June 15 Energy News

June 15, 2017

World:

¶ In Tanzania, an international collaborative called the Maasai Stoves and Solar Project has begun to change the roles of women by introducing the use of clean-energy cookstoves and solar power to the Maasai community. The project trains women to distribute and install cookstoves and solar panels in their traditional mud houses. [Earth Island Journal]

Installing solar in Tanzania (Photo: Photo Christabel Ligami)

¶ On June 3, two days after President Trump announced that the United States would withdraw from the Paris climate accord, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and French President Emmanuel Macron, at a meeting in Paris, pledged to achieve emissions reductions beyond their nations’ commitments under the Paris Agreement. [CleanTechnica]

¶ OPEC is trying to reduce the world’s oil supplies by cutting production so as to raise oil prices enough to fund the countries’ welfare states. That is turning out to be unsuccessful. Adding to OPEC’s woes, the International Energy Agency said it expected US producers to increase their production by 430,000 barrels a day. [The New American]

Oil tanker

¶ The President of the Republic of Cameroon, Paul Biya, signed a decree allowing an agreement with the Bank of China for a CFA 73.95 billion ($123.2 million) loan. The funds will be used to finance off-grid PV systems for about 350 communities in areas with no access to electricity. Each system will have a capacity of 32 kW. [pv magazine]

¶ Worldwide carbon emissions are not rising, BP’s Statistical Review of World Energy, says. “The combination of weak energy demand growth and the shifting fuel mix meant that global carbon emissions are estimated to have grown by only 0.1 per cent, making 2016 the third consecutive year of flat or falling emissions.” [Climate Action Programme]

Producing greenhouse gases

US:

¶ A federal judge ruled that the federal permits authorizing the Dakota Access pipeline to cross the Missouri River just upstream of the Standing Rock reservation, which resulted from one of the Trump administration’s first orders, violated the law in certain critical respects. The court is considering whether pipeline operations should be shut off. [Māori Television]

¶ The US economy is growing as carbon dioxide emissions fall and renewable energy rises. US Power plant carbon emissions have fallen to nearly the same level they were in 1990, according to a report released by consulting firm MJ Bradley & Associates. This is further evidence that the economy is decoupling from carbon. [InsideClimate News]

Different power sources (Credit: Volker Hartmann | Getty Images)

¶ Meeting in San Francisco, California Governor Jerry Brown signed a joint statement with German Federal Minister for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety, Barbara Hendricks, to solidify existing cooperation between the two governments and further California’s global leadership on climate change. [CleanTechnica]

¶ Capital Power Corp has started commercial operations at its 178-MW Bloom wind farm in Kansas. The company said the project was developed using a 10-year proxy revenue swap agreement with Allianz Risk Transfer, a subsidiary of insurance group Allianz. It is Capital Power’s first wind development project in the US. [reNews]

Wind farm (Image: Pixabay)

¶ According to the Energy Information Administration’s Electric Power Monthly, a bit more than 10% of all electricity generated in the US in March came from wind and solar power. Wind provided 8% and solar 2%. Those are record amounts for the country, and they reflect continuing construction of renewable capacity across the nation. [Ars Technica]

¶ A solar farm is taking shape next to the Apache Generating Station near Willcox, Arizona. It will provide 20 MW of power to rural electric cooperatives across the state when it goes online in September. The power from the solar farm will be sufficient for about 3,000 Arizona households. About 4,000 PV panels are going up each workday. [Arizona Daily Star]

Solar construction (Photo: Arizona G&T Cooperatives)

¶ The Center for Biological Diversity filed a public-records request seeking emails and documents that show the Trump administration’s collaboration with big polluters on a grid study that could benefit companies reliant on fossil fuels and hamper renewable power growth. The study was ordered by Energy Secretary Rick Perry. [Common Dreams]

¶ Florida Power & Light Company started construction at eight 74.5-MW solar plants in the state in which it operates. The Coral Farms, Horizon, Indian River, and Wildflower projects are expected to be operational by the end of the year, while Barefoot Bay, Blue Cypress, Hammock, and Loggerhead are planned to come online by 1 March 2018. [reNews]

Florida solar power (FPL image)

¶ Massachusetts lawmakers are considering bills that would advance the state’s interest in microgrids and require the consideration of non-wires alternatives before utilities make investments in grid upgrades. The bill, H 1725, would also direct utilities to offer time-of-use rate options by 2018 and put limits on fixed charge increases. [Utility Dive]

¶ More than half of America’s nuclear reactors are bleeding cash, racking up losses totaling about $2.9 billion per year, according to data from Bloomberg New Energy Finance analysis. Nuclear power plants are getting paid $20 to $30 per MWh for their electricity, but it costs them an average of $35 per MWh to operate. [Bloomberg]

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