SEIA proposes utilities run competitive solicitations in lieu of PURPA – Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) has filed a proposal with the federal energy regulators that both seeks to address the concerns of utilities regarding their must-take obligations under PURPA, while still allowing for a thriving solar market. “SEIA’s proposal brings competition into the PURPA regime by providing utilities with relief from their mandatory purchase obligation, if they run fair competitive solicitations for the capacity needs identified in their integrated resource plans.” Our take: With pressure to reform or scrap PURPA and so many boom-bust cycles as policies are tinkered with at the state level, this could provide some certainty to the market. And with ever-falling costs for solar, such solicitations often allow it to win. Source: SEIA
Turning Point Energy expands community solar service to Maine – In response to Maine becoming the 20th state to allow community solar earlier in the summer, Turning Point Energy has announced that the company will be bringing just that to Vacationland. The development will come as part of the more than 400 MW of solar called for under L.D. 1711. Source: Turning Point Energy
Solar Job Opportunity at the U.S. Department of Energy – “Once again, we have job announcements in the pvmb! Are you interested in working in the Solar Energy Technologies Office (SETO)? SETO is hiring supervisory interdisciplinary general engineers/physical scientists to fill vacancies on the team, including on the office’s soft costs team. The supervisory general engineer/physical scientist is responsible for managing a team of technology managers and their research and development programs. Responsibilities include planning, budgeting, developing, implementing, managing, and evaluating initiatives, and communicating their objectives to industry stakeholders in workshops, seminars, and conferences. Applicants may be selected at the GS-15 grade level. Apply now. The final day to apply is September 3, 2019. You must submit a transcript demonstrating a physical science or engineering degree to meet the basic eligibility requirements.” Source: SETO
Sunrun Brightbox and virtual power plant coming to Vermont – The summer of Brightbox expansion rolls on, as Sunrun has announced it will be bringing the product, as well as an opportunity to enroll with Sunrun in Green Mountain Power’s (GMP) innovative bring-your-own-device (BYOD) battery program. BYOD is a virtual power plant, aimed at harnessing the power of home batteries across the state to provide clean energy and valuable services to the electricity system – cutting power plant pollution and saving money for all consumers in Vermont. Source: Sunrun
Large user “open market” in Duke North Carolina – “Big institutions including universities and retail chains can now start moving into getting more of their power from the sun. Duke Energy said Wednesday that it’s moving ahead with plans allowed under a 2017 law to let large energy users select and negotiate prices and terms with renewable energy installers of their choice. Walmart stores are among the big users interested, and it last week negotiated a way to handle billing for solar power. Companies must apply for the limited amount of solar power permitted under the state law. Applications open in October. More than half of the limit is reserved for military bases and University of North Carolina campuses.” Source: Miami Herald
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Net billing is not enough. Regulatory pricing reform should be time-of-use net billing and include the cost of externalities ($0.13/kWh) for all, including private investment in demand side solar and EV by residential and commercial electric customers.
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