October 12 Energy News

October 12, 2017

Opinion:

¶ “Nuclear Cannot Keep Up With Wind, & Solar Is Coming Next” Even countries with long-standing nuclear aims are adding wind power much faster, as Brazil, China, and India show. Those interested in the fastest way to mitigate climate change can forget nuclear. Even China has experienced delays in reactor construction. [CleanTechnica]

Solar Panels (Image via Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “Unlikely allies fight Trump backing of coal, nuclear energy” • Dow Chemical, Koch Industries and US Steel Corp are standing with environmentalists in opposing an Energy Department plan to reward nuclear and coal-fired power plants for their constant power generation and are pressuring the administration to shift course. [Daily Journal]

Science and Technology:

¶ MIT researchers have developed an “air-breathing” battery that could store electricity for very long periods for about one-fifth the cost of current technologies, with minimal location restraints and zero emissions. Systems that could store electricity for multiple days to entire seasons would cost about $20 to $30 per kWh of storage capacity. [Gears Of Biz]

Energy Storage

¶ Scientists have developed a ceramic pump that can operate at 1,400° C, several hundred degrees hotter than existing heat transfer systems, opening up new possibilities for energy storage. Higher temperatures mean that more thermal energy can be converted to mechanical or electrical energy, improving overall efficiency. [MIT Technology Review]

World:

¶ Battery storage system installations in Australia look set to treble in 2017, driven by a growing uptake of home battery systems. New data shows more than 7000 were installed in the first six month of the year, surpassing the 6500 sales recorded for all of 2016, and the installations  may total over 20,000 by the year’s end. [One Step Off The Grid]

Sonnenbatterie sonnen eco

¶  Australian developer Windlab secured a landmark power purchase agreement for the country’s first grid-connected large scale hybrid project combining wind, solar, and battery storage. Kennedy Energy Park’s first phase includes comprises 43.5 MW of wind capacity, 15 MW of solar PV capacity and a 2-MW lithium-ion battery. [RenewEconomy]

¶ Guyana, as part of its strategy to transition towards a 100% renewable energy supply by 2025, has hired a company to design, supply and install a 400-kW solar system for the remote community of Mabaruma in the North West District. The new system, to be installed by meeco, will cut diesel fuel use by 21,000 liters per month. [Demerara Waves]

Mabaruma, Guyana (meeco image)

¶ The Netherlands’ new government coalition, to be finalized this week following elections in March, will set ambitious energy and climate targets, according to the Dutch energy consumer lobby VEMW. The lobby said Prime Minister Mark Rutte’s new coalition will set a new target to cut CO2 emissions by 49% from 1990 levels by 2030. [Platts]

¶ China aims to boost its large-scale energy storage capacity over the next decade, the government’s central planner said, in a major push to deal with stranded renewable power in the west of the country. China generated 5.9 trillion kWh of power in 2016, of which 25.6% came from hydro, wind, nuclear and solar power stations. [Nasdaq]

Floating solar array in China (Reuters image)

¶ Origin Energy is using artificial intelligence to help control customer energy usage in new demand-management trials. This comes as the Australian Renewable Energy Agency and the Australian Energy Market Operator started a $35.7 million trial in three states, rewarding households for cutting power usage on hot summer days. [Brisbane Times]

¶ The creation of a publicly-owned energy firm in Scotland to provide lower cost power should boost the country’s renewables sector as well as reducing household bills, according to experts. Ofgem, the industry regulator, was among the first to back the announcement made by Nicola Sturgeon in her speech to the SNP conference. [The National]

Wind turbines at sunrise

¶ The US Trade and Development Agency awarded a grant to Tayabas Geothermal Power Inc supporting development of a 60-MW to 100-MW geothermal power project in southeast Luzon. The project will help the Philippines meet its growing energy demand and diversify its energy mix, while creating market access for US industry. [ThinkGeoEnergy]

US:

¶ Environmentalists decried the Trump administration’s decision to terminate the Clean Power Plan, and threatened lawsuits. But San Antonio’s city-owned utility company CPS Energy said the EPA’s decision will not have any affect on its plans to decommission the coal-fired Deely Power Plant by the end of 2018. [San Antonio Business Journal]

Deely Power Plant (CPS Energy image)

¶ At the end of September, DOE Secretary Rick Perry formally proposed to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission that the coal and nuclear industries propped up and subsidized. The move has received opposition from nearly every group and institution with a stake in the matter, except for the few who will benefit financially. [CleanTechnica]

¶ EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt’s decision to “withdraw” the Obama-era Clean Power Plan is intended as a sign to coal miners that “the war on coal is over.” Nevertheless, experts are confident the repeal will not bring coal back, and a number of states are continuing to move forward with their own climate change initiatives. [CleanTechnica]

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