December 18 Energy News

December 18, 2019

Science and Technology:

¶ “Chance Of ‘Once In A Lifetime Heavy Snowfall’ Has Increased Five Times Thanks To Climate Change, According To Japanese Scientists” • A study from the Tohoku University and the Meteorological Research Institute says that ‘once in a lifetime’ snowfalls will be five times more likely to hit Japan if climate change continues at current rates. [Daily Mail]

Snow in the Mountains (Getty Images)

¶ “Earth’s Hottest Decade On Record Capped By Years Of Extreme Storms And Deadly Wildfires” • Deadly heat waves, wildfires, and pervasive flooding in 2019 punctuated a decade of climate extremes that may show global warming kicking into overdrive. Scientists say 2019 was Earth’s second-warmest year on record. [InsideClimate News]

¶ “Public Housing Buildings In Sweden To Benefit From Renewable Energy Hydrogen Storage System” • Six public housing buildings in the town of Vårgårda have a microgrid with solar panels, batteries, heat pumps, hydrogen production and storage, and hydrogen fuel cells. Hydrogen enables renewable power through the whole year. [Hydrogen Fuel News]

Housing in the far North

World:

¶ “2019 Had Three Of The Warmest Months On Record. The Rest Weren’t Far Behind” • In 2019, warmer-than-usual weather dominated forecasts around the globe. June, July and September ended up breaking or tying high temperature records, and the others were in the top five warmest for that month. The global records began in 1880. [CNN]

¶ “Ebusco Adds 60 Buses To The Largest Electric Bus Fleet In Europe” • Ebusco delivered 60 of its 12-meter Ebusco 2.2 electric buses to transit operator Qbuzz in the Netherlands. The new buses were brought into the service area in grand fashion, as a parade of the titans traveled the 250 kilometers into Groningen for the official delivery. [CleanTechnica]

Delivery of Ebusco electric buses (Ebusco image)

¶ “Australia Heatwave: Nation Endures Hottest Day On Record” • Australia has experienced its hottest day on record with the national average for high temperature reaching 40.9°C (105.6°F). The Bureau of Meteorology said heat on 17 December exceeded the previous record of 40.3°C set on 7 January 2013. Some places had high temperatures of 45°C. [BBC]

¶ “SSE Renewables To Buy Offaly Wind Farm” • SSE Renewables is to acquire a wind farm in County Offaly, further expanding its onshore wind pipeline. The Yellow River project in Rhode is set to enter construction in late 2020, and will have 29 turbines and an installed capacity in excess of 100 MW. The project is to be completed in 2022. [Irish Times]

Wind farm

¶ “Investment In Renewable Energy Dips Globally As Prices Fall” • Global investments in renewable energy fell to $241.6 billion last year, down from $312.2 billion in 2015, the UN Environment Program said. But investors got more bang for their buck: Renewable energy capacity grew by 138.5 GW, up 8% from the 127.5 GW of 2018. [Stock Daily Dish]

¶ “Solar Powered Mines Now Commercially Viable Without Need For Subsidies” • Zenith energy has deployed a 26.6-MW solar-diesel hybrid system at a remote Western Australia mine site. The company believes it will be one of the first such systems showing the technology is commercially viable without the need for government subsidy. [RenewEconomy]

Zenith Energy solar site (Photo supplied)

¶ “Insurance Companies Are Refusing To Back Coal Projects Over Environmental Concerns” • Coal is said to be the most polluting fuel for CO₂. It should be unsurprising that the past few years have seen a rise in insurance firms refusing to provide the industry coverage. In the US and Australia, four big companies have done so since March. [The New Economy]

¶ “Good News For Climate Change: India Gets Out Of Coal” • India has been aggressively pivoting away from coal-fired power plants and towards electricity generated by solar, wind, and hydroelectric power. This means that the amount of carbon dioxide the country emits into the atmosphere should come down dramatically. [National Observer]

Jharia Coal mine (TripodStories – AB | CC BY-SA 4.0)

US:

¶ “US Lawmakers Stiff Solar, Wind Gets Modest Victory In Tax Deal” • After months of lobbying, the clean energy industry secured minimal tax credit extensions in the $1.37 trillion end-of-year deal. It included $250 million for programs to aid advanced nuclear reactors, but solar power and electric vehicles were left out of the deal. [Greentech Media]

¶ “A Natural Gas Blowout In Ohio Released More Methane Than Many Countries Do In An Entire Year” • In February 2018, a blowout at a natural gas well in rural Ohio forced nearby residents to evacuate, but did not get much national attention. New analysis of satellite data shows that the leak was far worse than previously thought. [CNN]

Natural gas blowout (Ohio State Highway Patrol)

¶ “Maryland Gov Hogan Backs New Energy Plan; Promises 100% Clean Energy By 2040” • Maryland Gov Larry Hogan outlined his plans on clean energy for the 2020 legislative session. Under his proposal, the state would no longer grant renewable energy incentives for burning trash to generate electricity. That includes black liquor from paper making. [WTOP]

¶ “KIUC Tests Grid With Solely Renewable Generation” • For several hours per day over 11 days, electricity on Kauai was generated completely by renewable sources. The cooperative’s renewable portfolio consists of a combination of distributed and utility-scale solar, a biomass plant, and several relatively small hydro generation facilities. [Pacific Business News]

Have a delightfully fine day.

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