Category Archives: Vermont Yankee Closing

Energy News for week ending October 27, 2017

Thorough Review | Seaweed Energy | Cow Power

Good Friday afternoon.

This week brought news from CommonWealth Magazine that the MA DPU is launching “a thorough review” of allegations in a recent report that Eversource Energy and Avangrid Inc. artificially constrained natural gas pipeline capacity in New England and drove up electricity prices by $3.6 billion over three years.

Up in Maine, Penn Energy reports that the University of New England in Maine is receiving more than $1.3 million in federal money to develop methods for the U.S. to become a leader at utilizing seaweed for uses such as energy.

And, sticking with not your average energy sources, the Berkshire Eagle says in Dalton, MA, “the town is embracing wind energy, but officials plan to chew a bit more on “cow power.” The Select Board heard a pitch Monday from Hampshire Power to buy electricity produced from cow manure and compost. Doing so would support green energy and yield credits to reduce its electric bill. The five-member board decided to hold off on a decision until its next meeting.”

Have a great weekend.

Natural Gas/Pipeline

Data shows two companies stand alone in their New England pipeline practices, Environmental Defense Fund

Gas leaks increase in Concord, Wicked Local Concord

Massachusetts regulators to review allegations Eversource, Avangrid constrained pipelines, Utility Dive

Tribal dispute provokes another call for state intervention in Burrillville power plant debate, WPRI 12 Eyewitness News

Burrillville power plant decision delayed over changes to water plan, Valley Breeze

Citizens against the Rehoboth compressor station host Newton Mayor Setti Warren in Attleboro, The Sun Chronicle

Challenge to AIM Pipeline Approval Before DC Circuit Court, Patch.com

Wind energy project off LI to be called Empire Wind, Newsday

Study: Fracking Chemicals Harm Kids’ Brains, EcoWatch

Most Resolutions Against 1 GW Burrillville Plant Suppressed, Power Engineering

Activists bring pipeline protest to downtown Northampton, Hampshire Gazette

Amherst Board of Health asks Baker for more data on natural gas pipelines, Daily Hampshire Gazette

DPU reviewing report’s pipeline claims, CommonWealth Magazine

Renewable Energy (Policy, Miscellaneous, etc.)

Miller Environmental Group Installs First Utility Based Community Geothermal System on Long Island, New York for National Grid, Business Insider

Vinal Tech students unveil Connecticut’s ninth renewable energy E-house, New Haven Register

GE Renewable Energy Continues Strong 2017 Growth, CleanTechnica

Fusion Energy: How Scientists Are Creating Plasma Hotter Than the Sun in Quest for Limitless Clean Energy, Newsweek

Google’s New Office Complex Will Use a Massive Heat Pump Instead of Fuel, Fortune

Maine university getting more than $1M for seaweed-to-energy, Penn Energy

Dalton ponders ‘cow power’ for town electrical needs, Berkshire Eagle

Wind

New Study Finds Offshore Wind May Be Haven for Sea Life, Greentech Media

Light at the end of the tunnel for US offshore wind power, Recharge

Delaware Researchers Discover How to Cut Offshore Wind Construction Costs by $1.6B, Renewable Energy World

Massachusetts Clean Energy Center releases port assessment for offshore wind industry, Windpower Engineering

Developers Plan Wind Farms Off Jersey as Christie Era Ends, Bloomberg

Offshore wind ushers in a new time on Block Island, Windpower Engineering

Distributed Wind Turbine Makers Bolstered by Energy Department Grants, Greentech Media

Deepwater commits to New Bedford for Revolution project, Recharge

Solar

Ruling leads to increased solar panel prices, MetroWest Daily News

Rhode Island Solar Program Hits Cap, Installers Irked, ecoRI news

Solar Panel Facility Eyed At Former West Haven Landfill, Patch.com

Energy Efficiency

Battery storage, smart grid and energy efficiency investment tops $1bn, Power Engineering International

I-Team: After Expensive Energy Upgrades, Consumers Struggle To Get Promised Mass Save Rebates, CBS Boston / WBZ

NH House panel to weigh energy-efficiency charge opt-out bill, New Hampshire Business Review

Simple Energy Brings Instant Utility Rebates to Retail Outlets, Greentech Media

Nuclear

Oh, another wrinkle on budget deal: Millstone’s profitability, The CT Mirror

NRC presses Seabrook nuke plant on concrete problem, Seacoastonline.com

Whistleblowers Share Insights About Vermont Yankee Doc, Seven Days

New England Coalition defends expert witnesses in NorthStar hearings, vtdigger.org

Activists mobilize on nuclear power proposals, Cape Cod Times

Cyr Files Bill to Increase Authority of Pilgrim Decommissioning Panel, CapeCod.com News

As climate change fuels fears about nuclear waste, Maine looks to Trump for solution, Bangor Daily News

Former energy secretary highlights national security, low-carbon benefits of nuclear, Daily Energy Insider

Connecticut passes bill to support Dominion’s Millstone nuclear plant, Utility Dive

DOE NOPR

Connecticut AG opposes federal Energy Department’s proposed coal, nuclear subsidies, New Haven Register

RTOs Reject NOPR; Say Fuel Risks Exaggerated, RTO Insider

DOE’s Coal, Nuclear Cost Recovery Plan Receives Onslaught of Opposition, Greentech Media

Obama discriminated against coal, nuclear: US energy secretary, Reuters

What States Told FERC About the DOE’s Grid Resiliency Rule [INFOGRAPHIC], POWER magazine

DOE NOPR opponents: No basis for expanded FPA to justify coal, nuke cost recovery, Utility Dive

FERC Commissioner Gives Perspective on the Energy Markets in Light of NOPR, Renewable Energy World

Connecticut AG opposes federal Energy Department’s proposed coal, nuclear subsidies, New Haven Register

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

Eversource puts tab for memberships on ratepayers, CommonWealth Magazine

Town committee proposes resolution opposing Eversource rate increase, The Recorder

Northern Pass noise claims challenged, The Union Leader

Workshop To Discuss National Grid’s Electric Rates and Rate Hike: Rep. Lancia, Patch.com

Hydro-Quebec, DOE to explore collaboration on storage, EVs, Utility Dive

New Hampshire won’t join Clean Power plan suit – at least not yet, New Hampshire Business Review

The Energy 202: Tax debate opens door for renewables to get same break as fossil fuels, Washington Post

Board kills directive to bury power lines at park, Penn Energy

Bill would allow municipalities to develop microgrids, Penn Energy

NY regulators move to protect consumers in DER market, Utility Dive

US sounds alarm over increased cyber threat to energy, other sectors, Utility Dive

Maine Legislative Committee to Consider Community Microgrids as a “Force for Good,” Microgrid Knowledge

Hydro-Quebec, DOE to explore collaboration on storage, EVs, Utility Dive

New law allows NY to restrict oil tanker Hudson anchorages, Penn Energy

Editorial/Opinion

Viewpoint: Massachusetts is investing in clean-energy tech for businesses, BBJ (subscriber content)

No, Solar Doesn’t Have a Customer Acquisition Problem, Greentech Media

The key to tackling climate change: electrify everything, Vox.com

RGGI has been effective but Rep. Vadney opposes it, The Laconia Daily Sun

Leave a comment

Filed under Electricity Costs, Energy Efficiency, Pilgrim Closing, Vermont Yankee Closing

Energy News for week ending September 29, 2017

Cost Recovery for baseload | Brain Research for Storage |Power from Evaporation

Happy Friday afternoon everyone.

The big news this week actually broke today with the announcement, carried by Utility Dive, that the “DOE filed a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking under the Federal Power Act to enhance grid resilience, directing FERC to ‘accurately price generation resources necessary to maintain reliability and resiliency.’ The rule would provide for ‘recovery of costs of fuel-secure generation units frequently relied upon to make our grid reliable and resilient.’” If passed, it could be good news for coal and nuclear plants that keep fuel on site. As an aside, I got it from a very good source today that FERC is interested in receiving comments – so send them in.

Sticking with national news, we have an interesting story from Microgrid Knowledge about how some “Duke University brain science researchers are hoping to use electronics they developed for non-invasive brain stimulation to revolutionize energy storage technology, making batteries safer, more efficient and less expensive.”

Last tidbit for this week comes from Science Daily which reports that “In the first evaluation of evaporation as a renewable energy source, researchers at Columbia University find that U.S. lakes and reservoirs could generate 325 gigawatts of power, nearly 70 percent of what the United States currently produces.” They add, “Though still limited to experiments in the lab, evaporation-harvested power could in principle be made on demand, day or night, overcoming the intermittency problems plaguing solar and wind energy.” Cool stuff.

Be sure to check out the events page at New England Energy News. Have a great weekend.

Natural Gas/Pipeline

As Perry slams state pipeline decisions, lawyers say DOE has little authority to intervene, Utility Dive

EIA Says US Electric Rates Up This Year on Higher NatGas Prices, Natural Gas Intelligence

US lawmakers ask Facebook, Twitter for information on anti-fracking ads, Reuters

118 Groups Urge Trump to Ban Fracking on Public Lands, Center for Biological Diversity

Otis State Forest pipeline protesters make a plea for the planet during court hearings, Berkshire Eagle

Rick Perry links pipelines, natural security, CommonWealth Magazine

Renewable Energy

This Bipartisan Senate Bill Could Enable US Offshore Wind to Take Off, Greentech Media

Wind power is now cheaper than nuclear – the energy revolution is happening, The Guardian

Wind Energy Could Power 30% Of Europe’s Needs By 2030, Reports WindEurope, CleanTechnica

New Milford residents oppose solar project for Candlewood Mountain, Danbury News Times

US Climate Change Policy: Made in California, New York Times

New Jersey to examine solar incentives, cost differentials, Utility Dive

The most effective clean energy policy gets the least love, Vox.com

Savoy voters reject bylaw allowing taller wind turbines, Berkshire Eagle

Solar to power Middle East oil, natural gas exports, Platts

Stronger RGGI Cuts Projected to Be Achieved at Low Cost, Natural Resources Defense Council

RGGI issues first ever offsets as states narrow opportunities, Carbon Pulse

State environmental groups rip GOP cuts as short-sighted, New Haven Register

NextEra: Four former Ranger solar projects will be operating by end of 2019, Mainebiz

Let the Sun Shine In: Solar Prices Decreasing, ecoRI news

Ruling Finds Solar Panels From China Hurt US Makers, Maine Public

Scituate Wind turbine noise still a problem for some, Wicked Local Scituate

Renewable developers respond in droves to New York solicitation, Utility Dive

Large solar array in works for old gravel pit in Williamsburg, Going Green

Wind and water: Powering our past, and future, Seacoast Online

Energy Efficiency

Massachusetts stays atop NGO’s state energy efficiency rankings, Utility Dive

State money to help Central Mass. communities switch to energy-saving LED streetlights, Worcester Telegram

Meriden councilors favor program with Eversource to upgrade lights in city buildings, Meriden Record-Journal

How your air conditioner plays catch-up to regulations, Axios.com

Weymouth to convert 3,800 street lights to LED, Patriot Ledger

Nuclear

Entire US Nuclear Power Fleet Could Disappear in 38 Years: S&P, Bloomberg

Energy Company Finances At Center Of Battle Over Millstone, Hartford Courant

Plans to clean up Vt. Yankee met with criticism from environmental groups, The Recorder

Port council votes to send letter to NRC, The Daily News of Newburyport

NorthStar leader, engineering consultant talk future of Vt. Yankee, Going Green

Energy Storage

New York City Aims To Cut Greenhouse Gas Emissions By Using Energy Storage, Forbes.com

Years In, NY REV Lacks Major Storage Action. That May Have to Change Soon, Greentech Media

Brain Research Tools Could Help Revolutionize Energy Storage Technology, Microgrid Knowledge

Climate Change

Hidden Costs of Climate Change Running Hundreds of Billions a Year, National Geographic

States Can Lead the Way on Climate Change, Scientific American

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

DOE proposes cost recovery for baseload generators in new FERC rule, Utility Dive

Connecticut energy plan raises tough questions on comparative resource valuation, Utility Dive

SEC Member: Northern Pass Could Cost Taxpayers More For Public Construction Projects, indepthnh.org

Central Maine Power seeks permit to transmit cheap hydro from Canada, Utility Dive

Tisbury looks to join Brewster in Eversource spraying battle, Martha’s Vineyard Times

Texas firm sells Milford power plant in $119M sale, Worcester Business Journal

Sudbury property values (partially) fair play in Eversource case, MetroWest Daily News

Cushing bill looks to block utility monopolies, Foster’s Daily Democrat

Eversource says fewer people have lost power this year, cites system improvements, Concord Monitor

National Grid in settlement talks with NY over rates, Albany Times Union

Great Barrington pursues ‘low cost and green’ collective power purchase plan, Berkshire Eagle

Central Maine Power seeks permit to transmit cheap hydro from Canada, Utility Dive

Energy harvested from evaporation could power much of US, Science Daily

NiSource Again Named to Dow Jones Sustainability Index, Business West

Can Distributed Energy Resources Get Paid to Serve as ‘Virtual Transmission Lines’?, Greentech Media

Sudbury sues MBTA over Eversource lease, MetroWest Daily News

Editorial/Opinion

Letter: Not clean, not green, Concord Monitor

Approve bill to help Millstone secure its future, theday.com

Nuclear Power Is ‘On Its Back,’ Former CIA Director Says, Forbes

Lisa Ostrove: Why Candlewood Solar is a bad deal for our town, Danbury News Times

Leave a comment

Filed under Climate Change, Energy Efficiency, Renewables, Vermont Yankee Closing

Energy News for week ending September 15, 2017

What’s old is new | Millstone deal struck | It’s electric!

Happy Friday afternoon.

Some cool news this week from the folks at MIT who looked back in time – over 3 millennia – to find a potential solution to energy storage challenges. According to the article on Curbed.com, MIT researchers have reinvented firebricks, a Bronze-Age technology created by the Hittites in the 17th century BC. Firebricks were designed to retain heat for long periods of time. The MIT team’s Firebrick Resistance-heated Energy Storage (FIRES) system stores thermal energy (heat) in firebricks and later converts the energy back into electricity at about 1/40th the price of putting it into batteries. As the article notes, it could be a game changer for renewables.

According to the CT Mirror, the Connecticut General Assembly and the administration of Gov. Dannel P. Malloy have agreed in principle on bipartisan legislation authorizing state energy officials to take measures to stabilize the profitability of New England’s largest power plant, the Millstone nuclear station in Waterford. The Hartford Courant reported Friday afternoon that the Senate approved the measure which now awaits House action. The new proposal does not include a fee paid by Millstone’s parent company Dominion Energy.

In honor of the upcoming AltWheels event we have section on EV news. According to an article in the MetroWest Daily News, electric vehicle ownership is rising in Massachusetts. They cite data from the Mass. Department of Environmental Protection that shows the number of electric vehicles in the state has grown from 782 as of July 31, 2013, to 3,770 as of March 31, 2017. The number of plug-in hybrids, which can also utilize gasoline, has increased from 1,034 to 5,701 during that time frame. There is still a long way to go, but it’s a huge leap in numbers from the days yours truly spent promoting DOER’s EV program in the mid-late 90s.

On the same topic, The Huffington Post asks, Should Utilities Build Charging Stations For Electric Cars? Some arguments for and against are that, “Building more charging stations could help alleviate ‘range anxiety,’ the fear of running out of charge with no station in sight, and therefore stimulate sales of the clean-air-friendly cars. But in some states, officials say that letting the utility industry build more stations would force all electricity consumers to pay for a service that only a few, relatively affluent, people will use.” Hmmm. The article does contain a lot more detail on the pros and cons. It’s worth a read.

Have a great weekend.

Natural Gas/Pipeline

Feds overrule New York’s natural gas pipeline permit denial, Fox Business

10 arrested in pipeline protest at Tennessee Gas Co. headquarters in Sandisfield, Berkshire Eagle

Local officials seeking to stop gas leaks, MetroWest Daily News

Reliance on natural gas expected to grow, CommonWealth Magazine

Tennessee Gas Pipeline opponents plan flotilla on Lower Spectacle Pond, Berkshire Eagle

Pipeline maintenance cuts path through quiet neighborhood in Lynnfield, ItemLive

Climate Change

Climate change did not “cause” Harvey or Irma, but it’s a huge part of the story, Vox.com

Renewables

MIT turns to millennia-old tech for renewable energy storage, Curbed.com

Agency: Turbines could spin during bird migrations, Cape Cod Times

Family donates solar power systems to 8 nonprofits, Going Green

Cost of U.S. Solar Drops 75 percent in Six Years, Ahead of Federal Goal, YaleEnvironment360

CT greenlights major renewable projects, Hartford Business Journal

Massachusetts business coalition seeks steeper renewable energy standard, Electric Light and Power

The New 1,600 Megawatt Solar Program For Massachusetts Really Is SMART, Clean Technica

Eversource Building Solar Power Sites In Western Mass., WAMC

Solar project planned for Fitchburg site with history of energy production, Worcester Telegram

Cohasset’s new solar array officially open, Patriot Ledger

Farms that grow crops and solar power together, Greenfield Recorder

Maine cities, towns hope to pump up demand for air-sourced heat, The Forecaster

Stars Aligning for Clean Energy in the State…and NH Sustainable Energy Association is Helping Make it Happen, Keene Sentinel

Energy Efficiency

Mortgage Loans Still a Missing Link to Energy Efficiency Growth, Energy Collective

The Suburb of the Future, Almost Here, New York Times

Nuclear

Senate Approves Millstone Aid, Bill Awaits House Action, Hartford Courant

Deal struck on stabilizing profits of Millstone nuclear station, CT Mirror

Pilgrim addresses deteriorating protective panels, Energy Central

Activist posts billboard warning about Seabrook nuclear plant, Ipswich Chronicle

Planners look to future of VY site, Brattleboro Reformer

EVs

Electric vehicle ownership rising in the state, MetroWest Daily News

Should Utilities Build Charging Stations For Electric Cars?, Huffington Post

R.I., 6 other states face decision on plug-in cars, Providence Journal

Electric car dream collides with reality on profits, Boston Business Journal (subscriber article)

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

ISO-NE Visits Vermont to Discuss Tx Planning, RTO Insider

Power Plant Lawsuit Worries Town Of Sandwich, The Sandwich Enterprise

CMP, Gas Companies & Solar Proponents Battle Over Energy Policy, The Free Press

Utilities see benefits in energy storage, even without mandates, Utility Dive

No Fish Story. Tiny Island Lands Big Catch with Microgrid, Microgrid Knowledge

Northern Pass Spokesman Says ‘End in Sight,’ As SEC Pushes Back Decision, NHPR

U.S. Court Allows Suit Alleging ExxonMobil’s Everett Tank Farm Is A Hazard To Proceed, WGBH

CMP & Others Bidding for New Transmission Lines Across Maine, The Free Press

As Brayton Point hits the market, golf course, industrial park among pitches, Herald News

Pass rep questioned on whether project will affect scenic resources, Union Leader

Wellesley no longer at odds over Clean Energy Standard regulations, Wicked Local Wellesley

Baker Stepping Up Emissions Strategy With Focus On Transportation, Banker & Tradesman (subscriber article)

Opinion

New England’s power grid operator is biased, CommonWealth Magazine

Energy efficiency benefits NH businesses, NHBR

Kathy Sullivan: Northern Pass is not ready for prime time, Union Leader

Eversource’s solar proposal needs to go, CommonWealth Magazine

A Whiskey Tango Foxtrot Moment for Natural Gas in NH, IndepthNH

Karen Glitman: Efficiency Vermont’s listening tour, VT Digger

Leave a comment

Filed under Natural Gas Pipelines, Renewables, Vermont Yankee Closing

Energy News for week ending September 8, 2017

ISO-NE spoiled | Varying approaches to Grid Mod | Hacked

Good Friday Afternoon.

Harvey. Irma. Jose. Katia. It’s hard to fathom how much devastation has already occurred in Texas and the Caribbean as we continue to watch and pray for the folks in Florida, Mexico and again in the Leeward Islands as the massive hurricanes continue on their paths.

Closer to home we have a story from POWER magazine digging deep into ISO-New England’s 20-year history and asking if the success of the past can be replicated in the future – or is ISO-NE spoiled by its success? With winter approaching, here is an interesting quote from the article, “According to van Welie, the ISO has largely given up on the idea of bringing more gas to the region, in the face of the inability of pipeline developers to win support for their projects. The problem now, he said, ‘is how to get efficient electricity production during winter, assuming we see no further investment in gas infrastructure.’ He added, ‘Fuel has to come from somewhere when the existing pipelines are constrained.’”

This week Utility Dive dug into the Massachusetts utilities’ grid mod proposals. The question they say is that regulators must choose whether to embrace their original grid mod goals, opt for newly-proposed performance metrics, or go back to the drawing board. Further they add that Massachusetts regulators ordered the state’s utilities to develop a grid modernization plan (GMP) in 2014 but divergent approaches have so far prevented implementation.

If the Equifax hack wasn’t bad enough, we bring you a BuzzFeed story based on reports from Symantec that hackers infiltrated and gained access to operational controls of US electric companies.  Symantec, a California-based firm that provides cybersecurity services and worldwide research against online threats, says the group, which it’s nicknamed Dragonfly 2.0, may have compromised more than a dozen American companies in recent months.

Be sure to check out our events page. Have a great weekend.

Natural Gas/Pipeline

Is Big Oil Prepared For The Natural Gas Era?, OilPrice.com

Sugar Shack Alliance protests fossil fuels on I-91, The Recorder

Burrillville asks EFSB to dismiss Invenergy application because it’s incomplete, RI Future

FERC Orders Tech Conference on Algonquin No-Notice Changes, RTO Insider

Citing climate impacts, New York state blocks yet another natural gas pipeline, MassLive.com

Mother Nature Whips Natural Gas Amid Harvey And Irma, Investing.com

Natural gas pipeline projects move closer to development, Utility Dive

Renewable Energy

Public, private leaders call for renewable energy push, Worcester Business Journal

Connecticut pledging to cut greenhouse gas emissions, CT Post

Portland Airport to Get $1.3 Million for Solar Array, U.S. News & World Report

Giant Batteries Help Renewable Energy Grow In New England, WBUR

Grid strained by new solar farms, Berkshire Eagle

RGGI prices to continue languishing below $10 through 2030 despite reforms, analysts warn, Carbon Pulse

20 megawatts: Solar developer targets southern Vermont, Brattleboro Reformer

Shrewsbury town meeting OK gas line extensions, solar deal, Worcester Telegram

Resident group opposes solar proposal for Candlewood Mountain, The Greater New Milford Spectrum

VIDEO: World’s First Offshore Wind Facility Completely Dismantled, Power Engineering Magazine

Ocean Turbines Could Turn the Tide for Energy Generation, Government Technology

Wind turbine manufacturers are dipping toes into energy storage projects, Ars Technica

CleanChoice Energy opens office in Massachusetts, Clean Technology Business Review

Lynn Working to Become A Green Community, Lynn Journal

Two Energy Powerhouses Broaden Community Solar Access in Massachusetts, Energy Central

Wastewater treatment authority on path to full renewability, Penn Energy

Maine island completes conversion to ’90 percent cleaner’ energy, Bangor Daily News

Potential Tariff On Solar Panels Has Some Developers Concerned, Vermont Public Radio

Energy Efficiency

UMass, Eversource sign energy efficiency partnership, The Massachusetts Daily Collegian

Were thermal images taken of your Springfield house? Look for a postcard in the mail outlining energy-savings plan, MassLive.com

Bash the incandescent bulb and save money, The Cabinet Press

Nuclear

Entergy Seeks Approval To Accelerate Prep Work At Vermont Yankee, Vermont Public Radio

State OKs reduction in Vermont Yankee security, vtdigger.org

Report claims there’s no new pollution at VY, Commons

In advertising blitz, nuclear industry seeks reset, Axios

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

Could Success Spoil ISO-NE?, Power Magazine

Massachusetts utilities take divergent approaches to grid modernization, Utility Dive

Electricity Providers Targeted In Massive Hack, Buzzfeed

LePage can’t lower energy prices by himself, but that won’t stop him from trying, Bangor Daily News

How States Will Hit 100 Percent Clean Energy, Scientific American

CMP faces questions about power line plan for western Maine, Portland Press Herald

Environmental group appeals approval of Sandwich plant expansion, Cape Cod Times

Northern Pass transmission slated to bring Quebec electricity to Massachusetts gains OK from US Forest Service, MassLive.com

31 Northern Pass Hearings Added; Delay Prompts Lively Facebook Exchange, InDepthNH.org

Northern Pass route through White Mountains clears hurdle, WMUR Manchester

Northern Pass: Residents, Eversource Offer Differing Views On Another SEC Delay, Caledonian Record

Northern Pass project decision delayed by New Hampshire siting committee, Utility Dive

United States: DOE Report Offers Extensive Insight, But Limited Policy Suggestions, Mondaq News Alerts

Towns intervene in Eversource acquisition of Aquarion, Seacoastonline.com

Proposed State Energy Strategy Draws Critics, Hartford Courant

Major energy legislation of Gov. Paul LePage’s tenure, Bangor Daily News

The simple reason most power utilities suck, Vox.com

Editorial/Opinion

Wait ’til next year: More Northern Pass delays, The Union Leader

Carbon emissions problem has more than one solution, Press Herald

ALTERNATE ENERGY: The lure of nuclear energy no longer makes ‘cents’, Finger Lakes Times

Massachusetts’ leaders should go big on clean energy (Guest viewpoint), MassLive.com

Harvey Exposed Oil Issues We Must Address, Natural Resources Defense Council

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized, Vermont Yankee Closing, Energy Efficiency, solar

Energy News for week ending August 11, 2017

New GHG regs | Biomass proposal takes knocks | Worcester is Smart

Happy Friday afternoon.

The two biggest stories this week came out of Massachusetts. First, was the proposal by the Baker administration to treat biomass as a renewable energy resource. If you based your impressions directly on the headlines below, you’d think the proposal was doomed. In an article not directly related to MA, but out this week, one environmental advocate goes on to call “biomass the new coal” (Southeast Energy News). We put lots of stories and opinions on biomass below in one handy category.

The other big news broke today about Massachusetts’ new regulations to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. According to a story in the Boston Globe, “A little more than a year after the state’s highest court ruled Massachusetts had to do more to cut carbon emissions, state officials Friday will issue sweeping new regulations that set specific limits on sources of greenhouse gases, the emissions linked to climate change.” And, as usual, you can’t make all of the people happy all of the time as the story notes, “The new rules, [were] swiftly criticized as insufficient by environmental advocates and unfair by the power industry…”

In a Telegram story whose headline struck me as odd, “Worcester cited as example of power grid that isn’t stupid,” (Why not give it the “smart” creds it deserves?) we get an update on what’s happening with grid modernization in Massachusetts. And, at the moment, it’s a bit of a waiting game, “A DPU spokeswoman said there is no statutory deadline for the DPU to issue an order.” Regardless of that statement, National Grid is upbeat on the whole matter. “We’re hoping that DPU will rule on it in the next few months. Actually everything is pointing in the direction that they will,” Reed said.”

Lastly for this week I point you to what appears to be an article, but sounds more like an opinion piece from Pravda Report in Russia on what solar is doing to nuclear in the US. It’s titled, “In the US, solar power ends the era of peaceful atom technology.” I think it’s safe to classify this as some of that “fake news” making its way around the globe. It is good for a few chuckles if nothing else.

Have a great weekend.

Natural Gas/Pipeline

Massachusetts State Police arrest 10 at gas pipeline site in Western Massachusetts, MassLive.com

Police now tracking the cost of protests in Northampton, MassLive.com

With FERC set to have a quorum again, Otis State Forest rehearing requests will be considered, Berkshire Eagle

Looking for gas leaks? Listen to the trees, The Salem News

Fracking is causing invasion of harmful non-native plants in Pennsylvania forests, PSU researchers say, LancasterOnline

In rare eclipse, gas sees its future as solar’s backstop, Standard Examiner

10 Tennessee Gas pipeline protesters released after arrests for disorderly conduct, disturbing the peace, Greenfield Recorder

Biomass

Massachusetts Considering Plan To Classify Wood Pellets As Renewable Energy, CleanTechnica

Burning trees for fuel may soon qualify for state subsidies, Boston Globe

Q&A: Advocate says biomass energy is the new coal, Southeast Energy News

Is wood burning as ‘clean’ as we think? State environmental policy questioned, Greenfield Recorder

Massachusetts may overlook climate impacts of biofuels, Salon.com

Despite The Bio-Mass Flareup, Baker Continues To Move Forward On Renewable Energy, WGBH

Our view: Clear the smoke from wood-burning proposal, Salem News

Editorial: Need for biomass balance, Daily Hampshire Gazette

Cinda Jones: Argues biomass energy is a benefit to forests, Daily Hampshire Gazette

Renewable Energy

Solar eclipse on August 21 will affect photovoltaic generators across the country, Penn Energy

New York Launches REV Connect: The Start of Energy’s Amazon?, Microgrid Knowledge

US offshore pipeline ‘tops 24GW’, reNews

Energy Suppliers Find Fresh Lift From Offshore Wind, Wall Street Journal

Deepwater Project Combines Wind, Energy Storage — ecoRI News, ecoRI news

Falmouth gets $3M break on shuttered wind turbine, National Wind Watch

Maine hospital to demolish building, install solar arrays, Bangor Daily News

Rhode Island clean energy gets boost as governor signs bills, Utility Dive

Should Northern New England Host Massachusetts’ Renewable Energy Extension Cord?, New England Public Radio

State to weigh new plans for green power, The Salem News

Clean Energy Collective set to expand solar footprint in Fairhaven, SouthCoastToday.com

Dong Energy’s oil exit pays off as offshore turbines begin spinning, Telegraph.co.uk

New Jersey investors buy hydropower dams at defunct Maine paper mill, Bangor Daily News

Energy Efficiency

EIA: Most states now have energy efficiency goals in place, Utility Dive

Many States Have Adopted Policies to Encourage Energy Efficiency, Energy Collective

Nearly half of 2016 US electricity retail sales impacted by energy efficiency resource standards, Daily Energy Insider

Nuclear

Action is ‘slow, deliberate’ in Vermont Yankee fuel move, vtdigger.org

On CT’s budget, it turns out there may be a nuclear option, The CT Mirror

Millstone owners still pushing to save nuclear power plant, Electric Light & Power

New IAEA report presents estimates for nuclear power by 2050, Power Technology

NRC reviews Seabrook nuclear plant – Concrete degradation plan audited, Energy Central

Can We Make Nuclear Power Great Again?, Greentech Media

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

15 months after high court order, Massachusetts commits to slashing greenhouse gas emissions, MassLive

State approves major new rules to cut carbon emissions, Boston Globe

With higher rates looming, electric consumers face choices, Sun Chronicle

ISO-NE draft report: Market revenues not sufficient for new resource development, Utility Dive

Worcester cited as example of power grid that isn’t stupid, Worcester Telegram

Grid operators: Vermont electric grid reaching saturation point in the north, National Wind Watch

Pricing hints on Hydro-Quebec power, CommonWealth Magazine

Climate change will hit New England hard, report says, Boston Globe

A Visit To A Place Where Water Power Once Ruled The Farmington River, Hartford Courant

State approves major new rules to cut carbon emissions, Boston Globe

Northern Pass clears federal hurdle, CommonWealth Magazine

Northern New England Residents Hesitant To Host Transmission Lines Supplying Renewable Power To Mass., WBUR

Exelon Set to Expand Massachusetts Peaking Plant, Power Magazine

Utilities Work To Keep Up With An Ever-Changing Grid, Solar Industry

Power supplier fails to process hundreds of National Grid customers’ opt-out forms from Millbury, Worcester Telegram

Smarter grid could be more specific about pricing power usage, The Salem News

Proposed National Grid rate hikes draw concern, Ricentral.com

MBTA waived some construction rules for Sudbury-Hudson Eversource railbed project, Worcester Telegram

Union, Eversource and other companies reach a Northern Pass labor deal, The Union Leader

Editorial/Opinion

Western Massachusetts and New England need natural gas – and the infrastructure that delivers it (Guest viewpoint), MassLive.com

Is There Really A Western Mass Energy Crisis?, Valley Advocate

Pick up the pace on clean energy, Commonwealth Magazine

ROSELLA CICCHESE, Weymouth: Compressor wouldn’t benefit us, Wicked Local Rockland

SID McDONOUGH, Weymouth: Compressor stations safe, until they’re not, Wicked Local Rockland

Dan Weeks: Conservatives And Climate Change – Let Solar And Wind Compete, Caledonian Record

Letter: Eversource claims warrant skepticism, Concord Monitor

YOUR VIEW: Emera’s plan for Pilgrim site a bad idea, Wicked Local Plymouth

In the US, solar power ends the era of peaceful atom technology, Pravda Report

Leave a comment

Filed under Climate Change, Natural Gas Pipelines, solar, Vermont Yankee Closing

Energy News for week ending August 4, 2017

5 percent chance | 53 percent increase | 100 percent renewable

Happy Friday afternoon everyone.

Today’s focus is on the numbers.

According to an article in the Washington Post reasons for climate optimism seem to have all but disappeared. According to a number of studies, when looking at limiting the warming of the globe to below 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit) above pre-industrial temperatures, there’s only a 5 percent chance of success and a mere 1 percent chance that it can be limited below 1.5 degrees Celsius (2.7 degrees Fahrenheit). One idea to turn this around is that negative emissions, based on technologies that don’t exist yet at the relevant scale, would probably be required at some point in the future.

In Rhode Island, many politicians are lamenting National Grid’s proposed 53 percent increase in electric rates for residents in the Ocean State. However, the editorial board at the Providence Journal has a clear understanding of the root of the increase, “They are the consequences of public policy decisions and they cannot be wished away.” The editorial points to retiring generation units, lack of new generating capacity and limited natural gas pipeline capacity. They write, “This should concern us all. High energy prices are tough on households. Should the rate hike go through, the average home-owning family would see its monthly power bill jump from less than $90 a month to more than $106. And high power costs are (yet another) disincentive for businesses to grow jobs in our area.”

The last number for the week is 100 percent – as in the goal to get to 100 percent renewable energy. On this topic, we bring you a few stories. Utility Dive tells us what’s missing from the 100 percent renewable energy debate. Forbes has a piece on California’s bid to be 100 percent by 2045. And, because Massachusetts’ 100 percent renewable proposal includes transportation, we have an article from Penn Energy on whether bans on gas and diesel cars are realistic.

Be sure to check out the events page at New England Energy News. Have a great weekend.

Natural Gas/Pipeline

22 arrested by Massachusetts State Police at protest of Kinder Morgan pipeline in Sandisfield, MassLive.com

More arrests in anti-pipeline action: Standing Rock Sioux now part of resistance, Berkshire Eagle

Natural gas building boom fuels climate worries, enrages landowners, Salon

Pipeline Payday: How Builders Win Big, Whether More Gas Is Needed or Not, Inside Climate News

After damaging historic property and wetlands, pipeline CEO is ‘baffled’ by criticism, ThinkProgres

Proposed bill sets sights on compressor plans, Wicked Local Weymouth

Truck Exhaust Might Be Causing Health Problems Around Fracking Sites, WBUR

Groups Oppose Pipeline to New Power Plant, Public News Service

State review of proposed compressor station pushed back six months, Patriot Ledger

Renewable Energy

What’s missing from the 100% renewable energy debate, Utility Dive

Opponents continue fight against beleaguered Cape Wind, Cape Cod Times

Super-Colossal Wind Turbines May Be on the Horizon, ABC News

Charlemont to map renewable energy resources, Going Green

The two choices Maine lawmakers face on solar power, Energy Central

California Goes All In — 100% Renewable Energy By 2045, Forbes.com

Deepwater, Tesla to pair offshore wind farm with 40 MWh battery storage system, Utility Dive

Maine lawmakers pull plug on bill to maintain solar incentives, Portland Press Herald

Feds set to release Cape Wind impact statement, The Recorder

Invenergy, GE Renewable Energy to build largest wind farm in the US, Daily Energy Insider

Maine lawmakers fail to override governor’s veto of solar bill, Utility Dive

AWEA: Wind energy development rose 40% in Q2, Utility Dive

Tighter Pollution Cap Could Get RGGI States $3.2B Extra, Natural Resources Defense Council

Why small solar threatens the companies that deliver electricity in Maine, Bangor Daily News

Energy giant Con Ed proposes to deliver Maine wind energy to Boston, Press Herald

Vineyard Wind crews will begin survey for cable sites, Martha’s Vineyard Times

The Booming Wind Energy Industry Might Finally Break Its Massachusetts Hex, HuffPost

Maine-based Solar Company Ranked #1 in New England, #14 in US, Bangor Daily News

Cape Wind’s Gordon vows to ‘move it forward’ as BOEM weighs lease, Cape & Plymouth Business News

Wind power charging up, Boston Herald

Clean Energy RFP

5 companies propose transmission projects for Massachusetts clean energy RFP, Utility Dive

Deepwater Wind taking 2 shots at Massachusetts energy procurement, Cape Cod Times

Emera announces plans to construct 1GW Atlantic Link project, Energy Business Review

Bidders want to bring Canadian Hydro to Massachusetts, Wicked Local Waltham

Northern Pass competes for Mass. energy deal, Concord Monitor

State offers new momentum for offshore wind power, Cape Cod Times

Offshore wind farm bids against hydro, onshore wind firms, CommonWealth Magazine

Energy Efficiency

UMass, Eversource partner on campus energy efficiency, WLNE-TV (ABC6

CLF helps support clean energy and energy efficiency, Ricentral.com

US House Would Take Hacksaw to Energy Efficiency Budget, Energy Manager Today

Storing clean energy in salt isn’t as crazy as it sounds, Grist

Nuclear

Energy Department Scientists Barred From Attending Nuclear Power Conference, EcoWatch

NRC reviews Seabrook nuclear power plant, Seacoastonline.com

NorthStar already working at Vermont Yankee, Brattleboro Reformer

Proposed Vermont Yankee cleanup company changes hands, Commons

Pilgrim owner submits improvement plan, Cape Cod Times

Advanced Nuclear Is a Winning Issue in a Tri-Partisan Washington, Greentech Media

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

New England ISO targets 2018 for full DR integration into wholesale power market, Utility Dive

We only have a 5 percent chance of avoiding ‘dangerous’ global warming, a study finds, Washington Post

Utility Helps Wean Vermonters From the Electric Grid, NY Times

Eversource rate request pilloried at Department of Public Utilities hearing, Berkshire Eagle

Lt. Governor McKee to Intervene in Case Against National Grid’s 53-percent Rate Increase, (Press Release) RI.gov

9 States Deciding Whether to Tighten Power Plant Emissions Rules in RGGI, Inside Climate News

Connecticut energy, climate change goals open to public comment, Greenwich Time

Senator Morgan Opposes National Grid’s 53% Rate Increase, GoLocalProv

Study: Energy plays large role in Connecticut’s economy, New Haven Register

Berkshires Stands Against Proposed Eversource Rate Hike, iBerkshires.com

EIA: US residential power sales in decline since 2010, Utility Dive

The Future of Microgrids & Cleaner Locally Managed Power, Freepress Online

Public counsel grills Northern Pass expert on property value impact, New Hampshire Business Review

Credibility of Northern Pass contractor questioned, The Union Leader

National Grid, Swampscott discuss ‘smart-grid’ programs, Wicked Local Swampscott

How realistic are plans to ban new gas and diesel cars?, Penn Energy

Editorial/Opinion

Editorial: National Grid’s 53-percent hike, The Providence Journal

Cities and states must take lead on climate change, CommonWealth Magazine

Ingredients for climate success, CommonWealth Magazine

McQuiston: Power And The Lake, Vermont Public Radio

John McClaughry: Climate Action 4.0., vtdigger.org

Opinion: Vermont’s drive to energy independence, Burlington Free Press

Gov. Phil Scott: Scott’s Climate Action Commission, Caledonian Record

Our view: Offshore wind energy’s future is major farms, not failed AC project, Press of Atlantic City

Commentary: Let solar energy empower ratepayers, not utility, Press Herald

Why we shouldn’t bail out big nuclear, Washington Examiner

STEPHEN DODGE: Weymouth compressor safe and necessary, Wicked Local Braintree

Leave a comment

Filed under Climate Change, Natural Gas Pipelines, offshore wind, Renewables, solar, Vermont Yankee Closing

Energy News for week ending July 28, 2017

The bids are in | The saga continues | New wires and pipes

Happy Friday afternoon!

The news topic getting the most “ink” this week was the Clean Energy RFP and the bids that came in response. We’ve dedicated a whole section to it below. It seems the biggest surprise (AP via Energy Central) was the entrance of Central Maine Power into the mix.

Here’s one that makes us say, “Wut?” It seems members of the Citizens Against the Rehoboth Compressor Station (CARCS) have complained they were not given proper notification by the town of Spectra’s decision to withdraw plans for the station. According to a story in The Sun Chronicle, Rehoboth selectmen say they are baffled at the criticisms lodged against them by CARCS. (Um yeah, the story was all over the news and you’d think the CARCS would be celebrating…) Nonetheless, the board has invited them to air their grievances on August 7th. We’ll look for the follow-up story so we can share with you the reasons for CARCS’ unhappiness. A saga indeed.

Lastly, on projects that as far as we can tell didn’t have many detractors, the Telegram brings us details on a number of energy improvement projects in Central MA. The article notes, “The work coincides with a national effort by utilities to update aging infrastructure and make natural gas and electricity services more reliable for customers at a time when energy technology is advancing and consumers are demanding better options.”

Have a great weekend.

Natural Gas/Pipeline

Compressor station saga continues in Rehoboth, The Sun Chronicle

Hingham may form compressor station task force, The Patriot Ledger

State Rep. Lynch calls for stronger pipeline safety provisions, Wicked Local Westwood

ETP’s $4 billion Rover line hits another snag, this time in West Virginia, Reuters

The conflicts of interest hiding behind pro-pipeline op-eds around the country, Media Matters for America

Dakota Access developer’s new pipeline rankling regulators, The Boston Globe

State Sen. Adam Hinds visits anti-pipeline activists in Sandisfield, Berkshire Eagle

Acushnet selectmen confirm pipeline plan is ‘dead’, SouthCoastToday.com

Clean Energy RFP

5 major transmission, hydro and wind partners bid into Massachusetts Clean Energy RFP, Masslive

Hydro-Quebec partners up, CommonWealth Magazine

Central Maine Power joins green energy competition, Foster’s Daily Democrat

Maine utility a late surprise in green energy competition, Energy Central

CMP unveils plan that could quench LePage’s thirst for Quebec hydropower, Bangor Daily News

Governor Scott supports underwater Power Link from Canada, Vermont Biz

National Grid’s Plan To Run Power Line Through MA, NY Towns, WAMC

Eversource and Hydro-Québec Offer Two Proposals to Clean Energy Solicitation, (press release) Business Wire

Renewable Energy

State rule squeezes green energy producers, including Newburyport company, Newburyport Daily News

Impending eclipse underscores solar’s contribution to grid, Press Herald

Lights dim for cleantech funding under Trump’s budget, (subscriber content) Boston Business Journal

50% Rise in Renewable Energy Needed to Meet Ambitious State Standards, Inside Climate News

Renewables on the Rise, (report) Environment Maine

NE Environmentalists Want More Ambitious Carbon Emissions Cap For Power Plants, Rhode Island Public Radio

New Hampshire temporarily suspends solar rebate programs, Daily Energy Insider

The Top 5 Emerging Markets for Offshore Wind, Greentech Media

Report: Renewables Capable Of Being ‘America’s Energy Choice’, North American Windpower

LIPA declines to back 210MW Deepwater Wind project: report, Recharge

Seize the Day: RGGI Leadership More Important Than Ever, Union of Concerned Scientists

State energy plan calls for more renewables, Hartford Business

Massachusetts Town Saves $101,000 in 12 Months with Solar, Energy Manager Today

Analysis: Ratepayers Foot the Bill for Utilities’ Push Against Rooftop Solar, Renewable Energy World

New York will rebuild 78 miles of transmission to meet 50% renewables standard, Utility Dive

Solar farm covering 57 acres in Pittsfield (ME) wins regulators’ OK, Energy Central

Scientist: Hope for the best, prepare for the worst, Cape Cod Times

Energy Efficiency

Energy Efficiency’s Existential Crisis Is Also an Opportunity, Greentech Media

Litchfield High School recognized for energy efficiency, Litchfield County Times

Ultra-Efficient, Economical Apartments Now In South Boston Are Part Of ‘Big Wave’, WBUR

Needham-Newton Businesses Net $2.7M Through Energy Savers Program, Patch.com

Nuclear

Connecticut Gov. Malloy orders financial review of Millstone nuke, Utility Dive

Can Millstone Survive Natural Gas? Malloy Orders State Review, Hartford Courant

Rowley activist: Public hearing needed on Seabrook evacuation plan, Wicked Local Ipswich

Vermont Yankee concerns ‘unfounded,’ companies say, Brattleboro Reformer

VT Yankee closing leads New England colleges to form a green hub training program, NH1 News

Connecticut’s latest energy roadmap likely to raise debate over Millstone, alternative sources, New Haven Register

Report: Advanced Nuclear Tech Could Be Lifeline for Industry, Power

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

Virtual Power Plants & Transactive Energy: How Will They Change the Energy Business?, Microgrid Knowledge

Medway: State approves Exelon water plan, MetroWest Daily News

Monthly Wholesale Electricity Prices and Demand in New England, June 2017, Energy Central

Connecticut updates goals for energy, climate change, CT Mirror

Why We Need More Microgrids for Resilience, but Aren’t Getting Them, Microgrid Knowledge

Healey to DPU: Cut Eversource rates, CommonWealth Magazine

Providence Looks to Switch Sides in Power-Plant Case, ecoRI news

Vermont gov. creates climate commission to reach energy goal, Penn Energy

Utilities spend millions to replace old pipes, lay new wires and update infrastructure in Central Massachusetts, Worcester Telegram

Updated Energy Strategy Hampered By New England’s Congested Grid, WNPR News

National Grid seeking 53-percent rate hike, The Providence Journal

EIA: US residential power sales in decline since 2010, Utility Dive

National Grid talks energy, safety, and efficiency, Daily Item

Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey takes aim at proposed Eversource rate hike, MassLive.com

Would Eversource’s power line reduce property values?, Wicked Local Hudson

Hudson selectmen, residents fear environmental impacts of proposed powerline, Community Advocate

Hiding in plain sight: Aggregated DERs in wholesale power markets, Utility Dive

Northern Pass site visits begin in the North Country, The Union Leader

Northern Pass to withdraw purchase power agreement, The Union Leader

Editorial/Opinion

10 Years After Launch of its Wind Turbine, Jiminy Peak Now Reducing Carbon Footprint, Renewable Energy World

3 takeaways on the offshore wind RFP, CommonWealth Magazine

Expanding energy efficiency, Rutland Herald

Karen Glitman: Efficiency Vermont — yesterday, today and tomorrow, vtdigger.org

Our View: Regional climate compact victim of its own success, Kennebec Journal & Morning Sentinel

Your View: Let’s make New Bedford the US center for offshore wind, SouthCoastToday.com

Susan Schibanoff: Franconia Area Residents Take Northern Pass Concerns To Concord, Caledonian Record

Columnist Kathryn R. Eiseman: Berkshire Gas must update business model, Greenfield Recorder

Leave a comment

Filed under Electricity Costs, Natural Gas Pipelines, Renewables, Vermont Yankee Closing