October 22 Energy News

October 22, 2016

Financial Woes:

¶ A Fitch Ratings and Bloomberg both warn of a meltdown in the oil industry. The Fitch report warns that this could begin in 2023, based on “an acceleration of the electrification of transport infrastructure,” which it says “would be resoundingly negative for the oil sector’s credit profile.” Bloomberg says it might be as late as 2028. [Gas 2.0]

BNEF oil crash chart (please click on image to enlarge)

BNEF oil crash chart (please click on image for a larger view)

¶ The Dutch cabinet is prepared to help energy company Delta overcome its financial problems, but not by putting money into the Borssele nuclear power plant. Closing the nuclear power plant is not an option because of the €1.3 billion price ticket, but keeping the plant open would only be profitable if electricity prices double. [DutchNews.nl]

World:

¶ A year ago, no one living in Môle-Saint-Nicolas, Haiti, had electricity. By the spring of 2016, the town had a brand new grid, and it will soon run completely on solar and wind energy. Sigora International plans to get electricity to 300,000 people in Haiti by the end of 2017. By the end of 2018, they hope to reach a million people. [Co.Exist]

Electric work in Môle-Saint-Nicolas, Haiti

Electric work in Môle-Saint-Nicolas, Haiti

¶ A rapid transit system coming up near India’s capital, New Delhi, is planning to be the greenest such transport system in the country. It will include several rooftop solar power projects with a total capacity of 12 MW. The planned solar power plants will supply electricity to all 21 stations and offices, as well as the train depot. [CleanTechnica]

¶ The Andaman & Nicobar Islands, long fabled among holiday travellers for legendary beaches, world-class diving and far-flung location in the middle of nowhere, will soon have something else to boast of. The country will have its first city-scale renewable grid system with a combination of solar power plants and battery storage. [Gulf Digital News]

Solar panels on the Andaman & Nicobar Islands

Solar panels on the Andaman & Nicobar Islands

¶ According to a World Bank report, the cost of climate change mitigation could be reduced 32% by 2030, by increasing global cooperation through carbon trading. There are 40 national jurisdictions and over 20 cities, states, and regions, that are already putting a price on carbon, covering 13% of global greenhouse gas emissions. [CleanTechnica]

New Scientist reports on a fascinating new effort underway in Iceland to turn our planet’s gooey innards into a cheap and abundant source of power. If the drill can penetrate to a depth of 3 miles (5 kilometers), it will reach “supercritical steam,” water heated to 1,000° C by lava to have enormous energy potential. [Gizmodo Australia]

Emerging lava

Emerging lava

¶ Plans to build the world’s longest power interconnector, from Iceland to Britain, could be delayed by Britain’s decision to leave the European Union. The two governments agreed last year to jointly study building the 1,000-km IceLink cable, with 1,000 MW of capacity, sufficient to power some 1.6 million homes in the UK. [Investing.com UK]

¶ In a bid to defuse anger over skyrocketing bills, Ontario has a new deal to buy more hydroelectric power from Quebec. The seven-year pact will save the province $70 million, but will also trim 1 million tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions annually by cutting use of natural gas while the Darlington nuclear station is refurbished. [Hamilton Spectator]

Transmission lines (Darren Calabrese, The Canadian Press)

Transmission lines (Darren Calabrese, The Canadian Press)

US:

¶ Engineers from the NASA Glenn Research Center have begun testing new, electric aircraft technologies at a new facility. NASA’s Electric Aircraft Testbed facility will become “a world-class, reconfigurable testbed that will be used to assemble and test the power systems for large passenger airplanes with over 20 MW of power.” [CleanTechnica]

¶ Analysts think we could meet at least a quarter of US electricity needs by harnessing wave power around our coasts. There are technical and financial challenges, however, and advocates of wave energy say the federal government has done too little to encourage research and development in this promising energy sector niche. [The Bradenton Times]

Ocean Power Technologies' PowerBuoy

Ocean Power Technologies’ PowerBuoy

¶ Solar power capacity in the US will have nearly tripled in size in less than three years by 2017, according to monthly data published by the US DOE. This is amid an energy shakeup that has seen natural gas solidify its position as the country’s chief source of electricity and coal power increasingly becoming obsolete. [The Guardian]

¶ The US Energy Information Administration says in its latest report that solar power is the fastest-growing renewable energy source in the United States, and it’s expected to keep growing. The report said the generating capacity of utility-scale solar, rose from 10 GW in 2014, to 27 GW in 2017, for an annual growth rate of 39%. [Inverse]

Installing solar panels

Installing solar panels

¶ The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) has announced $3.5 million in funding available for the private sector with solutions to make it easier, less costly and less time-consuming to connect renewable resources, such as solar and wind, to the electric grid. [North American Windpower]

¶ According to a recent Bloomberg report, May 2017 will be a moment of truth for at least four of the country’s nuclear power plants. That’s when PJM Interconnection, the US’ biggest power market operator, will hold a supply auction. Davis Besse, Beaver Valley, Byron, and Three Mile Island are all expected to submit bids. [Manufacturing.net]

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