Tag Archives: energy storage

Lazards, Lazards, LCOE – what’s the cheapest energy?

By John Weaver, PV Magazine USA

Yesterday, Lazards released its Levelized Cost of Energy (LCOE) analysis version 12.0 for Energy (pdf), and Version 4.0 for Energy Storage (pdf). The document shows that utility scale wind, solar offer the cheapest absolute electricity pricing – without subsidies. When federal tax subsidies are applied, essentially politically palatable forms of a carbon tax, we see all thin film solar cheaper than all gas, and the majority of crystalline silicon solar cheaper than gas. Rooftop solar for residential and commercial, with its broad price ranges representing the broad classes of projects they cover, shows higher pricing. However, this analysis doesn’t consider the additional benefits including avoided costs achieved with behind-the-meter installations, and as such it isn’t a pure apples-to-apples comparison. Read more here.

MORE NATIONAL NEWS


ENERGY STORAGE 

NATIONAL SOLAR EXAMPLES

 

Friends of Venice Library to kick off solar power fundraiser with panel discussion, Herald-Tribune. Iconic nature photographer and environmentalist Clyde Butcher to serve as spokesman.

 

  • Wisconsin importer and distributor invests in solar energy, Fresh Plaza
    Maglio Companies, an importer and distributor of fresh produce, has installed over 1,100 solar panels on the roof of its Glendale, Wisconsin facility. This array is expected to produce an estimated 477,000 kilowatt hours of sustainable electricity each year. This is equivalent to the annual energy usage of 58 average Wisconsin homes.
  • Minnesota company turns abandoned sand pit into a solar garden, Red Wing Republican Eagle
  • State’s largest solar farm nearing production, The Spokesman-Review. Washington’s largest solar farm will begin commercial production next month in this Columbia Basin town better known for its annual Combine Demolition Derby. Nearly 82,000 solar panels have been installed near Lind’s pioneer-era cemetery, resembling a mirage on the dusty landscape. Sensors adjust the angle of the flat, blue panels throughout the day, allowing them to maximize the capture of solar rays.

GREEN CAMPUSES

Carport Solar Array Receives 2018 Innovative Project Award, MSU Today
Michigan State University’s solar carport project received the 2018 Innovative Project Award from the U.S. Green Building Council of West Michigan. The award recognizes exemplary projects in the region exhibiting features above and beyond the status quo. MSU’s solar carport array is constructed on five of the university’s largest commuter parking lots and covers 5,000 parking spaces.


Learn about more initiatives here: The Princeton Review Guide to 399 Green Colleges, 2018 Edition

 

INNOVATIVE TRANSIT APP

Transit app raises $17.5M with the help of unlikely investors: automakers, Smart Cities Dive

Pairing Wind + Solar for Cheaper, 24-Hour Renewable Energy

By Dan Gearino, Inside Climate News

Along a country road east of Lima, Ohio, a company is preparing to build one of the world’s largest renewable energy projects that pairs wind and solar to create a hybrid power source. It’s a rare combination now, but one that’s expected to become more common because of its potential to cut costs while providing a more consistent flow of clean energy. Invenergy is starting with a 175 megawatt wind farm. Within the wind farm, it plans to build a 150 megawatt solar farm. Together, they would produce enough electricity for about 175,000 homes. The wind and solar energy complement each other. Learn more here.

Photo: Invenergy’s Grand Ridge project in Illinois is one of a small number of hybrid power projects to combine wind and solar energy in one site. A larger one with more solar is planned for Ohio. Credit: Invenergy

NEWS FROM OTHER STATES

NATIONAL/REGIONAL NEWS

Your appliances can save the grid (and allow more solar), PV Magazine
A new report by Wood Mackenzie finds a surprising amount of potential demand flexibility in U.S. homes, which can make the job of integrating more solar and wind easier. Among the many dramatic changes happening in the U.S. electricity sector is entrepreneurs, utilities, policymakers and most importantly consumers waking up to the possibility of flexible demand, through the use of “smart” appliances, electric vehicles (EVs) and batteries.

EV NEWS

ENERGY TRANSITION NEWS

Bank of the West Makes $1 Billion Commitment to Energy Transition, PR Newswire

ONLINE SOLAR CAREER PLATFORM

The Solar Training Network manages AmericanSolarWorkforce.org, a comprehensive online platform to help solar companies recruit qualified candidates; allow solar job seekers to find career and training opportunities; and help the entire industry build a strong and diverse solar workforce.

The Solar Training Network is a program led by The Solar Foundation and funded by the U.S. Department of Energy Solar Energy Technologies Office. This online tool, revised and improved version of an earlier online platform, was unveiled last week at Solar Power International in Anaheim, California.

FOSSIL RESEARCH

DOE spent more than $500M on dead projects, E&E News
Nearly half the $2.7 billion in fossil research money spent by the Department of Energy over the last seven years supported nine carbon capture demonstration projects, the majority of which were canceled or withdrawn, according to a report from the Government Accountability Office.

Amidst Keystone XL Fight, Nebraska Farmers Give 10 Acres Back to the Ponca Nation

Written by Twilight Greenaway, Civil Eats

A few weeks ago, officials from the TransCanada Corporation drove two sets of wooden stakes, each fastened with about a yard of bright orange flagging tape, into the ground along two sides of Art Tanderup’s farm. But Tanderup, a retired school teacher whose Neligh, Nebraska farm sits right on the preferred route for the proposed Keystone XL pipeline, took TransCanada’s latest chess move in stride. Continue reading here. 

Photo by Twilight Greenaway: Signs commemorating a meeting of the Cowboy and Indian Alliance on the Tanderups’ farm in 2015.

ALSO IN NEBRASKA


70, OPPD Blog, The Wire

WHAT IS IT? The number of turbines that will produce electricity at the Sholes Wind Energy Center in northeast Nebraska.

 

NEWS FROM OTHER STATES

How refinancing could help retire Colorado coal plants sooner
By Allen Best, Energy News Network

Instead of continuing to operate the aging plants, paying down remaining depreciation, or debt, a utility could instead issue bonds securitized by reliable future sales.

 

NATIONAL NEWS

Abby Hopper at SEIA: #ThisIsWhy

The latest SunCast episode syndicated by pv magazine features Abby Hopper’s opening remarks at the Solar Power International Conference.

 

SOLAR SCHOOLS NEWS


New Initiative Helps More Schools Go Solar,
Solar Industry

Solar Schools 2025, an initiative of the nonprofit Renewable Nation, is seeking 50 K-12 schools across the U.S. that can “buddy up” with schools that have already gone through the process of installing solar.

 

MICROGRID NEWS

Microgrids slowly make inroads in Midwest, with Illinois taking the lead

PRODUCT LAUNCH IN THE U.S.

Commercial rooftop solar racking with one drill bit

Facebook gets specific about its 100 percent renewables target

By Heather Clancy, GreenBiz

Facebook has procured more than 3 gigawatts of electricity from solar and wind plants since 2013, including more than 2,500 megawatts within the past year. It is second only to Google in the sheer scale of its purchases, based on data collected by the Rocky Mountain Institute Business Renewables Center. What’s more, the social media giant is behind the biggest single set of corporate power purchase agreements (PPAs) announced so far in 2018, a series of six solar projects that will generate 437 MW of electricity from two projects near its data center in Prineville, Oregon, and four installations planned by PacifiCorp in Utah . . . The company has invested considerable energy, so to speak, in negotiating with utilities. For example, the company was involved in shaping a tariff adopted by the Omaha Public Power District in Nebraska last year. Read more here.

iStock Photo

OPPD BLOG
Power Purchase Agreements, by Jason Kuiper, The Wire
Currently, OPPD utilizes PPAs for the output of five wind farms: Grande Prairie, Prairie Breeze, Flatware, Petersburg, as well as Sholes, which is under construction. Also, OPPD has signed power sales agreements with NPPD for the partial output of five other wind farms. Those farms are Ainsworth, Broken Bow 1, Broken Bow 2, Crofton Bluffs and Elkhorn Ridge. The normal term of OPPD’s PPAs is 20 years. The new community solar project near Fort Calhoun is under a PPA, with NextEra Energy Resources.

NEBRASKA ALSO IN THE NEWS HERE

MORE 100% RENEWABLE ENERGY NEWS 

AWEA NEWS RELEASE
DOE reports Distributed Wind has surpassed 1 GW; Industry poised for further growth

MORE GIGAWATT NEWS

‘Electrification of Everything’ Would Spike US Electricity Use, but Lower Final Energy Consumption

By Justin Gerdes, Greentech Media

Widespread deployment of EVs, heat pumps, and other electric technologies could increase U.S. electricity consumption by nearly 40 percent by mid-century, according to a new government report. The report, the second in the National Renewable Energy Laboratory’s Electrification Futures Study series, analyzes the demand-side impacts of a transition to electricity in transportation, residential and commercial buildings, and industry through 2050.
Read more here.

ENERGY STORAGE NEWS

NEW OPPD VIDEO
Shovels turn to start construction of Sholes facility

ENERGY EFFICIENCY
Indiana cost consumers $140M by nixing efficiency program, AEC says, Utility Dive
A new report from the Applied Economics Clinic (AEC) estimates Indiana’s 2014 decision to do away with its energy efficiency requirements cost consumers more than $140 million, slashed electricity savings and reduced job growth in the state.

ALSO OF POTENTIAL INTEREST

Inspiring community service story: Lee’s Summit animal shelter goes green with help from teen

By Anne Marie Hunger, Kansas City Star

The community dedicated to the animals at Lee’s Summit Animal Control extends beyond the staff and volunteers who meet their needs. Advocates and activists focused on the long-term future of the shelter help ensure it can continue to care for more than 4,000 animals a year. 18-year-old Zach Burton is one of those activists.

In 2016, Burton approached city officials with a plan to promote green energy in Lee’s Summit through a solar power project. Burton has worked with the city, architects and energy professionals over the past two years to bring his project to fruition at Lee’s Summit Animal Control. Read more here.

Photo: The 96 solar panels at the shelter will reduce energy expenses by over $135,000 over the course of 25 years.

ADDITIONAL RECOMMENDED WEEKEND READING

NEWS FROM OTHER STATES

EXCELLENT ARTICLE BY KAREN UHLENHUTH
Nebraska tribe becomes a solar power leader on the Plains, Energy News Network

FEATURED NATIONAL NEWS

CORPORATE NEWS
Global Tech Giant Fujitsu Commits To 100% Renewable Electricity And Invests In Clean Energy Technologies, The Climate Group. IT giant Fujitsu has joined RE100 with a commitment to source 100% renewable electricity by 2050, with an interim target of 40% by 2030. Alongside investments in renewable energy technology, Fujitsu is also investing in its people. The company has been actively conducting seminars and events with an environmental focus for employees around the world. By educating staff on clean energy, Fujitsu aims to raise global awareness of renewable power.

RENEWABLE ENERGY LOAN PROGRAM
DOE rolls out $2B loan guarantee program for renewable energy on tribal lands, Utility Dive
Under the Tribal Energy Loan Guarantee Program, the DOE can guarantee up to 90% of the unpaid principal and interest of a loan made to a federally recognized Indian tribe for energy development.

INTERCONNECTION NEWS

RESEARCH

NET-ZERO ENERGY / COMMUNITY SOLAR NEWS

ENERGY STORAGE NEWS

  • Tesla Powerwalls and PowerPacks save Vermont $500,000 during heatwaves, PV Magazine
    Green Mountain Power suggests 500 distributed Tesla Powerwalls plus two larger energy storage facilities have saved its customers $500,000 this summer during peak demand hours.
  • CPS Energy sees storage as key element of energy transition, American Public Power Association. San Antonio, Texas-based public power utility CPS Energy is pursuing a so-called “Flexible Path” approach to energy, one that incorporates new energy storage technology to guide its ongoing transition from fossil fuels to renewables. “We want to look into new technology, innovation,” says CPS spokesman John Moreno. “We want to reduce our dependence on coal.”

SMART INVERTERS

Smart residential solar inverters prepping to run the grid

UA researcher tackles solar power

By Jaime Adame, ArkansasOnline

FAYETTEVILLE — Driving down the costs of solar power is the goal for Yue Zhao, a University of Arkansas, Fayetteville assistant professor receiving up to $2.7 million in support from the U.S. Department of Energy . . . Zhao earned a bachelor’s degree from Beijing University in China, then in 2014 earned a doctorate in electrical engineering from the University of Nebraska at Lincoln. Read more here.

Photo: Yue Zhao, Assistant Professor of Electrical Engineering at the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville

Additional Nebraska-Related News
Madison County wind regulations still up in the air, Norfolk Daily News

MORE STATES’ AND NATIONAL NEWS

Click image to watch a time-lapse video of the installation.

AMERICAN SOLAR CHALLENGE NEWS

 GLOBAL NEWS

Install Inequality: Nearly half of U.S. residential rooftop solar potential is currently out of reach

By Chris Crowell, Solar Builder Magazine

One of the largest barriers to solar adoption on a wide scale is the wealth gap, and it will require more problem-solving than a mandate to overcome it. A new report released by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) shows that nearly half (42 percent) of all the United States’ residential rooftop solar technical potential (see pg. 15 for definition) is on the dwellings of low-to-moderate income (LMI) households, representing 330 GW of potential solar capacity — a number the researchers admitted was much higher than they expected at the outset.

“Understanding the potential size of the LMI market in detail offers new insights and opportunities to serve these communities,” said David Mooney, executive director, Institutional Planning, Integration and Development for NREL. “The potential electric bill savings from the adoption of rooftop solar would have a greater material impact on low-income households compared to their high-income counterparts.” Read more here.

NREL Photo: PV installed on low-income housing development in Denver, Colorado

RELATED SOLAR BUILDER MAGAZINE ARTICLE
Solar for All: How to incentivize community solar projects to benefit low-, middle-income customers

RECOMMENDED CLEANTECH TALK

Record-Low Solar Power, Electric Car Startups, & The Mercedes EQ Brand (Cleantech Talk Today #4)

ALSO IN THE NEWS

UNL inching toward setting greenhouse gas reduction goals

By Chris Dunker, Lincoln Journal Star

No longer does UNL use a coal-fired power and heating plant built at 14th and W streets in 1930 (now the site of the City Campus utility plant), giving the university an advantage over the University of Iowa, University of Illinois and others within the Big Ten still generating electricity on their campuses and expanding their carbon footprint. UNL instead purchases 100 percent of its electricity to power lights and computers, charge cellphones and run other equipment through Lincoln Electric System, which in turn buys power from the Southwest Power Pool and Western Area Power Administration. Read the entire article here.

MORE NEBRASKA NEWS

NEWS FROM OTHER STATES

NATIONAL NEWS

GLOBAL NEWS

American Public Power Association urges DOE to reject FirstEnergy plea for emergency order

By Paul Ciampoli, American Public Power Association News

The American Public Power Association is urging the Department of Energy to reject a request by FirstEnergy Solutions that the Secretary of Energy issue an emergency order requiring PJM Interconnection and, by extension, electricity consumers in the PJM region, to provide “full cost recovery” for certain merchant generating plants in PJM. Such a request is unjustified, the Association said in its April 9 submittal to the DOE. FirstEnergy Solutions has neither demonstrated the existence of an emergency that would support action by Secretary of Energy Rick Perry under Federal Power Act section 202(c), nor shown that its requested relief is reasonable, the public power group argued. At issue is a March 29 request made by FirstEnergy Solutions, on behalf of certain of its subsidiaries (collectively, FirstEnergy), with the DOE. Continue reading here.

Photo: Benita5 / Creative Commons

ALSO OF POTENTIAL INTEREST

SOLAR GROUP BUY / SOLARIZE MODEL PROGRAM

Muncie couple promotes solar panels throughout Indiana, The Daily News
A retired Ball State University married couple John Vann, retired marketing professor, and Carolyn Vann, retired biology professor, are taking their knowledge of sustainability and clean energy to the forefront of East Central Indiana to help households procure solar energy for their own properties. They are working to help Hoosiers obtain discounted panels.

ENERGY STORAGE NEWS

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