November 17 Energy News

November 17, 2017


¶ “What the UN Climate Summit is teaching us about environmental action” • This year’s UN Climate Summit is almost over. Clear leaders have emerged, and the US is not one of them. Syria has agreed to sign the Paris agreement on climate change. The US is alone in refusing to make a voluntary climate change commitment. []

Glacier (Photo: derwiki | Pixabay)


¶ World leaders took center stage at the COP23 climate change conference in Bonn this week to promise dramatic new actions aimed at reducing global climate emissions. They also used the occasion to castigate the United States and Donald Trump for being entirely out of step with the rest of the world community on this issue. [CleanTechnica]

¶ India has announced some good news for COP23. Just a few years ago, India relied almost exclusively on coal to fuel its rapid development, opening new coal-burning power plants and increasing coal mining and imports. But it has cancelled plans for 14 GW of coal power and increasing its use of renewable energy. [Millennium Post]

Small solar system

¶ The Canadian Environment and Climate Change Minister helped bring more than 25 new governments on board for a Canadian and British push to power past coal at COP23. Those in the new alliance include major European industrial nations, such as France and Italy. Others range from New Zealand to the US state of Oregon. [National Observer]

¶ COP23 has built on innovative solutions that were introduced in COP21. This included changing our understanding of carbon’s function, says an Indian environmentalist. When we disrupt the Earth’s self-regulating climate systems, we receive climate chaos and climate uncertainty, not something we can predict and change. [Deutsche Welle]

Flooding in Assam (Getty Images | AFP | B Boro)


¶ Instead of traditional 25-year deals, Indian power distributors are negotiating ten-year agreements with coal power providers. The distributors believe the development of renewables and storage makes long term agreements redundant because solar and wind have become the country’s least expensive power resources. [Power Engineering International]

¶ In separate announcements, Microsoft Corp and Daimler indicated that hydrogen fuel cells could provide significantly better energy solutions for data centers than existing electrical grid and backup power technology. Fuel cells can be used to add such services as grid security at data centers, but they can also power vehicles. [Network World]

Daimler hydrogen fuel cell system

¶ The city of Saskatoon and the Saskatoon Tribal Council in Saskatchewan announced the development of the new Saskatoon Weir Hydropower Station. The estimated cost is about C$65 million ($51 million). The new power station will have a capacity of 6.1 MW and is being built at the weir on South Saskatchewan River. [HydroWorld]

¶ Levels of pollution in the UK’s air are still way above the targets set by the EU. According to a new report from the National Audit Office, 85% of UK “air quality zones” still exceed legal pollution limits eight years after they were supposed to meet them. The Government estimates that it will not meet some of the pollution targets until 2026. [The Independent]

Measuring air pollution in central London (Getty)

¶ So much of the decommissioning funds for the Japan Atomic Power Co’s reactors have been diverted that it now lacks enough cash to scrap its old units or even resume operations of existing ones. The company is banking on a decision by the Nuclear Regulation Authority, but even that might not be sufficient to save it financially. [Asahi Shimbun]


¶ The Shell GameChanger™ program has agreed to provide financial support for demonstration of closed-loop geothermal power generation at a currently inactive well in the Coso California geothermal field, GreenFire Energy Inc announced. GreenFire Energy Inc’s innovative ECO2G™ uses directional drilling technologies. [ThinkGeoEnergy]

Coso well, California (Photo: GreenFire Energy)

¶ Tesla CEO Elon Musk unveiled the highly anticipated Tesla Semi Truck in Hawthorne, California. This truck promises to transform not just the trucks that move goods around the world but the entire shipping industry. It has a number of safety improvements, but it will probably also cost less to operate than internal combustion semi trucks. [CleanTechnica]

¶ Elon Musk unexpectedly disappeared from stage during the Tesla Semi Truck unveiling, and then to everyone’s surprise, a Tesla Roadster 2.0 appeared. The base model will be the fastest production car ever made when it comes to market in 2020. Musk said, “The point of all this is just to give a hardcore smackdown to gasoline cars.” [CleanTechnica]

Tesla Roadster 2.0

¶ US solar developer Cypress Creek Renewables cut the ribbon on a 9-MW solar installation in Maryland. The Baker Point solar array uses 34,074 solar modules and is expected to produce enough power to meet annual needs of over 2,000 homes. It was inspired by Maryland’s legislation support for pollinator-friendly solar sites. [Renewables Now]

¶ TransCanada announced that it has shut down the Keystone pipeline in South Dakota because it discovered 210,000 gallons of oil has spilled from the pipeline. The state of Nebraska will decide next week if it will allow a stretch of the Keystone pipeline to be built through the state. Waterways or wildlife areas appear not to have been impacted. [Anadolu Agency]

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

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