August 7 Energy News

August 7, 2017

Science and Technology:

¶ Climate change may have contributed to 59,000 suicides committed by Indian farmers over the last 30 years, a research paper published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences said. It suggests India will see more such tragedies as climate change brings hotter temperatures that damage crops and exacerbate drought. [Gears Of Biz]

Farming in India

¶ Over the coming decades, a number of new diseases spread into Europe as the continued warming of the climate allows them to expand, a study from the University of Liverpool’s Institute of Infection and Global Health said. Among them may be Lyme disease, malaria, sleeping sickness, cholera, liver fluke infection, and anthrax. [CleanTechnica]

¶ At China’s Yunnan Agricultural University, researchers have developed a perennial rice by crossing Oryza sativa, the short-lived Asian rice, with a wild African perennial O. longistaminata. The cross, a possible help for climate change, “apparently lasts at least five years and gives 10 seasons of grain twice a year with yields comparable to seasonal rice.” [NewsX]

Perennial rice

¶ There is now only a 5% “chance” that anthropogenic climate warming will be limited to under 2° Celsius, the goal set at the 2015 Paris Climate Change conference, a study published in the journal Nature Climate Change said. It said there is a 90% likelihood that temperatures will rise between 2° Celsius and 4.9° Celsius by 2100. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ The head of Egypt’s New & Renewable Energy Authority announced that Egypt will begin to make solar panels soon, and the project will pave the way to other initiatives. According to the state-run newspaper, the solar panels will be set up on buildings that are being already established in Egypt’s New Administrative capital. [Egypt Independent]

New solar array

¶ Some of the world’s largest petroleum companies are investing in renewable energy. That is partly due to public concerns over climate change and uncertainty about the future. Statoil’s Senior Vice President of Sustainability told an international oil congress in Istanbul that his company would spend 20% to 30% of its resources on alternates. [Gears Of Biz]

¶ Plans for a major solar energy farm on a 27-hectare site in Ireland have been approved by Wicklow County Council. Ireland must meet a binding target of generating 16% of energy from renewable sources by 2020, or face a penalty of up to €120 million that will be imposed by the EU for every 1% the State falls below target. [Irish Times]

Solar panels in Ireland

¶ Taiwan’s first offshore wind farm has begun generating power with 6.5 MW coming from its first two turbines. The capacity is expected to grow to 120 MW by 2019, lead developer Swancor Renewable Energy Co Ltd (上緯新能源) said. The Ministry of Economic Affairs’ Bureau of Energy has a goal to install 1,000 wind turbines by 2030. [Taipei Times]

¶ Last week’s tender for the Wind Energy Renewable Energy Resource Area project in Turkey resulted in a world record feed-in-tariff, offered by Siemens-Türkerler-Kalyon consortium. The feed-in-tariff went down from 10.3¢/kWh to below 3.5¢/kWh, setting a new world record. This price is calculated to be 50% below the current incentive price. [Daily Sabah]

Wind power

¶ Latvia’s state-owned power utility Latvenergo has launched a program to support development of residential PV installations of up to 10 kW under net metering. Latvenergo also offers solar panels on the basis of interest-free hire-purchase with a term up to five years. The PV systems are to be installed by a partner company. [pv magazine]
Latvia (Photo: Flickr | Kārlis Dambrāns)

¶ TuNur Limited, a private company incorporated in the United Kingdom is seeking to set up a 4.5 GW concentrating solar power system in Tunisia. The power would be sent through three submarine cables to Europe. The first link, sending up to 500 MW of electricity through Malta, could be finished as soon as 2020. [Malta Independent Online]

Cable routes from Tunisia to Europe

¶ Engie Australia has begun the pre-construction work of the 119-MW Willogoleche wind farm near Hallett in South Australia. The $A250 million ($198 million) project, to be built on Willogoleche Hill about 160 km north of Adelaide, will include 32 turbines that each produce between 3.4 MW and 3.8 MW of power. [FutureFive NZ]

US:

¶ As more Hawaii residents use PV systems to power their homes and new large renewable energy sources come online, Hawaiian Electric Co. and its subsidiaries continued to see the islands’ old grid systems unable to effectively handle renewable energy sources. Now the utility is mounting a major push to modernize its electrical systems. [Maui News]

Hawaiian PV system (Photo: Matthew Thayer | The Maui News)

¶ There are a few more than 50,000 coal miners working in the US. That is slightly more than last year, with President Trump taking credit for the change, but coal mining is not secure work. By contrast, the wind industry added 15,000 workers last year and the solar industry added 50,000. The question is whether miners could take the new jobs. [Gears Of Biz]

¶ Billions of dollars have been lost on US nuclear power. Most of the 18 nuclear projects pending before the NRC a decade ago have been aborted or suspended indefinitely. The NRC licensed seven, but none of them is operational. Only one in Georgia is still being built, at a cost of $100 million a month, and in the end it could cost $25 billion. [The Augusta Chronicle]

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