January 16 Energy News

January 16, 2015

World:

¶ India’s largest wind energy equipment maker is continuing with efforts to take full advantage of the changing regulatory and financial environment in the country. Suzlon announced a plan to invest $3.7 billion to develop 3 GW wind energy capacity in Gujarat at the Vibrant Gujarat Global investors summit. [CleanTechnica]

¶ Hanwha Group has recently completed construction of its 24 MW solar power plant in Japan, cementing its leading position in the Japanese solar power market. The Kitsuki plant is built on mountain slopes. The project has 97,000 modules and can produce enough electricity annually to power 7,190 homes. [The Korea Bizwire]

¶ The green bond market saw incredible growth last year, reaching $36.6 billion issued by 73 different issuers, according to figures released by the Climate Bonds Initiative. The figure for 2014 is more than triple the number recorded in 2013. The growth takes the total amount of green bonds outstanding to $53.2 billion. [Blue & Green Tomorrow]

¶ Boston-Power, a notable players in the lithium-ion battery market, is apparently now looking to “compete with Elon Musk” and will be scaling-up its battery factories to produce much higher quantities of batteries. The scaling-up process will be funded with $290 million from Chinese government agencies. [CleanTechnica]

¶ Ethiopia has signed an agreement with an Israeli solar power company to further its goal of providing environmentally friendly and affordable renewable energy for its population. Ethiopia often suffers from blackouts due to its lack of lack of power and two-thirds of the country’s citizens have no electricity. [Jspace News]

¶ The reputations of companies linked to fossil fuels are at immediate risk from a fast-growing divestment campaign, warned a senior investment analyst at Axa Investment Managers, which manages over $700 billion of assets. She pointed to four Australian banks losing $328 million worth of fossil-fuel business. [The Guardian]

US:

¶ Prices of natural gas prices and electric power are not connected, as a graph from Deutsche Bank comparing them reveals. It shows that while natural gas prices in the US have fallen 88% since 2008, from a peak of $13/mmb to as low as $2/mmb, consumer electricity prices actually rose 20% over the same period. [CleanTechnica]

¶ California is clearly the US leader in energy storage after the state’s 2013 mandate that its largest utilities have 1,325 megawatts of electricity storage operating by 2024 to help fight climate change. Storage will help the state reach its climate goal of having 50% of its electricity supplied by renewables by 2030. [Discovery News]

¶ America’s clean energy economy is celebrating. A new report shows the solar industry’s explosive growth is creating new, highly skilled jobs at a rate nearly 20 times faster than the overall economy. One out of every 78 new jobs created in the US over the past 12 months was created by the solar industry. [Click Green]

¶ The West Virginia Legislature wants to repeal state renewable energy standards that require generating 25% of electricity have renewable or alternative power sources by 2025. A power company official said could be met at no additional cost. (Very efficient coal plants are included as alternative.) [Wetzel Chronicle]

¶ Florida businesses and property owners would be able to sell a limited amount of solar energy under a ballot initiative for a constitutional amendment rolled out Wednesday by a coalition, “Floridians for Solar Choice,” that brings together free-market conservatives, retailers and alternative-energy supporters. [RenewablesBiz]

¶ New York state regulators gave Rochester Gas and Electric and Exelon more time to negotiate the future of the Ginna nuclear power plant. Exelon says Ginna is losing tens of millions of dollars a year and needs to sell power at a higher price. RG&E would have to pass on extra costs to customers. [Rochester Democrat and Chronicle]

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