New Massachusetts Energy Bill Targets Energy Resource Diversity

A new Massachusetts energy bill aims to enhance energy diversity by rate-basing natural gas pipeline additions and mandating offshore wind procurement. A new energy bill filed by Rep. Patricia Haddad (D-MA) in the Massachusetts House of Representatives on January 16 proposes fundamental changes to the state’s energy landscape through increased renewable generation and natural gas...

President’s FY 2016 Budget Request Prioritizes Clean Energy and Climate Action

The President’s Budget Leaves a Legacy of Clean Energy and Climate Change Mitigation Support The president’s budget provides strong support for clean energy and addressing climate change. The proposal would allocate substantial funding for clean energy and climate initiatives, while removing favorable tax deductions for the fossil fuel exploration and production (E&P) industry. The budget...

Resource Constraints Yield High Prices in New England’s Ninth Forward Capacity Auction

High clearing prices in ISO-NE’s ninth forward capacity auction will stimulate new resource build-out to meet future demand. FCM Auction Attracts New Resources to Meet Low Reserve Margin The New England Independent System Operator’s (ISO-NE) ninth annual Forward Capacity Market (FCM) auction to acquire resources to meet June 1, 2018 through May 31, 2019 electricity...

DOE Solar Funding Opportunity Targets Continued Cost Reductions

The DOE’s new SunShot Program funding  could help lower costs across the solar PV value chain to help remove barriers to entry and de-risk solar energy grid integration. On January 29, 2015, the Department of Energy (DOE) announced more than $59M in funding to expedite commercialization of innovative solar manufacturing technologies and support multi-year solar...

President Obama Recommends ANWR for Wilderness Designation

President Obama’s recommendation seeking wilderness designation to 12.3 million acres of ANWR could block drilling opportunities in the 1.5-acre Coastal Plain estimated to contain up to 10.4 billion barrels of petroleum. On January 25, 2015, the Department of the Interior (DOI) released a revised Comprehensive Conservation Plan (CCP) for Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR)....

DOE Announces $55M Funding Opportunity for Advanced Vehicle Technologies

The DOE’s continued support of advanced vehicle technology research, development, and demonstration projects helps expand offerings, cut costs, and improve sales. On January 22, 2015, the Department of Energy (DOE) announced more than $55M to develop and deploy advanced vehicle technologies aimed to improve fuel efficiency and reduce petroleum consumption. The funding opportunity announcement (FOA) supports DOE’s 2012 EV...

RTOs Look to Tariff Revisions as FERC Petitions Supreme Court to Review Order 745

Wholesale Demand Response Hinges on Order 745 Decision Demand response (DR) participation and compensation in organized electricity markets has grown over the previous five years, in part due to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s (FERC) Order 745. Order 745 sets compensation levels for DR in wholesale energy markets; however, its future validity is uncertain with...

The 2015 Political Landscape Will Have Far-Reaching Energy Industry Implications

EPA emissions rules and legislative actions will impact every aspect of the energy value chain in 2015 Key Takeaways: Policies impacting energy independence and associated environmental impacts are coming head-to-head at the federal level Legislators will aim to settle long-debated oil and gas infrastructure and export bills and will use legistive authorities to delay, defund,...

SOTU 2015: Resolute Call for Climate Action

In his State of the Union Address, the President made a forceful call for climate action, asserting that the U.S. will double its emissions reduction pace. In his State of the Union (SOTU) speech on January 20, 2015, President Obama made a resolute call for climate action, stating that no challenge poses a greater threat...

Justice Department Seeks Supreme Court Review of FERC Order 745 Vacatur

The Justice Department has sought Supreme Court review of the May 2014 invalidated FERC Order 745 vacatur, considering its importance for the future of electricity-market regulation. On January 15, 2015, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) — on behalf of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) — petitioned the Supreme Court for a writ of certiorari to...

EPA Methane Rule Would Set Costly Bar for Oil and Gas Industry, Despite Current Reduction Efforts

EPA Regulations Could Add Costs to Constrained Industry On January 14, 2015, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) outlined measures to reduce methane emissions and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in the oil and natural gas (O&G) industry, with a new goal to reduce methane emissions by 40-45 percent by 2025 from 2012 levels, despite methane reductions...