September 20 Energy News

September 20, 2016


¶ “Oil Investment Crash Could Continue For Another Year” Investment in upstream operations in the oil and gas industry shrank by a quarter last year and is expected to continue to shrink this year by another 24%. Next year the trend could continue, for the longest investment decline period in the history of the industry. []

Offshore oil rig

Offshore oil rig

¶ “The Energy Policies Of The 2016 US Presidential Candidates” There has been increasing attention on the energy policies of the candidates. Here is a summary produced by identifying and comparing the energy policies of the two candidates based on their published positions and their public statements. [CleanTechnica]


¶ The price of solar PV continues to fall. On Monday, a new record low of 2.42¢/kWh was set in a tender for a large solar park in Abu Dhabi, not by an industry outlier but by the biggest manufacturer of solar modules in the world, JinkoSolar. Even this could be beaten, as there are reports of another, lower bid coming. [RenewEconomy]

Solar at dawn

The sun is rising. 

¶ In France, 150 single-use cups are tossed every second. Now, France has become the first country to ban disposable plastic cups and plates. A French law says all disposable tableware must be made from 50% biologically-sourced materials that can be composted at home by January of 2020, rising to 60% by January of 2025. [CNN]

¶ TenneT Holding BV, Statnett SF and KfW on Friday held a ground-breaking ceremony for the 1.4-GW NordLink subsea cable project, the first direct link between the Norwegian and German energy markets. The NordLink cable will be 623-km (387-mile) long and is expected to be in operation in 2020. [SeeNews Renewables]

NordLink symbolic cable pulling and ground-breaking ceremony. (Source: TenneT Holding BV)

NordLink cable pulling (ground-breaking) ceremony.
(Source: TenneT Holding BV)

¶ Canada’s federal environment minister made a huge announcement on Canadian television’s Question Period. The central government has come out for nationwide carbon pricing. It will soon levy a minimum national carbon price on any province that lacks adequate plans to reduce its own greenhouse gas emissions. [CleanTechnica]

¶ China has been building two wind turbines every hour, the International Energy Agency told BBC News. This is the world’s biggest program of turbine installation, double that of its nearest rival, the US. The nation’s entire annual increase in energy demand has been fulfilled from the wind. But coal plants are still being built. [BBC]

Huitengxile wind farm, Inner Mongolia, People's Republic of China (Photo by Steven Buss, CC BY SA, Wikimedia Commons)

Huitengxile wind farm, Inner Mongolia
(Photo by Steven Buss, CC BY SA, Wikimedia Commons)

¶ A panel of experts will discuss reforms at TEPCO, including the costly plans to scrap its Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, the Industry minister said. The costs of decommissioning the plant, ravaged by the 2011 triple meltdown, is expected to far exceed the initial estimate of ¥2 trillion ($19.65 billion). [The Japan Times]

¶ A 79-turbine wind project proposed near a shorebird habitat in southwestern Saskatchewan will not go ahead, says the provincial government. The environment ministry said it received 137 responses during a public review period, all but one of which supported wind energy, but expressed concern about this particular location. []

As many as 40,000 to 50,000 sanderlings have been seen at one time at the proposed site. (Submitted by Trevor Herriot)

As many as 40,000 to 50,000 sanderlings have been seen at
one time at the proposed site. (Submitted by Trevor Herriot)


¶ Wind power has rapidly become a significant source of electricity in the US, doubling its share of generation in just five years, to 4.9% in 2015. The extremely low cost of wind power, along with cheap natural gas, has put tremendous financial pressure on both coal-fired and nuclear power plants. [CleanTechnica]

¶ The nation’s first wave power generators, two state-of-the-art buoys, have just been placed online, off the coast of Hawaii. The system is already generating roughly 22 kW of electric energy. Officials estimate that wave power like this could eventually supply 20% to 28% of the nation’s – not just Hawaii’s – power. [Mother Nature Network]

Wave energy test device (Photo: US Department of Energy)

Wave energy test device (Photo: US Department of Energy)

¶ Avangrid Renewables representatives, joined by Vermont Governor Shumlin and local elected officials, broke ground on Deerfield Wind today in Searsburg, on US Forest land. The 30-MW project will include 15 Gamesa wind turbines, and it will provide enough energy each year for about 14,000 Vermont households. [Vermont Biz]

¶ A Clean Energy Cooperation Statement between Rocky Mountain Power and Salt Lake City lays out how the utility and the city will work together to reach its clean energy goals, and pave the way for the adoption of the new five-year franchise agreement between the city and the electric power utility. [Electric Light & Power]

Salt Lake City

Salt Lake City

¶ A federal appeals court ruled it will take more time to consider a request from the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe for an emergency injunction against the Dakota Access pipeline. But at the same time, the US Army Corps of Engineers issued a Special Use Permit for protesters to legally occupy federal land at Lake Oahe. [CleanTechnica]

¶ Committed to working towards a sustainable future, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America is divesting from its fossil fuel investments. A majority of the 900 voting members approved the resolution at its 2016 Churchwide Assembly on August 13. Over 3.7 million people are baptized members of the church. [CleanTechnica]

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