If it’s not Sustainable, its Condition is Terminal.

June 27, 2022

3,678 regular daily posts, linking 49,188 articles

§ The most recent reported status of US nuclear power plants can be found at the US Nuclear Power Report, a distressingly dull account of NRC news, posted when the NRC gives us news to post. As of June 27, out of 92 US-licensed power reactors, 4 was at reduced output and 3 not operating.

§ Video: Energy Week #476 – 6/16/2022: The EU Parliament voted to ban gasoline-powered cars by 2035. New South Wales is putting $1.2 billion into renewable energy. California has times of 100% renewable electricity. Wind and solar energy are preventing power loss in a Texas heat wave. BP acquired a large amount of the huge hydrogen project in Australia. And there is more.

§ You can get a copy of the latest Green Energy Times, the June, 2022 edition, by downloading the pdf file HERE.OK

June 27 Energy News

June 27, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “Climate Damage Caused By Growing Space Tourism Needs Urgent Mitigation” • Researchers from UCL, the University of Cambridge and MIT used a 3-D model to explore the impact of rocket launches and re-entry, and the impact of projected space tourism. The damage done by space launches was shown to be almost incredibly polluting. [CleanTechnica]

Launch in 2016 (SpaceX, Unsplash)

¶ “The Key To Climate Action May Be Debt Forgiveness” • It should be clear to everyone that solving the climate challenges of an overheating planet will take cooperation among all nations. It seems hard to imagine such a thing now, with lunatics running things in so many places. When enough tragedy strikes, people to act. But there may be another way. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Adventurer Chris Ramsey Talks EVs And His Upcoming Pole-To-Pole Trip – Part 1” • Chris Ramsey will drive a Nissan Ariya E-4ORCE from the North Pole to the South Pole in March 2023. He sat down with Johnna Crider for an interview and chatted about his achievements, his gratitude for Nissan’s support, and more. This is part one. [CleanTechnica]

Chris Ramsey in a Nissan (courtesy of Chris Ramsey and Nissan)

World:

¶ “Camouflaged Figures Lurking In The Bush Expose Australia’s Angst Over Climate Activists” • New South Wales state police formed a Strike Force Guard, a special squad formed to “prevent, investigate and disrupt unauthorised protests.” Their actions look repressive. Newly elected Prime Minister Anthony Albanese vowed to end the “climate wars.” [CNN]

¶ “Will Electric Motorbike Sales Take-Off Across Asia?” • Visit most Asian countries, and you’ll notice that motorcycles swarm and buzz about everywhere. In several countries, well over 80% of families have one. Nearly all of Asia’s motorbikes currently run on petrol, but transport experts say that a big switch to electric versions is now gathering pace. [BBC]

NIU Technologies electric scooter (NIU Technologies image)

¶ “Japan Urges 37 Million People To Switch Off Lights” • Japan’s government has urged people in Tokyo and its surrounding area to use less electricity on Monday, as it warned that supplies will be strained as the country faces a heatwave. It said people should switch off unnecessary lights but still use air conditioning to avoid heatstroke. [BBC]

¶ “In Europe, 11% Of New Car Sales Are Battery Electric, And 19% Are Plugins” • The overall European car market is still suffering, down 34% compared to May 2019, and the European passenger plugin vehicle market has also started to be affected. It grew just 3% last month, with approximately 183,000 plugin vehicles registered in May. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Light At The End Of The Tunnel As Italy’s EV Sales Recover In May” • Italy’s EV market is not yet out of the woods, but things are starting to look up again. As European countries continue their long run to electrification, the continent’s fourth-largest auto market struggles to regain the pace it lost a few months ago. But the rebound may be under way. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Voltalia Unveils 1.5-GW Brazilian PV Plans” • Voltalia has unveiled plans for an over 1,500-MW solar power complex called Arinos in the Brazilian state of Minas Gerais. The company said Arinos will be developed on its own account and also on behalf of third parties. It has already signed partnerships, including with CTG Brazil. [reNews]

Solar panels (Jeremy Bezanger, Unsplash)

¶ “Khan Moves Toward Running London Tube On 100% Renewable Electricity” • Mayor Sadiq Khan is beginning the London Underground’s transition to being carbon neutral as he opens London Climate Action Week. He is launching a Power Purchase Agreement, with the first tender spent on ensuring 10% of the required electricity is renewable. [City AM]

¶ “Philippines Allocates 1.57 GW Of Solar In 2-GW Renewables Auction” • The Green Energy Auction Bids Evaluation and Awards Committee of the Philippines’ Department of Energy published a list of 19 winners of a recent auction to allocate 2 GW of renewable energy capacity. It allocated 1,966.4 MW in the procurement exercise. [PV Magazine]

Philippine solar plant (Solar Philippines image)

¶ “France Likely To Restart Coal-Fired Power Plant To Deal With Energy Crisis” • France is likely to restart coal-fired power plants to cope with the energy crisis fueled by the Russia-Ukraine war, Anadolu reported. The Energy Transition Ministry proposed to restart the Emile Huchet power plant in Saint-Avold. Many of the French nuclear plants are offline. [The Sun daily]

US:

¶ “Arizona DOT Wants You To Suggest Sites for EV Charging Stations” • The Arizona Department of Transportation has an interactive map that gives EV enthusiasts a chance to express their views on where EV chargers should be installed. As pioneers of a new technology, and many of EV drivers know a lot more about such things than state officials do. [CleanTechnica]

Monument Valley (Florian Schneider, Unsplash)

¶ “Full-Bodied With Notes of Band-Aid and Medicine” • Vintners are no strangers to the vicissitudes wrought by climate change. Warmer temperatures have been a boon to some in traditionally cooler regions who are rejoicing over riper berries. But scorching heat waves, wildfires, and other climate-driven calamities have more often ruined harvests. [The Atlantic]

¶ “Milwaukee To Join Cities Nationwide In Measuring The ‘Urban Heat Island’ Effect From Climate Change” • Milwaukee is measuring its extreme heat affects, hoping to avoid heat-related fatalities like those that happened in the area in 1995. Volunteer citizen scientists with weather sensors attached to vehicles are measuring temperatures. [The Milwaukee Independent]

Have a perfectly relaxing day.

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June 26 Energy News

June 26, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “What Firefighters Can Teach Us About Preparing The Grid For Extreme Weather” • Preparing for emergencies and preventing disasters requires planning, equipment, and communications. This is as true for operating the electric power system in extreme weather as it is for fighting fires. For emergencies, firefighters and utilities both share resources. [CleanTechnica]

Firefighters training (Matt C, Unsplash)

¶ “EV Charging Network: Eight Ways US States And Cities Can Make It Work” • The Biden administration aims for 50% of new light-duty vehicle sales to be zero-emission by 2030. California, Massachusetts, and New York, plan to reach 100% new EV sales by 2035. EVs are on the rise in the US, and here are ways to get the nation’s EV charging network to grow. [CleanTechnica]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Century Old Material Key To Next-Gen Computer Chips” • The silicon-based computer chips that power modern devices require a lot of energy. Despite ever-improving computing efficiency, information technology is projected to consume around 25% of all primary energy produced by 2030. A well known material may change that. [CleanTechnica]

Arduino Uno (Vishnu Mohanan, Unsplash)

¶ “Examining The Pros And Cons Of Hydrogen Energy” • As a fuel that can generate zero emissions that is also an important industrial feedstock, hydrogen has been attracting people’s attention. Here, we take a look at the pros and cons of hydrogen energy, and whether it has a role to play in the global green energy transition. [Earth.Org]

World:

¶ “Energy Prices Are Causing Chaos In Asia. Here’s Why The Rest Of The World Should Worry” • Effects of high energy prices in Sri Lanka are so bad that the Prime Minister said the country’s economy has “completely collapsed.” In other countries trouble may be less obvious, but even in Australia, wholesale electricity bills are up 141% for the first quarter. [CNN]

Picking tea leaves in Sri Lanka (J A Neshan Paul, Unsplash)

¶ “European Gas “Crisis” Has Global Ripple Effects” • Russia’s Gazprom throttled deliveries of natural gas to Germany by 60% on Thursday. German economic minister Robert Habeck told reporters the cutbacks were a direct political attack in retaliation for Germany’s sanctions against Russia and military support for Ukraine. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Energy Shock Tests G7 Leaders’ Climate Resolve” • Leaders of the Group of Seven nations are under pressure to stick to climate pledges. Germany is in an awkward position as G7 summit host, having recently announced that it will burn more coal to offset a drop in Russian gas supplies amid deteriorating ties over the war in Ukraine. [France 24]

Hybrid solar-wind plant in Germany (Toksave, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “GE Leading Hybrid Wind And Solar Project In Turkey” • Renewable energy in Turkey will get a boost from a hybrid wind and solar power installation led by GE Renewable Energy. The project will integrate a 30-MW solar array with a 32-MW wind farm that was commissioned in 2020 by Sertavul, a Turkish energy company. [POWER Magazine]

¶ “Renewable Energy Development Boosts China’s Pursuit For Carbon Goals” • China has been laying a solid foundation for the country’s pursuit of its carbon neutrality goals, according to a report. China’s installed capacity of renewable energy reached 1,000 GW in 2021. That is 44.8% of the country’s total installed power capacity. [China.org]

Tibetan hamlet with hybrid power (Popolon, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “Chinese Companies Play Vital Role In Pakistan’s PV Sector” • As the Government of Pakistan strives to make transformational changes in the power system by exploring affordable alternative energy sources, Chinese companies are playing a leading role as installers and service providers for on-grid, off-grid, and hybrid energy in the country. [China Economic Net]

¶ “More Efforts Needed To Tap Renewable Energy Potential” • In his message to a recent webinar themed “Asia: Renewable Energy Continent”, Vietnam’s environment and climate change minister suggested seven focus points to fully unleash the potential of renewable energy, as well as accelerate the transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy. [Vietnam Plus]

Rooftop solar PVs in Vietnam (USAID Vietnam, public domain)

¶ “France Sees Nuclear Energy Output Plummet At The Worst Possible Moment” • A recent flurry of unexpected issues at EDF caused French nuclear output to tumble to its lowest levels in 30 years. Around half of the EDF’s massive nuclear fleet is offline, delivering a massive blow to the EU’s energy security in the midst of a worldwide energy crisis. [Oil Price]

US:

¶ “Ford Ends Leasing Buyout Provision For Electric Vehicles” • It used to be that leasing a car was a way for some people to drive more car than they could otherwise afford. One advantage was that the person leasing the car could purchase it at the end of the lease period for a predetermined price. But such a deal may not be available at Ford anymore. [CleanTechnica]

Ford F-150 Lighting (Ford image)

¶ “Tesla’s Stock Upgraded On ‘Strong Competitive Advantage'” • Despite the current economic turndown, and a “tough quarter” for Tesla according to Elon Musk, one analyst upgraded the company’s stock. The analyst posits that Tesla is set up well for both the short-term and long-term markets, largely due to its early focus on vertical integration. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Warming Trends: Putting Citizen Scientists To Work, Assuring Climate-Depressed Kids That The Future Is Bright, And Building Solar-Hydrogen Generators” • There are reasons why people are afraid of what the future holds. But there are also reasons to have hope. Citizen Scientists can help, and there are other ways to see a bright future. [Inside Climate News]

Have an agreeably wonderful day.

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June 25 Energy News

June 25, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “World Leaders Are Facing Crises On All Fronts. Putin Will Be Watching If They Fail” • As the G7 approaches, Russian President Vladmir Putin’s officials are hinting at nuclear Armageddon, China is increasingly assertive, a global food crunch is on the way, oil prices are spiking, and both global economic slowdown and a cost-of-living crisis are looming. [CNN]

Ukrainian wheat field (Polina Rytova, Unsplash)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Boston Metal And ArcelorMittal Take Different Routes To Green Steel” • Making steel is an incredibly dirty business. Every ton produced creates about two tons of CO₂. The industry makes about 2 billion tons of steel every year, so that is a lot of CO₂, roughly 7% of all global emissions. There are different ways to address the issue. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Wildlife Officials Want To Make It Easier To Relocate Climate-Imperiled Species” • The Endangered Species Act typically allows species to be introduced outside of their current range, but only within its historical range. But for some species, all of that range is becoming uninhabitable. New policy is needed, according to wildlife officials. [National Audubon Society]

Hawaiian Duck (Eric Tessmer, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

World:

¶ “New Zealand Sea Sponge Populations ‘Dying By The Millions’ Due To Climate Change” • Shocking images have emerged from New Zealand showing millions of once-velvety brown sea sponges bleached bone white, the worst mass bleaching event of its type ever recorded, marine scientists say. The bleaching event is due to warm waters from climate change. [CNN]

¶ “Singapore Takes Giant Step Forward” • In a forward thinking move, the Singapore government is proposing that all new buildings with carparks will have to install EV charging points in at least 1% of their total car and motorcycle parking lots and have sufficient electrical load to support EV charging for 15% of the total parking spaces. [CleanTechnica]

Singapore (Mike Enerio, Unsplash)

¶ “ORPC To Install Its First River Hydrokinetic Power System In South America” • A developer of systems that generate electricity from free-flowing river and tidal currents, Ocean Renewable Power Company, along with ORPC Chile, announced that it had agreed with the Municipality of Chile Chico to install a RivGen® Power System in 2023. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

¶ “All Purpose Transport – Electric Last-Mile Delivery For IKEA, Goodyear, BP, Others” • All Purpose Transport is a last-mile delivery provider to blue-chip customers. APT’s business model engages nearly 300 Australian owner-drivers who select and purchase their vehicles to do delivery services on behalf of APT. Now, APT is considering EVs. [CleanTechnica]

SEA Electric delivery EV (Photo courtesy of APT)

¶ “IAEA Voices Concern For Staff At Ukrainian Nuclear Plant, Demands Access” • The UN nuclear watchdog is increasingly concerned about the welfare of Ukrainian staff at the Russian-held Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant in Ukraine, Europe’s largest. International Atomic Energy Agency, said it must go there as soon as possible. [WION]

¶ “Norway Roadmap Targets Green Industrial Growth” • The Norwegian government includes offshore wind, hydrogen, and battery storage in seven focus areas in a roadmap for green industrial growth. The government aims to facilitate faster development of projects within the areas, including through stronger capital instruments. [reNews]

Norway (Tobias Tullius, Unsplash)

US:

¶ “Colorado Regulators Approve Plan That Phases Out Coal By 2031” • With a unanimous decision, the Colorado Public Utilities Commission approved Xcel’s plan to accelerate the end of coal in the state by 2031. The updated settlement was supported by NRDC, Sierra Club, and other parties and approved by the PUC with some modifications. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Tesla Invites New Round Of Californians To Enroll In Virtual Power Plant” • Tesla recently launched of its new virtual power plant in partnership with Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E). The virtual power plant will allow Powerwall owners to opt into the program to help stabilize the electric grid and end blackouts in California. [CleanTechnica]

House lit up in a blackout (Tesla image)

¶ “Michigan Ratepayers Celebrate Historic Win For Greener, Healthier Energy” • A diverse coalition of advocates across Michigan are touting approval of Consumers Energy’s 15-year power plan after the work of thousands of residents called for the utility to move quickly from coal and gas to healthier, more affordable wind and solar. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Einride Receives NHTSA Approval To Test Autonomous Trucks” • Einride, a Swedish company, has been using EVs to move shipping containers around freight terminals. Einride says it has received approval from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to test its Autonomous Electric Transport vehicle on US roads. [CleanTechnica]

Enride transport EV (Enride image)

¶ “Lawmakers Push Against Renewable Energy In Hearings On The Texas Grid” • Texas lawmakers held hearings this week on changes to the power grid in response to last year’s big blackout. The meetings touched on everything from infrastructure to the higher cost of energy. But renewable energy advocates may have reason to worry. [Texas Public Radio]

¶ “Bank Of America Signs 160-MW PPA In Indiana” • Bank of America signed a 15-year agreement with Constellation Energy to buy electricity and renewable energy certificates from the Mammoth Central PV project in Indiana. The agreement will help BOA get about 160-MW, 17% of its global electricity supply, from clean energy [reNews]

Have an extraordinarily satisfactory day.

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June 24 Energy News

June 24, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “Cheap Gas Fired Power Begins To Unravel” • In 2019, a year in which gas prices were at a record low, we saw evidence that gas plants were not being operated in the best interest of ratepayers. Now gas prices are at a high, and projections indicate that gas prices will not decrease anytime soon. Policy makers need to do more to protect ratepayers. [CleanTechnica]

Two US areas exemplifying uneconomic operations (UCS image)

¶ “Transform Energy Grid Now With Renewable Microgrids” • A solution to stabilize energy prices is within our grasp. Acting now can also make the energy we need become more reliable and efficient. That solution is renewable microgrids: localized grids based on renewable energy resources and storage that can keep operating when the larger grid fails. [The Hill]

World:

¶ “Germany Declares Gas Crisis As Russia Cuts Supplies To Europe” • Germany activated the second phase of its three-stage gas emergency program, after Russia reduced the amount of natural gas it supplies. This takes Germany one step closer to rationing gas to industry, which would be a huge blow to the manufacturing heart of its economy. [CNN]

Laying natural gas pipe (Philfaebuckie, CC0 1.0 public domain)

¶ “EU Policy To Strengthen Rules For Companies’ Sustainability Disclosures With Mandatory ESG Standards” • The Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive clarifies obligations relating to transparency by large companies operating in the EU. It requires adoption of Environmental, Social, and Governance reporting standards. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “The Small Seaport Crucial For Europe’s Energy Future” • The Lech Kaczyński terminal is important to replacing lost Russian gas, since Gazprom halted supplies to Poland. It is Poland’s biggest liquefied natural gas terminal, and it is being built up to increase the supply coming in from Qatar, the US, Norway, and elsewhere around the world. [BBC]

Świnoujście LNG terminal (Radosław Drożdżewski, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “Canada Will Ban Harmful Plastics By End Of Year” • Canada is working to eliminate a lot of the plastic litter it produces every year. It enacted a world-leading ban on harmful single-use plastics. The ban will result in the estimated elimination of over 1.3 million tons of hard-to-recycle plastic waste and more than 22,000 tons of plastic pollution. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “China Electric Car Market – 31% Market Share In May!” • Plugin vehicles continue to be all the rage in the Chinese auto market. With the end of the Covid lockdowns, plugins went back to the fast lane, growing 109% year over year, for over 403,000 registrations in May. Plugin hybrids surged 187% year over year to a record 105,000 units. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “RWE, EnBW JV Unveils 100-MW Green Hydrogen Scheme” • A joint venture including RWE and EnBW unveiled plans for a 100-MW green hydrogen plant on Germany’s north-east coast. The electrolysis plant will be at the heart of the HyTech Hafen Rostock project. The electricity for the plant is to come from renewable energies. [reNews]

¶ “Mitsubishi Power To Co-Develop Battery Storage Projects In Ireland” • The Japanese company Mitsubishi Power is to develop four battery projects in Ireland in partnership with renewable energy developer ION Renewables. The four battery projects will use Mitsubishi’s Emerald storage systems of 185.5 MW and 371 MWh of capacity. [Power Technology]

Storage facility (Mitsubishi Heavy Industries image)

¶ “Singapore Imports Renewable Energy” • Singapore received its first renewable energy import through an agreement between Keppel Electric and Laos state-owned enterprise Electricite Du Laos. The deal covers imports of up to 100 MW of hydropower from Laos to Singapore via Thailand and Malaysia, using existing interconnections. [Upstream Online]

US:

¶ “Two SMART Projects From Agilitas Energy Bringing Renewable Energy To Massachusetts” • Agilitas Energy, a developer and operator of distributed energy storage and PV systems, announced two Solar Massachusetts Renewable Target projects in its pipeline. They will help accelerate the Bay State’s transition to renewable energy. [CleanTechnica]

Massachusetts solar array (Agilitas Energy image)

¶ “US DOE Joins New Federal–State Partnership To Grow Domestic Offshore Wind Supply Chain” • The DOE announced that it will lead in the development of a comprehensive offshore wind supply chain roadmap as part of its participation in the new White House-led Federal-State Offshore Wind Implementation Partnership. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “American Clean Power Urges US Senate To Reconsider Coastguard Bill” • ACP has sent a letter to Senate leadership, with support from 24 senior leaders in the US offshore wind sector, raising concerns with the wording of a House-passed Coastguard Bill. If enacted, the Young Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2022 could stall offshore wind development. [reNews]

Offshore wind turbines (Nicholas Doherty, Unsplash)

¶ “James Hansen Leads Petition To EPA To Regulate Greenhouse Gases” • Nobody listened to Dr. Hansen 34 years ago when he told congress about climate change. That’s one of the reasons we are on the verge of a global climate catastrophe today. Now he and colleagues propose to regulate greenhouse gases under the Toxic Substances Control Act. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Mississippi Cuts $300 Million Settlement Deal With Entergy Over Grand Gulf Nuclear Profits” • Entergy Mississippi reached a $300 million settlement with the Mississippi Public Service Commission. The PSC had initiated litigation in 2017 relating to Entergy’s return on investments from the Grand Gulf Nuclear Power Station. [Magnolia State Live]

Have a sensibly opulent day.

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June 23 Energy News

June 23, 2022

Science and Technology:

¶ “Solar Power Plants Are More Missile Resistant” • Probably all of us have seen them the images of death and destruction in Ukraine. Every one has been heart rending. But, there’s one interesting piece of good news that came out of the country recently. It is the proof that it’s pretty difficult to take out a solar power plant. [CleanTechnica]

Bombed PVs (Ukrainian war crime investigators, Solar Generation)

World:

¶ “New Tesla Factories Losing Billions Of Dollars, Musk Says” • Elon Musk says Tesla’s new factories in Germany and the US are “losing billions of dollars” due to battery shortages and supply disruptions in China. The multi-billionaire also called the plants in Berlin and Austin, Texas “gigantic money furnaces.” He has warned of job cuts. [BBC]

¶ “Millions Affected As Deadly Floods Hit India And Bangladesh” • The South Asian nations of India and Bangladesh, home to more than 1.3 billion people, have been particularly badly hit by the rains, prompting some of the worst flooding in the region in years. Extreme weather events are increasingly frequent due to climate change. [CNN]

Children in Bangladesh (Nayeem Is J Preenon, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “Europe Told To Prepare For Russia Turning Off Gas” • The head of the International Energy Agency has warned that Russia may stop supplying gas to Europe this winter. Fatih Birol says he believes a complete shutdown is not the most likely scenario, but Europe needs to develop contingency plans. Russia is already supplying less gas than expected. [BBC]

¶ “Volkswagen Previews Aero Sedan, Studies Grid Integration For Electric Cars” • Volkswagen released official sketches of the Aero sedan. The actual car will be revealed on Monday in China. The Aero is expected to go on sale there in the second half of 2023. The production model for the North American and EU market will be presented in 2023. [CleanTechnica]

Volkswagen EV (Volkswagen image)

¶ “Historic Extension Of EU’s Carbon Market Gets Green Light From Parliament” • The EU Parliament has voted in favor of extending its carbon market to shipping and road transport, two weeks after it also voted on expanding coverage to all departing flights from the EU. After a ten-year fight, big shipping polluters will finally be made to pay. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Energy Estate Targets $500 Million To Accelerate Renewables Growth” • The Australian renewables developer Energy Estate is seeking to raise over $500 million to support development work and bankroll the construction of renewable power plants in both Australia and New Zealand. Energy Estate plans to co-develop over 30 GW of projects. [pv magazine Australia]

Solar array (Soltec image)

¶ “WB Has Messed Up Country’s Energy Sector By Backing Gas: Experts” • Speakers at a seminar criticized the World Bank for messing up Pakistan’s energy sector by supporting fossil gas and financing LNG infrastructure in recent years. They called the shift to fossil gas a costly mistake that created high reliance on imported LNG at exorbitant spot prices. [Dawn]

¶ “Edmonton Signs 20-Year Wind And Solar Contracts As Part Of Net-Zero Goal” • The City of Edmonton signed two contracts for renewable energy that will start providing power in 2024 and prevent emissions of over 95,000 tonnes of CO₂ per year. Of the power created through these contracts, 80% will be generated by wind turbines and 20% will be solar. [Global News]

Edmonton, Alberta (Justin Hu, Unsplash)

¶ “Brookfield Raises $15 Billion For Climate-Focused Fund” • Canada’s Brookfield Asset Management said it raised $15 billion for its first impact fund focused on the transition to a net-zero carbon economy. The Brookfield Global Transition Fund will target investments tied to reducing greenhouse gas emissions and energy consumption. [SaltWire]

¶ “Could Germany Keep Its Nuclear Plants Running?” • As Germany seeks to fuel its economy and ward off a recession considered likely if faltering Russian gas supplies stop entirely, some are calling for nuclear plants to stay open. Utilities say constraints in sourcing fuel rods and expert staffing make that impossible. [The Indian Express]

German nuclear plant (Felix König, CC-BY-SA 3.0, cropped)

US:

¶ “Brightdrop Delivers 150 Electric Vans To FedEx” • FedEx and Brightdrop announced that the first 150 Zevo 600 electric vans have been delivered to facilities around southern California. This would make for one of the biggest deployments of electric vans to date. It’s also the fastest GM has brought a vehicle from design to market in its history. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Video Explains California High Speed Rail Problems” • Even with California’s great economy and more left-leaning politics, they struggle mightily to build a high speed rail between two cities. The reason might be hard to imagine, but a recent video goes into some detail as to why it’s like pulling teeth to get rail installed and running there. [CleanTechnica]

High speed train in California (CHSRA image)

¶ “Volkswagen Opens US Battery Research Lab” • Volkswagen will build EVs in the US, but it also wants to take full advantage of battery expertise and talent pools that are here to develop future products. One way the company is doing this is with a Battery Engineering Lab in Chattanooga, Tennessee, near its current production facility there. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “NASA Selects Three Fission Reactor Concepts For Lunar Demonstration” • NASA and the US DOE have selected three design proposals for a nuclear fission surface power system that will be ready to launch by the end of the decade. The technology can help power vehicles and equipment for the Artemis program on the Moon. [News9 Live]

Have a simply splendid day.

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June 22 Energy News

June 22, 2022

Science and Technology:

¶ “New Solar Tech Achieves Commercially Viable Lifetime” • Princeton Engineering researchers have developed the first perovskite solar cell with a commercially viable lifetime, a major milestone for an emerging class of renewable energy technology. The team believes their device can perform above industry standards for around 30 years. [CleanTechnica]

Stable perovskite cell (Bumper DeJesus via Princeton University)

World:

¶ “Hundreds Of Thousands Evacuated As Floods Ravage Southern China” • Hundreds of thousands of people in China have been evacuated in several southern and eastern provinces after unrelenting rains caused floods and triggered landslides. Two provinces upgraded flood warnings as rivers overflowed and floodwater levels broke a 50-year high. [BBC]

¶ “Mining Firm Glencore Pleads Guilty To UK Bribery Charges” • A British subsidiary of the mining firm Glencore pleaded guilty in a UK court to corruption offences for the second time in two months. It was accused of paying millions of dollars in bribes for access to crude oil in several African countries. The company has also pleaded guilty in the US and Brazil. [BBC]

Oil well (Pixabay, Pexels)

¶ “Three Global Banks Tackle Aluminum Decarbonization Jointly” • Three top lenders to the aluminum sector – Citi, ING, and Societe Generale – announced that they will partner with RMI’s Center for Climate-Aligned Finance to help decarbonize the aluminum sector by forming the Aluminum Climate-Aligned Finance Working Group. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “It’s Boom Times For Wind Power And Green Hydrogen In Ireland” • Clean power is blooming in Ireland thanks to such new technology as green hydrogen and floating wind turbines. That’s good news for the economy and great news for the rest of the EU, which is scrambling to untangle itself from Russian fossil energy imports. [CleanTechnica]

Offshore wind turbine (Courtesy of Simply Blue Group)

¶ “Norway Rethinks Its Incentive Package For Electric Cars” • Norwegian EV drivers pay lower tolls and fees and have other advantages. The Norwegian public road administration is urging that some of the advantages given to EV drivers be removed. It wants to reduce the number of cars on Norway’s roads and promote public transportation. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Emissions Reduction Plan Adopted In New Zealand” • The government of New Zealand has adopted its first Emissions Reduction Plan. The plan is required under the Climate Change Response Act to help achieve net zero CO₂ by 2050. Its transport goal is a 41% reduction of CO₂ from 2019 levels by 2035 using a set of four targets. [CleanTechnica]

Auckland, New Zealand (Dan Freeman, Unsplash)

¶ “Energy Minister Says Australia Must Ditch Coal And Switch To Renewable Energy Immediately To Avoid Future Threats Of Blackouts” • Generators refused to provide power because they would lose money, so the Australian Energy Market Operator suspended the spot market along the East Coast. That must not happen again, Chris Bowen said. [Daily Mail]

¶ “Acwa Power Consortium Closes $1.5 Billion Egypt Wind Project” • A consortium led by Acwa Power, a leading Saudi developer, investor, and operator of power generation, water desalinization, and green hydrogen plants worldwide, signed an agreement to develop a 1.1-GW wind project in Egypt, at an investment value of $1.5 billion. [ZAWYA]

Egypt (Flying Carpet, Unsplash)

¶ “Extreme Weather Drives Need For Better Interconnection” • Insufficient interconnection hampers the ability of neighboring solar and wind rich regions to compensate for anomalous conditions in markets such as Spain had last winter, Solargis said. Grids spanning countries will help regional utilities deal with extreme weather events. [reNews]

US:

¶ “Giant Hangar Poised For An Aviation Revolution” • Airships could help speed up the delivery of aid in disaster zones, carry air cargo much more cheaply than air freighters, and cut aviation emissions. Airships could offer an alternative for some types of aviation. A new generation of airships is taking shape in a former airship factory in Akron, Ohio. [BBC]

Airship in hanger (LTA Research image)

¶ “Cadillac Celestiq Teaser Images Released, Production Site Chosen” • General Motors announced that it has chosen a site for making the Cadillac Celestiq, the company’s planned flagship luxury sedan meant to compete with such vehicles as the Tesla Model S. GM is investing $81 million into its Global Technology Center in Warren, Michigan. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Three Georgia Power Plants Land On List Of Nation’s Dirtiest” • Georgia is home to three of the nation’s hundred dirtiest power plants, a report from the Atlanta-based Environment Georgia Research & Policy Center says. It ranks power plants across the US by their contribution to climate change based on the EPA latest eGRID data. [Reporter Newspapers]

Georgia Power’s Plant Scherer (Georgia Power image)

¶ “US Solar Consortium To Buy Up To 7 GW Of Panels Annually From 2024” • Several US solar companies said they plan to spend over $6 billion to buy 6 GW to 7 GW of solar modules annually starting in 2024 to support domestic supply chains. The move comes as the US government seeks to strengthen the country’s energy security. [S&P Global]

¶ “Co-Owners Sue Georgia Power In $695 Million Vogtle Contract Dispute” • The owners of a majority share of a nuclear power plant being expanded in Georgia are suing lead owner Georgia Power Co. They claim Georgia Power is trying to bilk them out of nearly $700 million by unilaterally changing a contract. [USNews.com]

Have a verifiably grand day.

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June 21 Energy News

June 21, 2022

Science and Technology:

¶ “How To Store More Carbon In Soil During Climate Change” • Researchers from Cornell University, Ohio State University, Technical University of Munich, and the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station are using synchrotron light to investigate how moisture affects soil carbon, which is important for healthy crops and fertile fields. [Phys.org]

Cropland (Jake Gard, Unsplash)

World:

¶ “Indian Floods Destroy Millions Of Homes And Dreams” • In Assam, unprecedented rainfall and flooding have left behind a trail of destruction, submerging villages, destroying crops, and wrecking homes. Authorities say that 32 of the state’s 35 districts have been affected, killing at least 45 people and displacing more than 4.7 million over the last week. [BBC]

¶ “Counting Down The Days Until Its Water Taps Run Dry” • The Eastern Cape region of South Africa suffered a severe multi-year drought between 2015 and 2020, which devastated the local economy, particularly its agricultural sector. It had just a brief reprieve before slipping back into drought in late 2021. One city expects to run out of water in two weeks. [CNN]

Gqeberha City Hall (Leo za1, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “Heaviest Rain In 60 Years Hits Southern China” • Almost half a million people have been affected by floods and landslides in the Chinese province of Guangdong, according to authorities, after parts of southern China were hit by the heaviest downpours in 60 years over the weekend. Flooding caused by the torrential rain has destroyed 1,729 houses. [CNN]

¶ “Floating City In The Maldives Begins To Take Shape” • A city is rising from the waters of the Indian Ocean. In a turquoise lagoon, just 10 minutes by boat from Male, the Maldivian capital, a floating city, big enough to house 20,000 people, is being constructed. Because it floats, it is not vulnerable to sea level rise from climate change. [CNN]

Floating city (Waterstudio.NL and Dutch Docklands)

¶ “Report: Shanghai Will Subsidize EV Purchases With 10,000 Yuan Per Unit For Rest Of 2022” • Shanghai will subsidize battery electric vehicle purchases within its borders with 10,000 yuan (about $1,500) per unit for the rest of 2022, Zero Hedge reports, citing Bloomberg as a source. The subsidy started in June and ends at the end of the year. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Contact’s Hamilton Power Plant Closing Next Year To Reduce Carbon Emissions” • New Zealand’s Contact Energy is closing its Hamilton power plant next year to reduce carbon emissions. The 44-MW gas-fired power station has been operating since 1999 and provides steam and electricity to a dairy factory, with surplus electricity directed back to the grid. [Stuff.co.nz]

Hamilton power plant (Supplied image)

¶ “Gas Export Tax Would Help To Fix Australia’s Energy Crisis, Says Dr Ken Henry” • The dire state of Australia’s domestic electricity market, and our lack of investment in renewables, has been a mess of our own making, former Treasury secretary Ken Henry has said. But a gas export windfall tax could help to fix things, he added. [ABC]

¶ “Why China Just Can’t Seem To Quit Coal” • China has the world’s largest renewable energy supply, but it is not shutting down its coal-burning plants. Dr Joanna Lewis, an associate professor of energy and environment at Georgetown University, sees the problem in China as a fear of economic instability if coal plants are closed. [Popular Science]

Coal mine in China (Artyom Korshunov, Unsplash)

US:

¶ “Boeing Unveils New 777 ‘ecoDemonstrator’ Test Jet” • US aircraft maker Boeing showed its new 2022 ecoDemonstrator plane. It is a converted, 20-year-old 777-200ER that will be tasked with testing new technologies aimed at making air travel more sustainable and safer. The ecoDemonstrator will reportedly go through a six-month series of tests. [CNN]

¶ “Cold Climate Heat Pumps Light Up Climate Fight” • To the extent that the local power grid relies on renewable energy, heat pumps take fossil energy out of the heating and cooling equation for centralized power plants. That explains why heat pumps are front and center in Biden administration efforts to decarbonize building energy systems. [CleanTechnica]

Please click on the image to enlarge it.

¶ “Ford Sets EV Sales Record, Again” • Ford sold 6,254 EVs last month. This puts its total sales at 222% above last May’s numbers, an amazing increase. Perhaps more importantly, Ford’s EV sales growth is now four times that of the whole EV market, which means the company is grabbing ground and market share from other manufacturers. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “PUC To Cut New Net Metering Compensation As ‘Costliest’ Renewable Program” • The Vermont Public Utility Commission issued its required update of the state’s net-metering program. Future systems that apply for permits on and after September 1, 2022, will see a small net decrease in compensation compared to existing systems. [Vermont Business Magazine]

Rutland solar home (GMP photo)

¶ “Seattle Offers Utility Pole EV Chargers To City Residents” • Seattle City Light, the utility company that services the city of Seattle and surrounding communities, announced a program to install EV chargers on utility poles, but with a twist. It allows city residents to request the installation of utility pole-mounted EV chargers near where they live. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “US Nuclear Industry Hopes To Double Electricity Output With New Reactors” • The US nuclear industry generats less electricity as reactors retire, but plant operators are hoping to nearly double their output over the next three decades, the industry’s trade association says. The massive scaling-up they envision hangs on small modular reactors. [Business Standard]

Have an especially enchanting day.

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June 20 Energy News

June 20, 2022

World:

¶ “Germany To Fire Up Coal Stations As Russia Squeezes Gas Supply” • Germany must reduce natural gas consumption and increase the burning of coal in order to help fill gas storage facilities for next winter, German Economy Minister Robert Habeck announced as the country moves away from reduced Russian gas supplies. [CNN]

German coal-burning plant in snow (Arnoldius, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “Russia Becomes China’s Biggest Oil Supplier” • Russia has become China’s biggest oil supplier, selling it discounted crude amid sanctions over the Ukraine war. Imports of Russian oil rose by 55% from a year earlier to a record level in May, displacing Saudi Arabia as China’s biggest provider. China has ramped up Russian oil purchases despite lower demand. [BBC]

¶ “Coalition Calls For EU Hydrogen Quota For Shipping” • Last year the European Commission proposed a shipping fuel law aimed at increasing the uptake of alternative marine fuels. Now, a broad coalition of energy providers, shipping companies, and NGOs is calling for improvements to the proposal by including a quota for e-fuels. [CleanTechnica]

Maersk shipping (Maersk image)

¶ “Big Oil Bets That Green Hydrogen Is The Future Of Energy” • Major oil companies are finally planning the large investments that could make green hydrogen a serious business. They have a very particular vision of a low-carbon future – multibillion dollar developments that convert vast amounts of renewable electricity into clean fuels. [The Economic Times]

¶ “Jinkosolar Powers First Overseas Factory By 100% Renewables” • Solar module manufacturer JinkoSolar has powered its first overseas factory solely from renewable resources. The RE100 factory in Malaysia produces approximately 7 GW of vertically integrated solar module capacity and is powered through power purchase agreements. [PV Tech]

Robot assembly at a JinkoSolar facility (JinkoSolar image)

¶ “SA’s Costly Big Gas Projects Could Cause A 40% Electricity Price Hike, Say Top Researchers” • Gas should only play a small role in South Africa’s energy mix for the foreseeable future – providing some energy during peak demand, a study shows. And it will only be the fuel of choice in certain circumstances, as diesel could be cheaper. [News24]

¶ “TotalEnergies, Gecol To Build 500 MW Of Solar In Libya” • General Electricity Company of Libya, a state-owned utility, plans to build a 500-MW solar park 280 km southeast of Tripoli, in partnership with French energy giant TotalEnergies. The International Renewable Energy Agency says Libya now has only 6 MW of installed PV capacity. [PV Magazine]

Libyan Desert (M.T ElGassier, Unsplash)

¶ “Bataan Nuclear Plant Unsafe Due To ‘Potentially Active’ Volcano: Scientist” • A Filipino-American geologist has criticized the Philippine Nuclear Research Institute’s claim that the Bataan Nuclear Power Plant was safe for rehabilitation. He referred to a “potentially active” volcano near the plant, saying it is possible for Mount Natib to explode. [Yahoo News]

Australia and New Zealand:

¶ “Australian Companies In The Mix For $5 Billion Southland Hydrogen Plant” • Australian companies Woodside Energy and Fortescue Future Industries are counterparties in final stage negotiations to become lead developer of the prospective world’s largest green hydrogen plant in New Zealand’s Southland region, at the southern end of South Island. [Stuff.co.nz]

Southland landscape (Gulfside Mike, Unsplash)

¶ “Energy Estate Seeks $500 Million In Capital To Fast-Track Huge Development Pipeline” • Australian renewables outfit Energy Estate has revealed plans to launch a $A500 million-plus capital raising to underwrite its large and diverse development pipeline, which ranges from offshore wind, to green hydrogen and pumped hydro. [Renew Economy]

¶ “Mechanism To Ease Renewable Energy Transition” • To support the changing energy industry in Australia, the Energy Security Board released a draft plan for a capacity mechanism to stabilize the energy grid. The capacity mechanism would have gas and coal energy providers paid to have power available during peak times. [Utility Magazine]

Making things easy with coal (Mriya, CC-BY-SA 3.0, cropped)

¶ “Heavy Industries In Australia’s Regions Could Cut Emissions By 80% And Create A Jobs Bonanza, Report Says” • The regional powerhouses of Australia’s industrial economy could reduce their greenhouse gas emissions by more than 80% and become centers for multibillion-dollar investments in renewable energy, according to a report. [The Guardian]

US:

¶ “Half A Penny For ‘Near Firm’ Solar And Trillions In Renewable Opportunities” • NextEra, the largest renewable company in the US, sees 3.5 TW renewable capacity installations through 2050 worth $2 trillion. And that figure could double under the right conditions. It says the energy storage adder for solar power is now about 0.4¢ to 0.6¢ per kWh. [PV Magazine USA]

NextEra solar project in Oregon (NextEra image)

¶ “Diving Into Tesla’s 60+ Pages Of PUCT Filings” • Tesla has over 60 pages of Public Utility Commission of Texas filings that have recently been shared publicly. They include a lot of data that shows just how the Texas grid will benefit from virtual power plants. Tesla wants to register the first aggregate load resource in ERCOT, the Texan utility grid. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “‘It’s Our New Cash Crop’: A Land Rush For Renewable Energy Is Transforming The Eastern Plains” • Colorado’s Eastern Plains – from Yuma County cornfields to Prowers County feedlots and the wheat and sorghum fields in Kiowa County – are set for their biggest transformation in over a century as clean energy is added to the crops they produce. [The Colorado Sun]

Have an unimaginably agreeable day.

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June 19 Energy News

June 19, 2022

Opinion:

¶ “Is Australia’s Energy Supply In Crisis? What’s The National Electricity Market? Can It Be Fixed?” • Last week, the Australian Energy Market Operator suspended the spot market in the National Energy Market for the first time. We heard politicians talking about “load shedding” and “regulatory intervention.” What’s going on? Where is it all heading? [ABC]

AGL’s Bayswater power station in New South Wales (AGL image)

¶ “How Community Solar Can Benefit Customers With Low And Moderate Incomes” • Residential rooftop solar projects often only benefit the households who live under the array, but a community solar project can reach beyond its site, impacting many more customers who otherwise might have a hard time accessing renewable power. [CleanTechnica]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Friendly Fungi Help Forests Fight Climate Change” • While we know that forests play a major role in countering global warming, acting as reservoirs for carbon, what is less well understood is how tiny organisms that dwell hidden in the soil help lock away our greenhouse gas emissions. Ectomycorrhizal fungi enable certain trees to absorb CO₂ faster. [BBC]

Forest (Jay Mantri, Unsplash)

World:

¶ “Western Europeans Wilt In An Early Summer Heatwave, Compounding Climate Change Fears” • Spain is seeing its hottest early summer temperatures, one area of France banned outdoor events, and drought stalked Italian farmers as a heatwave sent Europeans hunting for shade and fretting over climate change. It was 40°C (104°F) in Madrid. [CNN]

¶ “Tesla Giga Berlin Team Built Over 1,000 Model Y EVs This Week” • Tesla’s Giga Berlin team made over 1,000 Model Y EVs in one week. This is a phenomenal achievement, as Giga Berlin just began producing vehicles this year. Last March, Elon Musk promised to make sure Giga Berlin is a gem, as he doubled down on solving climate change. [CleanTechnica]

Tesla workers celebrating (Tesla image)

¶ “A Ford Tops EV Sales In Germany In May – Yes, Ford!” • The overall German automotive market is still in the red, with the market dropping 10% last month, but sales of battery EVs were up 9% year over year. The 29,182 battery EV registrations last month, represented 14% of the overall market. The Ford Kuga plugin hybrid led the market. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “WA Forges Ahead With Renewables Transition As Other States Face Energy Crisis” • WA has announced the end of state-run, coal-fired power plants by 2030. With additions of rooftop solar, there’s little or no need for the coal-fired plants to run during the daytime, and that causes issues for coal because coal plants aren’t designed to be turned on and off. [ABC]

Albany wind farm (maveriqk, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “Demand For Rooftop Solar Batteries Surges As Eastern Australian Energy Prices Soar” • Demand for batteries linked to rooftop solar panels has soared in the past month as energy prices rise in the coldest start to winter in decades. Inquiries into battery rebates in Victoria have spiked in the past two weeks, one source says. [The Guardian]

¶ “Mexico Signs Renewable Energy Deals With US Companies As It Steps Up Climate Change Fight” • Mexico made commitments with 17 US companies on generating clean energy, its president said. After months of friction with business leaders, President Lopez Obrador said the deals would generate 1,854 MW as the government fights climate change. [The National]

Solar farm in Mexico (Contenidos InLab, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

US:

¶ “For The First Time, A Sea Turtle Has Laid Its Eggs On This Texas Beach” • For the first time, the world’s rarest species of sea turtle has laid eggs on Magnolia Beach in Texas, experts say. In the 1980s, there were only a couple hundred Kemp’s ridley sea turtles left in the world. About fifty hatched from the nest at Magnolia Beach. [CNN]

¶ “The Southwest’s Unchecked Thirst For Colorado River Water Could Prove Devastating Upstream” • When the federal Bureau of Reclamation and four states agreed to release a sixth of the capacity of the Flaming Gorge Reservoir, on the border of Utah and Wyoming, to help desiccated communities to the south, it created a local uproar. [CNN]

Flaming Gorge Reservoir in 2014 (Paul Hermans, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “Tesla And Frito Lay Are Preparing For 100 Tesla Semi EVs” • Tesla and Frito Lay are preparing for the long-awaited delivery of 100 Tesla Semis. Teslarati reported that Tesla added an active Megacharger to a Frito Lay and PepsiCo facility in Modesto, in preparation for the delivery. Reportedly, Semi chargers could reach up to 1 MW per vehicle. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Protecting Solar Energy Assets From Hazardous Weather” • According to the US Energy Information Administration, from 2020 to 2035 solar power is estimated to rise from 3% to 14% of total energy production in the US. The bad news is that with climate change, severe weather is also rising, putting solar panels at risk of damage. [CleanTechnica]

Severe Weather Climatology (NWS Storm Prediction Center)

¶ “Fort Stockton Facility Aims To Boost Renewable Energy” • The Permian Basin leads the nation in crude oil and natural gas production. But that epicenter also has significant potential for wind and solar energy, and that’s drawn companies like Lancium to the region. Lancium hopes to have a 325-MW wind farm operating by year’s end. [Midland Reporter-Telegram]

¶ “Georgia Cooperatives Move To Freeze Nuclear Costs At $8.1 Billion” • One of the owners of the Vogtle nuclear plant being expanded in Georgia says it’s shifting overruns to Georgia Power Co in exchange for part of its ownership. Vogtle is currently projected to cost $30.34 billion. Oglethorpe Power Corp hopes to save $400 million. [CityNews Toronto]

Have a profoundly admirable day.

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June 18 Energy News

June 18, 2022

Science and Technology:

¶ “GM Falls For Crazy Floating Wind Turbine Idea, May Not Be So Crazy After All” • General Motors has been deploying its GM Ventures arm to kickstart next-generation clean tech. The firm has spearheaded a round of up to $10 million in funding for a new floating wind turbine system that looks like a giant wall of fidget spinners. [CleanTechnica]

Mult-turbine floating platform (Wind Catching Systems image)

World:

¶ “Italy’s Eni Says Russian Gas Supply Cut By Half” • Italy has become the latest of a host of European countries to report further cuts in its Russian gas supply. Italian energy giant Eni said it would receive only half of the 63 million cubic meters per day it had requested from Gazprom, after experiencing shortfalls for two days. [BBC]

¶ “Fiat 500e Shines In 21% Plugin Share Market Of France” • Plugin vehicles continue to rise in France, with last month’s plugin registrations ending at 26,517 units, of which 15,247 were battery EVs (or 12% share of the overall auto market) and 11,270 plugin hybrids (9% share of the overall auto market). The former jumped 38% year over year. [CleanTechnica]

Peugeot e208 charging (Tomás Freres, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “National Battery Testing Centre At The Queensland University Of Technology” • Queensland Treasurer Cameron Dick is putting $15 million in funding for the National Battery Testing Centre at the Queensland University of Technology in the state budget. He says he wants his state to be “the natural home” of battery testing and making in Australia. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Marriage Between Sony And Honda Is Now Official” • Sony and Honda signed a memorandum of understanding in March saying the two companies intend to make electric cars together with each company contributing its own expertise to the effort. Now the new joint venture is official and will be known as Sony Honda Mobility. [CleanTechnica]

Sony Vision S 02 and Vision S 01 concepts (Sony image)

¶ “China’s Renewable Energy Capacity Expands In First Five Months” • In China, over the January-May period, the capacity of wind power jumped 17.6% year on year to around 340 GW, while solar farms saw capacity hit 330 GW, an increase of 24.4%, the National Energy Administration said. China’s goal is net-zero emissions by 2060. [China.org]

¶ “How Orkney Is Leading A Tidal Power Revolution” • Tidal power, while not yet widely commercialized, is seen by many as the next frontier in renewables. It’s the only renewable power source that comes from the moon’s pull on the Earth. Orkney, home of the European Marine Energy Centre headquarters, is a hub for tidal power innovation. [The Guardian]

Graphic showing Orbital O2 in action (Orbital Marine)

¶ “UAE Seeks Iran Assurance On ‘Peacefulness’ Of Nuclear Program” • The United Arab Emirates urged Iran to provide reassurances on the peaceful nature of its nuclear program after the IAEA denounced Tehran´s lack of cooperation. Iran has a controversial uranium enrichment program, and the UAE lies just across the Gulf. [The News International]

US:

¶ “Yellowstone River Flooding Is A 1-In-500-Year Event, Says US Geological Survey” • The devastating flooding that occurred along the Yellowstone River this week constitutes a 1-in-500-year event, according to a US Geological Survey news release. More than 10,000 visitors to Yellowstone National Park have been forced to evacuate. [CNN]

Flooding at Billings, Montana (Photo via USGS, public domain)

¶ “FERC Reveals Interconnection Reforms That Could Unleash Solar Energy Potential” • The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission issued a notice of proposed rulemaking detailing the proposed interconnection reforms the Commission would like to adopt in order to clear interconnection backlogs and speed clean energy deployment. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “NM’s Kit Carson Electric Cooperative Achieves 100% Daytime Solar Power” • The Kit Carson Electric Cooperative has achieved a milestone. Customers in their service area, around Taos and Santa Fe, New Mexico, will now have 100% of their daytime electric use provided by solar power. This was achieved with the opening of a 41-MW solar array. [CleanTechnica]

Solar panels (Courtesy of the Kit Carson Electric Cooperative)

¶ “Biden Announces New Initiatives To Curb Methane During The Climate Conference” • Convening a meeting of over twenty of the world’s largest economies to discuss curbing methane emissions, President Joe Biden said Russia’s war in Ukraine shows that renewable energy is vital to national security as well as to preventing global warming. [Press TV]

¶ “Natural Beauty And Renewable Energy Source Are Being Threatened” • Vermont’s Green River Reservoir State Park is threatened. The Vermont Agency of Natural Resources ordered Morrisville Water & Light, to reduce generation by about 30%. So the dam at the reservoir operates at a loss, and the electric utility has no choice but to remove it. [VTDigger]

Green River Reservoir (Vermont State Parks image)

¶ “Methane-Based Gas Plant Explosion Sends Shockwaves Through Market” • The Freeport LNG export facility in Texas will be out of commission until September and will not be fully operational until late this year, the company said. An explosion at its Quintana Island liquefaction facility last week is having effects on global markets. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “As Texas Increases Renewable Energy Production, Grid Capacity And Transmission Haven’t Caught Up” • While a lingering heatwave impacts Texas, renewable energy sources are picking up the slack for the state’s power grid. But as energy demand continues to grow, is Texas moving fast enough on embracing renewable energy? [Texas Standard]

Have a serendipitously soothing day.

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June 17 Energy News

June 17, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “Why The World Is Missing Its Chance For Clean Energy” • Sadly, the opportunity offered by economic slowdown of 2020 was lost. We sat down with Niklas Hagelberg, Coordinator on Climate Change at the UN Environment Programme, to find out more about the global energy crisis and what can be done to transition to an energy-efficient economy. [UNEP]

Sunflowers and wind turbine (Gustavo Quepón, Unsplash)

¶ “The West Just Experienced An Aspect Of The Climate Crisis That Scientists Have Warned Of For Years” • In the middle of a prolonged, water shortage-inducing megadrought, one area, Yellowstone, was overwhelmed by drenching rainfall and rapid snowmelt, creating a torrent of flash flooding that ripped out roads and bridges. [CNN]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Congo Peat: The ‘Lungs Of Humanity’ That Are Under Threat” • A giant slab of carbon-rich peat has been discovered in central Africa. It is under threat from uncontrolled development, posing a significant risk for future climate change, writes BBC Africa correspondent Andrew Harding. The peat bog stores about 30 billion tonnes of carbon. [BBC]

Congo River (Bsm15, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

World:

¶ “Europe Is Making It Much Harder For Russia To Ship Oil Anywhere” • The EU’s embargo on 90% of the oil it imports from Russia is the toughest punishment it’s inflicted on the Kremlin since the invasion of Ukraine. But another ban it just imposed could be nearly as important. It banned EU companies from insuring ships carrying Russian oil. [CNN]

¶ “Lightyear 0 Solar-Assisted Car Will Go Into Production This Year” • Dutch company Lightyear announced that this fall it will start making the world’s first production car fitted with solar panels. The Lightyear 0 will have curved solar panels in its roof, hood, and trunk that top up the electric battery. The first delivery in Europe could be as early as November. [CNN]

Lightyear 0 (Lightyear image)

¶ “Nepal To Move Everest Base Camp From Melting Glacier” • Nepal is preparing to move its Everest base camp because global warming and human activity are making it unsafe. The camp is used by up to 1,500 people in the climbing season. It sits on the rapidly thinning Khumbu glacier. A new site is to be found lower down, where there is no year-round ice. [BBC]

¶ “The UK’s Haven For Alternative Thinking” • The Centre for Alternative Technology spent the last half century redefining the relationship between nature and humankind. Once merely a haven for those who think about alternative ways to do things, it now offers master’s degrees in fields such as energy provision, green building, and sustainable food. [BBC]

Funicular powered by water and gravity (CAT image)

¶ “WA Urged Not To Delay On Renewable Energy” • A report by the Australian Energy Market Operator has found that Western Australia faced looming generation deficits even before the state government outlined a timetable for phasing out coal. The state’s Wholesale Electricity Market faces a shortfall of 21 MW from 2025 to 2026. [Western Magazine]

¶ “Australian State Grants Emergency Powers To Control Energy Crisis” • After cold weather combined with faults at coal plants to drive energy prices up, authorities in New South Wales were granted emergency powers to ensure the stability of the energy grid. They are directing the state’s private coal companies add supply to the grid. [The Straits Times]

Sydney harbor (Photoholgic, Unsplash)

¶ “Japan’s Top Court Says Government Not Responsible For Fukushima Damage” • Japan’s government is not liable for damages demanded by people whose lives were devastated by the Fukushima nuclear disaster, the country’s top court said. As the first such ruling in a series of similar cases, the ruling sets a precedent. [Reuters]

US:

¶ “US Mining And Geothermal Industries Could Strike ‘GOLD’ Through Partnership” • The mining and geothermal industries could partner for a more lucrative and greener future. GOLD (Geothermal Opportunities Leveraged Through Data) can use data from abandoned mining wells for the benefit of both industries. [CleanTechnica]

NREL graphic, NREL acronym (NREL image)
Please click on the image to enlarge it.

¶ “Introducing The 2022 Electricity Annual Technology Baseline” • The 2022 Electricity Annual Technology Baseline is now available, including distributed wind and pumped storage hydropower supply curve data for the first time. The Electricity ATB is a collaborative project led by the US DOE’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “US Grid-Scale Energy Storage Market Breaks Q1 Record” • The US energy storage market set a new record in the first quarter of 2022, with grid-scale installations totaling 2,399 MWh, the highest capacity for Q1 on record. The volume of US grid-scale installations was four times the volume seen in Q1 of last year, sources said. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

Energy Storage (NREL image)

¶ “Duke Energy Progress Submits Annual Update For Fuel, Renewable Energy, Energy Efficiency Program Charges In North Carolina” • Duke Energy Progress made its annual filings with the North Carolina Utilities Commission for costs associated with fuel and various riders, including state programs to encourage renewable energy adoption. [Duke Energy | News Center]

¶ “All Fifteen Cape Towns Say ‘No’ To Holtec’s Plans For The Bay” • This year Cape Cod voters were asked at local town meetings and elections about the now-closed Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station. All 15 towns on the Cape, including six on Martha’s Vineyard, voted against Holtec plans to dump radioactive water into the bay. [Cape Cod Times]

Have a delightfully gratifying day.

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June 16 Energy News

June 16, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “The 1977 Climate Memo That Could Have Changed The Course Of History” • The Guardian has revealed the existence of a climate memo written for president Jimmy Carter in 1977 by Frank Press, his chief science adviser. It bore the rather ominous title “Release of Fossil CO₂ and the Possibility of a Catastrophic Climate Change.” [CleanTechnica]

Science and Technology:

¶ “New Additives To Perovskite Tandem Solar Cells Boost Efficiency, Stability” • Scientists at the US DOE’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory demonstrated a perovskite cell that overcomes problems with stability and improves efficiency. The new cell, a tandem design with two layers of perovskites, measured a 25.5% efficiency. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ “Satellite Spots World’s ‘Largest’ Methane Leak In A Russian Coal Mine” • The Raspadskya Mine in Kemerovo region in remote part of southern Russia is spewing out huge amounts of methane, a very potent greenhouse gas, in what is described as the “biggest” such leak ever detected from a single facility. The leak was found by a GHGSat satellite. [CNN]

Methane leak (GHGSat image)

¶ “Rich Nations Accused Of ‘Betrayal’ At Bonn Talks” • Climate talks in Bonn headed into their final day with rich nations accused of betraying the developing world. Poorer countries say that at COP26 they were promised that their key demand on loss and damage would be honored this year, but instead the issue has been side-lined by the US and EU. [BBC]

¶ “Germany Accuses Russian Gas Giant Of Pushing Energy Prices Up” • Germany accused Russian state-controlled Gazprom of trying to push up energy prices by sharply reducing supplies. Gazprom said it was limiting the amount of gas to Germany to do maintenance on the Nord Stream pipeline, but the German economy minister said it was a political act. [BBC]

Retired offshore oil rigs (Ben Wicks, Unsplash)

¶ “Bloomberg Thinks Volkswagen Could Sell More EVs Than Tesla By 2024” • Bloomberg Intelligence thinks that Volkswagen could sell more EVs than Tesla by 2024, but that even if this does happen, Tesla will still be a key leader in the industry. One thing that seems sure is that both companies will be key leaders with EVs for quite some time. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “ROI Open For Tasmania Renewable Energy Industry” • The Tasmanian Government released an energy plan, and a Register of Interest to facilitate new energy opportunities across the state is now open. The plan is to put downward pressure on energy prices, increase the supply of reliable and affordable power, and bolster Tasmania’s economy. [Energy Magazine]

Tasmanian farm (Patrick McGregor, Unsplash)

¶ “Mekong Delta Eyes Rapid Development Of Renewable Energy” • The Mekong Delta will need to optimize its natural conditions to develop renewable energy and attract investment in the sector to mitigate the impacts of climate change, experts have said. The region has a lot of potential for renewables like wind, solar and biomass. [EIN News]

¶ “Wind Industry Urges ‘Greater Policy Ambition’” • The Global Wind Energy Coalition for COP27 has called for greater policy ambition and volumes made available to scale up to 390 GW of annual wind energy installations by 2030. On Global Wind Day the coalition is calling for the scale-up in line with a net zero trajectory. [reNews]

Work on a wind turbine (Global Wind Energy Coalition)

¶ “Renewable Power Inks 561-MW Swedish Wind Connection” • Renewable Power Capital signed a grid connection deal with Eon paving the way for up to 561 MW of new wind capacity in the Solleftea and Kramfors municipalities in Sweden. The parties agreed on the costs and the schedule for the grid connection of four wind power projects. [reNews]

¶ “US Awaits ‘Constructive’ Response From Tehran On Nuclear Deal” • The US said it awaits a constructive response from Iran on reviving the 2015 nuclear deal without “extraneous” issues, a possible reference to Iran’s demand its Revolutionary Guards be dropped from a US terrorism list. The 2015 deal was abandoned by Donald Trump. [The Algemeiner]

Tehran (Sajad Nori, Unsplash)

US:

¶ “Federal Watchdog Found Oil And Gas Company Likely Defrauded Government” • A federal watchdog found that the Interior Department’s safety and enforcement branch was for years unaware that an oil and gas company regularly vented and flared a potent planet-warming gas at levels exceeding Interior Department requirements. [CNN]

¶ “Scientists Saw Yellowstone’s ‘Unprecedented’ Flooding Coming” • Scientists predicted more frequent events like this week’s flash flooding in the Yellowstone area. Just last year, one report on the future of Yellowstone concluded the climate crisis would lead to more rainfall and rapid snowmelt due to extreme spring and summer warmth. [CNN]

Road destroyed by erosion (National Park Service image)

¶ “Environmental Groups Sue Biden Administration To Block 3,500 Oil And Gas Drilling Permits” • Three environmental law groups sued the Biden administration in an attempt to block over 3,500 permit applications from energy companies to drill for oil and gas on public lands. They say issuing the permits would violate several federal laws. [CNN]

¶ “Engineers Develop Cybersecurity Tools To Protect Solar, Wind Power On The Grid” • Solar panels and wind turbines, now projected to produce 44% of America’s electricity by 2050, present cybersecurity challenges. They have sensors, controllers, actuators or inverters that are directly or indirectly connected to the internet. [Iowa State University]

Have a particularly jolly day.

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June 15 Energy News

June 15, 2022

Science and Technology:

¶ “Vanadium Batteries Keep The Energy Flowing For The Telecommunications Industry” • The US Secretary of Energy, Jennifer Granholm, announced last year that vanadium flow batteries are “good for grid storage.” There are few places where that may be more evident than in the telecommunications industry. [CleanTechnica]

Vanadium flow battery (Image courtesy StorEn Tech)

World:

¶ “Climate Change: New Fossil Fuel Funding Is ‘Delusional’ Says UN Chief” • Spending money on new coal, oil and gas as a result of the war in Ukraine is “delusional” according to UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres. He says that our global energy mix is broken, and more coal will only reinforce the “scourge of war, pollution, and climate catastrophe.” [BBC]

¶ “Sri Lanka Gives Government Workers Extra Day Off A Week” • Sri Lanka is giving government officials an extra day off a week to encourage them to grow food, amid fears of a food shortage. Sri Lanka is in the worst economic crisis in 70 years and struggles to pay for critical imports such as food, fuel, and medicine as it faces a severe foreign currency shortage. [BBC]

Situlpawwa, Sri Lanka (Anusara Weerasooriya, Unsplash)

¶ “EU Parliament’s Lead Committees Vote Against Gas And Nuclear In The Green Taxonomy” • Two lead committees of the European Parliament have voted to throw out the European Commission’s sustainable investment taxonomy, which had inexplicably labeled gas as green. They voted by 76 to 62 against greenwashing gas and nuclear. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Canada Post: 14,000 Vehicles To Be Fully Electric By 2040” • Canada Post has earmarked $1 billion to reduce emissions and transform its fleet. Canada Post has 14,000 vehicles and close to 6,000 post offices. It will transform its fleet to non-emitting transportation, with commitments to reach a 50% electric fleet by 2030 and 100% by 2040. [CleanTechnica]

Canada Post vehicle (Jeangagnon, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “Renewable Energy Delays In 2016 Haunt SA Today” • South Africa could have basically solved load-shedding if it had not stalled critical renewable energy projects in 2016, according to a report by energy advisory firm Meridian Economics. The report says the outlook for SA’s escalating load-shedding problem is worse than generally recognized. [ITWeb]

¶ “BP Takes Stake In Oz Mega-P2X Project” • BP agreed to take an equity stake and be the operator of a huge green hydrogen hub in Western Australia. BP has acquired a 40.5% stake in the Asian Renewable Energy Hub, which will comprise 26 GW of renewable energy capacity (14.5 GW wind and 11.5 GW solar) plus 12.5 GW of electrolyser capacity. [reNews]

Western Australia (BP image)

US:

¶ “Across The US, A Day Of Extreme Weather Prompts Heat Warnings, Severe Flooding, And Power Outages” • All entrances to Yellowstone Park are closed due to flooding. Storms in the Ohio area left hundreds of thousands without power. The heat wave in the Southwest is moving to Mid-America, putting 125 million under a heat advisory. [CNN]

¶ “Wind And Solar Power Are ‘Bailing Out’ Texas Amid Record Heat And Energy Demand” • Texans are cranking on the air conditioning this week amid an unusually early heat wave, setting new records for electricity demand in the state. But the grid is holding up well, largely because solar and windpower are covering 40% of the demand. [CNN]

Azure Sky wind farm (Enel Green Power image)

¶ “Arizona’s Pipeline Fire Has Burned More Than 20,000 Acres In Two Days” • Arizona’s Pipeline Fire, about six miles from Flagstaff, has scorched more than 20,000 acres, about four times the area it was on Monday afternoon, according to Coconino National Forest officials. It was at 0% containment as of Tuesday afternoon, a press release said. [CNN] (Please note: ‘Pipeline’ is just the fire’s name. It does not mean a pipeline is on fire.)

¶ “Nikola Gets $185,000 Incentive Boost, Way Ahead Of Tesla” • Just weeks after announcing that early customers had begun taking delivery of Nikola’s Tre battery-electric semi trucks, the brand has announced that its trucks have officially qualified for massive incentives in the State of New York. The incentives can be worth up to $185,000 per truck. [CleanTechnica]

Nicola electric truck (Nicola image)

¶ “House Approves Ruggiero Bill Requiring 100% Of RI’s Electricity To Be Offset By Renewable Energy By 2033” • Rhode Island’s House of Representatives voted in favor of legislation to increase the state’s renewable energy supply by requiring that 100% of its electricity by offset by renewable production by 2033. The Senate has passed a similar bill. [What’s Up Newp]

¶ “DOE To Support Clean Energy Transition In 12 Remote And Island Communities” • The DOE announced it will work with 12 remote and island communities to help strengthen their energy infrastructure, reduce the risk of outages, and improve their economic outlook. Among the 12 are communities in Maine and Massachusetts. [Department of Energy]

Aquinnah, Martha’s Vineyard (MV Vacation, Unsplash)

¶ “New Mexico State Land Office Triples Renewable Energy” • Commissioner of Public Lands Stephanie Garcia Richard announced that the State Land Office has tripled renewable energy leased on state trust land since 2019, bringing renewable energy production to about 1,200 MW, up from about 400 MW when she took office. [Los Alamos Daily Post]

¶ “NextEra Energy Launches Zero Carbon Ambition” • NextEra Energy has committed to eliminate carbon emissions from its operations by no later than 2045, while leveraging low-cost renewables to provide affordable energy for its customers. Reaching the goal would require “significant investment,” according to the company. [reNews]

Have a beguilingly pleasing day.

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June 14 Energy News

June 14, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “Conservatives Do Want A Clean Energy Transition” • The future of clean energy can pivot with the nod of conservative political elites. Until recently, they promoted policies friendly to fossil fuels and resisted climate change efforts, but a new breed of conservatives is slowly taking hold, and a clean energy transition is patiently waiting in the wings. [CleanTechnica]

Supercell (NOAA, Unsplash)

¶ “Baby, It’s HOT Outside! Records Are Being Set Worldwide” • Much of the US is broiling in a horrible heat wave, and other parts of the world are cooking too. A half a degree here, a quarter of a degree there. Eventually, large tracts of the Earth will no longer be able to support human life. It is astonishing how many people seem to be OK with that. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ “Candela Cabin Cruiser Concept Takes Flight!” • The Candela P-8 Voyager cabin cruiser made its debut at the Salone Nautico show in Venice. The new craft is aimed squarely at Vencie’s water taxi business, and the company hopes it will help replace the gas and diesel motorboats that are currently used by the area’s commercial operators. [CleanTechnica]

Candela P-8 Voyager (Candela image)

¶ “Australian Company Announces More Efficient Lithium Extraction Process” • Recently, Australia’s Nuclear Science and Technology Organization joined forces with Lithium Australia to develop a technology to extract up to 95% of the lithium in spodomene ore. It can also squeeze more out of the waste of the conventional extraction process. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Norway Is Building The World’s Largest Wind Farm – To Power Oil And Gas Fields” • Norway still has a very complicated relationship with oil and gas. Now, the country will start up the world’s largest wind farm to power its offshore oil and gas fields. The project is being built by Equinor, the largest exporter of natural gas in Europe. [ZME Science]

Offshore wind farm (Equinor image)

¶ “WA Coal-Fired Power Plants To Shut By 2029” • Western Australia’s state-owned coal-fired power stations will close by the end of the decade amid a shift towards renewable energy. WA Premier Mark McGowan says coal-fired generation is becoming increasingly unviable as the uptake of rooftop solar and other renewable energy grows. [Shepparton News]

¶ “What Is Load Shedding And Why Is It A Sign That Australia’s Largest Electricity Market Is In Crisis?” • When demand for electricity exceeds capacity, the most extreme tool is load shedding, shuting down power to an area for a time. A cold snap with several large, coal-burning power plants offline threatens eastern Australia with load shedding. [ABC]

Power outage (Alexander Popov, Unsplash)

¶ “Denmark Boosts 2030 Offshore Wind Goal By 4 GW” • The Danish government has release proposals to expand planned offshore wind capacity for 2030 by a further 4 GW. This will increase total installed capacity by 2030 from 8.9 GW to 12.9 GW. Denmark’s offshore wind farms will reach a capacity of 2.3 GW in 2022. [reNews]

¶ “Corio Team Reveals 5-GW Brazilian Offshore Wind Push” • Corio Generation has revealed plans for five offshore wind farms in Brazil totaling more than 5 GW. The fixed-bottom projects, which are at early-stage development, are the 1.2-GW Costa Nordeste, the 1.2-GW Cassino and Guarita, the 1,170-MW Rio Grande and the 495-MW Vitoria. [reNews]

Boat and wind turbines (Bob Brewer, Unsplash)

¶ “‘We’re Still Recovering’: 11 Years After Fukushima Nuclear Disaster, Residents Return To Their Village” • Over 11 years after Japan’s worst nuclear disaster, the government lifted evacuation orders in part of a contaminated village, allowing residents to move back into their homes. Katsurao village is about 40 km (24 miles) from the Fukushima Daiichi plant. [MSN]

US:

¶ “California Reaching 100% Renewable Electricity At Times” • In early April, California achieved a new record at 97.6% renewable power, and on May 2 the state was able to reach 99.9%. On May 8 the record was broken yet again, with 103% of the state’s power needs being met by renewables for a few hours. Now it’s time for California to work on storage. [CleanTechnica]

Neighborhood in San Francisco (Robert Bye, Unsplash)

¶ “New Federal Rule Aims To Phase Out Residential Furnaces That Waste Natural Gas” • President Joe Biden’s DOE will propose a rule to make residential, natural gas furnaces more energy-efficient. It would be the country’s first significant update to furnace standards since the 1990s. Just over 40% of furnaces made today meet the proposed standard. [CNN]

¶ “BLM OKs Construction Of Large California Solar Projects” • The Interior Department gave notice that construction could proceed on two projects in the Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan area in California. The area includes 10.8 million acres of federal lands already evaluated by the Obama administration in 2016. [E&E News]

Desert solar array (Tom Brewster Photography, BLM via Flickr)

¶ “One Out Of Every Three New EVs Registered In US In 2022 Is A Tesla Model Y” • The Tesla Model Y, which is manufactured at two Tesla US factories, accounted for nearly one out of every three new EVs registered in the US during Q1, 2022. Altogether, the four models Tesla sells in the country captured 71.7% of the US EV market. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Carmakers Push Congress To Extend EV Tax Credit” • Top executives from General Motors, Ford, Stellantis, and Toyota have lobbied Congress to lift the 200,000 sold vehicle cap on the $7,500 electric vehicle tax credit, citing higher costs to produce zero-emission vehicles, according to a letter reportedly seen by Reuters. [CleanTechnica]

Have an inconceivably satisfying day.

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June 13 Energy News

June 13, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “What The Fed District Reserve Banks Should Do About Climate” • The Federal Reserve has a lot to do, from controlling inflation to staving off recession. But one issue should move up in priority. That issue is safeguarding the economy from the growing risks posed to the financial system from the growing risks of climate change. [CleanTechnica]

Tornado (Nikolas Noonan, Unsplash)

¶ “Ford Sides With EPA On California Clean Air Standards. We Should, Too.” • Because it already had emissions rules in place, California was allowed to have clean air standards stricter then the EPA’s. Donald Trump took their waiver away. Joe Biden gave it back. Now, a number of states are suing over the issue. Ford is on California’s side. [CleanTechnica]

Science and Technology:

¶ “How To Turn Your Garden Into A Carbon Sink” • As leaders in government and companies race to reduce their emissions, there is greater interest in natural landscapes, such as forests, wetlands, and mangroves, protecting against the risks of climate change. Horticulturalists say humble gardens can serve as a powerful tools in this fight. [BBC]

Country garden (Arno Senoner, Unsplash)

¶ “Protein-Filled Cotton Sheet Can Filter Carbon Emissions” • Using a cotton textile and an enzyme called carbonic anhydrase, North Carolina State University scientists created a fabric that can effectively scoop up and capture emissions. They published their new findings in ACS Sustainable Chemical Engineering earlier this month. [Popular Science]

World:

¶ “Fiji Says Asia’s Biggest Security Threat Is Climate Change, Not Conflict” • Fiji’s defense minister said climate change posed the biggest security threat in the Asia-Pacific region, a shift in tone at a defense summit dominated by the war in Ukraine and disputes between China and the US. Low-lying Pacific islands like Fiji are especially vulnerable to climate change. [CNN]

Scene in Fiji (Jeremy Bezanger, Unsplash)

¶ “Tesla Is The Most Purchased New Car In Switzerland” • The most popular new car brand in Switzerland is Tesla, RebelinkPress reported, citing Reuters and the Association of Automobile Importers, Auto-Suisse. New car demand is slowly growing when compared with 2020, and that change is driven by increased interest in EVs. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Electric Americas Foundation Is Filming A Documentary Driving The Pan-American Highway In Two Tesla EVs” • The founders of the Electric Americas Foundation will drive from Alaska to Patagonia using Tesla EVs, filming a documentary about their drive. The trip will cover 20,000 miles in seven months, if all goes according to plan. [CleanTechnica]

Brown bear (Courtesy of Electric Americas)

¶ “Marcos ‘Dedicated’ To Sustainable, Renewable Energy In The Philippines” • President-elect Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr is “dedicated” to using sustainable and renewable energy in the Philippines, the Danish Ambassador said. Marcos has said that aside from nuclear power, there should be a strong push for more renewable energy. [GlobalNation Inquirer]

¶ “Romania Aims For Energy Independence In Response To Ukraine War” • As Russia makes war on Ukraine, the Romanian government wants to transform the country’s energy mix and infrastructure to attain energy independence. Experts warn there are still issues while environmental groups call for a bigger role for renewables. [EURACTIV.com]

Dam in Transylvania (paul mocan, Unsplash)

¶ “Nenggiri Dam Operational In Five Years, To Boost Renewable Energy Capacity” • The RM5 billion ($1.13 billion) Nenggiri Hydro-Electric Dam project, which is to be operational in the middle of 2027, will boost renewable energy electricity capacity in Peninsula Malaysia, according to the Minister of Energy and Natural Resources. [The Sun Daily]

¶ “Enel Exits Gas-Fired Plant To Become 100% Renewable In Brazil” • Enel Brasil has signed a deal to sell its entire stake in a 327-MW gas-fired thermal power plant to local energy firm Eneva SA, thus becoming 100% renewable in the country. The sale is part of Enel’s carbon-neutrality plan as it looks to achieve zero emissions by 2040. [Renewables Now]

Enel’s Fontes Solar 2 plant in Brazil (Enel image)

¶ “Iran ‘Dangerously Close’ To Nuclear Bomb, Israeli Prime Minister Says” • Iran is “dangerously close” to getting a nuclear bomb, Israel’s Prime Minister Naftali Bennett has said. Tensions between Iran and the West have increased in the last week after UN inspectors found that officials had turned off cameras at a nuclear plant. [The National]

US:

¶ “Mandatory Evacuations After Southern California Fire Expands 20-Fold” • Mandatory evacuations are in place after a wildfire expanded steadily in Southern California’s Angeles National Forest. The Sheep Fire grew from 35 acres Sunday morning to 775 acres by the afternoon, according to InciWeb. The fire is only 5% contained. [CNN]

Earlier California wildfire (Ross Stone, Unsplash)

¶ “US Army Invests In Portable Nuclear Reactors” • To prove the concept, the US military selected BWXT and other contractors to build a generation IV transportable nuclear reactor. The design calls for a nuclear reactor that is small enough to fit in a 6 meter (19.7 foot) shipping container for easy transportation. It should also be easy to put into operation. [Ubergizmo]

¶ “45% Percent Of Americans Support Nuclear Power Plants” • A recent Reuters/Ipsos poll finds two in five Americans say they are familiar with nuclear power energy plants (43%). 45% percent of Americans say they support nuclear power energy plants, with coal-fired plants (36%) and gas-fired plants (41%) garnering less support. [Ipsos]

Have an enjoyably tranquil day.

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June 12 Energy News

June 12, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “Failure Is The Only Option” • There are three criteria that identify systems that will inevitably fail in some way: One, the system is complex; two, the system is tightly interconnected with one or more other complex systems; and three, the system has the potential for catastrophic failure. The failure of a nuclear power plant is a “normal accident.” [The Manila Times]

Chernobyl nuclear plant (UN photo)

¶ “The World Bank Is Blocking The Way To Renewable Energy Transition” • World Bank made a pledge in 2013 to stop funding coal. Despite that pledge, the World Bank’s private lending arm, the International Finance Corporation, continued to help make it possible for new coal projects to get the funding they need to begin operations. [Rappler]

World:

¶ “Tesla’s 35,000th Supercharger Is A Milestone For EV Charging” • Tesla keeps expanding its Supercharger network. Tesla China has announced Tesla’s 35,000th Supercharger, a milestone for EV charging. The Supercharger opened in Wuhan, China, and Tesla China noted that Tesla owns the largest fast-charging network in the world. [CleanTechnica]

Tesla Supercharger (Neo Tan, Unsplash)

¶ “Netherlands: 32% Of New Cars Sold Now Plugin Cars” • In the context of a falling overall market, down 7% year over year in May, the Dutch plugin vehicle market has continued to grow, reaching 32% last month. That’s mostly thanks to pure electrics (21% of all new vehicle sales), which jumped 48% year over year last month. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Mercedes EQV Electric RV From Tonke” • Nearly three years after the debut of the Mercedes’ EQV electric van, Dutch RV specialist Tonke has turned the innovative EV into a capable B-class camper with swiveling front seats, a pop-up dinette/game table, and a swing-out camp kitchen just as good as anything this side Volkswagen BusBox. [CleanTechnica]

Tonke electric Camper conversion (Tonke image)

¶ “Rajasthan Allots Land To Adani Firm To Set Up 1,000 MW Solar Power Project” • The Rajasthan cabinet decided to allot nearly 2,400 hectares of government land in Jaisalmer district to Adani Renewable Energy Holding Four Limited for setting up a 1,000-MW Solar Power Project. Rajasthan has installed around 13,000 MW of solar capacity. [Business Standard]

¶ “Oman Plans Projects Worth Over $ 1 Billion In Renewable Energy And Water Sector” • Oman plans to attract investments of more than 480 million rials, or $1.250 billion, for several projects in renewable energy and water sector, according to the CEO of the Oman Power and Water Procurement Company. 1,000 MW of solar power is part of the plan. [ZAWYA]

Neighborhood of Muscat, Oman (Anfal Shamsudeen, Unsplash)

¶ “Ukraine Restores Internet Link Between Occupied Nuclear Plant And IAEA, Says Energoatom” • Ukraine’s state nuclear firm Energoatom said it had helped restore an internet connection between the International Atomic Energy Agency and the servers of Ukraine’s Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant, which is occupied by Russian forces. [USNews.com]

¶ “Africa Turns To China For Renewable Energy Investments” • With Africa attracting only 2% of the global renewable energy investments, the continent is aspiring to increase its installed capacity but it needs capital. Chinese is among the countries Africia is turning to as its countries seek to reach sustainable development goals. [Morocco World News]

Kilimanjaro (Sergey Pesterev, Unsplash)

Australia:

¶ “Queensland Has Eight Coal-Fired Power Stations. What’s Their Future?” • As Australians across the eastern seaboard grapple with rising energy costs, unexpected outages at a handful of Queensland’s coal-fired power stations have been cited as part of the problem. Queensland has eight coal-fired power stations. Here is a look at them. [ABC]

¶ “Farmers, Renewable Energy Advocates Call For More Compensation For Hosting Transmission Lines” • To reach net-zero and bring down power bills, state and federal governments have promised to fast-track transmission lines to get more renewable energy into the grid. But farmers are calling for a rethink on compensation. [ABC]

Sheep on an Australian farm (Daniel Morton, Unsplash)

¶ “Massive Investment In Bushfire Management And Climate Change Adaptation” • The 2022-23 New South Wales Budget gives a big boost to fire management in national parks with $598 million of investment, creating 250 permanent jobs and critical infrastructure upgrades. And $93.7 million will go to the Climate Change Adaptation Strategy. [NSW Government]

US:

¶ “California Bill Wields State’s Purchasing Power For Climate Action” • The California legislature has a big opportunity to cut greenhouse gas emissions from concrete, one of the world’s most carbon-intensive products, by passing Senate Bill 778 authored by Senator Josh Becker. The bill would add concrete to the Buy Clean California Act. [CleanTechnica]

Little bit of California (Viviana Rishe, Unsplash, cropped)

¶ “Grand Rapids Advances 100% Renewable Goal With New Solar Array” • Grand Rapids turned on a new solar array to generate about 10% of the power needs of its Lake Michigan Filtration Plant. The 0.90-MW installation, which is expected to save the city about $200,000 annually in electricity costs, is now generating electricity. [MLive.com]

¶ “Oklahoma City Partners With Solar Panel Company To Bring More Renewable Power To Homes” • Some Oklahoma City residents have already warmed to the idea of using the sun to power solar systems in their homes, helping to pay their utility bills, and now they are encouraging others to do the same with a city-partnered promotion. [The Oklahoman]

Have a sensationally happy day.

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June 11 Energy News

June 11, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “Texas Repays Tesla – Excludes It From EV Rebates” • Tesla’s new global headquarters in Texas was always weird since Texas has always had anti-Tesla laws that make it hard to buy a Tesla there. Now, as a backhanded “thanks” to Tesla for building its headquarters there, Texas is excluding the EV maker from its EV rebate program. [CleanTechnica]

Giga Texas (Tesla image)

¶ “Colorado EV Charging Readiness Bill Vetoed – Big Mistake” • Amid an otherwise positive legislative session for transportation, air quality, and climate, Colorado Governor Jared Polis vetoed a bill that would have ensured that new buildings and major renovations had the electrical wiring and capacity to host future EV charging stations. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Why Nuclear Power Is Not Viable For Our World Today” • The Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Station in Ukraine, built between 1984-1995, is the largest nuclear power plant in Europe and the ninth largest in the world. With a Russian invasion and war going on around the plant, it highlights a problem with the assumption that nuclear plants can be secure. [Colorado Daily]

Nuclear power plant (Fusun Tut, Unsplash)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Green Aviation Fuels Could Save 5 Million Tonnes Of CO₂ In 2030” • E-kerosene, generated by combining green hydrogen and carbon dioxide, has the potential to substantially reduce the climate impact of aviation. Transport & Environment analysis shows that the European e-kerosene market is ready for higher rates and faster scaling. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Canal-Top Solar Solutions” • Canal-top solar was pioneered in India a decade ago with a canal-top solar array in Gujarat. There are now findings from the University of California and the resulting Project Nexus that shine attention on a symbiotic application: saving water, while generating solar energy, without occupying arable land. [pv magazine India]

Rendering of Project Nexus (Solar AquaGrid image)

World:

¶ “Multi-Gigawatt Solar From The Middle East” • Azerbaijan has announced a partnership with UAE-based developer Masdar for 1 GW each of solar and onshore wind, with 2 GW on integrated offshore wind plus green hydrogen production. The fact that green hydrogen production is included is noteworthy because Azerbaijan is a gas exporter. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “World’s Tallest Timber Residential Tower To Be Built” • The world’s tallest timber residential building is set to be built in Switzerland. The project, named Rocket&Tigerli, will consist of four buildings including one that boasts a 100-meter-tall (328-foot) tower. The development will be built in the Swiss city of Winterthur, which is near Zurich. [CNN]

Rendering (Aesthetica Studio/Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects)

¶ “Energy Dome Introduces Its Carbon Dioxide Energy Storage System On Sardinia” • Energy Dome says it has the solution to energy storage, which is to use a closed system based on CO₂. Its first demonstration facility is operational on the Mediterranean island of Sardinia, home to Energy Dome founder Claudio Spadacini. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “How This PEI Company Aims To Reduce Diesel Power By 50% In Remote Communities” • A company in Georgetown, Prince Edward Island, is building a new wind and energy storage system specifically designed for remote communities, with the goal of displacing 50% of the diesel fuel that communities now use for power generation. [CBC]

Remote wind turbines (Frontier Power Systems)

US:

¶ “It’s Not Your Imagination, US Summers Are Hotter Than Ever Before” • From Texas to California, most of the Southwest is experiencing scorching heat this week, with temperatures soaring above 100°F (38°C) in dozens of locations. This is part of an alarming trend. American summers are hotter than ever, research by Climate Central shows. [The Guardian]

¶ “Biden’s National EV Charging Plan Emphasizes Standards, Interoperability, And Rural Access” • The Biden administration proposed a new program entitled the National Electric Vehicle Charging Network. The program will be used to provide a minimum of four fast chargers every 50 miles along major transportation corridors. [CleanTechnica]

Shell EV charging area (Shell image)

¶ “Climate Change Keeps Creating Challenges For Michigan Farmers” • With more extreme weather conditions than we were seeing ten or twenty years ago, climate change is creating challenges for Michigan farmers. Here is a look at how that state’s farmers are adapting and how they can even help slow climate change. [FOX 47 News]

¶ “Duke Energy Florida Completes Its First Project In 750-MW Solar Plan” • Duke Energy Florida announced it has completed construction of the 74.9-MW Fort Green Renewable Energy Center. The facility is part of a plan that allows Duke customers to opt-in to sourcing a designated amount of capacity from the project on their monthly bill. [pv magazine USA]

Duke Energy technician (Duke Energy image)

¶ “Google, Facebook Stoke Wind-Farm Debate” • Microsoft, Google, and Facebook are sounding the alarm on a renewable energy project a Warren Buffet company proposed in Iowa. MidAmerican Energy’s project would cost nearly $4 billion. It asked state regulators to approve terms including a guaranteed 11.25% rate of return. [Data Center Knowledge]

¶ “Xcel Energy-Colorado Gets Green Light For $2 Billion Transmission Project” • Xcel Energy said in a statement that the Colorado Public Utilities Commission approved plans for the five segments of its Colorado’s Power Pathway, which will cost up to $2 billion. The project will upgrade the state’s high-voltage transmission system. [The Fort Morgan Times]

Have a satisfyingly magnificent day.

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June 10 Energy News

June 10, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “Australia’s Energy Crisis: How Can Such An Energy-Rich Country Be So Poor?” • A decade of mismanaging the energy transition by the previous federal government has left Australia in a dire situation. The previous energy minister, Angus Taylor, pilloried South Australia for its push to renewables. Now, it has the cheapest electricity in the nation. [CleanTechnica]

South Australian wind turbines (Simon Yeo, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “Reducing Local Opposition To Renewables” • Despite the climate urgency and the favorable economics, local opposition to renewable energy projects is becoming a major impediment to getting the projects up and running. One key to success is early engagement by renewable developers with communities and nearby residents. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Biden Hydrogen Hub Program Doles Out Federal Dollars To Natural Gas Industry” • Recently, US President Joe Biden issued an executive order invoking the Defense Production Act to give a big boost to clean energy and lower carbon emissions in the US. Now it turns out a lot of funding for hydrogen is going to support getting it from natural gas. [CleanTechnica]

Natural gas well – not green (ReAl, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Lithium-Ion Batteries That Last Longer In Extreme Cold” • In temperatures below freezing, cellphones need to be recharged frequently, and electric cars have shorter driving ranges. This is because their lithium-ion batteries’ anodes get sluggish, holding less charge and draining energy quickly. Researchers have come up with a solution. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Artemis Puts The Electric Foil Concept To Work” • Artemis, based in Belfast, launched its “world’s first” commercially viable electric-foil workboat. It can cut through the waves at well over 30 knots and cover up to 60 nautical miles per charge. It uses an advanced “eFoiler” propulsion system that lifts the boat out of the water using twin T-foils. [CleanTechnica]

Artemis electric foil workboat (Artemis, via New Atlas)

¶ “Decarbonization Potential Of Solar Thermal” • In a new article by SolarFlux, CEO Naoise Irwin shares how solar thermal has massive yet under-appreciated decarbonization potential. Almost 6% of US energy consumption could be decarbonized simply by using solar energy for industrial process heat applications, the article says. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ “Torrential rains kill dozens in southern China as climate change amplifies flood seasons” • Torrential rains in southern China have killed at least 32 people, impacted millions of residents and caused billions of yuan in economic losses, as the country grapples with increasingly devastating flood seasons fueled by climate change. [CNN]

Cloudburst (Linhao Zhang, Unsplash)

¶ “Putin: West Unlikely To Reject Russian Energy For Years” • Russian President Vladimir Putin says that Western countries will not be able to cut themselves off from Russian oil and gas for several years. His comments come after a US official admitted that Russian profits on energy may be higher now than they were before the war. [BBC]

¶ “NSW Announces $1.2 Billion Investment In Renewable Energy” • The New South Wales government has announced its single biggest investment yet in renewable energy infrastructure, committing $1.2 billion to fast-track priority transmission and energy storage projects as the energy sector continues its rapid transformation. [pv magazine Australia]

Transmission lines (CSIRO image)

¶ “Serbia’s Draft Hydrogen Strategy Envisages Production From Renewables To Start By 2025” • Serbia should start producing hydrogen from renewable energy sources by 2025 and increase production to 5,100 tons by 2035 and 20,600 tons by 2050, according to the draft Hydrogen Strategy, which focuses on green hydrogen. [Balkan Green Energy News]

¶ “Enel Starts 152-MW Canadian Onshore Project Build” • Enel Green Power Canada has started the main construction phase of the 152-MW Grizzly Bear Creek wind farm in the province of Alberta. The project, located in the counties of Minburn and Vermilion River, will consist of 34 turbines that are expected to generate 528 GWh of electricity a year. [reNews]

Wind turbines (Enel Green Power image)

¶ “Eastern Cape’s Thyspunt Nuke Power Plant Site A No-Go For Now, Says Regulator” • In South Africa, the National Nuclear Regulator has thrown out Eskom’s application for a nuclear site licence at Thyspunt in the Eastern Cape, citing “information gaps and outdated data.” The decision results from a lack of credible information provided to the NNR. [Daily Maverick]

US:

¶ “Black Fire Becomes New Mexico’s Second Largest Fire In The State’s History” • Two wildfires – the Hermits Peak-Calf Canyon Fire just northeast of Santa Fe and the Black Fire in the Gila National Forest – are both burning at the present time. Each, by itself, is larger than the Whitewater-Baldy fire of 2012, which held the record as biggest. [CNN]

¶ “SoCalGas Wins $750,000 Grant To Develop Renewable Hydrogen” • Southern California Gas Co has received a $750,000 grant from the California Energy Commission to develop a novel hydrogen production system using biogas from dairy farms, landfills, or wastewater treatment plants to create affordable and scalable renewable hydrogen. [Energy Digital]

¶ “US DOE Closes $504.4 Million Loan To Advanced Clean Energy Storage Project For Hydrogen Production And Storage” • Mitsubishi Power Americas and Magnum Development have announced getting a $504.4 million loan guarantee from the DOE’s Loan Programs Office for the world’s largest industrial green hydrogen facility. [Mitsubishi Power]

Have a wonderfully comfy day.

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June 9 Energy News

June 9, 2022

Science and Technology:

¶ “Microplastics Found In Fresh Antarctic Snow” • Scientists have for the first time found microplastics in freshly fallen Antarctic snow. Researchers from the University of Canterbury in New Zealand collected samples from 19 sites in Antarctica and each contained tiny plastic fragments. They found an average of 29 particles per liter of melted snow. [BBC]

Antarctica (Torsten Dederichs, Unsplash)

¶ “Space-Based Solar Power Is Back On The Table” • Beaming solar power down to Earth from space? Don’t laugh. The idea, once written off as technically and financially unworkable, is being actively considered by several countries, including the US, China, Korea, Japan, and the UK. The European Space Agency is also getting involved. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Scientists Rid Rechargeable Batteries Of A Common Pitfall By Use Of Multivalent Cation Additives” • Researchers at Tohoku University have found a way to stabilize depositions of lithium or sodium in rechargeable batteries, helping keep their metallic structure intact. The discovery helps prevent battery degradation and short circuiting. [CleanTechnica]

Batteries wired in parallel (Yo-Co-Man, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

World:

¶ “EU Lawmakers Support Banning Gasoline Car Sales By 2035 In Key Vote” • Members of the European Parliament voted to ban the sale of new combustion engine cars by 2035, in what would be one of the world’s strongest laws to phase out gasoline vehicles. To go into effect, the measure must be debated and approved by the European Council. [CNN]

¶ “New Zealand’s Plan To Tax Cow And Sheep Burps” • New Zealand unveiled a plan to tax sheep and cattle burps in a bid to tackle one of the country’s biggest sources of greenhouse gases. The country would be the first to charge farmers for methane emissions from their animals. New Zealand is home to around 10 million cattle and 26 million sheep. [BBC]

Cows (Jakob Cotton, Unsplash)

¶ “Ukraine War Prompts Fossil Fuel ‘Gold Rush'” • The world is witnessing a “gold rush” for new fossil fuel projects, a report by leading climate researchers says. Soaring energy prices spurred by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine have led to new investment in oil and gas. The report by Climate Action Tracker says the world risks being locked into “irreversible warming.” [BBC]

¶ “BYD To Supply LFP Batteries To Tesla, Sakuu Announces 3C Lithium Metal Battery” • Lian Yubo, BYD’s executive vice president, said this week in an interview with CGTN, “BYD respects Tesla, and we also admire Tesla. We are now good friends with Elon Musk, and we are going to supply him with batteries very soon.” [CleanTechnica]

BYD LFP battery (BYD image)

¶ “NSW Targets Offshore Wind Projects As It Seeks Proposals For Illawarra Renewable Zone” • The government of New South Wales hopes to attract some of Australia’s first offshore wind farms to power the state’s steelmakers as it opens up registrations for the Illawarra Renewable Energy Zone. It issued a call for ‘registrations of interest.’ [Renew Economy]

¶ “Investments In India’s Renewable Energy Sector Increased 125% In One Year” • In the financial year ended March 31, 2022, a record $14.5 billion was poured into India’s renewable and new energy industry as investments are up 125% from the previous year, according to an Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis report. [Quartz]

Solar plant in Telangana (Thomas Lloyd Group, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “Rio Tinto Calls For Proposals For Large-Scale Wind And Solar Power In Queensland” • Rio Tinto called for proposals to develop wind and solar power in Central and Southern Queensland to power its aluminum assets, help meet its ambitions on climate change, and further encourage renewable development and industry in the region. [Yahoo Finance]

¶ “Energy Communities Bring Renewable Power To The People” • In the face of sharp increases in energy costs, renewable energy systems under new community ownership structures are being pioneered all over the Europe. The goal is to develop cheap, clean and secure energy by bringing power generation closer to the people who will use it. [Horizon Magazine Blog]

Rooftop solar system (Giorgio Trovato, Unsplash)

¶ “Fresh Blow For EDF With Probe Into Practices At Tricastin Nuclear Plant” • French power utility EDF faces an investigation into alleged non-disclosure of safety incidents at its Tricastin nuclear power plant, according to the lawyer of a whistleblower, who was speaking to Reuters. It is another setback for the state-controlled company. [Reuters]

US:

¶ “Oil And Gas Companies Likely Underreporting Methane Emissions Leaks” • The amount of methane major oil and gas companies are emitting in the Permian Basin is likely to be significantly higher than the official numbers they are reporting to the EPA, according to a report by the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology. [CNN]

Pumpjack in West Texas (Eric Kounce, Public Domain)

¶ “Bolt EV Price Cut Signals A Great Thing Happening For EVs” • The Bolt EV and Bolt EUV’s 2023 pricing has received a lot of attention in media. It has had a pretty steep price cut, and unlike earlier cuts, this one is special, because GM is now making those price drops permanent instead of frequently temporarily dropping the price. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Walmart Invests In Renewable Energy, Lower Emissions For Truck Fleet” • Walmart announced it is testing three different kinds of renewable energy to power its fleet of trucks. The fleet has over 10,000 tractors and 80,000 trailers. The retailer did not reveal costs or project timelines, but it did say it was taking advantage of tax credits. [Talk Business & Politics]

Have a magically soothing day.

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June 8 Energy News

June 8, 2022

Opinion:

¶ “Climate Change, Danger Seasons And The Need For Global Action” • Deadly heatwaves, extreme drought, food and water shortages, catastrophic flooding, rapidly intensifying tropical storms, raging wildfires – around the world, climate change is exacerbating extreme conditions and their harsh toll on people and ecosystems. [CleanTechnica]

Fire in New Mexico (Kari Greer, USFS Gila National Forest)

¶ “If Australia Taxed Windfall Gas Profits We Could Invest Billions In Renewables” • The former administration did nothing to control Australia’s energy prices. Now, it would be good policy to impose a windfall gains tax on the extra gas profits that the Ukraine war is delivering to the gas companies and use the money to promote renewables. [The Guardian]

World:

¶ “Climate Crisis Costs Up Over 800% As UN Donor Nations Fail To Keep Pace, Report Says” • The amount of money needed to aid communities in the face of extreme weather-related emergencies has increased by more than 800% in the past two decades as the climate crisis also rapidly accelerated, according to Oxfam research. [CNN]

Storm (Thomas Dewey, Unsplash)

¶ “Razon’s Renewables Unit To Build The World’s Largest Solar Power Plus Storage Project” • Prime Infrastructure Holdings, a unit of Enrique Razon, is set to build the world’s largest solar power facility with a capacity of up to 3,500 MW combined with up to 4,500 MWh battery storage system boosting the supply of renewable energy in the Philippines. [Power Philippines]

¶ “Polestar 3 Electric SUV With 600 Km Range Coming Soon” • Polestar, the electric vehicle division of Volvo Cars, which itself is owned by Geely, has released the first official undisguised photo of the Polestar 3, a dual motor battery-electric SUV that will go into production simultaneously in both the US and China in the autumn of this year. [CleanTechnica]

Polestar Precept (Image courtesy of Polestar)

¶ “China Furthers Efforts In Wind, Solar Power” • China has vowed to speed up the construction of the second batch of massive wind and solar power projects in the Gobi Desert and other arid regions, according to a package of policy measures that aims to stabilize the economy. The policy was announced by the State Council. [The Star]

¶ “The Wuling Air Is Going Global!” • One of the first real mass market sub-$5,000 cars, the Wuling Hong Guang Mini EV, has been a huge success in China. It has been the top selling EV in China for a while now and in some months it has actually been the top selling car. Now, an upmarket version of the Wuling EV, the Wuling Air, is set to go global. [CleanTechnica]

Wuling Air (Wuling image)

¶ “Households, Industry Can Now Buy Green Energy” • In a major thrust to green power, the government of India gave notice of rules allowing everyone – from industry to households – to buy renewable energy from distribution companies. Power Minister RK Singh said the rules constituted a major reform to promote renewable energy. [Tribune India]

¶ “‘Chasing unicorns’: NSW Liberal minister rejects federal opposition push for nuclear power” • The New South Wales energy minister and treasurer, Matt Kean, has accused the federal Coalition of “chasing unicorns” over its push to overturn the moratorium on nuclear power in Australia. The push began when the Coalition lost power. [The Guardian]

No unicorns, but maybe a kangaroo (Fidel Fernando, Unsplash)

US:

¶ “California Seeks To Rein In Water Usage By Closing A Nearly Two-Month Gap In Getting Data From Suppliers” • Years of heat and drought have drained California’s reservoirs. To help keep track of the situation, Gov Gavin Newsom is calling on local water agencies to submit water usage data by the third business day of every month. [CNN]

¶ “Ford And Tesla Indicate EVs Might Be Selling Themselves” • A piece in Bloomberg told us that Ford is looking to do what Tesla does: not spend on advertising. Why? Because its EVs are already sold out for two years. With a second manufacturer considering ditching traditional advertising, it’s looking like EVs could be selling themselves. [CleanTechnica]

Ford EVs (Ford image)

¶ “Shell Energy Enters Texas Market With 100% Renewable Electricity Plans” • Shell announced the launch of the Shell Energy brand into the residential power market in the US. Through Shell Energy Solutions, the company is now offering 100% renewable electricity plans to eligible customers. The rollout is starting in Texas. [Irving Weekly]

¶ “State’s First 100% Renewable Multi-Customer Microgrid Is Now Up And Running In McKinleyville” • California’s first 100% renewable energy, front-of-the-meter, multi-customer microgrid is now fully operational. Located in Humboldt County, the microgrid provides energy resilience for the regional airport and US Coast Guard Air Station. [Lost Coast Outpost]

Solar array at the Redwood Coast Airport Microgrid (RCEA image)

¶ “Massive Water, Wind And Solar Idaho Energy Project Advances” • US officials have initiated a licensing process for a water, wind, and solar energy project in southwestern Idaho that could power nearly 300,000 homes. Cat Creek Energy would built the project mostly on private land in Elmore County and would create the Cat Creek Reservoir. [KTVB]

¶ “Oregon Utility Builds Nation’s First Large-Scale Wind, Solar And Battery Facility” • Portland General Electric built a first-of-its-kind facility that will use an innovative battery technology for Oregon’s renewable energy transition. The batteries allow the Lexington facility to capture and store electricity even when there’s no sun or wind available. [OPB]

Have an amusingly moving day.

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June 7 Energy News

June 7, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “Four Undisputable Advantages of Wind Energy” • Windpower is among the most important sources of renewable energy, and continued improvements in technology are contributing to its rapid expansion. It has some important advantages, and these should be recognized. They make a compelling argument for further expansion of wind energy. [Earth.Org]

Wind farm (Peter Beukema, Unsplash)

World:

¶ “Siemens Gamesa Begins Testing New 115-Meter-Long Wind Turbine Blades” • Siemens Gamesa, the Spanish-German wind energy giant, is ready to being testing its first B115 wind turbine blades in Aalborg, Denmark. Measuring 115 meters long, the blades will be used as part of the company’s next generation offshore wind turbine⁠. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “UK Launches Floating Wind Task Force” • RenewableUK is welcoming industry leaders, senior Government officials and other key stakeholders to the launch of a Floating Offshore Wind Task Force in London. The new body aims to ensure that the UK “stays at the forefront” of floating wind, attracting investment and creating jobs, the trade group stated. [reNews]

Offshore wind turbine (Grahame Jenkins, Unsplash)

¶ “Visible From Space: The Consequences Of Climate Change In The Alps” • Scientists from the University of Lausanne and the University of Basel, writing in the journal Science, have now used satellite data to show that vegetation above the tree line increased in nearly 80% of the Alps. Snow cover is also decreasing, albeit so far only slightly. [SciTechDaily]

¶ “Celebrating ‘Golden Decade,’ Poland Set To Reach 12 GW Of PV Capacity In 2022” • Poland’s solar PV capacity in 2022 exceeded 10 GW in May and is expected to reach 12 GW by the end of the year, according to a report published by the Institute for Renewable Energy. The country is on track to achieve 20 GW of PV capacity by 2025. [PV Magazine]

Solar farm in Poland (Lightsource BP image)

¶ “Prioritize Renewable, Not Nuclear Power” • Greenpeace International, the global environment network, is urging the incoming Philippine administration of President-elect Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos to prioritize renewable energy for the power requirements of the country instead of reviving the mothballed Bataan nuclear power plant. [The Manila Times]

Australia:

¶ “KFC Australia Forced To Swap Lettuce For Cabbage” • Fast food giant KFC has been forced to put cabbage in its burgers and wraps in Australia as the country is struggling with a shortage of lettuce. Heads of lettuce have cost over A$10 ($7.18, £5.72), three times the usual price, as a result of floods in Queensland and New South Wales. [BBC]

KFC wrap (KFC image)

¶ “Melbourne Office Building Clad Entirely In Skala Solar Power Panels” • A new office building in Melbourne, Australia will have installed solar power, thanks to architect Peter Kennon. It will be clad entirely in Skala thin film solar panels from Germany’s Avancis. The eight story building will have 1,182 solar panels as thick as a regular glass facade. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Energy Security At The Edge Of The Grid” • With experience in remote communities, Dr Andrew Mears is working on project in Australia’s Northern Territory. He founded SwitchDin, whose software will enable greater access to renewable electricity for Alice Springs by using already available solar and battery assets for a virtual power plant. [CleanTechnica]

Alice Springs (Phil Whitehouse, CC-BY-SA 2.0, cropped)

US:

¶ “Climate Groups Join For First-Of-Its-Kind, $100 Million Push To Mobilize Midterm Voters” • In an attempt to mobilize voters around the climate crisis, six climate groups are readying for the midterms with an arsenal of $100 million – the first coordinated spending of its kind. The $100 million will pay for multiple ad campaigns in battleground states. [CNN]

¶ “Biden Announces New Executive Actions To Spur Domestic Solar, Clean Energy Development” • President Joe Biden authorized the DOE to use the Defense Production Act to speed up domestic manufacture of solar panel components, heat pumps, building insulation, electric transformers and equipment like electrolyzers and fuel cells. [CNN]

Joe Biden speaking (The White House, public domain)

¶ “The US South Prepares For The EV Transition” • Electrify the South, a non-profit program of the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy, is leveraging research, advocacy, and outreach to push renewable energy and accelerate EV adoption across the Southeast. It is making the transition believable and part of an appealing regional mindset. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Bill McKibben Advocates For Food Security” • Activist Bill McKibben addressed the question of food security in his blog. He makes a plea to transition from fossil fuels to renewables as a way to cool the planet and increase food security. All the energy from Iowa’s corn ethanol could be replaced by covering a seventh of the land used to grow it with PVs. [CleanTechnica]

Harvesting corn (Bill Whittaker, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “Cost Of Renewables Falls As Installed Capacity Increases” • Researchers Mark Bolinger, Ryan Wiser, and Eric O’Shaughnessy collected data on renewables from 908 wind farms and 822 solar operations in the US, all of them larger than 5 MW in capacity. They found that the people operating solar and wind farms are getting more efficient, reducing costs. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Hancock County To Become Home To New Solar Plant” • Mon Power, a subsidiary of FirstEnergy Corp that services portions of the Northern Panhandle of West Virginia, is working on using renewable energy. Mon Power is working on 50 MW of renewable energy and is taking subscriptions from customers who want to support that initiative. [WTOV]

Have a superbly effective day.

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June 6 Energy News

June 6, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “Road To Zero Emissions Now Clear For Road Traffic” • The road to zero emissions from road traffic is becoming very clear now. That the solution is battery electric vehicles is now accepted even at most legacy carmakers. Only Toyota and a few of its friends still believe in an important role for hydrogen fuel cell technology. [CleanTechnica]

Kia EV6 (Hyundai Motor Group, Unsplash)

¶ “The Coalition Didn’t Do Much On Nuclear Energy While In Office. Why Are They Talking About It Now?” • Despite having not made a serious attempt to start a nuclear power industry in nine years as Australia’s government, the Coalition decided to argue for one as soon as it lost power. So why is it talking about nuclear energy again? [The Guardian]

Science and Technology:

¶ “This Deep Ocean Turbine Could Provide A Constant Source Of Renewable Energy” • Japanese heavy machinery maker IHI Corp has been testing a subsea turbine for over a decade. Kairyu is a 330-ton prototype anchored to the seafloor at a depth of 100 to 160 feet. It has two counter-rotating turbine fans and a system that adjusts buoyancy. [One Green Planet]

Ocean power source (Ant Rozetsky, Unsplash)

World:

¶ “Bonn Climate Conference: Ukraine War No Excuse For Prolonging Coal, Kerry Warns” • The US envoy on climate change John Kerry has warned that the war in Ukraine must not be used as an excuse to prolong global reliance on coal. If countries extend their reliance on coal in response to the war, then “we are cooked,” Mr Kerry said. [BBC]

¶ “Financial Analysis: Faster Electrification Would Boost Car Company Stocks And Profits” • Car makers stand to increase their market value and profit margins by switching to EVs faster than they currently plan, according to a financial analysis of six car companies. It finds they could add €800 billion to their stock value if they transition quickly. [CleanTechnica]

VW ID. Life concept (Image courtesy of Volkswagen)

¶ “Masdar, Azerbaijan Plan 4-GW Clean Power Drive” • Masdar signed implementation agreements with the Ministry of Energy of Azerbaijan to develop renewable energy projects with a total confirmed capacity of 4 GW, including offshore wind integrated with green hydrogen. The deal also includes the right to develop a 6-GW second phase. [reNews]

¶ “RWE Fires Up 60-MW Battery In Ireland” • RWE has brought online the 60-MW Lisdrumdoagh battery storage project in County Monaghan, Ireland. The facility is capable of providing the rapid delivery of electricity into the power grid to help balance intermittency in electricity generation, according to the company. [reNews]

RWE battery (RWE image)

¶ “IAEA Chief Working On Mission To Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Plant, Now Held By Russia” • Rafael Grossi, head of the UN nuclear watchdog, the International Atomic Energy Agency, said he is working on sending an international mission of experts to the nuclear power plant at Zaporizhzhia in Ukraine. It is Europe’s largest nuclear plant, and it is held by Russia. [Reuters]

Australia:

¶ “Why Canberrans’ electricity bills are falling while other Australians’ power costs soar” • Australia is facing an energy crisis. Wholesale power prices are currently more than five times last year’s average price, sparking fears that some electricity retailers will collapse. But Canberra’s electricity price is going down because of renewable energy. [ABC]

Sydney Harbor (Jamie Davies, Unsplash)

¶ “Labor Needs To Double The Pace Of Its Renewable Energy Rollout To Meet 2030 Emissions Target” • Australia will need to double the pace of its renewable energy uptake to meet the 2030 emissions target set by the Albanese government, even without any increase in demand, the head of the Victoria Energy Policy Centre said. Can it be done? [The Guardian]

¶ “Why Australia Is Declaring A ‘New Era’ In The Pacific” • Many small Pacific nations have long considered Australia to be their “big brother.” But more recently, some say Australia’s approach has been tearing the family. According to them, the key problem has been the reluctance of previous governments in Australia to act on climate change. [BBC]

Coast of Tahiti (Robert Preinfalk, CC 2.0 Germany)

¶ “Supermarket Major Reaches Milestone In Rooftop Solar Rollout” • Woolworths marked a major milestone in its rooftop solar program when a store in a Canberra suburb become its 150th outlet to be fitted with solar PV panels. The company is committed to 100% renewable power for all of its Australian operations by the end of 2025. [pv magazine Australia]

US:

¶ “Elon Musk: IDRA Group’s 9,000-Ton Giga Casting Machine Is For Tesla Cybertruck Unibody” • IDRA Group is a Tesla supplier that provides the automaker with ultra-large Giga Presses or Giga Casting machines. This Italian Giga Press manufacturer has been teasing an upcoming 9,000-ton Giga Casting machine for Tesla Giga Texas. [CleanTechnica] (Too many Gigas!)

IDRA 9,000-ton Giga Press machine (IDRA Group via YouTube)

¶ “Potential Electricity Reliability Concern For Central USA” • Higher electricity demand forecasts and potential lower supply raise concerns about tight reserve margins in the Midcontinent Independent System Operator balancing authority this summer. To ensure reliability, authorities plan for more available supply for the demand. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Hit By Probe, Biden To Waive Tariffs On Solar Panels From Malaysia, Other SE Asian Countries For 24 Months” • President Joe Biden will declare a 24-month tariff exemption for solar panels from four Southeast Asian nations after an investigation froze imports and stalled projects in the US, sources familiar with the matter told Reuters. [Malay Mail]

Have an uninterruptedly exquisite day.

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June 5 Energy News

June 5, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “Russia’s War Is The End Of Climate Policy As We Know It” • The headlong rush across Western Europe to replace Russian oil, gas, and coal with alternative sources of these fuels has made a mockery of the net-zero emissions pledges made by the major European economies just three months before the invasion at the UN climate summit in Glasgow. [Foreign Policy]

Alternate energy – wind turbines (Feri & Tasos, Unsplash)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Renewables Become Leader In Grid Resilience: Decentralized Approach To Disaster Recovery” • After an outage, it could be far quicker to restore electricity with energy resources that are close to home rather than through miles of transmission lines. In fact, many outages might be avoided altogether by configuring local resources into rugged microgrids. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Restoring Degraded Peatlands To Mitigate Climate Change” • Peatlands play an important role in mitigating climate change. They store more carbon than all other vegetation types in the world combined. But in some places, peatlands are degrading and turning into carbon sources. Restoring them can help mitigate climate change. [CGTN]

Peat bog in Scotland (Michal Klajban, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

World:

¶ “COP26: Are Nations On Track To Meet Their Climate Goals?” • New targets for reducing emissions, cutting back on fossil fuels, and ending deforestation were agreed by world leaders at the COP26 summit. Nations are meeting again in Bonn to discuss progress since the Glasgow Climate Pact was signed at COP26. Here is a look at how they are doing. [BBC]

¶ “Top 20 Electric Cars In The World – April 2022” • Global plugin vehicle registrations were up 38% in April 2022 compared to April 2021, despite large declines in the overall market. Looking at the monthly best seller table, the little Wuling Mini EV won another monthly title, its first this year, followed by the BYD Song PHEV. [CleanTechnica]

Wuling Mini EV (David290, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “Li-Cycle And Glencore Announce Partnership, Glencore Invests $200M In Li-Cycle” • Li-Cycle and Glencore announced a strategic partnership to provide customers with an integrated approach for both primary and recycled metal needs. This is in addition to a partnership announced earlier in May. Glencore is to invest $200 million in Li-Cycle [CleanTechnica]

¶ “France EV Share Grows In May, Fiat 500 Leads” • France, Europe’s second largest auto market, saw plugin electric vehicles take 20.9% share in April, from 17.3% year-on-year. Full battery electrics grew their share by almost 1.5 times YOY, to 12%. Overall auto volumes were down 10% YOY, and down by around a third from May 2019, at 126,811 units. [CleanTechnica]

Fiat 500 (Robin Ooode, Unsplash)

¶ “Chris Bowen Says Labor ‘Actively Managing’ Energy Crisis As Dutton Criticises Response” • Chris Bowen, Australia’s climate change and energy minister, has rejected Coalition claims that Labor is not doing enough to fix the energy crisis. He labelled its input “as effective as advice from the captain of the Titanic on navigation skills.” [The Guardian]

¶ “$1m Community Battery Unveiled In Melbourne In Move Towards More Renewable Energy” • A battery the size of four fridges installed in Melbourne’s inner north is expected to provide solar power to about 200 homes and speed adoption of renewable energy. The installation is part of Victoria’s $11 million Neighbourhood Battery Initiative. [ABC]

North Fitzroy neighborhood (Bidgee, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “Nuclear Terrorism: Russian Missile Flies Dangerously Close To Nuclear Power Plant” • Energoatom, the Ukrainian agency operating its nuclear plants, said, “On 5 June, Russia carried out another act of nuclear terrorism. At 05:30, a Russian cruise missile, which might have been a Kalibr missile, flew dangerously low over the Pivdennoukrainska NPP.” [Yahoo News]

US:

¶ “As California’s Big Cities Fail To Rein In Their Water Use, Rural Communities Are Already Tapped Out” • Gov Gavin Newsom has pleaded with urban residents and businesses to reduce their water consumption by 15%, but water usage in March was up by 19% in cities compared to March 2020. In rural areas, some people have no water at all. [CNN]

Bouquet Reservoir, already low, 2008 (Kfasimpaur, public domain)

¶ “EPA’s Proposed Truck Rule Delays Justice For Communities Impacted By Freight” • Last week truck manufacturers filed a lawsuit to prevent states from enforcing protective standards on particulates. And as EPA moves forward with its own proposal to strengthen truck pollution regulations, industry has been waging an all-out war on those, too. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “At Raleigh Event, Fort Bragg Official Outlines Renewable Energy Efforts” • The largest floating solar farm in the Southeast is just one of several steps Fort Bragg has planned to increase the sprawling army facility’s use of renewable energy, the chief of Fort Bragg’s energy and utilities branch said. Renewable energy is less expensive and more resilient. [Stars and Stripes]

Have a nicely ordered day.

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June 4 Energy News

June 4, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “How China’s Lithium Leverage Affects Tesla And Other EV Makers” • China is aggressively trying to maintain its dominance in lithium and other minerals for EV batteries. China’s jump on the raw materials game will make it hard for other countries to compete at such a scale. That could mean a few things for Tesla and other EV makers. [CleanTechnica]

Spodumene lithium ore (Ivar Leidus, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “What’s Your Position On Carbon Capture For The Year 2100?” • Are carbon capture and other geoengineering technologies inevitable? The author of a new book argues that meeting those thresholds will not be the end of the climate struggle but only “the end of the beginning.” While we might well be skeptical, his argument is worth studying. [CleanTechnica]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Turning High-Rise Buildings Into Batteries” • In a study published in the journal Energy, researchers at the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis propose a gravity-based storage system that uses lifts and empty apartments in tall buildings to store energy by lifting wet sand containers or other high-density materials. [CleanTechnica]

New York skyline (Robert Bye, Unsplash)

¶ “More Than 40% Of Earth’s Land Surface Must Be Conserved To Stop The Biodiversity Crisis” • 44% of the Earth’s land surface must be protected to stop the biodiversity crisis, a report in the journal Science says. Some 64 million square kilometers (24.7 million square miles) needs “conservation attention” to prevent major biodiversity losses. [CNN]

World:

¶ “Toyota Residential Battery Supports Vehicle-To-Home Operation” • Toyota is entering the residential battery storage market with its new O-Uchi Kyuden system, which consists of a battery with a rated capacity of 8.7 kWh and a rated output of 5.5 kWh. That much makes it seem like a competitor to the Tesla Powerwall, but there are differences. [CleanTechnica]

Toyota O-Uchi Kyuden (Toyota image)

¶ “Norway Continues To Grow EV Share In May” • Norway, the electric transport leader, saw plugin electric vehicle share of 85.1% in May 2022, up from 83.3% year-on-year. Full electrics grew their share by 1.2 times year-on-year to over 73%, whilst plugin hybrids halved their share. Overall auto volumes were down 18% year-on-year, at 11,537 units. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Autonomous Gold Coast Smart Shuttle” • The 6-seat EasyMile Smart Shuttle has been deployed in various places in southeast Queensland for the past 3 years. After two successful phases of trials, phase three of the trial has commenced in February 2022 on the Gold Coast, where traffic patterns are more complex than they had been in earlier phases. [CleanTechnica]

RACQ Gold Coast smart shuttle (Photo courtesy of RACQ)

¶ “Norwegian Startup Lighting The Way For Sea Change In Renewable Energy Solutions” • Norwegian startup Sunlit Sea believes it has solved the challenges for floating solar power. The company has created prefabricated floating solar panels that save time, reduce risk, and require fewer personnel to assemble the modules. [Sustainable Brands]

¶ “India To Replace 30 GW Of Thermal Power With Renewables” • India aims to replace 30 GW of thermal generating capacity with renewable energy by 2026, in a move aimed at reducing emissions from coal-fired power plants. Delhi has directed 81 thermal power plants to reduce coal-fired generation and offset the decline with solar power. [Argus Media]

Solar power in India (Vinaykumar8687, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “Russian-Held Nuclear Plant Faces Critical Shortage Of Spare Parts, Says Ukraine” • Europe’s largest nuclear power plant lies in Russian-occupied Ukraine. But the Zaporizhzhia plant is still operated by Ukrainian technicians. It faces a critical shortage of spare parts, threatening the safety of its operations, Ukraine’s military intelligence agency said. [News18]

¶ “Ukraine Could Shut Europe’s Largest Nuclear Power Plant If It Loses Control” • If Ukraine loses operational control at the largest nuclear power plant in Europe, at Zaporizhzhia, which is currently occupied by Russian forces, Kyiv would consider shutting down the power plant, Yuriy Boyko, an adviser to the Ukrainian prime minister, said. [Oil Price]

Three Zaporizhzhia reactors (Maxim Gavrilyuk, GNU License)

US:

¶ “Stellantis US Arm Pleads Guilty To Fraud And Conspiracy In Diesel Emissions Investigation” • The Michigan-based arm of the international automaker Stellantis has pleaded guilty and agreed to pay $300 million in penalties to settle an investigation into alleged cheating on emissions tests for diesel-powered vehicles of two models made in 2014 through 2016. [BBC]

¶ “Drought-Stricken US Warned Of Looming ‘Dead Pool'” • Lake Mead is the largest reservoir in the US and provides water to 25 million people across three states and Mexico. If it continues to recede, it would reach what’s known as “dead pool,” a level so low the Hoover Dam would no longer be able to generate power or deliver water downstream. [BBC]

¶ “Ford Adds 6200 Manufacturing Jobs, CEO Sees EV Price Wars Ahead” • Ford Motor Company says it wants to be the Tesla of commercial EVs. To that end, it is building four new vehicle and battery manufacturing facilities in Tennessee and Kentucky. This week, it announced it will invest $3.7 billion to retool three of its factories in the Midwest. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Solar Power Is On A Roll In Minnesota” • Solar power still accounts for less than four percent of electricity generated in Minnesota, but it’s growing fast as a way to reduce carbon emissions from burning fossil fuels. Utility companies in the state are on track to get 10% of their electricity from this renewable source by 2030. [MPR News]

Have a prodigiously inspired day.

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June 3 Energy News

June 3, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “The World May Be Careening Toward A 1970s-Style Energy Crisis – Or Worse” • The world is grappling with energy price spikes on everything from gasoline and natural gas to coal. Some experts fear this may just be the beginning of a situation that may rival or even exceed the oil crises of the 1970s and early 1980s, but this time it is not just oil. [CNN]

Power plant in Hong Kong (Ben Tatlow, Unsplash)

¶ “Sweltering India Turns To Superheating Coal For Cooling” • India has had a series of unusually early and prolonged heat waves this year. To cool off, the country has leaned on coal, the fuel most responsible for the blazing temperatures. But coal also contributes to the initial problem, making heat waves are more frequent and severe. [Scientific American]

¶ “Why Hydropower Is The Forgotten Giant Of Clean Energy” • Hydropower is the largest renewable worldwide, producing over twice as much energy as wind, and over four times as much as solar. And pumped storage accounts for over 90% of the world’s energy storage capacity. Despite its outsize impact, we don’t hear much about it. [CNBC] (I think solar and wind have grown to be more than this article indicates – ghh)

Dam (American Public Power Association, Unsplash)

Science and Technology:

¶ “US DOE: Slow Down To Save Fuel: Fuel Economy Decreases About 27% When Traveling At 80 Mph Versus 60 Mph” • Fuel economy for a light-duty vehicle going 80 mph is about 27% lower than when traveling at 60 mph. The best fuel economy is typically obtained when the vehicle is traveling at the lowest speed in the vehicle’s highest gear. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ “Chris Ramsey Will Drive A Nissan EV On An Epic Adventure From The North Pole To The South Pole” • British adventurer Chris Ramsey will be the first person to drive an EV from the North Pole to the South Pole, a press release says. The expedition is to raise awareness of the climate crisis and also to address misinformation about EVs. [CleanTechnica]

Chris Ramsey and Nissan EV (Courtesy Chris Ramsey and Nissan)

¶ “Sweden’s Plugin EV Share Keeps Growing, Up 22% YoY” • May saw Sweden’s plugin electric vehicles take 47.5% market share, up from 39.0% from May of 2021. Overall auto market volume was 26,375 units, up 9% year over year, though still 9% down from the normal seasonal level. Sweden’s best selling battery EV in May was the Volkswagen ID.4. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Siemens Mobility Finalizes Contract For 2000-Kilometer High-Speed Rail System In Egypt” • Siemens Mobility and a consortium partners signed a contract with a governmental authority under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Transport of Egypt. The deal means Egypt will have the sixth largest high-speed rail system in the world. [CleanTechnica]

Rendering of train (Courtesy of Siemens)

¶ “The BMW IX1 Is Coming To South Africa” • BMW has kept South Africa up to date with its EVs. Since the launch of the i3, BMW South Africa has followed that up by introducing the i4, iX, and the iX3. The iX was so well received that the first allocation for South Africa was quickly sold out. Now, BMW says that the iX1 is coming to South Africa. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Climate Agreement Between Canada And India Discusses Renewable Energy But Omits Coal” • Canada’s Environment Minister says an agreement to cooperate with India on climate action is an opportunity for Canada to export its technology for making renewable energy reliable. But the agreement does not mention coal. [Castanet]

Open pit mine (Lachlan, Unsplash)

US:

¶ “At Long Last, Hawaii Embraces Rooftop Solar Power” • Much of Hawaii’s electricity comes from burning diesel fuel refined from oil. In fact, a third of its oil imports came from Russia until Putin decided to go full rogue in Ukraine. That fact has forced Hawaiian Electric Company, HECO, to rethink its long standing opposition to rooftop solar. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Buick Resurrects Electra Brand For Future Electric Cars” • If ever there was a brand name from the past that cried out to be part of the electric car future, it is the Buick Electra, a name that replaced others in the Buick lineup from 1959. Now Buick says it will sell only electric cars from 2030 onward and they will all carry the Electra badge. [CleanTechnica]

Buick EV (Buick image)

¶ “Solar, Storage Win Big In $2.7 Billion New York Tender” • New York Governor Kathy Hochul has announced awards for 22 large solar and energy storage projects. The projects are expected to deliver enough energy to power over 620,000 New York homes for at least 20 years. And they will spur over $2.7 billion in private investment in the state. [reNews]

¶ “US Department Of Energy Launches Partnership To Speed Interconnection” • The US DOE is building the Interconnection Innovation e-Xchange (i2X) to develop systems for faster, simpler, and more fair interconnection of large solar, wind, and storage projects, through “better data, roadmap development, and technical assistance.” [pv magazine USA]

Transmission lines (Ernest Brillo, Unsplash)

¶ “North of Chicago, a contaminated site will be reused for solar energy” • In the middle of a commercial and residential area of Waukegan, about 42 miles north of Chicago, are 70 acres of empty land dotted with posts bearing toxic gas monitors. But Yeoman Creek Landfill is headed toward a second life as a renewable energy facility. [WBEZ]

¶ “Governor Wants Federal Bailout Rule Change To Keep Diablo Canyon Power Plant Alive” • The California governor’s office has asked the US DOE to rewrite the rules on its nuclear power bailout program so Pacific Gas and Electric Co can apply for money to keep Diablo Canyon Power Plant operating beyond its scheduled closure date. [Lompoc Record]

Have a justifiably perfect day.

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June 2 Energy News

June 2, 2022

A Note to Visitors: 

Today is this blog’s tenth anniversary. It has posted news every day since June 2, 2012. Now we are into its second decade!

World:

¶ “Germans Get €9-A-Month Travel In Response To Energy Price Rises” • For the next three months, Germans will be able to travel the country for just €9 (£7.50; $9.50) a month in a drive to tackle the soaring cost of living. All local and regional transport on trains, buses, and metro is included in the initiative, though inter-city trains are not. [CNN]

Munich U-Bahn (Florian Schütz, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “Why The Ukraine War May Power Asia’s Green Energy Shift” • Climate change may be a strong reason to stop burning fossil fuels, but there is another, arguably more immediate reason for Asia to make the transition, gas and coal: money. Global energy prices have jumped since late February when Russia launched its invasion of Ukraine. [BBC]

¶ “NIO Chooses Onsemi Silicon Carbide Power Modules” • A Phoenix-based maker of high efficiency traction power modules, onsemi, announced that it has signed a deal to sell its batteries to NIO, a Chinese EV manufacturer with plans to expand globally (including to the US). The traction power modules increase efficiency in EVs. [CleanTechnica]

NIO EV (Image by NIO)

¶ “EU Countries Accelerate Fossil Fuel Phase-Out” • A policy study from Ember and the Centre for Research on Energy and Clean Air shows EU national strategies are raising their ambition for renewables, resulting in a faster reduction in fossil fuel use. The latest national announcements put the EU on course for 63% of electricity from renewables in 2030. [reNews]

¶ “How Going 100% Renewables Will Shield One Part Of Australia From Surging Power Prices” • Australia’s electricity sector is in a state of crisis, with the surging cost of fossil fuels driving wholesale electricity prices to new highs. Residents of the Australian Capital Territory may be shielded by local reliance on renewable energy. [Renew Economy]

National Museum in Canberrra (Prakash Khanal, Unsplash)

¶ “Phasing Out Coal Could Generate ‘Social Benefits’ Worth $78 Trillion” • A working paper from Imperial College Business School shows that the transition from coal to renewable energy would be worth the equivalent of $78 trillion in ‘social benefits’ such as people facing less damage from climate change and less harm to their health. [Imperial College London]

¶ “China Targets 33% Renewables Power Share By 2025” • China plans to have 33% of its electricity generated by renewable power sources by 2025 in a new renewables plan. This is up from a 28.8% share in 2020. China is the world’s greatest greenhouse gas emitter, however, and the growth of renewables in China is key to addressing climate change. [Oil Price]

Wind farm in China (Xmhaoyu, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “First Look Inside Chernobyl Nuclear Plant Trashed By Russian Troops” • Photos from the Chernobyl nuclear plant reveal the reckless destruction left behind by Russians as they were forced out. Hallways overflowing with litter, broken windows, and taunting messages graffitied on walls were among the scenes left for the Ukrainian defenders to find. [Metro]

US:

¶ “Harris Unveils White House Plan To Address Global Water Security” • Vice President Kamala Harris unveiled a White House plan emphasizing the national security implications of water. Harris said the plan makes water security an “international priority” that aims to prevent conflict between nations and promote equity and economic growth. [CNN]

Kamala Harris (Gage Skidmore, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “CarMax: High Gas Prices Driving Jump In EV Interest” • In a recent report from CarMax on its EV customer interest and sales, one thing is pretty clear: EV sales are going up. And today’s nasty gas prices are definitely driving the change. EV test drives were also noticeably up in February and March of this year, at 1.5 times what they were a year ago. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Faraday Future Announces First ‘Brand Experience Center’ In Beverly Hills” • Luxury EV manufacturer Faraday Future recently announced that it is going to open its first retail location on posh Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills, California. The company is going to be working with the ASTOUND group to design and build the “Brand Experience Center.” [CleanTechnica]

Faraday Future store (Faraday Future image)

¶ “Rhode Island Senate Passes Commitment To 100% Renewable Energy” • The Rhode Island Senate passed a bill to accelerate the state’s commitment to a renewable energy future. The bill would require that 100% of all electricity sold in the state be generated from renewable sources by 2033 – the most ambitious timeline of any state. [Environment America]

¶ “FreeWire Shows Us How To Solve Charging Challenges In Rural America” • A company called FreeWire Technologies looks like they have a pretty good solution to something that keeps rural charging stations from happening in the US. FreeWire integrates battery storage directly into the station and plan on using a lot less continuous power. [CleanTechnica]

FreeWire charging station (FreeWire Technologies)

¶ “New York State Build Public Renewables Act Passes Senate” • The Build Public Renewables Act empowers New York Power Authority to develop a renewable, reliable, and affordable energy infrastructure that will reduce New York’s GHG emissions by 85% by 2050, and convert 70% of its power generation to renewables by 2030. [New York State Senate]

¶ “New Federal Measures Aim To Increase Production Of Clean Energy On Public Lands” • The federal government, in its quest to advance clean energy production, is taking steps to reduce rents and fees for wind and solar projects on public lands by 50% for both existing and new projects. Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland announced the changes. [Las Vegas Sun]

Have an impressively easy day.

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June 1 Energy News

June 1, 2022

Science and Technology:

¶ “An Electric Train That Never Needs Charging? It’s Real!” • NBC News recently reported on an electric train never needs to be plugged in to keep running. The train goes on battery power to a mine at the top of a mountain, where it is loaded with ore. It goes down by gravity, with regenerative breaking charging the battery again. [CleanTechnica]

Ore train in Australia (Fortescue, via Jalopnik)

¶ “New Process Yields Super Strong Recycled Wood” • An article at New Scientist tells us about a process to recycle wood, but with a twist: the process not only means you can build something with it again, but it will have more strength than steel. The process uses wood that can be broken, even sawdust, to produce material that is amazingly strong. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Wooden Towers To Help Cut The Cost Of Wind Turbines, Even More” • If laminated timber can make an office tower, why couldn’t it make towers for wind turbines? Good question. The leading wood products firm Stora Enso has teamed up with the lamination experts at Modvion to make wood towers happen for wind turbines. [CleanTechnica]

Modvion wooden tower manufacture (Courtesy of Modvion)

World:

¶ “ThinkBikes Nigeria Starts Delivering Its Locally Produced Electric Cargo Tricycles To Customers” • ThinkElectric Africa, a non-profit, has a mission to accelerate Africa’s transition to sustainable transport. For-profit ThinkBikes Limited arose from it. ThinkBikes is delivering its locally produced electric tricycles to customers in Nigeria. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Big Tech CEO Fights To Curb Coal Emissions In Australia” • Mike Cannon-Brookes is a co-founder of Atlassian, an Australian software company that makes digital tools that help people collaborate. Now that he has profited from the tech boom, he is looking for ways to use his wealth to reduce the carbon emissions in Australia. [CleanTechnica]

Mike Cannon-Brookes (TedXSidney, CC BY-NC-SA)

¶ “China Sets Out Five-Year Strategy For Renewable Energy Development” • The Chinese government has laid out its latest strategy for renewables as part of the country’s current five-year (2021-2025) economic development period, with demand for renewable energy expected to be equivalent to 1 billion tonnes of coal per year by 2025. [Upstream Online]

¶ “Renewable Energy Boosts China’s Green Development In Past Decade” • Over the past decade, China’s renewable energy has made remarkable progress, promoting green development and making major contributions to the global fight against climate change. China now gets 30% of its electricity from renewable energy sources. [Macau Business]

Wind turbines in China (Chris Lim, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “Sales Of Electric Cars Doubled To Record 6.6 Million In 2021” • Electric car sales doubled in 2021 to 6.6 million and remain strong in 2022, but future growth will demand greater efforts to diversify battery making and ensure critical mineral supplies to reduce the risks of bottlenecks and price rises, an International Energy Agency report says. [Energy Digital]

¶ “SNP Urge UK Government To Ditch ‘Obsession’ With Nuclear Power And Focus On Renewables” • The UK Government was urged to end its “obsession” with nuclear power and focus on renewable energy. The Scottish National Party said Scotland has plenty of renewable power sources, but nuclear power will send energy bills soaring. [The National]

Hadyard Hill windfarm (James Hearton, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “Court Rules Against Restarting A Nuclear Power Plant In Hokkaido” • A Japanese court ordered three reactors at a nuclear power plant in Hokkaido to remain offline as requested by over 1,000 plaintiffs due to safety concerns, in a rare decision issued while the operator is seeking permission from authorities to restart the plant. [Japan Today]

US:

¶ “Energy Experts Sound Alarm About US Electric Grid” • The forecasts say this will be a hotter than normal summer, and electricity experts and officials are warning that states may not have enough power to meet demand in the coming months. But many of the nation’s grid operators are also not taking climate change into account in their planning. [CNN]

Transmission lines (Jay Heike, Unsplash)

¶ “Ford F-150 Lightning Reaches Its First Customers” • The Ford F-series trucks have been selling really, really well for decades, so it made sense to simply adapt an F-150, a vehicle millions have purchased, to the EV platform. Now they are being delivered. Nick Schmidt, who just got the first of the new Lightnings, shared some of his first impressions. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Californian Solar Project Powers Up” • Idemitsu Renewables’ 73-MW solar project in California has achieved commercial operation and is expected to generate clean and affordable power equivalent to the needs of over 20,000 homes in the state. The Luciana solar project, located in Ducor, provided jobs for over 200 construction workers, Idemitsu said. [reNews]

Luciana solar project (Idemitsu Renewables image)

¶ “Vermont And ISO-New England Provide An Interesting Renewable Energy Transition Case Study” • Vermont’s power system is worth taking a look at as it has undergone a notable shift toward renewable energy. About 80% of Vermont’s power comes from renewable sources. Almost no fossil-fueled plants operate in the state. [Power Magazine]

¶ “NH Delegation Welcomes $1 Million To Continuum In North Conway To Support Wood Energy” • New Hampshire legislators applauded a $1 million award to Continuum in North Conway to support the Ridgeline Assisted Living Community Wood Chip Fueled District Heating and Cooling Plant. This award will help Continuum modernize. [Senator Jeanne Shaheen]

Have a thoroughly amusing day.

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May 31 Energy News

May 31, 2022

Science and Technology:

¶ “Stanford-Led Research Finds Small Modular Reactors Will Exacerbate Challenges Of Nuclear Waste” • Industry analysts say the advanced modular designs for nuclear plants will be cheaper and produce fewer radioactive byproducts than conventional reactors. A study in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences says the opposite. [Stanford News]

Work on small modular reactor (Idaho National Laboratory)

World:

¶ “Civil Society Calls On EU Policymakers To Support More Ambitious Car And Van CO₂ Targets” • Next week’s vote on EU clean car rules could help pave the way to European energy independence and make significant gains for the environment, consumers, and public health, 51 NGOs have said in a public appeal to MEPs. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “New Zealand Salmon Farmer Says Climate Change Is Happening Faster Than Expected” • One of the largest producers of chinook salmon is New Zealand King Salmon. Its CEO, Grant Rosewarne, told The Guardian that 42% of the fish being raised in some of its ocean farms died this year before reaching maturity because the water is too warm. [CleanTechnica]

Salmon (New Zealand King Salmon image)

¶ “Volkswagen Is Planning An Electric Station Wagon, The ID.7 Tourer” • Unlike most manufacturers, Volkswagen still makes station wagons instead of only making crossovers. It recently filed a new trademark for the ID.7 Tourer, which is expected to be an electric station wagon. It is expected to be exported to the United States. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Power Bills Set To Rise 9.2% In Regional Queensland As Report Blames Delays In Renewable Energy Projects” • Power prices in regional Queensland are set to jump by 9.2% next financial year because of the surging cost of coal and gas. A report details how customers are ultimately paying for delays in developing large-scale renewables projects. [The Guardian]

Yallourn W Power Station (Marcus Wong, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “Focus On Battery Storage Could Be A Cost-Effective Energy Goal For Albanese Government, Report Says” • The Australian government should redirect some of the $20 billion going to its Rewiring the Nation plan to support a storage goal and speed up the take-up of batteries and other power storage, according to a Victoria Energy Policy Centre report. [The Guardian]

¶ “Siemens Gamesa Lands A 110-MW Spanish Hat-Trick” • Siemens Gamesa will install three wind farms in the Spanish province of A Coruña, with a total capacity of 110 MW, for independent power producer Greenalia. The wind farms will be equipped with 22 SG 5.0-145 turbines, one of the company’s most powerful models. [reNews]

Wind turbine (Siemens Gamesa image)

¶ “Hinkley Point B Owner Says It Will Not Extend Life Of Nuclear Plant” • The French-owned EDF Energy said it will not extend the life of Hinkley Point B beyond a planned shutdown, despite officials raising concerns over the danger of blackouts in the months that follow. The plant’s two reactors are scheduled to be shut down on 8 July and 1 August. [The Guardian]

¶ “HyDeal Picks EPC Partners For PV-hydrogen Project In Spain” • HyDeal selected engineering, procurement and construction partners for the initial phases of a multi-GW solar-connected electrolyzer project in northern Spain. The expectation is that 9.5 GW of solar generating capacity will be installed along with 7.4 GW of electrolyzer capacity. [reNews]

Solar panels (American Public Power Association, Unsplash)

Russian Fossil Fuels:

¶ “Russia Could Cut Off Natural Gas For Denmark And The Netherland” • Denmark and the Netherlands could become the latest European countries to have their deliveries of Russia’s natural gas cut off because they had refused to make payments in rubles. Moscow has already cut off supplies to Poland, Bulgaria, and Finland. [CNN]

¶ “Europe’s Scramble For Gas Could Cause The Next Energy Shortage” • Europe’s scramble to find alternatives to Russia’s natural gas is pushing the world to the brink of a winter energy shortage, with the worst effects likely to be felt in poorer economies in Asia. Liquified natural gas is transported by ship, and Europe has been buying it up. [CNN]

LNG carrier (Ken Hodge, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “Russian Oil: EU Agrees To Compromise Deal On Banning Imports” • EU leaders agreed on a plan to block more than two-thirds of Russian oil imports. The ban will stop oil arriving by sea but not pipeline oil, which Hungary opposed banning. European Council chief Charles Michel said the deal cut off “a huge source of financing” for the Russian war machine. [BBC]

US:

¶ “With LA’s Vote, America’s Two Largest Cities Have Said No New Fossil Gas” • The Los Angeles City Council voted to ban fossil fuels in new construction. The Council told departments to develop a plan requiring “all new residential and commercial buildings in Los Angeles to be built so that they will achieve zero-carbon emissions.” [CleanTechnica]

Los Angeles (Venti Views, Unsplash)

¶ “National Grid Is Installing Pole-Mounted EV Chargers In Massachusetts” • National Grid has a plan to address the need for EV chargers for people who can’t plug in an electric car at home. In Melrose, Massachusetts, a suburban community 10 miles north of Boston, it is installing 16 EV chargers that are mounted on light poles. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “DeLorean Previews Electric Sports Car, Plans Three New Models” • Joost de Vries, who recently acquired the DeLorean brand, plans an entire lineup of new DeLorean cars. The first of those cars is scheduled to appear at Pebble Beach later this year. He says the car will have a 0 to 60 time of 3.4 seconds and an EPA range of at least 300 miles. [CleanTechnica]

Have a splendidly comfortable day.

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May 30 Energy News

May 30, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “Faster, Cleaner, Greener: What Lies Ahead For The World’s Railways” • Faster, cleaner, greener and packed with advanced technology, rail is the only transport mode currently well placed to provide the backbone of our future mobility needs. Ridership may be down due to the pandemic, but rail transportation may be headed to a new golden age. [CNN]

High speed train in Japan (tansaisuketti, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “Will Rising Lithium Prices Put An End To Trend Toward LFP Battery Cells For EVs?” • With high lithium prices, lithium-iron-phosphate may not take the leading role that some predicted, but it will still have its place. All EV batteries use lithium, so the price rise affects all chemistries, and LFP is just getting hit a bit harder than the others. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Offshore Wind Could Help Save Australia From High Gas and Coal Prices” • Australians will bear yet another blow to their cost of living in July when electricity prices will surge up to 18%. The increase is due largely to global tensions and their effects on the prices of coal, oil, and gas. Investing in offshore windpower could help with that problem. [The Maritime Executive]

Proposed Star of the South wind farm (Star of the South)

¶ “Atoms And Ashes By Serhii Plokhy Review – Why Another Nuclear Disaster Is Almost Inevitable” • Atoms and Ashes: From Bikini Atoll to Fukushima by Serhii Plokhy is a grim account of the downhill slide of atomic power since its heyday in the 1950s. The book illustrates why it nuclear power can never be the solution to global warming. [The Guardian]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Cars Could Get A ‘Flashy’ Upgrade” • The average SUV has up to 350 kg (771 lb) of plastic. It could sit in a landfill for centuries but for a new recycling process. Rice University chemists and researchers at the Ford Motor Company are turning plastic parts from “end-of-life” vehicles into graphene via the university’s flash Joule heating process. [CleanTechnica]

Ford F-150 Lightning (Image courtesy of Ford)

¶ “UCI Researchers: Autonomous Vehicles Can Be Tricked Into Dangerous Driving Behavior” • Researchers at the University of California, Irvine have identified a possible risk for driverless vehicles. They can be tricked into an abrupt halt or other undesired driving behavior by the placement of an ordinary object on the side of the road. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ “Stellantis Wins First And Second In Europe – Plugin Vehicle Sales Report” • The overall European car market was down 21% last month for the second lowest April in 30 years. Plugin hybrids were down 14% from last year, though battery EVs grew 15%. Two cars from Stellantis, the Fiat 500e and Peugeot e-208, took first and second place. [CleanTechnica]

Fiat 500e Cabrio (Alexander Migl, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “Six Million Homes Could Face Winter Power Cuts Due To Energy Shortages – Report” • UK Ministers have been warned of potential power cuts to as many as six million households this winter, according to reports. The potential arises from worse-case modelling, which is reported for a scenario in which Russia cuts off all supplies to the EU. [Sky News]

¶ “Rejecting Gas, Kosovo Eyes US Funds For Renewable Energy” • Having struck a verbal agreement in mid-May, Kosovo is expected to put pen to paper in July for a grant of over $200 million from a US foreign aid agency to increase the country’s renewable energy capacities and bring more women into the energy sector. [Balkan Insight]

Prishtina, Kosovo (Besart Ademi, Unsplash)

¶ “Mozambique’s EDM Invests $40 Million Into Windpower And Solar Plans” • EDM, Mozambique’s publicly-owned electricity company, will invest $40 million into windpower and solar plants through the Renewable Energy Auction Program. EDM’s goal is to add 600 MW of capacity by 2030, of which 200 MW would be renewables. [ESI Africa]

US:

¶ “‘In The Crosshairs’: Department Of Navy Releases Climate Change Strategy” • The Department of the Navy released its strategy on how to deal with climate change and proceed toward the government’s goal of net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. The Navy Secretary said the issue is “existential” for the Navy and Marine Corps. [Navy Times]

USS Arleigh Burke, DDG-51 (US Navy, public domain)

¶ “Mon Power, Potomac Edison Customers Can Start Purchasing Solar Energy Credits” • Customers of Mon Power and Potomac Edison can begin buying solar renewable energy credits as the utility companies move forward with five solar projects in West Virginia. The Public Service Commission has already approved construction of the projects. [WV MetroNews]

¶ “US Military Wants To Demonstrate New Nuclear Power Systems In Space By 2027” • A growing list of US government organizations are working on nuclear power in space. Defense Innovation Unit is now to be added to the list. The unit has awarded two contracts for nuclear power and nuclear propulsion on space craft. [Space.com]

Have a pleasantly uncomplicated day.

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May 29 Energy News

May 29, 2022

Science and Technology:

¶ “OpenOA Software Improvements Illuminate Wind Plant Performance” • The US National Renewable Energy Laboratory upgraded its Open Operational Assessment software, which helps demystify wind plant operations for operators. One new feature of version 2.3 is a wind plant layout visualization for interactive maps of wind farms. [CleanTechnica]

Wind plant (Dennis Schroeder, NREL)

¶ “Israeli-Led Study Shows Reality Of Climate Change Worse Than Expected” • An Israeli-led study found that climate change is causing winter storms in the Southern Hemisphere to intensify much faster than predicted. The study, published in the Nature Climate Change journal, indicated that such storms have reached a strength not expected until 2080. [Algemeiner.com]

World:

¶ “DHL Orders Some Volvo Electric Trucks” • Delivery company DHL has tested and used an electric truck in London since 2020, and the experience has been overwhelmingly positive. DHL has put in an order for 44 electric trucks from Volvo. The trucks will be deployed all over Europe. Four of them will be larger trucks for for long distance work. [CleanTechnica]

DHL electric truck (Volvo Trucks image)

¶ “India’s L&T Ahead Dor NEOM $6.4 Billion Hydrogen Renewables Facilities: MEED” • Saudi Arabia’s NEOM Green Hydrogen Co is understood to have selected India’s Larsen & Toubro to build solar and wind plants for supplying electricity to the city’s $6.4-billion green hydrogen-based ammonia plant, inteligence company MEED said. [Arab News]

¶ “Adani Commissions India’s First Wind-Solar Hybrid Power Plant Of 390 MW In Rajasthan’s Jaisalmer” • Adani Hybrid Energy Jaisalmer One Limited, a subsidiary of Adani Green Energy Limited, has commissioned a 390 MW wind-solar hybrid power plant in Rajasthan. It is India’s first wind and solar hybrid power generation plant. [Swarajya]

Renewable energy (AGEL image)

¶ “Sri Lanka To Implement Renewable Energy Generation Plan From June 1” • Facing a power crisis, Sri Lanka’s Minister of Power and Energy said an accelerated renewable energy plan may be implemented from June 1. A search is starting for roof spaces to install solar panels on industrial, government, hospital, and hotel roofs. [Business Standard]

¶ “Nuclear Power Has No Place In Renewables Bill, Says Activists” • Activists are urging Indonesian regulators to exclude nuclear energy development from the new and renewable energy bill, arguing that it would impede the country’s transition to green energy. “Accommodating nuclear energy in the bill would hinder renewable energy development.” [Borneo Bulletin Online]

Nuclear power plant (Avda, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “Deal Signed For World-Class Green Ammonia Project In Oman” • Oman’s integrated energy group OQ, American industrial gases firm Air Products, and Saudi-based energy company ACWA Power signed a joint development agreement to set up a world-class green hydrogen-based ammonia production facility in Oman. [Muscat Daily]

US:

¶ “Soon You’ll Be Able To Buy Solar Panels At Ikea” • Starting this fall, shoppers will be able to buy solar panels at Ikea stores. The new project, according to a news release, is a collaboration between Ikea’s US branch and SunPower, a California-based company that sells and installs solar power products, including solar panels. [CNN]

Ikea sign (Zheka Kapusta, Unsplash)

¶ “Why Can’t The US Stop Soaring Oil And Gas Prices?” • Since the start of 2021, prices for oil and gas have jumped two-fold or more. Recovery from 2020 Covid lockdowns and the Ukraine war have driven the price climb. Forecasts suggest US production will increase by about one million barrels per day, but it’s, not enough to meet the rise in demand. [BBC]

¶ “Truck Manufacturers Sue To Continue Polluting” • On the Friday before Memorial Day weekend, the Truck and Engine Manufacturers Association and their member companies filed a lawsuit to delay a lifesaving California clean truck regulation: the Heavy-Duty Omnibus rule. The suit claims the goals are set for dates that are too early. [CleanTechnica]

Trucking (500photos.com, Pexels)

¶ “Musk: Self Driving Cars Next Year” • Tesla is making progress on its goal of making cars that require no input from human drivers with its Full Self Driving Beta program, which has more than 100,000 testers currently in the US and Canada. Musk said the company should be able to expand the program to about 1 million Tesla owners this year. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Nio May Be Planning A US Factory” • China is the leader in EV manufacturing, but few of its cars make it to the US because of high import duties. Media outlets in China are reporting that Nio, one of the largest of the new crop of Chinese EV makers, is considering a factory in the US, which would be one way to avoid some of those import tariffs. [CleanTechnica]

Nio EVs in a factory (Nio image)

¶ “Feds Approve Plan To Delay Scrapping A New England Energy Rule That Harms Renewables” • The minimum offer price rule dictates a price floor below which new power sources cannot bid in the annual forward capacity market. This makes it harder for renewable energy to engage in a New England electricity market. FERC decided to keep the rule two more years. [WBUR]

¶ “This State Produces The Most Electricity From Renewable Sources” • Some states are transitioning to renewable energy faster than others. Using data from the US Energy Information Administration, 24/7 Wall St identified the state whose electricity supply has the highest percentage from renewable sources. That state is Vermont. [24/7 Wall St]

Have an exceptionally gratifying day.

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May 28 Energy News

May 28, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “A Year After The Shell Ruling: Big Victories And Next Steps For Climate Litigation” • A year has passed since a precedent-setting court ruling in the Netherlands ordered Shell to cut its activities’ carbon emissions by 45% compared to 2019 levels to align with the Paris climate agreement. Since then, other climate litigation has followed and more is to come. [CleanTechnica]

Tesla Model S charging up at a Shell gas station (Shell image)

¶ “Electric Trucks Are Viable Today” • Many people think that electric trucks can’t do the job – they won’t have a long enough driving range, they will be too heavy, truckers won’t like them. But that couldn’t be farther from the truth. RMI Principal Dave Mullaney said that electric trucks could effectively replace up to half of all trucks in use today. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ “G7 Commits To Decarbonizing Electricity By 2035 But Leaves Wiggle Room For Fossil Fuels” • The G7, which represents the world’s seven biggest advanced economies, agreed to achieve “predominantly decarbonized” electricity sectors by 2035, a goal that experts say is of major importance to help the world avert catastrophic climate change. [CNN]

Power plant emissions (Marcin Jozwiak, Unsplash)

¶ “Dutch BEV Sales Up 98%, Tailpipe Vehicles Down 19% In April 2022” • The Dutch battery EV market continued its recovery in April as it started to do in Q1, up from weak performance in 2021. The sales nearly doubled to 4,717 battery EVs, and market share increased from 10% to 21.4%, YOY. Sales of vehicles with tailpipes were 19% lower. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Shark Lake Renewables Hub Cuts Esperance Emissions By 50%” • The green new deal announced for Esperance, Western Australia, took a big step forward when Horizon Power and Pacific Energy were joined by WA Premier Mark McGowan and Minister for Energy Bill Johnston to formally open the Shark Lake Renewables Hub. [pv magazine Australia]

Shark Lake Renewables Hub (Horizon Power image)

¶ “Renewable Energy Underpins Boost In Moroccan Electricity Production” • Morocco’s local electricity production grew by 4.1% in the first quarter of 2022. Data from the Treasury and External Finance shows a 19.9% increase in renewable energy production and an increase of 34.4% in electricity production by the National Electricity Office. [Morocco World News]

¶ “UK Developer Signs 500-MW Deal In Chad” • UK company Savannah Energy has signed an agreement with the Ministry of Petroleum and Energy of Chad to develop up to 500 MW of renewable energy projects in the North African country. The first project is a solar farm of up to 300 MW with a battery energy storage system. It will be in Kome. [reNews]

Signing the deal in Chad (Savannah Energy image)

¶ “Economically Distressed Turkey Abandons Plans To Buy Shares In Nuclear Plant Built By Russia” • Turkey will not be a shareholder in the Akkuyu nuclear plant under construction by Russia in southern Turkey, Nordic Monitor learned. Lawmakers were told that being a partner in the $20 billion nuclear power plant is not on their agenda. [Nordic Monitor]

¶ “Ukraine Nuclear Inspectorate Accuses IAEA Of Falling For Russian Propaganda” • The Ukrainian state nuclear inspectorate accused the International Atomic Energy Agency of falling for Russian propaganda that said Ukraine was building nuclear weapons. Ukraine demanded it back efforts to expel Russian forces from a major power plant. [Reuters]

Russians in Czechia protest the war (AlexVolter, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

US:

¶ “Massachusetts Court Rules Suit Against Exxon Can Move Forward” • The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court has ruled against Exxon in its bid to stop a suit filed by Attorney General Maura Healey from going to trial. Massachusetts alleges that Exxon lied about the climate crisis and covered up the fossil fuel industry’s role in it. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “What Are Geophones?” • Geothermal energy is renewable, sustainable, and carbon free. A key factor to unlocking that energy could be through innovation in subsurface seismic sensors, or geophones. The DOE is offering the $3.65 million American-Made Geothermal Geophone Prize to support developmetn of geophones. [CleanTechnica]

Pipeline at a Nevada geothermal plant (BLMNevada, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “Parks Reserve Forces Training Area Increases Renewable Energy: Solar Array Ribbon Cutting Ceremony” • PRFTA is one step closer to uninterrupted access to electricity. On May 24, the Army Reserve-funded installation held a ribbon-cutting to celebrate the addition of 2 MW of renewable energy through a newly activated solar array. [DVIDS]

¶ “Entergy Mississippi To Bring Sunflower Solar Station Online” • Construction is complete on a 100-MW solar power station in the Mississippi Delta, providing energy to Entergy Mississippi’s 461,000 customers. The Sunflower Solar Station is the largest solar project in Mississippi and provides enough energy to power 16,000 homes. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

Sunflower Solar Station (Entergy Mississippi image)

¶ “Plugging Into Offshore Wind Will Power Up California’s Renewable Energy” • California has a goal of transitioning to 100% clean retail electricity by 2045. Now, it is looking to its 840 miles of coastline to power its communities and economy. Soon, two new offshore wind energy areas could provide bountiful clean energy to the state. [NREL]

¶ “Interior Approves Big Power Line For Renewables In US West” • The Interior Department announced final approval to construct a 416-mile transmission line to move renewable energy across three Western states. The line is set to run from Medicine Bow, in southeastern Wyoming, through northwest Colorado, and end outside of Mona, Utah. [E&E News]

Have a charmingly lovely day.

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