November 17 Energy News

November 17, 2016


¶ “Is Renewable Energy Trump-Proof? ” • Donald Trump vowed to “save $100 billion that the United States is spending on climate policies.” His rhetoric on the campaign trail was xenophobic, racist, and misogynistic, Now he’s been elected president. And yet, some renewable energy industry insiders say they’re not too worried. [TakePart]

A wind farm in Sweetwater, Texas. (Photo: Orjan F Ellingvag / Corbis via Getty Images)

A wind farm in Sweetwater, Texas.
(Photo: Orjan F Ellingvag / Corbis via Getty Images)

¶ “Clean Power Is Too Hot for Even Trump to Cool” • Donald Trump was elected president, in part by calling climate change a hoax, vowing to gut most of Obama’s clean-energy policies, and promising to revive coal mining. If recent corporate actions are any indication, a Trump administration won’t slow investments in renewables much. [Bloomberg]


¶ The International Energy Agency, which represents 29 energy-producing countries, says unless more money is spent exploring for and developing new oil fields, demand may outstrip supply early in the next decade. That could see oil prices surging again. Investment in new oil supplies last year was at its lowest since the 1950s. [BBC]

Oil well and camels

Oil well and camels

¶ US Secretary of State John Kerry gave an important speech at the Major Economies Forum of COP22, the UN’s climate change conference in Marrakesh, Morocco. Kerry drew the attention of listeners to melting glaciers, more powerful storms, and record-breaking droughts as incontrovertible evidence of the dangers of climate change. [CleanTechnica]

¶ Morocco is retrofitting 600 of its mosques with renewable energy, switching to efficient LED lighting, electricity from PVs, and solar water heating. The initial plan will be completed by early 2019, with the rest of the country’s 15,000 mosques to follow. The mosques are considered a starting point to raise awareness. [CNN]

Hassan II Mosque in Casablanca

Hassan II Mosque in Casablanca

¶ Renewable energy business Gaelectric is officially opening its County Antrim wind farm. Known as Cloonty, the £13.4-million plant will be Gaelectric’s fourth operating wind farm in Northern Ireland. Its four Enercon wind turbines will generate enough power to meet the annual electricity demand of over 5,000 homes. [Insider Media]

¶ Chile’s central power system saw the share of renewables rise to 17.7% in October 2016, with 778.2 GWh of green power generated, up from 13.4% a year ago. Wind power contributed 5.5% of grid power. Solar stood at 4.4%. Thermal renewable power supplied 4.37% of demand, and hydropower had a 3.4% share. [SeeNews Renewables]

Wind farm in Chile (Author: Diego Correa)

Wind farm in Chile (Author: Diego Correa)

¶ Renewable energy will keep growing in the next few years as costs drop and coal use continues to fall, despite US President-elect Donald Trump’s pledge to revive the fossil fuel, according to investors and analysts. They said possible policy changes under Trump should not dampen current investment in clean energy. []

¶ The International Energy Agency released its annual report, which takes into account economic, technological, and policy developments, and it tries to project the trends that will drive our energy use for decades. This year’s IEA report suggests that a combination of economics and policy will drive an explosion in renewables. [Ars Technica]

Silhouette of wind power stations over the sea at sunset (Photo: Bureau of Ocean Energy Management)

Silhouette of wind power stations over the sea at sunset
(Photo: Bureau of Ocean Energy Management)

¶ Egypt’s minister of electricity and renewable energy said the country is focusing largely on improving the transmission and distribution network to meet the electricity demand. Egypt is also installing coal plants and trying to finalize a contract to build a nuclear power plant with Russian company Rosatom by the end of this year. [Zawya]

¶ China has responded to Trump’s claim that climate change was a Chinese hoax. “If you look at the history of climate change negotiations, actually it was initiated by the IPCC with the support of the Republicans during the Reagan and senior Bush administration during the late 1980s,” the Vice Foreign Minister pointed out. [Science World Report]

In danger of melting due to climate change (Photo : Frances M. Ginter / Getty Images)

In danger of melting due to climate change
(Photo : Frances M. Ginter / Getty Images)


¶ More people in the US are deciding to buy outright their residential solar systems rather than lease solar panels from a third party. Figures from GTM Research suggest that direct ownership will overtake solar leasing for the first time since 2011 next year, with 55% of all new US residential solar capacity owned by customers. [CleanTechnica]

¶ Vasari Energy has expanded its utility-scale solar power project in Maricopa County and Gild Bend, Arizona, doubling the solar generating projects the company has in the state, with a capacity increase from 68 MW to 140 MW. The solar facility sits on a 900-acre development site. It will be connected to the Arizona grid. [Electric Light & Power]

Solar array in Arizona

Solar array in Arizona

¶ The US brewing industry is taking on a leadership position in sustainability. Breweries of all sizes have been investing in high efficiency equipment that cuts down their wastewater while producing usable products including methane gas, potable water and biosolids. That trend is not likely to change at any time in the near future. [CleanTechnica]

¶ General Motors made its largest procurement to date of renewable energy, purchasing enough wind power to provide for the electricity needs of 16 of its US facilities, including a major assembly and stamping complex in Arlington, Texas, offices in Fort Worth and Austin, and 13 parts warehouses east of the Mississippi River. [Justmeans]


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