Tunnel collapses at Hanford nuclear waste site in Washington state

Hundreds of workers at the Department of Energy’s Hanford nuclear site in Washington state had to “take cover” Tuesday morning after the collapse of 20-foot-long portion of a tunnel used to store contaminated radioactive materials.

The Energy Department said it activated its emergency operations protocol after reports of a “cave-in” at the 200 East Area in Hanford, a sprawling complex about 200 miles from Seattle where the government has been working to clean up radioactive materials left over from the country’s nuclear weapons program.

The agency said in a statement that the 20-foot section is part of a tunnel that is hundreds of feet long and is “used to store contaminated materials.” The tunnel is one of two that run into the Plutonium Uranium Extraction Facility, also known as PUREX. The section that collapsed was “in an area where the two tunnels join together,” the department said.

The PUREX facility, once used to extract plutonium from spent nuclear fuel, has been idle for years but remains “highly contaminated,” the agency said.

Energy Department officials said there was “no indication of a release of contamination at this point” but that crews were still testing the area. Responders also were using a robot to take video and survey the damage. The department said that Energy Secretary Rick Perry had been briefed, adding that “everyone has been accounted for and there is no initial indication of any worker exposure or an airborne radiological release.”

But Edwin Lyman, a senior scientist at the Union of Concerned Scientists, said there is still cause for concern. “It appears that this is a potentially serious event,” he said. “Collapse of the earth covering the tunnels could lead to a considerable radiological release.”

An August 2015 report by Vanderbilt University’s civil and environmental engineering department said the PUREX facility and the two tunnels had “the potential for significant on-site consequences” and that “various pieces of dangerous debris and equipment containing or contaminated with dangerous/mixed waste” had been placed inside the tunnels.

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Cleaning up radioactive materials at the Hanford site, which is a federal facility, has been one of the Energy Department’s priorities for years. Reactors at Hanford produced plutonium for the U.S. nuclear weapons program. Plutonium production there ended in 1980, and the cleanup program began in 1989.

Former Energy Department official Robert Alvarez said that remotely controlled rail cars once carried spent fuel from a reactor to the PUREX chemical processing facility, which then extracted dangerous plutonium. He said the plant lies near the middle of the sprawling 580-square mile Hanford site and was “a very high-hazard operation.”

For full news : https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/post-nation/wp/2017/05/09/tunnel-collapses-at-hanford-nuclear-waste-site-in-washington-state-reports-say/?utm_term=.13eb300da6a7

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Indiana Governor Signs Bill Aimed at Dimming Solar Incentive

indiana-governor-signs-bill-aimed-at-dimming-solar-incentive

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — The benefit currently available to those who install solar panels will be sharply curtailed in the coming years, under a bill backed by Indiana’s powerful utility companies that was signed into law by Gov. Eric Holcomb on Tuesday.

Driven by the plunging costs for sun-generated power, investor-owned utilities across the U.S. are looking to carve out a share of the market. But critics contend the new Indiana law is part of a broader nationwide push to muscle out smaller companies.

“Utilities absolutely understand there are benefits from putting solar on the grid, they just want to control it,” said Ryan Zaricki, president of the Evansville-based solar panel installation company, Whole Sun Designs. “It’s not an immediate death blow to our business, but next year is going to be much tougher.”

Solar power provides only about 1 percent of the country’s energy — and even less in Indiana. But the industry is growing rapidly and employed 260,077 workers nationwide, according to 2016 statistics from the Solar Foundation.

Signing the bill presented a dilemma for Holcomb, who has made economic growth fueled by technology and innovation a central theme of his administration. He waited until a deadline set by the state constitution to sign the new law.

“I support solar as an important part of Indiana’s comprehensive energy mix. I understand the concerns some have expressed, but this legislation ensures that those who currently have interests in small solar operations will not be affected for decades,” the Republican governor said in a statement.

Indiana’s investor-owned utility companies, who lobbied aggressively for the measure, say solar panel owners who feed excess power to the grid are currently compensated too generously. That rate of compensation, which usually comes as a credit on a power bill, will be drastically lowered for those who purchase solar panels in the coming years.

The roughly 1,000 people who currently have an alternative power source, like solar panels or a wind turbine, would be grandfathered in for 30 years, as would anyone who makes a purchase before the end of the year. But those who buy solar panels next year, or later, would receive the benefit for a limited time — or not at all.

That could make it difficult to recoup a costly solar panel investment, though improving technology may offset that affect and improving battery technology could make it easier for owners to store surplus energy.

“We are quite pleased that the bill was signed into law,” said Mark Maassel, president of the Indiana Energy Association, which represents utilities. “No, this does not grant the utilities any kind of control of the solar market. No, it doesn’t put the solar business out of business.”

Indeed, utilities across the U.S. are promoting an alternative to installing home solar panels called “community solar” that involves customers agreeing to buy or lease panels from the utilities on large panel farms.

For full news : https://www.usnews.com/news/best-states/indiana/articles/2017-05-02/lights-out-indiana-governor-mum-as-solar-bill-fate-looms

Atlanta Commits To 100 Percent Renewable Energy By 2035

WASHINGTON — Atlanta lawmakers approved a measure on Monday aimed at powering the city entirely on renewable energy sources, including solar and wind, by 2035.

A resolution introduced by city council member Kwanza Hall and unanimously approved commits city government to develop a plan for transitioning all of its buildings to clean electricity sources by 2025, and for the entire city to go green a decade later.

“We know that moving to clean energy will create good jobs, clean up our air and water and lower our residents’ utility bills,” Hall, who’s also a Democratic candidate for mayor, said in a statement. “We never thought we’d be away from landline phones or desktop computers, but today we carry our smart phones around and they’re more powerful than anything we used to have. We have to set an ambitious goal or we’re never going to get there.”

Atlanta becomes the 27th U.S. city and the first in Georgia to pledge a 100-percent renewable energy goal, according to the Sierra Club.

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Ted Terry, director of the Sierra Club’s Georgia Chapter, celebrated the city’s leadership in confronting climate change.
“Just days after hundreds of thousands marched for climate action across the globe, city leaders here in Atlanta are answering the call,” Terry said in a statement. “Today’s commitment will inspire bold, ambitious leadership from cities throughout the United States and pave the way for a healthier and stronger Atlanta.”

Monday’s vote comes less than a month after Hall came under fire for voicing skepticism about climate change.

“I got a question mark on the global warming thing,” he said at a forum last month, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported. “I do believe in sustainability. I’m a science-minded person and I have a science background. But stuff is in the media too much. … It’s hard for me to be convinced sometimes.”

One day after his controversial remark, Hall issued a press release spelling out his goal to make the city run on clean energy and clarifying his previous comment.

“I did not articulate where I am coming from clearly, at all,” he said. “I believe in science, and the overwhelming scientific consensus that tells us that our planet is warming and it is caused by humans burning fossil fuels. What I’m not sold on is the politicization of big issues like climate change. A lot of it is senseless propaganda, and it comes from both sides.”

For full news : http://www.huffingtonpost.in/entry/atlanta-renewable-energy_us_5907ca45e4b05c397681b81b

Gigantic Wind Turbines Signal Era of Subsidy-Free Green Power

Offshore wind turbines are about to become higher than the Eiffel Tower, allowing the industry to supply subsidy-free clean power to the grid on a massive scale for the first time.

Manufacturers led by Siemens AG are working to almost double the capacity of the current range of turbines, which already have wing spans that surpass those of the largest jumbo jets. The expectation those machines will be on the market by 2025 was at the heart of contracts won by German and Danish developers last week to supply electricity from offshore wind farms at market prices by 2025.

Just three years ago, offshore wind was a fringe technology more expensive than nuclear reactors and sometimes twice the cost of turbines planted on land. The fact that developers such as Energie Baden-Wuerttemberg AG and Dong Energy A/S are offering to plant giant turbines in stormy seas without government support show the economics of the energy business are shifting quicker than anyone thought possible — and adding competitive pressure on the dominant power generation fuels coal and natural gas.

“Dong and EnBW are banking on turbines that are three to four times bigger than those today,” said Keegan Kruger, analyst at Bloomberg New Energy Finance. “They will be crucial to bringing down the cost of energy.”

About 50 miles (80 kilometers) off the coastline in the German North Sea, where the local fish and seagulls don’t complain about the view of turbines in their back yards, offshore wind technology is limited only to how big the turbines can grow. Dong has said it expects machines able to produce 13 to 15 megawatts each for its projects when they’re due to be completed in the middle of the next decade — much bigger than the 8-megawatt machines on the market now.
Heavy Weights

Just one giant 15-megawatt turbine would produce power more cheaply than five 3-megawatt machines, or even two with an 8-megawatt capacity. That’s because bigger turbines can produce the same power from a fewer number of foundations and less complex grid connections. The wind farm’s layout can be made more efficient, and fewer machines means less maintenance.

“Right now, we are developing a bigger turbine,” said Bent Christensen, head of cost of energy at Siemens Wind Power A/S, in a phone interview. “But how big it will be we don’t know yet.”

Larger turbines are heavier, placing a natural limit on size, said Christensen. Lightweight materials such as carbon fiber may be required to reduce the heaviness of the rotor and the blades as the turbines grow.

For full news: https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-04-20/gigantic-wind-turbines-signal-era-of-subsidy-free-green-power

Saudi Oil Exports Drop to 2015 Low as Kingdom Sticks to Cuts

Saudi Arabia, the world’s largest crude shipper, trimmed exports to a 21-month low in February as local refineries took advantage of more abundant supplies and processed a record amount of crude.

Oil exports fell to 6.95 million barrels a day, the lowest since May 2015, from 7.7 million a day in January, according to data published Tuesday on the Riyadh-based Joint Organisations Data Initiative website. The kingdom boosted production to 10 million barrels a day from 9.7 million a day, the data show.

Saudi Arabia is bearing the brunt of the output cuts that members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries pledged to make in the first six months of this year. It committed to pump no more than 10.058 million barrels a day, as OPEC and other major producers sought to rein in global oversupply and support prices.

saudi-oil-exports-drop-to-2015-low-as-kingdom-sticks-to-cuts

Saudi refineries increased the amount of crude they processed in the month by 26 percent to 2.67 million barrels a day, the highest in JODI data going back to January 2002. The amount of crude used directly as fuel in power plants and other facilities also rose, as did volume in storage. Stockpiles increased to 264.7 million barrels at the end of February from almost 262 million barrels in January.

Saudi Arabian Oil Co. was planning an 80-day maintenance work at its Riyadh refinery starting in late February to last through mid-May, according to two people with knowledge of the situation. The refinery has capacity to process 120,000 barrels of crude a day, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

“It seems that Aramco is preparing for the long shutdown of the Riyadh refinery by increasing production from other refineries as they need to keep some products in stocks while the refinery is closed,” said Mohamed Ramady, an independent London-based analyst. “The amount of crude not being processed at the Riyadh refinery is reflected in the oil stockpiles in February as they increased from January.”

The country plans to double refining capacity to as much as 10 million barrels a day within 10 years, Saudi Energy Minister Khalid Al-Falih has said. Saudi Arabian Oil Co., the state producer known as Saudi Aramco, expects to start operating a 400,000 barrel-a-day refinery next year at Jazan on the Red Sea, adding to two other plants of the same size that have come online since 2013.

For full read : https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-04-18/saudi-oil-exports-drop-to-21-month-low-as-kingdom-sticks-to-cuts

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Saudis Target 30 Solar, Wind Projects in $50 Billion Pledge

Saudi Arabia will develop 30 solar and wind projects over the next 10 years as part of the kingdom’s $50 billion program to boost power generation and cut its oil consumption.

The world’s biggest exporter of crude oil will produce 10 percent of its power from renewables by 2023, Energy Minister Khalid Al-Falih said Monday at a conference in Riyadh. It also plans to generate an unspecified amount of electricity from nuclear plants.

The country is currently seeking bids to build 700 megawatts of wind and solar power capacity in a first round of tenders. It plans a second tender round for rights to build 400 megawatts more of wind power and an additional 620 megawatts of solar plants, Turki Al Shehri, head of the ministry’s renewable energy project development office, told reporters. Saudi Arabia will tender for the wind project in the fourth quarter at a project planned for the northern area of Domat al-Jandal, Al-Falih said.

The projects are part of a plan to transform the Saudi economy by weaning it off oil and creating new industries. Saudi Arabia plans to develop almost 10 gigawatts of renewables by 2023, requiring investment of up to $50 billion, Al-Falih said in January. Tapping new power sources and boosting natural gas production will help the kingdom cut domestic use of oil for energy as the government plans to sell shares in the state crude producer.

Saudi Arabian Oil Co., which generates 6 gigawatts of electricity per year, is interested in participating in the second round of bidding for renewable projects, Abdulaziz Al-Judaimi, senior vice president, said at the conference. Generating capacity will increase to 10 gigawatts next year, he said.

Along with the planned initial public offering of Aramco, as Saudi Arabian Oil is known, the government plans to privatize the power industry to restructure the economy, Al-Falih said. The government will sell stakes in Saudi Electricity Co.’s four generation units and its transmission and distribution businesses will operate independently, he said.

“There are no dates established yet, but the process has been moving and we are working on that,” Saudi Electricity’s Chief Executive Officer Ziyad Al-Shiha said on the sidelines of the conference. The government will also create a new company to trade power locally and wants to sell electricity to other countries, Al-Falih said.

Saudi Arabia is producing around 200 megawatts from renewable sources, the energy ministry’s Al Shehri said. Investors picked to build the renewables plants in Saudi Arabia will own and operate the facilities for between 20 and 25 years, he said. They will be able to renew their operating licenses or sell the plants after that, and the government will not own the renewable projects, he said.

The energy ministry will issue a request for qualifications for the wind project in the fourth quarter, Al Shehri said.

For full read : https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-04-17/saudis-seek-30-solar-wind-projects-in-50-billion-pledge

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Libya’s Oil Output Drops After Biggest Field Closes

Libya’s biggest oil field was said to stop producing, leading to a 20 percent decline in crude output from the country with Africa’s largest reserves.

The OPEC nation’s output dropped to 560,000 barrels a day, according to a person familiar with the matter who isn’t authorized to speak to the media and asked not to be identified. The North African country was pumping 700,000 barrels a day, Mustafa Sanalla, chairman of state-run National Oil Corp., said on March 22. Oil prices rose as much as 2.2 percent.

The pipeline carrying crude from Sharara, Libya’s biggest field, to the Zawiya refinery stopped operating, the person said. It wasn’t clear why the pipeline was shut. The NOC didn’t respond to calls seeking comment.

The NOC declared force majeure on loadings of Sharara crude from the Zawiya oil terminal and on loadings of Wafa field condensate from the Mellitah terminal, according to a different person familiar with the situation, who asked not to be identified for lack of authorization to speak to the media. Force majeure is a legal status protecting a party from liability if it can’t fulfill a contract for reasons beyond its control.

Clashes among rival armed groups in early March led to the closing of two of the nation’s biggest oil export terminals, forcing a number of other fields to halt production. The ports have since reopened. Libya pumped as much as 1.6 million barrels a day before a 2011 uprising led to the ouster of former leader Moammar Qaddafi and a breakdown in central authority that stunted oil production. Libya is one of the smallest members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries.

“The important question for the market will be whether this turns into a lengthy disruption or not,” Richard Mallinson, an analyst at Energy Aspects Ltd. in London, said by email. “The political and security situation remains deeply unstable and so I am not surprised to see Libyan output continue to fluctuate on these kinds of issues.”

Brent crude, a global benchmark, rose $1.12 to $51.87 a barrel, the most since March 15, and was trading at $51.63 a barrel at 8:43 p.m. in Dubai.

Sharara, in western Libya, had been producing 221,000 barrels a day, the NOC said March 21. Spain’s Repsol SA is an operator of Sharara. The Eni SpA-developed Wafa oil field, farther to the west near the Algerian border, is also shut, the person said. Wafa has capacity to produce about 35,000 barrels a day.

For full read : https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-03-28/libya-s-oil-production-drops-after-biggest-field-said-to-close

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IEA says global oil market nears balance even as stocks rise

FILE PHOTO: An Esso service station displays the price of petrol and diesel at Heathrow airport

Global demand for oil is finally close to outstripping supply after nearly three years of surplus production, despite growth in the overhang of unused crude, the International Energy Agency said on Thursday.

The agency said oil stocks across the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) fell by 17.2 million barrels in March. Over the first three months of the year, stocks were up by 38.5 million barrels, or 425,000 barrels per day (bpd), after a large increase in January.

Overall, OECD stocks fell by 8.1 million barrels in February to 3.055 billion barrels as demand outpaced supply to the tune of around 200,000 bpd between January and March, the Paris-based agency said.

“There are several possible explanations for the discrepancy, e.g., demand is overstated or supply understated in our estimates. Another potential explanation lies with ‘less visible’ stocks, including stocks held at sea (either in transit or for speculative reasons) and on land in countries outside the OECD,” the IEA said.

“Indeed, a look at data from various sources shows stocks drawing in some non-OECD countries over (the first quarter of 2017). Non-OECD stocks are thought to be roughly equal in size to OECD volumes, but there is far less data available about them.”

Analysts at Bernstein Energy said the coming quarter was a “make or break” one for OPEC as the producer group fights to cut global inventories back to their five-year average.

Demand for crude oil tends to decline in the first quarter of the year, when refineries close for maintenance.

Also, the 60- to 70-day lag between exports leaving the Arabian Gulf and arriving in major markets means the extent of OPEC supply cuts has yet to bite. And while the group has reduced supply, it has increased exports, Bernstein said.

“In other words, the full extent of the production cuts has not hit yet,” Bernstein said.

Most of the decline in non-OECD stocks likely came from Iran, where inventories of ultra-light condensate had been held at sea since the imposition of Western sanctions in 2012.

The IEA said Iranian offshore stocks fell to 4 million barrels in March from 28 million barrels when sanctions were lifted in early 2016.

Globally, oil held offshore fell to 58.4 million barrels in March from 82.6 million barrels at the end of 2016, the IEA said.

“The net result is that global stocks might have marginally increased in the first quarter, versus an implied draw of about 0.2 million barrels per day,” the IEA said.

“It can be argued confidently that the market is already very close to balance, and as more data becomes available this will become clearer. We have an interesting second half to come.”

DEMAND OUTLOOK DIMS

The IEA trimmed its forecast for global oil demand growth in 2017 by 40,000 bpd to 1.32 million bpd. It warned this could prove optimistic given slowing consumption in the United States and developed Asian economies such as Australia, Japan and South Korea.

“New data shows weaker-than-expected growth in a number of countries including Russia, India, several Middle Eastern countries, Korea and the U.S., where demand has stalled in recent months,” the agency said.

On the supply front, the agency said global production fell by 755,000 bpd in March to 95.98 million bpd as OPEC and its partners complied with their joint deal to cut output by 1.8 million bpd in the first half of this year.

The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries stuck to its pledge in March, bringing compliance to a “robust” 99 percent, the IEA said.

The agency said non-OPEC signatories, including Russia and Oman, raised their compliance rate to 64 percent, from 38 percent in February.

The price of oil LCOc1 has doubled to around $56 a barrel from a 13-year low of $27 hit in January last year, which has encouraged a raft of new supply.

For full read : http://www.reuters.com/article/us-oil-iea-idUSKBN17F0W0?il=0

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Russia Turns Wary on Japan Gas Future as Abe Heads to Moscow

Russia’s Gazprom PJSC isn’t confident in Japan’s future as a growing natural gas user, which may damp prospects of a proposed pipeline between the countries as Premier Shinzo Abe travels to Moscow later this month.

“The demand situation in Japan is not clear yet for the next 15, 20, 25 years,” said Alexander Medvedev, deputy head of the Kremlin-backed exporter. The country’s nuclear reactor restarts, use of coal and rising energy efficiency are making the outlook for gas uncertain, he said in an interview at the Gastech conference in Chiba, Japan. The world’s biggest exporter sees brighter prospects in China.

russia-turns-wary-on-japan-gas-future-as-abe-heads-to-moscow

Abe, seeking to deepen economic ties with Russia in an effort to resolve a 70-year-old dispute over islands off Hokkaido, is expected to visit Moscow on April 27. Russian gas supplies to Japan, including the possible pipeline between the nations, could be discussed during the visit, Russia’s Kommersant newspaper reported last month.

Russia has turned to Asia as a growth market for its energy exports to balance its reliance on European buyers. It has challenged Saudi Arabia as the biggest crude seller to China and is aiming to become the country’s largest gas supplier through pipeline supplies from Siberia.

Meanwhile, the potential link to Japan, which has been under discussion for years, “has a history with its ups and downs,” Medvedev said during an interview Thursday. Abe’s meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in December created “a very positive environment for business,” but the project requires “a deep feasibility study” by both sides, he said.

The pipeline would need a minimum capacity of 8 billion cubic meters a year and optimally carry 20 billion to 30 billion cubic meters, according to Medvedev. That volume would equal as much as roughly a quarter of Japan’s demand. The nation is the world’s largest importer of liquefied natural gas, including from Russia.

To read more on Russia’s plans to supply China with gas, click here

Gazprom’s prospects both in China and Japan will depend heavily on the price it’s ready to offer, said Gordon Kwan, head of Asia oil and gas research at Nomura Holdings Inc. in Hong Kong.

“There is a place for Russian gas in Japan, but only if Gazprom can lower the price enough — perhaps by 20 percent to compete with Qatar and Australia,” he said. The same goes for China, which “does not want to put all supplies in one basket.”

Gazprom has at least two Asia-focused projects in Russia’s Far East, including a gas pipeline to China and an expansion of the Sakhalin-2 LNG project, co-owned by Royal Dutch Shell Plc along with Japan’s Mitsui & Co. and Mitsubishi Corp.

While partners have been weighing an expansion of the Sakhalin plant for years, new production is seen only as soon as 2023 by Gazprom and around 2025 by Mitsui.

“We see a lot of opportunities” for the Sakhalin venture in future, however “the market is already supplied,” Medvedev said. There’s still a “huge potential” for customers in China, India, Vietnam, Bangladesh, Pakistan and Kuwait, he said.

Forecast Decline

Japan’s utilities have been using an increasing amount of coal instead of more-expensive gas, and the country’s gas needs are forecast to decline through 2021 due to returning nuclear power plants, flat electricity demand and growing use of renewables, according to last year’s outlook by the International Energy Agency.

For full read : https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-04-09/russia-turning-iffy-on-japan-gas-future-as-abe-heads-to-moscow?utm_content=energy&utm_campaign=socialflow-organic&utm_source=twitter&utm_medium=social&cmpid%3D=socialflow-twitter-energy

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Lawmakers Advance Bills to Revive Solar Industry in Nevada

The standout proposal would increase the amount of credit toward nighttime and cloudy-day power that residential solar users can get in exchange for sharing their rooftop solar energy with the state’s power grid.

“There’s thousands of people that want solar, but we need fair net metering rates for that to happen,” Casey Coffman of Sunworks, a solar energy provider in Nevada, said of the credits system.

Assemblyman Justin Watkins’ bill would immediately revert the solar benefit to the energy’s retail value per kilowatt hour — a favorable rate compared to the progressively decreasing levels Nevada utility regulators implemented in late 2015. Last year, regulators restored the advantageous rate for a limited number of solar users in northern Nevada.

However, solar supporters say the industry remains in a tailspin statewide.

The 2015-16 changes effectively drove up the cost for residents to generate solar power, halting the state’s previously booming home-solar industry and prompting hundreds of layoffs.

Two national solar companies, Sunrun and SolarCity, left the state and many smaller installation providers closed shop. Roughly 2,500 solar-related jobs evaporated. About 8,300 people are currently employed in the industry in Nevada, according to the Solar Energy Industries Association.

Potential solar customers have been turned off, environmental advocate Brant Olson said.

“They don’t know what to expect, they just know that things are not going well,” he said.

The Public Utility Commission acknowledged in its 2016 revision that lowering the rates “all but crushed the rooftop solar industry in Northern Nevada,” and that the commission’s decision, “in several respects, may be best viewed as a promise better left unkept.”

NV Energy, the state’s monopolized energy provider, had argued that solar users are piggy-backing off the company’s infrastructure for an alternative source of energy when the sun goes down, but not paying for it.

Pat Egan, of NV Energy, argued at the hearing for more controls over the returns on solar energy.

The company is also seeking certain resource distributions that Watkins said could delay the industry’s revival.

Assembly Bill 270 was among five bills aimed at promoting renewable energies that lawmakers advanced to a full committee for consideration.

Other measures would require solar companies to make contracts clearer, allow multiple homes to share solar energy and speed up the state’s move to renewables.

State law currently directs NV Energy and any other providers to generate 20 percent of retail electricity from renewable sources. That’s set to increase to 25 percent by 2025.

Assembly Bill 206 would raise that bar, requiring those companies to generate 50 percent of electricity from solar, biomass, geothermal, water or wind power by 2030. The target would increase between four and six percent every two years until then.

It would also set an unenforceable goal for the state to reach 80 percent of electricity from renewable sources by 2040.

NV Energy would prefer for the state to average its energy source amounts over three years and for targets to be postponed if regulators or developers delay construction of new solar or other renewable facilities, Egan said.

Nevada Resort Association President Virginia Valentine said hotel owners are concerned making too many changes too quickly could put the power grid at risk, especially during peak energy hours in Las Vegas.

Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

For full read : https://www.usnews.com/news/best-states/nevada/articles/2017-04-05/lawmakers-advance-bills-to-revive-nevada-solar-industry

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