Wind is blowing up in the Commonwealth! A report from Environment Massachusetts shows that offshore wind could help power the state’s electricity needs 19 times over – and major generators are already working to make it happen. Among them is ML Strategies client Deepwater Wind, which has identified New Bedford, Fall River and Somerset as possible sites where it will assemble wind turbine foundations for its Revolution Wind project.
Analysis by Bloomberg New Energy Finance finds that roughly 18% of U.S. energy generation is supplied by renewable sources. The details can be found in the 2018 edition of the Sustainable Energy in America Factbook, Bloomberg’s dive into the country’s energy mix and evaluation of how various renewable energy industries are faring.
In early April 2017, the Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources (DOER) partnered with investor-owned electric distribution companies across the state to jointly issue a request for proposals (RFP) for renewable energy generation. The mission of the RFP is to ultimately help the state meet goals outlined by energy diversity legislation signed into law by Governor Charlie Baker in August 2016. By the time the initial deadline closed on July 27th, the state had received nearly four dozen bids for a contract to add more renewable power to its energy portfolio.
This month’s Washington Update provides insight into a number of energy-related developments at the federal level, including President Trump’s recently proposed budget for Fiscal Year 2018, the Senate’s failed efforts to turn back the Obama administration’s methane rule, and several pieces of legislation related to energy efficiency.
With President-Elect Donald Trump and his administration officially moving into the White House this Friday, the landscape of energy policy, investment, and incentives could see major changes in 2017. Given this backdrop, it seems like a good time to review some of the most important trends and policies concerning clean energy that we covered in 2016.
Here are 2016’s top 5 most popular blog posts at Energy Tech Matters:
Financial advisory and asset management firm Lazard recently published its annual report on the costs of electricity generation technologies, finding that the costs for clean energy projects continue to decrease. The tenth version of Lazard’s Levelized Cost of Energy Analysis (LCOE 10.0) shows that the cost of large-scale solar projects continue to rapidly decline, falling by 11% in 2016 and thus 85% since 2009. This makes new solar projects competitive with natural gas power plants in some regions of the U.S., even before federal investment tax credits, and in many regions across the country, wind projects are the lowest cost option among all energy technologies, before federal tax credits. To learn more about Lazard’s report, read on!
On December 15, 2016, the MIT Energy Initiative (MITEI) released an in-depth research report providing guidance for the evolving electric power sector. The MITEI report, The Utility of the Future, proposes major regulatory, policy, and market overhauls to electric power systems around the world for efficient integration of distributed and centralized energy resources. Through a set of analysis-based recommendations, the comprehensive study has two overarching proposals: the development of a comprehensive system of prices and regulated charges that apply to all network users, and the removal of inefficient barriers that currently impede the integration and competition of distributed and centralized resources. To learn more about MITEI’s report, read on! Continue Reading MIT Energy Initiative Releases Report for Evolving Electric Power Sector
Passage of a tax package is another possible item on Congress’ list for the lame duck session, which is discussed in a recent ML Strategies alert. Three dozen tax provisions are scheduled to expire December 31, about half of which pertain to energy provisions. Congress approved last December a $1.1 trillion omnibus appropriations and $680 billion tax extenders package and adjourned for the first session of the 114th Congress. To learn more about the tax extenders package, read on!
Earlier this year, Massachusetts passed legislation that will require the state’s distribution utilities to purchase carbon-free electricity from hydropower and on and offshore wind farms under long-term contracts for up to 30% of the state’s electricity supply. Despite opposition from incumbent generators and large consumers over concerns that the bill would interfere with market competition, Democratic legislators found common ground with Republican Governor Charlie Baker to enact historic “clean energy” legislation that will transform the fuels used to generate the state’s power while significantly reducing its carbon-footprint. To learn more, read on!
The U.S.’s offshore wind industry is poised for a burst of activity after faltering for several years on the heels of the stalled Cape Wind project in Massachusetts. The country’s first offshore wind farm will open this fall off the coast of Rhode Island. To read more about this project, continue reading!