December 30 Energy News

December 30, 2021


¶ “Neoen’s 204-MW, 34-MWh Bulgana Project Points To Co-Located Renewables Future” • The future of renewables is a combination of large-scale assets, some of which are co-located. At least, that can be inferred in markets such as Australia where developer Neoen is continuing to develop a mix of big wind, PVs, and batteries. [PV Magazine]

Wind farm in Victoria (John Englart, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Feeding This Seaweed To Cows Can Eliminate Their Methane Emissions” • In a single year, a cow can emit as much greenhouse gas as a small car, but the amount can be reduced by adding seaweed to the diet. Rob Kinley, chief scientist at Futurefeed, found that the red algae Asparagopsis can practically eliminate methane emissions from livestock. [CleanTechnica]


¶ “Battery Recycling – A Fledgling Industry In Australia” • Some people raise a question about EVs: How fast can it go? But among people in environmental groups a different question always comes up: What happens to the batteries? The recent Future Battery Industries Cooperative Research Centre report provides a very good overview. [CleanTechnica]

Large EV batteries (Proterra image)

¶ “Vauxhall’s Electric Hatchback And Crossover Get More Range Without Bigger Battery Packs” • Vauxhall’s Mokka-e, a crossover, has a range of 201 miles with a battery pack of only 50 kWh. That comes out to just over 4 miles per kWh, or about 25 kWh/100 miles. This is really good. The smaller Nissan LEAF Plus uses about 27 kWh/100 miles. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “South African Court Halts Shell’s Oil Exploration In Whale Breeding Grounds” • A South African court has stopped Shell’s seismic testing for oil and gas along the nation’s eastern coastline, the BBC has reported, adding that this is pending a final ruling. Now This News has shared that the Wild Coast is also an area where whales breed. [CleanTechnica]

Wild Coast, South Africa (Jon Rawlinson, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “How India Hit 2030 Non-Fossil Fuel Energy Target In 2021” • India has achieved its target of generating 40% of the total installed electricity capacity from non-fossil energy sources, the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy said. The goal had been set under the 2015 Paris Agreement, and the target date was to achieve that level by 2030. [CNBC TV18]


¶ “The Beavers Returning To The Desert” • The Snake River runs through the middle of a shadeless desert land in Utah, at the bottom of a canyon. It could support a population of beavers, and researchers at Utah State University are working on a project to reintroduce them. Beavers can transform the land, as they build and maintain their dams. [BBC]

Mom and Pop Beaver (finchlake2000, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “67°F Day In Kodiak, Alaska, Sets New Statewide Temperature Record” • On Sunday, the Kodiak Tide Gauge station recorded an amazing 67°F, a new statewide temperature record for December. The Kodiak Airport recorded 65°F, breaking their record for the month by 9°F. One climatologist said, “I would not have thought such a thing possible.” [CNN]

¶ “Tesla Reaches Job Target For Buffalo Gigafactory” • In exchange for $950 million in subsidies, Tesla had to meet a mandate to employ 1,460 workers at its gigafactory in South Buffalo. When Covid-19 hit, everything was shut down. Tesla was able to get an extension on its employment goal, and now it has met that goal fully. [CleanTechnica]

Tesla employees (Tesla image)

¶ “Maine Getting High-Level Help With Electric Grid” • Huge solar farms are a vital part of Maine’s strategy for fighting climate change, but developers and regulators agree that the state’s electric grid can’t handle all the proposed projects. The US DOE approved Maine for a program to provide technical expertise to modernize the electric grid. [News Center Maine]

¶ “100,000 Diesel-Killing EVs For US Army, Eventually” • In a sign that the US Department of Defense is getting ready to expand its fleet of EVs, the 2022 Defense Authorization Act includes a provision that supports the Army’s Electric Light Reconnaissance Vehicles program, which reportedly had gone into limbo earlier this year. [CleanTechnica]

Gasmobile may be replaced by an EV (Oshkosh Defense image)

¶ “Apollo, NextEra Energy Partners Invest In 2.5-GW Renewable Energy Portfolio” • Funds managed by Apollo’s affiliates have made first close on $816 million in a convertible equity portfolio financing agreement with NextEra Energy Partners LP. This is for a 2.5-GW contracted renewable energy generation portfolio of thirteen assets in nine states. [Solar Industry]

¶ “Waymo To Partner With Geely To Build Autonomous Electric Ride-Hailing Vehicles” • Waymo is a self-driving spin-off of Alphabet intended to provide transportation as a service. Waymo says it will integrate its Waymo Driver autonomous technology into a new mobility-focused EV designed by Volvo, a Swedish company owned by Geely. [CleanTechnica]

Waymo EV (Waymo image)

¶ “Kentucky To Build State’s Largest Solar Project On Former Coal Mine” • The renewable energy firm, Savion, is building a 200-MW solar installation on a former coal mine on the border of Kentucky and West Virginia. When it is completed, it will be the largest solar project in Kentucky. It will generate enough electricity for over 33,000 homes. [Yale E360]

¶ “US Affirms New Interpretation For High-Level Nuclear Waste” • The Biden administration has affirmed a Trump administration interpretation of high-level radioactive waste that is based on the waste’s radioactivity rather than how it was produced. This means some waste from nuclear weapons could be stored with waste from power generation. [ABC News]

Have a genuinely lovely day.

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