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Today's topics include highlights from POWER-GEN, the largest show for the power generation industry, the energy imbalance market, Azeb Asnake, the solar trade case and more.
The Trump administration, which was looking to have a plan in place this week to bail out America’s coal country, will instead have to wait until the new year.
Kevin McIntyre, sworn in Thursday as chairman of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, asked for a 30-day extension to act on a sweeping proposal by Energy Secretary Rick Perry that would subsidize struggling coal and nuclear plants. Perry, who had called on the commission to come up with a plan by Dec. 11, granted the delay late Friday, saying he “respects the reasons” but “looked forward to swift action.”
There has been a steady stream of mergers and acquisitions (M&A) in the utility sector over the past several years. These transactions generally require public service commissions (PSC) approval in the states in which one or both of the parties have operations, and the PSCs are typically charged with approving only transactions that are in the public interest.
Electric grids are mighty complicated. Of course, if you’re in the industry, you don’t need me to tell you that. When we created these huge networks of wires to pass electricity from generator to user, we simultaneously needed to track where the energy originated and where it went so we could figure out how to pay people for the energy they provided.
So if solar won’t be growing in the United States, where should developers look for new markets? One place is in disaster relief. Yung Wong, engineering manager with WorldWater and Solar Technologies explained that when disaster hits, the first thing that the Red Cross and the military do is fly in water bottles. He said that the cost to transport water comes out to about $1.85 per gallon whereas his company can provide drinking water for just a few cents per gallon though a mobile self-sustaining system that purifies water from any source. The system includes 3 kW of solar PV capacity and a 31-kWh deep cycle battery bank and transports as a 7-foot cube.
Though the power industry continues to endure rapid change in technology, demand and regulation, the five keynote speakers at POWER-GEN International 2017 focused on making the most of a changing market through convergence and collaboration.
About 50 people gathered on Dec. 5 at the Women in Power luncheon during POWER-GEN International in Las Vegas to hear the Woman of the Year and other finalists discuss their roles in affecting change in the energy industry, and the variety of opportunities in energy for the next generation of leaders.
Energy storage is undoubtedly a hot topic worldwide. And as more focus is placed on this vital piece of the electricity system puzzle, particularly in the face of the increasing deployment of intermittent wind and solar generating facilities and growing demand for renewable generation, more technologies and approaches are being developed to provide needed storage.
Speakers in a session on utility-scale renewable power during POWERGEN 2017 presented evidence that corporate buyers are driving an unprecedented demand for renewable energy today and will continue to do so into the future.
In #RocktheGrid - New Market Demand for Renewables, Lily Donge of the Rocky Mountain Institute and head of the Business Renewables Center (BRC), an organization that helps corporations understand how to buy renewable energy, said that this year 16 corporations have signed deals to purchase renewable energy and of those 16, 13 are new, indicating the growing interest.
Microgrids have suddenly become a hot topic, but why? The five speakers in Tuesday afternoon’s session titled “Tuning Microgrids for Optimized Power Generation” shed some light on why there is increased interest in microgrids by electric utilities and their customers.
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