May 13 Energy News

May 13, 2015


¶ The UK’s new Conservative minister for energy and climate change, Amber Rudd, has made clear her unequivocal backing for action to combat climate change and for the science behind it. This is vital in a year when a major international deal to combat global warming is expected in Paris in December. [New Scientist]

March Against Climate Change. Photo by peganum from Henfield, England. Wikimedia Commons.

March Against Climate Change, September 2014. “Margaret Thatcher was the first ever world leader to sound the alarm.” Photo by peganum from Henfield, England. Wikimedia Commons.

¶ Major utility, Origin Energy, is set to launch a solar leasing program in three Australian states, focusing on small-scale residential and commercial systems. It will start rolling out the program in Sydney, Adelaide, Brisbane and the Gold Coast, where it will install and maintain the systems, at no up-front cost. [CleanTechnica]

¶ US-based New Generation Power International will develop a 200-MW of solar and a 100-MW of wind power project in the Jamshoro-Thatta region of Sindh, Pakistan. The company has signed a Letter of Intent with the Government of Sindh to develop the projects, at an expected cost of $550 million. [CleanTechnology News]

¶ A stationary energy storage system by Tesla Motors Inc will be installed at one of Enel Green Power SpA’s sites to test its integration with solar and wind farms. The companies have concluded an agreement for the testing project. The partners will now select the pilot site for the 1.5 MW-3 MWh system.
[SeeNews Renewables]

¶ The Australian Opposition says it will not pass changes to the Renewable Energy Target if they include the provision that the target will be reviewed every two years. An agreement reducing the RET had been reached, but then government added language to review the RET every two years. [Manufacturers’ Monthly]

¶ Greenpeace has released a report naming the tech companies who make the best (and worst) use of renewable energy. The report grades companies on areas including renewable energy commitment, deployment and advocacy of green power, mitigation and the transparency of their energy policies. [The Register]


¶ Con Edison Development has acquired six shovel-ready solar PV projects totaling 140 MW from a PV project portfolio developed by SolarReserve, LLC and GCL Solar Energy, Inc in three California counties. Ranging in size from 20 MW to 25 MW, have the capacity to power approximately 25,000 homes. []

¶ The Board of Supervisors of Riverside County, California, signed off on a major solar plant, voting unanimously to approve a 485-MW, 3,600-acre project near Blythe. The project, on private, previously disturbed land, would power about 180,000 homes and add over $500,000 per year to the county’s revenues. [The Desert Sun]

View from an airplane landing at Blythe, California in 2010. Photo by Shane.torgerson. Wikimedia Commons. 

View from an airplane landing at Blythe, California in 2010. Photo by Shane.torgerson. Wikimedia Commons.

¶ Philadelphia Industrial Development Corp, the agency redeveloping the Navy Yard, is installing a “smart-grid” system on the 1,200-acre campus in South Philadelphia. PIDC envisions an interconnected network of renewable power sources and storage devices in a self-supporting “community” microgrid. []

¶ Entergy New Orleans will build its first solar power project in the city, part of its effort to explore the reliability and cost of using sunlight to power local homes and businesses. The pilot project will be in service by late 2016. The company plans to install a system of over 4,000 solar panels with battery backup. []

¶ New Hampshire’s Proctor Academy is adding more solar arrays as the result of a push from the school’s student environmental action group. Five new arrays will be built, bringing the school’s annual solar generation from 78,000 kWh, achieved through a system built in 2012, to approximately 250,000 kWh. [T.H.E. Journal]

¶ Duke Energy Renewables has completed the 200 MW Los Vientos III wind farm, located in Starr County, Texas. The wind farm, powered by 100 Vestas 2 MW turbines, is located approximately 100 miles west of Brownsville near Rio Grande City. Austin Energy has agreed to purchase all of the project’s output. [North American Windpower]

¶ Senators Tom Udall (NM) and Ed Markey (MA) teamed up with others to introduce a bill that would establish a national renewable electricity standard that requires the nation’s largest power providers to supply at least 30% of their electricity from renewable energy sources by 2030. [The Equation: Blog of the Union of Concerned Scientists]

¶ The possibility that the episode at Indian Point on Saturday caused significant harm to the environment fueled the opposition from several of the plant’s critics. New York Governor Cuomo, who continues to press for a permanent shutdown of Indian Point, appeared there on Saturday night and again on Sunday. [New York Times]

¶ The reactor at the Indian Point nuclear power plant in the New York City suburbs may be offline for weeks because a transformer that failed over the weekend, sparking a fire and oil leak, must be replaced, Entergy officials said Monday. The company is still investigating the cause of the failure. []

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