Energy Democracy Media Roundup – week of August 7, 2017

Date: 8 Aug 2017 | posted in: Energy | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

This week in Energy Democracy news:

A new U.S. Energy Information Administration report reveals that as of last month, the majority of states have set energy efficiency goals, we check up on the state of Michigan’s electric vehicle policies, and Chattanooga’s municipal electric utility, EPB, makes strides with its new community solar project.


Featured Stories:

Three Major Themes From The First Community Solar Summit by Tom Hunt, Solar Industry Magazine

EIA: Most states now have energy efficiency goals in place by Robert Walton, Utility Dive

According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, as of last month, 30 states and the District of Columbia have adopted efficiency policies,including two dozen that have adopted an energy efficiency resource standard (EERS).

Like Exxon, Utilities Knew about Climate Change Risks Decades Ago by John H. Cushman Jr., Inside Climate News

Dirty energy’s quiet war on solar panels by Basav Sen, The Hill (Blog)

In statehouses all over the country, there’s a growing movement by industry front groups to undermine net metering and other renewable energy incentives.

SEPA: More than 25% of US solar was connected to the grid in 2016 by Robert Walton, Utility Dive

The adoption of solar energy is growing, as utilities outside of traditional solar states (such as California, Hawaii and Arizona) began to build new resources.

“What’s exciting about the survey is seeing the how solar is growing outside the traditional markets,” SEPA Research Analyst Brenda Chew, who led the study, said in a statement. “We now have thriving solar markets in the Southeast, and we’re seeing growth in states such as Utah and Arkansas.”

Energy Democracy News Across the States:


How an Arkansas co-op used solar power to help retain a major employer by Jim Pierobon, Southeast Energy News



A Different Kind of Car Factory Is Opening Up in Los Angeles by Mark Chediak, Bloomberg

Proterra said its California factory will supply buses for transit agencies along the West Coast. The Burlingame, California, company has orders to fill from cities serving California’s Central Valley to Seattle.

Blockchain-Enabled Electric Car Charging Comes to California by Julian Spector, Green Tech Media

“Every Now and Then I Fall Apart” by Manola Secaira, Grist



Oakton’s Skokie campus adds renewable energy source by Community Contributor Oakton Community College, Chicago Tribune

In addition to the new solar array, the Skokie campus is home to a test system that is easily accessible for enrolled students and provides them with hands-on experience working with solar panels. Live data from the solar array will soon be incorporated into the college’s existing Energy Dashboard which can be found at



City Aggressively Pursues Solar Energy With Solarize Bloomington Phase Two by WBIW Staff, WBIW

Indiana’s solar market is still alive, for now by Mark Burger, PV Magazine



Frederick County Solar Co-op turns on 272 kilowatts of power by Samantha Hogan, The Frederick News-Post



In ‘automotive capital of the world,’ critics say electric vehicle policy is lagging by Andy Balaskovitz, Midwest Energy News

Karlee Weinmann, research associate at the Minneapolis-based Institute for Local Self-Reliance, said incentives should be targeted to varied income levels as a way to “democratize access” to electric vehicles. Additionally, non-monetary incentives — like allowing EV drivers to use carpool lanes — has proven effective in some states, Weinmann said.

Michigan’s first pay-by-energy electric car charging station installed outside state agency by Emily Lawler, M Live



Minnesota co-op plans state’s biggest energy storage project by Frank Jossi, Midwest Energy News



To solve ‘duck curve,’ Missouri utility to pay bonus for west-facing solar panels by Karen Uhlenhuth, Midwest Energy News

In an effort to better align solar-energy production with peak demand, the electric utility in Columbia, Missouri has begun to pay higher rebates for new west-facing arrays than it will for those facing south.



The Future is Bright for Residential Solar in Nevada by Ryan Willemsen, Mother Earth News

The passage of Nevada State Assembly bill AB 405 marks the return of a top market for residential solar and sets an example for states in the heat of the net metering debate. Compromises have been made, but in essence the bill reinstates net metering at almost full retail rates in Nevada, and it’s being hailed as a victory for the rooftop solar industry.



Hamilton wants to know: Should its utilities go solar? By Mike Rutledge, Hamilton Journal-News



A look at the first weeks of EPB’s new community solar project by Dave Flessner, Chattanooga Times Free Press



How San Antonio, Texas, became a solar powerhouse by Eileen Mignoni, Yale Climate Connections



Next two weeks could decide Utah’s rooftop solar future by David DeMille, the Spectrum

Groups unveil ‘Mighty Five’ electric vehicle corridor initiative by Amy Joi O’Donoghue, Utah Deseret News

Red Rock Bakery becomes first fully solar bakery/café in Utah by Rose Egelhoff, Moab Times-Independent

Nationwide Energy Democracy News:

Why We Need More Microgrids for Resilience, but Aren’t Getting Them by Elisa Wood, Microgrid Knowledge

Microgrids achieve resiliency by islanding from the central grid during an outage. Their on-site generators then supply local customers. Buildings served by microgrids can act as electrified oases, places of refuge where community members can seek shelter, charge phones, get medical help, buy food and fuel cars. Utilities also are designing microgrids to power headquarters that workers can use as base camp while restoring the grid.

How electric vehicles could take a bite out of the oil market by Amy Myers Jaffe & Lewis Fulton, The Conversation

Toyota Working on Electric Cars That Charge in Minutes for 2022 by Eric Limer, Popular Mechanics

Virtual Power Plants & Transactive Energy: How Will They Change the Energy Business? by Lisa Cohn, Microgrid Knowledge

Tesla Gigafactory Adds Microgrid Lab by Tom Lombardo,

Let the Sun Shine by Michael Roeth, Fleet Owner

Battery Advances at the Heart of Tesla’s Model 3 by Julian Spector, GreenTech Media

This article originally posted at For timely updates, follow John Farrell on Twitter or get the Energy Democracy weekly update.

Nick Stumo-Langer
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Nick Stumo-Langer

Nick Stumo-Langer was Communications Manager at ILSR working for all five initiatives. He ran ILSR's Facebook and Twitter profiles and builds relationships with reporters. He is an alumnus of St. Olaf College and animated by the concerns of monopoly power across our economy.