NewEnergyNews: QUICK NEWS, August 4: UTAH DEBATES A TAX ON SUN; NRG’S GREEN BONDS FUND BIG WIND BUY; WHERE DISTRICT HEATING IS BIG BIZ

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    Monday, August 04, 2014

    QUICK NEWS, August 4: UTAH DEBATES A TAX ON SUN; NRG’S GREEN BONDS FUND BIG WIND BUY; WHERE DISTRICT HEATING IS BIG BIZ

    UTAH DEBATES A TAX ON SUN Is a fee for solar energy users a ‘sun tax’ or fair play? Solar power » State regulators to hear testimony Monday on the costs and benefits of “net-metered” residences.

    Brian Maffly, July 27, 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune

    “…[2,700 Rocky Mountain Power customers "net meter"] — earning credit for the excess power they produce — and this number is growing rapidly as the cost of solar installations drops. Now the utility wants to charge such customers $4.65 a month to help cover the grid’s fixed costs, those associated with transmission and distribution of electricity through a vast network of wires, transformers and substations…While this charge would raise only $150,000 in its first year, a disparate group, including local governments, businesses and religious leaders, criticizes it as a ‘sun tax’ or ‘solar penalty’ that would inhibit the market for energy from renewable sources [that bring environmental, economic, and energy security benefits and want]…the Public Service Commission (PSC) to reject the fee…But the utility, joined by state regulators and consumer advocates, contends critics are ignoring a good case for imposing the charge, which is a small part of RMP’s request for a general 5 percent rate increase…” click here for more

    NRG’S GREEN BONDS FUND BIG WIND BUY NRG Yield Plans $400 Million Green Bond for Alta Wind Buy

    Christopher Martin, July 28, 2014 (Bloomberg BusinessWeek)

    “NRG Yield Inc., a spinoff of mostly renewable energy assets by NRG Energy Inc., plans to offer $400 million in bonds for its purchase of the Alta Wind farm…The so-called green bonds tied to sales of clean energy technologies are due in 2024 and are guaranteed by NRG Yield and its parent…Proceeds from the offering will help NRG Yield acquire the biggest wind farm in North America for $870 million in cash from Terra-Gen Power LLC. Alta Wind in Tehachapi, California, can produce as much as 947 megawatts. The output is sold to Edison International’s Southern California Edison utility under a long term contract…The market for green bonds could almost triple this year to $40 billion from $14 billion last year…” click here for more

    WHERE DISTRICT HEATING IS BIG BIZ New Technologies, Fuels Enhance Viability of $10 Billion District Heating Market; The decades-old alternative to distributed heating can deliver cost gains of up to 74%, depending on specific technologies, fuel mix and climate…

    July 29, 2014 (Lux Research)

    “District heating (DH) can deliver cost gains of up to 74% over conventional distributed heating…Although the sector is decades old and worth $10 billion annually, efficiency and technical sophistication of systems varies from region to region, with Europe currently leading the way…[N]ew technologies – coupled with a range of alternative fuels – will enable more efficiencies, lower carbon output, and enhance the economic viability of district heating for a wider range of geographies, notably the Northeast United States, Spain, Poland, South Korea and Japan…With incremental gains in combustion efficiency, natural gas-fired DH produces the most consistent total cost of operations (TCO) reductions across all three building types – residential, multi-residential and commercial. Cost savings range between 47% and 74%, better than those derived from biomass and waste-to-energy (WTE)…[DH can displace] high-cost electric heating [in Scandinavia and]…is a cost-effective alternative to fuel oil in Japan, Spain and Poland…In Asia-Pacific, the most promising technologies are Ground Source Heat Pumps (GSHPs), biomass and solar thermal. Each can drive down TCO by 10%-20%. In South Korea, the GSHPs can realize a higher 30% cost reduction while China’s commercial segment alone is viable for Waste-to-Energy (WTE)…” click here for more

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