2014-10-02 Energy Week

Please note that this post is being developed.

Friday, September 26:

¶   A new report from Navigant Research examines the global demand response market with a focus on two key sectors: commercial/industrial and residential. The report says the total worldwide capacity of demand response programs is expected to grow from 30.8 GW in 2014 to more than 196.6 GW by 2023. [Transmission and Distribution World]

¶   The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) paper predicts an “auspicious future” for sustainable biomass, outlining that total biomass demand could reach 108 exajoules worldwide by 2030, which would represent 60% of total global renewable energy use, if its full potential is realized. [Business Green]

¶   Following Google, Facebook has cut ties with the American Legislative Exchange Council, bringing the number of corporations that have done so to at least 87. Facebook and Google’s high-profile departure from ALEC will likely put pressure on corporations still sending funds to the conservative group, such as Yahoo and eBay. [Business Spectator]

Saturday, September 27:

¶   Fresh statistics from the Department of Energy and Climate Change estimate renewables met a record-breaking 46.4% of electricity use in 2013, up from 39.9% in 2012. The Scottish government says this indicates Scotland is on track to meet its targets of 50% by 2015, and 100% by 2020. [Utility Products]

¶   As increasing levels of solar, wind, geothermal and biomass are integrated onto the grid, utility hiring is impacted. Solar, however, has the most employment, averaging 41 full-time equivalent (FTE) employees per 100 MW of PV interconnections vs. 12 FTEs per 100 MW of total renewable capacity. [Fierce Energy]

¶   In the State of New York, a looming power supply shortage is spurring regulatory action to support a smarter, less centralized and more robust power grid. The initiative could revolutionize the utility industry in that state, while solving the supply problem — in both a functional and business sense. [Energy Collective]

¶   Entergy expects to complete a detailed decommissioning site assessment for the Vermont Yankee plant in the next 30 days. Also, Entergy has slightly revised its schedule for moving the plant’s spent fuel into more-stable dry cask storage, saying it will be done by 2020. [Brattleboro Reformer]

Sunday, September 28:

¶   Elon Musk will soon be building what amounts, essentially, to being another “Gigafactory”, in New York State as per a recent agreement with the government there. This time it is a manufacturing plant that will produce more than a gigawatt of solar panels a year. [CleanTechnica]

¶   Federal energy regulators have given final approval for construction of a 330-mile electric transmission line to carry lower-cost Canadian hydroelectric power to New York City. Supporters say the line will make the state less bound to the Indian Point nuclear power plant in Westchester County. [Oneida Dispatch]

Monday, September 29:

¶   Saskatchewan’s government-owned power utility is set to launch a carbon-capture-and-storage project this week. SaskPower says it is the world’s first and largest commercial-scale, carbon-capture operation of its kind. It will capture carbon dioxide emissions from burning coal to store them deep underground. [Financial Post]

¶   Carbon emissions in the US are higher than expected for 2014. Carbon dioxide emissions due to the consumption of coal were more than 12% higher during the first half of 2014 than during the first six months of 2012, while those from natural gas and petroleum rose by 7.3% and 0.8% respectively. [Business Green]

¶   Unsatisfied with the pace at which the federal government is acting to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, several US states are forging ahead with their own initiatives. The first year of the California program was a resounding success, with the state’s economy expanding while at the same time adding renewable energy. [OilPrice.com]

Tuesday, September 30:

¶   Modern lithium batteries come with their own environmental baggage. Scientists at Sweden’s Uppsala University, seeking a more eco-friendly alternative, have created a new smart battery made from organic materials that they say produces just as much power as its lithium counterpart. Plus, it’s recyclable. [Big Think]

¶   “ALEC feigns leap off faltering climate denial bandwagon; Fools no one.” The American Legislative Exchange Council had a really bad week. Coming under fire for its climate denial, the typically secretive ALEC answered with a cringe-inducing position statement on climate and renewable energy. [Natural Resources Defense Council]

¶   The Tehachapi Energy Storage Project — the biggest battery energy storage project to date in North America — has now opened. The 32 MWh battery energy storage system built by Southern California Edison has lithium-ion batteries stationed in a special 6,300 square-foot facility in a substation in Tehachapi, California. [CleanTechnica]

Wednesday, October 1:

¶    Synthetically produced hydrogen can store huge amounts of power. Germany will require about 30 TWh of storage capacity, when the nation is 100% renewably powered. Existing gas infrastructure can store up to 200 TWh in gas generated. Wind plants with the ability to store energy as hydrogen are already starting up. [Business Spectator]

¶   A long-term plan to eliminate dependence on fossil fuels in Vermont’s capital of Montpelier is getting a boost from two new projects: one to install more solar panels at an insurance company and another to meet more heating needs with a new biomass heating facility. [BurlingtonFreePress.com]

¶   Michael Renner, senior researcher with Worldwatch Institute writes that nuclear energy’s share of global power production has declined steadily from a peak of 17.6% in 1996 to 10.8% in 2013. Renewables increased their share from 18.7% in 2000 to 22.7% in 2012. [Domestic Fuel]

¶   California Governor Jerry Brown has signed an Environmental Defense Fund-sponsored bill that accelerates the use of demand response, a voluntary, cost-effective tool that relies on people and technology, not polluting, water-intensive power plants, to meet the state’s rising electricity needs. [RenewablesBiz]

Thursday, October 2:

¶   SunEdison announced that its advanced polysilicon technology is now in production and on target to produce solar material at low cost. The company claims this development is a step-change in technology and will it enable it to deliver a 400 watt peak solar panel at a cost of $0.40 per watt peak by 2016. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

 

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