Articles filed under Energy Policy from Rhode Island
FERC approved ISO-NE’s two-stage capacity auction to accommodate state renewable energy procurements, with Commissioner Robert Powelson dissenting and Commissioners Cheryl LaFleur and Richard Glick leveling new criticism on the minimum offer price rule (MOPR) (ER18-619).
New England’s power grid is in good shape now and home solar and energy efficiency efforts mean the region’s annual demand for electricity is projected to decline, according to the grid’s operators. But there are also problems ahead.
Officials recently announced they needed more time for the evaluation process "given the complexity of the analysis and the volume of bids." Regulatory approvals of the selected projects are expected later this year.
The Rhode Island Republican Party has called for a provision in the House budget proposal that could benefit a politically connected wind power developer to be removed.
Backers of gas generation countered that renewables are benefiting from government-backed subsidies and long-term contracts that threaten to reintroduce government-mandated integrated resource planning. ...state policies are giving renewables undue advantage and undermining conventional generators’ investments in the market.
Dozens of submissions will need to be vetted in coming months as the three states look to sign long-term contracts for electricity from wind turbines, dams and solar projects. The states are seeking up to 600 megawatts of power.
Companies designing projects to bring clean electricity to southern New England say they’re grateful Massachusetts, Connecticut and Rhode Island have finally made a request for proposals to carry that power to the region. But meeting the region’s longer-term goal of expanding the use of renewable electricity from wind, solar and hydroelectricity will require more transmission capacity than the states requested, said Edward Krapels, the CEO of Anbaric Transmission, which is proposing one project in Maine and another Vermont.
Washington -- Aggressive energy efficiency efforts and new distributed generation capacity -- virtually all of it in the form of solar projects -- are combining to put a lid on growth in peak demand and electric use in New England, ISO New England said in its newly released 2015 Regional System Plan.
New England’s most populous states are looking to tap Canadian dams and rivers for more of their electricity, a change that officials say would help cut greenhouse-gas emissions and help keep some of the nation’s highest power prices in check.
Building more electricity transmission into New England isn't about an "energy crisis." It's about economics, jobs, corporate profit, failure to make the small fixes that add up, failure to do detailed analysis, failure to resist stampede crisis mentality, and lots of other things.
“The states and NESCOE are deliberately working out the details of this plan in secret, consistent with the view of one of NESCOE’s staffers that the plan should be ‘formulated behind closed doors’ because the ‘court of public opinion can be fickle and recalcitrant,’ ” Courchesne wrote, quoting an email from a NESCOE staff member to Executive Director Heather Hunt.
The opposition is prepared to assert that wind farms are visual blights and environmental disturbances. But Deepwater’s adversaries believe that the high cost of this particular type of green energy is their strongest argument. A stack of handouts by the door to the Narragansett Town Council chambers raised the alarm. They proclaimed: “Wind Power Invasion Coming Soon,” and warned of a “predatory development,” and “a risky venture,” doomed to fail, while guaranteeing “huge profits” to Deepwater Wind.
While Ehrhardt acknowledges the fact that National Grid has signed an agreement with Deepwater, he believes there should be some re-negotiating about this agreement. "There are contracts in place, so I'm not suggesting we just walk away from our obligations, as foolish as they may be," said Erhardt, referring to the PPA between National Grid and Deepwater. "Instead, we should consider contractual renegotiating, by trying to come up with a buyout asking Deepwater to reimburse us."
A federal order issued last fall is intended to make it easier to construct transmission lines, costly and controversial projects that are notoriously tough to build.
Martin Associates cautioned that the industry remains in its infancy and the future of Deepwater's proposed farms - one tied up in court - are uncertain. "The wind power market is uncertain, and investment in wind energy support and facilities should be placed on the private sector, not the state," the consultants wrote.
An attorney for the Conservation Law Foundation and another representing Toray Plastics and Polytop Corp. urged the five justices to allow their petitions against a contract for the sale of power from the wind farm to proceed to a full hearing. ..."Every time renewable-energy projects are advanced through illegal methods, it creates a backlash against renewable energy," Elmer said.
The Portsmouth turbine could not be set up behind an electric meter because of the layout of power lines and other equipment at the high school site. The turbine was instead installed directly into National Grid's distribution system. None of the power is used at the high school. Instead, all of it is sold to National Grid.
Two years ago, in an effort to promote wind energy, the legislature changed the law on "net metering'' - a practice that allows the owners of wind turbines to sell any power they don't use back to National Grid. It seemed to make sense ...but, as Jim Hummel finds, the change in law opened up a loophole that is now the subject of an investigation by the Public Utilities Commission. http://www.windaction.org/videos/30928
Attorney General Patrick Lynch said Monday that he has filed a brief in state Supreme Court challenging the constitutionality of a law that ultimately gave Deepwater Wind an exclusive contract to build a wind farm off the coast of Rhode Island.
Deepwater has said time is of the essence to take advantage of federal tax credits that expire at the end of 2012. The company has paid $3.2 million to defray the cost of the SAMP. Another $2.8 million has come from the state; $700,000 came from the U.S. Department of Energy and $2 million from the federal stimulus. The plan's creators say the source of money had no impact on the results of the plan.