Flywheels help Alaska’s remote microgrids go to 95% renewable energy

15 Oct 2017 NPR  Seafood processors like Ocean Beauty are some of the largest energy consumers in Kodiak, Alaska, which has generated more than 99 percent of its electricity from renewable sources since 2014. Here, the Ocean Beauty seafood plant. Eric Keto/Alaska’s Energy Desk This archipelago in the Gulf of Alaska is home to one of the busiest commercial fishing …

A utility-scale solar project demonstrated how solar can compete with natural gas over grid services and cost

Excerpt from Utility Dive, by Herman Trabish, 16 Oct 2017 a recent pilot successfully showcased how renewable energy can be used for reliability services to balance the wind and solar penetration on CAISO. CAISO (California ISO) collaborated with developer First Solar and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) on a 300 MW solar power plant project that showed renewable energy …

NREL new battery for utilities to store electricity costs 100x less than the conventional lithium ion batteries in use today, now need to extend lifespan

Oct 2017 by Steve Hanley on Clean Technica You can take this story with a grain of salt, literally and figuratively. Researchers at MIT, responding to a challenge issued by the US Department of Energy, have developed a new battery for use by utility companies to store electricity that costs 100 times less than the conventional lithium ion batteries in …

World’s First Technology To Measure Electricity Grid Stability Announced

October 4th, 2017 by Joshua S Hill on Clean Technica Reactive Technology and the UK’s grid operator National Grid have this week announced the completion of the world’s first technology which is able to continuously measure and monitor an electricity grid’s stability, or system inertia. UK-based environmental engineering company Reactive Technology partnered with the national grid operator for the UK, National Grid, to …

Grid of tomorrow can be one which rewards beneficial EV charging behavior and driver input to manage load distribution

By Eric Schmidt, September 4, 2017, Fleet Carma, in Electric Utilities The electric vehicle (EV) market is booming. Bloomberg estimates EVs will account for 35% of new vehicle sales worldwide by 2040. The increase in electric cars means the load on electricity systems are also on the rise. This poses a problem for electric utilities around the world. New electric vehicles such as the …

Electricity alone powers one quarter of U.S. homes

By Ingrid Lobet | September 26, 2017  Recently we reported that for climate reasons, some environmental groups are starting to advocate for all-electric homes. Those are homes in which all the appliances including heaters, hot water heaters and stoves run on electricity, not natural gas.  Buildings are major consumers of energy, and energy can be clean or contribute significantly to climate change. When it is …

Utility reinforces its position through a new, cleaner business model

By Stanley Reed, New York Times, 18 Aug 2017 AMSTERDAM — When Eneco, a major Dutch utility, tested a promising energy monitor in several dozen homes, things could not have gone much worse. The company making the devices failed to deliver enough of them, and some of those provided did not work. But when Eneco sent workers to recover the monitors, …

Microgrids considered for support in disasters can also be used for storage year round, unlike diesel generators

Reuters on Monday reported 80% of the island’s power lines are down, and the island is on the brink of a humanitarian crisis.   Acccording to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, last year almost half of Puerto Rico’s electricity came from petroleum, more than a third from natural gas, and 17% from coal. Just 2% came from renewable energy. Modernization has been …

New models for utility business and regulation, EVs, and smart grid modernization are path to viability for utilities

In the summer of 2016, two high-profile investment advisors declared “The Sun Will Set on Electric Utilities” in a well-read Barron’s article.  Citing rising fixed costs and competition from energy storage and microgrids, Leonard Hyman and William Tilles predicted a “death spiral” for utilities where rising prices create ever-reinforcing incentives for customers to find cheaper power elsewhere. But contrary facts …

Finnish modelling of a 100% renewable energy world on an hourly basis

As prices for renewables keep falling, global energy transition will happen faster than many think. To accelerate the process, we need innovative political measures.   “The time is ripe. We need a strong political and social movement to accelerate a global transition to 100% renewable energy.” — Hans-Josef Fell, President of Energy Watch Group and Former member of the German Parliament “More for less” was …