Municipal water infrastructure in the United States is aging and in need of significant modernization. Many water utilities have little data on their distribution network operations and still rely on manual meter reading for billing. A new industry survey shows that this has begun to change as utilities are increasingly deploying smart water infrastructure with sensors and two-way communications. As this trend continues, US water utilities are projected to invest $8.3 billion in smart infrastructure over the next ten years, according to a new study published today by Northeast Group, LLC.
The Partnership for Affordable Clean Energy (PACE) released a new report on the state of net metering policies, entitled "Net Metering: Costs, Customers, and a Smarter Way Forward." The report was co-authored by Dr. David Gattie, Associate Professor of Environmental Engineering at the University of Georgia.
In good news for migratory birds, Sen. Ben Cardin (D-MD) and Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) have introduced a bipartisan bill, S. 1537, to reauthorize the Neotropical Migratory Bird Conservation Act(NMBCA), one of the nation’s most important bird conservation laws. Now called the Migratory Birds of the Americas Conservation Act, the bill would provide a higher level of funding to help conserve species like Baltimore Oriole, Red Knot, Wood Thrush, and other migratory birds, many of which are in rapid decline. Rep. Robert Wittman (R-VA) and Rep. Ron Kind (D-WI) are expected to introduce companion legislation in the House of Representatives soon.
Utility green pricing programs allow homes and businesses to procure green power through their electric utility. Since 2000, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) has compiled data on these utility green pricing programs and released annual "Top 10" lists to recognize outstanding programs. Rankings for calendar year 2016 are now available at NREL's Voluntary Green Powerpage and are included below. This year's Top 10 programs sold more than 5.5 million megawatt-hours (MWh) of green power to more than 560,000 customers. NREL estimates that green pricing programs nationwide sold more than 8 million MWh of green power to more than 800,000 customers.
The Department of Energy announced $46.2 million for 48 projects as part of its SunShot Initiative. These projects are intended to develop innovative, early-stage solar power technologies, which are aimed at lowering costs and improving reliability and efficiency.
Contrary to Energy Secretary Rick Perry’s repeated statements, a draft U.S. Department of Energy study ordered by Perry into the reliability of the electric grid concludes that the rise of renewable energy has resulted in a more resilient and reliable energy system and that the electric grid has never been more reliable than it is today.