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Electricity Grid

Landmark Climate Law Directs Electric Utilities to Displace Oil Companies

September 14, 2015 by Max Baumhefner

Climate Law and California

Within 15 years, California will generate at least half of its electricity from renewable resources and double savings from energy efficiency gains, two milestones included in Senate Bill (SB) 350. News coverage of this bill prior to its passage overlooked these monumental targets.[read more]


Avoiding(?) The Next Fukushima

September 11, 2015 by Robert Hargraves

Nuclear Risk and Planning

The Fukushima disaster is ending. No member of the public was injured by radiation. People are moving back home. Processed, mildly radioactive water is being released into the sea. Japan nuclear power plants are being restarted and world-wide construction resumed.[read more]

Energy Efficiency Today Means More Access to Energy Tomorrow

September 11, 2015 by Durwood Zaelke

Energy Efficiency and Access

2015 has brought countries across the globe record-breaking temperatures. In addition to leading to wildfires, droughts, and thousands of premature deaths, it also has brought increasing demand for electricity to run air conditioning, leading to disruptive blackouts and reduced energy for other uses.[read more]

Can Utilities Get Smarter with Smart Meters?

September 10, 2015 by Coley Girouard

Utilities and Smart Meters

In this day and age where information is always at our fingertips and we are constantly connected, the lack of customer engagement in the electric utility industry - on which all our smart electronic devices depend - is absolutely mind-blowing.[read more]

Dominion to Offer Community Solar, Minus the Community and the Solar

September 10, 2015 by Ivy Main

Domnion and Solar Offerings

Dominion Virginia Power has a new scheme to extract money from customers who want to buy solar, without actually selling them solar. The solar hopefuls are to be bilked of extra payments on their utility bills by the promise of having their drab fossil electricity turned into golden sunlight-powered electrons.[read more]

Are We Over-Air Conditioned?

September 9, 2015 by Meredith Fowlie

Air Conditioning and Energy Use

Air conditioning made lots of headlines this summer. In newspaper accounts, internet memes, and office gripe sessions, there was much commiseration about the over-air conditioning of the American workplace. Is it actually true? And what can we do to reduce workplace energy waste?[read more]

Why Germany is Dumping Nuclear Power, and Britain Isn't

September 9, 2015 by Sussex Energy Group

Nuclear Power and Policy

Under the current major Energy Transition (Energiewende), Germany is seeking to entirely phase out nuclear power by 2022. Yet the UK has for many years advocated a “nuclear renaissance”, promoting the most ambitious new nuclear construction programme in Western Europe.[read more]

Four Things California Should Consider before Rolling Out Time-of-Use Pricing

September 9, 2015 by EDF Energy Exchange

California and Time-of-Use Pricing

This summer the California Public Utilities Commission ordered changes in how Californians pay for electricity. Customers of the big three investor-owned utilities will be switching residential customers to the same pricing plan used by commercial and industrial customers: time-of-use electricity pricing.[read more]

Electric Generator Capacity Factors Vary Widely Across the World

September 8, 2015 by U.S. EIA: Today in Energy

Electric Generation Variance

The tech used to generate electricity are similar across regions of the world, but the pattern of use for those generating technologies can be significantly different. Analysis of electric generating plant utilization over a five-year period shows a wide range of variability among fuel types and across world regions.[read more]

The Good and Bad of Low Commodity and Oil Prices for Renewable Microgrids

September 4, 2015 by Arnaud Henin

Oil Prices, Microgrids, and Commodities

In general, renewable energy companies have been affected by recent turmoil as the market seems to believe that lower oil prices will either indirectly lead to lower power prices or at least signal that power prices may come under pressure from some of the same factors impacting oil.[read more]

Alaska Increases Wind Power Capacity in Utility - and Distributed-Scale Projects

September 2, 2015 by U.S. EIA: Today in Energy

Alaska and New Energy

Although wind power provided less than 3% of Alaska's electric power generation in 2014, Alaska's wind power capacity has increased 20-fold between 2007 and 2014, growing from 3 megawatts (MW) to 60 MW. This increase is notable in light of the challenges of installing and connecting large wind generators.[read more]


Nuclear Retirements Would Sabotage Clean Power Plan Carbon Reductions

September 1, 2015 by Jesse Jenkins

Nuclear power and the EPA Clean Power Plan

The EPA believes it’s new regulations will cut carbon emissions 32% by 2030. Reaching that goal depends on nuclear continuing to supply one-fifth of U.S. electricity. Retirements of existing reactors could sabotage the Clean Power Plan's emissions goals—and the EPA can't stop it. Here's why...[read more]


Interoperability and Distributed Intelligence: OMNETRIC Group's Project with U.S. Energy Department's NREL

August 31, 2015 by Wade Malcolm

Grid Development and Energy Partnerships

To better operate an increasingly complex and crowded grid, greater interoperability across disparate devices and systems is needed. For greater responsiveness, more decisions need to be made at the edge, which is only possible if there is more intelligence in the distribution network.[read more]

Optimism is the Way Forward: Nuclear Power Delivers

August 31, 2015 by Milton Caplan

Nuclear Power Potential

We had an important piece of good news this month as Sendai Unit 1 was restarted in Japan, ending a long period of no nuclear generation in that country after the Fukushima accident in 2011. Sendai Unit 2 is following close behind and Japan will continue to restart many of its nuclear plants.[read more]

The DOE's Loan Program Office Needs to Help Manufacturers and Consumers

August 31, 2015 by James Greenberger

On March 6 of this year I wrote in this column about the need for the Department of Energy’s Loan Program Office (LPO) to assist distributed energy projects, including distributed energy storage projects, rather than dedicate all its financial resources to energy megaprojects.[read more]