Tag Archives: grid interconnection

Grid and supply issues to delay closing of OPPD’s North Omaha coal plant

By Nancy Gaarder, Omaha World-Herald

In a setback for air quality, OPPD would continue to burn coal at its North Omaha power plant for possibly another three years, until 2026, under a proposal before the board. The proposed delay in ceasing coal use is related to various problems besetting the nation’s electrical system — backlogs involving the grid, supply chain issues and controversies over siting renewable energy facilities. The Omaha Public Power District board is taking public comment on the proposed delay and expects to vote on it in August. Continue reading here.

OPPD RESOURCES


Nebraskans for Solar Note:
Nancy Gaarder states in the above article that OPPD’s Administration provides three reasons for their proposed long delay in closing the North Omaha coal-plant facility: “backlogs involving the grid, supply chain issues and controversies over siting renewable energy facilities.”

As OPPD administrators undoubtedly already know, numerous agencies, organizations and individuals are working on all three issues locally and nationally. These efforts appear to be accelerating, with news and reports issued frequently. Given OPPD’s inspiring 100% renewable energy goal, which has received considerable national attention, it would be sad to see one of our own utilities lag behind others in the energy transition rapidly taking place all across the country.

On our NewsBlog and Facebook Page, we have posted numerous news stories and releases, reports, and other resources related to the issues OPPD administrators highlight in their new proposal. Please take some time to read these and OPPD’s information. If you have an interest in doing so, consider sharing one or more links to additional information on these issues.

EPA RESOURCES

SEIA News Release: Interconnection Whitepaper Details Near Term Reforms Needed to Extricate Hundreds of Gigawatts of Solar Power

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) released a whitepaper detailing the extensive interconnection reforms needed to rapidly decarbonize the electricity grid. Across the country state and federal leaders are doubling down on their clean energy goals, but distribution utilities and regional transmission organizations (RTOs) are struggling to keep up with overflowing interconnection queues.

The new whitepaper, Lessons from the Front Line: Principles and Recommendations for Large-scale and Distributed Energy Interconnection Reforms, discusses the various opportunities utilities and regulators have to standardize, automate, and clarify interconnection procedures and policies. On June 16 FERC is expected to publish a proposed rule that will cover many of the same topics raised in this whitepaper. Read the entire news release.

 Additional Recommended Reading 

BREAKING: Biden Admin set to pause new solar tariffs for two years

By Tim Sylvia, PV Magazine USA

According to reports, alongside the moratorium on new tariffs, President Biden will invoke the Defense Production Act as a means to accelerate American manufacturing across the solar supply chain and alleviate overall dependency on imported PV hardware and materials. Reports indicate that the goal of invoking the act is to raise domestic solar manufacturing capacity to 22.5 GW by 2024. Read more here.

Additional Recommended Reading & Viewing

Previously Posted Department of Energy News Release

Biden Administration Launches Bipartisan Infrastructure Law Initiative to Connect More Clean Energy to the Grid, May 31, 2022

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Biden Administration through the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) today launched the Interconnection Innovation e-Xchange (i2X) — a new partnership funded by President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law that brings together grid operators, utilities, state and tribal governments, clean energy developers, energy justice organizations, and other stakeholders to connect more clean energy to America’s power grid by solving challenges facing the power industry. The partnership will help reduce wait times for clean energy sources in interconnection queues and lower costs to connect to the grid. As the Biden Administration ramps up expansion of new renewable energy to reach the President’s goal of 100% clean electricity by 2035, i2X partners will develop solutions for faster, simpler, and fairer interconnection of clean energy resources through better data, roadmap development, and technical assistance.

DOE will kick off the partnership June 7 at a virtual event with Secretary Granholm.

Partnership in i2X is free and only requires signing up: Join the partnership and learn more about the Solar Energy Technologies Office and Wind Energy Technologies Office.

State senator wants study on more nuclear energy generation

By Andrew Ozaki, KETV

Could more nuclear energy be the answer to providing power during extreme weather events and curbing global warming. One Nebraska lawmaker wants to spend a million dollars of federal recovery money to study if advanced reactor technology would work in Nebraska. “Nationally and internationally this has been recognized now as a need that we have to have this type of technology in order to reach that zero-carbon,” state Sen. Bruce Bostelman said. He also points to a year ago when most of the country was thrown into a polar plunge. Read more or watch the video here.

LB1100: Appropriate federal funds to the Department of Economic Development for a feasibility study relating to nuclear reactors

Previously Posted Research

Department of Energy Nuclear Energy News & Resources

NUCLEAR FUSION “SCIENCE ON SATURDAY” TOPIC

The 2022 Science on Saturday series presented by DOE’s Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory on “Energy and the Environment” showcases the Lab’s research and technology on environmental issues and climate change. Geared toward high school and middle school students, the virtual series is FREE. Click the above link to join the discussions and download companion student worksheets.
Sign in: 11:45 a.m. Central Time. Presentations begin at 12 p.m. 

Past presentations can be viewed on LLNL’s Science on Saturday YouTube channel

NEBRASKA ALSO IN THE NEWS HERE

Tri-State strife over cost, coal highlights energy transition challenge, S&P Global

Two of Tri-State’s distribution co-ops left in 2016 and 2020, respectively, for an up-and-coming power provider that fronted nearly $100 million in early exit fees. Tri-State’s largest member, Colorado’s United Power Inc., gave notice Dec. 14, 2021, that it intends to depart as well. Two days later, Poudre Valley REA Inc. followed suit, as did Northwest Rural Pub Power District in Nebraska on Dec. 30, 2021. 

United Power, Northwest and five others are participating in a February 2021 complaint before the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission over Tri-State’s exit fee calculations, which suggests that more members might be on their way out. A FERC administrative judge will hear the case in 2022.

CORPORATE RENEWABLE ENERGY PROCUREMENT

Clean Energy Buyers Association Announces Top 10 U.S. Energy Customers in 2021, CEBA News Release, Business Wire

In 2021, CEBA introduced a simple, yet powerful vision of customer-driven clean energy for all. The 2021 Deal Tracker Top 10 demonstrates the scale and influence of energy customers that have contracted nearly 47 gigawatts of clean energy – about 20% of all wind and solar capacity in the U.S. – over the last decade. As a business trade association, CEBA will continue to catalyze its community of nearly 300 members thorough foundational education, stakeholder collaboration and acceleration of advanced and innovative market strategies.

ALSO IN THE NEWS

Many States Lead on Energy Efficiency; More Needed

By Lara Ettenson, Natural Resources Defense Council

The annual American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE) analysis shows several states adopted energy-saving targets and vehicle or appliance rules last year that will lay the groundwork to scale up efficiency programs, such as insulating buildings or replacing energy-guzzling appliances. However, while some states are making progress, the scorecard also shows there is still much work to do to ensure that the investment in—and benefits of—efficiency are distributed equitably. Read more here.

ADDITIONAL RECOMMENDED READING

HYBRID PROJECT A FIRST WITHIN SOUTHWEST POWER POOL AREA

A greener, rural-Oklahoma energy grid is generating jobs by the hundreds and revenues by the millions, The Oklahoman

Energy flowing across Oklahoma’s transmission grid turned greener this week. On Wednesday, Western Farmers Electric Cooperative and NextEra Energy Resources flipped a switch activating the first phase of power generation from Skeleton Creek. The Skeleton Creek Project’s combination of wind, solar and energy storage was the first project of its type announced by developers within the Southwest Power Pool’s (SPP) 546,000 square mile operational area. 

About Southwest Power Pool
The Southwest Power Pool (SPP) is a regional transmission organization (RTO): a nonprofit corporation mandated by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to ensure reliable supplies of power, adequate transmission infrastructure and competitive wholesale electricity prices on behalf of its members. SPP oversees the bulk electric grid and wholesale power market in the central United States on behalf of a diverse group of utilities and transmission companies in 17 states, [including Nebraska].

Previously Posted

 OHIO’S SOLAR BOOM

Inside Clean Energy: The Solar Boom Arrives in Ohio, by Dan Gearino, Inside Climate News
Right now, Ohio has barely 100 megawatts of utility-scale solar power. By this time next year, it is likely to have more than 400 megawatts. And if every project that has filed papers with state regulators gets built, the total would exceed 5,000 megawatts by the mid-2020s. So what’s going on here?

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