August 14 Energy News

August 14, 2017

Opinion:

¶ “A greener grid for East Asia” • Nine of the 10 nuclear reactors that opened in 2015 were in Asia. But declarations by South Korea and Taiwan that they will “go green” have called into question nuclear power’s viability in the region. This year may mark the end of the region’s nuclear love affair and the start of one with renewables. [eco-business.com]

Windmills in Taiwan (Image: Alexander Synaptic, CC BY-NC 2.0)

World:

¶ Enel Energy, Nissan, Mitsubishi, and PSA Groupe, have been working together to pave the way for a roll-out of vehicle-to-grid technology. The Parker Project, going on in Denmark, is using a fleet of EVs to demonstrate the technology. It supplies electricity to the grid as needed from parked electric vehicles, in a real-life setting. [Digital Journal]

¶ A tiny Tesla house is on a tour of Australia, showing off the Powerwall and educating the public on how to generate, store and use renewable energy. Oh yes, and the tiny home is towed by a Tesla Model X. The tiny home is completely powered by renewable energy courtesy of a 2-kW solar power system and a Powerwall battery. [Gizmodo Australia]

Tesla Tiny House in Melbourne (iStock photo)

¶ Pakistan’s vulnerability to climate change is well established and widely recognized. Pakistan ratified the Paris Agreement on Climate Change. But even as the rest of the world is holding down on coal consumption, Pakistan is reviving its coal industry with several new power plants and working against the country’s own well-being. [MENAFN.COM]

¶ A lack of solar auctions in India could drive solar power prices down, below the record low of ₹2.44 (3.8¢/kWh). Developers backed by private equity funds are trying hard to build their assets, even if it means sacrificing returns. Analysts believe the internal rate of returns in the solar sector have reduced from 15-16% to the range of 10-13%. [Hindu Business Line]

Solar array in India

¶ Relief is in sight for farmers and other rural people in New Zealand suffering from electricity supply problems. Electricity distributor Powerco has developed a cutting-edge unit called Base Power. The system depends on PVs and batteries with diesel backup generators. Five customers have already received Base Power systems. [New Zealand Herald]

¶ Alberta produces about 80% of Canada’s oil. But as oil prices have dropped, there have been lay-offs, and the unemployment rate in the once-booming province stands at nearly 8%. Now Alberta’s renewable energy capacity is doubling roughly every two years, and interest in green energy training has been growing swiftly. [Huffington Post Canada]

Wind turbines in Alberta (Todd Korol | Reuters)

¶ Seaway Heavy Lifting has installed the first jacket foundation at the 588-MW Beatrice wind farm off the coast of Scotland, with the vessel Oleg Strashnov on the job. The foundations are being made at yards across Europe by BiFab, Bladt, and Smulders. Beatrice will feature 84 Siemens 7-MW turbines when fully commissioned in 2019. [reNews]

¶ A proposed solar thermal power plant in South Australia’s mid-north has been contracted to supply all the state government’s power needs. Work on the A$650 million SolarReserve facility will start in 2018. The state government said the 150-MW plant, to be ready in 2020, would dispatch energy to the grid even when the sun was not shining. [The Guardian]

Solar Reserve plant in Nevada (Photo: Solar Reserve)

¶ A consortium of Chinese organizations is teaming up with state-owned China National Nuclear Power Company to develop and produce small, floating nuclear power plants. The new venture will have $150 million in funding. The plants will be able to sail to where they are needed to fill a variety of high power needs. [The Maritime Executive]

US:

¶ Last year, California’s 1.4 million dairy cows fell under a statewide mandate to find a way to curb their environmental footprint in order to achieve the state’s goal to reduce methane emissions 40% from 2013 levels by 2030. The state government says now it is receiving more applications for anaerobic digesters than it can currently fund. [Triple Pundit]

California dairy cows (USDA photo, Wikimedia Commons)

¶ Despite moves made by Ohio’s legislature to thwart large-scale wind farm development, there is still a steady demand for small installations to power factories and small businesses. Projects with just a few turbines put Ohio among the top 10 for wind capacity installed since 2003, according to a report from the US DOE. [Midland Daily News]

¶ A 121-year-old church on the edge of coal country is harnessing the sun’s energy in an effort to move into the future. Campton Baptist Church in Wolfe County with 80 solar panels on its roof, has become one of the first churches nationwide to switch to solar energy, not only for both itself but also for others in the community. [WYMT News]

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