December 5 Energy News

December 5, 2016


¶ “Reliable renewable electricity is possible if we make smart decisions now” • Our recent research took a highly conservative approach to testing the cost question. With very conservative assumptions, we found that strategies to manage the variability of renewable resources were effective in a 100% renewable energy mix. [EconoTimes]

Wattle Point wind farm near Edithburgh, South Australia (Photo: ScottDavis / Wikimedia)

Wattle Point wind farm near Edithburgh, South Australia
(Photo: ScottDavis / Wikimedia)

¶ “Push towards renewable energy in India indicates coal is becoming yesterday’s fuel source” • Revelations that Labor has plans to progressively retire Australia’s coal-fired power stations put the cat among the energy pigeons. But, the fact is Australia is being buffeted by winds of change blowing far from our shores. [Courier Mail]

¶ “Through climate change denial, we’re ceding global leadership to China” • China was no more prepared for the results of the American election than the US. But it has been quick to size up the environmental implications of a Trump victory, and officials in Beijing are contriving to cast China in a fresh leadership role. [Los Angeles Times]

Shenzhen has won awards for its efforts to tackle climate change. (Brent Ng / Associated Press)

Shenzhen has won awards for its efforts to tackle climate change.
(Brent Ng / Associated Press)


¶ As Liberians await the first 22-MW turbine at the Mt Coffee Hydro Power Plant to go online on December 15, the ‘Liberia Energy Access Practitioner’ group has been launched to help government decentralize energy to rural areas in the country. The program was organized by Mercy Corps with funding from the EU. [Liberian Daily Observer]

¶ About 20,000 passengers were stranded at an airport in Chengdu, China as flights were grounded because of heavy smog and a thick fog that left the city in a dark haze. The air quality index in Chengdu registered 280, a level considered “very unhealthy.” In some industrial cities south of Beijing, the air quality levels reach up to 875. [Digital Journal]

Pollution is a popular discussion topic on social media. (File photo: Fred Dufour, AFP)

Pollution is a popular discussion topic on social media.
(File photo: Fred Dufour, AFP)

¶ The European Commission, the legislative arm of the EU, will publish a draft law allowing higher payment for surplus energy. Much of the money set aside by the law will be funneled to renewable energy companies, so they can provide electricity only when it is needed rather than simply generating as much as possible. [Hydrogen Fuel News]

¶ An initiative by youth organisations in Cameroon to turn human waste into biogas is reducing pollution and providing cheap, renewable energy. A non-governmental organisation run by young people, Bioenergy-Cameroon, installs equipment that converts waste from septic tanks and pit latrines into biogas. [New Straits Times Online]

Bioreactor in Cameroon (Photo: Bioenergy-Cameroon)

Filling a bioreactor in Cameroon (Photo: Bioenergy-Cameroon)


¶ Throngs of veterans from the group “Veterans Stand for Standing Rock” were arriving at the freezing Dakota Access Pipeline protest site on Sunday, one day before authorities are expected to remove protesters. The group said more than 2,000 veterans had signed up to support members of the Standing Rock Sioux tribe. [CNN]

¶ On Sunday afternoon, tribe members and their numerous allies celebrated, crying tears of joy, over the fact the pipeline project would be rerouted away from land that’s deemed sacred. Even so, the decision to re-route the Dakota Access Pipeline could be reversed once President Barack Obama leaves office next month. [CNN]

Snow covers the camp on November 30.

Snow covers the camp on November 30.

¶ The Solar Energy Industries Association reports that over 147 solar companies employ nearly 2000 people in Connecticut. The installed capacity of solar PVs in Connecticut is 265 MW, ranking it 17th in the US. The state’s 2015 solar installation ranks 14th nationally, growing 64% in 2015, with 91 MW installed for the year. [CleanTechnica]

¶ Comments from utility DTE Energy’s CEO Gerry Anderson provided may be the best assessment of the future of coal: “I don’t know anybody in the country who would build another coal plant.” He says coal is dying because of its cost, and that is the case “regardless of what Trump may or may not do with the Clean Power Plan.” []

Michigan coal plant (DTE Energy image)

Michigan coal plant (DTE Energy image)

¶ The environmental group Hudson River Sloop Clearwater sued New York regulators over their subsidies for upstate nuclear power plants. Clearwater wants the court to vacate a part of the state’s Clean Energy Standard that would pay zero-emission credits to three generators that could have closed as early as next year. [RTO Insider]

¶ Scientists recognize that a waterborne disease sickening tens of thousands of people each year is associated with warmer waters of the Gulf of Mexico moving northward, partly due to climate change. While it is rare in New Hampshire and Maine, scientists have seen cases elsewhere in New England and expect it to spread. [Torrington Register Citizen]


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