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In the Face of Extreme Drought, Australia (and Possibly Texas) Undoes Best Strategy for Water Conservation: Clean Energy

April 14, 2015 by Kate Zerrenner
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Drought Risk and Clean Energy

Cowboys, frontier grit, accented English, and wild, wide open spaces are just a few of the similarities shared by Texas and Australia. Both places also have an energy-water problem. But, the good news for Texas is that it’s not too late for us to learn from Australia’s mistakes – and a few successes, too.[read more]

A Roundup of Energy, Water, and Climate Bills in the 84th Texas Legislative Session

March 29, 2015 by Kate Zerrenner

Texas Energy Legislation

We’ve almost made it to the midway point of the 84th Session of the Texas Legislature, so it's a good time to check which climate, clean energy, and energy-water nexus bills have been filed this Session. Here’s a look at a few that are likely to rise to the top, and ones we hope will cross the finish line by June 1st.[read more]

Military Experts in Texas Call for Plan of Action on Climate Change

March 10, 2015 by Kate Zerrenner

Climate Change and the Military

 

When the U.S. military calls climate change a “threat multiplier” and “a serious threat to national security,” it makes anyone stand up and pay attention. From direct land impacts and food and water shortages, to the displacement of millions of people, climate change is not taken lightly by our armed forces.[read more]

Wind Generates More than 10% of Texas Electricity in 2014

March 1, 2015 by U.S. EIA: Today in Energy

Texas Energy Sources

In 2014, more than 10% of the electricity used in the grid covering most of Texas came from wind generation, according to the grid's operator, the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT). Wind's share of the ERCOT generation mix grew from 6.2% in 2009 to 10.6% in 2014.[read more]

Efficiency is What Texas Can (and Should) Do Best

February 27, 2015 by EDF Energy Exchange

Texas and Efficiency

Energy efficiency is Texas’ most cost-effective way to reduce energy use and carbon pollution from power plants. It also creates other benefits to the power grid, like improving reliability and lowering costs for infrastructure maintenance. Plus, saving energy saves water, which is critical in a state like Texas.[read more]

Think Texas Energy is All About the Oil? Think Again

February 25, 2015 by EDF Energy Exchange

Texas and Energy Alternatives

In 1999, we pushed to get the first renewable energy mandate passed in the country – in Texas of all places. There were all sorts of concerns at the time that wind could not be integrated into the system, or that it would be too expensive. Time has proven otherwise.[read more]

Modeling a Distribution Network: How Oncor's "Reality Check" Improves Reliability

February 3, 2015 by Chris King

Oncor and Distribution Reliability

Few utilities have a larger or more complex distribution network than Oncor Electric Delivery -- serving more than 7 million Texans, with over 102,000 miles of distribution lines. To help ensure that power keeps flowing, Oncor has created a detailed, dynamic, near-real-time model of its entire distribution network.[read more]

Smart Thermostat Programs Roll on in Texas, Arizona, and Maryland

December 28, 2014 by Katherine Tweed

TXU Energy was one of the first energy retailers to offer a smart thermostat program, way back in 2009. The Texas retailer has now chosen EnergyHub to manage those thermostats, which number in the tens of thousands, according to EnergyHub.[read more]

Texas Grid Regulator Cites Very Little Burden in Complying with EPA's Clean Power Plan

December 25, 2014 by EDF Energy Exchange

Texas and the Clean Power Plan

Well, it didn’t take long before the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) released, at the request of Texas’ very political Public Utilities Commission, another report about the impacts of the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) rules designed to protect public health.[read more]

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

December 9, 2014 by Jeff St. John
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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]

Texas to Overhaul Its Grid-Balancing Services With Energy Storage

December 4, 2014 by Katherine Tweed

Before the EPA released its Clean Power Plan earlier this year, with goals for each state to slash carbon dioxide emissions, Texas was already preparing for a changing energy mix. Its grid operator has been evaluating its grid-balancing needs as it takes on more wind power, while coal is retired at an increasing pace.[read more]

Going for Broke in Texas: Protecting the Environment without Slowing Economic Growth

December 3, 2014 by Lucas Davis
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Texas Environmental Policy and Energy Economics

The U.S. energy boom raises important questions about environmental risks. Setting aside climate concerns, the challenge for policymakers is how to encourage the continued development of these valuable resources while ensuring environmentally safe drilling and production.[read more]

Does Texas Need a Carbon Tax to Meet EPA Climate Rules?

November 27, 2014 by Katherine Tweed

The Texas grid has (mostly) kept the lights on despite having minimal reserve margins for years. But if ERCOT, which operates the state’s grid, implements the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed Clean Power Plan to cut carbon dioxide emissions, it will reduce grid reliability in the state even further.[read more]

Energy from Ice and the World's Largest Battery; Texas Looks to Join the Energy Storage Game

November 23, 2014 by Lexie Briggs
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Recent Energy News Stories

Ever since California’s Public Utilities Commission announced a new energy storage mandate last year, the storage market in California has exploded. Last week, Southern California Edison (SCE) announced that it would acquire 250 MW of energy storage system as part of a larger plan.[read more]

Texas & Germany: Energy Twins?

November 10, 2014 by Ben Paulos

Energy in Germany and Texas

In many respects Germany and Texas could not be more different. One is cold and northern and Old World, the other hot and dry and New World. Yet Germany and Texas have some intriguing similarities when it comes to their electricity systems, and may share a common future.[read more]