June 21 Energy News

June 21, 2015

Opinion:

¶ “African Utility Companies Struggle to Stay On the Grid” – In South Africa, major cities, including Cape Town and Johannesburg, are subject to regular power outages as electric utility Eskom periodically shuts down parts of its distribution system to take the pressure off the aging national grid. [Climate Central]

Cape Town, subject to regular power outages. Photo by Iwoelbern. Released into the public domain.

Cape Town, subject to regular power outages. Photo by Iwoelbern. Released into the public domain.

¶ “Abbott lets Australia slip behind as renewable energy advances” – In the stage-managed, focus-grouped, world of politics, Tony Abbott’s description of wind power as “visually awful” provided a starkly clear picture of the thoughts of Australia’s leader. It is a dangerous position, both economically and ecologically. [The Age]

¶ New Hope For Avoiding Catastrophic Climate Change” – New hope we can avoid a catastrophe for human civilization and the biosphere comes from two recently-released documents: The Encyclical “Laudatum Si’ ” by Pope Francis, and the data on growth of renewable energy from the Earth Policy Institute. [CounterCurrents.org]

World:

¶ Pledges by institutions and individuals to purchase green power from state-owned Taiwan Power Co far exceeded a goal set by the government for 2015, after several business heavyweights said they would participate. The goal was pledges for 10 million kWh, but 16.53 million kWh of pledges were received. [China Post]

¶ The government of the Australian Capital Territory is on track to reach its 90% renewable energy target by 2020 despite needing to quadruple its current supply in just 4½ years. The current figure of 18.6% is set to dramatically increase over the next two years, with wind playing a dominant role. [Brisbane Times]

Blayney Wind Farm, in New South Wales. Photo by Bren Barnes. Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.5 Generic license. Wikimedia Commons.

Blayney Wind Farm, in New South Wales. Photo by Bren Barnes. Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.5 Generic license. Wikimedia Commons.

¶ Nigeria has selected two sites for the construction of its planned nuclear power plants, as Africa’s biggest economy tries to end decades of electricity blackouts that have blighted its growth. Russia’s state-owned Rosatom confirmed the two sites had been selected and said they would have a total of four reactors. [Reuters Africa]

US:

¶ A new report from the Energy Information Administration has projected that the new carbon emissions rules from the Environmental Protection Agency’s will result in coal-fired power plant shutdowns potentially more than doubling, with a projected 90 GW of coal-fired plants being retired by the year 2040. [CleanTechnica]

¶ The DOE’s Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy announced $55 million in funding for 18 projects as part of its two newest programs. They are aimed at developing generator technologies for residential Combined Heat and Power, and at developing renewable transportation fuels from biomass. [Yumanewsnow]

¶ Georgia Power announced the latest major international shipment to reach the Vogtle expansion site near Waynesboro. It is the Unit 3 Steam Generator A. The steam generator, which was assembled in South Korea and shipped to the Port of Savannah, reached the site via train earlier this week. [Today’s Energy Solutions]

Source: Georgia Power

Source: Georgia Power

¶ Morgan Stanley has closed on its $500 million green bond issuance , its inaugural green bond and the latest step in its strategy to advance market, based solutions to social and environmental challenges. The bond proceeds will be allocated to various renewable energy and energy-efficiency projects. [The Nation]

¶ Less than 2% of the electrical power for Ellensburg, Washington, comes from carbon-generating sources. Almost 90% of the electricity comes from hydro facilities, but they are maxed out. The city is discussing restructuring the city solar project’s contribution, and one question is why not go the whole way? [Daily Record]

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