Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Company Briefs

Women of Wind Energy Changes Name to WRISE

Women of Wind Energy announced last week that it is changing its name to Women of Renewable Industries and Sustainable Energy (WRISE) to reflect the broadening of its programs to advance women across the renewable energy spectrum.

“In response to ongoing conversations with our stakeholders and recent industry trends, WRISE will continue to work with the wind industry, but will broaden our scope to include solar, energy storage, energy efficiency, energy management and power marketers focused on renewables, transmission, distributed generation and smart grid technologies,” the group said in a press release.

The group has more than 3,000 network participants.

More: WRISE

Chinese Parent Opposes Suniva’s ITC Petition

Shunfeng International Clean Energy has submitted a letter to the International Trade Commission supporting free trade in the face of a petition by its subsidiary Suniva seeking protection from solar imports to the U.S.

Suniva, which Shunfeng acquired a 63.13% interest in in 2016, recently filed for Chapter 11 because of declining market prices in the photovoltaic industry.

A report by IHS Markit estimates Suniva’s Section 201 trade complaint could cut U.S. PV demand by 60% over the next three years.

More: pv magazine; Renewables Now

Duke Energy to Add Electrification Stations to NC Truck Stop

Duke Energy will spend $300,000 to add 24 electrification stations at a North Carolina truck stop that are projected to save 25,000 gallons of truck fuel annually.

The project, which is part of a 2015 settlement between Duke and EPA, also will include four plugs that will provide standby power for refrigerated cargo to avoid having to run diesel compressors.

Annually, the project is expected to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by almost 500 tons, and volatile organic compounds and nitrogen oxide emissions by more than 2 tons.

More: Trucking Info

Mercedes-Benz, Vivint Partner on Residential Solar, Storage

Mercedes-Benz is partnering with Vivint Solar to combine the auto manufacturer’s 2.5-kWh energy storage batteries with the residential solar installer’s rooftop to make a combined product for homeowners.

A fully installed 2.5-kWh battery system, paired with a solar energy system, will cost about $5,000, a Vivint spokesperson said. A 20-kWh home energy storage system — made of several connected batteries — will cost about $13,000.

The product, which will compete with what Tesla offers, will be rolled out in California in the second quarter.

More: CNBC

Entergy’s Indian Point Unit 3 Returns to Service

Entergy’s Indian Point Unit 3 nuclear power plant returned to service Thursday after a scheduled $100 million refueling, maintenance and inspection outage. The planned shutdown began March 13.

More: Entergy; Patch

Relatives of Ghost Ship Victims Sue PG&E for Deadly Fire

Relatives of people who died in the Dec. 2 Ghost Ship warehouse fire in Oakland, Calif., added Pacific Gas and Electric as a defendant in their wrongful death lawsuits Tuesday.

The suits, consolidated in Alameda County Superior Court, claim PG&E should have known that the electric hookups in the warehouse where 36 people died were hazardous and illegally installed.

PG&E issued a statement saying it had no reports of electric theft or any other anomalies from the warehouse or the adjacent premises.

More: The Mercury News; The Associated Press

Entergy Names Rod West as Group President of Utility Operations

West

Entergy has named Rod West group president of utility operations, effective July 1. He succeeds Theo Bunting, who is retiring after 34 years of service.

West, who will report to CEO Leo Denault will be responsible for the operational and financial performance of the regulated utilities, including electric and natural gas distribution, and customer service operations. He also will oversee the utility’s engagement with state and local regulators, and regulated retail commercial development and innovation.

West previously served as a member of Entergy’s Office of the Chief Executive since 2010, when he was named executive vice president and chief administrative officer.

More: Entergy

Sunlight Financial Secures $500M Commitment for Home Solar Loans

Home solar loan provider Sunlight Financial announced last week it has secured a commitment of up to $500 million from Technology Credit Union for residential solar loans.

The money, which is the startup’s largest single funding commitment, will fund about 20,000 new rooftop projects originated by its national network of installers.

In September 2015, Sunlight received a $300 million investment from private equity firm Tiger Infrastructure Partners and founding investor Hudson Clean Energy Partners.

More: Greentech Media

Regulators Approve $1.51B Rate Hike for PG&E

California regulators Thursday authorized a rate hike for Pacific Gas and Electric that would increase revenue by $1.51 billion over the next three years, far below the $2.26 billion increase the utility originally requested.

The decision increases PG&E’s revenue from ratepayers by $88 million this year to cover its costs of operations and infrastructure, which had previously been set at $7.92 billion. The company’s authorized revenue will increase by $444 million in 2018 and $361 million in 2019.

PG&E estimates that a typical residential customer’s monthly bill will go up by 1% for the rest of 2017.

More: San Francisco Chronicle

Southern to Finish Vogtle Project for Westinghouse

Southern Co. will finish work at the Vogtle nuclear plant, taking over for the bankrupt Westinghouse Electric, under an agreement struck Friday night.

Toshiba, Westinghouse’s parent company, will remain responsible for about $3.6 billion in guarantees for the project, payable over at least three years, a person with knowledge of the discussions told Bloomberg. Southern Co. agreed to extend to June 3 an interim contract with Westinghouse while the companies finalize arrangements.

The deal hinges on the owners of the V.C. Summer Station, including SCANA, reaching a similar deal with Toshiba, so the utilities can pool resources, the source said.

More: Bloomberg

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