July 15 Energy News

July 15, 2017

Opinion:

¶ “Climate Change Could Make The Earth ‘Practically Ungovernable'” • Former NASA climate chief James Hansen believes climate change’s most dangerous effect may be a continuous rise in sea level. Because so many people live in coastal cities, the mass migrations inland that will follow this rise could leave the world in ungovernable chaos. [ScienceAlert]

Miami (Photo: Brian W. Schaller, Wikimedia Commons)

¶ “Bloomberg: Tesla Set To Win” • It looks like bad news for Big Oil as electric cars gained traction this past week. Bloomberg reports, “France plans to end the sale of gasoline- and diesel-powered vehicles by 2040” and, “Volvo Car Group became the first major manufacturer to say it will start phasing out vehicles powered solely by fossil fuels.” [CleanTechnica]

Science and Technology:

¶ A research project conducted in the Netherlands found that just attaching newly designed tips to wind turbine blades can increase power output by as much as 6%. The project looked at three new designs. One design has a bend on the tip, another has wake-reduction geometry, and the third improves characteristics of flow around the tip area. [reNews]

Working on the tip of a wind turbine blade (Image: ECN)

World:

¶ The Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Corporation announced that it awarded solar power projects with cumulative capacity of 1,500 MW to 16 developers. All these projects have been awarded at ₹3.47/kWh (5.4¢/kWh), the lowest tariff bid committed by 25 participating developers. Developers had offered 2.67 GW. [CleanTechies]

¶ Record low renewable energy prices in Chile are here to stay and will likely push power prices even lower, Chile’s energy minister told Reuters, a development that would pressure the nation’s already squeezed diesel and natural gas industries. Chile, with ample solar and wind resources, has become a poster child for renewable energy. [ETEnergyworld.com]

Wind turbines on a beach

¶ Siemens Gamesa got a contract to supply 118 MW of wind turbines to the Baglar and Ardicli wind farms in Turkey. The order is for 36 wind turbines. This marked the first order of turbines from Siemens Gamesa’s 3.3 MW platform in Europe. The design is intended to minimize the cost of energy across a wide variety of wind farm sites. [CleanTechnica]

¶ A $640 million biorefinery is scheduled to start early next year in Ingham, Queensland after eight years of development. It promises to provide electricity to more than 28,000 homes. The biorefinery, which is owned by the North Queensland Bio-Energy Corporation, will use sugar cane bagasse to generate renewable energy. [Townsville Bulletin]

Cane harvester (Picture: Hitchcock Ian MM337802)

¶ Wind power tariffs are expected to fall to a record of around ₹3.30 per unit (5.38¢/kWh), in a 1 GW tender by state-run Solar Energy Corp of India. SECI has received bids for three times the grid-linked capacity on offer. Wind power tariffs in India followed the solar route and hit a record low of ₹3.46/kWh in February. [Livemint]

¶ Korea Hydro & Nuclear Power has decided to temporarily suspend construction of units 5 and 6 at the Shin Kori nuclear power plant in south-eastern Korea. The move comes two weeks after South Korean President Moon Jae-in issued an order to halt construction. Construction of the reactors was due to start this year. [World Nuclear News]

Artists impression of Shin Kori 5 and 6 (Image: KHNP)

¶ Japan’s disaster reconstruction minister said he opposes releasing treated water from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power into the sea, citing the possible repercussions for local fishermen. His remarks came shortly after a top official from TEPCO said he is ready to see the tritium-containing water dumped into the sea. [The Mainichi]

US:

¶ Republicans are not all united against renewable energy. The House of Representatives voted down an amendment to block a requirement in the pending National Defense Authorization Act for the armed services to study the impact of climate change on the military. Those who voted against the measure included 43 Republicans. [CleanTechnica]

US Capitol

¶ National Grid is holding “community meetings” to gather input and discuss details of its proposed Granite State Power Link project, which would bring hydropower from Canada through New Hampshire to southern New England. The Granite State Power Link project would also cross northeastern Vermont. [New Hampshire Public Radio]

¶ Hesperia Unified School District, in San Bernardino County, California, will soon have more than 5.7 MW of high-efficiency SunPower carport systems generating solar power for 29 of its sites. Construction of the carports is underway at 15 locations now, and SunPower expects to complete all installations by the end of 2017. [Parking Network]

Solar parking system

¶ A draft version of the DOE’s highly anticipated grid study states that wind and solar do not represent a serious threat to electric grid reliability, running counter to comments made by Energy Secretary Rick Perry earlier this year. Perry ordered the grid study to examine negative effects of Obama-era clean energy incentives. [Greentech Media]

¶ Duke Energy will build three utility owned and operated solar projects in Kentucky. Construction will start by the end of the summer and the projects are likely to be on line by early 2018, Duke says. Duke Energy Carolinas, Duke Energy Progress, Duke Energy Florida, and Duke Energy Indiana all have solar farms already. [Charlotte Business Journal]

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