November 3 Energy News

November 3, 2015

Science and Technology:

¶ Germany’s dash away from nuclear power and toward renewables has helped to create new industries. About 370,000 Germans work in the renewable energy industry, twice the number who work in fossil fuels, according to the Heinrich Böll Foundation. In the change, cities with employment problems are being revived. [The Guardian] ‘

Solar panel roofs in Vauban in Freiburg, Germany Photograph: Imagebroker/Rex Shutterstock

Solar panel roofs in Vauban in Freiburg, Germany Photograph: Imagebroker/Rex Shutterstock

¶ Ravaged by months of war, Yemen is now being battered by the first tropical storm on record to make landfall in the impoverished Arab country. Tropical Cyclone Chapala slammed into Yemen’s central coast early Tuesday, lashing the area with maximum sustained winds of around 85 mph and over a year’s rain in one day. [CNN]


¶ A study published in Nature by scientists at Stanford and UC Berkeley has made waves for its finding that thus far we have badly underestimated the damage human-caused climate change will do to the global economy. It says wealthy countries are nearly as vulnerable to temperatures warming beyond 13°C as poorer countries. [CleanTechnica]

¶ BP published its first Technology Outlook, an 82-page report outlining how technology has the potential to unlock the world’s energy resources over the next 35 years. BP predicts the global energy system will remain heavily reliant on fossil fuels for decades to come. But the details of the report show renewables with a strong edge. [Business Green]

¶ Scatec Solar, a Norwegian solar power developer, has signed agreements for five solar projects totaling 250 MW in Egypt. The projects will be covered by Egypt’s solar FiT program. Some preparatory work like land and geotechnical studies has already been completed. Social and environmental impact studies are under way. [CleanTechnica]

Cairo. Image Credit: Luc Legay, Wiki Commons

Cairo. Image Credit: Luc Legay, Wiki Commons

¶ China is becoming a hotbed for the $100 billion market in bonds tied to green investments as authorities and developers seek alternatives to loans for funding a transformation to clean energy supplies. Green bonds aim to fund low-carbon transport, renewable energy and technologies to curtail climate change. [Bloomberg]

¶ Spanish wind power company Gamesa said it will build two 100-MW wind parks in India under a turnkey contract with renewable energy firm Ostro Energy. Gamesa will supply and install 50 pieces of its G97-2.0 MW class S turbines at the site of the future Amba wind park in the Indian state of Madhya Pradesh. [SeeNews Renewables]

¶ The UK Foreign Secretary’s Special Representative for Climate Change, Sir David King, warned that countries building new coal-fired power stations could well be building “stranded assets.” Britain’s former Chief Scientific Adviser said any country still building coal-fired power stations was building “white elephants.” [Creamer Media’s Mining Weekly]


¶ Altamont Winds Inc wrote in a letter to the US Fish & Wildlife Service that it had decided to “permanently shut down and cease operations” of all 828 of the wind turbines at Altamont Pass. The company has applied for a permit to replace the old equipment with 33 larger, state-of-the-art turbines that kill far fewer birds. [SFGate]

Wind generators dot the hills of Eastern Alameda County along the Altamont Pass in Livermore, Calif. on Wednesday Dec. 26, 2012. Photo: Michael Macor, The Chronicle

Outdated wind generators dot the hills of Eastern Alameda County along the Altamont Pass in Livermore, California. Photo: Michael Macor, The Chronicle

¶ Many drivers assume that gasoline taxes completely cover the cost of road maintenance, and are perhaps even too high, but that appears not even to be close to the truth of the matter, according to a report from the Frontier Group, in cooperation with the US PIRG Education Fund. And that does not address other social costs. [CleanTechnica]

¶ US investment bank The Goldman Sachs Group Inc said Monday it has lifted its clean energy financing and investments goal for 2025 to $150 billion (€136 billion). The new target was set in an update of the firm’s Environmental Policy Framework. It expands a $40-billion clean energy target announced in 2012. [SeeNews Renewables]

¶ The company behind the Keystone XL pipeline asked the US government to put its review of the controversial project on hold. TransCanada says the pause is necessary while it negotiates with Nebraska over the pipeline’s route through the state. The move came as a surprise as TransCanada executives have pushed hard to get approval. [BBC]

Gas pipes ready for installation.

Gas pipes ready for installation.

¶ According to model by the Yale Project on Climate Change Communication of state-level public opinion, a majority of the public in 23 out of the 26 states filing suits actually support setting strict limits on coal-fired power plants. Across all 26 suing states, an average of 61% of the public supports the policy. [Huffington Post]

¶ The US DOE and the Minnesota Department of Commerce has issued the Final Environmental Impact Statement for the proposed Great Northern Transmission Line. The power line will be used to deliver hydro power from Canada to Minnesota Power customers in the United States, reducing the state’s carbon emissions. [FOX 21 Online]

¶ Entergy Corp, which owns two nuclear plants in New York, said Monday it will close the James A FitzPatrick Nuclear Power Plant near Syracuse. Entergy said it would close the Oswego County plant late next year or early 2017. State officials, including Governor Cuomo, vowed to fight the company’s plans. [Rochester Democrat and Chronicle]

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