September 2 Energy News

September 2, 2015

World:

¶ After oil prices hit a record high in July 2008, the tiny Pacific nation of the Marshall Islands, which had about 90% of its energy from imported petroleum products, declared a state of emergency. Now, solar power is becoming important everywhere, and 99% of the lighting on its outer islands is powered by the sun. [Voice of America]

Solar panels are being used extensively on the Marshall Islands, which uses the sun for 99% of the lighting on its outer islands. File Photo.

Solar panels are being used extensively on the Marshall Islands, which uses the sun for 99% of the lighting on its outer islands. File Photo.

¶ In what is believed to be the largest Australian trial of its kind, a solar farm in Western Australia’s Pilbara region, will be fitted with “cloud predictive technology.” The technology uses an interconnected network of cameras, pointed towards the sky, to sense approaching cloud cover. This avoids sudden power drop offs. [ABC Local]

¶ New research by AeroThermal Group, pioneers in developing innovative solutions from aerospace through to green energy from waste, has shown that 635 kWh of renewable electricity can be generated from one tonne of waste from fast food outlets. Using the same system, one tonne of pure kitchen waste generated 847 kWh. [Industry Today]

¶ The commitment of the UK’s Big Six energy companies to tackling climate change has been called into question. Yesterday, The Independent revealed that British Gas and SSE use more coal for electricity now than they did ten years ago. Now, it says that not a single one of Britain’s biggest suppliers offers a renewable energy tariff. [The Independent]

¶ The global market for on-site [ie, small] wind power is predicted to grow to $1.89 billion by 2019, according to new analysis. A report from consultancy Research and Markets projects the segment’s steady growth at a compound annual growth rate of 19.5% during the forecast period. [Cogeneration & On-Site Power Production Magazine]

US:

¶ Although wind power provided less than 3% of Alaska’s electric power generation in 2014, Alaska’s wind power capacity has increased 20-fold between 2007 and 2014, growing from 3 MW to 60 MW. This increase is notable in light of the challenges of installing wind generators and connecting them to the grid. [Your Renewable News]

Coast Guard base Kodiak is seen across Women's Bay. Atop Pillar Mountain, beyond the base, are three wind turbines operated by Kodiak Electric Association. Photo by James Brooks. CC BY 2.0.

Coast Guard base Kodiak is seen across Women’s Bay. Atop Pillar Mountain, beyond the base, are three wind turbines operated by Kodiak Electric Association. Photo by James Brooks. CC BY 2.0.

¶ A review of 11 studies considering effects of net metering highlighted the importance of reduced or avoided environmental compliance costs, capital investment costs, and energy costs. It showed not only that solar net metering is not been harmful to markets, but that utilities have actually been underpaying for its use. [CleanTechnica]

¶ The Alabama Public Service Commission gave the go-ahead to Alabama Power’s plan to add up to 500 MW of renewable power capacity to its portfolio in six years. At present, the state of Alabama has just 2 MW of installed solar power capacity and is among the bottom 10 US states in the solar ranking. [SeeNews Renewables]

¶ TVA tentatively has approved an agreement with NextEra Energy Resources to buy power for up to 20 years from a bank of solar panels projected to generate 80 MW in Lauderdale, Alabama. The River Bend Solar project will occupy about 645 acres and is scheduled to be built over the next year or so. [RenewablesBiz]

¶ Michigan Governor Rick Snyder’s administration announced it will comply with the EPA’s Clean Power Plan by creating its own state-based carbon implementation plan. Meanwhile, Attorney General Bill Schuette, is suing to stop the plan. Snyder and Schuette, both Republicans, are seen as divided on the issue. [MLive.com]

Smoke stacks from Lansing's Board of Water and Light in REO Town Lansing Monday, August 3, 2015. (Danielle Duval | MLive.com)

Smoke stacks from Lansing’s Board of Water and Light in REO Town Lansing Monday, August 3, 2015. (Danielle Duval | MLive.com)

¶ Washington state’s three investor-owned electrical utilities have told the Utilities and Transportation Commission that they’re on track to meet the state’s renewable energy requirements, which require them to have a part of their power from renewable sources. The utilities also reported lower costs to meet those requirements. [seattlepi.com]

¶ At a regional summit in Newfoundland, Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker said he hopes to bring more Canadian hydropower and natural gas to Massachusetts in the coming years to help solve the state’s energy deficit. He spoke in particular about Canada’s hydropower and natural gas as resources his state needs. [RenewablesBiz]

¶ Exelon announced that all of its Illinois nuclear plants, including Quad-Cities, cleared in the power grid operator’s transition capacity auction, which means they can sell supplemental power to the grid in the 2016-2017 planning year. Some have lost bids to sell power to the grid in the 2018-2019 planning year. [Quad City Times]

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