Archive for October 5th, 2017

October 5 Energy News

October 5, 2017


¶ “Coal Will Not Bring Appalachia Back to Life, But Tech and Government Jobs Could” • Whatever the White House says, coal jobs are in a terminal decline. And whatever cynics claim, it’s not some cabal of heartless environmentalists to blame. It’s the power industry itself, driven by advances in technology and simple market forces. [EcoWatch]

Closed coal mine in West Virginia (WVPB | Janet Kunicki)

¶ “Special Report – The bankrupt utility behind Puerto Rico’s power crisis” • Two weeks after the storm plunged the island into a blackout, fewer than 10% of Puerto Rico’s people have seen power restored – and many will wait months. Governor Rossello said, “The emergency plan was as follows: There is no way to fix the nature of the grid.” []

¶ “It’s our choice: renewable energy superpower or Asian Pacific rust belt” • While its opponents portray decarbonizing as the death of Australia as an energy superpower, nothing can be further from the truth. As the world decarbonizes, Australia can not only continue to be an energy exporting superpower, it can enjoy a manufacturing boom. [The Guardian]

Great resources (Tim Phillips Photos | Getty Images)


¶ China accounted for more than 40% of capacity growth in renewable energy in 2016, and this was in a record year for worldwide renewables, according to an International Energy Agency study. Last year, new solar capacity around the world grew by 50%, reaching more than 74 GW, with China accounting for almost half of that expansion. [China Daily]

¶ Property Fund, Emira has completed the installation of a 16 million Rand ($1.8 million) solar farm on the roof of its mall in Randpark Ridge, Johannesburg. The PV solar farm, with 10,900 panels, produces about 1.2 MWh of electricity. It is estimated that over 15 years, the use of this solar power will save Emira over 40 million Rand ($2.9 million). [BusinessTech]

Randridge Mall

¶ Statoil is to acquire a 40% share in the construction-ready 162-MW Apodi solar plant in Brazil from Scatec Solar, marking the energy giant’s first foray into the PV market. The two Norwegian companies also agreed to develop potential future solar projects jointly in Brazil. Statoil also said it will acquire a 50% share in the project execution company. [reNews]

¶ Solar energy was the fastest-growing source of electric power last year, a new International Energy Agency report said, amid the “birth of a new era” for the renewable energy sector. Last year was the first time solar energy growth had surpassed any other fuel as a source of power, the report said, surpassing the net growth in coal. [Deutsche Welle]

Solar power in China

¶ The Australian Capital Territory government put the finishing touches on its mammoth “solar highway” project as it unveiled its 36,000 solar panels at Williamsdale. The Climate Change Minister said the long-awaited Williamsdale Solar Farm, just south of Canberra, could generate enough electricity to power 3,000 homes. [The Canberra Times]

¶ Batteries provided by Samsung have been chosen for the second big battery storage project in South Australia. The 30-MW/8-MWh facility to be built on Yorke Peninsula will work with a local wind farm and rooftop solar to create a renewable energy micro-grid. It will cost A$30 million ($23.46 million), which will be partly subsidized. [RenewEconomy]

Wattle Point wind farm on Yorke Peninsula

¶ The wind tariff in India touched lowest level of ₹2.64/kWh (4¢/kWh) in the second wind auction conducted by the Solar Energy Corporation of India on behalf of the Indian Ministry of New & Renewable Energy. This tariff is much lower than the winning figure for the first wind auction, ₹3.46/kWh, in February of this year. [Business Standard]


¶ Puerto Rico’s power grid has been down since Hurricane Maria devastated it on September 20. With reports that the island could continue without power for months, several tech companies are stepping in to provide relief, in the form of energy. Among those companies, three examples are Tesla, Sunnova, and Sonnen GmbH. [ARCHITECT Magazine]

Solar system in Puerto Rico (Cegli via Adobe Stock)

¶ The National Resources Defense Council’s fifth annual energy report, America’s Clean Energy Revolution, confirms that the country shattered dozens of clean energy records over the last year and a half. It proves that a massive shift is taking America away from traditional fossil fuels and nuclear towards renewable energy sources. [CleanTechnica]

¶ The first permanent tidal power test site in the US has been approved, following several environmental studies and careful review by multiple agencies. The Marine Renewable Energy Collaborative has received final approval from the US Army Corps of Engineers to install the Bourne Tidal Test Site within the Cape Cod Canal. [Marine Technology News]

Cape Cod Canal (Image: MRECo)

¶ The US Solar Energy Industries Association published a new analysis this week proving that more than $78 million worth of solar projects are currently on hold in Massachusetts due to a failure to extend the state’s Net Metering Cap. The analysis was published in advance of legislative hearings taking place at the State Capitol. [CleanTechnica]

¶ American Wind Energy Association’s CEO Tom Kiernan appeared before the House Energy and Commerce Committee where he said that, thanks to technological advances, wind farms are now competitive with other energy technologies with regard to reliability and resiliency. AWEA endorsed market-based solutions. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

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