Future of U.S. Solar at Risk in Net-Metering Suppression

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Nichola Groom for Reuters:In California, regulators voted in January to preserve so-called net metering, which requires utilities to purchase surplus power generated by customers with rooftop solar panels. But neighboring Nevada scrapped the policy – prompting solar companies to flee the state.The decisions foreshadow an intensifying national debate over public support that the rooftop solar industry says it can’t live without.“Without net metering, it just doesn’t work,” said Lyndon Rive, chief executive of top U.S. residential solar installer SolarCity Corp.More than 25 of the 40 U.S. states with net metering policies are reconsidering them, according to the North Carolina Clean Energy Technology Center at North Carolina State University.Opponents raise fairness concerns and argue that the industry no longer needs generous incentives, citing its rapid growth and solar panel prices that have fallen about 40 percent in five years.Net metering credits solar users – at full retail rates – for any surplus power their panels generate above household usage. That means many customers pay no monthly utility bill or even rack up excess credits, which they can redeem later in months when their systems produce less power than their home uses.For most customers, net metering and other incentives are essential to make solar power worth the steep upfront investment – between $17,000 and $24,000 for a typical system, according to data from research firm GTM Research. For systems that are leased, as most are, net metering creates a monthly savings over typical power costs.Solar providers understand those consumer economics, which explains why SolarCity last month shed more than 550 jobs in Nevada after the public utilities commission in December voted to end net metering at retail rates. The commission plans to reduce credits and raise service charges for solar customers gradually over 12 years.Future of U.S. solar threatened in nationwide fight over incentives Future of U.S. Solar at Risk in Net-Metering Suppressionlast_img read more

New York looking at battery storage to replace natural gas peaker plants

first_imgNew York looking at battery storage to replace natural gas peaker plants FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Utility Dive:New York’s Department of Public Service (DPS) [last week] issued two reports on energy storage development in the state — a unit-by-unit study of replacing or repowering peaking units in the state and a review of a DER Data Platform pilot.At least 275 MW of peaking units, or about 6% of the total rated capacity of New York’s peaking fleet, were identified as potential candidates for replacement with six‐hour energy storage sized to the maximum 2013 output of each peaking unit, according to study. This number increases to over 500 MW when using eight‐hour duration storage.Replacing New York’s fleet of less efficient peaking units with energy storage systems and renewables will be key to achieving the state’s clean energy goals. New York aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 40% by 2030 and shift to 100% clean electricity by 2040.Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo earlier this year announced proposed regulations to accelerate this plan. The governor’s proposal includes lower thresholds for nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions from simple cycle and regenerative combustion turbines, and would phase in control requirements from 2023 to 2025. Gas-fired peaker plants, which generate infrequently, can account for more than a third of the state’s daily power plant NOx emissions when they run.The DPS peaker replacement study showed that when considering the ability of storage to hybridize, which refers to installing energy storage at an existing conventional peaker unit, standalone four‐hour storage has the ability to bring 864 MW of peaking units into compliance with the daily NOx limit.Across the country, as much as 32% of new gas peaker capacity will be at risk from four-hour energy storage by 2027, GTM Research said in a March report. GTM said the costs of storage are dropping at a rate that will allow it to start being competitive with new peaking plants in about five years. But ten years from now, energy storage will “almost always” win out over the cost of a new peaking plant.More: New York regulators assess potential for storage to replace peaking units in the statelast_img read more

3 keys to cultivate deeper relationships with digital banking customers

first_img continue reading » ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr The ongoing seismic shift toward digital technologies poses significant challenges for retail banks and credit unions. Financial institutions are accustomed to interacting with consumers in brick-and-mortar branch environments. These days, they must adapt to a new generation of consumers who manage their banking relationships in a mobile-first world. To cultivate strong relationships with consumers, retail banking providers must find new ways to deliver a positive experience.But how do financial institutions deliver superior customer service when engagement is almost purely digital, and they no longer have an opportunity to “meet” the customer in-person?Based on the evidence from companies that have successfully navigated this challenge, including leading financial institutions, strong relationships between digital brands and their customers are often built on these three pillars:last_img read more

Modernized side hustles gaining momentum in the Southern Tier

first_imgShe earns about $500 to $700 dollars a month for roughly 10 hours of work a week. Labor Market Analyst for the New York State Department of Labor Christian Harris said a new, modernized version of side hustling has arrived in the Southern Tier. (WBNG) — Experts say a growing number of people in the Southern Tier are pursuing modernized side jobs, but the field has a lot to be determined. Harris explained in order to gather statistics on this up and coming work, the goal is to design a straightforward question to be added to a distributed survey. Ellis described her side hustle, saying, “If I’m done for the night, I can go home, at work like my full-time job, I can’t really just say alright, I’ve had enough today.” Working as your own boss is something people in our area are experiencing. “I think the very essence of it is about self- empowerment,” explained Harris. But regardless, he said, “I think it would only grow as other industry categories try to jump on this.” As for her beauty sales gig, it takes up 25-40 hours of her week, bringing in an additional $150 to 300 a month. Vestal resident Kristina Ellis works full-time at Catholic Charities of Broome County. She also drives for Uber and sells beauty products for a company called LimeLife by Alcone. She sells essential oil products online, also through Facebook live and social media from the comfort of her home or on the go. He highlights this kind of side hustle strongly differs from the traditional work setting and points out a major draw; the ability to work as your own boss. “It’s real, it’s big and it’s influencing our lives largely in a positive way,” said Harris. Harris explained, “It’s tough to track, not impossible to track.” Nearby, mother of three Tiffany Johnson works full-time at Riverview Manor, while also working as a distributor for a company called Young Living. At this stage of the game, however, experts are still trying to piece together what exactly this new type of work really is. Her sales gig primarily involves using her smartphone to go live on Facebook and post on social media to promote products, all from home or on the go. “The only pressure that’s there is whatever pressure you put on yourself,” she said. “My goals are set pretty high because why not? Who doesn’t want that financial freedom?” she asked. While these women supplement their full-time jobs, the question remains, are side gigs on there own, sustainable to make a living? Desiring some extra cash, but not a traditional part time job, a flexible side hustle was the perfect match. Harris responded, “That’s the question, that is the question, is it?” In one night of Ubering, Ellis said she makes anywhere from $40 to $100. Johnson enjoys similar perks. Governor Andrew Cuomo addressed the gig economy in his 2020 State of the State address. He plans to bring up legislation to ensure all workers in New York have needed benefits and protections.last_img read more

Twitter, Facebook flag Trump posts claiming attempt to steal election

first_imgFacebook stopped short of blocking the messages, but added warning labels to both. For Trump’s post claiming the opposition was trying to steal the election, Facebook added a message saying “Final results may be different from initial vote counts, as ballot counting will continue for days or weeks.” For the other Trump post claiming a big win, the label said “Votes are being counted. The winner of the 2020 US Presidential Election has not been projected.“This is in line with what the company pledged to do in September. – Advertisement – U.S. President Donald Trump speaks at the White House after returning from hospitalization at the Walter Reed Medical Center for coronavirus disease (COVID-19) treatment, in Washington, October 5, 2020, in this still image from video posted on Trump’s Twitter page.@realDonaldTrump | via Reuters – Advertisement –center_img President Trump also posted a tweet saying “I will be making a statement tonight. A big WIN!” which did not have a warning appended as of press time. NBC News has not yet projected the presidential election results.- Advertisement – Twitter has appended a warning over a tweet of President Donald Trump’s claiming that the opposition is trying to steal the election. “We are up BIG, but they are trying to STEAL the Election. We will never let them do it. Votes cannot be cast after the Polls are closed!” the president’s tweet reads.Twitter attached a label over the tweet, reading “Some or all of the content shared in this Tweet is disputed and might be misleading about an election or other civic process.” It offered a link to “learn more” about its civic integrity policy.- Advertisement –last_img read more

Voters OK wolf reintroduction, 50% renewables; clean energy firms examine own racism

first_img•  Clean energy companies spoke out against racism after the police killings of Breonna Taylor and George Floyd: Now, to turn words into action, they have to figure out how to actually combat racism inside and outside company ranks. Emma Foehringer Merchant at Green Tech Media writes:So far, the clean energy industry has largely embraced a “rising tide lifts all boats” approach: If renewables companies help clean up the grid, that will naturally reduce pollution for the communities of color who experience it most acutely. But data on the industry — such as the number of opportunities for Black employees in the industry and the availability of rooftop solar to majority-nonwhite neighborhoods — shows that that approach has fallen flat in challenging the legacy of systemic racism within clean energy.“At its core, the idea of moving forward clean energy, whether it’s solar or wind, has been good,” said Jacqui Patterson, director of the NAACP’s Environmental and Climate Justice Program. But overall, Patterson said, the industry’s approach to anti-racism efforts has been lackluster, even after she’s advised companies on best practices.• Six House Democrats oppose Forest Service plan to relax oil and gas drilling regulations in national forests:  Democratic Rep. Mike Levin of California  and five other House Democrats sent a letter to Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue and Forest Service Chief Vicki Christiansen Monday objecting to a proposed Forest Service rule, according to E&E News. The deadline for public comment on the proposal passed Monday.”If this proposal is adopted, oil and gas developers would be gifted lax rules in our National Forests while transparency and critical environmental reviews would be curtailed,” the lawmakers wrote. If approved, the proposed rule would allow the Forest Service to rubber-stamp surface-use plans for oil and gas drilling without public notice or environmental review. This is part of the Trump regime’s effort to boost resource extraction from public lands by streamlining rule changes. The Environmental Protection Network blasted streamlining and made recommendations about it this summer. wolf tracksWolf tracks in northwestern Colorado.By an extremely narrow margin, voters approved Colorado Proposition 114 that mandates Colorado Parks and Wildlife to come up with a plan to reintroduce gray wolves onto public lands. Backed by the Rocky Mountain Wolf Action Fund, the reintroduction, advocates say, is needed to rebalance ecosystems harmed by the eradication of wolves in the 1920s and ‘30s when government bounties were paid for their pelts. Federal reintroduction of gray wolves in next-door Yellowstone National Park and Idaho 25 years ago encountered vigorous organized opposition, and that was reflected in the closeness of the Colorado vote. Foes of the proposition included ranchers, farmers, sportsmen, the Colorado Cattlemen’s Association, Colorado Farm Bureau, and Coloradans Protecting Wildlife, as well as some counties. Some critics say the law is unnecessary because wolves have already returned to Colorado. But wildlife experts say the animals are unlikely to sustain a permanent presence without more wolves being reintroduced into the state. The last wolves in Colorado were killed in the 1940s. On Oct. 29, the Department of Interior removed the gray wolf from the roster of endangered species it had been added to in 1975. There are today perhaps 11,000 gray wolves in Alaska, the only state where they were not extirpated. An estimated 6,000 now live in the lower 48 states. • Across the nation, voters approved $3.7 billion in new funding for parks, public lands, and climate resilience:  In its survey of voting results, the Trust for Public Land found that there were 49 conservation-oriented ballot measures in 19 states. The trust had endorsed 26 of these in 11 states, all of which gained majority voter approval. Some examples of what passed: Oakland, California: a $735 million school bond that will, among other things, fund green or “living” schoolyards throughout the school district.Portland, Oregon: A five-year property tax levy authorities hope will bring in $293 million in investments in parks to “increase access in recreation opportunities for communities of color, refugees and immigrants, and families experiencing poverty.”Denver: A quarter-cent “climate sales tax” to generate $800 million over the next 20 years for climate-related programs, with a mandate that “funding should maximize investments in communities of color, under resourced communities, and communities most vulnerable to climate change.”Michigan: Constitutional amendment lifts the cap on how much revenue the Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund can take in to allow for an increase in oil, gas, and mining industry royalties used to create and protect state parks.Montana: Two measures legalizing and taxing recreational marijuana are anticipated to generate $360 million for land conservation over the next 20 years. – Advertisement – • Denmark will kill all 17 million of its farmed mink because of coronavirus mutation: The mutated virus has spread from five minks to 12 humans, Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen announced Wednesday. Authorities found new strains were less susceptible to antibodies, causing worries the new mutation could make any future vaccine less effective. Denmark is the world’s number one supplier of farmed mink. The Netherlands, Spain, and Utah have all culled thousands of their own mink because the virus had spread to farmed populations. But these were not mutated versions. Dr. Joanna Swabe, the Humane Society International/Europe’s senior director of public affairs, praised Denmark’s decision. “Denmark is one of the largest fur producers on the planet, so a total shutdown of all Danish mink fur farms amid spiraling COVID-19 infections is a significant development,” Swabe told The Guardian. “Although not a ban on fur farming, this move signals the end of suffering for millions of animals confined to small wire cages on Danish fur farms solely for the purposes of a trivial fur fashion that no one needs.”• Biden will, if elected, move to rejoin the Paris climate agreement early on in his administration: But fulfilling any pledge to cut emissions likely will encounter trouble at home. Biden has vowed that he would move immediately to rejoin the Paris Agreement officially abandoned with a sneer by the Trump regime Wednesday. Biden said he will “use every tool of American foreign policy to push the rest of the world to raise their ambitions alongside with the United States.” “Being out formally obviously hurts the U.S. reputation,” former Obama administration climate official Andrew Light told BBC News. “This will be the second time that the United States has been the primary force behind negotiating a new climate deal—with the Kyoto Protocol we never ratified it, in the case of the Paris Agreement, we left it. So, I think it’s obviously a problem.” To rejoin, the United States must come up with a credible pledge to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in what are called nationally determined contributions. Expectations of other world leaders as well as climate hawks at home are that the U.S. must make an ambitious NDC pledge. But while Biden can make such a pledge, obstacles to making it happen are rife. Among them, of course, is Congress, where the Democratic House majority will be smaller in 2021 and Republicans may still dominate the Senate. Even if Democrats manage to win the Senate majority, the Supreme Court, with three Donald Trump-appointed justices since Biden was vice president, will undoubtedly be less friendly to climate-related regulations. “I think that the Supreme Court, even with [Justice Ruth Bader] Ginsburg was going to be a pretty tough place for EPA,” Jeffrey Holmstead, a partner at Bracewell LLP, told Jean Chemnick at E&E News. “But I think that’s even more clear now.” Not everyone is pessmistic. Said Light, “I think that [Biden] will dig in deep, learn the lessons of what the Obama crew learned from trying to get these existing authority measures through and the legal hurdles they encountered, and he goes full bore.” • Variability of renewable energy sources means managing them on the electric grid, and because that’s challenging, there are costs to that: But how much?  Philip Heptonstall and Robert Gross of Imperial College London decided to find the answer. They dug into hundreds of studies. Their key conclusion: even at the high end of the estimates, the added costs of renewables still leave them competitive with carbon-emitting sources. Those extra costs vary tremendously depending on location and other factors.- Advertisement –center_img – Advertisement –last_img read more

Injury fells Cardiff captain Hudson

first_imgCardiff captain Mark Hudson has been ruled out for the rest of the season with a hamstring injury. Despite finding first-team chances hard to come by, the 31-year-old has experience which the Bluebirds will miss in their relegation run-in. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side are second bottom of the table and host Hull on Saturday. The centre-back, who has only played twice in the Barclays Premier League this term, suffered the injury in the 2-0 defeat at Manchester United at the end of January. Hudson said on Twitter: “Yes unfortunately I am out for the rest of the season. The hamstring injury at Man U was worse than first thought.” center_img Press Associationlast_img read more

Ben Arfa appearance cancelled

first_img A statement issued on Tuesday by The Back Page said: “It is with great regret that we must announce that the planned appearance of Hatem Ben Arfa at The Back Page shop later today has been cancelled. “Since accepting the invitation last week, it has become increasingly clear that Hatem will be excluded from the training day event at St James’ Park today. “In light of the increasing media circus that news has prompted, both the Back Page and Hatem agree that staging the event would be counter-productive and cancellation is the most logical course of action. “Hatem sends his apologies and is saddened that he’s unable to meet supporters at this time. “The shop remains open as usual today and we look forward to seeing many fans after they’ve visited SJP.” The club themselves on Tuesday announced a “long-term” extension to their partnership with their official kit supplier Puma that will take it “into the next decade”. Puma have supplied Newcastle’s kit, replica and training wear since the 2010/11 season. The Magpies’ 2014/15 Barclays Premier League campaign gets under way at St James’ Park on Sunday when they face reigning champions Manchester City. And Newcastle boss Alan Pardew is hopeful midfielder Cheick Tiote and forward Siem de Jong – one of the club’s numerous new signings, and a player the manager has likened to former England striker Teddy Sheringham – will win their battles to be fit for selection. Pardew told Sky Sports News: “On whether Siem and Cheick will be be available – it will be disappointing if they are not, but they are running well today. “So they could be available and make it an easy job for me to pick my strongest team. But we’ll have to see.” On De Jong, he added: ” I think he is a terrific player. “I have been lucky enough in my career to manage some great players and I think he could be one of the best. “I worked with Teddy Sheringham and he reminds me a lot of Teddy in the way he conducts the game, the way he conducts himself, and that will be shown on a matchday.” Newcastle midfielder Hatem Ben Arfa’s appearance at a book shop to meet fans on Tuesday has been cancelled because it would be “counter-productive”. France international Ben Arfa, 27, has become a peripheral figure for the Magpies and has been training with their development squad this summer. His meeting with supporters at The Back Page in Newcastle was set to take place on the same day as the Tyneside outfit’s open training day at St James’ Park. Press Associationlast_img read more

Manchester United winger Adnan Januzaj joins Borussia Dortmund on loan

first_img Press Association Manchester United’s winger Adnan Januzaj has joined Borussia Dortmund on loan for the rest of the season. The 20-year-old Belgium international has struggled to fit into the team under manager Louis van Gaal, though he did score the winner against Aston Villa earlier this season, and will move to the Bundesliga club. Januzaj tweeted a picture of himself holding a Dortmund shirt and said: “Pleased to sign for Dortmund ?? ! Looking forward to new season”. center_img Dortmund announced that Januzaj will wear the number nine shirt for the club. Januzaj told the club’s website: “Borussia Dortmund are a big club and the fans are meant to be really incredible here. I would like to achieve great things with this team.” Dortmund’s director of sport Michael Zorc added: “Adnan is a highly talented and technically adept player who rounds off our attack.” Two weeks ago, Van Gaal reacted angrily to suggestions that he did not give Januzaj enough of a chance to make an impact last season – but added that the winger needed to find consistency. Van Gaal said then: “Adnan had eight starts last season and 14 substitutions so he didn’t have any chances? This is not true, in my opinion. “The other players have no right? (to a place in the team) Only Adnan has a right? He has to compete with 23 or 24 other players. “He is 20 years old. The characteristics of a young player is he is not consistent. He has to show that. Maybe he can show it this season. It is possible.” last_img read more

Smalta Girls Schools Tournament… Sixteen goals scored on opening day

first_imgSIXTEEN goals were scored on the opening day of the 2016 Smalta Girls Schools Pee Wee football Tournament as action kicked off yesterday at the Ministry of Education ground.In game one between St. Agnes and St. Pius, the former registered a 2-0 win thanks to Amanda McPherson (5th) and Shequeena Smith (9th) while South Ruimveldt won via walkover from St. Gabriel’s in game twoGame three was an interesting encounter with Enterprise beating Stella Maris 3-1 thanks to strikes from Kemeora Warren in the 14th, Tanya Mohabir in the16th and Emmaria Mercier 20th while Stella Maris score came from an own goal in the .Game four ended in a 1-1 draw between F. E. Pollard and St. Angela’s. Carletta Ross’ 13th minute strike for St Angela’s was cancelled out by Cedranessa Benn in the 23rd while St. Margaret’s won via walkover over Tucville in game five.North Georgetown demolished Smith Memorial 4-0 in game six with Alicia James registering this year’s first hat trick with goals in the 5th, 17th and 20th. the fourth goal was an own Goal in the15th.Game seven saw West Ruimveldt beat Winfer Gardens 2-1 thanks to Gabriella McGarrel’s double (3rd and 10th). Winfer’s score came off an own goal while game eight had St Stephens needling Redeemer through Odelli Straughn (7th)Matches continue next weekend.last_img read more