Utilities are Key to EV Charging Roll Out

  • April 9, 2021

What’s happening? The Alliance for Transportation Electrification is reminding people why utilities are pivotal in EV charger roll outs. Here’s the reasons why: utilities are better equipped to handle customer service issues, utilities can encourage charging at times better for the electric grid, and utilities can enhance customer affordability with market incentives.

Why is this important? Every state and local entities is struggling with improving chargers. Manufacturers want chargers to clam range anxiety. Charging equipment manufacturers want their product out for consumption.

How will this be important? EV production is only increasing, which m Eans the n umber of chargers is only increasing. Jump on the rain before you find yourself on the late train and the late train is pricy.

River Bender | Utilities Key to Successful EV Transition

COVID Effects: Bag Bans.

  • April 8, 2021

What’s happening? Philadelphia paused its plastic bag ban during lockdown. Maine is postponing its statewide plastic bag ban. The Massachusetts Governor lifted local bans during May 2020 and then reestablished the local bag bans in July 2020.

Why is this important? Plastic bag bans, plastic food containers, styrofoam containers all the local bans, have taken a backseat to the pandemic.

How will this be important? As the new normal becomes clear, these bans will be tweaked, reassessed and new version will emerge.

Route Fifty | Pandemic-Paused Plastic Bag Bans Ripped Anew by Critics

Add Connecticut to States Expanding Offshore Wind

  • April 8, 2021

What’s happening? The Connecticut legislature is purchasing 2 gigawatts of offshore wind energy by 2030. CT Commissioner of the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection says if the state wants to meet its goal of sourcing all of its electricity from zero-carbon sources by 2040, it will need more offshore wind.

Why is this important? CT’s projections show it will need 5000 megawatts of offshore wind in total by 2040.

How will this be important? The state needs the Biden Administration help. To that end, to 800,000 acres in the New York Bight have been recognized the Biden Administration for wind turbine leases. Offshore wind is a state-federal partnership

Governing | Connecticut Expected to Increase Off-Shore Wind Contracts

Power Outages By the Numbers.

  • April 8, 2021

What’s happening? I’ll admit when I read the headline, I thought oh has to be California or maybe Texas if we factor in Winter Storm Uri. I was wrong. Maine has the highest number of power outages per year at an average of 4 outages per year and ranks 2nd in outage duration of 14 hours annually over a five-year period from 2015 to 2019

Why is this important? Watching Maine grapple with consistent electric power could be instructive. They are adding Hydropower to Western Maine & say that “expensive backup generators or battery storage are answers for some, but are not affordable to everyone, nor are microgrids for communities or islands.” A 2019 Maine law requires utilities to establish and file their emergency response plan for recovery and restoration every two years.

How will this be important? Watch their utility regulator who is considering “possibly holding utilities to performance-based standards”

Bangor Daily News via Governing | Maine Works to Resolve the Worst Power Outages in the Nation

New Report. OffShore Wind & Texas. More Power than TX Needs.

  • March 26, 2021

What’s happening? Environment Texas Research & Policy Center research says off shore wind could produce 166% of Texas Energy needs.

Why is this important? Earlier this year we talked about Louisiana partnering with Massachusetts, or one of the colonies, to build offshore turbines in the Gulf based on the turbines working in the Atlantic.

How will this be important? Winter Storm Uri has changed how people view energy in usually warmer states and by the looks of it, every option is on the table.

Renew Biz | Offshore wind ‘could deliver 166% of Texas power’

Texas A&M researchers. Dow Like Index for TX Energy

  • March 26, 2021

What’s happening? A recent Texas A&M study published in the journal Nature Communications researchers devised a metric that reflects the average price of energy in the United States

Why is this important? Researchers say pricing for energy should be beyond supply and demand. “Energy is affected by all kinds of events, including political developments, technological breakthroughs and other happenings going on at a global scale.”

How will this be important? “This metric can help guide lawmakers, government or non-government organizations and policymakers on whether, say, a particular tax policy or the impact of a technological advance is good or bad, and by how much,” Pistikopoulos said. “We now have a quantitative and accurate, predictive metric to navigate the evolving energy landscape, and that’s the real value of the index.”

Texas A&M Today | Dow-Like Index For Energy Prices Might Help Smooth Transition To Clean Power

Here’s How Kansas is Limiting Wind Farms

  • March 26, 2021

What’s happening? Kansas is considering SB 279 (2021 | KS). Currently Kansas gets 41% of its energy supply from wind. Makes sense, I’ve seen the Wizard of Oz. This bill will limit where wind turbines can be built. Imagine wind farms are strip clubs or bars and pull out your measuring tape, because this bill would limit wind farms to  least 1.5 miles from a home, 3 miles from an airport or park, and one mile from another person’s property line.

How is this important? It is a model for those who seek to limit wind energy.

Why will this be important? Limiting where businesses or resources can be built or collected isn’t unique to Kansas or wind energy.

KSNT | Bill would limit wind farms in Kansas

PA State Government Choosing Solar Power for its Buildings

  • March 25, 2021

What’s happening? Pennsylvania Governor announced the state would “build seven new solar arrays and create more than 400 construction jobs, calling it the largest solar commitment of any state or local government in the United States.”

Why is this important? By 2023, 1/2 of the state government’s energy needs ill be met by solar. Plus, the state is locking down its energy prices for 15 years.

How will this be important? The project is a viable template for other state governments

Route Fifty | Solar Project to Produce Half of State Government’s Electricity

State Laws and Microplastics in Water Supplies

  • March 25, 2021

What’s happening? In 2018 California passed a bill that required 4 years of testing water supplies for micro plastics. Now California will release the world’s first guidelines for microplastics in drinking water.

Why is this important? Last Week Tonight covered Microplastics last week. think of Microplastics like bans on plastic bags, straws, styrofoam. Its going to appear in all levels of state government.

How will this be important? Microplastics and plastics in water has impacted everything from the Arctic to the pool of plastics floating in the Pacific

CalMatters | California Is First to Tackle Microplastics in Drinking Water

Re-routing Transmission Lines with Conservation Easements

  • March 18, 2021

What’s happening? Imagine lands with no hard zoning so you have a conservation easement to avoid things like transmission lines in your backyard. Well, a new new Transmission Authority in Colorado would supersede the easement with eminent domain thanks to SB21-072 (2021 | CO)

Why is this important? The Transmission Authority will be funded by the existing fixed utility fund.

How will this be important? Unlike most eminent domain bills, this bill moves the power of eminent domain to a new entity that is not accountable to voters or a direct governing body that is elected.

Colorado Politics | OPINION | Pending bill gives away your say over utilities