Tag Archives: Nebraska Public Power District

Keystone XL developer pushes back construction date in Montana

By Jay Kohn, KTVQ

A TC Energy spokeswoman told MTN News Wednesday that construction on the pipeline crossing between the United States and Canada, did not get underway this morning as was previously anticipated. Spokeswoman Sara Rabern described the situation as “fluid”. On Tuesday, TC Energy announced the Keystone Pipeline project has new life – thanks to a $1 billion investment from the government of Alberta that will fund the project for the next year. The pipelines would transfer oil from the tar sands of Alberta to an existing line in Nebraska. The project has multiple ongoing challenges in federal court. Read more here.

Previously Posted News Stories & Resources: 

 TAR SANDS’ PRICE

U.S. Coal Bankruptcies Reveal The Future Of Alberta Tar Sands, Forbes
With oil demand softening, only the most efficient oil producers will survive. By some estimates, “the price of oil could permanently plummet to $25 a barrel by the mid-2020s. Only the cheapest oil in places like Saudi Arabia could be economically produced. Canada’s oil sands, where most projects need an oil price of $60 to $80 a barrel just to break even, would cease to make financial sense.” 

STRANDED ASSETS

  • “Stranded assets” are referenced in the above article. What are they?
    According to the Carbon Tracker InitiativeStranded assets are now generally accepted to be fossil fuel supply and generation resources which, at some time prior to the end of their economic life (as assumed at the investment decision point), are no longer able to earn an economic return (i.e. meet the company’s internal rate of return), as a result of changes associated with the transition to a low-carbon economy.
  • The growing concern over stranded assets, GreenBiz

FOSSIL FUEL COMPANIES’ ENERGY TRANSITION

Thriving in a low carbon future: M&A and the new energy economy, Utility Dive
Contributed article by Mary Anne Sullivan, Sarah Shaw and Alex Harrison, Partners at Hogan Lovells. Traditional oil and gas companies and utilities want to ride the wave of new technologies that can preserve their market position, even as old markets are redefined. Many companies have a combination of these motives. One particular trend we are witnessing in this sector is traditional oil and gas and utilities companies moving into new areas, principally renewable energy, electric vehicles and storage.

NEBRASKA’S ENERGY TRANSITION / LOCAL LEADERSHIP

SECURITIZATION 

Securitization laws are easing the transition from coal and other fossil fuels in the following states:

Conditional Use Permit Approved For Pierce County Solar Farm

By Alex Loroff, News Channel Nebraska

The Pierce County Board of Commissioners is giving the green light to the construction of a large-scale solar farm in the near future. The board approved a conditional use permit on Monday for Boulevard Associates to construct the Goldenrod Solar Farm in Pierce County on the property of Aaron and Ryan Zimmerman. The approval of the permit was a major step in the process of creating the farm, but representatives of NextEra Energy don’t expect the solar farm to be up-and-running until 2021 at the earliest. Read more here.

Additional Recommended Reading
Two Pierce County Farmers Are Going Solar

Nebraska Public Power District’s R-Project
NPPD’s R-Project is a 345,000-volt transmission line from NPPD’s Gerald Gentleman Station near Sutherland to NPPD’s existing substation east of Thedford. The new line will then proceed east and connect to a second substation to be sited in Holt County. The R-Project will increase the reliability of the transmission system, relieve congestion on the existing system, and provide additional opportunities for development of renewable projects if desired at the local level.

Southwest Power Pool’s Role
NPPD is a member of the Southwest Power Pool, a regional transmission organization. The SPP conducted a study, also known as the Integrated Transmission Plan, to assess the needs of the entire transmission network with the SPP region over the next 10 years. The R-Project is one of numerous projects to come out of that study.

Follow R-Project’s Progress Here.

Resident helps Buffalo County draft regulations for solar energy

 By Mike Konz, Kearney Hub  

Already a number of personal-size solar arrays have been installed on property in Buffalo County. In neighboring counties, larger commercial-size systems are being built, so there now is a need to standardize safety requirements and other aspects of solar installations, Deputy Buffalo County Attorney Andy Hoffmeister said last week.

He had begun drafting proposed regulations in August, but when the proposal went before the Buffalo County Board of Commissioners in September, a county resident urged the governing board to seek more input before adopting Hoffmeister’s proposal. Read more here.

Pixabay Photo

Previously Posted: La Vista resident spurs city to update solar panel regulations, Omaha World Herald

County board discusses North Bend project, solar farm

By Collin Spilinek, Fremont Tribune

[The Dodge County Board of Supervisors] unanimously approved a conditional use permit for Western Integrated Seed to establish a seven-acre solar farm on their property near Hooper. The farm came from a collaboration between Bluestem Energy Solutions and the Burt County Public Power District to provide energy to the county.

Bluestem is a renewable energy developer based out of Omaha that works with public power districts and municipal utilities across the state to provide them with options for local renewable generation. Matt Robinette, vice president of development, said the farm will provide energy to around 150 homes in Burt County. Read more here.

Additional Recommended Reading

Scottsbluff II Solar shares selling fast, NPPD News Release
Shares for the 4.375-megawatt solar farm opened for registration on Jan. 2, 2020. In just under a month, over 90 percent of the Scottsbluff II shares have already been purchased. 

Photo Credit: American Public Power Association

Nebraska has bright renewable energy future, leaders say

By Matt Olberding, Lincoln Journal Star

Nebraska is continuing to grow its renewable energy footprint, particularly when it comes to wind and solar. “There’s a lot of upside potential in our state because we have tremendous wind and solar resources,” John Hansen, president of the Nebraska Farmers Union, told attendees at the 2019 Nebraska Wind & Solar Conference and Exhibition. Hundreds of business executives, community leaders, landowners and others are attending the two-day event at the Cornhusker Marriott Hotel in Lincoln. Continue reading here.

Contracts for Hemingford Solar Project Signed

By Kay Bakkehaug, The Ledger, Scottsbluff Star Herald

A total of seven contracts for the Hemingford Solar Project were signed by Village of Hemingford Chairman John Annen last Thursday, October 3. GenPro first reached out to Annen and the Village Board not quite three years ago. Solar power wasn’t necessarily on their radar at the time so the initial email was passed off to Village Clerk Barb Straub. Just over a year ago plans really began taking place when GenPro held a town hall meeting in Hemingford to discuss the benefits of solar energy. Over the past year contracts were worked and reworked to ensure that the Village of Hemingford was getting the best deal and history was made on October 3, 2019 when the solar project plans were signed. Continue reading here.

Photo Credit: GenPro Energy Solutions

ADDITIONAL RECOMMENDED READING

Southern Public Power approves wind farm, while some residents object, NTV
Southern Power leaders say their agreement with Bluestem Energy for four wind turbines south of Aurora goes back five years. The project was agreed to, but development was delayed. Southern officials said this amendment will increase the capacity, at a better rate.“So that will be to the benefit of all our customers. This will be made available to any commercial industrial customers in Hamilton County for those that want a renewable energy,” said CEO Neal Niedfeldt. The customers Niedfeldt has in mind are ethanol plants that can reduce their carbon footprint, and improve their margins.

Wind will speed Holy Cross Energy to 70% renewable goal, Mountain Town News
Customers of Aspen Electric, the city utility, can be excused for yawning. After all, the city was able to hit 100% renewable energy in 2015, one of the first few utilities in the nation able to make that claim. It did so by bulking up on wind power from the Great Plains, specifically the panhandle of Nebraska, but also hydroelectric power from the big dams of the West, a bit of local and regional hydroelectric, plus a tiny amount of landfill gas. The gas is burned to generate electricity.

How to save on your energy bill during this week’s heat wave

By Roseann Moring, Omaha World-Herald

Want to beat the heat without breaking your budget? The Omaha Public Power District’s energy consultant, Eric BenSalah, and media relations specialist, Jodi Baker, offered these tips for efficient cooling of your home during this week’s predicted heat wave.

Continue reading here.

Additional Resources

Discover 40 plug-in models with this EV Guide

Plug In America Resource

Considering an electric vehicle but not sure what options are available? Plug In America’s popular Electric Vehicle Guide lists 40 currently available all-electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles with the retail price and mileage range, as of June 2019. The guide is available to download as a PDF.

To compare vehicles in greater detail, visit PlugStar.com. There, you can complete Plug In America’s EV Shopping Assistant, which makes personalized recommendations based on your budget, daily commute, access to charging, and many more considerations. Plus, you can find charging equipment, learn about incentives in your area, and connect with a PlugStar-certified dealer. And their EV Support Program will answer any questions you may have.

NEBRASKA’S LARGEST UTILITIES’ EV PROGRAMS & INCENTIVES

Video: How you can earn money with OPPD’s Cool Smart program

By Laura King-Homan, The Wire, OPPD Blog


Cool Smart
, an OPPD Power Forward program, is a demand-side management program that helps OPPD work toward its goal of shedding 300 megawatts (MW) of peak demand by 2023. To date, approximately 43,000 customers are enrolled in the program, and they’re getting paid to do so – $50 during the first year. Their participation is reducing OPPD’s peak energy usage by 62 MW. Learn more here.

ADDITIONAL RESOURCES

Facebook’s Papillion data center goes live

Written by Jodi Baker, The Wire, OPPD Blog

For Nebraska, it’s meant an investment of more than $1 billion, including 1,000 construction jobs and 100 permanent jobs, so far. And that’s just for the first phase. The second  phase, set for completion in 2023, will bring more construction and another 100 permanent jobs. During a grand opening event June 13, Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts said, “OPPD was really the linchpin in helping make this deal happen, because they were able to offer Facebook 100% renewable energy.”

The company is partnering with the Papillion-La Vista Schools Foundation to invest in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education at the high-school level. The company’s skilled and technical trades program will build on the schools’ existing STEM education to benefit more than 1,000 students the first year alone. Read more here.

NEBRASKA’S LARGEST UTILITIES’ EV PROGRAMS & INCENTIVES