Contributed by Sarah Kennedy, ChavoBart Digital Media.
Posted on Yale Climate Connections
“These new cold climate air source heat pumps are functional down to -10, -15 degrees,” [Chris Carrick with the Central New York Regional Planning and Development Board] says. And they run on electricity, so they generate heat without burning oil, natural gas or other fuels on site. According to a report by the nonprofit Rocky Mountain Institute, switching to heat pumps could dramatically reduce the carbon pollution caused by home heating. They have the most impact in places with renewable electricity. Read more here.
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Wind energy is on the rise in the Great Plains Southwest Power Pool oversees the electricity grid in parts of 14 states, including Nebraska, Kansas, and Oklahoma. In April, the organization briefly generated more than 65% of its power from wind – a national record for a regional grid operator.
The Department of Energy has selected the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA) to research small-scale, community-based wind energy solutions that can be deployed by electric cooperatives. NRECA is partnering with Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), Hoss Consulting and Mana Group LLC on research to develop business models and technologies for wind projects that can benefit cooperative consumer-members, communities and their electric distribution cooperatives, and rural generation and transmission cooperatives. NRECA will team with co-ops around the country to evaluate and deploy diverse types of distributed wind projects. The project aims to increase understanding of the potential benefits of distributed wind and reduce market barriers for the adoption of these technologies in rural areas. Continue reading here.
The Cornhusker Harvest wind farm project, owned by Apex Clean Energy out of Charlottesville, Virginia, is making advances to complete land lease agreements with residents of Saline County by year’s end. “Over 80% of agreements have been signed and that’s a very good milestone to be hitting,” Max Jabrixio, public engagement manager for Apex said. The project is to be located near the Tobias/Milligan area. According to project developer Dylan Ikkala, 25,000 of an estimated 32,000 acres of land have been aquired. Apex has been working on the land leasing portion of the project since 2016. Continue reading here.
By Sophia Ptacek and Sheryl Carter, Natural Resources Defense Council
Utility clean energy commitments have strengthened and multiplied since we inventoried some of the most newsworthy announcements last year. Xcel Energy recently became the first major utility to commit to eliminating 100 percent of its carbon emissions by 2050. Platte River Power Authority, a publicly owned utility in Colorado, announced its pledge to provide 100 percent carbon-free energy by 2030. And MidAmerican Energy, a Berkshire Hathaway subsidiary, will be the first U.S. utility to provide customers with electricity generated from 100 percent renewable energy by 2020, less than a year away . . . Climate commitments keep coming. Read more here.
MORE ENERGY TRANSITION STORIES & BLOOMBERG’S NEW MOVEMENT ANNOUNCEMENT
North Dakota finally embraces big solar, PV Magazine For the first time, North Dakota will have a solar installation at least 1 MW in size. Actually, that’s an understatement, as state regulators have approved Geronimo Energy’s bid for a
200 MW project outside of Fargo.
Canada Just Joined IRENA — Here Is Why That Matters, CleanTechnica It marks a continued growth in membership for IRENA year on year, with the membership almost doubled from 85 members in 2011. At present more than 80% of countries are members, including major world powers such as China, United States, Russia and the European Union.
WINDExchange Publishes New Offshore Wind Slideshow As part of its series of wind information slideshows, WINDExchange publishedBlock Island and Beyond: Offshore Wind Energy in the United States. This slideshow provides a brief introduction to offshore wind in the United States, including the country’s first installation off the coast of Block Island, Rhode Island. The slideshow is also available as aPowerPoint file.
U.S. companies are dominating corporate procurement of clean energy this year even as global demand rises, and the record pace accelerated with two new and very different types of American firms announcing renewable power purchase agreements (PPA) totaling 160 MW this week.
Jelly maker J.M. Smucker Co. signed a long-term PPA with Lincoln Clean Energy for 60 MW of wind power from the 230-MW Plum Creek project in Wayne County, Nebraska. The Plum Creek PPA will help Ohio-based Smucker gain half of its electricity use from clean energy by 2020. Continue reading here.
From WINDExchange Newsletter Associations Allow Landowners to Collaborate on Wind Energy Developments
In conjunction with the National Association of Farm Broadcasters, WINDExchange produced an audio interview with Paul Stout, board member of the Coalition of Renewable Energy Landowners, an organization launched in 2009. Landowner groups may allow rural landowners to collaborate to negotiate wind energy development agreements as a group. According to Stout, when wind energy developers need to assemble large parcels of land for a wind farm, it is easier for them when they have one negotiated agreement that everyone can sign. Learn more about wind project development at the WINDExchange website.