2014-07-10 Energy Week

Please note that this posting is under development:

Friday, July 4

¶   Aston Martin recently announced a partnership with the Hanergy Global Solar Power & Applications Group that will fit solar panels on the roof of the Vantage GTE racing in the World Endurance Championship. [SmartMeters]

¶   The US DOE announced a new $4 billion loan guarantee program to support renewable energy and energy efficiency projects. The program is geared specifically for projects that avoid, reduce or store greenhouse gases and prevent their release into the atmosphere. [FuelFix]

¶   Historically, distributed generation has largely been limited to a handful of progressive states. But as solar power gains presence and storage prices go down, microgrids are expanding into new territory. [Energy Collective]

Saturday, July 5

¶   Whether it is in reaction to international trade conflicts, booming local demand for solar, or the firm belief that solar PV will soon be a dominant player in the energy market, recent company announcements highlight the great promise that solar manufacturing holds. [Renewable Energy World]

¶   Over the past month Hawaii, Rhode Island, and Vermont have all either established climate adaptation laws or created long-term plans to tackle the increasing impacts of climate change. [CleanTechnica]

¶   Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant will be allowed to continue discharging millions of gallons of heated water into the Connecticut River until the plant shuts down later this year, despite owner Entergy Nuclear relying on “flawed science,” a draft state permit stated. [Barre Montpelier Times Argus]

Sunday, July 6

¶   UK researchers today announced what they believe to be a game changer in the use of hydrogen as a “green” fuel, by using ammonia as a clean and secure hydrogen-containing energy source to produce hydrogen on-demand in situ. [phys.org]

¶   In Australia, the combination of low demand and strong output from the Queensland’s 1.1 GW of rooftop solar helped send the state’s electricity prices into negative territory on Wednesday – in the middle of the day, when demand is usually the highest, and prices too. [CleanTechnica]

¶   The American Council On Renewable Energy released the results of its “Business Leaders Opinion Polling.” It showed broad support for renewables in all areas , with 78% of business leaders saying renewable energy technologies are a real growth opportunity for the economy. [Electric Light & Power]

Monday, July 7

¶   Australia is expected to spend some $55 billion on new electricity generation over the next decade and a half, but two thirds of this will be in the form of solar technology, and nearly half in rooftop solar PV, according to a Bloomberg New Energy Finance forecast. [Echonetdaily]

¶   After examining the publicly available compliance records of more than 41,000 wells in northeastern Pennsylvania, the Cornell-led researchers reported that 40% of the oil and gas wells in parts of the Marcellus shale region will probably leak methane into the atmosphere. [Energy Collective]

¶   “Give It Up, ‘Skeptics’ — America Is No Longer Debating Climate Change” This week, the Heartland Institute is holding a conference on climate change in Las Vegas, which they’ve dubbed “the biggest gathering of global warming skeptics in the world.” [VICE News]

Tuesday, July 8

¶   “Solar has won. Even if coal were free to burn, power stations couldn’t compete” As early as 2018, solar could be economically viable to power big cities. By 2040 over half of all electricity may be generated in the same place it’s used. Centralised, coal-fired power is over. [The Guardian]

¶   Increased generation capacity, high wind speeds, and low electricity demand has pushed the share of electricity generated from renewable energy sources to 19.4% in the UK during the first quarter of 2014, a substantial increase from 12.4% a year earlier. [CleanTechnica]

¶   One thing that might get lost amidst the headlines on renewable energy is the fact the coal power is increasing, too. It was the world’s fastest growing fossil fuel last year, according to British Petroleum’s annual energy review. [CleanTechnica]

Wednesday, July 9

¶   Pathways to Deep Decarbonization, a report prepared by researchers in 15 different countries, looks into what’s needed to achieve sufficient cuts in our carbon emissions. The report finds that current government pledges aren’t sufficient. [Ars Technica]

¶   For the first time, a large fraction of the world’s fossil fuels could be replaced at a lower cost by clean energy, with today’s renewable technologies and prices. And virtually no further investments in fossil fuels make long-term economic sense. [Huffington Post]

Thursday, July 10

¶   Wind and solar accounted for approximately 27% of Germany’s electricity generation in the first half of 2014. With 4% more coming from hydro, renewable energy sources accounted for a larger portion of electricity production than brown coal for the first time. [Business Spectator]

¶   China recently overhauled its basic environmental law in a way that brings it closer to the structure of the US Clean Air Act.  Among other things, the new law also contains a provision authorizing public interest litigation by certain Chinese NGOs. [Energy Collective]

¶   Saudi Aramco has come up with cost-effective ways to get at its tight gas and is now targeting a competitive price of $2.00 to $3.00 per thousand cubic feet. This is seen as a big blow to the US fracking industry. [CleanTechnica]

¶   The Abbott government’s bid to repeal Australia’s carbon tax has again been defeated in the Senate. It is still widely expected that the Senate will pass it, depending on how negotiations progress, but negotiations are not Abbott’s strong point. [RenewEconomy]

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