Bloomberg: Puerto Rico Electric Talks Proceed After Debt Plan Expires

Puerto Rico’s main electricity provider and its bondholders are continuing negotiations to restructure almost $9 million billion in debt after failing to meet a deadline Friday that caused a tentative pact reached last month to be terminated.

The restructuring support agreement between the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority and its creditors expired after lawmakers failed to pass legislation by Friday to enable Prepa, as the agency is known, to lower its obligations and implement a new customer surcharge. In a sign of progress, banks that finance its fuel purchases and the utility entered into a forbearance agreement on Sunday that keeps their negotiations out of court through Feb. 12.

R Street Institute: Understanding the GOP's Civil War Over Solar

If politics makes for strange bedfellows, few issues make for more peculiar sleeping arrangements than that of distributed energy. There aren’t many others that put former Republican congressman (and son of “Mr. Conservative” himself) Barry Goldwater Jr. on the same side as the Sierra Club. But when it comes to efforts by electrical utilities to add special fees for homes that use rooftop solar, Goldwater sees his opposition as the truly conservative stance.

Not all conservatives see things this way, however. Some conservative Republicans have found themselves in the unusual position of advocating stricter regulation and higher fees for distributed-energy generation. In Arizona, legislators recently tightened restrictions on solar leases, mandating more disclosure about lifetime cost to customers and giving homeowners a three-day grace period to get out of a solar contract after it’s been signed. The author of the legislation, State Senator Debbie Lesko, is a Republican whose campaign website stresses the importance of “limiting taxes and government regulation.”

Wired: The Home Battery You Can Install Yourself Is Coming

Orison, a small startup based in San Diego, wants to show that the people really do want these home batteries. That’s why it’s offering a rather friendly version of the technology via a new Kickstarter campaign. The device is unusually small and light, weighing only about 40 pounds. You can install it on your own, inside the house, simply by plugging into an ordinary electrical socket. And you can get your hands on one if you contribute a mere $1,600 to the Kickstarter campaign.

The Hill: Bill Nye Wants NASCAR to Switch to Electric Cars

Scientist Bill Nye is encouraging NASCAR to switch to all-electric cars, calling on the auto racing league to look to "the future rather than the past."

NASCAR could help address climate change by converting "all of our racecars to electricity -- right now -- and show the public exactly what electrons can do," wrote Nye, known popularly as "Bill Nye, the Science Guy," in an op-ed on the Aeon website.

The Engineer: Nissan to Lead £19.4 Million Lithium-Ion Project

Nissan is leading a £19.4 million U.K. project to develop next-generation lithium-ion batteries for electric cars.

The project, which has funding from the Advanced Propulsion Centre, is aiming to develop new and improved chemistry and manufacturing processes for Li-ion batteries.

The consortium also includes Warwick Manufacturing Group (WMG), Hyperdrive, Newcastle University and Zero Carbon Futures. The research will be based around Nissan’s Sunderland battery manufacturing plant, which is the largest facility of its kind in Europe.