Tag Archives: U.S. Department of Energy (DOE)

15 books about women leading the way on climate change

By Michael Svoboda, Yale Climate Connections

To observe Women’s History Month, Yale Climate Connections has again chosen to present a selection of new and recent titles on how women’s lives will be affected by climate change and on how women are changing the politics and prospects for action. Read more here.

 ALSO OF POTENTIAL INTEREST

DOE NEWS RELEASE

Energy Department Announces $20 Million Investment in Workforce Development in Emerging Fields.

EV NEWS

 CIRCULAR BATTERY

The case for designing a circular battery, by Jesse Gerstin, GreenBiz
Jesse Gerstin is director of Sustainable Business at SimpliPhi Power, providing energy storage solutions and access to energy for underserved communities globally.  

Department of Energy Announces $125.5 Million in New Funding for Solar Technologies

DOE News Release

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced up to $125.5 million in new funding to advance solar technology research. Through the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) Solar Energy Technologies Office, DOE continues to advance research and development of solar technologies that reduce the cost of solar, increase the competitiveness of American manufacturing and businesses, and improve the reliability of the grid.

In addition to today’s solar funding announcement, yesterday EERE announced up to $43.8 million to advance geothermal research and development. These funding opportunity announcements (FOAs), along with a $300 million investment in sustainable transportation made in January 2020, total more than $463 million making this the largest EERE investment made this early in the fiscal year over the past six years. Read more here.

Photo Credit: U.S. Department of Energy

DOE Awards $28 Million for Wind Energy Research, Development, and Demonstration Projects

Department of Energy News Release

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced the selection of 13 projects to receive a total of $28 million to advance wind energy nationwide. While utility-scale, land-based wind energy in the United States has grown to 96 gigawatts, significant opportunities for cost reductions remain, especially in the areas of offshore wind, distributed wind, and tall wind.

The funding selections were announced by DOE’s Assistant Secretary for the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, Daniel R Simmons, at the American Wind Energy Association Offshore WINDPOWER Conference in Boston, Massachusetts. “These projects will be instrumental in driving down technology costs and increasing consumer options for wind across the United States as part of our comprehensive energy portfolio,” said Simmons. Read more here.

Learn more about DOE’s wind energy research on the Wind Energy Technologies Office website.

ALSO IN THE NEWS

States March toward 100% Clean Energy–Who’s Next?

By Jeff Deyette, Director of State Policy & Analysis, Clean Energy,
Union of Concerned Scientists Blog

Eight states plus Washington DC and Puerto Rico (not pictured here) have committed to 100% Renewable or Clean Energy Standards. Another 13 states are actively considering similar measures.

One year ago this week, the California legislature passed landmark legislation committing the state’s power providers to supplying 60% of their electricity from renewable energy by 2030 and setting a target of 100% clean, or carbon-free, power by mid century. It was a bold action that significantly raised the bar for other states considering policy action. And over the last 12 months, another six states (bringing the total to eight states) plus the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico have answered the call with various obligations toward 100% clean energy over the next few decades. What’s driving this surge in state-level clean energy leadership? And which states will be the next to step up? Read more here. 

ADDITIONAL RECOMMENDED READING

ENERGY NEWS NETWORK ARTICLES

SEIA NEWS RELEASE

Solar Industry Calls on FERC to Enforce PURPA, Increase Competition
The proposal provides utilities with a new framework for offering competitive solicitations based on their integrated resource plans, while also complying with PURPA’s requirement to purchase energy and capacity from small renewable and cogeneration facilities. SEIA’s competitive bidding solution is designed to prevent utility self-dealing while opening the market for new capacity to independent developers.

PACE FINANCING

  • Green builders lean on a juggernaut loan program, The Philadelphia Tribune
    Developers grappling with the cost of new laws enacted to combat climate change are taking advantage of a little-known finance tool to help pay for green-building requirements. In Omaha, Nebraska, for instance, the Capitol District, a $205 million mixed-use entertainment development, has become the latest milestone in a long-running effort to revitalize the downtown area. The project’s developer, Shamrock Development, tapped a PACE program to pay for LED lighting, heat pumps, low-flow water fixtures, and other building materials and equipment to enhance energy and water efficiency.
  • In Chicago, a new financing tool for clean energy and efficiency upgrades, Energy News Network
    Advocates see strong potential in Chicago and surrounding areas for property assessed clean energy financing to boost investments.

RECYCLING EV BATTERIES

MORE ON UTAH’S SONNEN & RMP VIRTUAL POWER PLANT

Rocky Mountain Power prepares to operate largest US residential battery demand response project, Utility Dive. “In my opinion, this is the most transformative project we’ve worked on in the United States,” Sonnen CEO Blake Richetta told Utility Dive. That’s coming from a company that has installed more than 40,000 batteries globally and already developed multiple Virtual Power Plants that combine residential energy systems into grid resources. But Richetta, who took the helm at Sonnen earlier this year, said the Utah project stands out for multiple reasons.

Rocky Mountain Power is a division of PacifiCorp, a fully-owned subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway Energy.

Previously Posted

Building Electrification Could Add Hundreds Of Millions Of Batteries To The Grid

By Sonia Aggarwal, Forbes

To confront rising electricity demand from buildings, places as far apart as Singapore and California have set net-zero energy building targets. The goal is to build a fleet of super-efficient individual structures, topped with solar panels, generating at least as much energy as they consume, avoiding the need for more expensive power plants that could lock in decades of GHGs from coal or natural gas. Read more here.

ADDITIONAL RECOMMENDED READING

  • Residential Energy Storage VPPs Are Gaining Traction, Transmission & Distribution World
    Aggregated residential energy storage systems are increasingly deployed by utilities to provide a variety of services including replacing fossil fuel power plants, supporting increased renewable generation, and improving grid-resilience and reliability.
  • How to have an all-renewable electric grid, by David Timmons, Associate Professor of Economics, University of Massachusetts, Boston, The Conversation. Many studies demonstrate that fully renewable electric grids are feasible in the United StatesEuropeAustralia and elsewhere.
  • Energy Storage Developer Buys Texas Windfarms With Major Battery Retrofit Planned, Forbes
    A U.S.-based energy storage developer this week bought itself a portfolio of eight North Texas wind farms. The move is a sign of the growing status and confidence of the storage sector as well.
  • Form Energy Raises $40M Series B for Super-Long-Duration Grid Storage, Greentech Media
    Long-duration storage startup Form Energy thought that solving the problem of months-long grid storage would take a decade. But its last year of work advanced faster than expected. Long-duration storage startups have struggled for years, but the market has heated up in recent weeks. That’s in large part due to the growth of renewables pushing a need for more grid storage in the near term.
  • Pacific Northwest Facility to Study Grid Security, Resilience, Government Technology Magazine
    The Pacific Northwest National Laboratory has been tapped by the U.S. Department of Energy as the new site for a national research effort around grid stability, energy storage and system security.
  • The ten-year, 73 gigawatt renewable energy business plan, PV Magazine
    Renewable portfolio standards across 29 US states represent significant, legally required additions of wind and solar – including 15 states whose requirements will drive more than 11 GWac of solar power. An interesting nugget – 9 GW of RPS requirement meeting renewables have been built in non-RPS states, and wheeled into the state via power lines.
  • Renewable Energy Standards, Solar Energy Industries Association
  • Coming Soon to Your Home: Cleaner Air and Climate Action, Earthjustice
    The city of Berkeley, California, has opted to take one giant leap into a clean energy future – and is being closely watched by cities across the world. The city council voted unanimously in July to ban natural gas in new buildings, making it the first city in the United States to do so. The ban will apply first to all new low-rise buildings in 2020, and will then expand to other building types.  

ALSO IN THE NEWS

Department of Energy Releases Annual Wind Market Reports, Finding Robust Wind Power Installations and Falling Prices

U.S. Department of Energy News Release 

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has released annual market reports documenting data and trends in wind installations, technologies, costs, prices, and performance through the end of 2018 for three sectors: utility-scale land-based, offshore, and distributed wind.

“Onshore wind energy installation continues to grow across the country, and this Administration has proven that we can pursue renewable energy advancements and deployment, particularly wind energy resources, which are predicted to surpass other sources of renewable power generation this year,” said Under Secretary of Energy Mark W. Menezes. “And with over 25 gigawatts in the development pipeline, U.S. offshore wind is poised to be a significant part of our comprehensive energy portfolio in the coming years.” Continue reading here.

#AmericanWindWeek: Offshore wind powers the opportunity for a new ocean energy resource

By Celeste Wanner, Into the Wind, AWEA Blog

Day 5 of #AmericanWindWeek is here, and today we’re celebrating a new ocean energy resource: offshore wind. Interest in offshore wind has exploded in the three years since the Block Island Wind Farm became the first U.S. offshore wind project. States up and down the East Coast have made big commitments to offshore wind, and there are intriguing projects in the works off California’s coast and the Great Lakes. And just in time for #AmericanWindWeek, the Department of Energy (DOE) has a new report that explores the state of offshore wind.
Continue reading here.

Senate Bill Would Set Nation on Course for 50 Percent Renewable Energy or More by 2035

Environmental Working Group News Release

Currently, 30 states have renewables standards that require utilities to generate a set percentage of electricity that ramps up from year to year. The Renewable Electricity Standard Act, by Sen. Tom Udall (D-N.M), would require the remaining 20 states without renewables standards to get on board. A number of states with enormous solar and wind generation potential, like Florida, Georgia, Nebraska and Wyoming, have so far not adopted renewables policies. The proposal would more than double the pace of solar and wind development seen over the past decade, according to an analysis of Udall’s legislation by researchers with the Union of Concerned Scientists, or UCS. Read more here.

The Environmental Working Group is a nonprofit, non-partisan organization that empowers people to live healthier lives in a healthier environment. Through research, advocacy and unique education tools, EWG drives consumer choice and civic action.

ALSO IN THE NEWS

Non-Wires Alternatives: What’s up next in utility business model evolution

Utilities not already considering NWAs in planning processes should
wise up quick, says Navigant analyst Brett Feldman.
Opinion posted on Utility Dive

On May 17, 2017, Bonneville Power Authority (BPA) made an announcement that flew under the radar of most of the energy industry . . . This decision “reflects a shift for BPA—from the traditional approach of primarily relying on new construction to meet changing transmission needs, to embracing a more flexible, scalable and economically and operationally efficient approach to managing our transmission system.” The preferred solution includes resources like battery storage, flow control devices, and demand response. Such projects have become known as non-wires alternatives (NWA), and are proliferating across the country.
Read more here.

Photo: Flickr user Doug Wertman

ALSO IN THE NEWS

#StorageIsHere: Like Solar, Storage Has Only Started To Hit Its Stride

Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) Blog
#StorageIsHere
In 2013, Standard Solar and SunEdison installed one of the nation’s first commercial-scale solar-plus-storage systems at a commercial site in Maryland. The storage component supplemented the expansive solar arrays by protecting the facility from power outages.

Fast forward to 2015, the U.S. energy storage market saw a remarkable 243 percent growth, according to a recent report by GTM Research and the Energy Storage Association (ESA). In fact, there was more energy storage capacity deployed in just one quarter of 2015 (112 megawatts) than in 2013 and 2014 combined (106 megawatts). Read more.

Click here to learn more about Energy Storage Association’s #StorageIsHere campaign. It culminates today with companies and organizations across the nation sharing resources, white papers, case studies and multimedia content about energy storage.

DOE allotted $18 million earlier this year to fund six new integrated PV and storage projects.