2014-02-13 Energy Week


¶   Chicago-based Exelon Corp. said Thursday on a conference call following its quarterly earnings results that it will shut down nuclear plants to save money if it doesn’t see a path to steady profits this year. [Chicago Tribune]

¶   Several Caribbean nations committed on Thursday to start replacing diesel generators, the most common means of producing electricity on islands, with renewable sources like wind, solar or the earth’s heat. [New York Times]

¶   Ikea’s energy program dedicates over $2 billion–three times as much as originally planned–to clean energy investment through 2015. It is designed to protect the company from energy price shocks and to tap into customers’ green wishes. [CleanTechnica]


¶   A new report from the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) says the renewable energy industry is responsible for 615,000 jobs in the United States. Many Americans, from all political stripes, want to see more of it.[Natural Resources Defense Council]

¶   2014 looks like it will be an even better year for electric vehicles than 2013. IHS Automotive predicts that global electric vehicle production will increase by 67% in 2014, while global production for vehicles overall is forecast to increase by only 3.6%. [CleanTechnica]

¶   India has pledged to build the world’s most powerful solar plant, with a nominal capacity of 4,000 MW. The ‘ultra mega’ project will be more than ten times larger than any other solar project built so far. [Scientific American]

¶   Sumitomo Corp. has developed and installed the world’s first large-scale power storage system which utilizes used batteries collected from electric vehicles. The prototype for a grid-scale storage system will begin operating in February 2014. [Today’s Energy Solutions]

¶   A new process for the creation of gasoline-like fuels from cellulosic plant waste materials has been developed by researchers from UC Davis. Cellulosic plant waste is in very plentiful supply. [CleanTechnica]


¶   At a cost of $8 billion, a 3000 MW windfarm is being developed on a cattle ranch in Wyoming owned by Anschutz. Transmission lines will carry the power to southern California. Construction is expected to start in 2015. [Los Angeles Times]

¶   ”Biofuels Companies Rev Up While Oilcos Sputter” What’s going on – aren’t biofuels supposed to be dead, and fracking changing everything forever in oil & gas? Yet, public oil companies languish, while bellwether renewable fuel equities are on the rise. [Alternative Energy Stocks]


¶   Political delegations from several small Caribbean islands who gathered on Richard Branson’s private isle have committed to working with his renewable energy non-profit organisation and move at a faster pace to cut their dependence on fossil fuels. [Yahoo!7 News]


¶   The Louisiana Democratic Party is supporting lawsuits demanding that 97 oil and gas companies pay for damages to the state’s marshes that led to coastal wetlands loss and contributed to higher storm surges during hurricanes. [The INDsider]

¶   Decommissioning Sellafield nuclear power station in the UK will cost taxpayers at least £70 billion as costs hit “astonishing levels,” senior MPs said yesterday. “What’s worse is that the cost is likely to continue to rise.” [Morning Star Online]


¶   The Indian government is aiming to swap out 26 million fossil-fuel-powered groundwater pumps for solar-powered ones, Bloomberg reports. The pumps are used by farmers and currently rely on diesel generators or electric power from the grid. [CleanTechnica]

¶   In his latest action to prevent a windfarm from being built off the coast of Aberdeen, within sight of his Scottish golf resort, Donald Trump has been once more rebuffed by a Scottish court. He claimed his human rights were being violated. It did not work. [EarthTechling]

¶   The UN has issued its climate change report, which concludes that global warming is unequivocal, human influence on the system is clear, and limiting climate change will require substantial and sustained reductions of greenhouse gas emissions. [Energy Collective]

¶   ”Renewables’ Disruption Of The Utility Business Model Is A Good Thing” Renewables were 69% of new capacity added in 2012 in Europe and 49% in the United States. Not surprisingly, this threatens outmoded business models and fossil-fuel generation. [CleanTechnica]


¶   The Solar Foundation says Vermont is ranked first for solar jobs per capita. There are approximately 1,300 solar jobs total in installation, manufacturing and project development. Vermont added about 990 solar jobs from 2012 to 2013.[Bennington Banner]

¶   Citing levelized cost of energy data from the National Renewable Energy Lab, the Department of Energy says that the average price for a utility-scale PV project has dropped from about $0.21/kWh in 2010 to $0.11/kWh at the end of 2013. [EarthTechling]

¶   The European Commission has delivered what Greenpeace UK says can only be called a scathing initial verdict on the UK Government’s deal with French state-owned EDF to build the first new nuclear reactors in the UK for a generation. [CleanTechnica]

¶   Renewable energy plants constructed in the last 10 years will save Turkey $5.5 billion in natural gas imports each tear for the next 49 years, according to Turkey’s Energy Minister.[www.worldbulletin.net]

¶   Legendary hedge fund investor Jeremy Grantham says there is no doubt that solar and wind energy will completely replace coal and gas across the globe, it is just a matter of when. He says, “The question is only whether it takes 30 years or 70 years.” [CleanTechnica]


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