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*
Renewables like wind and solar aren't a threat to grid reliability in the US, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Commissioner Colette Honorable said at a conference Tuesday. "I don't see any problems with reliability, and I say bring on more renewables," said Colette, who is expected to exit her post on Friday.
The Southwest Power Pool ensures that the grid is prepared to handle the region's growing installed wind capacity as it monitors reliability in 14 states through its grid operations center in Little Rock, Ark. "With a footprint as broad as ours, even if the wind stops blowing in the upper Great Plains, we can deploy resources waiting in the Midwest and Southwest to make up any sudden deficits," said Vice President of Operations Bruce Rew.
UPS today said it plans to generate 25% of its electricity from renewables, cut emissions by 12% from its global ground operations and increase by 25% the total number of vehicles running on alternative fuels. In its latest corporate sustainability report, the company noted other steps, such as investments in software and updated aircraft and the possibility of using a person's exact GPS location, rather than a street address, on the last mile of delivery.
Siemens Gamesa has finished installing five 6-megawatt turbines on floating offshore wind foundations that are currently in Norway but will be shipped to Scotland for the 30-MW Hywind Scotland project, said the company. "Siemens Gamesa views the floating wind farm market area the same way as we did with offshore wind farms in the early beginning: It is a very interesting area that is initially a niche market," said Offshore CEO Michael Hannibal.
The wind industry paid Mower County, Minn., more than any other county in the state -- nearly $2.4 million -- for state wind energy production tax revenue in 2016. "Wind has become very, very important to Mower County, its taxpayers and our environment," Mower County Board of Commissioners Chairman Tim Gabrielson said, adding that the funds would be used for infrastructure upgrades and tax relief for residents.
Anheuser-Busch InBev is moving toward its 100% renewables by 2025 goal through a 15-year power purchase agreement it has in place with a 220-megawatt project under development by Iberdrola in Puebla, Mexico, according to the company. "We want to send a signal to businesses that switching directly to renewable electricity can create positive social and environmental benefits while also delivering local cost savings," said Chief Procurement and Sustainability Officer Tony Milikin.
Delayed transmission projects in Germany are causing problems for Dong Energy by raising costs and undermining the confidence of investors, said Dong Executive Vice President Samuel Leupold. He proposed several strategies to speed up the transmission timeline, including allowing operators to compete for construction work.
The North Carolina Senate has proposed its own version of a bill passed by the state House of Representatives last month that would change how Duke Energy purchases electricity while also placing a moratorium on new wind permits. A Duke Energy spokesman said that the House version of the bill is preferable, as it "struck a very delicate balance for all parties involved with renewable energy in North Carolina."
What they're saying: US Conference of Mayors passes 100% renewable resolution
The US Conference of Mayors, a bipartisan group representing 1,400 mayors across the country, just adopted a resolution to encourage cities to transition to 100% renewable energy by 2035. The move follows big 100 percent renewable announcements in recent months from cities like Atlanta, Chicago, Portland, Ore., and Salt Lake City. Read more.
Coming up with an idea is the least important part of creating something great. ... The execution and delivery are what's key.
Sergey Brin, computer scientist and entrepreneur
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.