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Renewables Reinforce Resiliency, Reliability

July 13 -- When a storm like the one that struck Fort Wayne on June 27 disrupts service to
our customers, Indiana Michigan Power’s work is quite visible. Bucket trucks were mobilized
throughout the city as I&M marshaled internal and external crews to restore power to more
than 30,000 customers within 72 hours.

Fortunately, I&M’s work often involves preparing for the future – and that work is visible,
too. >>View Article

Let's Make a Declaration of Energy Independence

July 13 -- This past weekend we honored the day our nation declared independence more than
200 years ago. We enjoyed our parades and fireworks, so now let’s also celebrate a different
kind of revolution – an energy revolution – that’s underway all across America.

Driven by innovation and entrepreneurship, the cost of renewable energy has fallen faster
and further than anyone could have predicted just 10 years ago. As a result, we are
developing secure, competitive clean energy at a record pace. Last year, the U.S. added more
homegrown solar and wind than any other electricity source. >>View Article

Don't Sell Us Short; Ky. Can Meet Clean-Power, Efficiency Goals

July 13 -- Last month I attended a hearing of the Interim Joint Committee on Natural
Resources, which included a presentation from the Energy and Environment Cabinet on the
proposed federal Clean Power Plan.

Under the plan as currently proposed, Kentucky would need to reduce its power-sector carbon
emissions rate 18 percent between 2012 and 2030.

While this sounds like a significant reduction on the surface, the goal is far less
stringent than most state goals across the country. >>View Article

Are Homeowners That Go Solar "Freeloaders"?

July 10 -- The solar boom shows no signs of slowing down. According to SEIA, the last quarter was the best one ever for the U.S. residential solar sector. The U.S. added 1.3 GW of solar energy, and solar made up over half of the electricity generation capacity added in the U.S. last quarter. Yup, we added more solar than natural gas, coal, and nuclear energy combined.

This is all great news. Solar is saving businesses, schools, and homeowners money, and the industry supports a thriving workforce. It will only keep growing as the price of solar continues to drop. But some people aren’t thrilled about that, and opponents of this booming industry have taken to throwing out as many criticisms as they can and seeing what sticks. >>View Article

The Clean Energy Case for Transmission Has Never Been Stronger

July 10 -- In the two years since we outlined how smarter transmission policy could accelerate and reduce clean energy costs in America’s Power Plan, evidence continues to mount that robust high-voltage transmission networks are indispensable to a clean energy future.

Smart transmission planning has enabled most of the wind and solar now operating in the United States and has done so while generating large net economic benefits; one study estimated that co-optimizing generation and transmission planning could save an incredible $90 billion. >>View Article

New Paths to Sustainable Energy

July 10 -- An airplane just flew across the Pacific Ocean on solar power alone. Self-driving “robocabs” powered by emissions-free electric motors could soon cut the emissions from a cab ride by 90 percent. Solar-powered homes, thought to be a luxury only for the wealthy, are now coming to middle- and even low-income families.

Nations around the world, including the United States, are preparing to meet in Paris in December to commit to new goals on reducing climate-harming emissions for 2030. President Obama pledged June 30 that the US would receive 20 percent of its electricity by 2030 from renewable sources such as solar and wind.

That’s an aggressive goal, but hardly impossible. >>View Article

US Solar Boom: 'Community' Solar Energy Projects Are Accelerating America's Drive Toward Renewables

July 10 -- Americans are putting more solar panels on their roofs than ever before. Yet only a small group of people -- homeowners, mostly well-to-do -- are driving the boom. Apartment dwellers, cash-strapped families, renters and others are largely shut out of the solar movement, sidelined by financial and technical constraints.

Enter community solar projects.

Paul Hyun and his neighbors have one of them on their rooftop. They live in a 70-unit apartment complex in a tightly packed neighborhood in the Brooklyn borough of New York. A solar array is affixed to the roof, and each neighbor pays about $80 a month to cover the cost of installing and maintaining the system. All the electricity that’s produced is sold to the local utility, Consolidated Edison Inc., and the neighbors split the proceeds.  >>View Article

Move Missouri Forward Toward a Clean Energy Future

July 10 -- I served with Terry M. Jarrett on the Missouri Public Service Commission and while I have great respect for him, I fundamentally disagree with his take on the Clean Power Plan in his commentary “State utility commissions should fight the Clean Power Plan” (July 7). The Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan is our nation’s first plan to limit carbon emissions from power plants. The energy sector is the largest source of the heat-trapping emissions that contribute to climate change in the United States, and we’re long overdue as a nation in limiting carbon pollution.

Jarrett wrongly cites cost as a major barrier to cutting carbon emissions, focusing on misleading studies — like the one by NERA Economic Consulting — that erroneously state that the costs of complying with the Clean Power Plan outweigh the benefits. The flawed NERA report inflates the cost of the Clean Power Plan by exaggerating the cost of energy efficiency, and ignores energy efficiency’s proven ability to deliver significant savings. >>View Article

Buffett Strikes Cheapest Electricity Price in US with Nevada Solar Farm

July 9 -- A Nevada utility owned by U.S. tycoon Warren Buffett has agreed upon a purchase
price for solar power from a First Solar plant that might well be the cheapest electricity
available anywhere in the U.S., reports Bloomberg.

NV Energy, a Nevada-based utility owned by Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway, has agreed to pay
just $0.3.87/kWh for solar electricity from the 100 MW Playa Solar 2 project being developed
by U.S. thin film company First Solar. >>View Article


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