Tag Archives: renewable energy

Wind farm company to visit with NCORPE

By Todd Von Kampen, North Platte Telegraph

Board members of NCORPE, the water augmentation project in southwest Lincoln County, have invited the developer of four northeast Nebraska wind farms to make a public presentation Monday in Curtis. A representative of Invenergy will discuss the firm’s wind- and solar-energy projects during the Nebraska Cooperative Republican Platte Enhancement Project’s 10 a.m. board meeting at the Curtis Community Center. General Manager Kyle Shepherd said a public comment period will follow Invenergy’s presentation, which arises from his board’s ongoing interest in leasing part of NCORPE’s 19,500-acre pumping ground for renewable energy projects. Continue reading here.

Website: NCORPE.Org

Additional Recommended Reading
Northeast ‘one of the top’ schools for aspiring wind turbine technicians, Kearney Hub

Sarpy County data centers have $522 million impact statewide, UNL report shows

By Reece Ristau, Omaha World-Herald

Business leaders in Nebraska take every available opportunity to refer to the state as the “Silicon Prairie,” a play on the term for Northern California’s cluster of big technology companies. The idea behind the term — to bring those companies, and by extension, high-paying jobs and more money, into the state — is playing out in Sarpy County, which recently landed its eighth data center with Google’s $600 million announcement. University of Nebraska-Lincoln researchers recently set out to determine how big an impact the data center industry has on the local economy, and their findings revealed some whopping figures. Continue reading here.

Opening markets to solar & wind could save billions in the Midwest

By Christian Roselund, PV Magazine

When we think of hot solar markets, the area covered by PJM Interconnection does not usually come to mind. The 14 states in the Mid-Atlantic and Midwest do not have the sunlight that California and the Southwest have. Additionally – New Jersey aside – they do not have the high electricity prices and supportive policy environment for solar seen in states like New York and Massachusetts.

The same could be said of the Midcontinent System Operator (MISO), the grid that covers the heart of the Midwest and stretches in a narrow band south to Louisiana. While MISO has some wind resources, none of the states that it covers have been leading solar markets. All of this is changing. As of the end of July, PV Magazine counted 47 GW of active solar projects in PJM’s interconnection queue, and 57 GW in MISO’s queue.
Read more here.

FERC: Regional Transmission Organizations (RTO) / Independent System Operators (ISO)

Wind Solar Alliance Website

ALSO OF POTENTIAL INTEREST

LEGISLATION

Duckworth, Booker File Bill to Reduce Cost of Solar Energy for Poor Families, WTTW U.S. Sen. Tammy Duckworth, D-Ill., is the lead sponsor behind a new bill that aims to make solar energy more affordable for low-income Americans. Duckworth and 2020 Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., recently introduced the Low-Income Solar Energy Act, which would expand an existing energy assistance program while also creating new energy financing programs for the poor.

NEW CESA INITIATIVE

Clean Energy States Alliance Launches Major Initiative to Advance Solar in Under-Resourced Communities

Department of Energy Funds CESA’s Efforts to Scale Up Solar for Low-and Moderate-Income Households, News Release. Montpelier, VT – The Clean Energy States Alliance (CESA) will lead a wide-ranging initiative to accelerate the development of solar projects that benefit low-and-moderate-income (LMI) households and communities. The “Scaling Up Solar for Under-Resourced Communities Project” is being supported by a three-year funding award of $1.1 million from the US Department of Energy Solar Energy Technologies Office. The project team will focus on three distinct subsets of the LMI solar market: single-family homes, manufactured homes, and multifamily affordable housing.

ELECTRIC VEHICLES / CIRCULAR ECONOMY 

How a utility became the world’s largest renewable developer

By Kristi E. Swartz, E&E News Reporter, Energywire

“There’s going to be enormous change for this industry; I don’t think the industry
has come to grips with it.” – Jim Robo, NextEra Energy Inc. CEO

“We have been able to turn NextEra Energy Resources into a Fortune 500 company from scratch; that’s taken a lot of blood, sweat and tears,” John Ketchum, the company’s CEO, said at a June investor conference with Wall Street analysts. The company plans to have as much as 34 gigawatts of wind, solar and storage projects by the end of 2022, up from the 18 GW it has now, said Jim Robo, CEO of parent company NextEra Energy Inc.

The U.S. market for wind, solar and storage is at its strongest and showing little signs of a slowdown. The appetite for renewables is starkly different from when it took the company 15 years to sign deals for 10 GW of wind and solar. Now it can do that in just 24 months. And 40% of those solar deals are connected to storage. Read more here.

Small Missouri utility proposes big pivot to clean energy in latest resource plan

Written by Karen Uhlenhuth, Energy News Network

Missouri’s smallest investor-owned utility is charting a dramatically different course two years after being acquired by new owners. The Empire District Electric Co. in Joplin, Missouri, serves about 173,000 customers in southwestern Missouri and parts of Kansas, Arkansas and Oklahoma. Its current capacity consists of about 65% natural gas, 30% coal and 5% renewables in the form of wind and hydropower. Read more here.

Photo Credit: Lucia Bourgeois / U.S. Department of Energy

ADDITIONAL RECOMMENDED READING

Expanding customer choices in a renewable energy future

By Ahmad Faruqui and Mariko Geronimo Aydin,
American Public Power Association Blog

This is part of a series of monthly posts reflecting different thought leader perspectives on utility rate design. All five opinion pieces appear in full in Leadership in Rate Design: A Compendium of Essays, which was designed to help public power utilities to rethink rate design strategies in the face of evolving technologies and customer preferences. The essays were developed as part of the Association’s Moving Public Power Forward initiative.

The number of states, cities and counties committed to 100% clean energy is growing dramatically. The 100% clean electricity supply that seemed impossible 10 years ago has now become a tangible and feasible future. With higher renewables penetration, planning for greener electricity becomes less about building individual resources and more about building a resource portfolio and system that — as a whole — is tuned to take advantage of clean power when it is available. One key challenge is what to do about the hour-to-hour and minute-to-minute mismatch between renewables output and electricity consumption. Continue reading here.

Ahmad Faruqui is an internationally recognized energy economist. He has analyzed the efficacy of a variety of tariff structures and carried out a meta-analysis of experimental results. His areas of expertise include demand response, energy efficiency, distributed energy resources, advanced metering infrastructure, plug-in electric vehicles, energy storage, inter-fuel substitution, combined heat and power, microgrids, and demand forecasting. He has worked for nearly 150 clients on five continents and testified before commissions in several states and provinces.

Mariko Geronimo Aydin is an economist with almost fifteen years of experience in analyzing the policies and economics of electricity system planning, regulation and de-regulation of electricity supply, and wholesale electricity markets across the U.S. Mariko specializes in helping clients meet their potential in a changing industry, by evolving utility business models and by developing customer choice, resource planning, and wholesale market refinements that can make the best use of clean, distributed, and customer-driven power supply resources in synergy with more traditional resources.

Photo Credit: American Public Power Association

Papillion’s Facebook data center, now officially online, part of company’s global infrastructure

By Reece Ristau, Omaha World-Herald

On Thursday, two years after construction began, a portion of the data center officially came online, connecting Papillion with Facebook’s network of similar centers that allow 2.38 billion monthly active users to share photos with friends, post life updates and stay connected from thousands of miles apart.

Facebook also is investing in Nebraska’s alternative energy sources. Committed to using 100% renewable energy to power its data centers, the company is buying wind power from the Omaha Public Power District, which in turn is purchasing it from the Rattlesnake Creek Wind Project in Dixon County, about two hours north of Omaha. Read more here.

Enel Green Power’s Photo of the Rattlesnake Creek Wind Farm in Dixon County, Nebraska

ADDITIONAL RECOMMENDED READING & VIEWING

MORE NEBRASKA NEWS & OPINION

APPA’s National Energy Innovator Award presented to NPPD, NPPD News Release
Columbus, Neb. – Nebraska Public Power District (NPPD) was recognized with the Energy Innovator Award from the American Public Power Association at the Association’s national conference held in Austin, Texas. NPPD was one of nine public power utilities recognized for service to APPA and the public power industry during the conference.

Innovation now NPPD’s calling card, Kearney Hub Editorial
NPPD has been on an innovative trajectory for at least the past 10 years, diversifying the ways in which it generates electricity, opening doors for innovation in communities such as Norfolk and Kearney, and re-purposing resources for experimental projects, such as the Sheldon Station plant that’s being retooled to burn hydrogen in a process that produces no greenhouse gases. In recent years, NPPD has been investing more in wind energy, and it’s helping local communities to explore how to broaden the use of new clean energy — including Norfolk with a battery storage experiment and Kearney with its 53-acre solar farm. 

LES CEO receives national public power award, LES News Release
AUSTIN, TX — Kevin G. Wailes, chief executive officer of Lincoln Electric System, received the Alan Richardson Statesmanship Award at the American Public Power Association’s national conference in Austin, Texas, on June 11, 2019. This award honors public power leaders who work to achieve consensus on national issues important to public power utilities.

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

NEWS FROM OTHER STATES

Companies Exploring Solar Energy, Establishing Foothold in Hot Industry

Network News Wire Editorial, PR Newswire

With climate change a hot topic and the Green New Deal providing a possible pathway for progress, solar power may be a more viable — and profitable — source of energy than ever before . . . Network News Wire holds no shares of any company named in this news release.
Read more here.

ADDITIONAL RECOMMENDED READING

Wind energy, tax breaks sought to bring Google to Becker, Minn.

By Kirsti Marohn – Collegeville, Minnesota, Minnesota Public Radio News

Google proposes to build the 375,000-square-foot data center on roughly 300 acres owned by Xcel Energy next to the Sherburne County Generating Station, the largest coal-burning plant in the Upper Midwest. Xcel will retire two of Sherco’s three generators in the next seven years. Google is working with Xcel to ensure that electricity used to power the data center will come from renewable sources. Continue reading here.

Previously Posted

HAPPENING IN OTHER STATES


Have You Heard The Buzz? Displaced Coal Workers Follow In Tradition of Appalachian Apiculture, CleanTechnica

Appalachian Headwaters operates the Appalachian Beekeeping Collective, continuing a long-standing tradition of Appalachian apiculture. They say the Beekeeping Collective has the potential to bring millions of dollars into the region, offering job options and supplemental incomes for hundreds of people.

ADVICE ON GOING SOLAR

Column: Here’s why I went with solar, by Alan Youngblood / Star-Banner photo editor.
Published by The Ledger

Solar is pretty much a no-brainer. You reduce your carbon footprint while saving money or eliminating your power bill. The federal government has also extended the 30 percent tax credit on everything connected to the installation of residential solar panels through 2019. That means that 30 percent of what you spend on a solar installation comes right off the taxes you owe. Click image to watch YouTube video of the installation in fast motion. 

Residential & Business Incentives
Federal Investment Tax Credit for solar systems and small wind turbines: 30% through 2019. Small wind: 100 kilowatts or less. Source: Database of State Incentives for Renewables & Efficiency (DSIRE)

EV / ETHANOL NEWS