2016-09-29 Energy Week

Visitors Please Note: This blog is maintained to assist in developing a TV show, Energy Week with George Harvey and Tom Finnell. The post is put up in incomplete form, and is updated with news until it is completed, usually on Wednesday. The source is geoharvey.wordpress.com.

Within a few days of the last update, the show may be seen, along with older shows, at this link on the BCTV website: Energy Week Series.

Thursday, September 22:

 Taftsville site on the Ottauquechee River in the town of Woodstock (GMP image)

Taftsville site on the Ottauquechee River in the town of Woodstock (GMP image)

  • Green Mountain Power announced that it has filed with the Public Service Board an agreement with Enel Green Power NA to acquire 14 of Enel’s small hydroelectric power stations located mainly in northern New England, with an approximate total capacity of 17 MW. The deal will create low cost resources for GMP. [Vermont Biz]
  • For the first time ever, investment in new renewables was more than enough to cover rising global electricity demand in 2015. That is according to the first World Energy Investment report, published by the International Energy Agency. The IEA says changes in investment indicate “reorientation of the energy system.” [CleanTechnica]
  • A group of 375 “concerned” scientists, including the famed physicist Stephen Hawking, released an open letter sharply criticizing Donald Trump, citing the threat of climate change and blasting his push for the US to leave the Paris Accord. CNN reached out to the Trump campaign for a response to the letter, but has not received one. [CNN]

Friday, September 23:

 Hikers in Olympic National Park in Washington. (Ralph Arvesen/Flickr)

Hikers in Olympic National Park in Washington. (Ralph Arvesen/Flickr)

  • “Celebrate national parks by fighting climate change” • This year our country is celebrating 100 years of national parks. They are special places woven into the fabric of American life, from the iconic view of California’s Yosemite Valley to our own Crater Lake. Yet these places are increasingly threatened by climate change. [OregonLive.com]
  • Opinion: “Distributed Biogas: $11.8 Billion Market Hidden in Plain Sight” • Every year in the US, 37 million tons of food waste are sent to landfills. At a $125-per-ton tipping fee, this costs $4.6 billion annually. Used to make biogas, at 4,200 cubic feet per ton, this same amount of waste could power five million homes for an entire year. [Biomass Magazine]
 Leedco plans to build the Lake Erie demonstration project in 2018.

Leedco plans to build the Lake Erie demonstration project in 2018.

  • The Lake Erie Energy Development Co has selected MHI Vestas to supply six V126-3.45MW turbines for the 20.7-MW Icebreaker freshwater offshore project in Ohio. Leedco’s president told reNews a decision has been made to use the Danish hardware, completing a shift away from the previously selected Siemens. [reNews]

Saturday, September 24:

Alstom iLint (Alstom image)

Alstom iLint (Alstom image)

  • During the Berlin InnoTrans trade show, France’ Alstom unveiled the Coradia iLint, the world’s first hydrogen-powered passenger train, and it is bound to make its home in Germany. The train essentially emissions-free, and the only sounds it makes come from air resistance and the wheels making contact with the track. [German Pulse]
  • “How the jaw-dropping fall in solar prices will change energy markets” • Every time solar prices have been bid lower, they have been met with howls of derision by less cost-competitive rivals. The multiple bids for solar power below $30/MWh on a 350-MW tender in Abu Dhabi suggest the projects are financially viable. [RenewEconomy]

Sunday, September 25:

California vineyards are at risk from drought related to climate change.

California vineyards are at risk from drought related to climate change.

  • The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, along with government and industry supporters, including Microsoft and Google, launched a partnership to harness the data revolution to strengthen climate resilience efforts, streamline climate data delivery, and inform researchers and data providers. [PlanetSave.com]
  • An analyst for Bloomberg believes the low cost of solar power in the Abu Dhabi Electricity and Water Authority (Adwea) auction should not be understood as a simple price for power. The winning bid, 2.42¢/kWh, is only for nine months per year. During the summer, Adwea will pay 1.6 times as much (about 3.87¢/kWh). [The National]
The SA power crisis should be a wake-up call. (photo by Joe Armao)

The SA power crisis should be a wake-up call. (photo by Joe Armao)

  • A report from the Grattan Institute said the blame for July’s high power prices in South Australia should not be placed on renewables. It highlighted the need for the federal government to have a more effective climate policy as older, brown and black coal-fired power stations prepare to exit the nation’s energy mix. [The Australian Financial Review]

Monday, September 26:

Fracking field (Image via Simon Fraser University)

Fracking field (Image via Simon Fraser University)

  • A new study from research scientists at Stanford University has linked a 4.8 magnitude earthquake recorded in East Texas in 2012 to the now common oil industry practice of hydraulic fracturing (“fracking”) and the accompanying wastewater injection wells. The study was done by use of satellite data. [CleanTechnica]
  • In a major announcement, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said India will ratify the Paris Climate Change Agreement on Mahatma Gandhi’s birth anniversary on October 2. The date to ratify the COP21 protocol was chosen as Mahatma Gandhi’s life was an example of how to leave a minimum carbon footprint. [Daily Pioneer]

For more news, please visit geoharvey – Daily News about Energy and Climate Change.

Tuesday, September 27:

Hydro dam (Statkraft image)

Hydro dam (Statkraft image)

  • Statkraft has officially opened the 73-MW Banja hydropower plant in Albania, the first of two projects that will make up the 256-MW Devoll hydro scheme. The plant, which is located 65 kilometers southeast of the capital Tirana and is Statkraft’s first in the country, will generate about 255 GWh of electricity a year. [reNews]
A box of signs up for auction (Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR)

A box of signs up for auction (Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR)

  • The owners of the Vermont Yankee nuclear plant had to keep a lot of spare parts around to keep the facility running. While the plant was open, the VY had a warehouse filled with equipment that workers might need in case something broke down. It closed in December 2014, and now the plant is auctioning off inventory. [Vermont Public Radio]
  • On September 27, the DC Circuit Court of Appeals is hearing challengers’ arguments against the Clean Power Plan, but many power companies are not waiting for the courts to resolve the legal challenges. Instead, they are cutting carbon emissions already and accelerating the shift to clean energy. [Natural Resources Defense Council]

Wednesday, September 28:

Solar panels on a Rockefeller Center rooftop in midtown Manhattan in New York. (Photograph: Mark Lennihan / AP)

Solar panels on a Rockefeller Center rooftop in midtown
Manhattan in New York. (Photograph: Mark Lennihan / AP)

  • New York City is set to be increasingly challenged by sea level rises caused by melting glaciers and thermal expansion of the ocean as the planet warms. By 2100, sea levels could be up to 50 inches higher than today in New York, a scenario that has prompted the city to pledge billions of dollars for flood defenses and adaptation. [The Guardian]
  • Almost all of us on Earth, 92% of the world’s people, now breathe polluted air, the World Health Organization says. An interactive map, based on global air pollution data, shows places where outdoor air quality fails to meet WHO guidelines. About 3 million deaths each year can be linked to exposure to outdoor air pollution. [CNN]
  • Twelve minutes into the first face-to-face encounter between the candidates, Clinton raised the issue of climate change by pointing to Trump’s past claims that question the science behind rising temperatures and assertion that climate change was a hoax perpetrated by the Chinese. “I did not,” Trump said. “I do not say that.” [Scientific American]
  • Vermont’s Department of Public Service released a public review draft of the energy planning determination standards and recommendations. The Department is due to issue final standards and recommendations by November 1. The public is encouraged to comment on the draft standards and recommendations through October 20. [vtdigger.org]

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