January 14 Energy News

January 14, 2016

World:

¶ The Canadian Wind Energy Association has reported that Canada closed 2015 seventh in the world for total installed wind energy capacity with 11,205 MW, and sixth in the world for the amount of capacity added in 2015. Over the year, Canada added 36 wind projects totalling 1,506 MW of new capacity. [Windpower Engineering]

Wind energy supplied approximately 5% of Canada’s electricity demand in 2015, or enough to power over three million Canadian homes.

Wind energy supplied approximately 5% of Canada’s electricity demand in 2015, or enough to power over three million Canadian homes. CanWEA

¶ Oil prices briefly have fallen below $30 a barrel on international markets for the first time since April 2004, before recovering again. Brent crude, used as an international benchmark, fell as low as $29.96, but bounced back to trade at $30.22. Oil prices have fallen by 70% in the past 15 months. [BBC]

¶ Growth in India’s coal-based installed generation capacity is on a decline, despite an increase in production and availability of coal. The coal-based installed capacity in 2015 grew at 10.77%, a figure that has fallen in each of the past four years. Renewable capacity grew 18.06%, up from 7.57% in 2014. [Business Standard]

¶ Global clean energy investment in 2015 rose to the record-high $329.3 billion (€303 billion). A report by Bloomberg New Energy Finance shows record investments despite falling fossil fuel commodity prices, weakness of the European economy, and the increasing capacity per investment dollar of PVs. [SeeNews Renewables]

Clean energy investment globally 2005-2015. Figures by BNEF.

Clean energy investment globally 2005-2015. Figures by BNEF.

¶ Indian Power and Coal Minister Piyush Goyal today said that Niti Aayog is working actively with the Institute of Energy Economics, Japan for developing a long-term cooperation in the energy sector. This will help India plan its energy security and energy mix for the country in the years to come. [Huffington Post India]

¶ Wind turbine manufacturer Suzlon has announced its foray into solar power with projects of 210 MW in the Indian state of Telangana. Suzlon won contracts in a competitive bidding process to install six different capacity projects across the state. They are to be commissioned in fiscal year 2017.[Financial Express]

¶ Taiwan may soon be the first nation in Asia to resolve to become a nuclear free nation after four decades of reliance on nuclear power. Taiwan’s voters will elect a new president on January 16. The leading candidate, by a hefty margin, is committed to turning Taiwan into a “nuclear free homeland” by 2025. [eco-business.com]

A collage of Taiwanese people holding posters protesting against nuclear power. Image: Hsiangfilm, CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

A collage of Taiwanese people holding posters protesting against
nuclear power. Image: Hsiangfilm, CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

¶ German energy group RWE AG plans to use the proceeds from the listing of a new, renewables-focused unit to expand in new markets and to enter the large-scale solar power segment. Its renewables arm, RWE Innogy, expects to post an operating result for 2015 more than double the prior year’s. [SeeNews Renewables]

¶ The Ontario Greens are calling for an independent, public review of rebuilding Ontario’s aging nuclear reactors to assess the costs, possible alternatives, and the need to work with the federal government on a national energy strategy that includes an East-West corridor to import energy. [NorthumberlandView.ca]

US:

¶ Governor Andrew Cuomo announced in his annual State of the State speech that the New York will phase out its dirtiest power plants, adopting renewable power. He said clean energy is a business opportunity for the state, as well as an important step to address increasing climate challenges. [Capital New York]

New York City's first commercial-scale wind turbine at the Sims Material Recovery Facility. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

New York City’s first commercial-scale wind turbine at the Sims
Material Recovery Facility. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

¶ The US has seen coal production levels fall to their lowest levels since 1986, dropping 10% in 2015 alone. Production in the Appalachian Basin fell the most last year. Lower natural gas prices and lower international demand for American coal are said to be behind the declining coal production. [CleanTechnica]

¶ Northern Power Systems Corp has announced that its flagship distributed generation wind platform is now available to businesses, farms, and other property owners with a compelling financing solution. It is offering a lease program to allow users to take advantage of wind energy with 100% financing. [Vermont Biz]

¶ After years of political gridlock, San Francisco is ready to launch its green energy community choice aggregation program this spring. The San Francisco Public Utilities Commission voted unanimously to approve the first round of energy contracts for the CleanPowerSF program. [San Francisco Chronicle]

The roof of the Sunset Reservoir, in San Francisco. Photo: Michael Macor, The Chronicle

Roof of the Sunset Reservoir. Photo: Michael Macor, The Chronicle

¶ Renewable energy provider Silicon Ranch Corp, based in Nashville, Tennessee and the Phoenix-based renewable energy team at McCarthy Building Cos say construction is ready to begin on a 52-MW AC solar energy plant planned in Hazlehurst, Georgia. It has a 30-year contract with Green Power EMC. [Solar Industry]

¶ Officials in Cumberland County, Tennessee, announced that Apex Clean Energy is planning to locate a new wind farm on private land in the county. The Crab Orchard project is expected to produce up to 71 MW of power with 20 to 23 turbines. The project is expected to begin operations in 2017. [The Hartsville Vidette]

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