October 30 Energy News

October 30, 2015

World:

¶ The preferential tariffs for wind and solar power in China may be cut in 2016 by 5.8% and 5.6%, respectively, under a plan by the National Development and Reform Commission. According to reports, by 2020, wind power rates could be cut by 19% from 2016 levels, while for solar the planned reduction is 15%. [SeeNews Renewables]

Wind farm in China. Author: David Schroeter. License: Creative Commons, Attribution-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic

Wind farm in China. Author: David Schroeter. License: Creative Commons, Attribution-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic

¶ 114,723 gigawatt hours of electricity in Germany came from renewable sources in the first nine months of 2015, which was almost double the amount produced from nuclear sources. Additionally, some electricity prices have decreased from the previous year. For example, the cost of peak load power is nearly at 2002 levels. [CleanTechnica]

¶ In a Chilean auction to procure 1200 GWh of power, wind and solar projects took 100% of the contracts even though there were no renewable energy subsidies. In the prior tender 80% went to fossil fuels. Two thirds of the power under the latest auction will come from two wind farms, and the rest will come from three solar projects. [Courier Mail]

¶ Lord Deben has defended a raft of green policy rollbacks by the new Conservative government, admitting the Climate Change Committee that he chairs greatly underestimated improvements in offshore wind farms and the subsidies they would use up. More efficient equipment had made subsidies more attractive than expected. [Business Green]

¶ Construction of a £1.5 billion windfarm off the Suffolk coast is to go ahead with the creation of nearly 800 jobs, after three new partners were found to back the project. The future of the Galloper windfarm had been left in doubt last year when energy company SSE pulled out of the project, blaming the cost and the subsidy regime. [The Guardian]

A windfarm off Sylt in Germany, which is outstripping the UK. Photograph: Daniel Reinhardt/EPA

A windfarm off Sylt in Germany, which is outstripping the UK. Photograph: Daniel Reinhardt/EPA

¶ In further signs of the staggering pace of transformation in global energy markets, Indian power behemoth Reliance Power is urgently seeking a new business strategy. Analysis of public statements, annual reports and press reports relating to the company all point to a major strategic refocus away from thermal and to renewables. [Business Spectator]

¶ Alberta is pushing ahead with a plan to phase out coal power plants, support renewable energy and improve energy efficiency. Premier Rachel Notley is pledging to seek a leading role on climate change while promoting investment in the energy industry as the province grapples with an oil rout and opposition to its oil sands. [PennEnergy]

¶ The UK’s first new nuclear power station for a generation will cost electricity customers at least £4.4 billion and the subsidy bill could reach £20 billion, the government has revealed. The new Hinkley Point C operators will get £92.50 for every unit of electricity – more than double the current market price. [The Guardian]

US:

¶ Tacoma Power has begun offering its customers a way to invest in solar energy by starting Pierce County’s first community solar project. Tacoma Power customers simply purchase solar units for $100 each and receive an annual incentive payment and payments for the electricity produced from a 75-kW Tacoma Power project. [Tacoma Weekly]

Tacoma Public Utilities has started a program for customers to invest in solar power projects. Photo courtesy of Tacoma Power / The Tacoma Weekly

Tacoma Public Utilities has started a program for customers to invest in solar power projects. Photo courtesy of Tacoma Power / The Tacoma Weekly

¶ TDI-New England, which is financing the New England Power Link, received a favorable assessment from federal regulators in their final environmental impact statement. About 98 miles of the power line will run under Lake Champlain and 56 miles will extend overland to grid connections in Ludlow, Vermont. [The Boston Globe]

¶ US energy provider Exelon Corporation has entered into a 153-MW wind power purchase agreement with Wolverine Power Supply Cooperative Inc, a Michigan-based not-for-profit generation and transmission cooperative. The agreement will boost Wolverine’s own wind generation portfolio to over 350 MW. [SeeNews Renewables]

¶ After tropical storm Sandy, Hoboken, New Jersey, examined grid security issues. The result was the Resilient Microgrids Toolkit, which provides stakeholders with the resources necessary to establish and maintain a clean and resilient microgrid. The toolkit can be used by any city looking to establish a clean microgrid. [Microgrid Knowledge]

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