March 2 Energy News

March 2, 2018


¶ “Bending to the water’s will” • In flood-prone Bangladesh, resilience can mean letting water have its way. As climate change brings threats of rising seas and stronger storms, people who have spent years building barricades are considering what was once unthinkable: letting the water in and be resilient by bending, not resisting. [Science Magazine]

Artificial island in Bangladesh

¶ “Trump’s attack on booming clean energy sector hurts American workers” • A rapidly growing US clean energy sector means good jobs across the country. The fastest growing jobs are in solar and wind power. But despite all the rhetoric about supporting American jobs, the Trump Administration keeps trying to downshift. [The Hill]

Science and Technology:

¶ A report published in the journal Environmental Research Letters employed radiocarbon dating to examine the content of river and lake waters in Canada’s Northwest Territories in 2014. It found an increasing prevalence of older dissolved carbon and carbon dioxide in the waters as the summer advanced. This is not good news. [ScienceAlert]

Land in the Arctic (Kingrobby | iStock)

¶ The rate at which sea level rise is occurring is continuing to increase every year, according to a  study that was published in the journal the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. What the new research suggests is that at current rates of increase, sea levels will rise by more than 65 centimeters (26 inches) by 2100. [CleanTechnica]


¶ The air pollution mitigation plans currently in place in the UK are not enough on their own, and they need to be improved, the union’s High Court has ruled, recent reports said. The ruling follows from a legal complaint issued by lawyers working for Client Earth, which was intended to spur the government to action on the growing problem. [CleanTechnica]

Air pollution in London

¶ Toy manufacturer Lego has announced it is to make some of its pieces, including leaves, bushes and trees, from sustainable, plant-based plastic. The material will be sourced from sugarcane and production of the pieces, or “elements,” has already started. They will be launched this year, the Danish business said in a statement. [CNBC]

¶ Switzerland’s ABB is supplying a microgrid and storage system to help Jamaica integrate renewable solar and wind energy into its power supply. ABB says the installation of its ABB Ability system, a 24.5-MW microgrid facility, will help the large tropical island reduce its use of fossil fuels and lower its carbon footprint. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

Munro Wind Farm (© Jamaica Public Service Company)

¶ The “frozen soil wall” erected around the crippled reactor buildings at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant at huge taxpayer expense appears limited in keeping groundwater from flowing in. TEPCO, the plant’s owner, said that the flow of radioactive water has been reduced by half because of the underground barrier. [Asahi Shimbun]

¶ Canadian Solar has secured finance totalling $149 million from Shinsei Bank for the 53.4-MW Oita Hijimachi PV plant in Japan. Construction of the project, located on Kyushu Island in southern Japan, started in November last year. Oita Hijimachi, which will consist of 160,000 solar panels, is expected to come online in May 2019. [reNews]

Solar farm (Credit: Canadian Solar)


¶ In a move with far-reaching implications for electric grids, Illinois regulators approved Commonwealth Edison’s cutting-edge microgrid cluster in Chicago. As the nation’s first utility-scale microgrid cluster, the $25 million project is expected to demonstrate what some believe will eventually become a grid-of-microgrids. [Microgrid Knowledge]

¶ US Independent power producer sPower is to sell electricity from its 220-MW Prevailing wind farm in South Dakota to an unnamed utility under a 30-year agreement. Construction of the project is scheduled to start later this year, sPower said. The wind farm is expected to generate over $56 million in tax revenue over the life of the project. [reNews]

sPower wind farm

¶ Florida Power & Light Company has completed construction of four solar plants in the state, totalling 298 MW. Each of the four projects has a capacity of 74.5 MW. They are added to four other facilities with the same capacity that came online in January. FPL said it now operates solar installations totalling 930 MW in the state of Florida. [reNews]

¶ GE Renewable Energy has unveiled a 12-MW offshore wind turbine, named the Haliade-X, that it claims will produce 45% more power than any machine currently on the market. The direct drive machine will feature a 220-meter rotor with blades of 107 metres, made by LM Wind Power. It will offer a gross capacity factor of 63%. [reNews]

GE Haliade-X wind turbine (GE image)

¶ L’Oréal USA announced its plans to achieve carbon neutrality in 2019 for all 21 of its US manufacturing and distribution facilities with a financially sustainable approach that could potentially serve as a model to support new renewable natural gas projects in the future. L’Oréal USA will buy landfill gas from a facility in Kentucky. [User-generated content]

¶ The NRC accepted a nuclear power plant part manufacturer’s proposal to build a high-level, underground nuclear waste facility in southeast New Mexico. Holtec International plans tostore up to 8,680 metric tons of waste at the site, initially. The 1,045-acre facility, if it is approved, would store spent nuclear fuel rods, according to the NRC. [Los Alamos Monitor]

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