Amazon commits to 100% renewable energy, 100,000 electric vans to fight climate change

USA TODAY | September 19, 2019

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos said Thursday that the company has committed to meet the terms of the Paris climate agreement 10 years ahead of schedule, including by purchasing 100,000 electric vans and moving to 100% renewable energy. Amazon, which committed to be carbon neutral by 2040, has been facing pressure from its employees and activists to reduce its emissions in an effort to combat climate change. A day before a global climate strike is expected to call attention to the world's environmental plight, Bezos said the company would use its considerable leverage to slash carbon emissions. Bezos told reporters that Amazon would "implement de-carbonization strategies in line with the Paris agreement," alter its "actual business activities to eliminate carbon" and acquire "credible" carbon offsets with "nature-based solutions." Former United Nations climate chief Christiana Figueres, who appeared alongside Bezos in an endorsement of the company's plan, said Amazon would also pressure its business partners to meet the goals. "We want to use our scale and our scope to lead the way," Bezos said. "We have to do it."

Spotlight

Find out in this animation how GE’s Hydro Variable Speed Pumped Storage technology works, and how it contributes to a better integration of intermittent energies on the grid.

Spotlight

Find out in this animation how GE’s Hydro Variable Speed Pumped Storage technology works, and how it contributes to a better integration of intermittent energies on the grid.

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SOLAR+STORAGE

Palmetto Announces Solar Mapping Coverage of over 107 Million U.S. Buildings

Palmetto | January 07, 2022

Palmetto, a rapidly growing platform technology company accelerating the national adoption of clean energy, announced that its Mapdwell division has mapped the solar potential and energy load profiles of over 107 million rooftops — approximately 75% of all U.S. buildings equating to 81% of the U.S. population — using its proprietary technology. Acquired by Palmetto in April 2021, Mapdwell also licenses this data via application programming interfaces (APIs) to leading utility companies, such as ConEd, Pepco, BGE and others, to further renewable energy initiatives across the country. Our deep tech and data capabilities are helping to accelerate the needed shift to clean energy on a societal scale. The accuracy of Mapdwell's technology helps educate consumers by providing unique and detailed information on their potential investment in solar energy. That information, coupled with our energy-as-a-service platform, provides an easier, faster and more intuitive way for consumers to adopt clean energy." Chris Kemper, Palmetto Chairman, Founder and Chief Executive Officer "Reaching this milestone is a significant step forward for the solar industry. Mapdwell now covers 81% of the U.S. population in 38 states and Washington D.C., including all current Palmetto service areas," stated Eduardo Berlin, Executive Vice President of Palmetto and Founder of Mapdwell. "Our goal is to map the solar potential and derive energy load profiles of every building across the U.S. — and we're on track to accomplish just that in the very near future." Mapdwell's state-of-the-art technology, incubated at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), provides an instant assessment of any building's rooftop potential for solar energy production and battery storage, as well as a baseline energy load profile. Within minutes, customers can see their estimated cost-benefit analysis to determine whether installing solar panels would be worth their investment as well as calculate an estimate of the number of years it would take to earn back the financial investment. The Mapdwell tool earned Fast Company's Innovation by Design Award in 2014. Recognized by Forbes as one of the fastest-growing private companies in the U.S., Palmetto believes that choosing to source clean energy from renewable resources like solar power should be a right, not a privilege. Palmetto's proprietary technology, marketplace business model, and consumer mobile application are all designed to simplify and democratize access to clean energy, making it easier and more affordable to make the switch. In addition to its solar calculator, which helps customers quickly estimate utility costs saved by switching to solar power, Palmetto offers a team of local solar experts to design and install a solar panel system that matches their needs. Palmetto Protect ensures these customers receive comprehensive, long-term monitoring and robust customer support. About Palmetto Palmetto is committed to the democratization of energy by putting power and control back in the hands of consumers and inspiring them to make environmentally responsible choices. To this end, Palmetto has developed a clean energy marketplace, with proprietary technology designed to make it easier and more affordable for customers to source their energy from renewables like solar power. The Company develops proprietary products that reduce costs and drive widespread distribution of simple energy management solutions through a fully distributed network with teammates throughout the U.S. In furthering its mission, Palmetto invests in communities to help mitigate climate change. Palmetto is a triple bottom line, fully distributed company.

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SOLAR+STORAGE

PearlX and SolarEdge Behind New Community Solar & Storage Virtual Power Plants to Bring Energy Equality to Renters in Texas

PearlX | January 14, 2022

Flexible energy provider, PearlX Infrastructure LLC (PearlX), and global leader in smart energy technology, SolarEdge Technologies, Inc. (SolarEdge), are collaborating on a series of first-in-kind residential clean energy projects for renters throughout Texas. Dubbed "Project TexFlex", the program deploys innovative community solar & storage virtual power plants (VPPs), enabling communities in the region to empower tenants with cost-effective and resilient clean energy. Project TexFlex will launch its initial VPP at 2410 Waugh Apartments in the Montrose neighborhood of Houston in the first quarter of 2022. Described by PearlX as a "win-win-win," each VPP provides load-serving and resiliency benefits to consumers, royalty and income streams for its multi-family real estate partners, and flexibility and capacity services to the Texas energy market – allowing utilities to smartly leverage and control a previously untapped pool of available distributed energy resources to support grid stabilization. Based on a signed agreement with Moonlight Interests, LLC, developer of 2410 Waugh Apartments, PearlX will scale Project TexFlex throughout the multi-family real estate market in Texas. As owner and operator of the project, PearlX will purchase hardware and cutting-edge, cloud-based grid services technology from SolarEdge, while SolarEdge will also provide design and engineering support. First-of-its-kind initiative to increase accessibility of solar for Texans With a mission to expand clean energy access and reduce energy poverty, PearlX's novel underwriting approach will enable multi-family real estate communities engaged in the project to empower lower and middle-income tenants with cost-effective, flexible and resilient community solar & storage. PearlX utilizes a "non-credit" based underwriting method, which allows tenant subscribers who live within TexFlex properties to access the rewards of solar generation and battery storage without the obligation to present an industry-defined adequate credit score. Mainstream solar and especially storage has traditionally been an amenity for the wealthy. If you don't have good credit, you don't have access. Credit is the ability to repay. Electricity is the ability to live. Payment for electricity we believe is the highest form of credit." Huerta added, "When you look at the data, electric bills are paid before rent, cell phone bills, even car payments." Michael Huerta, CEO of PearlX How Project TexFlex Works Project TexFlex has the capability to reduce grid strain and outages, while increasing energy resilience across the state. Energy production is becoming distributed, but production still needs to be centrally controlled for grid stabilization. VPPs makes this possible by enabling cloud-based, real-time aggregative control, management and reporting of a pool of distributed energy resources. This is particularly critical and valuable in the wake of the "Big Freeze" of February 2021, which placed grids under huge strain and caused mass power outages. Utilizing onsite solar, the program will facilitate the delivery of energy back to the grid in near real-time. Utilities are provided with access to stored power when grid stabilization is needed or during energy shortages. For participating tenants, beyond access to low-cost solar power to reduce their own carbon footprint and electricity bills, they will also gain onsite grid resiliency to help power their home during blackouts, and can simultaneously further reduce energy costs by participating in demand/response events or time-of-use arbitrage programs, where excess solar is diverted to help support the grid. With the award-winning SolarEdge energy hub inverter and new energy bank battery, PearlX will deploy energy storage as both a grid asset and community storage asset. SolarEdge's advanced software for grid services also enables behind-the-meter VPPs to receive and respond to onsite and grid level signals. "Advances in solar & storage technologies are serving as the key enablers that helping to drive the new democratic and distributed energy economy in North America." said Peter Mathews, SolarEdge General Manager, North America. "Developments in software are providing the grid with much needed control to optimize the use of solar for different communities. This is making solar power more available and flexible, so that even renters can benefit from renewable energy." In launching this Project, PearlX and SolarEdge are creating a widely replicable, decentralized model that will facilitate Texas' accelerating energy transition, while offering safeguards against grid failures. At the same time, energy consumers across the state will benefit from more cost-effective and reliable power benefits. PearlX awarded an EPC contract to Austin based Native Solar to design and construct Project TexFlex. The project is under construction and will be interconnecting through an agreement with CenterPoint Energy in the first quarter of 2022. Following Texas, the project will continue in California and several other US states later in the year. About PearlX Founded in 2019, PearlX is committed to increasing energy equality at multi-family communities through onsite community solar and storage. PearlX delivers energy resilience and independence to subscribers, and long-life royalty and income streams for its partners and shareholders. The company is led by a world-class team of industry-leading veterans in the energy infrastructure and technology business who are driven by selling the most flexible and reliable electron with the highest energy margins.

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ENERGY

GCCIA and CESI Launch the GCC DAM Pilot Project

GCCIA | December 23, 2021

Gulf Cooperation Council Interconnection Authority (GCCIA) with the support of CESI Middle East FZE, a subsidiary of CESI S.p.A. (Centro Elettrotecnico Sperimentale Italiano), a world-leading technical consulting and engineering company launched the GCC Day Ahead Market (DAM) Pilot Project at the Pavilion of the Gulf Cooperation Council at Expo 2020, in Dubai. This ambitious project consists in the creation of an electronic platform for the pricing of electricity in GCC countries, as part of the first phase of the energy pricing project in the region. After the go-live, the pilot project is set to last over the course of six months, during which the Member States will be able to gather and leave feedbacks for further implementations in the future. The GCC DAM Pilot Project is the first of its kind, as it represents a fundamental cornerstone for managing the energy exchange platform launched by the Electricity Interconnection Authority in 2018, an essential contribution to the development of the spot market for electricity trading. The Electricity Interconnection Authority has dedicated a full international team, in collaboration with CESI and ENERWEB, to manage and follow this project. The GCC DAM Pilot Project aims to be a key-step for the evolution of the roadmap of the regional electricity market. This first phase aims at estimating electricity prices at a regional level and enhancing the expertise and skills on electricity trading topics. Due to the complexity of simulating day-ahead market scenarios, CESI has been involved in the creation of the new platform in terms of both quality assurance and project management support. This project is a true milestone for the electricity trading in the Gulf area, as it meets the need to implement tools that can support the shift from fossil fuels to renewable electricity sources for GCC countries. I am very proud of CESI involvement in the initiative: for years, we have been developing and using simulation tools for power markets in Europe and supporting traders and market operators, therefore, our expertise and tools can support the ambition of GCCIA, with the goal of modernizing the Gulf region’s energy market.” Matteo Codazzi, CESI Group CEO

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