Tag Archives: renewable energy jobs

Can EDF Make Big Money in Small-Scale Renewables?

By Karl-Erik Stromsta, Greentech Media

The world’s leading nuclear power generator is betting big on a future of small-scale, distributed energy. Électricité de France operates 58 nuclear reactors in its home country and owns stakes in several U.S. nuclear plants that it’s now moving to sell. But EDF’s biggest stamp on the American power market has come in large-scale renewables: Its San Diego-based EDF Renewables North America subsidiary has developed and now operates gigawatts of wind and solar farms across the country. Now, EDF Renewables is trying to replicate that success on a much smaller scale. How it fares in the distributed space will be of great interest to other 20th-century energy giants feeling their way toward a transformed, low-carbon future. Read more here.

Photo Credit: EDF

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OPPD NEWS RELEASE

OPPD Named An Environmental Champion
The Environmental Dedication Index and other findings are from the Cogent Syndicated Utility Trusted Brand & Customer Engagement™: Residential study from Escalent, a top human behavior and analytics firm. The study looked at 140 utilities, overall. OPPD is among 31 utilities that received the Environmental Champion designation, based on customer scores. Some areas ranked include a utility’s encouragement of “green” initiatives for buildings and vehicles, and support for environmental causes. OPPD President & CEO Timothy J. Burke spoke to a number of these efforts during the virtual Earth Day Omaha celebration Saturday.

ENERGY EFFICIENCY

Smaller Cities Like St. Louis Lead on Energy Efficiency, Natural Resources Defense Council
St. Louis passed its highly ambitious Building Energy Performance Standard (BEPS) ordinance, making it the fourth jurisdiction in the United States and first in the Midwest to do so. Mayor Lyda Krewson is expected to officially sign the ordinance into law in the coming weeks. With the adoption of this policy, the city will accomplish a major goal in creating more energy-efficient buildings.

ELECTRIFICATION

Dear efficiency advocates: Don’t fear electrification, Utility Dive article contributed by Richard Oberg, an energy efficiency implementer with the Sacramento Municipal Utility District.

T. BOONE PICKENS & LAZARD’S LCOE ANALYSIS

Dear Oil Executive, Is There A Lack Of Imagination?, by Daryl Elliott, CleanTechnica
T. Boone Pickens, a former oil and business magnate, now deceased, built a ton of wind turbines. Most of that work was done when wind power was costly, before an adequate grid transmission line architecture had been built, and during his Midwest natural gas scheme boondoggle. The combination of these points had him claiming that he lost money, but at the time of his passing, he was still looking to build more wind turbines because if we examine Lazard’s most recent LCOE (Levelized Cost Of Energy) analysis, we see that onshore grid wind power, along with grid-scale solar, is among the least expensive new production energy sources. Wind power is best when built with battery storage so that electricity can be delivered to the grid smoothly around the clock as needed. Might you oil execs want to partner with Tesla to build some grid-level storage plants? Capitalism can make strange bedfellows. 

CLEAN AIR 

Himalayas Visible For The First Time In 30 Years In India, CleanTechnica

Report examines battery storage, renewable premiums

By Peter Maloney, American Pubic Power Association

Pairing wind and solar power with battery storage can result in cost savings and fetch premiums in wholesale power markets, but those premiums could potentially be higher for generation and storage facilities that are not co-located, according to a recent report from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.

The paper, “Motivations and options for deploying hybrid generator-plus-battery projects within the bulk power system,” examined utility scale hybrid generator-plus-battery applications that use variable renewable energy resources such as solar and wind power sited in wholesale power markets. Read more here.

TRI-STATE

Western Slope utility serving Delta, Montrose settles on $136.5 million fee to break up with Tri-State, by Mark Jaffe, The Colorado Sun. The Delta-Montrose Electric Association (DMEA) has since 2016 been sparring over renewable energy with Tri-State, a wholesale power production company serving 43 member electric cooperatives in Nebraska, Colorado, New Mexico and Wyoming.

ROOFTOP SOLAR

Why 30 Million Solar Rooftops Should Be In the Next Relief Bill, by John Farrell, Institute for Local Self-Reliance. As the federal government looks to a second (or even third) stimulus bill, Congress should consider a huge opportunity to pay Americans that pays back: solar rooftops. By investing $450 billion in rooftop solar, the federal government could slash energy bills for Americans, cut air pollution, and create over 3.7 million jobs. The government could also get paid back.  

COMMUNITY SOLAR

OFFSHORE WIND

Iberdrola Plans to Take Top Spot in US Offshore Wind (and Keep It), Greentech Media
Spanish utility group Iberdrola wants to be the biggest player in the U.S. offshore wind market, but it will need to go through early market front-runner [Denmark’s] Ørsted to get there.

Nearly $2T stimulus package omits direct renewable sector aid after Trump, McConnell opposition

Written by Catherine Morehouse, Utility Dive

Relief for the renewable energy sector was not included in the $2 trillion support package the Senate unanimously passed on Wednesday. But industry stakeholders say several of the broader economic provisions could provide employment and other relief to the sector, and there is still opportunity for inclusion in inevitable future federal legislation that will be needed to address the industry-wide impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“As Congress continues to address the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, we appreciate that they are prioritizing relief for families and small businesses. There are several elements in this legislation that can help solar businesses and solar workers, including long-term unemployment insurance, business loans and provisions that support employee retention and other employee protections,” Abigail Ross Hopper, president and CEO of the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) said in a statement. Read more here.

Previously Posted

In a March 23rd article, Joel Makower, Chairman & Executive Editor of the GreenBiz Group, spells out the massive benefits of America’s transition to a green economy, with clean and renewable energy, regenerative farming, climate action, carbon reduction and other opportunities at its core:  

After the age of contagion, what’s the ‘new normal’?
We at GreenBiz have reported on a spate of studies and plans that similarly align sustainability with large-scale economic development: the circular economy (a $2 trillion opportunity), carbon tech (a trillion-dollar opportunity), sustainable food and land systems ($4.5 trillion) low-carbon cities ($24 trillion), climate action ($26 trillion) and more. As I noted last fall, trillion is the new billion. And then there’s the Green New Deal, a concept that seems to have been rekindled in the age of contagion. 

Beatrice City Officials Hear About Proposed Wind Farm

By Doug Kennedy, Nebraska News Channel

BEATRICE – Even though it won’t have any decision-making authority over it, the Beatrice City Council and Mayor heard about a wind farm proposal Monday night that could have a significant financial impact for the Beatrice area. An attorney representing NextEra Energy Resources, told city officials the company is considering a 50-turbine wind farm in northern Gage County on land mostly owned by one entity and leased for farming.

David Levy, of Omaha said at this point, no formal permit application for the project has been filed with the Gage County Planning Commission. The development would cover roughly a five-by-seven-mile area, made up of about 35 sections of property from south of Nebraska Highway 41, to near Pickrell. NextEra Energy Resources, a subsidiary of Florida Power and Light, is looking at a 124-megawatt wind farm that could power about 40,000 homes, producing an estimated $850,000 to $900,000 in property tax revenue annually, mostly in the Beatrice School District. Continue reading here.

Photo: “Wind Rainbow” – Free Use American Wind Energy Association Image Gallery

Additional Recommended Reading

  • UNK looks into sustainable future with carbon-neutral goal by 2050, by Brandon Cortes, NTV One of the biggest shareholders of the Kearney solar farm is the University of Nebraska-Kearney (UNK). They say they plan on going carbon-neutral by 2050. “As administrators, I think we have a duty and responsibility to evaluate any chance we can to help us move more towards climate neutral,” said Vice Chancellor for Business and Finance Jon Watts.
  • Major FPL solar plan gets state approval, The News Service of Florida
    TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Pointing to issues such as expanding renewable energy, state regulators Tuesday approved a $1.8 billion plan by Florida Power & Light to add 20 solar-power plants by the middle of next year. Under SolarTogether, customers will be able to voluntarily pay more on their electric bills to finance the solar projects and receive credits that are expected to result in them getting a “payback” in about seven years.
  • How an Iowa utility and solar advocates found a compromise on net metering, by Karen Uhlenhuth, Energy News NetworkA proposal, which still needs to pass in the legislature, would preserve net metering and let utilities recoup costs faster.

Editorial: Nebraska has positive options to address its brain drain challenge

Omaha World-Herald

To meet this challenge, Nebraska can employ a variety of sensible strategies. The new Blueprint Nebraska initiative, developed through public sessions across the state, can provide a central vehicle for building consensus and momentum for progress. This initiative can bring together business, education, government, nonprofits and communities for concerted, focused action. Read more here.

Links to several programs featured in the editorial:

LES NEWS RELEASE

LES announces 2020 Sustainable Energy Program incentives
Lincoln Electric System’s Sustainable Energy Program is returning in 2020 with $1.75 million in incentive funds. These incentives are offered to LES customers to encourage upgrading to the most energy efficient equipment. By participating in the program, customers help reduce the need for LES to purchase more expensive power during the summer months and delays the need for new power generation to be built,” said Marc Shkolnick, LES manager of energy services. “This is good for all of LES’ customer-owners, regardless of whether they participate in the program.” Since the program’s launch in 2009, LES customers have accessed $22.5 million in incentives and spent $126.6 million on energy-efficient equipment and/or services.

MORE NEWS FROM VARIOUS STATES

NATIONAL NEWS & ENEL JOB OPPORTUNITIES

CORPORATE SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

5 Corporate Social Responsibility Trends To Follow In 2020. Forbes article contributed by Timothy J. McClimon, President of the American Express Foundation.

ENERGY STORAGE

GREEN HYDROGEN

OF POTENTIAL INTEREST TO FARMERS

Hemp Boot Camps Scheduled for Cities Throughout the US, by Jeffrey Friedland, CEO, FC Global Strategies LLC

The first two Hemp Boot Camps of 2020 will be held in Lincoln, Nebraska on February 1st and Des Moines, Iowa on February 29th. Hemp Boot Camps are sponsored by FC Global Events, a subsidiary of FC Global Strategies. US-based FC Global Strategies provides services and programs to early-stage, and entrepreneurial growth-oriented companies in the US and globally. The firm’s primary focus is on the cannabis, hemp, CBD, renewable energy, and technology sectors.

Links to More Information

Additional Recommended Reading

The Top Sustainability Stories of 2019

By Andrew Winston, Harvard Business Review

In my annual review of big themes in sustainability and business — in other words, how companies manage environmental and social issues and opportunities — I’ve always included a changing climate as a big story. But it’s now not an annual story; it’s permanent. The list of extreme, tragic, and very costly weather events this year — record heat in Europe, hail in June in Mexico, record floods in Nebraska, endless Australian bush fires, and epic destruction from storms in Mozambique and the Bahamas – was shocking. But sadly, it’s now the norm.

A changing climate is and will always be the top story, the context behind everything (at least in the near future). But that said, there was a shift this year in how seriously the world took the issue, which does merit highlighting. With that broad context, let’s look at 8 fascinating developments in sustainability from 2019. Continue reading here.

Nebraska National Guard Photo: Aerial view of the flooding at Camp Ashland, Nebraska on March 17, 2019.

 

More articles by Andrew Winston.
Follow him on Twitter @AndrewWinston.

 

Omaha-Based Tenaska In The News – Plus Job Opportunities

Acciona puts 145-MW wind farm in operation in Texas, Renewables Now
With the latest addition, its ninth in the country, Acciona increases its US wind portfolio to 866 MW. This is in addition to the 3 GW of solar projects and the 1-GW battery storage development portfolio which it recently agreed to acquire from Nebraska-based energy company Tenaska.

Additional Recommended Reading

TUESDAY TOPIC: Let’s get serious about being green

Written by John McCollister, Sioux City Journal

Climate change is a life-and-death threat. Climate is changing environmental conditions in every region. It affects the health, safety and security of all the world’s inhabitants – humans, animals and plants – all life on earth. What sort of future do we want for our descendants? Do we want a world with rising tides, greater weather variation and severity, compelled migration of peoples suffering climate disasters, or a world where countless species are erased from the face of the earth? Not me. We must do better.

Last spring the stark reality of our warming climate was painfully demonstrated in Nebraska. Heavy rainfall and rapid snowmelt triggered massive flooding and inundated countless homes, farms and communities. Fremont and Valley became islands. Norfolk evacuated a third of its residents. The Platte River swelled to “historic proportions.” Governor Ricketts declared a state of emergency to counter “the most extensive damage our state has ever experienced” at a cost of $1.3 billion. Continue reading here.

John McCollister of Omaha represents District 20 in the Nebraska Legislature.

Stepping Into The Sun: A Mission To Bring Solar Energy To Communities Of Color

By Andrea Hsu, National Public Radio Special Series
Getting to Zero Carbon: The Climate Challenge

Solar energy has taken off across the U.S. As an African American working in the industry, Jason Carney wants to make sure minority communities don’t miss out on the energy savings or the green jobs.

In early June, Nashville’s Metro Council approved a trio of bills that supporters are hailing as the city’s own Green New Deal. The legislation sets a 100% renewable energy target for the metro government, requires government vehicles to be zero-emissions by 2050 and also introduces new green building standards for government buildings. “So there are still these seeds of what can happen tomorrow,” Carney says. “But we’ve got to keep pressing.” Read more here.

Photo: The 40-panel solar installation at Whites Creek High School in north Nashville was paid for by grants and donations and designed and built largely by students under Jason Carney’s supervision. Credit: Andrea Hsu / NPR. View more photos with the article.

NPPD shines light on forward-thinking initiatives

Norfolk Daily News

Nebraska Public Power District (NPPD) continues to put a charge into sustainable, eco-friendly innovation — and people are noticing. In June, the American Public Power Association celebrated NPPD’s efforts with the “Energy Innovator Award” at its annual conference. One of NPPD’s popular clean energy innovations is its Community Solar A Sunny Distribution program. It’s a way for NPPD retail customers to purchase solar energy without having to install rooftop panels on their homes, making it convenient to utilize sustainable energy and an environmentally friendly way to lighten your own personal carbon footprint. Continue reading here.

NPPD’s SunWise Community Solar Program

SoCore Energy Photo: Kearney’s 5.7-megawatt solar farm on 53 acres of the city’s technology park, Tech oNE Crossing, The panels are mounted on a tracker-designed racking system. The solar farm generates about 5% of Kearney’s peak demand.

PREVIOUSLY POSTED

RENEWABLE ENERGY JOBS 

Kennedy’s role involves exploring energy solutions

By Laura King-Homan, The Wire, OPPD Blog

Courtney Kennedy doesn’t just tour wind farms. Kennedy, OPPD’s manager for alternative energy programs, and her team also research new alternative energy technologies, explore partnerships with large customers and work with system planning groups on how to best meet OPPD’s future load needs with alternative energy solutions. In short, Kennedy and her team are where the utility, and customers, can turn to get answers about renewable energy. Continue reading here.

Photo Credit: Omaha Public Power District

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