The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission is proposing changes to speed the process for obtaining grid interconnection agreements for renewable generation and energy storage projects. In separate action, federal regulators are seeking informational reports from grid operators on how they are coping with extreme weather events.
The Senate Energy Utilities & Communication Committee advances key bills this week, including one that targets reductions in the embedded and life-cycle carbon in building materials, in order to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Lawmakers in Sacramento also advance a measure to require that rooftop solar workers who install large systems on buildings are paid at the prevailing wage rate, though approval did not come without controversy.
Google will receive renewable energy for a data center in Silicon Valley 24-7-365 under a deal struck this week with Silicon Valley Clean Energy. Energy storage is key to making it possible.
Meanwhile, Microsoft opts for a backup power system at a California facility that runs on natural gas offset by renewable natural gas credits and a small amount of diesel backup capability. Microsoft is installing 224 small gas turbines at the site.
The first renewable community microgrid goes online in the remote North Coast. This solar-battery system is selling power into the grid operator’s market and ready to power the airport and Coast Guard when outside electricity flowing into the region gets shut off.
Electric heat pumps are critical to slashing carbon pollution from buildings. Installations are rising but costs and lack of awareness are keeping them from replacing most natural gas water heaters and furnaces.