News

Lawsuit Over Nation’s 1st Offshore Wind Farm Is Dismissed

Source: By The Associated Press • Posted: Tuesday, July 19th, 2016

A federal judge has dismissed a lawsuit brought over the nation’s first offshore wind farm. The lawsuit was filed in 2015 by plaintiffs including the Rhode Island Manufacturers Association and others. They argued that utility National Grid’s deal to purchase power from the wind farm violated federal law and would result in a significant increase to their electric bills.

Are floating turbines the future of wind energy?

Source: By Jennifer Johnson, Renewable Energy • Posted: Monday, July 18th, 2016

Wind turbine technology has come a long way in the quarter of a century since the world’s first offshore wind farm, Denmark’s Vindeby, was installed. The first turbines placed at sea had a capacity of roughly .45MW and stood just 52.5m tall. Manufacturers have since developed larger and more effective turbines, but innovation in wind energy is far from over.

New proposal calls for Utah, other states to have more participation in overseeing regional power grid

Source: By EMMA PENROD. The Salt Lake Tribune • Posted: Monday, July 18th, 2016

A revised document describing the guiding principals for the governance of California’s proposed 11-state electrical grid calls for broader participation from other states and sets deadlines for the implementation of a new Independent System Operator.

Hawaii Commission Says No to Major Electric Utility Merger

Source: By The Associated Press • Posted: Monday, July 18th, 2016

The Hawaii Public Utilities Commission has voted to not approve a merger between Florida-based NextEra and Hawaii’s largest utility, saying the companies didn’t show they would provide adequate benefits to ratepayers or help the state meet its aggressive renewable energy goals.

As solar floods California grid, challenges loom

Source: By David R. Baker, San Francisco Chronicle • Posted: Monday, July 18th, 2016

California’s solar plants produced a record 8,030 megawatts of electricity just after 1 p.m. Tuesday — enough power for more than 6 million homes, and almost twice as much solar power as California could generate two years ago. The state has a law requiring utilities to acquire 33 percent of their electricity from renewable sources by 2020. When demand on Tuesday peaked at 5:54 p.m., nearly 29 percent of electricity in the grid was renewably sourced.

Cantwell pursues modern policy for modern grid

Source: Hannah Northey, E&E reporter • Posted: Monday, July 18th, 2016

Sen. Maria Cantwell, the top Democrat on the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, is tapping into the nation’s scientific and engineering muscle for policy advice on how to build a cleaner, smarter electric grid.

Unsubsidized wind poised to become cost-competitive soon, report says

Source: By  Matthew Bandy, SNL • Posted: Monday, July 18th, 2016

Wind energy in the U.S. will become competitive with natural gas and other forms of electricity generation — without subsidies — by the middle of the next decade, just after the federal production tax credit for wind expires, according to a July 11 analysis from Macquarie Research. Reaching that milestone could make the U.S. the global center of the wind industry. “We believe the US is now the most attractive wind market in the world due to the increased visibility of demand in the long term,” the Macquarie analysts wrote. “We believe it supplants China, which has dominated wind demand over the last five years, and prior to that Europe, which was the key market a decade ago.”

Congress exits as September workload piles up

Source: Geof Koss, George Cahlink and Hannah Hess, E&E reporters • Posted: Friday, July 15th, 2016

Lawmakers decamped for their seven-week recess yesterday amid a growing pile of unfinished business that awaits them in September, which includes key energy and environment spending bills, a possible energy conference report, and measures to fight the Zika virus and address the lead crisis in Flint, Mich. Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) accused Republicans of leaving for their national convention in Cleveland next week with a long to-do list, including funding for Zika and Flint, plus proposed gun control legislation and criminal justice reform.

Grid manager seeks multi-state system, touts GHG benefit

Source: Anne C. Mulkern, E&E reporter • Posted: Friday, July 15th, 2016

Expanding the system that powers California’s grid with utilities beyond the Golden State’s borders would allow for more renewable power and cut greenhouse gas emissions, the grid manager said yesterday. The California Independent System Operator (CAISO), which manages most of the state’s grid, released a series of reports it said prove the benefits of a multi-state system. They include lower costs for consumers, reducing fossil fuel usage over the long term, and sparing the land and water that are used to build large power plants.

Key Chinese researchers say GHGs will peak sooner than promised

Source: Jean Chemnick, E&E reporter • Posted: Friday, July 15th, 2016

The experts the Chinese government relies upon to advise on energy planning say the world’s largest emitter is on track to stop growing its greenhouse gas output as much as a decade earlier than promised. Jiang Kejun, a lead researcher at the Beijing-based Energy Research Institute, said on the sidelines of the 2016 U.S. Energy Information Administration conference this week in Washington, D.C., that current economic and policy trends meant China would “for sure” outperform its Paris pledge to peak greenhouse gas emissions by 2030.