At the opening ELECTRIC POWER 2009 plenary session, both the keynote speaker and the Power Industry Executive Roundtable participants kept circling back to the problems created by a public and lawmakers who seem to be promoting policies without an adequate understanding of energy realities. Most of the speakers acknowledged that the industry itself is partly to blame, but nobody offered a way forward.
News items of interest to power industry professionals.
In the world of North American Electric Reliability Corp. (NERC) Reliability Standards, each company (entity) that must comply with the standards determines for itself the scope and size of its compliance program, based on the scope and size of its operations.
The intensifying spotlight on renewable energy seems to be casting a brighter light on the energy storage problem, with lawmakers, researchers, and investors scrambling to seek out the most feasible solution to bridge the intermittent nature of renewable power sources.
This March, Japan’s Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd. (MHI) quietly completed development of the "J-series" gas turbine — a machine that has been extolled in the turbo-machinery world for its ability to produce one of the world’s largest power generation capacities and highest thermal efficiencies.
The tension between the growing number of renewable energy projects and limited transmission capacity is reflected in Washington’s legislative agenda of establishing a national renewable portfolio standard and new transmission lines dedicated to moving renewable energy coast-to-coast. Even if those ideas become law, hurdles to the happy marriage of renewables and transmission remain.
What makes more sense to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from power plants—a cap-and-trade regime or a carbon tax? It’s a contentious issue among those who generate power and among academic economists and policy makers.
As expected, President Obama has named Nuclear Regulatory Commissioner Gregory Jaczko, an ally of Sen. Harry Reid (D-Nev.), as chairman of the NRC, almost certainly dooming the Yucca Mountain, Nev., site for disposal of spent nuclear fuel.
Many U.S. power companies are focusing their hiring efforts on military veterans. According to human resources HR experts, it makes a lot sense—beyond pure patriotism. Vets are motivated, experienced, often well-trained, and instilled with team-work. Plus, there is a great need to replace the retiring “baby boomers” generation who have populated many key industry jobs. In some cases, there’s even a financial incentive for hiring vets.
The Obama administration has unveiled its long-awaited policy on cyber security of government and private-sector communication and distribution systems. Is it less than meets the eye, as some critics argue?