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Electrek morning green energy brief: Wyoming proposes utility solar/wind tax @$10/MWh, 3D printing house+solar+storage+car and more!


Coal country Wyoming senators want to charge 1¢/kWh to use solar/wind power – A few senators have signed on from a state that would be hurt by less coal, and just maybe we’ll see a charge to use the sun and wind. The law is says utilities cannot pass the penny charge onto end users – seems a smart design to limit end user activism through one cent up charges but obviously a nightmare for the environment and the green energy sector, and the environment.

AES’ New Kauai Solar-Storage ‘Peaker’ Shows How Fast Battery Costs Are Falling – We brought up this power plant last week, but I like this article because it goes into detail about the project. A little over a year ago the CEO of NextERA, Jim Robo, said that by 2020 there may not be another natural gas peaker plant built because of batteries. Natural Gas peaker plants run 1-3% of the time – and only when the power company needs a little extra electricity for a short time, filling in a gap so to say. This plant – in expensive Hawaii – is a forerunner of that evolution from natural gas to battery occurring. Expect to see 20MWh battery peaker (replacing 200MW gas plants) plants popping up all over the country . This is how batteries get their foothold and scale from a manufacturing standpoint – attacking the low capacity factor (1-5%) natural gas peaker plant market.

AMIE – Additive Manufacturing Integrated Energy – 3D printed home & vehicle: This project has been out there a bit, but the people retweeted it this weekend and I went watching again…so you get to watch. Starting with a limited set of material – could we create a vehicle and home that could truly take care of someone? Can we do it while considering energy and materials used? Volvo once integrated batteries into a car’s structure. The “Tesla Home Manufacturing Department” need be started to get the research going.

Commercial PACE – Energy efficiency loans tied to property taxes: One of the drivers for me to get into solar power is that I felt my experience with financial modeling would help me in solar power, as it heavily needed the comprehension of finances to be sold. Even today, you see so many of the posts related to this form of energy circling money – price per watt and kilowatt hour being two of the most popular. Working at Brightergy I specifically deal with the type of small business customer that would use PACE – and in Rhode Island I get to use this program. Innovative finance by groups like SolarCity and PACE are what is pushing this energy revolution in the USA.

Nanoscale view of energy storage – “Toiling underground in the tunneled labs, they recorded atoms moving in and out of nanoparticles less than 100 nanometers in size, with a resolution approaching 1 nanometer.” We’re going to build battery storage that is cannot be fundamentally smaller or more dense. We will learn to manipulate this technology much like we do legos today. Your clothing, your car and your buildings will be build with energy storage integrated.

Tweet of the day – Revenue per energy efficiency area in North Carolina. Interesting to see where the money gets spent in a large, research focused state with a lot of utility scale solar going in.

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