Geothermal company Dandelion Energy partnering with Hudson Solar to bring 100% Renewable Energy to Hudson Valley and Capitol Region of NY

Today, my new partners at Dandelion, which is a geothermal startup that recently graduated X, the research and development lab at Google’s parent company, announces a partnership with Hudson Solar, the leading residential solarinstaller in the Hudson Valley and Capital Region.  Yes I’m teamed up with a Google Startup ok breathe breathe!).  

Plus, I know Hudson Solar. They were chosen as a leading provider of solar in the Solarize campaigns throughout most of the Hudson Valley. 

Together, these companies will offer homeowners the opportunity to easily get their homes to go 100% GREEN ENERGY. 
Dandelion as reported in the Poughkeepsie Journal today uses a new geothermal installation process developed at X, can convert homeowners away from oil or gas heat and offer them substantial savings.  

Hudson Solar, with its on-site or community solar offerings, can then offer homeowners to lower the cost of solar power.  A homeowner with geothermal, solar and energy efficiency can easily go 100 percent renewable. The Dandelion geothermal system will use solar electricity and the ground, as a source of heat and heatsink, to provide a home with heating, cooling and hot water! (BOOM!!)
Hudson Solar, with its on-site or community solar offerings, can then offer homeowners to lower the cost of solar power.  A homeowner with geothermal, solar and energy efficiency can easily go 100 percent renewable. The Dandelion geothermal system will use solar electricity and the ground, as a source of heat and heatsink, to provide a home with heating, cooling and hot water! (BOOM!!) 

Let’s put it this way, average geothermal installs cost around $40,000. Dandelion is about $20,000 and will offer financing and monthly payment plans. 

Now while solar costs about the same, the finance costs will be really more affordable than the grid.

Geothermal company Dandelion Energy partnering with Hudson Solar to bring 100% Renewable Energy to Hudson Valley and Capitol Region of NYDandelion Energy partners with Hudson Solar to bring 100% Renewable Energy to Hudson Valley and Capitol District in NY

“We chose Hudson Solar as our first solar partner because the company is well known for their high-quality work and share our values and excitement about the impact that our combined product will have on combating climate change,” Dandelion CEO Kathy Hannun said. “Hudson Solar’s unique offering of both on-site and community solar systems means they can provide all of Dandelion’s customers a way to power their geothermal systems with clean electricity. ”

“Dandelion has lowered the cost of geothermal and set up financing so a homeowner switching to geothermal from oil or propane can save money from day one, just like with solar,” Hudson Solar CEO Jeff Irish said. ” … And with our community solar arrays, even people who can’t site solar on their property can go solar.”

Source: Dandelion Energy

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Geothermal Energy Can Boost Low Carbon Economic Development in Central America and USA

While IRENA and Central American countries hold workshop to overcome geothermal development barriers across the region, we know clearly that it is the next new wave of clean green energy for the USA! For example, check out my newest partners Dandelion Energy!!

San Salvador, El Salvador, 21 August 2017 — Central America’s and the USA vast geothermal potential could be a key tool in low-carbon economic development. 

If state, local and regional government entities can adopt the policy and regulatory frameworks necessary to support its deployment. 

While IRENA and Central American countries hold workshop to overcome geothermal development barriers across the region, we know clearly that it is the next new wave of clean green energy for the USA! For example, check out my newest partners Dandelion Energy!!
Central American countries, which currently rank among the world’s top countries in terms of the share of installed geothermal energy, have the potential for 20 times the currently installed capacity.
A workshop in El Salvador today, organised by IRENA and LaGeo, El Salvador’s state-owned generator of electricity from geothermal resources, and in association with Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeitis (GIZ), seeks to identify the measures that may unlock the region’s vast geothermal potential.

“Central America holds some of the world’s most promising geothermal resources, that if utilised can help the region secure and deliver, inexpensive electricity while stimulating low-carbon economic growth,” said Gurbuz Gonul, Acting Director of Country, Support and Partnerships at IRENA. “Through the sharing of knowledge, experience and lessons learned from the leading geothermal countries in Central America, this workshop will help establish the building blocks for the stable, long-term policy framework needed to overcome barriers in geothermal development,” added Mr. Gonul.

“In the CEL Group we are proud to be part of this global effort to bring clean energy to our countries. Latin America needs renewables and this global network [the Global Geothermal Alliance] will give us the necessary tools to support the region,” said Mr. David Lopez Villafuerte, President of the Hydroelectric Commission of the Lempa River Group CEL.

“The development of more geothermal projects in the Central America region can boost the economy and contribute to the reduction of greenhouse gases,” said Ms. Tanja Gabriele Faller, Regional Director of GIZ’s Programme for the Promotion of Geothermal Energy in Central America. “Our Program for the Promotion of Geothermal Energy, implemented by GIZ on behalf of the German Government, supports this type of exchange of experiences, a resource as valuable as geothermal energy has to be tackled from different perspectives. For several years we have been working together with IRENA because we share its commitment to support countries in their transition to a renewable energy future,” Ms. Faller added.

The region’s leading countries with the highest geothermal capacity are Costa Rica – 207 megawatts (MW), El Salvador – 204 MW and Nicaragua – 55 MW. Geothermal power could satisfy nearly double the region’s predicted electricity demand through 2020. Expansion of geothermal in the region is hampered by several barriers, including a lack of adequate policies and regulations for the use and development of geothermal resources.

Geothermal energy like my buddies at Dandelion Energy and Jay Egg have proven to provide stable and affordable electricity, and offers flexibility through the direct use of geothermal heat in domestic, commercial and industrial sectors.

While IRENA and Central American countries hold workshop to overcome geothermal development barriers across the region, we know clearly that it is the next new wave of clean green energy for the USA! For example, check out my newest partners Dandelion Energy!!
IRENA started implementing a regional capacity building program in Central America under the Global Geothermal Alliance, a multistakeholder initiative aiming to increase the share of geothermal energy in the global energy mix. The capacity building program is supporting the development of capabilities of various stakeholders along the geothermal value chain in Central American countries. Today’s workshop constitutes part of this programme, strengthening the institutional and human capacities of the region, in the areas of geothermal technology, policy, regulation and finance. 

Source: International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA)

Nebraskans Install First Solar Panels Inside the Keystone XL Pipeline Route

‘Solar XL’ project breaks ground along Keystone XL pipeline in Nebraska, highlighting clean energy solutions over the fossil fuel industry
 
Silver Creek, NE — On Saturday, July 29th, the “Solar XL” project placed its first solar panels along the route of the proposed Keystone XL pipeline, on the farm of Nebraska landowners Jim and Chris Carlson near Silver Creek. The Carlsons, who rejected a $307,000 offer from the pipeline company TransCanada to build Keystone XL through their backyard, partnered with Bold Nebraska, 350.org, Indigenous Environmental Network, CREDO, and Oil Change International to put renewable energy directly in the pipeline’s path. Solar XL underscores the need to center solutions to climate change while rejecting the Keystone XL pipeline and resisting the expansion of the fossil fuel industry. 

“Build Our Energy Barn” built in 2013 on the Hammond family’s land inside KXL route near York, Nebraska — one of the many signs of resistance to Keystone XL. Photo Credit: Mary Anne Andrei / Bold Nebraska

Source:https://www.flickr.com/photos/boldnebraska/albums/72157686827119456

“While we are dedicated to Keep It In The Ground efforts to stop new fossil fuel development, we are also deeply committed to the Just Transition. Solar and renewable energy can provide a sustainable transition away from fossil fuels and provide job growth in areas traditionally left behind, like rural America and our Indigenous communities. By placing solar projects in the route of Keystone XL, we are demonstrating how vital it is to not just stop dangerous and unnecessary projects like KXL but to also show that there are alternatives to the fossil fuel industry that do not put communities at risk and sacrifice Indigenous Peoples and land. We are excited to be a part of this resistance that also highlights the solutions that are needed,” commented Joye Braun, organizer from the Indigenous Environmental Network.

The Solar XL project is being supported through an ongoing crowdfunding campaign launched earlier this month. The solar panels, which will be installed in at least two other locations along the pipeline route, will serve not only as a form of clean energy, but as a symbol of the urgent need for a just transition away from fossil fuels toward a 100% renewable energy economy. The panels will help power the homes of Nebraskans resisting Keystone XL, and are being installed by the family-owned rural solar business, North Star Solar Bears, run by Jim Knopik.

Jim Knopik (left) and North Star Solar Bears solar installers with farmer Rick Hammond (right) and his 25 kW solar array near Benedict, NE. (Photo: Mary Anne Andrei)
Jim Knopik (left) and North Star Solar Bears solar installers with farmer Rick Hammond (right) and his 25 kW solar array near Benedict, NE. (Photo: Mary Anne Andrei)
‘Solar XL’ project breaks ground along Keystone XL pipeline in Nebraska, highlighting clean energy solutions over the fossil fuel industryThe Keystone XL pipeline would carry 830,000 barrels of dirty tar sands oil a day from Canada through Montana, South Dakota, and Nebraska, and then on to the export market. The pipeline would pass through farms, ranches, and Indigenous land, posing a threat to the Ogallala Aquifer and other water sources that would be contaminated by spills and leaks. Landowners continue to fight eminent domain for private gain knowing this would be the first time the Public Service Commission (PSC) grants those powers to a foreign corporation. Lastly, all along the route, local economies are connected to agriculture, and climate change is a serious issue. Keystone XL would significantly add to climate risks for farmers, ranchers and Tribal Nations.

The first installation took place just over a week before the Nebraska Public Service Commission holds hearings in Lincoln on whether to grant a construction permit for Keystone XL through the state. One day before the hearings on August 6th, people from around Nebraska and surrounding states will converge for a march through the streets of Lincoln urging the Commissioners to reject the permit. If permits are granted for Keystone XL construction in Nebraska, TransCanada will have to tear down homegrown clean energy in order to build, galvanizing people across the country to fight back.
  

Jim Carlson, Nebraska landowner who placed solar in path of Keystone XL on his family’s farm: 

“I am vehemently opposed to the Keystone XL pipeline mainly because of the properties of the contents of the tar sands oil it will carry — this is not your Mother’s crude oil, it is the Devil’s, and it can kill. We must be focused on clean, renewable energy and America can get along just fine without this foul concoction they call bitumen that TransCanada wants to pipe across our precious soil and water.”
Jim Knopik, North Star Solar Bears. LLC:

“Our family-run company is based in Nebraska — and by installing solar projects, like the ones to stop the Keystone XL pipeline — my kids are able to stay on the farm. It’s time for our country to start the transition to clean energy now.”

More information on the “Solar XL” project:

http://boldnebraska.org/solarxl

Solar Toolkit Developed to Help Municipalities Advance Solar Projects 

The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) has developed a Solar PILOT Toolkit to assist the state’s municipalities in understanding and negotiating payment-in-lieu-of taxes (PILOT) agreements for solar projects larger than 1 MW, including community solar projects. Based on feedback from local government officials and solar industry representatives, NYSERDA developed the toolkit in response to the need for greater information on PILOT agreements as solar projects develop throughout the state.  The Solar PILOT Toolkit provides a framework for local taxing jurisdictions to negotiate payment agreements with solar developers. In addition to their
The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) has developed a Solar PILOT Toolkit to assist the state’s municipalities in understanding and negotiating payment-in-lieu-of taxes (PILOT) agreements for solar projects larger than 1 MW, including community solar projects. Based on feedback from local government officials and solar industry representatives, NYSERDA developed the toolkit in response to the need for greater information on PILOT agreements as solar projects develop throughout the state. 
The Solar PILOT Toolkit provides a framework for local taxing jurisdictions to negotiate payment agreements with solar developers. In addition to their clean energy and job-creation benefits, solar developments can yield significant financial value to municipalities through PILOT agreement payments. The toolkit addresses the lack of information on property tax issues around solar development and is designed to enable municipalities to work with developers to negotiate PILOT rates that benefit the community and make the projects financially attractive to developers and their customers. 

“The Solar PILOT Toolkit will serve as a vital resource to help municipalities encourage the development of community solar projects and make sure they benefit the entire community,” Alicia Barton, President and CEO, NYSERDA said. “Large-scale solar projects provide a great opportunity for communities across the state to take advantage of clean, renewable energy while advancing Governor Cuomo’s Reforming the Energy Vision strategy.” 

New York State is undertaking significant changes in the way it generates and delivers electricity. As one example, community solar projects allow electric customers who are not able to install solar panels on their properties to own or subscribe to a portion of a community solar project, and benefit from the cost savings of clean generation.

As a method to promote the installation of clean energy, Section 487 of the Real Property Tax Law exempts the added assessment value of renewable energy projects, including solar photovoltaic (PV) systems, from local property taxes for 15 years. The law allows any taxing jurisdiction to “opt-out” of the tax exemption, which would then makes the PV system fully taxable.    

The Toolkit offers guidance to counties, towns and school districts on the structure of a PILOT agreement as an alternative solution for community solar participants and developers in municipalities that opt-out of the tax exemption. It also includes templates for a single jurisdiction or multiple jurisdictions that municipalities can tailor to meet their needs in working with developers to negotiate an agreement.

The Toolkit is comprised of three elements: a model resolution to guide municipalities in exercising their legal authority to adopt a PILOT; a sample agreement that jurisdictions may use to draft an agreement with developers; and a PILOT Calculator with two options that offer guidance on methods to collect revenue.

For additional information and guidance about adopting solar in local communities, local officials can contact the NY-Sun team at its contact page to identify opportunities, mitigate barriers, and learn about training, education and technical assistance opportunities. The toolkit can be found on the NYSERDA website.

NYSERDA will hold a webinar for local government officials and tax assessors to discuss the Toolkit on Tuesday, July 25, 2017 at 2 p.m. To register, visit the PILOT Toolkit website or send an email to solarhelp@nyserda.ny.gov.

About Reforming the Energy Vision

Reforming the Energy Vision (REV) is Governor Andrew M. Cuomo’s strategy to lead on climate change and grow New York’s economy. REV is building a cleaner, more resilient and affordable energy system for all New Yorkers by stimulating investment in clean technologies like solar, wind, and energy efficiency and requiring 50 percent of the state’s electricity needs be generated from renewable energy by 2030. Already, REV has driven a nearly 800 percent growth in the statewide solar market, enabled over 105,000 low-income households to permanently cut their energy bills with energy efficiency, and created thousands of jobs in manufacturing, engineering, installation and other clean-tech sectors. REV is ensuring New York State reduces statewide greenhouse gas emissions 40 percent by 2030 and achieves the internationally-recognized target of reducing emissions 80 percent by 2050. To learn more about REV, including the Governor’s $5 billion investment in clean energy technology and innovation, please visit http://www.ny.gov/REV4NY and follow us at @Rev4NY.

Renewables on the grid: Putting the negative-price myth to bed

Three years ago, the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) rebutted arguments that occurrences of negative prices at nuclear plants in Illinois were frequently caused by wind energy. That “compelling” data led FERC Commissioner John Norris, who had previously discussed his concerns about negative prices, to affirm that “the focus on negative prices is a distraction.”
More recently, we have documented that many instances of negative prices are caused by conventional power plants.

AWEA has now made our prior analysis far more comprehensive by examining full-year 2016 price data for all retiring power plants in the main wholesale electricity markets that have a large amount of wind generation: PJM, MISO, SPP, and ERCOT.

AWEA has now made our prior analysis far more comprehensive by examining full-year 2016 price data for all retiring power plants in the main wholesale electricity markets that have a large amount of wind generation: PJM, MISO, SPP, and ERCOT.
The results, which we are releasing today for the first time, confirm that any instances of renewable policies like the Production Tax Credit (PTC) and state renewable standard credits being factored into market prices have a trivial impact on retiring power plants.

Across more than 1.8 million data points, which cover all 2016 pricing intervals in the day-ahead electricity market for all retiring power plants in those regions, only 55 instances of negative prices were found that could have been set by a wind project receiving the PTC. The analysis includes market price data for all power plants that have retired since 2012 or have announced plans to retire.

Our analysis focused on the day-ahead electricity market (the results bolded below), as that is where nuclear and coal generators sell most if not all of their generation. However, the results show that wind plants almost never set prices for an additional 2.4 million data points in the real-time electricity market as well. For more background on electricity markets and how prices are set, see the last section of this post.

In PJM and MISO, which account for a large share of all power plants in wholesale markets that are retiring nationwide, only 0.003 percent of day-ahead market prices at retiring power plants were in a range that could be set by a wind project receiving the PTC, as shown on the left side of the table. Occurrences of negative prices that could be wind-related were even less frequent in SPP, at 0.0017 percent of day-ahead market price intervals. Those occurrences were slightly more common at retiring plants in ERCOT, at 0.06 percent of price intervals, but it should be noted that there is only one retiring coal power plant in ERCOT.

To underscore the trivial impact of the PTC in setting market prices, the right side of the table shows how prices would change if wind projects receiving the PTC no longer received the credit. In PJM and MISO, conservatively assuming that all negative prices in that range were set by wind projects receiving the PTC, Day-Ahead Market prices at retiring power plants would increase by an average of $0.0007, or 1/13th of a penny per megawatt hour (MWh), if operating wind projects no longer received the PTC. Retiring power plants in SPP saw an even smaller impact at 1/25th of a penny, while the one retiring coal power plant in ERCOT saw an impact of around one penny per MWh.

It is important to clarify that the PTC does directly reduce consumer electricity costs outside of the electricity market. The PTC and other incentives allow wind projects to offer lower long-term contract prices to customers and the utilities who serve them, which translates into lower electric bills for consumers on a 1:1 basis.

However, those contract payments are outside of the wholesale electricity market, so they are not directly factored into the wholesale electricity market prices received by other generators.

The facts about energy incentives

In reality, the wind PTC has been a remarkable success in driving the American innovation and efficiency that have driven a two-third reduction in the cost of wind energy since 2009. The more than 102,500 Americans working in the wind industry today are creating a new industry with a bright future, bringing tens of billions of dollars in investment to rural areas and tens of thousands of manufacturing jobs to America. Production-based incentives like the PTC have driven efficiency increases that make U.S. wind projects some of the most productive in the world.

In reality, the wind PTC has been a remarkable success in driving the American innovation and efficiency that have driven a two-third reduction in the cost of wind energy since 2009. The more than 102,500 Americans working in the wind industry today are creating a new industry with a bright future, bringing tens of billions of dollars in investment to rural areas and tens of thousands of manufacturing jobs to America. Production-based incentives like the PTC have driven efficiency increases that make U.S. wind projects some of the most productive in the world.    Regardless, Congress voted in December 2015 to phase down the wind PTC, and we are now in year three of that five-year phasedown period. Despite the recent focus on incentives for renewables, cumulatively wind energy has received only 3 percent of federal energy incentives, versus 86 percent for fossil and nuclear sources, according to the Nuclear Energy Institute and other experts. Given that the wind industry’s “tax reform” is already in place with the PTC phasedown legislation, we would welcome a comprehensive look at all forms of subsidies for all electricity sources.  Market dynamics are driving retirements  Market dynamics are benefiting consumers by driving retirement of older, less efficient resources in favor of more efficient resources. A wide range of experts agree that the primary factors driving power plant retirements and economic challenges for generators of all types are cheap natural gas and flat electricity demand.  The following map, compiled from Department of Energy data, shows that most retiring coal and nuclear plants are in regions that have little to no renewable generation, confirming that renewable energy or pro-renewable policies cannot be the primary factor driving those retirements.    Rather, the primary factor driving power plant retirements appears to be low-cost shale gas production undercutting relatively high-cost Appalachian and Illinois Basin coal in the Eastern U.S., as shown below. In the regions shaded red in the map, the fuel cost of producing electricity from natural gas is significantly
Regardless, Congress voted in December 2015 to phase down the wind PTC, and we are now in year three of that five-year phasedown period. Despite the recent focus on incentives for renewables, cumulatively wind energy has received only 3 percent of federal energy incentives, versus 86 percent for fossil and nuclear sources, according to the Nuclear Energy Institute and other experts. Given that the wind industry’s “tax reform” is already in place with the PTC phasedown legislation, we would welcome a comprehensive look at all forms of subsidies for all electricity sources.

Market dynamics are driving retirements

Market dynamics are benefiting consumers by driving retirement of older, less efficient resources in favor of more efficient resources. A wide range of experts agree that the primary factors driving power plant retirements and economic challenges for generators of all types are cheap natural gas and flat electricity demand.

The following map, compiled from Department of Energy data, shows that most retiring coal and nuclear plants are in regions that have little to no renewable generation, confirming that renewable energy or pro-renewable policies cannot be the primary factor driving those retirements.

Rather, the primary factor driving power plant retirements appears to be low-cost shale gas production undercutting relatively high-cost Appalachian and Illinois Basin coal in the Eastern U.S., as shown below. In the regions shaded red in the map, the fuel cost of producing electricity from natural gas is significantly lower than the fuel cost of coal power plants, explaining why utilities in those regions are moving from coal to natural gas generation.

For the entire story on the AWEA blog, MICHAEL GOGGIN, JULY 18, 2017