Author Archives: geoharvey

2018-07-26 Energy Week, Episode 273

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, July 19:

Stockpiles of rocks containing uranium ore (Photo: Martin Divisek)

  • Trade War Spills Into Uranium as U.S. Weighs Import Tariffs
    The Trump administration began an investigation into whether uranium imports threaten national security, a move that may lead to tariffs on the nuclear power plant fuel. US uranium miners supply less than 5% of domestic consumption for the metal and say it’s increasingly difficult to compete with state-subsidized companies abroad. [Yahoo Finance]
  • 100% Renewable Energy: UK carbon emissions have fallen below 1890 levels – the Victorian Era!
    Carbon Brief reports the UK’s greenhouse gas emissions are already 38% below 1990 levels and are now equal to emissions not seen in that country since Queen Victoria sat on the throne. It says the decrease is attributable to a sharp drop in the amount of coal used in the UK to generate electricity, along with an increase in renewables. [Red, Green, and Blue]
  • Denver Pledges 100% Renewable Electricity By 2030
    Denver’s Mayor, now seeking a third term, pledged that the city will source 100% of its electricity from renewable sources by 2030. In doing so, Denver became the 73rd city in the US to commit to a 100% renewable electricity target. Nine other Colorado cities have made a 100% renewable electricity commitment, but Denver is the largest. [CleanTechnica]

Friday, July 20:

Rosatom icebreaker (Rosatom image)

  • Rosatom as a Tactic in Russia’s Foreign Policy
    Russia has continued to supply record amounts of coal, oil, and gas to global markets, but it has also identified nuclear power generation as a new energy export option. Russian leadership has embarked on active nuclear power diplomacy globally, with Rosatom as its centerpiece. [International Policy Digest]
  • A ‘fingerprint’ for anthropogenic climate change in a new place
    Adding to evidence attributing observed atmospheric changes to manmade influences, climate scientists used decades of satellite data to identify a human “fingerprint” on the troposphere, the lowest region of the atmosphere. In this space, say the authors, human-caused warming has significantly affected the seasonal cycle of the temperature. [EurekAlert]

Lower Manhattan (Eyone, Wikimedia Commons)

  • Oil majors win dismissal of New York City climate lawsuit
    A US judge dismissed a lawsuit by New York City seeking to hold major oil companies liable for climate change caused by carbon emissions from burning fossil fuels. In dismissing the city’s claims, US District Judge John Keenan in Manhattan said climate change must be addressed through federal regulation and foreign policy. [Reuters]

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2018-07-19 Energy Week, Episode 272

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, July 12

San Gabriel Mountains and Los Angeles (AP photo)

  • California meets goal for reducing greenhouse gases years early
    California greenhouse gas emissions fell below 1990 levels, meeting an early target years ahead of schedule and putting the state well on its way toward reaching long-term goals to fight climate change, officials said. The California Air Resources Board announced pollution levels were down 13% since their 2004 peak, while the economy grew 26%. [The Japan Times]
  • Court backs Duke, FPL in class-action suit over nuclear costs
    A federal appeals court backed Florida Power & Light and Duke Energy Florida in a class-action lawsuit that sought to recover $2 billion in money paid by utility customers under a controversial 2006 nuclear-power law. The law, allowing utilities to collect money for nuclear projects that might never be built, was argued to be unconstitutional. [Citrus County Chronicle]

Paro Taktsang, Bhutan

  • World’s only carbon-negative country Bhutan is giving us renewable energy goals
    Bhutan’s Prime Minister had the goal of making his country carbon neutral to make sure Bhutan does not contribute to the releasing carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. Now he has added a new policy of maintaining a minimum of 60% forest coverage. [India Today]

Friday, July 13

  • Tesla Passed 200,000 US Electric Car Deliveries In July, GM Will Pass This Year
    A Tesla spokesperson officially confirmed to CleanTechnica that the company had sold and delivered 200,000 EVs in the US. The phaseout period of the federal EV tax credit is set into motion when a manufacturer sells its 200,000th EV in this country. The amount of the tax credit will be cut 50% on January 1, 2019, with two further to follow. [CleanTechnica]

Australian energy (Coast Protection Board, South Australia)

  • Ammonia—a renewable fuel made from sun, air, and water—could power the globe without carbon
    Australia boasts a renewable energy potential of 25,000 GW, one of the highest in the world and about four times the installed electricity production capacity of the entire planet. A chemist at Monash University says that energy can be captured and stored for later use by making ammonia, which can be used as a carbon-free fuel. [Science Magazine]
  • Spain covers 45.8% of H1 2018 electricity demand with renewables
    A combination of good meteorological conditions in the first half of 2018 has led Spain to cover 45.8% of the electricity demand on its grid from renewable energy sources. Wind energy systems were the peninsula’s primary source of electricity, covering 22.6% of its electricity demand, followed by hydro power, with a 16.9% share. [pv magazine International]
  • Researchers In Norway Claim Lithium Ion Battery Breakthrough
    Researchers at Norway’s Department of Energy Technology in Kjeller say they have perfected a way to substitute silicon for the graphite commonly used in the anodes of lithium-ion batteries. The discovery will lead to batteries that can power an electric car for 600 miles or more, the researchers claim. Pure silicon has ten times the capacity of graphite. [CleanTechnica]

Saturday, July 14

Dried up river in England (Photo: Matt Cardy | Getty Images)

  • Heatwave sees record high temperatures around world this week
    High temperature records have been set across much of the world this week as an unusually prolonged heat wave intensifies concerns about climate change. The World Meteorological Organization said the rising temperatures were at odds with a global cyclical climate phenomena known as La Niña, which is usually associated with cooling. [The Guardian]
  • The US Is Burning Up, But No One Wants to Talk About The Elephant in The Room
    In the last week of June, broad areas of the the US were hit by a powerful heat wave stretching across the country, breaking 227 US records in its first week alone. A new and distressing report from Media Matters reveals that most major broadcast TV networks are completely ignoring the link between unprecedented heat waves and climate change. [ScienceAlert]

Sunday, July 15

Azolla

  • Tiny Azolla Fern Could Help Reduce Negative Effects Of Climate Change, Scientists Say
    In a study published in the journal Nature Plants, a multinational team of scientists discussed how they sequenced genomes for tiny ferns Azolla filiculoides and Salvinia cucullata. The research has implications in fields ranging from agriculture to climate science. It turns out that the ferns may be important tools to fight global warming. [The Inquisitr]
  • Exxon leaving ALEC
    ExxonMobil announced it will leave the American Legislative Exchange Council, a corporate lobby group bankrolled by the Koch brothers and known for its attempts to block climate action. Campaigners cautiously welcomed the decision, though they said Exxon had to do more to prove it was committed to addressing climate change. [NationofChange]
  • Former (Real) EPA Chief: Big Oil Is “Peddling Misinformation” About Electric Cars
    Christine Todd Whitman was head of the EPA under President George W Bush back in 2001–2003. Working intimately with (and regulating) the energy industries, she witnessed efforts from the oil industry to undermine clean energy solutions. Recently, she appeared on CNBC to discuss the misguided “misinformation” efforts of Big Oil. [CleanTechnica]

Monday, July 16

Babcock Ranch

  • Babcock Ranch In Florida Is To Sustainable Living What Tesla Is To Sustainable Transportation
    Tucked into a corner of Southwest Florida about a half-hour from Fort Myers, Babcock Ranch is what developer Syd Kitson calls the most sustainable new community in America. It was designed from the start as a green development. [CleanTechnica]
  • Tesla builds case for 250MW virtual power plant after first trial success
    The prospects for Tesla’s proposed 250-MW virtual power plant in South Australia look significantly brighter after the success of its first trial and an enthusiastic response from the South Australia government. So far, some 100 Housing SA homes have received their 5-kW of rooftop solar PVs and the 13.5k-Wh Tesla Powerwall batteries. [RenewEconomy]

Energy Observer (Gaël Musquet | Wikimedia Commons)

  • The World’s First Autonomous Hydrogen Boat Takes a Trip Around the World
    We have seen news about a cruise ship, Energy Observer, which as caught the world’s attention as it sails around the world on a six-year voyage. It is going on this long trip powered entirely by solar, hydrogen, wind and water energy, without fossil fuels. One article has already appeared here on June 23, but now we have more. [Interesting Engineering]

Tuesday, July 17

  • China, EU reaffirm Paris climate commitment, vow more cooperation
    China and the EU reaffirmed their commitments to the Paris climate pact and called other signatories to do the same, saying action against global warming is increasingly important. After President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw the US from the agreement, China and the EU have emerged as world leaders on climate change. [ETEnergyworld.com]

UK rail transit (Image: DB Cargo UK)

  • UK rail freight company on track to powered by 100% renewable energy
    A UK rail freight company said all its sites and offices will be powered by 100% renewable electricity. DB Cargo UK signed a three-year agreement with SSE Business Energy to supply its sites with green power. This is estimated to help reduce 5,000 tonnes of carbon emissions a year and equivalent to powering almost 4,000 homes. [Energy Live News]
  • Energy minister dodges questions about cost of cancelling green contracts
    Ontario’s Energy Minister is refusing to say how much it will cost taxpayers to cancel 758 renewable energy contracts in an effort to save $790 million, as opposition parties accuse him of leaving Ontarians in the dark. “It’s still money out the door. The people deserve to know that,” said a Green Party Leader. “It’s very disturbing.” [Toronto Star]

Wednesday, July 18

Melting Arctic ice

  • Climate Change Scenarios: An Updated Summary Of Climate Change, Seal Level Rise, & Carbon Bubble Predictions
    If we do not change, we’re headed down a dark path. The Global Carbon Budget 2017 says that in order to avoid 2°C of warming, “global CO2 emissions need to decline rapidly and cross zero emissions after 2050.” [CleanTechnica]
  • Investment in renewable energy drops as fossil fuel use rises
    Global investment in renewable energy is on the decline, the International Energy Agency said. Governments are failing to keep Paris Climate Accord promises. Investment fell by 7% to $318 billion last year, but fossil fuels’ share of energy investment rose for the first time since 2014. [Engadget]

A few of Palau’s many islands (Dr James P McVey | NOAA)

  • This island nation is making the fastest-ever shift to renewables
    Over the next year and a half, the Pacific island nation of Palau will shift to 100% renewable energy, at no cost to the government, in what is likely to be the fastest national transition to renewable energy ever to occur. In a new program, the partners behind the work in Palau plan to now help other small island nations do the same thing. [Fast Company]

2018-07-12 Energy Week, Episode 271

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, July 5:

Wind turbines in Sweden (Supplied image)

  • Sweden to reach its 2030 renewable energy target this year
    Swedish utilities and power generators have already installed so many wind turbines that the nation is on course to reach its 2030 renewable energy target this year. By December, Sweden will have 3,681 wind turbines installed, lobby group Swedish Wind Energy Association estimated. The turbines will supply enough power to meet the 2030 goal. [Business Day]
  • Climate change SHOCK: Rising sea levels to wipe out £10 TRILLION in flood damage
    A study published by the UK National Oceanographic Centre warned that rising sea levels could cost the world economy £10 trillion ($14 trillion) a year by 2100. It argued that failure to meet the UN’s 2° C warming limits could have catastrophic effects. The findings were published in the science journal Environmental Research Letters. [Express.co.uk]

Coal plant in Utah (Photo: Arbryreed | Flickr.com)

  • Sierra Club Study Indicates Lower Cost For Renewable Energy
    The cost of burning coal is rising, while the cost of renewable forms of energy is going down, according to a recent study commissioned by the Sierra Club. An independent company, Energy Strategies, was contracted for the study. Its analysis showed that wind and solar power tend to be less expensive for consumers than coal. [Utah Public Radio]

Friday,  July 6:

  • Trump coal plan could lead to 1 pollution-related death for every 2 jobs
    A newly published study projects that a Trump administration proposal for propping up struggling coal and nuclear plants could lead to premature deaths from pollution. Resources for the Future found that for every 2 to 4.5 coal mining jobs the plan protects, there would be 1 human death due to emissions of sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides. [The Hill]

Syrian wheat harvest (Amer Almohibany | AFP | Getty Images)

  • “Syrian seeds could save US wheat from climate menace”
    A Kansas greenhouse has in it a buzzing horde of flies laying waste to 20,000 wheat seedlings. But as researchers watched, there was one species of growth that remained untouched. That species, grown from Syrian seeds, could end up saving US wheat from climate change. [The Guardian]
  • A former coal lobbyist is the new leader of the EPA
    EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt resigned. Now, a former coal lobbyist will be the EPA’s new acting head. Andrew Wheeler was confirmed by the Senate in April to be the Deputy Administrator, though he was criticized by Democrats for his past ties to energy lobbyists. One client of the law firm where he worked was coal mining company Murray Energy. [CNN]

Saturday,  July 7:

Forest in Germany (Bob Ionescu, Wikimedia Commons)

  • Forests ‘essential’ for the future, UN agriculture chief spells out in new report
    Time is running out for the world’s forests, warns a report by the UN agriculture agency. It urges fostering an all-inclusive approach to benefit both trees and those who rely on them. Halting deforestation, managing sustainably, restoring degraded forests, and adding tree cover all need action to avoid damaging consequences. [UN News]
  • E.P.A. Drafts Rule on Coal Plants to Replace Clean Power Plan
    The Trump administration drafted a new proposal to regulate carbon dioxide emissions from power plants, but it is far less stringent than the climate plan formalized in 2015 by the Obama administration. The new proposal accepts, for now, the idea that CO2 is a pollutant, but it is likely to spur only small tweaks to the nation’s energy system. [The New York Times]
  • EIA finds renewable energy gradually diminishing fossil fuel dominance
    Last year had the lowest share of total US energy consumption by fossil fuels in more than 100 years, but they still have an 80% market share. The Energy Information Administration found petroleum, natural gas, and coal use have been decreasing for the last three years. Coal especially has taken hits, the others are both down. [Daily Energy Insider]

Sunday,  July 8:

Flooding in Sea Bright

  • 25K N.J. homes are at risk of chronic flooding by 2035. See if your town is in danger
    In New Jersey, 25,000 homes – worth nearly $10 billion – will be at risk of chronic flooding by 2035. Those properties could flood 26 times or more annually, according to a recent study by the Union of Concerned Scientists, making New Jersey the state that will be hit the hardest in the contiguous US in terms of value of property at risk by 2035. [NJ.com]
  • The roiled solar power market shows how Trump’s tariffs can disrupt an industry
    A 30% US tariff on imported solar panels should have caused prices here to jump. But when tariffs are unleashed, as businesses are learning, things don’t always go as expected. In the US, prices have not changed, but worldwide solar prices declined 35%. [Los Angeles Times]

Floating solar array

  • China X Cleantech — End of Q2, 2018
    China had 53% of the global new solar capacity in 2017, up from 45% in 2016. But its new solar policy reduces the amount of solar to be installed in China. Most forecasters project a downturn in PV production, but IHS Markit predicts that the global solar market will increase by around 11% to 105 GW in 2018 in spite of Chinese policy. [CleanTechnica]

Monday,  July 9:

  • ‘Unprecedented’: Solar panel installations soar, on track to triple 2017 record
    Australian rooftop solar panel installations soared by almost half in the first six months of 2018 as businesses eclipse residential take-up for the first time. In the January-June half, rooftop PV installations reached 701.9 MW, up 48.1% from the same time a year earlier, according to Green Energy Markets, a consultancy. [The Sydney Morning Herald]

Wind turbines in China (STR | AFP | Getty Images)

  • China’s Sinovel, Part of Country’s Bid for Clean Energy, Fined for Stealing US Trade Secrets
    A US judge ordered Chinese wind turbine maker Sinovel Wind Group to pay a $1.5 million fine after the company was convicted of stealing key technology from the Massachusetts-based AMSC. The US Justice Department said Sinovel has already paid AMSC, formerly known as American Superconductor Corp, $32.5 million. [The Epoch Times]
  • US DOE Funds Projects Aimed At Cutting Costs Of Solar Thermal Desalination
    Western states are running into critical water issues because of climate change. Desalination plants can address the issue, but they are expensive and use a lot of power. So the US DOE is putting $21 million toward fourteen projects aimed at developing technology to cut the cost of using solar energy to power thermal desalination. [CleanTechnica]

Tuesday,  July 10:

Mulan wind farm, China (Photo: Creative Commons)

  • China and EU can lead on climate action
    When Donald Trump announced that the US would withdraw from the Paris Climate Agreement, he surrendered its influence. The upcoming EU-China summit in Beijing will be yet another moment when the world leaders can emphasise the successes in decarbonizing their respective economies. [Climate Home]
  • Britain’s nuclear ambition must make way for renewable energy, warns commission
    The UK’s first independent infrastructure review poured cold water on plans to invest billions of pounds in a string of new nuclear power stations. It was in favor of cheaper wind and solar power. The National Infrastructure Commission warned ministers against deals for more than one follow-up to the Hinkley Point C project before 2025. [Telegraph.co.uk]
  • 750 MW Rewa solar project starts supplying power
    The 750-MW Rewa solar power project, one of the world’s largest single-site solar power plants, has started operations. Located in the central Indian state of Madhya Pradesh, it is the first solar project in the country to supply power to an inter-state open access customer. It will supply electricity to the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation. [pv magazine India]

Wednesday,  July 11:

Wind farm

  • Clean energy investment reaches $138 billion in 2018
    Investment in clean technologies is closely tracking last year and has already hit $138.2 billion, analysis by Bloomberg New Energy Finance shows. This is just 1% lower than for the first half of 2017, though the direction of investment is changing. Both windpower and smart technologies (including batteries) have seen increased investment. [Climate Action Programme]
  • EVs could drive 38% rise in US electricity demand, DOE lab finds
    EVs could drive a 38% rise in US electricity demand, according to the DOE’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory. The NREL study indicates that rising electricity demand could lead to sustained absolute growth of 80,000 GWh per year over the next thirty years. This could add a growth of 1.6% per year over that period for utility companies. [Utility Dive]
  • German coal trounced by renewables for first time
    According to data released by the German Association of Energy and Water Industries, wind, solar, hydropower, and biogas met 36.3% of Germany’s electricity needs between January and June 2018, while coal provided just 35.1%. This is the first time coal has fallen behind renewable power over such a long period of time in Germany. [EURACTIV]

 

2018-07-05 Energy Week, Episode 270

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, June 28:

Wind turbines

  • Can Wind Turbines Make You Sick?
    Whether the sound, audible or inaudible, actually impacts human health remains a deeply contested issue. Scientific consensus suggests it does not. Twenty-five peer-reviewed studies looking at a range of health effects have found that living near wind turbines does not pose a risk on human health. [NOVA Next]
  • Renewables account for 20% of domestic electrical generation in first four months of 2018
    Renewable energy sources accounted for more than one-fifth (20.05%) of net domestic electrical generation during the first third of 2018, according to a SUN DAY Campaign analysis of data released by the US Energy Information Administration. And solar power alone is now providing 2.07% of the nation’s electrical production. [Solar Power World]

SunEdison carport (SunEdison photo)

  • Solar bond pays for 12 solar installations, with no taxpayer cost
    The City of Albuquerque is installing 12 solar power systems using a bond that will be paid back with electricity savings. Along with this, the local police and fire facilities are increasing their resilience with onsite energy generation. Along the way, the city moves closer to 25% renewable electricity and local jobs are being created. [pv magazine USA]

Bee visiting a flower (supersum, CC BY 2.0)

  • “Oregon ‘solar apiary’ combines energy production with honey”Oregon ‘solar apiary’ combines energy production with honey”
    In Oregon, Eagle Point solar farm has a “solar apiary” that has agriculture with PVs. The owners believe the installation is the largest of its kind in the country. Utility-scale solar is sited with 48 beehives, covering 41 acres of land and providing pollination services to surrounding farms, while also producing electricity for the local grid. [Treehugger] (Look at the article this item in Treehugger links to.)

Friday,  June 29:

  • “Nuclear, coal bailout worth any cost ‘to keep America free’ – US energy chief”
    Energy Secretary Rick Perry told reporters that bailing out struggling coal and nuclear power plants is as important to national security as keeping the military strong. “You cannot put a dollar figure on the cost to keep America free,” he said. When asked about the cost of a potential bailout, he said he did not yet know. [ETEnergyworld.com]

BYD production line in Shenzhen

  • “BYD Releases More Than 400 Technologies On An Open Platform At Its Dreams Gala”
    BYD announced that it was releasing the technology for 341 sensors and 66 controllers for its DiLink system “on an open platform” to encourage other companies to adopt a standard platform for the developing EVs. BYD’s DiLink Intelligent Network System is a critical part of its e-Platform, the foundation for its EV technology. [CleanTechnica]
  • “Hydro-Québec To Supply The US With Enough Renewable Electricity To Power 3 Million EVs”
    Hydro-Québec and Central Maine Power Company jointly announced the successful conclusion of contract negotiations with Massachusetts electric distribution companies for the New England Clean Energy Connect 100% hydropower project. The deal will provide enough renewable electricity to power over 3 million electrical vehicles. [CleanTechnica]

Saturday,  June 30:

Salt Lake City (Eltiempo10, Wikimedia Commons)

  • “Air pollution linked to 3.2 million new diabetes cases in one year”
    Levels of air pollution well below what is considered safe by the US EPA and the World Health Organization are causing an increased risk of diabetes worldwide, a study published in Lancet Planetary Health said. In 2016, air pollution contributed to 3.2 million new diabetes cases, worldwide. It is linked to 150,000 new cases per year in the US. [CNN]
  • “Vermont utility owner joins international renewable gas effort”
    Three utilities announced a collaboration aimed to advance the research and development of renewable natural gas, including such technologies as power-to-gas, which uses renewable power to synthesize fuel. One of the utilities, Énergir (formerly Gaz Metro), is the parent company of Vermont Gas Systems and Green Mountain Power. [Vermont Biz]
  • “Coal Power Plants Retiring Quickly During Trump Administration”
    The US Energy Information Administration summarized the true coal power trends very concisely, saying, “At least 25 GW of coal-fired capacity will retire within the next three years (2018–2020), according to planned retirements reported to the EIA.” It also pointed out that natural gas now produces more power than coal. [CleanTechnica]

Sunday,  July 1:

  • Swansea Bay tidal lagoon can still be built, council leader says
    The Swansea tidal lagoon energy project could go ahead without UK government backing. The Welsh government said it does not have the resources to back the project, but a Swansea council leader told the BBC’s Sunday Politics Wales it could be viable under different ways of paying for it and selling the energy. [BBC News]

Swansea tidal lagoon energy project (TLP)

  • India’s huge solar ambitions could push coal further into shade
    India says it intends to launch a tender for 100 GW of solar power, 10 times the size of the current largest solar tender in the world, which is also Indian. These and other green power promises from Delhi have serious implications for the coal industry. [The Guardian]

Monday, July 2:

Foster City (Kim Brunhuber | CBC)

  • ‘Nobody has that much money’ — 1 sinking city’s fight against rising sea levels
    To address the threat of rising seas and subsiding land, during the recent primary elections Foster City, California proposed a ballot measure: $90 million worth of property tax increases to fund raising the levees by 2½ metres. Foster City residents voted yes, by more than 80%. The levees should protect them for a little over thirty years. [CBC.ca]
  • Tesla’s next energy storage project in California could be its biggest yet
    Tesla teamed up with the Pacific Gas and Electric Company, one of the largest electric utilities in the US, to produce a massive battery system with a capacity of up to 1.1 GWh. The battery packs for this project will be provided by Tesla with an output capacity of 182.5 MW of power for 4 hours. PG&E can choose to increase the time to 6 hours. [TNW]

Aberdeen Bay wind farm (Vattenfall image)

  • Aberdeen Bay delivers first power
    Vattenfall has delivered power for the first time from the 93.2-MW Aberdeen Bay offshore wind farm. The project delivered electricity to the UK National Grid on 1 July from the first two of the 11 MHI Vestas turbines to go live, according to the Swedish company. Aberdeen Bay will feature two 8.8-MW machines and nine 8.4-MW units. [reNews]

Tuesday, July 3:

  • Battery-backed solar power to undercut coal in China by 2028Battery-backed solar power to undercut coal in China by 2028
    Wind turbines or solar panels with batteries will be able to provide on-demand power cheaper than old coal plants in China by 2028, analysts at Bloomberg New Energy Finance predict. In the US, the combo can outcompete gas generation by 2027, according to the same New Energy Outlook report, presented in London. [Climate Home]

Rhode Island (Photo: Marc Choquette | CC-BY-2.0)

  • Rhode Island Sues Oil Companies Over Climate Change, First State to Do So
    Rhode Island has become the first state to sue oil companies over the effects of climate change. It filed a complaint seeking damages for the costs associated with protecting the state from rising seas and severe weather. The state’s attorney general said Rhode Island would hold the companies accountable for harm they have caused. [InsideClimate News]
  • Washington State Coal-Fired Plant Converts Barren Landscape into Solar Farm
    The TransAlta power plant contributes 10% of the of the total greenhouse gas emmissions of Washington state. Its three units will shut down, one at a time, from 2020 to 2025. The plant’s coal comes from a terraced, open-to-the-sky strip mine, and TransAlta will replace its generating capacity by repurposing 1,000 acres of the mine site to a solar farm. [CleanTechnica]

Wednesday, July 4:

Icebreaker test site

  • Icebreaker ‘receives green light’
    The Ohio Power Siting Board has given conditional approval for the 21-MW Icebreaker offshore wind farm on Lake Erie, according to local news reports. The wind farm will not be allowed to operate at night from 1 March until 1 January unless the developers have an adequate monitoring plan for birds and bats in place, the reports said. [reNews]
  • California 100% renewable energy bill heads to Assembly
    California took another step to mandate that utilities move towards sourcing 100% of their electricity from sources that do not emit CO2. On a 10-5 vote, the Assembly Utilities and Energy Committee approved SB100. The bill now goes to the full Assembly, and if approved will go to Governor Jerry Brown, who is expected to sign it. [pv magazine USA]
  • Michigan Conservatives Shocked To Learn Renewables Could Give Economy A $10 Billion Boost!
    The Michigan Conservative Energy Forum commissioned a study of the economic impacts of increased renewable energy on the state’s economy. They were shocked to find that if renewable energy is increased 30% by 2027, it will create more than 68,000 new jobs and have a gross economic impact on the state of over $10 billion. [CleanTechnica]

2018-06-28 Energy Week, Episode 269

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, June 21: 

Iowa wind farm

  • “MidAmerican Energy Hits 50% Renewables In Iowa”
    MidAmerican Energy Co, based in Des Moines, provided its Iowa customers with more than half of their electricity from renewable sources last year. The Iowa Utilities Board verified that MidAmerican Energy served 50.8% of its retail electric load using renewable generation and expects this percentage to grow each year. [North American Windpower]
  • “US Continues Trade War Against China With New 25% Solar Tariff”
    The United States imposed an additional 25% tariff on imported Chinese solar cells and modules last week in America’s steadily escalating trade war with one of the world’s most dominant economies and international powers. The newly imposed tariffs will impact $50 billion worth of Chinese products, including solar cells and modules. [CleanTechnica]

San Francisco at night

  • “California advances power grid oversight bill”
    A California Senate panel has narrowly advanced a contentious proposal to link oversight of California’s power grid with other western states. The committee’s vote keeps alive a plan that has divided environmentalists and sparked passionate debate about the best way to expand renewable energy in the state and its neighbors. [Electric Light & Power]

Friday, June 22:

  • “Fraunhofer Experiments In Chile And Vietnam Prove Value Of Agrophotovoltaic Farming”
    The results from the first experimental agrophotovoltaic program by the Fraunhofer Institute For Solar Energy Systems near Lake Constance in Germany found combining agriculture and farming increased the output of the land by 60% over what it would be if the same land was devoted 100% to farming or 100% to solar panels. [CleanTechnica]

London electric double-decker bus

  • “BYD Locks In Contract For 37 Electric Double-Decker Buses To Serve Central London”
    BYD and its local partner Alexander Dennis Ltd have won London’s first order for fully-electric double-decker buses. The deal will see 37 BYD ADL Enviro400EV buses serving London’s transit passengers in the spring of 2019. London currently has five electric double-decker buses. It still has more than 6,800 double-decker buses to replace. [CleanTechnica]
  • “Hybrit Fossil Fuel-Free Steel Demonstration Plant Starts Construction”
    Hybrit, which plans to make steel without using any fossil fuels, has broken ground in Sweden for its first pilot plant. Its CEO said that if the new process were applied to all of Sweden’s steel-making industry, the nation’s carbon emissions could be reduced by 10%. Hybrit is a consortium of Vattenfall, steel maker SSAB, iron ore producer LKAB. [CleanTechnica]

Saturday, June 23:

  • “IRS Ruling on U.S. Credit Is an Unexpected Gift to Solar Developers”
    The IRS is extending incentives for solar power and other clean energy sources by as long as four years. Developers can claim a 30% tax credit for solar projects as long as they prove they’ve started construction by the end of 2019, an IRS notice said. That means breaking ground or investing at least 5% of the total expected costs of the installation. [Bloomberg]

Wind turbines in Colorado (Jeffrey Beall, Wikimedia Commons)

  • “Colorado Energy Plan analysis shows switching from coal to renewable energy will boost jobs and local tax revenue”
    Two reports provide new details about Xcel Energy’s Colorado Energy Plan. The plan’s low bid prices for new renewable energy projects in the state include $35/MWh for solar with battery backup. The analysis of the impacts of the plan indicate boosts in employment and tax revenue for both Colorado and Pueblo County. [Clean Cooperative]
  • “Energy lobbyists have a new PAC to push for a carbon tax. Wait, what?”
    Former Senators Trent Lott of Mississippi and John Breaux of Louisiana, longtime lobbyists for big oil, formed a new political action committee. It is dedicated to the passage of a carbon tax. The plan would impose a carbon tax starting at $40, “rising gradually” at an as-yet-unspecified rate, with all the revenue returned as per-capita dividends. [Vox]

Sunday, June 24:

Steam rising from a geothermal power plant in Iceland (Photo: Daniel Bosma | Moment Open)

  • “Iceland demands fixed price to give UK volcano power”
    Talks over a 1,000 km (620 mile), 1,000-MW cable to carry electric power from geothermal plants in Iceland to the UK have been on the cards for decades. Iceland’s finance minister has called on the UK Government to offer a fixed energy price to enable plans for an undersea electricity cable between the two countries to move ahead. [Telegraph.co.uk]
  • “Drought woes? This tech can literally make it rain”
    North Dakota-based Weather Modification International uses planes to target clouds and draw out more rain from them. The concept, called cloud seeding, has been around for decades. But now, there is new urgency due to climate change and a rapidly growing global population, which have disrupted global water supplies. [CNN]

Derailed cars (Sioux County Sheriff’s Office via Associated Press)

  • “Train from Alberta derails in Iowa, leaking crude oil into floodwaters from rain-swollen river”
    A freight train from Alberta derailed in northwest Iowa, leaking crude oil into the flooded fields flanking the tracks and raising concerns about the possible contamination of residential water supplies downstream, according to officials. No information was immediately available on how much oil each of the tankers was carrying. [CBC.ca]

Monday, June 25:

  • “Why solar is suddenly so sexy for Indian companies”
    A few months ago, a few firms were experimenting with renewable energy. Now, solar and wind energy tariffs are below grid costs and the government pushing for renewables, so companies are going big on them. Some are even working towards meeting all their needs with clean power. [Quartz]

Indian solar array

  • “Chinese move may pull down solar power bid tariffs further”Chinese move may pull down solar power bid tariffs further”
    China’s decision to cap deployment and reduce feed-in-tariffs for solar projects may lead to a further drop in module prices, and this is likely to result in further reduction in solar bid tariffs, experts say. Chinese module prices are expected to decline to 29¢/W or lower from the current average of 33¢/W, following this announcement. [ETEnergyworld.com]
  • “30 years later, deniers are still lying about Hansen’s amazing global warming prediction”
    The incredible accuracy of James Hansen’s climate model predictions can debunk a number of climate denier myths. It shows that climate models are accurate and global warming is proceeding as predicted. But some people purposely distort Hanson’s work. [The Guardian]

Tuesday, June 26:

Ecobotix founder Anders Petersen

  • “Ecobotix Aerial Pest Warfare: Bombing Bugs With Bugs”Ecobotix Aerial Pest Warfare: Bombing Bugs With Bugs”
    A Danish company, Ecobotix, is developing solutions that may eliminate the use of chemical pesticides. It uses drones to deliver biological predators that can attack and eliminate agricultural pests. The drones also provide farmers with visual and infrared imagery recorded at fixed intervals so the farmer can see how crops are developing. [CleanTechnica]

  • “UK Government Pulls Support for Swansea Bay Tidal Lagoon Project”
    The UK government has pulled support for the Swansea Bay Tidal Lagoon Project. MP Gregory Clark, who is also the Britain’s secretary of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, said in the end, the £1.3 billion ($1.7 billion) project was not a value for the money. Ocean Energy Europe was among those that panned the decision. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

  • “Senate Passes $145B Spending Bill, With Boost to Energy Innovation Programs”
    The Senate passed a $145 billion spending bill 86-5, with provisions to fund the DOE for 2019. It keeps spending level or slightly increases funds for programs offered through the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy as well as the Energy Information Agency. It includes $1.2 billion for nuclear energy research and development. [Greentech Media]

Wednesday, June 27:

  • “Judge throws out climate-change lawsuits against big oil companies”
    BP Plc, Exxon Mobil Corp. and Chevron Corp escaped blame for the public costs of global warming when a US judge ruled that lawsuits by cities against oil companies are not the answer to climate change. The court did accept the reality of human caused climate change, and the cities are reviewing whether they should appeal. [Los Angeles Times]

Grouper and coral

  • “Heat-resistant corals in the Middle East could save the world’s dying reefs”
    Around the world, coral reefs are being wiped out by rising sea temperatures, a consequence of climate change. But in some places, there are corals that are able to withstand the heat. Marine biologists are trying to learn what gives these corals their ability to survive warming seas and whether genetic technology could be used to save dying coral reefs. [CNN]
  • “GE Announces New Focus On Renewables, Power And Aviation”
    Following a strategic review, GE has announced a focus on aviation, power and renewable energy. GE says its energy strategy, driven by GE Power and GE Renewable Energy, is based on offering a range of energy solutions across the electricity value chain. GE is shedding positions in oil services, healthcare, and transportation. [North American Windpower]

2018-06-21 Energy Week, Episode 268

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, June 14:

  • “Scotland Hits Annual GHG Emissions Target Third Year Running”
    Scotland’s Climate Change Secretary announced that the country had met its statutory annual greenhouse gas emissions target for the third year in a row in 2016, and this resulted in emissions being down 49% on a 1990 baseline. Of European countries, only Sweden, with a drop of 51%, reduced emissions faster than Scotland. [CleanTechnica]

Wind farm in Scotland

  • “Blockchain renewable energy pilot”
    Swytch, blockchain-based clean energy incentive, and the Energy2market, a German company aggregating energy trading in Europe, announced a blockchain renewable energy trial that could power over 500,000 homes. The pilot program, which is in Germany, includes approximately 3.5 GW of solar, wind, hydro, and biogas energy capacity. [SmartCitiesWorld]
  • “The US has added more solar power than any other type of electricity in 2018 so far — more evidence of an energy revolution”
    The US added more solar electric capacity than any other type in the first quarter of 2018. A report from the nonprofit Solar Energy Industries Association said the US solar market added 2.5 GW of new capacity in the first quarter, up 13% from the first quarter of 2017. That accounts for 55% of all new US electric capacity for the quarter. [Business Insider]

Friday, June 15:

  • “NRDC, 19 Other Groups Challenge EU’s Mistaken Climate Decision”
    EU policymakers agreed on a new Renewable Energy Directive that failed to fix Europe’s broken bioenergy policies. The decision to continue to label the indiscriminate burning of wood as “carbon neutral” undercuts the EU’s climate targets. [Natural Resources Defense Council]

Clearcut forest (MO Stevens, Wikimedia Commons)

  • “Volkswagen fined 1 billion euros for diesel emission scandal”
    Volkswagen’s diesel emission scandal is still ongoing with German prosecutors fining the automaker €1 billion (£882 million, $1.16 billion) for cheating. The one-billion-euro fine is one of the highest fines ever imposed by German authorities against a company, according to Reuters. However, things aren’t slowing down for VW. [Yahoo News UK]
  • “$1.6 Trillion Natural Gas Expansion Will Eliminate Any Chance Of Meeting Paris Carbon Goals”
    At an upcoming meeting of the G20 countries, one of the topics on the agenda will be increasing natural gas production investments by as much as $1.6 trillion by 2030. A report by Oil Change International finds doing so will use up the entire remaining carbon budget limits needed to meet the climate goals of the Paris climate accords. [CleanTechnica]

Saturday, June 16: 

Electric vehicle charging

  • “Putting a price on carbon gains momentum in Mass.”
    Massachusetts moved closer to embracing an economy-wide price on carbon, as the Senate approved an energy bill with a “market-based compliance mechanism.” One of New England’s largest utilities backed the move, saying a carbon price is needed for the region to have a chance of meeting its greenhouse gas emission targets. [CommonWealth magazine]
  • “Despite Tariffs, Solar Energy Is Cheaper Than Ever”
    The cost of solar power continues to fall to new lows in the US, even as tariffs are imposed in favor of keeping the coal and natural gas industries afloat. One expert pointed out that it is cheaper to build a new PV plant than just to operate an existing coal or natural gas plant. [The Weather Channel]
  • “The Chicago Transit Authority Selects The Boring Company For New High-Speed Route”
    The Boring Company announced a project with the Chicago Transit Authority to develop a set of tunnels connecting Chicago’s O’Hare Airport and downtown Chicago. The new route, the Chicago Express Loop, would get passengers from O’Hare to downtown in just 12 minutes for around $20–25. That’s half the price of a cab. [CleanTechnica]

Sunday, June 17:

St Johns River cooling towers (Bob Self | Florida Times Union)

  • “Down and out: Implosion of cooling towers marks end of St. Johns River Power Park”
    For a split-second after the demolition plunger went down, the cooling towers at St Johns River Power Park stood as if they would remain for 30 more years as Jacksonville landmarks. Then the burst of 1,500 pounds of dynamite ripped through them, and they collapsed into dust. From the crowd a child’s voice called out: “Do it again.” [The Florida Times-Union]
  • “Harvard scientists: Trump environmental policies could result in 80,000 more deaths per decade”
    Research by two Harvard University scientists concluded that the Trump administration’s environmental policies could result in an additional 80,000 deaths per decade. The research, which was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, examined the health impacts of the EPA’s policies on toxic chemicals and air pollutants. [The Hill]

Monday, June 18:

  • “Siemens pilots the use of ammonia for green energy storage”
    In a world first, Siemens is opening a £1.5-million pilot project in Oxfordshire employing ammonia as a form of energy storage. The proof-of-concept facility will turn electricity, water, and air into ammonia without releasing carbon emissions. The ammonia can be stored and burned for electricity, sold as a fuel, or used for industrial purposes. [businessgreen.com]

Cross Generating Station (Photo: Luke Sharrett | Bloomberg)

  • “Coal Plants Keep Shutting Despite Trump’s Order to Rescue Them”
    President Donald Trump ordered a rescue of the nation’s struggling coal and nuclear power industries, but that does not mean utilities are reconsidering the shutdown of unprofitable plants. Many said Trump has not altered their plans to retire old units despite the prospect of his trying to force grid operators to buy power from old plants. [Bloomberg]
  • “Global warming cooks up ‘a different world’ over 3 decades”
    We were warned. On June 23, 1988, a sultry day in Washington, Dr James Hansen told Congress that global warming was not approaching – it had already arrived. Thirty years later, it’s clear that Hansen and other doomsayers were right. And the change has been sweeping. [The Denver Post]

Tuesday, June 19:

Sea Installer at work

  • “US Offshore Wind Upends Plans For Saving Coal & Nuclear Power Plants”
    If the latest news out of the US DOE is any indication, the Trump Administration’s newest stratagem for keeping old coal and nuclear power plants in operation – make the taxpayers pay extra to keep uneconomical power plants running – is going nowhere fast. [CleanTechnica]
  • “National Grid unveils Northeast 80×50 Pathway programme”
    Electricity and natural gas distributor National Grid released “Northeast 80×50 Pathway,” outlining various measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 80% by 2050. The program includes in-depth modelling and analysis addressing the three most carbon-intensive sectors in the Northeast: power generation, heating, and transportation. [Power Technology]

Pennsylvania wetland (Nicholas, Wikimedia Commons)

  • “Changing species, flooding, wildfires among climate priorities on state land”
    Pennsylvania conservation officials released a plan to confront climate change on public land as flooding, wildfires and warmer bodies of water threaten wildlife, landscapes and recreation. The state will identify the most resilient microclimates, then try to physically connect them by acquiring the land or developing easements. [StateImpact Pennsylvania]

Wednesday, June 20:

  • “Sununu vetoes energy bills; Republican senators seek an override”
    New Hampshire Republican Gov Chris Sununu vetoed two energy-related bills that he says would have cost ratepayers about $110 million over three years. But key members of his party are bristling at the move, calling one bill a vital lifeline for the biomass and timber industry. And they say they have the votes to override a veto. [Concord Monitor]

Offshore wind farm (Sean Gallup | Getty Images)

  • “The Lifesaving Benefits of Offshore Wind Power”
    As an environmental health and climate researcher, I’m intrigued by how offshore wind power may improve public health. Replacing fossil fuels with wind and solar energy, research shows, can reduce risks of asthma, hospitalizations and heart attacks. In turn, that can save lives. [US News & World Report]
  • “Denmark demo ‘opens cost-cutting doors'”
    Cost reductions of up to 30% have been realised on elements of the 28-MW Nissum Bredning offshore wind farm demonstration project off the coast of Jutland in Denmark, according to Siemens Gamesa. The project showcases a several different engineering innovations that reduce costs of installation and the efficiency of electricity transmission. [reNews]

2018-06-14 Energy Week, Episode 267

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, June 7:

Solar array supplying Xcel (Denver Post file photo)

  • “Xcel Energy power plan would cut carbon emissions by half, use renewable sources for 55 percent of power”
    Xcel Energy Colorado unveiled a power plan that it estimates could save customers $215 million, cut carbon emissions by half, and increase its renewable energy sources to 55% of its electricity portfolio by 2026, according to a filing the utility submitted to the Colorado PUC. The plan is to retire 660 MW of coal-burning power plants. [The Denver Post]
  • “Mapped: Global temperatures since 1880”
    Every area of the globe has warmed since instrument records began in 1880, NASA data shows. The planet isn’t warming equally, however. The fastest temperature increases are taking place at the poles. That Arctic, for example, is warming at more than twice the rate of the rest of the globe, melting glaciers, sea ice, and permafrost. [Axios]

Pollution from fossil fuels

  • “US Still Subsidizing Fossil Fuels To Tune Of $27 Billion”
    Research from the Natural Resources Defense Council, the Overseas Development Institute, Oil Change International, and the International Institute for Sustainable Development found that the US Government spent $26 billion in both 2015 and 2016 on support for fossil fuels. Of this, $15 billion was for production and $1 billion for exploration. [CleanTechnica]

Friday, June 8:

  • “Trump’s nuclear bailout could cost consumers up to $17 billion each year”
    According to an updated report from the Nuclear Information and Resource Service, Trump’s subsidies for nuclear power plants could increase the overall cost of electricity by up to $17 billion each year. And that does not include subsidies for coal-burning plants. [Inhabitat]

Chinese solar panels

  • “Chinese Solar Shift Rewrites 2018 Forecasts, Prices Expected To Fall By 35%”
    China’s decision to curtail solar development this year in an effort to prevent oversupply has resulted in significantly revised forecasts for the Chinese and global solar markets. Forecasts on China’s solar installations for the year were revised downward by up to 40%. Expectations now are that solar module prices will fall by 35%. [CleanTechnica]
  • “Hurricanes are slowing, which could be a big problem”
    Tropical cyclones, are moving slower around the planet, a study from NOAA scientist James Kossin said. The study, released in the scientific journal Nature, showed a 10% decrease in forward speed globally between 1949 and 2016, though there is some variation among ocean basins. Slow-moving storms leave more rainfall in the areas they visit. [CNN]

Saturday, June 9:

Wind farm near Kimball, Nebraska

  • “For a small Colorado utility, 100% renewable energy is old news”
    Aspen Electric achieved 100% renewables in 2015, and now the residential rates for Aspen’s customers rank among the lowest in Colorado. This month, upgrades to a wind farm near Kimball, Nebraska, of which Aspen Electric is a major customer, will push the utility’s costs even lower, dropping about 15% annually, or $475,000. [Energy News Network]
  • “Main customer of Arizona coal plant goes green, ignoring Interior Department”
    Central Arizona Project, which supplies water to a large part of Arizona and is the main buyer of electricity from an Arizona coal plant on the verge of closure, said on it will instead source its electricity largely from a solar power project, ignoring an appeal by the US Interior Department to buy more power from the plant to keep it open. [Reuters]

Sunny day flooding in Miami

  • “Photos don’t lie. Plan needed for sea-level rise”
    Florida Senator Bill Nelson addressed the US Senate: “During 2017, the average high-tide flooding was the highest ever recorded. And in 2018, NOAA predicts that high-tide flooding will be 60% more frequent across US coastlines than it was in 2000, primarily because of sea-level rise.” [Sun Sentinel]

Sunday, June 10:

  • “Pope Francis warns oil executives ‘energy must not destroy civilisation'”
    Pope Francis told senior oil company executives that the world must convert to renewable alternatives to prevent humanity being destroyed by climate change. Speaking to the high-profile group at the end of a two-day conference at the Vatican, the pontiff warned: “Civilisation requires energy but energy use must not destroy civilisation.” [The Independent]

G7 Leaders (Adam Scotti | Prime Minister’s Office via Reuters)

  • The G7 summit, summed up in one photo”
    Hundreds, or even thousands, of photos taken at the G7 summit, a two-day gathering of leaders from member states to discuss everything from climate change to international trade policy. But one in particular stood out after it was published and raced around the internet. [The Sydney Morning Herald]
  • “Heavy Rainfall Has Increased by Up to 70 Percent in Parts of the U.S. Since the 1950s, and It Will Only Get Worse, Experts Say”
    Heavy rainfall from storms has increased in the US since the 1950s and will only get worse in the coming years, thanks to global warming, scientists say. The EPA noted that heavy rainfall events increased by 70% in the Pacific Northwest, where the increases are worst, but increases are also seen in the Midwest and Upper Plains. [The Weather Channel]

Monday, June 11:

Solar farm (Image: Siemens Gamesa)

  • “India Increases Its Massive 2022 Renewable Energy Target By 28%”
    Several years ago, India set what seemed like a lofty target of 175 GW of wind and solar energy by March 2022. Few believed that was a practical target, but then India plowed forward and happily impressed the world. This week that goal was increased to 227 GW! India has installed more than 70 GW already, and additions are coming faster. [CleanTechnica]
  • “Volcano Kilauea Destroys Hawaii’s Only Geothermal Plant, a Top Source of Energy”
    One of the Hawaii Civil Defense Agency’s biggest fears about Volcano Kilauea has been realized. Puna Geothermal Venture, Hawaii’s first and only geothermal plant, was flooded by lava, destroying two of its building and shutting down the plant. PGV contributed nearly 30% of the electricity for the Island of Hawaii, according to the DOE. [Inverse]

Berkeley water collector in the lab

  • “This solar-powered box wrings water out of thin air and could help solve the problem of water shortages across the globe”
    A team of researchers at UC Berkeley developed a potential solution to water shortages; a box that can harvest water out of desert air, without any need for power other than sunlight. The key to the device is not a pump or solar panel-operated tap, but rather the materials contained in the box, what the chemists call a metal-organic framework. [Alphr]

Tuesday, June 12:

  • “MIT Discovery Recaptures Fresh Water From Cooling Towers”
    In a study published in the journal Science Advances, a team of MIT researchers said 39% of all the freshwater withdrawn from rivers, lakes, and reservoirs in the US is earmarked for cooling at power plants that use fossil fuels or nuclear power. They devised a way to recapture some of that water vapor with a process they say is cost effective. [CleanTechnica]

Solar power plant

  • “Warren Buffett secures amazing low prices for 1GW of solar”
    Nevada Power, a utility owned by Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway, has signed a deal to build more than 1 GW of new large-scale solar in the US, with power purchase agreements starting as low as $21.55/MWh, a record low in the US. More than half of the PV systems will be co-located with battery storage, priced in separately. [RenewEconomy]
  • “Global Solar Demand To Increase 11% Despite China Cuts, Predicts IHS Markit”
    Market research firm IHS Markit published new figures showing the global solar market will increase by around 11% in 2018 despite China’s solar policy reductions. China’s cuts make large amounts of PVs available elsewhere, and Bloomberg New Energy Finance predicts that prices for PVs will drop by around 35% this year. [CleanTechnica]

Wednesday, June 13:

Singapore (chensiyuan, Wikimedia Commons)

  • “Oil Markets Unmoved By North Korea Summit”
    The oil markets shrugged off the historic meeting between President Trump and North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un. Both sides hailed the summit as a breakthrough, with a pledge towards denuclearization, but as expected, there was a lack of even the most basic details on how they might get there. Oil was flat at the start of Tuesday. [OilPrice.com]
  • “Trump’s coal, nuclear bailout no shield from hackers: cyber experts”
    Bailing out nuclear and coal-fired power plants will not help toughen the US power grid against cyber attacks as the Trump administration claims, according to cyber experts. Hackers have a wide array of options for hitting high-profile targets such as electric infrastructure and nuclear facilities. The ability to store fuel is not relevant. [Reuters]
  • “FERC commissioners criticize Trump’s order to bail out coal plants”
    Federal Energy Regulatory Commission members criticized President Trump’s order to prevent the closing of financially struggling coal and nuclear plants. Republican FERC Chairman Kevin McIntyre dismissed claims that the reliability of the grid is at immediate risk because of planned coal and nuclear plant closures. [Washington Examiner]