2016-04-21 Energy Week

Thursday, April 14:

Wind turbine in Toksook Bay, Alaska. Photo by energy.gov. Public domain. Wikimedia Commons.

Wind turbine in Toksook Bay, Alaska. Photo by energy.gov. Public domain. Wikimedia Commons.

  • The University of Guam and University of Alaska Fairbanks announced a broad partnership for climate change and energy generation. This took place at a collaborative energy workshop at the 7th Regional Island Sustainability Conference at the Lotte Hotel Guam in Tumon. [The Guam Daily Post]
  • The UK’s solar panels have generated more electricity than coal in a full day for the first time ever, Carbon Brief analysis shows. On Saturday 9 April, solar generated 29 GWh of electricity, 4% of the total used that day. Coal generated 21 GWh, which was 3% of demand. [Carbon Brief]
  • Peabody Energy, the world’s largest private sector coal miner, announced that it has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Its entire industry is reeling from low production and demand, and facing an upsurge in both gas and renewable energy electricity generation. [CleanTechnica]

Friday, April 15:

The project would see a converter station built at Bicker in Lincolnshire. Geograph / Richard Humphrey

The project would see a converter station built at Bicker in Lincolnshire. Geograph / Richard Humphrey

  • Plans for a 472-mile (760 km) electricity cable between the UK and Denmark have gone out to public consultation. If approved, the €2-billion ($2.25-billion) “Viking Link,” from Bicker Fen, Lincolnshire to Revsing, would enable import and export of power with mainland Europe. [BBC News]
  • MidAmerican Energy Company, based in Des Moines, announced plans to spend $3.6 billion on a wind turbine operation that would generate enough energy to power about 800,000 Iowa homes. Officials called the effort the largest economic development project in state history. [The Daily Nonpareil]
  • Entergy will refuel its 728-MW Pilgrim nuclear reactor in 2017 and shut it down on May 31, 2019. Entergy had been considering shutting the unit as early as the spring of 2017, because the unit is losing about $40 million annually, but it has power contracts through May 31, 2019. [Platts]

Saturday, April 16:

Franz Josef Fjord, glacier, Greenland. Jerzy Strzelecki. CC BY-SA 3.0 unported. Wikimedia Commons

Franz Josef Fjord, glacier, Greenland. Jerzy Strzelecki. CC BY-SA 3.0 unported. Wikimedia Commons

  • Greenland’s massive ice sheet has started its annual summer melt earlier than ever before, according to stunned scientists who said they had to recheck their calculations before releasing the results. The previous earliest dates were all later by weeks, in May. [CNN]
Many of those who came here to work in North Dakota’s oil industry have now gone home.

Many of those who came here to work in North Dakota’s oil industry have now gone home.

  • With the development of fracking, the former backwater of Williston, North Dakota was transformed into the unofficial capital of the energy renaissance. Its economic growth was staggering. Now, many workers have packed their bags and gone home. Williston has become a ghost town. [BBC]
  • Fifteen years after blackouts swept the state, a Federal Energy Regulatory Commission judge has found that a division of Shell Oil engaged in fraud and market manipulation during California’s energy crisis. The tentative decision holds Shell and Iberdrola liable for $1.1 billion. [SFGate]

Sunday, April 17:

A Great Northern Loon on a nest in Maine. Photo by Dana Moos. CC BY-SA 2.o generic. Wikimedia Commons.

A Great Northern Loon on a nest in Maine. Photo by Dana Moos. CC BY-SA 2.o generic. Wikimedia Commons.

  • Last summer, researchers found the first ever case of a loon that died of avian malaria in New England, on Umbagog Lake on the border of New Hampshire and Maine. Other birds in the area are infected. With climate change, the parasite appears to be moving north. [Barre Montpelier Times Argus]

Monday, April 18:

Santa Ana, Costa-Rica Wind Turbines. Photo sites.psu.edu

Santa Ana, Costa-Rica Wind Turbines. Photo sites.psu.edu

  • Costa Rica got 97.14% of it electricity from renewable sources in the first quarter of the year, according to the Central Nacional de Control de Energia (National Energy Control Centre). Hydro electric produced 65.2%, followed by wind with 15.6% and geothermal with 13.7% [Q Costa Rica News]
  • The world can wean itself from fossil fuels in as little as a decade, with effort. Europe moved from wood to coal in Europe in 96 to 160 years, electricity took 47 to 69 years to become mainstream. But Ontario completed a shift away from coal between 2003 and 2014. [International Business Times]
  • A meeting of the world’s leading oil exporters to discuss capping production has ended without agreement. Members wanted a deal that would freeze output and help stem the plunge in crude prices over the past 18 months, but they concluded that they need more time to consult. [BBC]

Tuesday, April 19:

The battery system in Salinas would consist of about 6400 Aquion batteries. Each occupies slightly more than one square foot of floor space. Image credit Aquion

The battery system in Salinas would consist of about 6400 Aquion batteries. Each occupies slightly more than one square foot of floor space. Image credit Aquion

  • A 1.25-MWh Aquion aqueous hybrid-ion battery has just been commissioned to support a 16-MW Puerto Rican solar power installation. The 16-MW solar power plant is located in Salinas, and the Aquion battery will generate 100% of the electricity used to operate it at night. [CleanTechnica]
  • The Washington-based Center for International Environmental Law says it can show the petroleum industry has been obscuring data on climate change for seventy years. By combing through documents, it traced the industry’s coordinated deception back to a 1946 meeting in Los Angeles. [CleanTechnica]
  • The lower house of the Dutch parliament passed a motion that would ban the sales of non-electric cars by 2025. The motion still needs to pass the Senate to become binding, but if it does, it would mean that anyone in the country looking to buy a new car would have to buy electric. [ThinkProgress]

Wednesday, April 20:

 

Sandbank substation. Bladt Industries photo

Sandbank substation. Bladt Industries photo

  • Bladt Industries has loaded out the offshore substation for the 288-MW Sandbank offshore wind farm in the German North Sea. The substation and its jacket foundation are in Aalborg on the barge AMT Commander, ready to sail to the construction site some 90 km west of the island of Sylt. [reNews]
  • Siemens AG is building a plant near Oxford, England, that makes ammonia by electrolysis instead of through the traditional reaction fed by fossil fuels. If fed by idled renewable power plants, the process would make emissions-free fertilizer used by farmers everywhere. [Bloomberg]
  • Mitsubishi Motors has admitted falsifying fuel economy test data for more than 600,000 vehicles. The inaccurate tests involved 157,000 of its own brand light passenger cars and 468,000 vehicles produced for Nissan. The problem was uncovered after Nissan pointed out inconsistencies in emissions data. [BBC]
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