Dozens of surcharges add to hidden costs for ratepayers

UTILITIES: Utility bill surcharges introduced in New Jersey a decade ago to fund infrastructure improvements have become pervasive and add millions to customers’ bills to pay for operations formerly included in ordinary rates. (ProPublica)

STORAGE: Green Mountain Power in Vermont wants to expand its home battery storage pilot program and make it permanent. (Energy News Network)

***SPONSORED LINK: MD-DC-VA Solar Energy Industries Association (MDV-SEIA) has convened hundreds of installers, developers, policymakers, and financiers for the 12th annual Solar Focus Conference. Held in Baltimore on November 20-21, attendees will experience high-level networking, partnership building, and action-inspiring solar discourse. Register today!***

RENEWABLE ENERGY: A pro-renewable energy group in New Jersey releases a poll showing widespread support for clean resources in the state, and nearly two-thirds of registered voters willing to pay extra for solar and wind power.

Subsidy revamp fails to protect ratepayers, New Jersey counsel says

SOLAR: The state Rate Counsel says the proposed revamp of New Jersey solar subsidies fails to reduce costs for ratepayers as a 2018 law requires. (NJ Spotlight)

ALSO: New Jersey regulators say the state has reached 3 GW of installed solar over 116,000 installations. (Solar Industry)

***SPONSORED LINK: MD-DC-VA Solar Energy Industries Association (MDV-SEIA) has convened hundreds of installers, developers, policymakers, and financiers for the 12th annual Solar Focus Conference. Held in Baltimore on November 20-21, attendees will experience high-level networking, partnership building, and action-inspiring solar discourse. Register today!***

BIOMASS: Two New Hampshire biomass plants lay off staff and go offline, and two others are at reduced capacity as efforts to save them fail.

New York approves massive battery to replace peaking units

STORAGE: State regulators approve a 316 MW battery storage project at a New York City power plant complex that will replace fossil fuel peak generating units. (New York Daily News)

OIL & GAS:
• ExxonMobil is scouting western Pennsylvania to site a second ethane cracker plant to take advantage of the region’s fracking boom as Shell nears completion of a similar plant. (Pittsburgh Business Times, subscription required)
• The future of energy is playing out in New York as gas interests run up against state restrictions and immediate customer demands. (Crain’s New York Business)
• New York utility regulators at their monthly meeting admit the state faces a gas shortage as it grapples with transitioning to cleaner energy sources. (New York Post)
• Two recent fatal crashes of trucks carrying compressed natural gas point out gaps in regulations for vehicles on the “virtual pipeline” carrying fuel on state highways.

Investigators say corroded pipe caused Philadelphia refinery explosion

OIL & GAS: Federal investigators pinpoint a corroded and outdated pipe as the cause of an explosion and fire at a Philadelphia oil refinery in June. (StateImpact Pennsylvania)

ALSO:
• Residents who live near the refinery say they have experienced health problems since the explosion as federal inspectors confirm the blast released 3,000 pounds of a dangerous chemical. (Philadelphia Inquirer)
• A New York utility that was ordered by Gov. Andrew Cuomo to lift a moratorium on new gas hookups due to supply constraints now has a backup plan to deliver compressed natural gas by truck to eastern Long Island. (Bloomberg)
• A county attorney in the Pittsburgh area says a proposed public registry of oil and gas leases likely faces legal and enforcement challenges. (WESA)

***SPONSORED LINK: MD-DC-VA Solar Energy Industries Association (MDV-SEIA) has convened hundreds of installers, developers, policymakers, and financiers for the 12th annual Solar Focus Conference.

Maryland releases plan to cut greenhouse gas emissions

CLIMATE: Maryland releases its long-awaited plan to cut greenhouse gas emissions, with a target of 44% below 2006 levels by 2030. (Baltimore Sun)

NUCLEAR:
• A company that decommissions nuclear power plants buys the recently closed Three Mile Island facility in Pennsylvania. (KUTV)
• Massachusetts legislators introduce a bill to change membership in an advisory panel for the closed Pilgrim nuclear plant, replacing plant owners with Cape Cod residents. (Cape Cod Times)

SOLAR:
• A Massachusetts company’s “solar skin” is helping customers overcome aesthetic objections from homeowners associations when installing solar panels. (Energy News Network)
• A new study says adding solar to homes in New Jersey and Pennsylvania provides the greatest increases in their value nationally.