Northeast Energy News

Maine Supreme Court dismisses challenge to net-metering rule

SOLAR: Maine’s highest court dismisses a challenge to a new rule that reduces solar net-metering rates over time, dealing a blow to solar advocates. (Portland Press Herald)

ALSO:
• A city in central New York approves a 5 MW solar project on the site of a former landfill. (The Leader-Herald)
• A solar developer partners with an affordable housing developer to install rooftop solar systems for two low-income communities in the New York City area. (Solar Industry)

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WIND: Fishermen have been largely unaffected by Rhode Island’s Block Island Wind Farm, but there are concerns that larger wind farms could harm offshore ecosystems. (Providence Journal)

RENEWABLES:
• New Brunswick, New Jersey, passes an ordinance establishing an “energy aggregation program” for residential properties, which will require suppliers to get 30 percent of their electricity from renewable sources by 2020 and 100 percent by 2035. (TAPinto, NJBIZ)
• The Energy Department announces nearly $9 million in funding for 15 tribal energy infrastructure projects, including energy efficiency measures and a rooftop solar array for a tribal administration building near Bangor, Maine. (Solar Industry)

EFFICIENCY: Lancaster, Pennsylvania, becomes one of the first cities to receive a new type of LEED certification, which is given to communities based on five sustainability metrics. (StateImpact Pennsylvania)

POLICY: Massachusetts in among a handful of states experimenting with new policies to achieve the same goals as renewable portfolio standards. (Utility Dive)

NUCLEAR: The upcoming closure of two nuclear plants in New York and New Jersey will pose challenges, from waste disposal to replacing the lost electricity. (WNYC)

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PIPELINES:
• Environmentalists say a pipeline expansion project in New Jersey could damage sensitive marshlands. (North Jersey Record)
• If Congress passes a bill to weaken the Clean Water Act, it could deal a blow to pipeline opponents in New Jersey and New York. (NJ Spotlight, S&P Global)
• Residents in eastern Vermont sue their town’s board and a gas company for moving forward with a 41-mile natural gas pipeline and distribution network without holding a town vote. (VT Digger)

COMMENTARY:
• If Maine removes some of its 240 small hydroelectric dams it could boost tourism and help migrating fish, says a conservation biologist and professor at Queens College in New York. (Portland Press Herald)
• Bringing together stakeholders from more than 40 organizations was key to developing a plan for New York City to reduce large buildings’ energy use 20 percent by 2030, says the executive director of the Urban Green Council. (Crain’s New York Business)
• Gov. Chris Sununu’s vetoes of two energy bills that would have helped New Hampshire’s solar and biomass industries “were simply wrong on the merits and wrong on the facts,” says the board member of an economic think tank. (New Hampshire Business Review)

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