Wednesday, November 14, 2007

All the links in today’s news digest lead to current stories. Please note that some media organizations update their web sites regularly, which may result in broken links in the future.

The news digest is also available at the following web site:


- Energy NW makes last appeal to state panel
- Clark County Utility expects no shift in rates
- Calif. Utility Sued Over Wildfires
- Advocates ask ratepayers to fight relicensing of four Klamath dams
- Wood Smoke Woes - Act now to improve region’s air quality
- Canola crop is no gold rush – Perhaps it was too good to be true.
- Energy Efficiency Leader Appointed Bonneville Environmental
- CO2 producers fingered in CARMA (Carbon Monitoring for Action) database
- Minnesota WiFi roundup
- New Hampshire Court blocks Hanover network
- VeriSign plans to divest most operations
- Woman Finds Boyfriend Dead In Cat Door

These and links to more stories in today’s Energy News Digest


Transpicuous • \tran-SPIK-yuh-wus\ • adjective – Clearly seen through or understood

“I’ll raise you $1,000,” blustered the sharply-dressed card sharp to the players clustered around the dusty table in the rural bar. “I’ll take that bet,” proclaimed the observant ten-year old opponent. “You should never have worn those reflective sunglasses,” the youngster mused silently as he noted the image of a very poor hand in the city-slicker’s sausage-like fingers. “Your bluff is totally transpicuous”


SE Washington – Monday winds reach 91 mph on wind farm. In spite of the high winds, little damage was reported in Garfield and Columbia counties. (Walla Walla Union Bulletin)


Energy NW makes last appeal to state panel – Public power giant Energy Northwest made its final case Tuesday to a state council to move forward with a $1.5 billion coal gasification plant at the Port of Kalama. (Daily News, Longview)

Clark County Utility expects no shift in rates – Water and electric rates should hold steady in the coming year under Clark Public Utilities' proposed 2008 budget (The Columbian)

More work ahead on electricity proposal – Effect on local rates isn’t known yet. While a new recommendation describes how to share benefits of the Columbia Basin federal hydropower system over the next 20 years, how that will affect power bills for public utilities is still anyone’s guess, according to an expert close to the issue. (The Dalles Chronicle)

Public comments sought on West Coast energy corridors – Several federal agencies are requesting public comments on a draft Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement proposing the designation of energy transport corridors in 11 western states, including Oregon. (Bandon Western World)

Calif. Utility Sued Over Wildfires – Two families who lost their homes during last month's wildfires in Southern California have filed lawsuits against San Diego Gas & Electric Co. accusing the utility of negligence for failing to clear vegetation around its power lines. (Associated Press, via

Alaska – Matanuska Electric Association to shelve coal plan for at least five years. Alternatives: Costs, critics pushed utility to look at options. (Anchorage Daily News)

A Year Later, Prosecutors Fight To Keep Enron's Skilling in Prison (Washington Post)

NY Times Editorial – Where’s That Energy Bill? Two months ago, Washington was filled with hope that Congress would produce an energy bill that would begin to address the two great challenges of oil dependency and climate change. These talks have now reached a dangerous point.

News Release – Mason County PUD No. 3 Commission cancels November 20 meeting PUD 3 Web Site)

As China's mega dam rises, so do strains and fear (Reuters)

Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals – Calderon vs. IBEW 47 & SoCal Edison – Issue was notice of hearing on termination (Links to PDF File: A cautionary tale of email notification of legal notices)$file/0556937.pdf?openelement


Advocates ask ratepayers to fight relicensing of four Klamath dams –The group calls the dams a disaster, but PacifiCorp says they offer cheap, clean hydropower (The Oregonian)

Stalking steelhead – Catching just one of these sea-run bruisers is worth the effort (Denver Post)


Opinion from the News Tribune, Tacoma – Act now to improve region’s air quality – As the calendar marches toward winter, there’s something deep in our DNA that compels some of us to fire up the old wood stove or throw some logs on the fireplace to take the chill out of the air – even if we have other ways to heat our homes.

Canola crop is no gold rush – Perhaps it was too good to be true. A handful of Snohomish County farmers in 2006 produced staggering results when they grew tests plots of canola, an oily grain used to make clean-burning biodiesel. (Everett Herald)

Electric car plugs into power grid – PJM Interconnection will host a presentation and demonstration on Nov. 14, 2007 of an electric vehicle adapted to plug into and receive power dispatch commands from the power grid. (Utility Automation & Engineering)

The New England Patriots Make a Play for Renewable Energy Credits – Constellation NewEnergy the utility that serves Gillette Stadium, is now the "Green Power Behind the Patriots." (Renewable Energy Access)


News Release – Energy Efficiency Leader Appointed Bonneville Environmental Foundation CEO (Bonneville Environmental Foundation)

Gadgets to Spur Energy Conservation – When the box turns red, it's time to turn off the air conditioner and save electricity. (Technology Review, MIT)


Fascinating note from Dean Boyer, WPUDA: A new data base posted today by CARMA (Carbon Monitoring for Action) list CO2 emissions info for 50,000 power plants worldwide and more than 9,000 in the U.S. The database is searchable many ways, including by utility name or zip code (I note that Mason County PUD No. 3’s Parent Company is the United States, with no data on the overall fuel mix)


Clarksville sees the light – FTTH paves the way for competitive triple play offering in Tennessee (Telecommunications Online)

Minnesota – Higher-flying Wi-Fi: The Minneapolis wireless Internet access project is getting an increasingly positive reception as early service problems recede and the pace of installation picks up. (The Star Tribune)

Meanwhile: Polarized in St. Louis Park – The Wi-Fi story is not so happy in St. Louis Park, where an ambitious solar-powered network has run into technical problems and incurred the wrath of some residents who say antenna poles used in the project mar the landscape. (The Star Tribune)

New Hampshire: Court blocks Hanover network – A Grafton County Superior Court judge this week granted an injunction against the town of Hanover over its installation of a fiber optics network that a local telecommunications company argues is illegal and unsafe. (The Union Leader)

VeriSign plans to divest most operations (Silicon Valley Business Journal)

Go Daddy teams with Google (Phoenix Business Journal)

Few Friends for Proposal on Media – The Federal Communications Commission’s new deregulatory proposal may actually force some large media companies to shed stations or newspapers. (NY Times)


CITY OF SHELTON HAS NO FUNDS FOR GAS CONTAMINATION CLEAN UP – The City of Shelton does not have the funds to fully clean up the gas contamination at the intersection of First and Franklin. At this time, the City is not able to fund clearing out all contaminated soil in the right-of-way. So, the City plans on just removing the soil in the trench needed to complete the Sewer Basin Two project. The intersection will then be added to the State Department of Ecology's list of contaminated sites and may be required to clean up the site some time in the future. The contamination at First and Franklin was discovered during the Basin Two project along with contamination at Fourth and Franklin. The Fourth Street location has since been cleaned up. Connection of the pipe at First and Franklin will complete Basin Two and the City will add the cost of contamination clean up to that project. City staff will bring a contract for the clean up of the trench soil to the Shelton City Commission next Monday. (KMAS Radio, Shelton)

Convoys exit port amid violent confrontation – Demonstrators gathered at the Port of Olympia’s main gate Tuesday night to block military shipments from the port to Fort Lewis, but the Army outflanked them and moved several convoys out another gate. (The Olympian)

Businesses could lose 1/3 of workers with flu (The Olympian)


Woman Finds Boyfriend Dead In Cat Door – 32-Year-Old Stuck In Cat Door Dies

2 Men Fight On Highway During Rush Hour – Two men fighting in the middle of rush-hour traffic on Interstate 17 in Arizona had motorists slamming on their brakes in disbelief as fists flew and tempers flared, Department of Public Safety officers said.

Anne Frank's tree to be cut – The chestnut tree that comforted Anne Frank while she hid from the Nazis during World War II will be cut down Nov. 21 because it is too diseased to be saved, the city said Tuesday.