January 13 Energy News

January 13, 2018

Science and Technology:

¶ Researchers at the Juelich Research Center and the Max Planck Institute for Dynamics and Self-Organization in Germany studied major electrical grids, and came up with surprising findings. The frequency and voltage variations caused by wind and solar power turn out not to be as great as those caused by the power trading system. [CleanTechnica]

Frequency fluctuations on the European power grid showing
regular variation every fifteen minutes due to the market trading system (Credit: Benjamin Schäfer, Max Planck Institute)


¶ The International Renewable Energy Association (IRENA) says the cost of power from onshore wind has fallen by around 23% and that for solar PV has fallen by 73% since 2010. With further price falls expected for green energy options, IRENA says that all renewable energy technologies should be competitive on price with fossil fuels by 2020. [Forbes]

¶ The cost of generating electricity from renewable energies is set to reach new lows worldwide, according to projections by IRENA. But along with the projections came a warning that much of the expected growth in renewable power such as solar and windpower could happen outside of Europe, because of stalling policies there. [EURACTIV]

Windpower and mist (David Clarke | Flickr)

¶ A target for English soil to be managed sustainably by 2030 was welcomed by the Anaerobic Digestion & Bioresources Association, which said AD can help achieve this objective with support from government. AD plants recycling biological waste can potentially meet 30% of the UK’s domestic gas or electricity demand. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

¶ A report published by the Institute for Energy Economics & Financial Analysis said that with the US pulling out of the Paris Climate Change Agreement, China has solidified its position as the dominant global clean energy powerhouse. China is set to lead the way in global power capacity additions for at least the next two decades. [CleanTechnica]

Wind turbines

¶ The Subsecretary of Renewable Energy of the Ministry of Energy and Mining of Argentina has launched a tender to supply solar PV kits to 120,000 rural households. The supply includes acquisition of both low-power solar home kits and rechargeable solar lamps, and operation of the facilities for a period of at least three years. [pv magazine International]

¶ South Africa may still get most of its energy from coal, but in the country’s sunny Northern Cape province, solar steam power plants are being built. Plants that use sun-heated salt to drive turbines will produce enough electricity for nearly a million people, or almost the province’s entire population, the operators say. [Thomson Reuters Foundation]

Solar plant (Pranab Ghosh | International Finance Corporation)


¶ E.ON has started building the Stella wind farm in Texas. It will have a capacity of 201 MW, powered by 67 Nordex turbines. E.ON also started operation of two wind farms: Bruenning’s Breeze in Willacy County, Texas, with a capacity of 228 MW, and Radford’s Run in Macon County, Illinois, with a capacity of 306 MW. [Your Renewable News]

¶ Citing several concerns, Rhode Island Attorney General Peter F Kilmartin today announced his opposition to construction of the gas-fired Invenergy power plant in Burrillville. He said that he intends to seek permission from the Court to file an amicus brief in Rhode Island Superior Court challenging the plant’s water-supply plan. [STL.News]

Rhode Island Capitol

¶ A report released by Oil Change International says that the greenhouse gas emissions associated with the proposed Jordan Cove liquefied natural gas project would be much greater than those of Oregon’s remaining coal-fired power plant, when such problems as methane leaks associated with production are considered. [The Grand Junction Daily Sentinel]

¶ Obsidian Renewables, a solar developer based near Portland, Oregon, is eyeing the prospects of developing a 600-MW utility-scale solar project that would help replace power lost from looming coal-fired retirements in the Northwest and which would be near the three 500-kV lines that make up the California Oregon Intertie. [Platts]

Installing solar panels (Oregon DOT, Wikimedia Commons)

¶ Sammons Renewable Energy has purchased the 162.9-MW Midway Wind from Apex Clean Energy. Planned for the Texas Gulf Coast in San Patricio County, Midway Wind will incorporate 47 Siemens Gamesa G132 turbines. The project is expected to be in commercial operation as early as December of this year. [Power Engineering Magazine]

¶ Earlier this month, Delaware announced it intends to sue the EPA over its lack of action to help curb emissions at power plants in Pennsylvania and West Virginia, which it says are responsible for 90% of the ozone in Delaware. Now it is reducing its own emissions by introducing electric and propane-powered buses into its transportation fleet. [Delaware First Media]

Proterra bus (James Dawson | Delaware Public Media)

¶ Groups including Vote Solar, Union of Concerned Scientists, and the Environmental Law and Policy Center are urging Michigan regulators to require DTE Energy to evaluate renewable energy sources before building a proposed billion-dollar natural gas power plant. Their analyses shows renewable energy would save money. [Solar Power World]

¶ A little more than five years after the Omaha Public Power District and Exelon Corp agreed to a 20-year, $400 million deal for Exelon to manage day-to-day operations of the now-closed Fort Calhoun nuclear plant, the Omaha utility is nearly off the hook. OPPD expects to pay a final $83,333.33 to Exelon this month. [Omaha World-Herald]

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