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score: low

January 2022

Subsidizing greenhouse-gas-reducing consumer products is politically popular, but recent literature on subsides ignore effects on product entry and interactions with other climate policies. This paper considers welfare and distributional effects of subsidies for electric vehicles. I compare subsidy scenarios using a new equilibrium model of the US new vehicles market that endogenizes vehicle entry and accounts for interactions among subsidies and other policies. Income-based subsidies are more effective and more equitable than uniform subsidies. Accounting for interactions with other policies substantially reduces estimated efficacy and increases progressivity of income-based subsidies.

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December 2020

Underserved communities, including low-income households, communities of color, and renters, face higher energy burdens than other households, meaning a higher portion of income is spent on energy costs. Energy efficiency is one of the best tools to help these customers reduce their energy bills and enhance their quality of life. This article explores how utility relationships with community-based organizations can improve participation from specific community groups.

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June 2022

Based on their work collaborating with utilities and communities across the country, RMI offers five steps utilities can take to build beneficial relationships with their communities.

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Microgrids Win Funding Boost in US Pandemic Relief Bill.

December 2020

This article reviews the Energy Act of 2020, which was created through the passage of a pandemic relief bill in December 2020. The Energy Act of 2020 created several grants and programs designed to incentivize the development and implementation of microgrids, energy storage projects, and grid resilience measures.

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New Analysis Shows How Electrifying the U.S. Economy Could Create 25 Million Green Jobs by 2035

July 2020

This article on EcoWatch examines the plans of a new nonprofit, Rewiring America, to transform the power, transportation, building, and industrial sectors through electrification. The plan is projected to create millions of green jobs, and would require support from both the private and public sector. The article identifies effective legislation and political leadership as the missing factors that could make widespread electrification possible.

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NJ TRANSITGRID: Overview

March 2021

This webpage provides an overview of NJ TRANSITGRID, a grid resilience project that is designed to support rail infrastructure in New Jersey. Within NJ TRANSITGRID are two projects: the NJ TRANSITGRID TRACTION POWER SYSTEM and NJ TRANSITGRID DISTRIBUTED GENERATION SOLUTIONS. The first project will electrify the rail tracks and power operations through a natural gas-fired power plant, and the second project will build grid resilience to power NJ TRANSIT-related operations during power interruptions with distributed energy, renewable energy, and other technology.

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Docket No. 3270-UR-123

August 2020

In Wisconsin, Madison Gas and Electric Company (MGE) filed an application to change electric and natural gas rates. Within this application was a settlement that expanded MGE's Bring Your Own Device Program, which provides bill credits to incentivize smart thermostat participation, and an Electric Vehicle Fleet Charging Pilot rate, which provides discounts for customers with separately metered charging infrastructure.

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Docket No. RMU-2020-2020

October 2020

In Iowa, the Utilities Board issued a correction to a previous filing in order to address electric vehicle charging services. This filing states that a commercial or public EV charging station is not considered a public utility if the station receives all of its electric power from a utility that is located in the same electric service area. The designation of the EV charging station as a public utility is at the discretion of the board if the EV charging station obtains electric power from a source other than the electric utility.

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Docket No. A-19-10-012

October 2020

In California, San Diego Gas & Electric filed an application to continue their Power Your Drive pilot program with the a modification: 2,000 charging ports will be installed at multi-unit dwellings and office buildings. The program will continue to incentivize charging during periods of low grid demand and provide heavily discounted or free installation of charging ports at multi-unit dwellings an office buildings.

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Sustaining the Future of Indoor Vertical Farming with Microgrids

June 2020

This article identifies high energy requirement as a shortcoming of vertical farming, a sustainable agriculture method, and identifies microgrids as a possible solution. The advantages of utilizing a microgrid in vertical farming operations are reviewed, and a case study of a modern farming company is evaluated.

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Docket No. 20A-0195E

May 2020

In Colorado, Black Hills Colorado Electric filed an application for approval of its transportation plan, "Ready EV," for 2021-2023. The proposed plan aims to support local EV adoption through implementing charging rebates, modifying the distribution line tariff, strengthening customer communication, and improving the education of customers.

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Denver sets targets for all-electric construction in new homes and buildings

February 2021

This article reviews Denver's goal to electrify all new residential and commercial buildings. The city promised to update building codes to require electrification in new construction, but challenges remain. The article identifies low consumer awareness and heat pump inefficiency in the cold climate as barriers to electrification, and also adds that a natural gas infrastructure ban is not being considered.

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Gas ban backlash spreads across the U.S.

February 2021

This article highlights the legislative action that rulemakers are taking to ban or prevent the ban of natural gas following Berkeley, California's 2019 ban. Southern and mid-western states with more conservative leadership tend to oppose electrification policies originating from progressive California. Additionally, this article includes perspectives on electrification policy from various stakeholders, including the American Gas Association and the Natural Resources Defense Council.

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Banning' natural gas is out; electrifying buildings is in

July 2020

This article explores the evolution of natural gas bans to more palatable calls for electrification. While effective in some cities like Berkeley, California, the term 'natural gas ban' can alienate policymakers, building developers, consumers, and natural gas stakeholders. The article identifies legislative strategies used in various cities to enact policies that encourage electrification without causing a significant rift.

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APS comes out against legislation barring Arizona regulators from mandating decarbonization

March 2021

This article highlights the controversy of recent natural gas legislation in Arizona. The Arizona Public Service is opposing bills introduced in the House and Senate that prevent decarbonization mandates for utilities. This article details the legal debate and how it calls the authority of regulators in decarbonization into question.

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Pacific Gas and Electric Company Smart Grid Annual Report - 2020

January 2020

This report reviews Pacific Gas & Electric's (PG&E) smart grid initiatives within several focus areas: wildfire safety and grid resilience, DER integration and enablement, customer service and incentives, and physical and cyber security. For selected projects, PG&E evaluates project benefits and updates.

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Washington state proposes legislation to phase out natural gas utility service

January 2021

This article reports that Washington proposed a bill to require new buildings to be zero-carbon by 2030. Additionally, existing buildings must be retrofitted to eliminate fossil fuel use by 2050. The article also reviews the proposed bill's impact on gas utilities.

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California's Cities Lead the Way to a Gas-Free Future

January 2021

This article highlights the areas in California that have adopted policies that require some form of building electrification. The article lists each city with a summary of their building electrification action.

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U.S. Department of Energy’s Future Connected Communities: Validating Buildings as a Grid Resource

April 2020

This document is a transcript of a PLMA webinar that included representatives from DOE (David Nemtzow), LBNL (Mary Ann Piette), ORNL (Teja Kuruganti) and their insights on the DOE FOA/latest activities coming out of the BTO office and of focus at LBNL, as well as more on the smart communities projects taking place at Southern Company.

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FERC pauses ruling preventing states from blocking demand response under Order 2222

June 2021

This article provides an important update regarding FERC Order 2222, which would effectively prevent states from having the choice to deny demand response aggregations to bid into the wholesale market. Commissioner Mark Christie pursuaded Commissioner Richard Glick to put a pause on the Order, which will allow for additional stakeholder discussion.

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Connected Communities: A Multi-Building Energy Management Approach

July 2020

This webinar, presented by RMI, includes several speakers: Sarah Zaleski of U.S Dept. of Energy, Bill Livingood of NREL, and Cara Carmichael and Seth Coan of Rocky Mountain Institute. The speakers discuss their research on Connected Communities and how this concept is valuable in building-grid integration at the multi-building scale.

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Los Angeles Buildng Decarbonization: Tenant Impact and Recommendations

December 2021

This report published by Strategic Actions for a Just Economy (SAJE) explores the impact of building decarbonization on renters, especially those who are disadvantaged. The author considers both the benefits and challenges of building decarbonization, and identifies the high upfront cost of decarbonization as a potential heavy burden passed to renters.

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Renovating Regulation to Electrify Buildings: A Guide for the Handy Regulator

January 2021

This report, written with regulators in mind, describes ways in which regulatory frameworks need to evolve in order to cease acting as barriers to progress and instead facilitate meaningful and efficient building electrification.

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The Fully Electric Future of Landscape Maintenance

June 2021

This article identifies gas powered landscaping tools as contributors to greenhouse gas emissions and takes a look at the electrification of those tools. The author highlights some of the benefits of the electrification of gas powered landscaping tools, including the alleviation of both air and noise pollution that is typically generated by their use.

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Electrification

October 2022

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The Department of Energy's Office of Electricity (OE) recognizes that our nation's sustained economic prosperity, quality of life, and global competitiveness depends on an abundance of secure, reliable, and affordable energy resources. OE leads the Department of Energy's efforts to ensure a resilient, and flexible electricity system in the United States. Learn more about OE >>

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