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Storage

Dramatic Growth of Energy Storage Depends on Natural Gas Prices

July 20, 2015 by James Greenberger
2

The case for the dramatic growth of energy storage on the grid is really a case against a long term stable price for natural gas. Hockey stick projections for the storage market fundamentally depend on the assumption that gas prices will rise and/or that grid operators will hedge against that possibility.[read more]

Department of Energy Sharpens the Budget Axe for South Carolina MOX Plant

July 20, 2015 by Dan Yurman

Nuclear Power and the DoE

As part of a unique nonproliferation agreement with Russia, the US is building a mixed oxide fuel production plant in South Carolina to downblend 34 tonnes of weapons grade plutonium with uranium oxide (U308) to make it into mixed oxide fuel (MOX). The Russians are disposing of a similar tonnage of plutonium.[read more]

Removing Toxic Electronics From New York City's Waste

July 17, 2015 by Steven Cohen

While the dangers of climate change attract more attention than other environmental issues, the problems of waste and toxics also persist - and are worthy of attention and action. One of the fastest growing environmental problems of the past decade has been the rapid increase in electronic waste.[read more]

Entrepreneurial Startups Tackle Advanced Nuclear Reactor Designs

July 16, 2015 by Dan Yurman
5

Nuclear Designs

Almost three dozen firms representing $1.3 billion of investor money are pursuing technological innovations in the field of nuclear energy. A June 2015 report by the Third Way, a Washington, DC, think tank, details the mix of firms includes small startups and big-name investors like Bill Gates.[read more]

Commentary: Cracking Open A Window for Iran to Attain its "Economy of Resistance"

July 14, 2015 by Amy Myers Jaffe
1

As news of a deal between Iran and the P+1 group intensifies, markets and companies will increasingly focus on what it will mean for oil. There are already hints that any deal will involve inspections, followed by affirmation of compliance, by the International Atomic Energy Agency which could take up to six months.[read more]

Last Monday's Large Percentage Decline in Crude Oil Prices was Relatively Rare

July 14, 2015 by U.S. EIA: Today in Energy

Oil Price Fluctuation

The front-month futures price for crude oil benchmark West Texas Intermediate (WTI) declined 7.7% on Monday, July 6, the largest single-day decline in percentage terms since February 4. With this decline, oil prices fell below the trading range established over the past few months.[read more]

Reliability Is Key Issue For Electric Utilities In Changing Market

July 13, 2015 by Dennis Wamsted
2

Energy Marktes and Reliability

In a recent article in Utility Dive, Tucson Electric Power’s Carmine Tilghman made a big deal about the unfavorable economics of Tesla’s current 7 kilowatt-hour Powerwall battery option, which he said would cost consumers $7,000 installed.[read more]

Cyberattack on U.S. Power Plants Could Cause $1T in Economic Damage

July 13, 2015 by Jeff St. John

Cyberattacks and Infrastructure Safety

Let’s imagine an “improbable, but not impossible” cyberassault on the U.S. power grid. A shadowy group of skilled and malicious actors spend years implanting a piece of malware, dubbed the “Erebos” trojan, in the control systems of power plants across the Northeastern United States.[read more]

My Dr. Strangelove Moment: How I Came to Love Clean Coal

July 10, 2015 by Edward Dodge
32

Clean Coal

I recently returned from a two week barnstorming trip that took me to see the newest clean coal power plants that employ carbon capture and sequestration (CCS). CCS is the practice of physically capturing carbon dioxide molecules from the exhaust streams of large fossil fuel burners like power plants.[read more]

What Greece, Cyprus, and Puerto Rico Have in Common

July 9, 2015 by Gail Tverberg

Economic Crises and Energy

We all know one thing that Greece, Cyprus, and Puerto Rico have in common–severe financial problems. There is something else that they have in common–a high proportion of their energy use is from oil. Figure 1 shows the ratio of oil use to energy use for selected European countries in 2006.[read more]

Energy Storage and the Cost of Going Off-Grid

July 8, 2015 by Geoffrey Styles
11

Last month's Annual Energy Conference of the EIA included speakers and panels on topics such as crude-by-rail, potential oil exports, and the role of the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, all of which should be familiar to my readers here. However, the topic that really caught my interest this year was energy storage.[read more]

Goodbye Mercury Rule, Hello Clean Power Plan?

July 7, 2015 by Brian H. Potts

The EPA and the Supreme Court

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) suffered a major setback on Monday after the U.S. Supreme Court doled out its ruling in Michigan v. EPA. The Court found that the EPA’s decision to ignore the $10 billion dollar annual price tag of its Mercury and Air Toxics Standard for power plants was unreasonable.[read more]

Financing Energy Storage: Taking Cues From the Success of PV

July 7, 2015 by Eric Wesoff
1

PV and Energy Finance

When it comes to solar project finance, the PV market is in the midst of a small golden age of sorts. Tax equity funds and PPAs are now joined by asset-backed securities, the potential for MLP status, loans, community solar, PACE financing, and solar bonds as some of the tools that can back solar projects.[read more]

California Grid Expected to Maintain Reliability despite Drought

July 7, 2015 by U.S. EIA: Today in Energy

California Energy and the Drought

According to the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC), the bulk power system in the state of California is not expected to lose any grid reliability this summer, despite a long-lasting drought that has lowered hydroelectric generation.[read more]

Demand for Small Modular Reactors may be Impacted by Supreme Court Ruling on EPA Coal Plant Emissions

July 6, 2015 by Dan Yurman

SMRs and Supreme Court Rulings

The US Supreme Court recently threw out EPA’s coal emissions regulations that if implemented would have forced many utilities to close older coal-fired plants. The new emissions controls are aimed at mercury and other toxic pollutants which are not removed from stack emissions by current air pollution controls.[read more]