February 15 Energy News

February 15, 2016


Asia can go 100 per cent renewable • For Asia, going 100 per cent renewable isn’t hypothetical. It is doable and it’s the best path to a sustainable future. The move is also being driven by costs. Renewable energy costs continue to decline, and we are beginning to see the true costs of fossil fuels. [eco-business.com]

Wind turbines in Western China. Image: Shutterstock

Wind turbines in Western China. Image: Shutterstock

Why Saudi Arabia and Russia are still flooding the oil market • Crude oil futures jumped 12% in New York on Friday, making their biggest one-day gain since 2009 and rebounding sharply from a 12-year low hit earlier in the week. Still, getting the fractious cartel to agree a deal to reduce oil supply may be a long way off. [CNN]

Science and Technology:

¶ A set photos from the US DOE’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory show how two eagles participate in a unique research at the National Wind Technology Center. They are helping on a research project that is developing radar and visual systems that prevent bird death caused by turbine blades. [Gizmodo India]


¶ Bids are being sought for over $13 million in geothermal energy projects in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly. Studies of the region’s geothermal potential suggest that it could supply all of Cornwall’s electricity. Geothermal energy could also meet as much as 20% of the UK’s electric power demand. [Hydrogen Fuel News]

Geothermal plant.

Geothermal plant.

¶ As power crisis continue to haunt the southern region of Africa, Zimbabwe has joined other member states in an effort to generate electricity using wind by establishing a pilot project in Mamina. The pilot project is to study the viability of generating electricity using wind to avert power crisis. [Southern Times Africa]

¶ EDF’s powerful unions and several senior executives are said to believe that the Hinkley C project could be suicidal for the world’s biggest generator of nuclear energy. They want EDF to abandon the project – or at least persuade Britain to wait another three years until a more advanced generation is available. [The Independent]

¶ Investors in fossil fuels are being warned that they may risk losing their money, because the markets for coal and liquefied natural gas are disappearing. In both cases it is competition from renewables as their costs fall, principally wind and solar power, that is being blamed for the threat.

Two of the world’s largest markets for coal, India and China, are cutting imports with India falling 34% last year and China by 31%. Image: Shutterstock

India and China are cutting coal imports. India’s fell 34%
last year and Chin’a declined 31%. Image: Shutterstock

¶ The South Australian Royal Commission into the nuclear fuel cycle has conceded that nuclear power is not a viable alternative for Australia, but has urged authorities to consider it anyway. The result of the “tentative findings” could have serious implications for the roll out of renewable energy across the country. [RenewEconomy]

¶ While the lights probably won’t go out in Tasmania, the state’s energy crisis is really starting to pile on the pressure and has devolved into a war of words. The submarine cable that was supplying Tasmania with up to 40% of its electricity, failed in December and a drought has reduced hydro output. [Energy Matters]


¶ According to the US Geological Survey, three earthquakes were recorded along the Kansas-Oklahoma border just a day after a 5.1 magnitude earthquake shook northwest Oklahoma. The state’s stronger and more frequent earthquakes have been linked to wastewater disposal associated with fracking. [KSAL]

Most recent USGS information.

Increase in earthquakes in Oklahoma to April, 2015,
projected through the end of the year. USGS data.

¶ Using data from FERC and rooftop solar power estimates, it seems that 69% of newly installed US electricity generation capacity was from renewable energy power plants, with 67% from solar and wind power. The renewables segment on the whole grew by 23.5 GW, from 200.94 to 224.43 GW. [CleanTechnica]

¶ The Supreme Court put a hold on the Clean Power Plan, but many states are engaged. Colorado, New York, California, Virginia and Washington, and, at least, a dozen more have pledged to continue the work they have already started to come into compliance with the Clean Power plan to combat global warming. [Digital Journal]

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