Synapse Energy Economics prepared an analysis and report of state energy policy impacts on future natural gas consumption in New England’s electric sector.


"First, with or without a new pipeline, existing laws and regulations will cumulatively require New England’s use of natural gas for electric generation to decrease by 27 percent by 2023, relative to 2015 levels."  


The below section ALTERNATIVE EVALUATION OF GAS CONSUMPTION AND PIPELINES, shows there will be no shrinking of NE gas requirements due to:


- Normal GDP growth of the NE economy of about 2%/y

- Millions of additional heat pumps for building space heating to replace about 1/3 of the fossil fuels presently used by traditional heating systems. The traditional systems would supply the other 2/3.

- Millions of light duty electric vehicles to replace light duty internal combustion vehicles.


Imported High-Cost Liquid Natural Gas Versus Low-Cost Domestic Natural Gas:

Synapse and its clients want to ship more LNG through the Everett terminal, but one must not forget that additional LNG would not be coming from friendly Trinidad at about $5/million Btu, but from hostile Russia and the Middle East at about $9/million Btu, in foreign-owned tankers, built in foreign shipyards, crewed by foreigners.


Sending $dollars abroad to buy gas when the US has an abundance of gas appears not too smart to me. It is downright subversive, as it would be adding to the US trade deficit and would fail to put America first.


Sponsors of Synapse Studies

1) Synapse was hired by the following anti-pipeline/anti-fossil fuel entities:


- The Connecticut Fund for the Environment, Consumers for Sensible Energy

- Mass Energy Consumers Alliance

- Pipe Line Awareness Network for the Northeast Sierra Club Connecticut

- Sierra Club Massachusetts


2) Synapse performed an analysis of the ISO-NE “Operational Fuel Security Analysis”. See URL.


An RE activist group paid Synapse:


- Conservation Law Foundation

- Acadia Center

- New Hampshire Office of the Consumer Advocate

- PowerOptions

- RENEW Northeast

- Vermont Energy Investment Corporation


The group did not like the way ISO-NE had made its analysis.

The group is avidly promoting wind, solar, and other measures.

Synapse is their go-to consultant to provide them with reports that support their views and objectives.


The Synapse analysis claimed:


- The ISO-NE analysis "suffers" from being overly conservative and therefore used flawed assumptions about how the NE grid is likely to evolve in the future.


- ISO-NE is not being realistic regarding current grid and fuel conditions, and also not understanding the future development of RE, in particular wind and solar.


- ISO-NE did not sufficiently take into account the mandated RE build-outs enacted by the six legislatures of New England.


3) The following RE entities are agitating, by various means, in favor of high-cost LNG instead of abundant, low-cost, domestic NG from Pennsylvania.


- Sierra Club

- Conservation Law Foundation

- Acadia Center

- New Hampshire Office of the Consumer Advocate

- PowerOptions

- RENEW Northeast

- Vermont Energy Investment Corporation

- Cere


These RE entities are against more pipelines for bringing gas from Pennsylvania, because they know what is good for us.

They are adamant about weaning us off fossil fuels, no matter what the cost or inconvenience.

They are in favor of more Russian/Middle East LNG that costs about 3 times as much as gas from Pennsylvania, and emits about 1.43/1.17 = 22.2% more CO2 than gas from Pennsylvania.

They think choosing to emit more CO2 for decades while “building out wind and solar” would be saving the world. See Appendix.




Below is presented an alternative evaluation of NE gas consumption and additional pipelines. Other aspects are:


- Arranging existing gas turbine plants for duel-fuel (gas and fuel oil) firing

- Providing more gas and fuel oil storage facilities near existing dual fuel plants and near any new dual fuel plants.


NE Wind in 2017 and Projected to 2030


ISO-NE has incorporated future plans of the NE states regarding onshore and offshore wind. See table 1 and URL for latest summary of capacity and electricity generation fed to grid in 2017 and by 2030.


NOTE: In this article it is assumed all of the state plans are implemented by 2030


Table 1/NE wind











































Generation, GWh
















*Maine has installed 923 MW, but about 23 MW is connected to Canadian grid, i.e., not “seen” by ISO-NE


NE PV Solar in 2017 and Projected to 2030


ISO-NE has incorporated future plans of the NE states regarding “before and after the meter” PV solar. See table 2 and URLs for latest summary of capacity and electricity generation fed to grid in 2017 and by 2030. The ISO-NE data were extrapolated to 2030.


NOTE: In this article it is assumed all of the state plans are implemented by 2030.


Table 2/NE solar

Per ISO-NE Per ISO-NE Extrapolated





Capacity, MW
















BTM, table 3A




ATM, table 3





NE Grid Load in 2017, and Projections for 2026 and 2030


Table 3 shows the:

- ISO-NE estimates for 2026

- Extrapolated estimates for 2030


With high levels of variable, intermittent wind and solar (wind and sun dependent), adequate flexible gas turbine capacity, with adequate gas/oil supply, has to be ready to run (kept in good repair), staffed and fueled for peaking, filling in and balancing to ensure electricity consumption by users exactly matches the electricity supplied to the grid, 24/7/365, regardless of whether there is adequate wind and/or sun.

Hour-By-Hour Analyses of Fuel Requirements for Electricity Generation

Synapse did not perform an hour-by-hour analysis to determine the hourly fuel requirements for:


- Generating electricity for general uses

- Generating electricity for heating buildings with normal fuels and heat pumps

- Operating vehicles with normal fuels and with electricity

- When the sum of wind and solar is minimal, i.e., near zero, for several days in a row, such as with snow and ice on the solar panels.


The Synapse report does not mention:


- ISO-NE has already performed an analysis of the projected NE grid load

- ISO-NE does not, at this time, know how fast electric vehicles and heat pumps will be deployed in future years.

- ISO-NE has observed, over the years, the actual build-outs of RE and energy efficiency usually are well short of and occur later than the avowed intentions of states. Synapse assumes all avowed intentions will be implemented and on time.

- ISO-NE states: "If rapid EV or electric heating adoption emerges, the impacts may need to be considered in the ISO’s outlook for the region’s demand and energy.

- ISO-NE plans to start working with regional stakeholders to quantify the impact of the states’ anti-fossil policies on long-term demand so that ISO-NE can understand their potential effects on the power system and reflect these in future Regional System Plans.


NOTE:It is likely, on an hour-to-hour basis, wind and solar could be minimal, i.e., near zero, at any time during the year, including during cold spells in winter, such as the severe, extended, cold spell of 2016/2017, which could have been made worse with snow and ice on the PV panels. That means a full complement of other energy sources must be available (ready to run, kept in good repair, staffed and fueled) at any time during the year, i.e., 24/7/365, to serve the NE electricity demand. Wind and solar must not be counted due to a lack of reliability. Reliability of supply, 24/7/365, must come before everything. How could people get to work with their EVs, if they had to rely on unreliable sources, such as wind and solar, which are near zero almost every morning?


NOTE: The Connecticut legislature voted to accept zero-carbon bids of two nuclear power plants, Millstone and Seabrook, and rejected bids of 6 wind entities in Maine.

Projected Electricity Generation for 2026 and 2030

Table 3 shows the generation, GWh, of each energy source for 2017, 2026, and 2030, if planned wind, solar and other build-outs were implemented. Below are explanatory comments on table 3:

- The first two columns are from ISO-NE historic data 

- Coal generation is assumed at zero for 2026 and 2030

- Standard, low efficiency, gas/oil plants should be closed down and replaced with up to 60% efficient, dual fuel, gas turbine plants. The same quantity of fuel would generate more electricity.

- Gas generation is assumed to slightly increase as older, less efficient gas turbine plants are replaced with up to 60% efficient, dual fuel, gas turbine plants.

- Nuclear generation is assumed to decrease in 2026 and 2030, due to plants closing down.

- Hydro generation is assumed to slightly increase due to ongoing plants efficiency improvements

- Solar generation, ATM, is assumed to increase in accordance with ISO-NE projections

- Wind generation is assumed to increase in accordance with projects listed with ISO-NE

- Geo, Muni refuse, Biomass, Landfill gas generation are assumed about unchanged for 2026 and 2030

- Methane, farm and other generation is assumed to slightly increase for 2026 and 2030

- Net external ties is assumed to slightly increase in 2026 and 2030

- Pumping loss is assumed unchanged for 2026 and 2030. Pumping loss = electricity required for pumping to upper reservoir - electricity generated by flow from upper to lower reservoir. The round trip pumping loss, high voltage AC-to-high voltage AC, is about 25 to 30%.


Table 3/NE Grid Load

NE grid Load

NE grid Load

NE grid Load

NE grid Load














Oil, incl. dual fuel GTs










Total fossil




















- Geo





- Solar, ATM





- Wind





- Muni refuse





- Biomass, i.e., wood





- Landfill gas





- Methane, farm and other





- Steam





Total RE










Total generation 





Net external ties 





- Québec



- New Brunswick



- New York



Pumping loss 










ISO-NE Projected NE Consumption


The consumption for 2030 was assumed by extrapolation. See table 3A

The solar, BTM, for 2030 was assumed by extrapolation.

The "Difference" between “Net” at bottom of table 3 and “Consumption, with HP and EV” in table 3A is 11456 GWh for 2026 and 13736 GWh for 2030. These small differences are not material.


There cannot be any significant reduction in annual gas supply, because all gas supply will be needed to serve future electricity demand due to:


- Wind and solar varying from year to year (more or less wind and sun), as happens in Germany and Denmark

- Hydro varying from year to year (more or less rain/snow), as happens during drought periods

- Some wind, solar and energy efficiency measures not fully implemented, or not at all, or at a later date. 


NOTE: An hour-by-hour study of fuel and gas consumption would reveal the need for additional fuel oil and gas storage near gas turbine plants and near other users during high stress events, such as the long cold spell of 2016/2017.


Click on 2018 Forecast Data, 2018 - 2027


See page 20 of URL

Energy Efficiency


The US has had near-constant electricity generation at about 4000 TWh/y, with average real GDP growth at about 2%/y, for about 10 years. That 2% was due to 1) improvements in electricity generation and 2) improvements to subsequent consumption, i.e., improved energy efficiency.


New England likely is as virtuous as the US. It likely also had about a 2% improvement. Any claim made by the six NE states in excess of 1.5 - 2% for improved EE would be highly suspect, as that would leave less than 0 - 0.5% for generation improvements. See table 3A and page 20 of URL.


Table 3A/year







Grid load, no PV and no EE




Grid load growth, compounded, %/y



Less solar, BTM




Solar growth, compounded, %/y






Prior energy efficiency, includes 2017


Added EE, 9 years, 2018 - 2026


Total EE, includes 2026


Added EE, 4 years, 2027 - 2030


Total EE, includes 2030


ISO-NE consumption. See URL





Heat pumps, assumed




Electric vehicles, assumed




Consumption, with HP and EV







Estimated Heat Pump and Electric Vehicle Implementation

Table 4 shows the estimated number of heat pumps installed (about 750000 in 2026), and estimated EVs on the road (about 1.35 million in 2026), and the estimated electricity fed to grid, kWh, for each HP and EV.


Table 4/year



Generation fed to grid for HPs, GWh/y



Generation fed to grid, kWh/y/HP

2500 kWh/y x 1.075



Heat pumps installed



Generation fed to grid for EVs, GWh/y



Generation fed to grid, kWh/y/EV

12000 mi x 0.350 x 1.15 x 1.075



EVs on the road




Caveat Regarding Enthusiastic Energy Efficiency Calculations

- The calculations performed by state entities regarding energy efficiency savings are not uniform from state to state

- The estimates by state entities likely are on the high side to "prove" to voters and legislators the effectiveness of EE programs to justify perpetuating them. See Note

- It is somewhat like having the fox determining the combination of the lock on the chicken coop.

- ISO-NE relying on those EE calculations regarding grid planning may be unwise, i.e., how good are these EE numbers provided by the states?

NOTE: Efficiency Vermont was claiming annual energy cost savings for heat pumps that were FOUR TO NINE times greater than in the real world, as proven by a VT-DPS sponsored survey of existing HP installations.


- Savings per Efficiency Vermont, $865 - $1842/y

- Savings per the VT-DPS survey about $200/HP/y.

- Those savings were reported by Efficiency Vermont in its annual reports to get its budgets approved and perpetuate its programs,

See URLs and Appendix


Increased Renewables per Capita Leads to Higher Household Electric Rates


The below graph shows countries with high levels of wind, solar, etc., also have high levels of household electric rates.


Politicians and bureaucrats find ways to place the cost burden of renewables (such as subsidies, grants, taxes, fees and surcharges) mostly on households, but give a free pass to the industrial and commercial sectors low for "competitive reasons"


Industry and commerce are vastly better organized and have vastly more political clout, and are much less easily swayed/bamboozled/conned than households. 


"Fossil fuels are essential for making wind turbines, as Robert Wilson explains in Can You Make a Wind Turbine Without Fossil Fuels?"

"Oil is used from start to finish; from mining to crushing ore and smelting it; to delivery to the supply chain fabrication plants for the 8,000 parts in a turbine; to the final delivery to the site and erection.

Cement trucks drive to the delivery site over roads built by diesel powered road equipment.

The roads are paved with asphalt made from refinery tar.

Fossil-made cement and steel rebar is required for the wind turbine foundations.

Diesel trucks haul the components of the turbine to the installation place, and diesel cranes lift the turbine sections and 8,000 parts upward.

There are no electric blast furnaces, only fossil fueled ones to make cement and most steel.

There are no electric mining trucks, electric long haul trucks to deliver the 8,000 parts made all over the world, nor electric cement trucks, electric cranes, etc.

That means, even if a wind turbine could generate enough energy to replicate itself, it wouldn’t matter, the A-to-Z process would need to be electrified."


"Not only would windmills have to generate enough power to reproduce themselves, but they have to make enough power above and beyond that to fuel the rest of civilization.

Think of the energy to make the cement and steel of a 300-foot tower with three 150-foot rotor blades sweeping an acre of air at 150 miles per hour. 

The turbine housing alone weighs over 56 tons, the blade assembly 36 tons, and the whole tower assembly over 163 tons. 

Florida Power & Light says a typical turbine site is a 42 by 42 foot area with a 30-foot hole filled with tons of steel rebar-reinforced concrete; about 1,250 tons of foundation to hold the 300-foot tower in place (per Rosenbloom)."



Wind and Solar Conditions in New England 

New England has highly variable weather and low-medium quality wind and solar conditions. See NREL wind map and NREL solar map.



- Wind electricity is zero about 30% of the hours of the year (it takes a wind speed of about 7 mph to start the rotors)

- Wind is minimal most early mornings and most late afternoons/early evenings (peak demand hours), especially during summer

- Wind often is minimal 5 - 7 days in a row in summer and winter, as proven by ISO-NE real-time generation data.

- About 60% is generated at night, when demand is much less than during the late afternoons/early evenings

- About 60% is generated in winter.

- During winter, the best wind month is up to 2.5 times the worst summer month

- New England has the lowest capacity factor (about 0.262) of any US region, except the US South. See URL.



- Solar electricity is strictly a midday affair.

- It is zero about 65% of the hours of the year, mostly at night.

- It often is minimal 5 - 7 days in a row in summer and in winter, as proven by ISO-NE real-time generation data.

- It is minimal early mornings and late afternoons/early evenings

- It is minimal much of the winter months

- It is minimal for several days with snow and ice on most of the panels.

- It varies with variable cloudiness, which would excessively disturb distribution grids with many solar systems, as happens in southern California and southern Germany on a daily basis. Utilities use batteries to stabilize their grids.

- During summer, the best solar month is up to 4 times the worst winter month; that ratio is 6 in Germany.

- New England has the lowest capacity factor (about 0.145, under ideal conditions) of any region in the US, except some parts of the US Northwest.


NOTE: Even if the NE grid had large capacity connections with Canada and New York, any major NE wind lull and any major NE snowfall likely would affect the entire US northeast, i.e., relying on neighboring grids to "help-out" likely would not be prudent strategy.


Wind Plus Solar:

ISO-NE publishes the minute-by-minute outputs off various energy sources contributing their electricity to the grid.

All one has to do is add the wind and solar and one comes rapidly to the conclusion both are minimal many hours of the year, at any time during the year.


- Wind plus solar production could be minimal for 5 - 7 days in summer and in winter, especially with snow and ice on most of the panels, as frequently happens during December, January and February, as proven by ISO-NE real-time generation data.


If we were to rely on wind and solar for most of our electricity, massive energy storage systems (a few hundred GWh-scale for Vermont, multiple TWh-scale for NE) would be required to cover multi-day wind lulls, multi-day overcast/snowy periods, and seasonal variations. See URLs.


Wind and solar cannot ever be expected to charge New England’s EVs, so people can get to work the next day, unless backed up by several TWh of storage, because wind/solar lulls can occur for 5 - 7 days in a row, in summer and in winter. BTW, the turnkey capital cost of one TWH of storage (delivered as AC to the grid) is about $400 billion.



High Levels of Wind and Solar


High levels of wind and solar, say 60% of NE grid annual load (the rest supplied by other sources), could not ever stand on their own, without the NE grid having:


- Much more robust connections to nearby grids (Canada, New York State), plus

- Gas turbine plants and reservoir/run-of-river hydro plants that could quickly vary their outputs to compensate for the quickly varying outputs of wind and solar, including very lowoutputs of wind and solar, which occur at random, at least 30% of the hours of the year, according to minute-by-minute generation data posted by ISO-NE.


If high levels of wind and solar were built out after a few decades, and the gas turbine, nuclear, coal and oil plants were closed down (according to RE proponent wishes), and with existing connections to nearby grids, and with existing reservoir/run-of-river hydro plants, and with existing other sources, the NE grid would require 6 - 8 TWh of storage to cover 5 to 7 day wind/solar lulls, which occur at random, and to cover seasonal variations (storing wind when it is more plentiful during fall, winter and spring, and when solar is more plentiful in summer, so more of their electricity would be available in summer when wind usually is at very low levels). See URLs.


That storage would need to have a minimal level at all times (about 10 days of demand coverage), to cover multi-day, scheduled and unscheduled equipment and system outages and unusual multi-day weather events, such as a big snow fall covering the solar panels andminimal wind.


- One TWh of storage costs about $400 billion, at $400/kWh, or $100 billion at a Holy Grail $100/kWh.

- Any electricity passing through storage has about a 20% loss, on a high voltage AC-to-high voltage AC basis, to be made up by additional wind, solar and other generation.

- Any electricity fed to EVs and plug-in hybrids has about a 20% charging and resting loss, from wall meter to “in battery”, as indicated by the vehicle meter, to be made up by additional wind, solar, and other generation. See URLs.;



Hydro-Quebec Electricity Generation and Purchases: Google this URL for the 2017 facts. The H-Q electricity supply is an order of magnitude cleaner than the Vermont supply.


Table 5/H-Q



Hydropower generated 




- Hydro


- Wind


- Biomass and waste reclamation 


- Other


Total RE generated and purchased



NOTE: Gentilly-2 nuclear generating station, plus three thermal generating stations (Tracy, La Citière and Cadillac) were shut down.


Hydro-Quebec Export Electricity: H-Q net exports were 34.4 TWh/y in 2017; provided 27% of H-Q net income, or $780 million, i.e., very profitable.


H-Q export revenue was $1,651 million in 2017, or 1641/34.4 = 4.8 c/kWh.

See page 24 of Annual Report URL.

This is for a mix of old and new contracts.

Revenue = 1641

Net profit = 780

Cost = 1641 - 780 = 861

Average cost of H-Q generation = 861/34.4 = 2.5 c/kWh


GMP buys H-Q electricity, at the Vermont border, for 5.549 c/kWh, under a recent contract. GMP buys at 5.549 c/kWh, per GMP spreadsheet titled “GMP Test Year Power Supply Costs filed as VPSB Docket No: Attachment D, Schedule 2, April 14, 2017”.

H-Q is eager to sell more of its surplus electricity to New England and New York.


That is at least 50% less than ridgeline wind and large-scale field-mounted solar, which are heavily subsidized to make their electricity appear to be less costly than reality. 


GMP sells to me at 19 c/kWh, per rate schedule. Consumers pricing for electricity is highly political. That is implemented by rate setting, taxes, fees, surcharges, etc., mostly on household electric bills, as in Denmark and Germany, etc. The rate setting is influenced by protecting “RE policy objectives”, which include highly subsidized, expensive microgrids, islanding, batteries and net metered solar and heat pumps.


The Vermont Heat Pump Promotion Troika


1) GMP: Kristin Carlson, GMP's vice president for strategic and external affairs, said in an email that the utility has now installed 1,125 heat pumps.


-GMP arranges for the installation with an Efficiency Vermont-approved contractor.

- The contractor chooses the heat pump brand and model; brands include Daikin, Fujitsu, and Mitsubishi, with outputs ranging from 9,000 Btu/h to 18,000 Btu/h.

- GMP loan at an interest rate is 10.74%/y. That appears to be a usury rate!

- GMP says that payments will range from $49 to $81 per month, depending on the model of heat pump that's installed.

- Maintenance is included; no mention of parts or outage service calls

- That doesn't include the electricity required to run the unit.

- Should a homeowner sell the house before the loan is repaid, GMP says it can offer a buy-out price for the heat pump, or the new owner could pick up the payments.


Table 6




ccHP capacity, Btu/h




ccHP turnkey cost, $




Monthly payment at 10.74% for 15y, $




Annual payment, $





Annual Cost Summary


Table 7

No ccHP

With ccHP

Fuel oil price, $/gallon



Electricity price, $/kWh


Fuel oil, gal/y



Fuel oil displaced by ccHP, gal/y


Fuel oil cost, $/y



Electricity consumed, kWh/y


Electricity cost, $/y


Total energy   cost, $/y



Energy cost saving, $/y


GMP loan, average cost, $/y^


Amortize back-up system, $/y*



Total cost, $/y



LOSS, $/y



Not Counted

Maintenance contract, ccHP, no parts, $/y


Outage calls, ccHP, no parts, $/call


Maintenance contract, back-up, no parts, $/y



Outage calls, back-up, no parts, $/call




* Amortize $10,000 back-up system at 5% for 20 y

^ GMP loan, average cost = (49 + 81)/2 x 12 = $780/y, includes (unspecified) ccHP maintenance. Does that include ccHP outage calls?

NOTE: With a carbon tax on fuel oil the scale can be tipped in favor of ccHPs.


2) Efficiency Vermont: According to a fact sheet at Efficiency Vermont, a homeowner would save:


- $1,842/y by shifting 80% of the heating load away from electric resistance heat to a cold-climate heat pump.

- Propane users would save $1,268/y.

- Fuel oil users would save $865/y.

- The “fact sheet” (fiction sheet?) is no longer accessible!


3) VPIRG, an RE Lobby: VPIRG, a booster of renewable energy, mostly financed by Vermont RE businesses, estimated the annual savings of a heat pump at $1000 to $1500 on a $3000 household heating bill. It appears, VPIRG grabbed a number out of the air, because it looked good.


Views: 430


You need to be a member of Citizens' Task Force on Wind Power - Maine to add comments!

Join Citizens' Task Force on Wind Power - Maine

Comment by Willem Post on January 5, 2019 at 5:35am


In below comment, $0.5/kWh should read $0.05/kWh

Comment by Willem Post on January 4, 2019 at 5:04pm

Hi Dan,

A 4 MW solar array will take up at least 30 acres of relatively level, open land.

The turnkey cost is about $12 million

Utilities are allowed to make 9%/y on invested capital

Assume money is borrowed at 5%/y for 25 years

Amortize $12 million PV system at 14%/y for 25 years; total payments $42.3 million

Amortize $12 million loan at 5%/y for 25 years; total payments $21 million

Net income to utility $21.3 million. Rate payers pay that.

Production over 25 years = 25 x 4000 kW x 8766 x 0.145 = 127.1 million kWh

Electricity cost = 0.165/kWh (mostly a noon-time affair, variable, intermittent, not there at all at night, which compares with $0.5/kWh (wholesale, always there 24/7/365) for the entire NE grid, which has been at that level for about 9 years.  

Various direct and indirect subsidies, such as cash grants, taxes, fees, surcharges, shifting costs to the rate base, rate increases, are use to reduce the $/kWh to make it APPEAR to be "competitive".

Same story with the battery system, which lasts only 12 to 15 years.

Comment by Dan McKay on January 4, 2019 at 10:24am


  Madison Electric Works in Maine is transforming to incorporate a 4MW solar array into their distribution territory. They are a municipal department and is exempt from the generation-distribution decoupling law. 

   They are considering adding storage capacity to augment their solar generation. 
     Bottom line of whether they achieve success or failure will be in the rates they establish going forward and whether customers are satisfied or not.
     Some of the related costs that MEW will have to consider as they deploy their DG in association with CMP :
       1.   Grid capacity provided by CMP  
                A. needed power for overload capacity,  
                B.  may absorb energy during overgeneration,
                C.  supports stable voltage and frequency.
        2.  Startup power deserves special mention. Large devices such as air compressors, air conditioners, and transformers require a significant in-rush current to run. Standalone PV systems may not have the requisite power to start these devices unless they are significantly oversized. For a residential air conditioner, the peak current measured to start the device “is six to eight times the standard operating current.”Therefore, most PV systems need the grid connection and the power supplied by the grid to start these larger devices. 
        3.     In terms of voltage quality, another benefit to the grid is its limiting of harmonic distortion. Absent a grid connection, DERs are prone to harmonic distortion, which in turn could lead to devices malfunctioning or shortening their useful life. Low voltage quality also leads to a reduction in system efficiency. 
Comment by Willem Post on January 4, 2019 at 5:59am


If you had more panels your generator would not need to run as much

Comment by Penny Gray on January 3, 2019 at 5:21pm

Thank you for that info, Willem.  My battery bank is small, my needs are small.  But still, the battery bank is the most expensive component of my 500 watt photovoltaic system. And right now my generator is charging my battery bank, not the solar panels.  This will continue for several months here in northern Maine.

Comment by Willem Post on January 3, 2019 at 3:05pm


Microgrids are an expensive hoax, perpetrated by idle bureaucrats on lay people, that will NOT EVER PAY, if all costs are properly allocated, instead of fudged into the rate schedule, and made to look better with subsidies and grants.

I am sure GMP and other utilities have hidden spreadsheets that show actual costs, and what they need to hide, by hook or crook, to get those spreadsheets to look good. Some categories of costs disappear into the rate base behind closed doors.

Comment by Willem Post on January 3, 2019 at 3:00pm


Good question.

Seasonal storage for NE would be about 8 TWh, if NE had 60% plus wind and solar, and used batteries (instead of gas turbines) for most of the peaking, filling in and balancing.

One TWh costs about $400 billion, turnkey

Any energy passing through storage would lose about 20%, on a HV AC-to-HV AC basis.

Comment by Dan McKay on January 3, 2019 at 1:48pm
           An Act To Allow Microgrids That Are in the Public Interest   

           Be it enacted by the People of the State of Maine as follows: 

Sec. 1. 35-A MRSA §2305-B, sub-§§1 and 2, as enacted by PL 2001, c. 110, 3 §2, are amended to read:

 1. Transmission and distribution utilities; microgrids.     A transmission and distribution utility or a person that constructs, maintains or operates a new microgrid approved in accordance with section 3351, subsection 3 may construct and maintain its lines in, upon, along, over, across or under the roads and streets in any municipality in  which it is authorized to supply electricity, subject to the conditions and restrictions  provided in this chapter and chapter 25. 
     2. Persons other than transmission and distribution utilities or persons that construct, maintain or operate a new microgrid. A person other than a transmission  and distribution utility or person that constructs, maintains or operates a new microgrid  approved in accordance with section 3351, subsection 3 may not construct or maintain  electric lines, including poles or other related structures, in, upon, along, over, across or  under a road, street or other public way unless: 
        A. The person satisfies the requirements of section 2503; 
        B. The person or the person's contractor hired to construct the line provides to the applicable licensing authority a performance bond: 
                    (1) In the amount of the value of the line, including poles or other related structures, to be located in the public way; and 
                     (2) That is enforceable for one year from the date the line is energized; 
        C. Prior to constructing the line, the person notifies the transmission and distribution utility in whose service territory the line is proposed to be built of the proposed location of the line; and 
          D. If a public utility objects to the line on the basis that it may constitute a duplication of existing transmission or distribution facilities or may interfere with the adequate and safe delivery of electricity to others, the commission issues a finding that the line is not a duplication of existing transmission or distribution facilities and does not interfere with the adequate and safe delivery of electricity to others. A finding is not required under this paragraph unless a public utility has objected in writing to the applicable licensing authority.
 Sec. 2. 35-A MRSA c. 33-A is enacted to read: 
                                    CHAPTER 33-A 
§3351. Microgrids
           1. Definitions. As used in this chapter, unless the context otherwise indicates, the 37 following terms have the following meanings. 
             A. "Distributed energy resources" means small-scale electrical generation sources located close to where the generated electricity is used.                  B. "New microgrid" means a group of interconnected loads and distributed energy 4 resources within clearly defined electrical boundaries that acts as a single controllable entity with respect to the electric grid and can connect and disconnect from the electric grid to enable the new microgrid to operate in both electric grid-connected mode and nongrid-connected mode, also referred to as island mode, and that is constructed after October 1, 2019. 
            2. Microgrids, public utility exception. Notwithstanding section 2102 or any other provision of this Title, a person that constructs, maintains or operates a new microgrid approved under subsection 3 does not, as a result of furnishing service through that new microgrid to participating consumers, become a public utility and is not subject to regulation as a public utility under this Title. 
               3. Commission approval. The commission shall approve a petition to construct and operate a new microgrid if the commission finds that operation of the new microgrid is in the public interest and the new microgrid meets at least the following requirements: 
                   A.    The proposed new microgrid will serve a total load of no more than 10 megawatts; 
                   B.     The distributed energy resources for the new microgrid meet the portfolio requirements in section 3210, subsections 3 and 3-A; 
                    C.    The person proposing the new microgrid demonstrates that the person has the financial capacity to operate the proposed new microgrid;                       D.     The person proposing the new microgrid demonstrates the technical capability to operate the proposed new microgrid; 
                      E.      There is a relationship between the proposed new microgrid operator and consumers within the area to be served by the proposed new microgrid;
                       F. The person proposing, owning or operating the new microgrid is not an investor-owned transmission and distribution utility, an affiliate of an investor-owned transmission and distribution utility or an affiliated interest of an investor-owned transmission and distribution utility; and 
                       G. The proposed new microgrid will not negatively affect the reliability and security  of the electrical system. 
     For the purposes of this subsection, when determining whether a proposed new microgrid is in the public interest, the commission may consider possible ratepayer effects, whether positive or negative, benefits due to the increased resilience or reliability of the electric grid, economic development benefits or any other factors the commission considers  necessary to promote the public interest. 
     In granting its approval, the commission shall impose such terms, conditions or requirements on the construction, maintenance or operation of the new microgrid as, in its judgment, it considers necessary. 
         4. Participant; grid protections. A new microgrid approved in accordance with subsection 3 is subject to commission oversight to ensure reliability and security of the electrical system and consumer protections for new microgrid consumers.  
          Sec. 3. Report. The Public Utilities Commission shall submit a report by January 15, 2021 to the joint standing committee of the Legislature having jurisdiction over energy and utility matters detailing its activities related to new microgrids as defined in the Maine Revised Statutes, Title 35-A, section 3351, subsection 1, paragraph B, including whether any new microgrids have been approved under Title 35-A, section 3351. The report must also include any recommendations for legislation that may be necessary to clarify or enhance the law regarding new microgrids. The committee may report out a bill to the First Regular Session of the 130th Legislature based on the report.   
      This bill directs the Public Utilities Commission to approve a petition to construct and operate a new microgrid if the commission finds the proposal to be in the public interest and the new microgrid meets other specified requirements. It provides the commission with the ability to impose such terms, conditions or requirements as, in its judgment, it considers necessary in approving a new microgrid and also gives the commission oversight to ensure reliability and security of the electrical system and consumer protections for new microgrid consumers. It specifies that a new microgrid 20 does not become a public utility as a result of its furnishing electrical service to participating consumers. It provides that a new microgrid that has been approved by the commission may construct, maintain or operate its lines in, upon, along, over, across or under the roads and streets. The bill directs the Public Utilities Commission to submit a report to the joint standing committee of the Legislature having jurisdiction over energy and utility matters by January 15, 2021.  
Comment by Penny Gray on January 3, 2019 at 12:42pm

What size battery bank would it take to power NYC for 12 hours?  24 hours?

Comment by arthur qwenk on January 2, 2019 at 9:08pm

With a net out migration from the New England region very possible resulting in  lowered electrical need, this is all smoke and mirror politicized  spreadsheet absurdity.

When the bills come due, reality will set in.

Dense energy rules , not renewable low density ideology.

Conn. is  already re-upping nukes for its energy mix, and wisely so.



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.”

Not yet a member?

Sign up today and lend your voice and presence to the steadily rising tide that will soon sweep the scourge of useless and wretched turbines from our beloved Maine countryside. For many of us, our little pieces of paradise have been hard won. Did the carpetbaggers think they could simply steal them from us?

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

“First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.”

 -- Mahatma Gandhi

"It's not whether you get knocked down: it's whether you get up."
Vince Lombardi 

Task Force membership is free. Please sign up today!

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."

© 2024   Created by Webmaster.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service