November 21 Energy News

November 21, 2016


¶ “Solar And Wind Versus Nuclear: Is Baseload Power Obsolete?” Renewables coupled with efficient, cost effective energy storage make grids virtually obsolete. Utility companies are petrified they may become irrelevant and the trillions of dollars invested in building grids throughout the world will no longer produce income. []

Solar installation (via Quora)

Solar installation (via Quora)


¶ S&P Global Platts reports that European power prices spiked
in early November as unscheduled nuclear outages in France continued to squeeze supply margins across Northwest Europe. Doubts continued to assail the market in mid-November, holding baseload prices for next January at up to €140/MWh ($149/kWh). [ScandOil]

¶ Between November 1 and November 15, Brazil’s wind power output rose by 53.6% on the year to an average of 4,817 MW, according to preliminary figures released by the Power Trading Chamber. Wind power’s share of Brazilian power generation grew to 7.8%. Biomass and solar have also shown growth in the period. [SeeNews Renewables]

Wind farm in Brazil. (Author: Otávio Nogueira,  License: Creative Commons, Attribution 2.0 Generic)

Wind farm in Brazil. (Author: Otávio Nogueira, 
License: Creative Commons, Attribution 2.0 Generic)

¶ So far, renewables have played little part in Indonesia’s power sector. Now, an Indonesian marine renewable energy company and a unit of a French state-owned naval defence company aim to be the first to plug into the vast, and as yet untapped, tidal energy potential of the world’s biggest archipelago. [Thomson Reuters Foundation]

¶ A 90-MW battery energy storage system project was officially put into operation in Germany last week. To date, it is the largest implementation of its kind in the country. Six 15-MW lithium-ion battery-based systems have been deployed; one each in Bexbach, Fenne and Weiher and another three in North Rhine-Westphalia. [Energy Matters]

German battery-based system

German battery-based system

¶ Two Chinese firms plan to build a solar power plant in the exclusion zone around the Chernobyl nuclear reactor, which has been off limits since 1986. GCL System Integration Technology and China National Complete Engineering Corp work on the project in Ukraine, with construction expected to start next year. [The Indian Express]

¶ Dong Energy has generated electricity for the first time from its 258-MW Burbo Bank 2 offshore wind farm in Liverpool Bay. The Danish company said the energization of the initial MHI Vestas 8-MW turbines is an “important step in the project.” All 32 turbines are expected to be in place by the first quarter of 2017. [reNews]

Turbine at Burbo 2 (Dong Energy photo)

Turbine at Burbo 2 (Dong Energy photo)


¶ President-elect Donald Trump promised get rid of the Clean Power Plan, and that, he says, would give a boost to the declining US coal industry. But even without the plan, he would probably not reverse a years-long movement away from coal in the US electric power industry, according to the head of one leading electric utility. [Tribune-Review]

¶ The Dakota Access Pipeline protest is turning violent. About 400 protesters clashed with police as demonstrators lit cars on fire and police launched tear gas and water at the crowds. Police said that the protesters “attempted to flank and attack the law enforcement line from the west,” and described their actions as “very aggressive.” [CNN]

Dakota Access Pipeline protest

Dakota Access Pipeline protest

¶ Internal carbon pricing is just starting to catch on in the global business community. Microsoft began what might be described as an internal carbon tax back in 2012. Now, some results are in. During the COP22 climate talks, the company released a white paper that makes a strong business case for an internal carbon fee. [Triple Pundit]

¶ Storms obviously aren’t new at the Norfolk Naval Station, but they are worse than ever – and the Pentagon blames climate change. Legislators have made denial of the effects of carbon emissions into policy, so Pentagon planners sometimes list upgrades to infrastructure as maintenance or repairs to avoid scrutiny from lawmakers. [The Recorder]

Fort Irwin, California (Gina Ferazzi / Los Angeles Times / TNS)

Fort Irwin, California (Gina Ferazzi / Los Angeles Times / TNS)

¶ AWS announced six new solar projects across Virginia. They will help it meet its target of generating 50% of its power using renewable energy sources by the end of 2017. The company hopes one day to be 100% reliable on renewable energy, and the new solar-powered plants are also a significant step towards its short-term goals. [Cloud Pro]

¶ Rawhide Energy Station, 23 miles north of Fort Collins, was once synonymous with coal. Environmental concerns over the burning of coal has prompted the Platte River Power Authority station to broadening its energy portfolio, which took a major diversification step when the Rawhide Flats Solar Project went online. [The Coloradoan]

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