July 20 Energy News

July 20, 2015


¶ “The Fossil Fuel Energy Industry Is Now Entering Terminal Decline” The detail is interesting and important, but unless we recognise the central proposition, that the fossil fuel age is coming to an end, and within 15 to 30 years, not 50 to 100, we risk making serious and damaging mistakes in climate and economic policy, in investment strategy and in geopolitics and defence. [CleanTechnica]

Lignite mine, "Turów", Poland. Author Anna Uciechowska. GNU Free Documentation License. Wikimedia Commons. 

Lignite mine, “Turów”, Poland. Author Anna Uciechowska. GNU Free Documentation License. Wikimedia Commons.

Science and Technology:

¶ A study just published in ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces,”Efficient Electrochemical CO2 Conversion Powered by Renewable Energy,” demonstrates that current, state-of-the-art renewable energy sources can efficiently power large-scale CO2 conversion systems. A US DOE scientist says the data “shows that large-scale CO2 conversion technologies are practical.” [Nanowerk]

¶ IBM has shared details on its program to harness powerful computers to forecast weather and other factors that determine the output of solar and wind installations. Using machine learning and advanced data analytics, IBM is aggressively pushing to give utilities, plant managers, and grid operators clearer guidance on what their arrays will produce. [MIT Technology Review]


¶ Electricity retailing giant AGL Energy has taken the industry by surprise by offering 7.2-kWh battery storage systems at less than $10,000 in four Australian states. The price includes an inverter, control system, and installation, including connection to a rooftop solar system. The price is less than one third of that offered for the same battery storage system to wholesalers. [CleanTechnica]

¶ The Australian Government’s insistence that the Clean Energy Finance Corporation cease investing in small-scale solar power could mean many pensioners and low-to-middle income households miss out on significant electricity bill savings. Councils have used CEFC funding to enabled pensioners to install solar power systems at zero up front cost and low payments. [Energy Matters]

Photo by SteKrueBe. Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license. Wikimedia Commons. 

Photo by SteKrueBe. Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license. Wikimedia Commons.

¶ Germany added more than three times the amount of offshore wind capacity in the first six months of this year than in the same period of 2014 and the country looks set to reach half of its 2020 offshore target of 6,500 MW later this year. Some 1,765 MW of new offshore capacity were installed in the first six months of 2015, compared with 492 MW in January-June 2014. [Reuters UK]

¶ The Australian Capital Territory government says it has been swamped by thirty submissions representing 967 MW of potential solar plus storage capacity in response to its call for interest on its next generation solar program. The ACT government intends to commission around 50 MW of capacity, in what will likely be Australia’s first large scale solar plus storage project. [CleanTechnica]

¶ Negev Energy, a consortium of Israel’s Shikun & Binui and Spain’s Abengoa, has signed an agreement with the Israeli Government to construct a 121-MW thermo-solar power plant in the Negev desert. The project is expected to cost around $1.05 billion, and will be financed by the European Investment Bank and the US Overseas Private Investment. [Energy Business Review]

¶ Concerned about running out of nuclear fuel, India is creating a strategic uranium reserve to ensure that its reactors can keep producing electricity without interruption. The reserve could be sufficient for five to ten years’ supply of nuclear fuel. Nuclear represents a about 2% of the baseload power for densely populated India, with 20 reactors having a total capacity of 4,780 MW. [MINING.com]


¶ Drilling is scheduled to start next month at three sites in American Samoa identified as potential locations for a geothermal power plant. Geothermal power is one of the renewable energy projects the American Samoa Power Authority is undertaking as it attempts to reduce the territory’s reliance on imported fossil fuels. Scientists say the chance of positive results is high. [Radio New Zealand]

Pago Pago, American Samoa. Photo: AFP

Pago Pago, American Samoa. Photo: AFP

¶ Nevada Power is seeking approval to build two 100-MW solar energy projects as part of a three-year plan to help replace the utility‘s coal-fired capacity. The prices in the proposed 20-year agreements with Boulder Solar and Playa Solar 2 are under $50 per MWh. The average cost of solar renewable energy delivered to Nevada Power in 2014 was $137.65 per MWh. [Las Vegas Review-Journal]



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: