A personal quest to promote the use of wind energy and hydrogen technology in the Great Lakes area of the United States. The Great Lakes area is in a unique position to become an energy exporting region through these and other renewable energy technologies. *Update 2014: Just do it everywhere - Dan*
Monday, April 18, 2016
Analysis: Technology companies dominated corporate PPAs in 2015
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Iowa poised to source 40% of its electricity from wind, says MidAmerican | Editorial: Infrastructure updates need to drive wind development | Analysis: Technology companies dominated corporate PPAs in 2015
Iowa is on track to source 40% of its total electricity from wind, according to MidAmerican Energy President and CEO Bill Fehrman. The deciding factor, he said, would be whether his company is granted approval to build its 2,000-megawatt Wind XI project in the state. Fehrman added that the project would also allow MidAmerican to source 85% of its total electricity from wind, bringing it close to its 100% renewable energy goal.
The US must update its electrical grid in order to facilitate the spread of commercial-scale renewables, including wind, writes the editorial board of the Brattleboro Reformer. The American Wind Energy Association said the industry employs 88,000 Americans, and that is expected to increase to 380,000 by 2030. "Standing in the way of large-scale renewable energy facilities is our outdated electrical grid, which is in dire need of a massive infusion of federal dollars," it writes.
Technology companies such as Google, Amazon Web Services and Salesforce accounted for more than one-third of the wind power purchase agreements signed by non-utility buyers in 2015, experts say. The American Wind Energy Association said that non-utility deals represented 52% of all the wind PPAs signed in the US last year. Technology companies alone signed deals for 1,334 megawatts of wind capacity during that period.
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The Independent Electricity System Operator in Ontario, Canada, has signed a 20-year power purchase agreement with EDF EN Canada for its Romney wind farm. The project is expected to begin operations in 2019. EDF EN Canada is a subsidiary of EDF Energies Nouvelles.
Oklahoma State University's Stillwater campus sources 70% of its total electricity from a power purchase agreement with the Cowboy Wind Farm near Blackwell. The project features 26 turbines. Observers say that through this and other energy saving measures, OSU has been able to save $35 million since 2007.
As Maine lawmakers begin to prepare for 2017, they must be prepared to combat the unrealistic goals of Gov. Paul LePage, writes Douglas Rooks. Since 2013, LePage has been stalling land-based and offshore wind development, argues Rooks, by rejecting projects such as Statoil's $120 million offshore Hywind wind farm. "One man is not going to be able to stand in the way of Maine's energy future forever," he writes.
President Barack Obama will have a wide-ranging legacy of environmental action, said Gina McCarthy, administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency. As for the relationship between EPA and Congress, she said, "It's always been a struggle, but it's always been that Republicans and Democrats care about the health of their kids."
The Environmental Protection Agency is sending mixed messages in the litigation process for its proposed Clean Power Plan, according to coalition of industry groups and states challenging the rule. The agency, they argue, can't both emphasize the rule's importance and minimize its overall magnitude. The Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit is scheduled to hear oral arguments in June.
Fact check: Comparing American, European wind power is apples to oranges
The clear success of wind energy in the US, which leads the world in wind energy production, has forced critics to attack the renewable record of other countries because the evidence against them is so strong here. Thanks to America's world-class resources, wind energy is now the lowest-cost source of new electricity generation in the US. While wind energy may increase electric bills in other countries, that is clearly not the case here. Read more.
Always be a first-rate version of yourself, instead of a second-rate version of somebody else.
Judy Garland, singer and actress
These stories were selected and summarized by independent editors at SmartBrief Inc., not by AWEA's staff, and do not represent AWEA positions. They reflect the variety of daily coverage of American wind power.