December 23 Energy News

December 23, 2016

World:

¶ Installation of the 18 turbines of the 110.7-MW Nordergruende offshore wind project in the German North Sea has concluded, MPI Offshore Ltd said, as the wind turbine installation vessel MPI Enterprise has finished its work. The wind park is will produce enough power to provide the annual needs of over 70,000 homes. [SeeNews Renewables]

Nordergünde turbine installation (Image by WPD AG)

Nordergünde turbine installation (Image by WPD AG)

¶ In West Bengal, rooftop solar units installed on industrial and corporate establishments by third parties are offering power 30-40% below the rates offered by the state’s power distribution companies. This gap is expected to widen further as thermal power costs will likely rise and solar modules prices fall further. [ETEnergyworld.com]

¶ France has opened what it claims to be the world’s first solar panel road, in a Normandy village. A 1-km (0.6-mile) route in the small village of Tourouvre-au-Perche covered with 2,800 sq m of electricity-generating panels. It cost €5m (£4.2m) to construct and will be used by about 2,000 motorists a day during a two-year test. [The Guardian]

Solar panel road (Photo: Christophe Petit Tesson / EPA)

Solar panel road (Photo: Christophe Petit Tesson / EPA)

¶ Construction of a ­massive solar scheme that will power 26,000 homes is set to begin next month in Queensland after the State Government guaranteed its financial security. The $126 million, 50-MW Kidston solar facility will go ahead with $9 million in federal funding and a funding guarantee from Queensland. [Gold Coast Bulletin]

¶ A patch of land in the shadow of Mount Fuji is becoming a testing ground for energy storage, with some of Japan’s leading companies trying to develop technologies such as spinning flywheels and fuel cells. Yamanashi Prefecture’s government is hoping to make the prefecture a center for development of energy storage. [TODAYonline]

Solar panels in Yamanashi prefecture (Photo: Bloomberg)

Solar panels in Yamanashi prefecture (Photo: Bloomberg)

¶ A rule change means consumers in Alberta can have more flexibility when it comes to generating their own electric power, the government said. Amended regulations on low-carbon power sources allow for more flexibility in grid connectivity and power limits, increasing micro-generation size limits from 1 MW to 5 MW. [UPI.com]

¶ Scottish renewable sources delivered the equivalent of 59.4% of the country’s gross electricity consumption in 2015 – up from 49.9% in 2014. This means that the 2015 50% renewable electricity target has been met and exceeded. Scotland exported 29% of the electricity it generated in 2015 and accounted for 26% of the UK renewable output. [Milngavie Herald]

Renewable energy in Scotland

Renewable energy in Scotland

¶ The Indian government predicted it will exceed the renewable energy target set in Paris last year by nearly half and it also predicted that it will be three years ahead of schedule. This forecast also reflects that the investment by private sectors in Indian renewable energy project has also increased in the past few years. [ScrollToday News]

¶ Half of the UK’s electricity came from wind turbines, solar panels, wood burning and nuclear reactors between July and September. Official figures show low carbon power, supported by the government to meet climate change targets, accounted for 50% of electricity generation in the UK in the third quarter. [The Guardian]

In the London Array (Photo: Bloomberg / Bloomberg via Getty Images)

A boat visiting a turbine in the London Array
(Photo: Bloomberg / Bloomberg via Getty Images)

US:

¶ 8minutenergy Renewables claims to have “the first operational solar PV installation to beat fossil fuel prices in California.” The 155-MW Springbok 2 Solar Farm in Kern County will provide electricity to the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power at $35 to $38 per MWh (adjusted for inflation) over the PPA term. [Greentech Media]

¶ A Montana company has been granted a license to build a $1 billion, 400-MW power storage project in the central part of the stat. The Gordon Butte Pumped Storage Project would use excess power produced by wind farms or other sources to pump water uphill to a 3,000-foot long reservoir, according to the license. [ETEnergyworld.com]

Wind turbines reflected on the water

Wind turbines reflected on the water

¶ Fortune 500 companies have waked up to the potential of low-cost, reliable renewable energy in the last four years. Recently, there has been a flood of announcements. Eighty-three of the largest companies including GM, along with Amazon, Microsoft, Mars, and others have committed to go 100% renewable. [Windpower Engineering]

¶ The Metropolitan Council of Shakopee, Minnesota, together with several partners, is giving a major boost to the Community Solar Garden capacity in the state. In the past several days, CSGs began commercial operations at two of the council’s wastewater treatment plants. One has a capacity of 5 MW, and the other of 3 MW. [SW News Media]

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