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$14 B Port Cleanup Plan Lacks Funding

25 Jul

A joint plan by the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach to dramatically cut pollution and greenhouse gas emissions from their operations over the next two decades leans heavily on electrifying cargo handling equipment and trucks that haul shipping containers. But, it rests on an uncertain financial foundation. The plan, rolled out earlier this […]

Opinionated: NREL at 40-It Started With a Desire to Harness the Sun

11 Jul

By Wayne Hicks and Don Gwinner May 3, 1978, fell on a Wednesday, but it was Sun Day as well. President Jimmy Carter, who had designated the date to highlight the potential of solar energy, spent part of the afternoon visiting an office park in Golden, Colorado. It was there, 10 months earlier that the […]

Shorts

3 Jul

Volvo will sell only hybrid and pure electric powered vehicles beginning in 2019. “People increasingly demand electrified cars and we want to respond to our customers’ current and future needs,” Håkan Samuelsson, Volvo president and chief executive, stated July 5. Volvo announced it will launch five fully electric cars between 2019 and 2021. The car […]

Ways to Advance Renewable Gas

27 Jun

State energy and environmental agencies June 27 heard a potpourri of ideas for building a market to sop up biomethane, which is currently produced and emitted to the atmosphere from dairies, sewage treatment plants, landfills, and other sources in California. Biomethane can be used as a renewable fuel to power vehicles, make electricity and displace […]

Undercurrents: Laying Ground Rules to Lessen Grid Insecurities

3 May

Energy regulators face myriad challenges in ensuring that state utilities adequately protect their substations, power lines and other energy infrastructure, from utility resistance to sharing sensitive information to impacts on ratepayer wallets. “Making sure the utilities are not overspending, and spending the right amount and in the right areas,” are key concerns, California Public Utilities […]

The Buzz

13 Apr

Eggs gathered in Current’s Easter news basket include approval of two controversial and large natural gas project redos along the SoCal coast. The California Energy Commission unanimously approved the Huntington & Alamitos replacement projects, which are to be cooled with air, not seawater-cooled. On the agenda at this week’s Energy Commission post business meeting closed […]

CPUC Revives Self Gen Program with Bigger Budget

6 Apr

Utility regulators April 6 approved a doubling of funds for the self-generation incentive program. It is intended to subsidize solar and other generation technologies, plus energy storage, at the power distribution system level. Funding is set at $83 million a year for the period 2017-2019, under the decision approved unanimously by the California Public Utilities […]

CPUC Budget Cuts to Delay Efficiency, CHP, & Other Proceed

3 Dec

The California Public Utilities is planning to delay implementing some new laws, defer hiring, and cut staff travel and meetings outside San Francisco in order to trim its expenditures by $5 million. (more…)

House Panel Examines Nuclear Waste Mess, But Lacks Solution

3 Dec

A House committee took up the federal government’s gridlocked nuclear waste disposal program Dec. 3, but proposed no specific course toward creating a permanent resting place for spent fuel and other radioactive material from the nation’s nuclear generating plants. (more…)

CLIMATE ROUNDUP: More Banks Temper Financial Support for Coal

3 Dec

The number of big U.S. banks reducing lending to the coal industry to curb climate change gases grew this week to include Wells Fargo and Morgan Stanley. The banks’ announcements coincided with the start of the United Nation’s climate change talks being held the next two weeks in Paris. (more…)

Financing Efficiency at Issue as State Hikes Goal

17 Sep

As California ups its goal for energy efficiency, financing is becoming increasingly important to help home and business owners carry out the deep retrofits inherent in doubling energy efficiency by 2030. (more…)

CEC Approves Water Appliance Efficiency Standards

20 Aug

Appliance efficiency standards, which could save the state more than 2.4 billion gallons of water in the first year alone, were approved during the California Energy Commission’s most recent business meeting. (more…)

Clean Energy Jobs Act’s Efficiency Questioned

20 Aug

A state senator who helped craft legislation expected to generate more than $1 billion a year in tax revenue and create up to 40,000 jobs—more than 10,000 in retrofitting schools for energy efficiency—is pushing back against allegations that the measure has fallen far short of promises. (more…)

Edison in Hot Water for Replacing Staff with Foreign Help

18 Jun

Southern California Edison is at the center of a Department of Homeland Security investigation involving potential abuse of the H-1B visa program. (more…)

BrightSource Pulls Plug on Solar Project

5 Jun

BrightSource Energy abandoned plans to build the 500 MW Hidden Hills solar electricity plant, which was vigorously opposed by environmentalists and local officials. (more…)

Diablo Disaster Funding Extension Makes Way

30 Apr

A bill requiring Pacific Gas & Electric to continue paying into an account another five years for emergency services for its Diablo Canyon nuclear plant was approved without discussion by the Assembly Utilities & Commerce Committee April 27. (more…)

CPUC Session Presents Energy Paths Forward

3 Apr

California Public Utilities Commission staff gave a sneak preview March 26 of their thinking on how to revolutionize electricity delivery, protect power grid cybersecurity and align energy efficiency sales with standard power purchase agreements. (more…)

Funding for Air Board Air Pollution Programs Likely to Remain Flat

26 Mar

Despite a call from stakeholders for an increase in the California Air Resources Board’s Air Quality Improvement Program and low carbon transportation investments, funding levels are expected to be on par with those in the current state budget. (more…)

Health Officials Seek Money for Climate Adaptation

27 Feb

California has dedicated a lot of state money toward reducing greenhouse gas emissions to mitigate climate change, but hasn’t provided commensurate resources for adapting to a warming climate. That could be to the detriment of the power grid. (more…)

EPIC Program Implementation Streamlined

27 Feb

The California Energy Commission’s 2012-2014 EPIC Investment Plan is proving successful to date due to a concerted effort to streamline the funding process for project applicants, commission staff said during a Feb. 24 workshop. (more…)