February 6 Energy News

February 6, 2020

Science and Technology:

¶ “Arctic Sinkholes Open In A Flash After Permafrost Melt” • Arctic permafrost can thaw so quickly that it triggers landslides, drowns forests, and opens gaping sinkholes. This rapid melt can dramatically reshape the Arctic landscape in just a few months, a study shows. Previous climate models overlooked a particularly vulnerable type of soil. [Livescience.com]

Lake formed at a sinkhole (Image: © David Olefeldt)

¶ “Scientists Warn Multiple Overlapping Crises Could Trigger ‘Global Systemic Collapse'” • Overlapping environmental crises could tip the planet into “global systemic collapse,” more than 200 top scientists warned in a 50-page report. Climate change and issues related to it each poses a monumental challenge to humanity in the 21st century. [ScienceAlert]

World:

¶ “Malmö, Sweden Goes Electric With An Order For 60 Fully Electric Buses From Volvo” • Volvo is making a significant dent in transit emissions in its home country of Sweden. The company announced that it has received an order for 60 fully electric articulated buses from the transit operator in Malmö, Sweden. Each bus can carry 150 people. [CleanTechnica]

Volvo articulated bus (Photo: Volvo via Green Car Congress)

¶ “Fossil Vehicle Sales In France Crash By 25% As EVs Quadruple To 11% Market Share” • France, the world’s 8th largest auto market, just hit 11% EV market share in January, quadrupling in a year-on-year growth. Meanwhile, diesel and gasoline vehicle sales crashed by about 25%. Almost half of all Renault Zoe units sold were EVs. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Europe Adds ‘Record 3.6 GW Of Offshore Wind'” • A record 3.6 GW of offshore windpower was built in Europe last year, with 10 new wind farms in five countries, WindEurope said. European offshore capacity is now 22 GW. The UK and Germany account for three-quarters of that; nearly all the rest belongs to Denmark, the Netherlands, and Belgium. [reNEWS]

Floating offshore wind turbine (Credit: WindEurope)

¶ “Thousands Of Blood-Sucking Ticks Found On Bodies Of Canadian Moose” • In nearby New Hampshire and Maine, over a three-year period, scientists found an alarming 70% of calves didn’t make it through their first winter due in large part to tick infestation. Now, ticks are a growing problem for the Canadian moose population also. [CBC.ca]

¶ “CO₂ Emissions Fell By 12%, As Wind And Solar Took The Lead In Europe” • The report “The European Power Sector in 2019” was recently published by climate think-tanks Sandbag and Agora Energiewende. It says that wind and solar provided 18% (569 TWh) of EU electricity in 2019, while coal fell to just 15% (469 TWh). [Saurenergy]

Power generation in Europe by wind, solar, and coal

¶ “Fukushima Wastewater Release: Diplomats Briefed” • The government of Japan briefed foreign embassy officials on an increasingly preferred method of disposal of treated radioactive water from the crippled Fukushima nuclear power plant into the ocean. Attendees reportedly included 28 diplomats representing 23 countries. [OOSKA News]

¶ “Greenland Rising: The Future of Greenland’s Waterfront” • While much of the world is planning for flooding and inundation from changes in sea level, Greenland is facing a much different future. Greenland’s melting ice has translated into rising sea levels along most world coastlines, but for Greenland itself, the effect has been a rising land. [State of the Planet]

Nuuk, Greenland’s capital (Photo: Margie Turrin)

US:

¶ “Exxon’s Market Value Has Crumbled By $184 Billion” • ExxonMobil, the world’s most valuable public company in 2014, looks like it is in steady decline. A stunning $184 billion, 41% of its value, has been wiped off Exxon’s market valuation since its 2014 peak. It just posted dreadful results that suggest a turnaround is unlikely any time soon. [CNN]

¶ “Twitter Data Shows Major Cities Are Flooding More Than Previously Thought” • A study published in the journal Nature Communications used Twitter to measure tidal flooding impacts of  along the East and Gulf coasts. It suggests flooding happens more frequently in some areas than current flood monitoring technologies can detect. [CNN]

Florida shore (Matt Gannon | CNN)

¶ “Trump Withholding $823 Million For Clean Energy, Democrats Say” • The Trump administration is withholding funding for a clean energy program it unsuccessfully tried to cut, according to Democrats on the House Science Committee. This raises the specter of political interference. The unspent funds now amount to $823 million. [Yahoo News]

¶ “Southern Minnesota Power Generator Commits To Being 80% Carbon-Free By 2030” • Southern Minnesota Municipal Power Agency plans to replace coal, its main source of electricity generation, with renewable power. With co-owner Xcel, it will close the coal-fired Sherco 3 power station. SMMPA will be 80% carbon-free by 2030. [Minneapolis Star Tribune]

Sherco 3 (Glen Stubbe | Star Tribune)

¶ “Voters Seek Leadership On Climate Change At Forum With 2020 Candidates” • Voters heard new specifics and a sense of urgency around climate change from several Democratic candidates at a youth-focused forum in Concord. Eleven presidential candidates out their plans to tackle global warming at the event. [New Hampshire Public Radio]

¶ “John Glenn Columbus International To Rely Entirely On Renewable Energy” • John Glenn Columbus International Airport announced it will get 100% of the energy it and Bolton Field use from renewables, joining other leading US airports in their sustainability efforts. It forecasts saving $13 million in energy costs. [International Airport Review]

Have a majestically lovely day.

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