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Energy Update: April 27, 2018

In the States

NH – Governor Chris Sununu released his plan to transform New Hampshire’s energy resources and priorities, titled the New Hampshire 10-Year State Energy Strategy, in coordination with the Governor’s Office of Strategic Initiatives. The new plan seeks to “inform decisions about [the state’s] energy challenges and energy future” whole updating the last state energy strategy, which was released in 2014. Noting that New Hampshire energy prices are among the highest in the United States, the Energy Strategy seeks to prioritize cost-effective energy policies utilizing all resources, encourage market-selection of those resources, and improve energy infrastructure. The plan further recommends an increase in the use of natural gas-fired and nuclear power generation, as well as a rewriting of the state’s renewal energy portfolio standards. The Governor’s Energy Strategy also notes the state will reconsider net metering policies for solar power. "Electricity touches every aspect of the economy, and New Hampshire's costs are among the highest in the region,” said Governor Sununu, and “our 10-year  strategy provides direction and leadership to our state's policymakers that is squarely aimed at helping our ratepayers.” NH energy strategy shifts from subsidizing renewables to lowering ratesThe New Hampshire Union Leader


Regional and National

Three Appalachian state Governors – Tom Wolf of Pennsylvania, John Kasich of Ohio, and Jim Justice of West Virginia – extended an interstate memorandum of understanding to generate investments focused on their energy resources, arrange partnerships between their universities and the private sector, as well as offer technical training for careers in the oil, gas, and petrochemical sectors. Known as the Tri-State Shale Coalition, the agreement seeks to “transform the Appalachian Basin into a global energy hub on par with Texas and Louisiana” while making “the region as a whole more attractive [for] midstream and downstream investments.” All three states contain substantial energy formations known as the Marcellus and Utica shales and account for roughly 29 percent of the United States’ natural gas output. “The shale gas resources in the Appalachian Basin represent enormous economic opportunity not just for Pennsylvania, but for the region as a whole,” Governor Wolf said. “I’m proud to continue our successful collaboration with Ohio and West Virginia to ensure that we are doing everything we can to support additional development.” The agreement, which was originally signed in 2015, will now be extended through 2021. Appalachia markets itself as global energy hubU.S. News


According to a new study from the consulting firm Analysis Group, the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI), a multi-state emissions-capping program, has “generated $4 billion in net economic activity,” finding the money produced more than offset the cost of the program. Under RGGI, power plants pay states to exceed the caps on emissions and the funds generated are spent on renewable energy and efficiency programs, electricity bill rebates, and other energy-related state priorities. RGGI includes all the New England states, as well New York and Delaware. New Jersey is planning to rejoin the interstate group after leaving in 2012, while Virginia is expected to join, too. “Rather than being an economic drag on the RGGI states, it’s actually providing economic benefits,” said Paul Hibbard, one of the study’s authors. RGGI spurs $4 billion in economic activity, study findsThe Baltimore Sun


The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) released its latest Energy Infrastructure Update, noting that wind and solar power accounted for 98 percent of all new power generation capacity so far in 2018. While 12 units of wind power was created generating 1,568 megawatts, solar power accounted for 40 new units generating 565 megawatts of power in the first two months of 2018. The new FERC report predicts that renewable energy will continue “to dominate new power generation capacity installed over the next several years.”


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