April 6 Energy News

April 6, 2016

Opinion:

Hey, Bill Gates, our ‘energy miracles’ are already here • The transformation from a fossil fuel-based global economy, to one that is powered by a decentralized mix of renewables is happening far faster than anyone anticipated, according to Michael Liebreich of Bloomberg New Energy Finance. [Mashable]

Photo by Chen Yibao - Imaginechina

Photo by Chen Yibao – Imaginechina

Science and Technology:

¶ A new study from the Institute for New Economic Thinking at the Oxford Martin School and the Smith School for Enterprise and Environment, University of Oxford shows “we are uncomfortably close to the point where the world’s energy system commits the planet to exceeding 2°C.” [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ A new alliance of renewable energy, natural gas, and energy intensive industry trade bodies published a declaration warning without reforming planned EU Internal Energy Market the bloc will struggle to deploy smart grid technologies that promise to cut costs and carbon emissions. [Business Green]

More flexible grid management capabilities are needed.

More flexible grid management capabilities are needed.

¶ Ireland’s Mainstream Renewable Power said today that all 35 turbines have been installed at the 80-MW Noupoort wind farm in South Africa, with the project on track for a July 2016 start of commercial operations. Erection of the turbines started in December, 2015. [SeeNews Renewables]

¶ Ontario plans a Request for Qualifications process for 930 MW of renewable energy under its Large Renewable Procurement by August 1. The province will seek up to 600 MW of wind, up to 250 MW of PV, up to 50 MW of hydropower and up to 30 MW of bioenergy. [SeeNews Renewables]

Wind and sun. Author: Gerry Machen. License: Creative Commons, Attribution-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic.

Wind and sun. Author: Gerry Machen. License: Creative Commons, Attribution-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic.

¶ The Miyazaki branch of the Fukuoka High Court ruled that the reactors at the Sendai power plant should be allowed to stay online. The verdict represents a victory for an industry struggling to restore atomic power five years after a series of meltdowns at the Fukushima plant. [ABC Online]

US:

¶ Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin and the leaders of the House and Senate agreed Tuesday that the state should consider purchasing the hydroelectric dams on the Connecticut and Deerfield rivers. Their owner, TransCanada, has announced it wants to sell 13 dams. [Seven Days]

Gov. Peter Shumlin speaks, flanked by (l-r) House Speaker Shap Smith, Senate Pro Tem John Campbell, and Secretary of Administration Justin Johnson. Nancy Remsen

Governor Peter Shumlin speaks, flanked by (l-r) House Speaker Shap Smith, Senate Pro Tem John Campbell, and Secretary of Administration Justin Johnson. Nancy Remsen

¶ Utility regulators announced that Southern California could face 14 days of rolling blackouts if the Southern California Gas Co’s Aliso Canyon energy facility above Porter Ranch remains depleted. The warning is the latest reverberation from the largest natural gas leak in US history. [Press-Enterprise]

¶ The Co-op Power renewable energy cooperative awaiting startup of its Northeast Biodiesel plant at the Greenfield Industrial Park has received a long-delayed interconnection agreement for another project at the same site, a 595-kW community-shared solar project. [The Recorder]

¶ New York State’s first community choice aggregation under Governor Cuomo’s watch, is now expected to start supplying customers with electricity on May 1, 2016. Of the 20 participating Sustainable Westchester communities, 14 opted for 100% green energy as a default. [CleanTechnica]

Mamaroneck, New York by WalkingGeek via Flickr (CC BY SA, 2.0 License)

Mamaroneck, New York by WalkingGeek via Flickr (CC BY SA, 2.0)

¶ Even as construction of two nuclear reactors at Plant Vogtle remain behind schedule and over budget, Georgia Power is seeking permission from regulators to look at constructing a new reactor. Nuclear plants take much longer to build than those fueled by natural gas or renewables. [The Augusta Chronicle]

¶ US regulators have given the green light for the 287-MW Soda Mountain solar project in California. The decision was based on a revised project design by BLM and project developer Soda Mountain Solar. The project is located six miles southwest of Baker in southern California. [reNews]

¶ The Alevo Group agreed with Ormat Technologies to construct a 10-MW energy storage project at the Rabbit Hill substation in Georgetown, Texas. A comparison with a similar installation suggests this may have a capacity of 5 MWh. It will be owned and operated by the two companies. [CleanTechnica]

Rendering of storage facility. Alevo image

Rendering of storage facility. Alevo image

¶ A legislative committee has reached a deal on a bill designed to help shape the future of solar energy use in Massachusetts by making it easier to get credit for generating extra power from solar panels. A six-member House and Senate committee agreed on the bill’s final language. [Concord Monitor]

¶ The Vermont Public Service Board approved Green Mountain Power’s plans for using over $300,000 from a Nuclear Electric Insurance Limited fund to support renewable energy projects. The periodic fund allocation stems from GMP’s former ownership stake in Vermont Yankee. [vtdigger.org]

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