January 4 Energy News

January 4, 2016

World:

¶ The development of wind energy projects in Lennox and Addington County could move forward in 2016 as Ontario seeks to bolster its supply of renewable energy. Proposals from three different companies could see major wind energy projects built at both ends of the county. [The Kingston Whig-Standard]

Wind energy projects in Lennox and Addington County could move forward in 2016. (Whig-Standard file photo)

Wind energy projects in Lennox and Addington County could move forward in 2016. (Whig-Standard file photo)

¶ Qinghai Electric Power, the sub-company of China’s State Grid Corporation, aims to install 7.1 GW of renewable energy in 2016. The majority of the new capacity will be solar PV. Qinghai province’s cumulative capacity of 6 GW, 5.6 GW of which is ground-mounted solar PV, the rest being wind. [pv magazine]

¶ The Irish wind industry launched a publicity campaign to highlight its potential to replace fossil fuels. The Irish Wind Energy Association worked with Rothco to created “Power To Power Ourselves,” a campaign showcasing Ireland’s natural resources for reducing its 85% reliance on energy imports. [reNews]

Image: a 3.6MW GE turbine at Arklow Bank in Ireland (NREL)

Image: a 3.6MW GE turbine at Arklow Bank in Ireland (NREL)

¶ Battery storage for domestic applications is relatively common in Germany as a result of government incentives. The rationale was not to encourage PV take-up but to smooth out the spikes in electricity flooding its national grid; on some days, the grid can be stressed by excess power from renewables. [CM]

¶ While renewable energy includes wind, biofuels and hydropower, the main winner for this year has been solar energy. And the main regional winner has been the UAE. After a consortium submitted bids for 100 MW, Dewa announced that it would award the consortium 200 MW at 5.84¢/kWh (US). [The National]

Dewa has ramped up the capacity of Dubai’s Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park to 5,000 MW. Courtesy Dewa

Dewa has ramped up the capacity of Dubai’s Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park to 5,000 MW. Courtesy Dewa

¶ Zimbabwe’s main hydroelectric power plant at Kariba is failing, forcing the nation to turn to dirtier fossil fuel-based energies to make up for the deficit. The Kariba Hydropower Station has operated at just 63% percent of capacity since early October when the Kariba dam began to dry up. [AllAfrica.com]

¶ Dong Energy, the biggest operator of offshore windfarms in Britain, has said it plans to spend a further £6 billion in the UK by 2020, convinced that the government is serious about supporting wind power. Vattenfall, another significant UK windfarm operator, says it too is optimistic about conditions in 2016. [The Guardian]

Offshore wind turbines off Skegness in Lincolnshire, UK. Photograph: Alamy

Offshore wind turbines off Skegness in Lincolnshire, UK. Photograph: Alamy

US:

¶ Discarded Christmas trees are being collected at trash centers across Beaufort County, South Carolina, and when the bins are full, crews from a local logging company haul them away. The trees are ground up and burned to make steam for industrial purposes or to create electricity at power plants. [Island Packet]

¶ Wärtsilä will supply a 47-MW Smart Power Generation power plant to Rochester Public Utilities in Minnesota. Five Wärtsilä 34SG natural gas engines will replace aged coal and gas turbine-based capacity. Efficiency will be nearly doubled, and hourly carbon emissions are reduced by 50%. [Industrial PRIME]

Wärtsilä 34SG engines at Pearsall Power Plant, located in Texas (Image: Wärtsilä)

Wärtsilä 34SG engines at Pearsall Power Plant, located in Texas (Image: Wärtsilä)

¶ Leases the Diablo Canyon need to get cooling water expire in 2018 and 2019. They asked the State Lands Commission, chaired by Lieutenant Governor Newsom, to have the leases renewed, casting the move as a simple administrative step. But he wants a full environmental impact review. [San Francisco Chronicle]

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