Tag Archives: Vermont Yankee

Energy News for week ending September 15, 2017

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

Happy Friday afternoon.

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

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

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

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

Have a great weekend.

Natural Gas/Pipeline

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

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

Local officials seeking to stop gas leaks, MetroWest Daily News

Reliance on natural gas expected to grow, CommonWealth Magazine

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

Pipeline maintenance cuts path through quiet neighborhood in Lynnfield, ItemLive

Climate Change

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

Renewables

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

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

Family donates solar power systems to 8 nonprofits, Going Green

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

CT greenlights major renewable projects, Hartford Business Journal

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

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

Eversource Building Solar Power Sites In Western Mass., WAMC

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

Cohasset’s new solar array officially open, Patriot Ledger

Farms that grow crops and solar power together, Greenfield Recorder

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

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

Energy Efficiency

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

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

Nuclear

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

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

Pilgrim addresses deteriorating protective panels, Energy Central

Activist posts billboard warning about Seabrook nuclear plant, Ipswich Chronicle

Planners look to future of VY site, Brattleboro Reformer

EVs

Electric vehicle ownership rising in the state, MetroWest Daily News

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

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

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

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

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

Power Plant Lawsuit Worries Town Of Sandwich, The Sandwich Enterprise

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Opinion

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

Energy efficiency benefits NH businesses, NHBR

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

Eversource’s solar proposal needs to go, CommonWealth Magazine

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

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

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Filed under Natural Gas Pipelines, Renewables, Vermont Yankee Closing

Energy News for week ending September 8, 2017

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

Good Friday Afternoon.

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

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

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

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

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

Natural Gas/Pipeline

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

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

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

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

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

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

Natural gas pipeline projects move closer to development, Utility Dive

Renewable Energy

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

Connecticut pledging to cut greenhouse gas emissions, CT Post

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

Giant Batteries Help Renewable Energy Grow In New England, WBUR

Grid strained by new solar farms, Berkshire Eagle

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

20 megawatts: Solar developer targets southern Vermont, Brattleboro Reformer

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

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

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

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

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

CleanChoice Energy opens office in Massachusetts, Clean Technology Business Review

Lynn Working to Become A Green Community, Lynn Journal

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

Wastewater treatment authority on path to full renewability, Penn Energy

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

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

Energy Efficiency

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

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

Bash the incandescent bulb and save money, The Cabinet Press

Nuclear

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

State OKs reduction in Vermont Yankee security, vtdigger.org

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

In advertising blitz, nuclear industry seeks reset, Axios

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

Could Success Spoil ISO-NE?, Power Magazine

Massachusetts utilities take divergent approaches to grid modernization, Utility Dive

Electricity Providers Targeted In Massive Hack, Buzzfeed

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

How States Will Hit 100 Percent Clean Energy, Scientific American

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

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

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

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

Northern Pass route through White Mountains clears hurdle, WMUR Manchester

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

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

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

Towns intervene in Eversource acquisition of Aquarion, Seacoastonline.com

Proposed State Energy Strategy Draws Critics, Hartford Courant

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

The simple reason most power utilities suck, Vox.com

Editorial/Opinion

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

Carbon emissions problem has more than one solution, Press Herald

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

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

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

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

Energy News for week ending August 25, 2017

RGGI Agreement | DOE Grid Study | Chelsea’s Burden

Happy Friday everyone. First, let me say let’s all keep the good folks from the State of Texas in our thoughts and prayers. Harvey looks to be unrelenting for days. One forecast from Dave Epstein writing for the Boston Globe called the expected rainfall potential to be “biblical in proportion.” We have one story below from Fox4KC about what Hurricane Harvey may mean for the oil and gas sectors given its expected landfall in the Corpus Christi area. We may be seeing more of these stories over the next weeks; we’ll keep you posted.

Two other stories led the headlines this week and we have sections for each below. First, the RGGI agreement where nine participating states agreed to reduce power plant emissions by 30 percent by 2030. Second was the release of the DOE Grid reliability report. There are so many different perspectives on what each of these mean that I’m not even going to try to create a synopsis. I’ll leave that to each of you to decide. I must say though the Mother Jones piece on Chris Christie is pretty scathing.

We also call your attention to a somber story from New England Public Radio about how Chelsea, Massachusetts bears many of the environmental burdens for the region. From heating fuel to jet fuel and road salt – many of the area’s energy and safety needs are placed on that one community and they say there are resulting negative health effects.

Lastly, there’s this article from the Herald News about how some energy developers came to Somerset with proposals, but no real plans for reusing the closed Montaup and Brayton Point power plants. As the headline notes they created more questions than answers. And, as one attendee stated, “they were all over the place.” After reading the article, I have to agree. One has to wonder what the heck these companies were thinking with this approach.

Have a great weekend.

Natural Gas/Pipeline

All state reviews of Weymouth compressor plan now on hold, Patriot Ledger

Federal court upholds state’s right to stop natural gas pipeline under the Clean Water Act, MassLive.com

Kinder Morgan’s Pipeline Expansion Is A Likely Topic At Connecticut DEEP’s Public Hearing, WAMC

US Court of Appeals upholds New York rejection of Constitution pipeline permit, Utility Dive

Whitehouse facing multiple attacks over Burrillville plant stance, The Providence Journal

Kinder Morgan paying Massachusetts State Police hundreds of thousands to quell Berkshire pipeline protests, MassLive.com

Kinder Morgan has ponied up $115K to state police for Sandisfield pipeline security detail, Berkshire Eagle

Nonprofits, pols, utility companies work to plug Cambridge’s 250-plus gas leaks, Wicked Local Cambridge

In 5 months Vermont Gas signs up over 500 in Addison County, Vermont Biz

Hurricane Harvey has strengthened to a Category 3 storm, Fox4KC

DOE Grid Study

The Energy 202: Here’s the bottom line on the Energy Department’s grid study, Washington Post

Energy Dept: Government should ease rules on power plants, CT Post

DOE’s Grid Reliability Study Is a Rorschach Test for the Future of Electricity, Greentech Media

U.S. Energy Department study says more coal, nuclear needed to secure grid, Reuters

Do coal and nuclear need a helping hand? 5 essential reads, The Conversation

DOE Releases Much-Awaited Grid Study to Mixed Reviews, Microgrid Knowledge

Breaking: The US power market is cracking, Bloomberg

Oops: Rick Perry may have stumbled upon the solution to going 100 percent renewable, Think Progress

RGGI Agreement

RGGI Agrees to Cut Power Plant Pollution by Another 30%, Natural Resources Defense Council

Maine agrees to deeper cuts in carbon emissions, Press Herald

Group of nine states announces aggressive plan to cut emissions, Boston Globe

NE states propose 30% cut in power plant emissions, CommonWealth Magazine

Environmentalists React To Regional Proposal To Cut Carbon Emissions, RIPR

Scott agrees to carbon dioxide emission reductions, VT Digger

Chris Christie Has Plenty to Be Embarrassed About, But This One Really Matters, Mother Jones

Northeastern States Vow to Cut Carbon Emissions 30% by 2030, Governing

Eclipse

US grid untroubled by total eclipse despite plunge in solar output, Utility Dive

Eclipse Causes Less Power Loss Than Expected for Solar Generation, Power Engineering

Storage Didn’t Play a Primary Role During the Eclipse, but It Helped in Its Own Quiet Way, Greentech Media

New England Power Grid Operations During August 21 Partial Eclipse, (ISO-NE Release) Energy Central

Renewable Energy

Going solar now will save you more, The Recorder

Wind-power opponents dominate comments at Savoy hearing, Berkshire Eagle

In England, new offshore wind farms mean jobs, Boston Globe

Maine Business Park Seeks Partners for Green Microgrid Development, Microgrid Knowledge

Deepwater Wind Could Create 6000 Jobs in New England, GoLocalProv

Wood, Landfill Gas Dominate RI Renewable Energy, ecoRI news

America’s first US-built offshore wind installation vessel, SouthCoastToday.com

In Solar Trade Dispute, Will Proposed Tariffs Cost Industry Jobs?, Rhode Island Public Radio

We really can run the world on renewable energy – here’s how, New Scientist

Community group aims to bring more solar energy systems, education to Bangor area, Bangor Daily News

Killingworth lavender farm one of 1st in nation to get SmartFlower solar energy system, Middletown Press

Massachusetts jail gets $545K grant to install solar panels, CT Post

Dartmouth and Hanover pledge renewable energy goals, The Dartmouth

Emerson Center in Topsfield wins solar array, Wicked Local Topsfield

Ameresco, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts and BlueWave Solar Celebrate 6.9 MW Renewable Power and Community Solar Initiative, Energy Central

Nexamp Completes 2.4 MW Community Solar Project in Dudley, MA, Energy Central

Energy Efficiency

Connecticut utilities drop interest rates on energy efficiency improvements, New Haven Register

Orange discussing Green Community designation, The Recorder

Regional energy saving program now open to Kensington, Seacoastonline.com

Energy Efficiency: The Stealth Competitor, T&D World

Nuclear

Vermont Yankee settlement money to be used for wood boiler projects, vtdigger.org

Millstone Owner Digs In On Finances, Possible Shutdown, Hartford Courant

Commenters Seek Broader Response on Millstone, RTO Insider

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

Governor Baker is offering Hydro-Quebec another helping hand, The Boston Globe

How One Massachusetts City Came To Bear Environmental Burdens For The Region, New England Public Radio

Proposal for Somerset power plant gets attention, more questions, Herald News

Unmoved by public testimony, PUC approves ‘outrageous’ National Grid rate increase, RI Future

Fung, residents rebuke electricity rate hike, Cranston Herald

European company hopes to build $80 million plant in Western Massachusetts, bringing new trash-to-energy technology to US, MassLive

Northern Pass transmission project gets DOE environmental nod, Utility Dive

Eversource seeks to conceal Berlin biomass plant fiscal info, New Hampshire Business Review

Green Mountain Power stumping for rate increase, Brattleboro Reformer

Getting the Most Out of Vehicle Electrification for Both Customers and the Grid, Greentech Media

Follow the Patents: New Technologies Address Balancing Peak and Off-Peak Power Demand, Electric Light & Power

Eversource transmission project gets DOE impact statement, needs final OK, Electric Light & Power

MAP: How Much Climate Change Will Cost Each U.S. County, Governing

Mansfield hydrogen to have many safeguards, Sun Chronicle

Editorial/Opinion

Letter: Civil disobedience our only hope at this time, Berkshire Eagle

Your View: Pipelines, compressors, LNG tanks — suspended not canceled, SouthCoastToday.com

Get excited about city’s solar project, Kennebec Journal & Morning Sentinel

To the Editor: Clean energy is good for business, Boston Business Journal

Councilors’ column: Advantages of Community Choice Energy, Wicked Local Roslindale

Bill McKibben: 100% Renewables Needed ‘As Fast as Humanly Possible’, EcoWatch

Toward a climate economy, Rutland Herald

Maine Voices: Aggressive caps on carbon emissions would benefit regional greenhouse gas efforts, Press Herald

Sorting out our perverse electricity markets, CommonWealth Magazine

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Filed under Climate Change, Energy Efficiency, Renewables, solar

Energy News for week ending August 4, 2017

5 percent chance | 53 percent increase | 100 percent renewable

Happy Friday afternoon everyone.

Today’s focus is on the numbers.

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

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

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

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

Natural Gas/Pipeline

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

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

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

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

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

Proposed bill sets sights on compressor plans, Wicked Local Weymouth

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

Groups Oppose Pipeline to New Power Plant, Public News Service

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

Renewable Energy

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

Opponents continue fight against beleaguered Cape Wind, Cape Cod Times

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

Charlemont to map renewable energy resources, Going Green

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

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

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

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

Feds set to release Cape Wind impact statement, The Recorder

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Wind power charging up, Boston Herald

Clean Energy RFP

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

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

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

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

Northern Pass competes for Mass. energy deal, Concord Monitor

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

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

Energy Efficiency

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

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

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

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

Nuclear

Energy Department Scientists Barred From Attending Nuclear Power Conference, EcoWatch

NRC reviews Seabrook nuclear power plant, Seacoastonline.com

NorthStar already working at Vermont Yankee, Brattleboro Reformer

Proposed Vermont Yankee cleanup company changes hands, Commons

Pilgrim owner submits improvement plan, Cape Cod Times

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

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

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

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

Utility Helps Wean Vermonters From the Electric Grid, NY Times

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

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

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

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

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

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

Berkshires Stands Against Proposed Eversource Rate Hike, iBerkshires.com

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

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

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

Credibility of Northern Pass contractor questioned, The Union Leader

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

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

Editorial/Opinion

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

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

Ingredients for climate success, CommonWealth Magazine

McQuiston: Power And The Lake, Vermont Public Radio

John McClaughry: Climate Action 4.0., vtdigger.org

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Energy News for week ending July 28, 2017

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

Happy Friday afternoon!

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

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

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

Have a great weekend.

Natural Gas/Pipeline

Compressor station saga continues in Rehoboth, The Sun Chronicle

Hingham may form compressor station task force, The Patriot Ledger

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

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

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

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

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

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

Clean Energy RFP

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

Hydro-Quebec partners up, CommonWealth Magazine

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

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

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

Governor Scott supports underwater Power Link from Canada, Vermont Biz

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

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

Renewable Energy

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

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

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

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

Renewables on the Rise, (report) Environment Maine

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

New Hampshire temporarily suspends solar rebate programs, Daily Energy Insider

The Top 5 Emerging Markets for Offshore Wind, Greentech Media

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

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

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

State energy plan calls for more renewables, Hartford Business

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

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

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

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

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

Energy Efficiency

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

Litchfield High School recognized for energy efficiency, Litchfield County Times

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

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

Nuclear

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

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

Medway: State approves Exelon water plan, MetroWest Daily News

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

Connecticut updates goals for energy, climate change, CT Mirror

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

Healey to DPU: Cut Eversource rates, CommonWealth Magazine

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Northern Pass to withdraw purchase power agreement, The Union Leader

Editorial/Opinion

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

3 takeaways on the offshore wind RFP, CommonWealth Magazine

Expanding energy efficiency, Rutland Herald

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

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

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

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

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

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

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 July 7, 2017

Happy Energy News Friday.

Let’s start with a nod to Yogi Berra’s quote that “It ain’t over ‘til it’s over.” We have several stories this week where various people are questioning whether several energy projects are dead, or are just on a rain-delay of sorts.

We’ll start on the Cape where residents of Falmouth aren’t sure they should be celebrating about the shutdown of the turbines at the waste treatment facility (Cape Cod Times). Why? Because as the Falmouth Enterprise reports, there are still lawsuits up in the air (their pun, not mine). Moving to central Mass, opponents of the West Boylston Lateral, which was part of the Access Northeast project, tell the Telegram “they are thrilled that the proposal has been put on hold. But they fear the controversial project will be revived.”

After we sent last week’s Energy News, utilities in MA jointly issued their first solicitation for offshore wind power (MassLive). And this week, as is reported on BostonGlobe.com, several environmental groups are “imploring the Baker administration to accelerate the state’s nearly 10-year timeline to establish a pioneering clean energy industry in Massachusetts.” All kinds of allegations are bandied about in the article, including an “unholy alliance” between Governor Charlie Baker’s regulators and the utility companies.

When you have some time give a listen to Greentech Media’s Guide to Blockchain and Energy. They explain how blockchain is already being applied to utility operations and energy markets, and where the long-term potential lies. Another unrelated but interesting story comes from Vox.com, which reports that states and cities are forming a kind of parallel national government around climate change.

Have a great weekend.

Natural Gas/Pipeline

Rehoboth officials hail end to compressor station saga, The Sun Chronicle

Pipeline foes fear renewed effort to build West Boylston Lateral, Worcester Telegram

Access Denied: Mounting opposition buries pipeline plans, Worcester Sun

Weymouth compressor station opponents say battle is not over, Wicked Local Weymouth

EcoRI’s Carini on Raimondo’s “Regret” Over Putting “Thumb on the Scale” in Invenergy Debate, GoLocalProv

Some Pipeline Protestors In Otis State Forest Face Fines, WAMC

Native Americans Sue Frackers Over Manmade Earthquakes, National Geographic

UK gets first big shipment of US liquefied natural gas, Financial Times

Climate Change

Blue America reaches out to the world, ignoring Trump, Vox.com

Renewable Energy

Massachusetts utilities release first offshore wind RFP under new state energy law, MassLive.com

Environmental groups push to shorten offshore wind timeline, Boston Globe

New Haven commits to using only renewable energy for city operations, New Haven Register

Falmouth neighbors worried celebration premature in fight against wind turbines, Cape Cod Times

Multiple Wind Turbine Lawsuits Remain Up In The Air, Falmouth Enterprise

Newport Harbor Home to Floating Microgrid Platform for Charging Electric Marine Vessels, ecoRI news

Connecticut Chooses New Sites For Statewide Solar Plan, WSHU

Second Circuit Upholds Conn. Renewable Procurement Law, RTO Insider

Fledgling Berkshire Communities Green Network seeks to rally ‘green communities,’ Berkshire Eagle

Connecticut DEEP picks Shelton for shared-solar project, New Haven Register

State approves Brattleboro landfill solar array, vtdigger.org

Massachusetts landfill gets solar panels, Waste Today Magazine

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

Mass Solar Connect Program Helps Massachusetts Consumers Shop Around, Solar Industry Magazine

The Energy Secretary Is Wrong: The Grid is Ready for Renewables, Yale Environment 360

Offshore needs the big players, Windpower Monthly

Expediting a Renewable Energy Future With High-Voltage DC Transmission, Greentech Media

Connecticut Utility Regulator Issues Decision on SHF Systems, Energy Central

Project may double MDI’s solar output, Mount Desert Islander

Energy Efficiency

Energy Department to reconsider Obama energy efficiency rule, The Hill

How Much Of A Stretch To Become A Green Community?, Cape Cod Chronicle

It’s Good to be Green: State Provides $250K in Energy Saving Grants, The Belmontonian

Buying into a low-energy subdivision may be too costly for some, Press Herald

Nuclear

NRC: Vermont Yankee can send tainted water to Idaho, Commons

14 environmental, energy, consumer groups oppose Millstone bill, theday.com

NRC to determine C-10 status as nuke plant interveners, Seacoastonline.com

Hackers Are Targeting Nuclear Facilities, Homeland Security Dept. and F.B.I. Say, New York Times

Markets/Grid/Policy/Prices/Etc.

Electricity market: Pricing change can mean free power, The Union Leader

A Guide to Blockchain and Energy, Greentech Media

Massachusetts Energy Storage Target Comes with Less Clout but More Money, Microgrid Knowledge

Power Plant Project Wins Key Approval, Sandwich Enterprise

Look out, your town may switch you to a ‘greener’ energy plan, The Boston Globe

MBTA withholds portions of power line agreement with Eversource, MetroWest Daily News

National Grid, IBEW to build Granite State Power Link project, Union Leader

Group to protest Seacoast Reliability Project, Foster’s Daily Democrat

Distributed energy resources pose biggest disruption to utility business model, Electric Light & Power

Public Power Skeptical of ISO-NE Two-Tier Capacity Auction, RTO Insider

AG finds no open meetings violations concerning special January meeting, Johnston Sun Rise

Rick Perry says he had nothing to do with Trump’s energy budget, Business Insider

Editorial/Opinion

Around New England: Ignoring boom in solar energy, The Westerly Sun

Columnist Marty Nathan: Citizens must stand against environmental assaults, GazetteNET

HINGHAM COMMENTARY: Any benefit from compressor station?, Wicked Local Hingham

Letter: Shannon Reynolds: Even on temporary basis, natural gas is not the answer, The Providence Journal

Nancy Martland: DOT Should Follow NH Law For Norther Pass Burial Route, Caledonian Record

Eversource ever untrustworthy, Foster’s Daily Democrat

Reviewing the Legislature’s energy accomplishments, New Hampshire Business Review

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