February 6 Energy News

February 6, 2017

Opinion:

¶ “The clean energy juggernaut can’t be stopped now” • Investors have always held concerns about policy risk in renewable energy, but the basic direction of travel now seems set. As costs continue to fall and economic fundamentals now compete with other forms of power generation, the importance of subsidies is falling away. [The Fifth Estate]

Wind turbines in Iowa (Tony Webster, Wikimedia Commons)

Wind turbines in Iowa (Tony Webster, Wikimedia Commons)

Science and Technology:

¶ South Australian company 1414 Degrees developed technology to store electricity as thermal energy by heating and melting containers full of silicon, at a tenth of the cost for lithium-ion batteries. Silicon is the second most abundant element in the earth’s crust, and one tonne can store enough energy to power
28 houses for a day. [Electronics News]

World:

¶ Spanish wind turbine-maker Gamesa will facilitate around ₹17,500 crore ($2.63 billion) of investment in wind, solar and wind-solar hybrid power projects in the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh, a top official said. He said Gamesa intends to facilitate investors setting up wind, solar and wind-solar hybrid power projects. [ETEnergyworld.com]

Suzlon wind turbine

Suzlon wind turbine

¶ Being rich in fossil energy resources the Islamic Republic of Iran has opted to turn its attention to renewable energy. The country plans to establish renewable energy power plants with
a total capacity of 5,000 MW. The Energy Minister said that foreigners will invest some $3 billion in Iranian solar power plants in the near future. [AzerNews]

¶ Gamesa has opened a new wind turbine blade factory in the Nellore region, in the state of Andhra Pradesh. Construction of the new factory, which will be one of the company’s largest in India, has been supported by the company’s growth plans, which predict a capital expenditure of more than €100 million through 2017. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

Blade making

Blade making

¶ China’s smog-hit capital Beijing plans to cut coal consumption by a further 30% in 2017 as part of its efforts to combat its air pollution, the official Xinhua news agency said. Beijing promised to implement “extraordinary” measures this year in a bid to tackle choking smog from traffic congestion and the heavy use of coal. [ETEnergyworld.com]

¶ The Australian Energy Market Operator says it is confident that adjustments made to wind farm software will prevent the South Australia blackout from being repeated. He said the blackout in South Australia in September, which has set off a huge political debate about renewable energy across the country, would not be repeated. [RenewEconomy]

Australian wind turbines

Australian wind turbines

¶ Another robot has been developed for the elusive goals of locating the melted fuel and surveying the interior of the No 1 reactor at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant. TEPCO, operator of the plant, plans to deploy the robot into the No 1 reactor before the end of March to find melted nuclear fuel and assess its condition. [Asahi Shimbun]

US:

¶ In America’s breadbasket, the economic realities of climate change are a critical business issue, but frank discussion is often complicated by politics and social pressure, so they get disguised as something else. Perhaps no one is as aware of the climate and its impact on the earth than a farmer, and the New York Times recently featured one from Kansas. [HPPR]

Soy beans (Credit: US Department of Agriculture)

Soy beans in a no-till field (Credit: US Department of Agriculture)

¶ Altus Power America, Inc announced the completion of a
1,672-kW rooftop-mounted solar energy system in Framingham, Massachusetts. The solar system is sited on the rooftops of the Shoppers World complex, a large retail shopping center owned by DDR Corp. The system is expected produce 2,133,000 kWh
in its first year. [Your Renewable News]

¶ Three scientific advocacy groups have filed a legal brief in support of federal climate scientists who are being sued by the conservative organization Judicial Watch. Judicial Watch has sought to force the NOAA to release 8,000 pages of researchers’ communications regarding a peer-reviewed paper published in the journal Science. [InsideClimate News]

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