April 4 Energy News

April 4, 2023


¶ “Illinois Has No Time to Waste in Building Its Carbon-Free Electricity Future” • Illinois’ Climate and Equitable Jobs Act sets a bold goal for the state – no carbon pollution from electricity generation by 2045. The Union of Concerned Scientists has commissioned power flow modeling to study the effects of retiring Illinois fossil fuel plants. [UCS blog]

Wind turbines (US DOE image)

¶ “DOE’s Nuclear Growth Proposal ‘Untethered to Reality’” • The US DOE is once again promoting large-scale reactors after it had spent a decade advancing smaller models. It boldly declared in a report last month that the domestic nuclear industry has the potential to scale up to about 300 GW by 2050. This is beyond absurd – it’s irresponsible. [Energy Intelligence]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Oil And Gas Production In Gulf Of Mexico Has Twice The Climate Impact Of Official Estimates” • Oil and gas production in the Gulf of Mexico has significantly higher levels of potent, planet-heating gas than previously thought, research shows. The research found the climate effects of the operations are twice those of official estimates. [CNN]

Offshore oil rig (Kayden, Pexels, cropped)

¶ “Vehicle Exhaust Filters Do Not Remove ‘Ultrafine’ Pollution” • Airborne particles from vehicle emissions are a major factor in air pollution. Exhaust filters designed to mitigate this pollution are legally required in new vehicles, but a study, published in Environment International, shows they are not very effective at removing smal liquid particles. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Researchers In Australia Find A New Reason To Recycle Solar Panels” • Dr Mokhlesur Rahman, a lead researcher at the Deakin Institute of Frontier Materials, and his team of co-workers say they have developed a sustainable way to reclaim silicon from old solar panels, purify it, and reconfigure it to to use in better batteries. It is highly lucrative. [CleanTechnica]

Solar array (Raphael Cruz, Unsplash)


¶ “Philippines Sets June Auction For New 11,600 MW Renewables Capacity” • In June, the Philippines will auction rights to build up to 11,600 MW of new power capacity from renewable sources in the next three years, the Department of Energy said. The country is to reduce its reliance on coal, replacing it with onshore wind, solar, biomass, and waste-to-energy. [Yahoo Finance]

¶ “Climate Change: Catalonia In Grip Of Worst Drought In Decades” • In the Sau reservoir of Spain, teams in small boats are hard at work hauling out fish with nets. The idea is to remove them before they die and rot in the water, making it unusable for human consumption. The water level has dropped to below 10% of the reservoir’s capacity. [BBC]

Drought in the Sau Reservoir (espencat, public domain)

¶ “Next-Generation Volkswagen Golf Will Be Battery Electric” • Reuters reports that Thomas Schäfer, the head of the Volkswagen brand, told Germany’s Automobilwoche that the company does not plan to develop a new combustion engine generation of the Golf after the current version reaches the end of its normal life. The next generation will be all-electric. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “UN Asks International Court Of Justice For Advisory Opinion On Climate Change” • The UN General Assembly adopted by consensus a resolution requesting an advisory opinion from the International Court of Justice on the obligations of States in respect to climate change, with most speakers hailing the move as a milestone for climate justice. [CleanTechnica]

International Court of Justice (ICJ image)

¶ “Powering Up Britain: Multi-Billion Pound Investment In Energy Revolution Unveiled” • The UK government says that it is delivering a radical shift in the energy system towards cleaner, more affordable energy sources to power more of Britain from Britain. The plan is to scale up affordable, clean, homegrown power and foster green industries. [CleanTechnica]


¶ “From Nearly No Snow To A Potentially Record-Breaking Pile-Up In California” • After a remarkable series of winter storms, California water officials reported in their April snow survey the Sierra snowpack is among the largest on record, dating back to the 1950s. Last year, the snow depth in early April 2 was just 2.5 inches. This year it’s 126.5 inches. [CNN]

Snow (Daniela Cuevas, Unsplash)

¶ “Federal Judge Rules Willow Project Construction Can Move Forward As Environmental Groups’ Lawsuits Proceed” • A federal judge in Alaska declined to block progress on the controversial Willow oil drilling project while lawsuits against the project go on. Environmental law group Earthjustice and law firm Trustees for Alaska filed the complaints. [CNN]

¶ “EPA Grants California Electric Heavy Trucks Waiver” • For decades, California has had stricter standards on emissions, but only for passenger cars and light trucks. Cement mixers, tractor trailers, and garbage trucks, and other heavy trucks sold in the state only had to meet federal guidelines. Now the California Air Resources Board may regulate them also. [CleanTechnica]

Electric truck (Volvo Trucks image)

¶ “California Grid Needs $9.3 Billion Upgrade In Renewables Shift” • California’s power grid operator says $9.3 billion in new projects is needed over the next decade to support the state’s shift to renewable energy and plug-in cars. The California Independent System Operator identified 46 projects that will be needed for grid reliability. [Yahoo Finance]

¶ “Ørsted Signs US PPA With Google” • Google signed a 150-MW PPA with Ørsted to purchase renewable energy generated by the 268-MW Helena Wind Farm for the next 15 years. The project was commissioned in mid-2022 and provides electricity to the South ERCOT service territory, enough to provide annual power an estimated 90,000 homes. [reNews]

Have a decidedly enchanting day.

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