COSPP News July / August 2005


NEWS SUMMARY
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USCHPA welcomes new interconnection rules for small generators
The US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) has issued standard procedures for the interconnection of generators below 20 MW... More

Major new CHP plant for BASF manufacturing site
BASF Aktiengesellschaft has inaugurated a major new 440 MW CHP plant at its Ludwigshafen chemicals manufacturing site in Germany.More

Europe's largest forest biomass-fired CHP plant
Siemens Power Generation (PG) is building what is said will be Europe’s largest forest biomassfired CHP plant, in Vienna, Austria.More

GE ‘ecomagination’ initiative includes PV for research centre
US-based general Electric Company (GE), which promotes distributed generation and wind energy technology as well as utility-scale equipment, has committed itself to expanding... More

China leads record world energy demand growth
BP’s annual snapshot of the world energy picture revealed a worryingly strong growth in demand dominating 2004, with climbing energy...More

Waste-fired fuel cell energy plant for Japan
A new mini-grid, incorporating a 250 kW fuel cell CHP unit, is to supply power to a school, a hospital, apartment buildings and city hall in a renewable energy community...More



USCHPA welcomes new interconnection rules for small generators

The US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) has issued standard procedures for the interconnection of generators below 20 MW in a move that, says FERC, removes barriers to the development of needed infrastructure by reducing interconnection uncertainty, time and costs. The Commission has designated the rule as Order No. 2006.

The rule will help preserve grid reliability, increase energy supply, and lower wholesale electricity costs for customers by increasing the number and types of new generators available in the electricity market, including development of non-polluting alternative energy resources, said the Commission.

The rule reflects input from a broad-based group of utilities, small generators, state commission representatives and other interested entities who came together to recommend a unified approach to small generator interconnection. It harmonizes state and federal practices by adopting many of the best interconnection practices recommended by the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (NARUC) and should help promote consistent, nationwide interconnection rules for small generators, the Commission added.

Out of the closet?

still some hope of mitigating climate change

Climate change is out of the closet. So said someone who moves within well connected circles among the Washington DC energy community. It was a comment they made at a senior US energy policy forum in July to indicate that US policymakers are finally taking the carbon issue seriously.

If true, it’s pretty good news for every living thing on this planet. Let’s hope therefore that it is. To the rest of the world, however, the noises emerging from the White House today are just the same as those we’ve been hearing for the last 5 years. The G8 climate change communiqué, also in July, was successfully watered down by Mr Bush to the point that it had no flavour at all. It simply contains a series of bland aspirations rather than specific commitments. Given the intensifying clamour of urgency rising from the world’s scientific community about the need to act yesterday, the incremental progress from the US administration continues to defy belief.

So, since it seems that – at least to a European onlooker – climate change does in fact remain in the White House closet, what are the prospects for serious responses to climate change that will effectively incentivize high-efficiency cogeneration systems?

Well, on one hand, they seem pretty dismal, particularly at the political level. The EU, supposedly in the vanguard of the international political response, is going to miss its own Kyoto objectives by a mile and will have to import great piles of ‘assigned amounts’ of surplus permits from other countries, together with some CDM credits. This is hardly fertile ground for an ambitious round of Kyoto-2 negotiations to agree emission reductions for 2020. With Japan and Canada in similar positions, it’s not looking likely that the international community will take the necessary steps to achieve the massive long-term reductions that are necessary. On this evidence, we can put away those woolly jumpers for good. Bring on those nine month summers and global droughts.

On the other hand, there is some cause for serious optimism – and industry is leading the way, driven on by increasing energy costs and the recognition that a low-carbon future is a one-way bet – whatever the pace of the Kyoto process. Cutting energy waste, and so reducing exposure to fuel-price hikes, is now a matter of life or death for growing numbers of industrial and commercial users. To achieve competitive advantage, energy equipment manufacturers are accelerating the development of new energy technologies and are continuously improving existing ones. This means that energy users throughout the world are increasingly able to implement ever more efficient energy solutions, including on-site cogeneration. And not only in the OECD countries. The world’s most efficient super-critical boilers have been installed in China.



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