March 18 Energy News

March 18, 2016

Opinion:

So … was that climate change? • While the broad trends of climate change, and our role in causing it by burning fossil fuels, have been clear for decades, it was not possible until recently to tie a specific storm, drought, flood or heat wave to long-term warming trends. Thankfully, that’s changing. [CNN]

Waterspout off the Florida Keys. Photo by Dr. Joseph Golden, NOAA. US Government image. Public Domain. Wikimedia Commons.

Waterspout off the Florida Keys. Photo by Dr. Joseph Golden, NOAA. US Government image. Public Domain. Wikimedia Commons.

How Cheap Oil Is Accelerating Investment In Sustainable
Energy
• An increasingly unprofitable global oil market is discouraging its own investors. Cheap oil no longer foretells disaster for renewable energy companies because investors want opportunities for growth. [CleanTechnica]

Science and Technology:

¶ February smashed the previous record for the warmest February and even became the warmest month ever compared to average, according to NOAA. February temperatures averaged 1.21° C (2.18° F) above the 20th century average. The past three months hold the top three places. [CNN]

Temperature departures from normal for the month of February 2016

Temperature departures from normal for the
month of February 2016

World:

¶ Doubling the global share of renewable energy by 2030 could save $4.2 trillion annually, 15 times the costs. This is the primary conclusion from a report by the International Renewable Energy Agency. It examines options to boost renewable energy from its current 18% to 36% by 2030. [CleanTechnica]

¶ Japan’s energy ministry confirmed that the feed-in-tariffs for solar power will be reduced, as usual, for the new fiscal year. The rate for PV systems bigger than 10 kW will fall to ¥24/kWh ($0.22/kWh) from the current ¥27/kWh. Smaller systems have higher rates. [SeeNews Renewables]

Solar farm in Japan. Author: Haruhiko Okumura. License: Creative Commons, Attribution 2.0 Generic.

Solar farm in Japan. Author: Haruhiko Okumura.
License: Creative Commons, Attribution 2.0 Generic.

¶ The world is expected to have about 18.4 GW of geothermal capacity by 2021, after it reached 13.3 GW, spread across 24 countries, in 2015, according to a report by the US Geothermal Energy Association. There are currently 12.5 GW of projects under development in 82 countries, according to the association. [SeeNews Renewables]

¶ Two “run of river” hydro power schemes are being developed in the Scottish Highlands as part of a £4.8 million investment. Albion Community Power (ACP), said the projects would generate 2.8 GWh of renewable electricity a year, enough to power about 700 homes. [Scotsman]

ACP is also involved in a scheme near Loch Arkaig. Picture: Contributed

ACP is also involved in a scheme near Loch Arkaig.
Picture: Contributed

¶ The Suzlon Group has bagged orders for a combined capacity of 81.90 MW of wind turbines. The orders were received from SMEs (Small and Medium-sized Enterprises) across diverse industry segments including food and agro, textiles, chemical, real estate and engineering. [Business Standard]

¶ As Abu Dhabi pursues its solar ambitions, it is weighing more cost-effective technologies. As it comes to its third anniversary, the 100-Mw Shams 1 concentrated solar power plant is not cost competitive to other available technologies, such as solar PV, whose price has been falling. [The National]

The Shams 1 plant was one of the first concentrated solar power plants in the region. Christopher Pike / The National

The Shams 1 plant was one of the first concentrated solar
power plants in the region. Christopher Pike / The National

¶ The £18 billion plans to build the first nuclear plant in the UK in two decades look set to go ahead after EDF secured a bailout from the French government. The French economics minister said it would be a mistake for EDF, which is 85% government-owned, not to build the plant. [Fresh Business Thinking]

US:

¶ The California Public Utilities Commission gave the 392-MW Ivanpah CSP park more time to reach the output levels agreed in its power purchase agreement. Pacific Gas & Electric has agreed to give the owners of the power plant until end-July 2016 to improve performance. [SeeNews Renewables]

Ivanpah. Author: Bill & Vicki T. License: Creative Commons, Attribution 2.0 Generic

Ivanpah. Author: Bill & Vicki T.
License: Creative Commons, Attribution 2.0 Generic

¶ Work began this week on one of the largest floating solar arrays in the nation, in the Borough of Sayreville, New Jersey. Along with the project development team, two local educational partners will also participate, providing valuable services to their special needs clients. [Water Online]

 

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