Keeping it cool: Malaysia looks to district energy systems

Feng Zengkun reports in Eco-Business that district energy systems, a more sustainable way of cooling and heating buildings, could be key to Malaysia’s climate change mitigation plans as it revs up its development of commercial centers and industrial parks. Eco-Business looks at the country’s strategy to adopt the technology.

District energy systems, a more sustainable way of heating and cooling buildings, have been around for more than 120 years, but they are only now getting their day in the sun. From Paris to Singapore and Dubai, more cities are deploying the tried-and-tested technology to reduce their energy use and carbon emissions.

According to UN Environment, a United Nations agency, a transition to these systems can help cities to reduce their primary energy consumption for heating and cooling by up to 50 percent. They also form the central infrastructure for many cities’ 100 percent renewables or carbon neutral targets

In Asia, Malaysia has teamed up with UN Environment to boost the use of district energy in Iskandar Malaysia, a growth region in southern Malaysia, and other parts of the nation of 30 million people. In April 2017, the Iskandar Regional Development Authority (IRDA) and the UN Environment-led District Energy in Cities Initiative announced that they would develop planning guidelines and other policies to encourage the installation of district energy systems in Iskandar and elsewhere in Malaysia. Already, Cyberjaya, Malaysia’s version of Silicon Valley, plans to reduce 21% of carbon emissions by 2020. The Megajana District Cooling System in Cyberjaya has helped Malaysia avoid 4,100 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions since 2012.

Experts from the District Energy in Cities Initiative will contribute their expertise in barrier and opportunity analysis, technical assessment, identification of regulatory gaps and development of initial strategies to unlock Iskandar and Malaysia’s district energy market and outline the technology’s potential use.

The initiative consists of 38 public and private partners, including non-government groups, industry associations, utilities, manufacturers and firms such as the French energy company ENGIE Group, as well as 45 cities across the world. It is helping six other countries, namely China, Chile, India, Morocco, Serbia and Bosnia & Herzegovina, to adopt the technology or improve their systems.  More….

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U.S. DOE Better Buildings Challenge partners save $1.9 billion; 18 achieve their portfolio-wide goal this year

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) today announced the energy-efficiency progress made by the 345 leading public and private sector organizations in the Better Buildings Challenge.

Click illustration to access the report.

Click illustration to access the report.

These efforts have led to a combined 240 trillion Btus and an estimated $1.9 billion in cumulative energy and cost savings. These results are summarized in the 2017 Better Buildings Progress Report released today that highlights accomplishments across the broader Better Buildings Initiative. The goal of this initiative is to make commercial, public, industrial, and residential buildings 20% more energy efficient over the next decade by focusing on overcoming market barriers and sharing partner-created solutions.

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Why is Energy-from-Waste slow to catch on in the U.S.?

reports in TriplePundit that Energy-from-Waste (EfW) is growing fast in Europe and parts of Asia. But it’s relatively stagnant here in the United States. In fact, the percentage of waste we burn for energy is actually slightly down in the past five years. What’s holding the U.S. back from this potentially sustainable solution?

Incinerator (waste-to-energy plant; waste incineration plant), Industry Park Höchst, Hesse, Germany. Presumably the largest incinerator in Germany with a capacity of about 675,000 tons per year. (Image credit: Norbert Nagel via Wikimedia Commons)

Incinerator (waste-to-energy plant; waste incineration plant), Industry Park Höchst, Hesse, Germany. Presumably the largest incinerator in Germany with a capacity of about 675,000 tons per year. (Image credit: Norbert Nagel via Wikimedia Commons)

This stagnation is even more surprising when you consider that the past decade has seen a real energy shift in the U.S., as coal usage falls and renewable energy grows. Here’s the problem – it’s not enough. We’re still burning far too much fossil fuel, and not utilizing enough low- or zero-carbon alternatives like energy-from-waste. Indeed, once recoverable materials are removed from a waste stream, burning the remains in a highly controlled incinerator can be a sustainable power solution.

So why hasn’t EfW taken off yet? Here’s what we uncovered, along with what it might take to bring change to our energy mix.

The U.S. is different

America, geographically, is unlike most of the countries leading on EfW. They tend to be high-density nations such as Germany, Denmark or the United Arab Emirates. Lack of readily available land space for landfills means that these nations have a much more difficult time managing waste than most of the U.S.

“Most of the countries that take advantage of waste-to-energy also have drastically higher population densities,” said Ryan Fitzpatrick, deputy director of the clean energy program at Third Way. Lacking space to build landfills, EfW thus provides a double benefit – energy and waste disposal – making it far more economically feasible.

Here in the U.S., we have plenty of land and plenty of landfills (probably too many). When it is so cheap to dump waste in landfills, there is little incentive to change waste management – and little reason to divert that waste to other uses.

In those few places where EfW makes sense, NIMBYism (“not in my backyard”) can deter local efforts to utilize it. When the country’s densest city, New York, looked at burning waste as a solution for its landfill crisis, residents refused to allow facilities to be built in their neighborhoods for fear of environmental pollution, even though planners said the facilities would have been quite clean. Still, the community effort was enough to dampen EfW efforts in New York City, and the garbage problem there is only getting worse.

The final concern is cost. EfW is not necessarily cheap, and it requires large upfront costs to build facilities. Thus, it can have a tough time competing.

“The U.S. . . . has ample energy resources,” Fitzpatrick explained. “While cheap and abundant natural gas definitely has its benefits, it does make it tough for other useful energy technologies like waste-to-energy, nuclear and some renewables to compete on price.”

Is energy-from-waste feasible?

And it isn’t just cost concerns holding back EfW in the U.S. One major concern is pollution. There has been pushback in several European countries due to the byproducts of incineration.

After coal is burned, toxic coal ash remains and is often left in giant coal ash ponds which can, sometimes, break. EfW facilities also need to dispose of low levels of dangerous ash. This is not always done properly: for example, in 2015, Swedish authorities were caught dumping toxic incinerator waste on an island near the Norwegian capital of Oslo.

These challenges mean that EfW is probably not a broad, large-scale solution. Still, there is space for EfW, if done properly and with the best technology. In fact, many argue it is a necessary step in larger efforts to draw down carbon, given that landfills themselves can contribute to global warming.

Policy changes

Another factor driving the growth of EfW in Europe and parts of Asia is that those countries have more fixed national waste and energy policies. The U.S., by contrast, features a patchwork of regulations that make it tough for investors to commit to the higher front-end costs of an energy-from-waste plant.

“It’s hard to plan a long-term project with only short-term certainty in your financial incentives,” Fitzpatrick told us. “Some other mechanism would be needed to properly incentivize new waste-to-energy plants.”

EfW is eligible for subsidies or tax breaks in the U.S., though in reality, it is hard to access those benefits.

This needs to change if EfW is to ever grow in the U.S. For Fitzpatrick, the reason is not to promote a single solution, but address the fact that we need to add more clean energy quickly.

“Climate change is the existential threat of our time, and we’re going to need a huge array of tools to drastically cut emissions from every sector of our economy and meet our national goals,” he said. “Waste-to-energy can certainly help with that . . . I guarantee you we’d see a lot more than we do today if our state and federal policies adequately priced CO2 and/or valued low-carbon options.”

EfW, if done properly, can be an essential part of the U.S. energy and waste management mix in certain contexts. But chances are our unique situation will mean it will never be as large a source of energy as in other, denser countries. And that’s absolutely fine.

Nithin Coca is a freelance journalist who focuses on environmental, social, and economic issues around the world, with specific expertise in Southeast Asia. Follow Nithin Coca @excinit

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Mass. Department of Environmental Protection set to approve application for MIT Central Utilities Plant upgrade

Kristin Lund reports in MIT News on the progress of MIT’s efforts to upgrade its central utilities plant. MIT is a member of the International District Energy Association (IDEA).

In its efforts to upgrade the on-campus Central Utilities Plant (CUP), MIT has been advancing along a path of rigorous planning and meticulous permit applications. This summer, the Institute hopes to break ground on the project, based on the fact that one of the final permitting steps — approval from the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP) — is near completion.

For more than 20 years, MIT has produced a portion of its own power on campus through cogeneration, a highly efficient combined heat and power process that generates electrical and thermal power simultaneously. The cogeneration facility in the CUP currently provides electricity, steam heat, and chilled water to more than 100 buildings on campus. However, the 21-megawatt gas turbine at the heart of the plant has been running since 1995 and is reaching the end of its useful life.

The upgrade project will replace the existing gas turbine with two new turbines, improving power reliability and overall cycle efficiency. Flexible in design and adaptable to change, the upgraded power system will serve as a bridge to the future, enabling MIT to incorporate new energy technologies, equipment, and other innovations as they emerge. The upgrade is one of the key components of MIT’s plan to reduce campus greenhouse gas emissions at least 32 percent by 2030.

Permitting process

To date, the CUP upgrade project has moved through the Massachusetts Department of Transportation permit process and the environmental review required by the Massachusetts Environmental Policy Act (MEPA), which required a public hearing and comment procedure. The current MassDEP process ensures that the upgraded plant will comply with state and federal air quality regulations, state noise policy, and federal Clean Air Act regulations.

Specifically, MIT has applied to MassDEP for the necessary approval and permit to operate two 22 megawatt (MW) gas turbines, each with an associated heat recovery steam generator equipped with duct firing capability, and one 2 MW emergency engine. In addition, MIT is seeking approval to change its fuel usage in five existing boilers, eliminating the use of No. 6 oil and shifting the entire CUP to cleaner fuels (natural gas as the primary fuel, and No. 2 fuel for emergency purposes only).

MassDEP has determined that the upgraded plant will comply with state and federal air quality regulations and state noise policy and has issued a proposed Comprehensive Plan Approval. In addition, MassDEP has issued a draft Prevention of Significant Deterioration permit, which states that the project complies with EPA New Source Review regulations (as part of the 1977 Clean Air Act Amendments).

Public hearing scheduled for May 22

Having proposed that the permit application be approved, MassDEP will hold a public hearing for the purpose of receiving public comments on the Proposed Plan Approval and Draft PSD Permit before issuing the Plan Approval and PSD Permit.

Public hearing:
Monday, May 22, 2017, 7 p.m.
MIT Room 4-270
182 Memorial Drive (Rear)
Cambridge, MA 02139

Testimony may be presented orally or in writing at this public hearing on May 22. Written comments will be accepted until 5 p.m. on May 23. Full details are available on the MassDEP website.

Learn about the planned upgrades and permitting process on the Powering MIT website.

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UK: Ancala and Peel Group launch independent multi-utility operator

London, May 15, 2017 – Ancala Partners LLP (‘Ancala’), the independent mid-market infrastructure investment manager, and The Peel Group, one of the UK’s leading private real estate investment and infrastructure companies, today announced a joint venture to establish an independent multi-utility operator to be named Leep Utilities (‘Leep’). The new joint venture will provide platform to invest in and benefit from growth in independent gas, electricity, district heating and water utility networks.

Ancala has acquired a 50% share in part of Peel’s existing utilities business, which owns and operates a range of private and regulated ‘last mile’ electricity, water and district heating utility assets. The new entity will provide a platform offering a complete utilities solution to new residential and commercial developments.

Peel’s current multi-utility platform has over 2,000 connections to homes and businesses, including MediaCityUK, intu Trafford Centre, Liverpool Waters and Liverpool International Business Park.  The business is licensed by Ofgem and Ofwat to own and operate electricity and water networks within the group’s portfolio.  Leep Utilities will build on these foundations by continuing to provide and expand its offering to Peel developments, whilst bringing much-needed competition in the market for utility connections to new UK commercial and domestic schemes.

Spence Clunie, Managing Partner, Ancala Partners LLP, said: “Peel has a high quality utilities team in place that has been backed by The Peel Group, one of the foremost real estate enterprises in the U.K. This team will be augmented by the deep utilities and investment experience that exists in Ancala.  This is another example of how we proactively source platforms that add value for our investors.”

Steven Underwood, Chief Executive, The Peel Group, said: “We are delighted to have reached agreement with Ancala Partners on the creation of Leep Utilities.  The launch of this exciting new venture is directly aligned with our strategy of securing high-quality partners to invest alongside Peel for long-term growth and to enhance the prospects for our key infrastructure and real estate investments.”

David Glover, Operations Director, The Peel Group, and Chairman of Peel Utilities, added: “Our utilities team have worked incredibly hard to establish a strong position in the marketplace.  This partnership with Ancala now offers exciting opportunities for the future which will build on our achievements to date.”

About Ancala Partners:
Ancala Partners is an independent infrastructure investment manager founded in 2010. Ancala launched its UK Mid-Market Infrastructure Platform in February 2016 to meet the requirements of long-term investors looking for enhanced returns from core mid-market infrastructure investments in the UK. Ancala now has over £800 million in funds under management (as at end-April 2017).

Ancala’s highly-experienced team has a proven track record in originating, executing and managing mid-market infrastructure investments. The investment team combines experienced infrastructure investors with operational leaders who have a proven track record of de-risking businesses and improving cashflow through pro-active asset management, thereby protecting and enhancing returns.  Ancala’s senior partners are market and industry veterans with over 200 years’ experience.

A strong network at senior levels with corporate and market participants enables Ancala to pro-actively source investment opportunities and generate a strong pipeline of bespoke investment opportunities in the UK and Europe.

Ancala is based at 40 Gracechurch Street, London EC3V 0BT;

About The Peel Group:
Investing for tomorrow: The Peel Group is one of the UK’s foremost privately-owned investment enterprises. Our strategy embraces a broad range of sectors – land and property; transport and logistics; retail and leisure; energy and utilities, with assets owned or under management of more than £5 billion. Group investment policy is focused on actively managing our diverse portfolio, enhancing the quality of our assets and recycling capital over the long-term.


Ancala Partners LLP: Spence Clunie / David Owens / Tim Power, Tel: +44 (0) 203 440 3520, /

Citigate Dewe Rogerson: Patrick Evans / Stephen Sheppard / Alice Stewart, Tel: 0207 638 9571,

The Peel Group: Jo Whittaker, Communications Manager, 07894 815568,

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Program to foster community microgrids in Mass.

Maxine Joselow reports in E&E News that Massachusetts may soon be home to several new community microgrid projects.*

The Massachusetts Clean Energy Center launched a program earlier this month aimed at catalyzing the development of community microgrids throughout the state. The center will provide $75,000 of funding for three to five projects that it deems attractive.

Advocates of microgrids have long touted their ability to improve the reliability and resiliency of the grid. Microgrids can operate autonomously while the main grid is down, which makes them particularly useful during peak demand and weather strain.

The Massachusetts Clean Energy Center has chosen to focus on community microgrids, or microgrids that support an entire district. Staff at the center say community microgrids can provide backup to critical facilities such as schools, hospitals, and police and fire stations.

The Northeast currently leads the nation in installed microgrid capacity with 567 megawatts, according to a report by GTM Research. But New York dominates other Northeastern states, largely thanks to combined heat and power microgrids in and around New York City.

“There are a handful of other states around the country, including New York and Connecticut, that have developed microgrid programs for a lot of the same reasons we are,” said Galen Nelson, senior director of innovation and industry support at the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center.

“They’re concerned about resilience, and the ability of communities to recover from prolonged power outages,” Nelson said. “They’re interested in exploring additional strategies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. And of course, they’re concerned about energy costs.”

The center will accept applications for the program until June 23, Nelson said. At that point, the center will begin selecting projects to undergo feasibility assessments, he said.

In this respect, the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center’s program resembles a program by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority called the NY Prize. That program provided $100,000 to dozens of communities to study the feasibility of microgrids.

“What we want to achieve with the feasibility study is to help highlight potential components of a project that will make it less risky and more attractive to private investors,” Nelson said. “That means looking at the existing generation assets and how they might be combined with new assets, particularly energy storage.”

Since its launch, the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center’s program has received praise from city officials in Boston, industry associations and the private sector.

Travis Sheehan, senior infrastructure adviser at the Boston Planning & Development Agency, said he thinks the program’s funding will be essential to helping community microgrid projects get off the ground and attract third-party investment.

“I think this grant funding is absolutely crucial for Massachusetts communities to develop microgrids,” Sheehan said. “The microgrid market has a really unresolved business model. The engineering costs are kind of floating in the air among multiple stakeholders. This kind of funding really helps you get over the hump of being able to create a vision to get the stakeholders on board.”

Sheehan also said he thinks Boston is fertile ground for development of community microgrids.

“Boston has a really advanced energy ecosystem already in terms of climate resiliency,” Sheehan said. “Between Boston and Cambridge, we have about four or five unique microgrids that belong to college campuses and institutions of higher learning and research. With such an advanced energy ecosystem, we really want to shift the public policy conversation from single microgrids to multi-user microgrids.”

Rob Thornton, president and CEO of the International District Energy Association, said he thinks not only Boston, but the entire state of Massachusetts, is a prime candidate for community microgrids.

“In Massachusetts, the economy is populated by medicine and education. It’s often called the ‘med and ed’ economy,” Thornton said. “There are clusters of pharma or research in a lot of communities that would lend themselves to highly competitive and economically attractive microgrids.

“The Massachusetts Clean Energy Center is kind of lubricating the market,” Thornton added. “So we’re hopeful that it will serve to advance new deployment in Massachusetts, not unlike what happened in New York.”

EDITOR’S NOTE: The MassCEC will accept expressions of interest through June 23. Questions will be accepted through June 16 and will be posted with responses to the MassCEC website on a rolling basis. The state expects to announce grant winners in the third quarter of 2017. Application details are available from the MassCEC (EOI FY2017MKTDEV-02).

*This story is Reprinted from Energywire with permission from E&E News. Copyright 2017. E&E provides essential news for energy and environment professionals at For the original story click here

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Schneider Electric kicks off $7 million energy ESPC project with U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to improve efficiency and sustainability of VA Medical Center in San Juan, P.R.

Schneider Electric, a global specialist in energy management and automation, today announced it will implement more than $7 million in infrastructure upgrades at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Medical Center in San Juan, Puerto Rico, part of the Sunshine Healthcare Network (VISN 8). The project will include comprehensive facility improvements and upgrades that will enhance patient care, all delivered with no up-front capital investment through a guaranteed energy savings performance contract (ESPC). Schneider Electric is a member of the International District Energy Association (IDEA).

According to a recent VA Scorecard on Sustainability/Efficiency, only 15 percent of VA facilities are considered sustainable, and 23 percent of facilities are not on track to meet their energy intensity reduction goals. The partnership with Schneider Electric will provide new resources to help the VA close these sustainability and efficiency gaps while also addressing the tight budget constraints that many VA facilities face.

“Schneider Electric is dedicated to providing innovative ways to improve operations through energy and infrastructure upgrades that support the VA’s mission of advancing care for veterans and their families,” said Jeff Sherman, Director of Federal Energy & Sustainability Services, Schneider Electric. “We are proud to deliver critical upgrades that will dramatically improve the living and operating conditions in the hospital, and also help the VA achieve its energy conservation and sustainability goals with no impact on its operating budget.”

Schneider Electric will guarantee more than $1 million in annual energy savings to the VA to fund the improvements over the life of the project. A significant portion of the work focuses on water conservation efforts to alleviate high water bills brought on by recent drought conditions and a remote water island environment, which drive up the price of fresh water. By installing low-flow plumbing fixtures, the VA will be able to significantly reduce water consumption which translates to tangible utility savings. Additional energy conservation measures include lighting, HVAC and advanced metering system upgrades.

Facility upgrades will not only reduce energy consumption, but will directly impact patient comfort by way of improved lighting in patient areas and better efficiency and control of heating and air conditioning equipment. Savings will come from a variety of strategies, including:

  • Installing energy efficient LED lighting and occupancy sensors to turn off lights during unoccupied times
  • Replacing existing aged pump and fan motors with premium efficiency motors
  • Installing power-returned fan equipment with variable frequency drives
  • Upgrading high-flow plumbing fixtures with lower-flow fixtures

“Through our partnership with Schneider Electric, we’re able to achieve energy efficiency we never imagined was possible and deliver new levels of comfort and care to our patients,” said Sixto Ortiz-Diaz, Energy Manager, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. “We are thrilled to be able to implement $7 million in needed capital improvements at no cost to our community through guaranteed revenues and savings which will play a key role in ensuring the delivery of the highest quality patient care for years to come.”

Schneider Electric will work with local subcontractors for the installation phase of the project, bringing local jobs to the San Juan community. Construction is underway and is scheduled to be complete in early 2018.

The project marks an expansion of a long-term collaboration between Schneider Electric and the VA. In addition to the work being done at the VA Medical Center in San Juan, Schneider Electric has completed similar projects at three VA New England Healthcare System (VISN 1) facilities, which will save $10 million in energy costs over the life of the projects. Schneider Electric has deep experience in serving Caribbean-based facilities, including the U.S. Coast Guard in San Juan, as well as General Services Administration facilities in St. Croix and St. Thomas.

The VISN 8 is the nation’s largest system of hospitals and clinics serving more than 1.6 million veterans across Florida, South Georgia, Puerto Rico and the Caribbean. Services are provided through primary care supported by eight Joint Commission-accredited medical centers and more than 55 outpatient clinics. VISN 8 facilities provide a full range of high quality, cost effective medical, psychiatric and extended care services in inpatient, outpatient, nursing home and home care settings.

Over the past 23 years, Schneider Electric has successfully implemented more than 625 ESPC projects across the nation, saving its clients nearly $1.6 billion. This project delivery method helps publicly funded entities make capital improvements over longer payback periods and offers many long-term benefits such as improved facility efficiency, occupant comfort, financial management and environmental protection.

For more information on how Schneider Electric helps federal agencies tackle energy and water efficiency, please visit or contact your local Schneider Electric representative.

About Schneider Electric
Schneider Electric is the global specialist in energy management and automation. With revenues of $26 billion US dollars (25 billion euros) in FY2016, our 144,000+ employees serve customers in over 100 countries, helping them to manage their energy and process in ways that are safe, reliable, efficient and sustainable. From the simplest of switches to complex operational systems, our technology, software and services improve the way our customers manage and automate their operations. Our connected technologies reshape industries, transform cities and enrich lives. At Schneider Electric, we call this Life Is On

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EPA signs off on North Dakota regulation of CO2 wells

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — Blake Nicholson reports for the Associated Press that the Trump administration is proposing to make North Dakota the first state with the power to regulate underground wells used for long-term storage of waste carbon dioxide captured from industrial sources such as coal-fired power plants.

Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt on Tuesday signed off on the proposal that had languished under the Obama administration. A final decision will come after a 60-day public comment period that will follow a Federal Register posting. North Dakota, which has a large coal industry, would be the first state to get such authority, according to the EPA.

North Dakota already has regulatory authority over numerous other types of injection wells, such as those used to store waste from oil production. Giving the state authority over CO2 wells, known as Class VI wells, could help advance carbon capture and sequestration technology, Pruitt said. CO2 is a greenhouse gas said to contribute to global warming.   More….

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US Navy Submarine Base signs PPA for two fuel cell plants totaling 7.4MW

The New Haven Register and Energy Manager Today report that the US Navy’s submarine base in Groton, CT, will soon have long-term power supplied by two advanced power plants from FuelCell Energy, based in Danbury CT.

FuelCell Energy is working with the submarine base via a power purchase agreement (PPA) with the Connecticut Municipal Electric Cooperative, which in turn will work with Groton Utilities to implement the power supply.

writes in Energy Manager Today that “The Department of Defense seeks to add resiliency and grid independence to its key military installations; two of FuelCell Energy’s SureSource 4000 plants will give a total output of 7.4 megawatts for a long-term, cost-effective and clean power supply, while ensuring continuous power to the base’s critical infrastructure. When power goes out elsewhere, fuel cells will keep the power running without the momentary lapse of electricity that can occur before backup power kicks in.


About FuelCell Energy
FuelCell Energy (NASDAQ:FCEL) delivers efficient, affordable and clean solutions for the supply, recovery and storage of energy.  The company designs, manufactures, undertakes project development, installs, operates and maintains megawatt-scale fuel cell systems, serving utilities, industrial and large municipal power users with solutions that include both utility-scale and on-site power generation, carbon capture, local hydrogen production for transportation and industry, and long duration energy storage.  With SureSource™ installations on three continents and millions of megawatt hours of ultra-clean power produced, FuelCell Energy is a global leader with environmentally responsible power solutions.  Website:


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Hurdle cleared for Duke Energy’s Clemson plant as environmental objections are withdrawn

Senior Staff Writer for The Charlotte Business Journal, reports that the Clemson City Council has withdrawn its regulatory challenge to Duke Energy’s contract to sell steam to Clemson University now that the university has moved the proposed power plant away from two residential neighborhoods. Clemson University is a member of the International District Energy Association (IDEA).

Renderings of CHP plant (top) looking north and (bottom) south. (Illustrations courtesy of Duke Energy)

Renderings of planned CHP plant (top) looking north and (bottom) south. (Illustrations courtesy of Duke Energy)

The South Carolina city’s action should ease the way for approving the $50.8 million combined heat-and-power (CHP) plant Duke now plans to build on university property on Kite Hill. The site is a little more than a quarter-mile from the previously planned location and well away from residential neighborhoods.


Neighbors had objected to the original plan, which put the proposed 16-megawatt natural gas plant as little as 100 feet from some homes in two adjoining neighborhoods….

Charlotte-based Duke (NYSE: DUK) proposes to build the electric power plant on Clemson property and use it to produce electricity for its own customers. The waste heat from the plant will be captured and used to generate steam to be sold to the university for institutional heating and cooling.

Because the power plant is smaller than 75 megawatts, Duke and Clemson do not need the approval of the commission to build the plant. But the regulators must approve the contract between Duke and the university to sell the steam…. 

The university and Duke hope to have the plant operating by spring of 2019.  More….

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