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Governors' Wind Energy Coalition

October 2, 2017

Grid talk takes over the Hill

Sam Mintz, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2017-10-02 06:49:16

Three House hearings will examine the electric grid this week, days after a bold move by Energy Secretary Rick Perry aimed at boosting coal and nuclear plants with the goal of increasing grid reliability and resilience. Perry on Friday called on the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to require the electricity markets it oversees to make new rules that would compensate “fuel-secure” generation sources — primarily coal and nuclear plants — the theory being that doing so will increase the grid’s reliability. [ read more … ]

Rick Perry just proposed sweeping new steps to help struggling coal and nuclear plants

By Chris Mooney and Steven Mufson, Washington Post  •    •  Posted 2017-10-02 04:32:04

Energy Secretary Rick Perry took sweeping steps on Friday to buttress a pair of financially-strapped nuclear plants under construction and redefine how coal and nuclear plants are compensated for the electricity they provide — a move that, if agreed to by independent federal energy regulators, could tilt some of the nation’s complex power markets away from renewables and natural gas. [ read more … ]

U.S. Energy Head Seeks Help for Coal, Nuclear Power Plants

Bi Nallur Sethuraman and Timothy Gardner, Reuters  •    •  Posted 2017-10-02 04:32:31

U.S. Secretary of Energy Rick Perry has asked federal regulators to attempt to keep the nation’s struggling coal and nuclear power plants open by rewarding them for contributing to the resilience of the electric grid, the Department of Energy said on Friday. The move drew praise from the coal and nuclear power industries. But it raised alarm bells among renewable energy groups and environmentalists concerned that such incentives were unfair and could lead to an increase in emissions from coal plants linked to global warming and more toxic waste from nuclear plants before a permanent repository is built for the country. [ read more … ]

Perry proposes regulatory overhaul to boost coal, nuclear

Sam Mintz and Hannah Northey, E&E News reporters  •    •  Posted 2017-10-02 04:34:03

In a rare move that could spark sweeping changes in energy regulation, Energy Secretary Rick Perry Friday called on the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to take action that could prop up struggling coal and nuclear plants. The Department of Energy wrote in a notice of proposed rulemaking that FERC has an “immediate responsibility to take action to ensure that the reliability and resiliency attributes of generation with on-site fuel supplies are fully valued.” [ read more … ]

Automakers Plan Electric Car Blitz Even as Tesla Burns Billions

By David Welch, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted 2017-10-02 04:34:33

“Nobody doubts that the future will be electric,” said Erich Joachimsthaler, founder and CEO of brand-strategy firm Vivaldi, which works with German luxury carmakers. “The car companies dragged their feet with electric. Now they are being dragged into it by Tesla and by regulations.” In North America alone, the number of electric vehicles will soar to 47 by the first quarter of 2022 from 24 in the third quarter of this year, according to data from Bloomberg New Energy Finance. China’s EV market will go to 80 from 61, and European buyers will have 58 electric choices, up from 31. Globally, there will be 136 EVs on the market by the end of that year, and that doesn’t even include the hybrid models or fuel cells. [ read more … ]

Suniva and SolarWorld propose remedies on Safeguard case

By ADAM BEHSUDI, Politico  •    •  Posted 2017-10-02 04:35:03

The two companies filed a joint brief and each recommended different remedies, though they said that either option could be selected. Suniva recommends a price floor for all solar modules that starts at 74 cents per watt and declines over the four years of the tariff, as well as tariffs for both modules and the solar cells. SolarWorld said it was seeking a quota of 220 MW on imported cells and 5,700 MW on imported modules. [ read more … ]

Renewable Energy Investors See Opportunity in Puerto Rico’s Demolished Grid

By Valerie Volcovici and Nichola Groom, Reuters  •    •  Posted 2017-10-02 04:35:35

Hurricane Maria destroyed Puerto Rico’s antiquated and bankrupt electrical system, leaving millions in the dark and utility crews scrambling to help. Now some politicians and renewable energy investors see a golden opportunity in the crisis to use federal funds to re-invent the U.S. territory’s grid as a storm-resistant network that relies less on costly coal and oil imports and more on local wind, solar, and batteries. [ read more … ]

Storm-Ravaged Caribbean Is Eyeing Solar, But It Won’t Come Cheap

By Emma Ockerman, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted 2017-10-02 04:36:02

In making the case for so-called microgrids, environmental nonprofit Rocky Mountain Institute pointed to solar installations on the Turks and Caicos islands that remained largely intact while the local utility reported more than 1,200 poles down. That was the case on Richard Branson’s Necker Island, too. Even Bruce Walker, the nominee to lead the Energy Department’s electricity office, hailed Puerto Rico’s devastated grid as an opportunity to test technologies that’ll make it more resilient to storms. Governor Ricardo Rossello said Friday that he’s considering microgrids. [ read more … ]

Storage technology, innovation to come under review

Christa Marshall, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2017-10-02 06:49:37

The Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee this week will examine energy storage technologies as a tool to make the grid more resilient against natural disasters and to back up renewable power. The U.S. energy storage industry has grown dramatically in recent years, increasing 243 percent in 2015 alone. But supporters say batteries and other storage technologies are disadvantaged in the tax code and in regulations. [ read more … ]

Tesla’s Big Battery Races to Keep South Australia’s Lights On

By Sonali Paul, Reuters  •    •  Posted 2017-10-02 04:36:20

One year after the state of South Australia suffered a major blackout, the clock has started ticking for Tesla Inc to finish building the world’s biggest battery to help keep the lights on in Australia’s most wind-dependent state. Tesla won a bid in July to build a 129 megawatt hour (MWh) battery and the state is counting on it to be ready by the start of the southern summer in December when electricity demand begins to peak. [ read more … ]

Note: News clips provided do not necessarily reflect the views of coalition or its member governors.