October 28 Energy News

October 28, 2018

Opinion:

¶ “Where To for Australia’s Renewable Energy Sector?” • The Australian Government has no plans to revise the country’s renewable energy target “with anything” after 2020. It will reach its watered-down goal for 2026 anyway, so why bother? Some analysts expect this to cause a slowdown of renewable growth. Others see things differently. [CleanTechnica]

Australian wind farm (Wikipedia)

¶ “Why Canadian Tar Sands Oil may be Doomed” • At current prices, $19 per barrel, Canadian tar sands oil producers are losing money on every barrel of oil they dig out. Despite signs earlier this year the industry would “turn profitable in 2018,” a much more likely scenario at this point is a fourth straight year of losses. [NationofChange] (Thanks to Tad Montgomery)

¶ “What Mary Barra’s National EV Mandate Plan Says – and Doesn’t Say – about General Motors” • The public comment period on the federal government’s plan to roll back Obama-era fuel economy standards will end soon. Just before the deadline, Mary Barra, CEO of General Motors, submitted her company’s position. [CleanTechnica]

The Wimpy approach (Credit: The Awl)

¶ “Some Minnesotans Find Ways to Take Action on Climate Change Challenges” • Many Minnesotans are rethinking their daily habits as evidence mounts on the perils of climate change. While the science suggests that individual actions by households cannot solve the problem alone, their action is needed to address the issue. [Minneapolis Star Tribune]

¶ “Why a Democratic Candidate Opposing Offshore Drilling Is Getting Republican Support in Trump Country” • Ocean engineer Joe Cunningham is a scientist who turned Democratic candidate for Congress. He has always opposed offshore drilling, and if elected, he will “make sure we never do” drill along South Carolina’s coast. [Gizmodo]

Beach near Charleston (Photo: Getty)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Climate Change a Threat to Even the Most Tolerant Oysters” • Severe weather events associated with climate change may cause flooding that threatens the survival of the Olympia oyster, new research suggests. The findings will be presented today at a conference of the American Physiological Society in being held in New Orleans. [Science Codex]

¶ “Dry Lakes and Dust Storms: Dramatic Changes to Yukon Glaciers are Warning for Planet, Researchers Say” • The Yukon’s enormous glaciers are thinning very quickly, creating huge environmental changes. The dramatic changes are an early warning of what climate change could mean for the rest of the planet, researchers say. [CBC.ca]

Kaskawulsh glacier

World:

¶ “$658 Million Deal Signed to Supply Power to 210,000 Homes in South Africa” • Saudi company ACWA Power has announced plans to invest $658 million in South Africa. The company said it will build the 100-MW Redstone concentrated solar thermal power, which will supply enough power to meet the needs of 210,000 homes. [Arab News]

¶ “Spain Scraps Solar Tax in Energy Market Shakeup that Threatens Coal” • Spain is scrapping a tax widely criticised for undermining solar power, in the latest energy policy reversal by the country’s new socialist government. The move also dims the outlook for coal power. Details of the new law will be published next month. [Energy and Carbon]

Spanish rooftop solar array

¶ “Seventy of the Largest Wind Turbines Ever Seen in Africa Will Head for the Karoo” • Enel Green Power placed an order for 70 of massive turbines from Vestas, one of the world’s largest wind turbine makers. The turbines, each of 4.2 MW, are intended for wind projects in South Africa’s Northern Cape and Western Cape provinces. [Business Insider South Africa]

US:

¶ “Portland General Electric to Award 100 MW of Renewables” • Portland General Electric, a public utility in Oregon, is on track to award a number of 20-year contracts for a cumulative 100 MW of renewable energy generation by the end of this year, with short-list proposed projects including wind, solar, and battery storage. [CleanTechnica]

Lime wind farm (Photo: Bureau of Land Management)

¶ “Billionaire Brawl: Warren Buffett vs Sheldon Adelson in Nevada” • Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway owns NV Energy, a government-regulated monopoly that ranks as the state’s largest utility. And Adelson is bankrolling a campaign to break up the company and take control of where his power-hungry casinos buy electricity. [Politico]

¶ “SunPower to Install Solar Systems at 19 Walmart Stores and Two Distribution Centers” • Walmart announced an agreement with SunPower to install solar systems at 19 stores and two distribution centers in Illinois. The project will include rooftop and ground-mounted solar systems, with construction set to begin in 2019. [Business Chief]

Urban solar system

¶ “As Trump Slashes Environmental Regulations, the EPA Union Forms the Crux of an Internal Resistance” • The American Federation of Government Employees represents EPA workers, and as the Trump Administration works to hasten climate change, the union and the employees it represents have proven to be a source of resistence. [Salon]

¶ “As Trump Wavers on Yucca Mountain, Nuclear Waste, Costs Mount” • A remark by President Trump that he would not support development of the federal government’s politically embattled nuclear waste repository at Yucca Mountain may not have been his most noticed statement. But his inaction will have continuing high costs. [Madison.com]

Have a truly fabulous day.

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