There’s a lot to like in Northam’s energy plan, but missed opportunities abound
By: Ivy Main - October 15, 2018
There is a lot to like in the Northam administration’s new Virginia Energy Plan, starting with what is not in it. The plan doesn’t throw so much as a bone to the coal industry, and the only plug for fracked gas comes in the discussion of alternatives to petroleum in transportation. The 2018 Energy Plan […]
Will Virginia be late to the offshore wind party?
By: Ivy Main - September 28, 2018
Nearly 200 government leaders, academics, and business people packed the Virginia Offshore Wind Executive Summit in Norfolk last week to stake their claims in the launch of Virginia’s newest industry. “The offshore wind market is exploding,” said Liz Burdock, executive director of the Business Network for Offshore Wind, in her opening remarks. If this sounds […]
After Dominion’s big overhaul, how much oversight do regulators retain over utility spending?
By: Ivy Main - September 24, 2018
It’s no secret that the State Corporation Commission didn’t like this year’s big energy bill, the Grid Transformation and Security Act. SCC staff testified against SB 966 in committee, and their objections played a major role in amendments removing the “double dip” provision that would have let Dominion Energy Virginia get paid twice for infrastructure […]
Are state utility regulators at last ready to embrace customer-owned solar?
By: Ivy Main - September 20, 2018
Almost four years ago, Virginia’s State Corporation Commission approved a request from Appalachian Power to impose “standby charges” on grid-connected homeowners who installed solar arrays between 10 and 20 kilowatts. The approval came not long after the SCC had given the same authority to Dominion Power (now Dominion Energy Virginia). The standby charges, dubbed a […]
Dominion’s community solar program approved by Virginia regulators
By: Ivy Main - September 14, 2018
The State Corporation Commission has approved Dominion Energy Virginia’s so-called community solar pilot program, under which the utility will offer its residential and commercial customers the output of solar farms to be built by independent solar developers here in Virginia. Customers will have the option to meet either all or part of their entire electric […]
Virginia’s high court passes on chance to stand up to Dominion for conflicts of interest on the Atlantic Coast Pipeline
By: Ivy Main - August 24, 2018
Many Virginia leaders seem to have the notion that if our environment is being polluted and ordinary people are having their land destroyed, that must be good for business. And as a corollary, if a business wants to pollute the environment and destroy private land, that must be good for Virginia. So maybe it shouldn’t […]
On the heels of its big legislative win, what kind of grid does Dominion want to build for us?
By: Ivy Main - August 6, 2018
Imagine that you have hired a builder to design and build you a three-story house. He brings you the plans for the first floor and proposes to start work right away. “These look okay,” you say, “but I need to see the plans for the whole house.” “Don’t you worry about that,” says the builder. […]
Northam’s energy plan: A blueprint for action or destined for dusty shelf?
By: Ivy Main - July 23, 2018
Forget “all of the above.” Under Gov. Ralph Northam, Virginia’s next Energy Plan will emphasize the features of a clean energy future: solar and wind, energy efficiency, electric vehicles, energy storage and offshore wind. This marks a welcome departure from previous state energy plans, though whether the end result serves as a blueprint for action […]