February 20 Energy News

February 20, 2020

Science and Technology:

¶ “Climate Change Could Kill All Of Earth’s Coral Reefs By 2100, Scientists Warn” • Climate change could destroy almost all of Earth’s coral reef habitats by 2100, University of Hawaii Manoa reported. And about 70-90% of all coral reefs are expected to disappear in the next 20 years due to warming oceans, acidic water, and pollution. [CNN]

Coral reef (Emily Irving-Swift | AFP | Getty Images)

¶ “BloombergNEF: Lithium-Ion Battery Cell Densities Have Almost Tripled Since 2010” • Colin McKerracher of BNEF took to the stage at the BloombergNEF Summit and made a case for electric vehicles reaching the “end of the beginning.” Electric vehicles are moving into the mainstream with higher battery cell densities. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Oil And Gas Production Is Contributing Even More To Global Warming Than Was Thought, Study Finds” • study finds that methane emissions from fossil fuels are between 25% and 40% larger than past research had estimated, revealing that oil and gas production is contributing far more to warming the planet than previously thought. [CNN]

Gas flaring at a fracking facility (David McNew | Getty Images)

World:

¶ “The Wet’suwet’en Conflict Disrupting Canada’s Rail System” • Rail lines across Canada have been paralyzed for almost two weeks after being blockaded by protesters. The blockades were put in place in solidarity with Wet’suwet’en First Nation hereditary chiefs who oppose a natural gas pipeline in their traditional territory in British Columbia. [BBC]

¶ “Bushfire Royal Commission To Look At Mitigation But Not Climate Change” • Prime Minister Scott Morrison released letters patent establishing a national inquiry into bushfires. It is to examine powers of Australia’s government to call out the militarynational standards for hazard reduction, and disaster mitigation, but not climate change. [The Guardian]

PM Scott Morrison examining destruction (James Ross | EPA)

¶ “Renewable Hydrogen ‘Gigastack’ Monster Rises From UK Seas” • Word is out that Phase 2 of the so-named “Gigastack” industrial-scale green H₂ project is barreling full steam ahead. Danish wind giant Ørsted is collaborating in the project along with three other heavy hitters: ITM Power, Phillips 66 Limited, and Element Energy. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Renewable Energy Yet To Fill Nuclear Void” • A government drive to phase out nuclear power in Korea is based on the idea that solar, wind, and LNG power plants will be able to fill the energy void which will result from the lowering of the country’s reliance on nuclear power. But experts warn that the growth of renewables is too slow. [Korea Times]

Offshore wind farm (Courtesy of Korea South-East Power)

¶ “Spanish Govt Plans To Back PPAs For Energy-Intensive Industry” • The Spanish government prepared two draft laws to help energy-intensive industrial consumers ease some of the burden of high costs of electricity through access to state aid, at the same time supporting renewables development through power purchase agreements. [Renewables Now]

¶ “Coal-Fired Power Is Losing ‘Unfair Fight’ In India To Renewables” • If there was one major theme at this week’s annual industry gathering, Coaltrans India, held in the resort state of Goa, it was that the domestic coal sector is under siege, and probably faces limited growth and eventual disbandment in the future. The issue is economics. [Reuters UK]

Coal-fired power plant (Amit Dave | Reuters File Photo)

¶ “France’s ENGIE Inks Renewable PPA In Spain” • French utility ENGIE has signed a power purchase agreement to provide renewable energy to industrial customers in Spain. It will supply more than 400 GWh of electricity annually to FORTIA, a company that manages the supply of energy for large industrial corporations. [Energy Live News]

US:

¶ “Changes In Attitudes At Higher Latitudes: Utah Reconsiders Its Response To A Hotter Planet” • Utah is a certified red state where the full conservative mantra as preached by Faux News is de rigeur. So why is Utah beginning to talk openly about the risks associated with an overheated planet? It’s the money, stupid, same as it always is. [CleanTechnica]

Alta ski area in Utah (Image credit: Alta.com)

¶ “2022 Contract Will Bring Renewable Energy To Waco City Buildings, Operations” • City of Waco facilities will move to renewable electricity sources in 2022, thanks to a contract with MP2 Energy Texas approved last week. MP2 Energy will provide electricity from wind and solar plants at 3.226¢/kWh, about 14.6% less than its current rate. [Waco Tribune-Herald]

¶ “Climate Crisis Is Coming For The Tidal Basin In DC” • The Jefferson Memorial in Washington, DC overlooks the Tidal Basin, a man-made body of water surrounded by cherry trees. Visitors who stroll along the water’s edge, gazing up at the stately monument, are forced off parts of the path by water. The land is sinking, but the seas are rising, too. [EcoWatch]

Tidal Basin (Andrew Bossi | Wikimedia Commons)

¶ “Bloomberg, Apparent Climate Champion, Defends Fossil Fuel In His First Debate” • Billionaire Michael Bloomberg spoke in his first debate as a 2020 presidential candidate. The former New York City mayor defended fossil fuels and pitched what’s widely considered the lowest baseline for any federal response to global warming. [HuffPost]

¶ “Los Angeles To Explore Agreement With Navajo Nation For Renewable Energy” • The Los Angeles City Council voted Wednesday to explore entering into an agreement with the Navajo Nation to place solar and renewable energy production on tribal lands. The power would be paid for and sent to the city of Los Angeles. [MyNewsLA.com]

Have paradigmatically perfect day.

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