May 24 Energy News

May 24, 2016


¶ The private sector is leapfrogging inefficient state-owned utilities in Africa to deliver electricity to rural people, according to a report by consulting firm PwC. An estimated 80% of those without electricity live in rural areas, where transmission are excessively expensive. [BDlive]

Renewable energy programs aim to bring power to remote locations. File picture: CIRCA

Renewable energy programs aim to bring power
to remote locations. File picture: CIRCA

¶ A strike over new labor laws has spread to all of France’s eight oil refineries, the CGT union says, in an escalating dispute with the government. An estimated 20% of gas stations have either run dry or are low on supplies. Clashes broke out at the refinery at Fos-sur-Mer in Marseille. [BBC]

¶ The owner of London Taxi Company, the manufacturer of London’s iconic black cabs, has reportedly raised $400 million in new funding through a green bonds sale. These new funds will reportedly be used to electrify the company’s fleet offerings, such as the recently revealed hybrid TX5. [CleanTechnica]

London electric taxi.

London electric taxi.

¶ Ecotricity announced it has gained planning permission to build two new solar farms at existing wind farm sites in Devon and Leicestershire. This follows approval of 5 MW of solar capacity at a wind farm in Lincolnshire, which is expected to be the first ‘hybrid energy park’ in Britain. [Business Green]

¶ Offshore contractor Subsea 7 SA said it has been awarded a contract worth over $1 billion for the 588-MW Beatrice wind project off Scotland. The company has been selected by Beatrice Offshore Windfarm Ltd to supply the turbine foundations and array cables for the project. [SeeNews Renewables]

Offshore wind turbines. Featured Image: Eugene Suslo /

Offshore wind turbines. Eugene Suslo /


¶ MGM Resorts International said it plans to leave NV Energy in the fall and pay an $87 million exit fee to do so, while Wynn Resorts is planning a similar move. The casino giants filed paperwork with the Public Utilities Commission of Nevada, after months talks on costs. [PennEnergy]

¶ An energy bill released by key lawmakers in the Massachusetts House would require the state’s utilities to enter into long-term contracts to buy more offshore wind and hydro-power. The bill would require solicitation of contracts of 15 to 20 years for 1,200 MW of offshore wind power by 2027. []

Associated Press photo.

Associated Press photo.

¶ A solar array approximately 60 to 80 times more powerful than any currently in the state may be coming to hundreds of acres in Fitzwilliam, New Hampshire. Ranger Solar of Yarmouth, Maine, is proposing to install a solar array of 60 to 80 MW on privately held property. [The Keene Sentinel]

¶ A trio of non-profits has come out with a report that makes a strong case for deploying energy storage plus on-site solar for low-income rental housing in California. The analysis says that under today’s market conditions, the combo would cut electricity bills practically nothing. [CleanTechnica]

Image (screenshot): via The Clean Energy Group.

Image (screenshot): via The Clean Energy Group.

¶ Online solar energy marketplace Geostellar has partnered with Etsy on a pilot program so members of the Etsy community can install solar PV systems at a discount, the companies say. Apparently they plan to use emissions reductions in aggregate to offset shipping emissions. [CleanTechnica]

¶ TVA’s Watts Bar Unit 2 reactor achieved initial criticality Monday, beginning its first sustained nuclear fission reaction. Meanwhile, the NRC is holding a public meeting today to discuss TVA’s response to a letter the NRC wrote over working conditions a the plant. [Knoxville News Sentinel]

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