July 6 Energy News

July 6, 2019

Opinion:

¶ “More Signs That Natural Gas Can’t Compete With Renewables On Cost” • From a natural gas industry conference to a major metropolitan area, it is getting clearer that natural gas is losing economically to renewables and battery storage. Considering recent news on climate change, this emerging reality couldn’t come soon enough. [DeSmog]

Solar farm in Ontario (Credit: I Saw That, CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

¶ “Three Takeaways From New York’s Ambitious Climate Change Plan” • New York passed a sweeping climate change plan of its own in June. It calls for 100% of the state’s electricity to come from carbon-free sources by 2040. Some will come from offshore wind, and some from distributed sources. How much will be nuclear is a question. [Motley Fool]

¶ “Got An Overheating Planet? Plant A Trillion Trees. Problem Solved” • Lead researcher Tom Crowther of ETH Zürich in Switzerland told The Guardian, “What blows my mind is the scale. I thought restoration would be in the top 10, but it is overwhelmingly more powerful than all of the other climate change solutions proposed.” [CleanTechnica]

Redwood forest (US National Park Service)

World:

¶ “Gold Fields Mine Is First In Australia To Incorporate Wind Into A Hybrid Microgrid” • Gold Fields and EDL are rolling out the first hybrid microgrid with windpower at a mine in Australia. The Agnew mine will have 18 MW of windpower, 16 MW of natural gas generation, 4 MW of solar and 13 MW/4 MWh of energy storage. [Microgrid Knowledge]

¶ “Indian EV Aggregator Ola Electric Hits $1 Billion Valuation” • TechCrunch reported that Ola Electric had raised $250 million from SoftBank, which also holds stake in the former’s parent company, Ola Cabs. With this fresh round of funding Ola Electric is reported to have achieved unicorn status with a valuation of $1 billion. [CleanTechnica]

Recharging Ola Electric vehicles (Ola Electric image)

¶ “Budget To Boost Investment In Renewable Energy Sector” • Cheering the Indian government’s proposal to set up mega manufacturing plants for solar cells, batteries, and solar charging infrastructure, industry experts said the move will give a boost to the sunrise industry. But they said soft loans and export credits are also needed. [ETEnergyworld.com]

¶ “$14.5 Million Climate Change Research Center Promised For PEI” • Ottawa and the government of Prince Edward Island committed to building a climate change research center and school in the community of St Peters Bay. The Canadian Centre for Climate Change and Adaptation will be part of the University of Prince Edward Island. [CBC.ca]

Planting grass at St Peters Bay (CBC)

¶ “OPEC Head: Climate Activists Are The ‘Greatest Threat’ To Oil Industry” • What’s one of the world’s most powerful cartel’s afraid of? A bunch of meddling kids. Climate activists and their “unscientific” claims are “perhaps the greatest threat to our industry going forward,” said Mohammed Barkindo, the secretary general of OPEC. [Grist]

US:

¶ “Alaska Sees Record Temperatures In Heatwave” • A temperature of 90°F (32°C) was reached at Anchorage airport, the US Weather Service tweeted. The previous high was just under 88°F (30°C), and the average at this time of year is 65°F (18°C). Alaska had earlier broken records throughout a hot spring, particularly in the Arctic. [BBC]

Anchorage sunset (Joseph from Cabin On The
Road, USA, Wikimedia Commons, CC-BY-SA-2.0)

¶ “As Coal Crumbles, Dem Asks What About The Miners?” • Blackjewel LLC filed for bankruptcy in a West Virginia court, sent its employees home, and closed the mines, it was reported. Gov Mark Gordon suggested the state could get more involved as miners lose jobs and benefits. The state’s Democrats say more action is needed. [Buffalo Bulletin]

¶ “Blackjewel Withheld $1.2 Million From Payroll, Didn’t Put In 401(k)s” • Bankrupt coal mine operator Blackjewel LLC has withheld $1.2 million from employees’ paychecks without depositing the funds in the workers’ retirement accounts. The company suddenly shuttered two Wyoming mines on Monday, laying off nearly 600 workers. [WyoFile]

Belle Ayr mine (Dustin Bleizeffer | WyoFile)

¶ “Paychecks Bounce, Leaving Kentucky Coal Miners At Bankrupt Blackjewel In A Bind” • It’s been an anxious week for coal miners in Southeastern Kentucky after their last paychecks from a bankrupt coal company bounced, leaving them short on cash and wondering when, or if, they’ll get paid or go back to work anytime soon. [Lexington Herald Leader]

¶ “Georgia Power Requests Rate Increase For Grid Improvements And Renewable Energy Projects” • Georgia Power has filed a request with the Georgia Public Service Commission to increase customer rates by about 7% in 2020 to enable the company to continue making investments in Georgia’s energy future. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

Have a satisfyingly gleeful day.

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