December 21 Energy News

December 21, 2021

Opinion: 

¶ “Small Generators Aren’t As Good As Solar For Emergency Preparedness” • This article series is to give you reasons that solar power is not only a good alternative, but a generally superior one for emergencies. It might start with a gloomy view, but in the end, it is pretty clear that clean energy gives us more hope than we have had. [CleanTechnica: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3]

Solar storm that could shut down the grid (NASA image)

¶ “COVID Drove Rise In Electricity Burden – RMI Reality Check” • Despite claims that the growth of clean energy has caused higher electric bills, utility data suggests that factors related to COVID, not the changing energy mix, drove 2020 increases in costs for US customers. In fact, customers benefited from more renewables. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Wright Electric Shares Details About Passenger Plane Retrofit And 2-MW Motor Testing” • The electrification of aviation is important because aviation is a source of air pollution, including climate change emissions. Also, the extraction, transportation and handling of fossil fuels is harmful and problematic. Here is an interview with its CEO, Jeff Engler. [CleanTechnica]

Electric plane (Wright Electric image)

¶ “Peter Sterling: Vermont’s Dirty Secret: State Government Is Anti-Eenewable Energy” • Talk to anyone who has tried to bring renewable energy to Vermonters and they will tell you the same thing: Despite our green reputation and our wish for climate action, our state government works every day to put the brakes on new solar and wind projects. [VTDigger]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Seagoing Energy Storage Ship Meets The Offshore Wind Transmission Challenge” • Japanese startup PowerX launched in March 2021 with the ambitious idea of offloading electricity from offshore wind turbines, without having to lay undersea cables. The company now aims for its new Power Ark vessel to hit the waves within the next three years. [CleanTechnica]

Power Ark (Screenshot via PowerX)

World:

¶ “Freyr Battery Announces 31-GWh Lithium-Ion Deal” • Freyr Battery, a startup company based in Norway, is planning to build a battery factory in Mo i Rana, Norway that will have an annual capacity of 43 GWh. That may not be the biggest battery factory in the world, but it is in the running. And it already has an order for 31 GWh of batteries. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Fluence To Deliver Its First Energy Storage System In Taiwan” • Fluence said that it has been chosen by the renewable energy IPP, Ina Energy, a local subsidiary of the PJ Asset Management Group, as the provider for a 6-MW, 6-MWh energy storage battery system in Taoyuan, a municipality in the northwest of Taiwan. [Off Grid Energy Independence]

Solar system and batteries (Fluence Energy image)

¶ “Consortium Formed To Develop Geothermal In Northern Ireland” • A consortium of leading businesses and academics was formed to explore and develop deep geothermal energy projects in Northern Ireland. Geothermal NI will bring forward projects to provide 100% renewable energy to homes and businesses throughout the region. [ThinkGeoEnergy]

US:

¶ “Walmart Sued For Allegedly Dumping Over A Million Items Of Hazardous Waste A Year” • California filed a lawsuit against Walmart alleging that it has illegally dumped 159,600 pounds of hazardous waste per year in California landfills that are not equipped to handle the materials. The waste includes lithium batteries, pesticides, and cleaning supplies. [CNN]

Walmart (Caique Morais, Unsplash)

¶ “Democrats Scramble To Salvage Climate Provisions After Manchin Sinks Build Back Better” • With Senator Joe Manchin confirming he’s a “no” on President Joe Biden’s social spending package, the fate of the bill’s $550 bill worth of climate and energy provisions – and the President’s climate agenda – are now on the line. [CNN]

¶ “Elon Musk Says He’ll Be Paying $11 Billion In Tax This Year” • Elon Musk, the world’s richest person, has tweeted he will pay $11 billion (£8.3 billion) in tax for this year, “more taxes than any American in history.” Musk has been caught up in a public debate on social media over how much he pays. Bloomberg Billionaires Index puts his wealth at $243 billion. [BBC]

Musk at Boring Company event (Steve Jurvetson, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “Thirteen New Electric Vehicle Battery Factories Planned In USA Within Next Five Years” • In addition to EV battery plants now operating in the US, thirteen have been announced that are expected to be operational within five years. Of the thirteen planned plants, eight are joint ventures between automakers and battery manufacturers. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Siemens Gamesa Confirms 2.6-GW Coastal Virginia Deal” • Siemens Gamesa has reached an agreement with Dominion Energy to supply 176 of its SG 14-222 DD turbines for the 2600-MW Coastal Virginia commercial offshore wind project in the US, cementing an earlier deal between the two companies. Installation is set to begin in 2024. [reNews]

Wind turbine (Siemens Gamesa image)

¶ “Biden Raises Fuel-Economy Standards To Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions” • The EPA will issue a final rule to raise mileage standards starting in the 2023 model year, reaching a projected industry-wide target of 40 mpg by 2026. This is 25% higher than a rule finalized by the Trump administration last year and 5% higher than an EPA proposal in August. [WKYC]

¶ “To Access Low-Cost Renewables, A Colorado Co-Op Plans To Exit Tri-State Utility” • United Power intends to exit its contract with Tri-State Generation and Transmission. United Power’s costs for power from Tri-State are “disproportionately high,” said the co-op’s website, as Tri-State continues to relying heavily on fossil fuels. [pv magazine USA]

Have an appreciably untroubled day.

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