Archive for August, 2021

August 31 Energy News

August 31, 2021

Opinion:

¶ “Keep Fuel Dollars Local By Switching To EVs” • A study shows that in the US Southeast, consumers spend about $94 billion on fossil fuels annually. Of this money, about $64 billion leaks out of the region’s economy every year. A switch to EVs powered by local renewable energy would retain this within the region, a boon to its economy. [CleanTechnica]

Charging an EV (Mike, Pexels)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Heimdal Uses Renewable Energy To Get CO₂, Cement From Seawater; Startup To Debut Carbon-Free Materials” • Heimdal is a tech startup that focused its services to extract CO₂, cement, and other materials from seawater, using renewable energy sources. The company features one of the most eco-friendly ventures in the world. [Tech Times]

¶ “Climate Change Is Making Hurricanes Stronger, Slower And Wetter. Ida Checked All The Boxes” • Human-caused climate change is making hurricanes more dangerous. They are produce rainfall, move slower once they make landfallm and generate larger storm surges along the coast. Hurricane Ida was a prime example of those changes. [CNN]

Rainfall potential of storm (NOAA image)

World:

¶ “Highly Polluting Leaded Petrol Now Eradicated From The World, Says UN” • There is now no country in the world that uses leaded petrol for cars and lorries, the UN Environment Program has announced. The toxic fuel has contaminated air, soil and water for almost a century, but in July, Algeria stopped allowing its use. [BBC]

¶ “Volkswagen ID.3 Rolls Into China” • The Volkswagen ID.3, Europe’s second best selling electric car in the first half of 2021, is finally making its way into the Chinese market, the largest auto market and largest electric car market in the world. It appeared at the Chengdu Motor Show, and pre-bookings of the hatchback EV were opened. [CleanTechnica]

Volkswagen ID.3 EVs (Image courtesy of Volkswagen AG)

¶ “New French Law Will Help Millions Of People Drive On Sunshine” • France has a new climate bill that will have 30% of the surface of new commercial and industrial buildings solarized starting on January 1, 2023. Those solar panels will power a lot of electric vehicles, but they won’t be the only ones in a wave of new solar power capacity. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “R Power Acquires 59-MW Portuguese PV Portfolio” • Polish company R Power has invested in a portfolio of solar projects in Portugal totaling 59 MW. With the acquisition, the company’s Portuguese capacity will reach almost 70 MW. The investments are expected to reach the construction-ready status in 2021, with construction to begin in 2022. [reNEWS]

R Power solar project (R Power image)

¶ “Renewables Could Meet 100% Demand In Australia At Certain Times Of Day By 2025, Report Says” • Renewables will meet 100% of consumer demand for electricity at certain times of the day by 2025 if large-scale wind and solar development continues at current rates, according to a report from the Australian Energy Market Operator. [The Guardian]

¶ “BC Is Blocking Needed First Nations Power Projects, Says Report” • Renewable energy projects run by First Nations could help British Columbia power through the climate crisis, but government roadblocks threaten their participation, according to a recently published report from the New Relationship Trust and the Pembina Institute. [The Tyee]

Wind farm (Photo by Washington DNR, Creative Commons)

¶ “Electricity Grid Powers On Despite Demise Of Coal As Renewables Surge” • Australia’s power grid is set up to cope with coal’s continued decline over the next decade, the Australian market operator has declared. There is a growing flood of cheap electricity from solar and wind farms undercutting traditional power plants’ profits. [Sydney Morning Herald]

US:

¶ “Hurricane Ida: One Million People In Louisiana Without Power” • Louisiana residents may be in the dark for weeks as officials take stock of the damage from Hurricane Ida. Ida made landfall on Sunday with 150 mph (240 km/h) winds, the fifth strongest to ever hit the US mainland. About one million locals remain without power. [BBC]

Storm (Hunt on Photos Studio, Pexels)

¶ “South Lake Tahoe Residents Ordered To Evacuate As Caldor Fire Threatens The Area” • With fire conditions resulting in the rapid spread of the fire, Cal Fire officials released updated maps three times in as many hours on Monday morning for three areas, marking the change from evacuation warnings to orders in South Lake Tahoe areas. [CNN]

¶ “Energy Bill Could See A Vote As State Lawmakers Return For Redistricting Session” • When Illinois lawmakers return to the Statehouse for what is scheduled as a one-day special session, they may vote on an energy regulatory overhaul bill. People interested in coal-burning and nuclear power plants hope to see those plants get subsidies. [Illinois Newsroom]

Prairie State coal-burning plant (PSEC on Facebook)

¶ “Indigo Technologies Promises Lightweight, Highly Efficient Electric Cars” • Indigo Technologies, a startup based in Woburn, Massachusetts, was formed by several people from MIT who are committed to making electric cars lighter and more efficient than anything else on the market. It is focusing on working EVs rather than personal cars. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “DOE Releases New Reports Highlighting Record Growth And Declining Costs Of Wind Power” • The Department of Energy released three reports showing record growth in land-based wind energy, significant expansion of the pipeline for offshore wind projects, and continued decline in the cost of generating energy with wind turbines. [CleanTechnica]

Have an abundantly rewarding day.

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August 30 Energy News

August 30, 2021

Opinion:

¶ “How To Save $40,000 Over Next 10 Years By Selling Your Car Now!” • I want to say that this won’t work for everyone, but I hope thousands of you will be able to take the ideas in this article and sell a car or truck now, while the used car market is white hot in the US. After giving up the fossil-dependent vehicle, there are lots of low-cost options. [CleanTechnica]

2021 Ford Edge combustion-powered SUV (Ford image)

¶ “Transformative Climate Action Framework: Transportation” • My colleagues and I at the Union of Concerned Scientists, along with an advisory committee, have worked to understand what is needed to decarbonize our economy while focusing on people. We recently released a report outlining a transformative climate action framework. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Floating Wind Turbines Could Open Up Vast Ocean Tracts For Renewable Power” • In the stormy waters of the North Sea, 15 miles off the coast of Aberdeenshire, in Scotland, five floating offshore wind turbines stretch 574 feet (175 metres) above the water. The world’s first floating windfarm, it has already broken UK records for energy output. [The Guardian]

Floating wind turbine in tow (Lars Christopher, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

World:

¶ “Renewable Energy Consumption Has Tripled In Ten Years” • Over the past decade, renewable energy consumption has grown at an average annual rate of 13.4%. Renewables were the only category of energy that grew globally at double digits over the past decade. Last year, it grew by 9.7%, and was the only source of energy to grow at all. [Oil Price]

¶ “Australian Electric Buses To Run On Sunlight In Queensland” • A massive expansion in electric buses will be enabled by the partnership of Keolis Downer, BusTech, and the Queensland government. Sixteen new electric buses will be built in Bustech’s workshop on the Gold Coast. The first one should be running on sunshine within 12 months. [CleanTechnica]

Electric bus (Image courtesy of BusTech Group)

¶ “Shell To Power Malaysian Gas Platform With Renewables” • Royal Dutch Shell subsidiary Sarawak Shell Berhad will power its Timi gas development project off the coast of the Malaysian state of Sarawak with a solar and wind hybrid power system. Timi will be the first gas wellhead platform in Malaysia to be powered by solar and wind energy. [reNEWS]

¶ “Aquila To Sell Statkraft Finnish Wind Power” • Norwegian energy company Statkraft is to buy electricity from German investment manager Aquila Capital from wind farms in Finland under power purchase agreements. Starting in 2022, Aquila Capital will provide Statkraft with electricity from two wind farms at competitive price levels. [reNEWS]

Wind farm (Statkraft image)

¶ “Sinopec Plans To Spend $4.6 Billion On Hydrogen Energy By 2025” • China’s Sinopec Corp plans to spend ¥30 billion ($4.6 billion) on hydrogen energy by 2025 as it pivots to producing natural gas and hydrogen as part of becoming a carbon-neutral energy provider by 2050. Sinopec plans for an annual capacity of 200,000 tonnes of hydrogen by 2025. [The Star]

¶ “Melbourne’s Zoos Are Now Entirely Powered By Renewable Energy” • Your next trip to one of Melbourne’s major zoos just got a little greener. Zoos Victoria has announced that all three of its Melbourne zoos – Melbourne Zoo, Werribee Open Range Zoo, and Healesville Sanctuary – are now powered by 100% renewable energy. [Time Out]

Lions in the Melbourne Zoo (Chris Phutully, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “Electrolyzer Market Value To Hit $53 Billion By 2030, Says Global Market Insights Inc” • Global electrolyzer market revenue is expected to surpass $53 billion by 2030 according to a study by Global Market Insights Inc. This is due to large-scale integration of renewable energy resources and ongoing development of hydrogen infrastructures. [Yahoo Finance]

¶ “Non-Hydro Renewables To Have 72% Of Power Capacity Growth By 2030, Fitch Says” • Non-hydropower renewables – which refers largely to wind and solar power – will account for 72% of global capacity growth between 2020 and 2030, amid efforts to rapidly decarbonize the global power systems, Fitch Solutions projected. [The National]

Wind turbines (Tom Swinnen, Pexels)

¶ “UN Atomic Watchdog Says North Korea Appears To Have Restarted Nuclear Reactor” • North Korea appears to have restarted a nuclear reactor that is widely believed to have been used to produce plutonium for nuclear weapons, the UN’s watchdog International Atomic Energy Agency has said in an annual report. [The Guardian]

US:

¶ “Hurricane Ida Forces Mississippi River To Reverse Flow” • Ida made landfall near Port Fourchon, Louisiana, as a Category 4 hurricane with winds of 150 mph. Its storm surge and strong winds actually caused the flow of the Mississippi River near New Orleans to reverse, something the US Geological Survey says is “extremely uncommon.” [CNN]

Hurricane Ida, August 29, 7:00 AM (NASA image, public domain)

¶ “Hurricane Ida’s Impact On Louisiana Is ‘Unprecedented,’ Cajun Navy Relief President Says” • Nearly a Category 5 storm, Ida had maximum sustained winds estimated to be 150 mph, when it hit land on Katrina’s anniversary. Only two storms that strong have ever hit Louisiana before, Last Island in 1856, and Hurricane Laura in 2020. [Yahoo News]

¶ “PG&E Launches Clean Energy Generator At Its Angwin Microgrid” • From the outside, the new linear generator Pacific Gas & Electric Co will use at its microgrid in Angwin, California, looks like other pieces of electrical equipment, a large diesel generator or maybe an array of lithium-ion energy storage. But this generator uses biogas. [The Press Democrat]

Have a basically copacetic day.

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August 29 Energy News

August 29, 2021

Opinion:

¶ “Louisiana Hasn’t Yet Recovered From Two Major Hurricanes In 2020. Now Another Is Taking Aim” • Five named storms struck Louisiana in 2020. Two of them were major hurricanes, doing a total of $18.75 billion in damages. As the state still reels from the destruction, another major hurricane is now barreling toward the coast. [CNN]

After Hurricane Laura (Josiah Pugh, Louisiana National Guard)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Looking Into The Future Of The Grid” • One of the challenges of aggregating energy data from different sources into studies is knowing whether the data uses consistent assumptions. The Annual Technology Baseline resolves this challenge by creating consistent assumptions across all electric generation technology cost and performance data. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Space Mission Tests NREL Perovskite Solar Cells” • NREL Researchers are testing ways to bring costs down for terrestrial applications and transforming how PV technologies could work in space. Now, a test will evaluate the potential use of perovskite solar cells in space and assess the durability of materials used in those cells. [CleanTechnica]

Solar Everywhere (NREL)

World:

¶ “XPeng P7 Gets Highest Active Safety Score Of All EVs Sold In China – 98.51%” • After passing the 50,000 vehicle milestone with the P7, setting sales records two months in a row, and leading the Chinese EV startup market, the Guangzhou-based company has announced that the XPeng P7 has the absolute highest safety rating of all EVs sold in China. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Volkswagen ID Buzz Assembly Line Update, Chip Shortage Shuts Down Production” • VW is expanding production of EVs, but MDR Sachsen reports that Volkswagen is pausing electric car production at its Zwickau factory because of the global shortage of computer chips. The shortage is also affecting the company’s main factory in Wolfsburg. [CleanTechnica]

Volkswagen factory (Volkswagen image)

¶ “Masdar Commissions 100-MW Nur Navoi Solar Project In Uzbekistan” • Masdar, a world leader in renewable energy, has inaugurated Uzbekistan’s first successfully-financed independent power producer solar project. Shavkat Mirziyoyev, President of the Republic of Uzbekistan, said 19 projects with 11,500 MW of new capacity are coming. [Trade Arabia]

¶ “‘Energy Patriots’ Bring Electricity To Indonesia’s Remote Villages” • For millions of villagers in Indonesia’s remote areas, a 12-hour-per-day erratic electricity supply is the norm. A recently launched UN-led initiative could change that, thanks to a group of Indonesians, “energy patriots,” who have been tasked to boost the use of clean energy resources. [UN News]

Fishing village in Indonesia (Agency for the
Assessment and Application of Technology)

¶ “Evidence Is Mounting About What Renewable Energy Could Mean For Southeast Alberta” • Evidence shows what renewable energy development could mean for southeast Alberta. New solar and wind farms are coming, and the Globe and Mail reported that Vulcan County might soon get half its tax revenues from green power plants. [Medicine Hat News]

¶ “Shell Plans To Boost Oman Renewable Energy Portfolio” • Global energy major Royal Dutch Shell plans to add new clean energy projects in Oman and boost its renewables portfolio as the sultanate aims to generate 30% of its electricity from green sources by 2030. Oman is building renewable energy plants across the country. [The National]

Qabas solar plant in Oman (Shell EP International)

¶ “Kuwait Reschedules Renewable Energy Projects To Meet Its Electricity Needs” • A bank source told CNBC Arabia that Kuwait has brought back to the table its ambitious plan for renewable energy projects, which were halted due to the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic on the Kuwaiti economy. The plan had been canceled in July of 2020. [Dubai Week]

US:

¶ “Hurricane Ida: Thousands Flee As Storm Bears Down On Louisiana” • Thousands of people are fleeing as Hurricane Ida closes in on Louisiana. Ida is expected to make landfall with 130 mph (209 km/h) winds and a “life-threatening” storm surge. Forecasters say it may be stronger than Hurricane Katrina, which devastated much of New Orleans in 2005. [BBC]

Projected path of Hurricane Ida (NOAA image)

¶ “Gas Cars Are Declining Significantly And Full Electrics Rising In USA” • We may have experienced peak fossil car sales in the USA, and the peak year wasn’t even very recently. It appears that 2016 will go down in history as the peak year for fossil-powered light-duty vehicle sales. Ironically, that’s also the year the Tesla Model 3 was unveiled. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “The Waiting List To Own A Tesla Is Growing” • Tesla’s waiting lists are back. For most models, if you order today, you may be lucky to see your new Tesla this year. Tesla is predicting a wait of up to six weeks for the Performance Model 3 and Performance Model X. For some models, estimated delivery times can be as far out as April 2022. [CleanTechnica]

Tesla Model Y cars (Tesla image)

¶ “Intensifying Hurricane Ida A Significant Threat To Key Infrastructure” • Ida is forecast to hit the corridor between Baton Rouge and New Orleans, where the Waterford 3 nuclear plant sits. The plant is at an elevation of 10-15 feet on the south shore of the Mississippi River, and it is vulnerable to storm surge from a major hurricane. [Yale Climate Connections]

¶ “Nuclear Regulators Up Scrutiny Of Plant Vogtle, Citing Issues” • Nuclear regulators said that they will give greater scrutiny to construction of two new nuclear reactors being built at Georgia Power’s Plant Vogtle after a special inspection found electrical cables were not properly separated. Southern Nuclear could contest the findings. [WABE 90.1]

Have a noticeably flawless day.

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August 28 Energy News

August 28, 2021

Opinion:

¶ “A Carbon Tax That Sends Americans Checks Could Pass This Fall: Interview” • The Senate will be voting on a reconciliation package soon. One of the things in that package is a proposed carbon tax that would actually use the funds from the carbon tax to create jobs, grow the economy, and even send monthly checks to US households. [CleanTechnica]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Tesla’s Re|Source Blockchain Collaboration For Cobalt Aims To Prove That Tesla Ethically Sources Its Cobalt” • To ensure transparency, Tesla is developing a blockchain platform that will allow users to track what cobalt it does get from the mine to the battery. Reportly, Tesla is working with cobalt producers to develop the blockchain. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Climate Change Accelerating Disruptions To El Niño And La Niña” • Two studies, published in Nature Climate Change and Nature Reviews Earth & Environment, examine the complexity of the El Niño-Southern Oscillation’s variability. In the first, the variability will increase; in the second, it will instead collapse. Neither is good. [IFLScience]

Model of ocean temperatures (Institute for Basic Science)

¶ “China Set To Begin First Trials Of Molten Salt Nuclear Reactor Using Thorium Instead Of Uranium” • Scientists in China are about to turn on for the first time an experimental reactor that’s believed by some to be the Holy Grail of nuclear energy – safer, cheaper, and with less potential for weaponization. At a capacity of 2 MW, the test reactor is small. [ABC] (For safer, cheaper, and no weaponization, try solar, wind, and batteries.)

World:

¶ “Queen Elizabeth II Will Attend UN Climate Change Talks In Glasgow” • Queen Elizabeth II will attend a pivotal UN climate change conference in Glasgow this fall, giving a royal boost to the event, according to a tweet from organizers. The UK is hosting global leaders for the nearly two weeks of talks in the Scottish city from October 31 to November 12. [CNN]

Queen Elizabeth II speaking to open parliament (Parliament TV)

¶ “Government To Ban Single-Use Plastic Cutlery” • The British government announced plans to ban single-use plastic cutlery, plates, and polystyrene cups in England. Ministers said the move would help to reduce litter and cut the amount of plastic waste in oceans. Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland already have plans to ban single-use plastic cutlery. [BBC]

¶ “World’s First Crewless, Zero Emissions Cargo Ship Will Set Sail In Norway” • Yara International, a Norwegian company, has created what it calls the world’s first zero-emission, autonomous cargo ship. The ship is to make a journey between two towns in Norway, with a reduced crew on board to test the autonomous systems, before the end of the year. [CNN]

Yara Birkeland (Yara International image)

¶ “SSE Renewables Pours £50 Million Into Second Life Of Scottish Hydro Plant” • A hydro-electric power station in the Highlands of Scotland secured new life through a £50 million investment by SSE Renewables. The company announced it will deploy new turbine technology in its Tummel Bridge Hydro-Electric power plant. [Energy Live News]

US:

¶ “New Orleans Braces For Possible Direct Hit By Hurricane Ida” • The mayor of New Orleans has called for residents to evacuate unprotected city neighbourhoods as Hurricane Ida bears down on the Louisiana coastline. Forecasters say the hurricane will be at category 4 strength by the time it reaches the Louisiana coast of the Gulf of Mexico on Sunday. [BBC]

Hurricane Ida (National Weather Service image)

¶ “Energy Infrastructure Near Hurricane Ida” • Hurricane Ida is approaching the U.S. Gulf Coast region and is expected to make landfall on August 29. Our Energy Disruptions Map has layers for energy-related infrastructure such as high-voltage transmission lines, power plants including two nuclear power plants, and petroleum bulk terminals. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Rivian Aims For $80 Billion Valuation In IPO” • At long last, Rivian is on the verge of going public. It hasn’t yet delivered a single customer car (or truck), but it is aiming to start its public market life with a whopping $80 billion valuation when it has an IPO later this year. That might seem like a lot, but Amazon and Ford are already big investors. [CleanTechnica]

Rivian pickup truck (Rivian image)

¶ “Voices Of 100%: A Renewable City Coalition Grows In Western Montana” • For this episode of the ILSR’s “Voices of 100%” series of the Local Energy Rules Podcast, host John Farrell talks with local leaders in Helena, Montana. Helena has joined Missoula and Bozeman, building a coalition for 100% renewable energy in western Montana. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Campaign To Shut Down New York City’s Peaker Plants Gains Congressional Ally” • Rep Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) threw her support behind a proposal to cut the number of peaker power plants in New York City in half by 2025 and to zero in 2030. “They are old, inefficient, costly, and dirty,” one Peak Coalition activist said. [Utility Dive]

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August 27 Energy News

August 27, 2021

Science and Technology:

¶ “This Center In Dubai Is Growing ‘Future-Proof’ Food In The Desert” • In the Dubai desert, farmers must contend with intense heat, limited freshwater and sandy soil. Here, the International Center of Biosaline Agriculture is transplanting and growing salt-loving superfoods in an effort to expand food diversity in the region. [CNN]

Quinoa growing in the Dubai desert (ICBA image)

World:

¶ “‘Southern Blob’ Of Hot Ocean Is Causing A Megadrought Thousands Of Miles Away In Chile” • “The Southern Blob” is a huge, decades-old region of warm water in the southwest Pacific Ocean. Chile has been experiencing a megadrought for over a decade. A study, published in the Journal of Climate says the one is causing the other. [CNN]

¶ “Bourbon Installs Norwegian Floater” • Bourbon Subsea Services has successfully installed the innovative TetraSpar Demonstrator Floating Wind Turbine in Norway. After mooring lines installation in June, towing and hook up in July, Bourbon Subsea Services completed the offshore installation of the 3.6-MW turbine at the Metcentre Test site. [reNEWS]

Floating offshore turbine (Bourbon Subsea Services image)

¶ “Supermarket Giants Race To Net Zero, Beating The Do-Nothing Australian Government” • The federal government will not commit to a net-zero-by-2050 target, but Australia’s three biggest supermarket chains are making massive strides. Aldi, Coles, and Woolworths have all set and then quickly achieved net-zero goals. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Australia’s Largest Planned Renewables Zone ‘Swamped’ With 34 GW Of Capacity” • Australia’s newest planned renewable energy zone has been “swamped” by investors, according to the New South Wales government. It revealed that 34 GW of new solar, wind, and energy storage projects have been proposed for the 8-GW site. [PV Magazine]

Solar array (Neoen image)

¶ “Hydro Developer Unveils 600-MW Corrievarkie” • ILI Group launched the initial planning phase for the Corrievarkie pumped storage project in the Scottish Highlands. The 600-MW project at Loch Ericht, Dalwhinnie, will be able to supply power for up to 24 hours, enough to power 1.4 million homes, making it one of the largest such schemes in Scotland. [reNEWS]

¶ “Vensys On Track To Power Austrian Trains” • The world’s first wind turbine to produce traction current is to be built in Lower Austria. A Vensys112 with a hub height of 140 meters in a 16.7 hz version will enable direct feed-in to the ÖBB overhead contact line, which means that the trains are supplied with wind energy directly and with little loss. [reNEWS]

Wind turbine (Vensys image)

¶ “Anti-Nuclear Campaigners Slam Plans To Install New Nuclear Reactors In Wales” • Anti-nuclear campaigners in Wales have criticized the Welsh Government for supporting “flawed and outdated” technology as it plans to install new nuclear reactors in Wales. They said the site should be used for renewable and sustainable technologies. [Nation.Cymru]

US:

¶ “Northern California Wildfires Traveled Up To 8 Miles In A Single Day, Cal Fire Says” • Hundreds of California residents are under evacuation orders after new fires were sparked, with a new heat wave expected to make fighting fires even more challenging. Meanwhile, the Dixie Fire, California’s second-largest fire, is threatening over 11,800 structures. [CNN]

Firefighters battling the Bennett Fire (Cal Fire image)

¶ “Kerry Will Travel To China And Japan To Negotiate On Climate Action” • US Climate Envoy John Kerry will travel to China and Japan to meet with top climate officials in the lead-up to the UN climate conference in Glasgow in November. Kerry will be in Japan on August 31, then China from September 1-3, a person familiar with the plans said. [CNN]

¶ “Tesla Is Slowly Cutting Into Pharmaceutical And Health Insurance Costs” • Tesla doesn’t make medicines or cure diseases, but it is having a growing effect on the pharmaceutical industry and the health insurance industry here in America. Asthma, Covid-19, and dementia have all been shown to be made worse by air pollution. [CleanTechnica]

Tesla Model 3 (Vlad Tchompalov, Unsplash)

¶ “Big Agnes Commits To Renewable Energy At New HQ” • The outdoor equipment brand Big Agnes, of Steamboat Springs, Colorado, has committed to using 100% renewable energy to power each of its three US facilities. Its sister company BAP, Inc also uses solar panels to power its retail outlet in downtown Steamboat Springs. [Steamboat Pilot]

¶ “Ford Doubles Production Target For F-150 Lightning Electric Pickup” • Ford has doubled its production target for the F-150 Lightning electric pickup truck due to strong early demand, several people and suppliers have told Reuters. It will invest an additional $850 million to meet the new production goal of 80,000 sales in 2024. [CleanTechnica]

Ford F-150 Lightning pickups (Ford image)

¶ “California Farmers To Power Its Electric, Self-Driving Fleet” • Cruise, a self-driving car company under General Motors, has launched an initiative, Farm to Fleet, that will allow the company to source solar power from farms in California’s Central Valley. Cruise is purchasing renewable energy credits to help power vehicles in San Francisco. [TechCrunch]

¶ “Renewable Energy Bills Signed Into Law In Derry” • Calling it a “603 win for clean energy” New Hampshire Governor Chris Sununu signed two bills into law that advance renewable energy initiatives. Both bills enjoyed bipartisan support and are among the last measures expected to be signed into law from this past session. [InDepthNH.org]

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August 26 Energy News

August 26, 2021

Opinion:

¶ “Can Investors Save The Amazon?” • When you think of your retirement savings, your bank, or your investments, it’s unlikely that you associate these with trees being chopped down in lush tropical rainforests. And yet, well-known financial institutions either own shares in or provide credit to companies that have links to deforestation. [BBC]

Emperor Tamarin (Steve Wilson, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

Science and Technology:

¶ “How To Fight Microplastic Pollution With Magnets” • Fionn Ferreira, a chemistry student at Groningen University in the Netherlands, found a way to use magnets to extract microplastics from water. He mixed vegetable oil with iron oxide powder to create a magnetic liquid, which attached to the particles. He was 87% successful in trapping them. [BBC]

¶ “Turning Hazelnut Shells Into Potential Renewable Energy Source” • Biomass is attracting growing interest from researchers as a source of renewable, sustainable, and clean energy. It can be converted into bio-oil by thermochemical methods, such as gasification, liquefaction, and pyrolysis, and used to produce fuels, chemicals, and biomaterials. [Lab Manager]

Hazelnuts (Mockup Graphics, Unsplash)

World:

¶ “Europe’s 2020 Heat Reached ‘Troubling’ Level” • Last year was the warmest on record across Europe, breaking the previous high mark by a considerable amount, say scientists. Temperatures in the region were more than 1.9°C above the long-term average of 1981 through 2010. Also, Arctic Temperatures were the highest since records began in 1900. [BBC]

¶ “XPeng P7 Goes To Norway” • Some of us have been wondering about when Chinese EV startups would start trying to sell their vehicles in Europe and North America. Now, we’re finally seeing the expectation come to life. XPeng started deliveries of its G3 electric crossover in Norway in December, and P7 electric sedan are on the way. [CleanTechnica]

XPeng cars being loaded for shipment (XPeng image)

¶ “Emissions Reduced By 28% From 2005 Levels, 80% Of Power To Come From Renewable Sources By 2030: Govt” • India has managed to fulfill the commitments part of the Paris Agreement as it boosts renewable energy capacity. India reduced emissions by 28% from 2005 levels, against the target of 35% by 2030, the government said. [India Today]

¶ “Electric Conversion Expert EDub Services Creates The Electric Vespa T5” • When Kit Lacey of eDub services took us on a little tour of his oldtimer EV conversions business, among the VW Golf Mk2 and Porsche 911 projects we got a sneak peak of an electric Vespa T5. Now it is officially ready for order under the catchy name: ESCOOT! [CleanTechnica]

Electric Vespa T5 (Photo credit of eDub services)

¶ “Energy Board To Consult Widely After Australian Renewables Industry Says Rules Could Prop Up Coal” • With criticism from the renewable energy sector over proposed market rules, which some fear could support coal, Australia’s Energy Security Board vowed to work with industry players and all tiers of government to design a new system by 2023. [The Guardian]

¶ “Funding For Gravity-Based Renewable Energy Storage Tower For Grid-Scale Operations” • Energy Vault, maker of the EVx gravitational energy storage tower, has secured $100 million in series C funding. The investment was led by Prime Movers Lab, with additional participation from SoftBank, Saudi Aramco, Helena, and Idealab X. [PV Magazine]

Energy Vault EVx storage tower (Energy Vault image)

¶ “It’s Crunch Time For France’s Tumultuous Renewable Energy Debate” • As the debate on renewable energies and nuclear rages in France, nuclear proponents, environmentalists, scientists, and politicians will have to set aside their differences to advance the energy transition. The French transition is underway, but has a long way to go. [EURACTIV.com]

US:

¶ “Climate Change Is Sparking Wildfires That Are Amplifying Covid” • The Caldor Fire east of Sacramento, is causing noxious air in Reno and threatening Lake Tahoe. The air quality near Reno this week is at its worst it’s ever been, and there’s growing evidence that noxious smoke from the fires amplifies the severity of Covid outbreaks. [CNN]

Smoke from wildfire (Malachi Brooks, Unsplash)

¶ “Tesla Model 3 Has Passed 1 Million Sales” • A reader pointed out that the Tesla Model 3 seems to have had 1 million deliveries. Indeed, looking at my own long-term records of Tesla sales, at the end of the 2nd quarter of 2021, the Model 3 had reached 1,031,588 worldwide deliveries. The Model 3 would be the first EV to have 1 million sales. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “RWE To Develop 200-MW Texan Solar Project” • RWE Renewables partnered with Constellation to develop a 200-MW solar facility coupled with a 80-MW, 120-MWh battery storage system in Texas. Constellation, a leading competitive energy and energy solutions provider, will purchase much of the power from RWE’s Big Star solar project. [reNEWS]

Solar farm in Texas (RWE image)

¶ “The Heat Is On – Is The Grid Ready?” • Our aging energy grids just were not designed to handle the stress of climate change. In the heat, more electricity is needed. But in times of drought, the reservoirs are low and can’t produce as much electricity. The Pacific Northwest National Laboratory is working on preventing failures. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “CenterPoint Energy seeks approval for 335 MW of renewable energy” • CenterPoint Energy announced that they filed with the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission to enter into two power purchase agreements for an additional 335 MW of solar energy as part of their long-term plan to transition to renewable electric generation. [Eyewitness News, WEHT & WTVW]

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August 25 Energy News

August 25, 2021

Opinion:

¶ “Why I Think The New BYD Dolphin Will Convince Millions To Go Electric” • The reason I think this car matters is that it could be a car that is a “game changer” like the VW Beetle was last century and the Tesla Model 3 and Y are today. Part of the reason for the Beetle’s popularity was that it was reliable and affordable, features the Dolphin shares. [CleanTechnica]

BYD Dolphin (Image from BYD Europe)

¶ “Electric Vehicles Getting Ready To Rocket In Australia” • Last year, the EV share of Australia’s overall auto market was 0.78%. It is now approaching 2%, and should be more so by year’s end. From the fourth quarter, many new models of EVs will become available in Australia, including eight from BYD. Things may get exciting down under. [CleanTechnica]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Tech Firm Promises 1500 Times More Cattle Feed Using 5% Of The Water” • One Utah tech firm is hoping we’ll be able to use science to find our way out of drought-fueled food shortages with a new spin on vertical farms that promises fifteen-hundred times (!) the food production of a conventional farm with just 5% of the water use. [CleanTechnica]

Olympus Farm (Grōv Technologies image)

World:

¶ “JPMorgan Says Fuel-Cell Vehicles Are Set For Big Gains In China’s Commercial Truck Market” • Hydrogen fuel cell vehicles are set to become a major player in China’s commercial truck market, according to JPMorgan’s Elaine Wu. The trucks can be fueled in less than 15 minutes and will have a range of about 800 km (497 miles). [CNBC]

¶ “Maersk Just Ordered Eight Carbon Neutral Ships. Now It Needs Green Fuel” • Shipping giant Maersk said it would spend $1.4 billion on eight large ships that will be able to use green methanol as well as traditional fuel. There’s not enough green methanol to power them, but Maersk hopes that the size of its order will help jumpstart the market. [CNN]

Maersk container ship (AlfvanBeem, placed in public domain)

¶ “Liberal Politicians Squabble As Australia Burns” • Matt Kean, energy and environment minister in the Liberal (Conservative) state of New South Wales, is giving members of his party in the federal government an ultimatum: Lead, follow, or get out of the way. He challenged voters to remove politicians who obstruct measures to combat climate change. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Vestas Picks Up 50-MW Polish Double” • Vestas has received two orders in Poland totaling 50 MW from a joint venture of KGAL and V-ridium Power Group. The order is to supply and install turbines at the 35-MW Wólka Dobryńska and 15-MW Podlasek projects in Poland, both to be fully commissioned by the end of 2022. [reNEWS]

Wind farm (Vestas image)

¶ “Innovators In Indonesia Are Advancing Renewable Energy” • The Indonesian government promises to almost triple the share of renewables in its energy mix in the next three years. That would reverse an investment climate in which fossil fuels saw three times more capital than renewable energy between 2016 and 2019. [GreenBiz]

¶ “Japan To Build Undersea Tunnel To Release Wastewater From Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant” • Japan reportedly decided to discharge radioactive water from the Fukushima nuclear plant into the sea just 1 km off the coast through an undersea tunnel. Japanese media report that TEPCO is about to announce their decision on discharging the water. [Arirang News]

Fukushima Daiichi in 2002 (KEI, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

US:

¶ “‘Zero Now Fund’ Powers Electric Trucks In Chicago, San Diego, And San Jose” • Delivering Zero Emissions Communities, a one-year accelerator program supported by the Zero Now Fund, is enabling three cities – Chicago, San Diego, and San Jose, California – to take bold steps to have commercial vehicles with 100% zero-emissions today. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Waymo Enters San Francisco” • Two big players stand out in the autonomous driving world, Tesla and Waymo. Whether it’s planned or organically ironic, just after Tesla held its AI Day to show us the progress it’s making toward robotaxis, Waymo has expanded its legitimate, collecting-money-now robotaxi into San Francisco. [CleanTechnica]

Waymo autonomous vehicle (Waymo image)

¶ “Governor Murphy Signs Legislation Establishing the Garden State C-PACE Program” • Governor Phil Murphy signed a bill that establishes the Garden State Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy Program. The program will facilitate the funding of clean and renewable energy infrastructure at commercial properties throughout the state. [NJ.gov]

¶ “Record Growth Continues For Renewable Energy Projects” • The pace of installations of renewable energy projects across the first six months of 2021 hit a new high for the sector, according to a report released by the American Clean Power Association. The US renewable energy additions were 17% greater than for the same period in 2020. [Power Magazine]

Solar installation (Hoan Ngọc, Pexels)

¶ “So You Want To Fly A Drone Over A Nuclear Weapons Lab …” • Drone pilots beware: Authorities at one of the United States’ top nuclear weapons laboratories issued a warning that airspace over Los Alamos National Laboratory is off limits. After unauthorized drone flights were detected, officials said if you fly a drone over the lab, you likely will lose it. [Defense News]

¶ “State Lawmakers Again Try To Ban Most Dangerous Nuclear Waste As Feds Consider Allowing It At West Texas Site” • Texas lawmakers are again trying to ban the most dangerous nuclear waste from entering the state. A nuclear waste disposal company in West Texas is pursuing a federal application to store the highly radioactive materials. [Marfa Public Radio]

Have an utterly untroubled day.

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August 24 Energy News

August 24, 2021

Opinion:

¶ “Energy Charter Treaty Allows Oil Companies To Sue Nations, But Not The Other Way Around” • The Energy Charter Treaty is an international agreement that protects energy and mineral companies operating in 57 signatory nations from government lawsuits as they work to extract natural resources. It does not prevent the companies from suing. [CleanTechnica]

Fossil fuels protest (Extinction Rebellion)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Hydrogen – For Cars, No; For Steel, Yes” • Given the physics and chemistry involved, I do not expect hydrogen to be a fuel widely used in passenger vehicles. It does, however, have its place – or places, and judging by the amounts of money being poured into research and development, industry thinks it has found those places. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “How Climate Change Amplifies Extreme Weather Like Tennessee’s Deadly Floods And NYC’s Record Rainfall” • Record breaking rainfall amounts in New York and Tennessee exemplify the same scientific phenomenon: extreme rainfall events being supercharged by human-caused climate change. The science is well known and easily explained. [CNN]

Flooding in Tennessee (NOAA image)

World:

¶ “How To Make A Small Fortune” • One way to make a small fortune is to start with a big one and invest it badly. Australia’s largest generator and largest emitter, AGL, is finding itself in hot water. It recently announced a $2 billion loss for the 2021–2022 financial year that was caused by clinging to coal and delaying the switch to renewables. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “From ‘Air-Pocalypse’ To Blue Skies. Beijing’s Fight For Cleaner Air Is A Rare Victory For Public Dissent” • Beijing was known as one of the world’s most polluted cities, with dense smog and acrid air a daily reality. Now, its skies are mostly blue, a sign the Chinese capital is entering a new era of clean air, the Minister of Ecology and Environment claimed. [CNN]

Temple of Heaven, Beijing (Pier Francesco Grizi, Unsplash)

¶ “SSE, National Grid Unveil Green Heat Initiative” • SSE Energy Solutions and National Grid have unveiled a project that could decarbonize heat networks, capturing waste heat from electricity transformers to generate hot water and space heating for homes and businesses. It is estimated that the heat recovery project could reduce emissions by 40%. [reNEWS]

¶ “Queensland-Built Electric Buses To Boost Jobs From Burleigh To North Lakes” • The Palaszczuk Government’s commitment to roll out more zero emissions vehicles on to Queensland roads was supercharged with a plan to build 16 new electric buses on the Gold Coast. The $15.6 million deal will also create the state’s first 100% electric bus depot. [Media Statements]

Gold Coast, Queensland (Jordan, Unsplash)

¶ “Tata Power Renewable Energy Commissions 150-MW Solar Project In Rajasthan” • Tata Power arm Tata Power Renewable Energy Limited has commissioned a 150-MW solar project in the village of Loharki in Rajasthan. With the latest installation in Rajasthan, the total renewables installed capacity of Tata Power will be 2,947 MW. [Business Today]

¶ “Vattenfall Plans Kriegers Flak Opening Bash” • Denmark’s Crown Prince Frederik and Minister for Industry, Business and Financial Affairs Simon Kollerup will inaugurate the 604-MW Kriegers Flak wind farm in the Baltic Sea on 6 September. All 72 offshore wind turbines are now in place at the wind farm, which is Vattenfall’s largest. [reNEWS]

Offshore wind turbine construction (Jan de Nul)

¶ “Tariff Falls To ₹2.34/Unit In Wind-Solar Hybrid Auctions” • The latest bid by Solar Energy Corporation of India to set up 1,200 MW of wind-solar hybrid plants has discovered the lowest tariff of ₹2.34 per unit (3.2¢/kWh), much lower than the ₹2.41 per unit quoted by companies in the last auction for hybrid plants held in December 2020. [The Financial Express]

US:

¶ “Raging Wildfires In California Forced 42,000 To Evacuate And Drove Reno Residents Indoors Due To Historic Bad Air” • Over 42,000 residents have been told to evacuate their homes as nine large wildfires burn in northern California. The Caldor Fire has burned 114,166 acres since sparking ten days ago and is only 9% contained, according to Cal Fire. [CNN]

Fire (Rodnae Productions, Unsplash)

¶ “Tennessee Flash Floods Kill 22 With Dozens Missing” • At least 22 people have been killed and dozens are missing after flash floods in the US state of Tennessee. The record flooding began on Saturday, submerging entire roads and taking out telephone and power lines. In Humphreys County, 17 inches (43 cm) of rain fell  in less than 24 hours. [BCC]

¶ “Eurowind Energy Enters US Market” • Eurowind Energy is stepping into the US market, with its first projects expected to start construction in 2022. The company’s American subsidiary, Eurowind Energy USA, already has three projects under development, consisting of three hybrid projects in California that total 800 MW. [reNEWS]

Wind farm (Master Wen, Unsplash)

¶ “Four Suburban Philly Counties Join To Pursue Renewable Energy” • In a partnership aiming to combat climate change, four suburban Philadelphia counties have joined in pursuit of a renewable energy power purchasing agreement. Chester, Bucks, Delaware, and Montgomery have signed a memorandum of understanding on the effort. [Patch]

¶ “Staffers See Little Interest Or Action On Nuclear Waste Issues” • The 117th Congress has introduced few bills this session dealing with nuclear power and nuclear waste, according to staffers for Vermont’s congressional delegation. They were speaking to a committee of the Vermont Nuclear Decommissioning Citizens Advisory Panel. [Brattleboro Reformer]

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(, CC-BY-SA 3.0) CO₂ NH₃ CH₄ ₹ NOₓ

 

August 23 Energy News

August 23, 2021

Opinion:

¶ “When Electric Buses Make Sense, And When They Just Don’t” • Electric buses are definitely better than a diesel or natural gas bus. That’s indisputable without seriously bending the facts. The thing is, combustion buses aren’t the only competition electric buses have, and in many situations, there are even cleaner options that we can choose. [CleanTechnica]

Electric bus in Hamburg (Phuoc Anh Dang, Unsplash)

Science and Technology:

¶ “PivotBio’s Genetically Engineered Microbes Displace 20-25% Of Fertilizer Today, 100% By 2030” • Continuing a conversation with Karsten Temme, PhD, geneticist and CEO of PivotBio that began yesterday, we find that Pivotbio’s microbe displaces 20-25% of fertilizer with better crop yields and less work for the farmer. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ “GAC Aion V 6C Promises 8-Minute Charge Times, 1000 Km Range” • Chinese car maker GAC says that next month it will be selling an Aion 6C battery electric SUV will charge a depleted battery to 80% capacity in a lightning fast 8 minutes. The car is rated to have a range of 1000 km NEDC, though that standard is known to be overly optimistic. [CleanTechnica]

Gac Aion V (Evnerd, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “Burning Forests To Make Energy: EU And World Grapple With Biomass Science” • A major political and environmental dispute is coming to a boil in the run-up to COP26 in Scotland this November, as the EU and the forestry industry claim the science shows biomass is sustainable and produces zero emissions. [Eco-Business.com]

¶ “Crown Estate To Research Offshore Wind Impact” • The Crown Estate has launched a new research program to address the critical gap in understanding how marine ecosystems will respond to the continued growth of offshore wind. The four-year program will fund leading edge research into how offshore wind farms affect the marine environment. [reNEWS]

Offshore wind turbines (Insung Yoon, Unsplash)

Australia:

¶ “How Australia Could Save Almost $7 Billion On Its Energy Transition” • Representing eighteen major institutional investors, the Clean Energy Investor Group is calling for Australian Governments to pick a scenario from the Australian Energy Market Operator’s Integrated System Plan and commit to de-risking renewable energy. [pv magazine Australia]

¶ “Net-Zero-Pursuing Investors Change Australia’s Renewable-Energy Development Game” • Research by market analyst and advisory firm PwC, finds bigger players – state governments, oil and gas majors and sophisticated large investors – have become involved in the energy transition, and are shifting the rules of engagement. [pv magazine Australia

Solar array (PwC Australia image)

¶ “Solar Generates More Power Than Coal In Australia” • In Australia, solar power generated more energy on Sunday than coal for the first time since the market was set up two decades ago. The crossover point lasted for only a few minutes, with low demand and sunny skies on Sunday, when coal generated at a record low level, less than solar. [reNEWS]

US:

¶ “Storm Henri Makes Landfall At Rhode Island” • More than 120,000 homes in the Northeast are without power after Tropical Storm Henri made landfall at Rhode Island. Although Henri had been downgraded from a Category One hurricane, it brought winds of 60 mph (95 km/h). People in southern and central New England are warned of potential flooding. [BBC]

Storm (Johannes Plenio, Unsplash)

¶ “Stanford Going To 100% Renewable Electricity – First Major University In USA To Do So” • The first university in the USA to announce a 100% renewable target is Stanford University. More good news is that its goal for getting to 100% renewable electricity is next summer, 2022. And this is even after the university had a solar farm burn down. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Giant Energy Storage Project Hoovers Up Excess Wind And Solar” • The huge Vistra energy storage project in Moss Landing, California, is to get bigger. Work on the first two phases is ahead of schedule, and Vistra is looking forward to another expansion that will bring the plant up to 1,500 MW, which translates into 6,000 MWh. [CleanTechnica]

Energy storage (Image courtesy of Vistra)

¶ “Here’s Why The Navy Is Betting On Wave Energy Research In Hawaii” • To reduce oil dependence, Hawaii is exploring wave energy as a possible source to help meet its goal to rely on 100% renewable energy by 2045. The military is looking for ways to more efficiently fuel forces increasingly focused on the Pacific as it battles China for influence. [Honolulu Civil Beat]

¶ “Wyoming Business Leaders Urge Feds To Take Action On Climate” • Critics of climate proposals making their way through Congress warn that reducing greenhouse-gas emissions will harm the economy, but some business leaders say those plans won’t get the job done in time. It is already too late. Significant change is happening. [Public News Service]

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August 22 Energy News

August 22, 2021

Science and Technology:

¶ “How The Climate Crisis Is Changing Hurricanes” • The proportion of high-intensity hurricanes has increased due to warmer global temperatures, according to a UN climate report released earlier this month. Scientists have also found that the storms are more likely to stall and lead to devastating rainfall, and they last longer over land. [CNN]

Hurricane (Pixabay, Pexels)

¶ “Why Autumn Weather Won’t Be The Same This Year” • At the halfway point of August, fall is quickly approaching. But warm temperatures and prolonged drought could continue, hindering the traditional fall feeling of cool, crisp mornings with beautiful foliage on the trees. The Climate Prediction Center also raised chances for La Niña this fall. [CNN]

¶ “CEO Karsten Temme Of PivotBio On Microbes Reducing Agriculture GHG Emissions” • PivotBio was founded on the basis of a eureka moment. Microbes that fix nitrogen don’t work hard in fields that are fertilized. When microbes can be made to fix nitrogen constantly in fertilized fields, fertilizing is needed less frequently, reducing emissions. [CleanTechnica]

Agriculture (US Bureau of Labor Statistics)

World:

¶ “The Middle East Is Running Out Of Water, And Parts Of It Are Becoming Uninhabitable” • Lakes in the Middle East are drying up, and there are concerns that they will disappear entirely. The region has witnessed persistent drought and temperatures so high that they are barely fit for human life. And from this point, things are just getting worse. [CNN]

¶ “Major Solar Energy Project Coming To Israel” • A bid for plans for a 300-MW solar farm in Israel that will provide significant electricity reserves for the country received 11 proposals from national and international groups. The solar farm is to be spread over 3,000 acres. Some electricity will be routed to a battery storage facility. [The Jerusalem Post]

Solar panels (Pixabay, Pexels)

¶ “Need For Generation Licences For Small-Scale Renewable Energy-Based Systems Eliminated” • In Pakistan, the Cabinet Committee on Energy approved the proposal of the Power Division for eliminating the need for generation licences for small-scale Renewable Energy based systems of up to 25 kW for net metering. [Business Recorder]

¶ “With 4 Lakh (400,000) Renewable Energy Installations By July, Odisha Achieves Milestone” • In India, the Odisha Renewable Energy Development Agency has made significant strides in generation and use of renewable energy in the state with more than 400,000 installations serving around 5.5 million people. [Sambad English]

Rooftop solar in India (Thamizhpparithi Maari, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “UK Government Announces £12 Million Energy Storage Solution Competition” • The UK Government is planning to award up to £12 million in prize money to innovators competing to develop the nation’s next energy storage solutions. Entries are welcome, so long as pre-existing commercialised technologies are not put forward. [Energy Digital]

US:

¶ “Hurricane Henri: East Coast Warned Of Significant Damage” • Residents on the East Coast have been urged to prepare for one of the most powerful storms in years. Hurricane Henri, which has strengthened from a tropical storm, is expected to hit Long Island and southern parts of New England. Hurricanes are rare for this part of the US coastline. [BBC]

Coming storm (Shashank Sahay, Unsplash)

¶ “Tesla Switching To LFP Batteries For Standard Range Model 3 And Model Y” • Though it is probably wise not to be moved by internet rumors, they sometimes pan out. There’s the rumor of standard range Model 3 and Model Y vehicles made in Fremont getting LFP (LiFePO₄) batteries. Tesla already has experience with this configuration in China. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Exelon Generation Receives US DOE Grant To Explore Hydrogen Production At Oswego Nuclear Station” • Exelon will partner with Nel Hydrogen, Argonne National Laboratory, Idaho National Laboratory and the National Energy Laboratory to demonstrate integrated production, storage and normal usage at the Nine Mile Point nuclear plant. [H2 View]

Have an indisputably ducky day.

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August 21 Energy News

August 21, 2021

Opinion:

¶ “What My Departure From Conservatism Can Teach Us About Getting Conservative Support For Climate Policy” • Try a gentle approach to get conservative support. Perhaps, “Hey, honest question. I remember that conservatives used to like alternative energy a few years ago. George Bush even signed the EV tax credits. What happened?” [CleanTechnica]

Declaration of Independence by John Trumbull (Wikipedia)

¶ “The Power Of Wind: Interview With Bound4blue Founder” • Shipowners and operators may be able to decrease their fuel-related costs and pollutant emissions up to 30%, thanks to a wind-assisted propulsion system created by Bound4blue. The Beam had an interview with one of the founders, José Miguel Bermúdez. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ “UK’s Climate Spokesperson Pushes Anti-Electric Car Myths – Brilliant!” • Allegra Stratton, Boris Johnson’s spokesperson for the Cop26 climate summit, seems to have a talent for making daft, headline-generating statements. In an interview with Times Radio, she said she drives an old diesel VW Golf. She will not own an EV because of range anxiety. [CleanTechnica]

Tesla police car (Courtesy of Tesla UK)

¶ “Zambia Has A New President Who Could Help Accelerate The World’s Transition To Sustainable Energy” • President-elect Hakainde Hichilema is determined to push Zambia forward as a key player in the new low carbon world order. The secret weapon he plans to use for this is copper. Zambia is Africa’s second largest producer of copper. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Alpine Solar Project To Help Fill Swiss Winter Energy Gaps” • A 2.2-MW solar plant project, developed by Swiss energy group Axpo and partner IWB, is part of Swiss plans to plug the gap left by the phaseout of nuclear energy while also aiming to reach net zero in greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. The solar array is on the face of the dam at the Muttsee Reservoir. [Rappler]

Muttsee (Wala, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “Broome’s Solar Cap Hinders Transition To Renewables But Hope Is On Horizon” • There are big opportunities for solar power in Broome, Western Australia, where the sun shines 350 days per year, but Horizon Power limits grid-tied rooftop solar power because of transmission constraints. This problem will not last much longer, however. [ABC]

¶ “As Carbon Capture, Storage Spending Nears $4 Billion, What Are The Options For Heavy Industry?” • As climate change is increasingly pressing, Australia is looking at carbon capture and storage. Data shows that almost $4 billion of taxpayer money has been spent on the technology, and after decades it is still not operating at industry scale. [ABC]

Carbon capture system (Coal21 image)

¶ “US Will Oppose Fossil Fuel Projects At Development Banks” • The Biden administration released new guidance that will lead the US to oppose financing fossil fuel projects at the Multilateral Development Banks. Under the new guidance US will support financing fossil fuel projects by such international banks only under extremely rare circumstances. [NRDC]

¶ “GEG Partners With Proman On Scottish Green Methanol Plant” • Global Energy Group, owners of the Nigg Oil Terminal in Scotland, has partnered with Proman, a Swiss-based energy company, to develop a renewable power to methanol plant at the terminal. The two parties will source carbon dioxide from local industries. [Power Engineering International]

Offshore wind terminal (GEG image)

¶ “‘Too Hypocritical For Words’: Burning Wood For Power Isn’t Sustainable, Says Flemish Minister Of Energy” • The Flemish Minister of Energy is calling into question the practice of burning trees to generate power, a procedure she says doesn’t pass the sustainability test given that the trees are often shipped from faraway places. [The Brussels Times]

US:

¶ “Hurricane Warnings Posted For Long Island, Southern New England As Henri Looks To Make Landfall Sunday” • As Tropical Storm Henri moved north through the Atlantic on Friday night, hurricane warnings were posted from New York’s Long Island to Rhode Island and a tropical storm warning was issued for New York City. [CNN]

Hurricane Henri’s rainfall potential (NOAA image)

¶ “Missouri Among States Most Dependent On Fossil Fuels” • With the effects of global climate change becoming increasingly apparent, policymakers across the US are moving to reduce the nation’s reliance on carbon-based fossil fuels. In Missouri, 88% of the energy is derived from fossil fuels. Coal is the main fuel for generating electricity. [St Joseph News-Press]

¶ “Offshore Wind Would Help Save California $1 Billion” • Offshore wind electricity could bring employment gains, cost savings, carbon dioxide reductions, and improve the stability of California’s electric grid according to a study from the USC Schwarzenegger Institute, “California’s Offshore Wind Electric Opportunity.” [reNEWS]

Offshore windpower (Zoltan Tasi, Unsplash)

¶ “States Take The Lead On Renewables In 2021” • While federal leaders continue deliberations on how to build a cleaner, healthier future, states are making strides to advance renewable energy, according to a new roundup of state legislative highlights from Environment America’s report, “The United States of Clean Energy, Summer 2021.” [Solar Industry]

¶ “Vistra Completes Expansion Of Battery Energy Storage System At Its Flagship California Facility” • Vistra completed construction on Phase II of its Moss Landing Energy Storage Facility. The system is now storing and releasing power for California’s grid. The facility’s capacity of 400 MW, 1,600 MWh makes it the largest of its kind. [Yahoo Finance]

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August 20 Energy News

August 20, 2021

Science and Technology:

¶ “Automated Energy Transfer Vessel Would Expand Wind Farms Opportunities” • PowerX, a Japanese start-up company is developing a unique vessel, the Power ARK 100. It is a trimaran designed for transferring renewable energy in Japan’s coastal water. It would carry electricity from wind turbines to shore in a massive battery array. [The Maritime Executive]

Power ARK 100 trimaran (PowerX image)

¶ “New Innovations Bolster American Workforce And Advance Building Envelope Retrofits” • The US DOE’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy has announced the ten winners for the first phase of a $5 million competition focused on fast-tracking advanced robotics technologies for building envelope retrofits. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ “Rain Fell At The Summit Station In Greenland For The First Time On Record” • For the first time on record, precipitation at the National Science Foundation’s Summit Station was rain and not snow. Summit Station is at Greenland’s highest point. It has been staffed since 1989, and it has been under observation by satellite since the 1970s. [CNN]

Ice formed by rain on Greenland snow (Alicia Bradley, NSF)

¶ “Oil Firms Made False Claims On Blue Hydrogen Costs, Says Ex-Lobby Boss” • Oil companies have used false claims over the cost of producing fossil fuel hydrogen to win over the Treasury and access billions in UK taxpayer subsidies, according to the outgoing hydrogen lobby boss. He quit because the schemes “make no sense at all.” [The Guardian]

¶ “XPeng To Double Production Capacity To 200,000 EVs A Year” • XPeng’s Zhaoqing Smart Electric Vehicle Manufacturing Base can currently produce about 100,000 “smart electric vehicles” per year, but the company is now bringing the factory into a second phase of development and aims to double its production capacity. [CleanTechnica]

XPeng EV manufacture (XPeng image)

¶ “Household Power Bills Could Jump If Aging Power Plants Are Paid To Remain Open, Report Warns” • Households on the eastern and south-eastern coasts of Australia could see their power bills jump by amounts ranging from $182 to $430 per year if they are forced to pay coal and gas plants to keep running, a report warns. [ABC]

¶ “Candela Builds Most Efficient Boat Motor Ever. Of Course It’s Electric!” • Swedish electric boat maker Candela has released pictures of a boat motor that looked like a cross between a Mark 48 torpedo and a Tomahawk cruise missile. Meet the Candela C-Pod, the most efficient marine outboard ever made. And it’s 100% electric – of course! [CleanTechnica]

Candela C-Pod 1 (Candela image)

¶ “France, Germany, UK Very Worried About Iran’s Uranium Enrichment” • France, Germany, and Britain voiced grave concern about a report that Iran had accelerated its enrichment of uranium to near weapons-grade, saying this was a serious violation of its commitments. The IAEA reported that Iran was enriching uranium to 20% fissile purity. [Ynetnews]

¶ “MingYang Unveils 16-MW Offshore Giant” • The Chinese turbine manufacturer MingYang has launched a 16-MW offshore machine with a 242-meter rotor. The MySE 16.0-242 is designed for high-wind sites including typhoon-class IEC TC, and features 118-meter long blades. MingYang said it will be tailored for North Sea deployment. [reNEWS]

MingYang turbine (MingYang image)

US:

¶ “Tesla’s New Product – Robot Hamburger Flipper” • As is often the case with Elon, at the end of the AI Day presentation today, there was a surprise announcement of a new product. In this case, it was a human-like robot with the FSD computer inside of it to direct its actions. It is designed to do things humans really don’t want to do. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Stanley Black & Decker Bets On Foam “Superbattery” Energy Storage Revolution” • Stanley Black & Decker got a jump on the rest of the world for solid state battery technology. It took a plunge into the field through the little known Colorado startup Prieto Battery back in 2016. Now it looks like all that hard work is about to pay off. [CleanTechnica]

Prieto Battery system (Prieto Battery image)
Please click on the image to enlarge it.

¶ “US Energy Secretary Meets With Navajo Nation In New Mexico” • US Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm met with Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez and other tribal leaders at the Four Corners Power Plant in northwest New Mexico to talk about renewable energy initiatives, including a solar project and an energy storage system. [AP News]

¶ “CEP Renewables Develops Largest Landfill Solar Project In North America” • CEP Renewables LLC is to build the largest solar project on a capped landfill in North America. The 25.6 MW (DC) solar project in Mount Olive, New Jersey, transforms the former Combe Fill North Landfill Superfund site into a clean energy asset. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

Solar array (Courtesy of CEP Renewables)

¶ “Wind Project Would Double Idaho’s Turbine Energy Output” • A proposed energy project in south-central Idaho would more than double the amount of wind energy produced in the state. The US Bureau of Land Management is taking comments on the 1,000-MW project proposed by Magic Valley Energy. It would include 400 wind turbines. [Kenosha News]

¶ “AES Kicks Off 72 MW Of Michigan Solar Construction” • AES has chosen US engineering, procurement and construction contractor Borrego to engineer and construct three solar projects in Michigan, totaling 72 MW. The three projects, which are in Cement City, Pullman, and Letts Creek, are scheduled to come online by mid-2022. [reNEWS]

Have a really great day.

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August 19 Energy News

August 19, 2021

Opinion:

¶ “Eight Zero-Emission Transport Items That *Need* To Be In The Next Reconciliation Bill” • There were several provisions in the infrastructure bill that we worked hard to make sure were included (and were as good as possible), but almost none of them go as far as we would have liked or climate needs demand. Here are eight we need. [CleanTechnica]

Capitol building (Wendy Maxwell, Pexels)

¶ “Contradictory Headlines Show Fossil Fuel Market Confusion” • It surely must be turmoil in the fossil fuel future predictions industry. Huge variations can be found in expectations of supply and demand. A recent newsletter from mining.com showed this in its headlines, all in the one issue of its energy news digest. My head is spinning. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ “Plugin Vehicles Score 15% Market Share In China In July!” • Plugin vehicles continue to see record or near-record levels in China, having scored 231,000 registrations in July. That pulls the year-to-date tally to 1.3 million units, which is already more than this market had in the whole year of 2020. … And remember, we are still just at July. [CleanTechnica]

Wuling HongGuang Mini EV (David290, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “Australia’s Big Four Banks To Stop Lending To Thermal Coal Mining And Coal Fired Power Plants” • The Commonwealth Bank, ANZ, Westpac, and National Australia Bank all committed to stop fossil fuel financing. They are increasing commitments to sustainable lending, and they are reducing their exposure to the risks of climate change. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Northland Signs Up Locals To Back ScotWind Bid” • As part of its ScotWind bid, Northland Power has signed memoranda of understanding with the Western Isles Council and the region’s higher education institutions. The agreements cover topics ranging from domestic use of hydrogen to development of local skills for offshore wind farms. [reNEWS]

Offshore wind farm (Northland Power image)

¶ “Italian Energy Giant Plans Another 1,000 MW Of Renewables In Australia And Seeks Retail Licence” • Italian energy giant Enel, the biggest EU utility by some metrics, is seeking a retail energy licence in Australia to support its plans to grow its solar and wind portfolio by another 1,000 MW and provide power to industrial and commercial customers. [Renew Economy]

¶ “‘Green Steel’: Swedish Company Ships First Batch Made Without Using Coal” • The Swedish venture Hybrit said it was delivering the steel to truck-maker Volvo AB as a trial run before full commercial production in 2026. Volvo has said it will start production in 2021 of prototype vehicles and components from the green steel. [The Guardian]

Iron made in the green steelmaking process (Hybrit image)

¶ “Spain Looks To Cut Soaring Power Prices With More Renewables” • Spain, one of the fastest-growing renewable energy markets in Europe, is looking to award 3.3 GW of new wind and solar capacity. The Spanish government expects that the additional supply of electricity will help it cut sharply rising power prices, Bloomberg reports. [Oil Price]

India:

¶ “By Upgrading Old Wind Turbines, India Can Achieve Its Renewable Energy Targets” • India’s current installed wind power generating capacity is 39.2 GW. The country is targeting 60 GW by 2022. Progress is now slow. But the best sites for wind are the ones with the oldest turbines, and repowering them could put that goal within reach. [Scroll.in]

Wind turbines (Pixabay, Pexels, CC0)

¶ “India Proposes New Green Energy Rules To Promote Renewable Power” • The Indian government has proposed a new set of rules “Draft Electricity (promoting renewable energy through Green Energy Open Access) Rules, 2021” for purchase and consumption of green energy, including green hydrogen and waste-to-energy plants. [Mongabay-India]

¶ “Maharashtra Renewable Plans Back On Track, Powered By Lower Costs” • So far, 2021 has been a good year for renewable energy growth in Maharashtra. MSEDCL is finally happy with the bids it received for its recent tenders. With prices dropping to as low as ₹2.42 (3.3¢) for its last solar tender and ₹2.62 (3.5¢) for its Solar+Wind hybrid tender. [Saur Energy]

Mumbai, Maharashtra (Vijit Bagh, Unsplash)

US:

¶ “Tesla Aims To Become A Retail Electric Provider In Texas” • Tesla is looking to become a retail electricity provider in Texas, according to Energy Choice Matters. The article noted that Tesla is seeking the certificate and it applied for Option 1 Texas retail electric provider certificate. Tesla already offers retail electricity in Australia and the UK. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “BlackRock Acquires US Wind And Solar Portfolio” • BlackRock Real Assets acquired National Renewable Solutions, a renewable energy developer focused on early stage wind and solar projects in the US. BlackRock has a current project development pipeline of more than 3.5 GW, with assets in Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, and Nevada. [reNEWS]

Wind farm (Johanna Montoya, Unsplash)

¶ “Community Power Plan Gets A Charge” • The Plainfield Selectboard voted unanimously to join the Community Power Coalition of New Hampshire, a nonprofit energy aggregator that buys power for municipalities while limiting their legal and financial liability. Lebanon had already voted in favor of an agreement with the coalition. [Valley News]

¶ “New Criminal Charges Filed In SC’s Nuclear Plant Failure, Revealing How Project Unraveled” • A second high-ranking employee of Westinghouse Electric faces criminal charges that relate to the multi-billion dollar failure of the SCANA nuclear project, an 18-page indictment shows. It was made public in US District Court in Columbia, South Carolina. [The State]

Have a resoundingly serene day.

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August 18 Energy News

August 18, 2021

Opinion:

¶ “Higher Carbon Prices Driving Greater Interest In Carbon Capture Technology” • Carbon capture is expensive, at about $120 a ton, and it doesn’t work very well. It may be a decade or more before carbon capture is commercially viable. But as countries prices on carbon, it might be possible to make carbon capture profitable. [CleanTechnica]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Automated Disassembly Line Aims To Make Battery Recycling Safer, Faster” • Researchers at the US DOE’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, have developed a robotic disassembly system for spent electric vehicle battery packs. It can recycle and reuse critical materials safely and efficiently while reducing toxic waste. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Teams Ride A Wave Of Winnings To Succeed In The Water Desalination Challenge” • Oncoming storms and hurricanes create challenges for remote, coastal, and island communities, like reliable access to energy and drinking water. To help people overcome such challenges, innovators are tapping into the power of ocean waves. [CleanTechnica]

Wave (Linus Nylund, Unsplash)

¶ “Major Nuclear Fusion Milestone Reached As ‘Ignition’ Is Triggered In A Lab” • An experiment appears to have triggered “ignition” (energy output greater than input) for the first time, at the National Ignition Facility at Lawrence Livermore Laboratory in California, with extreme temperatures and pressures like those of the center of the Sun. [Imperial College London]

World:

¶ “Thousands Evacuated As Blaze Rages Near French Riviera” • A wildfire that broke out on Monday close to the French Riviera has already consumed 6,000 hectares (14,820 acres), according to fire officials. Thousands of people, including tourists staying in campsites, have been moved to safety as firefighters work to bring the wildfire under control. [BBC]

Fire (Vladyslav Dukhin, Pexels)

¶ “Australia In The Race For Green Hydrogen” • There is a green gold rush going on in Australia at the moment. Billions of dollars in investment are flowing into the production of green hydrogen. Before you reach for your keyboard, let me stress this hydrogen is green. The plans include massive wind and solar farms to power hydrolysis. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Australia’s Longest Electric Superhighway” • Not to be shown up by Queensland’s Electric Super Highway, the government of Western Australian announced its own, running from Kununurra to Esperance. At 3205 km, it is the longest electric highway in the country. With 45 chargers placed every 200 km, range anxiety should be a thing of the past. [CleanTechnica]

Electric Highway in Western Australia (Google Maps image)

¶ “IKEA To Start Selling Renewable Electricity To Swedish Households” • Ikea, which started selling solar panels and other equipment at its stores sometime back, is now moving into direct electricity selling too. IKEA’s solar panel producer, Svea Solar will be buying electricity on the Nordic power exchange Nord Pool and resell it without surcharge. [Saur Energy]

¶ “Asia-Pacific CPPAs Surge To 3.8 GW” • Corporate renewable power purchase agreement activity in the Asia Pacific region more than doubled to 3800 MW in 2020 compared to the previous year, according to Wood Mackenzie. This is despite project delays from labor shortages and logistic disruptions from the pandemic. [reNEWS]

Wind turbines (Peter Franken, Unsplash)

¶ “China Has Approved A Renewable Mega-Project For Green Hydrogen” • The Energy Administration of Inner Mongolia has approved a massive hydrogen project. It gave the go-ahead to a cluster of plants in the cities of Ordos and Baotou that will use 1.85 GW of solar and 370 MW of wind to produce 66,900 tons of green hydrogen per year. [Yahoo Finance]

¶ “Watchdog Halts Tsuruga Nuclear Safety Assessment After Data Tampering” • Japan’s nuclear regulator said it will pause its safety assessment of a central Japan reactor in response to the operator having tampered with key geological data related to a fault underneath the facility, putting in doubt its restart after a 10-year shutdown. [The Mainichi]

Tsuruga nuclear plant (Hirorinmasa, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

US:

¶ “EVgo Announces New Plans, Shows Us One Of Its Big Electric Bills” • A recent email from EVgo told current customers about upcoming changes to the company’s charging plans. In a link, the company also gave us a good look at what it takes to support a DC Fast Charging station financially. It provided the electric bill for one charging station. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Portland-Based Renewable Energy Company Gets $25 Million In Growth Capital” • Ocean Renewable Power Co, a marine renewable energy business based in Portland, Maine, announced that it has secured investments totaling $25 million. The funding comes from a consortium including two Canadian companies, according to a news release. [Mainebiz]

RivGen Power System in Igiugig, Alaska (ORPC image)

¶ “GOP Wants State Study Of Renewable Energy” • Republicans in the New York State legislature have introduced a proposal that would require the Public Service Commission and NYSERDA to conduct a full cost-benefit analysis of renewable energy systems and to compare those costs with other ways of producing electricity. [Observer Today]

¶ “Biden Administration: Solar Could Provide 40% Of US Power By 2035” • Solar power plants could supply more than 40% of the nation’s electricity by 2035, up from 3% today, if Congress adopts such policies as tax credits for renewable energy projects and component factories, according to a memo published by the US Department Of Energy. [Reuters]

Have a tolerably flawless day.

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August 17 Energy News

August 17, 2021

Opinion:

¶ “How US Congress Can Get Cities Moving” • Cities and their partners have made significant strides with climate-friendly transportation policies to encourage people to bike, walk, or use public transit instead of driving. But local action can’t tackle the climate crisis alone. The federal government has tools to support bottom-up climate action. [CleanTechnica]

Bike lane in Boston (Aaron Doucett, Unsplash)

¶ “Did The US Spend Two Decades And Trillions Of Dollars In Afghanistan And Iraq Because Of Oil Addiction?” • After 9/11, the needs were obvious. We “needed” to secure our oil supplies. We “needed” to have the strongest presence in this “oil-rich” region of the world. The cost? Well, never mind the cost, short term and long term – it was a “necessity.” [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Bipartisan Support For Clean Energy Appears To Be Growing” • Many observers on Capitol Hill were surprised that nineteen Republican senators supported the bipartisan infrastructure package that overwhelmingly passed the Senate last week. After decades of climate change denial and opposition to clean energy, the GOP seems to be changing. [TheHill]

Wind turbines (Pixabay, Pexels, CC0)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Experts Say Record-Setting Heat And Wildfires Just A Taste What’s Coming In Our Future” • Historic heat waves have been ravaging the Pacific Northwest, wildfires blaze across California and Oregon, and July was the hottest month on record. Extreme weather could offer a preview of what to expect in forecasts of the near future, experts suggest. [TheHill]

¶ “Cities Like Paris May Be Optimal Urban Form For Reducing Greenhouse Gas Emissions” • Researchers at CU Boulder are part of a newly published study that finds that low-rise, high-density environments like those found in Paris are the optimal urban form when looking to reduce greenhouse gas emissions over their whole life cycle. [CleanTechnica]

Paris buildings (Nil Castellví, Unsplash)

World:

¶ “UK Government Launches Plan For A World-Leading Hydrogen Economy” • With its new Hydrogen Strategy, the UK plans to produce tens of thousands of jobs, billions of pounds in investment, and new export opportunities. It hopes to unlock these to create a thriving low carbon hydrogen sector over the next decade and beyond. [GOV UK]

¶ “How Water Shortages Are Brewing Wars” • Over the course of the 20th Century, global water use grew at more than twice the rate of population increase. Today, this dissonance is leading many cities to ration water. Water crises have been ranked in the top five of the World Economic Forum’s Global Risks by Impact list nearly every year since 2012. [BBC]

Ho Chi Mihn City (Polina Rytova, Unsplash)

¶ “Low Carbon Acquires 30-MW Finnish wind” • Low Carbon recently completed the acquisition of the Morknasskogen wind project in Finland. The 30-MW, five-turbine facility forms part of Low Carbon’s exclusive renewables pipeline of more than 120 MW being developed in the country. Construction is expected to start in early 2022. [reNEWS]

¶ “Unlocking Renewables In Victoria” • In the western parts of Victoria, rich in solar and wind resources, many solar and wind projects are stuck because of grid stability and access problems. They are facing lengthy delays in getting connected, and even when connected, their output is curtailed. However, there is progress going on. [CleanTechnica]

Victoria landscape (Zac Porter, Unsplash)

¶ “China’s Cash For UK Nuclear Plants Is In Doubt” • In order to finance the construction of nuclear stations that are supposed to generate up to 20% of the UK’s electricity, the UK government needs Chinese money. Without it, the already prohibitively expensive projects may become completely unaffordable. And that money is in doubt. [Eco-Business.com]

¶ “UK Storage Start-Up Swoops On 160-MW Battery Pipeline” • Renewables infrastructure start-up Field has secured a 160-MW battery storage pipeline in the UK, with construction underway on the first 20-MW site. Field, founded earlier this year, has a pipeline of sites across the UK, with advanced discussions for a further 330 MW. [reNEWS]

Energy storage (Southern Power image)

US:

¶ “First-Ever Water Cuts Declared For Colorado River In Historic Drought” • The federal government has now declared a water shortage on the Colorado River for the first time ever, triggering mandatory water consumption cuts for states in the Southwest, as climate change-fueled drought pushes the level in Lake Mead to unprecedented lows. [CNN]

¶ “BOEM Wraps Up South Fork Environmental Review” • The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management has completed its environmental review of the proposed South Fork Wind project in waters offs New York and Rhode Island. The project will deliver approximately 130 MW of power to South Fork of Long Island, New York. [reNEWS]

Offshore wind farm (Jack Hunter, Unsplash)

¶ “US Energy Official To Visit NM Amid Renewable Push” • US Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm will be in New Mexico for a two-day visit. She and Senator Martin Heinrich (D) are to meet with local leaders and organizations about the state’s push for more renewable energy and efforts to lower costs as utilities face a mandate to lower emissions. [Albuquerque Journal]

¶ “Greenbacker Renewable Energy Acquires 40 MW Of Solar Projects In New York” • Through a subsidiary, Greenbacker Renewable Energy Company purchased two 20-MW (AC) solar projects from Hecate Energy. The acquisitions of Hecate Energy Albany 1 and Hecate Energy Albany 2 showcase Greenbacker’s expansion into New York. [Solar Builder]

Have a phenomenonally gratifying day.

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August 16 Energy News

August 16, 2021

Opinion:

¶ “How Extreme Weather Makes Everything Harder, Except Climate-Risk Analysis” • The IPCC report has a clarity that is sobering. What does this newfound certainty mean for investors trying to hedge against climate risks? In the first half of this year, insured losses from catastrophes topped $42 billion, and they are growing. [Insurance Journal]

Hurricane (Zoltan Tasi, Unsplash)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Agora Energy’s Solution Will Turn CO₂ And Electricity Into Industrial Feedstocks Cheaply” • The carbonates of potassium and sodium are in lots of things we use daily. But making them uses quite a lot of energy. While the Agora Energy redox flow battery stores electricity at a very low cost, it also draws down CO₂, and carbonates are by-products. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ “UK Government To Review Green Retail Electricity Tariffs” • The UK government is concerned that energy companies could be exaggerating how environmentally friendly their products are, and it said it will review green retail electricity tariffs. The review will look into the current system’s transparency and whether its rules are fit for their purpose. [Reuters]

Birds on wires (Pixabay, Pexels)

¶ “Bridgend Renewable Energy Firm Wins Royal Mint Contract” • The Welsh renewable energy company Infinite Renewables has won the tender to supply power directly to the Royal Mint. Local Energy Centre is on a site in Llantrisant. The project will include solar, wind, hydrogen-ready Combined Heat and Power, and battery storage technologies. [Business News Wales]

¶ “ACWA Power Hits Financial Close On 1.5-GW Saudi Solar” • ACWA Power has reached financial close on the 1.5-GW Sudair solar plant in Saudi Arabia, with the Public Investment Fund renewable energy program supporting the project. A specialised Saudi technical team at the Ministry of Energy selected the site for the Sudair project. [reNEWS]

Solar array (Saudi Aramco image)

¶ “NSW’s Roadmap To Renewables” • The New South Wales Committee on Environment and Planning outlined the future of its energy infrastructure, focusing on a transition to renewable sources. The Committee noted that NSWs’ coal-fired generating system is aging, and that many factors were driving a transition to sustainable energy. [Energy Magazine]

¶ “Concerns At Increasing Demands On Electricity Grid” • The Irish electricity grid faces increased prospects of blackouts this winter as emergency plans to import generators have stalled, according to a professor of energy engineering at University College Cork. One problem has been lack of maintenance for two gas plants due to Covid-19. [RTE]

Data center (imgix, Unsplash)

¶ “Construction Jobs In Renewables Two-Thirds Down On 2018, Says Clean Energy Council” • The pace of construction in Australian renewable energy is declining in 2021 despite global momentum for energy transition technologies. The Clean Energy Council claims some 2,700 jobs have been lost to the sector since 2018. [Stockhead]

US:

¶ “Decarbonized Buildings And Vehicles Create Good Missouri Jobs” • Eliminating carbon emissions from our building and transportation sectors will be critical to maintaining a healthy and livable climate. The good news is that decarbonizing these sectors is also good for our economy. Missouri is home to more than 50,000 clean energy jobs. [CleanTechnica]

Please click on the image to enlarge it, (NRDC image)

¶ “Elon Musk Shares Details On Tesla’s Full Self-Driving Beta 9.2 Improvements” • After a Twitter user asked Elon Musk when FSD Beta 9.2 would be released, Elon explained that there had been some unexpected last-minute issues. The anticipated update is now out, and Elon shared more details on the improvements of FSD Beta 9.2. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Renewable Energy Transition Faces Roadblocks In New Mexico” • As the alarms increase about the horrors of climate change, New Mexico and the nation are hustling to accelerate their renewable energy efforts. New Mexico has a good start on developing renewable energy, but the transition to green energy is facing delays. [Santa Fe New Mexican]

¶ “UMass Solar Canopies Near Completion” • Two more solar canopies are going up over parking lots at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst. Together, the 4.09-MW solar canopies are expected to produce about 4.5 million kWh per year. That is enough electricity to provide for the annual needs of around 650 households. [Daily Hampshire Gazette]

¶ “Latest Climate Change Report Underscores Impacts For Skagit County” • Worldwide, the IPCC report shows the kind of heat wave that used to happen only once every 50 years now happens once a decade. For Skagit County, Washington, that means more glaciers melting, more massive wildfires, drought, hot days, bad air quality, and sea-level rise. [goSkagit]

Have a magnificently uncomplicated day.

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August 15 Energy News

August 15, 2021

Opinion:

¶ “How Investors, And Everybody, Should Think About Climate Change” • Companies that don’t make a transition to deal with climate change risk falling behind or having their business models usurped. For example, consider the $5.8 trillion global insurance industry and the upheaval that climate change is creating there. [Yahoo Finance]

Houses built on permafrost (Fbaudoux.ir, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Agora CO₂-Based Redox Battery Wins Global Deeptech Competitions And Has 1 Year ROI” • Agora Energy Technologies has a flow battery that is revolutionary, and has won some well deserved awards. It is based on the chemistry of CO₂, which it captures aggressively in an open-loop system and renders into commercially useful chemicals. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Wireless EV Charging For Highways – Does Indiana Have The Solution?” • The Indiana Department of Transportation and Purdue University have announced plans to develop the world’s first contactless wireless-charging concrete pavement highway segment. The project will use innovative magnetizable concrete developed by a German startup. [CleanTechnica]

Purdue University (Cole Parsons, Unsplash)

¶ “Activists Call It A ‘False Solution.’ But UN Scientists Say We Need To Suck Up CO₂” • Avoiding climate catastrophe at this point will require removing carbon from the atmosphere. But IPCC report makes clear that averting catastrophe now will require us to develop measurable, surefire ways to suck CO₂ from the air and return it to the ground. [HuffPost]

¶ “Argonne Study On Costs And Benefits Of New Transportation Technologies The Most Comprehensive To Date” • An study from Argonne National Laboratory offers the most complete understanding yet of the costs of owning and operating a vehicle and how those costs vary by powertrain, from the conventional to the cutting-edge. [CleanTechnica]

Tesla charging (Jannis Lucas, Unsplash)

World:

¶ “Volkswagen Takes Three Out Of Top Four Spots In July In Germany” • The German plug-in vehicle market scored over 55,000 registrations last month. Full battery EVs were up 52% year over year, and plug-in hybrids were up 58% year over year. This is slower growth than the year to date, which increased 185% and 182% respectively. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Japan Rain: Nearly Two Million Residents Told To Seek Shelter” • Nearly two million people have been urged to evacuate their homes because of heavy rainfall in parts of Japan. The evacuations are non-compulsory. The west of the country is worst affected but heavy downpours are expected across the country in coming days. [BBC]

Raindrop (Sourav Mishra, Pexels)

¶ “Saudi Aramco Joins Local 1.5-GW Solar Project With A 30% Stake In Renewables Push” • Saudi Aramco is investing, alongside the country’s sovereign wealth fund and Riyadh-based ACWA Power, in the oil exporter’s largest solar project with a capacity of 1.5 GW as the world’s biggest energy company makes a push into renewables. [S&P Global]

¶ “Just What Australia Needs – More Droughts, More Floods, More Fires” • According to the recent IPCC report, Australia can look forward to more floods, more droughts, more fires, and even drier conditions. While the weather presenters on the news prattle about the wonderful sunny days, the farmers off the coast pray for rain. [CleanTechnica]

Stormy weather (Moritz Böing, Pexels)

¶ “Dublin Solar Power Developer Signs €39 Million Deal For Renewables Ahead Of €500 Million Fundraising Plan” • Dublin solar power developer BNRG has signed a €39 million deal with Paris-listed renewable energy business Neoen for three projects in Ireland. It revealed plans to raise €500 million in debt and equity over the next five years. [Independent.ie]

US:

¶ “As The Climate Crisis Worsens In The US, Pressure For Action From Biden And Kerry Grows” • The Biden administration and Democrats are walking a tightrope, with a razor-thin majority in Congress, to enact policies that will reroute the US economy away from fossil fuels and show the world that the US will lead on climate change. [CNN]

Wind turbines (Narcisa Aciko, Pexels)

¶ “Tesla Model S Plaid Is Ready To Race In Mt Washington Hillclimb Today!” • Before today, no electric car had ever raced in the Mt Washington Hillclimb. Today, two electric cars are racing up the highest peak in the Northeast. One is a modified EV, and one is stock. Eighty cars are racing in the event, which covers 7.6 miles of road. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “FedEx Orders 120 Xos Electric Trucks” • The electric truck market has been a hot topic in the past year or so, but you might not have heard of Xos. Xos produces electric Class 5 and Class 8 commercial trucks, and as you can see in the headline, it has landed a big order with FedEx, with 35 FedEx ground operators, to be specific. [CleanTechnica]

Have an uncommonly peachy day.

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August 14 Energy News

August 14, 2021

Opinion:

¶ “I Toured ‘The Best Damn [Natural Gas] Plant In The Fleet.’ Two Years Later It Exploded” • Two years ago, I went on a tour of the Russell City Energy Center, a California natural gas power plant. Two months ago, the power plant exploded, raining hunks of metal down on its neighborhood. Now the state is racing to put it back online. [CleanTechnica]

Russell City Energy Center (Mark Specht, UCS)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Smoke And Soot From Wildfires May Be Causing More Covid-19 Cases And Deaths, Study Finds” • A study published in the journal Science Advances found that increases in fine particulate matter of the type called PM2.5 from wildfire smoke in 2020 led to increased numbers of Covid-19 cases and deaths in California, Oregon, and Washington. [CNN]

¶ “NREL’s Thermoplastic Blade Research Dives Deep With Verdant Power’s Tidal Energy Turbines” • National Renewable Energy Laboratory researchers are studying thermoplastic composite blades on a large-scale tidal power turbine for the first time. They have the potential to revolutionize the marine energy industry. [CleanTechnica]

NREL researchers making a blade (Dennis Schroeder, NREL)

¶ “UN Report: Human Role In Global Warming Overwhelming And ‘Unequivocal’” • The latest scientific assessment from the UN’s IPCC for the first time speaks with certainty about the total responsibility of human activity for the rising temperatures of global warming. The scientists forecast no end to warming trends until emissions cease. [Buenos Aires Times]

¶ “The Planet’s Water Cycle Is Changing Rapidly. Here’s What That Means For Us” • A number of factors are intensifying the water cycle, but one of the most important is that warming temperatures raise the upper limit on the amount of moisture in the air. That increases the potential for more rain. Oddly, it also increases the potential for drought. [Popular Science]

Key parts of the water cycle (NASA image)

World:

¶ “Sales Of Fossil-Fuel Vehicles Have Already Peaked, Bloomberg Says” • A recent article in Bloomberg makes the bold assertion that sales of vehicles with internal combustion engines have already peaked, so the future of the global auto industry belongs to EVs. EVs may still be more expensive than fossils, but that won’t be the case for much longer. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “July Was The Hottest Month On Record” • We just had the hottest month, as a planet, in any of our lifetimes, and we saw the weather extremes that came with it. The global temperature in July 2021 was the highest for any July in the 142 years of records, according to data released today from NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Information. [CNN]

Departure from normal temperatures (NOAA)
Please click on the image to enlarge it.

¶ “India On Track To Achieve Renewable Energy Target Of 450 GW By 2030” • The Union Minister for Power and New and Renewable Energy, RK Singh, apprised the business leaders that India will achieve the set renewable energy target of 450 GW by 2030. He was interacting with members of the US India Business Council in a virtual event. [Swarajya]

¶ “Study: Renewables Much Cheaper Than Fossils” • Fraunhofer ISE released a levelized cost of energy analysis for power plants in Germany, a place with solar resources comparable to Alaska’s (not a joke). Solar panels are so cheap now and solar power plant systems are so streamlined that solar is just cheap, compared to anything else. [CleanTechnica]

Levelized cost of electricity (Fraunhofer)
Please click on the image to enlarge it.

¶ “Middle East Renewables Surge” • Middle East Energy Transition reports that there were no contract awards for oil-powered or gas-fuelled power stations in the Middle East and North Africa region in the first half of 2021. In the same period, there were about $2.8 billion of renewable energy project contracts awarded. [Power Technology]

US:

¶ “GM Teases Electric Chevy Silverado Pickup Again: What We Know So Far” • Tesla and Ford have shown off their electric pickup trucks, to much fanfare. Now Chevy is finally taking another small step toward a public announcement. I saw “small step” because the company hasn’t really announced anything yet – it’s just teasing it. [CleanTechnica]

Tease of an electric vehicle

¶ “Read All About It! ‘US To Lead In EV Manufacturing'” • US President Joe Biden said that he wanted half of new cars sold in the country to be battery-powered by the end of the decade. To do that, he revealed a multi-layered strategy that would ease US consumers away from gasoline-powered cars and trucks and toward EVs. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “70% Of US EV Battery Cells And 87% Of Battery Packs Made In USA” • The US DOE recently shared that through 2020, most battery cells and packs used in US plug-in vehicles were made in the USA. That’s great news for the USA, but not surprising once you think about it for a moment. It is also not even close to the full story. [CleanTechnica]

Battery sources (Yan Zhou et al, Argonne National Laboratory) Please click on the image to enlarge it.

¶ “Clean Energy Projects Highlighted In Granholm’s Alaska Tour” • Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm is to spend two days in Alaska traveling with Republican Senator Lisa Murkowski to showcase “America’s living laboratory.” They will visit research projects, such as one to find ways to power remote villages 100% with renewable energy. [Laredo Morning Times]

¶ “Amid Extreme Weather, A Shift Among Republicans On Climate Change” • After a decade of disputing the existence of climate change, many leading Republicans are shifting their posture amid heat waves, drought, and wildfires that have hit their districts and unnerved their constituents. What they will do about it is not settled. [The Seattle Times]

Have an unprecedentedly superb day.

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August 13 Energy News

August 13, 2021

Science and Technology:

¶ “Theory Versus Reality: The Dirty Hydrogen Story” • Not all hydrogen is clean. According to a report in the New York Times, a peer-reviewed study by researchers at Cornell and Stanford finds that most hydrogen used today is extracted from natural gas in a process that requires a lot of energy and emits vast amounts of carbon dioxide. [CleanTechnica]

Shell hydrogen facility (Bexim, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “Why Heat Pumps Are The Answer To Heat Waves” • RMI modeled the performance of several cooling options for a Seattle home during the three-day heat wave in June 2021. We found that the heat pump was not only capable of maintaining a safe and comfortable indoor air temperature during extreme heat, but it also has the lowest cost. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ “ESB Unveils Irish Green Hydrogen Project” • A large-scale green hydrogen storage project off the coast of Cork, Ireland, was launched by ESB and dCarbonX. Green Hydrogen @ Kinsale is an integrated project that could store up to 3,000 GWh of green hydrogen and hydrogen carriers, the equivalent of about 10% of Irish annual electricity consumption. [reNEWS]

Kinsale, Ireland (Image from Kinsale.ie)

¶ “US Project Enhances Pakistan’s Renewable Energy Capacity” • USAID has increased the wind and solar capacity in Pakistan by approximately 50% by leveraging over $900 million, according to an official statement. USAID partnered with the government of Pakistan to build renewables through the Sustainable Energy for Pakistan project. [The Express Tribune]

¶ “100 GW Renewable Energy Milestone Achieved, Much Work Ahead In India” • India has reached a key milestone of 100 GW of renewable energy capacity, excluding large hydro. Including large hydro, the number goes right up to 146 GW. There are 50 GW of renewable capacity under construction, and 27 GW more are being tendered. [Saur Energy]

Windfarm in Tamil Nadu (Raj, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

Australia:

¶ “Large-Scale Solar And Windfarm Investment In Australia Records Major Drop This Year” • In Australia, investment in new large-scale solar and windfarms fell dramatically in the first half of 2021, according to industry data. There has been ongoing concern over delays in getting new renewable energy plants connected to the electricity grid. [The Guardian]

¶ “BEVs Make Slow And Steady Progress In Queensland” • The Queensland government released data detailing the growth of BEVs in the state’s transport fleet. While not quite an S curve, it does show slow and steady progress, almost doubling from April 2020 to April 2021. There was surge of Teslas delivered at the end of the second quarter. [CleanTechnica]

Gold Coast, Queensland (City of Gold Coast, Unsplash)

¶ “Energy Giant’s $2.06 Billion Loss Labeled A ‘Titanic’ Failure” • Australia’s largest energy retailer, AGL, has blamed an “extremely challenging market,” prompted in part by the ongoing growth of renewables, including rooftop solar PV, after reporting a $2.06 billion full-year net loss. AGL is the country’s biggest operator of coal-fired power plants. [pv magazine Australia]

US:

¶ “Bill Gates Pledges $1.5 Billion To Climate Projects In The Infrastructure Bill” • Bill Gates has pledged $1.5 billion over three years for climate change partnerships with the DOE, through his climate investment fund Breakthrough Energy. The $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill has over $100 billion for addressing climate change. [CNN]

Bill Gates, 2013 (Energy.gov, public domain)

¶ “Tesla Service Center Approved In East Hartford, Connecticut” • Here is some good news for Tesla owners in Connecticut, a state that has heavily favored the whims of dealerships. The Planning and Zoning Commission of East Hartford voted unanimously to approve Tesla’s application to build a service center, the Journal Inquirer reports. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Planning A Wind Energy Project? Two New WINDExchange Resources Can Help” • The DOE’s WINDExchange initiative has released two resources: a report titled “Land-Based Wind Energy Siting” and a web-based Land-Based Economic Development Guide, to help local decision makers see if a wind project is right for their community. [CleanTechnica]

Agriculture and windpower (Dennis Schroeder, NREL)

¶ “Tesla’s Lowest Priced Model 3 Is Sold Out For Rest Of 2021 In USA” • The Tesla Model 3 Standard Range Plus is apparently already sold out for the rest of the year in the US. The estimated delivery time if you order a new Model 3 SR+ is now January 2022. Previously, the estimated delivery was for November of this year. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Facebook Plans To Build Data Center In Mesa Powered By Renewable Energy” • Facebook announced that it is building a data center in metro Phoenix powered only by renewable energy. Once completed, the Mesa facility “will represent an investment of more than $800 million and will support approximately 100 jobs,” Facebook said. [KTAR News]

Rendering of data center (Facebook image)

¶ “With The Growth Of Renewable Energy, The Need For More Trained Workers Is Surging” • Nearly 3.3 million Americans work in clean energy, outnumbering fossil fuel workers by 3-to-1, and the number of jobs is growing remarkably fast. The renewable energy industry will need skilled technicians to provide for the projected growth. [The Business Journals]

¶ “New Jersey’s Largest Energy Company Sells Off Fossil-Fuel Plants” • Public Service Enterprise Group announced that it has agreed to sell its fleet of 13 fossil-fuel plants for $1.92 billion to a Boston-based private equity company that focuses on energy infrastructure investments. It will keep three nuclear plants with state subsidies. [NJ Spotlight News]

Have a prodigiously priceless day.

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August 12 Energy News

August 12, 2021

Opinion:

¶ “We Have The Solutions To The Climate Crisis. Now We Must Act” • We have known for many decades that at some point the day would come when the climate crisis was not a distant future occurrence but happening now. The only remaining question is, how fast will we take action to reduce the consequences of this planetary emergency? [CleanTechnica]

Surveying Arctic ice (NOAA, Unsplash)

¶ “Australia’s Response To The IPCC” • We are doing a great job – everything bad is someone else’s fault. We are waiting for some magic technology to solve the problem for us – no, we won’t use the technology we already have. We have to give all our money to the fossil fuel industry. All we need to meet our energy problems is a Future Fuels Strategy. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Small Businesses Can Play A Big Role In Championing Renewables” • A report from Total Retail reveals a noteworthy trend: over four-fifths of Gen Z consumers and three-quarters of millennials consider environmental sustainability in purchasing decisions. They value companies that put responsible and ethical practices to use. [Sustainability Times]

Installing solar panels (Los Muertos Crew, Pexels)

¶ “Utah Cities Shouldn’t Gamble On Nuclear Power” • We’re not into energy politics, and we don’t take positions on the sources or technologies. But one of our critical missions is to protect the taxpayers when governments are looking to make risky bets. If modular nuclear power is ready for market, let the private sector show it by putting up its money. [Deseret News]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Scientists Say This Invisible Gas Could Seal Our Fate On Climate Change” • Reducing carbon dioxide emissions is critical to ending the climate crisis. But, for the first time, the UN climate change report emphasized the need to control a more insidious culprit: methane, an invisible, odorless gas 80 times as effective as carbon dioxide as a greenhouse gas. [CNN]

Atmospheric methane (Jens Mühle, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

World:

¶ “Italy May Have Registered Europe’s Hottest Temperature On Record” • The Italian island of Sicily may have registered the hottest temperature ever recorded in Europe – 48.8°C (119.8°F). Regional authorities reported the reading near Syracuse. It still needs to be verified by the WMO. The current official record in Europe is 48°C, registered in Athens in 1977. [BBC]

¶ “Algeria Forest Fires: At Least 65 People Killed As Fires Spread” • Wildfires tearing through northern Algeria have killed at least 65 people, including 28 soldiers deployed to help the firefighters. Some 69 fires were burning on Wednesday, as a heatwave sweeps across North Africa. The flames have been fanned by tinder-dry conditions and strong winds. [BBC]

Algerian countryside (Bilou bilal, Unsplash)

¶ “Audi Is Bringing Six Electric Vehicle Models To South Africa In Q1 2022” • EV sales in South Africa have been quite slow due to several factors. One of these is the small selection of EVs for consumers to choose from. But a wider range is coming. Audi South Africa will launch six all-electric models in the South African market early next year. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Mainstream, Aker Offshore Wind Take Stake In Japanese Floater” • Mainstream Renewable Power and Aker Offshore Wind, together, were selected as the preferred bidder to acquire an initial 50% in Progression Energy’s 800-MW floating wind project in Japan. The country aims to expand offshore wind energy capacity to 10 GW by 2030. [reNEWS]

Offshore wind project (Principle Power image)

¶ “GIG And TotalEnergies Secure Rights For Korea Floater” • Macquarie’s Green Investment Group and TotalEnergies have secured exclusive development rights for the first phase of a 1500-MW floating offshore wind farm off the coast of Ulsan, South Korea. The plant is to have a maximum capacity of 1.5 GW, developed in three phases. [reNEWS]

US:

¶ “US Department Of Energy Awards $45 Million To Advance Solar Manufacturing And Grid Technologies” • The US DOE announced $45 million for projects that will help integrate clean energy sources onto the grid. The purpose of the funding is to advance the domestic manufacturing of solar energy and electric grid technologies. [CleanTechnica]

Transmission lines (James Wainscoat, Unsplash)

¶ “Senator Markey Announces Legislation For Offshore Wind Manufacturing” • Senator Edward J Markey (D-MA), and cosponsors Senators Robert Menendez (D-NJ), Cory Booker (D-NJ), and Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), announced the Offshore Wind American Manufacturing Act, to drive US manufacturing and offshore wind deployment. [Senator Edward Markey]

¶ “EDPR Unleashes 180-MW Wildcat Creek” • EDP Renewables North America announced that its 180-MW Wildcat Creek Wind Farm reached commercial operations and is producing energy in Cooke County. Wildcat Creek Wind Farm is EDPR NA’s fifth operating wind farm in Texas and brings its Texas portfolio to 1089 MW of operating capacity. [reNEWS]

Wind turbine (EDPR image)

¶ “‘Once-in-a-generation’ Infrastructure Bill To Boost Renewable Energy With Modernized Grid” • From hydrogen pipelines and electric vehicle charging stations to green school buses, the sprawling $1.2 trillion infrastructure package approved in a 69-30 vote on Tuesday features a list of energy projects of all types. [The Florida Star]

¶ “Critics Decry $12 Billion For Nuclear In Infrastructure Bill” • The US Senate has passed a massive infrastructure bill. Buried in the package is $12 billion for the nuclear industry. Half of that money would go to supporting unprofitable nuclear plants, and half to untested technology. Critics say all of the money would be better spent elsewhere. [Public News Service]

Have a plainly magnificent day.

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August 11 Energy News

August 11, 2021

Opinion:

¶ “Frightening New Climate Report Also Holds The Seeds Of Hope” • The latest report that just arrived from the IPCC isn’t pretty. But in a year defined by searing heat waves, torrential floods, and raging fires, it is encouraging that the same report that is so frightening also suggests a strategy to alleviate some of its most devastating projections. [CNN]

Extinction Rebellion (Bhuwan Bansal, Unsplash)

¶ “When Do Fossil Fuel Car Sales Collapse?” • I expect fossil fuel car sales to start to really collapse in 2025–2026 in Europe and 2027–2028 in the USA, though, it seems that is already started. But the 50% plugin vehicle share, which Biden’s team is targeting, is not a peaceful state of equilibrium. It’s a point of hyperfast change and disruption. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Why Rural America Is Key To Climate Change Policy” • Rural areas represent 86% of persistent poverty counties in the US, and over 50% of rural Black residents live in economically distressed counties. Addressing the climate crisis and lagging economic vitality will require federal investment in building a new climate economy for rural America [GreenBiz]

Farmland (Arno Smit, Unsplash)

World:

¶ “Wildfires: How Are They Linked To Climate Change?” • Recent heatwaves and wildfires around the world have caused alarm, with warnings that parts of Europe and North America could be experiencing the worst fire season ever. So how do wildfires compare with previous years? Here is a look at areas around the world that are burning. [BBC]

¶ “Stellantis Takes Four Out Of The Top Five Spots In July In France!” • After a record month in June, the French plugin vehicle market took some time to breathe in July, just 5% above July 2020. That may not seem impressive. But considering that the overall market is down 33% compared to July 2019, that is impressive growth. [CleanTechnica]

Hyundai Tucson (Duncan Winslow, Unsplash)

¶ “Companies Unite To Develop A Japan-Australia CO₂-Free Hydrogen Supply Chain In South Australia” • A ground-breaking MOU between ENEOS Corporation and Neoen, a world-leading independent renewable energy provider, will explore developing a Japanese-Australian CO₂-free hydrogen supply chain in South Australia. [Premier of South Australia]

¶ “NSW’s Largest Electricity User Plans To Go Green, Abandon AGL’s Coal” • One of the country’s most electricity-intensive smelters plans to switch to renewable energy, a move that would drastically reduce its footprint. It sends power generators a clear message that Australia does not support coal, even if the federal government does. [pv magazine Australia]

Wärtsilä battery storage system (Wärtsilä Corporation)

¶ “Wärtsilä Supplies Battery For Taiwan Grid” • Wärtsilä will supply an energy storage system that will provide frequency regulation in the ancillary service market for the Taiwanese grid as the country aims for a 20% renewables mix by 2025. The 5.2-MW / 5.2-MWh battery order was placed in August 2021 by Shangfa Construction. [reNEWS]

¶ “EU Clean Hydrogen Drive Finds Partners In Kazakhstan And The UK” • The EU is placing a major bet on hydrogen to replace the fossil fuels, oil, gas, and coal, but so far the move has involved a lot of wrangling. EU companies, however, have been moving ahead on their own, making deals in other places, such as the UK and Kazakhstan. [Sustainability Times]

Almaty, Kazakhstan (Alexander Serzhantov, Unsplash)

US:

¶ “Well Over 100 Million People Are Under Heat Alerts” • As if hundreds of wildfires, crippling drought, and a summer marked by a once-in-a-lifetime heat wave were not enough, more than 20 million Americans in the western US are on alert again, ahead of another historic heat wave. They are not alone. Over half the US is under heat alerts this week. [CNN]

¶ “Tesla Impact Report Highlights Sustainability & Battery Recycling” • Tesla’s focus is on more than building electric vehicles. In its 2020 Impact Report, the company says, “In 2020, Tesla customers helped accelerate the world’s transition to sustainable energy by avoiding 5.0 million metric tons of CO₂e emissions.” [CleanTechnica]

Tesla cars (Tesla image)

¶ “American Canyon Opts Into 100% Renewable Energy For Facilities” • The American Canyon City Council voted to opt the City’s facilities into Marin Clean Energy’s Deep Green 100% renewable energy program. Currently, the California city is enrolled in the Light Green program, MCE’s default energy plan that offers 60% renewable energy. [Patch]

¶ “Winds of Change: Samsung Purchases 100% Renewable Energy in the US” • All Samsung’s facilities in the US, including its manufacturing and distribution sites, use renewable energy. Samsung currently has over 20,000 employees in 46 states, with six major subsidiaries based in California, New Jersey, South Carolina, and Texas. [Samsung Newsroom]

Samsung Semiconductor’s rooftop solar array (Samsung image)

¶ “AEP Energy Procures More Capacity From Mammoth Project In Indiana” • AEP Energy and Doral Renewables have signed a renewable energy purchase agreement for the second phase of the Mammoth solar project in Indiana. The 360-MW Mammoth Solar II is part of the 1.65-GW Mammoth project that Doral has under development. [pv magazine USA]

¶ “Salem Township Concerns Over A New Bitcoin Mining Facility To Be Built Near Power Plant” • Talen energy, the owner of the Susquehanna nuclear power plant in Salem township, Pennsylvania, announced plans to develop an infrastructure campus next to the plant. The facility would use electricity from the plant to make Bitcoin currency. [PAhomepage.com]

Have a wonderfully lovely day.

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August 10 Energy News

August 10, 2021

Opinion:

¶ “Climate Scientists Have Done Their Bit. Now The Pressure Is On World Leaders” • Scientists have warned for decades that we were changing the climate in a way that would have devastating impacts on the planet and our lives. The landmark report from the IPCC showed that it is already happening, and faster than we ever expected. [CNN]

Ice (Johannes Plenio, Unsplash)

¶ “We Saw This Coming” • As I read the press reports, I realized that the joke has been on us. A small group of very smart, very selfish people backed by huge sums of money managed to stop the changes that need to be made to stop climate change. They’ll go to a future Hell of their own creation, but they are bringing us with them. [Environmental Health News]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Was That Wild Weather Caused By Climate Change? Scientists Can Now Say ‘Yes’ With Confidence” • Historic heat waves are so clearly caused by human-driven emissions that researchers can easily link them to climate change. Scientists at World Weather Attribution say this year’s Northwest heat wave would have been “virtually impossible” without it. [CNN]

Rainfall from Hurricane Harvey (National Weather Service)

World:

¶ “Greece Faces ‘Disaster Of Unprecedented Proportions’ As Wildfires Ravage The Country” • Greece faces a “natural disaster of unprecedented proportions,” as 586 wildfires burn all over the country, Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis said in a televised address. Sixty-three organized evacuations have taken place in the past few days. [CNN]

¶ “At-Risk Nations Fear Extinction After IPCC Report” • Nations vulnerable to climate change have warned they are on the “edge of extinction” if action is not taken. The warning by a group of developing countries comes after the landmark UN IPCC report argued that global warming could make parts of the world uninhabitable. [BBC]

Protest sign (Ma Ti, Unsplash)

¶ “The IPCC Environmental Warning India Cannot Ignore” • Among the most serious findings of the sixth assessment report of the UN’s climate science organisation is that some of the climate systems of the planet have already seen irreversible changes due to unabated global warming. India is exposed to both increased droughts and flooding. [BBC]

¶ “Tesla Giga Shanghai’s New Production Rate Is 450,000/Year” • Tesla’s Giga Shanghai reached a milestone earlier this month. It now has an annualized vehicle production rate of 450,000 Models Y and 3 vehicles. Last year, Tesla met a goal of delivering 500,000 cars globally. Now, there are thoughts that Tesla could make 1 million EVs in 2021. [CleanTechnica]

Tesla Modle Y (Tyler Casey, Unsplash)

¶ “Broad Public Support For Tough Action On Climate Change – Poll” • The survey of 2,046 British adults aged 16 to 75 found 60% wanted a ban on imported goods linked to deforestation, while just 10% did not. The survey also found 58% wanted the UK to use its diplomatic influence to persuade other countries to reduce emissions. [Evening Standard]

¶ “Abandoned Pits Of Former Mining Town Will Fuel Green Revolution” • A garden village with 1,500 homes, a primary school, and shops is being planned on fields near the old mining town of Seaham, County Durham. The heating and hot water for the entire development will come from water pumped from an abandoned mine shaft nearby. [The Guardian]

Miners’ homes in Seaham (peter robinson, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “Study Finds 95% Of Renewable Energy Capacity In Richest Countries” • An analysis found that 95% of installed renewables capacity is located in just 16% of global countries, particularly in Global North countries. However, Global South countries have the strongest growth in energy demand, and are still heavily reliant on fossil fuels. [Open Access Government]

US:

¶ “‘Final Warning’: Lawmakers, Biden Administration Sound Alarm Over UN Climate Report And Urge Swift Action” • US Lawmakers and the Biden administration’s top climate officials sounded the alarm in response to a new report from the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, urging nations to swiftly limit global warming to 1.5°C. [CNN]

Dixie fire Pyrocumulus (Frank Schulenburg, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “‘We’re Seeing Truly Frightening Fire Behavior’ Firefighters Battling The Dixie Fire Say” • Pyrocumulus, firenadoes, dry lightning. It sounds like an apocalyptic movie, but it’s the reality that firefighters are facing. When wildfires are this intense, they can sometimes create their own weather, making their next move nearly impossible to predict. [CNN]

¶ “Ørsted Signs US Power Play With Microsoft” • Ørsted and Microsoft have entered into an agreement for Microsoft to purchase energy from a 430-MW solar farm project in Texas. Under the terms of the agreement, Microsoft will buy power from the Old 300 solar farm in Fort Bend County, which is expected to come online next year. [reNEWS]

Solar farm (Ørsted image)

¶ “Ford’s Got More Ambitious EV Plans Than The White House” • Ford and the Biden administration announced their goals to convert to EVs the same day. Now, we see that the Ford targets, 40–50% full EV sales in 2030, are a bit stronger than the Biden administration’s, which has a goal of 50% plugin and hydrogen vehicle sales by 2030. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Push For Green Energy Could Strand More Than $68 B In Coal And Gas Assets, S&P Says” • An ongoing push to expand renewable energy generation in the US could strand at least $68 billion in coal and natural gas power plant investments, an S&P Global Market Intelligence report says. The assets at risk include both coal and gas investments equally. [Utility Dive]

Have a tremendously worthwhile day.

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August 9 Energy News

August 9, 2021

Opinion:

¶ “Why China’s Climate Policy Matters To Us All” • China’s carbon emissions are vast and growing, dwarfing those of other countries. Experts agree that without big reductions in China’s emissions, the world cannot win the fight against climate change. China’s President Xi Jinping has said his country will aim for its emissions to peak before 2030. [BBC]

Li River, a different picture of China (Sam Beasley, Unsplash)

¶ “Tipping Points With World Climate Starting – How To Respond?” • I try to remain positive. But increasingly, evidence points to our breaching tipping points that can’t be remediated. There are ice sheets melting, ocean currents changing, record heat in Siberia. I think the answer is hope and work for the best, but prepare for the worst. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “IPCC 6: Slash Methane Or Die. Any Questions?” • The sixth IPCC climate report is due out, but there are already broad hints about what it will say. Put together over a period of years by thousands of scientists and climate researchers in 195 countries, IPCC reports offer us a snapshot of where our planet is in terms of human survivability. [CleanTechnica]

Where is our civilization going? (Constantinos Kollias, Unsplash)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Major Climate Changes Now Inevitable And Irreversible, Stark UN Report Says” • The Earth’s climate system is changing across the entire planet and human activities are worsening its effects. As a result, those effects are “widespread, rapid and intensifying,” according to the latest Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report. [The Irish Times]

¶ “Landmark Report Stresses Urgency Of Climate Crisis” • The latest report from the IPCC, to be published today, August 9, stresses the urgency to protect the most ambitious target of the Paris Agreement for global temperature rise to remain below 1.5°C. It says emphatically that the action needed for a stable climate cannot be delayed. [Met Office]

Wildfire smoke (Manny Becerra, Unsplash)

World:

¶ “The World Is On The Brink Of ‘Catastrophe,’ Leader Of Next UN Climate Talks Warns” • Failure to act now on climate change will result in “catastrophic” consequences for the world, the leader of the UN’s next climate talks warned. He warned that the COP26 talks in November would be among the last chances to limit global heating. [CNN]

¶ “Greece Wildfires: Evia Island Residents Forced To Evacuate” • Wildfires are continuing to rip through the Greek island of Evia, prompting residents to flee to safety by sea. More than 2,000 people have already been evacuated. Greece is experiencing its most severe heatwave in 30 years, and temperatures have spiked to 45°C (113°F). [BBC]

Village in central Evia (C messier, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “400-MW Wind Farm In Saudi Arabia Begins Generating” • A 400-MW windpower project in Saudi Arabia is now generating electricity. The project was developed by a consortium led by EDF Renewables and Masdar, two of the leading renewable energy companies in the world. It is comprised of 99 Vestas turbines, each of 4.2-MW capacity. [Saur Energy]

¶ “UK Backs Siemens Gamesa, GRI Factory Plans” • The UK government has selected manufacturers Siemens Gamesa and GRI Renewable Industries to receive grant funding to develop factories in the Humber region. Siemens Gamesa will expand its offshore blade plant in Hull by 41,600 square meters, more than doubling the size of the facilities. [reNEWS]

Offshore windpower supply facility (Siemens Gamesa image)

¶ “Derby’s Solar-Powered Future” • Derby, Western Australia, with a population of over 3,300, is celebrating solar installations funded by the state government. The plan has a $66.3 million renewable-energy package, designed to help foster resilience, create sustainable jobs, and promote recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic. [pv magazine Australia]

¶ “Australia Trails World On Energy Transition And Emissions” • Contrary to the federal government’s talking points, a report found that the country’s performance on energy and emissions trails the rest of the world. The report, Back of the pack, from the progressive think tank The Australia Institute, compares Australia with 23 similar countries. [Renew Economy]

Rooftop solar power in Queensland (Kgbo, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

US:

¶ “Denver Experienced The Worst Air Quality Of Any Major City In The World Due To Smoke From Western Wildfires” • Denver had the worst air quality of any city in the world for several hours Saturday, as heavy smoke from western wildfires polluted the city. The 107 wildfires in the West have burned 2.1 million acres, about a third of the size of Vermont. [CNN]

¶ “The Boring Company In Talks With Austin And San Antonio To Build Tunnels” • The Boring Company has some big plans for a possible transportation tunnel that would go from Giga Texas to Downtown Austin. The company is also in talks with officials in San Antonio for a tunnel in Central Texas similar to the one that opened in Las Vegas. [CleanTechnica]

Tesla in a tunnel (The Boring Company)

¶ “Panther National Partners With Tesla To Build A Luxury Community That Is Sustainable” • Tesla is building a new 218-home luxury development in Florida with solar roofs, batteries, and EV chargers, Yahoo! News reports. Centaur US Holdings is developing the new community, Panther National, around a golf course in Palm Beach. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Solar Challenging Nuclear As Potential Climate Change Solution” • Research suggests that we can power 80% of the US with wind, solar, and 12 hours of energy storage, but replacing the country’s nuclear power plants hasn’t been seen as financially viable. Is that about to change? Moving forward, it seems nuclear has lost its swagger. [PV Magazine]

Have a fabulously amusing day.

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August 8 Energy News

August 8, 2021

Opinion:

¶ “Five Key Things To Watch For In The UN Climate Report” • Filled with detail and tracing multiple future scenarios, the IPCC report is likely to run hundreds or even thousands of pages. New research, computer modeling, and data collection will make this report the most comprehensive yet. Here are five key things to watch for. [Thomson Reuters Foundation News]

Lake Tahoe, in drought on a cold winter day (NOAA, Unsplash)

¶ “Greenhouse Gas Emissions Need To Be Reduced Dramatically, But Nuclear Power Isn’t The Way” • There are growing questions as to whether nuclear power plants are a variable “alternative” to reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Based just on risk costs, the Fukushima disaster shows that the economics of nuclear power are by no means a safe bet. [The Hankyoreh]

Science and Technology:

¶ “A Machine Learning Breakthrough Uses Satellite Images To Improve Lives” • A team at UC Berkeley has devised a machine learning system to tap the problem-solving potential of satellite imaging, based on low-cost, easy-to-use technology that be used by researchers and governments worldwide. The study appeared in Nature Communications. [CleanTechnica]

Satellite image (Photo by NASA via Pxfuel)

¶ “Virtuous Cycles Of Technology Adoption” • What creates the “S” curve of technology adoption? It is a virtuous cycle. Positive change creates more positive change, just as negative change has the opposite effect. In a report, Carbon Tracker identifies seven of these paired cycles which are creating “S” curves and speeding us toward the future. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ “Climate Change: Low-Income Countries ‘Can’t Keep Up’ With Impacts” • Low-income countries struggle to protect themselves against climate change, officials and experts have told the BBC. Organisations representing 90 countries say that their plans to prevent damage have already been outpaced by climate-induced disasters, which steadily get worse. [BBC]

Flood (rachman reilli, Unsplash)

¶ “Greece Wildfires: PM Describes ‘Nightmarish Summer” • The prime minister of Greece has talked of a “nightmarish summer” as forest fires continue to ravage the country. Thousands have been evacuated from their homes in various parts of Greece and more than 1,000 firefighters have been deployed to bring the flames under control. [BBC]

¶ “AC Cobra Series 1 Electric Is Ready For Launch” • Storied British car brand AC announced plans for an all-electric version of its iconic AC Cobra Series 1 sportscar last year, with its performance promised to be on par with the original V8. Now, the first of the electric AC Cobras is out on the road, as it goes through real-world testing. [CleanTechnica]

AC Cobra (Image by AC Cars, via EV Obsession)

¶ “ReNew Power Signs PPA With SECI For Country’s Maiden Round-The-Clock Renewable Energy Project” • To supply power from the 400 MW RTC project at 80% utilization rate, ReNew Power will need to install wind and solar capacity, along battery storage facilities, that will bring the total project cost to an estimated $1.2 billion. [The Financial Express]

¶ “Experts Approve Key UN Climate Science Report” • A critical UN science report that will provide the most comprehensive and up-to-date assessment yet of the state of Earth’s climate has been approved by representatives from 195 countries. IPCC delegates had been locked in virtual negotiations for two weeks, vetting the summary of the report. [New Age]

Arctic ice (Melissa Bradley, Unsplash)

US:

¶ “$1.5 Million Grant Will Improve Wildfire Spotting From The Air And Space” • Helped by a $1.5 million grant, a UC Berkeley physicist and a firefighter-turned-scientist plan to outfit spotter planes with improved infrared detectors to study fire. They hope that within four years similar systems in space will do 24/7 fire discovery and monitoring. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Justice Reactivates Public Energy Authority, Appoints New Members” • Governor Jim Justice reactivated the West Virginia Public Energy Authority, which has been inactive for ten years, and appointed new members. The body has the authority, among other powers, of issuing bonds to build coal or natural gas power plants. [WV MetroNews]

Mountaintop removal mining (iLoveMountains.org, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “Bipartisan Bill Leaves Out Key Climate, Clean Energy Steps; Upgrade To Power Grid Left Out” • The $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill headed for a Senate vote falls far short of the president’s pledge to transform from an economy powered by fossil-fuels into one that is clean-burning and free of greenhouse gas emissions by 2035. [Houston Chronicle]

¶ “Community Choice Clean Energy Coming To Santa Barbara South Coast In October” • Through community choice, clean energy is coming to the Santa Barbara South Coast this fall to help meet the goal of 100% clean and renewable energy by 2030. Customers will be able to choose between various electricity services for the first time. [Noozhawk.com]

Have a delightfully fortunate day.

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August 7 Energy News

August 7, 2021

Science and Technology:

¶ “Signs That Gulf Stream Is At Risk Of Collapse” • Climate scientists have detected indications that the Gulf Stream might collapse, one of the most important potential tipping points in the climate crisis. Researchers found the currents had “an almost complete loss of stability over the last century.” They are at their slowest of at least 1,600 years. [The Guardian]

Gulf Stream and related currents (RedAndr, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “Study Reveals An Increase In The Frequency Of Nuclear Power Outages Caused By Climate Change” • A paper published in Nature Energy explored the outages at nuclear nuclear power plants that were caused by climatic events. It showed that these outages have become increasingly more frequent in the past few decades. [Tech Xplore]

¶ “Lightning No Match For Wind Turbine Blade Protection System” • Lightning protection systems exist for conventional wind turbine blades. But protection was needed for blades made from more easily recycled thermoplastic resin composites, a technology recently developed by scientists at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory. [CleanTechnica]

Lightning simulation test (NREL image)

World:

¶ “Climate Change: New Report Will Highlight ‘Stark Reality’ Of Warming” • UN researchers are set to publish their strongest statement yet on climate change. Due out on August 9, the report that the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has just compiled will be their first global assessment on the science of global warming since 2013. [BBC]

¶ “Project Symphony: Virtual Power Plant Project To Link Over 500 Homes And Businesses” • The Labor government of Western Australia is moving forward with Project Symphony, a plan to link over 500 homes and businesses equipped with rooftop solar and home batteries in a virtual power plant that manages the flow of electricity. [CleanTechnica]

Community in Western Australia (Calistemon, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “UK Plugin EV Share Almost Doubles To 17.1% In July, With Combustion At Record Low” • The UK, Europe’s third largest auto market, saw plugin electric vehicle market share hit 17.1% in July 2021, up from 8.9% in July 2020. Combustion powertrains hit a record low of 51.9%. Overall auto market volume was down over 22%. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “ReNew Power Signs First ‘Round-The-Clock’ PPA In India” • The clean power outfit ReNew Power, based in India, has signed a power purchase agreement for a round-the-clock electricity supply, the first-of-its-kind in the country. The 25-year PPA is with the Solar Energy Corporation of India, which is owned by the Indian government. [reNEWS]

Wind turbines (Gabriel Xu, Unsplash)

¶ “Ontario’s Unfunded Nuclear Decommissioning Liability Is In The C$18 to C$27 Billion Range” • Ontario Power Generation operates eighteen ageing nuclear reactors. It has funds of about C$5 billion ($4 billion) for nuclear decommissioning. That is probably C$17.5 less than will be needed, and the reactors are still servicing $19.3 in debts. [CleanTechnica]

US:

¶ “California Hydropower Plant Forced To Shut Down As Water Levels Fall At Lake Oroville” • The Edward Hyatt Power Plant at Lake Oroville, a major California hydroelectric facility, has been forced to shut down due to low water levels for the first time since it opened in 1967, officials said. The state is grappling with an unrelenting drought. [CNN]

Lake Oroville in May (© Frank Schulenburg, CC BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “Summer Smoke Might Be The New Normal In Colorado” • Scratchy lungs and scorched earth. The West is not only battling raging wildfires, but poor air quality as well, caused by ash lofted thousands of feet in the air. Hundreds of miles away, that ash is settling in Colorado, something that has become all too familiar to its residents. [CNN]

¶ “Stellantis: First BEV Jeep Coming In 2023, But What Electric Jeep Will We Get?” • A recent Stellantis earnings presentation revealed that Jeep will release its first all-electric vehicle in 2023, and it also revealed various other approximate release dates for Stellantis EVs and PHEVs. Sadly, however, the information is still not very specific. [CleanTechnica]

Jeep Magneto concept (Jeep image)

¶ “Tampa Commits To 100% Clean, Renewable Energy By 2035” • The city council of Tampa, Florida, voted in favor of moving the city to 100% clean, renewable energy by 2035. It is the twelfth Florida city to pass such a resolution. This latest passage comes after Governor Ron DeSantis signed prohibitive energy bills into law this summer. [WJCT News

¶ “US Petroleum Consumption Decreased To 25-Year Low In 2020” • In 2020, 18.1 million barrels per day of petroleum products were consumed in the US, a 25-year low. From 2019 to 2020, petroleum consumption decreased in every sector of energy consumption, and it decreased a record 15% in the transportation sector. [CleanTechnica]

US petroleum consumption (EIA image)

¶ “Department Of The Interior Advances Three Solar Projects In California” • In support of the Biden-Harris administration’s goal to address climate change and promote production of renewable energy, the Department of the Interior announced August 6 it is advancing three solar projects on 4,700 acres of public lands in Riverside County, California. [YubaNet]

¶ “466 Groups Urge Biden to Fill FERC Seat With Champion For Environment, Energy Justice ” • 466 environmental and energy justice, racial justice, faith, and youth organizations from all across the US sent a letter urging President Joe Biden to appoint a nominee to FERC who will champion environmental and energy justice. [Center for Biological Diversity]

Have an amusingly consequential day.

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August 6 Energy News

August 6, 2021

Opinion:

¶ “What Is The UN Climate Conference In Glasgow And Why Is It So Important?” • COP26 (COP is for Conference of the Parties) is widely seen as crucial if climate change is to be brought under control. In 2015, the countries agreed to try to keep temperature increases “well below” 2°C (3.6°F), but many scientists say efforts have fallen far short. [BBC]

Emissions (Patrick Hendry, Unsplash)

¶ “Why Is The USA Okay Being 5 Years Behind Europe And China On Vehicle Electrification?” • The big EV announcement the Biden administration wanted to make today is that it has got GM, Ford, and Stellantis onboard for a 2030 EV target that, unfortunately, is actually quite lame. In fact, it goes beyond being just disappointing. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “You’ve Got $30 Billion To Spend And A Climate Crisis. Nuclear Or Solar?” • As solar and energy storage professionals, we must be conscious of the limitations of our technologies. So to compare the cost and abilities of solar power with those of nuclear must be done carefully. It turns out that a solar power wins. Hands down. [pv magazine USA]

Nuclear power plant (Viktor Kiryanov, Unsplash)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Get serious: Eight Technologies That Could Eliminate Nearly All Emissions By 2035” • A report from California think tank RethinkX says accelerating eight existing technologies across renewable energy, electric transport, and lab-grown food can do the heavy lifting on climate action and cut greenhouse emissions by 90% within fifteen years. [Renew Economy]

¶ “Futuristic Farmers Deploy Solar Power To Farm For Microbes” • Ambient air carbon capture has come in for ridicule over the years, but its fans finally have something to cheer about. Applied to farming, carbon can be plucked from the air to boost crop yields. All that’s needed is an assist from solar power and some other equipment. [CleanTechnica]

Carbon capture for agriculture (Göttingen University)

World:

¶ “Europe Aims To Kill Gasoline And Diesel Cars By 2035” • The EU has announced plans to end the sale of polluting vehicles by 2035, an ambitious goal that would put even hybrid cars on the endangered species list and usher in a rapid and dramatic shift to fully electric models. The EU is also reducing average emissions of new cars by 55% by 2030. [CNN]

¶ “The Search For The World’s Largest Methane Sources” • In the past, huge plumes of potent greenhouse gas released in Siberia by Russian petroleum operations last year might have gone unnoticed. But armed with powerful new imaging technology, a methane-hunting satellite sniffed out the emissions and tracked them to their sources. [BBC]

Methane seen from space (Nasa/JPL-Caltech image)

¶ “Australian Miners Line Up For A Slice Of The EV Pie” • Just two days ago, BHP Nickel West asset president Eddy Haegel let known at the annual Diggers and Dealers conference that BHP expected EVs to achieve global penetration of 25% by 2030. This is much earlier than many in the conservative camp anticipated. BHP is getting ready for change. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Portugal Exceeds Renewable Energy Target” • Portugal’s Renewable Energy in Gross Final Consumption in 2020 stood at 34.1%. This exceeds the 31.0% target that was set in accordance with EU Directive 2009/28/EC, according to an article from the ADENE Energy Observatory, “Portugal and the energy targets for 2020.” [The Portugal News]

Lisbon (Vita Marija Murenaite, Unsplash)

US:

¶ “California Gold Rush Town Destroyed By State’s Largest Wildfire” • The largest wildfire burning in California, known as the Dixie Fire, has destroyed nearly all of the historic Gold Rush town of Greenville. The estimated 800 residents of the northern California community were told to evacuate before the blaze tore through the downtown area. [BBC]

¶ “Biden Announces New Emissions Standards, Target That 50% Of Vehicles Sold In Us By 2030 Are Electric” • President Joe Biden unveiled another component of his administration’s plan to fight the climate crisis, announcing a new target that half of vehicles sold in the country by 2030 will be battery electric, fuel-cell electric, or plug-in hybrid. [CNN]

Electric Jeep (Stellantis image)

¶ “Nissan Slashes Price Of Base LEAF To $28,375 And Offers $89/Month Lease Plan” • The base Nissan Leaf, with an EPA range of 149 miles, is now available for just $28,375, including the $975 destination charge, according to Green Car Reports. With a $7,500 federal tax credit, the cost would be $20,875. And it can be leased for $89 a month. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “McDonalds and Ebay” • McDonald’s and eBay have signed power purchase agreements to source electricity for their US operations from a $300 million solar farm that Lightsource bp is developing. The 345-MW solar project is predicted to become Louisiana’s largest. It is big enough to provide power for 59,000 area homes. [Energy Live News]

McDonald’s (Third Serving, Unsplash)

¶ “Mars Announces Plans for 100% Renewable Electricity for its 2,000 Veterinary Hospitals in US” • Mars, Inc has announced a power-purchase agreement with Apex Clean Energy to provide renewable energy to cover more than 100% of the electricity used by its 2,000 veterinary hospitals in the US. Mars needed more electricity to cover business growth. [WebWire]

¶ “Ohio AG seeks to add former executives, regulator to lawsuit” • Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost asked a judge in Columbus to add two former FirstEnergy Corp executives and the former chair of the Ohio utilities commission as defendants in a state racketeering lawsuit for their alleged roles in pushing a tainted energy bill in 2019. [Westport News]

Have a phenomenally inspiring day.

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August 5 Energy News

August 5, 2021

Opinion:

¶ “Sturgeon Handed Huge Independence Boost As Scotland Can Power Itself ‘Without Westminster'” • Nicola Sturgeon has been handed a huge boost to her independence bid as an expert in energy politics has told Express.co.uk that Scotland would be able to run itself on renewable energy “without Westminster support.” [Daily Express]

Wind turbines in Scotland (John Allan, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “We The Power: How Community Energy Can Free People And Help The Planet” • “We the Power” includes a feature-length documentary shining a light on the citizen-led renewable community energy movement across Europe. It was directed by David Garrett Byars, from the multi-award winning Patagonia film Public Trust. [CleanTechnica]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Solarflux FOCUS Parabolic Dish Concentrator Converts 72% Of Solar Energy Into Usable Heat” • Solarflux, a company developing parabolic dish concentrator technology, produced the FOCUS parabolic dish concentrator, which converts 72% of the solar energy it gets into usable heat, according to an independent report. [CleanTechnica]

Solarflux FOCUS parabolic dish concentrator (Solarflux image)

¶ “The Waste Product Which Could Help Mitigate Climate Change” • Visiting Professor in the School of Materials Science and Engineering at University of New South Wales Science, Stephen Joseph, says the study published in GCB Bioenergy provides strong evidence that biochar can contribute to climate change mitigation. [ScienceDaily]

¶ “Building Blocks For The Future We Need” • Miscibility Gap Alloys are capable of storing a huge amount of energy as heat. They are 10–100 times more conductive than other currently available materials. Heated by intermittent renewables, they can provide baseload electricity to the grid. MGA blocks can store energy for up to a week. [CleanTechnica]

MGA Thermal bricks (photo via University of Newcastle)

¶ “Farm Pesticides Killing More Bees – Study” • Agricultural pesticides sold to farmers ready-mixed into “cocktails” can kill twice as many bees, according to an analysis of 90 studies. Each measured the impact of environmental stresses such as poor nutrition and pesticides. They showed that combinations of stresses affect pollinators. [BBC]

World:

¶ “Study: Floods Are Getting Worse, And The Number Of People Exposed Is 10 Times Higher Than Previously Thought” • Climate change is making extreme flooding worse. A study published in the journal Nature concluded the population exposed to those floods since 2000 is 10 times higher than previous estimates, as more people migrate into flood-prone areas. [CNN]

Flooded Venice (Nastya Dulhiier, Unsplash)

¶ “Volvo Focuses On Software-Based Cars For Full Future Lineup (100% Electric, Of Course)” • Volvo Cars aims to be one of the quickest legacy automakers to transition to 100% electric vehicle sales. Within 4 years, in 2025 if not sooner, Volvo Cars expects 50% of its sales to be sales of fully electric vehicles. By 2030, the commitment is 100% electric. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Ilmatar To Construct 216-MW Finnish Wind Giant” • Finnish renewables company Ilmatar Energy reached a final investment decision on the 216-MW Alajarvi wind farm, with construction due to start in October 2021. The project is in central Finland and will have 36 wind turbines. Commercial operation is set to begin at the end of 2023. [reNEWS]

Wind farm (Ilmatar Energy image)

US:

¶ “Pro-Fossil Fuel Facebook Ads Were Viewed 431 Million Times – In One Year” • Big Oil is strategically using Facebook to blitz Americans with a steady stream of messages designed to delay the extinction of fossil fuel use, according to new research. Such ads were seen on Facebook’s US platforms 431 million times in 2020 alone. [CNN]

¶ “California Regulators Vote To Restrict Water Access For Thousands Of Farmers Amid Severe Drought” • The California State Water Board unanimously agreed to issue an emergency order that bans some farmers from diverting water from rivers and streams in the Sacramento and San Joaquin river watersheds to irrigate their crops. [CNN]

San Luis Reservoir (Fredrick Lee, Unsplash)

¶ “Green Mountain Energy Applies To Enter Arizona’s Electricity Market, Offers 100% Renewable Energy” • Residents of Arizona could soon be able to choose 100% renewable energy for their homes and businesses. Green Mountain Energy submitted its application to the Arizona Corporation Commission to provide retail electric services. [Arizona Daily Star]

¶ “Oshkosh Delivers USA’s First Electric Fire Truck” • Oshkosh Corporation announced that it is working to get electric fire trucks into fire stations across the US, starting with the City of Madison Fire Department in Wisconsin. It is also offering electric trucks for other emergency vehicle services. The trucks are being built on a new “Volterra” platform. [CleanTechnica]

Electric fire truck (Photo courtesy of Oshkosh Corporation)

¶ “Ørsted signs US renewables offtake with Royal DSM” • Ørsted has signed a power purchase agreement with materials and nutrition multinational Royal DSM. The PPA covers the output from a solar PV farm project Ørsted is developing in Texas as part of its plan to achieve a greenhouse gas reduction of 50% by 2030, compared to base year 2016. [reNEWS]

¶ “Meet The New Yorkers Mapping The City’s Heat Islands” • For the fourth year in a row, NOAA has funded collaborations of educational insitutions with scientists in the Urban Heat Island Mapping Campaigns program. The program has been returning data that shows temperature divisions within cities, with some neighborhoods at high risk. [Scientific American]

Have a stunningly superior day.

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August 4 Energy News

August 4, 2021

Opinion:

¶ “The US Infrastructure Bill: Is Half A Loaf Better Than None?” • President Biden proposed spending $15 billion to install 500,000 EV charging points. In the draft infrastructure bill, that proposal has been cut in half. With similar cuts elsewhere in the bill, the odds are stacked against doing the hard work that will be needed to address climate change effectively. [CleanTechnica]

Washington, DC (Jorge Alcala, Unsplash)

World:

¶ “Italy’s EV Market More Than Quadrupled In The First Half Of 2021!” • With the effects of the pandemic fading away, electric mobility is booming in Italy. The overall car market is up 51.6% year on year, but electrified powertrains are the real winners. Fully electric vehicle sales are at 30,384 in the first half of 2021, up from 9,959 units last year. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Norway At 84.7% Plugin EV Share In July – Mustang Mach-E Bestseller” • Norway, the world’s leading country in the electric transport revolution, saw plugin electric vehicles take 84.7% of new auto sales in July 2021, up from 68.4% in July 2020. Diesels fell to 4.1%, and petrols were at 4.3%. The Ford Mustang Mach-E was July’s top seller. [CleanTechnica]

Bergen, Norway (Ignacio Ceballos, Unsplash)

¶ “Simply Blue Signs MOU Over 200-MW Scottish Floater” • Simply Blue Energy and Subsea 7 have signed a memorandum of understanding with ERM for the potential use of the ERM Dolphyn hydrogen technology at the 200-MW Salamander floating wind farm off Scotland. The project is working closely with Scotland Gas Networks. [reNEWS]

¶ “DHL Express Is Buying Electric Cargo Planes From Eviation” • DHL Express, the world’s leading express service provider, has agreed to purchase 12 Alice electric cargo planes from Eviation for use in the US. They will be the world’s first electric air freight network. Eviation expects to deliver the electric aircraft to DHL Express in 2024. [CleanTechnica]

DHL Alice electric cargo plane (Image courtesy of DHL)

¶ “India’s ReNew Power Selects Siemens Gamesa For 322-MW Wind Project” • Global energy company Siemens Gamesa was chosen by Indian renewable energy company ReNew Power to supply turbines for a 322-MW wind energy project. Siemens Gamesa will manufacturer the 180 turbines in India and supply them as of 2022. [Power Engineering International]

Australia:

¶ “The Northern Territory Of Australia Takes Tentative Solar And EV Steps Forward ” • The Northern Territory is implementing a plan to support the introduction of EVs. The government will charge reduced registration and stamp duty fees for EVs, give grants for many EV chargers, and facilitate the installation of more EV charging stations. [CleanTechnica]

Uluru, NT (Simon Maisch, Unsplash)

¶ “Truckies Going Electric In Australia” • Two entrepreneurs are building Janus Electric, an amazing business converting diesel trucks to electric in Australia. The conversions’ many benefits include reductions in noise, vibration, and fumes. Janus expects to have its first commercially available electric vehicles on the road next year. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Gold Fields Eyes Renewables At St Ives” • Gold miner Gold Fields is looking at options to incorporate renewable energy at its St Ives gold project, in Western Australia. Gold Fields executive VP for Australia said the company is looking to build on the $110 million already invested in renewable energy and battery storage at its Australian mines. [Mining Weekly]

Battery storage facility

US:

¶ “Bipartisan $1 Trillion Senate Infrastructure Bill Focuses On Nuclear, Carbon Capture, Transmission” • The Infrastructure Bill would invest billions of dollars in transmission and power grid infrastructure, new advanced nuclear plants, current nuclear facilities, EV infrastructure, carbon capture, and other clean energy resources. [Utility Dive] (Big disappointment – ghh) 

¶ “Sue The Bastards! Boulder County Wants Exxon And Suncor To Pay For Climate Related Losses” • Boulder County brought suit in Colorado state court against ExxonMobil and Suncor, a Canadian company with its US headquarters in the state. The suit seeks to require the two companies to pay their fair share to deal with the problems they created. [CleanTechnica]

Wildfire in Boulder County (Malachi Brooks, Unsplash)

¶ “Federal Stimulus Could Boost New Mexico Renewable Energy, Create Jobs, Study Says” • Advanced Energy Economy, a national renewable energy trade association, estimated in a report that federal stimulus investments of $20 billion in renewables could add $117 billion to New Mexico’s GDP while saving $6 billion per year in energy costs. [Carlsbad Current-Argus]

¶ “New York Offshore Staging Post Progresses” • New York State put in an application for the US Department of Transportation’s Port Infrastructure Development Grant Program to support construction of Arthur Kill Terminal in Staten Island. AKT will be an offshore wind staging and assembly port built on a 32-acre undeveloped site. [reNEWS]

Rendering of Arthur Kill Terminal (Atlantic Offshore Terminals)

¶ “Ørsted Completes 367-MW Texan Project” • Ørsted has completed the 367-MW Western Trail wind farm in Wilbarger and Baylor Counties, Texas, its largest onshore project to date. It has a set of PPAs for most of the electricity. The project brings Ørsted’s total onshore capacity to over 2.8 GW of wind, solar, and battery storage in operation. [reNEWS]

¶ “As Energy Talks Crumble, Some Eye Standalone Nuclear Deal” • With the Dresden and Byron Exelon nuclear plants slated to close because of a lack of statehouse action on a comprehensive energy bill, some members of the Illinois legislature are working on to keep the plants open. They are looking in new directions to keep the plants operating. [The Center Square]

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August 3 Energy News

August 3, 2021

World:

¶ “‘It’s Biblical’ – Climate Fueled Destruction Circles The Globe” • The drought, heat, and fires in the Western US and the heavy rain and flooding seen elsewhere in the country are parts of a pattern that is seen worldwide. Wildfires are hitting Italy, Greece, and Turkey, while monsoon rains are causing flooding in India. “Welcome to global warming!” [CleanTechnica]

Howe Ridge Fire, Glacier National Park (Photo courtesy of NPS)

¶ “Reach For The Sun – New Report From Carbon Tracker” • A report from Carbon Tracker uses a number of colorful charts to make the point that the majority of new global generating power will be wind and solar. The authors predict a leapfrog effect in countries where there is no developed power grid. People who need power will install solar panels. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Masdar Joint Venture Starts Construction On Indonesia’s First Utility-Scale Floating Solar Power Plant” • PT PJBI, a subsidiary of Indonesia’s state-owned electricity company PT PLN, and the leading renewable energy company Masdar, announced that they reached financial close on the Cirata Floating Photovoltaic Power Plant project and it is under construction. [WAM EN]

Cirata Floating Photovoltaic Power Plant (Masdar)

¶ “Serbia In Talks With UGT Renewables On 1 GW Of Solar Power Plant Projects” • Serbia hopes to sign a contract soon with Chicago-based UGT Renewables for installation of a total of 1 GW of PV systems, President Aleksandar Vučić said. CFO Peter Goodall of UGT Renewables said domestic construction firms would be involved. [Balkan Green Energy News]

Australia:

¶ “Queensland’s Ambitious Actions To Tackle Climate Change” • Queensland, the Sunshine State, set a target of 50% renewable electricity by 2030. RenewEconomy’s live feed indicates that as of 12 noon, the state is living up to its nickname, with 30% of its electricity coming from the sun. And wind turbines are coming to balance the nighttime load. [CleanTechnica]

Vestas wind turbines in Australia (Vestas Wind Systems A/S)

¶ “New Projects To Accelerate Victoria’s Renewable Energy Zones” • Victoria’s Labor Government announced six new major energy projects to prepare the grid for the unprecedented load of renewable energy projects in the pipeline. The first projects of the $540 million Renewable Energy Zones will make it easier for new projects to connect to the grid. [Mirage News]

¶ “Vestas Bags 58-MW Oz Turbine Order” • Vestas has secured a 58-MW turbine deal for a wind project in New South Wales. Crookwell 3 wind farm, under development by Global Power Generation, a subsidiary of Naturgy Group, will feature 16 V126 3.45-MW wind turbines in 3.6-MW operating mode. Vestas will service the turbines for 15 years. [reNEWS]

Vestas turbines (Vestas image)

¶ “Australia Expands Renewable Funding To Hydrogen, CCS” • The mandate of the Australian Renewable Energy Agency has been expanded to finance hydrogen projects, energy storage, low carbon materials, including aluminium and steel, carbon capture and storage, and new measurement technologies for healthier soils, the Australian energy minister said. [Argus Media]

US:

¶ “Tesla To Make Its First Texas-Built Test Model Y Next Week, One Month Ahead Of Giga Berlin” • A source working on Tesla’s Giga Texas site with knowledge of its construction timelines let out some interesting news. Tesla will build its first full test Model Y at Giga Texas next week. As a test, it will be fully operational but not street legal. [CleanTechnica]

Gigafactory Berlin (Tesla courtesy image)

¶ “NREL Software Is Assisting Maui In 100% Solar And Wind Operations Goal” • Maui will not wait for 2045 to meet Hawaii’s clean energy goals. The world’s first interconnected grid system to run with 100% wind and solar PV power on an instantaneous basis is likely to be built on Maui. It is to have over 175 MW of new solar-storage hybrid plants by 2024. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Organized Labor Declares Impasse With Environmental Groups Over Clean Energy Overhaul” • A coalition of influential labor unions says negotiations with environmental groups over a massive new clean energy proposal have reached impasse, and is asking Gov JB Pritzker and lawmakers to step back into talks to broker a compromise. [NPR Illinois]

Power plant (RL Boston, CWLP, Springfield, Illinois)

¶ “Misinformation Thwarting Indiana’s Clean Energy Initiatives” • Fossil fuels have supplied most electric generation in Indiana for decades. Progress has not been easy for solar and wind energy suppliers in Indiana as proposed projects have faced opposition from concerned local citizens and groups with ties to the fossil fuel industry. [Indiana Environmental Reporter]

¶ “Report Finds Nearly 58% Of Electricity In Iowa Last Year From Renewable Sources” • A report from the American Clean Power Association shows Iowa leads the nation in the percentage of electricity generated by renewable sources. Nearly 58% of the electricity generated in Iowa in 2020 came from wind turbines and solar panels. [Radio Iowa]

Wind turbines in Iowa (Voice of America, public domain)

¶ “AES To Buy 250-MW Indiana Solar Project” • AES Indiana announced plans to acquire the 250-MW Petersburg solar plus storage facility in the US state of Indiana from NextEra Energy Resources for an undisclosed price. The project, in Pike county, will have 180 MWh of storage capacity. It is expected to be operational by May, 2024, if approved. [reNEWS]

¶ “Green light For $2.3 Billion Spent Nuclear Fuel Storage Site In Texas” • NRC staff recommended granting a license for a spent nuclear fuel storage facility in Texas. The NRC issued its final environmental impact statement on the application by Interim Storage Partners LLC. The license would allow up to 44,000 tons to be stored for 40 years. [Power Engineering International]

Have an admirably enchanting day.

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August 2 Energy News

August 2, 2021

Opinion:

¶ “Finding Answers To The World’s Drinking Water Crisis” • We are facing a water crisis. Climate change, overpopulation, and global conflict are just some of the factors devastating the water supply in many areas around the world. It means that two billion people – one-quarter of the human population – are without access to safe drinking water. [BBC]

Water, but is it safe? (Silas Baisch, Unsplash)

¶ “Tesla’s Autopilot Saves Lives – Period. Just Ask This Drunk Driver” • One new video may not be on the front page for most mainstream media news sites, because it doesn’t fit the narrative of killer cars driving themselves and killing people. But the clip, which was all over Twitter this week, reminds us how helpful Tesla Autopilot can be. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ “Iran Water: What’s Causing The Shortages?” • Iran’s water supplies are shrinking. It has frequent droughts and faces the prospect of more extreme conditions brought about by climate change. Hotter and drier weather will have a greater impact on hydropower generation, which has already led to severe power disruptions this summer in Iran. [BBC]

Kavir National Park, Iran (mostafa meraji, Unsplash)

¶ “Africa’s Most Populous City Is Battling Floods And Rising Seas. It May Soon Be Unlivable, Experts Warn” • Residents of Nigeria, Africa’s most populous nation, are used to the yearly floods that engulf coastal areas during the months of March to November. But the floods are getting worse. Lagos, with 24 million people, may become uninhabitable this century. [CNN]

¶ “Pathfinder Gets The Nod For Burgate Solar” • UK developer Pathfinder Clean Energy has secured planning permission for its 21-MW Burgate solar farm near Norwich. The solar farm will provide enough power for the equivalent of 6800 UK households and will reduce CO₂ emissions by 4900 tonnes annually, the company said. [reNEWS]

Solar farm (PACE image)

¶ “Tesla Battery Supplier CATL Spawning Billionaires As It Becomes China’s 3rd Largest Company” • Chinese battery manufacturer Contemporary Amperex Technology is having a very good year. Its share price is up 167% over the past 12 months, making it the third-largest business listed in mainland China, according to the Wall Street Journal. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Genesis Energy And Tilt Renewables Partner In 75-MW Northland Wind Farm” • Genesis Energy and Tilt Renewables signed a 20-year electricity off-take agreement for a planned new 75-MW wind farm in New Zealand. The Kaiwaikawe Wind farm will cut carbon emissions from Genesis’ thermal generation by an estimated 180,000 tonnes a year. [NZ Herald]

Proposed wind farm (Image supplied)

¶ “Woolworths To Go All In On Renewables By 2030” • Retailer Woolworths has set its sights on using 100% renewable energy by 2030. In a statement, the company says in line with its vision to be one of the world’s most responsible retailers, Woolworths is proud to announce its next set of ambitious Good Business Journey sustainability goals. [ITWeb]

¶ “Pacifico Tees Off At 121-MW PV Park In Japan” • Japanese developer Pacifico Energy began construction of a 121-MW solar farm in Japan. The project is in Hyogo prefecture and will be primarily constructed on the site of a golf course. The EPC contractor is Juwi Shizen Energy. Commercial operations are expected to start in 2023. [reNEWS]

Solar project (Pacifico Energy image)

¶ “EIB To Expand Spain’s Renewables Capacity With Seven New Projects” • Spanish renewable energy company Solaria is set to expand its portfolio of solar energy capacity using €54 million of European Investment Bank funding. The money will enable Solaria to develop seven solar PV projects with a total capacity of 261.05 MW. [Power Engineering International]

US:

¶ “Innergex Commissions 226-MW US Wind Park, Concludes Tax Equity Funding” • Innergex Renewable Energy Inc has announced that the 225.6-MW Griffin Trail wind farm in north Texas has been fully commissioned and that its tax equity funding has been concluded. The plant has a total of 80 GE turbines installed. [Renewables Now]

Flat Top wind park in central Texas (Innergex image)

¶ “DeWine Says Ohio Wants To Be A Leader In Renewable Energy” • A recent bill empowered local county commissioners in Ohio to kill wind or solar projects early in development. Gov Mike DeWine, who signed the bill that adds more hurdles to developing such projects, says he hopes Ohio will still become a leader in renewable energy. [Ohio News Time]

¶ “Social Cost Of Methane Changes The Equation For Colorado Utility Policy” • As a growing list of states pass laws aimed at curbing carbon emissions, Colorado has widened its scope, taking the seminal step of requiring state officials to consider the social cost of methane, the primary constituent of natural gas, in regulatory decisions. [Energy News Network]

Colorado (Katie Moum, Unsplash)

¶ “New York City Public Advocate Supports Catskills Renewable Connector” • New York City Public advocate Jumaane Williams announced his support for the Catskills Renewable Connector, a a 115-mile, 1,200-MW project proposed by Rise Light & Power that would deliver renewable energy from upstate to homes and businesses downstate. [Mid Hudson News]

¶ “Nuclear Power Could Get Lifeline In Senate Infrastructure Bill” • Struggling nuclear power reactors could get a $6-billion lifeline in the bipartisan infrastructure bill being written in the US Senate, according to a draft obtained by Bloomberg News. The text of the bill hasn’t been released and changes could still be made before its release. [Mining Weekly]

Have a mystifyingly delightful day.

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August 1 Energy News

August 1, 2021

Opinion:

¶ “Enbridge’s Pipeline 3 Threatens An Endangered Species – Contact The EPA” • The drinking water of people who live along the Mississippi River is put into danger by Enbridge’s Pipeline 3. There are many other reasons to oppose it. One, however, is the survival of a rare mussel species. And that gives us something we can do about it. [CleanTechnica]

Higgens eye pearly mussel (USFWS Midwest Region)

¶ “Australia’s Response To ‘Duty Of Care’ Judgement: We Have A Fossil-Fuel Heart” • A High Court Judge found that the Federal Environment Minister has a duty of care for the future of the country’s children. Sadly, the minister’s response is to appeal, and the response of big business is to ask the federal parliament to support the affected industries. [CleanTechnica]

 

¶ “Recommended Reading: “The Future We Choose”” • There are a number of great books about the future that turn out to be depressing. But there is also The Future We Choose (2020) by Christiana Figueres and Tom Rivett-Carnac. This is a book full of hope, with an action plan to save the future. It reminds us that “the Future is not yet written.” [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ “Tesla Model 3 And Model Y Take #1 And #2 In World Record Month For Electric Vehicle Sales!” • Last month, global plugin vehicle registrations were up an impressive 153% compared to June 2020, scoring a record 583,000 units (or 8.7% share of the overall auto market). That does not count the 700,000-plus hybrids registered. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Tata Power-DDL Among The First Utilities In The Country To Meet 100% Renewable Purchase Obligation Compliance” • Tata Power Delhi Distribution Limited, the electric power utility for over 7 million in the northern and and northwestern parts of Delhi, became the first utility in Delhi to meet 100% Renewable Purchase Compliance. [EquityBulls.com]

Delhi (Anish Kumar, Unsplash)

¶ “Renewable Energy Project To Extract Water From Air At Masdar City” • The first project to produce commercial volumes of water from a sustainable source will launch this month in Abu Dhabi. The pilot project will be run by AQUOVUM, based in the US, in partnership with Masdar and Khalifa University of Science and Technology. [Khaleej Times]

¶ “50% Cheaper To Generate From Renewable Energy, According To New Analysis” • According to analysis by energy think tank Ember, the cost of electricity from a power plant using fossil fuels is about twice the cost of electricity from a renewable energy source. And the cost of energy from fossil fuels is rising as renewables get cheaper. [Texas News Today]

Solar PV (Biel Morro, Unsplash)

¶ “Nuclear White Paper Warns Against Complacency” • Japan’s annual nuclear energy report has warned against complacency that could set in at nuclear plant operators once they clear government screening requirements. This year’s white paper on nuclear energy points to mounting challenges faced by operators of nuclear facilities in the country. [NHK]

US:

¶ “The Two Largest Wildfires In The US” • America’s two largest active wildfires, the Dixie Fire in California and the Bootleg Fire in Oregon, have burned land nearly the size of New York City, Los Angeles and Chicago combined, as drought and extreme heat continue to make matters worse for those fighting the massive fires in the West. [CNN]

Fire fighters (Garreth Paul, Unsplash)

¶ “NIMBYism Puts The Kibosh On America’s Largest Solar Power Plant” • Several years ago, a plan spearheaded by then Senator Harry Reid was put forward to build Battle Born Solar Project, the largest solar power plant in the US, on Mormon Mesa. Even though the project would be sited out of sight of nearby towns, it was stopped by NIMBYs. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Stanford University Creates New School For Study Of Climate And Sustainability” • Stanford University announced that it was forming a new school focused on climate and sustainability. The school, which will absorb several of the university’s existing units and departments and add others in time, will begin operations in the fall of 2022. [Forbes]

Have an easily splendid day.

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