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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.

 


The State of Wind Farm Underperformance Syndrome

Wind Systems Magazine, Mar. 2016, by Bruce H. Bailey.
http://www.windsystemsmag.com/article/detail/1149/the-state-of-wind-farm-underperformance-syndrome

"It is fair to expect that the energy output of an operating wind farm should be close to what it was designed to produce. If the wind conditions for a particular site are well-measured and the selected turbine is a well-known model, then logic would conclude that the energy prediction process is fairly straightforward. But is this an oversimplification? Industry experience has shown that it is, since the majority of operating wind farms don’t meet their predicted P50 energy values in an average year."

Solar Energy Surge In Washington Leads To Reduced Incentives

KPLU, Apr. 14, 2016, by Tom Banse.
http://www.kplu.org/post/solar-energy-surge-washington-leads-reduced-incentives

"People who are interested in solar energy but don't own the perfect roof on which to install solar panels may have the option to buy into a bigger, centrally-located project. These are called shared solar or community solar. There's a boomlet of such projects in Washington state right now, while there are hardly any in sunnier Oregon and Idaho. But Washington's generous solar incentives are coming under scrutiny."

Feedstock Tradeoffs [Biofuels]

Biofuels Journal, 1st Quarter 2016, by Jerry Perkins. -- jump to page 60.
http://edition.pagesuite-professional.co.uk//launch.aspx?pbid=4d63415d-a95c-43f0-937d-3d7fe7e4fc52

"Researchers from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign and their collaborators have found that second-generation biofuel feedstocks such as Miscanthus and switchgrass can reduce the green-house gas emissions of transportation fuels without displacing food-producing crops."

Seventh [Northwest] Power Plan Now Available

Northwest Power & Conservation Council, Feb. 25, 2016.
http://www.nwcouncil.org/energy/powerplan/7/home/

"Four-state bipartisan agreement calls for clean, low-cost competitive energy economy attracting high wage jobs and preserving superior quality of life and environment over twenty year horizon."


Understanding Highly Insulated Wall Assemblies’ Relationship with Global Warming

The Construction Specifier, Mar. 2016, by Jim Lambach.
http://www.constructionspecifier.com/understanding-highly-insulated-wall-assemblies-relationship-with-global-warming/

"A well-insulated building envelope is the starting point in any energy conservation strategy. The embodied global warming potential (GWP) of the insulating material, as part of a complete wall assembly, must be weighed against the use-phase energy efficiency contribution to see the complete environmental picture. This article examines the impact of both high- and low-embodied GWP insulation materials on the ultimate benefit of highly insulated wall assemblies."

Centralia Coal Transition Board Approves $727,433 Grant for Community Action Council

The Chronicle (Lewis County, WA), Mar. 29, 2016, by Justyna Tomtas.
http://www.chronline.com/centralia-coal-transition-board-approves-grant-for-community-action-council/article_1ac8fefa-f5d2-11e5-ae4b-972838408d90.html

"The Centralia Coal Transition Weatherization Board approved its first grant application, one submitted by the Community Action Council of Lewis, Mason and Thurston counties. The money will help support weatherization services in Lewis and South Thurston counties over a 24-month period."


Prevent Motor Bearing Failures

Maintenance Technology, Mar. 2016.
http://www.maintenancetechnology.com/2016/03/prevent-motor-bearing-failures-2/

"Understanding the top five causes of failed motor bearings will help stop these problems in their tracks."

Residential IAQ Guide

ASHRAE Journal, Mar. 2016, by Lawrence J. Schoen.
http://bookstore.ashrae.biz/journal/download.php?file=2016Mar_080-081_IAQ_Schoen.pdf

"This column previews the Residential Indoor Air Quality Guide that ASHRAE will publish early in 2017. The new guide will be a companion to the affordable Indoor Air Quality Guide: Best Practices for Design, Construction and Commissioning that ASHRAE published in 2009, which focused primarily on nonresidential indoor air quality."

Why Rural Electric Cooperatives Are Opting for Community-Scale Solar

Rocky Mountain Institute Outlet, Mar. 31, 2016, by Kevin Brehm and Joseph Goodman.
http://blog.rmi.org/blog_2016_03_31
_why_rural_electric_cooperatives_are_opting_for_community_scale_solar


"The successful idea of the moment is community-scale solar. Rural electric cooperatives are spreading the word on how local clean power can save money, support communities, and diversify energy supplies. Community-scale solar is becoming an important tool for rural electric cooperatives as they begin their transition from a centralized fossil-fuel-based energy system to an increasingly distributed and renewable system."

Report: Energy Efficiency Still Less Expensive Than Building New Power Plants

Utility Dive, Apr. 5, 2016, by Robert Walton.
http://www.utilitydive.com/news/report-energy-efficiency-still-less-expensive-than-building-new-power-plan/416852/

"No matter how you cut it, efficiency is cheaper than building a new power plant. That's the takeaway from a short paper on efficiency's costs put out by ACEEE. In it, the group indicates it has a forthcoming report which will peg the cost at 3.5 cents/kWh – less than half the cost used by the federal government, but slightly higher than other estimates."

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The Energy Newsbriefs Blog is a continuation of the weekly Energy Newsbriefs. Please bookmark this site and return frequently. Although we will not be accepting comments from within the Blog, we would be happy to hear from you by email at library@energy.wsu.edu