Archive for July 23rd, 2018

July 23 Energy News

July 23, 2018


¶ “10+ Million Fires, 19,000 Deaths, And 70,000 Injuries From Internal Combustion Vehicles” • Over 10 million highway vehicle fires caused about 19,000 deaths and over 70,000 injuries in the US from 1980–2015, the National Fire Protection Association says. But some mainstream news outlets ignore those fires and seem to report the rare Tesla fires obsessively. [CleanTechnica]

YouTube screen shot

¶ “Reverse power flow: How solar + batteries shift power from utilities to consumers” • For 100 years, the US electric grid has been controlled by electric utilities, public regulators, and grid operators. But the economics of coal and nuclear power plants, relying on operating at high capacities around the clock, are being undermined by PVs and batteries. [Red, Green, and Blue]

¶ “Skyscrapers Full of Lettuce Promise an Eco-Friendly Alternative to Outdoor Farming. There’s Just One Problem.” • “Vertical farming can allow former cropland to go back to nature and reverse the plundering of the earth,” a New Yorker article said. But vertical farming also uses a lot of energy, and we need to take care where it comes form. [Mother Jones]

Vertical farming (Image: Jun Cen)


¶ Almost half of all major businesses in Australia are switching to clean, affordable and reliable renewable energy in a bid to take control of soaring power bills and tackle intensifying climate change. But for small to medium-size businesses, making a switch is not so straightforward, so local government has an important role to play. [Queensland Country Life]

¶ Sanjeev Gupta, the British billionaire who rescued the Whyalla steelworks from administration and is spending more than $2 billion on clean energy and green steel developments in regional South Australia says most Australians are yet to grasp that solar power is now a cheaper option than new coal-fired electricity. He intends to prove it. [The Guardian]

Sanjeev Gupta (Photo: Bloomberg via Getty Images)

¶ The Philippine Department of Energy is working on establishing renewable energy zones to maximize the country’s renewable resources, a ranking official said. The department released a draft of a circular, “Establishment and Development of Competitive Renewable Energy Zones (CREZ) in the Country,” to get comments from stakeholders. [The Manila Times]

¶ The British government said it will provide up to £557 million ($732 million) of funding for the next clean electricity auctions for less-established renewables. The next so-called contracts for difference allocation round for renewable energy technologies such as offshore wind will open by May 2019, the government said. []

Fishing in an offshore wind farm

¶ In Malaysia, up to seven Independent Power Producer agreements could be cancelled as part of a 10-year plan to be unveiled soon. Four have already been voided without any cost incurred, the energy minister said, and another four are under review. She said Malaysia needs a long-term goal of producing cheaper and cleaner energy. [The New Paper]

¶ Global coal prices have been on a steady rise and hit a six-year high early this month, putting pressure on the power generation industry in Malaysia. Coal plays a large role in Malaysia’s energy scheme, as it provides 53% of peninsular the country’s power. All of Malaysia’s coal is imported, with costs are entirely dependent on the global market. [The Star Online]

Coal barge (Reuters image)

¶ Wealthy governments have been accused of promoting fossil fuels in Africa at the expense of clean energy. Analysis showed 60% of public aid for energy projects was spent on fossil fuels, compared with just 18% on renewables. Oil Change International  estimated aid to Africa’s energy sector was $59.5 billion (£45.3bn) between 2014 and 2016. [The Guardian]


¶ At the end of 2017, the numbers of Arkansas PV systems and accounts that net meter were almost double what they were a year before and more than 40 times the what they were in 2007, according to the Arkansas Public Service Commission. And while the state’s PV capacity is not large at 9 MW, it is continuing to grow. [Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette]

Arkansas installation (Charlie Kaijo | NWA Democrat-Gazette)

¶ The Daily Hampshire Gazette reports that CVE North America Inc wants to install 17,280 solar modules across two 10-acre parcels in Westhampton, Massachusetts. Together, they would produce nearly 5 MW of power. Local utility Eversource has entered into an agreement with CVE for the power, according to the special permit application. [The State]

¶ The New England Hydropower Company says it wants to place a small scale hydropower plant in Hugh Moore Park along the Delaware and Lehigh Historic Canal Corridor in Pennsylvania. It recently presented its plans to Northampton County Council, which voted to match a state grant for this project, in any amount up to $1.5 million. [WFMZ Allentown]

Delaware and Lehigh Canal

¶ Following in the steps of growing number of municipalities, New Brunswick, New Jersey, now proposes to buy electricity in bulk to get a low rate for all households, and to seek a supplier that will employ environmentally-friendly renewable energy sources. The city is moving forward on a plan to bring in more renewable energy resources. []

¶ The Winnebago Tribe of Nebraska already boasts 400 kW of installed solar panels, more than nearly any other Midwestern American Indian tribe. It doesn’t plan to stop there. The American Indian tribe expects to learn later this summer whether it will receive a federal grant to pay half the cost of an additional 300 kW. [Lincoln Journal Star]

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