Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Fees proposed in Mauldin budget | | The Greenville News

Fees proposed in Mauldin budget | | The Greenville News:
"The franchise proposal would increase franchise fees to 5 percent, a suggestion that was rejected last year. Franchise fees could add $2 a month in power bills for residents who use Duke Power and Laurens Electric Co-Op."

Progress Energy Starts Appliance Rebates

Columbia Regional Business Report | Columbia, SC:

"The new program, approved by the S.C. Public Service Commission, will be offered to customers in early April.

The program will pay customers $50 for each qualifying refrigerator or freezer that they take out of service and recycle. A Progress Energy contractor will pick up the appliance and transport it to a recycling facility for processing of the materials."

Colorado Adopts 30% RPS Standard

     Colorado has increased its renewable energy standard to require large utilities to obtain 30% of their power from renewable sources by 2020. Governor Bill Ritter signed the legislation on March 22, noting that the new standard makes it the "best in the Rocky Mountain West" and one of the highest in the nation. In 2004, the state became the first in the United States to have a voter-approved renewable energy standard, when a referendum was approved calling for 10% renewable power by 2015. In 2007, state legislation increased the requirement to 20% renewable energy by 2020, a target that the new legislation increased by another 50%.
   As with the previous law, the new law credits electricity produced from solar energy, wind power, geothermal energy, biomass power (including power generated from non-toxic plants, animal wastes, and methane from landfills and wastewater treatment facilities), small hydropower, "recycled" electricity from waste heat, and fuel cells powered with hydrogen derived from eligible renewable energy resources. The new law requires utilities to supply at least 12% of their retail electric sales from such sources from 2011 to 2014, 20% from 2015 to 2019, and 30% for 2020 and thereafter. Those requirements apply to all provides of retail electric service in the state, with the exception of municipal utilities serving 40,000 customers or fewer. In-state power facilities receive extra credit towards the requirements.
     The new law also sets specific requirements for distributed generation from eligible renewable energy resources. The law divides this into "retail distributed generation," which includes customer-located facilities connected to the customer's side of the meter, and sized to not exceed the customer's load by more than 20%, and "wholesale distributed generation," which includes systems of 30 megawatts capacity of less that don't qualify as retail distributed generation. The law requires investor-owned utilities to draw on distributed generation for at least 1% of their retail electric sales in 2011 and 2012, ratcheting up to 3% by 2020. At least half of the requirement must be met with retail distributed generation. According to the governor, that requirement will lead to at least 100,000 additional solar rooftops over the next decade. See thegovernor's press release and the full text of the legislation (PDF 75 KB). Download Adobe Reader.

EPA Top 25 Cities With Energy Star Labeled Buildings

click above for the full list:

Atlanta is # 9, Charlotte is #22

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

CBJ: Duke Energy and Australian Company Eye the Same Deal

Charlotte Business Journal: Duke Energy may face Aussie rival in bid for Ky. utilities:
John Downey, Senior Staff Writer
"The report says Australian investment bank Macquarie Group Ltd. has not yet actually approached E.On AG, the German company that owns the utilities. It also reports that Duke is rumored to already be in talks with E.On."

Monday, March 22, 2010

Progress urged to team up on nuclear project

N.C. utilities chief pushes for joint nuclear projects - Charlotte Business Journal::

Charlotte Business Journal - by John Downey Senior staff writer

"Ellen Ruff, appointed head of nuclear strategy for Duke Energy Corp. last year, says Duke, Progress and others have been looking to cooperate on nuclear-power projects. And she thinks regional agreements could be worked out quickly enough to affect Duke’s plans for its proposed Lee Nuclear Station near Gaffney, S.C."

Midlands Tech training new nuclear operators

Columbia Regional Business Report | Columbia, SC:
By Mike Fitts
Published March 22, 201
"Students at Midlands Technical College recently plowed through formulas, working diligently to keep up with the guest instructor as she walks them through the steps of monitoring an atomic reaction. The subject matter is far from theoretical: The students are studying to become nuclear power plant operators."

FCC Plans for Emergency Services and Cybersecurity

FCC Outlines Public Safety Network -- FCC -- InformationWeek:

"Barnett also pointed to a recommendation in the FCC's broadband plan submitted to Congress Tuesday that seeks suggestions on how to improve cybersecurity. The FCC would coordinate with the executive branch to identify pressing cybersecurity threats and develop a plan to counter the threats."

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