Maine Senator

Renews Push for More Energy Independence

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — Maine Sen. Angus King is introducing a bill he says will create a push for greater energy independence.

King, an independent, is calling the legislation the Next Generation Grid Resources and Infrastructure Development Act, or the GRID Act. He says it's designed to use federal resources to support an electricity grid that's more resilient.

King says the bill builds on his Free Market Energy Act, which he introduced in 2015 to create parameters for consumers to connect sources such as solar to the energy grid.

The newer bill would establish parameters for the governance of distributed energy resources, such as solar. King says that would provide guidance to the states and allow for more development of energy technologies. He also says it would grow energy independence "at the personal level."

Next Generation Grid Resources and Infrastructure Development (GRID) Act

U.S. Senator Angus King (I-Maine)

America’s electricity grid has remained relatively unchanged over the past 100 years – but today, new technologies, environmental pressures, and the need for more resilient infrastructure are beginning to transform the way electricity is generated and delivered. Distributed energy resources (DER), which can include generation, storage, efficiency, and demand response, among others – are being deployed at the edge of the grid, helping to create a more secure, resilient, and cost-effective electricity system. The Next Generation GRID Act would help move America’s energy infrastructure into the future, by removing barriers to the deployment of DER and leveraging federal resources to ensure new investments in the grid lay the groundwork for a more modern energy system.

Removing Barriers
Removing barriers to DER starts at protecting the rights of consumers—from homeowners to businesses large and small—to manage their energy use and to be protected from discriminatory rates and interconnection procedures. The Next Generation GRID Act would establish a right of interconnection for DER under the Public Utilities Regulatory Policy Act of 1978, preventing undue delays, punitive rates or charges, and fair credit for exported energy.

A New Approach
Recent events have shown the vulnerability of the electric grid to physical disruption. While we cannot build an entirely secure grid, new approaches, including through DER, have shown we can build a more distributed and resilient grid. The Next Generation GRID Act would target federal dollars for a new infrastructure effort, asking states and electric utilities to conduct assessments of their grid systems and infrastructure and develop plans for incorporating DER, to assess areas of the system where different types of DER can provide the most value, or where their integration may pose challenges for the grid. The bill would also ask state and federal regulators to proactively consider new alternatives to costly infrastructure upgrades, like new substations and transmission lines, in the planning of the electric grid. While the cost of producing electricity has declined dramatically over the last few years, the cost of delivering that power has steadily increased, keeping consumer bills high. Known as non-wires alternatives, these new solutions are often a combination of DER such as energy storage, solar and demand response, which can more cost effectively meet grid needs while limiting the construction of new physical infrastructure.

New models
With the grid changing rapidly it is also time to consider new models for utility regulation. While utilities are already accustomed to implementing policy goals, economic incentives under the current regulatory model have relied too heavily on the need for utilities to expend capital to make money. With more demands increasingly being placed on utilities, from environmental goals to energy efficiency and to incorporating a range of customer-driven technologies, the Next Generation GRID Act would encourage state regulators to consider the use of performance-based incentives to better align economic incentives for utilities with policy goals.

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Comment by Penny Gray on December 18, 2017 at 7:02pm

One just south of Waterville on the right hand side heading north, one in Freeport, also on the right hand side headed north.

Comment by Eric A. Tuttle on December 18, 2017 at 6:34pm

Penny Gray -- Where, along side of I-95 ? 

Comment by Penny Gray on December 18, 2017 at 5:51pm

The solar "farms" that fill old farm fields alongside of I-95 have been covered with snow and ice for the past two weeks.  I don't think any of the promoters realize that no energy is produced when the panels are covered over, but I'm wondering if that really matters.  Perhaps they are just icons, like the wind turbines.  Symbols of what we should be doing, even if it doesn't work.

Comment by Long Islander on December 18, 2017 at 10:43am

Please read "The Untold Story of Record Hill Wind":

Angus King's Record Hill:

Part I -

Part II -

Comment by Thinklike A. Mountain on December 18, 2017 at 8:54am

I propose the SCAM act, just to repel King Angus and his ilk.

Stop Carpetbaggers Around Maine (SCAM) act

Comment by Dan McKay on December 17, 2017 at 11:40am

 "the Next Generation GRID Act would encourage state regulators to consider the use of performance-based incentives to better align economic incentives for utilities with policy goals."

"Maine has substantial natural resources, including wind, biomass, and hydroelectric power. The American Recovery & Reinvestment Act (ARRA) is making a meaningful down payment on the nation’s energy and environmental future. The Recovery Act investments in Maine are supporting a broad range of clean energy projects, from energy efficiency  and the smart grid to solar and wind. Through these investments, Maine’s businesses, universities, non‐profits, and local government are creating quality jobs today and positioning Maine to play an important role in the new energy economy of the future."

The Public Utilities  Commission has  received $27.3 million  to invest in state‐level  energy efficiency and  renewable energy  priorities. 

Central Maine Power  Company was awarded  $95.9 million through the  Smart Grid Investment  Grant Program to install a  smart meter network for all  its residential, commercial  and industrial customers approximately 650,000  meters. 

Maine received six 1603 payments for renewable  energy generation  totaling $40.6 million,  which include solar  projects and wind  facilities. For example  Evergreen Wind Power  received $40.4 million for  a wind facility.

Verso Paper Corporation was awarded $9.4 million  to deploy industrial energy  efficiency technologies that  will recover waste energy  from industrial facilities.  The project involves 12 subprojects at Verso paper  mills located in Jay and  Bucksport, Maine and  Sartell, Minnesota.

The University of Maine received $7.1 million to  design and deploy three  floating offshore turbine  prototypes in Orono to  research wind power.

 The Maine Public Utilities Commission in Augusta received $321,000 for Enhancing State and Local  Governments’ Energy Assurance to expand state and local energy assurance planning and resiliency  efforts and to build in-house state and local government energy assurance expertise. 

The Maine Public Utilities Commission in Augusta received $784,000 for State Assistance on  Electricity Policies to assist in addressing its Recovery Act electricity workload by hiring staff trained  to facilitate the review of time‐sensitive requests approving electric utility expenditures.


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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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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