding, CT Post

Sanders, Welch reintroduce Nuclear Plant Decommissioning Act, Vermont Biz

Exelon Closing Oyster Creek Nuke Plant Ahead of Schedule, The SandPaper

 

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

ISO New England secures plenty of power capacity for the region’s 2021-2022 electricity needs, MassLive.com

Energy tax credits in final budget deal, Utility Dive

Eversource cleanup on New Bedford waterfront to start next week, South Coast Today

MassDPU orders electric, gas, and water companies to cut rates to reflect federal tax windfall, MassLive

ISO-NE players split over 2-part capacity auction proposal, Utility Dive

Court orders EPA to act on Connecticut air pollution petition, The Hill

Residents urge regulators to reject Eversource fee hike, theday.com

Eversource rate hike limited by corporate tax changes, wwlp.com

ISO-NE players split over 2-part capacity auction proposal, Utility Dive

Utilities criticized for response to windstorm that caused about 500000 outages, Press Herald

As Utilities Move To Pass Tax Savings To Customers, Credit Concerns Arise, Wall Street Journal

 

Editorial/Opinion

Why a Big Utility Is Embracing Wind and Solar, New York Times

New Jersey fossil-fuel free by 2035? Climate-change alarmists are environmentally ill | Mulshine, NJ.com

Our view: Beverly should rethink latest ‘investment’ in solar field, Salem News

Why is LNG coming 4500 miles to Boston from the Russian Arctic when the US is the world’s No. 1 natural gas producer?, American Enterprise Institute

Eldridge, Aylward, Gough, and Bill Schineller: Eversource’s outdated energy plan, MetroWest Daily News

Jenny Tesar: Fracking wastes — Liquid or solid, you don’t want them, Danbury News Times

Howard Fairman: Vermont, New England and Canadian hydropower, vtdigger.org

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

Energy News for week ending January 19, 2018

Fuel Security Risk | Climate solution | New EV infrastructure | KRUSTY

Happy Friday Afternoon.

Just when I think, “Gee it’s been a quiet week for energy news…” BOOM! ISO-New England drops its Operational Fuel-Security Analysis and the energy news board lights up. RTO Insider writes, “The report highlighted the concern that New England’s system reliability is heavily dependent on LNG and electricity imports. While dual-fuel capability for plants can provide a key contribution to reliability, permitting for construction and emissions is difficult. All but four scenarios resulted in fuel shortages requiring rolling blackouts, indicating the trends affecting the system may intensify the region’s fuel security risk.”

The report generated no shortage of opinions about what it all means and how it affects the future of New England’s energy grid. CommonWealth Magazine reported, “The two sides fighting over whether the region needs additional natural gas pipeline capacity both took comfort on Thursday from a fuel security study by the operator of the region’s power grid. The Baker administration, meanwhile, issued a statement that appeared to fall somewhere in the middle while supporting ‘additional natural gas capacity.’” According to the article, the pro- gas pipeline side says rolling black outs “would wreak havoc on the economy and New Englanders’ lives.” Those not in favor of pipeline development say, hold on, the scenarios outlined in the report “are perhaps possible but highly unlikely.” I’m sure we’ll have a lot more articles and opinion pieces on this topic in the week ahead.

Also out this week was an announcement reported by the AP in Time Magazine that the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the United Kingdom’s meteorological office said that 2017 was the third hottest year on record. At the same time, NASA and researchers from a nonprofit in Berkeley, California, called it the second. So what’s a state or nation to do? Utility Dive takes a long look at cap and trade initiatives in New England and California to see if those programs are having a positive effect, but ultimately decides, the jury is still out.

One way to help ease climate change is to get more EVs on the road. The New Hampshire Business Review brings us a great read titled, “New Hampshire, Northeast states mull building Quebec-to-D.C., EV charging network.” The money to pay for this 734 mile network would largely come from Volkswagen settlement funds. Journalist Liisa Rajala writes, “In New England alone, approximately $214 million was paid by Volkswagen to fund programs that reduce nitrogen oxide emissions, with up to $32 million available for investment in electric vehicle charging stations over the next 10 years, should states choose to do so.” They include some great infographics in the article as well. Check it out.

Last highlight for this week is a story from Reuters about KRUSTY and it’s out of this world! “Initial tests in Nevada on a compact nuclear power system (The Kilopower Reactor Using Stirling Technology — KRUSTY) designed to sustain a long-duration NASA human mission on the inhospitable surface of Mars have been successful and a full-power run is scheduled for March…The technology could power habitats and life-support systems, enable astronauts to mine resources, recharge rovers and run processing equipment to transform resources such as ice on the planet into oxygen, water and fuel. It could also potentially augment electrically powered spacecraft propulsion systems on missions to the outer planets.” Wow! Now that’s cool.

That’s it for this week. As always, be sure to check out Northeast Energy News for events. Have a great weekend and Go Pats!

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Generators burned 2m barrels of oil over 15 days, CommonWealth Magazine

Pipeline advocates renew calls for expansion as grid operator warns of future blackouts, Wicked Local Scituate

Upset over Burrillville’s opposition to proposed power plant, Invenergy withholds fee payment, The Providence Journal

RI Attorney General Speaks Out Against Proposed Burrillville Power Plant, Rhode Island Public Radio

Regunberg introduces resolution opposing Trump’s off-shore drilling plans, Uprise RI

FERC: Rhode Island tribe missed its chance to intervene in Massachusetts pipeline fight, MassLive.com

Fight is on to block Maine pipeline — ex-Texan says: Good luck with that, The Boston Globe

Rover Pipeline Spills Another 150000 Gallons of Drilling Fluid Into Ohio Wetlands, EcoWatch

Grid operator says new study shows need to expand access to natural gas in New England, New Haven Register

Compressor station foes encouraged by feds’ response to New York project, Patriot Ledger

Governor: Scrub NY from plan to expand offshore oil drilling, Penn Energy

Fixation on timing of peak oil is ‘misguided,’ Financial Times

 

Renewables Policy/Climate Change/RGGI

2017 Was One of the Hottest Years Ever, Time Magazine

Is cap and trade the climate solution? The jury’s still out, Utility Dive

Northampton officials show support for local goal of achieving 100 percent renewable energy, MassLive

RGGI States Set a New Standard for Climate Action in 2017, Natural Resources Defense Council

Massachusetts agrees to slash power plant emissions under 9-state system, MassLive.com

Maryland, northeast states accelerate carbon pollution reduction, Baltimore Sun

Power generators contest state greenhouse gas rules, Boston Globe

Gov. Murphy plays to NJ environmentalists from day one, NJ Spotlight

The Force Is With Clean Energy: 10 Predictions for 2018, Bloomberg New Energy Finance

Competition Moderates Clean-Energy Costs for Ratepayers, AIM Blog

New York, Connecticut sue EPA for failing to act on smog pollution from upwind states, Utility Dive

US Utility-Scale Solar, Wind Capacity Could Double by 2020, Renewable Energy World

Global emissions ‘will plateau by 2030,’ Energy Live News

 

Wind

Turbines blow hot, cold on financial benefits for local towns, Worcester Telegram

Why Some Fishermen Are Wary Of Offshore Wind Farms, WBUR

US Working Hard to Boost Wind Energy, Adviser Says in Denmark, Bloomberg

Wind Industry Embraces Robots to Boost Safety, Cut Costs, Greentech Media

Vineyard Wind to hold open house on proposed offshore project, Cape Cod Times

 

Solar

On Haverhill landfill-solar proposal, council wants results, Eagle Tribune

CMP’s New CEO: If They Want, ‘Everyone Should Put Solar Panels On Their Roof’, Maine Public

Developer for proposed solar project in New Marlborough wants public’s input on project, Berkshire Eagle

Outer Cape Energize encourages use of solar panels, Cape Cod Times

New warehouse now biggest green energy provider in Peabody, The Salem News

 

Electric Vehicles

New Hampshire, Northeast states mull building Quebec-to-D.C., EV charging network, NH Business Review

North America’s largest transit system is the acid test for electric buses, Quartz

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

State money helps Massachusetts towns improve energy efficiency, SouthCoastToday.com

There once was an energy storage system on Nantucket…, Utility Dive

Energy Storage Can Drive Future Tesla Growth, Not Just Autos, Seeking Alpha

 

Nuclear

U.S. tests nuclear power system to sustain astronauts on Mars, Reuters

PUC sticks with Yankee hearings postponement, Rutland Herald

Merrimac seeks NRC hearing on Seabrook plan, Gloucester Daily Times

Indian Point Utility Workers Will Strike If Contract Talks Break Down, WAMC

Offsetting Loss of Indian Pt Revenue Still Challenge One Year Later, The Examiner News

War of words over Millstone escalates as final regulatory decision nears, Litchfield County Times

 

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

Energy study draws divergent reactions, CommonWealth Magazine

Report: Fuel Security Key Risk for New England Grid, RTO Insider

What Will Become of the Electric Utility in the Age of Microgrids?, Microgrid Knowledge

Oversubscribed northern Vermont power grid costing utilities millions, VT Digger

D-Day Approaches for Northern Pass, IndepthNH.org

National Grid’s Northern Pass Competitor To Talk Low-Income Benefits In Concord, New Hampshire Public Radio

Eversource Ranked Among Nation’s Greenest Companies, CapeCod.com News

Conn. Consumer Counsel, Eversource Energy strike deal to reduce size of distribution rate increase, Litchfield County Times

New Central Maine Power CEO Lays Out His Vision For The Company, Maine Public

National Grid asks for $26 million less in Rhode Island rate hikes, Electric Light & Power

Fuel banks seek $25M in state assistance, Cape Cod Times

 

Editorial/Opinion

EDITORIAL: Enviro-zealots are wrong on natural gas, Lowell Sun

A bad deal for NH, (Northern Pass) The Union Leader

Letter: Wind, solar, biofuel should power Maine, The Forecaster

Offshore drilling catastrophic for Maine economy, Biddeford – Saco – OOB Courier

Lawmakers have one more chance to fix nonsensical solar rules, Bangor Daily News

Wind And Solar Energies Could Peter Out If Transmission Grid Is Not Expanded, Forbes

Our electricity grid gives us a wake-up call in New Hampshire, Manchester Ink Link

Letter: Industrial wind turbines threaten our way of life, Dansvilleonline.com

Guest Opinion: Broken energy market leaves Mass. consumers in the cold, Herald News

Mass. needs to think bigger on offshore wind, CommonWealth Magazine

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

Energy News for week ending January 12, 2018

5 years | Drill? Not here! | Solar ruling challenged | Record cold revives debate

Good Friday afternoon.

First, LinkedIn reminded us this week that we are celebrating 5 years of delivering the energy news from New England and the Northeast into your email boxes. We long-time “energy geeks” here at McMahon Communications do this as a labor of love to share the news with those of you who also care about energy and the environment. We thank you for reading and appreciate the opportunity to be with you each week.

Now to the news. President Trump’s administration’s proposal to allow offshore drilling isn’t meeting with much acceptance from regional officials. The Newburyport Daily News (via the State House News Service) reminds us that months ago MA Governor Baker expressed no interest in drilling happening in the North Atlantic. They report, “In a June 21 letter to Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke pertaining to the federal government’s review of protected marine monument areas, Baker wrote that as the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management develops its five-year Outer Continental Shelf Oil and Gas Leasing Program ‘the Commonwealth does not support the inclusion of areas of the North Atlantic adjacent to or affecting Massachusetts. For more than three decades, the exploration or leasing for oil and gas in the North Atlantic has not been justified, and we believe this holds true today more than ever.’”

The Washington Examiner reports “Both of Maine’s senators are warning that the Trump administration’s plan to open offshore drilling along the coast of their state threatens the state’s huge lobster industry.” And NH1 reports NH Republican Gov. Chris Sununu is among those opposing the Trump administration’s plan to vastly expand offshore drilling from the Atlantic to the Arctic oceans.

As the article notes, “Well that didn’t take long.” Today PV Magazine reports, “With the ink barely dry on the decision by Massachusetts’ Department of Public Utilities (DPU) to allow utility Eversource to impose demand charges on its net metered solar customers, solar advocate organization Vote Solar said it will appeal the decision to the state’s Supreme Court as soon as early February, with the support of Earthjustice.”

Last for this week is a bevy of news reports and opinion pieces about whether New England needs more gas pipelines. Here’s a bit for the in favor crowd from a Boston Globe editorial, “For a region that prides itself as a leader against climate change, the numbers were sobering: As recently as Monday, 19 percent of New England’s energy supply came from oil, and 7 percent from coal, according to the grid operator. Rates had climbed even higher on the worst days of the recent cold spell, when power plants in New England burned tons of the dirtiest fuels available. On some days, oil accounted for more than 30 percent of the region’s energy mix.

It’s 2018. Coal and oil shouldn’t play any role generating New England’s electricity, something that almost all policy makers in liberal-minded Massachusetts claim to believe.” The editorial board says two things created the problem, first, “efforts by some environmental activists to block natural gas infrastructure, mainly pipelines” and “foot-dragging on the development of new renewable energy sources.” See the Opinion section below for many other thoughtful pieces, both pro and con.

That’s it for this week. As always, be sure to check out Northeast Energy News  for events. Have a great weekend and Go Pats!

 

Natural Gas/Pipeline/Oil/Drilling

Does (sic) We Need More Natural Gas Pipelines?, WBUR

The Agency That Approves Pipelines Is About To Get A Trump-Era Overhaul, HuffPost

A look at Liberty Utilities proposed underground gas pipeline, Manchester Ink Link

FERC will not overrule New York’s denial for Constitution Pipeline permit, Utility Dive

US may get first LNG import from Russia despite sanctions: report, Reuters

Record cold result in record gas usage for NY utility, Penn Energy

Maine senators: Trump’s drilling plan threatens lobsters, Washington Examiner

New York City plans to divest $5bn from fossil fuels and sue oil companies, The Guardian

Collins, King on Drilling Off Maine’s Coast, Freepress Online

Markey: Draft plan will spur ‘huge fight’ over offshore energy drilling, Berkshire Eagle

Baker reiterates opposition to drilling off Mass. Coast, Newburyport Daily News

 

Renewables Policy/Climate Change/RGGI, etc.

ISO-NE proposal would drive state-sponsored renewables into wholesale markets, Utility Dive

DPU oks new fees on solar, wind installations, CommonWealth Magazine

Ice Loss and the Polar Vortex: How a Warming Arctic Fuels Cold Snaps, Renewable Energy World

House rejects bill to rebate all RGGI funds to ratepayers, Concord Monitor

With proposal to join RGGI, Virginia would be first Southern state to cap carbon, Utility Dive

NH House votes to boost RGGI fund for residential programs, New Hampshire Business Review

What the new tax law means for renewables, GreenBiz

Engineers unveil improved algae-powered fuel cell, UPI.com

NYC Sues Five Oil Majors For Contributing To Climate Change, OilPrice.com

State of Energy: Going green to fill the Indian Point energy gap, lohud.com

 

Wind

Falmouth wind turbine could become cell tower, Cape Cod Times

Concerns surface with plan to connect offshore wind farm to Cape electric grid, Cape Cod Times

Regulators delay power contract essential to UMaine floating wind farm, Press Herald

After an Uncertain Start, US Offshore Wind Is Powering Up, Yale Environment 360

Bids submitted in Massachusetts as Cuomo outlines plan for 800 MW in New York, Offshore Wind Journal

Oil Giants See a Future in Offshore Wind Power. Their Suppliers Are Investing, Too., InsideClimate News

Study looks at jobs and supply chain growth from floating offshore wind, Offshore Wind Journal

 

Solar

Vote Solar to challenge Massachusetts’ demand charge ruling in court, PV Magazine

Solar industry riled by Mass. DPU approval of new infrastructure fee, Worcester Telegram

Non-Residential Solar Is Booming in Massachusetts. How Will New Incentives Impact Growth?, Greentech Media

Massachusetts becomes first state commission to approve mandatory demand charges for residential customers, Solar Power World

Mass DPU OKs new ‘demand charge’ on residential solar customers in Eversource territory, MassLive.com

How to Halve the Cost of Residential Solar in the US, Greentech Media

Solar energy to help provide power to business park (Maine), Penn Energy

Solar developer questions town energy plan, Bennington Banner

Greater Lawrence Technical School contributes to global sustainable solar project, Andover Townsman

Eversource bid to cut net metering rates is denied, Wicked Local Chatham

New Jersey Legislature advances bill to increase state’s solar target, Daily Energy Insider

Industry Leaders Make Last-Ditch Effort to Steer Trump White House Away From Solar Tariffs, Greentech Media

 

Storage/Energy Efficiency/Microgrid

The Best News Yet for Energy Storage in New York, Greentech Media

2017 Milestones and 2018 Predictions for the Energy Storage Market, Energy Manager Today

State money helps Massachusetts communities save the environment, Patriot Ledger

The Energy 202: This popular program helps keep homes warm in winter. Trump proposed eliminating it, Washington Post

Water-Based Air Conditioning Slashes Energy Usage & Uses No Refrigerants, CleanTechnica

Efficiency is important, but it is time to get serious about sufficiency, Treehugger

Eight Projects Proposed in Round 4 of the Connecticut Microgrid Grant Program, Microgrid Knowledge

 

Nuclear

MIT: Cheap gas, not renewables, caused nuclear woes, Utility Dive

Small nukes pass key step as regulators approve NuScale safety system, Utility Dive

Pilgrim nuclear plant back online after storm shutdown, The Patriot Ledger

War of words over Millstone escalates as final regulatory decision nears, New Haven Register

New Funding Proposal Prompts Settlement Talks In Vermont Yankee Sale Case, Vermont Public Radio

Opponents To New State Rules Say Frigid Weather, Lower Taxes Make Millstone Profitable, Hartford Courant

How tidal energy could help Japan with its nuclear power problem, Phys.Org

 

Tax Bill

Connecticut utility passes entirety of tax break to customers, CT Post

Connecticut weighs shaving utility rates after federal tax cuts, Thehour.com

Customers Get A Break As Utilities’ Tax Bill Drops, Hartford Courant

Corporate Tax Cuts Could Mean ‘Quite Substantial’ Savings In New Englanders’ Electricity Bills, Vermont Public Radio

National Grid Reduces Rate Hike Request, Cites Tax Law, WBUR

 

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

Procurement not following regular playbook, CommonWealth Magazine

What’s happening with the Northern Pass project? WMUR (video)

FERC rejects ‘multi-billion-dollar bailout’ of coal and nuclear plants, MassLive

12 Charts That Shook the Earth in 2017, Greentech Media

Experts view Trump’s intervention as ‘worrisome’ even after coal, nuclear subsidy plan fails, ThinkProgress

West Springfield’s A&D hydropower facility receives state funding, MassLive.com

Healey-led coalition asks for federal utility rate review, The Recorder

Eversource Power Plant Sale Completed, New Hampshire Public Radio

Northern Pass receives OK to bury power lines in White Mountain National Forest HydroWorld

Supreme Court sides with Eversource in Merrimack Station valuation case, Concord Monitor

Bomb Cyclone Ravages US Coast: 3 Utilities in Focus, Nasdaq

Clients burn through fuel assistance in bitter cold, Gloucester Daily Times

Raimondo: PUC reviewing National Grid rates, Turn to 10

 

Editorial/Opinion

It’s time to go nuclear in the fight against climate change, Grist

Time to revisit the need for more gas pipelines, CommonWealth Magazine

More pipelines aren’t the answer, CommonWealth Magazine

More natural gas not answer to climate change, CommonWealth Magazine

Viewpoint: Competitive electricity markets have transformed New England’s power grid, Boston Business Journal

Mass. turned to oil and coal during the cold snap. Here’s what went wrong, Boston Globe

Surprise: Nuclear Power Maximizes Environmental Benefits Of Electric Vehicles, Forbes.com

Letters: Why we have the nation’s highest natural gas prices, Worcester Telegram

Our View: Maine should stay the course on ocean wind power, Press Herald

Letter: Preserving ridgelines while supporting wind power?, Brattleboro Reformer

To the Editor: Make a new energy vision your 2018 resolution, Foster’s Daily Democrat

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Filed under Electricity Costs, Natural Gas Pipelines, Renewables, solar

Energy News for week ending December 15, 2017

Profitable for decades | Surviving negotiations | Living in the shadows

Happy Friday afternoon!

A few quick news notes before we buzz into the weekend and holiday prep frenzy.

The CT Mirror is reporting that [CT] “State energy officials concluded in a preliminary report released Thursday that the Millstone nuclear power station in Waterford will be profitable through 2035, undercutting its owner’s assertion that Connecticut must change how its electricity is sold or face the early retirement of New England’s largest source of carbon-free power.”

Utility Dive reports “that the speed at which the Republican tax reform bill is being pushed through Congress makes it difficult to assess the details, but at this point it appears that some of the highest profile renewable energy incentives will survive the negotiating process intact.”

If you’re looking for a long read, check out Gatehouse Media’s piece titled, “In the Shadow of Wind Farms.” They describe the article as, “How the wind industry angers landowners and divides communities in pursuit of billions of dollars in subsidies and other incentives.”

Have a great weekend.

Natural Gas/Pipeline

Milford Power files plans for 53-megawatt upgrade to facility, Milford Daily News

New, Major Evidence That Fracking Harms Human Health, The Atlantic

Trump, Zinke to Auction Away 700000 Acres of Western Public Lands for Fracking, EcoWatch

Eversource threatens EDF with cease and desist over report on gas capacity constraints, Utility Dive

National Grid finds an electric approach to natural gas demand response, Utility Dive

Deerfield methane digester getting hooked up to grid, GazetteNET

Loose Cap Caused Blast in Austria That Rattled Energy Market, Bloomberg

Have We Reached Peak Peaker? ‘I Can’t See Why We Should Build a Gas Peaker After 2025,’ Greentech Media

Gas driller: Make homeowner pay for disparaging us, Penn Energy

Fracking sites may raise the risk of underweight babies, new study says, Washington Post

Renewables Policy/Climate Change/Etc.

Northampton Energy Commission agrees to co-sponsor resolution championing goal of 100 percent renewable energy, MassLive

Energy tax credits appear safe as GOP tax bill speeds toward a vote, Utility Dive

The Hidden History of Canadian Hydropower Headed for America’s Northeast States, Greentech Media

Some Republicans are reconsidering the tax bill’s attack on renewable energy, Vox.com

Benefits of RGGI and RPS, The Union Leader

Energy-Related Carbon Dioxide Emissions Decreased in Most States from 2005 to 2015, Energy Collective

Source says GOP tax bill will preserve EV and wind tax credits, Midwest Energy News

US Sen. Ed Markey urges conference committee to cut provisions targeting clean energy sector from tax bill, MassLive.com

Wind

In the Shadow of Wind Farms, Gatehouse Media

Wind energy is supposed to help fight climate change. It turns out climate change is fighting back, Washington Post

Possible wind farm sites 17 miles off Hamptons identified, Newsday

DOE slates $18.5 million for research, development of offshore wind power, Daily Energy Insider

Global wind power market expected to reach $111.4bn by 2025, Power Technology

DOE Announces New R&D Effort for Offshore Wind, Renewable Energy World

Solar

Success shines on Solect Energy, Milford Daily News

Governor says he wants to reverse solar rule delay, Penn Energy

This utility CEO’s powerful vision reimagines solar, GreenBiz

Hartland Elementary School wins the big prize – a solar tracker!, Vermont Biz

US Solar Installs Fall to Their Lowest Level Since 2015, as Uncertainty Swirls and Prices Rise, Greentech Media

Maine Supreme Court Hears Arguments In Solar Incentives Battle, Maine Public

Solar array location raises concerns in Chesterfield, Brattleboro Reformer

Energy Efficiency

Going for the green – Smithfield competes in 2017 Rhode Island Energy Challenge, Valley Breeze

Georgetown looks to LED lights for energy savings, but weighs health concerns, Wicked Local Georgetown

Energy Efficiency Program Likely to Survive Regulatory Challenge, Public News Service

Central Mass. businesses getting creative when it comes to high energy costs, Worcester Telegram

Split opinion on Amherst’s move to zero-energy buildings, Daily Hampshire Gazette

Storage

NYISO’s Energy Storage Roadmap: A Plan to Match the State’s New Mandate, Greentech Media

The Key Trends Shaping Energy Storage in 2018, Greentech Media

Tesla and Sunrun Among Winners of Massachusetts Storage Grants, Renewable Energy World

Energy storage sees significant growth as more utilities include it in long-term plans, Utility Dive

Reading Municipal Light Department receives $1 million grant for energy storage project, Wicked Local Reading

Massachusetts Announces More Energy Storage Grants, Renewable Energy World

Nuclear

CT’s preliminary conclusion: Millstone profitable through 2035, CT Mirror

Vermont Yankee cleanup fund hitting $30M with final pay-in, vtdigger.org

Federal nuclear watchdog says licensing advanced power plants will get ‘expensive’, Washington Examiner

We’ll know this week if Diablo Canyon is going to close, The San Luis Obispo Tribune

Russian nuclear plant says it emits leaked nuclear isotope, PennEnergy

N.J. Governor Christie eyes nuclear power subsidies, sparks criticism, Reuters

N.Y. power seen sufficient after Indian Point nuclear retirement -report, Reuters

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

Eversource sends cease-and-desist letter to environmental group, The Boston Globe

State energy affordability gap widens, New Haven Register

How blockchain can help solve the $3.6 trillion American infrastructure crisis, Business Insider

National Grid bills skyrocket for some in Cumberland, Lincoln, Valley Breeze

Eversource offers late holiday gift: No rate hike in January, Berkshire Eagle

Analyst: FERC Likely to Modify DOE NOPR, RTO Insider

Northern Pass hosts job fair, looking to hire 2600 people, WMUR Manchester

23 communities renew electricity aggregation program for 3 years, SouthCoastToday.com

The Top 10 Utility Regulation Trends of 2017, Greentech Media

State energy office seeking public input to develop plan, Press Herald

New FERC Chairman Requests More Time to Weigh DOE’s Coal, Nuclear Rule, Greentech Media

October Windstorm Took Down CMP’s $200 Million Smart Meter Network, Maine Public Radio

Once-promising Boston-Power cuts Westborough presence, Boston Business Journal (subscriber content)

Maine net metering battle heads to court, Utility Dive

New York Puts $3.8M Behind Large-Scale Geothermal Heating-Cooling Challenge, Renewable Energy World

Regulators Probing Utilities’ Response to Powerful Storm, US News & World Report

NY Governor Announces $3.5 Million Available to Accelerate Electric Vehicle Use, Transmission and Distribution World

New Brunswick to seek new fuel source to replace coal in major power plant, Metro News

Editorial/Opinion

Coast lawmakers push offshore wind project, CommonWealth Magazine

Meet the European Petrochemical Giant Trying to Profit from the Fracking of Pennsylvania, Common Dreams

Why Maine Lawmakers Should Support Pending Microgrid Legislation, Microgrid Knowledge

Mass. should import wind power from Canada, CommonWealth Magazine

Electric vehicle charging gets a jump, CommonWealth Magazine

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Filed under offshore wind, Renewables, solar, Vermont Yankee Closing

Energy News for week ending December 8, 2017

Santa & Solar Panels | Energy Storage | Blockchain Investments

Holiday Alert: We’ve found a few stories with great gift ideas for the energy geeks in your life. Prices range from $30-50 for a thermal leak detector to $5,500 for a solar panel package and Tesla Powerwall that can handle the energy needs of an entire house, depending on where you live and your energy usage. The panels, combined with a 13.5 kilowatt-hour Powerwall might let you go off the grid, or sell power back to your utility company. Plus they offer protection against power outages by giving you days of backup.

And in more holiday season giving, 26 energy storage projects in Mass. are sharing $20M in grants to grow the energy storage market. WBUR reports these pilot projects represent a quarter of Massachusetts’ 200-megawatt-hour grid storage mandated target, set for 2020. The state currently has seven megawatt hours of advanced energy storage installed.

Finally, if you haven’t been paying attention to blockchain, a distributed, digital transaction technology, now might be the time. GreenBiz reports that as we transition to a decentralized, digitized and decarbonized energy world, blockchain technology may be the ‘missing link’ to spur on renewable energy investments.

As always, be sure to check out Northeast Energy News for more stories and events. Have a great weekend.

Green Gift Guide for Energy Geeks

Energy Adviser: Geeky energy gifts on a budget, The Columbian

HybridCars.com Green Holiday Gift Guide, Hybrid Cars News

Natural Gas/Pipeline

In Massachusetts, Protesters Balk At Pipeline Company’s Payments To Police, HuffPost

Kinder Morgan payments for state police details at nearly $1 million, Berkshire Eagle

Liberty Proposes Gas Pipeline To Run From NH Seacoast To Manchester, New Hampshire Public Radio

Narragansett Tribe plans to sue FERC over gas pipeline approval in Berkshire County, MassLive.com

As more elected officials call for resignation of CRMC chair, Governor Raimondo remains silent, Uprise RI

Community members protest gas plant, The Brown Daily Herald

Weymouth compressor review could take a year, state says, The Patriot Ledger

12 Anti-Pipeline Protestors Will Face Criminal Charges In Court, WAMC

PCBs, fracked gas pipelines endanger human and planetary health, warns author activist, theberkshireedge.com

Leaked PowerPoint Reveals The Gas Industry’s Playbook For Waging Pipeline Fights, HuffPost

Renewable Energy

Mass. Gives Out $20M In Grants To Grow Energy Storage Market, WBUR

The missing link for renewable energy investment? Blockchain, GreenBiz

Maine Utility: Our hydro project has lowest cost, Commonwealth Magazine

Surge of Carbon Pricing Proposals Coming in the New Year, MIT Technology Review

As Cape Wind dies, offshore wind picks up steam in Massachusetts, MassLive.com

Energy chairman Golden gets tour of Greenfield, The Recorder

CAS Scientists Develop ACES to Monitor Greenhouse-Gas Emissions, BU Today

Koch-funded network targets New Hampshire’s renewable energy policies, ThinkProgress

To-the-point: Avangrid touts best cost proposal in Massachusetts RfP, Renewables Now

Energy Efficiency

The Hidden Gem of Wholesale Energy Markets: Energy Efficiency, Energy Collective

A bipartisan message of clean energy progress, MIT News

Clean energy slashed in new budget, Yale Daily News

US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Rejects Energy Efficiency Restrictions, CleanTechnica

Nuclear

Millstone shares data with DEEP, PURA, theday.com

On 75th anniversary of first nuclear fission reactor, MIT stages tribute to seminal experiment, MIT News

Saudis invite US firms to develop multi-billion-dollar nuclear power projects, CNBC

Christie Hints He Might Sign Bill to Subsidize PSEG’s Nuclear Plants, NJ Spotlight

Weighing 75 years of the nuclear age, Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

ISO-NE Preparing for Energy Storage Growth, RTO Insider

Eversource, National Grid Complete Transmission Line From Mass. To NH, WBUR

Aquarion Water Co. sale to Eversource approved, Seacoastonline.com

Energy fights loom in conference talks, E&E News

As grid modernization accelerates, which states are in the lead, and why?, Utility Dive

Massachusetts approves Eversource rate increase to help boost EV, storage investment, Utility Dive

National Grid to install back-up battery system as electricity demand grows, Nantucket Island Inquirer

National Grid report defends storm response, Gloucester Daily Times

Decision on Eversource rate hike drawing criticism, The Recorder

Why Mergers and Acquisitions Will Define the Distributed Energy Boom,, Greentech Media

One Trump Buzzword to Seal Fate of $700 Billion Power Trade, Bloomberg

Efficiency Vermont rates rise for residents, down for businesses, vtdigger.org

CMP touts its bid to build transmission line through Maine, Press Herald

ExxonMobil opposes ALEC’s attempt to fight EPA climate policy, The Hill

Rethinking the utility company as solar power heats up, PBS NewsHour

Editorial/Opinion

Cape Wind: A blown opportunity, Cape Cod Times

Sandra Levine: An innovative climate policy for Vermont, vtdigger.org

Who Will Fund Clean Energy? Familiar Faces, Bloomberg

Letter: RI Energy Challenge helps town, residents, The Independent

 

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Filed under Climate Change, Electric Grid, Electricity Costs, Energy Efficiency, Natural Gas Pipelines, nuclear, Renewables, solar

Energy News for week ending December 1, 2017

The next big thing | An unlikely partnership | Heating assistance en route

 

Good afternoon. For this week’s recap we’re focusing on some positive stories.

Starting on the renewables front, NBC News brings us a story of how wave power may be “the next big thing in green energy.” One of the technologies to harness wave power is called the “Lifesaver.” It’s described as a “hulking device, as wide as a school bus is long, [and] looks a bit like a massive buoy or life raft.” The benefits they say are that, “Like solar and wind power, wave power harnesses energy that comes ultimately from the sun. Solar radiation causes air pressure gradients that cause wind, and wind gives its momentum to the ocean surface, producing waves.” They note that a square meter of a solar panel receives 0.2 to 0.3 kilowatts of solar energy, however every meter of the California coast receives 30 kilowatts of wave energy. Further, wave energy has another advantage over solar and wind. Waves are easy to forecast… and unlike solar, wave energy can be harnessed 24/7.

This week WGBH reports that environmentalists and gas companies in Massachusetts are doing something unusual — they’re teaming up to try to fix something they both agree is a problem. That problem is gas leaks. Audrey Schulman, founder of HEET talks about dealing with the utilities, “The relationship in the past was really, really contentious,” Schulman said. “In general, HEET would — my nonprofit — would release some sort of report in the press and the utilities would come back with some angry statement, and I would respond with some angrier statement, and we would both cast aspersions upon each other’s facts, knowledge, clothing. Like, anything we could.”

But one day, a utility executive responded differently, saying more information on gas leaks could help his company. “And I was so startled by that, that I think that that was the moment when I began to realize we might be able to all work together,” Schulman said.

Last upbeat note for this week the MetroWest Daily News reports that, “Despite threats that funding would be eliminated in President Donald Trump’s preliminary budget, the state’s home heating program will continue to keep low-income families warm this year, just as temperatures are beginning to drop.” Nice!

As always, be sure to check out Northeast Energy News for more stories and events. Have a great weekend.

Natural Gas/Pipeline

In An Unlikely Partnership, Local Environmentalists And Utilities Work Together To Reduce Gas Leaks, WGBH

Eight energy companies commit to reduce methane emissions within natural gas industry, Penn Energy

Opening of 1-GW Burrillville Power Plant Pushed Back to 2021, Penn Energy

Gas rush: FERC’s pipeline approvals underline persisting controversy over permitting, Utility Dive

Fire reported at natural gas power plant (CT), Penn Energy

Kinder Morgan says holding tank is source of contamination of 547,000 gallons of pipeline test water, Berkshire Eagle

Opponents of LNG facility in Providence say look to the future, The Providence Journal

Opponents Bring Passion, Scrutiny to LNG Hearing, ecoRI news

Vermonters join suit over alleged electricity price-fixing, vtdigger.org

Gas rush: FERC’s pipeline approvals underline persisting controversy over permitting, Utility Dive

South Dakota Warns It Could Revoke Keystone Pipeline Permit Over Oil Spill, InsideClimate News

Environmental concerns mount as Keystone pipeline leaks more oil than predicted, AccuWeather.com

Eversource Energy begins $3.8M expansion of natural gas distribution in Shelton, Westfair Online

A map of $1.1 billion in natural gas pipeline leaks, High Country News

Keystone pipeline spill blamed on damage from its construction, The Hill

Ecologist Sandra Steingraber to speak on fracked gas, PCBs, and our health Saturday in Lenox, theberkshireedge.com

Ohio EPA: Rover Pipeline spill leaks 200 gallons of drilling fluid into Black Fork, Richland Source

US FERC approves 223 MMcf/d Millennium Pipeline expansion in New York, Platts

Chatterjee blames national environmental groups for delaying pipeline approvals, Utility Dive

Renewable Energy

A tale of 2 states: Massachusetts and California provide different lessons on growing community solar, Utility Dive

Savings from solar farm to pump $200K into Williamstown budget, Berkshire Eagle

Why wave power may be the next big thing in green energy, NBC News

In Bid To Sell Wind Energy To MA, Bay State Wind To Hold Community Meetings, RIPR

Work moves forward at 100-kW Bell Mill Hydro in New Hampshire, Renewable Energy World

UMass Dartmouth to study offshore wind and commercial fishing, MassLive

Is Wave Power Finally Ready to Scale Up? Energy Manager Today

Cape Wind fight spins on, Cape Cod Times

Wind industry leaders tout Somerset’s power potential, Fall River Herald News

Long Island muni proposes new compensation scheme for C&I solar, Utility Dive

The Obscure ‘Poison Pill’ Senate Tax Provision Threatening Renewables, Greentech Media

The Energy 202: Why the wind and solar lobby is terrified of the Senate tax plan, Washington Post

Last-minute provision in Senate tax bill could ‘devastate’ renewable energy, Utility Dive

Looking For A Green Way To Heat Your Home? Try A Wood Pellet Stove, Rhode Island Public Radio

Boston Begins Effort To Become Carbon Neutral By 2050, WBUR

Retired Massachusetts coal plant may serve to advance offshore wind, (press release) Windpower Engineering

Shell, one of the biggest oil companies, plans to halve its carbon emissions. Here’s how, CNBC

Energy Efficiency

Harvesting the Sun for Energy Increases Efficiency by 60 Percent, Futurism

First Ever International Symposium on Energy Efficiency, (press release) ELE Times

MA: Two South Shore Farms Receive State Grants to Improve Energy Efficiency, 95.9 WATD-FM

Local farms receive energy grants, The Recorder

Solar powered smart windows break 11% efficiency – enough to generate more than 80% of US electricity, Electrek

Energy efficiency is linked to the internet of things, but adoption rates of energy saving devices is low, Alt Energy Magazine

Nuclear

Nuclear Regulatory Commission Releases List Of Issues To Consider In New Decommissioning Rules, Vermont Public Radio

C-10 responds to Seabrook nuke plant owner’s appeal, The Daily News of Newburyport

Entergy contends Vermont Yankee testing could be dangerous, vtdigger.org

NRC Issues Confirmatory Order Over Security-Related Violations at Millstone Nuclear Power Plant, Energy Central

Closing Indian Point Nuclear Plant Could Be Costly For Surrounding Communities, CBS New York

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

ISO New England warns of gas pipeline constraints while promising adequate power for winter, MassLive

Mass. officials approve Eversource rate hike, Boston Globe

DPU cuts Eversource rate hike by 60%, CommonWealth Magazine

Cape Light Compact announces winter electric pricing, Barnstable Patriot

Pittsfield explains new electricity aggregation agreement, Berkshire Eagle

Powerline: How Hydro-Québec Helped Shape Canadian Energy and Cultural History, New Hampshire Public Radio

If bid is approved, CMP to invest millions in Lewiston converter station, Lewiston Sun Journal

Critics Fault Eversource For Proposing Business Fees Be Charged To Ratepayers, Hartford Courant

National Grid proposes rate increases for RI customers, Turn to 10

Who Needs Coal? Huge Hydropower Project On Tap For New England, CleanTechnica

Northern Pass says it continues to work with developer of recently-approved Bethlehem hotel, The Union Leader

After uncertainty, state gets heating assistance funds, MetroWest Daily News
New York PSC approves Orange and Rockland smart meter installation plan, Daily Energy Insider

Empire State Connector Announces Open Solicitation for 1,000 MW HVDC Transmission Line from Utica to Brooklyn, Energy Central

Pittsfield explains new electricity aggregation agreement, Berkshire Eagle

Utilities commission approves Eversource power plant sale, Penn Energy

New York energy storage target official after Gov. Cuomo signs bill, Utility Dive

Editorial/Opinion

Editorial: Pipeline bills would protect consumers, GazetteNET

Opinion: Housing unlikely for Vt. Yankee site, BurlingtonFreePress.com

As Northern Pass drags on, what’s the Legislature to do?, Manchester Ink Link

Our view: Keep pressure on utilities to repair gas leaks, Salem News

Big business should watch this tiny state’s power transformation, GreenBiz

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Filed under Electricity Costs, Energy Efficiency, Natural Gas Pipelines, nuclear, solar