2016-04-07 Energy Week

Thursday, March 31:

From the Environment America Research & Policy Center

From the Environment America Research & Policy Center

  • This chart shows the United States’ mind-blowing clean energy potential • The United States uses about 3.7 million GWh of electricity each year. The next time someone tries to make the argument that 100 percent renewable energy is out of reach for the U.S., show them this image: [Grist]
  • Clear Skies From Wind Power • Over 17 million Americans have asthma. Every year it is responsible for more than 10 million doctor visits and 1.8 million trips to the emergency room. Health professionals tell us one of the biggest triggers for an asthma attack is air pollution. [Huffington Post]
  • It might seem like a bad April Fool’s joke, but Plant Vogtle is no laughing matter to Georgia Power customers. They have already paid more than $1.4 billion for reactors that won’t be operational until 2020 or 2021. The first was supposed to be operational on April 1, 2016. [Creative Loafing Atlanta]

Friday, April 1:

  • A total of 57.7% of electricity consumed in Scotland was renewably generated last year, up 7.9 percentage points on 2014, according to provisional UK government statistics. Scottish politicians and green groups hailed the figure, but warned further progress would be hindered by UK policy. [Energy Voice]
  • According to new figures published by the UK’s Department of Energy and Climate Change, 2015 saw renewable energy generate a record 24.7% of the country’s electricity, an increase of 5.6% on 2014 numbers. As a result, electricity bills across the country are falling. [CleanTechnica]
  • Ohio state regulators approved a version of FirstEnergy’s request to have customers subsidize continued operations of the Davis-Besse nuclear plant and the coal-fired WH Sammis plant. Customers will be forced to buy power from the old plants even when cheaper power is available. [cleveland.com]

Saturday, April 2:

Tesla Motors unveils the Model 3 on Thursday at the Tesla Motors design studio in Hawthorne, Calif. (Justin Prichard, The Associated Press)

Tesla Motors unveils the Model 3 on Thursday at the Tesla Motors design studio in Hawthorne, Calif. (Justin Prichard, The Associated Press)

  • Demand for the lower-priced electric Tesla Model 3 surprised even the company’s CEO Friday as 198,000 people plunked down $1,000 deposits. Tesla had secured about 135,000 reservations on Thursday, the first day of ordering. The car won’t go on sale for at least another year. [Denver Post]
  • Technology companies Google, Apple, Microsoft, and Amazon filed a joint amicus brief in a federal Court of Appeals to support the Environmental Protection Agency as it defends its signature Clean Power Plan against a challenge by industry groups and more than half of US states. [eNCA]
  • The State Grid, the company running China’s power grid, is proposing a $50 trillion global electricity network to tackle pollution and climate change. If it goes ahead the network would use advanced renewable solar and wind technology and be operating by 2050. [RT]

Sunday, April 3:

Micro-CSP collectors on the Big Island of Hawaii. Photo by Xklaim. CC BY-SA 3.0 unported. Wikimedia Commons.

Micro-CSP collectors on the Big Island of Hawaii. Photo by Xklaim. CC BY-SA 3.0 unported. Wikimedia Commons.

  • Hawaiian Electric Companies submitted a revised power plan to the Hawai’i Public Utilities Commission to get to 100% renewable energy in 30 years. The company would use a broad mix of solar energy sources, onshore and offshore wind, hydropower, and geothermal. [Big Island Now]

Monday, April 4:

Plug’n Drive, Ontario. CC BY-SA 2.o. Wikimedia Commons

Plug’n Drive, Ontario. CC BY-SA 2.o. Wikimedia Commons

  • Ontario’s challenge is to have enough power for all the new electric cars • When Ontario’s power planners look down the road, they see electric vehicles coming at them. They just might be coming a little faster now than even the forecasters imagined. [London Free Press]
A giant dredging machine at work in the brown coal mine at Loy Yang in the Latrobe Valley. Photo: John Woudstra

A giant dredging machine at work in the brown coal mine at Loy Yang in the Latrobe Valley. Photo: John Woudstra

  • More than 300 doctors and other medical professionals have signed an open letter demanding the government of the Australian state of Victoria develop a plan to retire the Latrobe Valley’s brown coal power plants because of the health damage they cause in the local community. [The Age]
  • In the UK, g2 Energy completed work on 47 large scale solar farms totalling 356.4 MW in the six months leading up to closure of the Renewables Obligation on 31 March. The year is the fifth running that it has connected 100% of its contracted renewable energy projects on time. [Solar Power Portal]

Tuesday, April 5:

Solar PVs in Hawaii. Image: Renewable Energy Services Facebook page

Solar PVs in Hawaii. Image: Renewable Energy Services Facebook page

  • Hawaii’s main utility, HECO, says smart grid, demand response, and storage technologies will help Hawaii reach 100% renewables by 2045. A plan submitted to the regulator shows how the state can continue to steer a course to meet its ambitious “100% renewable energy-powered” target. [PV-Tech]
  • Continued operation of the “decaying” 40-year-old Indian Point nuclear power plant up the Hudson River from New York City “makes no sense,” according to Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders. The plant is within 50 miles of the homes of 20 million residents. [RT]
  • A report by the UK’s Intergenerational Foundation forecast that the country could save £39.9 billion ($56.7 billion) over the next 35 years if government steered the estimated £24 billion ($34 billion) required to build and run the Hinkley Point nuclear plant towards solar PV investment instead. [pv magazine]
Image: Wagenborg

Image: Wagenborg

  • Dutch shipping company Wagenborg has set sail with the topside for the Horns Rev 3 offshore wind substation ahead of installation off Denmark. A pair of vessels left Schiedam with the HSM-built structure, which will export power from Vattenfall’s 400-MW offshore wind farm. [reNews]

Wednesday, April 6:

  • Utility regulators announced that Southern California could face 14 days of rolling blackouts if the Southern California Gas Co’s Aliso Canyon energy facility above Porter Ranch remains depleted. The warning is the latest reverberation from the largest natural gas leak in US history. [Press-Enterprise]
Gov. Peter Shumlin speaks, flanked by (l-r) House Speaker Shap Smith, Senate Pro Tem John Campbell, and Secretary of Administration Justin Johnson. Nancy Remsen

Gov. Peter Shumlin speaks, flanked by (l-r) House Speaker Shap Smith, Senate Pro Tem John Campbell, and Secretary of Administration Justin Johnson. Nancy Remsen

  • Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin and the leaders of the House and Senate agreed Tuesday that the state should consider purchasing the hydroelectric dams on the Connecticut and Deerfield rivers. Their owner, TransCanada, has announced it wants to sell 13 dams. [Seven Days]
  • New York State’s first community choice aggregation under Governor Cuomo’s watch, is now expected to start supplying customers with electricity on May 1, 2016. Of the 20 participating Sustainable Westchester communities, 14 opted for 100% green energy as a default. [CleanTechnica]
  • The Co-op Power renewable energy cooperative awaiting startup of its Northeast Biodiesel plant at the Greenfield Industrial Park has received a long-delayed interconnection agreement for another project at the same site, a 595-kW community-shared solar project. [The Recorder]
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