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Energy Newsbriefs Blog

This current awareness service is prepared by the WSU Energy Program Library with funding from the U.S. Department of Energy State Energy Program. This information is provided for energy professionals and interested members of the public to highlight recent energy-related news, articles, and reports that discuss energy efficiency, energy conservation, and renewable sources of energy in engineering and policy circles.


Category: Renewable Energy


The Good News On Renewables — Unleashing Innovation: Energy Report

iBloomBerg Reports, Sept. 14, 2015.

"In February 2013, California energy officials sat down with power-industry executives to figure out how to avert an approaching calamity: The rapid rollout of wind and solar electricity was stressing the state’s grid. The more renewable energy California added, the more its power supply could be whipsawed by a cloudy day or a windy storm. Some at the meeting warned that problems, such as rolling brownouts, could start to show up later that year. ...Plenty of risks still remain. But the fact that the grid has been able to handle more renewables than previously thought is driving massive changes through the industry. One of the places it is being felt most acutely is among utilities."

IT Industry’s Renewable Energy Procurement is Significant, Set to Climb

National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), Aug 20, 2015.

"The percentage of renewable electricity purchased by U.S. companies in the information and communication technology (ICT) sector is growing and will likely increase significantly by the start of the next decade, according to a first-ever analysis by the Energy Department's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). The report, "Renewable Electricity Use by the U.S. Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Industry," includes case studies of renewable energy purchased by companies including Apple, Facebook, Google and other key industry figures."

Healthy Choices: Selecting From the Distributed Generation Rate Menu

Public Power, Jul/Aug 2015, by Laura D'Alessandro.

"Choosing the best distributed generation rate design for your utility depends largely on your community."

In Nevada and Beyond, Energy Efficiency Means More Jobs, Less Carbon

Huffington Post "The Blog", Aug. 25, 2015, by Nicole Lederer.

"Consider for a moment the 6,000 positions Tesla expects to fill near Reno at a massive factory for advanced batteries - a major announcement that helped propel Nevada to the top spot nationwide in a major 2014 clean energy jobs report. Or the jobs installing and maintaining a nearly 30-megawatt solar array at Nellis Air Force Base south of downtown Vegas. Or the thousands of workers it will take to retrofit Nevada's schools, businesses, casinos, homes and apartments to make them all use energy smarter via energy efficiency."

Why RECs Matter: The Case for Renewable Energy Credits

North American Windpower, July 2015, by Roger W. Rosendahl.

"RECs can be a meaningful incentive and a flexible facilitator of renewable portfolio standards."

Microsoft’s 2-Year Journey to 285 MW of Wind Energy

Rocky Mountain Institute Blog, Aug. 6, 2015, by Stephen Abbott.

"Over the past two years, Microsoft has contracted for 285 MW of renewable power from two off-site wind energy projects. These two wind farms—capable of generating enough electricity to power 125,000 U.S. homes—could not have been built without the long-term off-take agreement provided by Microsoft, demonstrating the large-scale impact that companies can have on renewable energy deployment. The Business Renewables Center (BRC), an RMI-convened initiative and member-led platform, is working to accelerate corporate procurement of off-site renewable energy such as Microsoft’s, by bringing together corporate buyers, project developers, and service providers."

Competitiveness of Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency in U.S. Markets

Advanced Energy Economy Institute (AEE), June 2015.

"Questions have been raised about whether renewable energy (RE) and energy efficiency (EE) resources can provide substantial emission reductions at reasonable cost under EPA’s proposed Clean Power Plan (CPP). These concerns reflect fundamental misperceptions about the performance and cost of today’s renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies, rooted in outdated information and perpetuated by inaccurate official market projections. This paper shows that RE and EE are competitive resources in today’s marketplace that will not only be cost-effective mechanisms for CPP compliance but should also be expected to grow strictly on the basis of competitiveness."

Renewables Share of U.S. Energy Consumption Highest Since 1930s

Today in Energy (EIA), May 28, 2015, by Mary Joyce.

"Renewable energy accounted for 9.8% of total domestic energy consumption in 2014. This marks the highest renewable energy share since the 1930s, when wood was a much larger contributor to domestic energy supply."

The Game Changer [Energy Storage]

Solar Today, April 30, 2015, by Maureen McIntyre (Editor & publisher)

"The global energy landscape is shifting, and the game changer is energy storage."

NREL Highlights 2014 Utility Green Power Leaders

National Renewable Energy Laboratory New Release, May 2015.

"The Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) has released its assessment of leading utility green power programs. Using information provided by utilities, NREL has developed "Top 10" rankings of utility green power programs for 2014 in the following categories: total sales of renewable energy to program participants, total number of customer participants, the percentage of customer participation, and green power sales as a percentage of total utility retail electricity sales."
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