September 3 Energy News

September 3, 2018

Opinion:

¶ “Automakers Try Hard To NOT Sell Electric Cars” • Automaker executives from Ford, GM, Nissan, and Toyota are fond of saying that few consumers want electric cars. They sometimes claim they could produce many more electric cars, but customers are not asking for them. But they are pushing gasmobiles, and putting no effort into EVs. [CleanTechnica]

New Nissan LEAFs

¶ “The reality is new coal power is not the answer for cheaper electricity bills” • The tipping point has been reached: renewable energy is now a cheaper source of power for Australia’s future electricity needs than coal. The cold, hard numbers show it, and no less an authority than the Australian Energy Market Operator agrees. [ABC News]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Australia unveils starfish-killing robot to protect Barrier Reef” • Scientists at Queensland University of Technology announced that they have built a robot called the RangerBot, developed with a grant from Google, that could be able to serve as a “robo reef protector” for the vast World Heritage site off Australia’s northeastern coast. [Daily News & Analysis]

Barrier Reef

¶ “Yes, There Will Be Plenty Of Lithium For Energy Storage” • Concerns about the global supply chain for lithium could soon be moot. The California-based startup Lilac Solutions has an innovative, low-impact method for extracting lithium from abundant brines around the globe. And it has just received a major financial boost. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ “China Doubled Its Battery Storage Capacity In Just Six Months” • Thanks to a central government policy boost, and to some regional storage policies, China added nearly as much battery storage capacity in the first half of 2018 as it had in total at the end of 2017, according to data by the China Energy Storage Alliance. [OilPrice.com]

Charging an electric car in China

¶ “IRENA: Renewable Energy Costs Falling Rapidly” • A report published by the International Renewable Energy Agency indicates that the cost of renewables is falling at such a rapid rate that it will be a consistently cheaper electricity source than traditional fuels in only a few years’ time, posing a mounting threat to the fossil fuel industry. [Financial Tribune]

¶ “Solar power installations in India down 52% in April-June 2018” • Solar installations in India were reduced 52%, to 1,599 MW, during the second quarter of 2018. This was mainly due to uncertainties around trade cases and module price fluctuations, according to Mercom India Research’s “Q2 2018 India Solar Market Update.” [ETEnergyworld.com]

Solar array

¶ “India Now Third Largest Electricity Producer In The World, Beats Out Russia And Japan” • According to a report in the Business Standard, India has overtaken Russia and Japan in terms of electricity production and currently ranks as the third highest producer and consumer in the world after China and the United States of America. [Swarajya]

¶ “Tunisia plans 1.7-GW solar complex” • Tunisia is set to build the solar park across three phases. It will be located in Tunisia’s southernmost region of Remana, in the Sahara Desert. The project was conceived by the Tunisian Government to support organic farming and improve security at the border with Libya. [pv magazine International]

Tunisia (Image: Julien | Flickr)

¶ “Solar energy can reduce gas reliance of Australian industry” • Solar energy can help Australian industry cut energy costs by reducing reliance on gas, a publication of the Clean Energy Finance Corporation and associated groups says. Major efficiency improvements are achievable by “fuel shifting” from gas to clean technology. [Energy Matters]

¶ “Business gives up on Coalition, turns to Labor and states on energy, climate” • Business has all but given up on the Coalition’s energy and climate policy. There is now no expectation of any meaningful moves on policy from the Coalition government between now and the next election, which must be held by the end of next May. [RenewEconomy]

Solar farm

¶ “Japanese utilities ended funding for nuclear fuel reprocessing in 2016, putting MOX program in doubt” • Utilities that operate nuclear power plants stopped funding the reprocessing of nuclear fuel in fiscal 2016, their financial reports showed, a step that may affect resource-scarce Japan’s nuclear fuel recycling policy. [The Japan Times]

US:

¶ “Driven by climate change, fire reshapes US West” • Wildfires in the US have charred more than 10,000 square miles this year, with large fires still burning in every Western state including many that are not fully contained. Whether sparked by lightning or humans, fire has long been a force shaping the landscape of the West. [Phys.Org]

Wildfire (Kent Porter | The Press Democrat via AP, File)

¶ “Can Miami’s Aquifer Survive Climate Change?” • Climate change is endangering drinking water resources in Miami-Dade County. The geography of the Miami area makes it particularly difficult to protect drinking water resources. Officials are puzzling over how Miami can keep its water safe and what that will cost, as sea levels rise. [Water Online]

¶ “GOP Climate Denier Seeks To Chair House Science Committee” • Rep Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA) dismissed climate change research as “junk science.” Now, he is angling to chair the House Science, Space and Technology Committee if Republicans maintain control of Congress after November, according to Roll Call. [The National Memo]

Have an absolutely joyful day.

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