Wind turbines keep getting bigger, stronger, cheaper

WIND: A U.S. Department of Energy analysis of wind energy technology trends shows “robust” capacity additions and lower prices than ever as the industry moves to bigger and more powerful turbine designs. (Axios)

• Six offshore wind farms globally are the size of small nuclear power plants, and the trend is for them to continue to get larger. (Greentech Media)
• A permitting delay for Massachusetts’ Vineyard Wind project threatens its access to crucial federal tax credits that are expiring. (Boston Globe)

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• Maryland’s ambitious renewables goal could bring acres of solar farms to the state; a task force is trying to figure out where they should go.

Report: PG&E failed to clear trees before wildfires

• Pacific Gas & Electric, blamed for some of California’s most devastating recent wildfires, failed to clear thousands of trees that posed a threat to power lines, according to a report submitted to a federal judge (Associated Press)
• Nevada regulators will allow a planned liquid hydrogen facility to opt out of service from utility NV Energy without paying an impact fee. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)

• California’s grid led the country with the most renewable energy output during the first half of 2019, producing 3% less than the previous year. (S&P Global)
• California’s Clean Energy Commission awards $3.75 million to support 25 early-stage clean energy projects. (news release)

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Iowa governor blocks state AG from joining power plan lawsuit

CORRECTION: Alliant Energy is adding wind capacity to replace power from a retiring Iowa nuclear plant. An item in Wednesday’s digest misidentified the plant’s fuel type. POLICY:
• Midwest environmental groups join 22 states in a lawsuit against the Trump administration’s attempt to overturn the Clean Power Plan. (Wisconsin State Journal)
• Iowa’s Democratic attorney general says Republican Gov. Kim Reynolds blocked him from joining the lawsuit against the Trump administration. (Associated Press)

PIPELINES: Environmental and indigenous groups push Democratic presidential candidates to sign a campaign pledge to stop construction on the Keystone XL pipeline.

Pennsylvania regulators sought information on potential pipeline failure

PIPELINES: Pennsylvania regulators last year demanded information from Sunoco on its calculations of what could occur if the Mariner East pipeline failed. (StateImpact Pennsylvania)

• The delay in approval for the Vineyard Wind project endangers crucial federal tax credits that are expiring, impacting project economics and potentially consumer costs. (Boston Globe)
• There are six offshore wind farms globally that are the size of small nuclear power plants, and the trend is for them to continue to get larger. (Greentech Media)
• A coalition of labor, environmental and community groups will hold a day-long conference Friday in Atlantic City to consider the prospects for offshore wind development in New Jersey. (ROI)

***SPONSORED LINK: Join us at the 7th annual HOMER International Microgrid Conference, October 7-8 in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Does Texas need more power plants to meet summer demand?

FINANCE: Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam’s administration explores a possible alliance with the New York Green Bank to help finance clean energy projects in the state. (Energy News Network)

UTILITIES: Hot weather this month drives the Tennessee Valley Authority’s electricity use to its highest August peak in more than seven years. (Chattanooga Times Free Press)

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POWER PLANTS: Some Texas energy industry experts make the case for building more power plants to meet energy demand.