July 9 Energy News

July 9, 2015

World:

¶ Four engineering students from Taiwan are heading to Iceland, Sweden and Norway to research on renewable energy this summer. The team plans to head to Iceland first, to study geothermal power, since 90% of Iceland’s energy is produced via geothermal generation. Financial help came from alumni. [China Post]

Krafla geothermal power plant in Iceland. Photo by Ásgeir Eggertsson. Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license. Wikimedia Commons.

Krafla geothermal power plant in Iceland. Photo by Ásgeir Eggertsson. Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license. Wikimedia Commons.

¶ RenewableUK, the trade association representing the wind, wave and tidal energy industries, strongly criticised the Chancellor’s budget announcement that he is retrospectively changing the rules governing the Climate Change Levy. The green-tax break was designed to promote generating clean energy. [Energy Voice]

¶ India and Kazakhstan, the world’s largest producer of uranium, reached an agreement on uranium. Kazakhstan will supply India with 5,000 metric tons of nuclear fuel in the 2015-2019 period. In 2010 through 2014, Kazakhstan supplied India with 2,100 metric tons, but India its increasing it use. [The Diplomat]

¶ Norwegian company Scatec Solar entered an agreement with the government of Pakistan to set up large-scale solar power projects with 150 MW of combined capacity. Pakistan has been facing acute power shortage for several years now, and is developing large-scale renewable projects to boost power generation. [CleanTechnica]

¶ Workers at the Sendai nuclear power plant here have loaded nearly half of the nuclear fuel into a reactor that is expected to resume operations in mid-August. About 50 workers are engaged in the round-the-clock operation. It takes workers about 20 minutes to install each of the 157 bundles of fuel rods. [Asahi Shimbun]

US:

¶ Hundreds of wildfires are burning in Alaska and Canada, fed by record high temperatures and drought. They mark a new milestone in the history of climate change. The fires may speed up the melting of permafrost, releasing methane into the air, as the permafrost’s natural insulation becomes fuel for the fires. [Wired]

An Alaska Army National Guard helicopter drops water on the Stetson Creek Fire near Cooper Landing, Alaska, on June 17 2015. Photo by Sgt. Balinda O'Neal, US Army National Guard.

An Alaska Army National Guard helicopter drops water on a fire near Cooper Landing, Alaska. Photo by Sgt. Balinda O’Neal, US Army National Guard.

¶ New York’s Governor Cuomo announced awards of about $100,000 each to be given to 83 communities across the state to support microgrid projects. These awards were granted as part of the NY Prize microgrid competition to support a new generation of community-based power. [Hudson Valley News Network]

¶ A group of scientists at Stanford has published a plan for the United States to have all of its energy come from renewable sources by 2050, an ambitious goal that carries a $15 trillion dollar price tag. Mark Jacobson and his co-authors drew up the plan based on the capability of existing technology. [The Epoch Times]

¶ The Sierra Club says it will air a radio ad in the Albuquerque radio market urging the Public Regulation Commission to reject plans for the San Juan power plant. The plans call for closing two coal-fired units and replacing the lost power with more coal, natural gas, nuclear power, and other sources. [Santa Fe New Mexican]

¶ In Florida, municipal governments are divided over a decision by the Florida League of Cities to file a legal brief urging the Florida Supreme Court to reject the proposed Solar Choice amendment to the November 2016 ballot. The amendment would allow homeowners and businesses to sell solar power. [Bradenton Herald]

¶ Governor Charlie Baker plans to file legislation to help bring up to 2,400 MW of hydropower to Massachusetts from Canada. Baker’s energy and environmental affairs secretary says the state needs more renewable energy to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, as required by the EPA Clean Power Plan. [Boston Globe]

¶ 8minutenergy Renewables LLC and DE Shaw Renewable Investments LLC have announced the completion of permitting and start of construction of the 137-MW Springbok 1 solar farm, located in Kern County, California, 70 miles north of Los Angeles. The project is expected to be operational in June, 2016. [solarserver.com]

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