California Lawmakers Rush $21 Billion Wildfire Liability Bill to Save Embattled Utilities

Lawmakers in California quickly approved legislation providing investor-owned utilities with $21 billion to help them pay for wildfire damages linked to their transmission equipment. Democratic Governor Gavin Newsom signed the bill on July 12. The bill gives companies two options. One is a $10.5 billion state-backed line of credit to pay for wildfire damages that…

North Carolina Passes Bill to Boost Private Investment in Electric Vehicle Chargers

North Carolina lawmakers approved a measure on July 8 allowing charging stations to resell kilowatt-hours purchased from an electric utility to the public, in a bid to encourage private investment in charging infrastructure. The bill determines that operators of these stations are not public utilities. Under the legislation, charging stations must be immobile and entities…

Vineyard Wind’s 800-Megawatt Offshore Wind Project Dealt Blow With Permit Denial

Vineyard Wind LLC on July 12 announced it will seek an order from the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection to overrule the Edgartown Conservation Commission’s denial of a permit to install offshore transmission cables. The decision came after the U.S. Interior Department informed that it was not yet prepared to issue a final environmental review,…

Minnesota Power Seeks Over $30 Million in Cost Recovery for Transmission Projects

Minnesota Power, a unit of ALLETE Inc., proposed a rate adjustment to recover the costs related to on-going transmission projects, which include the 500-kilovolt Great Northern Transmission Line that will deliver 383 megawatts of hydropower from Manitoba Hydro beginning in 2020, according to a July 9 filing with the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission. The company…

U.S. Utility-Scale Battery Capacity Expected to Triple Over Five Years: EIA

U.S. utility-scale battery capacity is expected to nearly triple by the end of 2023 if planned additions of about 1,623 megawatts come online as scheduled, according to a July 10 report from the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Grid-scale battery capacity more than quadrupled to almost 900 megawatts in March 2019 from 214 megawatts at the…