Although the new tariff is couched in economic recovery language — saying it will allow large businesses and government entities to “put people back to work and can provide critical services to communities during this time of recovery” — the pricing plan has been in the works for more than a year.
The proposed rate increases would mean the average monthly bill for a Southern Nevada single-family residence would go up by an estimated 8.65 percent, or a $3.71 hike in their monthly gas bill. The increase would be less for the company’s Northern Nevada customers, with an estimated 3.19 percent increase or roughly $2.47 increase in monthly gas bills.
Energy Secretary Dan Brouillette sought to reassure Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto on Tuesday that the Department of Energy plans to seek alternatives to storing nuclear waste at Yucca Mountain, but he stopped short of backing an effort to change the law designating the site for a national repository.
The contract, which was approved without comment as part of the North Las Vegas City Council’s consent agenda during a meeting last Wednesday, is the latest in an ever-growing string of contracts that sees NV Energy give direct cash payments to government entities in return for sticking with the utility as a customer and promising to apply for a future fixed-rate, renewable energy based pricing program.
The proposed contract and pricing system were given a thumbs up from the state’s Public Utilities Commission in a draft order released last month and was officially approved on a 2-0 vote during the commission’s Wednesday meeting.
According to a draft order published on Friday and up for approval at the Public Utility Commission’s Wednesday meeting, the utility essentially ignored a 2017 state law and subsequent commission orders requiring it to put aside $10 million in energy storage investments, instead using the funds to pump up subsidy payments for solar installations. The fine, which will be deposited in the state’s general budgetary fund, is the maximum amount allowed under Nevada law.
Signing the executive order was the most recent step for Sisolak — the state’s first Democratic governor in 20 years — in aligning Nevada with national and worldwide efforts to combat the effects of climate change, including signing up the state in March to meet the emission reduction targets as part of the U.S. Climate Alliance.
The proposed contract, which is up for approval during the Board of Regent’s meeting on Thursday and Friday, is the latest in a string of contracts by NV Energy that offer cash payments in return for sticking with the utility and promising to apply for a future fixed-rate renewable energy-based pricing program.
The announcement marks a significant shift for an executive branch that was early to embrace renewable energy, but until recently had shied away from making explicit policy statements on an issue that scientists say is playing a role in rising temperatures, more extreme wildfires and increased variability of mountain snowpack, the source of drinking water for most Nevadans.
During a meeting of the interim Legislative Committee on Energy on Friday, Department of Conservation and Environmental Resources Director Brad Crowell gave lawmakers a sneak peek, as well as a wake-up call, on how projected greenhouse gas emissions are still trending higher than statewide emission reduction goals.
On Thursday, state lawmakers joined with officials from the Governor’s Office of Energy and NV Energy to open a new electric car charging station in Jean, Nevada — a tiny outpost south of Las Vegas best known for its many casinos and the largest Chevron station in the world.
In a major victory for NV Energy, the electric utility has filed a proposed contract with utility regulators to provide a new, reduced-rate pricing system for the Raiders’ stadium and team facilities, reversing earlier plans for the football team to operate independently of the state’s largest electric utility.
NV Energy notified a widely watched solar facility that it was terminating its power contract after it “failed to produce” the required amount of energy, according to a lawsuit filed on Wednesday. The lawsuit paints a stark picture of a 110-megawatt solar facility that has faced several recent management and operational issues.
The commissioner’s presentation included a request to hire a full-time sustainability manager whose primary task would be conducting a six-month audit of existing efforts and identify what the county can do to improve its sustainability practices. After the audit, the sustainability manager would be expected to adopt and implement a climate action plan.
A market report released Tuesday by Wood Mackenzie and the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) shows that 11.2 gigawatts the U.S. utility solar projects were announced in the first half of 2019, bringing the “pipeline” of future projects to 37.9 gigawatts. Nevada’s solar market has grown 29.9 percent since this time last year and it ranks as the state with the fourth-highest installed solar capacity.
Commissioner Justin Jones says it’s time for Clark County to tackle climate change. Discussions that will take place at the board meeting on Tuesday will come in light of SB358 which passed in spring and requires the state to reach a 50 percent renewable portfolio standard by 2030.
In a short, one-page letter submitted to the Public Utilities Commission on Thursday, Two Blackbirds Hospitality Management LLC (parent company of The Drew) announced that it was withdrawing its application to depart NV Energy and purchase electric power from another provider. The $3.1 billion project, which took over from the failed Fontainebleau Las Vegas resort casino, isn’t scheduled to open until 2022.