May 19 Energy News

May 19, 2015

Opinion:

¶ “President Obama Regrettably Approves Oil Drilling in the Arctic Ocean” – The Obama administration granted conditional approval to Shell Oil Company to begin exploratory drilling in the Arctic Ocean off the North Slope of Alaska on May 11, 2015. The decision represents a major compromise on global warming. [Energy Collective]

Shell Oil's Polar Pioneer Arctic Drilling Rig. Photo by Chas Redmond from Seattle WA, USA. Wikimedia Commons.

Shell Oil’s Polar Pioneer Arctic Drilling Rig. Photo by Chas Redmond from Seattle WA, USA. Wikimedia Commons.

World:

¶ A house in the hills above Stuttgart can theoretically generate enough energy to power itself and an electric car, with enough left over to feed back to into Germany’s national grid. The B10 house is designed to generate 200% energy, a target it hopes to hit within the next year. Almost the entire house is recyclable. [Wired.co.uk]

¶ Around 1.6 million premature deaths would be prevented annually if the world’s governments stopped subsidising fossil fuels, according to researchers from the International Monetary Fund found. They say in eastern Europe and Turkey, 60% of the people who die as a result of air pollution could be saved. [EUobserver]

¶ SaskPower’s 140-MW Boundary Dam coal plant has an operating carbon capture and storage system (CSS), which captures 90% of carbon dioxide it produces. It sells most of it to a nearby oilfield for “enhanced oil recovery” and buries the rest. CSS reduces power output by 17% to 18%. [The Australian Financial Review]

¶ Energy giant E.ON has partnered with the UK Green Investment Bank over the construction of the Rampion offshore wind farm, which is expected to power 300,000 homes. The Green Investment Bank has acquired a £236 million stake in the new project. Total investment supported by E.ON is £1.3 billion. [Blue & Green Tomorrow]

¶ Unilever has saved 1 million tonnes of CO2 emissions since 2008 in its manufacturing network. Energy consumption has been reduced by 20%, the same energy used to run 40 factories or the carbon of over 800,000 acres of forest per year. This has also resulted in significant cost savings of €244 million. [New Food]

¶ The rise of renewable energy, weak power demand and declining coal prices are pushing down the price of power in Germany. The country’s baseload wholesale price is about €32/MWh ($37/MWh), lower than both the UK and the Netherlands. The trend has pushed conventional power plants out of the market. [Interfax Global Energy]

¶ Greenhouse gas emissions from installations covered by the EU emissions trading scheme fell by about 4.5% last year, in part, due to the impact of renewables, according to the European Wind Energy Association. It is of interest that power sector emissions fell substantially more than industrial emissions. [reNews]

European emissions

European sunrise

¶ A Japanese court upheld an injunction banning the restart of two nuclear reactors, in a blow to the government’s ambitions to return to atomic power generation. Fukui District Court dismissed Kansai Electric Power’s motion for a stay on an earlier decision baring restart of reactors in Takahama. [The Straits Times]

US:

¶ As the Tennessee Valley Authority is developing plans for meeting energy demands in its future, US Senators Lamar Alexander and Bob Corker, both R-Tennessee, are pushing it to steer clear of renewable power. But the TVA’s President and CEO remains firm on the need for more use of renewable energy. [The Daily Times]

¶ The ravages of climate change could severely hurt the ability of utilities in the 11 Western states to generate power unless they “climate proof” their power grid using renewables, increased transmission capacity, and energy efficiency, something they are not prepared for, according to a new study. [Standard-Examiner]

¶ Pattern Energy Group has finalized its purchase of 351 MW of operational wind capacity from Wind Capital Partners. The deal gives Pattern ownership rights facilities in central Kansas and northwestern Missouri. The company paid $242 million for the projects plus assumed debts of $102 million. [Argus Media]

¶ Nearly a dozen shareholder groups are furious with FirstEnergy for its stance on energy efficiency rules and its efforts to keep its coal-fired power plants. And outside of the early morning, closed-door shareholder meeting, a broad coalition of labor, consumer and environmental groups will stage a protest. [cleveland.com]

¶ At least 41 states are in talks with neighbors about how they might cut power-sector carbon emissions under US EPA’s Clean Power Plan, despite appeals from Republicans in Congress for state officials to refuse to comply, according to regional coordinators. Fifteen states are bringing court challenges to the rule. [Environment & Energy Publishing]

One Response to “May 19 Energy News”


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