NewEnergyNews: QUICK NEWS, January 19, 2015: WISC FIGHT FOR NET METERING; CALIF COMMUNITY SOLAR LAW STIRS CONTROVERSY; TENN CLEARS LINE TO DELIVER OKLA WIND

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    Monday, January 19, 2015

    QUICK NEWS, January 19, 2015: WISC FIGHT FOR NET METERING; CALIF COMMUNITY SOLAR LAW STIRS CONTROVERSY; TENN CLEARS LINE TO DELIVER OKLA WIND

    WISC FIGHT FOR NET METERING In Wisconsin, solar ‘new math’ could equal big impacts

    Kari Lydersen, January 16, 2015 Midwest Energy News

    After granting crucial rate design changes to We Energies, Wisconsin Public Service Corporation (WPS) and Madison Gas & Electric, the Wisconsin Public Service Commission (PSC) is expected to hear a final challenge which could determine the pace of residential solar growth in the state for the foreseeable future. The expected challenge will ask the PSC to reconsider its decisions to allow We Energies and utilities to “true up” net metered customers’ bill credits monthly instead of annually. Wth a monthly true-up, the bulk of excess credits accumulated in the spring and fall, when electricity use is lower, are lost. Annual true-ups preserve the credits. A separate challenge is in the works to the PSC’s decision to allow Alliant Energy/Wisconsin Power and Light to remunerate net metered customers at the avoided cost rate of $0.03 per KWh to $0.04 per kWh instead of the retail rate $0.11 per KWhto $0.14 per kWh. click here for more

    CALIF COMMUNITY SOLAR LAW STIRS CONTROVERSY New policy to help renters, apartment dwellers go solar

    Sammy Roth, January 14, 2015 The Desert Sun

    The California Public Utilities Commission issued a decision approving a community solar program late in 2014 and is expected to finalize details late in January. Community solar plans allow utility customers to buy portions of solar arrays, by the kilowatt or by the module, get credit on their bills for the electricity produced. Community solar is aimed at utility customers who are not homeowners or don’t have solar-suitable rooftops or good credit scores. With an estimated 75% of all rooftops unsuitable and the millions of renters and low income utility customers, the potential market in California is estimated at tens of millions. The CPUC-approved plan will allow utilities to charge community solar participants fees for grid use and maintenance that aren’t paid by rooftop solar customers. Solar advocates claim the fees fail to accurately balance the costs and benefits of distributed solar to the grid. There are only an estimated 55 to 60 community solar projects in the U.S., with Colorado and Massachusetts leading the market. The U.S. market potential for community solar has been estimated as high as 7 times that of rooftop solar.click here for more

    TENN CLEARS LINE TO DELIVER OKLA WIND $2B wind power project gets state approval

    Michael Sheffield, January 13, 2015 (Memphis Business Journal)

    The Tennessee Regulatory Authority has approved a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity to Plains & Eastern Clean Line LLC, a subsidiary of Clean Line Energy Partners, clearing an obstacle for the delivery of Oklahoma wind to Memphis. The certificate allows Plains & Eastern Clean Line to operate as a transmission only public utility in the state, making it easier to route the planned $2 billion, 700-mile, high voltage direct current (HVDC) line from the Oklahoma Panhandle to utilities and markets throughout the Southeast. DOE issued its Draft Environmental Impact Statement for the Plains & Eastern Clean Line in December 2014. Following a public comment period, it will issue a Final EIS later this year. That is expected to clear the way for the 2 year to 3 year construction period to begin so that the project can go into service by 2019. “You can’t get enough clean energy from distributed resources,” former Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) chairman and staunch distributed energy resources (DERs) advocate Jon Wellinghoff recently told this reporter. “We need these clean remote resources and transmission lines to get them to the load.” click here for more

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