Mainers likely to endure high electric rates into 2023 - Read the "Public Advocate's" real remedy for this

Harwood, the public advocate, believes Maine’s standard offer bid process needs to be adjusted. One approach could be to seek bids for both long- and short-term contracts, to smooth out rate impacts as a hedge against volatility. But the real answer, he said, is for New England states to speed up the transition to renewable generation and away from their dependence on natural gas.

New law could boost labor union presence in Maine renewable energy projects
Maine Public | By Fred Bever
Published April 26, 2022 at 6:18 PM EDT

As Maine continues to expand its investments in renewable energy infrastructure, organized labor is notching some policy victories aimed at boosting union workers' presence in the green economy.

This week, Gov. Janet Mills allowed a new law to go into effect without her signature that will require developers to pay prevailing wages to workers on commercial, mid- and large-scale renewable energy projects. And it will also allow regulators to give extra weight to bids for big public renewable energy projects that include agreements with unions or employee-owned contractors.

"Maine is becoming a national leader in making sure we tackle climate change and inequality together and making sure we have a worker-centered plan for climate action," says Matt Schlobohm, executive director of the AFL-CIO.

The measure was opposed by business groups, with solar power advocates saying it would slow recent progress on combating climate change with new, nonpolluting electricity sources. The new law will go into effect for projects that are proposed starting in Jan. 2023.

Schlobohm adds that last year lawmakers passed a law requiring the inclusion of union workers in the construction of a ratepayer-financed wind farm off Maine's coast, and another law requiring that a $20 million state investment in climate-resilient affordable housing do the same.

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Comment by Willem Post on April 30, 2022 at 5:56pm



This article has eight parts


Solar electricity increases with the rising sun, is maximal around midday, and decreases with the setting sun.


The Owners of traditional generating plants, to avoid grid disturbances, are required by ISO-NE, the NE grid operator, to reduce their outputs when solar is present, which decreases their annual production, kWh/y, and increases their costs per kWh, plus increases wear and tear of their plants, i.e., those services are not “for free”.


Electric grids with many solar systems have major midday solar output bulges, that are counteracted by the traditional power plants reducing their outputs. They have to increase their outputs during the peak hours of late afternoon/early evening, when solar will have gone to sleep until about 8 or 9 AM the next morning.


Battery systems, in use during all of 2015, delivered electricity, on average, for 0.5 hours

Battery systems, in use during all of 2019, delivered electricity, on average, for 3.2 hours  


The increase in energy-delivery duration is required, because the main function of battery systems is to absorb midday solar output bulges. They discharge about 80% of the absorbed electricity during the peak hours of late afternoon/early evening; the other 20% are battery system losses. See Parts 2 and 4


This article will show: 1) the annual cost of financing, 2) plus the Owner’s annual return of investment, 3) plus the annual cost of operation and maintenance will exceed 53 c/kWh of throughput, based on an annual battery system capacity factor of 0.5


Most of the 53 c/kWh of throughput, plus most of the battery system throughput loss (about 18.4 c/kWh of throughput, in case of net-metered solar) should be allocated to the Owners of solar systems, because: 1) they are the disturbers, and 2) almost the entire annual throughput of the battery system is due to absorbing midday solar output bulges.


Battery systems perform various other functions, but those services require much smaller throughputs than midday solar bulges.


This analysis assumes the net effect of financial benefits and subsidies is equivalent to reducing Owner’s annual costs by 45%. See Part 6.


NOTE: US Utilities, which own a large number of various type battery systems, provide a minimum amount of information regarding the:


1) All-in, turnkey capital cost of their battery systems, and

2) Hourly and daily operating data, including overall, round-trip, system losses. See Parts 1, 2 and 7




Turnkey Capital Costs of Site-specific, Custom-designed, Utility-grade, Grid-scale Battery Systems


Tesla Megapacks


Tesla is at the forefront of providing the world with lithium-ion battery systems, that include front-end power electronics, the batteries, and back-end power electronics, and systems for battery heating and cooling, as needed, in standardized enclosures.


The Megapack ratings shown in the table, in bold, fit into a standard container W, 286” x D, 85” x H, 99”

If multiple Megapacks are purchased, the $/kWh becomes less. See URL


The 2022 Megapack pricing is shown in the table

The 2022 Megapack pricing is 24.5% greater than the 2021 pricing. See URL


The 2025 Megapack price likely will be much higher, due to increased inflation rates, increased interest rates, supply chain disruptions, and increased energy and energy and materials prices, such as of Tungsten, Cobalt, Lithium, and Copper


NOTE: After looking at several aerial photos of large-scale battery systems with many Megapacks, it is clear many other items of equipment are shown, other than the Tesla supply, such as step-down/step-up transformers, connections to the grid, land, access roads, fencing, security, site lighting, i.e., the cost of the Tesla supply is only one part of the total battery system cost on a site.


NOTE: PG&E, a California utility, put in operation a 182.5 MW/730 MWh battery system, 4-h energy delivery duration.

The primary purpose is to absorb midday solar output bulges.

The turnkey cost was about $330 million, based on 2020/2021 pricing.

The cost would be significantly greater, if based on 2022 pricing. See URL

None of the costs associated with such systems will be charged to Owners of solar systems


NOTE: World Cobalt production was 142,000 and 170,000 metric ton, in 2020 and 2021, respectively, of which the Democratic Republic of the Congo was 120,000 metric ton in 2021.







Cap Cost






















































Turnkey Capital Cost Surveys of Grid-Scale Battery System by EIA

Comment by Art Brigades on April 28, 2022 at 4:12pm

The Public Advocate ought to have some background (at least 6th grade) in mathematics, economics, common sense.

Comment by arthur qwenk on April 28, 2022 at 9:13am

LePage, We Need You!

Comment by Robert Feller on April 28, 2022 at 8:16am

So let me see if I got this, there is now a law that mandates that the labor rate to provide unreliable and inefficient intermittent eclectic power from over priced and subsidized wind and solar so its now even more expensive? 

If you're a democrat this math probably makes complete sense.


Maine as Third World Country:

CMP Transmission Rate Skyrockets 19.6% Due to Wind Power


Click here to read how the Maine ratepayer has been sold down the river by the Angus King cabal.

Maine Center For Public Interest Reporting – Three Part Series: A CRITICAL LOOK AT MAINE’S WIND ACT


(excerpts) From Part 1 – On Maine’s Wind Law “Once the committee passed the wind energy bill on to the full House and Senate, lawmakers there didn’t even debate it. They passed it unanimously and with no discussion. House Majority Leader Hannah Pingree, a Democrat from North Haven, says legislators probably didn’t know how many turbines would be constructed in Maine if the law’s goals were met." . – Maine Center for Public Interest Reporting, August 2010 Part 2 – On Wind and Oil Yet using wind energy doesn’t lower dependence on imported foreign oil. That’s because the majority of imported oil in Maine is used for heating and transportation. And switching our dependence from foreign oil to Maine-produced electricity isn’t likely to happen very soon, says Bartlett. “Right now, people can’t switch to electric cars and heating – if they did, we’d be in trouble.” So was one of the fundamental premises of the task force false, or at least misleading?" Part 3 – On Wind-Required New Transmission Lines Finally, the building of enormous, high-voltage transmission lines that the regional electricity system operator says are required to move substantial amounts of wind power to markets south of Maine was never even discussed by the task force – an omission that Mills said will come to haunt the state.“If you try to put 2,500 or 3,000 megawatts in northern or eastern Maine – oh, my god, try to build the transmission!” said Mills. “It’s not just the towers, it’s the lines – that’s when I begin to think that the goal is a little farfetched.”

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We have the facts on our side. We have the truth on our side. All we need now is YOU.

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Hannah Pingree on the Maine expedited wind law

Hannah Pingree - Director of Maine's Office of Innovation and the Future

"Once the committee passed the wind energy bill on to the full House and Senate, lawmakers there didn’t even debate it. They passed it unanimously and with no discussion. House Majority Leader Hannah Pingree, a Democrat from North Haven, says legislators probably didn’t know how many turbines would be constructed in Maine."

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