Grids & Integration

Berkeley Lab finds negligible potential rate impacts from distributed solar

The latest report from the respected national lab finds that even if – big if – behind-the-meter solar is raising the rates of other utility customers, the impacts are tiny, especially compared to other activities.

Renewable energy advocates slam utilities for slow progress under REV

Comments filed by AEEI and SolarCity on the Supplemental Distribution System Implementation Plan (DSIP) say utilities should do more to get ready for and assist with the integration of distributed renewables and storage, and AEEI says utilities should go back to the drawing board.

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$1 B-plus San Vicente pumped hydro plan flows forward

San Diego County Water Authority (SDCWA) has requested letters of interest due in February for the design and business model for the proposed 500 MW San Vicente Energy Storage Facility, which could include PV energy to pump water to the dam.

Oregon sets timetable for 10 MW energy storage review

The Oregon Public Utilities Commission has finally set a timetable for the review of energy storage projects that will be proposed by Portland General Electric and Pacificorp.

From the editor: James Hansen is behind the times on wind and solar

James Hansen has played a very important role in publicizing the dangers of Climate Change. But his remarks on renewable energy show that he is not well informed on the current state of wind, solar and grid integration.

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MIT report questions value of distributed solar

The Utility of the Future report decries poor state-level rate-making, mythical cross-subsidies by non-solar customers, and economies of scale as reasons that adding more distributed PV to utilities’ portfolios make little long-term economic sense.

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Kit Carson Co-op voluntarily commits to 100% solar electricity in summer

The New Mexico power producer has always wanted to serve its customers with renewable energy, but was severely limited by a previous contract. Now, thanks to a landmark FERC ruling and a new ‘angel’ wholesale-electricity supplier, the co-op can finally reach its goals.

Solar receives transmission boost in the West

As part of President Obama’s Climate Action Plan to cut carbon pollution and create clean energy jobs, U.S. Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell approved two transmission lines to deliver energy across Southwest.

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IEA: solar, wind need new policies to tackle variability concerns

New report by the International Energy Agency identifies the integration of masses of variable renewable energy as the chief challenge facing next-generation solar and wind power, citing policy support as key in maximizing potential.

Bill Gates’ energy innovation fund commits to $1 billion in investment

The Breakthrough Energy Coalition is backing research on zero-carbon technologies; however its guidelines show a lack of understanding of solar technology and market development.

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