Renewable Energy Update – December 2020

Focus
U.S. Senate approves Allison Clements and Mark Christie for FERC PV-Tech – December 2The U.S. Senate has approved two candidates for the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) that were nominated by President Donald Trump, bringing the agency to a full complement of five commissioners. The move was welcomed by the American Council on Renewable Energy, which said that an “invigorated, independent” Commission would be more motivated to make regulatory reforms that would accelerate the country’s transition to renewable energy. Commissioners serve five-year terms.
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News
Vineyard Wind pauses U.S. permitting over switch to GE turbines Reuters – December 2Vineyard Wind, which is developing the first major U.S. offshore wind farm, has temporarily withdrawn the project from the federal permitting process so the company can incorporate turbines from a new supplier, General Electric Co, in its design. The move will almost certainly delay a federal decision over whether to approve the project until after President-elect Joe Biden takes office on January 20. The project is designed to generate enough electricity for more than 400,000 customers in Massachusetts.
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WoodMac: U.S. energy storage industry breaks quarterly installation record Greentech Media – December 2The U.S. energy storage industry smashed its quarterly installation record with an influx of major projects in the third quarter. The industry also broke records in the second quarter, but it beat that period’s performance by 240%, installing 476 MW, according to the Energy Storage Monitor out Wednesday from Wood Mackenzie and the Energy Storage Association. Most significantly, this quarterly record does not look like an outlier. Annual deployments are expected to more than double in 2020 overall and nearly triple in 2021, according to Wood Mackenzie’s analysis.
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Three Orange County cities look to unplug from Southern California Edison The Orange County Register – November 24Three Orange County cities are preparing to pull the plug on Southern California Edison (SCE) as their electricity procurer and take up the task themselves, a move they say will cut customer rates and hasten the move to clean energy. SCE would continue delivery of electricity. Irvine, which is spearheading the effort, has been joined by Costa Mesa and Fullerton in initial approval of a joint powers authority that will do the actual purchasing of power.
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C2 Energy Capital acquires California floating solar project Solar Industry Magazine – November 30C2 Energy Capital has purchased California’s largest floating solar project from Ciel & Terre, a company that specializes in the integration of photovoltaic systems. Located in Windsor in Sonoma County, the 1.78-MW system features a floating grid of 4,959 high-performance solar modules on the surface of Windsor’s largest recycled water storage pond. The system covers 22% of the pond’s surface.
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Projects
Alameda County approves 410-acre Aramis solar project north of Livermore Pleasanton Weekly – December 1The East County Board of Zoning Adjustments last week approved plans to develop a 410-acre, utility-scale solar power plant north of Livermore. Opponents of the project said they plan to appeal the decision to the Alameda County Board of Supervisors. The Aramis solar project by Intersect Power will cover an estimated total of 580 acres of land, of which 410 acres will contain solar arrays and support facilities.
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ReneSola secures PPA for California solar-storage project Renewables Now – December 2ReneSola Ltd has secured a power purchase agreement (PPA) for the output of a 20-MW solar project in California that will be coupled with 6.5 MW/26 MWh of battery storage. The output of the complex will be bought by Northern California-based electricity provider Valley Clean Energy, ReneSola said this Wednesday. The term of the contract is 20 years. The plant, due to become operational by 2022, will be located in Yolo County.
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Visalia City Council to take second glance at community solar project The Sun Gazette – November 25Dimension Renewable Energy and partners are going to get another shot at pitching their Doe Avenue Solar Project to the Visalia City Council on December 7. The council decided to take a second look after councilmember Brian Poochigian requested to reconsider a zoning amendment to allow stand-alone solar on industrial-zoned land at their November 16 meeting. The proposed community solar farm will serve nearby disadvantaged communities.
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Southern Power puts 136-MW Washington wind farm into operation Power Engineering – December 1Southern Power, the wholesale energy arm of Southern Co., has put its 12th wind power facility into operation. The 136-MW Skookumchuck Wind site is now generating electricity from its site in Lewis and Thurston counties in the state of Washington. It is the company’s first-ever wind power facility in that state.
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