Northeast AGs join fight against utility’s ‘bailout’ proposal

GRID: Attorneys general from four Northeast states are among a coalition urging the Energy Department to reject FirstEnergy’s request for support for its power plants, saying it would “set a dangerous precedent that threatens all of our states.” (Toledo Blade)

ALSO:
• Massachusetts officials have authorized state utilities to spend $220 million over the next three years to upgrade the power grid, including accommodating renewables, but put off a decision to purchase smart meters. (CommonWealth)
• New Hampshire regulators backtrack on a pilot project to study distributed resources after critics, including Eversource Energy, say it should include more than generation. (Utility Dive)

***SPONSORED LINK: Northeast Renewables Summit 2018 will bring together Northeast policymakers and regulators, utilities, the renewables community, off-takers and policy advocates to share the latest information and insights on developing the Northeast renewables markets.***

SOLAR:
• Rhode Island lawmakers hold a public hearing on a bill restricting construction of solar farms on large, wooded areas, with critics noting it “ calls out restrictions only on renewable energy.” (Providence Journal)
• An advocate says Connecticut’s recently passed energy bill will “significantly harm the state’s solar market.” (RTO Insider)
• A Vermont school board has approved joining a solar project that will save the school district more than $400,000 over 25 years. (Associated Press)
• Two studies, one focused on Maryland and the other on Montana, provide different perspectives on the value of solar. (Utility Dive)

TRANSMISSION: Opponents of a Pennsylvania transmission line testify before state regulators, with at least one raising health concerns that are not supported by science.

Sweeping Connecticut energy bill heads to governor’s desk

RENEWABLE ENERGY: A sweeping energy bill that increases Connecticut’s renewable energy standard but eliminates net metering, is now headed to the governor’s desk for his expected signature after contentious debate in the state House. (Connecticut Mirror)

SOLAR:
• New England’s grid operator says behind-the-meter solar installations, followed by energy efficiency, will be the primary factors driving down demand over the next decade. (Utility Dive)
• Voters in Newport, New Hampshire have approved a 2.2-MW solar energy project, which will be the largest municipal solar installation project in the state. (Solar Power World)
• A Rhode Island solar developer discusses the complexities of siting projects: “There are no simple answers, as they tend to be wrong.” (ecoRI)

***SPONSORED LINK: Northeast Renewables Summit 2018 will bring together Northeast policymakers and regulators, utilities, the renewables community, off-takers and policy advocates to share the latest information and insights on developing the Northeast renewables markets.***

WIND:
• Offshore wind energy is the energy future of the Northeast, according to a new report. (The National Law Review)
• Offshore wind is expected to gain traction as an energy producer as states such as New Hampshire and Maine take a pass on transmission line projects.

Schneiderman resignation not expected to derail climate lawsuits

CLIMATE: The resignation of New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman over sexual misconduct allegations is not expected to derail climate-related legal actions his office has led. (InsideClimate News)

ALSO: The Connecticut Senate passes a bill setting a target of reducing emissions 45 percent below 2001 levels by 2030. (CT Post)

***SPONSORED LINK: Northeast Renewables Summit 2018 will bring together Northeast policymakers and regulators, utilities, the renewables community, off-takers and policy advocates to share the latest information and insights on developing the Northeast renewables markets.***

PIPELINES:
• A business group backed by pipeline interests releases a report saying new natural gas infrastructure is needed to reduce pollution from coal and oil generation. (HuffPost, State House News Service)
• A Pennsylvania lawmaker says the ongoing fight to protect citizens and property from the dangers of the Mariner East 2 pipeline project is a modern-day “David vs. Goliath” battle.

Connecticut Senate passes sweeping clean energy bill

RENEWABLE ENERGY: A bill that would increase Connecticut’s renewable energy standard to 40 percent passes the state Senate, but still faces opposition over proposed changes to net metering rates. (CT Post, Connecticut Mirror)

SOLAR:
• Environmental groups oppose a Rhode Island bill that would prohibit solar developments in forests, noting the bill does not similarly restrict real estate development or power plants. (ecoRI)
• A 500-kilowatt solar project is being proposed for a business park in Bennington, Vermont. (VT Digger)

***SPONSORED LINK: Northeast Renewables Summit 2018 will bring together Northeast policymakers and regulators, utilities, the renewables community, off-takers and policy advocates to share the latest information and insights on developing the Northeast renewables markets.***

OIL AND GAS:
• Why a Pennsylvania court decision could have a “chilling effect” on future fracking operations. (Bloomberg BNA)
• The Pennsylvania State Ethics Commission will conduct a full investigation of an aide to Gov. Tom Wolf over conflicts of interest with her lobbyist husband’s gas industry clients.

New Jersey governor asked to conditionally veto nuclear subsidy bill

NUCLEAR:
• A coalition of business, consumer, labor and environmental groups want New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy to conditionally veto the nuclear subsidy bill passed last month by the state legislature. (Press of Atlantic City)
• Delaware’s Public Advocate is urging the Trump administration to deny FirstEnergy’s emergency nuclear bailout request. (Delaware Business Times)

BIOMASS:
• A bill that adds biomass to the list of renewable energy generators in Rhode Island has passed in the state Senate. (ecoRI news)
• U.S. Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) has introduced a bill that would provide grants to help local governments pay for the costs of installing biomass-fueled energy systems. (The Ripon Advance)

***SPONSORED LINK: Northeast Renewables Summit 2018 will bring together Northeast policymakers and regulators, utilities, the renewables community, off-takers and policy advocates to share the latest information and insights on developing the Northeast renewables markets.***

SOLAR:
The latest iteration of a Connecticut energy bill preserves net metering and gives solar customers other options. (CT Mirror)
The U.S. Navy will add a 21-megawatt solar park to land it owns near a naval station in Rhode Island.