Op-ed: Merrimack Valley tragedy offers climate change opportunity

The significant investments required in the energy infrastructure of the impacted communities present an opportunity to re-think what energy options are available to best meet the needs of these communities, not only for this winter but for many years to come. Doing so can lead to practical, cost-effective actions that will provide a host of benefits for the residents and businesses in these communities: reduced energy costs for ratepayers; safer, more resilient homes and businesses; improved indoor air quality; and, meaningfully, less climate pollution. Read the full article from CommonWealth Magazine here.

New York Must Expand Solar: How Does Its New Net Metering Process Fit in?

Since 1997, New York has allowed customers with certain types of distributed generation systems, including rooftop solar (sometimes referred to as “mass market” solar) and community solar, to participate in net metering. This simple billing method allows a customer’s consumption and generation to be “netted” at the end of every month. If a customer has consumed more energy from the grid than she has generated from her solar panels, she will pay for the net consumption. However, if a customer has generated more power than she has consumed, then that net generation will be rolled over into the next month’s
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Regional Interest in Battery Storage Heats Up

With the sweltering days of summer behind us and New Englanders reluctantly turning their minds to winter storm season, it is worth asking how we can keep our electric grid running affordably and efficiently during both heat waves and cold snaps. Behind-the-meter energy storage is one solution that is showing increasing promise.   In-Home Energy Storage Behind-the meter energy storage refers to when customers store electric power purchased from the grid or power generated themselves (such as from rooftop solar panels) in batteries installed in their homes. The market for behind-the-meter storage is growing rapidly due to decreasing costs and growing
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As market takes shape, Connecticut makes its first moves on offshore wind

The expansion of the offshore wind industry in the region has meant more competition, and more competition means lower costs. Emily Lewis, a policy analyst at the Acadia Center, said there’s a common misconception that offshore wind is more expensive than other forms of energy, when it’s actually quite cost competitive. “The contracts that utilities entering with offshore wind companies are longer term,” she says. “Through that, they’re getting lower prices.” The data is minimal right now, but her suspicion seems to be right. The price for the Block Island Wind Project was $0.244 per kWh, while the price for in-progress
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Op-ed: Rising transportation emissions are a threat to Maine’s environment

When National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Secretary Elaine Chao and acting Environmental Protection Administration Secretary Andrew Wheeler announced their agencies’ rollback of federal clean car standards in August, they pledged to “ Make Cars Great Again.” In doing so, they have threatened our air, water and public health — and will increase costs for consumers. Federal clean car standards directly reduce the amount of fuel burned for transportation by requiring auto manufacturers to increase fuel efficiency, saving consumers money and limiting transportation emissions. Consumer Reports says the proposed rollback could cost consumers as much as $100 billion, and the increased pollution is definitely
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Merger of two wind power companies is good news for Connecticut, supporters say

Connecticut officials already have issued another request for proposals in an effort to meet the state’s clean energy goals for the future. Three offshore wind bids were among the dozens submitted and supporters of wind power in Connecticut are optimistic that request for proposals will yield further wind power projects to add to the state’s energy mix. “These bids give Connecticut another opportunity to affordably meet its clean energy and greenhouse gas reduction requirements by bringing more offshore wind online,” said Emily Lewis, senior policy analyst at Acadia Center. “With this procurement, Connecticut should aim to keep pace with its
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National Rankings Highlight Leadership of Northeastern States’ Energy Efficiency Programs

Policy and Funding Challenges Remain BOSTON – Northeast states continued their nation-leading performance in the 2018 State Energy Efficiency Scorecard, released today by the nonpartisan American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE). Massachusetts ranked #1 for the eighth straight year, Rhode Island remained at #3, and Vermont, Connecticut and New York ranked #4, # 5 and #6, respectively. Maine and New Hampshire ranked #14 and #21, respectively. “Energy efficiency is a cornerstone of the clean energy economy in the Northeast and beyond. Leading states in the region are successfully demonstrating that non-polluting energy efficiency lowers consumer utility bills, reduces the
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Electric vehicle advocates urge Connecticut regulators not to forget sector in grid planning

A group of clean-energy proponents are calling on state utility regulators to make sure plans for modernizing the state’s power grid include the necessary components to accommodate the expected increase in use of electric vehicles. […] “EVs are a key piece of Connecticut’s clean energy future, and the state’s utilities can play a role in advancing these vehicles,” said Emily Lewis, senior policy analyst for Acadia Center, a regional environmental group with an office in Connecticut. “Through this grid modernization proceeding, PURA can set the stage for utility engagement that supports EV deployment, protects consumers, and shares the benefits of
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