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215 Million And Rising: Surge In LED Installs Is A Growing Threat To Utility Industry

August 27, 2015 by Dennis Wamsted
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LED Installs and Utilites

The cumulative number of light emitting diodes (LEDs) installed across the United States has soared during the past two years—topping 215 million at the end of 2014. That’s good for the environment and consumers, but not for growth-starved electric utilities.[read more]

Smart Utility Rates Could Slash Grid Investment Costs and Monthly Bills

August 27, 2015 by Katherine Tweed

Smart Utilities and Customer Bills

Homeowners could save up to 40 percent on their electricity bills and utilities could slash billions of costs every year in grid upgrades if demand-flexible rate plans were widely available, according to a new study from Rocky Mountain Institute.[read more]

At the 'Tip of the Spear' for Solar Energy in Virginia: Tony Smith

August 26, 2015 by Jim Pierobon

Solar Energy Forefront in Virginia

A handful of individuals and their organizations have persevered to develop pathways for the implementation of cost-effective solar energy in Virginia, a state where utilities are widely viewed to be undermining the adoption of solar by their customers.[read more]

Trending Topics: How Utilities Can Deliver Value for Customers and Society

August 26, 2015 by America's Power Plan

Utilities and Delivering Value

As with any investor-owned company, managers of investor-owned utilities (IOUs) are obligated to maximize shareholder value. So it pays when regulators can find ways to align shareholder value creation with the public interest. Enter performance-based regulation.[read more]

Katrina's Vital Lesson

August 26, 2015 by NRDC Switchboard

President Obama goes to New Orleans on Thursday to mark the Gulf region's struggle to recover from not one disaster but two: Hurricane Katrina and the collapse of the levee system that swamped the Crescent City 10 years ago this week. In some respects, the recovery has been remarkable.[read more]

The Decline of Sloppy Electricity Rate Making

August 25, 2015 by Severin Borenstein
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Sloppy Electricity Rates

Back in the “good old days” most customers had no choice about how to buy electricity and a regulator’s life was pretty easy. The utility needed sufficient revenue to cover its costs, but the regulator approving rates was mostly just deciding whose ox to gore.[read more]

Growing Global Liquids Inventories Reflect Lower Crude Oil Prices

August 25, 2015 by U.S. EIA: Today in Energy

Supply of Global Liquids

Continued growth in global production of petroleum and other liquids has outpaced consumption growth since August 2014, resulting in rising global liquids stocks. Total global liquids inventories are estimated to have grown by 2.3 million barrels per day (b/d) through the first seven months of 2015.[read more]

Major Fossil Fuel-Producing States Rely Heavily on Severance Taxes

August 24, 2015 by U.S. EIA: Today in Energy

Fossil Fuel Production and Taxes

Severance taxes accounted for less than 2% of state tax collections in 2014, but in three states severance taxes provided a much larger share of total state tax revenue in that year. Pennsylvania is considering a severance tax, and currently derives less than 1% of its revenues from a well head fee.[read more]

EPA Methane Rule: A Good Start Toward Meeting Administration's Landmark Goal

August 24, 2015 by EDF Energy Exchange

EPA Methane Rule

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency took a big step recently, announcing the nation’s first methane pollution standards for the oil and gas industry. But to understand the impact of these new draft rules, it’s important to look at what they do – and what they don’t.[read more]

'Pathway to 2050' Focuses on California’s 2030 Goals, Utility Regulation and Business Models

August 24, 2015 by Bob Keough

California, Regulation, and Future Planning

“We are at another inflection point in California policy,” said Howard Wenger of SunPower Corp. With legislation pending across the street in the Capitol to raise California’s already high standards for renewable energy and building efficiency, he couldn't be more right.[read more]

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Will the Iranian Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty become a Threat to U.S. Energy Security?

August 21, 2015 by John Miller
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Iran Nuclear Deal and U.S. Energy Security

The Obama Administration negotiated a nuclear non-proliferation treaty that is supposed to curtail Iran’s possible nuclear weapons development for 10-15 years. While the pros and cons of this treaty are being strongly debated in Congress, the risks to U.S. energy security are apparently not a priority concern.[read more]

Why the $20 Oil Predictions are Wrong

August 21, 2015 by Robert Rapier
2

Oil Production, Prices, and Predictions

As the price of West Texas Intermediate (WTI) retests the $40 per barrel (bbl) mark, some pundits are again calling for WTI to fall to $15 or $20/bbl. The same thing happened earlier in the year when crude prices tested $40. Lots of people predicted $20, the price went to $60, and the $20 crowd went quiet for a while.[read more]

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Crowdfunders Threaten the Cozy World of Largescale Renewable Energy Provision

August 21, 2015 by Aedan Kernan
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A bid to crowdfund a 350 MW offshore wind project in Denmark looked likely to provide the ‘usual suspects’ with some stiff competition, that is, until the moment when the Danish government blocked it. Now, the crowdfunders are starting to fight back.[read more]

Troubles With America's First Clean Coal Plant Put Mississippi Power 'on the Brink of Bankruptcy'

August 20, 2015 by Stephen Lacey
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Months after a landmark carbon capture project in Illinois was scrapped after losing government funding, the builder of America's first commercial-scale clean coal project in Kemper County, Mississippi is facing financial troubles due to soaring costs and long construction delays.[read more]

EIA Lowers Crude Oil Price Forecast Through 2016

August 20, 2015 by U.S. EIA: Today in Energy

Oil Price Predictions

Amid uncertainty in the oil market, EIA has lowered crude oil price forecasts in the Short-Term Energy Outlook (STEO), expecting West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil prices to average $49 per barrel (b) in 2015 and $54/b in 2016, $6/b and $8/b lower than forecast in last month's STEO, respectively.[read more]