February 8 Energy News

February 8, 2021

Opinion:

¶ “Extreme Weather Driven By Climate Change, Conflict, And The Covid-19 Pandemic Are Driving Worsening Hunger. What Can Change That?” • Our climate is so closely connected to our food systems that even if fossil fuels were eliminated today, emissions from farming mean temperatures would likely still rise by at least 1.5°C. [Thomson Reuters Foundation]

Farming (Gozha Net, Unsplash)

¶ “How Can Mercedes-Benz Compete With Tesla If It Pushes ICE Vehicles Over Its Own New EV?” • A Teslarati article shows that Mercedes-Benz does what many dealerships do when customers want EVs – pushing customers to think about cars with internal combustion (ICE) engines instead. It seems like Mercedes-Benz is not serious about selling its EVs. [CleanTechnica]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Got Climate Change? Kelp Can Help” • Kelp, which most of us refer to as seaweed, may be an important tool in the quest to limit the effects of a warming planet. By absorbing carbon dioxide from sea water, it can reduce local acidity, improving water conditions to the benefit of other local sea life, such as the blue mussels fishermen harvest. [CleanTechnica]

Giant Kelp (NOAA image)

World:

¶ “Oil Prices Climb Back To Pre-Pandemic Levels” • The price of oil has recovered to its pre-pandemic levels having hit an all-time low last year. It has now reached $60 a barrel. While the demand for oil is still lower than normal, there are hopes of a speedier than expected economic recovery as the vaccines for Covid-19 are rolled out. [BBC]

¶ “Mango Solar – Offering Electrification And Digitalization In Africa, Now In Installments” • The Mango Combo Bundle has a large portable battery with a lamp; a chargeable speaker with aux, radio, and Bluetooth; and a solar panel that can power it all. Many of Africa’s rural poor can afford it on through Mango’s cloud-based pay-as-you-go system. [CleanTechnica]

Mango Combo and lamp

¶ “Amazon Buys More Offshore Wind Power” • Amazon has signed an agreement with Shell Energy Europe for renewable power from the subsidy-free Hollandse Kust Noord offshore wind farm being constructed in the Netherlands. Amazon will buy a total of 380 MW from the wind farm, 250 MW from Shell and 130 MW from Eneco. [Offshore Wind]

¶ “Vestas Secures 29-MW Italian Job” • Vestas has received a turbine order totaling 29 MW for the Mazara Messer Andrea wind farm in Sicily. The contract includes the supply and installation of eight V136-3.45MW machines delivered in 3.6-MW power optimized mode. Commissioning is expected in the first quarter of 2022. [reNEWS]

Vestas turbine (Vestas image)

¶ “Revising Clean Energy Policy To Help Australia Unlock $40 Billion In Investments” • The Australian government should revise its renewable energy policy to unlock future investments of up to $40 billion in the power generation sector, according to a Wood Mackenzie study. It says that renewable capacity could double by 2030. [Power Engineering International]

¶ “Crown Hails High Lease Bids As ‘Vote Of Confidence’” • The Crown Estate says the outcome of the Round 4 leasing process, which will see annual option fee payments from developers hit £879 million, is a “significant vote of confidence” in the UK offshore wind industry. Six sites totaling just under 8 GW were awarded in the round. [reNEWS]

Offshore wind turbine (Crown Estate image)

¶ “Donated Hitachi ABB Microgrid Simulator To Grow The NT’s Renewable-Energy Capabilities” • A Hitachi ABB microgrid simulator is now in place at Charles Darwin University in the Northern Territory, where it will help build knowledge and capability to guide the Territory on its road to 50% renewable electricity by 2030. [pv magazine Australia]

US:

¶ “$4 Billion US Oil Company Banks On Perovskite Solar Cell Of The Future” • Hunt Consolidated is part of a $4 billion oil and gas empire and one of the largest privately held firms in the US. Despite its oil industry connections, Hunt has been working on a years-long perovskite solar cell venture. Now it looks like all that hard work may be about to pay off. [CleanTechnica]

Perovskite Solar Cell (NREL image)

¶ “Plymouth State University Offering Climate Studies Degree” • Plymouth State University started a bachelor’s degree program in climate studies, the first institution in New Hampshire to do so. Students, who are increasingly taking an active role in doing something about climate change and its effects, have few college programs offered to them. [WCAX]

¶ “GE Awarded DOE Grant To Research 3D Printing Of Wind Turbine Blades” • Three General Electric businesses working in the field of renewable energy, GE Research, GE Renewable Energy, and LM Wind Power, were recently selected by the US DOE to research the design and manufacture of 3D printed wind turbine blades. [Power Engineering International]

Wind turbine blades (LM Wind Power image)

¶ “Competitive Suppliers’ Attempt To Reopen Virginia’s Renewable Energy Market Faces Tough Utility Opposition” • A bill to let electricity customers in Virginia purchase renewable energy from companies other than their local utilityy cleared the House of Delegates. Now it faces a Senate committee that struck it down in 2020. [Virginia Mercury]

¶ “Biden: US Won’t Lift Sanctions Until Iran Halts Uranium Enrichment” • President Biden said the US will not lift sanctions against Iran unless it stops enriching uranium, continuing a standoff with Iran’s supreme leader, who has demanded that sanctions be lifted before the country returns to its obligations under the 2015 nuclear deal. [msnNOW]

Have a fully functioning day.

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