January 21 Energy News

January 21, 2018


Science and Technology:

¶ A team of researchers led by a University of Arizona associate professor of dendrochronology examined lines of hundreds of tree rings to reconstruct the last 290 years of climate history. They found increases in extreme summer weather events in the last 50 years, which related to increased changes in the jet stream from climate change. [Arizona Daily Star]

Pine on Mount Olympus (Photo: Greg King)

¶ Global warming is real, and it is happening now. Within hours of the announcement by scientists in the US that 2017 was either the third warmest or second warmest year ever recorded over the Earth’s land and oceans, there came a further revelation: In regards to oceans in particular, 2017 was simply the warmest year on record. [bdnews24.com]


¶ Saudi Arabia aims to save 40 GWh this year from efficiency, as part of the country’s economic diversity and environmental sustainability objectives, according to the head of the its newly established National Energy Services Company. The energy efficiency body is seeking collaboration with foreign partners to achieve the target. [The National]

Saudi electric generating plant (Photo: Fahad Shadeed | Reuters)

¶ The revised projections for energy up to 2035 from the UK Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy are generally very optimistic. BEIS expects low-carbon sources of electricity to supply 68% of UK power generation by 2020, 70% by 2025, 76% by 2030 and 86% by 2035. That of course includes nuclear. [environmentalresearchweb]

¶ The governor of Sokoto State, Nigeria, inaugurated an 80-kw solar mini grid electricity project that will provide uninterrupted power supply to Kurdula community of Gudu LGA. He said more than 500 households, with 4000 inhabitants, benefit. The event was attended by ambassadors to Nigeria from Germany and the EU. [Politics Nigeria]

Inauguration ceremony

¶ TEPCO, the operator of destroyed Fukushima nuclear power plant, published fresh images from inside a damaged reactor, the AFP news agency reported. Images captured by a special camera installed on a robotic probe, showed broken metal parts, debris and rubble, including fragments that may contain melted nuclear fuel. [Sputnik International]

¶ In India, as part of the Southern Railway’s initiative to save on electricity costs by producing 4 MW of solar power, rooftop solar plants will be installed at 11 stations in the Thiruvananthapuram and Palakkad railway divisions. The solar installations are expected to produce electric power at half the price the system currently pays. [The New Indian Express]

Angadipuram rail station (Dhruvaraj S, Wikimedia Commons)


¶ Omaha-area economic development officials are looking to get a piece of Apple’s $30 billion-plus expansion plan announced last week. Apple will build data centers, and it also plans to build a new corporate campus. Apple will power its new facilities with renewable energy, and Nebraska has a lot of wind power to offer. [Omaha World-Herald]

¶ The California Public Utilities Commission approved 15 utility pilot programs to accelerate the change to electric mobility, generally supporting needs of disadvantaged communities. Historically, they been shut out of affordable high-quality transportation, and air pollution levels have been dangerous. The oil lobby is not happy. [CleanTechnica]

Nodding donkey

¶ Product announcements this week from Nissan’s Infiniti luxury brand and Volkswagen’s Porsche division tap into a larger story from last year. While global automakers are watching what Tesla is up to, an announcement in July by near-luxury brand Volvo seems to have had just as much impact on new vehicle product planning. [OilPrice.com]

¶ As SCE&G tried to complete the increasingly costly Summer nuclear project, it learned that a major piece of equipment it needed would be shipped to China instead. Westinghouse promised it would provide a replacement. But Westinghouse went broke, and the Summer nuclear plant was cancelled, Now, SCE&G wants its money back. [The State]

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