January 20 Energy News

January 20, 2020

Science and Technology:

¶ “Fires Set Stage For Irreversible Forest Losses In Australia” • Before the wildfires, ecologists divided up Australia’s native vegetation into two categories: fire-adapted landscapes that burn periodically, and those that don’t burn. Now, that distinction lost meaning. Even rainforests and peat swamps caught fire, likely changing them forever. [The Denver Post]

After a fire (Sebastian Pfautsch via AP)

¶ “NASA And NOAA: 2010s Was The Hottest Decade Ever” • NASA and NOAA both found that the last decade was the hottest ever recorded. NOAA’s data shows global annual temperature increases at an average rate of 0.07°C per decade since 1880 and over twice that since 1981. NASA says every decade has warmer than the one before it. [CleanTechnica]


¶ “Single-Use Plastic: China To Ban Bags And Other Items” • China unveiled a major plan to reduce single-use plastics across the country. Non-degradable bags will be banned in major cities by the end of 2020 and in all cities and towns by 2022. Also, the restaurant industry will be banned from using single-use straws by the end of 2020. [BBC]

Rubbish (Getty Images)

¶ “Oil And Gas Companies Will Only Survive The Climate Crisis If They Spend More Now” • The oil and gas industry needs to work harder and faster to tackle the climate crisis if it wants to remain profitable. Oil and gas companies cannot rely on fossil fuels to keep driving returns, the International Energy Agency said in a report. [CNN]

¶ “Hornsea One Will Power Millions of UK Homes” • Hornsea One, the world’s largest offshore wind farm, is almost complete and will power millions of homes in Britain. The farm will span an area of 407 square kilometers and has a capacity of 6 GW. It is also located farther out to see than any other wind farm, 120 km off the coast of England. [CleanTechnica]

Last Hornsea One turbine being installed (Ørsted image)

¶ “Could Renewable Energy, Wind Energy, Concentrated Solar Power And PV, Overcome Coal In China?” • A report released this week by Wood Mackenzie Power and Renewables has heralded another energy milestone: China will soon be added to that list of countries in which coal energy is no longer more economical than renewable energy. [REVE]

¶ “Qatar To Build Solar Power Plant With Total And Marubeni” • Qatar has signed an agreement with France’s Total and Japan’s Marubeni to build a solar power project with capacity of about 800 MW, Qatar’s energy minister said. The cost of the project is about $467 million. It will reach full capacity by the first quarter of 2022. [ETEnergyworld.com]

Renewable Energy


¶ “Dust Storms And Giant Hail Batter Bushfire-Weary Australia” • Thunderstorms and giant hail battered parts of Australia’s east coast on Monday after “apocalyptic” dust storms swept across drought-stricken areas, as extreme weather patterns collided in the bushfire-fatigued country. Violent hail storms pelted the Australian capital, Canberra. [RTL Today]

¶ “Climate Refugees Can’t Be Returned Home, Says Landmark UN Human Rights Ruling” • It is unlawful for governments to return people to countries where their lives might be threatened by the climate crisis, a landmark ruling by the UN human rights committee has found. The judgement is considered to be a legal “tipping point.” [The Guardian]

South Tarawa (Dmitry Malov | Alamy)


¶ “US Army Weighs Up Proposal For Gigantic Sea Wall To Defend NY From Future Floods” • Could a massive sea wall shield New York from the devastation of superstorm surges like Hurricane Sandy’s? The truth is, nobody knows for sure, but a giant sea wall is one serious proposal being investigated by the Army Corps of Engineers. [ScienceAlert]

¶ “Rhode Island Orders 100% Renewables Electricity By 2030” • The governor of Rhode Island, Gina M Raimondo, has signed an executive order that directs the state to source 100% of its power from renewable energy sources by 2030. While Rhode Island is not the first state to do so, it is the first state setting such a tight schedule. [Renewables Now]

Offshore wind farm (Beverley Goodwin, CC 2.0 Generic)

¶ “Conservation Groups Sue Trump Administration’s Plan To Frack California Lands” • Groups sued the Trump administration over its plan to allow oil drilling and fracking on over 1 million acres of public lands in Central California. They say the Bureau of Land Management illegally failed to consider the potential of fracking to cause harmful effects. [Santa Barbara Edhat]

¶ “Senate Hearing Evaluates Progress Of Nuclear Energy Innovation And Modernization Act” • The Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works held a hearing on progress of the Nuclear Energy Innovation and Modernization Act. It requires the NRC to develop a new licensing process for “commercial advanced nuclear reactors.” [The Depaulia]

Have a fabulously wonderful day.

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