Energy News for week ending April 27, 2018

Power Struggle | Offshore Wind = 1000s of jobs | Nuclear can be flexible

 

It’s Friday afternoon so it’s time for the weekly Northeast Energy News.

We begin with an article from the Boston Globe about Central Maine Power’s proposed project to bring Canadian hydro to Massachusetts. As the article notes, “Until recently, Central Maine Power’s proposal was considered an also-ran to a similar plan in New Hampshire, called Northern Pass, the initial choice of Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker’s administration to import clean energy.” But like the Northern Pass project, the CMP project also goes through sensitive and important environmental areas and it has some people very unhappy. Others however, are seeing it differently due to incentives. David Abel writes, “In exchange for their support, the company has promised to lavish The Forks and neighbors — small towns that have struggled economically for years — with tens of millions of dollars…Many residents consider those payments bribes, and worry that the pledged money is pitting neighbors against each other. At the same time, they recognize the need for economic aid to offset declining tourism.”

Yesterday, Wind Power Engineering reported that “The Massachusetts Clean Energy Center has released a report on the workforce needs and economic impact of the emerging offshore wind industry, finding that the deployment of 1,600 MW of offshore wind is estimated to create between 2,270 and 3,170 job years — defined as one person working full-time for one year — during construction over the next 10 years and generate between $675 million and $800 million in direct economic output in Massachusetts. The Offshore Wind Workforce Report, sponsored by the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center (MassCEC) and authored by Bristol Community College, UMass Dartmouth and the Massachusetts Maritime Academy, also provides analysis and recommendations to guide the training and development needs for the offshore wind industry workforce in Massachusetts.”

The last article highlight for this week was posted by one of my favorite people on Twitter – Jesse Jenkins of the MIT Energy Initiative. From the article on Energy.MIT.edu, “Nuclear power plants generally operate at full capacity, but they are also technically capable of more flexible operation. This capability lets them respond dynamically to seasonal changes in demand or hourly changes in market prices. Reactors could also provide the standby backup regulation and reserve services needed to balance supply and demand. According to Jenkins, all reactor designs now being licensed or built in the U.S., Canada, and Europe are capable of flexible operation, as are many older reactors now in service. ‘We primarily rely on gas and coal plants to meet all those flexibility needs today, while we operate our nuclear plants fixed, or ‘must-run,’ 24/7,’ says Jenkins. ‘The question here is, what would the benefits be if we stopped operating them so inflexibly, if we started using more of their technical capabilities to ‘ramp’ output up and down on different time scales from seconds to hours to seasons?’ The answer, he says, is less reliance on the gas and coal plants—and more renewable energy integration.”

As always you can find events at Northeast Energy News. Have a great weekend.

 

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Greenfield residents suing city over plans to cut down trees for pipeline, wwlp.com

Does Region Need More Natural Gas? Invenergy’s Final Burrillville Push Begins April 26, ecoRI news

Invenergy has nine or ten contingent water suppliers in Rhode Island and Connecticut says their Attorney, Uprise RI (blog)

Following Spills, PA Stops Pipeline Work At Delaware County Site, WSKG.org

Court: Youngstown anti-fracking amendment must go on ballot, Youngstown Vindicator

Energy Transfer and Sunoco Pipelines Have Leaked Every 11 Days on Average, For 16 Years, Care2.com

Activists head to court after shutting down pipelines. Their defense? Climate change., Grist

NY nixes natural gas pipeline expansion permit, Penn Energy

Nearby communities stepping in to track CPV power plant emissions, Times Herald Record

PSEG urges New Jersey to approve $1.9B gas line replacement program, Utility Dive

 

Renewables Policy/Climate Change/RGGI/etc.

Keeping the balance: How flexible nuclear operation can help add more wind and solar to the grid, MIT Energy Initiative

MIT Clean Energy Prize rewards student innovation, MIT News

Scott Pruitt wades into a fraught science debate, declaring biomass burning ‘carbon neutral,’ Washington Post

New York launches next large-scale renewables procurement round, Recharge

The Northeast US has a carbon-trading system. It is boosting, not hurting, state economies., Vox

The Carbon Tax Could Come Soon To A State Near You, Law360

The Fighting Has Begun Over Who Owns Land Drowned by Climate Change, Bloomberg

2 Clark University Expert Authors On Report On Climate Change, Patch.com

U.S. Department of Energy announces $2.4 million in funding for fish passage technologies research programs, Hydro-World

 

Wind

New Massachusetts report finds 1600 MW of offshore wind would create thousands of jobs, Windpower Engineering

Opponents seek suspension of Antrim Wind Energy’s construction certificate, National Wind Watch

Savoy rejects wind turbine building permit; developer plans appeal, National Wind Watch

Convoys of huge wind turbine parts move through western NY, Penn Energy

Selection of offshore wind providers delayed one month, South Coast Today

Advocates Seek More Momentum for Massachusetts Offshore Wind, Renewable Energy World

Trump likes coal, but that doesn’t mean he’s hostile to wind, Washington Post

Winds of change calmed: PGC declares moratorium on wind turbines, National Wind Watch

How Windmills as Wide as Jumbo Jets Are Making Clean Energy Mainstream, New York Times

World’s Largest Offshore Wind Turbine Can Power 16000 Homes, EcoWatch

Offshore wind farms concern fisherpeople, The Brown Daily Herald

NextEra CEO Robo slams US offshore wind as ‘bad business’, Recharge

 

Solar

Solect expands to Illinois, Worcester Business Journal

New Bipartisan Legislation Would Repeal Trump’s Solar Tariffs, Greentech Media

Regional planners balk at part of solar project, Rutland Herald

Amherst among 5 New England colleges partnering on solar facility in Maine, wwlp.com

Londonderry Superfund site eyed for big solar array, New Hampshire Business Review

NH House panel passes a new fix to net metering bill, New Hampshire Business Review

Solar Generation, Energy Storage System Completed at SUNY New Paltz, Hudson Valley News Network

City Weighs New Regulations After ‘Solar Monster’ Complaints, CBS Boston / WBZ

Darien company installs a 129 kilowatt solar array on the roof, wins award, The Darien News

Freeport is considering a municipal solar energy project, CentralMaine.com

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

In Massachusetts, Energy Storage Has Allies in High Places, Greentech Media

FERC Order 845 opens door a little wider for energy storage, Utility Dive

Massachusetts Is Staring Down a Duck Curve of Its Own. Storage Could Help, Greentech Media

Falling Grid-Scale Storage Prices Create “Watershed Moment”, CleanTechnica

New York Boosts Efficiency Target, Makes Way for More Solar and Energy Storage, Greentech Media

2 buildings in Orange targeted for energy efficiency upgrades, The Recorder

Lockheed says ‘flow’ battery will boost use of renewable power, Reuters

 

EVs

The electric vehicle boom is coming. What can we learn from early adopters?, ensia.com

New York agencies propose shifting EV fast chargers to non-demand charges, Utility Dive

Utilities boost electric car incentives, (VT) Energy Central

ABB launches what it says is world’s fastest EV charger, PV Magazine

New York regulators to mull advancing EV market with new proceeding, Utility Dive

Convenience at Heart of New US Ultra-Fast EV Charging Network, Renewable Energy World

 

Nuclear

Keeping the balance: How flexible nuclear operation can help add more wind and solar to the grid, MIT Energy Initiative

Pilgrim officials consider moving nuclear waste to higher ground, Boston Globe

NY nuclear plant resumes service after scheduled outage, Penn Energy

Update on the decommissioning of Vermont Yankee Nuclear Power Plant, vtdigger.org

NRC hosts meeting on safety of Seabrook nuke plant, Seacoastonline.com

 

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

Will a transmission line run through the wilds of Maine?, Boston Globe

US regulator considers value of resiliency, World Nuclear News

New York to launch utility energy registry this summer in data-gathering effort, Utility Dive

FERC Commissioners Testify on Energy Infrastructure, Resiliency, State-Federal Tensions, Lexology

National Grid customers won’t see relief for months, The Daily News of Newburyport

Eversource devotes $80M to tree trimming, hazardous tree removal, CT Post

Eversource, UI hit hard in new customer value survey, New Haven Register

Eversource Continues Natural Gas Expansion In Darien, Patch.com

New England line would have to take the scenic route, E&E News

 

Editorial/Opinion

Why you’ll pay for Beacon Hill’s pipeline folly, Boston Globe

We need a RGGI for transportation, CommonWealth Magazine

Maine needs zones free of windmills, power lines, Press Herald

Legislation will help lower electric bills for all ratepayers, Energy Central/Concord Monitor

Fears about blackouts increasing, CommonWealth Magazine

Infrastructure Necessary for Energy Independence, Everett Independent

Nancy Stiles: Energy-efficiency funds important for schools, towns, state’s 10-year strategy, Concord Monitor

Bold Ideas to Address Society’s Energy Issues Deserve Consideration, not Dismissal, ecoRI news

Quebec hydro line is not without environmental costs, Bangor Daily News

Confessions of a former carbon tax skeptic, Washington Examiner

Dick Henry: Legislation will help lower electric bills for all ratepayers, Concord Monitor

Letter to the editor: Excuse from CMP wanted as electric bills defy logic, Press Herald

Natural gas essential to New York’s energy mix, Albany Times Union

Robert Thorson: US Backs Big Oil Against Tiny Arctic Tribe, Hartford Courant

Letter: Conservative Law Foundation is right about Vermont Yankee, Brattleboro Reformer

Offshore wind energy right for Connecticut, The Day

 

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Filed under Electricity Costs, New England Energy News, Northeast Energy News, nuclear, offshore wind, Renewables, solar

Energy News for week ending April 20, 2018

RGGI Pays Off | Palm Trees | Sox Go Green

 

Happy Friday Afternoon.

First up in the news this week is from Inside Climate News where we learn that our friends at the Analysis Group released a report Tuesday about the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) that showed some unexpected benefits. They report, “The nine Eastern states gained $1.4 billion in economic benefits from RGGI over the past three years because of the way they invested proceeds from the cap-and-trade program…The biggest payoff came in investments in energy efficiency programs, which have led to more businesses and jobs in activities such as energy audits and installing energy-efficiency equipment. The analysts also found that the cap-and-trade system has not undermined the reliability of the electricity grid, and it has not led to a net increase in electricity bills.”

Who doesn’t love palm trees? Greentech Media reports “A team of researchers is working to complete the design for a novel 50-megawatt offshore wind turbine…The blades for the so-called Segmented Ultralight Morphing Rotor (SUMR) wind turbine would…face downwind. The “go-with-the-flow” design was inspired by palm trees, which have evolved to withstand hurricane gales. Just as palm fronds bend and yield to the direction of the wind, the segmented blades for the SUMR turbine will fold together, aligned with the wind direction, in strong winds.”

The Red Sox are on quite a roll this season. For some activists though the chant of “Let’s Go Red Sox” should be “Sox Go Green.” From the Eagle Tribune, “Fenway Park already has its Green Monster — and now environmental activists want the whole ballpark to ‘go green’… activists from Environment Massachusetts and MASSPIRG Students have announced the launch of their “Sox Go Green” campaign. They’re asking the franchise to obtain 100 percent of the energy used for Fenway Park, team operations, and the team’s spring training facility in Florida from renewable resources like solar and wind power within five years.” Whatever the Red Sox decide, we certainly don’t want them to change whatever energy they have going in their bats right now.

As always you can find energy events at Northeast Energy News. Have a great weekend.

 

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

FERC issues NOI seeking comments on gas pipeline evaluations, Utility Dive

Zinke hints at Maine exemption for offshore gas drilling, Penn Energy

For public hearing on fracking, public shows up, but hearing is delayed, Thehour.com

Oil leaking into Mystic River in Boston believed to be coming from Eversource pipe, The Boston Globe

Footprint cuts ties with Iberdrola, The Salem News

Two years after pipeline shelved, opposition groups continue fighting fossil fuel development, The Keene Sentinel

Columbia Gas seeks rate hike, MassLive.com

As FERC Review of NatGas Pipeline Policy Nears, House Lawmakers Divided Over Priorities, Natural Gas Intelligence

FERC Whipsawed on Pipeline Policy in House Hearing, RTO Insider

Parents Didn’t Want Fracking Near Their School. So the Oil Company Chose a Poorer School, Instead., Mother Jones

The Secret of the Great American Fracking Bubble, DeSmog

 

Renewables/Climate Change/RGGI

Greenhouse gas emissions from power plants plunge, EPA report shows, Washington Examiner

Going Green? Activists push Red Sox to use 100 percent renewable energy, Eagle Tribune

Bills setting 100 percent renewable energy goal for Pa. draws bi-partisan support, PennLive

Carbon Markets Pay Off for These States as New Businesses, Jobs Spring Up, InsideClimate News

Green Mountain Power’s Distributed Energy Business Isn’t Scaling Fast Enough, Greentech Media

Danbury-based company submits seven fuel cell proposals for energy procurement, New Haven Register

 

Wind

Fishermen air concerns about Vineyard Wind, MV Times

Connecticut Evaluates Bids for First Offshore Wind Farm, Engineering News Record

Concerns, support aired at offshore wind hearings in Hyannis, on Nantucket, Cape Cod Times

Fate of Fall River waterfront waits on offshore wind decision, Herald News

How fishermen could thwart Cuomo’s offshore wind master plan, City and State NY

US East Coast Offshore Wind Benefits Vary Significantly Depending On Location, Finds Berkeley Lab, CleanTechnica

Design for 50-MW Offshore Wind Turbine Inspired by Hurricane-Resilient Palm Trees, Greentech Media

Cape Cod Chamber Supporting Competitive Offshore Wind Development, CapeCod.com News

Construction unions back Bay State Wind project, SouthCoastToday.com

New Massachusetts offshore wind energy auction, and New Jersey project gets a boost, WorkBoat

 

Solar

WorkinCT: Greenskies bringing solar energy to Connecticut schools, FOX 61

Bifacial Plus Tracking Boosts Solar Energy Yield by 27 Percent, Greentech Media

Low-income housing represents huge solar opportunity, new study from NREL finds, Solar Power World

New Brunswick’s first solar farm located near Sussex, Global News

 

Energy Efficiency

From Lenox to Nantucket, 36 Massachusetts communities get state energy efficiency grants; see how much your city or town got, MassLive

Rigorous Energy Standards Should Put Massachusetts Growers on Alert for Best Practices, Compliance, Cannabis Business Times

Eversource agreement with Lindt could serve as energy saving template for state, Seacoastonline.com

New York state unveils energy efficient standards, CT Post
Over 100 Groups Call on Gov to Lead Nation on Energy Efficiency
, Artvoice

Shining new light on Smith Hill: RI shows off new State House lighting system, WPRI 12 Eyewitness News

Grafton sees cost savings from energy contract, Worcester Telegram

 

Energy Storage

Energy storage problem dates back to the ol mill pond, Energy Central

Graphene Could Be Next Battery Breakthrough, Renewable Energy World

New Jersey Gets 40 MWh of New Utility-Scale Energy Storage, Renewable Energy World

Report: Gravity-based energy storage could prove cheaper than batteries, Business Green

Tesla is teaming up with BP on an energy storage project, Business Insider

New Jersey could get 2GW of storage to help reach 50% renewables target, Energy Storage News

New York advances REV, moves to bring more energy storage online, Utility Dive

 

Nuclear

States Are Breathing New Air Into Nuclear Energy To Preserve Jobs And Environment, Forbes

EPSA rails against FirstEnergy emergency request, New Jersey nuke subsidies, Utility Dive

Report: Losing FirstEnergy’s Nuclear Fleet Would Wipe Out Two Decades of Solar and Wind Progress, Greentech Media

C-10 allowed to challenge Seabrook nuclear plant relicensing, Seacoastonline.com

Debate over Millstone rages on, theday.com

Environmentalists and Nuclear Power? It’s Complicated, New York Times

Feds seek financial data on sale of Vermont nuke to private decommissioning firm, MassLive.com

Exelon, FE nuke closures would reverse PJM wind, solar benefits: Brattle report, Utility Dive

MIT Spin-off Faces Daunting Challenges on Path to Build a Fusion Power Plant in 15 Years, IEEE Spectrum

 

Electric Vehicles

Short term pain for long term gain: EPRI assesses expanding US electrification, Utility Dive

Wireless Charging Seen as a Game Changer for EV Infrastructure, Renewable Energy World

 

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

Electricity Demand, Prices Heat Up After 2017 Slowdown, Commercial Property Executive

New State Energy Policy Aims to Lower Rates, Let Nuclear & Gas Compete With Renewables, NHPR

Connecticut utility regulators slash Eversource Energy’s distribution rate hike request, New Haven Register

New Hampshire governor’s energy plan leans on nuclear, gas, Utility Dive

Sen. Murphy calls for investigation into Eversource’s high shutoff rates, The Ridgefield Press

Central Maine Power responds to higher-than-average electricity bills, Kennebec Journal & Morning Sentinel

Utility Could Set Standard for Reducing Energy Costs, U.S. News & World Report

Exelon, ISO Hopeful on Stopping Proposed Closure, Everett Independent

Northern Pass Back Before NH SEC Next Month, New Hampshire Public Radio

RI regulators ask PUC to slash National Grid’s requested rate hikes, The Providence Journal

Over 500 National Grid Employees to Volunteer on Earth Day, GoLocalProv

 

Editorial/Opinion

LETTER: Closure of Pilgrim Power Plant would result in additional CO2 emissions, Wicked Local Yarmouth

American energy dominance means Mass. Wind, Boston Globe

Costly infrastructure is driving up Maine’s electricity costs, Bangor Daily News

Getting to grid modernization, CommonWealth Magazine

Editorial: Wishing away our energy challenges, The Providence Journal

My Turn: Matt Brown: Wind turbines off coast can provide energy RI needs, The Providence Journal

Letter: The high price of fracking, Concord Monitor

Op Ed: Offshore Wind Competition Benefits Massachusetts, Cape Cod Today

Letter to the editor: Maine PUC should back offshore wind development, Press Herald

Letter: State, utilities need to take energy strategy seriously, Concord Monitor

Shame on legislators who voted against solar, Kennebec Journal & Morning Sentinel

Letter: Richard H. Lee: Governor’s criticism of National Grid ignored facts, The Providence Journal

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

Energy News for week ending April 13, 2018

Billions needed | Sometime in May | Horror Story

Happy Friday afternoon.

Let’s start off with a climate change story from today’s Boston Globe that shows the region is in for some serious costs when it comes to climate change mitigation. Globe reporter Milton Valencia writes, “A report to be released Friday by the University of Massachusetts points to the challenges the city and the region face in funding solutions to combat climate change, with local neighborhood projects expected to amount to $2.4 billion…A separate UMass team is looking at the feasibility and usefulness of a 4-mile barrier wall that would be constructed in the Boston Harbor that could protect the city’s coastal areas from storm surges. Estimates for that project range from $7 billion to $15 billion.”

One of Massachusetts’ efforts to increase the amount of renewable energy to combat climate change will be a bit delayed. From South Coast Today, “A decision on the state’s first offshore wind contract could come in May, Gov. Charlie Baker said Tuesday. ‘That decision will probably happen, I’m guessing, sometime in May,’ Baker said during a stop at The Standard-Times while he was visiting the South Coast. ‘If the date slips, it will slip a little; it won’t slip a lot.’”

What do you think – is it a horror story here or is this just a bunch of hyperbole? A story from the Washington Examiner states, “New England is struggling to keep the lights on as it pursues aggressive clean energy goals, a dilemma that is so troublesome that the region’s power grid operator warns of blackouts if something doesn’t change. ‘I am getting nervous in New England,’ said Robert Powelson, a Republican commissioner of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, which oversees wholesale power markets, during a recent event hosted by the American Council on Renewable Energy. ‘It is almost like a horror story.’”

OK – that’s the recap for this week. You can find more news and events at Northeast Energy News.

Enjoy the long weekend (if you’re fortunate to have the day off). And here’s wishing good luck to all those running Monday’s Boston Marathon.

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Whitehouse preps bill directing study, pilot program for natural gas demand response, Utility Dive

Final Hearings Begin For Proposed Natural Gas Power Plant In Burrillville, Rhode Island Public Radio

Burrillville, Invenergy settle dispute over alleged misrepresentations about power plant proposal, The Providence Journal

Witness: Burrillville plant could cost ratepayers $14M more, The Providence Journal

What Will It Take to Keep Up With Shale Gas Boom? $170 Billion, Bloomberg

Prometheus Energy And National Grid Complete A Successful Winter Peaking Project In Rhode Island, Oil and Gas Online

Natural Gas Expansion Project Underway In Darien, Patch.com

 

Renewables Policy/Climate Change/RGGI

UMass report cautions billions needed for local climate change preparations, Boston Globe

RGGI states call for tighter cap, consistent language in Virginia cap-and-trade programme, Carbon Pulse

Carbon taxes could make significant dent in climate change, study finds, MIT News

Federal Power Rules Threaten New England Renewable Energy, Natural Resources Defense Council

How The New England Aquarium Seeks To Urge Visitors To Act On Climate Change, WNPR News

Advocates ask Red Sox to go green, Metro US

Apple’s Entire Business Is Now Being Powered With Clean Energy, Bloomberg

Exeter town council tables hearings on renewable energy, RICentral.com

 

Wind

Baker: Offshore wind decision likely in May, South Coast Today

24-MW New Jersey Offshore Wind Farm May Be Online By 2020, Renewable Energy World

Fishing industry wants limits, delay on offshore wind rollout, Worcester Business Journal

Vineyard Wind plans operations facility on island, Cape Cod Times

The Biggest Problem for Offshore Wind in the United States Might Be the Ports, gcaptain.com

Hoping for a state contract, Bay State Wind offers more than $2 million in environmental research grants, SouthCoastToday.com

President Trump Expands Wind Leases Off Martha’s Vineyard, The Vineyard Gazette – Martha’s Vineyard News

UMass Dartmouth to study economic impact of offshore wind on Bay State, Boston Business Journal

The US Wind Sector Toasts Trump’s New Love of Offshore, Greentech Media

To See Offshore Wind Energy’s Future, Look on Shore – in Massachusetts, InsideClimate News

Fishing Industry Wants New Bedford Port Authority to Facilitate Offshore Wind, wbsm.com

 

Solar

Westport Announces New Partnership With Windham Solar, LLC, Patch.com

Rain won’t go through solar panels, so Concord plan gets nixed, Concord Monitor

Massachusetts Nonprofit Makes The Switch To Solar, Solar Industry

Solar Incentives to be Phased Out in Maine, Power Engineering

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

A Plug for Plug Load: NY Needs Appliance Efficiency Standard, Natural Resources Defense Council

Town Meeting says ‘no’ to stretch code, Wicked Local Falmouth

Building Energy Codes Can REV Up NYS Energy Efficiency, Natural Resources Defense Council

America Leads Global Energy Storage Development, But China’s Catching Up, Greentech Media

Estimating the Value of Energy Efficiency to Reduce Wholesale Energy Price Volatility, (Report) ACEEE

 

Nuclear

NRC Wants More Financial Details Before Approving Vermont Yankee Sale, VPR

New Jersey Takes a Big Step Toward Renewable Energy (and Nuclear Gets Help, for Now), New York Times

Nuclear Regulatory Commission OKs repairs to Indian Point reactor after leak, The Journal News | LoHud.com

Riverkeeper pledges legal action against efforts to replace Indian Point energy with gas, The Journal News | LoHud.com

Budget Plan Allocates $24 Million for Closing Power Plants ,Westchester Magazine

Feds OK emergency planning changes at Vermont Yankee, Brattleboro Reformer

As Fossil Fuels Melt the Planet, Could Climate Change Cause a Nuclear Meltdown?, Climate Science Watch

Environmentalists split on letting carbon-free nuclear power die, Washington Examiner

First Small-Scale Nuclear Reactor May Be Just Eight Years Away, Bloomberg

Lawmakers, advisory panel plot Pilgrim’s future, Cape Cod Times

 

EVs

Volkswagen’s Dieselgate Settlement Billions Are Funding Electric Vehicle Charging Corridors. Can They Help Overcome Range Anxiety?, The Energy Collective

Why PG&E, National Grid and Enel are charging up to power EVs, GreenBiz

 

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

Report: Worcester, Springfield top Massachusetts cities for inflated ‘competitive supply’ electricity rates, MassLive

CMP’s Kennebec River Gorge deal never came to fruition, Maine Public

Rick Perry: Emergency Action May Not Be the Way to Save Coal and Nuclear, Greentech Media

NYPA proposes rebuilding North-South transmission lines to bolster renewable energy, Utility Dive

New Hampshire utility proposes virtual power plant with Tesla Powerwalls, Utility Dive

Independent audit of soaring CMP bills may not yield answers until end of this year, Press Herald

Tesla delivered massive batch of 2,000 Powerwalls to Vermont electric utility, only ~10% installed, Electrek

Document: 97000 accounts part of Central Maine Power investigation, WABI

New England faces ‘horror story’ of expensive power, Washington Examiner

MISO states push for authority over DER in electricity markets at FERC meeting, Utility Dive

Franklin County: National Grid gouged broadband fund, Glens Falls Post-Star

Eversource: Connecticut customers’ data not compromised in cyberattack, New Haven Register

New Transformer Will Enhance Reliability for Eversource Customers, Londonderry News

Independents and Utilities at Odds Over Who Builds Microgrids in Maryland, Microgrid Knowledge

NYPA continues digital transformation as New York funds grid upgrades, Utility Dive

 

Editorial/Opinion

Hats off to North Attleboro, Mansfield electric departments, Sun Chronicle

Go bigger with offshore wind procurement, CommonWealth Magazine

Turbines Not By-Right Use – Letter, Capenews.net

Tom Sullivan: Environmental activists ignore energy security realities, Concord Monitor

Letter: New England needs solar and hydro, Concord Monitor

Opposition to power plant is widespread, Valley Breeze

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

Energy News for week ending April 6, 2018

Home rating | Drive electric | Hearing on Competitive Suppliers

Good Friday afternoon – albeit a temporarily snowy one. Let’s dive into what we’re reading this week.

What grade will your house get? From the Worcester Business Journal, “A home energy efficiency score would eventually become part of the valuation of all homes on the market in Massachusetts under legislation Gov. Charlie Baker filed on Tuesday to elevate awareness of home energy efficiency and target the residential sector for greenhouse gas emission reductions. Under the bill, [by 2021] home energy auditors would be required to provide homeowners with an easy to understand scorecard that would grade a home’s energy efficiency and provide recommendations for how the home’s energy performance could be improved. While the proposal was cheered by the environmental community, realtors expressed reservations…‘If someone doesn’t have the resources to improve their home it will just be like a scarlet letter on their home,’ said Michael McDonagh, of the Massachusetts Association of Realtors.”

Be on the lookout for a new EV ad campaign. According to an article in Green Car Reports, “16 major automakers are joining forces with seven states to promote sales of electric vehicles to consumers. The Alliance for Automobile Manufacturers announced it would launch two separate marketing campaigns – ‘Drive Change, Drive Electric’ and ‘Buyers Wanted’ in New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Vermont and New Jersey…EV advocates have long noted that consumers need more education about the benefits of electrics, and these ads will provide it, focusing on performance, affordability, choice, and convenience.”

Last for this week is a follow-up story to last week’s news that Mass AG Maura Healey would like to roll back competitive supply in the residential market. From the Lowell Sun, “House and Senate lawmakers are gearing up to hold an oversight hearing to question companies cited by Healey about what she described as deceptive business practices. The Joint Committee on Telecommunications, Utilities and Energy…is planning the hearing, according to the committee, to ‘consider immediate protective measures and the implications of those actions,’ learn about best practices in other states and explore issues related to the market that Healey said were beyond the scope of her review…The date for the hearing has not yet been scheduled.”

As always you can find events at Northeast Energy News. Have a great weekend.

 

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Utility Regulators Want Review Of Vermont Gas Pipeline Construction, Vermont Public Radio

Cyberattack Shows Vulnerability of Gas Pipeline Network, New York Times

Four Gas Pipeline Data Systems Shut Down as Cyberattack Hits, Bloomberg

Algonquin natural gas pipeline in US Northeast delays significant Apr 4 maintenance, Platts

Kinder Morgan still has NGL pipeline plan on pause, Danville Advocate

TransCanada completes Northwest Mainline Loop-Boundary Lake pipeline expansion, Daily Energy Insider

Residents curious, wary about natural gas expansion, Newcanaannewsonline

 

Renewables Policy/Climate Change/RGGI, etc.

Carbon taxes can be both fair and effective, study shows, Science Daily

Sometimes Fighting Climate Change Means Breaking the Law, The New Yorker

Local N.H. Conservation, Climate Groups Launch Renewable Energy Campaign, NHPR

Climate change threatens ski industry, Stowe Reporter

Virginia Supreme Court upholds 100% renewable energy option, PV Magazine

Lawmaker tries to steer investments toward renewable energy, WJAR

Beaton: Natural gas not part of Massachusetts ‘clean peak’ standard, Worcester Telegram

Sometimes Fighting Climate Change Means Breaking the Law, New Yorker

Attorney General Maura Healey, other states sue EPA for not enforcing pollution controls, MassLive

ITM Power secures MassCEC’s grant for power-to-gas feasibility study, Power Distribution Utilities Network

Hancock County residents protest Brookfield’s dam operations, MaineBiz

Carbon Tax Bill Moves Slowly Despite Need for Urgency, ecoRI news

Green energy gets cool response at hearing in Exeter, The Providence Journal

Maine regulators approve partial subsidy to keep biomass power plants alive, Press Herald

Biomass owners say director of logging trade group is bad-mouthing business, Press Herald

 

Wind

Ørsted & Eversource Announce 200 Megawatt Connecticut Offshore Wind Farm, CleanTechnica

Three wind power projects submitted to Connecticut DEEP, New Haven Register

Effort to build offshore wind industry in Maine may hinge on 73 cents, Press Herald

Sara Lee Cake Maker Buys Wind Credits to Offset Your Dessert, Bloomberg

BOEM seeks mariners’ input on East Coast wind energy sites, WorkBoat

AEG plans to build US offshore wind vessel fleet, port facilities, Renewables Now

Atlantic wind boost on US menu, reNews

Offshore wind projects make headway, Cape Cod Times

Offshore wind blows new life into dormant partnership, NJ Spotlight

Federal Agency To Study Effects Of Electric Pulses From Proposed Wind Farm On Fish, 27East.com

Moody’s likes the look of NJ, other northeastern states, for offshore wind, NJSpotlight.com

Turbine parts to be made in MA, Bay State Wind says, South Coast Today

Delays likely in offshore wind procurement, CommonWealth Magazine

Murphy: Danish off-shore wind firm coming to Atlantic City, Penn Energy

 

Solar

Green Lantern receives CPG for solar array at former Newfane dump, Commons

Town council to reexamine solar ordinance, Ricentral.com

Portland Highlighted for Solar Progress in New Report, Environment Maine

Shining Cities 2018: How Smart Local Policies Are Expanding Solar Power in America, Environment Maine

Maine solar advocates powerless again as House upholds LePage’s veto by 3 votes, Press Herald

LIPA trustees won’t delay new solar energy compensation plan, Newsday

German Developer of Solar + Storage “Smart Flower” Quietly Goes Insolvent, Renewable Energy World

Home Solar Dims as Tesla, Others Curb Aggressive Sales, Wall Street Journal (pay wall)

Longmeadow to participate in solarize program, The Reminder

Solar farms now allowed outside of industrial-zoned areas, The Reminder

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

Baker proposal would rate homes on energy efficiency, Worcester Business Journal

Energy efficiency, rooftop solar to trim New England power usage, draft report says, Utility Dive

As DC retreats, NY goes all-in on energy efficiency, Crain’s New York Business

Efficiency Vermont recognized as Energy Star partner by EPA, Vermont Biz

 

Nuclear

Vermont Yankee’s fuel move is still on hold, Rutland Herald

Amid arguments and warnings, nuclear subsidy bill clears committee, NJ Spotlight

Auction pushes forward for zero-carbon resources, including Millstone, The Day

FirstEnergy Seeks Bankruptcy Protection for Ailing Coal and Nuclear Subsidiaries, Greentech Media

 

EVs

Buyers in seven Northeast states urged to consider electric cars, Green Car Reports

Gas stations pivot to address the threat from electric vehicles, Teslarati

Pennsylvania Driving Toward an Electrifying Win, NRDC

Eversource to Invest $45 Million in Electric Vehicle Charging Ports, CapeCod.com News

 

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

Legislature plans hearing into competitive electric supply market, Lowell Sun

Electric supply exec blasts Healey’s ‘one-sided report,‘ Lowell Sun

How to Build a Foundation for New Utility Business Models, Greentech Media

The Microgrid Way: Going Green with Solar & Supercapacitor-based Energy Storage, Microgrid Knowledge

Exelon plays power politics, CommonWealth Magazine

Sandwich power plant sold, Cape Cod Times

New York is changing the face of energy innovation, Utility Dive

Spring forward: European grid fixes lag that slowed clocks, Penn Energy

Baker treads softly on Healey proposal, CommonWealth Magazine

Grid operator raises alarm at Mystic shutdown, CommonWealth Magazine

Updated: ISO-NE seeks to keep 1,600 MW of gas generation from retirement, Utility Dive

Somerset power plant closure will raise water and sewer fees, Southcoastonline.com

CMP customers disputing high bills must pay a portion of them, Press Herald

State lawmakers say customers shouldn’t have to pay for CMP investigation, WGME

I-Team: PUC changes disconnect rules during CMP investigation, WGME

Cyberattack Bleeds Into the Utility Industry, Bloomberg

Emissions and Dispatch Top Talk at NY Task Force, RTO Insider

Connecticut grid test planned for May, Thehour.com

Hydro-Québec partner plans appeal in New Hampshire for Northern Pass project, Montreal Gazette

National Grid names new New York president, Albany Times Union

 

Editorial/Opinion

Editorial: Renewable energy’s challenges and challengers, Worcester Telegram

Op-Ed: New Jersey’s Path to Zero-Subsidy Offshore-Wind Bids, NJ Spotlight

All Americans want cleaner, safer sources of energy to be encouraged, The Laconia Daily Sun

Lawmakers have third chance to avert higher electricity costs for all Mainers, Bangor Daily News

Hildt’s view: Remembering TMI, thankful for C-10, The Daily News of Newburyport

Op-Ed: Why Private Investors Must Fund ‘New Nuclear’ Power Right Now, Harvard Business School Working Knowledge

My recipe for embracing renewables, CommonWealth Magazine

Tony Giunta: The ripple effect of high electricity prices, Concord Monitor

The simple argument for keeping nuclear power plants open, Vox.com

Letter to the Editor: Pushing for a clean energy future, Daily Free Press

Lawmakers have third chance to avert higher electricity costs for all Mainers, Bangor Daily News

Push back against Central Maine Power, Press Herald

Letter: Stephen J. Nelson: Raise National Grid’s costs when customers lose power, Providence Journal

Tweak needed for clean peak standard, CommonWealth Magazine

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

Energy News for week ending March 30, 2018

We’re on to Maine | Shut it down | A look inside

Happy Friday afternoon.

The big news this week, as Bill Belichick might say, is “We’re on to Maine.” In a succinctly worded announcement on the Massachusetts Clean Energy website, the new direction for the clean energy procurement went from Eversource’s Northern Pass project to Central Maine Power’s New England Clean Energy Connect 100% Hydro project. The announcement read in part, “The Electric Distributions Companies are in the process of concluding contract negotiations with the New England Clean Energy Connect 100% Hydro project (“NECEC Hydro”) and intend to execute agreements with NECEC Hydro for submittal to the Department of Public Utilities, assuming negotiations are concluded successfully.” For your reading enjoyment, we have included a whole section of stories related to this news.

But even before the Clean Energy Connect news broke, the Press Herald reported that new opposition is “ramping up” to CMP’s project. Tux Turkel writes, “A trio of companies, (Calpine Corp., Dynegy Inc., and Bucksport Generation LLC) which together own one-third of Maine’s generating capacity, say subsidized power from Canada could upend New England’s competitive, wholesale electric market and make some existing power plants in Maine too costly to run when they’re needed. They also say a big slug of power from Hydro-Quebec over a high-voltage, direct current line will make it technically difficult for new Maine-based wind and solar to connect to the region’s electric grid.

Normally when you hear, “shut it down” in the energy industry, it usually comes from anti-nuclear or anti-gas protesters. But this week it was Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey who is aiming to shut down the residential competitive supply market. According to a story on WGBH News by Colin Young of the State House News Service, “Electric customers in Massachusetts who switched to a competitive electric supplier paid $176.8 million more than they would have had they stayed with their utility company from July 2015 to June 2017, the two-year period during which Healey’s office was investigating the industry, her office announced…Healey said she plans to work with the Legislature, the Department of Public Utilities and the energy industry “to close down the market for individual residential competitive electric supply in Massachusetts.”

I have to say, as someone who has hung up on countless suppliers, had debates at my front door with electric supply salespersons, and counseled volunteers working with the elderly who have switched suppliers multiple times and faced huge penalties – at a minimum something needs to be done to reign in deceptive practices and to get the bad actors out of the game. The good news is that AG Healey already did that with Viridian, as was reported in the Boston Globe “An electricity supplier will pay $5 million to settle claims of deceptive marketing and sales tactics that resulted in consumers being overcharged, according to state Attorney General Maura Healey’s office. In addition to the settlement payout announced Wednesday, Viridian Energy LLC of Norwalk, Conn., agreed it would not market its electricity supply door-to-door in Massachusetts for the next two years and that it would change some of its marketing methods.” Hear, Hear!

Last for this week is a recently released video from ISO New England that “takes you inside the ISO, showcasing how the grid operator keeps the lights on across New England – today and in the future. Shot at the ISO offices and throughout New England, the video looks at the transformation occurring in New England, as the region transitions from a grid powered by oil and coal plants to one more reliant on renewable energy.”

As always you can find more news and events at Northeast Energy News. Have a great weekend.

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

It’s the No. 1 Power Source, but Natural Gas Faces Headwinds, New York Times

State Lawmaker Secretly Sends Constituent’s Emails to Gas Pipeline Lobbyist, (MA) Huffington Post

National Grid proposes gas line along bike path, Glens Falls Post-Star

Natural gas expansion project starts in April, New Canaan Advertiser

Judge rules civil disobedience a ‘necessity’ to prevent climate change, ThinkProgress

West Roxbury Lateral Pipeline in Boston Criminal Trial Downgraded, Patch.com

Natural Gas Act preempts local efforts to preclude construction of compressor station, Lexology

 

Renewables/Climate Change/RGGI

Bill Adds Wood to RI’s Renewable-Energy Portfolio, ecoRI news

New Jersey foresees RGGI re-entry in 2019, Carbon Pulse

Massachusetts announces funding for woodstove rebate program, Biomass Magazine

Trump to allow more car pollution. But by how much?, EandE News

Walsh: Despite cost, city must stem climate change tide, Boston Herald

Renewables or Nuclear? A New Front in the Academic War Over Decarbonization, Greentech Media

 

Wind

800 Megawatt Bay State Wind US Offshore Project Partners To Combine Energy Storage, CleanTechnica

Is Offshore Wind a Better Deal With Batteries?, Greentech Media

Deepwater commits to making foundations in Massachusetts, Recharge

Hopkinton residents receive letter from wind company offering payments on electric bills, Watertown (NY) Daily News

Deepwater’s Offshore Wind Plans Could Revolutionize Mass. Workforce and Offshore Wind Industry, Renewable Energy World

Deepwater Wind narrows locations to New Bedford, Fall River or Somerset, South Coast Today

Vineyard Wind to do 3rd round of marine surveys, South Coast Today

BOEM seeks public comment on proposed offshore Massachusetts wind farm, Windpower Engineering and Development

Governor looking to kill wind power, Sun Journal

 

Solar

Solar facility proposed for former landfill, The Laconia Daily Sun

Solar developer in a vortex of court filings, Bennington Banner

MWRTA installing solar canopy in Framingham, MetroWest Daily News

Solar Power Energy Payback Time Is Now Super Short, CleanTechnica

Moratorium on solar farms sought in Charlton, Worcester Telegram

New Energy Plan Clears Legislative Committee, But More Changes Expected, Hartford Courant

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

Environmental groups call on Senate to support energy-efficiency bill, WMUR Manchester

Annual Update on Energy Efficiency from America’s Utilities, Natural Resources Defense Council

Good News: Congress Stands Up for Energy Efficiency with Omnibus Bill, ACEEE Press Release

Mass Save beginning in Brockton through Revise Energy, Cape Verdean Association, Enterprise

 

Nuclear

Companies propose solution for Vermont Yankee spent fuel, Brattleboro Reformer

Tainted water shipments continue at Vermont Yankee, Brattleboro Reformer

Vt. Yankee citizens panel reviews decommissioning memo, The Recorder

Indian Point Nuclear Power Plant Begins Final Refueling, The Examiner News

ITER nuclear fusion project avoids delays as U.S. doubles budget, Reuters

Del. Group Seeks to Block Artificial Island Project, RTO Insider

As Nuclear Plant Closes, Fears Shift From Contamination to Financial Pain, Wall Street Journal

FirstEnergy Solutions will close its nuclear power plants, but is silent on bankruptcy restructuring (photos), Plain Dealer

Pilgrim review draws support, criticism, Cape Cod Times

 

83D Mass RFP

Unexpected foes emerge to CMP’s plan to build transmission line to Canada, Press Herald

Three companies seek to block CMP’s Hydro Quebec transmission project, Mainebiz

$950M power grid project could tunnel under Kennebec River Gorge, Bangor Daily News

Baker pulls the plug on Eversource, The Boston Globe

In reversal, Massachusetts puts CMP in lead position for $950 million power line project, Press Herald

Massachusetts pulls out of Northern Pass energy deal, WMUR Manchester

Avangrid Wins Mega Transmission Project In New England, Forbes

Massachusetts Sinks Eversource Power Project, Picks Avangrid (1), Bloomberg BNA

Mass. And Utilities Ditch NH-Routed Northern Pass For Hydro Project Through Maine, WBUR

Maine In, NH Out for Energy Contract with Massachusetts, New Hampshire Public Radio

NH Site Evaluation Committee should stand firm on Northern Pass decision, New Hampshire Business Review

Massachusetts Electric Companies Reject Northern Pass, The Valley Patriot

Massachusetts hydro power will come through Maine, not White Mountains, Wicked Local

Next up, Central Maine Power, CommonWealth Magazine

Massachusetts ditches Northern Pass, looks to CMP for clean energy goals, Utility Dive

 

Electric Vehicles

Prospects of Fuel-Cell Electric Vehicles Boosted with Chinese Backing, Energy Collective

 

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

Staying a Step Ahead: A look inside ISO-NE and the region’s changing power system, (video) ISONewswire.com

Grid security falls to industry to self-regulate, Salem News

Raimondo: Report critical of National Grid’s response to October storm, ProJo

Peeved about power? Eversource defends its efforts, Wicked Local Brewster

Electricity supplier to pay $5 million to settle claims it misled Massachusetts customers, Boston Globe

Vermont Public Utility Commission approves release of request for proposals for Standard Offer program, Daily Energy Insider

Exelon Generation Files to Retire Mystic Generating Station in 2022, Absent Any Regulatory Solution, (Press Release)

Call For ‘Stiff Penalties’ Vs. Utility Companies Made By County Legislators, White Plains Daily Voice

Healey: Shut Down Competitive Electric Residential Supply Market, WGBH

Lawmakers grill CMP on handling of October storm, WGME

Microgrid Projects and Virtual Power Plants from Maine to Australia, Microgrid Knowledge

Exelon Generation Files to Retire Mystic Generating Station in 2022, Absent Any Regulatory Solution, Business Wire (press release)

RI Officials: National Grid’s October Storm Response Was Inadequate, Rhode Island Public Radio

What is up with your electric bill? Eversource explains, Wicked Local

 

Editorial/Opinion

Editorial: A pipeline lesson for Virginia, courtesy of Massachusetts, Richmond.com

The best chance for offshore wind in Mass., The Boston Globe

Expanding access for harvesting the sun, Monadnock Ledger Transcript

Boston’s ad hoc planning doesn’t work with climate change, Boston Globe

New England’s largest battery, CommonWealth Magazine

The era of conventional nuclear power may be ending, Washington Examiner

Northern Pass or another path?, NH Business Review

EDITORIAL: Mass. hydropower pact takes a detour, Lowell Sun

Oppose Eversource’s use of herbicides — now, Cape Cod Times

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

Energy News for week ending March 23, 2018

19 times over | Carbon Bomb | US location doesn’t matter – it’s cleaner

 

Happy Friday afternoon.

Here are a few quick hits for you before we all break for the weekend.

From SouthCoastToday.com we have news that “Winds off the Massachusetts coast have the potential to generate more energy than in any other state — enough to power the state’s electricity needs 19 times over, according to a new report from the advocacy group Environment Massachusetts. But that’s no assurance the state will dominate the industry over the long haul. The report details major efforts in other states, especially New Jersey and New York, where state governments have committed to larger offshore wind projects than Massachusetts.”

Chris Mooney writing for The Washington Post reports that “For some time, scientists fearing the mass release of greenhouse gases from the carbon-rich, frozen soils of the Arctic have had at least one morsel of good news in their forecasts: They predicted most of the gas released would be carbon dioxide, which, though a greenhouse gas, drives warming more slowly than some other gases. Scientists obviously weren’t excited about more carbon dioxide emissions, but it was better than the alternative: methane, a shorter-lived but far harder-hitting gas that could cause faster bursts of warming. Now even that silver lining is in doubt. Research released Monday suggests that methane releases could be considerably more prevalent as Arctic permafrost thaws. The research finds that in waterlogged wetland soils, where oxygen is not prevalent, tiny microorganisms will produce a considerable volume of methane, a gas that doesn’t last in the air much more than a decade but has a warming effect many times that of carbon dioxide over a period of 100 years.”

On the positive news side, The Energy Collective tells us that “New data shows that in every corner of the United States, driving an EV produces significantly fewer greenhouse gas emissions than cars powered only by gasoline, regardless of the local power mix. Today, an average EV on the road in the U.S. has the same greenhouse-gas emissions as a car getting 80 miles per gallon (MPG). That’s up from 73 MPG in 2017, and far greater than the average gas-powered car available for sale in the U.S., which hit a record 24.7 MPG in 2016.”

As always you can find energy events at Northeast Energy News. Have a great weekend.

 

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

AG: Offshore drilling a ‘grave’ risk to Bay State, Boston Herald

Pipeline protester refuses state deal — won’t admit he shoved trooper, Berkshire Eagle

State’s top executives push for more natural gas, CommonWealth Magazine

Backers of stalled pipeline keep pilot light lit, Boston Globe

Council tables resolution to rescind opposition to Burrillville power plant, Valley Breeze

Region’s Power Grid Manager Gets OK For Renewable-Fossil Fuel Exchange Auction, New Hampshire Public Radio

Proposed Norwalk fracking ban moves to public hearing, Thehour.com

United States: Natural Gas Act Preempts Local Efforts To Preclude Construction Of Compressor Station, Mondaq News Alerts

Nearly 1/3 of planned gas peakers at risk from energy storage, GTM finds, Utility Dive

Biz group: Increase natural gas supply, Lowell Sun

Powelson Tells New England to Learn from Pennsylvania, RTO Insider

Eversource holding info session on gas pipeline in Jewett City, Norwich Bulletin

Dennis Kucinich Finds Fracking Facts in Southeast Ohio: A Horror Story, Cleveland Scene

 

Renewables Policy/Climate Change/RGGI

MA Governor Embraces ‘Clean Peak’ Policy to Encourage Renewables Paired With Storage, Greentech Media

Report: Boston Sea Level Projected To Rise 1.5 Feet By 2050, WBUR

Clean Energy Issues Highlight “New Hampshire Energy Week,” Renewable Energy World

The Arctic’s carbon bomb might be even more potent than we thought, Washington Post

A Contentious Debate: Green Energy vs. Green Space, ecoRI news

FERC ruling could undermine state renewable energy mandates, pv magazine USA

FERC decision a boost to renewable energy in New England, The Union Leader

100 percent renewables by 2050 in Massachusetts? Pittsfield activists think it’s possible, Valley Advocate

Virginia governor will veto legislation aimed at blocking carbon caps, Utility Dive

Mansfield may seek state’s Green Communities designation, Wicked Local Mansfield

Bill Gives Rhode Island Teeth to Cut Carbon Emissions, ecoRI news

 

Wind

Bay State Wind and NEC partner to develop energy storage system, Power Technology

Offshore Wind: Is the Long Wait over for New Jersey?, NJ Spotlight

Vineyard Wind collaborates with UMass Dartmouth on offshore wind assessments, Windpower Engineering

The Netherlands is building the world’s first subsidy-free offshore wind farms, MIT Technology Review

Hyper-efficient gas engines, next-gen wind turbines, and more early-stage wonders, Ars Technica

Report: Offshore wind could power Massachusetts 19 times over, South Coast Today

Wind Power to Spare: The Enormous Energy Potential of Atlantic Offshore Wind, (Report) Environment Massachusetts

Opponents say Block Island wind farms are causing problems across prime fishing grounds, Boston Globe

Most wind jobs would be in construction, UMD study says, South Coast Today

Turbine owner responds to noise, shadow criticism, Newport Daily News

 

Solar

Report: Massachusetts solar capacity increased 30 percent in 2017, but challenges loom, MassLive.com

Public meetings to be held on community solar power, Lewiston Sun Journal

USDA awards $1.5 million loan for solar project, Press Herald

New Hampshire Senate votes to expand net metering eligibility, Utility Dive

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

Teach-In Thursday on Why NY Needs More Energy Efficiency, Natural Resources Defense Council

Transcript: FERC Is Taking Energy Storage to the Next Level in the US, Greentech Media

Medford moves step by step toward renewables, energy efficiency, Wicked Local

The Uneven Gains of Energy Efficiency, WIRED

 

Nuclear

Cask concern halts fuel move at Vermont Yankee, Brattleboro Reformer

FEMA to hold briefing on Millstone exercise, theday.com

NRC to Host Annual Pilgrim Performance Meeting Next Week, CapeCod.com News

US Says Russian Hack Did Not Compromise Nuclear Plants, Power Engineering

 

EVs

Why Is Vehicle-to-Grid Taking So Long to Happen?, Greentech Media

Southern Maine bus services consider cleaning up their act with electric vehicles, Press Herald

Driving An Electric Vehicle Is Far Cleaner Than Driving On Gasoline Across The US, Regardless Of Local Power Mix, Energy Collective

 

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

Federal energy regulators back Massachusetts attorney general on rate cuts tied to Trump tax bill, MassLive.com

State business group warns of energy ‘shortage’, The Salem News

Mapping Out Requirements for Tomorrow’s Energy Infrastructure, NJ Spotlight

Maine Compass: Central Maine Power transmission line project raises red flags, Kennebec Journal & Morning Sentinel

PSC Dramatically Lowers National Grid’s Rate Request, URBAN CNY

Updated Generator Rules Lower Costs, Improve Safety, AIM blog

Regulators to decide on possible audit of power company, Penn Energy

Central Maine Power Under Investigation for Rising Bills, NECN

The Energy 202: Rick Perry has a plan for Russia’s grid attacks. Some lawmakers worry it’s not enough, Washington Post

Poll Finds Americans Wary of Grid Safety in Wake of Russian Hacking, Microgrid Knowledge

 

Editorial/Opinion

This energy storage is tough on Connecticut River, CommonWealth Magazine

Community Conversations: New power supply policy: truly a big deal, WickedLocal Belmont

David Arbeitman: Natural gas wrong approach to energy needs, Daily Hampshire Gazette

An energy transition, Mt. Desert Islander

Wind energy in Vt. is a sham, Rutland Herald

Annette Smith: An examination of Vermont’s energy policies, vtdigger.org

Ahead of Senate vote on Clean Energy Bill, Massachusetts is on the cusp of an energy revolution (viewpoint), MassLive.com

Keeping RGGI, The Union Leader

Leslie Sullivan Sachs: Vermont Yankee impossible to trust, vtdigger.org

Letter: Northern Pass and electricity rates, Concord Monitor

Letter To The Editor: Eversource Misleading On Cause Of Outages, Patch.com

Boston Gets Russian Gas Amid US Boom, Wall Street Journal

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

Energy News for week ending March 16, 2018

Russians at the switch | Mortally wounded |Clean Peak Standard | What’s in a name

Happy Friday afternoon.

This week brings disconcerting energy news of Russian cyberattacks where hackers had their fingers on the switches at US power plants. According to the story in the New York Times, “The Trump administration accused Russia on Thursday of engineering a series of cyberattacks that targeted American and European nuclear power plants and water and electric systems, and could have sabotaged or shut power plants off at will…‘We now have evidence they’re sitting on the machines, connected to industrial control infrastructure, that allow them to effectively turn the power off or effect sabotage,’ said Eric Chien, a security technology director at Symantec, a digital security firm. ‘From what we can see, they were there. They have the ability to shut the power off. All that’s missing is some political motivation,’ Mr. Chien said.”

Earlier in the week, Portland Press Herald wrote about the New Hampshire Site Evaluation Committee’s decision to delay its final decision on the Northern Pass Project, “The proposal to build a $950 million power line through western Maine received a major boost on Monday, when a decision by a regulatory board in New Hampshire mortally wounded the project’s competitor…The result is placing new scrutiny on CMP’s plan to build a 145-mile line along a corridor it already owns. The line would run from Beattie Township, on the Canadian border north of Route 27 and Coburn Gore, through Farmington and Jay to Lewiston, where it would connect to the regional electric grid. The line would cross the Kennebec Gorge, a scenic, 10-mile cut in the river traversed each summer by thousands of whitewater rafters. It also would bisect the Appalachian Trail. The project cost would be borne by Massachusetts electricity customers.”

Speaking of Massachusetts, Shira Schoenberg at MassLive reports that “Gov. Charlie Baker on Thursday released a $1.4 billion bond bill that would authorize spending on climate change preparedness and environmental protection…The bill includes authorization for $300 million to respond to the impacts of climate change — $170 million to repair dams and seawalls and help coastal communities, and the rest split between grants to communities and implementation of a statewide plan to adapt to climate change.”

Utility Dive noted that one provision of the bill is the creation of a “new Clean Peak Standard for utilities to increase the use of clean energy during high-demand periods that are also carbon intensive…The proposed legislation language would direct the Department of Energy Resource to create a new clean peak standard for all retail electricity suppliers selling electricity to end-use customers. The standard will require all retail electricity suppliers to provide ‘a minimum percentage of kilowatt-hour sales’ from clean peak energy resources, ultimately determined by regulations. The legislation specifies that, ‘to the maximum extent practicable,’ the Clean Peak Standard cannot raise individual customer rates more than $0.005/kWh in the aggregate of any year.”

Last for this week, and to end on a lighter note, is a story from Newhampshire.com which reports that some folks in New Hampshire, Seabrook to be specific, are having a hard time believing that Disney writers weren’t making ties to their community in a movie called “Zombies.” The movie is, “set around a nuclear power plant disaster that creates zombies in a small, suburban town. It’s wildly popular among children and has received good reviews so what’s the problem? The fictional town is named Seabrook.” Seabrook Selectman Aboul Khan said that he’s not “worried about a zombie apocalypse in Seabrook, but used the opportunity to stress the safety of the power plant. ‘We have a very good track record for many years and we do exercises every year with state agencies,’ he said. ‘We are prepared for any kind of accident or any kind of issue that might come.’”

As always you can find events at Northeast Energy News. Have a great weekend.

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Northeast Gas Pipeline Buildout Hits Bottleneck in Massachusetts, Natural Gas Intelligence

Scituate is withdrawing their opposition to Invenergy and their support for Burrillville, Uprise RI

Why Is Russian Gas in Boston Harbor?, Wall Street Journal

Lawmakers hear dueling pipeline positions, Hartford Business

From Asthma to Cancer, ‘Blistering’ New Report Details Human Cost of Fracking, EcoWatch

New York Loses Bid to Block Millennium Gas Line Project, Bloomberg Quint

Pipeline Opponents Pleased With Caveats, Valley News

Federal Regulators End Key Tax Benefit for Certain Pipeline Companies, Wall St. Journal

 

Renewables/Climate Change/RGGI

Storms focus attention on climate change, as Gov. Charlie Baker releases $1.4 billion environmental bond bill, MassLive

Massachusetts governor seeks Clean Peak Standard with $1.4B bond bill, Utility Dive

Push is on for carbon tax in New York, Lockport Journal

Clean energy projects in Albany to get share of $1.4 billion in state money, Albany Business Review

Regional plan could provide local say on renewables, Stowe Reporter

3rd District candidate unveils green-jobs plan, Lowell Sun

State of renewables not what you might think, Rutland Herald

Could FERC Order Put State Clean Energy Policies in Danger?, Greentech Media

Report: Severe weather in Northeast tied to warming Arctic, Cape Cod Times

Clean Energy Is Key to New England’s Fuel Security, Natural Resources Defense Council

Towns tell state leaders to act on climate change. Are they listening?, vtdigger.org

Connecticut renewable energy supporters to push for legislative gains, Litchfield County Times

Climate Change Resolution Adopted In 35 Communities, Vermont Public Radio

Holyoke Mayor Alex Morse featured among ‘Voices for 100 percent Renewable Energy’, MassLive.com

The 2018 Community Power State Scorecard, CleanTechnica

Emissions and Dispatch Top Talk at NY Task Force, RTO Insider

NA Markets: Compliance demand re-emerges in California as RGGI awaits next week’s auction, Carbon Pulse

‘Reggie’ states addressing transportation emissions, Yale Climate Connections

 

Wind

Bay State Wind Teams With Massachusetts Energy Storage Company, NA Windpower

Ocean City loses bid to push back offshore wind developments, Delmarvanow.com

Study gauges economic impact of offshore wind, CommonWealth Magazine

Offshore wind backers push New London area as potential hub, theday.com

Report Quantifies Economic Impact Of Vineyard Wind’s Offshore Proposal, North American Windpower

Offshore wind company partners with Red Sox, Cape Cod Times

Vineyard Wind plans workforce development, Barnstable Patriot

Bay State joins permit fast lane, reNews

 

Solar

Worry over solar sprawl spreads across Rhode Island, Providence Journal

Solar-powered brewery donates extra power to senior center, Caledonian Record

US solar forecast ratcheted down as tariffs weigh, The Week

Even under pro-coal President Trump, U.S. solar is doing pretty well, Washington Post

Vermont lodge and bierhall goes solar, Solar Power World

A Push To Expand A Struggling Sector Of Solar Energy In Connecticut, WSHU

Wilton among state leaders in solar technology, Thehour.com

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

A global game changer for energy efficiency investments, Environmental Defense Fund

How an energy-efficient house can become a big wind-powered battery, Treehugger

Efficiency Startup Gets Funding to Cut Energy Use by Buildings, Bloomberg

Green buildings will have to go beyond conserving energy, Popular Science

State Report: Budget Raid On Energy Funds Hurting Connecticut Economy, Hartford Courant

For utilities trying to drive conservation, mixed messages may be best, Utility Dive

 

Nuclear

Vermont Yankee deal gives state more financial peace of mind, Vermont Biz

Vermont Yankee sale case will extend into summer, vtdigger.org

Nuclear Community Engagement Experience Takes Place On Saturday in Barnstable, CapeCod.com News

Disney: ‘ZOMBIES’ movie set in power plant town called ‘Seabrook’ a coincidence, NewHampshire.com

Congress Hasn’t Given up on Nuclear Power, Futurism

The quiet fight to finally send nuclear waste to Yucca Mountain, Washington Examiner

Nuclear subsidy bill re-engineered as three separate measures, NJSpotlight.com

Interest in Small Modular Nuclear Reactors Is Growing. So Are Fears They Aren’t Viable, Greentech Media

 

Electric Vehicles

Electric cars are becoming increasingly greener in the US thanks to a cleaner electric grid, Energy Central

Pennsylvania proposal could bolster EV charging infrastructure, Utility Dive

 

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

Cyberattacks Put Russian Fingers on the Switch at Power Plants, U.S. Says, New York Times

Split FERC approves ISO-NE 2-part capacity market plan, Utility Dive

Powelson ‘very nervous’ about long-term reliability in ISO-NE, Utility Dive

ISO New England real-time price spike leads to increase in oil, hydro generation, Platts

Report Examines Comparatively High Expenses For New England’s Power Grid Operator, New England Public Radio

Lawyer: Site Evaluation Committee won’t decide whether to reconsider Northern Pass rejection until May, Union Leader

Time running short for N. Pass, CommonWealth Magazine

Prospects improve for CMP’s $950 million power line plan, Press Herald

Northern Pass Hydropower Project Again Delayed, ecoRI news

Utility workers travel to restore Cape’s power, Cape Cod Times

State launches probe into utilities’ response to 2 storms, Albany Times Union

7News Investigates: Seeking Power Outage Solutions Underground, WHDH TV

Cryptocurrency Companies to See Electric Rates Rise in NY. Opening for Microgrids?, Microgrid Knowledge

Schneider Electric and REC Solar collaborate on Massachusetts microgrid, Solar Power World

Pennsylvania Microgrid Bill Wins Committee Vote. Heads to House, Microgrid Knowledge

 

Editorial/Opinion

Columnist Stanley Rosenberg: Building our green, clean energy future, Daily Hampshire Gazette

Column: Securing a clean energy future, Gloucester Times

Maine needs new natural gas capacity to control our energy costs, Bangor Daily News

Letter: Thanks to supporters of renewable energy, Bennington Banner

New York Is Moving Aggressively To Harvest Its Offshore Wind, Forbes

Letter: A proposal on the Vermont Yankee sale, Brattleboro Reformer

Yankee candor: A deal to decommission Vermont Yankee is promising, but only if it involves transparency, The Keene Sentinel

Stop pouring money into fusion energy research, Eagle Tribune

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