We write a lot here about the potential of advanced vehicles to transform the transportation sector and the electrical grid as a whole. One Honda dealership in Vineland, NJ, managed to one-up us when it became the first dealership in America to be “electric grid neutral.”
The dealership has instituted policies that both produce and save energy. It installed 900 solar panels attached to canopies in the dealer’s parking lot – simultaneously giving the vehicles shelter – and changed all the lights in the parking lot to LED lamps. As a result, the dealership’s monthly energy bills have diminished to “almost zero.”
Speaking of advanced vehicle policies, AEE is hosting a webinar with member company Recargo to discuss policies for advancing plug-in vehicle technology. Click the button below for more information on the event or to sign up.
Some other AEE member companies had a big week in the news. Conservation Services Group (CSG) announced plans to use a platform built by Retroficiency, another AEE member company, to offer automated audits, provide customer engagement, and help utilities and real estate owners prioritize efficiency upgrades in their buildings. CSG will also offer Retroficiency’s analytics to its existing customers. Retroficiency, which has built its business on evaluating energy efficiency potential in the built environment, is leveraging CSG’s decades-long expertise in residential efficiency to offer customizations to its software for multifamily customers. CSG and Retroficiency are offering utilities the ability to scan their multifamily building portfolio and identify the buildings that would benefit from in-depth audits and retrofits.
Pattern Energy Group, another AEE member company specializing in wind power, was featured on The Motley Fool’s blog for its innovative approach to wind financing. “By securing steady revenue streams with long-term power purchase agreements, or PPAs, the company is confident that it can produce stable and sustainable cash for shareholders through a newly introduced quarterly dividend – a 4.3% yield as of this writing,” Scott Levine writes.
AEE member company Gridco Systems launched its first line of products this week. Its first commercially available product, emPower Solution, is a distribution grid platform that uses Gridco’s In-Line Power Regulator (IPR). The product could change the nature of grid maintenance and delivery as we know it, according to Greentech Media: “That’s the ability to control voltages along individual distribution lines, independently of the network as a whole, with a device that uses no moving parts, needs no regular maintenance, and keeps running for 25 years,” writes Jeff St. John. Of course, there’s a little more to it than that – utilities need to have advanced semiconductors and other grid management technology to allow emPower Solution to reach its full potential. Gridco is ready to make that a reality, though.
Meanwhile, Opower, another AEE member company, released an in-depth analysis of Super Bowl statistics – energy efficiency statistics, that is. Which team is more efficient? You’ll have to read their blog to find out.
Speaking of the Super Bowl, we all remember the energy fumble last year that left the stadium in the dark for more than a half hour. The MetLife Stadium in New Jersey, where the big game will be played this weekend, wants us all to know that they are prepared to keep the lights on, no matter what. It’s a more efficient stadium overall: the stadium is equipped with a solar ring and uses ENERGY STAR equipment and automated lighting to cut down on energy costs. Will the more advanced stadium be able to keep the lights on? We’ll be watching to find out.
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