pvMB 2/26/19: Hawai’i gas’ last-ditch bid against solar heater mandate, EV’s could bring $43 million to Colorado… and more!


Before we get started: today is a big day. Jinko is opening its US factory in Jacksonville and pv magazine is there and will be getting exclusive coverage out on it later today.

EVs to provide $43 million in benefits to Colorado – eMotorWerks and Platte River Power Authority are partnering on Colorado’s first smart electric vehicle charging study after a report from the Colorado public utilities commission found EVs could provide cumulative benefits of $43 billion to the state. The study is open to EV drivers in Estes Park, Fort Collins, Loveland and Longmont and is looking to find their charging habits in order to develop future smart charging services at scale. Source: eMotorWerks


Hawai‘i Gas attempting to intervene in solar water heater mandate decision – Hawai’i gas has filed to intervene in a decision made by a state environmental court which mandates that all new homes be constructed with solar water heating. The company is looking for a wholesale exemption of gas water heaters. However this could easily all be for not, as the court must first decide if it will even honor the intervention. Source: Earthjustice


Georgia lab not ready to give up on solar roads yet – While frequently criticized on the figures of their practicality and efficiency, solar roads may still have a place in the future of energy generation, at least if you ask researchers with the Ray C. Anderson Foundation. The group is working with Auburn University on tests to improve the reliability of solar roads. The group’s resiliency comes from the belief that roads can be more than just roads and can be used to harness energy, just like carports and parking garages have been able to do as of late. Source: Energy News Network


Utility donations dwarf those of solar PAC in Kentucky net metering bill fight –Four big utility interests pumped $327,050 into the political committees of legislative candidates and the political parties during the 2018 election cycle. That compares with the $6,500 contributed by the tiny political action committee of Kentucky’s solar industry… 90 percent of the utility contributions went to political committees of Republicans, who hold majorities in the Kentucky House and Senate. Democrats got 10 percent of the utility PAC contributions… “The contributions come into play 100 percent,” said Jamie Clark, who owns Synergy Home, a Lexington heating, cooling and solar company. “It’s a big part of why this bill is such a David versus Goliath situation.”” Source: The Courier-Journal


Florida town considering major regulatory changes for solar development – The town of Waterloo, Florida is hearing a law which, among other things, would designate solar facilities for non-prime farmland with marginal soil quality. The proposed law would also require a performance bond for 20 years to make sure the project isn’t abandoned after 10 or 15 years, with an additional requirement that the bond be renewed after 15 years. This law could be in response to reports that NextEra is looking to purchase 125-500 acres of land in the town to develop a solar project on. Source: Finger Lakes Times


MISO considering fast-tracking renewables for interconnection – In an effort to eliminate its interconnection backlog and amid criticism that its interconnection rules don’t work for renewables, MISO is considering a fast-track process for “shovel-ready” renewable generation projects. The current ruleset has led to an average interconnection time of 505 days, which has been a bane to solar development, but even more crippling to wind development in the area. Furthermore, wind projects are facing the end of their investment tax credits in 2020, while solar will see a cut of those credits from 30% to 10% in 2022. Source: RTO Insider

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