July 13, 2015
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Clean Energy revolving fund to aid projects by Avista, PSE, PNNL and others

Several private-sector Washington employers have signed contracts to develop and test innovative battery and clean energy technology through the Washington Clean Energy Fund, which was created in 2013 to help expand the state's technological prowess and energy independence.

Among the projects:
  • Avista will use a $3.2 million grant to field test a 1-megawatt, 3.2-megawatt hour vanadium-flow battery assembly at a substation in Pullman; and
  • Puget Sound Energy was awarded a $3.8 million contract to help deploy a 2-megawatt, 4.4-megawatt hour lithium-ion/phosphate battery assembly.
The Pacific Northwest National Laboratory will help analyze the technical and economic attributes of these Smart Grid utility projects, including how they can help enhance the stability, reliability, resilience and economics of the future energy grid. This includes the contribution of intermittent renewable energy sources, such as wind and solar power generation.

The Department of Commerce has more information here and here.

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Export-Import Bank helps employers compete globally

By U.S. Rep. Dave Reichert (R-Wash.) and Kris Johnson

With the creation of the U.S. Export-Import (Ex-Im) Bank over 80 years ago, many Washington state businesses -- both large and small -- have remarkable success stories to tell about growing their businesses because of exports.

These stories can be found throughout the Washington state in a variety of industries. Take for example, Seattle's Lighthouse for the Blind, a manufacturer of machine parts and molding for aerospace companies. Because of its robust export business supported by the bank, it is able provide more than 400 good-paying jobs for Washingtonians in the deaf-blind community. ...

Congress must act to reauthorize the Ex-Im Bank charter. The consequences of doing nothing would be devastating to employers and employees in Washington state and around the nation.

Click here to read the full op-ed in The Hill

Our Voice: Lawmakers make right choice supporting gas tax

By the editorial board of the Tri-City Herald

Voting in favor of a significant tax hike is not easy for lawmakers from conservative legislative districts.

So the Mid-Columbia legislators who approved an 11.9-cent gas tax increase should be commended for having the courage to make the right decision. ...

Tax hikes are tough to take, but at least in this case the Tri-City area will get some benefit from the new revenue.

And that is thanks to several Mid-Columbia lawmakers who made the right, but tough, choice...

Click here to read the full editorial in The Tri-City Herald
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