Embracing clean energy could bring $25B in investment in Ohio

New energy technologies “could lead to $25 billion in new investment in Ohio and support another 20,000 jobs,” a recent study shows, according to an article in Columbus Business First. Massachusetts-based Synapse Energy Economics and Case Western Reserve University’s Great Lakes Energy Institute, who conducted the study, “called for favorable policies in local economic development as well as a longer-term roadmap from the Statehouse to better capture potential investment and jobs.” There are “four principal changes in the energy business” that could benefit Ohio. Corporate investment by companies who want to power facilities with renewable energy could bring $6.2 billion; transportation could add another $6 billion from electric vehicles as they change the automotive market. The analysts said Ohio “has the means to quadruple green energy investment for another $7.6 billion,” and energy efficiency could add $6.6 billion. For more, read the full article.

Economic Development, Energy Efficiency, Renewable Energy, State Updates

Wind and solar make big jumps in annual PJM capacity auction

PJM Interconnection’s annual capacity auction, which “procures power supply resources to meet electricity needs for three years from now,” saw big increases in wind and solar resources, nawindpower.com reports. PJM “procured 163,627 megawatts [MW] of resources for the period of June 1, 2021, to May 31, 2022,” according to the article. Solar increased over last year’s auction “more than fourfold, with around 570 MW clearing,” while 1,417 MW of wind cleared, an increase over last year of 529 MW. Additionally, the auction cleared “1,000 MW more gas-fired generation than last year,” including “one new combined cycle plant.” Energy efficiency was also up about 1,100 MW, with 3,832 MW clearing. For more, read the full article.

Energy Efficiency, Renewable Energy

Cincinnati named to top 25 most environmentally friendly U.S. cities

Insider included Cincinnati in its top-25 ranking of the most “eco-conscious destinations across the country,” Soapbox Cincinnati reports. Insider consulted sources including Siemens’ Green City Index and WalletHub’s 2017 list of America’s greenest cities that “compares 100 of the largest cities in the US across 22 ‘green’ indicators like median air-quality and number of jobs accessible by public transit.” Insider reports that in 2012, Cincinnati “became the largest US city to offer its residents 100% renewable electricity.” For more, read the full article or click here for the full list of cities.

Environmental, Renewable Energy

Battery storage could propel wind and solar to power half the world

Falling battery costs will have a “huge impact” on the world’s electricity mix in the coming decades, and “could help wind and solar rise to 50% of the world’s electricity generation by 2050,” nawindpower.com reports. Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF)’s annual “long-term analysis of the future of the global electricity system, New Energy Outlook (NEO) 2018,” predicts $11.5 trillion in new power generation capacity investments between 2018 and 2050, with $8.4 trillion in wind and solar power. Seb Henbest, lead author of NEO 2018, said, “[t]he arrival of cheap battery storage will mean that it becomes increasingly possible to finesse the delivery of electricity from wind and solar so that these technologies can help meet demand even when the wind isn’t blowing and the sun isn’t shining.” For more, read the full article.

Renewable Energy

Champaign County wind farm project granted extension

The Ohio Power Siting Board (OPSB) recently granted an extension to “two phases of a proposed wind farm in Champaign County,” giving the developers until May 2019 to begin construction, the Journal-News reports. The OPSB sided with the developer, Everpower Wind Holdings, “who argued the extensions were needed because years of litigation by opponents had delayed the project,” according to the article. The board’s decision extends the certificate for two proposed phases of the project, Buckeye Wind and Champaign Wind, which would install about 50 wind turbines across sections of the county. The OPSB ruled against a group of residents opposed to the project, stating they had “long ago missed a deadline to have a say in the process and instead relied on a separate group of opponents,” Union Neighbors United (UNU), to protect their interests. UNU reached a settlement with the developers last year. For more, read the full article

Renewable Energy, State Updates

Pennsylvania joins Ohio, other states offering PACE financing

Congratulations to Ohio’s neighboring state Pennsylvania for joining a group of more than 30 states, including Ohio, that authorize Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) programs to help finance energy upgrades. Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf recently signed legislation establishing the state’s PACE program, which enables funding for energy upgrades to be paid back through property assessments, according to a news release on the governor’s website. The legislation “represents a triple win,” creating new clean energy jobs, saving small businesses money on energy bills, and promoting cleaner air and water by increasing clean energy sources. For more, read the full release

Energy Efficiency, Environmental, Project Finance, Renewable Energy

Ohio House bill takes another swing at renewable energy mandates

A revised version of Ohio House Bill 114 (HB 114) would require utilities to “find more of their power from renewable sources like solar and wind,” but lower the mandated amounts from the original standards created in 2008, The Toledo Blade reports. HB 114’s new final mandate calls for 8.5 percent renewable power by 2022 instead of 12.5 percent by 2027, while also requiring utilities to “reduce electricity use by 17.2 percent, down from 22.2 percent, by 2027.” Additionally, the bill proposes changing wind turbine setback requirements to 1,125 feet from the nearest habitable residence for wind farms generating at least 5 megawatts of power. Current regulations require a setback of 1,125 feet from the nearest property line. For more, read the full article

Energy Efficiency, Renewable Energy, State Updates

Couple ties the knot at One Energy wind campus in Findlay, Ohio

On June 2, 2018, One Energy technical manager Erin Kashawlic and her soon-to-be husband held their marriage ceremony at the One Energy North Findlay Wind Campus that she helped develop and construct. According to North American Wind Power, the wedding offered turbine tours and yard games for guests, as well as oversized pinwheel decorations. Kashawlic and groom Chris Roekle chose the site so their guests could see their home city and wind energy from a different angle. “Erin and Chris exchanging vows just a couple hundred feet from the spinning turbines, surrounded by family and friends, was a perfect backdrop to a beautiful day,” said Angela DeBoskey, head of storytelling for One Energy.

Miscellaneous, Renewable Energy

Growing solar company expanding to central Ohio

A solar energy and roofing company listed as one of Inc. 500’s fastest growing private companies wants to extend that growth into Central Ohio, Columbus Business First reports. Power Home Solar and Roofing, based in North Carolina, plans to hire 65-70 people for its new Worthington office. The company designs, sells, finances, installs and services home solar panels, as well as working in commercial, utility and government real estate, according to the article. Jayson Waller, a co-founder of Power Home Solar, said the company’s mission is to help consumers save money and “gain energy independence over the rising costs of power by harnessing the sun’s natural energy to create a cleaner environment for future generations.” For more, read the full article.  

Renewable Energy, State Updates

Athens residents vote for SOPEC carbon fee

A first-of-its-kind proposed 0.2-cent carbon fee for Athens city electrical customers (see our January 26, 2018 blog post) passed with 76.34 percent of the vote in the May election, The Athens News reports. The new carbon fee “will only apply to customers enrolled in the SOPEC [Southeast Ohio Public Energy Council] Opt-Out Electric Aggregation Program,” and will cost the average household using 800-900 kilowatt hours of electricity between $1.60 and $1.80 each month, according to the article. SOPEC Executive Director Eddie Smith said he is “extremely thrilled that we are going to be the first municipality in the entire United States that has figured out the carbon price program.” The carbon fee will help fund a community solar program; SOPEC will work with the Athens City Council and Mayor’s office to plan hearings to determine the rules for that program. For more, read the full article.

Environmental, Renewable Energy
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