October 31 Energy News

October 31, 2017

Opinion:

¶ “Trump Admin. Desperate To Keep Coal Power Plant Alive With Taxpayer Dollars” • Trump supporters have repeated often, “government shouldn’t be picking winners and losers.” Now, the administration is trying to prop up the Navajo Generating Station in Arizona with taxpayer dollars, perfectly illustrating the depth of the lie. [CleanTechnica]

Navajo Generating Station

¶ “Why More Flexible Operation Won’t Save US Nuclear Power Plants” • Flexible nuclear operation is happening in Europe. But for nuclear plants that depend purely on power sales, as is the case with US merchant plants, operating flexibly just reduces the total amount of energy sold, and thereby reduces the profits. [Greentech Media]

¶ “If we don’t talk about water, are we really talking about resiliency?” • Depending on the type of technology, generating just one megawatt-hour of electricity could use anywhere from 500 to 50,000 gallons of water. Solar and wind, on the other hand, use negligible amounts of water, and energy efficiency uses none. [Environmental Defense Fund]

Sunset, water, and power lines (pixabay)

¶ “Wine Country post-fire rebuilding offers an opportunity for microgrids” • Electric lines are notoriously vulnerable to a variety of hazards, and may even have caused the recent fires. It is time to think about replacing some of our centralized electrical system with decentralized “microgrids,”  and without utility poles. [San Francisco Chronicle]

Science and Technology:

¶ Concentrations of CO2 in the Earth’s atmosphere surged to a record high in 2016, according to the World Meteorological Organization. Last year’s increase was 50% higher than the average of the past 10 years. Researchers say a combination of human activities and El Niño drove CO2 to a level not seen in 800,000 years. [BBC News]

Emissions (Getty Images)

World:

¶ Climate change is already affecting the health of populations around the world, but things are set to get worse if adequate changes are not made. Fueling the impact is the fact that more than 2,100 cities globally exceed recommended levels of atmospheric particulate matter, a report published in the medical journal The Lancet says. [CNN]

¶ A poor country in the Caribbean did a good deal better than Florida with Hurricane Irma. In fact, as far as hurricane preparedness goes, the Dominican Republic beat the US hands down. After losing many power lines and over 40% of their generating capacity, the grid was still operating, partly thanks to two backup battery systems. [CleanTechnica]

Storm in the Dominican Republic
(Photo: MIGUEL montojo Wikimedia Commons)

¶ London’s long awaited “T-Charge” went into effect in the city last week, effectively limiting access to central London by those driving the oldest and most heavily polluting vehicles still on the road (those not meeting Euro 4 standards). Such vehicles must now pay a £10 daily tax. The city will increasingly restrict such cars in the future. [CleanTechnica]

¶ British solar developer Lightsource Renewable Energy and Australian bank Macquarie will jointly fund development of large solar power projects in India, the bank said. Macquarie’s UK Climate Investments will provide 49% of the equity for the first project, Lightsource’s 60-MW solar project in the Indian state of Maharashtra. [ETEnergyworld.com]

Solar system in Asia

¶ United Breweries Limited has joined hands with CleanMax Solar to adopt large-scale rooftop and ground mounted solar power for ten of their breweries across India. With a total solar capacity of 4 MW peak across six large facilities in the first phase, the initiative will reduce United Breweries’ carbon footprint and save electricity costs. [ETEnergyworld.com]

¶ Salmon are leaping in a scenic Perthshire river for the first time in nearly 70 years after pioneering work was carried out to restore flow cut off by a hydro-electric scheme. A 10-mile stretch of the River Garry, which had been dry since the mid-1950s, is now running with water, promising major benefits for local salmon populations. [The Scotsman]

River Garry (Photo: Sarah Charlesworth, Wikimedia Commons)

US:

¶ In mid-December, National Grid Plc will start an automated trading system that pays hospitals and research facilities at the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus to sell electricity from their onsite solar panels, batteries, and other generators to doctors’ offices and businesses, the first power market ever designed within a single utility service area. [Bloomberg]

¶ New Mexico’s largest electric provider put out a request for proposals for hundreds of megawatts of power to fill a future void it plans to wean itself from coal-fired generation over the next several years. Public Service Co of New Mexico plans to close two units at the San Juan Generating Station before the end of the year. [Power Engineering Magazine]

San Juan Generating Station

¶ The loss of 2,000 MW of power resulting from the shutdown of the Indian Point nuclear plant will be filled by natural gas until renewable sources like solar and wind power become more readily available, experts at an Iona College conference said. The event was sponsored by the pro-natural gas Empire Energy Forum. [The Journal News | LoHud.com]

¶ Entergy Arkansas completed the state’s largest solar energy project near Stuttgart in partnership with NextEra Energy Solutions of Florida. Now it hopes to top itself with an even bigger solar facility near Lake Village. Entergy filed documents with the Arkansas Public Service Commission seeking approval for a 100-MW project. [Arkansas Business Online]

How can I help the people of Puerto Rico? One way is
to donate at [Sunnyside Solar’s crowdfunding website].

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