April 14 Energy News

April 14, 2020

Opinion:

¶ “Five Visible Signs Of Climate Change In Antarctica” • Clearly Antarctica itself is not disappearing, but the Antarctica we know, and the life that depends on its glaciers and snowy mountains, is being transformed. There are visible signs of this transformation. Here are a few that present a troubling picture of a warming world. [CleanTechnica]

Penguin in a green land  (Photo by Kelly Levin | WRI)

¶ “The Fossil Fuel/Renewable Energy Inflection Point: Three Perspectives” • The world is struggling with the coronavirus pandemic, but even the darkest of clouds can have a silver lining. Years from now, when historians look back and try to pinpoint exactly when renewables surged and fossil fuels contracted, this pandemic may what they focus on. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Tackling Climate Change Is Vital For The Strongest Economic Recovery After Coronavirus” • Recovery from coronavirus must reckon with climate change. The current and urgent focus properly needs to be flattening the curve and saving lives. But governments need to be thinking about how to support the strongest possible recovery. [The Guardian]

Wind turbines under the moon (Guillaume Horcajuelo | EPA)

¶ “Why 30 Million Solar Rooftops Should Be In The Next Relief Bill” • Over one in three home or business rooftops in America is suitable for solar. By investing $450 billion in rooftop solar, the federal government could reduce energy bills for Americans, cut air pollution, and create over 3.7 million jobs. The government could also get paid back. [CleanTechnica]

Science and Technology:

¶ “How Low Can Energy Storage Go? Lots And Lots Lower!” • Flow batteries are already working their way into the energy marketplace. Researchers are working on ways to keep flow battery costs down while reducing the use of toxic chemicals. Much of the attention has been focused on organic compounds for redox flow batteries. [CleanTechnica]

Flow battery (Image by USC via Eurekalert)

¶ “What Does Air Pollution Have To Do With Covid-19?” • A recent study from researchers at Harvard’s TH Chan School of Public Health, which is still awaiting peer review, estimates a 15% increased death rate from Covid-19 with a small increase of 1 μg/m³ of air in PM2.5 particulates. PM2.5 is associated with burning fossil fuels and other material. [CNN]

¶ “Scientists Set New Solar Power Efficiency Record At Almost 50%” • Scientists at the US DOE’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory have set a new world record solar energy conversion efficiency, producing an innovative “six-junction” solar cell with 140 layers of semiconductor materials. It converts light into electricity at 47.1% efficiency. [RenewEconomy]

Scientists John Geisz and Ryan France (Dennis Schroeder | NREL)

¶ “ITM Power, Ørsted Unveil Wind Turbine Electrolyser Concept” • Ørsted A/S and ITM Power Plc revealed a design concept for bulk hydrogen production through an electrolyser installed in the tower of an offshore wind turbine. The hydrogen will be transported to the shore through an underwater or underground pipe network. [Renewables Now]

World:

¶ “Covid-19 Gives Breathing Space To Greek Renewable Energy Projects” • With the new realities of the fight to stop the spread of Covid-19, the Greek government has extended the deadlines for renewable energy projects. The move comes in recognition of the fact that public services may be unavailable and delays in construction are to be expected. [Neos Kosmos]

Wind turbines in Greece (Jason Blackeye | Wikkicommons)

¶ “Portugal Okays 30 MW Of Small Renewables To Start Operations” • Portugal allowed 30 MW of small renewable electricity systems to commence production immediately as a provisional measure due to the coronavirus pandemic. The move benefits self-consumption and small producers with renewable system capacities below 1 MW. [Renewables Now]

¶ “Chernobyl Guides Say Worst Wildfires In Area’s History Are Out Of Control” • Guides who offer tours of Chernobyl have warned that wildfires close to the former nuclear power station are out of control. They accused Ukrainian authorities of concealing the scale of the problem, which they said threatens to destroy many of the sites in the area. [ABC News]

Fires on April 12 (Volodymyr Shuvayev | AFP via Getty Images)

¶ “Tanzania’s First Ever Wind Farm Nearing Completion” • Tanzania’s first ever wind farm to reach financial close and start construction is nearing completion with a $1.2 million loan from the Renewable Energy Performance Platform. It will add 2.4 MW to a rural electric grid that is powered by 4 MW of hydropower currently. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

US:

¶ “Engie North America Launches Financing Plan For Renewable Projects” • Engie North America initiated a major tax equity financing plan for its renewable energy portfolio. The company has secured financing through tax equity commitments of up to $1.6 billion on various renewable projects through the Bank of America and HSBC. [Daily Energy Insider]

Wind turbines (© Shutterstock)

¶ “Salt River Project, Seattle City Light Now Can Dispatch Into CAISO’s Energy Imbalance Market” • The Western Energy Imbalance Market added two more utilities to its sub-hourly market of electricity generation and dispatching resources. Salt River Project, based in Phoenix, and Seattle City Light joined the EIM this month. [Power Engineering Magazine]

¶ “‘No Existing Playbook’: Covid-19 Forcing NV Energy, NYPA And Other Utilities To Get Creative” • The Covid-19 pandemic is forcing utilities to determine in real time how to keep capital projects on track and provide critical services as unprecedented numbers of employees are forced to work from home, utility executives said in a panel discussion. [Utility Dive]

Have an especially good day.

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