July 22 Energy News

July 22, 2016

Science and Technology:

¶ A recent drought shut down the Amazon Basin’s carbon sink, the ability of a natural zone to absorb CO2 from the atmosphere, by killing trees and slowing trees’ growth rates, a study has shown. In the first basin-wide study of the impacts of the 2010 drought, data showed trees’ mortality rate went up while growth rates declined. [BBC]

The vast tropical forests of Amazonia account for almost one-fifth of the world's terrestrial vegetation carbon stock. Roel Brienen.

The vast tropical forests of Amazonia account for almost
one-fifth of the world’s terrestrial vegetation carbon stock. Roel Brienen.

World:

¶ The European Commission presented proposals on binding greenhouse gas emissions intended to “set clear and fair guiding principles to Member States to prepare for the future and keep Europe competitive.” The plan would ensure that all Member States reduce the emissions by at least 40% from 1990 levels by 2030. [CleanTechnica]

¶ South African utility Eskom may refuse to enter into new deals with independent power producers beyond those currently in progress, local media reported. Eskom’s chairman said the utility’s board had concerns about the IPP programme, and it wanted the government to analyse the implications for Eskom. [SeeNews Renewables]

The Darling wind farm in South Africa. Author: warrenski. License: Creative Commons, Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic

The Darling wind farm in South Africa. Author: warrenski.
License: Creative Commons, Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic.

¶ Donald Trump claims that planning conditions have been breached on Vattenfall AB’s 92.4-MW Aberdeen offshore wind farm. The Scotsman reported that Trump’s company plans to file formal written objections, and the paper cited a spokeswoman as accusing Aberdeen City Council officials of “gross incompetence.” [SeeNews Renewables]

¶ Residents in Orkney are to benefit from a new smart-control energy system linking the renewable energy generated from wind turbines to the heating systems in their homes. The project will use the excess electricity that cannot feed into the grid and divert it to newly-installed heating devices in domestic properties. [Blue & Green Tomorrow]

South Ronaldsay is one of the Orkney Islands. Photo by John Haslam. CC BY-SA 2.0. Wikimedia Commons.

South Ronaldsay is one of the Orkney Islands.
Photo by John Haslam. CC BY-SA 2.0. Wikimedia Commons.

¶ Energy giant EDF will make its long-awaited final decision on the planned nuclear power station at Hinkley Point next week. The company has called a meeting of its board of directors on July 28. The agenda includes the final investment decision on the construction of two reactors at Hinkley Point C in Somerset. [Energy Voice]

¶ Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s unabashed ambition to transform the country’s energy sector into a world-leader for renewables looks to have won over a series of the industry’s typically more curmudgeonly opponents, big oil and the fossil fuel industry. A number of the biggest companies are investing in solar power. [pv magazine]

Leading big oil, coal, and gas giants of India are beginning to see the benefits of solar power. IBC Solar

Leading big oil, coal, and gas giants of India are
beginning to see the benefits of solar power. IBC Solar.

US:

¶ Elon Musk, Tesla Motors chief executive, has unveiled a ‘master plan’ for his company to broaden its product portfolio into electric trucks and buses, car sharing and solar energy systems. The strategy additionally includes plans to go into more competitive markets to develop car and ride-sharing programs. [E&T magazine]

¶ The Obama administration announced that it will make $4.5 billion in DOE loan guarantees available for the support of a commercial-scale electric vehicle charging station buildout. The DOE will partner with car makers, in the move, which is to support the faster and easier adoption of electric vehicles over the coming years. [CleanTechnica]

EV charging. Photo by Cynthia Shahan for CleanTechnica & EV Obsession.

EV charging. Photo by Cynthia Shahan for CleanTechnica & EV Obsession.

¶ East Kentucky Power Cooperative filed the request with the Kentucky Public Service Commission according to a news release issued by Farmers RECC. If approved, the installation would be one of Kentucky’s largest solar farms, covering 60 acres of land and providing power from more than 32,000 PV panels. [Glasgow Daily Times]

¶ Phoenix-based Republic Services Inc and Ponte Vedra, Florida-based Mas Energy LLC have unveiled a series of landfill-gas-to-energy projects in the Atlanta area. The three systems are located at landfills in the cities of Buford, Griffin and Winder, Georgia. Together, the facilities are capable of generating 24.1 MW. [Recycling Today]

Republic landfill gas site.

Republic landfill gas facility.

¶ A coalition of over 150 local businesses and institutions ranging from farms and credit unions, to hotels, main street shops, manufacturers and solar companies has sent a joint letter to the Vermont Public Service Board urging the regulators to support renewable energy and protect the state’s net energy metering program. [Solar Industry]

¶ Target Corp has expanded its commitment to renewable energy. The discounter kicked off its first wind power partnership, buying a portion of the energy produced by Starwood Energy Group’s 211-MW Stephens Ranch Wood Project, to offset 100% of the energy used at all 60 Target stores in the state of Texas. [Chain Store Age]

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