March 13 Energy News

March 13, 2018


¶ “Clean Energy Is Key to New England’s Fuel Security” • ISO New England, which operates the New England power grid, filed comments with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, raising concerns that reliance on natural gas could undermine grid security due to potential wintertime shortfalls in gas supply. [Natural Resources Defense Council]

Block Island Wind Farm (National Renewable Energy Lab | flickr)


¶ Late last month, the Solar Energy Corporation of India launched a Request for Proposal for what will be the single largest solar power auction in the country’s history. This tender for 3 GW of capacity will overtake a 2 GW tender launched by the state of Telangana in 2015 to become India’s largest solar power tender ever. [CleanTechnica]

¶ A new analysis from the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group has revealed that cities are actually generating up to 60% more greenhouse gasses than currently estimated due to the impact of trade in goods and services, but this means cities now have even greater opportunities to deliver on the Paris Climate Agreement goals. [CleanTechnica]

Mexico City

¶ Norway has just two fully operational electric-powered ferries, but more are coming. By 2023 the country’s entire ferry fleet will be all-electric or hybrid technology, experts say. Electric cruise liners are also coming there, and elsewhere in Europe, the electrification of maritime travel is gradually beginning to take off. [Hellenic Shipping News Worldwide]

¶ Thirty ore trucks at Sweden’s Aitik mine work 24 hours per day, each hauling 310 ton loads of rocks up steep inclines. Each consumes 100 gallons of diesel oil per hour. Now, with a grant from the Swedish Energy Agency, Caterpillar is converting some of the trucks to run exclusively on electric power taken from overhead wires. [CleanTechnica]

Caterpillar 795F mining truck

¶ A South African court granted an order to stop the state-owned utility from signing deals for renewable power projects worth $4.7 billion, the applicants in the case said. They had argued that the utility already has excess capacity and signing the deals would force coal-fired power plants to shut down, resulting in job losses. [Bloomberg]

¶ The City of Sydney is supporting a $2.25 million Ausgrid program that could boost apartment solar uptake in the area. Ausgrid has the second lowest rate of solar uptake in Australia due to its large number of apartments and commercial buildings, but the project could increase the number of PV installations on such properties. [Energy Matters]

Sydney (Image: Pixabay)

¶ Media reports say Diu (2001 pop 21,576) has become the first union territory in India to be fully powered by solar power. The power department of Diu has set up a total solar power capacity of 13 MW. Of this, 10 MW is in ground-based systems and 3 MW in rooftop systems. The excess power generation is used to offset nighttime needs from the grid. [CleanTechnica]

¶ AGL, the biggest coal generator in Australia, says there will still be too much baseload power in New South Wales, even after the ageing Liddell coal plant is closed in 2022. AGL vowed to replace Liddell with a mixture of wind, solar, battery storage, demand management, a new generator, and an upgrade of the Bayswater coal-fired power station. [RenewEconomy]

Liddell Power Station


¶ Each year, the Institute for Local Self-Reliance rates each state’s energy policies based on how they help or hinder local clean energy action. In 2018, 21 states had a failing grade, 17 were mediocre, 11 had a passing grade, and just 2 excelled at enabling residents to act individually and collectively to take charge of their energy future. [CleanTechnica]

¶ The three largest California electric utilities are well on their way to meeting the state’s mandate of sourcing 33% of energy from renewable sources by 2020. But they did not procure any new renewable energy capacity last year, and the California Public Utilities Commission has proposed they procure nearly none in 2018. [Inhabitat]

California solar array

¶ The Union of Concerned Scientists has updated its information on vehicle emissions and finds that a conventional car in America today needs an average fuel economy of 80 mpg to have the same carbon footprint as a typical EV. Last year, that number was 73 mpg. The reason for the change is that the electric utility grid is getting greener. [CleanTechnica]

¶ Kentucky sunshine captured from about a dozen solar panels will be used to spin the carousel at the Louisville Zoo. The new project, which should be complete by the end of the week, will be among the most highly visible solar installations in the city. And organizers say that visibility is important to help inform the public about solar energy. [89.3 WFPL]

Carousel at the Louisville Zoo (Photo: Ryan Van Velzer)

¶ Calpine Corp wants to suspend its application to build a gas-fired plant near Santa Paula, California. Citing the recent request for offers on renewable energy projects by Southern California Edison, Calpine stated last week that there does not appear to be an opportunity for the Mission Rock Energy Center power plant project. [Ventura County Star]

¶ A three-judge federal appeals court panel heard arguments in a case regarding New York’s zero-emissions credit program for the state’s economically struggling nuclear plants. The legal battle highlights friction of state policy with federal jurisdiction and market integrity. The plaintiffs argue New York’s nuclear subsidy program oversteps its legal authority. [Platts]

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