Tag Archives: natural gas

Energy News for week ending October 6, 2017

Try a little voodoo | Methane Moooystery Solved | Troubling Conclusion

Happy Friday afternoon. The Energy News list today is UGE! In order to make it easier for folks to find what they want we created more categories. This may not be the case every week, but when have nearly 80 stories, like today, a little more sorting seems to help.

We’ve also been expanding our range to include more Northeast (i.e. beyond New England) stories, and of course have national news stories with potential local and regional implications. We hope you’re enjoying the change. Now, let’s get to a few of the news items.

I love the lede in this Berkshire Eagle article, “When all else fails, keep bugging the pipeline company, and try a little voodoo.” While it sounds like a lot of shenanigans were going on, the story also touches on some kind human interactions between the members of the police detail and the protestors. With all that’s been going on in the world, examples of peaceful protests are welcome news.

The Washington Post brings us the results of a study on upticks in methane over recent years. It seems the cause may be burping bovines. “Just from livestock methane emissions, our revisions resulted in 11 percent more methane in a recent year than what we were previously estimating,” said Julie Wolf, lead author of the study who completed the work while a postdoc at the institute and now works at the Department of Agriculture. “It’s not the biggest contributor to the annual methane budget in the atmosphere, but it may be the biggest contributor to increases in the atmospheric budget over recent years.” And, if you thought the emissions came from the other end of the cow, check out the embedded 2015 story about how that’s not the case.

Lastly this week, also from the Washington Post comes the results of 26-year climate change study that has been taking place in the Harvard Forest in Petersham, MA. From the article, “The research, tracking the emissions of carbon from artificially heated plots of a forest in Massachusetts, reinforces fears about the possibility of a climate change “feedback” involving the planet’s soils, one that could pile on top of and substantially worsen the ongoing warming trend triggered by the burning of fossil fuels.” Check it out, it’s pretty interesting stuff.

As always, be sure to check out the events page at New England Energy News. Have a great Columbus Day weekend.

Natural Gas/Pipeline/Methane

Activists relentless as Tennessee Gas tries to wrap up pipeline work, gas to flow in November, Berkshire Eagle

Scientists may have found a solution to the atmosphere’s methane mystery, Washington Post

New York power plant raises concerns, Greater New Milford Spectrum

TransCanada says it’s cancelling Energy East pipeline, CT Post

LISTEN: The science behind gas leaks under our cities and towns, The Patriot Ledger

Massive Pennsylvania gas leak proves industry requires more oversight, Environmental Defense Fund

Looking beyond pipelines to address New England’s electricity needs, Environmental Defense Fund

Renewables (Policy/RGGI/Purchasing, etc.)

Murphy or Guadagno: There’s Likely RGGI in New Jersey’s Future, NJ Spotlight

Vermont a Leader in Renewables, PUC Chair Says, RTO Insider

Renewable energy fans flex lobbying muscles in Massachusetts, Penn Energy

Council president, mayor differ on green electricity plan for city, Boston Globe

Wind

Energy Companies’ Proposal Could Help Expand Maine’s Wind Power Capacity, Maine Public

New York To BOEM: Here’s Where We Can Build Offshore Wind, North American Windpower

NY State clears way for more offshore wind, Long Island Business News

Senvion’s 3.7M144 Wind Turbine Arrives In North America, North American Windpower

If Wind Power Is Going to Replace Fossil Fuels, We Need Bigger Turbines, Futurism

From Black to Green: DONG Energy is Now Ørsted, Renewable Energy World

So Long, DONG: Danish Energy Giant Changes Name While Dropping Fossil Fuels, Greentech Media

Scituate selectmen consider shutting down wind turbine, Patriot Ledger

Solar

Net Metering Cap Stalls $78 Million Worth Of Massachusetts Solar Projects, CleanTechnica

Massachusetts Solar Industry Testifies in Support of Raising Net Metering Caps, Energy Collective

Claremont solar array project moves forward, The Union Leader

Rebuilding After the Hurricanes: These Solar Homes Use Almost No Energy, InsideClimate News

Regulations Force Boston Churches to Cut Back Solar Plan, WGBH

Solar industry turns up heat on Mass. Legislature, Boston Globe

New tariff proposals put solar in ‘a land of complete uncertainty’ ahead of ITC hearing, Utility Dive

Fairfield enters partnership to explore solar array on closed landfill, Energy Central/Morning Central

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

Low-income families left in dark by solar law, Wicked Local Littleton

Tidal

N.S. opens door to new energy ventures among world’s highest tides in Fundy, Times Colonist

Tidal turbine test site at Cape Cod Canal gets green light, Cape Cod Times

Climate Change

One of the oldest climate change experiments has led to a troubling conclusion, Washington Post

Storage

Massachusetts’ largest ESS will help ‘stabilise’ utility customers’ rates for 20 years, Energy Storage News

National Grid, battery company unveil power system at Holy Name, Worcester Business Journal

ENGIE and Massachusetts utility team up for 6 MWh energy storage project, Utility Dive

Energy Efficiency

Pot power drain on the minds of Bay State utilities, Gloucester Times

Happy Energy Efficiency Day: Buy an LED Bulb to Celebrate, Natural Resources Defense Council

Efficiencies helped households save up to 30 percent on energy bills in 2016: IEA, Reuters

States Lead the Way on Energy Efficiency as Feds Falter, Natural Resources Defense Council

Portsmouth joins national Energy Efficiency Day, Seacoastonline.com

Start saving money, reducing pollution on Energy Efficiency Day, wwlp.com

Despite Trump, states keep getting more energy-efficient., Grist

Connecticut slips slightly in state-by-state ranking of energy efficiency, The Greater New Milford Spectrum

Want To Build An Energy Efficient House? Try Concrete, WNPR News

LED streetlight conversion leads to $115K grant, Daily Times Chronicle

Nuclear

Nuclear Regulatory Commission responds to Seabrook safety activist’s concerns, Wicked Local Ipswich

At Vermont Yankee Nuclear Plant, A Rumble Over Rubble, New England Public Radio

Vermont Yankee decommissioning fund grows by $13M, Brattleboro Reformer

Entergy, NorthStar want critical comments nixed, vtdigger.org

Pilgrim owner backs off another nuclear plant closure, Cape Cod Times

Proposed federal bill would give millions to cities storing nuclear waste, Chicago Tribune

Courtney targets nuclear waste, Hartford Business

DOE NOPR FERC

US DOE proposal for FERC market reforms draws heavy fire at GCPA, Platts

An Obscure Statute Is Helping Trump Save U.S. Coal, Nuclear, Bloomberg

How DOE’s baseload power rule ‘would blow the market up,’ Utility Dive

Behind the Backlash to Energy Secretary Rick Perry’s Demand for Coal-Nuclear Market Intervention, Greentech Media

The Energy Department is Making up Reasons Why You Need to Pay More For Dirty Energy, Fast Company

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

State budget woes jeopardize environmental funding, New Haven Register

Eversource predicts dip in monthly bills by 5.5 percent, The Union Leader

Site Evaluation Committee views potential impact of Northern Pass on Concord, Concord Monitor

World’s First Technology To Measure Electricity Grid Stability Announced, CleanTechnica

Land Conservationists Worry Power Plant Will Fragment Forest, Harm Species, WNPR News

Invenergy announces water deal with Narragansett Tribe, RI Future

Rep. Cushing to PUC: Don’t Let ‘Polluter’ Eversource Buy Aquarion Water, InDepthNH.org

Worcester balks at National Grid repair bills for DCU Center, Worcester Telegram

EPA chief wants more of Northern Pass underground, The Union Leader

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

FERC eschews social cost of carbon measurement in new downstream analysis, Utility Dive

Winter energy prices to rise at least seven percent in Mass, MetroWest Daily News

Northern Pass hits another obstacle, CommonWealth Magazine

Imagining the Utility of the Future, Utility Dive

Gardner deal to trim electricity bills, Telegram

Editorial/Opinion

Stopping Climate Change Starts at Home, Commonwealth Magazine

Editorial: Energy project shows promise, once connected to the grid, The Recorder

Northern Pass is committed to working with businesses, The Laconia Daily Sun

Forum: Protect Millstone’s workers and communities, not its shareholders, New Haven Register

Amelia Shea: A long-term view of Vermont Yankee site, vtdigger.org

Could electricity become too cheap to meter?, CommonWealth Magazine

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Filed under Climate Change, Energy Efficiency, nuclear, offshore wind, solar

Energy News for week ending September 8, 2017

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

Good Friday Afternoon.

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

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

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

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

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

Natural Gas/Pipeline

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

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

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

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

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

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

Natural gas pipeline projects move closer to development, Utility Dive

Renewable Energy

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

Connecticut pledging to cut greenhouse gas emissions, CT Post

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

Giant Batteries Help Renewable Energy Grow In New England, WBUR

Grid strained by new solar farms, Berkshire Eagle

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

20 megawatts: Solar developer targets southern Vermont, Brattleboro Reformer

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

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

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

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

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

CleanChoice Energy opens office in Massachusetts, Clean Technology Business Review

Lynn Working to Become A Green Community, Lynn Journal

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

Wastewater treatment authority on path to full renewability, Penn Energy

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

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

Energy Efficiency

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

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

Bash the incandescent bulb and save money, The Cabinet Press

Nuclear

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

State OKs reduction in Vermont Yankee security, vtdigger.org

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

In advertising blitz, nuclear industry seeks reset, Axios

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

Could Success Spoil ISO-NE?, Power Magazine

Massachusetts utilities take divergent approaches to grid modernization, Utility Dive

Electricity Providers Targeted In Massive Hack, Buzzfeed

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

How States Will Hit 100 Percent Clean Energy, Scientific American

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

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

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

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

Northern Pass route through White Mountains clears hurdle, WMUR Manchester

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

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

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

Towns intervene in Eversource acquisition of Aquarion, Seacoastonline.com

Proposed State Energy Strategy Draws Critics, Hartford Courant

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

The simple reason most power utilities suck, Vox.com

Editorial/Opinion

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

Carbon emissions problem has more than one solution, Press Herald

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

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

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

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

Energy News for week ending September 1, 2017

Gas Pump Pain | Giant Batteries | Northern Pass Delay

Hopefully many of you are headed out of the door to start your long weekend so we’ll keep the news highlights short.  Our thoughts go out to all those impacted by Hurricane Harvey–it has been hard to wrap our heads around the scale of devastation and destruction. Damage to energy supplies in Texas combined with the normal increase in Labor Day holiday travel is already leading to higher gas prices throughout New England.  In better news, giant batteries are starting to make a positive mark on the electric grid reports WNPR. And depending upon which side of the Northern Pass issue you are on, you may or may not be happy to learn NH State regulators announced they will delay their final decision on the Northern Pass by another six months to March 30, 2018.  We hope you have a wonderful Labor Day weekend!

Hurricane Harvey: New England Impact

Hurricane fuels gas-price hike as reserves tapped, Lowell Sun

Energy Dept. taps into emergency oil reserves after Harvey, The Hill

Colonial Pipeline to shut US Northeast fuel lines due to Harvey, Reuters

Harvey’s impact in Southern New England might be at the pump, Turn to 10

EPA waives emission rules in 38 states amid fears of fuel shortages, Washington Examiner

Natural Gas/Pipeline

Discharge water from Tennessee Gas Co. pipeline testing worries environmentalists, Berkshire Eagle

State drops charges against 4 pipeline protesters arrested for blocking access to Otis State Forest, Berkshire Eagle

Putin-linked steel company supplies pipes for Kinder Morgan’s expansion project in Otis State Forest, Berkshire Eagle

FERC Denies Request To Halt Kinder Morgan’s Pipeline Expansion, Again, WAMC

Smell Natural Gas Outside? Report It, But Don’t Always Expect A Fix, Cape Cod Chronicle

Gas Co. Challenges NY Pipeline Permit Denial At 2nd Circ., Law360

Weymouth: Sen. Warren Reaffirms Opposition to Compressor Station, 95.9 WATD-FM

Natural Gas Upgrade: Eversource Begins $2.2M Project In East Norwalk, Norwalk Daily Voice

Renewable Energy

Gigantic Batteries Help Grow Renewable Energy In Maine, New England, WNPR News

RI Wastewater Treatment Authority To Reach 100% Renewable Energy By 2018, Rhode Island Public Radio

Solar power microgrid goes online in Cuttyhunk Island, Massachusetts, Electric Light & Power

History-rich Maine island goes green, WLBZ-TV

Chemetal taps into solar with 560-panel roof array, GazetteNET

Possible tariff puts NH solar firms on edge, New Hampshire Business Review

From Fenway Park to Wembley, these stadiums are going big on renewable energy, CNBC

No anti-competitive behavior in RGGI secondary market, report finds, Utility Dive

Sununu Satisfied With Latest RGGI Proposal, New Hampshire Public Radio

Policymaker support key to offshore wind prospects in US, Utility Dive

World’s Biggest Wind Turbine Maker Waves Goodbye to Oil Industry, Bloomberg

Narragansett Bay Commission Adding Solar, Will Be Nearly 100% Renewable, GoLocalProv

Energy Efficiency

How Does the United States Rate in Energy Efficiency?, Energy Collective

Making data centers more energy efficient, MIT News

Heating Camden’s new middle school from town’s sewer plant: What’s the cost and can it be done?, PenBayPilot.com

500 cities have committed to going big on clean energy this year – now what?, Into the Wind

Nuclear

If nuclear is not in the future US energy mix, what will replace it?, Utility Dive

Newburyport City Council to review letter to NRC calling for hearing, The Daily News of Newburyport

Opponents launch petition against Millstone “deal”; Dominion says group “misleads” consumers, theday.com

Environmental Group Seeks Added Financial Protections In Vermont Yankee Sale, Vermont Public Radio

Vermont Yankee companies expand request to seal documents, vtdigger.org

No new pollution at Vermont Yankee, Brattleboro Reformer

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

Eversource dealt 6-month setback for Northern Pass transmission line, MassLive.com

State committee delays Northern Pass decision until 2018, The Union Leader

Northern Pass dealt regulatory blow, Commonwealth Magazine

Eversource Asks PUC To Conceal Fiscal Info On Berlin Biomass Plant, Caledonian Record

Utilities Grapple with Rooftop Solar and the New Energy Landscape, Yale Environment 360

Executive Councilor: Sununu Needs To Do More Outreach On Northern Pass, New Hampshire Public Radio

National Grid, Hydro-Quebec snipe over hydro power, Commonwealth Magazine

RI approves rate hike for National Grid, The Sun Chronicle

Could Success Spoil ISO-NE?, POWER magazine

Editorial/Opinion

States Dare to Think Big on Climate Change, New York Times

Misinformation being spread about Northern Pass project, Foster’s Daily Democrat

My Turn: Michael F. Sabitoni: Natural gas plant vital for RI, The Providence Journal

Foss: Proposed energy rate increase is too much, The Daily Gazette

My Turn: Hydro-Quebec cannot rewrite history, Concord Monitor

Letter: Colin Nagle: National Grid ought to modernize energy infrastructure, The Providence Journal

Renewing RGGI: Do nothing, but more of it, The Union Leader

 

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Filed under Energy Efficiency, Natural Gas Pipelines, Renewables, solar, Wind Power

Energy News for week ending July 21, 2017

TGIF to all!  A few news items of note…

The Patriot Ledger reports Gov. Charlie Baker has broken his long silence on the controversial natural-gas compressor station Monday, ordering state agencies to review the Fore River project’s potential impact. Spectra Energy wants to build a 7,700-horsepower compressor on the river bank.

Construction has started on what is expected to be Maine’s largest municipally owned solar array. The one-megawatt solar array will be composed of 2,944 solar panels. Officials expect the array to generate 1.2 million kilowatt-hours of energy per year according to U.S. News & World Report.

Lawmakers on the House Appropriations Committee recently voted to slash Energy Star funding in the fiscal year 2018 budget — an improvement over previous calls to cut the program entirely, but advocates say the impact could still be “crippling.”

Natural Gas

Baker’s review of Weymouth compressor station applauded, Patriot Ledger

Stepping up the pressure, Boston Globe

State to look into health, safety concerns around Weymouth compressor station, (subscriber content) Boston Business Journal

Gov. Baker orders state to investigate compressor station issues, Greenfield Recorder

Catholic nuns in Pa. build a chapel to block the path of a gas pipeline planned for their property, Washington Post

Unitil to expand natural gas line through downtown, Fosters.com

Pipeline Construction, And Protests, Continue In Sandisfield, NEPR

Finding leaks while they’re easy to fix, MIT News

Renewables

South Portland’s Major Solar Array Project Begins, U.S. News & World Report

New Hampshire law benefits biomass power production, Biomass Magazine

Record Demand Puts Popular N.H. Renewable Energy Rebate Program On Hold, NHPR

Federal SunShot program funds $5.5M in Mass. solar projects, (subscriber content) Boston Business Journal

California Leads Off: Now RGGI Must Grab the Climate Baton, Natural Resources Defense Council

Eversource rate case poses woes for solar projects, Patriot Ledger

Solar debate heats up again, Boston Globe

Falmouth ruling bolsters cause for neighbors of Plymouth turbines, Cape Cod Times

In New England, Cooperative Values Drive Solar Growth – Episode 41 of Local Energy Rules Podcast, Renewable Energy News

Brookline launches renewable energy program with opt-out system, Wicked Local Brookline

Bay State Wind Receives First Offshore Wind Site Assessment Plan Approval in the United States, (Press Release) Business Wire

Maine large-scale manufacturers eligible for energy rebates, Mainebiz

Energy Efficiency

House Appropriations Committee votes to cut Energy Star funding 40%, Utility Dive

Green Energy Committee: Lincoln residents complete 162 home energy assessments, Wicked Local Lincoln

Energy Efficiency Upgrades Illuminate Six Ion Bank Branches, Patch.com

Nuclear

EXCLUSIVE: Gov’t Red Tape Costs Every Nuclear Plant $63 Million Annually, Daily Caller

Washington, DC firm signed to dismantle Vermont Yankee reactor, Commons

US Finds ‘Apparent Violations’ of Security at Millstone, Hartford Courant

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

Delays Push Burrillville Power Plant Toward Irrelevance, ecoRI news

More than 100 state legislators join opposition against Northern Pass, Concord Monitor

New Energy Alert Can Do More Than Save You Money, ecoRI news

Vermont regulators to examine grid modernization, Utility Dive

Options for Energy Storage that Aren’t Batteries, WCAI

Electric meter mistake costs Monson family big bucks, Western Mass News

Indigenous Community Airs Long-Standing Grievances at Northern Pass Hearing, NHPR

Footprint plant work extension to go forward, The Salem News

In Webster, Residents Weigh In On New Proposed Power Line, New Hampshire Public Radio

Quakers go on 60-mile pilgrimage from Portsmouth to Bow in protest of coal-fired plants, The Union Leader

Grid threats require ‘imagining the unimaginable’ — report, E&E News

Editorial/Opinion

Pilgrim closure requires oversight, not panic, Cape Cod Times

A lousy electric bill: Concord not on ratepayers’ side, The Union Leader

CMP chief: Lawmakers should sustain Gov. LePage’s veto of solar bill, Press Herald

Editorial: Bridging the gap of energy eras, Concord Monitor

Letter: Let Pessamit Innu speak on Northern Pass, Concord Monitor

Letter: Fight the power, Concord Monitor

Events

2017 Fuels Conference, Northeast Energy and Commerce Association, Marlborough, MA, September 27, 2017

Microgrid 2017 Conference, IDEA, MRC and Microgrid Knowledge, Boston, MA, November 6-8, 2017

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Filed under Electric Grid, Energy Efficiency, Natural Gas Pipelines, nuclear, Renewables, solar, Wind Power

Energy News for week ending June 30, 2017

Happy Friday everyone!

Gas stories abound this week. First, CommonWealth Magazine brings us the news that the companies involved in the Access Northeast Pipeline are putting the project on hold. According to the story, company officials said the project was being withdrawn from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s pre-filing review process and would not be revived until “gaps in legal authority” are addressed. Its backers said the region needed more access to gas, particularly in the winter months, when prices rise and backup coal and oil-fired plants are rushed into service to meet the region’s power needs.

Earlier in the week, The Recorder’s Going Green blog wrote about Kinder Morgan’s Tennessee Gas subsidiary “open season” filing seeking bids from gas distribution companies and other customers for a new pipeline in the region. The past couple of weeks have also brought us two reports on the benefits of natural gas. The API’s report looks at all 50 states, while the Northeast Gas Association directs its attention specifically on Massachusetts.

Last tidbit for this week comes from Microgrid Knowledge in an article that demonstrates bigger is not necessary better, at least when it comes to grid reliability according to two reports from the Brattle Group and the Analysis Group.  The studies find renewables are not jeopardizing reliability and the very idea of ‘baseload’ — power plants that run almost all the time — may be antiquated, given today’s mix of flexible, software-driven power resources.

Have a wonderful and safe 4th of July weekend.

Natural Gas/Pipeline

Access Northeast pipeline put on indefinite hold, CommonWealth Magazine

Gubernatorial candidates join compressor station opposition, Berkshire Eagle

Native Americans to fight FERC over pipeline work, Berkshire Eagle

98-year-old Northampton peace activist Frances Crowe faces trespassing charge after Berkshire pipeline protest, MassLive.com

8 protesters arrested at Massachusetts gas pipeline project, Boston.com

Kinder Morgan pitches future natural gas pipeline capacity in New York, New England, MassLive.com

Risk assessment requested for Weymouth compressor station site, Wicked Local Weymouth

Eversource invests $3.5M in Danbury’s natural gas system, CT Post

‘Victory’: Irish Lawmakers Ban Fracking | Common Dreams, Common Dreams

Study of oil and gas drilling finds pollution and connections to earthquakes, Houston Chronicle

Judge’s DAPL Ruling, Reckless Spill Record Pushes Pipeline Company’s Shares Below $20 for First Time, EcoWatch

‘Open season’ filed to gauge natural gas market, Going Green

Climate Change

WBUR Poll Finds A Sharp Increase In Concern About Climate Change Among Mass. Voters, WBUR

These experts say we have three years to get climate change under control. And they’re the optimists., Washington Post

Northeast & Mid-Atlantic Climate Leadership Starts with RGGI, Natural Resources Defense Council

Renewable Energy

RGGI mulling ‘cocktail’ of price-boosting measures as review’s end draws closer, Carbon Pulse

Ashland: Citizens Energy takes a shine to Nyanza site, MetroWest Daily News

Solar Energy Compromise Heads to LePage With Enough Support to Withstand Veto, Maine Public

Onshore wind development slow but steady as offshore plan advances, Mainebiz

New Bedford hoping to catch renewable energy wave, South Coast Today

DONG Energy Inaugurates 582 Megawatt Gode Wind I & 2 Offshore Wind Farms, CleanTechnica

Green Farmland Or Green Energy? Deepwater Wind Brings Debate To Connecticut, Rhode Island Public Radio

Was America’s First Offshore Wind Farm Unfairly Blamed For A Whale’s Death?, HuffPost

Wind Energy Has Officially Become Cheaper Than Fossil Fuels, Futurism

Is Offshore Wind Power Riding a Rising Tide?, The National Law Review

Simsbury Debates Trade Off Between Green Farmland And Green Energy, WNPR News

Citing ‘Hughes v. Talen,’ court rejects challenge to Connecticut’s renewable RFP, Utility Dive

Rooftop solar power gets a boost, mostly, from new PUC ruling, Concord Monitor

Marine Conservationist On New England’s Potential To Harness Energy From Ocean Tides, Rhode Island Public Radio

A Fight Over the Electric Grid Could Reshape America’s Green Power Boom, TIME

Baker-Polito Administration Announces $960,000 for Clean Energy Education Program, Energy Central

Yarmouth pours energy into going green, Cape Cod Times

Massachusetts Regulators Direct Utilities to Shorten Offshore Wind Bid Evaluation Timeline, Renewable Energy World

New Rules for Wind Turbines Delayed in Vermont, Energy Central

New Hampshire regulators approve new net metering tariffs, Utility Dive

Falmouth selectmen weigh financial impact of turbine shutdown, Cape Cod Times

New Hampshire Shines In Solar Compromise, Solar Industry

Energy Efficiency

A second attack on the energy efficiency program at the General Assembly poised to pass, RI Future

South Burlington residents save six percent on electric, vtdigger.org

Energy Efficiency Deserves Center Stage During President’s Energy Week, Energy Collective

Greenfield receives state funding for energy efficiency, wwlp.com

Nuclear

Nuclear Can Be Friends With Renewables—If It’s Modular, Greentech Media

Millstone Owner To Assess Shutting Down Nuclear Plant, Hartford Courant

NRC: Entergy served notice of violation ‘with willful intent’, The Recorder

Millstone owners not giving up on lucrative legislation, CT Post

ISO-NE lays out retirement options for Dominion’s Millstone nuke, Utility Dive

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

Hudson, Sudbury, Stow OK’d to intervene in Eversource power line case, MetroWest Daily News

Regional energy plan approved by state DPS, Bennington Banner

AMS in partnership with Southern Company subsidiary, gets Massachusetts peak load reduction grant, Energy Storage News

Massachusetts Energy Reliability Awareness Campaign, Northeast Gas Association

Northern Pass Clears Another Regulatory Hurdle, New Hampshire Public Radio

President Trump’s budget would put communities living near oil and gas at risk, Environmental Defense Fund

Bigger is Not Better: Grid Modernization and the Antiquated Concept of ‘Baseload,’ Microgrid Knowledge

Melrose Community Electricity Aggregation program update, Wicked Local Melrose

Eversource details impact of proposed rate shift, Berkshire Eagle

CT Siting Council to Return to Greenwich for Public Hearing on Eversource Proposed Substation, Greenwich Free Press

Hudson ConCom Commission says preferred Eversource power line route would hurt environment, MetroWest Daily News

New Brattle study touts flexible grid, dismisses ‘baseload’ hype, Utility Dive

New York expected to set high bar for energy storage after target bill passage, Utility Dive

Editorial/Opinion

Opinion: It’s nonsense to say fracking can be made safe, whatever guidelines we come up with, Phys.Org

Legislature Should Revive Millstone Bill, Hartford Courant

Commentary: Ideology shouldn’t trump practical solutions, LePage energy adviser says, Press Herald

Don’t Sweep Utility Funds Into General Budget, Hartford Courant

Opinion: Renew push for pricing carbon, BurlingtonFreePress.com

Round three on renewable energy, CommonWealth Magazine

 

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Filed under Climate Change, Natural Gas Pipelines, solar, Wind Power

Energy News for week ending June 23, 2017

Good Friday Afternoon.

This week’s energy news includes a story in the MIT Technology Review about a new paper from nearly two dozen “prominent researchers” that sharply critiqued an influential paper arguing that wind, solar, and hydroelectric power could affordably meet most of the nation’s energy needs by 2055. The researchers said the 2015 paper “contained modeling errors and implausible assumptions that could distort public policy and spending decisions.” That the 2015 paper was influential is right. Massachusetts, California and other states are now considering 100 percent renewable energy targets not only for electricity generation, but for transportation and heating as well. Greentech Media pulled together a podcast on the “bitter debate” that ensued after the critical paper was released. It also includes some links to Tweetstorms that erupted after the paper was released.

Also this week, the Consumer Energy Alliance released the results of a poll that showed “a large majority of voters in Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and New York embrace affordable and reliable energy in New England, but a much smaller majority embrace natural gas pipelines to make that happen.” The article in Natural Gas Intelligence reported, “CEA noted that the polling shows only 6% of respondents thought that a lack of natural gas or oil infrastructure was the cause for the region’s high electric rates. This shows ‘an apparent disconnect or lack of understanding from respondents as to how pipelines and other related energy infrastructure impact fuel and electricity prices,’ the group said.”

The last highlight this week is a story from the Cape Cod Times about the ongoing battle to shut down Wind 1 and Wind 2, the two turbines at the Falmouth Wastewater Treatment Facility. According to the story, “a Barnstable Superior Court judge on Tuesday ordered the town of Falmouth to shut down [the] two town-owned wind turbines. Judge Cornelius Moriarty issued his decision at about 4:30 p.m. in the case which pitted the town against its own Zoning Board of Appeals and a neighbor of the turbines. The Board of Selectmen had appealed a decision by the zoning board that found the turbines are a nuisance.” More court cases over the turbines are in process so this order to shut them down isn’t necessarily ‘case closed.’

Have a great weekend.

Natural Gas/Pipeline

FERC says no environmental review for ‘heavy-duty’ vehicle use variance, says it will trust Tennessee Gas Pipeline Co., Berkshire Eagle

New England Poll Finds ‘Disconnect’ Between Voter Support for Affordable Energy, Pipelines, Natural Gas Intelligence

18 Arrested At Kinder Morgan Pipeline Project Will Go To Court, WAMC

Despite trespassing arrests, Sugar Shack Alliance members vow to begin ‘summer days of resistance’ protest, Berkshire Eagle

Keene City Council backs natural gas proposal, delays climate change vote, Keene Sentinel

Weymouth residents continue air quality testing in the Fore River Basin, The Patriot Ledger

Court Issues Burrillville Power Plant a Setback, ecoRI news

Defending Burrillville from Invenergy may cost town millions, RI Future

API positions gas as all-purpose resource for grid reliability, Utility Dive

Renewable Energy

Scientists Sharply Rebut Influential Renewable-Energy Plan, MIT Technology Review

Major Simsbury Solar Project Opposed By State Officials Moving Ahead Thanks to Mass., R.I., Hartford Courant

Grafton solar project helps preserve Knowlton Farm, Telegram.com

Your Guide to the Bitter Debate Over 100% Renewable Energy, Greentech Media

Maine legislators get set for net metering vote that could impact PUC ruling, Daily Energy Insider

Falmouth ordered to shut down turbines, Cape Cod Times

Murphy and Esty Want $5 Billion for ‘National Green Bank’, Hartford Courant

Supporters tout carbon pricing plan from Lexington state senator, Wicked Local Lexington

What’s Next For Climate Change Efforts in NH?, New Hampshire Public Radio

Can Offshore Wind Power Revive US Ports?, Scientific American

Battle for US offshore wind jobs hots up, Recharge

Offshore Wind Faces Stiff Test From Hurricanes, ecoRI news

House and Senate Approve Solar Bill, More Votes Ahead, WAGM

Massachusetts Businesses Taking Climate Change Seriously, CBS Boston / WBZ

Vivint Solar Continues Huge Month With Expansion Into Vermont, CleanTechnica

Wind noise should be overseen by state, not developer, Brattleboro Reformer

Video: P.E.I. wind farm brings in special scaffolding to repair turbine blade, CBC News

At Pittsfield stop on Clean Energy Future Tour, anti-turbine sentiment a frequent topic, Berkshire Eagle

Report: Renewable energy is no threat to power reliability, Utility Dive

Rhode Island Considering Legislation to Streamline Process of Developing Renewable Energy Projects, JD Supra

Energy Efficiency

Critics of RI budget take aim at one-time revenue transfers, The Providence Journal

National Grid named one of the most energy efficient utilities in US, Daily Energy Insider

Donovan joins suit against US Department of Energy, Vermont Biz

Green Massachusetts, green Harvard, Harvard Press

Hinds, Pacheco Host MA Clean Energy Future Tour In Pittsfield, WAMC

6 towns get Green Communities grants totaling $830211, The Recorder

Nuclear

New York Senate narrowly passes bill to reallocate funds for nuclear subsidies, Utility Dive

Pilgrim advisory panel ‘ready to get to work’, Cape Cod Times

Judge blocks sale of Vermont Yankee disposal company, Brattleboro Reformer

Activists And Climate Scientists Push For Support Of Millstone Nuclear Power, WSHU

Entergy prepares to leave Plymouth; Emera hopes to enter, Wicked Local Plymouth

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

New England, California could see tight spots with reliability this summer, says FERC, Utility Dive

DOE grid study deadline delayed as Perry defends budget proposal, Utility Dive

MassDEP reaffirms Exelon plant in Medway is safe, despite project criticism, MetroWest Daily News

Medway: Exelon, law group spar over contractor suspension, MetroWest Daily News

Northern Pass foes show up in force, The Union Leader

From Yale to the North Country, Northern Pass elicits strong opinions, The Keene Sentinel

University statement on the Northern Pass hydropower transmission line, Yale News

Weymouth school gets energy assist from Celtics, National Grid, Wicked Local Weymouth

Senate Chair on Global Warming Takes Input on Energy Policy, iBerkshires.com

New York lawmakers clear bill creating an energy storage mandate, Utility Dive

A Massachusetts Co-op Makes A Powerful Vintage, Renewable Energy World

Enel to Buy EnerNOC for $250M, in Bid for Demand Response and Energy Software Market Share, Greentech Media

Editorial/Opinion

Finally – A Market-Based, Investable Approach to Energy Efficiency, Electric Light & Power

Another View — Richard Sampson: Yale could stop Northern Pass, The Union Leader

Our View: Solar bill would let Maine grow clean energy jobs, Press Herald

Exports explain interest in gas pipeline, CommonWealth Magazine

Our view: Footprint’s deal is a good one for neighbors and the city, Salem News

The upside of renewables, CommonWealth Magazine

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Filed under Natural Gas Pipelines, nuclear, Wind Power

Energy News for week ending June 16, 2017

Happy Friday afternoon.

There are a lot of stories this week! Let’s start with one from ISO-NE’s Newswire. They are reporting that “New England will be under the shadow of the moon for much of the afternoon on August 21 during a partial solar eclipse. According to NASA, the eclipse will occur between approximately 1:20 p.m. and 4:00 p.m., with the peak expected at around 2:45 p.m., when about 65% of the sun will be blocked (called obscuration). If it is a sunny day, the ISO expects that output from the region’s 2,000 megawatts (MW) of solar photovoltaic (PV) systems will drop during these 2 hours and 40 minutes, but anticipates having sufficient resources available to meet the resulting rise in electricity demand.” Be sure to check out the page to see the eclipse map and an easy to understand detailed explanation.

The US EIA announced this week that for the first time, monthly electricity generation from wind and solar (including utility-scale plants and small-scale systems) exceeded 10% of total electricity generation in the United States, based on March data. They expect similar results for April.

We all know Massachusetts is tops when it comes to energy efficiency. This week, the ACEEE announced The 2017 Utility Energy Efficiency Scorecard that looks at the performance of the 51 largest electric utilities in the United States and highlights cutting-edge efforts. Topping the list are Eversource Massachusetts and National Grid Massachusetts, which both earned the same score (91%). As is noted in the blog post, “both achieved more than 3% savings as a percentage of their retail sales in 2015 — a notable achievement.” Notable indeed.

Have a great weekend and a Happy Father’s Day to all the dads out there.

Natural Gas/Pipeline

Pipeline blasting plans raise fears, Berkshire Eagle

Activists question if Keene’s part of effort to create demand for natural gas infrastructure, Keene Sentinel

Gas bills going up for 12000 National Grid customers, WPRI 12 Eyewitness News

National Grid combating uptick of gas leaks in RI, Turn to 10

Eversource begins first phase of gas line project in Wallingford, New Haven Register

New Coalition Supports Burrillville Power Plant, Wants Affordable Energy Prices, Rhode Island Public Radio

Senate Hears Bill to Derail Burrillville Power Plant, ecoRI news

Departments run drill on how to respond to a leak in Spectra line, Wicked Local West Roxbury

Judge Delivers Blow To Trump Administration In Dakota Access Fight, NPR

Chicago Developer Helps Fund Pro-Power Plant Group, ecoRI news

Natural Gas Industry Brings A Fake Grassroots Group To Eastern Pipeline Fights, HuffPost

Renewable Energy

Wind and solar in March accounted for 10% of U.S. electricity generation for first time, US EIA

Report: Solar could power state’s flagging economy, CT Post

Competition for offshore wind ramps up in Massachusetts, ABC News

Labor, environmentalists tout first US offshore wind farm, SouthCoastToday.com

Cape Wind opposition continues, Cape Cod Times

Offshore wind may help New Hampshire lower energy costs, Recharge

Where offshore wind researchers see the most opportunity, Bangor Daily News

Wind power group’s new ad campaign aims to win over Trump, The Hill

Goldman Sachs invests in wind power and will help other big brands meet their green goals, Marketplace.org

Poll: Maine Voters Support Solar Energy, But Deeply Concerned About Affordable Energy and See Lowering Costs as Top Priority, Energy Central

Saco looking to get rid of wind turbine, National Wind Watch

2017 Clean Energy Jobs Report: RI Clean Energy Jobs See 66 Percent Growth Since 2014, Energy Central

Pick My Solar Partners with the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center and Local Non-Profits to Create An Online Solar Marketplace, Energy Central

Big business sees the promise of clean energy, The Economist

Wind Turbines: Behind the Spin, Machine Design

August eclipse will miss New England, but still could cut solar power output, Concord Monitor

RGGI CO2 auction price drops to $2.53/st, lowest price since 2012, Platts

Company gets rights to put solar panels on old Wallingford landfill, Meriden Record-Journal

Nexamp Completes Community Solar Project In Massachusetts, Solar Industry Magazine

Energy Efficiency

The results are in: here are the most energy-efficient utilities in the US, ACEEE Blog

Number Of Clean Energy Jobs Increasing In RI, Rhode Island Public Radio

Trump’s Delay on Energy Efficiency Is Illegal, Natural Resources Defense Council

11 states sue Trump’s DOE over stalled energy-use limits, ABC News

Energy Efficiency Bill Would Help Schools, U.S. News & World Report

Genbright and Ice Energy partner to reduce peak electricity demand on Nantucket, Penn Energy

Green Mountain Power’s Latest Distributed Energy Play: Smart Water Heaters for 99 Cents a Month, GreenTech Media

Nuclear

Natural Gas Industry Blasts Nuclear Power With Fake News, Forbes.com

DOE shells out $67M for advanced nuclear technology research, Utility Dive

Plymouth: Proposal to Build Converter Station on Pilgrim Site Goes Before Selectmen, 95.9 WATD-FM

NRC reports on Seabrook Station nuke plant, The Daily News of Newburyport

Oral arguments set for nuke plant license amendment, The Daily News of Newburyport

Vermont Yankee offers safety assurances as fuel move starts, Brattleboro Reformer

Trespass charge dropped against Vermont Yankee activist, vtdigger.org

Ferland: Commend citizens’ panel for an extraordinary Vermont Yankee Meeting, VermontBiz

How Retiring Nuclear Power Plants May Undercut U.S. Climate Goals, New York Times

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

Carbon Pricing Bill Attracts Support and Opposition, Rhode Island Public Radio

Massachusetts Bills Create New Opportunities for Microgrids, Non-Wires Alternatives, MicroGrid Knowledge

Powered Down, Massachusetts’ Last Coal-Burning Plant Leaves A Void, WGBH

ISO-NE prepared to operate grid through partial solar eclipse in August, ISO-NE Newswire

Utility CEOs to DOE: Hands off state energy policies, grid planning, Utility Dive

Heat waves: Demand response’s time to shine, Utility Dive

Southern California power supply at risk this summer -FERC, Reuters

Proponents, opponents speak out at Northern Pass hearing, The Union Leader

Analyst: Northern Pass could save customers about $18 a year, The Union Leader

Cape Light Compact Concerned with Changes in New Eversource Filing, CapeCod.com

Eversource rate tweak missed review deadline; new hearings ordered, Berkshire Eagle

“Do you believe?” is the wrong question to ask public officials about climate change, Vox.com

Survey: What Electricity Customers Really Want, Greentech Media

Morse, Bradley Support Repeal of Electric Consumption Tax, Biomass Study, Energy Central

Editorial/Opinion

Natural Gas Industry Blasts Nuclear Power With Fake News, Forbes.com

Chris McKay: Sound regulations restricting wind power, vtdigger.org

Letter: No to Northern Pass, industrial wind, Concord Monitor

Editorial: New England’s energy challenges, The Providence Journal

Millstone nuclear plant not in ‘limbo’. Needs no special financial treatment, MassLive.com

If the feds won’t face climate change, the region can, The Boston Globe

Paris withdrawal won’t deter wind, solar, CommonWealth Magazine

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Filed under Climate Change, Energy Efficiency, nuclear, solar, Wind Power