Tag Archives: offshore wind

Energy News for week ending October 9, 2020

Ludicrous…Propaganda | Hard 2021 | Radiative Cooling

Happy Friday folks.

We have quite a few stories below about CT’s new legislation aimed at requiring utilities to pay up if power isn’t restored after 96 hours among other penalties and incentives. This article won the headline war though, Electric rate hikes as a result of new law? ‘Ludicrous…propaganda.’ (Middletown Press)

With election day fast approaching, things are heating up in Maine over the Clean Energy Connect power line. Despite this story from the Press Herald New England Clean Energy Connect may start construction in November, despite opposition, there is this report from the Bangor Daily News CMP could have hard 2021 in Augusta as legislative hopefuls turn against corridor.

For a new technology story this week, we alert you to Bringing the chill of the cosmos to a warming planet “Scientists are tapping into a law of physics to create cooling systems that work without special fuel or electricity.” (Washington Post)

That’s the recap for this week. Enjoy the long weekend, and as always, stay safe.

Efficiency/Storage

GMP energy storage program saves customers millions, WCAX

Once shut out, Maine cannabis industry now eligible for sustainable energy grants, Press Herald

Will the Distributed Energy Revolution Leave Renters Behind?, Greentech Media

Climate Change/Renewables/RGGI

RI Updates 2030 Load and Renewables Forecast, RTO Insider

DOE study: Solar-hydro projects could power 40% of world, E&E News

National Grid sees hydrogen as a lynchpin, joins utilities targeting net zero carbon by 2050, Utility Dive

Boston near top in new clean energy scorecard, WHDH

Coalition: Avoided Deaths, Asthma Cases Underscore Need for TCI, State House News Service

Transportation and Climate Initiative gets corporate push, Worcester Business Journal

Can the US Catch Up in the Green Hydrogen Economy,? Greentech Media

MBTA embracing renewable energy, CommonWealth Magazine

Bringing the chill of the cosmos to a warming planet, Washington Post

Job losses in renewables sector total 75,669; clean energy losses at 477,862: report, S&P Global

Wind, solar smash records. But analysts worry it won’t last, E&E News (subscriber content)

Long-delayed Trump administration study finds that climate change threatens polar bears, Washington Post

Is Wave Energy Ready to Climb Out of the ‘Valley of Death’?, Greentech Media

Second wave: Ocean Power Technologies’ power-grid plan sank, but it grabbed life preserver by switching focus to niche offshore systems, ROI-NJ

Jaffrey’s MilliporeSigma unveils new $14.4M wastewater treatment plant, Keene Sentinel

Wind

UMaine continues to develop floating concrete wind turbine, WBAI TV

European developers build out dominance in US offshore wind race, S&P Global

Ørsted to Host Three Virtual Open Houses: Offer Updates on the Progress of the Ocean Wind Offshore Wind Project, tapinto.net

Solar

Plymouth Planning Board considers solar fields on bogs, Wicked Local Plymouth

Company eyes solar farm at New England Dragway, seacoastonline.com

Marsh Sanctuary alleges special treatment for proposed Mount Kisco solar farm, Westchester and Fairfield County Business Journals

Oregon solar company eyes two projects in Rutland Town, Rutland Herald

EVs

Vermont offering up to $5,000 towards purchase of energy efficient used car, St. Albans Messenger

New kind of ride in Beverly, Beverly officials charged up about first electric school bus, Salem News

Electric Trash Trucks Are Coming Quietly to Your Town, Wall St. Journal

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Lynch: FBI To Investigate Possibility of Cyberattack At Weymouth Compressor, WBUR

Weymouth officials, residents want to see gas company’s emergency plan, Patriot Ledger

State approves $56 million settlement with Columbia Gas for Merrimack Valley gas explosions, Boston Globe

Nuclear

Bill Gates-backed nuclear fusion pioneer: ‘We can fill the gaps left by wind and solar,’ Recharge

Market/Grid/Policy/Prices

Grid operator calls for ‘net carbon pricing,’ CommonWealth Magazine

R.I.’s Climate Crisis Means Higher Energy Bills and Less Work, EcoRI

After a summer of widespread outages and rising rates, anger at utility companies explodes on the campaign trail, Hartford Courant

Massachusetts City Plans “Microgrid without Borders,” Microgrid Knowledge

CT Utility Reform Bill Passes: Here’s What It Means For Customers, Patch.com

A new bill requires Connecticut utility companies to pay up when the power is out for an extended period. Here are 7 ways it affects customers., Hartford Courant

Electric rate hikes as a result of new law? ‘Ludicrous…propaganda,’ Middletown Press

New England Clean Energy Connect may start construction in November, despite opposition, Press Herald

CMP could have hard 2021 in Augusta as legislative hopefuls turn against corridor, Bangor Daily News

Five First Nations file brief with DOE opposing New England Clean Energy Connect, Energy Central

Mayor: Plan will lower residents’ electric bills, Eagle Tribune

Inside the Utility Company Lobbying Blitz That Will Hike Electric Bills, ProPublica

How to Prepare for Increased Energy Disruptions Due to Extreme Weather, NY1

Power-buying policy still an open question in NJ, NJ Spotlight

Opinion

Opinion: A clean energy future for Connecticut, CT Post

NY needs clean renewable energy like Québec hydropower, Altamont Enterprise

Maine Voices: Canada’s ‘Atlantic Loop’ power grid could bring big value to Maine, CentralMaine.com

Leave a comment

Filed under Climate Change, Electric Grid, Electricity Costs, Energy Efficiency, New England Energy News, Northeast Energy News

Energy News for week ending September 11, 2020

High Energy Burden | Big Oil Goes Green | Where are the yeses?

Happy Friday folks.

Busy day and week. So I need to keep this short.

I direct your attention to these two articles:

67% of low-income households face high energy burden: ACEEE, Utility Dive

Oil Major BP Gives a Taste of How It Will Go Green, WSJ

One more interesting article to share, which was a result of yesterday’s MIT CEEPR event that featured former Energy Secretary Moniz.

From Axios:

Amy: What is the state or region that you think will have the most difficult time transitioning to a clean-energy economy? Why?

Moniz:

New England. Moniz then went on to say that that region has in recent years opposed new and existing energy infrastructure, like natural-gas pipelines, hydropower and nuclear power plants that could help reduce emissions.

“There are a lot of nos. Where are the yeses? … If we are going to go to low carbon, where is it all going to come from? It’s not all going to come from offshore wind. That’s why we need pragmatic, realistic solutions.”

That’s the recap for this week. Have a great weekend and as always, stay safe.

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

67% of low-income households face high energy burden: ACEEE, Utility Dive

NYISO allows full participation for energy storage in wholesale power markets, Utility Dive

FERC Order May Undermine Renewables, Energy Storage in New York’s Capacity Markets, Greentech Media

How to Keep Firefighters Safe From Batteries, Greentech Media

 

Climate Change/Renewables/RGGI

Utilities Look to Green Hydrogen to Cut Carbon Emissions, Wall St. Journal

AWEA Introduces New Trade Group, the American Clean Power Association, Greentech Media

FERC details carbon pricing conference as groups blast renewables, consumer and women exclusions, Utility Dive

Amid a Pandemic, Green Electricity Charts a Course Forward, S&P Global Market Intelligence

United in Science report: Climate change has not stopped for COVID19, UN Environment Programme

Federal report warns of financial havoc from climate change, Boston Business Journal (subscriber content)

Oil Major BP Gives a Taste of How It Will Go Green, WSJ

House to probe US lag on leveraging clean energy for COVID-19 recovery, consider bipartisan energy bill, Utility Dive

FERC rejection of NYISO renewables plan could prompt state-managed capacity market, advocates say, Utility Dive

 

Wind

Coalition, including UMass Dartmouth, backs expanded research of offshore wind, Herald News

Vineyard Wind partners with Nantucket for support, Cape Cod Times

Floating Offshore Wind Turbines Blast Off, With Help From US Taxpayers, CleanTechnica

Study Finds Offshore Wind and Lobstering Can Coexist, EcoRI

Offshore Wind in NJ Gets Boost, But Lawmakers Demand a Halt to One Project, NJ Spotlight

Wind Farm Benefits Package Totals $29 Million for East Hampton Town, East Hampton Star

 

Solar

US Solar Market Performed Better Than Expected During Pandemic’s Worst Months, Greentech Media

Final approval given by the Town of Glocester for new solar project, WPRI

U.S. Solar Market Insight, SEIA

 

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Weymouth compressor station starts testing, Patriot Ledger

Natural gas lobby charts course for fuel in carbon-constrained world, Washington Examiner

Natural Gas Is the Rich World’s New Coal, Bloomberg

 

Nuclear

Nuclear Energy Among the Least Popular Sources of Power in the U.S., Polling Shows, Morning Consult

So, What Exactly Are Small Modular Nuclear Reactors?, Greentech Media

 

Market/Grid/Policy/Prices

Maine Microgrid Project Lands USDA funding, Microgrid Knowledge

Obama energy secretary on blackouts, campaign scrutiny, Axios

PURA holds a final hearing for public comment on energy bill ratehikes, Fox 61

Leave a comment

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

Energy News for week ending September 4, 2020

Ambitious Goals | Kill the Zombie | 99 Turbines

Happy Friday folks.

We start this week’s recap with a story from NHPR, “N.H. Electric, Gas Utilities Propose ‘Ambitious’ New Energy Efficiency Goals. New Hampshire’s electric and natural gas utilities are proposing an increase to their energy efficiency savings goals for the next three years, in a plan that aims to cut costs and carbon emissions but could slightly increase customers’ bills in the short-term. The proposal centers on the utility-run NHSaves rebate program, which gives ratepayers incentives to use less energy by upgrading things like appliances, insulation or machinery. The utilities’ new goal for that program would have them sell 5% less electricity and 3% less gas between 2021 and 2023. The current goal, spanning 2018 to 2020, was to sell 3% less electricity and 2% less gas. Eversource, Unitil, Liberty Utilities and the New Hampshire Electric Cooperative filed their proposal with the Public Utilities Commission Tuesday. They say it would save customers $1.3 billion overall – more than a third of the total amount they’ve saved with this program since 2002. And they say reducing New Hampshire’s gas and electricity use, particularly in the summer, will lower carbon emissions by the equivalent of taking nearly a million cars off the road for a year.”

Next stop is Western MA with a story from MassLive, “Kill the ‘zombie’: Springfield demonstration calls for end to biomass proposal after decade-long battle. More than 75 people gathered on the steps of City Hall on Thursday calling for an end to a long-proposed biomass project in East Springfield, saying it is a threat to public health and an environmental hazard. Some of those speaking used the phrase “we can’t breathe” in expressing their strong opposition to the wood-to-energy plant proposed by Palmer Renewable Energy LLC at 1000 Page Blvd. Verne McArthur, of the Springfield Climate Justice Coalition, led the activists and residents in chants against the biomass project, including, ‘We will, we will, block you, block you.’  ‘This event is about the zombie project — this biomass plant that Palmer Renewable wants to build and keeps pulling political strings to get loopholes to go do it,’ McArthur said. ‘We’ve been fighting it for 10 years and they’re now trying to come back.’ There is a climate bill before the state Legislature, in conference committee, that includes one proposed clause that would list biomass energy plants as “non-emitting sources” — a designation that would help the developers receive subsidies, opponents said. Ten city councilors have urged legislators to reject the clause, and there is also a signature petition.”

Next up is a visual story – but you’ll need a VR headset for the full effect. From NBC Philadelphia, “Here’s What 99 Wind Turbines Will Look Like Off the Jersey Shore. The company building New Jersey’s first offshore wind farm is providing a glimpse into the future — what beachgoers and residents will see when turbines are erected. Massive turbines, with blades as long as football fields, will one day spin in the Atlantic Ocean off the Jersey Shore. The first wind farm off New Jersey is expected to begin generating clean energy by 2024, according to Ørsted, the Danish company that received New Jersey’s initial permit for an 1,100-megawatt project last year. It will generate enough electricity to power 500,000 homes. The company has released a first look at what the farm’s 99 turbines will look like from the beaches of Atlantic City and Stone Harbor once they are up and running. The ‘virtual reality tour’ also provides a view from one of the turbines, which will be roughly 15 miles out to sea and in an area off southern New Jersey between Cape May and Atlantic City.”

That’s the recap for this week. Have a great Labor Day weekend and as always, stay safe.

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

N.H. Electric, Gas Utilities Propose ‘Ambitious’ New Energy Efficiency Goals, NHPR

Why Aren’t Home Efficiency Scores Standard in Online Real Estate Listings?, Greentech Media

City of Framingham Hosting Home Energy Efficiency Workshop, Framingham Source

 

Climate Change/Renewables/RGGI

The US and climate: New York’s bold green plans hit opposition, Pop Times UK

Biggest U.S. Utility Says Going Green May Cost You $58 a Month, Bloomberg Green

The quest for renewable energy could wreak havoc on wildlife, report warns, mic.com

Kill the ‘zombie’: Springfield demonstration calls for end to biomass proposal after decade-long battle, MassLive

$320,703 in grants awarded to transition rural businesses to renewable energy, Press Herald

Dartmouth Study Models Bioenergy Scenarios With Major Climate Benefits, NHPR

Renewable power grid would require $338B of improvements: Industry study, Washington Examiner

 

Wind

Groups say Boston electric grid upgrades should anticipate offshore wind, Energy Central

An inside look at NYSERDA’s award-winning offshore wind program, Windpower Engineering and Development

Seven Policies To Tap U.S. Offshore Wind’s $166 Billion Economic Growth And Emissions Reduction Potential, Forbes.com

Here’s What 99 Wind Turbines Will Look Like Off the Jersey Shore, NBC Philadelphia

Atlantic Shores Offshore Wind Opens Educational and Community Outreach Center in Atlantic City, Yahoo! Finance

 

Solar

Orsted, the World’s Offshore Wind Giant, Gets Serious About Solar, Greentech Media

Solar investment group buys former Tee Bird South golf course in Saratoga County, Albany Business Review (subscriber content)

Advocates say over 200 shovel-ready community solar projects await legislative action in Pennsylvania, Solar Power World

 

EVs

Rhode Island initiates vehicle charging station project, Transportation Today

Electric vehicle charging stations increase in a county that barely uses them, Bangor Daily News

CMP starts up incentive program for high-power electric vehicle chargers, Press Herald

Electric trucks are gaining ground over natural gas in the waste industry, Utility Dive

The great battery race, Axios

 

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

State Ends State Of Emergency For Merrimack Valley Gas Explosions, Patch.com

Clean Energy Fuels’ RNG to fuel New York transit buses, Bioenergy Insight

Algonquin Gas Gets Massachusetts Plant OK’d Despite Permit Suit, Bloomberg Law (subscriber content)

New Jersey Natural Gas Strengthens Sustainability Commitment, New Jersey Business

 

Nuclear

Bill Gates’ Nuclear Startup Unveils Mini-Reactor Design Including Molten Salt Energy Storage, Forbes.com

NuScale Becomes First Modular Nuclear Reactor to Receive NRC Design Approval, Engineering News Record

 

Market/Grid/Policy/Prices

Engineering Group Sees Increase in Power Outages, Costs, Microgrid Knowledge

Springfield councilors, Eversource slate meeting to discuss rising electric bills amid coronavirus pandemic, MassLive

Facing scrutiny over rate increases, power outages, Eversource quietly files $500M smart-meter plan, Hartford Business Journal

State’s Electric Utilities Make Plans to Roll Out Smart Meters, NJ Spotlight

Massachusetts top court denies NextEra bid to block state’s PPAs with Hydro-Québec, Utility Dive

Tesla ramps up interest in electricity utility business, CNET

Local Legislators Looking For Answers From Eversource, Cheshire Herald

Connecticut customers who lose power for three days or more would receive $500 in compensation for spoiled food or medicine under draft legislation, Hartford Courant

PURA to hold another public hearing on Eversource rate hikes, WFSB

 

Opinion/Editorial

Anna Gyorgy and Patricia Hynes: State Senate should remove biomass from climate bill, Daily Hampshire Gazette

Outage outrage was phony; legislators should get back to work, Journal Inquirer

School buses should go electric – here’s how, CommonWealth Magazine

Jon Lender: After storm, now comes test of whether lawmakers can enact an effective utilities reform bill, Hartford Courant

Climate action key theme of primary races, CommonWealth Magazine

Solar energy makes more sense all the time. Why build another gas plant?, Hartford Courant

Tackling the biggest obstacle to new transmission — power providers’ commitment phobia, Utility Dive

Leave a comment

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

Energy News for week ending August 28, 2020

Doesn’t Have to Happen | OSW Coalition | Paint it Black

Happy Friday folks.

Coming at you early this week.

Let’s start with news from the CT Mirror, which is perhaps one of the best explainer articles we have read in a while. It’s certainly worth sharing. Kudos to Jan Ellen Spiegel for her great reporting. “CT keeps losing power when storms strike. But that doesn’t have to happen. As the power outages from Tropical Storm Isaias piled up in every single community in Connecticut on Aug. 4, the finger pointing began. The utilities were seen as unprepared, leading critics to suggest they should pay for everything from snapped poles to spoiled food. But even if Eversource and United Illuminating had stationed armies of repair crews ready to roll as soon as it was safe, the high likelihood is that all that power would still have gone out. Arguably the questions Isaias begs are not who to blame and how to punish them, energy experts say, but ‘How do we keep the lights on?’ The answers may require a good bit of soul searching, not just by the utility villains of the moment, but by state officials, lawmakers, advocates, and residents themselves, who for years have focused on short-term costs and electric rates instead of long-term solutions that could eventually lower those rates and provide more storm resilience.”

When it comes to getting things done, the saying goes there is strength in numbers. Hence a new coalition has been formed to support offshore wind, From the Cape Cod Times, “Coalition formed to further offshore wind initiatives. Sena Wazer addressed the online press conference announcing a new coalition supporting offshore wind through the eyes of a 16-year-old peering into a potentially bleak future. ‘I’m fearful for my future,’ the co-founder of the Sunrise Movement in Connecticut said. ‘In 10 years, when I’m only 26, I don’t know if I’ll have a safe planet to live on.’ Experts describe actions taken in the next decade as critical to staving off the worst-case global warming scenarios. This summer gave us an inkling of how bad it could get, with unbearably long heat waves and drought in the Northeast and California wildfires in the West… ‘This crisis will only go away if we commit to do everything in our power to make sure we have a livable home going forward,’ Wazer said. It was that sense of urgency that impelled environmentalists, businesses, researchers and labor unions to form New England for Offshore Wind, a coalition focused on pushing state legislatures and governors in the region to make commitments by 2022 to offshore wind farms that could provide for one third of the region’s power needs.”

Our “new technology” of the week is less about tech but is effective none the less. From E&E News, “Study: Black turbine blades reduced bird mortality by 72%. Painting one of a wind turbine’s three blades black led to a dramatic decline in bird mortality along the Norwegian coast, new research shows. Bird death from turbine collisions dropped by 71.9% where a turbine blade was black, compared with unpainted turbines at the same wind farm, according to findings published last month in the peer-reviewed journal Ecology and Evolution. Researchers observed a nearly 50% reduction in mortality from collisions involving towers with a single black blade. Bård Stokke of the Norwegian Institute for Nature Research, one of the study’s lead authors, said the findings could address the evolving wind industry’s Achilles’ heel, its impact on birds.”

That’s the recap for the week.

Have a great weekend and as always, stay safe.

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

$13M in funds for clean energy projects across Massachusetts, WWLP

Connecticut’s first ‘net-zero’ schools, tapping solar and geothermal energy, to be built in Manchester and Mansfield, Hartford Courant

Over 20 percent energy use reduction in New York State buildings since 2010, informnny.com

Bloomfield bearing pioneer sets sights on wasted energy market, Hartford Business Journal

Cambridge partners with All In Energy to assist residents, Wicked Local Cambridge

Time for a diet: Today’s US homes have super-sized into “energy gluttons,” Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists

Learn How You Can Take Advantage of Horticulture Energy Efficiency Programs, Greenhouse Grower

 

Climate Change/Renewables/RGGI

Energy experts warn over green hydrogen ‘shortfall,’ Renews.biz

Preserving Trees Becomes Big Business, Driven by Emissions Rules, Wall St. Journal

WoodMac: 2020s Will Be the ‘Decade Of Hydrogen,’ Greentech Media

Utilities warn New York’s $72M ‘build-ready’ renewables program could cost consumers, Utility Dive

Adirondacks seeing a push for green energy, Times Union

 

Wind

New York, New Jersey hesitant on offshore grid planning amid federal uncertainty, Politico

New York’s Hudson Valley: Future Offshore Wind Hub?, Greentech Media

Mitchell: Delays to wind projects have hurt New Bedford’s ‘first mover’ status, South Coast Today

So Much For Saving Coal Jobs: More Offshore Wind Jobs Waiting In The Wings, Cleantechnica

Study: Black turbine blades reduced bird mortality by 72%, E&E News

Coalition formed to further offshore wind initiatives, Cape Cod Times

 

Solar

New Report Finds Rhode Island has Plenty of Room to Expand Solar Responsibly, EcoRI

Solar Grids Built on NJ Farmland Get Senate Backing, NJ Spotlight

Agilitas Energy’s SMART Solar Project in Auburn MA Commences Construction, Alt Energy Mag

Bakers Island Light Station Celebrates New Solar Array, North Shore Magazine

CT Green Bank sells 6 solar energy systems to Greenwich investment firm, New Haven Register

Investment firm proposes $100 million trio of solar projects for Maine, Press Herald

 

EVs

Energy storage for EV charging can lower demand charges, Guidehouse reports, Utility Dive

Electric Vehicle Makers Find a Back Door to Wall Street, New York Times

 

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Not everyone happy about Columbia Gas deal, Eagle Tribune

The United States set record for daily natural gas power burn in late July, EIA.gov

 

Nuclear

NRC board extends Seabrook plant’s license with conditions relating to concrete testing, Gloucester Times

 

Market/Grid/Policy/Prices

CT keeps losing power when storms strike. But that doesn’t have to happen., CT Mirror

New York City’s hottest new energy fight, Grist

At Connecticut hearing on Eversource rate increases, critics demand more accountability; Blumenthal calls for break-up of utility, Hartford Courant

Breakup Eversource? Or just closely regulate? Blumenthal’s suggestion jolts PURA hearing, CT Mirror

Energy sector divided over transmission incentives for voluntary cybersecurity investments, Utility Dive

Following botched utility response to Hurricane Isaias, New York governor proposes stricter penalties, Utility Dive

Exelon: Massachusetts’ gas and oil-fired Mystic power units to close in 2021 and 2024, Power Engineering

A new voice at PURA at a pivotal time in energy oversight, CT Mirror

Opponents will still try to kill CMP corridor after court nixes referendum, Bangor Daily News

 

Opinion/Editorial

New England needs to go all in on offshore wind, CommonWealth Magazine

Natural Resources Council CEO: State agencies failed Maine on CMP corridor, Press Herald

My Turn: Is solar net metering a net good for New Hampshire?, Concord Monitor

Opinion: CT leading the way in wind energy development, CT Post

Grow crops, not solar panels, on NJ’s best farmland, The Link News

Leave a comment

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

Energy News for week ending August 21, 2020

Grid Plan Disappeared | OSW Terminal Leases | New and Better Transmission

Happy Friday folks.

Busy day here. Sorry no time for a recap. Not a lot of news since we’re in the dog days of summer.

But I do draw your attention to these stories:

How a Plan to Save the Power System Disappeared, The Atlantic

Offshore wind firms agree to $33M in leases for New Bedford terminal, Boston Business Journal

Propelling the transition: New and better transmission is key to zero carbon; here’s what’s driving it, Utility Dive

Have a great weekend and as always, stay safe.

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

Utilities triple energy savings goal for New York businesses, Smart Energy Intl.

Schneider Electric and Huck Capital Launch ‘Energy-as-a-Service’ Microgrids for the Mass Market, Greentech Media

 

Climate Change/Renewables/RGGI

Propelling the transition: Green hydrogen could be the final piece in a zero-emissions future, Utility Dive

Middletown resolution would take a hard stance on climate change, Middletown Press

Defying Trump, 5 Automakers Lock In a Deal on Greenhouse Gas Pollution, New York Times

National Grid Lobbied Against Massachusetts Bills to Expand Renewable Energy, Energy and Policy Institute

 

Wind

Offshore wind firms agree to $33M in leases for New Bedford terminal, Boston Business Journal

Offshore Wind Turbine Plant Proposed For Cortlandt Waterfront, Patch.com

U.S. Offshore Wind Industry To See Explosive Growth, OilPrice.com

Europe’s Latest Supergrid Plan Could Slash Offshore Wind Transmission Costs, Greentech Media

 

Solar

Regulators issue fines to Eversource and UI over shared solar program, CT Mirror

 

EVs

GM’s new charging network is less than it seems, E&E News

 

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Kennedy criticizes gas safety bill, Salem News

In the run-up to U.S. election, drilling lobby promotes natural gas as ‘clean,’ Reuters

Oil Industry Frets About Recruiting Its Next Generation of Workers, Wall St. Journal

 

Nuclear

Town meeting approves new demo bylaw, nixes $9.1 million in capital projects, Wicked Local Plymouth

 

Market/Grid/Policy/Prices

How a Plan to Save the Power System Disappeared, The Atlantic

N.J. investigating how utility companies handled Tropical Storm Isaias power outages, NJ.com

Clean energy break: NJ may consider creating its own electric grid, NJ 101.5
California’s Shift From Natural Gas to Solar Is Playing a Role in Rolling Blackouts, Greentech Media

Eversource boss Jim Judge to face legislative hearing, CT Post

Propelling the transition: The battle for control of virtual power plants is just beginning, Utility Dive

Propelling the transition: New and better transmission is key to zero carbon; here’s what’s driving it, Utility Dive

NJ Lawmakers Want In On Fight Over Power Supplies, NJ Spotlight

Following outrage over Hurricane Isaias response, Connecticut bill would put utilities on the hook for outage costs, Utility Dive

 

Opinion/Editorial

The Current System of Electric Billing No Longer Makes Sense, Greentech Media

Leave a comment

Filed under Electric Grid, New England Energy News, Northeast Energy News, offshore wind

Energy News for week ending July 31, 2020

Roadmap | Healthier Kids

Happy Friday afternoon.

Running late today so just a quick recap.

From CommonWealth Magazine, “The House unveiled a climate change bill on Wednesday that directs the executive branch of government to create a roadmap for reaching net zero carbon emissions by 2050 and includes sections dealing with solar power subsidies, grid modernization, clean energy jobs, and municipal light plants. The bill is expected to be taken up in the House on Thursday and then go to a conference committee that will be charged with sorting out differences with a Senate bill that is broader in scope and far more detailed in its instructions. The House bill requires the administration to achieve net zero emissions by 2050 and sets interim goals for 2030 and 2040. It charges the administration with coming up with a roadmap of policies, regulations, legislative recommendations, and carbon pricing mechanisms to reach the targets.”

And some good news resulting from RGGI brought to us by Environmental Health News. “A climate change initiative in the Northeastern U.S. designed to cut greenhouse gas emissions has also greatly reduced harmful air pollution and related impacts to kids’ health, such as asthma, preterm births and low birth weights, according to a new study. Led by researchers from the Columbia Center for Children’s Environmental Health at Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health, the study found the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative has reduced fine particulate matter (PM2.5) and, due to this reduction, the region avoided an estimated 537 cases of child asthma, 112 preterm births, 98 cases of autism spectrum disorder, and 56 cases of low birthweight from 2009 to 2014. By avoiding such impacts to children’s health, the researchers estimate an economic savings of between $191 million to $350 million.”

Have a great weekend and as always, stay safe.

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

State Offers New Option for Energy Efficiency Project Financing, Banker & Tradesman

NY’s investor-owned utilities work to increase access to energy efficiency for low-income households, Daily Energy Insider

Gillette Stadium Turns to Energy Efficient Servers to Reduce Annual CO2 Output, Environment and Energy Leader

This prof is shedding light on energy injustice — and how to fix it, Grist

Electrification drives the need for energy efficiency, Smart Energy Intl.

GSA Picks 4 Building Mgmt Concepts for Energy Efficiency Pilot, ExecutiveGov

 

Climate Change/Renewables/RGGI

House climate change bill calls for roadmap, CommonWealth Magazine

Q&A With Rishi Reddi, The State’s Top Environmental Justice Leader, WBUR

Biden calls for 100 percent clean electricity by 2035. Here’s how far we have to go., Washington Post

Clean energy to assist over 350,00 low-to-moderate income households in NYS, InformNNY.com

Microsoft Eyes New Tool in Decarbonization Quest: Green Hydrogen, Greentech Media

Mayors to state: Environmental justice can’t wait, Lowell Sun

Believe It Or Not, Forests Migrate — But Not Fast Enough For Climate Change, NPR

Biden plots $2tn green revolution but faces wind and solar backlash, The Guardian

A Northeast US climate initiative has had a major side benefit—healthier children, Environmental Health News

 

Wind

The money case for offshore wind, Axios

Massachusetts Institutions Get Grants for Offshore Wind Workforce Training, Maritime Jobs News

Policy Shift Aims to Bring More Offshore Wind Sooner, State House News Service (subscriber content)

 

Solar

A blow to small solar, a win for states and utilities? Regulators, analysts assess FERC’s PURPA rule, Utility Dive

 

EVs

Utilities must prioritize customer experience to advance role of electric vehicles on the grid: experts, Utility Dive

Inside Clean Energy: How Soon Will An EV Cost the Same as a Gasoline Vehicle? Sooner Than You Think., Inside Climate News

 

Nuclear

America Wants to Put a Nuclear Power Plant on the Moon, Popular Mechanics

 

Gas

Town group tracking gas leaks seeks scent of danger, yourArlington.com

Mass. gas ban backers press ahead after state strikes down 1st East Coast bylaw, S&P Global

 

Market/Grid/Policy/Prices

‘Tidal Wave’ Of Power Shut-Offs Looms As Nation Grapples With Heat, NPR

Why peak electricity usage matters, CommonWealth Magazine

ISO-NE: Minor COVID Impacts on Summer Load, Forecasts, RTO Insider (subscriber content)

Hackers Are Targeting the Remote Workers Who Keep Your Lights On, Bloomberg

US energy use hit 30-year low during pandemic shutdowns, AP News

No easy fix for upgrading power lines to deliver wind and solar power, energy regulator says, Washington Examiner

Maine’s most expensive ballot fight ever unites natural gas companies and environmentalists, Washington Examiner

Mass. in middle of Maine power fight, CommonWealth Magazine

 

Opinion

Op-ed: A cleaner economy must be a priority as we rebuild Mass., BBJ (Subscriber content)

Leave a comment

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

Energy News for week ending May 29, 2020

Chafing | Higher bills | Empire State Building

 

Happy Friday afternoon.

It’s been a very busy week so my apologies, but I don’t have time for a full recap.

Here are a few stories though that caught our attention:

 

Have a great weekend and as always, stay safe.

 

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Global Glut Keeps a Lid on Natural-Gas Prices, Wall St. Journal

EPA backtracks on fish-protecting requirements in long-delayed Merrimack coal plant permit, Utility Dive

Coal’s Decline Continues with 13 Plant Closures Announced in 2020, E&E News via Scientific American

 

Climate Change/Renewables/RGGI

U.S. Consumed More Renewables Than Coal for First Time in 134 Years, Wall St. Journal

Cuomo calls for Canada-to-New York City power line to deliver clean energy, Financial Post

Green group proposes nearly $6T infrastructure and clean energy stimulus plan, The Hill

 

Wind

Coast Guard favors turbine corridors sought by energy developers, Herald News

US May Host First Factory for Siemens Gamesa’s 14MW Offshore Turbine, Greentech Media

Treasury Department offers wind industry coronavirus lifeline with safe harbor extension, Utility Dive

Ohio OKs North America’s first freshwater offshore wind farm — with a huge caveat, Electrek

 

Solar

Massachusetts’ Solar Industry Chafes at New Land-Use Restrictions, Greentech Media

FERC Might Rewrite Solar Net Metering. Here’s What That Could Mean, Greentech media

24 Congressional Democrats urge FERC to reject net metering overhaul, Utility Dive

As Commercial Solar Takes a Hit From COVID-19, Virtual PPAs Continue Their Rise, Greentech Media

US solar developers get reprieve on bifacial panel prices as judge rejects USTR move on tariffs, Utility Dive

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

Energy efficiency helped the Empire State Building save money and cut carbon. It can help you, too., Washington Post

Green Mountain Power expands BYOD and Tesla battery programs as it targets fossil peakers, Utility Dive

Landfills emerge as promising battery storage sites to back up renewable energy, Utility Dive

After Bold Promise, New Jersey’s Energy Storage Plan Remains a Mystery, Greentech Media

 

EVs

Powering EVs is cheaper than diesel, gas in the largest US cities — Atlanta and Boston are exceptions, Utility Dive

Retail co-location may prove key to sustainable funding for EV charging, panel finds, Utility Dive

Largest all-electric aircraft to make maiden flight, CNN.com

 

Market/Grid/Policy/Prices

Pandemic pulls NY power prices down further from already-low 2019 levels, S&P Global

Lockdowns are pushing up home electric bills, and air conditioning season is hardly here yet, Boston Globe

Data Tool Shows Pandemic’s Impact on Power Prices, Power Magazine

Energy sector confident about pandemic operations, WWLP

No Resiliency Strategy? You’re Taking a Big Risk, Report Warns Utilities, Microgrid Knowledge

 

Opinion

Don’t knock natural gas, CommonWealth Magazine

Energy won’t be the same when this is over, Washington Post

COVID-19’s lessons for climate change, CommonWealth Magazine

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

Energy News for week ending May 22, 2020

Big deal | Curtailed | Zinc-air

Happy Friday afternoon.

We start with a piece from the Granite Geek. “Rooftop solar is becoming a big deal in New England. One sunny afternoon earlier this month, reports ISO-New England, the six-state region had roughly 3,200 MW of “behind the meter” solar – the rooftop stuff, as compared to stand-alone solar farms that feed straight to the grid. This was a record, says the folks who run our power system, although it’s a record that will be falling frequently in coming years, since they expect many thousands more megawatts of solar to be added. How much is 3,200 megawatts? It’s almost three times the output of Seabrook Station nuclear power plant, so we’re talking serious output…”

For this next story we move from solar to wind. From S&P Global Platts, “Portion of New England offshore wind could be curtailed by 2030: ISO. ISO New England analysis made public Wednesday estimated about 10% of the total 2030 offshore wind power portfolio connected into southeast Massachusetts and Rhode Island would be “spilled,” or curtailed, under certain assumptions due to transmission constraints and a glut of supply. Transmission developer Anbaric requested ISO-NE perform a study reviewing the impact on energy market prices, air emissions and regional fuel security of three offshore wind power scenarios for target year 2030: 8,000 MW, 10,000 MW and 12,000 MW. An ISO-NE presentation during an earlier Planning Committee meeting discussed the Anbaric economic study for scenarios with 8,000 MW to 12,000 MW of offshore wind additions in southern New England. The addition of 8,000 MW to 12,000 MW of offshore wind plus assumed resource retirements of nearly 4,500 MW result in southeast Massachusetts and Rhode Island (SEMA/RI) export interface transmission congestion, according to the presentation. Other key points include a finding that connecting more offshore wind close to load centers outside of southeast Massachusetts and Rhode Island, especially the Mystic and Millstone substations, would reduce the congestion hours of the southeast Massachusetts/Rhode Island export interface.”

Our new tech feature this week comes from Recharge. “New zinc-air battery is ‘cheaper, safer and far longer-lasting than lithium-ion.’ A new type of battery is coming onto the market that can store multiple days’ worth of energy, that doesn’t degrade, can’t possibly explode and is up to five times cheaper than lithium-ion, claimed its developer as it prepares to pilot the technology in New York state. The zinc-air hybrid flow battery developed by Canadian company Zinc8 has the potential to disrupt the entire energy-storage market — making wind and solar farms baseload and even replacing the need for transmission grid upgrades in many places…Zinc-air can beat lithium-ion batteries on price because the latter can generally only hold about four hours’ worth of energy at any one time, so an eight-hour storage system would require two batteries. By contrast, the storage capacity of the Zinc8 system can just be made bigger by increasing the size of the storage tank and the volume of the electrolyte it contains. The capital cost of an eight-hour Zinc8 storage is about $250/kWh, falling to $100/kWh for a 32-hour system and $60/kWh for 100 hours. By contrast, lithium-ion projects cost about $300/kWh for any duration over eight hours.

That’s the recap for this week. Have a wonderful Memorial Day weekend and don’t forget to take a moment to remember those who lost their lives in service to our country.

And as always, stay safe.

 

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Tree Deaths in Urban Settings Are Linked to Leaks from Natural Gas Pipelines Below Streets, Inside Climate News

Cuomo administration cites new climate law in denying controversial New York, New Jersey pipeline, Politico NY

Devastated By Coronavirus, New York’s Pipeline Politics Ensure A Tougher Second Round, Forbes.com

First gas disaster settlement checks going out Friday, Eagle Tribune

Answers Sought Regarding Explosion and Pipeline Construction in Burrillville, EcoRI

 

Climate Change/Renewables/RGGI

‘Devil is in the details.’ The fight for grid carbon pricing, E&E News

Majority of Mainers support bold energy, transportation policies to address climate change, MaineBeacon.com

Wind and Solar Profits: The Race Between Falling Costs and Declining Revenue, Greentech Media

Traffic Is Way Down, Due To Lockdowns, But Air Pollution? Not So Much, WGBH

Trump admin slaps solar, wind operators with retroactive rent bills, Reuters

Vatican ties virus rethink to pope’s environmental appeal, AP News

The strongest, most dangerous hurricanes are now far more likely because of climate change, study shows, Washington Post

Americans See Climate as a Concern, Even Amid Coronavirus Crisis, New York Times

Global emissions plunged an unprecedented 17 percent during the coronavirus pandemic, Washington Post

Global green energy growth to fall for first time in 20 years: IEA, Reuters

Why some spots on the planet are heating up faster than others, Washington Post

Group Says It Will Launch World’s Largest Green Hydrogen Project, Power Magazine

With CT’s trash future in flux, food-waste recycler hopes for bigger role, Hartford Business Journal

More US Power Generated This Year Expected To Come From Renewables Than From Coal, WGBH

 

Wind

Connecticut Utilities Move Forward with Park City Wind PPAs, Offshorewind.biz

Brattle Study Highlights Benefits of Offshore Grid, RTO Insider

Siemens Gamesa Launches 14MW Offshore Wind Turbine, World’s Largest

Four New Studies to Examine Fisheries, Offshore Wind, South Coast Today

Portion of New England offshore wind could be curtailed by 2030: ISO, S&P Global

 

Solar

Rooftop solar is becoming a big deal in New England, Granite Geek

5 Wind Energy Giants Embracing Solar Power, Greentech Media

Utility regulator denies controversial Bennington solar project, VT Digger

Why is cloudy Syracuse suddenly a solar farm magnet?, Syracuse.com

Coronavirus Wipes Out 5 Years of US Solar Job Growth, Greentech Media

COVID-19 Impacts on the U.S. Solar Industry, SEIA

Why (and How) the Solar Finance Market Is Changing in This Crisis, Greentech Media

National Solar Tour Coming Soon to a Neighborhood Near You, NA Clean Energy

Proposed solar farm in Gorham up for review June 1, Press Herald

DEEP rejects Candlewood Solar permit in New Milford, News Times

Melrose church installs community solar project, Wicked Local Melrose

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

Can Free Smart Thermostats Get Homeowners to Enroll in Summertime Demand Response,? Greentech Media

New zinc-air battery is ‘cheaper, safer and far longer-lasting than lithium-ion,’ Recharge

Con Edison commits $1.5 billion to energy efficiency, Utility Dive

 

EVs

As Covid-19 Hits Electric Vehicles, Some Thrive, Others Die, Bloomberg

HEVO to Launch US Manufacturing for Wireless Electric Vehicle Charger, Greentech Media

 

Nuclear

Tonopah quake bolsters Nevada’s case against Yucca dumpsite, LasVegas Sun

Brick by brick: Finding families of loved ones who worked at Pilgrim Station, Patriot Ledger

America Just Made a Huge Investment in Next-Gen Nuclear Power, Popular Mechanics

 

Market/Grid/Policy/Prices

The Drive to Replace Summer-Only ‘Peaker’ Power Plants, Wired

Mainers get more time to pay bills, utilities get pinched as virus reduces demand, WGME

ISO-New England: 2019 transmission-outage coordination stats and goals, Electric Energy Online

‘Terrified’ energy workers press feds for safety standard, E&E News

New York grants flexibility, works to limit ‘bad actors’ in demand response programs hit by COVID-19, Utility Dive

Unpaid utility bills, lower usage threaten to push rates higher in Maine, Press Herald

LIPA officials planning to retire at least 1 power generating unit, Newsday

Mass. Hydropower Project Stymied By Maine Ballot Question Dispute, WBUR

 

Opinion

Eastie needs straight answers from Eversource, CommonWealth Magazine

We need to start using less natural gas, CommonWealth Magazine

Gov. Phil Murphy needs to unplug NJ Transit’s power plant | Opinion, northjersey.com

Mid-Maine Chamber of Commerce: NECEC offers some hope for Maine’s economy, Central Maine.com

Rhode Island Can’t Delay Efforts to Decarbonize Its Economy, EcoRI

INSIGHT: Will AI Increase or Decrease Power Grid Efficiency,? Bloomberg Law

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

Energy News for week ending May 15, 2020

Planned Approach | Green Grant Rejected | Secret Space Plane

Happy Friday afternoon.

We start with an offshore wind story brought to us by the State House News Service via the Boston Business Journal. “Report sees benefits in offshore energy transmission hub. If Massachusetts and other New England states continue to develop offshore wind projects that each have their own cables connecting the offshore arrays to the onshore power grid, transmission costs will be higher, there will be more marine life disturbance and greater environmental impacts, and the existing grid could need significant upgrades sooner, a Brattle Group report found. The report, which was conducted on behalf of a Wakefield-based company that focuses exclusively on transmission, recommends that Massachusetts and surrounding states adopt a planned transmission approach to offshore wind, in which existing wind lease areas would connect to one common transmission network and then deliver power to southern New England…Using a planned transmission approach rather than individual generator lead lines from each offshore project would lead to a 10 percent reduction in overall transmission costs, 49 percent less undersea cable, 40 percent less energy lost in transmission and optimized utilization of each of the limited locations at which offshore wind power can be brought onto shore, the Brattle Group said Thursday morning as it presented its findings alongside Anbaric, the Responsible Offshore Science Alliance and Eric Hines of Tufts University.”

We missed this story last week, but the interesting dynamics in it made it worth sharing this week. From the Daily Hampshire Gazette, “Holyoke City Council turns down $275K grant for green energy planning. After nearly an hour of heated debate Tuesday evening, six members of the City Council voted to reject a $275,000 grant to help Holyoke transition away from fossil fuels. The Barr Foundation announced in December that the city would be a recipient of the grant, which would have paid for project management and technical consulting for developing a plan to transition the city’s buildings and energy grid to renewable energy. But the City Council voted 7-6 on the grant, denying the body the nine votes it needed. “I believe that this grant is an attempt to basically introduce a political agenda — the politics of the Green New Deal — into Holyoke,” At-Large Councilor Howard Greaney said during the meeting…The grant had previously been the subject of disagreement over the role that the grassroots organization Neighbor to Neighbor would play in the project. Neighbor to Neighbor, which organizes against environmental and racial injustice, was set to receive their own separate, $125,000 grant to do outreach to city residents…Much of the controversy revolved around a protest that Neighbor to Neighbor held in October 2018 at the Suffolk Street headquarters of Holyoke Gas & Electric, or HG&E — the city’s municipal utility. HG&E also was slated to be a partner in the grant project. For some councilors, though, the protest was too much. In February, the Council’s Finance Committee had already recommended, by a 3-2 vote, to reject the grant. But the full City Council sent the grant back to the Finance Committee, asking the city’s director of planning and economic development, Marcos Marrero, to contact the Barr Foundation about the possibility of removing mention of Neighbor to Neighbor from the grant. The Barr Foundation ultimately said it would not amend the contract, and asked the council to vote the grant up or down… Bartley expressed opposition to Neighbor to Neighbor’s role in the project. He added that the outcome of the Barr Foundation project is to reduce fossil fuel consumption to as close to zero as possible. ‘That’s the goal,’ Bartley said. ‘So the ‘G’ in the ‘Gas and Electric’ might as well go away. I just can’t in good conscience support this grant.’”

For our technology feature of the week, we bring you this story from Wired, “A Secret Space Plane is Carrying a Solar Experiment to Orbit. On Saturday, the US Air Force is expected to launch its secret space plane, X-37B, for a long-duration mission in low Earth orbit. The robotic orbiter looks like a smaller version of the space shuttle and has spent nearly eight of the past 10 years in space conducting classified experiments for the military. Almost nothing is known about what X-37B does up there, but ahead of its sixth launch the Air Force gave some rare details about its cargo. In addition to its usual suite of secret military tech, the X-37B will also host a few unclassified experiments during its upcoming sojourn in space…But the real star of the show is a small solar panel developed by the physicists at the Naval Research Lab that will be used to conduct the first orbital experiment with space-based solar power. ‘This is a major step forward,’ says Paul Jaffe, an electronics engineer at the Naval Research Lab and lead researcher on the project. ‘This is the first time that any component geared towards a solar-powered satellite system has ever been tested in orbit.’ Space-based solar power is all about getting solar power to Earth no matter the weather or the time of day. The basic idea is to convert the sun’s energy into microwaves and beam it down. Unlike terrestrial solar panels, satellites in a sufficiently high orbit might only experience darkness for a few minutes per day. If this energy could be captured, it could provide an inexhaustible source of power no matter where you are on the planet.”

That’s the recap for this week. Have a wonderful weekend and stay well.

 

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Ashland consultant says Eversource pipeline project is unnecessary, MetroWest Daily News

Does New York need a new natural gas pipeline? It’s about to decide., Grist

Weymouth compressor station moves toward completion, Patriot Ledger

US fossil fuel giants set for a coronavirus bailout bonanza, The Guardian

Gas stoves can generate unsafe levels of indoor air pollution, Vox.com

 

Climate Change/Renewables/RGGI

Mass. emission strategies all up in air, CommonWealth Magazine

In a First, Renewable Energy Is Poised to Eclipse Coal in U.S., New York Times

Clean energy has shed nearly 600,000 U.S. jobs due to pandemic: report, Reuters

Replace NYC peakers with renewables+storage? Plant owners say they’re working on it, Utility Dive

Clean energy, rate relief on collision course, Politico

Holyoke City Council turns down $275K grant for green energy planning, Daily Hampshire Gazette

Judge Dismisses Another Green Development Lawsuit, EcoRI

Climate models got hotter. Why they might be overshooting, E&E News

April 2020 was Earth’s second hottest April on record, NOAA

Smog-Causing Pollutant Way Down In Mass. — For Now, WBUR

US Emissions May See Record Decline in 2020, Study Says, Greentech Media

 

Wind

Report sees benefits in offshore energy transmission hub, State House News via Boston Business Journal (Paywall)

Treasury Department offers wind industry coronavirus lifeline with proposed safe harbor extension, Utility Dive

Climbing Wind Turbines for a Living | That’s Amazing, greatbigstory.com

US wind sector delivers ‘strong first quarter’ despite coronavirus crisis, Energy Live News

Eversource pushes back startup date for NY offshore wind farm, SandP Global

 

Solar

A Secret Space Plane is Carrying a Solar Experiment to Orbit, Wired

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

Cold storage: Organic proton batteries show disposal, solar pairing advantages in advance to market, Utility Dive

 

Nuclear

Consultant says NorthStar’s spending on track, Brattleboro Reformer

NRC commissioner blasts proposed emergency preparedness rules for SMRs as a ‘radical departure,’ Utility Dive

 

Market/Grid/Policy/Prices

CMP gets a key state approval for its hydropower corridor, Bangor Daily News

New England takes key step to 1.2 GW of Quebec hydro as Maine approves transmission line, Utility Dive

Ditching PJM capacity market could cost New Jersey $386M through 2022, market monitor finds, Utility Dive

NYISO stands by renewable exemption limit proposal, urges swift FERC action, S&P Global

CT regulators toughen rules on energy suppliers, Greenwich Time

CMP parent sues state in effort to halt proposed anti-corridor referendum, Bangor Daily News

House coronavirus bill aims to prevent utility shutoffs, The Hill

 

Editorial/Opinion

CT regulators toughen rules on energy suppliers, Greenwich Time

Stop Equating Coronavirus with Climate Action, Next City

NJ’s energy master plan is a winner, Energy Central

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

Energy News for week ending May 8, 2020

Outrage | Social Distancing Threat | Woodwind

Happy Friday afternoon.

We start this week with a story from RTO Insider, “Exelon Bid to Keep Mystic Units Running Provokes Outrage. When Exelon announced that it would retire its 2,001-MW Mystic Generating Station, ISO-NE was forced to amend its Tariff and sign an expensive and controversial out-of-market contract to keep the plant running through May 2024 for reliability. Now, Exelon has filed interconnection requests to keep the two combined cycle units at the plant in Everett, Mass., running beyond the end of its $400 million cost-of-service agreement for “fuel security” in 2024. Exelon’s April 20 filing with ISO-NE asked the RTO to treat the two gas-fired units — with combined capacity of 1,600 MW in summer and 1,700 MW in winter — as “new” resources. ‘The filing preserves an additional option for Mystic 8 and 9 to provide unique fuel security and electric reliability benefits to the region following the cost-of-service period, if ISO-NE decides that it does not need Mystic 8 and 9 in the market for transmission security for at least one more year,’ Exelon Generation spokesman Mark Rodgers explained in response to questions from RTO Insider. News of Exelon’s change of heart provoked outrage among some stakeholders.”

It’s a bit far-flung from the Northeast but the strategy in this story could certainly have implications here, especially given the number of cities and towns contemplating gas bans. From the LA Times, “How to stop a climate vote? Threaten a ‘no social distancing’ protest. San Luis Obispo was on the verge of passing an ambitious climate change policy when the proposal’s most vocal critic, Eric Hofmann, found a trump card: fear of the coronavirus. Elected officials in this city along California’s Central Coast planned to vote on an energy code that would encourage construction of all-electric buildings, which don’t use gas appliances and aren’t hooked up to the gas grid. It’s an increasingly popular tool for cities looking to phase out fossil fuels — and a threat to the gas industry, which has mounted a vigorous counteroffensive. On March 16, Hofmann sent an email to San Luis Obispo officials that left them shocked. ‘If the city council intends to move forward with another reading on a gas ban I can assure you there will be no social distancing in place,’ he wrote. ‘I strongly urge the city council to kick this can down the road to adhere to public health safety measures. Please don’t force my hand in bussing in hundreds and hundreds of pissed off people potentially adding to this pandemic.’ Hofmann is president of Utility Workers Union of America Local 132, which represents thousands of employees of Southern California Gas Co. — one of the nation’s largest gas utilities, and a prominent crusader against local efforts to phase out gas. He also chairs the board of directors of Californians for Balanced Energy Solutions, a pro-gas advocacy group that has received funding from SoCalGas and worked closely with the utility to generate opposition to all-electric building policies.”

And for our new technology story of the week we travel to Sweden with a story from Business Green. “Renewable power: Modvion installs 30-metre wooden wind turbine tower. A 30-metre wooden wind turbine tower has been erected by engineering and industrial design firm Modvion on a Swedish island close to the city of Gothenburg. Modvion announced last week that the successful pilot project, built for research purposes for the Swedish Wind Technology Centre, marked a ‘major breakthrough’ in the development of a new generation of low-carbon, high-efficiency wind turbines. ‘Laminated wood is stronger than steel at the same weight, and by building in modules, wind turbines can be taller,’ chief executive Otto Lundman said. ‘By building in wood, we also reduce carbon dioxide emissions in manufacturing and instead store carbon dioxide in the design.’ Alongside their environmental benefits, advocates of wooden wind towers maintain that they hold several major advantages for wind project developers accustomed to working with steel. For example, because wood is cheaper, lighter, and can be transported in smaller modules, construction costs for wooden towers are likely to be lower. Furthermore, a modular approach to construction allows towers to be taller and wider, meaning that turbines can extend longer vertically and operate in places where wind speeds are higher.”

That’s the recap for this week. Have a wonderful weekend and stay well.

 

Natural Gas/Oil/Pipeline/Drilling

Gas Stoves: Health and Air Quality Impacts and Solutions, Rocky Mountain Institute

Legislation aims to block fossil fuel companies from receiving coronavirus aid, The Hill

So far, COVID-19 fallout not altering plans to retire US coal-fired plants, S&P Global

These dirty power plants cost billions and only operate in summer. Can they be replaced,? Grist

How to stop a climate vote? Threaten a ‘no social distancing’ protest, LA Times

 

Climate Change/Renewables/RGGI

US Treasury to Tweak Tax Credit Deadlines for Renewables Projects, Greentech Media

Amid pandemic, U.S. renewable power sources have topped coal for 40 days, Reuters

Coronavirus Offers a Clear View of What Causes Air Pollution, Wall St. Journal

Solar, wind energy struggle as coronavirus takes toll, AP News

Critics Say R.I. Climate Council Falls Short of Its Mandate, EcoRI

Coronavirus crisis hits solar and wind energy industry, Washington Post

New York to include small combustion turbines in annual carbon emission limits, Utility Dive

Are Progressive Climate Policies a Political Poison Pill,? Greentech Media

Forests Are Vanishing More Slowly, But Not Slowly Enough, Bloomberg Green

MassCEC Goes Underwater NB Ocean Wind Turbine Port, Patch.com

Harvard didn’t divest from fossil fuels. So what does its ‘net-zero’ pledge mean?, Grist.com

Climate and coronavirus hit the same communities hard, Futurity.org

Governor rejects withdrawal from RGGI, Daily American (PA)

 

Wind

‘Growing chorus’ endorses multi-user transmission system, RiveriaMM.com

Renewable power: Modvion installs 30-metre wooden wind turbine tower, Business Green

Peek Into a Wooden Mast Reveals Wind Power’s Towering Future, Bloomberg Green

Energy generated on offshore wind turbine farms, and conveyed ashore as hydrogen fuel, EurakAlert!

Sheffield wind case: Timeline of years-long sound level fight, Caledonian Record via National Wind Watch

Big data ‘could help drive better performance of wind energy assets,’ Energy Live News

 

Solar

New 3.2MW solar plant to provide clean energy to Vermont’s electric utilities, Energy Live News

Planning Board: Buxton Street solar farm doesn’t meet ordinance, Valley Breeze

 

Energy Efficiency/Storage

Storing solar and wind energy with compressed air, PV Magazine

Regulatory developments shaping energy storage in 2020 so far, PV Magazine

 

EVs

Utilities should charge electric delivery trucks as a new rate class, take other cost-cutting steps: Amazon-led alliance, Market Watch

New Breed of Pickups Mixes Horsepower and Battery Power, New York Times

 

Nuclear

Millstone security employees criticize COVID-19 safety efforts, The Day

Nuclear plant workers cite lack of precautions around virus, AP News

Fact-checking Amazon’s new season of Bosch, American Nuclear Society

 

Market/Grid/Policy/Prices

Exelon Bid to Keep Mystic Units Running Provokes Outrage, RTO Insider

Maine Supreme Court Rules That Anti-CMP Corridor Referendum Signatures Were Valid, Maine Public

Trump’s grid security executive order will create vendor ‘black list,’ complicate equipment sourcing, Utility Dive

Looming Coal and Nuclear Plant Closures Put ‘Just Transition’ Concept to the Test, Greentech Media

Trump’s security order could have ‘chilling effect,’ slow smart grid deployment, experts say, Utility Dive

Utility Sought Repeated Rate Increases to Make Up for $285M in Under-Earnings, Audit Finds, NJ Spotlight

 

Editorial/Opinion

Can Mass. launch the fusion revolution,? CommonWealth Magazine

Powering through — and beyond — the crisis, Utility Dive

LETTER: Holtec and spent fuel rods, Wicked Local Plymouth

Why We Need Renewable Natural Gas, Microgrid Knowledge

Toll taken by Hoosac Wind, Berkshire Eagle via National Wind Watch

Letter to the editor: Renegotiate CMP corridor so Maine gets a better deal, Press Herald

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