August 13 Energy News

August 13, 2016


¶ Global alcohol company Diageo intends to get all of its power from renewable sources by 2030 after seeing its energy use fall 10% in its latest reporting year. The company said in its report that it had seen an increased stakeholder focus on climate change. Its brands include Guinness, Johnnie Walker, Smirnoff, and Gordon’s. [Clean Energy News]

Roseisle Stillhouse, one of Diageo's distilleries. Image: Diageo.

Roseisle Stillhouse, one of Diageo’s distilleries. Image: Diageo.

¶ US tech giant Apple has been given the go-ahead to develop a data center in the west of Ireland that will be powered by 30 MW of renewables. National planners An Bord Pleanala approved the first phase of the scheme in Athenry this week. The company is expected to power a 30 MW phase one with onshore wind. [reNews]

¶ The UK’s surging solar PV capacity has helped the country to a new quarterly renewable generation record. In Q1 2016 renewables generated 25.1% of the UK’s electricity despite lower than expected wind speeds and rainfall. That figure was up 2.3 percentage points on generation recorded in Q1 2015. [Solar Power Portal]

Lightsource solar farm.

Lightsource solar farm.

¶ Macquarie Capital and Macquarie Commodities and Financial Markets have reached financial close on £900 million of funding for the 299-MW Tees renewable energy plant in the northeast of England. The biomass combined heat and power plant will be the world’s largest new-build biomass plant when completed. [reNews]

¶ Scotland is pledging to reach 100% renewable sustainability for energy production by the year 2020, a reasonable goal after meeting 100% of the energy demand through wind power alone for a day. Scotland is believed to have the largest oil reserves in Europe, but has proven they largely do not need it. [Interesting Engineering]

Scotland’s wind turbines (Image: Dorli Photography)

Scotland’s wind turbines (Image: Dorli Photography)

¶ Britain’s Chinese partner in the Hinkley Point power station deal has been accused of plotting to steal US nuclear secrets. A nuclear engineer for state-owned China General Nuclear is accused of setting up US experts to obtain sensitive information, confirming the worst suspicions of critics of the UK-Chinese nuclear deal. [Sputnik International]

¶ The Indian Ministry of Shipping is planning to install almost 83 MW of solar PV panels at the country’s 12 major ports. The port plans are part of the Green Port Initiative undertaken by India’s Shipping Ministry, which aims to cut the cost of purchasing power from the grid. The 12 ports handle 61% of India’s cargo traffic. [Energy Digital]

The plans are part of the Indian Shipping Ministry's Green Port Initiative.

The plans are part of the Indian Shipping Ministry’s Green Port Initiative.

¶ Of Japan’s 43 ‘operable’ nuclear reactors, few are actually running, as renewables and a 12% fall in demand eat into their market. And while Japan’s ‘nuclear village’ defends safety standards, the IAEA, tasked with promoting nuclear power worldwide, has expressed deep concerns over the country’s safety regulation. [The Ecologist]


¶ In less than five years, the Army has engaged in 127 energy-saving projects with the private sector that now exceed $1 billion in investments, according to the Secretary of the Army. He explained that these projects were undertaken in response to a challenge from President Obama to save energy. [Product Design & Development]

Solar array at Tooele Army Depot in Utah. Image credit: US Army Corps of Engineers.

Solar array at Tooele Army Depot, Utah. US Army Corps of Engineers photo.

¶ SolarCity and Balfour Beatty Communities, managing member of military housing projects located at Fort Detrick, Maryland, and Fort Carson, Colorado, have completed the installation of more than 18,000 solar panels at Army family housing. The installations total more than 4.7 MW of solar power generation capacity. [PennEnergy]

¶ Facing high summer temperatures that strain power supplies, Vermont utilities issued peak alerts yesterday asking customers to reduce their energy use. Meanwhile, Renewable Energy Vermont says that renewables, including wind and solar power, are helping to reduce both peak costs and use of fossil fuels. [North American Windpower]

Vermont Law School 9.36 kW solar array. Photo by SayCheeeeeese. CC BY-SA 1.0 Wikimedia Commons.

Vermont Law School 9.36 kW solar array. Photo by
SayCheeeeeese. CC BY-SA 1.0 Wikimedia Commons.

¶ Neste Renewable Diesel is now being used by the Sacramento County, California. By doing so, the county will reduce greenhouse gas emissions from its fleet by up to 80%. The county estimates that greenhouses gas emissions will be reduced by about 8,000 tons per year. The switch does not require engine modifications. [Energy Global]

¶ NRG Energy has agreed to pay up to $188 million to buy wind and solar projects from bankrupt SunEdison in Texas and other states. NRG, based in Houston and New Jersey, was seemingly scaling back its renewable-power focus after a CEO change last year. But the company says that’s not the case. [Houston Chronicle]

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