January 4 Energy News

January 4, 2019

Opinion:

¶ “Can Trump’s New Science Adviser Convince Him that Climate Change Is Real?” • As one of its last acts of the term, the Senate confirmed meteorologist Kelvin Droegemeier, to be director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy, “science adviser” to the president. Trump, however, has a history of ignoring his own experts. [CNN]

Collapsing polar ice

World:

¶ “EV Subsidies Going Up in Italy, Down in China” • EV subsidies are a hot topic. In Norway, 30% of all new cars sold in 2018 were battery electrics thanks to aggressive incentives. Tesla and GM are losing US subsidies as they reached quotas. A number of countries, including the US, are considering whether to cancel or expand EV subsidies. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Delhi Policy Draft Calls for 25% EVs by 2023” • A study found that Delhi’s polluted air contributed to almost 15,000 premature deaths in 2016. To reduce toxic air pollution in the city, Delhi’s government created a draft policy calling for 25% of new vehicle registrations to be EVs by 2023. About two-thirds of vehicles are motorcycles or scooters. [CleanTechnica]

Pollution (Credit: Sumitmpsd, via Wikipedia, CC BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “Germany Says Hallo to Renewables as Clean Power Overtakes Coal” • Research from the Fraunhofer research organisation suggests output from solar, wind, biomass, and hydroelectric generation units produced more than 40% of German electricity, where coal provided around 38%. German renewables passed coal for the first time. [Energy Live News]

¶ “Canada-US Team Strikes Gold in Oz” • Canadian Solar and Signal Energy are partnering to give engineering, procurement, and construction services on a 175-MW PV project in New South Wales. Construction of the Finley solar farm, which is being developed by ESCO Pacific, began in December 2018 and will be completed in October 2019. [reNEWS]

Finley solar farm (Canadian Solar image)

¶ “Government to Give Up Plan to Export Nuclear Power Reactors to Turkey” • Japan is expected to effectively withdraw its plans to build a nuclear power plant in Turkey by asking Ankara to provide significantly more funding amid ballooning safety costs. Turkey is likely to reject the request, according to people familiar with the decision. [The Mainichi]

¶ “Renewables Account for 52% of Portugal’s Consumption in 2018” • Non-hydro renewables generated 29.5% of Portugal’s electricity in 2018, utility data shows. Wind power contributed 23%, followed by biomass  at 5% and PVs at 1.5%. Taking into account hydro sources, the renewable power generation made up 52% of the total. [Renewables Now]

Wind farm

US:

¶ “Electric Vehicle Sales up 130% in 2018, 210% in Q4 2018 – US Electric Car Sales Report” • EV sales growth has been uneven. Aside from the new models (Jaguar I-PACE and Honda Clarity EV), the only models that saw growth were the Tesla Model 3, Tesla Model S, Tesla Model X, and Nissan LEAF. But those models certainly grew a lot . [CleanTechnica]

¶ “More Coal Plants Shut Down in Trump’s First Two Years than in Obama’s Entire First Term” • Despite campaigning on a pledge to save the dirtiest of fossil fuels, President Donald Trump has presided over a faster rate of coal plant retirements in his first two years than President Barack Obama saw in his entire first term in office. [ThinkProgress]

Dismantling a coal-fired plant (George Frey | Getty Images)

¶ “New York’s Solar for All Program Will Award No-Cost Community Solar to 10,000 Low Income Residents” • In a bid to reduce the energy costs for low income New York households and to help increase access to renewable energy for both renters and homeowners alike, New York is enabling no-cost community solar for up to 10,000 residents. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “143 MW of Distributed Solar Goes Online in VA, DC, MD, DE” • While large utility-scale projects grab the headlines, installation firms in the region racked up 7400 small-scale (under 1 MW) PV installations in 2018. While Maryland had the most installations by far, Delaware held second place in terms of new solar capacity per capita. [pv magazine USA]

Distributed solar (Image: Sun Tribe Solar)

¶ “GM Passed 200,000 EV Milestone in Q4” • The $7,500 federal EV tax credit will drop to $3,750 for General Motors on March 31, 2019, because GM recorded more than 200,000 EV sales in the 4th quarter of last year. The credit will be at $3,750 the following 2 quarters. Then it will drop to $1,875 for the next two quarters. And then, it will end. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Denver and Boulder Have Big Goals to Fight Climate Change. But There Is an Obstacle: Cannabis” • With lights on 18 hours each day, growing cannabis in a greenhouse uses a lot of energy. Colorado gets a lot of power from coal-fired plants, so marijuana grown indoors is far more carbon intensive as that grown in California or Oregon. [The Colorado Sun]

Cannabis growing (Andy Colwell, Special to The Colorado Sun)

¶ “Tesla Model 3 Is the #1 Best Selling Car in USA From an American Car Company” • Comparing sales numbers from top car companies, we can see how the 5 top-selling cars in the US were for December and the 4th quarter of 2018. The Tesla Model 3 was the only car from an American car company that was in the top 5 on either list. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “New Research: Texas Could Ditch Coal Entirely for Wind and Solar” • Fossil fuel may comprise a large part of the Texas economy, but new research shows that the state has the natural resources to ditch coal entirely and still meet its electricity needs. The report was published in the journal Renewables: Wind, Water, and Solar. [Futurism]

Have a restfully cheery day.

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