December 17 Energy News

December 17, 2020

Science and Technology:

¶ “The Robot That Could Help Make The Shipping Industry Greener” • When a ship sails through the sea, barnacles, mussels, algae, and other organisms stick to its hull. Biofouling increases the drag of ships, so more fuel is needed to power them, which multiplies their carbon emissions. Now, there’s a robot that can help with that. [CNN]

Hullskater robot

¶ “Gas Leaks – And It’s Worse Than We Thought” • An analysis found that all 71 cities evaluated in “The Gas Index,” just released by Climate Nexus, had lifecycle methane emission rates higher than estimated in the US EPA’s Greenhouse Gas Emissions Inventory. And in some, the emissions were more than four times higher. [CleanTechnica]


¶ “Mercedes Reconfiguring Factories To Produce 6 New Electric Cars By 2022” • Mercedes-Benz has announced that it plans to introduce six new battery electric models to its EQ brand lineup by the end of 2022. The company is making major upgrades at six factories worldwide to make them, and it will add battery factories near each. [CleanTechnica]

Mercedes EQA (Image courtesy of Mercedes-Benz)

¶ “South Korea’s New Aim: Bring Renewables From 6.5% To 21% Of Electricity By 2030” • South Korea is increasing its cleantech commitment. Specifically, it is moving to renewable energy faster, with new plans for the next 13 or 14 years. The country intends to increase its renewable electricity capacity from 20.1 GW today to 77.8 GW by 2034. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Renewable Energy Credit Scheme Launched For Countries At Risk” • Peace Renewable Energy Credits,  P-RECs, are a creation of the NGO Energy Peace Partners as international renewable energy certificates, or I-RECs, with a supplementary label from the organisation certifying support for renewable energy projects in vulnerable countries. [ESI Africa]

Nuru solar system (Credit: 3Degreesinc)

¶ “Australia’s Newest Coal-Fired Power Plant Deemed Worthless By Japanese Owner” • In accounts for the six months to the end of September, released last month, the Japanese conglomerate Sumitomo said it had written off the “total amount” of its $1.2 billion investment in the Bluewaters power plant in Western Australia, built in 2009. [The Guardian]

¶ “UBS: A ‘Wave Of Capital’ Is About To Flow Into Renewable Energy” • Australia’s wholesale electricity prices are falling as more renewable energy sources enter the mix, according to the multinational investment bank UBS. And over the next decade, the ongoing renewables rollout will help cap the electricity cost at below A$70/MWh by 2030. [Stockhead]

Wind turbines in New South Wales (CSIRO, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “Egypt Negotiates For 1,000 MW Renewable Energy Projects: Minister” • Egypt’s Ministry of Electricity and Renewable Energy is negotiating for new renewable energy projects with a total capacity of 1,000 MW, Mohamed Shaker, Minister of Electricity, told Daily News Egypt. And an additional 1,000 MW contract was signed last week. [ZAWYA]


¶ “Bill Gates, Amazon, And British Airways Are Backing A Hydrogen Plane Startup” • ZeroAvia, a company developing hydrogen-electric technology to power aircraft, said that it’s raised $21.4 million from investors including Amazon, Shell, and Breakthrough Energy Ventures, a company established by Bill Gates in 2015. [CNN]

Piper Malibu M350 with ZeroAvia’s powertrain (ZeroAvia image)

¶ “Study Finds US Can Reach Net-Zero Emissions By Spending 3% More On Energy” • The US can completely decarbonize its economy by mid-century without spending significantly more on energy, a report by a team of researchers at Princeton University says. Nuclear energy is not needed under the all-renewables scenario. [S&P Global]

¶ “Minnesota Power Reaches 50% Renewable Energy” • With activation of the Nobles 2 wind farm in southwestern Minnesota, Duluth-based Minnesota Power announced that it had reached its goal of 50% renewable energy. It is the first utility in the state to hit that renewable energy milestone, which it did ahead of its 2021 goal. [Minneapolis Star Tribune]

Nobles 2 wind farm (Minnesota Power image)

¶ “Study Analyzes Economic Impact Of Renewable Energy In US” • According to a Wood Mackenzie study, by reaching the majority renewable electricity generation within the next 10 years, Kansas will see $11 billion in capital investments from wind and solar projects, 13,700 new renewable energy jobs and $667 million in land lease payments. [WIBW]

¶ “New York City Will Begin Development Of 100-MW Battery Storage Project” • 174 Power Global and Con Edison announced that they signed of a seven-year dispatch rights agreement for development of a 100-MW battery project, the East River Energy Storage System in New York City. The battery will be built in Astoria, Queens. [Environment + Energy Leader]

New York City (Emiliano Bar, Unsplash)

¶ “US Renewable Energy Installations Break Records Despite Pandemic” • Both the solar and wind power markets will see record capacity additions in 2020, while electricity generation from those renewable energy sources has seen double-digit increases amid a decline in the overall US power generation market due to the pandemic. []

¶ “Spokane Police Will Be Forced To Buy Four Tesla Model Y Vehicles” • The Spokane Police Department will buy four Tesla Model Y vehicles, in accordance with the city council’s orders. In fact, according to The Spokesman-Review, the Spokane City Council actually forced the Spokane Police Department to purchase the Model Ys. [CleanTechnica]

Have an overwhelmingly comfy day.

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