June 4 Energy News

June 4, 2017

Opinion:

¶ “America Is Acting Like a Rogue State, So We Must All Stand Up for What’s Right” • We knew what was coming. So why did the whole event leave me feeling physically sick and scared to my core? It must have been the sight of Trump’s Breitbart mentors lined up in front of him, all satisfied as he threw his bomb out to the world. [Common Dreams]

Protesters at the White House (Photo: AP)

Science and Technology:

¶ One of the most potentially deadly effects of climate change has been largely undiscussed: an increase in the spread of dangerous epidemics and the risk of a global pandemic. The interactions between climate change and disease are hard to predict with certainty, but the scientific linkages between them are unmistakable. [MetroWest Daily News]

¶ In March 2017, when Arctic sea ice is typically at its maximum winter extent, circling US satellites recorded an extent of just 5.57 million square miles, the lowest maximum in the record’s 38-year history. Now, due to budget cuts, the 38-year continuous US Arctic satellite monitoring program is about to end, leaving scientists blind. [The Wire]

Satellite measuring sea ice (US Air Force image)

World:

¶ US withdrawal from the Paris climate deal can potentially elevate India to a leadership role in the global fight against climate change and sharpen investor focus on the government’s program to build massive renewable energy capacity. The government is working to build 175 GW of renewable energy capacity by 2022. [Times of India]

¶ Prime Minister Modi vowed that India will go “above and beyond” the 2015 Paris Climate Agreement. Speaking at a news conference with French President Macron, Mr Modi described the agreement as part of “our duty to protect Mother Earth.” He has criticized President Trump’s decision to withdraw from the Paris accord. [BBC]

Narendra Modi and Emmanuel Macron (Reuters)

¶ South Australia is seeking final proposals for its battery storage tender from candidates short-listed from the more than 90 expressions of interest received last month. Many developers, analysts, and utilities are saying that battery storage, combined with renewable energy such as wind and solar, is cheaper than existing gas-fired generation. [CleanTechnica]

¶ Solar power is rising again in the UK. Once only for the very well-off, rooftop solar panels are suddenly within the reach of homeowners. Farmers with depleted land find it makes more sense to farm renewable electricity than sheep. Energy-intensive factories are easily persuaded to generate their own power to cut costs. [Telegraph.co.uk]

UK solar array (Tim Ireland | PA Wire)

US:

¶ Philanthropist Michael Bloomberg and others will dig into their own pockets to make sure the Paris climate agreement is met, no matter what happens in Washington. They pledged up to $15 million to the United Nations, the same amount the UN stands to lose from the United States’ early withdrawal from the climate pact. [9NEWS.com]

¶ US states accounting for almost 30% of national gross domestic product have pledged to meet the country’s commitments in the Paris climate agreement by joining the US Climate Alliance. The mayors of 187 US cities, with a total population of 52 million, have also agreed commitment to uphold the Paris agreement goals. [Financial Times]

Melting polar ice

¶ Vermont will join the US Climate Alliance, a coalition of states intent on countering President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw from the Paris climate change agreement. Late Friday afternoon, after lawmakers and environmental activists called for Vermont to play a part, Governor Phil Scott announced the state will also join. [Seven Days]

¶ Tesla’s solar roof is off to a good start, and that bodes well for the sprawling solar panel factory that the company plans to open in Buffalo later this year. Less than a month after the company started taking orders for their solar roof tiles, Tesla executives told analysts that the new product already is “sold out well into 2018.” [Buffalo News]

House with a Tesla solar roof (Rendering courtesy SolarCity)

¶ US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley told CNN’s Jake Tapper, in an interview on “State of the Union,” that President Donald Trump does believe in climate change and that humans have a role in it. Haley’s comments are the closest acknowledgment by an administration official since Trump took office that the President. [CNN]

¶ Since 2009, companies working to build twin nuclear reactors in South Carolina have made nearly three dozen changes to the project that drove up costs by about $325 million, according to recently released records and a state agency tracking the work’s progress. The amount is only a fraction of the escalating costs of the $14 billion project. [The State]

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