Tag Archives: Eversource

Energy News for week ending February 15, 2019

Glacial Changes | Maryland | Moooo

 

Happy Friday afternoon folks.

We’re starting out this week with a couple of climate change stories.

First, from the New York Times, in what is a graphically cool piece as well as interesting relative to adapting to climate change, is a story about how Switzerland (yeah, I know it’s not the “Northeast”) is rethinking how they use hydropower. Check it out, if for nothing other than the presentation of the information.

Our second climate change story comes from the AP which reports that Matt Fitzpatrick, an ecology professor at the University of Maryland’s Center for Environmental Sciences in Frostburg, Maryland, “looked at 12 different variables for 540 U.S. and Canadian cities under two climate change scenarios to find out what the future might feel like in a way a regular person might understand. He averaged the climate results from 27 different computer models then found the city that most resembles that futuristic scenario.” For those of you in greater Boston and other coastal New England cities, it looks like we’re all going to experience what’s typical weather right now for various areas in Maryland. For those that reside inland, your weather is more west. For example, Burlington, VT will feel like Taylorville, IL and Hartford, CT like Sikeston, MO. All in all it looks warmer and wetter. The link to the interactive map is https://fitzlab.shinyapps.io/cityapp/

Last story for this week is from Seven Days in Vermont about cheese – Cabot Creamery’s farms to be specific. While this long read has a lot of details about their operations including “Fitbits for cows” (who knew?) there is a section on their energy efficiency and renewable energy measures. “Consider electricity: Fairmont’s East Montpelier milking parlor is active nearly 24-7…Fairmont recently installed energy-efficient LED lighting in its barns, recommended by Efficiency Vermont. And it now has solar panels on the roofs. The company that installed the panels last year now sells power to the farm at a reduced rate. Ayer expects that arrangement to shave 11 percent off the farm’s annual power bill. Gladstone noted that Newmont runs on alternative energy, too. The farm worked with Green Mountain Power, Catamount Solar and Yankee Farm Credit to install a solar array in Fairlee that produces 50 percent of the farm’s power…Blue Spruce Farm in Bridport generates some of its energy using a wind turbine, but the cows there also create some renewable energy of their own — with help from a biodigester. The digester provides the right environment for the manure to break down and release methane gas, which in turn powers a generator producing renewable electricity for Vermont homes and businesses. Aptly dubbed “Cow Power,” it’s available to Green Mountain Power customers, who can choose to pay an extra four cents per kilowatt for it; the money flows back to the farm.” So this weekend when you might be enjoying some wine and cheese, you can say that you’re supporting renewable energy and helping to keep us the heck out of Maryland.

That’s it for this week. Enjoy the long weekend.

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Holyoke utility, citing pipeline constraints, halts natural gas hookups, CommonWealth Magazine

Enbridge wins lawsuit over town’s opposition to compressor station, Reuters

Legislators want gas system study, Newport Daily News

National Grid pays out $360K to those affected by Newport gas outage, WPRI 12

State to consider reopening door for proposed Killingly natural gas plant, The Day

Enbridge gave Massachusetts studies by climate denier, ALEC associate in gas project assessment, NationofChange

Salem YMCA closed following gas explosion outside, Salem News

Head Of Mass. Pipeline Safety Division Stepping Down, WBUR

 

Renewables/Climate Change/RGGI

Report recommends action to transition to a clean-energy economy for New England, Portland Press Herald

State kickstarts Western Massachusetts wood chip industry with renewable thermal energy grants, MassLive

Eversource plugs into green power with offshore wind, solar projects, Boston Globe

9 Northeastern states share $115M from carbon sale, Adirondack Daily Enterprise

No, the Green New Deal won’t threaten the grid, Vox.com

Where Glaciers Melt Away, Switzerland Sees Opportunity, New York Times

Clean Energy Solutions Must Include Nuclear, (Whitepaper) Clearpath.org

A dozen power plant and pipeline projects could derail Phil Murphy’s clean energy goals, NorthJersey.com

State kickstarts Western Massachusetts wood chip industry with renewable thermal energy grants, MassLive

Heading south: Warming to change how US cities feel in 2080, AP News

Wall Street Is More Than Willing to Fund the Green New Deal, Bloomberg L.P.

 

Wind

Vineyard Wind submits 1,200 MW proposal to New York’s 800 MW offshore wind RFP, Utility Dive

ISO New England Interconnection Queue Has More Offshore Wind Than Gas, CleanTechnica

ISO-NE capacity prices fall amid controversy over Vineyard Wind participation, Utility Dive

R.I. offshore wind price bit higher than Mass., CommonWealth Magazine

In $225 million partnership, Eversource takes deep dive into offshore wind projects in Atlantic, Hartford Courant

Shell, innogy, & Stiesdal Offshore Technologies To Partner On Floating Offshore Wind, CleanTechnica

Eversource To Pay $225 Million For A Half Share In 2 Offshore Wind Projects, WBUR

Rhode Island to run rule over Revolution power play, Renews.biz

Betting $1 Million on Offshore New Jersey Wind Paid Off Big Time, Renewable Energy World

National Grid contract with Orsted would save customers $90 million over 20 years, ProJo

Falmouth Wind Turbines Called ‘Disaster’ On National Stage, Falmouth Enterprise

 

Solar

Vast swarm of homes with solar-battery systems poised to act as ‘virtual power plant’ in New England, MassLive

Solar Panels, Smartphones and a FitBit for Cows: Cabot Creamery Farmers Adapt to the Digital Age, Seven Days

Sunrun Wins Milestone Solar, Storage Contract In ISO New England Auction, Solar Industry

Another solar array proposed for Franklin, Milford Daily News

CT sees slight uptick in solar jobs, Hartford Business Journal

How much is Cohasset saving? Stats from town’s solar array now available online, Wicked Local Cohasset

U.S. solar jobs down for second year as Trump tariffs weigh, Reuters

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

Maine Town Sees LED Streetlights Paying for Themselves Fast, Government Technology

U.S. Energy Storage Market is set to exceed an annual deployment of 3,000 MW by 2024, MarketWatch

Eversource Charges Forward with Cutting-Edge Battery Storage on Martha’s Vineyard, CapeCodToday

 

EVs

Electric car charging stations planned for downtown, Eagle Tribune

Pennsylvania prods utility investment in charging as part of EV growth plan, Utility Dive

 

Nuclear

Supporters Say Seabrook Nuke Protects Climate; Critics Worry About Cracks In The Concrete, WBUR

With concrete degrading in critical parts of Seabrook, environmental advocates urge to delay renewal of license, Boston Globe

NRC defends Seabrook Station’s license extension, Keene Sentinel

CEOs Ask Trump to Help Them Sell Nuclear Power Plants Abroad, Bloomberg L.P.

A Look Inside Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station Before Its Reactor Goes Quiet, WGBH

Exelon: Need Pa. Action by May to Save TMI, RTO Insider

 

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

New England efficiency advocates raise alarm over potential capacity market changes, Utility Dive

Mills shows new support for CMP transmission line, Portland Press Herald

$1.1 million in funds approved to buy Augusta streetlights from CMP, replace with more efficient lights, Kennebec Journal

Glick calls for ‘new approach’ to capacity markets in wide-ranging NARUC talk, Utility Dive

New Hampshire grid mod proposal recommends ‘tempered’ approach to AMI, Utility Dive

Auction for New England’s future power needs yields lowest clearing price in six years, New Haven Register

Big Win for Local Energy: First Virtual Power Plant Snags Contract in US Wholesale Capacity Auction, Microgrid Knowledge

 

Editorial/Opinion

Commentary: Let’s go 100 percent renewable to protect the North Shore, Daily Item

Klaber’s viewpoint: The problem with New York regs, Business Journals

Eversource mandate, New Hampshire Union Leader

Positive signs state is ready to seize offshore wind-energy opportunity, The Day

The Answer Is Blowin’ in the Wind, New York Times

My Turn: Dissecting the Northern Pass appeal narrative, Concord Monitor

Editorial: The cost of rolling back bulb standards, MetroWest Daily News

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

Energy News for week ending February 8, 2019

Compressor Station Opposition | FERC Twitter Spat | Waste for Good

 

Hi all. Happy Friday afternoon.

Given that so much has been written about the Green New Deal, we’re going to focus on a few other stories today.

The compressor station controversy in Weymouth continues to grow since it received approval on its air quality permit. From sit-ins at the Governor’s office to protests at the State House, this is a story that keeps on going. The Patriot Ledger reports that, “A group of physicians is challenging the findings of a state-ordered report on Weymouth’s proposed 7,700- horsepower natural-gas compressor station, arguing that the facility would pose “an unacceptable health risk to the surrounding community.” Greater Boston Physicians for Social Responsibility released a report Thursday rejecting the findings of a health-impact assessment that the Metropolitan Area Planning Council conducted on the compressor station proposed by Algonquin, a subsidiary of Spectra Energy-Enbridge. The report, released last month, concluded that the facility would be unlikely to affect health and noise in the area…” To add further to the controversy, WBUR reports that “Metropolitan Area Planning Council (MAPC) Executive Director Marc Draisen told WBUR that his agency does not support construction of the compressor station in North Weymouth, citing concerns about climate resilience and public safety. The surprising comments come about a month after the MAPC released its Health Impact Assessment (HIA) concluding that emissions from the compressor station are ‘not likely to cause health effects’ to the surrounding community.”

Considering this guy was nominated by Donald Trump, it’s hard to believe he finds anything on Twitter surprising. From Bloomberg, “The top U.S. energy regulator is chastising his colleagues in a very public Twitter dispute that shines a light on the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s inner workings. ‘I do not discuss the commission’s internal deliberations with the public,’ FERC Chairman Neil Chatterjee said Tuesday on Twitter. ‘Doing so would be highly inappropriate.’ Chatterjee was responding to an earlier tweet from the agency’s two Democratic commissioners. Richard Glick and Cheryl LaFleur said they were ‘disappointed that the commission failed to act’ on an offshore wind project’s request for an important waiver.” Considering what else comes out of Washington, their tweets seemed pretty tame to me.

Speaking of garbage, Utility Dive brings us a story of a local company doing something positive with food waste. “Up a steep dirt road in Haverhill, Massachusetts, past a set of old farm buildings, sits one of the newest anaerobic digesters in the country. It’s the fourth facility of its kind from Vanguard Renewables, with many more on the way…Vanguard’s ‘farm-powered’ model is designed to come with automatic community benefits. While Hanselman said the six-year-old company’s original plan was to focus on energy production, their scope has since expanded to include much more. A small adjacent building contains a 1 MW engine capable of generating up to 7,700 MWh of electricity per year from the resulting methane. In addition to a 20-year power purchase agreement with the city of Haverhill, Vanguard is providing free heat to the multigenerational family business — Crescent Farms — that hosts it on their land. The AD facility also handles all of their manure, creates enough liquid fertilizer for them to swear off synthetic material entirely and makes an animal bedding byproduct that has reportedly led to higher quality milk yields among the cows.”

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

 

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Doctors’ group challenges report on Weymouth compressor station, Patriot Ledger

The Fight Against A Gas Line Project In Weymouth Is Fought Every Day In Charlie Baker’s Lobby, WGBH

Proposed Weymouth Compressor Station Draws More Opposition, WBUR

Columbia Gas Fined $75,000 For Spikes In Pipeline Pressure Years Before Merrimack Valley Explosions, WBUR

Senate panel gets look at bill that would ban new oil and gas pipelines, VT Digger

Proposed $700M Killingly power plant clears key hurdle, Hartford Business Journal

Nearly 200 National Grid customers in Cranston affected by gas main break, WJAR

Aquidneck Island gas emergency causes 300 to seek unemployment benefits, Providence Business News

5 Newport restaurants sue National Grid, Enbridge over gas outage, Providence Journal

United States : Raimondo Discusses Relief Efforts for Newport County Gas Customers, MarketWatch

State Division of Public Utilities launches investigation into Newport gas outage, Providence Journal

Nearly 200 National Grid customers in Cranston affected by gas main break, WJAR

 

Renewables/Climate Change/RGGI

Green New Deal resolution calls for 100% zero-carbon power within 10 years, Utility Dive

Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker urges Congress to address climate change, MassLive

Inside Vanguard Renewables, the Northeast’s biggest food waste recycler, Utility Dive

Green New Deal won’t call for end to fossil fuels, Politico

A Small New York Town Plans a Profitable, 100% Renewable Energy Future, Greentech Media

Climate change may result in loss of lake ice in coming years, WGME

Climate Change Could Mean Increased ‘Weather Whiplash’, WAMC

 

Wind

Price heads new study commission on impact of offshore wind turbines, Westerly Sun

FERC passes on Vineyard Wind emergency request for ISO-NE auction delay, Utility Dive

Twitter Spat Erupts as FERC Chair Scolds Colleagues for Post, Bloomberg

DOE to provide $28M for floating wind turbine technologies, Daily Energy Insider

State: Vineyard Wind can seek local permits for cable, Cape Cod Times

Ørsted divests 50% of South Fork, Revolution Wind and two New England offshore wind lease areas, Windpower Engineering

National Grid contract with Orsted would save customers $90 million over 20 years, Providence Journal

Vineyard Wind, backed by Baker, plays power politics, CommonWealth Magazine

Charlie Baker defended wind power after a Republican congressman questioned him on Capitol Hill, Boton.com

National Grid Seeks Approval For Revolution Wind Project, USA Patch

Offshore Wind Firm Seeks to Disrupt New England Power Auction, Bloomberg L.P.

Falmouth Wind Turbines : “A Green New Deal in Profile” WSJ, USA Patch

 

Solar

Ameresco develops 110-kW rooftop solar project at Rhode Island College, Solar Power World Online

Watertown Requires Solar Panels On New Buildings, And Massachusetts Considers Following Suit Statewide, WGBH

Neighbors sue to block Lewiston solar project, Buffalo News

Massachusetts opens revenue stream to advance solar-plus-storage, Utility Dive

Standard Solar Building 4.2 MW System For R.I. Town, Solar Industry

Battery-Backed Solar Breaks Into Grid Long Seen as Off Limits, Bloomberg L.P.

Boatyard, solar farm among Norwalk options for Manresa Island, The Hour

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

Rollback of light bulb standards would cost consumers billions — $100 per household each year, aceee.org

New Massachusetts energy efficiency plan to push storage, heat pumps and ‘demand response’, MassLive

New Milford looks to make buildings energy efficient, New Milford Spectrum

 

Nuclear

Nukes can have small role in Green New Deal, backers say, Utility Dive

Cory Booker — and his full-throated support of nuclear energy — enters the presidential race, Grist

State reassures skeptics on decommissioning, Brattleboro Reformer

Legislators pitch a bill to rescue Pennsylvania’s nuclear plants, Pittsburgh Gazette

Trump Uranium Quota Could Shutter Nuclear Plants, Trade Group Warns, US News and World Report

Nuclear waste burial fund grows to $43 billion, but DOE has not buried an ounce of spent fuel, Orange County Register

NRC sets meeting on nuclear plant license extension, Seacoast Online

 

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

Sunrun Wins Big in New England Capacity Auction With Home Solar and Batteries, Greentech Media

New England’s electric auction closes with adequate resources for 2022-2023, Vermont Biz

Power Authority board approves economic development incentives to create jobs in Western New York, WNYPapers.com

CMP sweetens the pot for new transmission corridor, Press Herald

Transmission constraints impede incremental Quebec-to-US power deliveries, S&P Global Platts

Utilities may outperform again in 2019, despite high valuations, Bloomberg L.P.

Eversource seeks another rate hike, WTNH

Seacoast Reliability Project gets final approval, Seacoastonline.com

Consumer advocates, saying regulations have failed, seek to shut residential electric supply market, Hartford Courant

 

Editorial/Opinion

Viewpoint: Mass. needs comprehensive climate action now, Boston Business Journal

When they talk of wind turbine ills, Falmouth residents are not just making it up, Boston Globe

An Energy Wish List for Congress, New York Times

Carbon tax folly for NH: Will the enviros now embrace nuclear?, New Hampshire Union Leader

Dan Haar: Electricity sellers pick wrong guy for a fight, Connecticut Post

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Filed under Climate Change, Electric Grid, Energy Efficiency, offshore wind, solar

Energy News for week ending February 1, 2019

Personnel Changes | Storage Goes Mainstream | Sun-powered Super Bowl

Happy Friday afternoon.

We start this week’s news with two personnel changes. Yesterday, Massachusetts’-own and enthusiastic Patriot’s fan, Cheryl LaFleur announced on Twitter she wouldn’t be “seeking a third-term at FERC” and would be leaving the Commission later this year. You can read more details at Utility Dive.

The second personnel announcement comes from the MA DPU where the Patriot Ledger reports that the new Chairman, Matthew Nelson, who is replacing Angie O’Connor, hails from Hull and that he “has worked for the agency for eight years, most recently as director of electric power and regional and federal affairs.”

Big energy efficiency news came out of Massachusetts this week as reported by CommonWealth Magazine, “State regulators on Wednesday approved utility plans to spend nearly $2.8 billion of ratepayer money over the next three years on initiatives designed to curb energy consumption in the aggregate and particularly at peak periods, resulting in energy savings of $8.5 billion. While Mass Save will continue to offer efficient light bulbs, insulation, and other standard energy-saving devices that help curb electricity and natural gas consumption, the focus of the program is starting to shift a bit, with homeowners incentivized to swap oil and propane systems for electric heat pumps and to purchase energy storage devices. Energy storage devices appear to be going mainstream. Under the energy efficiency program approved by the Department of Public Utilities on Wednesday, utilities would offer performance-based financial incentives to customers who purchase the devices. At peak demand periods, utilities would pay the customer to use the stored energy to reduce his/her personal power usage or to feed the electricity into the grid. The DPU decision did not detail the size of the incentives, although in testimony the utilities said they would be sizeable.”

 

Last story for this week, (because, you know,…Super Bowl) comes from Inc. How This Year’s Super Bowl Will Be Powered by the Sun (Sort of). “Fans arriving at Super Bowl LIII in Atlanta…will be far too excited to think twice about the carports that they’ll be parking under. But those structures go a long way toward helping the newly opened Mercedes-Benz Stadium earn its status as the greenest sports arena in the world. Completed in 2017, the $1.5 billion stadium is the first sports facility ever to receive Platinum certification from the global rating system LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design). One decision that helped the stadium earn that honor: The carports in the parking lot are plastered with solar panels.”

 

That’s the recap for this week. Have a great weekend. And, Go Pats!

 

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Northeast Struggles Due To Insufficient Gas Pipeline Infrastructure, Benzinga.com

National Grid: 95 percent of customers have gas service restored in Rhode Island, WHDH

Residents, businesses file class-action lawsuits following gas outage, WPRI

Attorney behind Newport gas outage lawsuit says ‘some people suffered real damages’, Newport Daily News

Drillers Are Easing Off the Gas, Wall St. Journal

Feds agree to visit Weymouth to hear gas compressor concerns, Boston Business Journal (paywall)

Braintree, Weymouth to appeal air permit for compressor, Weymouth.wickedlocal.com

Utility Will Cover Gas Disaster Repair Costs Through May 2020, USA Patch

Danskammer officials outline plans for power plant revamp, Recordonline

 

Renewables/Climate Change/RGGI

Traditional and renewable energy “at odds” in Connecticut, Connecticut Post

Democrats’ ‘carbon tax’ bill debated at State House hearing, New Hampshire Union Leader

New Jersey looks to rejoin RGGI to tackle greenhouse gas emissions, WHYY

Renewable energy brings questions in Rhode Island, Westerly Sun

US energy-related CO2 emissions rose in 2018 but are expected to fall in 2019, 2020, Daily Energy Insider

From Beer to Casinos, Businesses Turn to Solar, Wind Power, Wall St. Journal

Move To All-Renewable Energy A ‘Moral Obligation,’ Lawmaker Says, WGBH

In Vermont, a progressive haven, emissions spike forces officials to consider drastic action, Boston Globe

Trump rollbacks for fossil fuel industries carry steep cost, AP News

Boston wants to go carbon neutral by 2050. Here’s how that could happen, Boston Globe

Science Says: Get used to polar vortex outbreaks, AP News

If the Earth Is Warming, Why Is It So Cold Outside?, New York Times

7 Reasons Democrats Won’t Pass a Green New Deal, The Atlantic

Carbon Free Boston panel pushes $5 charge for cars on city streets, Boston Herald

GE restructures renewables business to include solar, storage, Utility Dive

 

Wind

A new way to predict sea breezes may benefit offshore wind farms, Phys.org

Backyard Wind Turbines Renew R.I.’s Energy Debate. EcoRI.org

Thiele Withdraws Support For Deepwater Wind Project, Says ‘Bait and Switch’ Has Eroded Trust, 27East.com

Court Rules State Has To Refund Fee For Swanton Wind Project That’s On Hold, VPR
Landmark project faces critical test in R.I.
 , National Wind Watch

Offshore wind set for ‘sixfold growth’, reNews

Momentum Continues to Build for NE Offshore Wind, RTO Insider

 

Solar

Bill proposes to roll back ‘gross metering’ rule impacting residential solar users, Mainebiz

Plymouth town meeting will consider 15-acre solar fields, The Enterprise

Vermont Solar-storage Projects Aim to Lower Costs During Peak Demand, Renewable Energy World

How This Year’s Super Bowl Will Be Powered by the Sun (Sort of), INC.

Vermont regulators advance first of 3 Green Mountain Power solar-plus-storage projects, Utility Dive

Conti Solar Reaches 650 Megawatts Of Solar Projects, CleanTechnica

Second solar farm has powered up in Warwick, Providence Journal

Solar supporters urge Maine lawmakers to restore financial incentives, Portland Press Herald

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

State adjusts priorities in $2.8B energy program, Sentinel & Enterprise

Massachusetts approves 3-year efficiency plan with first fuel-switching incentives, Utility Dive

Electricity storage takes key role in energy efficiency plan, CommonWealth Magazine

Next Middleborough Science Cafe will look at energy efficient buildings, Southcoasttoday

What Does the Nuclear Power Phase-Out Mean for Energy Storage?, Renewable Energy World

 

EVs

With rise of electric vehicles, a new foreign energy dependence looms, Houston Chronicle

 

Nuclear

How do you dismantle a nuclear power plant? Very, very carefully. Washington Post

Can We Drill A Hole Deep Enough For Our Nuclear Waste?, Forbes.com

These dumpsters of old nuclear waste are costing taxpayers a fortune, Boston Globe

Bill Gates comes to Washington — selling the promise of nuclear energy, Washington Post

The Nuclear Kid — Memphis youth builds home nuclear fusion reactor, Commercial Appeal

United States : Markey, Warren, Moulton Commend Decision to Delay Seabrook Nuclear Plant License Amendment and Extension, MarketWatch

 

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

FERC’s LaFleur to step down after push from Senate Democrats, Utility Dive

Hydro Quebec to increase hydropower capacity to more than 37,000 MW in 2021, S&P Global

Blue state AGs press McNamee recusal in resilience docket, Utility Dive

As Maine debates 145-mile electric line, energy giant with billions at stake is absent, Bangor Daily News

Watertown’s hydro power not running at capacity, Watertown (NY) Daily News via Energy Central

Eversource Seeks Rate Hike to Cover Storm Damage Costs in Connecticut, Insurance Journal

State to take up power plant project, The Bulletin

Critics call for replacing CMP, Emera Maine with a ‘consumer-owned utility’, Portland Press Herald

Saviello requests PUC amend NECEC schedule to consider alternatives, Mainebiz

Lamont talks grid reliability, offshore wind with DEEP staff, The Day

Utility Grid Modernization Plans: The Latest Developments, Greentech Media

State’s new public utilities chairman is from Hull, Patriot Ledger

Still no deal between Eversource, wood-fired power plants, New Hampshire Union Leader

 

Editorial/Opinion

LETTER: Extending Seabrook plant’s license is right move, Daily News of Newburyport

Another View: Editorial offers incomplete picture of Maine PUC’s oversight efforts, Portland Press Herald

Editorial: Solar benefits, Wilton Bulletin

Guest Opinion: Time for a Green New Deal in R.I., Westerly Sun

‘Carbon Free Boston’ begins with cars and homes, Boston Globe

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

NE Energy News for week ending January 4, 2019

Monitoring | Sun shines in Holyoke | What if…

Happy Friday everyone. We hope you all enjoyed the holidays. Now let’s get back to it.

This week we start with a gas story. From the Eagle Tribune, “Natural gas companies would be required to have experienced technicians on job sites to monitor gas pressure in the lines during work, under a proposal filed Thursday. Senate Minority Leader Bruce Tarr, R-Gloucester, filed the proposal in response to the gas fires and explosions that ripped through the Merrimack Valley four months ago. ‘We need to make sure that monitoring is taking place on every site where it’s warranted,’ Tarr said. ‘It’s a matter of protecting public safety and the reliability of the gas system.’ He said the proposal, if approved, would require the state Department of Public Utilities to come up with regulations to require monitors on job sites.”

Holyoke finds itself at the center of an “activists do good” story in Fast Company. “For more than half a century, a coal plant in the city of Holyoke, Massachusetts spewed pollution into the air. Now, the plant is closed, and 17,000 solar panels and a battery storage system–the largest in the state–send clean power to the grid. Later this year, as the coal plant’s smokestacks come down, the rest of the site will be developed for new industry. It’s a transition that was driven by the economic collapse of coal and accelerated by local activists who were concerned about the area’s high asthma rates, twice as high as the rest of the state.”

The last story we’re highlighting for this week comes from CommonWealth Magazine and features a “What if” scenario relative to offshore wind. “Last year at this time, New England was gripped by a blast of unusually cold weather that went on for 16 days. The prolonged low temperatures increased demand for natural gas for both heating and electricity, which with the region’s pipeline constraints led to sharply higher wholesale electricity prices and forced power generators to burn more oil in the brief period than they had in the previous two years combined. Now the operator of the region’s power grid, at the request of the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center, has engaged in a bit of “what if” analysis. What if a wind farm had been operating off the coast last winter? The analysis indicates a working wind farm last winter would have reduced the region’s carbon dioxide emissions and wholesale electricity prices, but not enough to eliminate the impact of the region’s pipeline constraints.”

See below for a lot more articles and opinion pieces. Enjoy and have a great weekend.

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Gov. Charlie Baker signs law requiring greater engineering oversight of natural gas work, MassLive

Tarr proposal would require monitors on gas projects, Eagle Tribune

New England Pipeline Upgrade Opponents Fail At DC Circ., Law360

Fracking’s Secret Problem—Oil Wells Aren’t Producing as Much as Forecast, Wall St. Journal (paywall)

Pipeline Incident Statistics Reveal Significant Dangers, NRDC.org

With Hogan ‘no’ vote, Maryland board rejects Columbia Gas pipeline expansion, Utility Dive

 

Lockout

National Grid workers say holding firm on contract demands ‘the right thing,’ Boston Globe

As National Grid Reaches Tentative Deal, Real Estate Group Warns Backlog Could Be 2 Years, WBUR

Developers cheer eased gas moratorium, impending National Grid lockout end, BBJ (paywall)

National Grid, union reach tentative agreement to end lockout, Boston Globe

 

Merrimack Valley

Lawrence fire chief wants Columbia Gas to pay for extra firefighters in new year, Eagle Tribune

Andover Fire Chief: Call 911 For Gas Leaks, USA Patch

Columbia Gas customers have sticker shock at first bills since explosions in Massachusetts, WGME

 

Renewables/Climate Change/RGGI

Emissions from New England power plants fall again, MassLive

Clean energy industry increases in Massachusetts, The Reminder

Bill seeks $50 million to address sea level change in Maine, Portland Press Herald

Conn. joins multi-state pact to tax auto emissions, Connecticut Post

Massachusetts activists and legislators call for action in environmental policy, Daily Hampshire Gazette

State starts from zero with clean peak energy standard, WBJournal

Westborough and Northborough Named Green Communities, USA Patch

Conn. Zero-Carbon Awards Include Nuclear, Offshore Wind, Solar, RTO Insider

 

Wind

What if an offshore wind farm was up and running last winter?, CommonWealth Magazine

PPA for 200-MW Offshore Wind Farm Approved by Connecticut Regulators, Renewable Energy World

With Vineyard Wind, the U.S. Finally Goes Big on Offshore Wind Power, IEEE Spectrum

3 firms eye building wind energy turbines off New Jersey, Houston Chronicle

 

Solar

This old coal plant is now a solar farm, thanks to pressure from local activists, Fast Company

New Jersey Board of Public Utilities releases straw proposal for transition to new solar program, Daily Energy Insider

US on cusp of unprecedented solar boom, pv magazine international

Solar farms and bridgework lead news in 2018, Breeze Publications

Solar farm on town warrant, Cabinet

Brunswick families ask state’s top court to overturn solar panel tax, Portland Press Herald

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

Vassalboro to convert streetlights to energy-efficient LEDs, Kennebec Journal

New York energy storage sector expected to create 27,400 jobs by 2030, Business Journals

 

EVs

Massachusetts Extends Electric Vehicle Rebate Program, Electriccarsreport.com

 

Nuclear

Connecticut taps nuclear plants to generate clean energy, AP

Trump’s Tech Battle With China Roils Bill Gates Nuclear Venture, Wall St. Journal

Nuke on a truck: How Westinghouse is shrinking the nuclear power plant, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Nuclear Industry Still A Power Player, But Solar And Offshore Wind Energy Grow, WNPR

Regulators file complaint against maker of nuclear fuel cask at Vermont Yankee, The Post-Star

 

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

Town anticipates $3.5 million power plant payment, Wicked Local Sandwich

NY State Public Service Commission launches pilot program to reduce energy costs, Daily Energy Insider
US energy expenditures lowest in nearly 50 years in 2016, Daily Energy Insider

A power company mishap turns New York’s skyline blue, CNN

Electricity Use Was Up Last Year, But Why?, Bloomberg

Three Big Energy Ideas to Watch in 2019, Microgrid Knowledge

Eversource continues to oppose sale of Connecticut Water to Calif. company, Journal Inquirer

ISO-NE Pulls off Fuel Security, CASPR Measures, RTO Insider

New York Looks to Expand Energy Programs in 2019, RTO Insider

CMP says Jackman outages are higher, but not as bad as residents are saying, Portland Press Herald

 

 

Editorial/Opinion

To combat climate change, Massachusetts needs to break these habits — and soon, Boston Globe

Developing Widett Circle is short-sighted, CommonWealth Magazine

Municipal electricity aggregation really works, CommonWealth Magazine

Unexpected fall of Northern Pass, Concord Monitor via Energy Central

Viewpoint: New energy infrastructure must be a priority, Boston Business Journal

Whitcomb: They’re Leaving but It’s Still Crowded; NEPOOL; End of Zoning? Crowded Block, GoLocalProv

How gas demand from Boston changed a faraway island, Boston Globe

Editorial: Industry must be part of transit carbon cap policy, Boston Business Journal

Columnist Marty Nathan: ‘Pollute or convert.’ It’s time for green energy., Daily Hampshire Gazette

Editorial: Nuclear regulatory diligence is appreciated, Daily Hampshire Gazette

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Filed under Electric Grid, Natural Gas Pipelines, New England Energy News, Northeast Energy News, nuclear, offshore wind, solar

Energy News for week ending December 21, 2018

Rising Waters | Winter Wallop | Plea for LNG

Happy soggy Friday afternoon.

Here are a few stories you may have missed this week.

For those of you who enjoy taking Amtrak to destinations between Boston and DC – take note. Bloomberg Businessweek reports, Rising Waters Are Drowning Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor. “By the middle of this century, climate change is likely to punch a hole through the busiest stretch of rail in North America. Parts of Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor route, which carries 12 million people each year between Boston and Washington, face ‘continual inundation.’ Flooding, rising seas, and storm surge threaten to erode the track bed and knock out the signals that direct train traffic. The poles that provide electricity for trains are at risk of collapse, even as power substations succumb to floodwaters. ‘f one of the segments of track shuts down, it will shut down this segment of the NEC,’ warned members of Amtrak’s planning staff. ‘There is not an alternate route that can be used as a detour.’

If that long-term forecast doesn’t worry you, how about this short term one? The Washington Post had a story this week, Polar vortex could unleash winter wallop by January. “Winter got off to a fast start in the Lower 48 even before it was technically winter. Waves of cold gripped the eastern two-thirds of the United States and several winter storms tracked across the region. Conditions have since eased some, but the heart of winter lies ahead. Will cold and snowy conditions return and turn more harsh? The polar vortex, the roaring river of air winding around the North Pole, holds the cards. What they reveal could be very disturbing and a harbinger of extreme winter weather in the Eastern United States.”

Cold snaps often create natural gas supply issues. So what’s a region to do? The Sentinel and Enterprise reports, ‘Disaster’ has Gov. seeking LNG changes. “As cold weather and higher electricity prices start to encroach, Massachusetts energy officials want to lobby the federal government to ease restrictions on shipments of liquified (sic) natural gas into New England in hopes of controlling costs and improving reliability in the energy grid…So the Baker administration, with the support of the rest of the New England governors, is planning to try ‘working with federal officials to explore modifying the Jones Act to facilitate shipping of LNG from domestic sources,’ Department of Energy Resources Commissioner Judith Judson said last week. The Jones Act has been suspended or amended before, often in the wake of a natural disaster when the government wants to maximize the number of ships that can help deliver relief aid. EEA said such a waiver or exemption ‘could be done permanently or semipermanently to ensure a reliable and affordable supply of LNG to Massachusetts consumers.’”

There are a lot of news stories below. We’ll be off next Friday for the holidays but will be back in your inboxes on January 4th. In the meantime, thank you for letting us be a part of your energy world each week and we wish you all a wonderful holiday week and a happy and healthy 2019.

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

‘Disaster’ has Gov. seeking LNG changes, Sentinel and Enterprise

After change of heart, Eversource will fund repairs to Framingham couple’s home, MetroWest Daily News

Gateway Gas Pipeline Expansion Connecting to Utilities in Northeast, Power Engineering

Natural gas industry burns for more pipeline capacity in Mass., Boston Globe

Rising LNG demand to exert more pull on U.S. natgas prices, Reuters

Watchdog Finds ‘Significant’ Weakness in U.S. Pipeline Security, Bloomberg

Natural gas utility to fund ‘alternative heating’ in Western Massachusetts, MassLive

State joins suit to block offshore drilling, Salem News

East Braintree resident raises concerns about Calpine generators, Weymouth.WickedLocal.com

CT regulator wraps pipeline review, finds utilities acting properly, Hartford Business Journal

Despite moratorium’s end, new National Grid gas hookups will not begin immediately, MassLive

 

Merrimac Valley

Gas recovery will extend into fall 2019, Eagle Tribune

Massachusetts senators press Columbia Gas on whistleblower’s warning, Boston Herald

Lawsuit filed against Columbia Gas, Boston Herald

Day care owner joins those suing Columbia Gas, Salem News

Recovery Will Finish More Than A Year After Gas Explosions, Patch.com

Sen. Markey Promises Hearings After Columbia Gas Whistleblower’s Warnings, NECN

Columbia Gas says it will meet DPU deadline, Eagle-Tribune

Massachusetts DPU puts Columbia Gas under engineering firm’s oversight, Boston Herald

Foundation Set To Release Third Stipend To Gas Explosion Victims, USA Patch

More Aid For Merrimack Valley Gas Explosion Victims, USA Patch

 

Lockout

Massachusetts Senate passes bill to extend unemployment benefits to locked-out National Grid gas workers, MassLive

With differing bills for locked-out workers, House calls for Baker’s suggestions, Boston Globe

House, Senate at odds on Grid legislation, CommonWealth Magazine

Oops: DeLeo says Grid bill drafted incorrectly, CommonWealth Magazine

Baker backs more worker benefits if Grid lockout doesn’t end soon, CommonWealth Magazine

Senate readying bill to extend benefits for locked-out National Grid workers, Boston Globe

Decision on National Grid unlikely to help Quincy projects, Patriot Ledger

Moratorium on National Grid gas hookups lifted, Boston Globe

Montigny presses Spilka to act on lockout bill, South Coast Today

Locked-out workers blast DPU lift of National Grid moratorium, Boston Herald

Massachusetts imposes gas safety protocols on National Grid following over pressurization incident, Utility Dive

 

Renewables/Climate Change/RGGI

Rising Waters Are Drowning Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor, Bloomberg Business

From climate change to congestion, Massachusetts has a new transportation plan, MassLive

Polar vortex could unleash winter wallop by January, Washington Post

New Jersey regulators issue rules to rejoin RGGI carbon trading system, Utility Dive

New York Gov. Cuomo pledges 100% carbon-free electricity by 2040, Utility Dive

New York Power Authority to invest $250M in electric grid for better access to renewables, Daily Energy Insider

DC passes ‘most ambitious’ mandate for 100% renewables by 2032, Utility Dive

Energy transitions are usually slow. Here’s why the clean energy transition might be faster., Vox.com

Report: Massachusetts clean energy sector added 1,500 jobs in 2017, MassLive

Cap-and-Trade for Cars Is Coming to the Northeast, Scientific American

In landmark agreement, Mass., eight other states vow to cut transportation emissions, Boston Globe

Conn. Looks To Mix Of Strategies To Cut Greenhouse Gas Emissions, WSHU News

Rhode Island Renewable Energy Becomes Part Of The Everyday Landscape, CleanTechnica

 

Wind

A 21,000% Gain Shows Sky-High Value of Offshore Wind Leases, Bloomberg

Offshore Wind Auction For 390,000 Acres South Of Mass. Blows Through Sale Record, WBUR

Vineyard Wind Lands Second Offshore Lease, Vineyard Gazette

New Jersey regulators hand third rejection to Atlantic City offshore wind pilot, Utility Dive

Avangrid Renewables expands offshore wind portfolio after auction win, Windpower Engineering & Development

CT wind, fuel cell projects win long-term contracts, Hartford Business Journal

Shell Places 1.6 Gigawatt Bet On US Offshore Wind Energy, CleanTechnica

Association to Preserve Cape Cod Formally Endorses Vineyard Wind, Cape Cod

 

Solar

New Jersey moves to end solar RECs, take next steps toward 100% renewables, Utility Dive

Portland’s newest and largest solar array moves city toward its renewable-energy goal, Press Herald

Solar Wolf Energy Expands Footprint in Massachusetts, NA Clean Energy

LIPA OKs consumer-protection measures for solar customers, Newsday.com

New England Talks Solar, Storage and Public Policy, RTO Insider

ReVision Energy launches fund to help nonprofits tap solar energy, Mainebiz

Environmental group worries proposed solar farm could destroy Milford’s ecological gem, New Hampshire Union Leader

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

New York State PSC approves increases in energy efficiency, energy storage targets, Daily Energy Insider

MIT researchers make strides on location-independent, large-scale energy storage, Daily Energy Insider

NYPA board approves $600M credit line for efficiency projects as utility targets double, Utility Dive

NY’s energy storage target: It’s the journey, not the destination, stakeholders say, Utility Dive

Waltham Considers Hiring Full-Time Sustainability Manager, USA Patch

Design Building awarded LEED Gold certification, Massachusetts Daily Collegian

 

Nuclear

Indian Point closure will put power supply in flux, Times Herald-Record

Accelerated retirement of U.S. coal, nuke plants has potential risks –NERC, Reuters

PSEG first to file for subsidies to keep its nuclear plants online, NJ Spotlight

Nuclear Advisory Group Endorses Seabrook’s Plan To Monitor Concrete Cracks, NHPR

Seabrook Station: Study: Plant can operate, Newburyport Daily News

 

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

Eversource balks at state law ordering it to buy wood power, New Hampshire Union Leader

Consumer Energy Alliance Report Finds Higher Household Heating Costs Threaten Northeast Consumers, Boston Business Journal

Capacity pricing changes: How each power market plans to account for resource adequacy, Utility Dive

Wallingford not affected by utilities’ rate hikes, Record-Journal

Connecticut regulator weighs ‘amnesty’ for alternative electric suppliers, The Hour

Meriden To Recoup $3.4 Million From Eversource, USA Patch

Audit of CMP billing errors reveals lapses in training, testing, Portland Press Herald

FERC approves cost recovery for Exelon’s Mystic gas plant, Utility Dive

Zoning board approves generators at Fore River power plant, Patriot Ledger

Camden, N.J. Looks to Innovative Bonds to Expand Microgrid Project, Microgrid Knowledge

 

Editorial/Opinion

Has the Mass. solar gamble paid off?, CommonWealth Magazine

New Congress will bring a green wave on climate change, Boston Globe

In Quebec, clean energy goes to waste. Let’s use it., Boston Globe

Governor Baker, it’s time to hold gas utilities accountable, Boston Globe

Ocean plot auctions reap windfall for future, Boston Herald

The state’s social contract with utilities, CommonWealth Magazine

Clarity coming to NJ’s aggressive clean energy plan and its costs, Press of Atlantic City

Column: Justice for the Merrimack Valley starts with real accountability, Eagle-Tribune

Record-Smashing Auction Sets America on Course for Offshore Wind, Union of Concerned Scientists

Letter to the editor: Why are Massachusetts power needs prioritized over Maine’s?, Portland Press Herald

Lights out for Eversource (Letters), MassLive

Letter to the editor: Shame on National Grid, Sun Chronicle

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

Energy News for week ending December 7, 2018

We are in Trouble | Transfer Approved | Plenty of Capacity

TGIF! Let’s get to it.

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

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

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

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

 Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

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

Changing fuel prices impact household heating market, Connecticut Post

Portland Xpress pipeline project gets FERC environmental OK, Seeking Alpha

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

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

Environmentalists slam Murphy for inaction on pipelines, NJtoday.com

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

 

Lock Out

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

Emotions high at National Grid lockout hearing, Lowell Sun

National Grid takes pounding on Beacon Hill, CommonWealth Magazine

 

Merrimack Valley

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

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

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

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

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

 

Renewables/Climate Change/RGGI

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

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

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

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

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

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

Climate change already reshaping South Shore coastline, Patriot Ledger

 

Wind

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

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

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

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

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

Vineyard Wind draft report released, Energy Central

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

 

Solar

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

Consortium turning former brownfields into solar farms, Westerly Sun

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

Watertown passes new solar requirement, Wicked Local Watertown

Salem Receives Award For Solar Efforts, USA Patch

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

EVs

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

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

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

 

Nuclear

Vermont Yankee Transfer Approved, NorthStar Will Decommission Plant, VPR

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

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

 

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

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

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

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

Cape Light Compact Announces Winter Electric Pricing, Cape Cod

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

Seacoast Reliability Project continues to clear hurdles, Seacoastonline.com

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

Editorial/Opinion

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

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

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

Eversource project endangers children, the environment, Seacoastonline.com

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

Energy News for week ending November 30, 2018

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

 

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Berkshire Gas moratorium continues indefinitely, The Recorder

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

Lockout

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

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

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

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

 

Merrimack Valley

Trailers removed as need for shelter declines, Eagle Tribune

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

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

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

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

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

Rivera: Columbia Gas should be disbanded, CommonWealth Magazine

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

 

Renewables/Climate Change/RGGI

Report warns of coastal impact for New England, Salem News

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

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

Bipartisan group of lawmakers propose landmark carbon tax, The Hill

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

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

 

Wind

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

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

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

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

 

 

Solar

Massachusetts accepts first applications for new solar SMART incentives, MassLive

BlueWave withdraws solar array proposal in Webster, Telegram.com

Solar Project Completed On Former East Providence Landfill, Solar Industry

Tiverton taps brakes on solar development, Newport Daily News

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

Farmington planning board approves solar project, Kennebec Journal

Local solar nonprofit seeks to innovate energy assistance, Brainerd Dispatch

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

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

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

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

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

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

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

 

EVs

Are regulators hindering EV acceleration?, Utility Dive

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

 

Nuclear

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

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

Plymouth seeks extended benefits as Pilgrim closes, Cape Cod Times

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

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

Nuclear panel questions cask life span, Cape Cod Times

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

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

 

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

Region’s electricity market in trouble, CommonWealth Magazine

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

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

New England power grid expected to meet winter demand, MassLive

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

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

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

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

Newton Signs Historic Green Energy Contract: Mayor, USA Patch

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

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

 

Editorial/Opinion

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

Our region needs the Seacoast Reliability Project, Seacoastonline.com

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

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

We need a Green New Deal in Massachusetts, CommonWealth Magazine

LETTER: Maintain conservative nuclear cleanup standards, Wicked Local Plymouth

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

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