June 7 Energy News

June 7, 2015

World:

¶ Hydro Tasmania is bracing for the effects of a looming El Nino. Drier than normal conditions have been blamed for lower hydro generation in other Australian states, while the weather bureau warns a strengthening El Nino in the Pacific should bring below average rainfall for south-eastern Australia. [Perth Now]

Hydro Tasmania’s Gordon Dam on Lake Gordon in the South-West of Tasmania. Picture: Peter Mathew/Hydro Tasmania.

Hydro Tasmania’s Gordon Dam on Lake Gordon in the South-West of Tasmania. Picture: Peter Mathew/Hydro Tasmania.

¶ Curbing global warming will be among many items on the agenda when G-7 leaders meet over the weekend. Japan may find itself odd man out, as the government favors coal, gas and nuclear power over green energy despite rapid growth of investment in renewables since the Fukushima Disaster. [News Watch International]

¶ India’s National Institute of Engineering, one of the oldest institutions in the country, is set to establish a renewable energy-based micro grid. Its Center for Renewable Energy and Sustainable Technologies will collaborate with the University of Wisconsin, US, to establish a micro grid on the institute campus. [Web India]

¶ Pakistan’s climate change minister says reduction in taxes on clean energy would lessen Pakistan’s heavy dependence on coal, oil, and natural gas. In the new financial budget for 2015-16, the government has exempted solar panels and certain related components from sales tax and customs duty for a year. [DAWN.com]

¶ To hear the oil ministers of Saudi Arabia and Kuwait talk about it this week, the race to develop massive solar power arrays in the world’s sunniest nations is nearly as important as the current battle for oil market share. At a major OPEC conference , both took time to hail their nascent solar power efforts. [Trade Arabia]

¶ Africa can boost its capacity to generate power, economic growth, and jobs, without precipitating catastrophic climate change, argues Kofi Annan. The Africa Progress Panel, which he heads categorically rejects the idea that Africa has to choose between growth and low-carbon development. [Front Page Africa]

Solar panels in Senegal. Photo by Fratelli dell'Uomo Onlus, Elena Pisano, Wikimedia Commons. 

Solar panels in Senegal.  Photo by Fratelli dell’Uomo Onlus, Elena Pisano, Wikimedia Commons.

¶ Right at this very moment 621 million Africans, two-thirds of the continent’s population, live without electricity. A kettle boiled twice a day in the United Kingdom uses five times as much electricity as someone in Mali uses in a year. With current trends, the lack of power will last until long after 2030. [Times of Oman]

US:

¶ Columbia Water and Light, the municipal utility of Columbia, Missouri, plans to test biofuel pellets that are not made from wood in a power plant boiler later this summer, after the Missouri Department of Natural Resources approves a temporary permit. The pellets are made from such materials as corn stover. [Columbia Daily Tribune]

¶ Ohio’s growth of green energy jobs is slowing down because of government policies, according to a study conducted by Environmental Entrepreneurs. The study, Clean Jobs Ohio, says there are now 89,000 Ohioans working in the clean energy field, but the government believes clean energy is unaffordable. [Cincinnati.com]

¶ With more than 280 buildings and 13 million square feet of indoor space, green energy would seem elusive if not impractical at the University of Utah. And yet, the US EPA this week ranked the school eighth in the nation and first among Pac-12 schools in the College and University Green Power Challenge results. [Salt Lake Tribune]

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