Plugging In

Plugging In

Energy and the Environment

Don’t forget about transmission

Don’t forget about transmission

Rick Perry had the right idea in Texas

EARLIER THIS MONTH my company, Anbaric, announced a new partnership with the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan that enables funding to create up to $2 billion in renewable energy transmission and microgrid projects. At first glance, we make an unusual team – a transmission company and a reputable institutional investor with $171 billion in assets. But(...)

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Offshore wind firms split on size of initial contract

Offshore wind firms split on size of initial contract

Big disagreement on whether bigger is better

THE THREE COMPANIES vying for Massachusetts offshore wind contracts sharply disagree on how big the initial procurement should be, but they are united in their belief that electricity generation and transmission should be handled by them and them alone. The companies spelled out their positions in responses to a Baker administration request for ideas on(...)

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US planning more offshore wind leases off MA coast

US planning more offshore wind leases off MA coast

Two firms indicate they want in on Bay State action

IN ANOTHER SIGN the offshore wind market is heating up, the federal government indicated on Friday that it intends to lease more ocean tracts off the coast of Massachusetts after hearing interest from two major developers. The US Bureau of Ocean Energy Management said PNE Wind USA and Statoil Wind submitted unsolicited lease requests for(...)

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Trump’s puzzling clean energy stance

Trump’s puzzling clean energy stance

Great deal-maker seems content on sidelines

Celebrate or despise his politics, it is hard not to acknowledge the brilliance of President Trump as a competitive opportunist.  His business and political success is a long history of seizing opportunities by understanding what the public is hungry for, whether it is a realty show in the boardroom, get-rich-quick educational formats, or a return(...)

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Sparks fly on electric vehicle provision

Sparks fly on electric vehicle provision

Obscure state board split on change in building code

A FIGHT IS BREWING on Beacon Hill over how far the state should go in promoting the adoption of zero emission vehicles. Environmental advocates and many state lawmakers want new homes and commercial buildings to come equipped with the electrical lines needed to hook up electric vehicle chargers. Developers and home builders, however, say customers(...)

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Wholesale electricity prices drop to 13-year low

Wholesale electricity prices drop to 13-year low

Cheap natural gas and lower demand cause price to fall

New England’s wholesale electricity prices plunged to their lowest level in 13 years in 2016, propelled by cheap natural gas and lower consumer demand for power. The operator of the region’s power grid, ISO New England, said the average wholesale price of electricity was $28.94 per megawatt hour in 2016, down 29.4 percent from the(...)

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Utility raises concerns on emission targets

Utility raises concerns on emission targets

Eversource official calls MA an outlier in the region

A TOP OFFICIAL WITH EVERSOURCE ENERGY said on Wednesday that Massachusetts was in danger of not meeting its carbon emission reduction targets for 2020. In a conference call with financial analysts, Lee Olivier, an executive vice president with Eversource, said all of the New England states except for Massachusetts are on track to meet their(...)

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Eversource facing big Beacon Hill challenge

Eversource facing big Beacon Hill challenge

Utility seeks to overcome resistance to gas pipeline financing plan

EVERSOURCE ENERGY FACES a monumental lobbying challenge this year – convincing Beacon Hill lawmakers to pass legislation allowing electric ratepayers to finance the construction of a natural gas pipeline into the region. The challenge is immense because the Supreme Judicial Court ruled in August that the novel financing scheme is not allowed under existing Massachusetts(...)

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Eversource solar hikes unwarranted

Eversource solar hikes unwarranted

Benefits of photovoltaics exceed cost to utilities

I READ WITH INTEREST the story entitled “Eversource seeks higher fees on customers with solar.” In several instances, the utility’s stated reasons for its proposed fee hikes for customers with rooftop solar installations appear to me to be contrary to the facts. While Eversource argues that solar homes use the power grid just like any(...)

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Power auction goes smoothly for 2020-2021

Power auction goes smoothly for 2020-2021

Closings of Brayton Point, Pilgrim causing no disruptions

NEW ENGLAND POWER GRID OFFICIALS said on Thursday that they easily secured enough electricity to meet the region’s energy needs three years from now. ISO-New England, the region’s power grid operator, said an auction on Monday secured commitments from generators to deliver 35,835 megawatts of electricity between June 1, 2020, and May 30, 2021. The(...)

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