December 22 Energy News

December 22, 2020


¶ “The Biden Administration Must Double Down On Science” • As President-elect Biden takes office, he will assume leadership of the US government’s scientific enterprise. Once the envy of the world, it has been battered and marginalized for the past four years, as the Trump administration steadfastly refused to follow the lead of science. [Scientific American]

¶ “Let’s Help The Biden Administration Get The Most From 500,000 Charging Stations” • Joe Biden has promised to build 500,000 new charging stations if elected. Bloomberg says the plan could help sell up to 25 million EVs in coming years, but the administration is going to need a lot of help from people like us to get it right. [CleanTechnica]

Science and Technology:

¶ “US Energy Department Hearts New Silicon EV Batteries” • In batteries, silicon’s superpower is its ability to expand in the presence of lithium. But it overdoes it and expands by 300%, which breaks up the anode. Also, it does not stand up well to conventional manufacturing. The US DOE is funding research to overcome the problems. [CleanTechnica]

Silicon in a battery (Pacific Northwest National Laboratory)


¶ “Canada’s $170/Ton Carbon Price Makes Heat Pumps Financial Winners” • As part of his ongoing exploration of heat pumps as a wedge on climate change, Michael Barnard assess the fiscal impacts of Canada’s new carbon price of C$170 per ton ($132 per ton) of COon annual heating costs for them compared to gas furnaces. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Scotland’s Green Hydrogen Scheme Trumps Blue H₂ BS” • Almost all of the world’s hydrogen comes from natural gas or coal. With technology costs falling, green hydrogen, made from water, is getting closer to being financially competitive. Scotland has introduced its H₂ plan includes very little wiggle room for fossil sources. [CleanTechnica]

Wind farm in Scotland (Alyssa Bossom, Unsplash)

¶ “Aberdeen International Makes Moves To Boost H₂ Renewable Energy Investment” • Aberdeen International Inc has announced its plans to boost its investment strategy with a wider focus on H renewable energy. The company feels the Hrenewable energy sector is on the cusp of a breakthrough because of the green tech revolution. [Hydrogen Fuel News]

¶ “Construction Starts On 80-MW Dutch Wind” • Construction has started on the 80-MW Kroningswind wind project in the Netherlands, following successful financial close. Kroningswind, located at Goeree-Overflakkee, will feature 19 Vestas V117 wind turbines and is scheduled to produce its first electricity by the end of 2022. [reNEWS]

Wind turbine (Vestas image)

¶ “World’s Biggest Solar Power Plant Project In Abu Dhabi Secures Funding” • The funding is now in place for the world’s biggest solar power project, which is being built in Abu Dhabi. The 2-GW Al Dhafra Solar Photovoltaic facility is about 35 km from Abu Dhabi city. The project will provide electricity at Dh4.85 fils/kWh (1.32¢/kWh). [Gulf News]


¶ “Michigan’s Anti-EV Bill Dies” • Earlier this month, a bill was passed by the Michigan House of Representatives that would prohibit Tesla from operating sales and services centers in the state. It would also have blocked EV startups such as Rivian and Lucid from operating. The state senate, however, did not put the bill on its schedule. [CleanTechnica]

Lucid studio (Image courtesy Lucid Motors)

¶ “Department of Energy Releases Energy Storage Grand Challenge Roadmap” • The US DOE released the “Energy Storage Grand Challenge Roadmap,” the Department’s first comprehensive energy storage strategy. It seeks to create and sustain American leadership in energy storage, meeting all US market demands by 2030. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “EDF Inks 55-MW Texas PV Power Play” • EDF Renewables North America has signed the first tranche of a power purchase agreement for the 345-MW Space City solar project in Texas. The PPA, for 55 MW of output, is with global chemicals producer BASF. Space City Solar is expected to commence construction in summer 2021. [reNEWS]

Solar panels (F Neema | EDF)

¶ “Solar And Wind Are 74.6% of Expected US Power Capacity Growth in Next 3 Years” • The good news was that 100% of new capacity power in October was from renewables. The less good news was that only 21.7% of total power capacity is from wind, water, and solar power (not counting small-scale solar, which is over a third of solar capacity). [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Rebar Leader Nucor Switches To Renewable Energy For Texas Operations” • The top concrete reinforcing steel producer and rebar fabricator has signed a 15-year Virtual Power Purchase Agreement with EDF Renewables North America for 250 MW of solar energy in Texas. Construction is scheduled to begin in mid-2022. [Concrete Products]

Nucor Steel Texas facility (Nucor image)

¶ “Incoming EPA Chief Vows ‘Sense Of Urgency On Climate’” • Michael Regan gave his first speech as the presumptive head of EPA, and his brief remarks were transformative, both for the 44-year-old Black man who grew up in the shadow of a 1950s-era power plant in North Carolina, and for the battered federal agency he is to inherit. [Scientific American]

¶ “Pacific Power Says It’s Cutting Oregon Electric Bills By An Average 5.2%” • More than 600,000 Pacific Power customers in Oregon will see welcome relief when their electric bills go down an average of about 5.2% in January, the company announced. The move is a result of investments in renewable energy and a more resilient transmission system. [KTVZ]

Have an engagingly esteemable day.

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