Land Rights & Infrastructure Asset Management Software
The geoAMPS team gave in a big way to the Mid-Ohio Foodbank. Each year, geoAMPS employees have donated nonperishable food items and money to help those less fortunate have nutritious meals during the holidays. The team’s donations amounted to 7,329 meals, which far exceeded the food and money donated in 2014.
The geoAMPS software solution for development and operation of renewable energy projects is featured in the November/December 2015 edition of North American Clean Energy, a leading provider of news and information about renewable energy industries. altAMPS is part of the geoAMPS suite of software products. altAMPS is specially designed for renewable energy projects, such as wind farms, solar panel fields, geothermal plants and biomass facilities.
Denzil31 / flickr Wind farm developers in the United States may want to gear up planning for new projects, as action in Washington to extend the Production Tax Credit (PTC) could come before year’s end. The PTC has provided incentive for a dramatic increase in wind farms and growth of the wind energy industry. That growth has resulted in greater wind energy capacity since the PTC was established. The PTC, however, was allowed to expire at the end of 2014. There is new legislation in Congress that would extend the PTC. It received strong bipartisan support in the Senate Finance Committee in May. Now, Marika Fredriksson, Chief Financial Officer of Vestas Wind Systems, the world’s largest wind turbine manufacturer, told Reuters that she believes Congress will approve an extension of the PTC in December 2015.
flickr / Portland General Electric Common criticisms of widespread development and utilization of renewable energy, particularly wind and solar power, are that power is only being generated when the wind blows and the sun shines. Critics claim these facts in nature result in unreliability of renewable sources of energy. But there is a technological response to this criticism: energy storage systems. Recognizing that there are downtimes of power production when the wind isn’t blowing or after the sun has set, researchers have been hard at work for some time developing systems that will store energy so it will be available to the grid on a 24-hour basis.
Renewable energy industries have learned in recent years that they cannot depend upon the Production Tax Credit and other tax incentives to help in project development. Even though the tax credits have led to increased development and job creation, politicians in Washington have been unable to agree to extend the credits. While the debate in Washington continues, advances in technology are helping the industry reduce the cost of project development. New articles from geoAMPS, published on The Energy Collective and altEnergyMag websites, discuss how those advances in technology are aiding the industry at this critical time.
geoAMPS was presented with the Fast 50 award during an awards luncheon Oct. 15 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in downtown Columbus. A Columbus, OH-area company that provides software solutions to manage land rights and infrastructure assets, geoAMPS was named to the Fast 50 list of fastest growing companies in Central Ohio for 2015.
In the development and operation of a wind farm, several issues enter the discussion quickly, issues that are critical to determining project costs. These issues include availability of wind, siting of the wind farm and its turbines, land use in the area, transmission of the electricity to the power grid, access roads, and power generation capacity of the turbines. But there is another issue that gets little attention outside the wind industry world. Managing lease and royalty payments to landowners can be a time-consuming, labor-intensive task. Absent an effective strategy and the right technology, wind companies struggle with this necessary aspect of doing business.
Delta Wind Farm / flickr The Production Tax Credit and Investment Tax Credit have been political footballs in recent years. Extensions have been approved, then left to expire, brewing uncertainty within renewable energy industries. This remains the case. This summer, the U.S. Senate Finance Committee voted 23-3 to extend a number of renewable energy tax credits through the end of 2016. That measure would allow developers of wind, geothermal, biomass, landfill gas, incremental hydroelectric and ocean energy to take advantage of federal tax credits for projects begun before Dec. 31, 2016. Among those are the Production Tax Credit (PTC) and Investment Tax Credit (ITC). If passed, wind farms could receive a 2.3-cent-per-kilowatt-hour credit through the end of 2016.
Andy Tucker / flickr Cities across the United States are completing and planning improvements to their public transportation systems. These improvements are efforts by metropolitan transit agencies, in concert with local, state and federal governments, to relieve congestion on city streets and provide a transportation alternative that will save money for individual citizens and reduce fuel usage. The federal government pumps billions of dollars each year into public transportation improvements. Local and state sources provide funding, too. The improvements include bus, streetcar and light-rail projects.
Nester Galina / flickr The past few months have been rough on the oil industry. The price for oil has plummeted, dropping to a level half of what it was last year. The result has been company bankruptcies, mergers, layoffs and cancelled projects. Despite this dire news, the industry is still poised to produce more oil in 2015 than it did last year. Advancements in technology are a major reason. These advancements are being introduced at each stage of oil production, from analyzing drilling sites, to acquiring land rights to develop new wells, drilling and extraction, pipeline construction, project operation and maintenance, and standardizing organizational procedures.