September 13 Energy News

September 13, 2017

Science and Technology:

¶ A paper published in the journal Climatic Change builds on earlier research finding that nearly two-thirds of historical greenhouse gas emissions can be traced to just 90 companies. Researchers from the Union of Concerned Scientists and two universities calculated how much of the actual change in the climate can be tied to those emissions. [InsideClimate News]

Source of climate change (Credit: Christopher Furlong)

World:

¶ The Climate Group announced that Kellogg Company, DBS Bank Ltd, and Clif Bar & Company joined its RE100 campaign and committed to sourcing 100% renewable electricity across their global operations. The total demand of the 105 campaign members is now around 150 TWh annually, more than enough to power New York State. [The Climate Group]

¶ BYD announced that the first commercial application of its SkyRail monorail mass transit solution opened for operation in Yinchuan, China, on September 1, 2017. The SkyRail system in Yinchuan is the first monorail solution installed in China that uses a straddle design where the vehicle sits on top of the monorail, hanging over both sides. [CleanTechnica]

BYD SkyRail

¶ BYD announced the world’s first installation of its high-voltage B-Box energy storage system in Germany. BYD’s B-Box is a modular energy storage system that allows customers to add battery modules to the B-Box unit as demands increase over time. The first installation has 9 battery modules for a total storage capacity of 11.5 kWh. [CleanTechnica]

¶ The Corporate Carbon Policy Footprint, a new analysis from UK nonprofit InfluenceMap, measures “the extent to which a corporation is supporting or obstructing the climate policy process.” It ranks Koch Industries as the company with the strongest opposition to the Paris climate agreement, as it lobbies intensely against the accord’s policies. [EcoWatch]

Corporate Policy Footprint (Please click on the image to enlarge it.)

¶ Australia’s first ever large-scale renewable corporate Power Purchase Agreement has been signed between Flow Power and Australia’s third-largest wind generator, Ararat Wind Farm. The agreement is to supply 50 MW, but Flow Power’s managing director said, “We’d like to get to thousands of megawatts over the coming years.” [EcoGeneration]

US:

¶ As was expected, the 2018 Honda Clarity Plug-In Hybrid (PHEV) has been granted an impressive EPA all-electric range rating – 47 miles (76 kilometers) per full charge. The EPA’s range ratings are essentially real-world figures. Honda brags that the car “earned the highest all-electric range rating among all midsize plug-in hybrids.” [CleanTechnica]

The 2018 Honda Clarity Plug-In Hybrid (PHEV)

¶ It’s official. The solar industry has met the 2020 utility-scale solar cost target set by the Energy Department’s SunShot Initiative – three years early. The DOE’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory released new research today that shows the average price of utility-scale solar is now under $1 per watt and below 6¢/kWh. [Greentech Media]

¶ The US solar industry had its largest second quarter ever this year, adding 2.4 GW of solar capacity, but the country’s residential segment was lackluster. It grew only 1% over the first quarter and declined year-over-year. GTM Research predicts that the US residential solar segment will shrink 3%, which would make this its first ever down year. [CleanTechnica]

US solar installations (Please click on the image to enlarge it.)

¶ Vermont Gas Systems will begin offering renewable natural gas – methane produced from landfills, cow manure, and other organic sources – this heating season, regulators said. The company was required to develop a plan to do so as part of the approval for its recently completed 41-mile natural gas pipeline into Addison County. [vtdigger.org]

¶ Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens in Pittsburgh has reduced its carbon dioxide emissions per square foot by 56%. This significantly exceeds the Paris Climate Agreement goal of a 26% to 28% reduction by 2025. Phipps reduced its carbon footprint through the use of renewable energy and sustainable, building designs. [InvestorIdeas.com]

The Broderie Room (Cbaile19, Wikimedia Commons)

¶ 8minutenergy Renewables announced that it has closed the financing for its 26-MW Redwood 4 Solar Farm in Kern County, California and that construction has already begun. The plant is expected to be completed in late 2017 and will stand as the fourth 8minutenergy project in the combined 100-MW Redwood solar cluster near Bakersfield. [PV-Tech]

¶ Recurrent Energy, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Canadian Solar, has signed a 15-year Power Purchase Agreement for a 100-MW solar project in California with community choice utility Peninsula Clean Energy. PCE gives consumers in San Mateo County various options to use renewable energy. The project is expected to be operating in 2019. [PV-Tech]

Solar array in California (Credit: Recurrent Energy)

¶ Yet another major rate payers’ lawsuit against SCANA and Santee Cooper has been filed. The lawsuit, filed in South Carolina state court in Richland County, says not only were the two companies’ plan to build VC Summer’s two nuclear reactors a “fictitious project,” but that rate payers were billed monthly for “fictitious costs” for construction. [The State]

¶ Several reactors at Florida Power & Light’s nuclear power plants remained inactive, despite sustaining no damage from Hurricane Irma. FPL officials declined to disclose when they would power up three of its nuclear reactors – one at the St Lucie plant and both at Turkey Point.  The reactors were shut down before and after Irma struck. [TCPalm]

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