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Energy Technology Matters

The Latest Legal, Financing, and Policy Developments in Energy and Clean Tech

Companies Tap Into Battery Power to Cut Energy Bills

Posted in Advanced Batteries, clean energy, Energy Efficiency

All kinds of companies are using batteries to cut expenses and reduce demand for new power plants. Over the past few years, there has been a major upward tick in the number of U.S. companies that have started installing batteries to store electricity for later use.

Last year, Cargill Inc. reported that it had installed two megawatt-hours of batteries to provide extra power at certain times of the day at its plant in Fresno, California. The batteries are expected to help save about $100,000 a year on power expenses. More recently, J.C. Penney Co. Inc. announced that it had installed batteries in six of its Southern California stores and has plans to install batteries at three additional stores this year as well as 14 more next year. The batteries provide about 35 kilowatts of power for roughly two hours, which translate into $6,000 a year on savings on its power bills. To learn more about the upward trend in battery installations and use, read on!

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Carbon Reduction Reshapes a Regional Electricity Market

Posted in Energy Financing, Hydropower, Legislative Updates, Massachusetts Renewable Energy, Renewable Energy, Wind

Earlier this year, Massachusetts passed legislation that will require the state’s distribution utilities to purchase carbon-free electricity from hydropower and on and offshore wind farms under long-term contracts for up to 30% of the state’s electricity supply. Despite opposition from incumbent generators and large consumers over concerns that the bill would interfere with market competition, Democratic legislators found common ground with Republican Governor Charlie Baker to enact historic “clean energy” legislation that will transform the fuels used to generate the state’s power while significantly reducing its carbon-footprint. To learn more, read on!

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U.S. Department of Energy Announces 16 New Innovative Projects in Energy Storage and Conversion

Posted in Energy Efficiency, Energy Financing, Energy Technology News

On September 13 the U.S. Department of Energy’s Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E) announced $37 million in funding for 16 new projects as part of its new program called Integration and Optimization of Novel Ion-Conducting Solids (IONICS). The projects that make up the IONICS program transform current technologies that overcome the limitations of current battery and fuel cell products. To learn more about IONICS, read on!

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Massachusetts Energy Outlook: The Remainder of 2016 and Beyond

Posted in Energy Financing, Legislative Updates, Massachusetts Renewable Energy, Renewable Energy, Solar

After ending formal sessions in July, Massachusetts lawmakers will convene in informal sessions for the remainder of the year, and no controversial legislative matters are expected to pass during this time.

Below ML Strategies presents its forecast and analysis of the key developments to expect in Massachusetts on energy-related matters for the remainder of this year and into the 2017-2018 legislative session. The complete forecast, which covers a wider array of topics, can be read here. To learn more about Massachusetts’ energy forecast, read on!

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U.S. Offshore Wind Industry Readies for Take-off Led by Northeast U.S.

Posted in Energy Financing, Federal Policy, Massachusetts Renewable Energy, Wind

The U.S.’s offshore wind industry is poised for a burst of activity after faltering for several years on the heels of the stalled Cape Wind project in Massachusetts. The country’s first offshore wind farm will open this fall off the coast of Rhode Island. To read more about this project, continue reading!

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Energy and Environmental Legislative Updates for Fall 2016

Posted in Federal Policy, Legislative Updates, Water

The House of Representatives and Senate returned September 6 from the long August recess that started in mid-July. The House is scheduled to be in session for four weeks and the Senate for five weeks before breaking again for the month of October to campaign. Energy legislation will be debated at the conference of the energy bills (S.2012 and H.R. 8) and potentially during an end of the year tax extenders debate. For further information on energy legislation updates, continue reading!

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“Holy Grail” of Renewable Energy Storage is Fast-Approaching

Posted in Advanced Batteries, Energy Efficiency, Energy Technology News, Renewable Energy

In 2009, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) created its Advanced Research Projects-Energy (ARPA-E) division to fund energy storage projects conducted by scientists at Harvard, MIT, Stanford, and the Lawrence Livermore and Oak Ridge labs. The DOE now believes that some of the 75 battery system projects it is currently funding have the ability to transform the renewable energy storage industry in as little as 5-10 years. To learn more about these breakthrough technologies, read on!

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Research finds that Reducing Carbon Emissions will Spur Technology Innovation

Posted in Climate Change, Energy Financing, Renewable Energy, Solar

In December 2015, 195 nations and the European Union formally pledged to meet nationally determined emissions-reduction targets in the Paris Agreement. Since then, many experts have observed that the national targets are not sufficient in meeting the goal of limiting global warming to less than two degrees Celsius.

However, Jessika Trancik of the MIT Institute of Data, Systems, and Society recently presented research results that demonstrated that there is a mutually reinforcing cycle between emissions-reduction policies and technology development. Her analysis illustrates that for countries to meet their emissions-reduction pledges in the Paris Agreement, they need to deploy low-carbon technologies, which will spur technology innovation, lower costs, and ultimately enable further deployment of these technologies. To learn more about this cycle, read on!

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Our Favorite Summer Reads for Every Start-Up

Posted in Articles

Since our members at Mintz Levin constantly work with start-ups, entrepreneurs, and investors, we thought it would be especially beneficial to list the top six summer reads for every start-up as recommended by Tom Burton, Jeremy Glaser, Dan DeWolf, and Sam Effron.  From negotiation to the internet of things, these six classic reads are sure to have valuable insights for anyone in the start-up field!

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Massachusetts Legislature Passes Compromise Energy Bill

Posted in Energy Financing, Legislative Updates, Massachusetts Renewable Energy, Renewable Energy, State Happenings, Wind

Last Sunday, the Massachusetts Legislature passed a compromise energy bill to significantly increase electricity produced by renewable energy sources. The state’s utilities will be required to purchase power from on and offshore wind farms, as well as power from hydroelectric dams located largely in Canada. Governor Baker is expected sign the bill in short order, as he has strongly supported purchasing imports of clean energy. To learn more about this bill, read on!

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