June 9 Energy News

June 9, 2018

Opinion:

¶ “Photos don’t lie. Plan needed for sea-level rise” • Florida Senator Bill Nelson addressed the US Senate: “During 2017, the average high-tide flooding was the highest ever recorded. And in 2018, NOAA predicts that high-tide flooding will be 60% more frequent across US coastlines than it was in 2000, primarily because of sea-level rise.” [Sun Sentinel]

Sunny day flooding in Miami

World:

¶ Vestas received a 306-MW wind turbine order in Mexico from EnerAB, a joint venture of The AES Corp and Grupo BAL. The order is for the Mesa la Paz wind park, located in the state of Tamaulipas. The order includes the supply and installation of 85 V136-3.45 MW turbines, delivered in 3.6 MW power-optimized mode. [North American Windpower]

¶ The government of Québec is blocking all new requests for hydroelectric power from cryptocurrency mining operations. They say they are doing it so Hydro-Québec can keep supplying power to everyone else in the province. The emergency move followed a warning from Hydro-Québec in January over the “unprecedented demand.” [Stockhouse]

La Grande-1 dam (Photo: P199, Wikimedia Commons)

¶ Energy2market GmbH, a leader in European aggregated energy trading, and Swytch, a blockchain-based clean energy incentive, announced a pilot program including roughly 3.5 GW of renewable energy capacity in Germany. Swytch is testing data flow, blockchain, dashboard, estimators, and other key parts of the platform. [Bankless Times]

¶ Solar developer Gigawatt Global Cooperatief UA, with financial backing from the US government, has signed a deal with the 15-nation Economic Community of West African States to build $1 billion of renewable energy projects in the region. The Agency for International Development may have retained its ability to act despite President Trump. [Bloomberg]

Solar array (Photo: Xaume Olleros | Bloomberg)

¶ European renewable energy targets for 2030 are facing a key decision. The EU energy ministers are meeting ahead of a final meeting between council and EU Parliament, and there may be movement toward a possible compromise in positions. The EU Council originally proposed “at least 27%,” but is now tabling two options: 30%-31% or 32%-33%. [Platts]

¶ A forest fire that had raged for three days in the restricted zone around Chernobyl, scene of the world’s worst nuclear accident in 1986, has been put out, and no increase in radiation in the air was detected, authorities said. The fire broke out in a dry grassy area of the exclusion zone, before moving to a forested area 10 km from the power plant. [Yahoo News UK]

Fire near the Chernobyl plant

¶ Bulgaria’s parliament revived plans to build a major nuclear power station on the Danube, fuelling concerns of environmental and corruption risks and Russian efforts to regain influence in the Balkan state. Deputies gave their overwhelming approval to a government request to seek investors to build a 2,000-MW atomic plant at Belene. [Irish Times]

US:

¶ Aspen Electric achieved 100% renewables in 2015, and now the residential rates for Aspen’s customers rank among the lowest in Colorado. This month, upgrades to a wind farm near Kimball, Nebraska, of which Aspen Electric is a major customer, will push the utility’s costs even lower, dropping about 15% annually, or $475,000. [Energy News Network]

Wind farm near Kimball, Nebraska

¶ Massachusetts utilities would need to ramp up renewable energy purchases, the state could dramatically expand its support of offshore wind, and commercial solar endeavors would be freed from existing restrictions, under legislation the Senate plans to take up next week. But the end of formal sessions is coming up on July 31. [Sentinel & Enterprise]

¶ A renewable energy boom in Ohio is all but inevitable, a report that has support from a number of major companies said. The Powering Ohio report says the state can attract investment worth billions of dollars by embracing clean energy and by building on the state’s strengths such as industrial research and automotive manufacturing. [Energy Manager Today]

Ohio

¶ US power company NRG Energy Inc will install 25 MW of solar gardens in Texas to meet about 10% of the national electricity usage of food products distributor Sysco Corporation. The two companies have entered into a 10-year agreement on renewable energy that calls for construction of three solar gardens in the Houston and Dallas areas. [Renewables Now]

¶ The number of cities that pledged to go to 100% renewable energy has doubled since last year, bolstering hopes that similar state and national policies could soon gain traction. Seventy cities and nine counties across the US have adopted ordinances setting targets to overhaul their electricity use, up from 36 cities before June 2017. [HuffPost]

Tennessee Solar facility (Acker | Bloomberg via Getty Images)

¶ Central Arizona Project, which supplies water to a large part of Arizona and is the main buyer of electricity from an Arizona coal plant on the verge of closure, said on it will instead source its electricity largely from a solar power project, ignoring an appeal by the US Interior Department to buy more power from the plant to keep it open. [Reuters]

¶ After strong growth in 2017, wind power now supplies more than 30% of the electricity in four states: Iowa, Kansas, Oklahoma, and South Dakota. The industry’s latest trends and milestones from 2017 are detailed in the American Wind Energy Association US Wind Industry Annual Market Report 2017 released in May 2018. [Facility Executive Magazine]

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