November 6 Energy News

November 6, 2016


¶ “Climate change: What does it mean for Canada and how can we respond?” • Climate change is the biggest health threat of the 21st century, the World Health Organization says. Canada has already seen health impacts from increased air pollution from wildfires, the spread of Lyme disease, and other health issues. [Canada News]

Climate change in the North

Climate change in the North

Science and Technology:

¶ For every tonne of C02 a person produces (the amount of CO2 from burning 100 gallons of gasoline), three square meters of Arctic sea ice melts, according to researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Meteorology in Germany, the National Snow and Ice Data Center in Colorado, and the University College London in the UK. [DailyQuint]

¶ Burning fossil fuels and emissions of other greenhouse gases mean more of the earth’s heat that would have been radiated back to space is trapped at lower levels of the atmosphere. Cooling in the stratosphere is causing it to shrink, lowering that layer by “a number of kilometres”, according to NASA. [The Sydney Morning Herald]

The Paris climate agreement, in effect on November 4 (Photo: AP)

The Paris climate agreement, in effect on November 4 (Photo: AP)


¶ Western Queensland is becoming a major hub for solar energy, with the state’s largest solar power farm soon to go online and construction of another major project about to get underway. Six solar projects partially funded by the Australian Renewable Energy Agency were either recently completed or being built. [ABC Online]

¶ Sir Ed Davey, the UK’s Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change from 2012 to 2015, has actually had to resort to a Freedom of Information request for a report he commissioned himself. And his request has been turned down, an act he calls “an abuse of power.” It is on the true costs of different electricity sources. []

The true cost of wind power - now, it seems, a state secret  (Photo: Graham / Rex Shutterstock)

The true cost of wind power – a state secret?
(Photo: Graham / Rex Shutterstock)

¶ In Papua New Guinea, the Chief Executive Officer of PNG Power Limited says the government power company received an unsolicited proposal from Australian company, Mayur, to build coal-fired power plants in Lae, the second largest city, and other centers. The government has environmental concerns and is being cautious. [EMTV Online]

¶ The 2016 Vendee Globe, a non-stop round-the-world single-handed sailing race, starts on Sunday, November 6. One skipper is planning to become the first to race around the world using only 100% natural energy, with no fossil fuels. The sails have flexible solar cells on them, and the boat’s forward motion drives a generator. []

Foresight Natural Energy (© Jean Marie Liot / DPPI)

Foresight Natural Energy (© Jean Marie Liot / DPPI)

¶ Japan and India are set to sign a controversial civil nuclear deal this week, reports said on Sunday, as the two Asian allies look to boost economic and security ties to counter China. India will be the first non-signatory to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons to reach such a nuclear deal with Japan. [South China Morning Post]

¶ African countries are adopting renewable energy strategies at a national levels to meet growing demand, according to a new report, “Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency in Developing Countries: Contributions to Reducing Global Emissions.” The report notes that these efforts could inspire similar efforts on a worldwide basis. [Face 2 Face]

The Noor solar plant in Morocco (Photo Credit: NPR)

The Noor solar plant in Morocco (Photo Credit: NPR)


¶ New Hampshire Senator Kelly Ayotte is the only Republican senator in a competitive race who admits humans are behind climate change and who backs President Obama’s plan to cut greenhouse gas emissions. Her stance cost millions of dollars in lost funding from the climate-denial-backing oil billionaire Koch brothers. [The Intercept]

¶ Alpha Omega, a winery in Rutherford, California, has placed into operation a new solar system featuring a “fully integrated” solar and battery facility back-up power system. The multi-million dollar microgrid system has already drastically reduced Alpha Omega’s average monthly PG&E bill from $15,000 to $1,000. [Napa Valley Register]

Alpha Omega's solar awnings (Photo: Bob McClenahan)

Alpha Omega’s solar awnings (Photo: Bob McClenahan)

¶ FuelCell Energy, Inc, a leader in the design, manufacture, operation, and service of fuel cell power plants, announced the completion of construction and commercial operation of a previously announced 5.6-MW fuel cell project on the Pfizer research and development facility in Groton, Connecticut. [DirectorsTalk Interviews]

¶ The Red Lake Band of Chippewa in northern Minnesota intends to build enough solar energy capability on tribal lands over the next few years to free itself from electricity generated from fossil fuels. Given outside investors who can tap of tax credits, depreciation and deductions, it will cost the tribe very little. [Minneapolis Star Tribune]

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