Monday, October 9, 2017

Suniva, SolarWorld Tariff Case Turns to Remedies


Following the International Trade Commission’s (ITC) September 22 decision that foreign manufacturing of solar cells and panels have contributed to “serious injury” among US cell and panel manufacturers, the focus of the solar industry has now turned to the potential remedies that the ITC will recommend to the President in its November 13 report. Under Section 201 of the Trade Act of 1974 (codified in 19 U.S.C. § 2253), the ITC will recommend an imposition of tariffs, quotas or other trade remedies. Last week, the ITC Commissioners began hearing petitions over potential remedies. Suniva and SolarWorld, the two companies behind the Section 201 petition to the ITC, have proposed a $0.32c/W tariff be included in the price of solar panels from abroad. While SolarWorld is also seeking relief through quotas, some attention should be paid to the tariff remedy of $0.32c/W that Suniva and SolarWorld are seeking.

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Southland Charges Up Battery Storage Financings


The largest non-recourse financing of energy storage assets anywhere in the world is the US$2.3 billion financing of the AES Southland project in the USA that closed in June 2017. The project included a 100 MW, utility-scale battery energy storage system located in California, a 10 MW utility-scale battery energy storage system in Arizona and two combined-cycle gas-fired power projects with a combined capacity of 1,284 MW in California. The 100 MW battery will provide capacity to the local utility, Southern California Edison, under a 20-year power purchase agreement (PPA).

Monday, September 25, 2017

In Domestic Solar Manufacturing Decision, ITC Rules in Favor of Suniva, SolarWorld


Following its Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing in April, US-based solar cell and panel manufacturer Suniva petitioned the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) that low-cost solar cells and panelsare causing "serious injury" to US manufacturers under the 1974 Trade Act. Under Section 201 of the 1974 Trade Act, the President can implement tariffs or quotas on imported goods from anywhere around the world if it is proven that the imports cause "serious injury" to a domestic industry. SolarWorld AG, a bankrupt solar panel manufacturer from Germany with US operations, joined Suniva in its argument. On Friday, the ITC unanimously accepted Suniva and SolarWorld's argument, ruling that cheap foreign imports are in fact causing "serious injury" to U.S. solar cell and panel manufacturers. Following a remedies hearing in a few weeks, the ITC will formally deliver its recommendations to the President by November 13 and the President will have until January 12 to decide whether to impose tariffs and import quotas on solar cells and panels from abroad.  

Wind Power Opponents Finding Fertile Ground in Oklahoma


Recent actions by federal regulators, state lawmakers, military installations, oil and gas interests and environmentalists may be making the Oklahoma regulatory terrain increasingly difficult for wind developers to navigate.

In April of this year Gov. Mary Fallin signed two bills that ended the last large tax credit for wind generation and tightened the requirements for registering private-use airfields near wind turbines. Under the signed legislation, wind farms that started producing energy after July 1, 2017 could not claim the state's zero emission tax credit program, originally set to expire in January 2021. The program, which pushed claims from $3.7 million in 2010 to $113 million in 2014, helped Oklahoma become the fourth-largest in the country by wind capacity, with more than 6,600 megawatts. Last year, about 25% of the state's electricity came from wind generation.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Brazil Holds Auction to Cancel Renewable Energy Contracts



On August 28, 2017, Brazil conducted something relatively unheard of -- its first ever "cancellation auction".  Wind, hydro and solar developers were given the opportunity to cancel future power contracts for a price, instead of having their performance bonds called. In total 557.4 MW were canceled; 307.7 MW were associated with 16 wind farms and 249.7 MW were associated with 9 solar parks. No hydroelectric contracts were canceled. Early reports show that there are more than 8,000 MW in renewable energy under development in Brazil.  The total number of megawatts canceled were fewer than many market observers had expected. 

Monday, September 11, 2017

Learn More: Round 2 Results of Contracts for Difference


Contracts for Difference: round 2 results

As predicted, the biggest winner of Contracts for Difference (CfD) in the second allocation round (AR2) was offshore wind. AR2 will bring over 3.1 GWs of offshore wind at strike prices that were up to 50 percent lower than those awarded in the first auction in 2015. Read more about the second allocation round results here.

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Hawaii’s Utilities Moving Forward on State’s Ambitious RPS Goals


by Todd Alexander, in New York and Jacob Yaniero, in Washington, DC

Hawaii’s big utilities now have a plan for meeting the most ambitious renewable portfolio standards (RPS) in the country. The Hawaii Public Utilities Commission accepted a plan last month submitted by Hawaiian Electric, Maui Electric and Hawaii Electric Light (collectively, the Hawaiian Electric Companies) that will add significant renewable capacity to a grid that is already one of the nation’s leaders.