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Electricity Grid

Several States are Adding or Increasing Incentives for Electric Vehicle Charging Stations

December 14, 2014 by U.S. EIA: Today in Energy

EV Charging Station State Support

During the past few years, several models of plug-in electric vehicles, including battery electric vehicles and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles, have been introduced in the light-duty vehicle market, but are limited in driving range. Charging infrastructure is crucial to the success of these kinds of vehicles.[read more]

Newspapers Nationwide See Benefits of Continuing Investment in Wind Power

December 13, 2014 by Shauna Theel
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Wind Industry Growth

Newspapers across the country came out over the course of this fall in strong support of extending the renewable energy Production Tax Credit (PTC), which is the primary federal policy supporting development of new wind farm development.[read more]

Future Energy Fellows post

Utility 2.0: New York Draws Lessons on Utility Regulation from Across the Pond

December 13, 2014 by EDF Energy Exchange

New York Energy Planning

When the New York Public Service Commission opened its historic “Reforming the Energy Vision” proceeding, it recognized that the way utility companies have been regulated is out of sync with innovations in technology, business realities, and evolving customer needs, including the need to reduce harmful pollution.[read more]

Upgrading to a Smart Thermostat? Choose One of These

December 13, 2014 by Sarah Battaglia
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Smart Thermostat Choices

With so many smart thermostats on the market today, it can be difficult to determine which one is best for you. You want one that is going to be easy to install, simple to program, pleasing to look at, and probably most important, one that will save you money.[read more]

World Record Solar Module Efficiency of 40.4% From CPV Startup RayGen

December 13, 2014 by Eric Wesoff
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RayGen Resources of Australia and the University of New South Wales have built a solar module with a world-record efficiency of 40.4 percent. The results were verified at NREL's test facility and handily beat the previous module record of 36.7 percent.[read more]

Almost All U.S. Nuclear Plants Require Life Extension Past 60 Years to Operate Beyond 2050

December 12, 2014 by U.S. EIA: Today in Energy
2

Nuclear Plant Life Planning

When nuclear plants are built, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) has the authority to issue initial operating licenses for a period of 40 years. Beyond that, the reactors need license renewals, and the NRC has granted 20-year license renewals to 74 of the 100 operating reactors in the United States.[read more]

Massachusetts Public Housing Leverages SunEdison Solar PPAs for Big Savings

December 11, 2014 by Katherine Tweed

SunEdison has inked sixteen separate power-purchase agreements with public housing authorities from all across Massachusetts over the last year, all of which involve net metering credits for solar PV arrays installed elsewhere in the utility’s territory.[read more]

US-China Climate Deal Underscores Need for Substantial Energy Innovation

December 11, 2014 by Arthur Yip
4

US, China, and Innovation

Talks at the UNFCCC COP 20 in Peru have been buoyed by the recent US-China Joint Announcement on Climate Change. While the pledges by the two largest players may represent a veritable political breakthrough, a new Breakthrough analysis of China’s energy plans shows there is reason for concern.[read more]

Interoperability is a Smart Grid Necessity [INFOGRAPHIC]

December 11, 2014 by Jared Anderson

Smart Grid Interoperability

Making the power grid smarter and more efficient is becoming a necessity as aging infrastructure requires upgrading, distributed generation sources proliferate and utilities adjust business models to address climate change and other new realities.[read more]

This Map Explains Why the Ivanpah Solar Plant Is Performing Worse Than Expected

December 10, 2014 by Stephen Lacey
16

Solar Project Performance Difficulties

As if burned birds and political theater around the loan guarantee program weren't enough problems for the Ivanpah concentrating solar project, the owners are now dealing with lower-than-expected electricity production. From January to August, the 392-megawatt plant generated one-quarter the electricity expected.[read more]

In Texas, a Showdown Over How to Pay for Grid Batteries

December 9, 2014 by Jeff St. John
3

Texas utility Oncor’s $5.2 billion grid battery plan is facing opposition from an unexpected source: the retail and generation arms of its own corporate parent. It's a conflict that underscores the complexities of incorporating energy storage into the state’s unique, competitive energy market.[read more]

Great Progress on Smart Grid and Smart City Predictions for 2020

December 9, 2014 by Christine Hertzog

How much can actually change in a year? When it comes to Smart Grid and Smart City topics, the answer is quite simply that quite a lot can change. Here’s a progress report on my ten predictions about Smart Grid and Smart Cities activity by 2020.[read more]

Why Cutting CO2 with Renewables Alone Means Betting Big on Efficiency: Behind the IPCC's Climate Stabilization Scenarios

December 9, 2014 by Suzanne Waldman
53

Nuclear Energy and IPCC Climate Models

What is the problem with leaning on renewable energy as a solution to the consequences of climate change? All-RE scenarios show one thing in particular, which is they all depend on increasingly intensive demand reductions over time to avert climate change.[read more]

Does Europe Really Need an EPS to Keep from Falling Behind America?

December 9, 2014 by Sieren Ernst

Last month at the European Parliament, the WWF held an event that was titled: “Fighting Coal CO2 Pollution: Is the EU Falling behind the US?” It was held to discuss the US use of an Emission Performance Standard (EPS) as a part of the climate change regulations that it will be effecting under the Clean Air Act.[read more]

Finding Energy Efficiency's Next Purpose: Leveraging Energy Efficiency to Enhance Customer Satisfaction

December 8, 2014 by Subu Balan

Energy Efficiency and Customer Satisfaction

Energy efficiency will continue to evolve and advance in the years ahead. Beyond the perception of energy efficiency as merely a vehicle steered by political or environmental drivers, there is significant value in employing it to elevate customer satisfaction.[read more]