August 18 Energy News

August 18, 2015

World:

¶ A new study has found that China’s air pollution is linked to the death of over 1.6 million people a year or 4,400 people a day. The study was carried out by Richard Muller and Robert Rohde, researchers at Berkeley Earth. They mapped the concentrations of six major pollutants across eastern China, using data from China’s national air quality reporting system. [The Next Digit]

Pollution in China.

Chinese industrial pollution.

¶ The Ghanaian Minister for Power has launched the rollout of a PayGo home solar power in the Assin district of Central region, Ghana. Starting with households in the area of Assin Sienchem, the first phase of the program will deliver power to over 100,000 households, with particular focus on Cocoa growing regions in Central, before being rolled out more widely. [CleanTechnica]

¶ Sojitz Corporation of America reached an agreement with Grupo T-Solar Global SA and invested in two solar power plants in Peru, becoming owner of a 49% equity interest. With a total output of over 44 MW, the project is the first mega-solar project in Peru. The project has 20-year fixed-price power purchase agreements guaranteed by the Ministry of Energy and Mines. [pv magazine]

¶ Engie, the French utility giant formerly known as GDF Suez SA, is said to have plans to sell more than $1 billion of stakes in Asian coal-fired power plants. Engie, a sponsor of the Paris climate-change talks later this year, has shut gas plants and capped coal-fired installations as Chief Executive Officer Gerard Mestrallet steers the company toward renewable energy sources. [Bloomberg]

¶ ScottishPower confirmed it is to close the giant Longannet coal-fired power station next March 31. It said a combination of high carbon taxes and high transmission charges made the plant uneconomical. It also said since the same issues make any thermal power plant in Scotland challenging, it will not pursue plans for a combined cycle gas turbine plant at Cockenzie. [Business Green]

Longannet Power Station 2012

Longannet Power Station 2012

¶ RWE AG has officially commissioned a power-to-gas plant, rated at 150-kW, as part of a system linking together the supply of electricity, natural gas, and district heating in North Rhine-Westphalia. The power-to-gas plant turns unused renewable power into hydrogen, which is then injected into the natural gas network. The gas will be used at a co-generation plant. [SeeNews Renewables]

US:

¶ Opponents to the offshore wind farm under construction near Block Island, off the coast of Rhode Island, have filed a case in federal court seeking to overturn a critical agreement under which developer Deepwater Wind will sell power to utility National Grid. The complaint was filed by several long-standing opponents of the five-turbine wind farm. [The Providence Journal]

¶ In a recent survey, while 71% of the Southern Californians queried stated that they were highly interested in getting an EV, it seems an additional 13% already had one. All things considered, it is not a shabby percentage (and a reflection of the relative wealth of those queried, I assume). Only 16% of those asked were not interested in EVs, according to the results. [CleanTechnica]

Image Credit: Nissan

Image Credit: Nissan

¶ Google has announced a tool for finding an easy answer to one of the most difficult questions for climate-conscious homeowners: Should I install solar panels? Project Sunroof is an application of Google Maps that aims to cut through the complicated calculations that go into whether your house is well-suited to generate its own power from that giant nuclear furnace in the sky. [Slate Magazine]

¶ Additional degradation of concrete related to alkali-silica reaction at Seabrook Station nuclear power plant was found in a Nuclear Regulatory Commission inspection this summer. NRC officials downplayed concerns, however. Concrete degradation was discovered in Seabrook Station in 2010 and may be the last hurdle in Seabrook’s attempt to renew its license. [Seacoastonline.com]

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