January 16 Energy News

January 16, 2020

Opinion and Interviews:

¶ “Sir David Attenborough Warns Of Climate ‘Crisis Moment'” • “The moment of crisis has come” in efforts to tackle climate change, Sir David Attenborough has warned. According to the renowned naturalist and broadcaster, “we have been putting things off for year after year.” Sir David’s comments came in a BBC News interview. [BBC]

Probably time to do something (Getty Images)

¶ “Exhibit 9,172 That Global Warming Is An Urgent Threat” • Not only did 2019 barely miss out on being the hottest year ever recorded on planet Earth, but it brought to a close the hottest decade ever, according to statistics provided by NASA and NOAA. The report from the two agencies notes that the past five years were the five hottest on record. [CNN]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Irrigation Keeps Things Cool In Extreme Heat” • A study in Nature Communications examined the influence of irrigation on extreme heat. The cooling effect of irrigation over regions studied partly or completely offset the effect of global warming contributing to more frequent and intense heat extremes by up to a factor of eight. [Futurity]

Watering (Getty Images)

¶ “Marine Heatwave Known As ‘The Blob’ Killed A Million US Seabirds” • A million seabirds that died along the US west coast were probably the victims of an unprecedented marine heatwave in the Pacific. Common murres have died en masse in the past, never like this. Such events are expected to become increasingly frequent due to climate change. [New Scientist]


¶ “BBC Launches New Climate Coverage” • The BBC announced plans for a year-long series of special programming and coverage on climate change. The Our Planet Matters project is to have news services and shows, including a new monthly Climate Check podcast from BBC Weather, and coverage of debates and events around the globe. [BBC]

Wildfire in Australia (Getty Images)

¶ “Coalition’s Axing Of Funding To Climate Change Adaptation Body Condemned” • The Australian Coalition government’s decision to axe funding to a climate change adaptation research body in 2017 has left the country “not well positioned” to deal with fires, the “silent killer” of drought, and other global heating impacts, its director has said. [The Guardian]

¶ “Volkswagen Will Be World’s Largest EV Manufacturer By 2030, Claims Report” • Wood Mackenzie says in a report that Volkswagen is on pace to be the largest manufacturer of electric cars by the end of this decade. Globally, it is currently in 10th place. The company says it expects to produce 22 million battery electric vehicles by 2028. [CleanTechnica]

Volkswagen ID Buzz (Image courtesy of Volkswagen)

¶ “Renewable energy’s advance drives Australia’s carbon emissions lower” • Record levels of renewable energy produced the first drop in Australia’s annual greenhouse gas emissions since 2015. But if the level of reduction is maintained the rate of decline would mean the country’s Paris pledge would be met 68 years late. [The Sydney Morning Herald]

¶ “Citi Explains Why There’s An ‘Ultimate Cap’ On Oil Prices” • David Bailin, CIO of Citi Private Bank, said the cost of producing electricity from solar energy has been lower than that of fossil fuels for two years. That’s a “permanent change” that will limit how high oil prices can climb, he said. The global oil supply is currently running ahead of demand. [CNBC]

UK solar system (Andrew Aitchison | In Pictures | Getty Images)

¶ “Last Pickering Reactor To Be Shut By 2025” • The last reactor at the Pickering nuclear station will be shut down within five years, says Ontario Energy Minister Greg Rickford. After the Star revealed the 49-year-old Ontario Power Generation facility is getting its life extended, Rickford emphasized the power-plant will be slowly phased offline. [durhamregion.com]


¶ “Electric Aircraft Pilot Training Is Arriving” • Quantum Air and OSM Aviation Group announced an electric aircraft pilot training partnership. OSM Aviation Academy will conduct the Quantum-branded pilot training program according to FAA commercial standards. Electric urban air mobility is taking shape one step at a time. [CleanTechnica]

Bye Aerospace eFlyer (Photo courtesy of Bye Aerospace)

¶ “Visa Reaches 100% Renewable Electricity Goal” • Visa, based in Foster City, California, announced it has met its goal to use 100% renewable electricity by 2020, furthering its commitment to lead responsibly and sustainably across the company’s US and global operations, including 131 offices in 76 countries and four global processing centers. [SB News]

¶ “Harvard Law Students Protest Firm Representing Exxon In Climate Lawsuit” • Harvard law students disrupted a recruiting event for Paul Weiss, the law firm representing ExxonMobil in climate lawsuits over what it knew and what it said about climate change. The protesters hope to open a new climate activism front in the legal world. [The Guardian]

Harvard Law School (Photo: Steven Senne | AP)

¶ “Gov Raimondo Offers New Vision For Renewables And Transit” • Rhode Island Gov Gina Raimondo gave her State of the State address on Jan 14. Some of the loudest applause followed what she said about environmental issues. She said her vision was to see Rhode Island using 100% renewable electricity by the end if this decade. [ecoRI news]

¶ “Renewables Quench PepsiCo Thirst For Power” • PepsiCo plans to get all its electricity in the US from renewable energy by the end of this year. The company said the US is its largest market and accounts for nearly half of its total global electricity consumption. It said PPAs will finance the development of new wind and solar farms. [reNEWS]

Have a decidedly good day.

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