December 31 Energy News

December 31, 2018

Opinion:

¶ “The US Department of Energy Roots for Floating Solar Panels. Do You?” • Floating solar PVs on water seems to make sense, right? Well, maybe. Floating PVs on water add another wrinkle to maintaining them. So does finding suitable bodies of water. But as other countries move on floating PVs, the US DOE wants the US to play catch-up. [CleanTechnica]

Floating solar panels

¶ “Social Entrepreneurs Make It Easy for 2019 To Be Your First Carbon Neutral Year” • While debates rage about what should be done about climate change, some social entrepreneurs are doing something about it. Among other things, they’re making it easy for 2019 to your first carbon neutral year. One organization working on this is Drawdown. [Forbes]

¶ “Six Renewable Energy Trends to Watch in 2019” • 2019 promises to be an exciting year for clean tech. Increasingly, numbers of countries, companies, and regions are embracing sustainable energy generation and the landscape is rapidly evolving. Here are 6 renewable energy trends to watch in the coming year. [Forbes]

Renewable energy in China (Getty image)

¶ “Trump Administration Fiddled While California Burned” • 2018 brought chilling warnings about the growing dangers of climate change. As possible evidence of it, the Camp Fire killed over 80 people and destroyed the town of Paradise, California. Scientists blamed climate change, but Trump worked to bail out the coal industry. [RTO Insider]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Flood Defences: How Willow Proved to Be a Natural Defender” • Planting willow trees on farm land along a river to grow fuel for a biomass plant had an unexpected benefit for a farmer in Cumbria. As heavy rain produced a flood that washed gravel and debris onto exposed fields, the willow trees provided protection to the adjacent fields. [The Guardian]

Willow growing along the River Eden in Cumbria
(Photo: Christopher Thomond for the Guardian)

World:

¶ “35 Renewable Energy Projects Completed Costing $3.5 Billion” • Over the past year, Pakistan added just a bit more than 1,185 MW of wind capacity to its electric grid. Six solar projects with a total of 430 MW capacity have been brought online, and six sugar mills have new bagasse co-generation projects totalling 201 MW. [Technology Times Pakistan]

¶ “Home Solar Power Systems Shine in HCM City” • Hundreds of households in Ho Chi Minh City have been benefiting from homegrown solar power systems. The Ministry of Trade and Investment has encouraged citizens to produce solar power at home to cover their own electricity demand and contribute to the national power grid. [en.vietnamplus.vn]

Solar panels in HCM City (Source: tuoitre.vn)

¶ “Cyprus to See a New Wave of Subsidy-Free PV in 2019” • Cyprus has had several policy schemes supporting development of solar power over the years, but the most important is a plan now backing projects considered subsidy-free. There have been 86 PV projects submitted for plants with capacities ranging from 100 kW to 5 MW. [pv magazine International]

¶ “Solar Power Plant Set for 2019” • A solar power plant worth more than $58 million is under construction in Cambodia’s Kampong Speu province. Installation of 200,000 solar modules will start in January, and they are set to begin operating late next year, said PV supplier JinkoSolar Holding Co Ltd. The plant’s capacity will be 60 MW. [The Phnom Penh Post]

Solar plant in Mexico (Alfredo Estrella | AFP)

¶ “227 MW of Solar Green-Lit for Bangladesh” • The government of Bangladesh approved proposals for setting up five solar power plants, which will generate 227 MW of electricity in the power-hungry country. The cabinet committee on public procurement agreed to buy the plant’s electricity at about 11¢/kWh for 20 years. [pv magazine International]

¶ “Vestas Nails 328-MW Norwegian Nugget” • Vestas has landed a 328-MW order to supply and install turbines at several projects in Norway. The Danish manufacturer said that variants of 4-MW machines will be used in the projects, but did not immediately give further details of the number of units, the developers, or the projects themselves. [reNEWS]

Vestas turbine installation (Vestas image)

US:

¶ “DOE Stalls Clean Energy R&D, Risking Jobs and US Competitiveness” • The US DOE may be sitting on about $600 million in Fiscal Year 2018 funding for clean energy research and development, despite clear and strong congressional guidance to invest in new technologies and innovation to pave the way for America to lead in clean energy. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “House Climate Change Committee to Oppose Disastrous Trump Environmental Agenda” • As Democrats become the majority party in the House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi, its new Speaker, announced a new special committee on climate change. The chair will be Karen Castor, a 7-term representative from Tampa, Florida. [CleanTechnica]

US Capitol Building (Wikimedia Commons)

¶ “Climate Report Author Takes on White House” • One of the authors of the latest federal climate assessment, which warns of severe consequences for the country’s economy, environment, and public health from global warming, pushed back against the White House press secretary’s statement that the findings were not based on facts. [Parker City News]

¶ “DOE Agreement Supports Power Generated from SMRs” • Utah Associated Municipal Power Systems plans development of a 12-module NuScale nuclear demonstration plant at a site at the Idaho National Laboratory, with operation expected by 2027. The DOE signed a memorandum of understanding on two of the modules. [World Nuclear News]

Have a sublimely tranquil day.

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