April 22 Energy News

April 22, 2017

Opinion:

¶ “Defend Science on Earth Day and Beyond” • On April 22, 1970, 20 million Americans participated in the first Earth Day – a nation-wide demonstration to advocate for a healthier planet. This marked the start of the modern environmental movement. Indeed, the first Earth Day led to the passage of a slew of environmental laws. [Huffington Post]

Earth Day 2010, Washington Mall

¶ “Even Nixon was a ’70s environmentalist: How bipartisanship made Earth Day a success” • Republican Representative Paul “Pete” McCloskey is largely a footnote in the history of the modern environmental movement. Yet his partnership with Wisconsin Democratic Senator Gaylord Nelson made the first one a success. [Idaho Statesman]

¶ “March for Science Chicago expects more than 45,000 to attend Saturday” • The first March for Science Chicago will take place on Earth Day on Saturday amid growing concern from environmental groups and scientists about climate change and other environmental issues. Similar events are scheduled around the world. [Chicago Tribune]

Chicago (Brian Cassella | Chicago Tribune 2015)

World:

¶ Britain went a full day without using coal to generate electricity for the first time since the Industrial Revolution, the National Grid says. Friday is thought to be the first time the nation has not used coal to generate electricity since the world’s first centralized public coal-fired generator opened in 1882, at Holborn Viaduct in London. [BBC]

¶ The lithium-ion battery manufacturer LG Chem has launched a residential battery systems line in the North American market, following completion of UL certification. Two different voltage options are available, a low-voltage 48-V option and a high-voltage 400-V option. Several different sizes are available, up to 9.8 kWh. [CleanTechnica]

LG Chem home energy storage system

¶ French authorities have authorized plans for France’s largest offshore wind farm, over seven times the size of the current largest. The developer, Ailes Marines, will build off the coast of Brittany and has set the construction date for 2020. It will have a capacity of 493 MW, and will provide enough energy for 850,000 people. [The Local France]

¶ The Indian government plans to auction wind power projects of about 4 GW capacity in tranches this year, according to a senior official. The expectation is that five to six gigawatts of wind capacity will be auctioned off every year until 2022, to meet India’s commitment to have 60 GW of wind capacity installed by that date. [ETEnergyworld.com]

Indian wind farm

¶ Apple’s new data center in Denmark is set to distribute its heat into the local district heating network. The data center will be partly powered by recycling farm waste. Apple is working with Aarhus University on a system that passes agricultural waste through a digester to generate methane, which is then used to power the data center. [Decentralized Energy]

¶ Up to 200 jobs will be created as a Scottish dry dock comes out of a 23-year hibernation during the construction of what is said to be the world’s largest floating wind farm. Kishorn dry dock in the Highlands will be used to help build floating turbines for Kincardine Offshore’s 50-MW development off the coast of Aberdeen. [Aberdeen Evening Express]

Pumping out Kishorn dry dock (Kincardine Offshore | PA)

US:

¶ Oil giant Exxon Mobil will not be allowed to resume drilling in Russia after US President Donald Trump vowed to uphold sanctions. It had been reported that Exxon, the world’s largest publicly traded oil company, had sought a dispensation. The US and European Union imposed economic sanctions on Russia in 2014. [BBC News]

¶ Two natural-gas leaks in Rhode Island got the attention of the multinational companies that own the pipelines. But it’s unclear what is being done and what damage has been done. One leak, in South Providence, disrupted the gas service for National Grid customers. The other was in an Algonquin natural-gas pipeline in Burrillville. [ecoRI news]

Environmental crew (Tim Faulkner | ecoRI News)

¶ The Korea Electric Power Corp will enter the rapidly growing virtual power plant market in the US as part of efforts to find new growth engines. The state-run utility said it signed an agreement with KOKAM, a local lithium polymer battery maker for energy storage systems, and Sunverge, a renewable energy management firm. [koreatimes]

¶ NRG Energy, a power producer based in New Jersey, finished a 20-MW solar farm in California for leading IT and networking firm Cisco. The plant is on 60 hectares in the Lower Colorado River Valley region. It will generate power for use at the company’s San Jose headquarters under a 20-year power purchase agreement. [PV-Tech]

NRG solar farm (Source: NRG Energy)

¶ In 2015 the New Mexico utility PNM created a subsidiary to buy a coal mine that supplies its San Juan Generating Station. Now all of a sudden PNM has announced a new energy plan that shuts down part of the power plant in just a few months, with the remaining units following those into the dustbin by 2022. [CleanTechnica]

¶ Members of the planning commission in Vernon, Vermont, have drawn up a plan, “Re-energizing Vernon.” In it, they explore the possibility of a multi-fuel, clean-energy, affordable micro-grid on the site of the closed Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant. Important components would include the 32-MW Vernon dam and batteries. [Rutland Herald]

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