Western Energy News

California power outages fueling interest in home batteries

SOLAR: Much of the new demand for solar-plus-storage across the U.S. is driven by the impact of PG&E’s planned power outages in California. (Greentech Media)

ALSO: Arizona-based solar panel manufacturer First Solar will pay out $350 million in claims for a class action lawsuit filed by shareholders in 2012 over warranty costs. (Greentech Media)

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EMISSIONS:
California Democrats announce a Green New Deal that would aim to transition the state completely off of fossil fuels by 2030. (Sacramento Bee)
A project at a Colorado industrial cement plant would target capturing 725,000 metric tons of carbon per year. (Houston Chronicle)
A new report indicates that regulations may not be the sole reason for California’s dramatic reductions in emissions over the past decade. (Courthouse News Service)

EFFICIENCY:
A Colorado congressman helped extend the Save Energy Act, allowing homeowners to deduct up to $500 on their taxes when they purchase energy efficient improvements for their homes. (CBS Denver)
Public buildings in Oakland and San Diego, California are to undergo $9.8 million in energy saving upgrades this year. (Environment + Energy Leader)

STORAGE: The California Energy Commission is sinking $11 million into energy storage technologies other than lithium-ion batteries. (Utility Dive)

CALIFORNIA:
PG&E’s bankruptcy and public safety power shut-offs remain on the agenda for California legislators returning to work this week. (KQED)
PG&E contractors in Paradise, California cut down a tree that landed on a power line, damaging a nearby house. (Action News Now)

CLIMATE: Utah researchers release seven recommendations to guide legislators in addressing the state’s climate and air quality concerns. (Deseret News)

TRANSPORTATION:
Environmental and health groups are concerned that the EPA’s plans for tougher truck emissions regulations could undermine state efforts including California’s. (The Hill)
• Washington State Ferries aims to reduce emissions on one of its busiest routes by converting a Jumbo Mark II vessel from diesel fuel to hybrid-electric propulsion. (KING5)

TECHNOLOGY: Honolulu apartments are being equipped with grid-interactive water heaters that can help manage demand. (Pacific Business Journal, subscription)

COAL: Experts say the lack of recent closures of Powder River Basin coal mines may be short-lived as coal production continues to decline in the region. (WyoFile, Associated Press)

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GEOTHERMAL: A new agreement between a Hawaii utility and a geothermal company could result in lower electric bills. (Associated Press) 

COMMENTARY: A California columnist says that how — and if — PG&E should be reconfigured is an issue that needs attention. (CALmatters)

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