April 30 Energy News

April 30, 2020

Opinion:

¶ “The World May Never Recover Its Thirst For Oil” • The world is learning to live with less oil. The coronavirus pandemic has destroyed demand for gasoline and jet fuel as billions of people stay home, and there’s no guarantee it will ever fully recover despite rock-bottom prices. The oil industry is bracing for the effects of the crisis to linger. [CNN]

Sun setting on a nodding donkey (Eric Gay | AP)

¶ “Fossil Industry Extracting From Another Source: Taxpayers” • While the world shelters in place, and policymakers must prioritize Covid-19 until the current crisis is in hand, polluting industries have, across the board, used this time to push for policy changes that would extract billions of dollars from American taxpayers. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Are we witnessing the death of the car?” • Cities around the world are seeing dwindling numbers of fossil-fuel powered cars on their streets, and many are planning to keep it that way after lockdowns ease. Milan, the epicentre of Italy’s coronavirus outbreak, announced it would transform 35 km (21.7 miles) of its streets for cycling post-lockdown. [BBC]

Mayor Claudia López of Bogotá (Credit: Getty Images)

¶ “Trump’s Coronavirus Failures Offer Warnings And Lessons About Future Climate Change Challenges” • Some lessons of Covid-19 have been bitter. Here in the US, we have seen the cost of failed leadership. As he has done with climate change, Donald Trump failed early on to understand sound scientific consensus and act decisively. [NBCNews.com]

¶ “Climate Scientist Katharine Hayhoe’s ‘Global Weirding’ Videos” • If you have not been keeping up with Dr Katharine Hayhoe’s series of short videos called “Global Weirding,” it’s time to treat yourself to a good handful of those pieces. Even if you’re well-versed in climate change, you’ll enjoy them and learn from them. [Yale Climate Connections]

Katharine Hayhoe (Climate Models, “Global Weirding” video)

World:

¶ “Wind Energy Overtakes Gas To Be The Leading Source Of Electricity In Ireland” • For the first time, wind energy became Ireland’s leading source of electricity for a full quarter. It beat out natural gas for the first three months of 2020, as it accounted for 43.8% of demand, an increase of 16.8% from the same quarter last year. Natural gas provided 41.8%. [RenewEconomy]

¶ “Shannon, Obton To Spend €60 Million On Solar Farms” • Irish group Shannon Energy and Danish company Obton plan to kick off a €300 million investment in the Republic by spending €60 million on plants that will generate electricity from solar power. They plan to start by developing eleven solar farms with a total capacity of 105 MW. [The Irish Times]

Renewable energy (Photo: VCG)

¶ “Australia’s electricity grid could run with 75% renewables, market operator says” • Australia has the technical capacity to run a power grid in which 75% of the electricity comes from wind and solar. It should occasionally reach this level within five years, a study by the Australian Energy Market Operator says. But it must get regulations right. [The Guardian]

¶ “Renewable Energy Helps Utilities Survive Virus Slump” • Energy companies from Ørsted A/S to Iberdrola SA reported robust first quarter earnings in a period that has been bedeviled by a slump in energy demand and a collapse in gas prices. Large wind and solar portfolios have so far protected those companies from the worst effects of the crisis. [gcaptain.com]

Offshore wind farm (Phil Noble | Reuters)

¶ “Covid-19 Crisis Will Wipe Out Demand For Fossil Fuels, Says IEA” • The International Energy Agency said the outbreak of Covid-19 would wipe out demand for fossil fuels by prompting a collapse in energy demand seven times greater than the slump caused by the global financial crisis. It said renewable energy will continue to grow. [The Guardian]

¶ “Wooden Wind Tower Takes Root In Sweden” • Swedish design and engineering company Modvion has built a wooden wind turbine tower. The structure, which is carbon neutral and 30 meters tall, was installed on Bjorko island. It will be used for research by the Swedish Wind Power Technology Center at Chalmers. [reNEWS]

Building a wooden wind tower (Modvion image)

US:

¶ “Tesla Q1 2020 Update Shares Unexpected Profits” • Tesla released its Q1 2020 update, and it’s filled with unexpected good news. When the pandemic temporarily closed all of its factories, many thought Tesla would be reporting losses in the quarter. Instead, Tesla has reported a $1.8 billion increase in its cash and cash equivalents. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “General Mills Turns To Biogas To Help Meet 100% Renewable Electricity Goal” • General Mills has set a goal of 100% renewable electricity by 2030 as a part of its commitment to the RE100 initiative. To achieve this, the company is investing in renewable energy. Examples are two large-scale wind farms and anaerobic digestion. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

Biogas facility (Pixabay image)

¶ “Wärtsilä Delivering 70-MW Energy Storage System In California” • Wärtsilä is finalizing a 70-MW energy storage project in the California Independent System Operator energy market. The system will maximize efficiencies, and it will keep renewable power on the grid at times when it otherwise wouldn’t be available. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

¶ “Indian Point 1-GW Nuclear Unit 2 Closing Permanently” • Tonight, April 30, with the push of a red button, one of the two operating nuclear reactors at the Indian Point Energy Center along the Hudson River north of New York City will shut down. The plant is 24 miles from Manhattan. Demolition is projected to cost $2.3 billion. [Power Engineering Magazine]

Have an invigoratingly copacetic day.

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