Here’s how utilities use their resource plans to block solar power

At least seven utilities chose to bias their resource modeling against solar in 2019. The good news is that transparent utility modeling could fix the problem.

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Boulder, Pueblo, San Francisco pursue city utilities for clean energy, lower costs

Boulder sees a public utility as a way to reach 100% renewables, while San Francisco aims for 100% clean energy, and Pueblo expects 10% to 14% savings.

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The quick gray fox jumped through the upside-down solar fence—a photo essay

Deer fence installed upside down lets foxes and other small wildlife through to forage and pursue prey. Solar developers in Tennessee and North Carolina have the photos to prove it.

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Making rooftop solar customers ‘go away’ by raising fixed fees on utility bills

Thousands of people across the Southeast have opposed utility plans to increase fixed fees on monthly bills, including a Georgia Power case to be decided soon. Making customers with solar “go away” is an explicit goal of at least one utility.

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Pro-renewable co-ops must propose how to figure a fair fee to exit Tri-State

To stop buying wholesale power from coal-heavy Tri-State, two co-op utilities in Colorado must first advise state regulators on setting a fair fee to exit their Tri-State contracts. A renewables-friendly wholesale competitor waits in the wings.

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Fair compensation for rooftop PV generation: lawyers make the case

The Tennessee Valley Authority will offer just over 2 cents per kWh for distributed solar, although TVA’s prior calculations show a value of 7.2 cents per kWh, or higher when counting avoided pollution. An environmental lawsuit may be brewing.

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Biased capacity markets accelerating gas over solar, storage

Regional markets for energy capacity favor new gas generation over solar and storage, at a high cost to consumers. Eight U.S. Senators have taken notice, while a new report marshals the evidence.

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Solar capacity could soar with electrified transport and heating

With wide adoption of electric vehicles and heat pumps, Colorado’s least-cost grid would reach 21 GW of solar capacity, 12 GW of wind, and 7 GW of storage by 2040, while electric rates would decline. These modeling results apply to other states as well.

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Federal grants aim to spark investment in U.S. solar manufacturing

Seven early-stage solar manufacturing firms have won U.S. Department of Energy grants to develop prototypes, which they could use to help attract private investment. DOE’s 21 PV research and development grants may hold more interest for established manufacturers.

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Montana utility wants gas units; Sierra Club suspects biased modeling

In developing its resource plan, NorthWestern Energy apparently used modeling assumptions that favor gas-fired generation, says the Sierra Club. The group has filed a legal motion requesting access to the modeling inputs, and to the model itself.

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