Community leaders form Ohio Clean Energy Jobs Alliance to save Ohio’s nuclear plants

A “broad-based coalition of community leaders and organizations” have joined to form the Ohio Clean Energy Jobs Alliance, a group “seeking a public policy solution” that will allow the state’s two nuclear energy plants to remain in operation, The News-Herald reports. The coalition “will engage legislators, policymakers and the public to highlight the employment, economic, environmental and grid reliability benefits” provided by the Perry and Davis-Besse nuclear plants, the article reports. Lake County Commissioner Jerry Cirino said the plants contribute “over $500 million annually to the state’s economy — over 4,000 jobs are at stake.” Members of the alliance include the Perry Economic Development Council, members of the North Perry Village Council and the Mentor Council, the superintendent of Perry Local Schools and other community leaders. For more, read the full article.

Environmental, Renewable Energy, State Updates

SARTA offers free loan of fuel-cell bus to any transit authority in the U.

The Stark Area Regional Transit Authority (SARTA) and the manufacturers of its fuel-cell buses have launched a national promotion “to persuade other transit authorities to switch to hydrogen fuel cells,” Cleveland.com reports. SARTA “is offering to loan” one of its 13 fuel-cell buses free of charge “to any transit authority in the nation interested in seeing first-hand how the now commercially available technology works,” according to the article. Kirt Conrad, SARTA’s CEO, said, “[g]iving the people across the country the opportunity to see, learn about, and ride on a hydrogen-fuel cell bus is the best way to demonstrate this technology’s potential to totally transform the way vehicles are powered here and around the world.” SARTA’s fuel cell buses have electric motors powered by on-board fuel cells that use oxygen from the air and stored hydrogen to generate power, emitting only water. For more, read the full article

Environmental, Renewable Energy

“Bring Your Green” participants saved more than $600K in energy costs

Results of the ‘Bring Your Green 2.0 Challenge’ were recently announced by Dayton Power & Light (DP&L), Dayton Regional Green, IGS Energy, Vectren and Energy Optimizers, the Dayton Daily News reports. Local businesses, schools and organizations “competed to reduce their environmental impact, save energy and resources, and engage their employees and students in sustainability efforts,” according to the article. The challenge resulted in energy cost savings of $639,644, more than “6,875 tons of CO2 release into the atmosphere prevented,” 6,867,064 kWh in electricity saved, and the equivalent “to taking 935 homes off the grid and 1,336 cars off the road.” For more, read the full article

Energy Efficiency, Environmental, State Updates

Lake Erie wind turbine project “won’t harm environment,” DOE rules

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) recently ruled that the Lake Erie Energy Development Co. (LEEDCo)’s proposed project to build six wind turbines off the shore of Lake Erie “will have no significant impact on the environment,” Cleveland.com reports. The finding “included 14 categories of environmental impact,” including impact on the lake bottom as well as on birds, bats, fish and water quality. The ruling follows a two-year review and “means the federal agency’s funding arm can continue to support” the proposal to build the wind farm 8 to 10 miles offshore, according to the article. Six years ago, the DOE awarded LEEDCo a $50 million grant for the project, and has “so far dispensed $10 million of that award as the project developers met required milestones.” For more, read the full article.

Environmental, Federal Updates, Renewable Energy, State Updates

Lake Erie litigation involving several environmental groups dismissed

Judge Carr issued an order on October 3, 2018, in Environmental Law and Policy Center, et al., v. U.S. EPA, et al., effectively dismissing the litigation and providing no clear path forward for challenges of Ohio EPA’s plan to delay pursuit of a TMDL for the open waters of Lake Erie. Judge Carr is highly critical of Ohio EPA and US EPA and states that the General Assembly and executive branch have “turned their backs on a long-standing, persistent, and possibly worsening problem.” For more, read the full article.

Environmental

DP&L will invest up to $1 million for electric vehicle charging equipment

Beginning next year, Dayton Power & Light (DP&L) “will dedicate up to $1 million to building charging equipment for electric vehicles, according to an agreement the utility has with staff of the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO),” the Dayton Daily News reports. The capital investment will “fund distribution grid investments necessary to support installation of electric vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure in the DP&L service territory,” the article reports. Sharon Schroder, DP&L’s director of regulatory affairs, said the utility will “work with the Ohio EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) in charging station host applicants within its service territory to facilitate the installation of the fast chargers.” For more, read the full article.

Environmental, State Updates

Acting EPA head says new clean-air plan gives states more flexibility

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)’s proposed Affordable Clean Energy Rule will “provide more flexibility to the states” than the Clean Power Plan, acting EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler said, according to an article in The Columbus Dispatch. Wheeler said the EPA “will issue efficiency guidelines to states for each type of power plant, which the states will use to ‘set specific efficiency requirements on an plant-to-plant basis,’” according to the article. The Clean Power Plan “sought to reduce the nation’s carbon dioxide emissions by 32 percent below 2005 levels by 2030," but “never went into effect after numerous legal challenges.” Wheeler said the new proposed plan returns “to the core basics of the Clean Air Act, which is working cooperatively with the states.” For more, read the full article

Energy Efficiency, Environmental, Federal Updates

Ohio Caverns first in U.S. to produce solar energy on site

When Ohio Caverns opened to the public in 1897, “visitors walked through with lanterns and candles”; now, the tourist attraction is “the first cave in the United States to have solar energy produced on site,” the Urbana Daily Citizen reports. Ohio Caverns installed a solar field that produces “44,000 watts at any given time when the sun is at its peak,” making it “energy neutral,” according to the article. Owner Eric Evans said the cave and facilities were completely retrofitted with LED lighting, which lowered energy consumption to the point “that solar became very viable.” Evans said, “we’ve been stewards of the environment since the cave first opened. . . . That’s where we see the future and longevity of the cavern is protecting and preserving the environment, and this was by far the cleanest form of energy known.” For more, read the full article

Energy Efficiency, Environmental, Renewable Energy

Ohio ranks 3rd in region for clean energy employment

More than 3,700 workers in the Mahoning Valley and 108,000 workers statewide are employed in the clean energy industry, a report from Clean Energy Trust and Environmental Enterprises finds, according to a recent article in The Business Journal. Those numbers placed the state third “in the 12-state region highlighted in the ‘Clean Jobs Midwest’ report.” Energy efficiency is the “top clean energy sector in the state,” employing 79,653; clean vehicles ranked second with “just over 14,000 employed,” according to the article. The study found “employers project 5.5% job growth in 2018.” Environmental Entrepreneurs spokesperson Micaela Preskill said in a release, “[w]ith further investment and smart state policy, clean jobs will continue [to] power Ohio’s economy into the next decade.” For more, read the full article, including a link to the full report.

Energy Efficiency, Environmental, State Updates

U.S. DOE offers up to $6M in funding for wind R&D

The Wind Energy Technologies Office of the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has released a funding opportunity announcement (FOA) “aimed at catalyzing technical and operational solutions to reduce environmental compliance costs and environmental impacts” of wind turbines, nawindpower.com reports. The “Advanced Wind R&D to Reduce Costs and Environmental Impacts” FOA will provide up to $6 million in funding, according to the article. The FOA will provide $2 million each to three research areas: reducing costs and environmental impacts of bat curtailment at wind plants, developing “advanced components and other instrumentation for advanced bat-deterrent technologies,” and developing “offshore wind instrumentation for environmental monitoring and mitigation.” For more, read the full article.

Environmental, Federal Updates, Project Finance, Renewable Energy
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