Plugging In

Plugging In

Energy and the Environment

Colleges can lead on climate change

Colleges can lead on climate change

Good for students and good for the bottom line

AT THEIR BEST, American universities and colleges are problem-solving institutions whose work is rooted in a set of universal values. This is a unique position in our society, one that allows professors, students, and alumni to draw on diverse expertise and skills to address the world’s most pressing challenges. Few challenges are as daunting, complex,(...)

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Baker’s latest solar goal called too small

Baker’s latest solar goal called too small

Pacheco, advocates push administration to think bigger

THE BAKER ADMINISTRATION is calling for an 800 megawatt expansion of the state’s relatively new solar incentive program, but a state lawmaker and industry advocates say that amount is way too small. The so-called SMART program launched last November and demand for incentives quickly outpaced the supply. Nearly 15,000 applications for projects generating 1,100 megawatts(...)

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DPU approves National Grid rate hike

DPU approves National Grid rate hike

Rejects grant program for Gateway Cities

STATE REGULATORS on Tuesday approved raising National Grid’s monthly residential customer charge from $5.50 to $7 along with a yet-to-be-determined increase in the per-kilowatt distribution rate on residential customer bills. On a gross basis, the rate increase amounted to $90 million a year. The increase, the first since 2016, will take effect November 1. In(...)

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Trump aide offers no guidance on Vineyard Wind

Trump aide offers no guidance on Vineyard Wind

Refuses to say when review of project will be completed

A TRUMP ADMINISTRATION official attending a conference in Boston on Friday repeatedly refused to say when the agency’s review of the Vineyard Wind project would be completed. The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management put the offshore wind farm on hold indefinitely in early August while it tries to gain a better understanding of the cumulative(...)

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Vineyard Wind limbo is chance for reset

Vineyard Wind limbo is chance for reset

Federal timeout on offshore wind could last a long time

THE INTERIOR DEPARTMENT’S Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, or BOEM, the agency that issues permits for offshore wind projects in federal waters, has called a timeout on the rapidly expanding offshore wind industry in the US. The bureaucratic delay poses an unwelcome challenge for the Vineyard Wind project, the wider offshore wind industry, and states(...)

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Mayflower Wind promises lowest US price yet

Mayflower Wind promises lowest US price yet

Offers other options with higher prices plus onshore investments

ONE OF THE COMPANIES seeking to win the state’s second offshore wind procurement offered regulators a choice between the lowest price ever in the United States or proposals that come with a higher price but include major onshore investments. Most analysts had expected prices to rise on the state’s second procurement, partly because the bid(...)

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Baker presses for March Vineyard Wind decision

Baker presses for March Vineyard Wind decision

Refuses to criticize Trump; may seek accommodations for project

GOV. CHARLIE BAKER pressed the Trump administration on Wednesday to wrap up its environmental review of Vineyard Wind by March 2020, and indicated he is seeking accommodations for the wind farm in regard to federal tax credits and project timetables. Even though President Trump appeared to disparage wind power at a summit in France earlier(...)

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3 firms competing in 2d offshore wind procurement

3 firms competing in 2d offshore wind procurement

Vineyard Wind, its 1st project in limbo, is bidding again

THREE COMPANIES SUBMITTED proposals on Friday for the state’s second offshore wind procurement, an indication that a last-minute budgetary maneuver by Gov. Charlie Baker succeeded in spurring a competitive bid process. Officials with Vineyard Wind, Bay State Wind, and Mayflower Wind Energy confirmed they submitted bids. Officials at a fourth company, Equinor Wind, could not(...)

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Over objections, feds approve transfer of Pilgrim station

Over objections, feds approve transfer of Pilgrim station

Healey, Markey, and Baker had raised concerns about decommissioning firm

STATE HOUSE NEWS SERVICE DESPITE THE OBJECTIONS of Attorney General Maura Healey, the Baker administration, and local advocacy groups, federal regulators approved the transfer of the Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station license to a company that plans to decommission the plant on an “accelerated basis.” Entergy, which bought the Plymouth plant from Boston Edison in 1999,(...)

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