[Report] State-Backed Green Bonds Emerge Following International Model

Massachusetts offered its first green bond sale in June 2013, and several additional states have offered green bonds over the last two years. Green bonds offer issuers access to capital to finance projects for water quality and infrastructure, energy efficiency, renewable energy, pollution cleanup, and other capital-intensive projects.. With the Green Bond Principles gaining marketplace...

DOE Finalizes Standards for Green Building Certification Systems

The DOE has issued a final rule establishing standards for green building rating systems that provide certification for federal buildings. On October 10, 2014, the Department of Energy (DOE) issued a final rule establishing standards for green building certification systems to strengthen federal buildings’ energy management through enhanced energy use measurement and energy efficient design....

EPA Report: MY 2013 Vehicles Achieve All-Time High Fuel Economy

The EIA’s annual fuel economy report shows that MY 2013 vehicles achieved an all-time high fuel economy and record low emissions levels. On October 8, 2014, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released its annual “Light-Duty Automotive Technology, Carbon Dioxide (CO2) Emissions, and Fuel Economy Trends: 1975 through 2014” report which tracks average fuel economy, emissions,...

[Report] New England’s Eighth Forward Capacity Auction Draws Market Design Concerns

ISO-NE’s eighth Forward Capacity Market Auction (FCA-8) rates became effective September 16, 2014, despite FERC being unable to reach agreement on whether the filing was “just and reasonable.” The final price for existing sources was set at the administrative price of $7.025/kW-month, a 123 percent increase from the FCA-7 clearing price. The Northeast Massachusetts (NEMA)/Boston...

Massachusetts Attorney General Seeks DPU Investigation to Mitigate Winter Rate Spikes

The Massachusetts Attorney General has sought DPU action to mitigate spikes in winter rates and extend the state’s Winter Moratorium by one month. On October 2, 2014, Massachusetts Attorney General (AG) Martha Coakley wrote to the Department of Public Utilities (DPU) requesting an investigation into ways to mitigate National Grid’s winter rate spikes that will...

California Enacts Demand Response Legislation

Governor Brown has signed SB 1414 into law to include demand response into resource adequacy and procurement planns. On September 29, 2014, California Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. signed Senate Bill 1414 (SB 1414) into law, facilitating implementation of demand response (DR) programs to meet the state’s growing electricity needs.  SB 1414, sponsored by Sen....

[Report] Lawmakers Consider Energy Tax Reform as December Deadline Nears for Extending Expired Provisions

On September 17, 2014, the U.S. Senate Committee on Finance held a hearing entitled “Reforming America’s Outdated Energy Tax Code.” Retroactively extending tax provisions has significant impact on financial accounting for multiple energy industries, including wind and solar, and also small and mid-sized businesses such as commercial building owners, architects, engineers, contractors, and design-construction companies....

Massachusetts Grants $7.4M for Municipal Resiliency Projects

Massachusetts has awarded the first round of grants under the Community Clean Energy Resiliency Initiative for six municipal resiliency projects. On September 25, 2014, the Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources (DOER) awarded $7.4M in the first round of project implementation grants under the Community Clean Energy Resiliency Initiative.  The funding will support six projects designed...

Massachusetts’ Second Green Bond Sale Shows Strong Demand

Massachusetts’ second Green Bond sale resulted in orders exceeding $1B for $350M worth of bonds and $429M in refinancing transaction that will save taxpayers $45M. On September 22, 2014, Massachusetts Treasurer Steven Grossman announced that the Commonwealth’s second Green Bond sale generated more than $1B in buy orders for a $350M bond offering.  Retail investors placed...

[Report] Northeast Programs Aim to Ensure Winter Electricity Reliability amidst Pipeline Constraints

On September 9, 2014, FERC accepted ISO-NE’s Transmission, Markets and Services Tariff revisions to aid its 2014/2015 Winter Reliability Program (Docket No. ER14-2407-000). ISO-New England’s Winter Reliability Programs offer incentives to oil-fired generators to hold increased inventory to meet peak winter demand, as much of natural gas pipeline capacity is dedicated to firm service contract...

New York City Launches Building Retrofit Plan to Reduce Emissions

NYC has committed to reduce emissions to 80 percent below 2005 levels by 2050, beginning with a comprehensive plan to retrofit all public buildings by 2025 and set target reductions and mandates for private buildings. On September 21, 2014, New York City (NYC) Mayor de Blasio announced a new goal of reducing emissions to 80...

California-Quebec Announce First Joint Carbon Auction

California and Quebec will hold the first carbon auction under their integrated cap-and-trade emissions trading platform on November 19. On September 18, 2014, the California Air Resources Board (CARB) and the Quebec Ministry of Sustainable Development, Environment and Fight against Climate Change (MDDELCC) announced the first joint carbon auction under their linked cap-and-trade program is scheduled...