Posts Tagged ‘nuclear power’

October 13 Energy News

October 13, 2019


¶ “Australia’s tortured energy debate: what is the state of play?” • There are a lot of moving parts in Australia’s tortured energy debate – and many of the parts are moving in the wrong direction. With parliament set to resume next week, and with energy back on the agenda, it is timely to recap the state of play for energy. [The Guardian]

Liddell power station (Jonny Weeks | The Guardian)

¶ “The Executive Branch Must Stop Suppressing Science” • Our ability to keep the public safe and move the country forward economically rests, in large part, on government science and research. That foundational work is endangered by manipulation for political ends, and the ramifications are vast and should concern all Americans. [Scientific American]

¶ “Why The Shift Toward Renewable Energy Is Not Enough” • The climate and biodiversity crises reflect the stories that we have allowed to infiltrate the collective psyche of industrial civilization. It is high time to let go of these stories. Regain clarity. Make room for other stories that can help us reshape our ways of being in the world. [GreenBiz]

Protest (Alex Hsuan Tsui | Shutterstock)

¶ “The Harm From Worrying About Climate Change” • Worry about climate change is affecting more people as global warming becomes more apparent around the world. But there is a solution that can help improve this anxiety and slow climate breakdown at the same time. And it helps to recognize that climate anxiety isn’t a pathology. [BBC]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Russian Scientists Say They’ve Found The Highest-Ever ‘Flares’ Of Methane In Arctic Waters” • Russian scientists doing research in Arctic waters found the most powerful ever methane jets shooting up from the seabed to the water’s surface, they said. Amounts of methane in the air over the East Siberian Sea were up to nine times the global average. [CNN]

Russian scientists aboard ship (Tomsk Polytechnic University)


¶ “Twenty Corporations Responsible For A Third Of All Carbon Emissions” • Climate Accountability published a report that tracks the CO₂ attributable to corporations since the Industrial Revolution began. It finds just 90 companies were responsible for two thirds of all CO₂ emissions, and a mere 20 of them are responsible for 30%. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “StreetScooter Plans To Enter US And Chinese Markets With New Electric Delivery Trucks” • Deutsche Post purchased EV startup StreetScooter in 2014. Then it started to replace all 70,000 vehicles in its fleet with electric trucks, and to sell trucks to other companies. Now it is planning to build factories in the US and China. [CleanTechnica]

StreetScooter delivery truck (StreetScooter image)

¶ “Saudi Arabia’s Renewables Drive Remains In First Gear” • Saudi Arabia has promised to diversify its economy away from fossil fuels, but so far there has been limited evidence of large renewable energy projects. Fossil-fuel production has risen and Saudi delegates refuse to accept international climate reports presented to the UN. [Energy Reporters]

¶ “Scientists Endorse Mass Civil Disobedience To Force Climate Action” • Over 300 scientists from at least 20 countries, including climate scientists, physicists, biologists, and others, endorsed a civil disobedience campaign to force governments to act to tackle climate change. They warning that failure to do so could inflict “incalculable human suffering.” []

Extinction Rebellion demonstration in London (Reuters)


¶ “‘If They Don’t Do It, We Will’: Greta Thunberg Rallies Climate Strikers For Long Haul” • Young people must be prepared to strike for a long time for action on climate change and not back down, the Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg has told a rally in Denver. Thunberg said she and fellow youth activists would not beg. [The Guardian]

¶ “Loons Likely To Disappear From Minnesota Due To Climate Change, New Report Warns” • Minnesota could lose its beloved state bird in coming decades if humans don’t stall climate change and prevent the common loon from shifting north, a report by the National Audubon Society, Survival by Degrees: 389 Bird Species on the Brink says. [Minneapolis Star Tribune]

Loon (David Joles | Star Tribune)

¶ “Renewable Energy Firm Doubles Down On Western Wind Projects” • Pattern Development, a California-based renewable energy developer, plans to increase its investments by seven-fold, with an economic impact of $1.2 billion, as it prepares to build more wind farms in New Mexico and West Texas over the next several years. [Longview News-Journal]

¶ “President Trump’s Support Of US Uranium Producers Awaits The Nuclear Fuel Working Group Report” • The Nuclear Fuel Working Group is due to release its report to President Trump in the next few days (by mid October) and a positive outcome is going to be needed to help re-establish the US domestic uranium supply chain. [InvestorIntel]

Have an entirely untroubled day.

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October 12 Energy News

October 12, 2019


¶ “Scottish Water Produces More Power From Renewables” • Solar panels in Speyside and wind turbines in Orkney are helping Scottish Water reap the benefits of renewables at its sites across the country. The utility firm says it has already hit its latest carbon-cutting and energy-efficiency targets, two years ahead of schedule. [Inverness Courier]

Scottish Water wind turbines

¶ “KPMG: Demand For Renewables ‘Insatiable'” • The renewables industry is in excellent health, but more policy work is needed to realize its full potential and avoid the worst effects of climate change, a KPMG study commissioned by Siemens Gamesa said. Debt market demand for sustainable energy increased from $5 billion in 2012 to $247 billion in 2018. [reNEWS]

¶ “The First 100% Electric Taxi In Spain” • In October, 2011, Roberto San José Mendiluce drove the first 100% electric taxi in Spain. He replaced the original 24-kWh battery in his Nissan LEAF after driving 354,000 km (220,000 miles). After 392,000 km with no emissions and no breakdowns, the car was hit by another vehicle and totaled. [CleanTechnica]

Electric taxi

¶ “Two New Coal Plants Cancelled In Botswana” • Two Japanese banks, the Japan Bank for International Cooperation and the Nippon Export and Investment Insurance, have withdrawn their support to finance two new 150-MW coal plants in Botswana. The country has world-class solar potential, averaging 3,200 hours per year of sunshine. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “UK Trio Pilot Temporary Power Solution” • Northern Powergrid is partnering with energy storage companies Offgrid Energy and Hyperdrive Innovation to trial a system that could provide temporary electricity in the UK during power cuts. The Silent Power solution will have electric vans with on-board energy storage systems. [reNEWS]

Mobile backup storage (Northern Powergrid image)

¶ “Hanergy’s Renewable Energy Center Bags LEED Zero certification” • Hanergy’s Renewable Energy Center received the LEED Zero certification, becoming the first building in the world certified to be Zero Carbon by the USGBC’s LEED certification authority. USGBC is promoting the “greening” process of the construction industry. [Greentech Lead]


¶ “Saddleridge Fire: One Dead In Blaze Raging Round Los Angeles” • At least one person is dead in a fast-moving wildfire that has razed 4,700 acres north of Los Angeles, California, forcing thousands of others to flee. The Saddleridge fire has led to a mandatory evacuation for 25,000 homes, some of which have been destroyed. [BBC]

Fire (Reuters image)

¶ “The Coal King Is Racing To Avoid Bankruptcy” • Coal baron Robert Murray, a forceful supporter of President Donald Trump, is fighting to save his mining empire from financial collapse. Murray Energy is America’s largest private coal miner. It recently failed to make payments to lenders, and S&P downgraded the company’s credit rating to “default.” [CNN]

¶ “OUC Commissioners Approve Plan To Add 149 MW Of Solar Power” • In Florida, the Orlando Utilities Commission approved a plan to add 149 MW of solar power to its generation portfolio, doubling the utility’s solar capacity. The solar resource would provide enough energy to power around 27,000 residential customers. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

Solar trackers (Dennis Schroeder | NREL)

¶ “Wells Fargo And Other Climate Destroying Banks” • The Sierra Club is asking people to stop doing business with banks like Wells Fargo that fund fossil fuel activities. Anyone with an account at Wells Fargo, including credit card accounts, can walk in to any branch at their earliest convenience, close it, and make a point by telling them why. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Vigor Completes Construction Of Massive Wave Energy Buoy” • Vigor Industrial of Portland, Oregon, has completed construction of an 826-ton energy buoy for Ocean Energy, an Irish company. The buoy is being moved to Oahu, Hawaii. It measures 125 x 59 feet with a draft of 31 feet and has capacity of 1.25 MW. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

Energy buoy (Courtesy of Ocean Energy)

¶ “Sierra College Dedicates New Solar Array To Save Money, Increase Use Of Renewable Energy, And Shade Parking Spaces On Rocklin Campus” • Sierra College dedicated a 2-MW solar parking canopy at its campus in Rocklin, California. The system, which includes storage, is projected to save millions of dollars in long-term energy costs. [YubaNet]

¶ “The Midwest’s Solar Future Will Be Unlike Anything Seen Before” • Fitch Solutions Marco Research released a solar sector report, Midwest US Set To Experience Strong Growth In Solar Sector, which predicts that the Midwest will contribute heavily to a 100-GW increase in solar power capacity in the US over the next 10 years. [pv magazine USA]

PV installation in Iowa (Ideal Energy | prnewswire)

¶ “Louisiana kills net metering. Will other states roll back solar?” • Louisiana’s multiyear brawl over rooftop solar policy finally has a winner. Much to the dismay of US renewable energy advocates, the winner is the regulated utilities. A 3-2 vote by the Louisiana Public Service Commission will abandon net metering starting next year. [E&E News]

¶ “Cunningham To Introduce Bill Aimed At Keeping Diablo Canyon Power Plant Open” • California Assemblyman Jordan Cunningham says he plans to introduce a bill that could keep Diablo Canyon Power Plant operational. The bill would classify nuclear power as renewable under California’s Renewable Portfolio Standard. [KSBY San Luis Obispo News]

Have an astoundingly jolly day.

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October 11 Energy News

October 11, 2019

Science and Technology:

¶ “Carlsberg Is Working On Beer Bottles Made Of Paper” • Carlsberg, the Danish beer company, is getting closer to its goal of selling beer in paper bottles. Fiber bottles are better for the environment than aluminum or glass because they are sourced in a sustainable way, and because paper has a “very low impact on production processes.” [CNN]

Carlsberg’s latest paper bottle prototype (Carlsberg image)


¶ “Dyson Abandons Electric Car Project” • After making plans and spending millions, Dyson has quit the car-making business. Going forward, the company will “concentrate on the formidable task of manufacturing solid-state batteries” as well as other “fundamental” technologies like vision systems, robotics, machine learning, and AI. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Danish Six Pack Forms Taiwan Offshore Cluster” • Six Danish companies are collaborating to provide services to the offshore wind sector in Taiwan. They are ProCon Wind Energy, A-leaf, All NRG, Comtech, Hytor and Site Solution Partners. Each company will operate as independently from each other from a shared office in Taiwan. [reNEWS]

Mast sections (Pro Con Wind Energy image)

¶ “Three Battery Researchers Share Nobel Prize In Chemistry” • Three people who are primarily responsible for creating the rechargeable lithium ion battery that has become the preferred power source for personal digital devices, energy storage, and electric car batteries today are sharing the Nobel Prize for chemistry. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Equinor To Invest Nearly $550 Million In Floating Windpower Off Norway” • Equinor will invest close to 5 billion Norwegian crowns ($549 million) to build floating turbines that will supply power to several North Sea oil and gas platforms, the first such project of its kind, the Norwegian firm said. The project will have a capacity of 88 MW. []

Offshore wind farm

¶ “Vietnam’s First, Southeast Asia’s Largest Floating Solar Project Secures Funding” • Da Mi Hydro Power signed an agreement with the Asian Development Bank to fund development of Vietnam’s first large-scale floating PV solar energy facility. The 47.5-MW solar energy plant will be built at the utility’s existing 175-MW hydropower plant. [Smart Energy]

¶ “Union Demands Halt To New Wind And Solar Projects In Queensland, But It’s Already Happened” • The influential Electrical Trades Union has demanded that the Queensland government put an immediate halt to all large scale renewable and energy projects until it has put together a “just transition plan” and a detailed energy policy. [RenewEconomy]

Wind farm in Queensland

¶ “Saskatchewan Launches Call To Build 300 MW Of Wind Power Capacity” • Saskatchewan is launching a new request for proposals to add up to 300 MW of wind power generation capacity. Environment Minister Dustin Duncan said the province could quadruple its wind power when a project or projects come online in late 2023 or 2024. [GuelphToday]

¶ “With Appeal Of TEPCO Acquittal, Thousands Hit By Fukushima Nuclear Disaster Seek Closure” • Plaintiffs appealed a ruling handed down by the Tokyo District Court in mid-September that found three former TEPCO executives not guilty of professional negligence. They had filed a  class action lawsuit against the executives. [The Japan Times]

Namie, evacuated (Steven L Herman, Wikimedia Commons)


¶ “Nearly 600 Ex-EPA Officials Want Congress To Investigate Agency Over ‘Inappropriate Threat Of Use’ Of Authority” • Nearly 600 former EPA officials are calling on Congress to investigate the Trump administration’s “inappropriate threat of use of EPA authority” against the state of California over recent environmental policies. [CNN]

¶ “California Governor Says ‘Greed’ To Blame For Power Outage As More Than 300,000 Remain In The Dark” • An angry Gov Gavin Newsom slammed California’s largest utility over its power shutoffs, saying they’re the result of years of greed and mismanagement. PG&E cut power to almost 800,000 customers Wednesday to avoid fires. [CNN]

Oakland, blacked out (Ray Chavez | San Jose Mercury via AP)

¶ “College To Build The Largest Private Solar Array In Iowa” • Thanks to a 20-year purchase agreement with Trusted Energy, Grinnell College will soon begin installing over 10,000 solar panels near campus. Starting in the spring of 2020, the College will be able to generate up to 30% of its power through solar energy. [Scarlet and Black]

¶ “Huffman Gets Bleak Input on Fisheries” • Fishing has long provided a livelihood in Northern California’s Humboldt Count, but when Rep Jared Huffman went on a listening tour, he found that is no longer true. Four important kinds of salmon have been declared overfished. This is not because of excessive fishing; it is because the climate is changing. [North Coast Journal]

Fishing boat

¶ “California, New England Will Miss 2050 Carbon Targets At Current Pace, Reports Find” • Although US cities, states, and corporations are becoming more aggressive in their aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, some of the most ambitious players are falling short of their goals, according to several recent reports. [Utility Dive]

¶ “Trump’s Push To Save Coal Is Failing. Coal Demand To Plunge To 42-Year Low” • President Donald Trump’s mission to revive America’s coal industry is failing. US power plants are expected to consume less coal next year than at any point since President Jimmy Carter was in office, according to forecasts by the DOE’s Energy Information Administration. [CNN]

Have an enchantingly beautiful day.

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October 10 Energy News

October 10, 2019


¶ “Breakdown Of Interdependency Between Big Auto And Big Oil” • Many automobile manufacturers now moving to supply power to their EV customers. The biggest competitors targeting those customers may be the oil companies. Here’s the question: Are we witnessing the end of the century-old relationship between Big Oil and Big Auto? [CleanTechnica]

EV charging

Science and Technology:

¶ “How Climate Change Primed California’s Power Shutdown” • Since the 1980s, the size and ferocity of the fires in California have trended upward: Fifteen of the 20 largest fires in California history have occurred since 2000. And since the 1970s, the amount of area burned in the state has increased by a factor of five. [National Geographic]

¶ “Bosch Claims Better Chips Can Increase EV Range” • Bosch, one of the largest suppliers of components for car makers in the world, is devoting more resources to designing specifically for EVs. It is building a factory in Germany to manufacture chips that it says are less expensive and sufficiently more efficient to extend ranges of EVs. [CleanTechnica]

Semiconductor (Bosch image)

¶ “Manatees And Key Deer Are Being Pushed To Extinction By Climate-Fueled Superstorms” • Manatees and Key deer are among 10 species that are particularly at risk of disappearing as intensifying hurricanes bring more rainfall, storm surge and winds that destroy coastal habitats, the Center for Biological Diversity said in a report. [Miami Herald]


¶ “MNRE Issues A Rebuttal On A Report Casting Doubt On Achievement Of The Renewable Energy Target” • The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy issued a rebuttal on a recent report by rating agency CRISIL that had said India may not be able to achieve its renewable energy capacity addition target of 175 GW by 2022. []

Solar farm

¶ “Delhi Penalizes Three DISCOMs For Defaulting On Renewable Purchase Obligations” • The Delhi Electricity Regulatory Commission imposed penalties of ₹17.2 million ($240,000) to ₹28.8 million ($410,000) on three power distribution companies for defaulting on renewable energy purchase obligations. [Mercom India]

¶ “BHP Turns To Renewables To Power Huge Copper Mine In Chile” • Australian mining giant BHP says it expects to make significant cost savings when it replaces gas with renewables to provide most, if not all the power at the Escondida copper mine in Chile. The Escondida copper mine is the largest of its type in the world. [RenewEconomy]

Escondida mine

¶ “Lord Howe Island Finds Renewable Energy Solution With Solar And Battery Storage” • The Australian Renewable Energy Agency announced that Lord Howe Island will soon be powered by a solar and battery system and reduce reliance on diesel. The remote island will have at least 1.2 MW of solar PVs and 3.2 MWh of battery capacity. [Mirage News]

¶ “Malampaya’s Finite Bounty Spurs Hectic Race For More Renewables, Other Oil-Gas Fields” • The Philippines continues to be confronted with energy supply challenges. But one that has to be dealt with immediately is the urgency to find and develop new energy sources to fill the void that will be left by depletion of the Malampaya gas field. [Business Mirror]

Malampaya gas platforms (Shell image)

¶ “SUEZ Signs New Organic Waste Treatment Contract” • French company SUEZ has contracted to design, build, operate, and maintain an organic waste treatment center in Montreal. The plant will process organic waste produced by nearly 1.5 million Montreal inhabitants into biomethane. Commissioning is expected in 2022. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

¶ “Yukon Energy Axes Thermal Plant Plans” • Yukon Energy Corp is cancelling its plans to develop a thermal power plant in the Whitehorse area, bending to Yukoners’ concerns, including climate change, proximity to homes, and cost. The decision was also based on “technical, environmental, and socio-economic research.” [Yukon News]

Sign for green power (Alistair Maitland | Yukon News file)


¶ “Elizabeth Warren Unveils Environmental Justice Plan” • Sen Elizabeth Warren detailed a new environmental justice plan aimed at bolstering and protecting vulnerable communities on the front lines of the climate crisis. As president, she would use the powers of the office for a “just transition” toward a green energy economy. [CNN]

¶ “Wind Will Speed Holy Cross Energy To 70% Renewable Goal” • A year ago, Holy Cross Energy, which serves areas in western Colorado, announced a goal to have 70% of its electricity be carbon-free by 2030. Holy Cross recently announced that its 2030 goal would be met for sure by 2021. Now, it is considering a more ambitious goal. [Mountain Town News]

Colorado Green wind farm (Allen Best)

¶ “PacifiCorp Plan To Move Away From Coal Exposes Deep Divide Among Western States” • PacifiCorp’s 20-year plan to cut way back on coal-fired power and ramp up wind and solar, exposes a harsh reality: With more than half of its power still coming from coal, the utility is stuck in the middle of a regional tug of war over the future of coal. [OPB News]

¶ “US Nuclear Power And Uranium Mining Industries Hope For Trump Bailout” • A plea from uranium mining companies and nuclear power plant operators for tax breaks and other federal financial boosts is going before President Donald Trump, as his administration studies reviving the US uranium industry in the name of national security. [The Japan Times]

Have a thoroughly enjoyable day.

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October 9 Energy News

October 9, 2019


¶ “Upcoming Canadian Federal Election Is About Climate Change” • While US politics dominate the news, Canada is going to the polls. It’s likely that Justin Trudeau, the current Prime Minister, will be returning as leader of Canada. But there is a lot to say about the story of climate change in Canada and how it’s shaping this election cycle. [CleanTechnica]

Justin Trudeau and family (SrA Joshua RM Dewberry, USAF)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Buildings Account For 11% Of Global Emissions. Here Are Two Ways To Slash That Number” • The steel and concrete used in new buildings come with a high price, in terms of CO₂ emissions. There are ways to reduce those emissions, however. One is to use wood instead of steel, and the other is to use new methods for making cement. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Hundreds Of Temperature Records Broken Over Summer” • Almost 400 all-time high temperatures were set in the northern hemisphere over the summer, analysis indicates. According to Dr Robert Rohde, Lead Scientist at Berkeley Earth, the increasing number of record high temperatures is a part of the long-term trend of global warming. [BBC]

Wildfire in France (Bonsai-ka, Wikimedia Commons)


¶ “23,415 Solar Panels Installed In Luxembourg’s Largest Solar Park” • Luxembourg’s largest PV power station is made up of the RTL Group’s transmitter sites in Junglinster and Beidweiler, where 23,415 solar panels were installed at the beginning of September. The solar panels are scheduled to begin working as of mid-2020. [RTL Today]

¶ “NAIF May Fund Renewables-Powered Manganese Metals Project In WA” • The federal government’s Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility agreed to conduct due diligence on a ground-breaking mining project in Western Australia. It could use a renewables-dominated power source for production of manganese metals. [RenewEconomy]

Wind and solar at Coober Pedy (Christian Sprogoe)

¶ “Power Retailers Facing Business Model Risk Amid Rise Of Renewables” • Kerry Schott, chair the national body overseeing energy security in Australia, castigated power retailers for treating consumers poorly and warned their business models are at risk as the energy market changes with the rise of renewable power. [The Sydney Morning Herald]

¶ “GE secures Cypress Brazilian debut” • GE Renewable Energy is to supply turbines of its Cypress platform to EDF Renewables for the over 132MW extension to the Ventos da Bahia wind farm in Brazil. It is GE’s first contract with the company in the South American country. The deal covers the supply of 25 GE 5.3-MW machines. [reNEWS]

Cypress wind turbine (GE image)

¶ “Financing Cost Accounts For The Largest Component Of Renewable Energy Tariffs In India” • Mobilizing finance for low-carbon energy solutions is a critical challenge for global energy transition, according to a policy brief by Council on Energy, Environment and Water, a non-governmental organisation based in Delhi. []

¶ “ABB Supplies Prefabricated Substation To Harness Geothermal Power” • ABB commissioned a geothermal power plant in a volcanic complex in a remote highland part of South Sumatra, far from the island’s main transmission system. The plant provides 220 MW of electricity – enough to power almost 500,000 local homes. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

Sumatra (ABB image)

¶ “EDF Warns Flamanville Weld Repairs To Cost €1.5 Billion” • French utility EDF warned that its Flamanville nuclear project in France will cost €1.5 billion ($1.65 billion) more than previously expected as it counts the costs of weld repairs demanded by French nuclear watchdog ASN. Flamanville is running a decade behind schedule. [Reuters]

¶ “Partners Hail Turbine Triumph At Formosa 1” • Installation of turbines was completed at the 120-MW Formosa 1 phase two offshore wind farm off Taiwan. Taiwanese developer Swancor, which is one of the project partners, said commissioning of the Siemens Gamesa 6-MW hardware is ongoing but should be done by the end of the year. [reNEWS]

Formosa 1 Phase 2 (Swancor image)


¶ “Tribes, Environmental Groups Sue To Stop Mine In Alaskan Salmon Spawning Areas” • Five environmental, business, and native organizations sued the EPA over a proposed controversial Alaska gold and copper mine the Trump administration backed. The mine had been stopped due to environmental concerns during the Obama era. [CNN]

¶ “Northern California Braced For Mega Power Cut” • Pacific Gas and Electric is cutting electricity to around 800,000 customers in Northern California, in an attempt to prevent wildfires. Large swathes of the San Francisco Bay Area outside the city are expected to be affected. PG&E warned the shut down could last several days. [BBC]

Paradise, California, after last year’s wildfire (Getty Images)

¶ “Consumers Energy Gets Nod For 166-MW Wind Buy In Michigan” • Michigan regulators greenlighted an application by utility Consumers Energy to acquire a 166-MW wind park in Hillsdale County. Project development will be undertaken by Crescent Wind LLC. The power plant will be brought online by the end of this year. [Renewables Now]

¶ “Renewable Energy Firm Doubles Down On Western Wind Projects” • A California-based renewable energy developer plans to increase by seven-fold its investments as it prepares to build more wind farms in New Mexico over the next several years. It aims to serve customer demands in the state and export electricity to other markets. [RFD-TV]

Have an absolutely magical day.

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October 8 Energy News

October 8, 2019


¶ “Coal Finished As Renewable Costs Crash” • Bloomberg just published another stark reminder of the shifting landscape for energy generation. Fossil fuels have a limited time as viable sources of energy, because of economics. Solar+Batteries are the “killer app,” extremely scalable once they reach an acceptable cost, and we are reaching it. [MacroBusiness]

Please click on the image to enlarge it

¶ “Are Mortgage-Backed Securities Storm Proof?” • According to some investors, hurricanes and flooding pose a far larger threat than is being priced into mortgage securities. A key culprit may be outdated flood maps, meaning far fewer people are required to have flood insurance than are at risk, the investors and researchers say. []

Science and Technology:

¶ “Ghost Forests Are Visceral Examples Of The Advance of Climate Change” • Ghost forests can result from rising seas. Swaths of dead, white, trees are created when salty water moves into forested areas, first slowing, and eventually halting, the growth of new trees. That means that when old trees die, there aren’t replacements. [TIME]

Ghost forest in Maryland (Luke Piotrowski | Newsy)


¶ “Ben & Jerry’s Maker To Slash New Plastic Use By Nearly 400,000 Tons Per Year” • Consumer goods giant Unilever, maker of Ben & Jerry’s and Dove, committed to halving its use of new plastic by 2025. Its goal is to use no more than 350,000 tonnes (386,000 tons) of new plastic each year by 2025, down from around 700,000 tonnes in 2018. [CNN]

¶ “EVs To Revolutionize Postal Services, And More” • Parcel and Postal Expo, the largest event for courier services in Europe, is taking place in Amsterdam. This year, the Expo is putting a new emphasis on e-mobility, and this includes not only EVs, but also charging infrastructure. The new EVs range up from the smallest delivery vehicles. [CleanTechnica]

Author on a Chinese electric delivery vehicle

¶ “A French City Introduces Free Public Transportation” • Now known as an industrial city, Dunkirk wants to change its image to one with a green future. Its leaders want it to have transportation powered by green electricity. One key is a free public transit system that will connect Dunkirk to its neighboring cities and towns. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Over €2 Billion Invested In Renewable Energy In Ukraine” • In January to September 2019, over €2 billion was invested in developing renewable energy in Ukraine, according to the State Agency for Energy Efficiency and Energy Saving. Renewable capacity rose from about 2,300 MW at the end of 2018 to about 5,000 MW as of October 1, 2019. [Ukrinform]

Solar array

¶ “‘Significant Uncertainty’ Over Wind Outlook” • According to WindEurope’s new ‘Wind Energy Outlook to 2023’ report, forecasting growth of Europe’s wind capacity is subject to “significant uncertainty.” The study has found that annual volumes of new wind capacity up to 2023 could range between 13 GW and 22 GW. [reNEWS]

¶ “Australia Could Aim For 700% Renewables, ARENA Boss” • Australia’s energy minister thinks having 20% of electricity come from solar and wind is too much. Labor wants to get to 50% by 2030. But Australia’s chief scientist, Alan Finkel is suggesting a figure of 700%, a goal supported by the Australian Renewable Energy Agency. [RenewEconomy]

Wind farm for Western Australia

¶ “Total Turns Sod On 52 MW Of Solar In Japan” • Total has begun construction of a 52-MW PV plant in Japan. Total Solar International, the utility-scale solar business of the oil and gas player, is building the solar power plant in Osato, in the Miyagi prefecture. The facility is expected to start producing power in 2021. [reNEWS]

¶ “Solar Power Is The Red-Hot Growth Area In Oil-Rich Alberta” • Solar power is beating expectations in Alberta, where the renewable energy source is poised to expand dramatically in the coming years as international power companies invest in it. Fresh capital is being deployed in the Alberta’s electricity generation sector. [Financial Post]

Sunrise near Edmonton (Max Maudie | Postmedia)


¶ “Frito-Lay Ditches Diesel In Favor Of A Renewable-Powered Fleet At Its Modesto Facility” • PepsiCo is replacing the fleet of diesel freight vehicles that service its Frito-Lay plant in Modesto, California with zero-emission and near-zero emission vehicles. Frito-Lay is getting 15 Tesla class 8 trucks, 6 BYD class 6 trucks, a PV array, and a lot more. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Miami-Dade Locks In Order For 33 Electric Buses From Proterra” • Miami-Dade is taking a big first step to electrified transit with the purchase of 33 fully electric buses from Proterra. It is the largest purchase of electric buses to date on the US east coast. Each bus reduces CO₂ emissions by 230,000 pounds annually, compared to diesel. [CleanTechnica]

Electric bus charging station (Proterra image)

¶ “Target To Achieve 25% Of Its Renewable Electricity Goal By End Of 2019” • Back in June, the Minneapolis-based retailer announced that it had set a 100% renewable electricity goal, which would see all its stores in the US running on clean power by 2030. By the end of this year, it will have accomplished 25% of this mission. [Hydrogen Fuel News]

¶ “Five States Now Have Programs To Help Struggling Nuclear Power Plants” • The DOE’s Energy Information Administration reported that Ohio joined Connecticut, Illinois, New Jersey, and New York in implementing programs to provide financial compensation and other assistance to struggling nuclear power plant operators. [Interesting Engineering]

Have an appropriately cheerful day.

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October 7 Energy News

October 7, 2019


¶ “In The Mountains, Climate Change Is Disrupting Everything, From How Water Flows To When Plants Flower” • Mountain snowpack is shrinking and melting earlier in the spring. Warmer and longer summers increase the threat of wildfires, and the fire season has lengthened by at least a month since 1979. The list of problems just goes on. [InsideClimate News]

Colorado farmland (Jutta Strohmaier)

¶ “The Paris Agreement Hinges On A European Hydrogen Economy” • Economic theorist Jeremy Rifkin predicted the rise of a hydrogen economy 17 years ago, but he had not foreseen fracking. Now, his words are proving true. Hydrogen has come back on the scene,  with significant implications for climate change and the global economy. [Energy Digital]

¶ “Who are Extinction Rebellion and what do they want?” • Environmental campaign group Extinction Rebellion says it will start two-weeks of protest on Monday, October 7. Extinction Rebellion (XR for short) wants governments to declare a “climate and ecological emergency” and take immediate action to address climate change. [BBC]

Hourglass in a circle logo (Getty Images)

¶ “Oyster Creek, Three Mile Island: How The Power Grid Can Lose Two Nuclear Plants In A Year” • Three Mile Island closed almost exactly a year after Oyster Creek. More nuclear power plant retirements may be on the horizon, including the Davis-Besse and Perry nuclear power plants in Ohio and Beaver Valley, in Pennsylvania. []


¶ “UK Universities In Landmark Deal To Buy Energy Direct From Windfarms” • Twenty of the UK’s leading universities have struck a £50 million deal to buy renewable energy directly from British windfarms for the first time. The collaborative clean energy deal will supply electricity from wind farms across Scotland and Wales. [The Guardian]

Wind farm (Murdo MacLeod | The Guardian)

¶ “Some $71 Billion Of Japanese Coal Assets At Risk From Cheaper Renewables” • As much as $71 billion of Japanese coal assets could be at risk as the economic viability of plants is undermined by cheaper renewable energy, research by the University of Tokyo, Carbon Tracker and the Carbon Disclosure Project showed. [The Business Times]

¶ “Queensland Celebrates 4-GW Solar Milestone: Three Panels For Every Person” • The Queensland state Labor government has celebrated reaching the milestone of 4 GW of solar PV capacity in the state. It says its solar capacity is now more than twice the capacity of the state’s biggest power station, the Gladstone coal generator. [RenewEconomy]

Rugby Run solar project (Adani Renewables)

¶ “‘We Need Support’: Pacific Islands Seek Help And Unity To Fight Climate Change” • Swedish activist Greta Thunberg scolded world leaders for “failing us.” But while one of the groups most vulnerable to climate change, the Pacific Islands, may have received fewer headlines, it was among those making the strongest calls for action. [WKMS]


¶ “California’s Clean Truck Rule: First Of Its Kind And Long Overdue” • California officials are gearing up to launch a momentous new rule to tackle one of the largest sources of pollution in the state: medium- and heavy-duty commercial trucks. After years of deliberation and public input, the rule is the first of its kind and long overdue. [CleanTechnica]

Thor Trucks cab (Kyle Field | CleanTechnica)

¶ “Tesla Model 3 Has 24% of Small And Midsize Luxury Car Sales in USA” • The Tesla Model 3 has taken the US luxury car market by storm, with an estimated market share of 24% for the first three quarters of this year. The Model 3 was by far the best selling luxury car in the country in Q4 of last year, but sales have increased since then. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “State’s Largest Solar Power Project Proposed For Concord, Sardinia” • EDF Renewables has filed documents in Albany to begin the process of seeking a permit to put solar panels on 2,500 acres in the New York towns of Concord and Sardinia. One farmer hopes to earn about $1,000 an acre every year by leasing his property to EDF. [Buffalo News]

Solar panels in a field

¶ “Campus Sustainability Efforts Expanded Wind Energy Initiative” • Carnegie Mellon and ENGIE Resources announced energy agreements to 2024. Carnegie Mellon will buy its energy from Radford’s Run Wind Farm in Macon County, Illinois for its Pittsburgh campus. Eventually, the wind farm will serve all of the campus electricity needs. [CMU The Tartan Online]

¶ “From The Rooftops, Big Box Stores Are Embracing Solar” • At a time when the federal government is increasingly stepping away from addressing issues like sustainability and climate change, corporate America is stepping up. Retail and tech giants are taking action to respond because it’s good for business and good for corporate image. [The New York Times]

Have an astonishingly good day.

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October 6 Energy News

October 6, 2019


¶ “Wexit: Why Some Albertans Want To Separate From Canada” • As talk about climate change heats up and construction on pipelines grows cold, frustrated Albertans have breathed new life into old regional grudges and the western separatist movement. People in a province that is a major oil producer, are thinking to “Wexit Alberta.” [BBC]

Alberta oil field (The Washington Post via Getty Images)

¶ “Rachel Maddow On How Russia’s ‘Resource Curse’ Drove Putin To Election Interference” • In her new book, Blowout: Corrupted Democracy, Rogue State Russia, and the Richest, Most Destructive Industry on Earth, Maddow concludes that Russia is a victim of a “resource curse” that drove it to interfere in US elections. [KUAR]

¶ “The Tough Task Of Persuading A Climate Denier” • Some 84% of American adults believe that global warming is happening, according to research by the Yale Program on Climate Change Communication. But what’s going on with the other 16%? They can be moved. For example, cynics can have epiphanies when they talk to local EV owners. [CleanTechnica]

Child and Tulips (Carolyn Fortuna | CleanTechnica)

Science and Technology:

¶ “International Research Team Claims New Perovskite Solar Record: 18.1%” • Perovskite solar cells are inexpensive and easy to make, but have had low efficiency. An international team from China, Switzerland, and Japan claims its perovskite solar cells have an efficiency of 18.1%, with a new configuration based on cesium lead iodide. [CleanTechnica]


¶ “Notre-Dame: How An Underwater Forest In Ghana Could Help Rebuild A Paris Icon” • A forest of massive trees has been submerged since Lake Volta was created for hydropower in1965. A Ghanaian company believes that using its wood to rebuild Notre-Dame is more environmentally friendly than cutting down new trees. [BBC]

Trees in Lake Volta (Dennis Ivers)

¶ “Global Shipping Is Making False Impressions About Circumventing Pollution – Billions Spent On ‘Cheat Devices'” • Will Crisp of The Independent follows the money: “More than $12 billion (£9.7 billion) has been spent on … open-loop scrubbers.” They capture sulfur from the exhaust, but they discharge it into the ocean. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Water Resources Minister ‘Totally’ Accepts Drought Linked To Climate Change” • David Littleproud, Australia’s drought and water resources minister, said he “totally” accepts that worsening droughts are linked to climate change. He signaled more support for regional communities was coming as Australia’s big dry “escalates.” [The Guardian]

Worsening droughts (Mick Tsikas | EPA)

¶ “Kansai Electric Gift Scandal Extends To Kyoto Branch” • Three former vice presidents of Kansai Electric’s Kyoto branch received cash and gift coupons from Eiji Moriyama, the late deputy mayor of Takahama, the home of a Kansai Electric nuclear plant. The scandal over gifts to utility officials, which is related to nuclear energy, is growing. [Japan Today]

¶ “Jordan: A Case Study In Expanding Renewable Energy” • Jordan has a highly indebted economy, heavily reliant on fossil fuel imports. To improve energy security and reduce economic burdens, Jordan implemented a phased removal of fuel and electricity subsidies in 2012. It has adopted aggressive renewable energy targets. [Roya News English]

Solar panels


¶ “‘Sunny Day Flooding’ And 90-Degree Days During South’s Endless Summer” • Atlanta has broken a record for 90-degree days this year; there have been 91 of them, wildly surpassing the average of 37 per year. Charleston has had 58 coastal flood events so far in 2019. These are effects of global warming, and this September was another record month. [CNN]

¶ “Greta Thunberg Leads Iowa Students In Pop-Up Climate Strike” • In Iowa City, home to the University of Iowa, 14-year-old high school student Massimo Biggers was planning the protest he has done every Friday since last spring, when he got a message from Greta Thunberg saying she would join him. Over 3,000 people showed up for that. [CleanTechnica]

Protest in Iowa (Credit: Greta Thunberg via Twitter)

¶ “Donald Trump’s attacks on science” • The president’s denial goes past climate, a report by US campaign group the National Task Force on Rule of Law and Democracy says. Compiled by ex-government officials, it says that the Trump administration commits “almost weekly violations” to the impartiality of scientific research. [The Guardian]

¶ “Utility Giant Sets Up Critical Test For Top 2020 Democrats On Nuclear Power” • Duke Energy, one of the largest US utilities, announced last month that it plans to request new licenses for eleven nuclear reactors. This sets up a critical new test for Democratic presidential candidates on how to achieve zero-carbon energy generation. [HuffPost]

Have an extraordinarily fine day.

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October 5 Energy News

October 5, 2019


¶ “Two Trends in Wind Power That Investors Need to Know About” • The production tax credit, which subsidizes electricity generated by wind farms in their first 10 years of production, will be phased out at the end of this year. This is reasonable because windpower has matured. But maturity brings both challenges and opportunities. [Motley Fool]

Wind farm (Getty Images)

¶ “Police Tracking Of Climate Protesters? It’s Worse Than You Could Possibly Imagine” • American taxpayer dollars are being used to subject law abiding citizens to surveillance and possible arrest if they dare raise their voices against any project that will transport liquid death through their communities. The land of the free? Hardly. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Russia Signs Climate Accords And Putin Responds To Climate Change, But There’s A Catch” • Putin’s plan to address climate change is as enlightening about the Russia leader’s intentions as it is disturbing. It reveals the country’s strategy for the next 25 years, and it does not look like it will do much good. We can hope it is a start, however. [CleanTechnica]

St Basil’s Cathedral


¶ “Lilly Is On A Mission To End Thailand’s Plastic Addiction” • Lilly is a young student in Thailand who often skips school for an hour to clean up canals and streams. In a video, Lilly explains that she has learned more by cleaning up canals than she has by going to school. Inspired by Greta Thunberg, she is working to make a difference. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “$3.3 Million Grant For Fuel Cell/Electric Aviation Startup ZeroAvia” • The aviation startup ZeroAvia has received a £2.7 million ($3.3 million) grant from the government of the UK. The funds will be used to support the continued development of fuel cell/electric propulsion technology to reduce aviation carbon dioxide emissions. [CleanTechnica]

Hydrogen-powered airplane (Credit: ZeroAvia)

¶ “Argentina Invites Russia To Participate In Renewable Energy Projects – Diplomat” • Argentina is inviting Russia to participate in its renewable energy projects, the country’s Secretary of Foreign Affairs told Sputnik. He specifically mentioned a wind farm to be developed in the region of Patagonia where there are strong winds. [UrduPoint News]

¶ “Draining Lake Pedder Fifty Years On Gains Environmental Momentum” • When an ancient glacial lake in a remote and wild part of Tasmania was flooded in 1972, a movement was born. The flooding turned Lake Pedder from a 1,000 hectare (2470 acre) lake to a 24,200 hectare reservoir. The Restore Pedder campaign is working to restore the lake. [ABC News]

Lake Pedder, before it was inundated (Photo: Lindsay Hope)

¶ “Siemens Gamesa 4.X To Make 200-MW Chinese Debut” • Siemens Gamesa has secured a deal to supply 4.X turbines for a 200-MW wind farm in China, its first contract for the platform in the market. The German-Spanish manufacturer will deliver 42 units rated at 4.8 MW to independent power producer Xinjiang TBEA Group for the project. [reNEWS]


¶ “PA To Join Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative” • Pennsylvania is taking a major step forward in its efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Gov Tom Wolf has set the wheels in motion for the Keystone State to join nine other northeastern states in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative. Announcing the plan, he spoke of climate change. [Public News Service]

Flooding has become an issue (Rico Löb | Adobe Stock)

¶ “Virginia To Develop Four New Solar Energy Projects” • In Virginia, permits were issued for construction and operation of four new solar projects that are expected to offset carbon dioxide emissions in the state by 459 million pounds, the equivalent of driving more than 44,000 cars for a year. They have a combined capacity of 192 MW. [Associated Press]

¶ “Generac Pivots From Generators Into Residential Energy Storage And Solar At SPI 2019” • Generac is known for installing more than 2 million backup generator into homes. Earlier this year, however, Generac acquired the residential energy storage company Pika Energy. And with that, it is moving heavily into energy storage. [CleanTechnica]

Generac PWRcell (Generac image)

¶ “Dulles Airport Pilot Is One Of The Region’s Largest Solar Project” • Dominion Energy has partnered with Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority for a solar energy pilot project at Washington Dulles Airport. The 100-MW solar PV project is the Airports Authority’s first large scale renewable energy initiative of this kind. [Smart Energy]

¶ “Digital Realty Signs Renewable Solar PPA To Power Data Centers” • Digital Realty, based in San Francisco, signed a power purchase agreement for solar power from a 50-MW project for its data centers in Oregon and Northern Virginia. Digital Realty said that the new project is expected to come online later next year. [Environment + Energy Leader]

Digital Reality Data center (Digital Realty
Data Centers and Colocation on Facebook)

¶ “Hecate And Google Sign Solar Energy Agreement” • Hecate Energy, which is based in Chicago, Illinois, signed an agreement for Google to purchase 250 MW of renewable electricity from a 500-MW solar facility in Texas. Hecate will develop and operate the Texas solar project, which will require an estimated $275 million investment. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

¶ “Final Major Module For Georgia Power’s Vogtle 3 & 4 Nuclear Project Arrives Onsite” • The final major module needed for the construction of the Vogtle 3 & 4 units arrived onsite. This means all 1,485 major modules required to complete construction have now been safely delivered. Modules have come from 25 suppliers around the globe. [POWER Magazine]

Have a ecstatically exuberant day.

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October 4 Energy News

October 4, 2019

Science and Technology:

¶ “Students, Teachers: Drift Along With An Epic Arctic Climate Expedition” • K-12 students around the world can now be a part of one of the largest Arctic climate research expeditions ever conducted. In September, the RV Polarstern icebreaker set out to freeze itself in Arctic sea ice. For the next year it will drift across the Arctic ocean. [CU Boulder Today]

RV Polarstern frozen in the ice (Stefan Hendricks | AWI)


¶ “Greta Thunberg Just Sassed Putin With Her Classic Clapback Style” • Greta Thunberg is a teenager who knows what it’s like to be criticized by leaders of the world’s most powerful countries, but she doesn’t seem to be short on comebacks. Her Twitter bio used to mock criticism of her by Donald Trump. Now it mocks one from Vladimir Putin. [HuffPost UK]

¶ “Shipping Is One Of The Dirtiest Industries. Now It’s Trying To Clean Up Its Act” • The shipping industry was excluded from the 2015 Paris Climate Agreement because its emissions are hard to allocate to individual countries. But the international community has started to act, and some shipping businesses are taking up the challenge. [CNN]

Hybrid cruse ship King Harald (CNN image)

¶ “The Netherlands Surpasses Wildest Predictions For Tesla Model 3 Sales” • Sales of the Tesla Model 3 have jumped in the Netherlands. For the January to September period, the Tesla Model 3 accounted for 4.1% of Dutch auto sales. In the month of September, the Model 3 suddenly accounted for 15.1% of new registrations. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Meghan Spotlights Ethical Fashion Brands During Southern Africa Tour” • Fashion choices made by the Duchess of Sussex frequently sell out after being identified online. She appears to be using this attention to powerful ends by highlighting ethical brands and consumption habits during the tour she took with Prince Harry of southern Africa. [CNN]

Dancing in Cape Town (Courtney Africa | AFP | Getty Images)

¶ “Pubs clinch state-wide renewable energy deal to cut electricity bills” • A deal between a brewing giant and one of the world’s biggest energy generators is to slash energy costs for up to 300 pubs across New South Wales. It is the world’s first industry-scale aggregated power purchase agreement, and its electricity is from solar PVs. [The Sydney Morning Herald]

¶ “Climate Activists Spray UK Finance Ministry With Fake Blood” • Environmental activist group Extinction Rebellion used a fire engine to spray 1,800 liters of fake blood (water colored with red food dye) at Britain’s finance ministry in London. It is protesting what it calls the UK’s contradictory stance on tackling climate change. [CNN]

Fire engine and fake blood (Simon Dawson | Reuters)

¶ “Statkraft Awoops On 200-MW Shetland Giant” • Statkraft has acquired the Energy Isles consortium’s proposed wind farm in Yell on the North Isles of Shetland in Scotland. The scheme of up to 200-MW consists of 29 turbines and is under development. The Energy Isles consortium planning application has the project earmarked for operations by 2026. [reNEWS]

¶ “Hurtigruten Introduces Battery-Powered Snowmobiles” • Hurtigruten is a Norwegian cruise, ferry, and cargo operator. Its land-based adventure travel company, Hurtigruten Svalbard, and a Finnish startup company, Aurora Powertrains, made a deal on what may be the beginning of a silent and emissions-free era of snowmobiling. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

Electric snowmobile (Courtesy of Aurora Powertrains)

¶ “Kyushu Electric To Halt Reactors Over Delay In Anti-Terror Plans” • In a blow to its financial situation, Kyushu Electric Power Co said it will suspend operations of its Sendai nuclear power plant after falling behind schedule on establishing mandatory anti-terrorism measures. The reactors will be offline for eight to nine months next year. [Asahi Shimbun]


¶ “Tesla 3rd Quarter Sales Grew 1664% In 6 Years, 271% In 2 Years” • Many of us who believed that Elon Musk’s aggressive forecasts could come to pass weren’t super confident they actually would be. We were perhaps more hopeful than convinced. Nevertheless, Tesla is currently on track to nail Elon Musk’s 2014 forecast for 2020 sales. [CleanTechnica]

Tesla’s Tampa delivery center (Zach Shahan | CleanTechnica)

¶ “National Task Force On Rule Of Law And Democracy Report Slams Trump For War On Science” • The new report warns that the Trump administration is creating a crisis of confidence in America’s institutions because of its policy of installing industry shills in positions of authority and relentlessly attacking scientists who do not toe the party line. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “PacifiCorp To Add 7 GW Clean Power By 2025” • PacifiCorp, a utility serving the Northwest, has published a 20-year blueprint setting out a plan to add around 7 GW of new renewables and storage capacity by 2025. The plan includes more than 3.5 GW of new wind capacity, 3 GW of solar, and 600 MW of storage by the middle of the next decade. [reNEWS]

Windpower on the farm (pixabay image)

¶ “Portland-Based PacifiCorp Releases Plan To Cut Coal Power And Add Renewables” • PacifiCorp’s 20-year power plan cuts back on coal as it adds renewable wind and solar energy. Right now, more than half of PacifiCorp’s power comes from coal, but it plans to shutter more than 75% of its coal fleet, about 4,500 MW, by 2038. [KLCC FM Public Radio]

¶ “Experts Urge “Full Speed Ahead” On Climate Action” • In the first of six symposia planned at MIT this academic year on the subject of climate change, panels of specialists on the science of global climate described the state of knowledge on the subject today. They also discussed what kinds of actions are urgently needed. [MIT News]

Have a beautifully composed day.

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October 3 Energy News

October 3, 2019


¶ “How The US Could Have An All-Renewable Energy Grid” • There is debate about whether fully renewable electricity systems are feasible. My research and that of others shows fully renewable electric grids are feasible with current technology at current prices. The barriers are more political and cultural than technological or economic. [Discover Magazine]

Transmission lines (Russ Allison Loar | flickr, CC BY-NC-ND)

¶ “Do Negative Spot Electricity Prices Spell End Of Renewable Transition?” • In September, a transmission outage dropped Queensland’s spot price to the regulated floor of minus $1,000 per MWh. Based on headlines, you could think we are on the brink of a wholesale electricity price disaster. But the market is easily misunderstood. [The Sydney Morning Herald]

¶ “Big Oil Faces A Formidable Foe In Fight Against EVs” • Electric utilities are keen on EVs, seeing them as a future revenue source. They are developing programs to encourage the buildout of the charging infrastructure needed for this. But millions of dollars are being put into campaigns around the country to try to put a stop EV infrastructure projects. [CleanTechnica]

Chevy Bolt in utility FPL wrap (Zach Shahan | CleanTechnica)

Science and Technology:

¶ “A Floating Device Created To Clean Up Plastic From The Ocean Is Finally Doing Its Job, Organizers Say” • The Ocean Cleanup, a nonprofit based in the Netherlands, says its latest prototype was able to capture and hold debris ranging in size from huge, abandoned fishing gear, known as “ghost nets,” to tiny microplastics as small as 1 millimeter. [CNN]


¶ “Online Marketplace Sun Exchange Powers Solar Projects In South Africa” • Sun Exchange sells solar cells (the parts which make up a solar panel) to online buyers around the world and leases them to schools and businesses in South Africa. The buyers then receive monthly payments based on how much electricity is used. [CNN]

Roof of Protea Heights Academy in Cape Town (Sun Exchange)

¶ “Energy Transformation Delivers Renewable Solution To Regions” • Horizon Power will install solar PVs, batteries, and back-up diesel generators for 17 standalone power systems in Australia’s Esperance region. It will be the country’s first utility to remove poles and wires of a network and replace them with off-grid renewable energy systems. [Mirage News]

¶ “Tropical Forest Success Story Under Threat In Guatemala” • Though the Maya Biosphere Reserve in Guatemala is a hotspot of deforestation, there is a large swathe of it where the rate of loss has been near zero since 2000. But the program that has led to this success, community concessions for forest management, is under threat. [BBC]

Maya Biosphere Reserve (Photo: Sergio Izquierdo)

¶ “EU Will Provide €530 Million In Funding Towards Irish-French Power Line” • The EU will contribute €530 million to the Celtic Interconnector project, to connect the Irish electric grid to France. The project will cost €1 billion. It will link Ireland’s electricity network to France via an underwater connection. It is to be complete by 2026. []

¶ “Queensland Conservatives Emerge As Voice Of Reason In Nuclear Debate. Seriously!” • The state Liberal National Party of Queensland dropped a bomb on the federal inquiry into nuclear power. Arguing against leaders of its federal counterpart, the state Liberals seek to retain a federal ban on nuclear power in favor of renewable energy. [RenewEconomy]

Renewable energy at Cooper Pedy

¶ “Giant Greenhouses To Grow 20 Tonnes Of Tomatoes A Day” • One of the UK’s largest clean energy funds revealed plans to invest £120 million in a pair of low-carbon greenhouses in eastern England. The giant greenhouses will be used to grow up to 20 tonnes of tomatoes a day using the heat from Anglian Water’s water treatment facilities. [The Guardian]

¶ “Cottam Coal-Fired Power Station Turned Off For Final Time” • Cottam power station, commissioned in 1968, was capable of generating enough electricity for 3.7 million homes. The plant was originally designed to be operational for 30 years, but its life was extended until 30 September 2019. Now, decommissioning has begun. [BBC]

Cottam coal-fired power plant (BBC image)


¶ “4th Circuit Rules Suit By Baltimore Against Oil Companies Can Go Forward In State Court” • The US Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit ruled that proceedings may proceed in a Maryland state court in the case of Mayor and City Council of Baltimore v BP et al. The oil companies have appealed the ruling to the US Supreme Court. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Anheuser-Busch And BYD Launch North America’s Largest Electric Class 8 Fleet” • Anheuser-Busch is dipping its toes into electrifying its fleets with the purchase of 21 fully electric Class 8 trucks from BYD. The BYD 8TT Class 8 trucks will be put to use at four of Anheuser-Busch’s Southern California distribution facilities. [CleanTechnica]

Anheuser-Busch electric Class 8 truck by BYD

¶ “New Coalition To Steer The Future Of California’s Offshore Wind” • Wind industry leaders including Equinor, Magellan Wind, Mainstream Renewable Power, Northland Power, Ørsted, and others, announced a coalition, Offshore Wind California. OWC is urging California to set a goal of reaching at least 10 GW of offshore wind by 2040. [Smart Energy]

¶ “NYC Picks Nine Buildings For ‘Deep Energy Retrofits'” • The City of New York will start deep energy retrofits on nine city facilities, with the goal to reduce energy usage by at least 50%. Another 28 facilities will be audited for future retrofits. The nine projects selected by the city are expected to be completed by 2025. [Utility Dive]

Have an extremely rewarding day.

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October 2 Energy News

October 2, 2019


¶ “The Koch Brothers And Protest In America” • Documentary filmmaker and journalist Deia Schlosberg was arrested and charged with felonies carrying a maximum sentence of up to 45 years in prison for reporting on the Indigenous protests against fossil fuel infrastructure, Common Dreams tells us. What about the  First Amendment? [CleanTechnica]

Deia Schlosberg (Image from Edward Snowden, via Twitter)

¶ “Elizabeth Warren’s Climate Plan Is Much Stronger With Addition Of Inslee-Related Commitments” • Elizabeth Warren announced changes to her climate plan inspired by elements of Jay Inslee’s, possibly a gold standard. Warren is nearly tied with Biden in key states and could turn out to be the Democratic candidate in 2020. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Illinois Must Take Immediate Action On The Clean Energy Jobs Act” • The Clean Energy Jobs Act is one of Illinois’ biggest opportunities to become a national clean energy leader. But with the fall veto session almost here, its future could be in jeopardy if legislators don’t understand what’s at stake. Its many benefits are just a start. [Environmental Defense Fund]

Renewable energy

Science and Technology:

¶ “This Kite Could Harness More Of The World’s Wind Energy” • California-based Makani is using power from the strongest winds, which are typically found in spots where it’s a challenge to install traditional wind turbines. To do this, it uses turbines mounted on a kite. Makani is owned by Alphabet, the parent company of Google. [CNN]

¶ “Tractebel Eyes Green Hydrogen Offshore” • Two Engie businesses, Tractebel Engineering and Tractebel Overdick, are working on an offshore platform that could produce ‘green’ hydrogen from offshore wind power. The companies said the platform would incorporate all the technical components needed for hydrogen production. [reNEWS]

Tractebel offshore hydrogen platform (Tractebel image)

¶ “They’re Making Paper Out Of Stone – And Saving Lots Of Trees” • Karst Stone Paper produces paper without using timber, water, or harsh chemicals. Instead, they use stone waste mined from construction sites and other industrial waste dumps. The stone is pulverized and mixed with a compostible plastic to make paper. [CNN]


¶ “Brazil Okays 401 MW Of Renewable Supply From June 28 Auction” • Brazil’s power sector regulator announced the winner list from its auction of June 28, 2019. The approved projects have a total capacity of 401.6 MW and should generate nearly 17.5 million MWh per year at an average price of R$140.33 per MWh ($42.1/MWh). [Renewables Now]

Solar farm

¶ “Kansai Electric Admits Execs’ Acceptance Of Gifts; President Won’t Resign” • Kansai Electric Power Co said two executives responsible for its nuclear business both received more than ¥100 million ($930,000) as gifts from a former official of a town hosting one of its nuclear plants, as the utility disclosed more information on the money scandal. [Japan Today]

¶ “World’s Largest Wind Turbines To Be Built Off Yorkshire Coast” • The Dogger Bank project, to be built from next year in a joint venture between SSE and Norway’s Equinor, will be the largest windfarm in the world once it begins generating power in 2023. It will have GE wind turbines 220 meters tall, with blades over 100 meters long. [The Guardian]

Artist’s impression of the Dogger Bank windfarm (PR image)

¶ “‘Massive Appetite’ For Caribbean Renewable Energy Investments” • MPC Renewable Energies sees rising local private investments in Carribbean clean power. “There is a massive and growing appetite for renewable energy investments in the Caribbean from local investors,” managing director Martin Vogt told BNamericas. [BNamericas English]


“Feds Seek To Gut Law Boosting Small-Scale Renewables” • Since 1978, the Public Utilities Regulatory Act has boosted renewables by requiring big utilities to buy some power from small solar and wind companies. Now federal regulators are proposing changes that would hurt both the smaller companies and consumers. [Environmental Working Group]

Coal Emissions

¶ “UMass Boston Partners With Enel X For Renewable Energy, Storage, And EV Chargers” • UMass Boston is working with Enel X, the advanced energy services division of Enel Group, to bring renewable energy plus storage to its urban campus. Also, the partnership will see 11 smart chargers from Enel’s eMotorWerks installed on the campus. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “US University Taps Engie For Wind” • Engie signed deals with Carnegie Mellon University to power its Pittsburgh campus  with wind-generated electricity through 2024. Engie Resources and Amerex Energy Services jointly designed a structure to procure energy from the Radford’s Run wind farm in Illinois to serve all of the campus electricity needs. [reNEWS]

Wind turbine (Engie image)

¶ “Americans Really Want The US To Adopt Renewable Energy Like Wind And Solar Power, While Rejecting Fossil Fuels Like Coal” • The latest Insider poll shows that both self-identified Democrats and Republicans support the transitioning towards renewable sources of energy. They favor wind and solar, and they rank coal last. [Business Insider]

¶ “Evangelicals See The Light On Climate Change” • At a time when American business and military leaders are becoming increasingly vocal on the urgent need to reduce US reliance on fossil fuels, an evangelical campaign could alienate Republican lawmakers from another core constituency, conservative Christians. [Houston Chronicle]

Have a pragmatically auspicious day.

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October 1 Energy News

October 1, 2019


¶ “A Formula For Catastrophe In The Arctic” • The White House views the Arctic as a key arena for great-power competition, with the ultimate prize being a great trove of resources, including oil, natural gas, uranium, zinc, iron ore, gold, diamonds, and rare earth minerals. It is possible because of climate change. It will worsen climate change. [CleanTechnica]

Arctic ice (NOAA image)

¶ “Bad Ancestors: Does The Climate Crisis Violate The Rights Of Those Yet To Be Born?” • What if climate change is a violation of the rights of people who are yet to be born? Finally, this urgent question seems to be getting the attention it deserves. Part of this is happening with student strikes. Part is because of young people suing for a right to life. [The Guardian]

¶ “Conservatives’ ‘Nuclear Fusion By 2040’ Pledge Is Wishful Thinking” • The UK’s governing Conservative Party announced new climate policies that include £220 million for research into nuclear fusion reactors to provide clean energy “by 2040.” As a fusion researcher, I welcome the funding. But it isn’t an effective response to climate change. [Big News Network]

Fusion reactor

Science and Technology:

¶ “Jet Fuel From Thin Air: Aviation’s Hope Or Hype?” • Several companies are working on making jet fuel from CO₂ captured from the air and H₂ split from water, powering the operations with solar PVs. They say it could be a future fuel for aviation. Environmental organizations are skeptical, and make plain that we should fly less than we do. [BBC]


¶ “ACT Has ‘100% Renewable’ Electricity From Today. But What Does That Mean?” • The last stage of South Australia’s Hornsdale wind farm is coming online, and the Australian Capital Territory is “officially” powered by 100% renewable electricity. That means that for every watt of power the ACT consumes, it provides one through its renewable investments. [ABC News]

Hornsdale Wind Farm (Nick Harmsen | ABC News)

¶ “Saudi Crown Prince Warns Of Threat To Global Oil Supply” • Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman told the BBC that if Iran and Saudi Arabia go to war, oil prices could rise up to “unimaginably high numbers.” He says this is possible if the world doesn’t try to deter Iran, and that escalation will threaten the world’s interests. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “NSW Reveals Grants Shortlist For Nearly 3 GW Of Renewables And Storage Capacity” • The government of New South Wales shortlisted 21 renewable energy and energy storage projects for grant funding under the state’s Emerging Energy program. The aim is to support up to 700 MW of dispatchable generation in the state. [RenewEconomy]

Blaney wind farm in NSW (Bren Barnes, Wikimedia Commons)

¶ “Ocean Holds Key To Ireland’s Renewable Energy Targets, Says Bruton” • Ireland’s ocean resources are crucial to delivering on the target of generating 70% its electricity renewable energy by 2030, Minister for the Environment Richard Bruton said. He confirmed 3.5 GW of Irish power would come from offshore wind in the coming decade. [Irish Times]

¶ “Vestas V150 Secures Greek Debut” • Vestas has won a turbine order totalling 16 MW from Iberdrola for the Pyrgari wind farm, which is to be built in Viotia, Greece. The contract includes the supply and installation of four V150-4.2MW machines delivered in 4.0 MW operating mode. Delivery is planned for the first quarter of 2020. [reNEWS]

Mt Dirfys, Viotia (Chavakismanolis, Wikimedia Commons)

¶ “EDF Submits Application To Shut Down Fessenheim Nuclear Power Plant” • EDF submitted an application seeking approval for the termination of operations and permanent shutdown of both reactors at Fessenheim nuclear plant. One reactor is planned to be closed on 22 February 2020, and the other on 30 June in the same year. [Power Technology]


¶ “Arnold Schwarzenegger Lends Greta Thunberg A Tesla” • When you can count Arnold Schwarzenegger among your fans, you’ve definitely achieved high levels of public recognition! After meeting her in May (and saying he was a bit star-struck) Arnold has now made sure Gretta has a Tesla Model 3 for the rest of her trip through North America. [CleanTechnica]

Greta Thunberg and Arnold Schwarzenegger (From Twitter)

¶ “New Campaign Launched On 30 Campuses Urges Colleges And Universities To Shift To 100% Clean Renewable Power” • Environment America Research & Policy Center is launching 30 campaigns in 11 states, pressing colleges and universities to get 100% of their energy from renewables. Their goal is to get 150 to sign on by 2021. [Environment America]

¶ “Chapel Hill Sets 100% Renewable Energy Goal” • The town council of Chapel Hill, North Carolina, has unanimously passed a resolution establishing a goal of 100% renewable energy by 2050. The resolution also set an interim goal of 80% clean, renewable energy by 2030. The issue was brought before the council by two petitions. [North American Windpower]

Downtown Chapel Hill (Wikimedia Commons)

¶ “For Murray Power, Here Comes The Sun” • The City Council of Murray, Utah, unanimously authorized Murray Power to engage in a 25-year contract with Navajo Tribal Utility Authority for 5 MW of solar energy, starting at $23.15/MWh (2.35¢/kWh) and escalating by 2% yearly. The source is a 66-MW array in San Juan County, Utah. [Murray Journal]

¶ “Renewable Energy Will Provide Discount To Thousands” • Imperial Irrigation District and Citizens Energy Corporation just completed the largest low-income solar project in the country. There are more than 100,000 solar panels in the solar array in Calipatria, California. It will generate 30 MW of power and serve over 12,000 customers. [NBC Palm Springs]

Have a congenially entertaining day.

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September 30 Energy News

September 30, 2019


¶ “Can A Carbon Fee Save The World’s Oceans? Senator Whitehouse Says ‘Yes'” • Climate change is altering the oceans, and CO₂ is changing their chemistry. In an exclusive comment for CleanTechnica, Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) says a carbon fee is the best method to limit emissions and mitigate ocean quality loss. [CleanTechnica]

Lobster fishing (AK-Bino, Wikimedia Commons)

¶ “The Short List Of Climate Actions That Will Work” • People often ask about solutions for climate change. What works? What should we be doing? A question on Quora was well enough formed to trigger me to write down the solution set: “What exactly is the current scientific consensus on steps to combat climate change?” [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Solar, Wind And Batteries Threaten Future Of Nuclear Power” • The natural gas boom is killing America’s nuclear industry, and wind and solar may finish the job. Battery prices have plunged 85% from 2010 to 2018, and huge storage plants are planned in California and Arizona. The US is also not the only place nuclear power is threatened. [The Business Times]

Three Mile Island (Smallbones, Wikimedia Commons)


¶ “GE Delivers Wind PPA To Google” • GE Renewable Energy announced that it signed a Power Purchase Agreement with Google for energy from the Björkvattnet Onshore Wind Farm in Sweden, about 470 km north of Stockholm. GE will supply 33 of its 5.3 MW Cypress turbines. The wind farm is to be operational by the end of 2020. [Power Engineering International]

¶ “First Utility-Scale Floating Solar Power Plant For Germany” • Ciel & Terre  announced a 750 kW floating solar array in Baden-Württemberg, Germany. The project has more than 2,300 solar panels and is predicted the solar power plant will generate 736 MWh per year. The mining company Ossola GmbH will use the electricity. [CleanTechnica]

Floating solar array (Image courtesy of Ciel & Terre)

¶ “Piiparinmaki Deal Gives Glennmont Nordic Foothold” • Investor Glennmont Partners entered the Nordic market with the acquisition of the ready-to-build 211-MW Piiparinmaki wind farm in Finland from Ilmatar Energy. The unsubsidized project will feature 28 5.6-MW and 4.2-MW Vestas EnVentus turbines. Construction will start in October. [reNEWS]

¶ “RWE Touts 18 GW Renewable Project Pipeline In Green Shift” • German utility RWE said it has a renewable project pipeline of more than 18 GW, mostly in the US. The company confirmed that it is setting aside €1.5 billion ($1.37 billion) per year into renewable energy and storage, but indicated it could expand that to €3 billion. []

Solar PVs and wind turbines

¶ “Queensland Green Ammonia Plant Could Use Renewable Hydrogen” • The Australian Renewable Energy Agency has provided $1.9 million in funding to Queensland Nitrates Pty Ltd to assess the feasibility of the construction and operation of a renewable ammonia plant at its existing facility near Moura in Central Queensland. [Mirage News]

¶ “Turkish Delight For GE With 51-MW Cypress Deal” • GE Renewable Energy has inked a deal to supply 4.8-MW turbines from its Cypress platform for the 51-MW Gazi 9 wind farm in Turkey. Blades will be produced by GE company LM Wind Power at a site in the Turkish city of Izmir and towers will also be made locally in Turkey. [reNEWS]

Prototype Cypress wind turbine (GE Renewable Energy image)

¶ “Centrica To Use Customers’ Hot Water Tanks To Stop Blackouts” • Centrica, the owner of British Gas, plans to use its customers’ hot water tanks to create a virtual power plant which could help National Grid prevent future blackouts. It hopes to harness household gadgets with energy capacity equivalent to a large power plant by 2025. [The Guardian]

¶ “PMO Steps In To Ease Supply Of Credit For Green Energy Firms” • In India, the Prime Minister’s Office has intervened to help ease the credit supply for renewable energy firms. The government is moving to ensure that India’s efforts to emerge as a clean energy champion are not undermined by a lack of access to funds. [Livemint]

Solar array in India (Bloomberg image)

¶ “France Says Nuclear Plant Overruns ‘Unacceptable'” • The French government slammed as “unacceptable” delays and cost overruns at nuclear power plant projects undertaken by state utility firm EDF, including Britain’s controversial Hinkley Point. Finance and Economy Minister Bruno Le Maire said there would be an independent audit. [Daily Pioneer]


¶ “Hanwha Q Cells Dedicates Largest Solar Panel Factory In Western Hemisphere” • Hanwha Q Cells opened a 300,000 square foot solar panel factory in Dalton, Georgia. The $200 million factory employs more than 650 workers and is capable of producing 12,000 solar panels a year, enough to generate 1.7 GW of electricity. [CleanTechnica]

New Hanwha Q Cells facility (Hanwha image)

¶ “California Governor Newsom And Michael Bloomberg Announce Plan To Use Satellite To Track Climate Change” • Gov Gavin Newsom of California and former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced a new initiative that will use satellite data from Earth-imaging company Planet to monitor climate change in California. [Newsweek]

¶ “Duke Energy Renewables Announces Second Power Purchase Agreement For Frontier Windpower II” • Oklahoma’s Frontier Windpower project, owned by Duke Energy Renewables, has a second major purchaser for energy. The company announced signing a 15-year, 160-MW virtual power purchase agreement with AT&T. []

Have a totally excellent day.

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September 29 Energy News

September 29, 2019


¶ “Greta Thunberg Got The World’s Attention. But Are Leaders Really Listening?” • The science is clear that we need to act now on climate change. But commitments to reduce planet-warming emissions that were announced at the UN Climate Summit this week show some world leaders are not yet willing to take really transformative action. [CNN]

Greta Thunberg and other climate activists (Sarah
Silbiger | Getty Images North America | Getty Images)

¶ “Why Vladimir Putin Suddenly Believes In Global Warming” • Some Russians have seen climate change as a “good thing,” with new opportunities for commerce, shipping, and exploration for petroleum sources. But the melting of permafrost poses a huge threat to Russia’s heartlands, as the thawing ground cannot bear the weight of infrastructure. [Bloomberg]

¶ “Food Or War: A Book That Teaches Common Sense” • Famine and conflict over food have been driving forces for as long as humans have lived on the planet. A new book called Food or War, by Julian Cribb, chronicles thousands of years of human history surrounding the quest for food and its violent consequences, into the present age. [CleanTechnica]

Fenway Park Gardens (Carolyn Fortuna | CleanTechnica)


¶ “Solar, Wind Are Now Cheaper Than Coal In Most Of The World” • Bloomberg reported this week on the once unthinkable phenomena of solar and wind subsidies disappearing across the world because the industry has outgrown the need for them. The costs of electricity from renewable resources has dropped below the cost from coal. []

¶ “China struggling to kick its coal habit despite Beijing’s big climate pledges” • Even as China reiterated its commitment to reducing emissions last week in New York, earlier this month at least three large, new coal-fired power stations appeared to be either operating or under construction in Inner Mongolia in northern China. [CNN]

Sheep grazing near a new coal plant (CNN)

¶ “Ban On Single-Use Plastic In Ministries Of Power, Renewable Energy From Oct 2” • Single-use plastic will be banned from October 2 in India’s Ministries of Power, and New and Renewable Energy, by order of Union Minister RK Singh. The order says all public sector undertakings and attached offices of both ministries will also ban single-use plastic. [Devdiscourse]

¶ “Energy Minister Angus Taylor’s Liddell Taskforce Told Singleton ‘Comfortable’ With Liddell Closure Plans” • Lack of government leadership is the biggest issue facing Australia’s Hunter Region as closure of Liddell power station approaches and the region transitions away from coal, Hunter councils told a federal/state Liddell taskforce. [Newcastle Herald]

Liddell coal-fired power station (Photo: Janie Barrett)

¶ “Iran’s Renewable Power Generation Capacity Exceeds 840 MW” • The capacity of Iran’s renewable power plants reached 841 MW, the Iranian Energy Ministry reported. The country’s renewable power plants have so far generated about 4.171 billion kWh of electricity, preventing emissions of 2.871 million tons of greenhouse gases. [Tehran Times]


¶ “Dozens Arrested At Protest Outside New England’s Largest Coal Power Plant, In Bow, NH” • Nearly 70 people were arrested during a protest at a coal-fired power plant in Bow Saturday. The activists had marched onto the grounds of Merrimack Station, the largest coal-burning facility left in New England that is not set to retire. [New Hampshire Public Radio]

Activists at Merrimack Station (Annie Ropeik | NHPR)

¶ “Apple Encourages Suppliers To Move To Green Energy With New Investment Projects” • Apple has moved to using 100% renewable energy, but now hopes that it can convince its suppliers to do the same. With 70% of its corporate carbon footprint is in the supply chain, Apple is helping its suppliers make the transition. [AppleInsider]

¶ “Big Banks Are Shifting Mortgages Made Riskier By Climate Change Onto Taxpayers” • New research first reported by The New York Times suggests banks are shifting mortgages made riskier by the climate emergency over to financial institutions backed by US taxpayers, a finding that echoes the subprime lending crisis of 2008. [Truthout]

Flooded house in Texas (Thomas B Shea | Getty Images)

¶ “Feds Give Counties Grants To Help Boost Ailing Coal Industry” • The Associated Governments of Northwest Colorado won a $200,000 matching federal grant to help it develop new ways to market its coal. The plan could include finding ways to create coal-derived products as a way to help diversify the coal industry. [The Grand Junction Daily Sentinel]

¶ “Push For Nuclear Power In Space Sets Off Proliferation Debate” • NASA could place human missions to the moon or Mars in political jeopardy if it opts to use  power from highly-enriched uranium in space, warns Alan Kuperman, the founding coordinator of the Nuclear Proliferation Prevention Project at the University of Texas at Austin. [Yahoo News]

Have an exceedingly comfortable day.

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September 28 Energy News

September 28, 2019


¶ “Is Trudeau Doing Enough On Climate Change?” • For the first time in more than a decade, climate change is at the forefront of a federal election campaign in Canada. Greta Thunberg has earned a reputation for speaking truth to power – but Mr Trudeau nonetheless chose to meet her before she led the climate strike march in Montreal. [BBC]

Melting arctic ice

¶ “The 3.5% Rule: How A Small Minority Can Change The World” • Erica Chenoweth, a political scientist at Harvard University, has shown it takes around 3.5% of the population to be participating actively in the protests to ensure serious political change. She also showed civil disobedience is the most powerful way to shape world politics. [BBC]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Proctor & Gamble And PureCycle Collaborate On Recycling Process For Polypropylene” • Polypropylene is hard to recycle. But Proctor & Gamble, working with PureCycle Technologies, a subsidiary of Chicago-based Innventure, says it has perfected a process that results in recycled polypropylene that is odor-free and snowy white or clear in color. [CleanTechnica]

Polypropylene structure (Stan Zurek, Wikimedia Commons)


¶ “Almost 13,000 Study Clean Power In Scotland” • Almost 13,000 students are studying courses related to renewable energy at Scotland’s universities and colleges, according to a survey by Scottish Renewables. Over one third (36%) of the 12,885 students are female, according to data from 31 institutions, from Dumfriesshire to the Highlands. [reNEWS]

¶ “Tesla: Russia’s Top Propaganda Target” • RT (formerly called Russia Today), produces an abundance of articles suggesting Tesla is led by an incompetent CEO producing pathetic, highly dangerous, and unpopular cars. Tesla has nearly no presence in Russia. It does, however, represent a threat to a country whose exports are primarily gas and oil. [CleanTechnica]

Teslas in Florida (Zach Shahan | CleanTechnica)

¶ “Tory Conference 2019: Boris Johnson Pledges £1 Billion To Develop Electric Cars And To Plant A Million Trees” • Plans for heavy investment in electric car production, energy reduction measures in all new homes and the planting of one million trees are being promised by Boris Johnson in a £1.2 billion package to combat climate change. [iNews]

¶ “Hundreds Of Thousands Join Canada Climate Strikes” • Hundreds of thousands of people have joined climate strike marches across Canada, with almost 100 events planned in cities and towns. Greta Thunberg spoke in Montreal at the start of strikes in the city, which were expected to draw more than 300,000 people. [BBC]

Greta Thunberg speaking in Montreal (AFP)

¶ “Pm Tells UN General Assembly: Bahamas Under Threat From Climate Change” • Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis said during the UN General Assembly meeting that the beauty and existence of the Bahamas is under grave threat from climate change. He used Hurricane Dorian as an example of the destruction climate change brings. [Bahamas Tribune]

¶ “Germany’s Climate Targets Require Huge Amounts Of Renewable Hydrogen – Reports” • Germany will require massive amounts of hydrogen made with renewable power to reach its climate targets, two reports commissioned by Greenpeace Energy say. The company sees demand for more hydrogen than green electricity. [Clean Energy Wire]

German geothermal plant (Niteshift, Wikimedia Commons)


¶ “Rupert Murdoch’s Daughter-In-Law Bucks The Family’s Conservative Reputation, Pledging Millions To Fight Climate Change” • Kathryn Murdoch, the daughter-in-law of Rupert Murdoch, publicly contradicted the family’s conservative stance on climate change in an interview with John Schwartz of the The New York Times. [Business Insider]

¶ “Climate Change Is Raising Quite The Stink In Florida” • In addition to other problems, the sunny day flooding that comes with rising sea levels threatens to overwhelm septic systems, leading to health issues. A Dade County report estimates it would take more than $3.3 billion to build water treatment facilities to provide sewer hookups. [CNN]

Sunny day flooding (Joe Raedle | Getty Images)

¶ “Dominion Energy Acquires Two Solar Projects In Virginia” • Dominion Generation, Inc, a wholly owned subsidiary of Dominion Energy, has acquired two solar generating projects with a total capacity of 95 MW from Savion LLC, a subsidiary of Macquarie’s Green Investment Group. They are expected to be operational in 2020. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

¶ “Oil Company Agrees To Pay Up To $100 Million To Restore Louisiana Coastline” • An agreement between Freeport-McMoRan, a company that specializes in drilling for oil in the Gulf of Mexico, and 12 coastal communities in Louisiana may set a precedent. The company agreed to pay up to $100 million to restore the Louisiana coastline. [CleanTechnica]

Barrier island creation (

¶ “DTE Pledges Carbon-Free Power By 2050 Banking On Small Reactors, Carbon Capture Advancements” • DTE Energy said it will work to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2050. It says it needs some regulatory changes, such as a price on carbon, and it is looking at technology, such as small modular nuclear reactors and energy storage. [Utility Dive]

¶ “Scout Flush For Heart Of Texas Build” • Scout Clean Energy has secured construction financing and tax equity commitments for the 180-MW Heart of Texas wind farm. Construction financing of $255 million was provided by KeyBank, Rabobank and CoBank. The project will comprise 64 GE turbines from the company’s 2-MW platform. [reNEWS]

Have a fascinatingly agreeable day.

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September 27 Energy News

September 27, 2019

Science and Technology:

¶ “Birds Are Dying Off At An Alarming Rate. Here’s How You Can Help From Your Own Backyard” • An alarming study says that since 1970 the US and Canada have lost almost a third of their bird population. Habitat loss, collisions with glass, hunting by cats, and pesticides are the biggest threats, the American Birding Conservancy said. [CNN]

Western Meadowlark (Matthew Pendleton, Cornell University)

¶ “Tesla Model 3 vs. Mercedes C-Class And Audi A4: 5 Year Cost of Ownership Comparisons” • Given reasonable assumptions, Tesla’s Model 3 has a far lower 5 year cost of ownership than the Mercedes-Benz C-Class or Audi A4. In fact, the Model 3’s cost in these comparisons is about 60% that of the popular Mercedes and Audi models. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Microplastics: Premium Teabags Leak Billions Of Particles – Study” • Some premium tea bags might be leaving billions of microscopic plastic particles in your cup, new research suggests. Canadian researchers found that some plastic tea bags shed high levels of microplastics into water. Microplastics have widely been found in the environment. [BBC]

Tea (Getty Creative Stock)

¶ “Fifth Of World’s Calories Threatened As Climate Scientists Sound Alarm Over Wheat” • Droughts caused by global warming could devastate up to 60% of the world’s wheat fields by the end of the century, and the world must prepare for “unprecedented” shocks to the production of the crop, a paper published in the journal Science Advances warns. [Malay Mail]


¶ “Telford And Wrekin Council Switch To Renewable Electricity” • In Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin Council has switched to a new environmentally-friendly energy contract, Pure Green, which is provided by WME. This decision is part of the Council’s commitment to ensure all its activities and operations are carbon neutral by 2030. [Shropshire Live]

Solar array

¶ “EirGrid: 70% Of Ireland’s Electricity Will Be Renewable By 2030” • EirGrid Group in planning for 70% of all Irish electricity to come from renewable sources by 2030, as part of a €2 billion, five-year strategy to transform Ireland’s electric system. Energy will come from a combination of onshore and offshore wind and solar sources. []

¶ “South Africa’s Renewables Sector Growth May Be Driven By Coal’s Collapse” • South Africa’s switch to green energy may come sooner than later as its coal-based energy utility continues to implode. The opposition in parliament, the Democratic Alliance, published a warning that coal stocks are running out and blackouts are inevitable. [The National]

Traffic in a blackout (Waldo Swiegers | Bloomberg)

¶ “No More Pipelines, It’s Time For Renewables: Green Party” • Elizabeth May, leader of the Green Party of Canada, reaffirmed a party pledge to cancel the $13 billion Trans Mountain pipeline expansion and redirect the funds to implementing a National Grid Strategy to transmit cheap, clean, renewable energy from coast to coast to coast. [Net Newsledger]

¶ “Offshore wind lifts UK renewables to ‘best ever Q2′” • New installed offshore wind capacity has help propel renewables share of UK electricity generation to record production in the second quarter of 2019. The UK’s electricity generation rose to over 35.5% in the second quarter of 2019, up from 32% in the same quarter of last year. [reNEWS]

Offshore wind farm (SSE image)

¶ “Macquarie Reveals Five-Year Plan For Massive Investment In 20 GW Renewables” • Australian based Macquarie Group has announced plans to develop a massive portfolio of clean energy projects, with a goal of investing in 20 GW of new projects across the globe and will be channeled through a subsidiary, the Green Investment Group. [RenewEconomy]

¶ “Latin America Pledges 70% Renewable Energy, Surpassing EU” • At the United Nations Climate Action Summit, Latin American countries have set a collective target of 70% renewable energy use by 2030, more than double what the EU plans, Colombia’s energy minister said. Her country has a renewables tender scheduled for October. []

Climate Strike in Bogota (Luisa Gonzalez | Reuters)

¶ “Kansai Electric Execs Allegedly Got ¥180 Million From Ex-Deputy Mayor Of Town Hosting Nuclear Plant” • Kansai Electric Power Co’s top executives have received payoffs totaling ¥180 million from a former deputy mayor of a town hosting one of the company’s nuclear power plants, sources close to the matter said. [The Japan Times]


¶ “US War On California Emissions Standards Gets Approval From Republicans, Opprobrium From Democrats” • In a survey by Autolyst about California’s ability to set its own emission standards, 61% of Republicans responding said they agreed with the administration’s climate policies, while 70% of Democrats disagreed. [CleanTechnica]

Downtown Los Angeles (Coolcaesar, Wikimedia Commons)

¶ “The Second-Largest Gift To A US University Was Pledged To Caltech. It’s Being Used For Climate Research” • Stewart and Lynda Resnick, owners of The Wonderful Company, pledged $750 million, the second-largest gift to a US academic institution, to the California Institute of Technology to support cutting-edge research into environmental sustainability. [CNN]

¶ “Fired EPA Scientists Band Together To Continue Their Work” • Last October, the EPA disbanded an advisory panel of scientists whose mission was to advise it on air pollution standards. Many of those same scientists will meet this year where they always met in the past to carry on their work as private citizens rather than public employees. [CleanTechnica]

Have a certifiably merry day.

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September 26 Energy News

September 26, 2019


¶ “Landmark UN Report Warns Sea Levels Will Rise Faster Than Projected By 2100” • Cities from New York to Shanghai could see regular flooding, as sea levels rise faster than previously thought. Glaciers and ice sheets from the Himalayas to Antarctica are rapidly melting. And the fisheries that feed millions of people are shrinking. [CNN]

Ocean food (Jay Directo | AFP | Getty Images)

¶ “Fish Are In Trouble With The Climate Crisis, IPCC Report Finds” • Since the 1970s, the climate crisis has made our oceans warmer and more acidic, reducing the number of the fish we rely on for our food, according to a major UN report. Ultimately, the report said, this will lead to the extinction of some species we fish for food. [CNN]

¶ “Vestas Wins 168-MW In Mexico” • Vestas has secured a 168-MW turbine order for a wind farm in Mexico. The order derives from a corporate power purchase agreement and includes the supply and installation of 42 turbines from the 4-MW platform with V150 rotors. Details of the project location, customer, and completion date are undisclosed. [reNEWS]

Wind farm (Vestas image)

¶ “The Tiny Island That Aims To Become A Carbon-Netural Paradise” • Gapado  is a speck of land off the southern coast of South Korea. It has fewer than 200 residents, many with solar powered homes, and two wind turbines. The island produces more energy than it uses. It could show Jeju province how to be carbon neutral by 2030. [BBC]

¶ “Australia Is A Forerunner In Generating Renewable Energy” • Growth of renewable energy in Australia is happening at a rate that is ten times faster per capita than the world average. In 2018 through 2020, the country is installing more than 16 GW of solar and wind capacity, which is an average rate of 220 watts per person per year. [Industry Reporter]

Installing solar panels

¶ “Nuclear Power Risks Pricing Itself Out Of Europe’s Energy Market” • Aside from the British project at Hinkley Point in southwestern England, additional nuclear plants in Finland and France are also behind schedule and over budget. The industry’s woes contrast with swiftly falling costs for installing wind and solar farms. [Yahoo Finance]

¶ “Australian Energy Market Commission Wants Power Prices Cut And A Grid Suited For Renewables” • The energy adviser for the Federal Government warned that solar panels are so popular that the grid is at capacity. Time is running out for the energy grid to be revolutionized to pass on better returns to customers generating their own power. [ABC News]

Solar project (Supplied photo: Quality Solar NT)


¶ “The World’s Largest Offshore Wind Farm Is Nearly Complete. It Can Power 1 Million Homes” • The world’s largest offshore wind farm is taking shape 120 km (75 miles) off England’s Yorkshire coast. Hornsea One will produce enough energy to supply 1 million UK homes with clean electricity when it is completed in 2020. [CNN]

¶ “Renewable Energy Resurgence In Wales” • Four years ago Welsh Government passed the Well-Being of Future Generations Act. It contained an ambitious target for the country to get 70% from renewables by 2030. The latest figures show this is within reach, since 48% of Wales’ energy consumption is currently coming from renewable power. [Energy Saving Trust]

Dam in the Elen Valley (Getty Images)

¶ “The Road To Clean Energy” • Wind power has made it possible for the UK to contemplate a zero carbon future. What was once a seemingly impossible dream is now a government commitment for the year 2050. Thanks in part to the growth in use and the reduction in cost of renewables, the UK has lowered its carbon emissions by 40% since 1990. [BBC]

¶ “Scotland Will Probably Reach 100% Renewable Energy Goal ‘Soon’” • With nearly three-quarters of its energy coming from wind, solar, and hydro, Scotland is well on its way to a carbon-free energy grid. Scottish Renewables predicts in a recent report that the country will soon be meeting its 100% target for energy from clean sources. [ZME Science]



¶ “GE Scores California Storage Hat-Trick” • GE Renewable Energy has been selected by Convergent Energy and Power to supply battery energy storage systems for three projects in California with total capacity of 100 MWh. GE said the project will bring its total battery storage capacity in operation or under construction to 495 MWh. [reNEWS]

¶ “eBay San Jose Headquarters Moves To 100% Renewable Energy” • eBay announced that two San Jose campuses, including eBay’s global headquarters, will be powered entirely by carbon-free solar, wind, and geothermal energy by the end of September thanks to a new partnership with San Jose Clean Energy and its TotalGreen service. [eSellerCafe]

eBay campus (eBay image)

¶ “Merrimack Valley Gas Explosions Were Caused By Weak Management, Poor Oversight, NTSB Says” • In September, 2018, a series of gas explosions and fires destroyed 131 buildings in the Merrimack Valley of Massachusetts. One person was killed. An NTSB investigation said the fault lay in inadequate management and poor oversight. [CNN]

¶ “Dominion Energy Plans America’s Largest Offshore Wind Farm” • Dominion Energy is planning the construction of the single largest offshore wind project in US waters, consisting of three 880-MW phases. According to the American Wind Energy Association, this presents a huge economic opportunity for the State of Virginia. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

Have an outstandingly gratifying day.

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September 25 Energy News

September 25, 2019


¶ “Mont Blanc: Glacier in danger of collapse, experts warn” • Italian authorities closed roads and evacuated mountain huts after experts warned that about 250,000 cubic meters of ice are in danger of breaking away from a glacier on the peak of Grandes Jorasses. The mayor of nearby Courmayeur said global warming was changing the mountain. [BBC]

Glacier on Grandes Jorasses peak (Getty Images)

¶ “UN Report Warns Climate Change Is Accelerating” • Days after millions of climate protesters called for international action and global leaders convened at the UN Climate Action Summit, the world’s top climate-science body warns that intergovernmental collaboration on a global scale is required to cope with changes that are already under way. [Bloomberg]

¶ “Hydro-Floating Solar Farms: New Opportunity For Việt Nam’s Renewable Energy Sector” • The Đồng Nai People’s Committee proposed the Ministry of Industry and Trade develop eight floating solar farms on the man-made Trị An Lake. The floating solar projects would have total capacity of 5,400 MW and be added by 2025.  [Viet Nam News]

Floating system on Đa Mi reservoir (Courtesy of DHD/ADB)

¶ “Amazon Rainforest Belongs To Brazil, Says Jair Bolsonaro” • Conservationists blame Brazil’s President Jair Bolsonaro and his government for turning a blind eye as Amazon land is cleared by farmers and loggers, hastening deforestation. But  Bolsonaro has insisted that the Brazilian areas of the Amazon rainforest are sovereign territory. [BBC]

¶ “Costa Rica Will Run On More Than 98% Renewable Energy For Fifth Consecutive Year, Government Says” • Costa Rica’s government expects that the country will generate more than 99% of its energy from renewable resources in 2019. That means Costa Rica will have run on more than 98% clean energy over five consecutive years. [The Tico Times]

Costa Rica (Via ICE)

¶ “More Cost Overruns And Delay For UK’s Nuclear Project: EDF” • Britain’s controversial Hinkley Point nuclear power plant project faces substantial fresh cost overruns and further delay, France’s EDF power supplier said. The increase puts the cost between £1.9 billion ($2.36 billion) and £2.9 billion ($3.6 billion) over previous estimates. []

¶ “Apple-Launched China Clean Energy Fund Invests In Three Wind Farms” • Launched in 2018, the first-of-its-kind China Clean Energy Fund connects suppliers with renewable energy projects. Apple and ten of its suppliers in China will invest nearly $300 million by 2022 to develop projects totaling 1 GW of renewable energy. [Apple Newsroom]

Concord Jing Tang wind farm


¶ “Trump Is Weaponizing The EPA Against California” • President Donald Trump continues to make political war on California over the environment. Last week the Trump administration went after the state for doing too much under the Clean Air Act. This week it’s alleging that California isn’t doing enough under the same law. [CNN]

¶ “In The Renewable Energy Credit Market, Some Are Greener Than Others” • Vermont’s energy may not be as green as it seems. Rep Sarah Copeland-Hanzas, D-Bradford, said the Vermont Climate Solutions Caucus, which she vice chairs, will push to update the state’s renewable energy standard to require more in-state generation. []

Green Mountain Power solar array (Glenn Russell | VTDigger)

¶ “America’s Top Energy Regulator Agonizes Over The Downfall Of Coal Country” • Neil Chatterjee, America’s top energy regulator, grew up in the heart of coal country. Now, he agonizes over the collapse of the coal industry, and there’s not much he can do to save it. “It is really, really difficult for me to watch,” Chatterjee said in an interview. [CNN]

¶ “Microsoft Signs 230-MW US Renewables PPA” • Microsoft entered into a long-term PPA with Engie to buy 230 MW of wind and solar capacity in Texas. The 200-MW Las Lomas wind farm will supply 145 MW, and the 200-MW Anson Solar Center park will provide 85 MW. The projects bring Microsoft’s renewables portfolio to over 1.9 GW. [reNEWS]

Installing a wind turbine (Engie image)

¶ “GE Renewable Energy Goes Carbon Neutral” • The wind, hydropower, energy storage, and grid operations business of GE has committed to going 100% carbon neutral by the end of 2020. GE Renewable Energy chief executive Jerome Pecresse said, “This is a decision that makes business sense.” Natural Capital Partners will advise GE on the move. [reNEWS]

¶ “US Developer Primed For 1.7-GW Solar Surge” • US solar developer Intersect Power has entered late-stage development on a large portfolio of solar power plants with a combined capacity of more than 1700 MW. The five shovel-ready projects, which are located in California and Texas, will begin construction in 2020. [reNEWS]

Solar array (First Solar image)

¶ “More Utilities Getting Serious About Becoming Carbon-Neutral” • Last year, Xcel Energy became the first utility to commit to reducing its net carbon emissions to zero by 2050. The company’s bold goal now is spurring others in the sector to make similar pledges. The investments are to benefit both the environment and the investors. [Motley Fool]

¶ “Industry Leaders: Solar Can Cover 20% Of US Energy Needs In The Next Decade” • While it may seem like an ambitious and overly lofty plan, leaders in the solar energy industry say they believe a variety of strategies will help get them to their goal of producing 20% of the US energy demand in about a decade from now. []

Have a stunningly lovely day.

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September 24 Energy News

September 24, 2019

Greta Thunberg:

¶ “Angry Greta Thunberg Tells Global Leaders She ‘Will Never Forgive’ Them For Failing On Climate Change” • Greta Thunberg doesn’t mince words. “We are in the beginning of a mass extinction and all you can talk about is money and fairy tales of eternal economic growth,” the Swedish climate activist told the UN General Assembly. “How dare you?” [CNN]

Greta Thunberg scolding the UN (UNTV)

¶ “Greta Thunberg And 15 Other Children Filed A Complaint Against Five Countries Over The Climate Crisis” • Greta Thunberg and 15 other children filed a complaint with the United Nations alleging that five of the world’s major economies have violated their human rights by not taking adequate action to stop the unfolding climate crisis. [CNN]

¶ “Trump Makes Flying Visit To UN Climate Crisis Gathering But US Remains Silent” • The UN gathered world leaders to present concrete plans to tackle the climate crisis. Scientists, activists, and religious leaders warned that urgent steps are needed as natural disasters are increasingly devastating. President Trump paid a flying visit but said nothing. [CNN]

Thunberg watches Trump (Andrew Hofstetter | Reuters)


¶ “Logic Supports Renewables, Not Nuclear” • The latest World Nuclear Industry Status Report gives nuclear power little hope in the race against quickly installed, job-friendly, and popular renewables. The report makes it clear that clean power is taking the lead. Nuclear is not only too costly but too slow to deploy to deal with climate change. [pv magazine international]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Energy Watch Group Says Natural Gas Is A Death Sentence For The Earth” • An Energy Watch Group study calculates the climate impact of switching to natural gas. It shows that benefits from reducing CO₂ by switching to natural gas are lost because of the high methane emissions from natural gas production and transportation. [CleanTechnica]

Natural gas report (Credit: Energy Watch Group)


¶ “Chinese Suppliers Report Solar Module Supply Milestones In India” • Two Chinese PV manufacturers announced milestones in their business in India. Trina Solar said it has 4 GW in cumulative installed PV modules in India. Jinneng Clean Energy Technology said it shipped over 1 GW of solar modules to Indian customers over the last two years. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Gabon Becomes The First African Country To Receive Funding For Preserving Its Rainforests” • In an effort to fight climate change, the UN announced that Gabon will become the first African country paid to preserve its rainforest. Norway will pay $150 million to Gabon to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and battle deforestation. [CNN]

Gabon (AFP | Getty Images)

¶ “UK Labour Plans State-Led 52-GW Offshore Wind Drive” • The UK Labour party unveiled a plan to set up a state-owned development company to build 37 new offshore wind farms in domestic waters by 2030. The ‘People Power Plan’ would see 52 GW of offshore wind online by the end of the next decade, up from the existing 30-GW target. [reNEWS]

¶ “UK Offshore Wind Prices Reach New Record Low In Latest CfD Auction” • The latest UK renewable energy auction awarded 12 projects, including 5.5 GW of offshore wind projects, at prices as low as £39.65 ($50.05). According to the UK Department of Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy, prices for offshore wind have fallen 30% since 2017. [CleanTechnica]

Offshore wind farm (Credit: Jan Arne Wold, via Equinor)

¶ “Enlight Team Toasts 105-MW Serbian Success” • Israeli company Enlight Renewable Energy and its Serbian partner New Energy Solutions officially opened the 104.5-MW Kovacica wind farm in Serbia. The project is in the municipality of Kovacica and features 38 GE 2.75-120 turbines. Investment for the wind farm was €189 million. [reNEWS]

¶ “South Australia Unveils Plans For 100% Renewable Hydrogen Economy” • South Australia has outlined plans for a 100% renewable hydrogen economy, saying that with its enormous wind and solar resources, there is nowhere else in the world as well positioned to produce, consume, and export 100% green hydrogen. [RenewEconomy]

South Australian wind farm


¶ “New York State Partners With Ireland, Denmark To Improve Power Grids, Allow More Renewable Energy Resources” • New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced that he signed memorandums of understanding with Ireland and Denmark to partner to improve electric grids and enable more renewable energy resources. [USA Herald]

¶ “Beekeeper Groups Sue EPA Over Pesticide Decision” • In the latest confrontation between the bee industry and the Trump administration, a group of concerned beekeepers have sued the Environmental Protection Agency over its July decision to expand the use of a pesticide that is known to harm bees and other pollinators. [CNN]

Bee hive (Georges Gobet | AFP | Getty Images)

¶ “23 States Sue Trump To Keep California’s Auto Emission Rules” • California sued Friday to stop the Trump administration from revoking its authority to set greenhouse gas emission and fuel economy standards for cars and trucks, enlisting help from 22 other states in a battle that will shape a key component of the nation’s climate policy. [Associated Press]

¶ “Honda Pushes US Renewables Accelerator” • Honda signed a 320-MW virtual power purchase agreement for electricity from a wind farm in Oklahoma and a solar farm in Texas. In the third quarter of 2020, 120 MW of electricity will come from E.ON’s 150-MW Boiling Springs wind farm. And 200 MW will come a year later from PVs in Texas. [reNEWS]

Have an undeniably marvelous day.

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September 23 Energy News

September 23, 2019


¶ “Our Failed-Businessman President Is Working To Tank Another US Industry” • Whether it’s due to pure business ignorance, immense ignorance in general, or poisonous malice, our current president, a consistent business failure over the past several decades, is working feverishly to destroy another major US industry – the auto industry. [CleanTechnica]

Chevy Bolt (Zach Shahan | CleanTechnica)

¶ “What Are The Top Priorities For Utilities In Asia?” • Earlier this month, Malaysia’s Energy Minister gave a glimpse of what is happening in her country. She spoke of the need to digitize the electricity grid, why Malaysia is pushing for the use of solar energy and engaging with ‘prosumers,’ and the need for transparency to boost investment. [GovInsider]

¶ “Climate Change: Did We Just Witness The Beginning Of The End Of Big Oil?” • The energy sector is notorious for booms and busts, but oil and gas stocks’ weighting in the S&P 500 has not been this low since as far back as 1979. Investors have lost faith in oil companies, though it is not yet entirely clear whether that is a permanent change. [CNBC]

Gas station (Bloomberg | Bloomberg | Getty Images)

¶ “Can Nuclear Power Help Save Us From Climate Change?” • Nuclear power’s contribution to electricity generation is in a free fall, dropping from about 18% of worldwide electricity capacity in the mid 1990s to 10% today, the International Energy Agency says. The agency expects the downward spiral to continue, hitting 5% by 2040. [Chemical & Engineering News]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Climate Change: Impacts ‘Accelerating’ As Leaders Gather For UN Talks” • The signs and impacts of global heating are speeding up, the latest science on climate change, published ahead of key UN talks in New York, says. The data, compiled by the World Meteorological Organization says the five-year period from 2014 to 2019 is the warmest on record. [BBC]

Boat and ice (Getty Images)

¶ “Countries Must Triple Climate Emission Cut Targets To Limit Global Heating To 2°C” • An assessment backed by the world’s major climate science bodies has found commitments to cut greenhouse gas emissions must be at least tripled and increased by up to fivefold if the world is to meet the goals of the 2015 Paris climate agreement. [The Guardian]

¶ “Five-Year Period Ending In 2019 Set To Be Hottest On Record, Sobering UN Report Says” • A stunning UN report, produced by the world’s leading climate science organizations, says the five years from 2015 to 2019 “is now estimated to be 1.1°C (1.98°F) above pre-industrial (1850-1900) times and 0.2°C (0.36°F) warmer than 2011-2015.” [The Weather Channel]

Protest in Sydney (Rick Rycroft | AP)


¶ “More Than 90 Heads Of State Are Descending On New York City. Here’s What To Watch For” • Before the UN General Assembly this year, the UN is to hold a special Climate Action summit. UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has told country leaders not to come to the podium without “concrete and transformative plans” for the climate. [CNN]

¶ “Pizol Glacier: Swiss Hold Funeral For Ice Lost To Global Warming” • A Swiss glacier lost to global warming has been commemorated at a memorial service in the Alps. Dozens of people took part in Sunday’s “funeral march” to mark the loss of the Pizol glacier. It has shrunk so much that “from a scientific perspective it is no longer a glacier.” [BBC]

“Funeral march” for the Pizol glacier (Getty Images)

¶ “Tailem Bend Solar Farm Gets Operator Approval For Self-Forecasting Technology” • South Australia’s 95-MW Tailem Bend solar farm is the first of its kind to get approval for self-forecast generation by the Australian Energy Market Operator. Tailem Bend is required to switch off at times of negative prices, and it is looking at battery storage. [RenewEconomy]

¶ “Dozen Renewable Energy Projects Approved” • The UK approved electricity supply deals for a dozen major renewable energy projects, including the world’s largest wind farm, the £9 billion Dogger Bank project off the Yorkshire coast. The projects will provide 6 GW of electricity, enough to power over seven million homes. [Construction Enquirer]

Offshore wind farm

¶ “Google Clicks With Neoen For Finnish Power Pact” • French developer Neoen signed a power purchase agreement with internet giant Google for 130 MW of electricity from Finland’s 250-MW Mutkalampi wind farm. The off-take deal will kick in once the project, located in Central and Northern Ostrobothnia, begins operations in 2022. [reNEWS]


¶ “Where Solar Energy Is Booming in the US” • Right now, amid the ebbs and flows of the solar industry, utility-scale solar may be the hottest business in town. According to the Q3 2019 U.S. Solar Market Insight Report from Wood Mackenzie and the Solar Energy Industries Association, the utility-scale pipeline has hit an all-time high of 37.9 GW. [Motley Fool]

Solar array (Getty Images)

¶ “Tredyffrin Targets 100% Renewable Energy” • The Board of Supervisors of Tredyffrin, Pennsylvania, adopted a resolution to commit to 100% clean energy. The vote of 6 to 1 was met with thunderous applause. Tredyffrin joins ten other municipalities in Chester County currently developing plans to transition away from fossil fuels. []

¶ “Tri-State Retires Nucla Station” • Tri-State Generation and Transmission officially retired its Nucla Station after it used up the last of its coal supply last week. Tri-State had announced in July that it would shutter the 100-MW coal-fired plant next year, roughly two years ahead of its previous plan to close the station in 2022. [The Grand Junction Daily Sentinel]

Have a sufficiently splendid day.

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September 22 Energy News

September 22, 2019


¶ “Tesla Vs Porsche EV Rivalry Accelerates The Death Of Fossil Vehicles” • If Porsche wants its Taycan to keep pace with the Tesla Model S Plaid, Porsche will have to allow it to outperform the company’s current flagship Panamera combustion sedan. And that will only highlight the inferiority of vehicles powered by fossil fuels. [CleanTechnica]

Porsche Taycan (Porsche image)

¶ “The World Is Installing A Ton Of Renewables, But Coal Could Screw Things Up” • The International Energy Agency expects the capacity for renewable energy to grow by almost 12% this year. The problem is, the world is still having a dirty love affair with coal. Worldwide, new coal projects under development come to 579 GW. [Gizmodo Australia]

¶ “Hawaii Wants To Lead The Renewable Revolution” • In 2015 Hawaii became the first US state to mandate a full transition to renewable energy. With high energy prices and an ingrained environmental ethos, Hawaii positioned itself as a pioneer in the move to a future free of fossil fuels. But it is easier to make a promise than to fulfill it. [Scientific American]

Solar array in Hawaii (Julie Thurston Getty Images)

¶ “How Russia Seized Control of the Uranium Market” • Mines in Canada and elsewhere, which have supplied uranium for nuclear fuel, have been closing, as Russia and Kazakhstan put pressure on the market. The US imports 93% of its nuclear reactor fuel, and much of this is from Russia, but President Trump says this is not a problem. [The Market Oracle]


¶ “The Amazon Burns. But Another Part Of Brazil Is Being Destroyed Faster” • The Amazon blazes have captured the attention of the world and its leaders, and for good reason. But just miles away, another part of Brazil, home to 5% of the planet’s plants and animals, and a carbon store of its own, is being destroyed at a faster rate. [CNN]

Land clearing (Nelson Almedia | AFP | Getty Image)

¶ “Deep Geothermal: Is This NZ’s Clean Energy Future?” • The key to driving New Zealand’s emissions to net zero by 2050 may lie deep beneath our feet. A new project will explore how tapping deep and hot geothermal resources could yield an unlimited source of clean energy for the country, at a time it’s searching for bold ways to decarbonize. [New Zealand Herald]

¶ “Germany To Join Alliance To Phase Out Coal” • In the wake of the global student climate strike, Environment Minister Svenja Schulze said Germany would move further in its efforts to phase out coal. Berlin is hoping to shut down all its coal-fired power plants by 2038. The country will be joining the Powering Past Coal Alliance. [Deutsche Welle]

Mine and turbines (S Zeise | ©Picture Alliance | DPA)


¶ “California Is Investing $95 Million Into Clean Transportation” • California wants to make sure that its citizens eventually use only zero-emissions vehicles. It recently announced that it is investing $95 million into clean transportation. One goal is helping those living in the state’s disadvantaged communities get access to clean transportation. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Minnesota Wind-Solar Hybrid Project Could Be New Frontier For Renewable Energy” • As an experiment, a wind turbine and small solar array sit in a cornfield near Pelican Rapids, Minnesota. By capturing both sun and wind power, they can provide a more stable supply of electricity than either energy source can provide alone. [Minneapolis Star Tribune]

Wind turbine (Clean Energy Economy Minnesota)

¶ “Trump Administration Suppressed Over 1500 Climate Change Studies” • The Trump administration systematically suppressed and minimized the results of more than 1,400 studies related to climate change at the Department of Agriculture, information released by Sen Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) shows. Farmers are not getting facts they need. [The National Memo]

¶ “Climate Activists Blast NorthWestern Energy For Reliance On Fossil Fuels” • More than 100 activists brought the Climate Strike to NorthWestern Energy’s office in Missoula, Montana, urging the company to stop using coal and natural gas to produce energy and convert to wind, solar, and other renewable energy sources. [KPAX-TV]

Demonstration in Missoula (Dave Stalling | Missoula Current)

¶ “Salt Lake Students Skip Class, Take Part In Global Climate Strike” • Young people across the world Friday rallied for a bigger response to what they say are dire threats to people everywhere from climate change. Conservatively, Salt Lake City’s event drew several hundred demonstrators. Many of them were high school students. [KUTV 2News]

¶ “The Heat Is On The Rise And Climate Change Is Affecting Tampa Bay” • Climate change is real, and it’s happening now: That’s the message protesters wanted the nation to hear. Heat and coastal flooding are the main issues people in Florida are seeing. The water level in Tampa Bay is 7.8 inches above what it was in 1940, and it is rising. []

Have a gratifylingly magnificent day.

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September 21 Energy News

September 21, 2019


¶ “11% Of The Military Budget Could Fund Enough Renewable Energy For Every Home In The US” • Just 11% of the Pentagon’s current $716 billion budget would pay to produce enough wind and solar energy to power every one of the 127.59 million US households. A Green New Deal could make energy bills a thing of the past. [National Priorities Project]

Climate strike in Perth. (Gnangarra, Wikimedia Commons)


¶ “Germany Unveils $60 Billion Plan To Fight The Climate Crisis” • As tens of thousands took to the streets of Berlin to demand urgent action to tackle the climate crisis, Germany’s coalition government unveiled a €54 billion ($60 billion) package of policies to speed up the country’s transition to renewable energy and reduce carbon emissions. [CNN]

¶ “Climate Protests: Marches Worldwide Against Global Warming” • Millions of people around the world held a global climate strike on Friday, inspired by activist Greta Thunberg. Protesters across continents waved placards and chanted slogans in what could be the biggest ever demonstration over global warming caused by humans. [BBC]

Over four million people demonstrating (Reuters image)

¶ “Saudi Oil Facility Attacks: Race On To Restore Supplies” • While it is not clear who launched the attack on Saudi oil facilities, it is clear significant damage was done. Oil prices saw their biggest jump in 30 years on Monday, rising by nearly 15%. Despite this, Saudi Arabia says oil production will resume as normal by the end of September. [BBC]

¶ “After Stalling Last Year, Renewable Power Capacity Additions To Hit Double-Digit Growth In 2019” • After stalling last year, global capacity additions of renewable power are set to bounce back with double-digit growth in 2019, driven by solar PV’s strong performance, according to the International Energy Agency. [Modern Diplomacy]

Solar energy

¶ “Daimler And VW Saying ‘Auf Wiedersehn’ To Internal Combustion Engines, But Not BMW” • In an interview, the head of R&D for the Mercedes-Benz division of Daimler, said his company has no plans to develop next-generation internal combustion engines. Instead, it is focusing on development of electric powertrains and batteries. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “‘We’re Losing The Race:’ UN Secretary General Calls Climate Change An Emergency” • UN Secretary General António Guterres said in an interview with Covering Climate Now that he is counting on public pressure to compel governments to take much stronger action against what he calls the climate change “emergency.” [The Philadelphia Inquirer]

António Guterres (Mary Altaffer | AP)


¶ “‘Worse Than Harvey’: Catastrophic Imelda Flooding Turns Deadly In East Texas” • Tropical Depression Imelda dumped catastrophic amounts of rain on parts of eastern Texas and western Louisiana. Houston’s Police Chief said the rainfall is worse than during Harvey two years ago, which was the most extreme rain event in US history. [Daily Beast]

¶ “Tropical Storm Imelda Will Likely Be Southeast Texas’ Fifth 500-Year Flood In Five Years” • Tropical Storm Imelda was incredible. Though it might be too soon to tell how climate change shaped the intensity and speed with which Imelda struck Texas, Imelda will likely be Southeast Texas’ fifth 500-year flood event in as many years. [The Texas Observer]

Flooding (Kim Brent | The Beaumont Enterprise Via AP)

¶ “AT&T Renewable Energy Purchases To Surpass 1.5 GW Of Clean Energy” • AT&T has announced that its renewable energy purchases will surpass 1.5 GW of clean energy capacity, the amount used by about 560,000 homes, with the addition of new Virtual Power Purchase Agreements. The agreements are with Invenergy and Duke Energy Renewables. [KFVS]

¶ “California, New York Sue To Block Trump Administration From Revoking Higher Auto Emissions Standards Waiver” • California and New York filed a lawsuit to try to block the Trump administration from revoking the states’ authority to set their own vehicle emission standards, a legal waiver established under the Clean Air Act. [CNN]

CA (Justin Sullivan | Getty Images North America| Getty Images)

¶ “Trump Will Hold Session On Religious Persecution Instead Of Attending UN Climate Summit” • When President Trump visits the UN on Monday, many world leaders will be participating in a summit meant to address climate change. Trump won’t be there. Instead, he is chairing his own session focused on worldwide religious persecution. [CNN]

¶ “Repeat Flooding Has Residents Asking: Is Houston Worth It?” • Harvey was the third “500-year” rain event to hit Southeast Texas in three years. This week, Tropical Storm Imelda also earned that distinction, dumping more than forty inches of rain on the area. And many residents are now asking themselves: Is Houston worth it? [Houston Chronicle]

Woman and child (Godofredo A Vásquez | Houston Chronicle)

¶ “Former Analyst Quit Over White House Efforts To Edit Climate Report” • Dr Rod Schoonover, a former State Department intelligence analyst who resigned in protest when the White House attempted to block his report to Congress, told CBS News why he believes the threat climate change poses to America’s national security is being silenced. [WCBI]

¶ “Three Mile Island Unit 1 Closes For Good, Unable To Run Profitably” • Three Mile Island Unit 1, the nuclear power station whose name has become synonymous with the nation’s worst nuclear accident, was closed for good on Friday. The 45-year-old nuclear reactor, located in Middletown, Pennsylvania, was losing money. [CBS News]

Have a satisfyingly perfect day.

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September 20 Energy News

September 20, 2019

Science and Technology:

¶ “Storing Energy In Compressed Air Could Finally Become Cheap Enough For The Big Time” • Hydrostor uses excess energy to compress air and store it in a container. Then, to recover the energy, run the trapped air through a turbine that generates power. It has developed the technology to the point that it is looking for big projects. [Quartz]

Hydrostor energy storage (Hydrostor image)


¶ “More Than 100,000 Have Gathered In Melbourne As The World Begins Climate Demonstrations” • All around the world, climate activists are taking part in a global general strike in what is expected to be the biggest day of climate demonstrations in the planet’s history. The day started with more than 100,000 marchers gathering in Melbourne. [CNN]

¶ “Enel Turns Sod On 201-MW Kolskaya Wind Farm” • Enel Green Power has started construction of a 201-MW wind farm in Russia. The Kolskaya wind farm, which is the largest renewables project beyond the Arctic Circle, is expected to be completed in 2021. The wind farm, located in Murmansk, will consist of 57 turbines. [reNEWS]

Wind turbine (Enel Green Power image)

¶ “How The ACT’s 100% Renewable Electricity Target Is Saving Households Cash” • In less than two weeks, the Australian Capital Territory will reach its target of sourcing the equivalent of 100% of its electricity from renewable sources. It has showed that the target is doable. And it proved to be a lot less expensive than anyone thought. [RenewEconomy]

¶ “Ikea Has Invested In Enough Clean Energy To Power All Of Its Operations (Plus Extra)” • Ikea’s parent company has invested around $2.7 billion in renewable energy. Today, it announced that its latest investments will tip it over a milestone that it originally aimed to achieve a year from now. It will produce more energy than it uses. [Fast Company]

Ikea solar array (Ikea image)


¶ “Scottish Islands Set To Be ‘Green Powerhouse’” • Scotland’s remote islands will become a “green energy powerhouse” after four wind projects with a combined capacity of 275 MW secured Contracts for Difference, according to trade association Scottish Renewables. The CfDs ranging between £39.65 ($49.70) and £41.61 per MWh. [reNEWS]

¶ “Britain’s New Renewable Subsidies Hit Record Low On The Path To Net Zero” • Britain has awarded record low subsidies to twelve renewable energy projects capable of generating enough power for some 7 million homes, the government said, as a drop in the cost of offshore wind projects curbs the need for state support. [Euronews]

Turbines (Andy DingleCleanTechnicay, Wikimedia Commons)

¶ “CfD3 Puts UK In ‘New Era Of Cheap Power’” • The UK is in a new era of cheap renewables after the Contract for Difference auction results saw a record-low support price of under £40 ($50.20) per MWh, according to trade association RenewableUK. Offshore and onshore wind are now lower than the expected market price for power. [reNEWS]


¶ “US To Stage Its Largest Ever Climate Strike: ‘Somebody Must Sound The Alarm'” • Climate strikes will take place in more than 1,000 locations in the US on Friday, with major rallies in New York, Washington DC, Boston, Chicago, San Francisco, and Miami. Globally, more than 4,500 strikes are planned across 150 countries. [The Guardian]

Greta Thunberg at the UN (Bryan R Smith | AFP | Getty Images)

¶ “Amazon To Buy 100,000 Electric Vans As Part Of Broader Climate Pledge” • Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos announced a climate plan that will meet the Paris climate agreement goals ten years early and makes the company carbon neutral by 2040. As part of this pledge, Bezos announced Amazon will purchase 100,000 electric vans. [CNN]

¶ “The Famous Three Mile Island Nuclear Plant Is Closing” • The famous Three Mile Island nuclear plant is officially shutting down September 20, a plant spokesperson confirmed to CNN. Exelon Generation announced in May that it would officially close the plant by September 30, citing a lack of state action in subsidizing clean energy. [CNN]

Cooling towers (Andrew Caballero-Reynolds | AFP | Getty Images)

¶ “Why GM Auto Workers Are Striking And Some Want To Make More EVs” • The Tesla Model 3 won the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s TOP SAFETY PICK+ award, which means that the car achieved the highest possible score in all 8 test categories. You cannot get a better overall score. But then, this should not be surprising. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Google Search Finds 1.6 GW Of Green PPAs” • Google made what the internet giant claims to be the biggest ever corporate purchase of renewable energy. The US company has secured a 1.6 GW package consisting of 18 power purchase agreements in wind and solar across Europe and the Americas. And its global PV porfolio has more than doubled. [reNEWS]

Data center (Google image)

¶ “Hot Springs, Arkansas Is Switching Over To 100% Solar Energy, Joining Only Six Other Cities In The US” • The city of Hot Springs, Arkansas has announced plans to switch to 100% solar energy. The City Manager says the switch to a renewable energy source will save the city an estimated $30 million over the next three decades. [Newsweek]

¶ “Ørsted To Pioneer Deployment Of GE’s Next Generation Offshore Wind Turbine” • Subject to required approvals and final contract signing, Ørsted will deploy Haliade-X 12-MW wind turbines on the two offshore wind farms in Ørsted’s Mid-Atlantic cluster. They would put 120 MW off the coast of Maryland and 1,100 off New Jersey. [EnerCom Inc]

Have an outrageously tranquil day.

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September 19 Energy News

September 19, 2019


¶ “I Saw What Climate Change Hell Looks Like. Now I’m Joining The Global Climate Strike. You Should Too” • I thought it was snow. Soft white flakes dissolved into my coffee. With the other students on the cafe patio, I looked to the sky for an explanation. It was not snow. It was the Thomas fire, the largest fire on record in California history. [Los Angeles Times]

Students demonstrate (Filip Singer | EPA-EFE | REX)

¶ “Leading US Businesses Sow Distributed Wind Energy, Reap Control” • Three US DOE reports contain an interesting detail. Uilities still account for the largest share of distributed wind energy, but commercial and industrial users are catching up. Large wind power users could become a major force in the renewable energy transition. [CleanTechnica]

Science and Technology:

¶ “How Climate Crisis Is Accelerating The Global Spread Of Deadly Dengue Fever” • Explosive outbreaks of dengue fever have rapidly spread in countries across Asia, killing more than 1,000 people, infecting hundreds of thousands and straining hospitals packed with sick families. Bangladesh is having the worst outbreak it has ever seen. [CNN]

Treating dengue fever (Nicolas Asfour | AFP | Getty Images)

¶ “Study Of Ancient Climate Suggests Warming Could Accelerate As CO₂ Levels Rise” • Researchers at two universities in the US used a state-of-the-art climate model to successfully simulate the extreme warming of the Early Eocene Period. They found that the rate of warming increased dramatically as carbon dioxide levels rose. [UANews]

¶ “Vegetarian Diets Not Always The Most Climate-Friendly, Researchers Say” • Scientists found that diets in which meat, fish, or dairy products were consumed only once a day would leave less of a footprint on climate change and water supplies than a vegetarian diet including milk and eggs, in 95% of countries they analysed. [Good Food]

Good food (Supplied photo)


¶ “China Still Planning New Coal Power Projects: Environmental Groups” • China’s total planned coal-fired power projects now stand at 226.2 GW, the highest in the world and more than twice the amount of new capacity on the books in India, according to data published by German environmental organization Urgewald and thirty other groups. [CNA]

¶ “Investors Turn Up The Heat On Companies Over Climate Change” • A group of 515 investors managing assets worth $35 trillion are sending a message to governments and companies: Do more to fight climate change. They urged policymakers to act with the “utmost urgency” to comply with the goals of the 2015 Paris climate agreement. [CNN]

Coal-burning power plant (George Frey | Getty Images)

¶ “Decentralised Renewable Energy Can Ensure Round-The-Clock Power Supply: Report” • Decentralized renewable energy can ensure round-the-clock, reliable and quality energy supply through clean energy sources to most customers, according to a report by Clean Energy Access Network, a non-government organisation based in Delhi. []

¶ “NT Backs Massive Solar Push To Reach Zero Emissions Target” • The Labor government of Australia’s Northern Territory unveiled a comprehensive and firmly science-informed plan to reach net zero emissions by 2050. It has a focus on the territory’s massive advantage in solar – “the cheapest form of new electricity generation.” [RenewEconomy]

Solar roof in Darwin, NT

¶ “Renewable Energy Could Cut Electricity Rates By 30%” • Heavy reliance on imported fossil fuels, high financing costs, and uncompetitive market structures have helped make electricity prices in the Philippines among the highest in Southeast Asia, a report of a global research institute says. Switching to renewables could save 30%. [BusinessWorld Online]

¶ “GE To Supply World’s Biggest Battery For South Australia Solar River Project” •  GE Renewable Energy will build what has been touted as “one of the largest” grid-connected batteries in the world. If the 200-MW Solar River Project in South Australia were built today, it would be the world’s biggest, according to our calculations. [RenewEconomy]

GE battery

¶ “Fukushima Disaster: Nuclear Executives Found Not Guilty” • More than eight years after the Fukushima nuclear disaster, a Japanese court has cleared three former executives of the firm operating the plant of professional negligence. It was the only criminal case to arise out of the disaster, which was the worst since Chernobyl in 1986. [BBC]


¶ “Greta Thunberg Has A Suggestion For Congress On How To Take Real Action On The Climate Crisis” • Sixteen-year-old Greta Thunberg appeared in front of Congress before a hearing on climate change, just days after she met with former President Barack Obama. She said, “I don’t want you to listen to me. I want you to listen to the scientists.” [CNN]

Greta Thunberg (Alex Wong | Getty Images)

¶ “California Vows To Fight Trump Administration To Keep Higher Car Emission Standards” • Sacramento has vowed to fight Washington’s attempt to remove the state’s higher car emission standards. “It’s about the oil industry, period, full stop. It’s not about the car manufacturers, … it’s not about our economy,” Governor Gavin Newsom said. [KGO-TV]

¶ “US Utility-Scale Solar Pipeline Tops 37.9 GW” • The US solar industry now boasts the largest pipeline of utility-scale solar projects in history with a record 37.9 GW of contracted solar, according to the latest figures, in the US Solar Market Insight Report from Wood Mackenzie Power & Renewables and the Solar Energy Industries Association.  [CleanTechnica]

Have a wonderfully uplifting day.

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September 18 Energy News

September 18, 2019


¶ “September, 2019: A Tipping Point Moment For The Earth?” • Thanks to the unceasing efforts of people like Bill McKibben, Michael Mann, Greta Thunberg, Extinction Rebellion, Sunrise Movement, and many others, there is a sense that attitudes toward climate change may be shifting. Mainstream media is starting to cover the story. [CleanTechnica]

Bill McKibben marching (chesapeakeclimate, Wikimedia)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Air Pollution Particles May Reach Fetuses In The Womb, Study Finds” • New evidence has been found that air pollution can breach a mother’s placenta and potentially reach fetuses in the womb, raising the possibility of future health problems. Harmful particles can make their way from the lungs to the placenta and may reach fetuses directly. [CNN]


¶ “Egypt’s Massive 1.8-GW Benban Solar Park Nears Completion” • Amid the sand dunes of the Sahara, workers are putting the finishing touches on one of the world’s largest solar installations. There, as many as 7.2 million PV panels will make up Benban Solar Park – a renewable energy project so big, it will be visible from space. [IEEE Spectrum]

Officials at Benban Solar Park (Dominic Chavez | IFC)

¶ “AC Energy Building Up Renewable Energy Portfolio With $2 Billion Investments” • AC Energy Philippines Inc, formerly Phinma Energy Corp, is eyeing close to $2 billion or P100 billion of investment in domestic renewable energy projects, with a goal of racking up a total of 2,000 MW of renewable capacity within six years. []

¶ “Scatec Solar Lifts Capacity Target On Upbeat Demand For Renewable Energy” • Norway’s Scatec Solar, which builds and operates solar power plants, raised its capacity outlook due to strong demand for renewable energy. Oslo-listed Scatec now aims to increase its capacity to 4.5 GW of electricity by the end of 2021. [The Edge Markets MY]

Solar systems (Reuters image)

¶ “Trial Of TEPCO Executives Over Fukushima Disaster Heads To Conclusion” • A Tokyo court will hand down a verdict later this week on whether three TEPCO executives are liable for the 2011 Fukushima disaster. It is the only criminal case to arise out of the world’s worst nuclear crisis since the Chernobyl explosion in 1986. [Japan Today]


¶ “Atlassian Is Just One Of Several Aussie Companies Which Have Pledged To Use 100% Renewable Energy – And One Has Already Met The Goal” • While the government drags its feet, the Global Climate Strike is taking place around the world. And some Australian businesses are taking their own stands against climate change. [Business Insider Australia]

Renewable energy (Peter Macdiarmid | Getty Images)

¶ “ACT Joins Exclusive Club As Renewable Energy Goal Reached Ahead Of Schedule” • When the third stage of South Australia’s Hornsdale Wind Farm comes online on 1 October, the Australian Capital Territory will become the first major jurisdiction outside Europe to transition from a fossil fuel-based energy supply to 100% renewable electricity. [TheRiotACT]

¶ “Why 200% renewables would be better for Australia than 100%” • Australia could be a global leader in climate mitigation and zero-carbon energy exports, and meet its domestic power demands “on the side,” according to a new energy transition scenario that would take us well beyond 100% renewables, to a target of 200%. [RenewEconomy]

Solar array in Australia


¶ “EPA Set To Revoke California’s Authority To Set Vehicle Standards” • The EPA is preparing to revoke California’s authority to set its own vehicle emission standards, a source familiar with the plans told CNN. The Trump administration is in an ongoing fight with the state as it works to reduce former President Obama’s environmental legacy. [CNN]

¶ “Greta Thunberg To US Politicians: ‘Sorry, You’re Not Trying Hard Enough'” • Greta Thunberg has told US politicians that they’re not doing enough to combat climate change. She also told the Senate climate task force to save their praise. “Don’t invite us here to just tell us how inspiring we are without actually doing anything about it,” she said. [BBC]

Greta Thunberg (Getty Images)

¶ “Duke Energy Plans To Invest More In Renewable Power” • Duke Energy says it plans to invest heavily in renewable energy and natural gas powered plants to further reduce its carbon emissions by 2030. One of the nation’s largest utilities said it plans to double its portfolio of solar, wind and other renewable power sources by 2025. []

¶ “SF Approves Legislation Requiring Renewable Electricity Sources For Commercial Buildings” • The San Francisco Board of Supervisors approved an ordinance that requires commercial buildings over 50,000 square feet to begin relying on electricity generated from renewable sources. The legislation, was passed by unanimous vote. [San Francisco Chronicle]

San Francisco (Paul Chinn | The Chronicle)

¶ “Longmont’s Transition To 100% Renewable Energy Appears Ahead Of Schedule” • With Colorado’s Platte River Power Authority set to expand it renewable energy portfolio, which already generates approximately 30% of its power, Longmont’s goal of transitioning to 100% renewable energy by 2030 appears to be attainable. [Longmont Times-Call]

¶ “Northam Wants Virginia Running On 100% Renewable Energy By 2050” • Virginia Gov Ralph Northam announced that he signed an executive order setting a goal for the state to produce 100% of its electricity from carbon-free sources by 2050. Climate change “poses potentially devastating risk to Virginia,” the order said. []

Have an incomparably superior day.

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September 17 Energy News

September 17, 2019


¶ “China Is Doing A Lot Better On Climate Action Than Most People Realize” • China may be the biggest CO₂ emitter, but China is turning on more low-carbon electrical generation annually in the form of hydro, wind, solar, and nuclear than any other country. China invested $3 in renewable energy for every $1 the US invested in 2017. [CleanTechnica]

Beijing (Image courtesy of the Government of China)

¶ “Here’s Another Argument For Renewable Energy: No More Wars For Oil” • Imagine a world in which each country is able to meet its energy needs internally, using nothing but the natural abundance of sunshine, wind, geothermal, hydroelectric, or tidal power. What if the US did not have to destroy national treasures just to dominate oil markets? [CleanTechnica]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Climate Change And Health: Interactive New England Journal Of Medicine Report” • The New England Journal of Medicine, one of the world’s most prestigious medical journals, has created an interactive online presentation, The Climate Crisis – Health and Care Delivery. It illustrates the relationship between climate change and health. [CleanTechnica]

Lyme disease in Wisconsin (Lamiot, Wikimedia Commons)


¶ “Oil Prices Soar After Attacks On Saudi Facilities” • Oil prices ended nearly 15% higher on Monday, with the Brent benchmark seeing its biggest jump in about 30 years. The rise came after two attacks on Saudi Arabian facilities on Saturday knocked out about 5% of global supply. Brent crude ended the day at $69 a barrel, up 14.6%. [BBC]

¶ “Total JV Targets Chinese Solar” • French energy giant Total has formed a 50:50 joint venture with Envision Group to develop solar energy projects in China. The TEESS JV will offer B2B customers a combination of distributed PV energy systems and digital solar energy solutions running on Envision’s operating system EnOS. [reNEWS]

Solar panels (Pexels image)

¶ “SA Coal Is Burning Out Quicker Than Expected” • A report on the export outlook for South African coal, which was published by the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis, a respected international energy think-tank, warns that new energy technologies will replace coal-fired power faster than most have predicted. [Daily Maverick]

¶ “Solar Power To Drive Renewable Energy Investments To $2.6 Trillion By 2019 End” • Solar power, which has seen a significant increase in capacity investments in the last decade, is set to drive the global investment in new renewable energy capacity to $2.6 trillion by the end of 2019, a report by the UN Environment Programme said. [Down To Earth Magazine]

Solar powered apartments (Getty Images)

¶ “Unilever: 100% Of Grid Purchased Electricity Now Comes From Renewables” • Unilever said its factories, offices, R&D facilities, data centers, warehouses and distribution centers worldwide are now powered by 100% renewable electricity. The CPG giant further says there have been no “net on-costs” to get to this point. [Environmental Leader]

¶ “Vestas Nails 34-MW Norwegian Prize” • Vestas won a turbine order totaling 34 MW for the Haramsfjellet wind farm on the island of Haramsoya in Norway from Taaleri Energia’s SolarWind II fund. The deal covers supply, installation, and commissioning of eight V136 4.2-MW turbines, as well as a 27-year management agreement. [reNEWS]

Installing a wind turbine blade (Vestas image)

¶ “TransAlta Unveils $2 Billion Clean Power Vision” • Canadian energy company TransAlta Corporation unveiled a $2 billion clean energy investment plan. This includes renewables projects already under construction, which comprise four wind farms located in the US and the Canadian province of Alberta, worth $800 million. [reNEWS]

¶ “Is This Australia’s First Utility To Acknowledge Death By Solar?” • The electricity utility owned by the Northern Territory said it is facing an “existential risk” from the rise of solar power, as its portfolio of largely gas-fired generation assets was losing out to lower cost solar alternatives that are increasingly attractive in the market. [RenewEconomy]

Gas turbine at Alice Springs


¶ “Why Does The US Hide Oil Underground?” • As oil prices spiked after the drone strikes in Saudi Arabia, President Donald Trump tweeted they could use the oil “to keep the markets well-supplied.” The oil he was referring to amounts to more than 640 million barrels which are stored in salt caverns beneath the states of Texas and Louisiana. [BBC]

¶ “Brookridge Developer Hopes To Make Project Largest In Nation Powered By 100% Renewable Energy” • The Brookridge development in Overland Park, Kansas, will become the largest in the nation to be certified as 100% renewably powered, according to its developer. It will be powered by solar and wind resources in Kansas. [Shawnee Mission Post]

Rendering from the final development plan for Brookridge

¶ “US Utilities File Legal Challenge To Trump Power Plant Rule” • Con Edison and eight other utilities filed a legal challenge to the Trump administration’s plan to cut carbon emissions from power plants, replacing a much tougher Obama-era rule. The utilities, mostly from Democratic-led states, serve more than 23 million customers in 49 states. [Reuters]

¶ “Michigan’s Largest Producer Of Renewable Energy Requests Proposals For New Solar And Wind” • DTE Energy is issuing Requests for Proposals for more solar and wind projects in Michigan. DTE will use the resources for its voluntary renewable energy programs and to deliver on its commitment to reduce carbon emissions 80% by 2040.  [pvbuzz media]

Have a gloriously happy day.

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September 16 Energy News

September 16, 2019


¶ “The Shift To Solar, Wind, And Electric Vehicles Is Too Monumental To Overstate” • The transition is happening. Wind energy, solar energy, and electric transport are the better, more cost-competitive products, and they are winning today in the marketplace. But the transition could be happening faster, and it should be happening faster. [CleanTechnica]

Tesla Model S (Chanan Bos | CleanTechnica)

¶ “Fossil Fuel Companies Roll Out A New Era Of Spin” • Over the years, fossil fuel companies have poured millions into sowing doubt about climate science and burnishing their public image. Now, they are reckoning with a different communications challenge: convincing their investors that the future of oil and gas companies is bright. [Grist]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Faster Pace Of Climate Change Is ‘scary,’ Former Chief Scientist Says” • Speaking to the BBC, Professor Sir David King, a former chief scientific adviser to the government of the UK, said, “It’s appropriate to be scared. We predicted temperatures would rise, but we didn’t foresee these sorts of extreme events we’re getting so soon.” [BBC]

Wildfire (Getty Images)


¶ “One Of India’s Largest Coal-Mining States Says It Will Not Build New Coal Power Plants” • The central Indian state of Chhattisgarh, home to the country’s third-largest coal reserves, will not build any new coal power plants, the chairman of the Chhattisgarh State Power Distribution Company, a state-owned utility, told Quartz India. [Quartz]

¶ “Frankfurt Motor Show Hit By Huge Climate Protests” • Thousands of climate protesters marched in Frankfurt against the role of Germany’s car industry in climate change and the destruction of the environment. As they paraded past Frankfurt’s annual motor show, they called for an end of vehicles with combustion engines. [CNN]

Frankfurt protest (Boris Roessler | DPA | AFP | Getty Images)

¶ “Renewable Energy Festival Research Shows Scots Are Clued Up” • Research released to mark the beginning of the Scottish Renewable Energy Festival found that 47% of 1002 Scottish adults surveyed said they now think more about the sustainability of the type of energy powering their home than they did in 2014. Only 3% said they are less aware. [The National]

¶ “Ofgem Green-Lights Orkney Transmission Link” • UK energy regulator Ofgem approved SSE Networks’ proposals to build a 220-MW link between Orkney with the Scottish mainland, on the condition that at least 135 MW of new Orkney wind projects are awarded a Contract for Difference or are judged likely to be developed by December 2021. [reNEWS]

Orkney (Image: reNEWS)

¶ “Tata Power Renewable Energy Limited Commissions 150 MW Solar Capacity In Rajasthan” • Tata Power, the largest integrated power company in India, announced the commissioning of 150 MW of solar capacity in Rajasthan by a wholly owned subsidiary. With this, the overall operating renewable capacity of TPREL in India now stands at 2,628 MW. [Equity Bulls]

¶ “Nationals MPs Snub Launch Of Farming Group’s Climate Change Report” • A report, launched by Farmers for Climate Action group at Parliament House in Canberra, warned that agricultural production will fall, farm profits will decline, and food insecurity will increase absent a cohesive national strategy on climate change and agriculture. [The Guardian]

Raspberries in Tasmania (Rafael Ben Ari | Alamy Stock Photo)

¶ “UTM To Participate In Global Climate Strike” • University of Toronto Mississauga will hold a series of events in support of the Global Climate Strikes taking place on September 20 and 27. The dates coincide with the upcoming a UN Climate Action Summit, which aims to present viable plans to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. [Varsity]

¶ “Fukushima Fishermen Concerned For Future Over Release Of Radioactive Water” • Having spent the past eight years rebuilding from the Fukushima Disaster, the local fishing fleet is worried. It appears increasingly likely that the nuclear plant’s operator, TEPCO, will dump huge quantities of radioactive water into the ocean. [The Guardian]

Poor catch at Fukushima (Koji Ueda | AP)

¶ “Broad Coalition Representing Millions Of Australians Opposes Nuclear Power” • More than 40 groups representing millions of Australians have come together to issue a clear message to the federal government that the nation’s energy future is renewable, “not radioactive.” The mining industry is calling for the ban on nuclear energy to be lifted. [SBS]


¶ “Maine Ocean Institute Launching New Climate Center” • The Gulf of Maine Research Institute says its new climate center will be “a new interdisciplinary center focused on solutions to local, regional, and global challenges related to ocean warming.” The Gulf of Maine has numerous fisheries and is warming faster than most ocean waters. []

Gulf of Maine (Yoon S Byun | The Boston Globe)

¶ “Minnesota Grows Business, Jobs As It Greens The Local Economy” • In Minnesota, 25% of electric power is renewable. Now policymakers and utilities talk about doubling that by 2030. Several announcements in the last few days alone will advance the renewable-energy, less-carbon and faster-growing Minnesota economy. [Minneapolis Star Tribune]

¶ “How American Communities Are Preparing For The Impacts Of Climate Change” • A study from the American Association for the Advancement of Science found that many communities across the US are addressing their own unique challenges associated with climate change. Some communities are also working to reduce emissions. []

Have a transformatively pleasing day.

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September 15 Energy News

September 15, 2019


¶ “We Can Still Save The Earth From Climate Change. Here’s How” • A years-long research project simulating a global pathway towards 100% renewables across all energy sectors, bears a clear message: A global energy transition, with real climate action, is not only technically feasible but also cheaper than our current energy system. [CleanTechnica]

Saving Earth (Image © Viktoria Kurpas)

¶ “Climate Emergency: Have We Reached The End Game?” • A new paper on climate change grabbed the headlines this week as it predicts the world will end in thirty years. The absence of drastic measures to deal with climate change, its adverse effects, and the seeming non-action of human societies have made the situation worse. [Science Times]

¶ “Katharine Hayhoe Reconciles Christianity And Climate Science” • Atmospheric scientist Katharine Hayhoe asked an audience in Juneau how a Christian, like herself, could truly say they were pro-life if they ignored the damage being done by climate change? “I’m a climate scientist because I’m a Christian,” she said. [Juneau Empire]

Katharine Hayhoe speaking (Peter Segall | Juneau Empire)

¶ “How To Live With The Climate Crisis Without Becoming A Nihilist” • Today, despite all the grim climate news, I actually feel more optimistic than ever. People are waking up! Maybe there’s a bit of panic, but that’s a sensible response and a good place to start. I’m hopeful we’ll see broad climate mobilization and systems transformation. [Los Angeles Times]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Researchers Using Photos To Study Impact Of Climate Change On Fall Foliage” • With autumn approaching and cooling temperatures, the first blush of the season’s fall foliage is likely drawing smiles from the pumpkin spice-loving crowds. But scientists believe warmer temperatures are pushing the fall color season later into autumn. []

Fall colors (Karen James)


¶ “Coordinated Strikes Knock Out Half Of Saudi Oil Capacity, Five Million Barrels A Day” • The strikes on key Saudi Arabian oil facilities, among the world’s largest production centers, have disrupted about half of the kingdom’s oil capacity, or 5% of the daily global oil supply. Yemen’s Houthi rebels have taken responsibility. [CNN]

¶ “Battling For Survival On The Frontier Of Climate Change” • Evolving weather patterns are making their impacts felt in the Caribbean with long droughts, incessant bush fires and worsening storms. And Jamaica’s reliance on rain-fed farming, with many smallholdings set on mountain slopes, leaves the farming sector particularly vulnerable. [BBC]

Dry Pagee River

¶ “Indian Hydro Power Generator Floats 2-GW Solar Tender” • India’s largest hydro power generation company has issued one of the largest-ever solar power tenders in the country’s history. NHPC Limited (formerly National Hydro Power Corporation) has called upon developers to set up 2 GW of solar projects across the country. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “World’s First Floating Nuclear Power Plant Arrives At Port In Russia” • Russia’s world first floating nuclear power station has completed a 5,000-km Arctic transfer to the country’s far east, according to the Rosatom nuclear agency. The power plant Akademik Lomonosov is to start operating when it is connected to the grid, by year’s end. []

Akademik Lomonosov (Maxim Shemetov | Reuters)

¶ “Softbank Wins 330 MW Capacity In India’s Undersubscribed Solar Tender” • The fifth national-level solar power auctions by the Solar Energy Corporation of India had two winners that secured 480 MW of capacity. The originally tendered capacity was 1.2 GW, and the technical round of the auction was sharply undersubscribed. [CleanTechnica]


¶ “Tesla Announces Simple Pricing On Commercial Solar, $1.01/Watt (Will Blow Some Minds)” • Elon Musk announced California customers can now order commercial sizes of solar power in five minutes at Tesla is getting within a penny of the psychologically magical $1 for a watt of solar generation capacity. [CleanTechnica]

Solar system (

¶ “Many States Are Punishing Drivers For Owning An Electric Car” • A study by Consumer Reports show that many states are seemingly punishing EV drivers for owning EVs. The report shows that several states are applying taxes to electric vehicle drivers at rates that are much higher than what an average driver pays in gasoline taxes. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Tucson Electric Bills To Rise With Renewable-Energy Buildout” • Customers of Tucson Electric Power Co will pay a little more on their bills starting next month under a new renewable-energy plan and surcharges state regulators approved. TEP is authorized to collect $60.9 million from surcharges to support the programs. [Arizona Daily Star]

Navajo Generating Station (Eduardo Manchon, Wikimedia)

¶ “More Renewable Energy Options Available Under Duke Energy’s Green Source Advantage” • The North Carolina Utilities Commission approved Duke Energy’s Green Source Advantage program in North Carolina. The program offers large energy users the flexibility of choosing renewable energy suppliers as they choose. [New Kerala]

¶ “Greater Wildfire Risks Prompt Growth Of Electrical ‘Microgrids’ To Rely Less On PG&E” • In Sonoma County, California, microgrids would allow hospitals, municipal utilities, and certain government agencies to continue operations when natural disasters interrupt PG&E’s electrical transmission and distribution. [Santa Rosa Press Democrat]

Have a zip-a-dee-doo-dah day.

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September 14 Energy News

September 14, 2019


¶ “How Trump May Bulldoze ‘America’s Amazon'” • Nature lovers and earth scientists have been fighting Alaskan politicians over ANWR and King Cove Road for decades. Now, Trump’s mention of “logging” reopens a different front in an old war because everyone knows he’s talking about Tongass, the crown jewel of the National Forest system. [CNN]

Tongass Forest (Julian Quinones | CNN)

¶ “Republicans Must Accept Climate Change Or Lose The Presidency” • Donald Trump’s record of climate change denial is unlikely to stop him from doing whatever will win him another four years, and that includes reversing his previous statements. But what about the rest of his campaign team? Opinions are shifting away toward reality. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “China’s Gambling On A Nuclear Future, But Is It Destined To Lose?” • With around a dozen nuclear power plants in the works, China is set to overtake France as the number two producer of atomic energy worldwide within two years. It could surpass the US to become number one by 2030. But nuclear power is not as attractive as it once was. [CNN]

End of a cooling tower (RWE Germany)

¶ “Fantasy From ExxonMobil As Reality Confronts The Share Price” • ExxonMobil Chairman and CEO Darren Woods spelled out underpinning assumptions for dramatic expansion of oil and gas production. He said renewable energy is largely irrelevant, and Exxon must expand exploration to meet demand. He is engaging in fantasy. [Seeking Alpha]

Science and Technology:

¶ “15 To 20 Foot Sea Level Rise Possible Sooner Rather Than Later” • A draft of a report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change says rising sea levels and warming waters are about to unleash “misery on a global scale.” The final report warns that ocean levels could rise by several feet before the end of this century. [CleanTechnica]

Harbor in Greenland (Ray Swi-hymn, Wikimedia Commons)


¶ “Geothermal Energy Ltd Completes 3.2 Mile Deep Well In UK” • The deepest and hottest geothermal wells in the world have been completed after 10 months of drilling at United Downs in Cornwall. The $22 million wells are 3.1 miles deep and 195°C (383°F) at the bottom. Tests indicate the well could be used for geothermal heat. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Drone Attack Strike At Two Saudi Aramco Oil Facilities” • A fire broke out before dawn at a Saudi Aramco facility in Abqaiq after drones hit two oil facilities, Saudi-owned Al Arabiya TV reported, citing its own correspondent. The fire was brought under control. Houthi fighters in Yemen have launched similar attacks in the past. [Deccan Herald]

Fire at a Saudi Aramco facility

¶ “IRENA And UN Ink Agreement To Combat Desertification With Renewables” • Renewable energy plants can do more than provide cheap, emission-free energy. The shade cast by PV modules can help mitigate the adverse effects of desertification. The advantages of shade under solar PVs for agriculture are becoming known. [pv magazine International]

¶ “East Anglia One Offshore Wind Farm Begins Producing Electricity” • Spain’s Iberdrola hooked up the first wind turbines of the East Anglia One offshore wind farm to the British electric grid. The wind farm has 102 Siemens Gamesa turbines. It is about 50 km from the coast of Suffolk, and it is to be fully operational next year. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

East Anglia One (Iberdrola image)

¶ “Offshore Wind To ‘Grow 15% A Year'” • The offshore wind sector is expected to grow by an average of 15% per year over the next 10 years, according to new research by Commerzbank, the second largest bank in Germany. Commerzbank said the current installation level is 4.3 GW and it expects that to grow to 19.1 GW per year by 2028. [reNEWS]

¶ “Global Renewable Energy Initiative Aims To Bring A Billion People In From The Dark” • A new global commission on energy poverty says that advances in micro energy grids and renewable energy technologies could “dramatically accelerate change” and transform lives in rural areas of sub-Saharan African and south Asia. [The Guardian]

Running a restaurant by candle light (Nic Bothma | EPA)


¶ “Record Growth In Residential Energy Storage In Q2” • From April 1 to June 30, 2019, behind the meter residential energy storage in the US experienced its greatest increase in history, 35 MWh, according to a US Energy Storage Monitor report from Wood Mackenzie Power & Renewables and the US Energy Storage Association. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “More Americans Concerned About Climate Change, New Poll Finds” • In a new poll by the Washington Post and the Kaiser Family Foundation, 80% of respondents agreed that human activity is a leading cause of climate change. That’s huge. But only half believe urgent action is needed and only 40% say it amounts to a crisis. [CleanTechnica]

Threatened by sea level rise (NOAA image)

¶ “Advocates Highlight Familiar Renewable Energy Issues In Fight To Override Sununu’s Veto” • New Hampshire legislators hope to override vetoes of five bills they say are key to fighting climate change and developing new sources of energy. One bipartisan measure advocates are pushing for would expand net metering. [New Hampshire Public Radio]

¶ “ESF Joins 19 New York Colleges and Universities to Purchase Large-Scale Aggregated Renewable Energy” • The SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry has become a member of a consortium of 20 New York public and private higher education institutions for the purchase of large-scale aggregated renewable energy. [SUNY-ESF Headlines]

Have a profoundly delightful day.

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September 13 Energy News

September 13, 2019

Science and Technology:

¶ “Solar Powered Hyperloop System Could Be Coming To A City Near You” • An eco-friendly version of the Hyperloop network is in the works, powered by a skin of solar-powered modules and wind turbine forests, and complete with parks and urban farming spaces. It is the superfast transport technology first envisaged by Elon Musk. [CNN]

Solar powered Hyperloop

¶ “Satellite Data Reveals Link Between Hotter Temperatures & Forest Fires” • NASA satellites have been gathering data for many years. Now, in a report by the Goddard Space Flight Center, NASA scientists say analysis of all that data shows a strong link between higher global temperatures and the frequency and severity of forest fires. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Device Generates Light From The Cold Night Sky” • An inexpensive thermoelectric device harnesses the cold of space without active heat input, generating electricity that powers an LED at night, researchers report in the journal Joule. The device was developed by at team of scientists at UCLA and Stanford University. [Eurasia Review]

Thermoelectric generator (Credit: Aaswath Raman)


¶ “Nestlé Plans To Reduce Greenhouse Gases Across Its Supply Chain” • Nestlé pledged to reach zero net greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, a goal that requires many changes from both it and the farmers it works with. Global warming poses a huge threat to any business that relies heavily on agricultural products and water. [CNN]

¶ “Brazil Amazon: Old Enemies Unite To Save Their Land” • While the world’s attention has been focused on the fires raging in the Amazon rainforest in Brazil, indigenous people warned that policies of President Jair Bolsonaro pose a bigger threat to their existence. Rival groups are uniting to fight government plans for their home region. [BBC]

Kayapó and Panará, once rivals (Lucas Landau | Rede Xingu+)

¶ “AfDB’s Solar Project Aims At Making Africa A Renewable Power House” • The African Development Bank is leading a revolution with a highly ambitious solar project to make Africa a renewable power-house. This project is expected to stretch across the Sub-Saharan region by tapping into the region’s abundant solar resource. [Inter Press Service]

¶ “How The Battery Of The Nation Will Power Up Our Future” • The project director at Hydro Tasmania believes Tasmania is on the cusp of the most significant economic and social opportunity since the hydro system was developed. The rest of Australia wants renewable energy and Tasmania’s Battery of the Nation project can provide it. [The Advocate]

Cethana Power Station site (Photo: Paul Scambler)

¶ “North, South Korea Oppose Japan’s Plan To Release Radioactive Fukushima Water” • South Korea reacted angrily to the proposal that water contaminated water at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant be dumped, summoning the Japanese ambassador to the Foreign Ministry in August to express its concerns. [Taiwan News]

¶ “Network Giant Says Renewables Transition Will Deliver Lower Prices And Cut Emissions” • The biggest owner of Australian grid assets, Spark Infrastructure, says renewables will cut prices for consumers significantly. But it warns that the lack of federal policy is making the transition more expensive than it needs to be. [RenewEconomy]

Gannawarra solar farm and battery storage (Wirsol image)


¶ “Greta Thunberg Responds to Cost of Climate Action Critics: ‘If We Can Save the Banks, We Can Save the World'” • During an event with Naomi Klein, 16-year-old Swedish activist Greta Thunberg had a message for those people who claim it is “too expensive” to boldly confront the climate crisis with sweeping policies like a Green New Deal. [EcoWatch]

¶ “Climate Activists Climb Houston Bridge Ahead Of Democratic Debate To Demand Renewable Energy” • Greenpeace climate activists climbed Houston’s Fred Hartman Bridge ahead of the Democratic debate to shut down shipping traffic and call for a shift to renewable energy. Pictures showed the activists dangling with banners unfurled. [msnNOW]

Activists and banners (© Greenpeace)

¶ “Marriott Aims For 33% Reduction In Plastic Waste” • Marriott, the world’s largest hotel chain, is on a mission to reduce plastic waste at an epic scale. Its big shift will come from eliminating travel-sized toiletries, which should reduce plastic waste by nearly a third. While it’s not a goal of reaching 0% plastic, it is laudable. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Duke Energy Acquires 200-MW Texas Solar Giant” • Duke Energy Renewables has purchased the 200-MW Rambler photovoltaic project in Texas from Canadian Solar subsidiary Recurrent Energy. The solar plant is being constructed in Tom Green County, Texas and is expected to achieve commercial operation in mid-2020. [reNEWS]

Solar array (Duke Energy image)

¶ “Clean Power Greens Mexican Cement In Texas” • Mexican cement company Grupo Cementos de Chihuahua signed a long-term power purchase agreement with an unnamed company for renewable electricity for a cement plant in Texas. The 10-year fixed-price deal will mean wind and solar power will cover 100% of the plant’s electricity needs, GCC said. [reNEWS]

¶ “New York Installs 20-MW Battery” • The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) has completed the state’s largest battery storage installation. The 20-MW system, supplied by Key Capture Energy, will serve the state’s electrical system by enhancing power grid performance and reliability. [reNEWS]

Have a wholesomely fruitful day.

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September 12 Energy News

September 12, 2019


¶ “Nuclear Power Is Too Costly And Too Risky” • Nuclear power is often proposed as a climate solution because it does not emit climate changing gases. But, unlike other zero emissions energy technologies such as solar and wind, nuclear poses enormous risks to the environment and communities, and it’s too costly to boot. [USA TODAY]

Protest in Tokyo in 2012 (Photo: Itsuo Inouye | AP)


¶ “Indonesian Forests Are Burning, And Malaysia And Singapore Are Choking On The Fumes” • Intense forest fires have raged across the Indonesian regions of Sumatra and Kalimantan in recent weeks. More than 930,000 hectares (about 2.3 million acres) of land have been burned and hundreds of residents evacuated. [CNN]

¶ “ACT Includes Big Battery In New Renewable Power Push” • The Australian Capital Territory will conduct a ‘reverse auction’ to secure 250 MW of supply and will build a large-scale battery in the Territory that will support the grid and provide back-up power during blackouts. The total battery storage capacity would be 20-MW / 40MWh. [The RiotACT]

Wind farm in Victoria that supplies ACT (Windlab image)

¶ “Solar ‘Renewable Microgrid’ To Power Up Billion Dollar Peel Industry Park” • The Peel Business Park, a 120-hectare industrial park that the Labor Government of Western Australia hopes will inject a billion dollars a year into the state’s economy, bringing jobs and investment, will be powered by solar energy and battery storage. [The Sydney Morning Herald]

¶ “GE Renewable Energy To Deliver Cypress Wind Turbines For 175-MW Onshore Wind Farm In Sweden” • GE Renewable Energy secured another win for its Cypress platform, providing 33 of its 5.3-158 Cypress wind turbines at Björkvattnet wind farm. The 175-MW wind farm will power the equivalent of 175,000 homes in Sweden. [REVE]

GE wind turbine

¶ “GE Renewable Energy To Power CIP’s Monegros Onshore Wind Energy In Aragon” • GE Renewable Energy is to power CIP’s Monegros onshore wind energy in Aragon, the first time the two companies have worked together. The first 30 of 60 GE onshore wind turbines are already being installed for the first phase, totaling 113 MW. [REVE]

¶ “California’s Capstone Lands French Biogas-to-Energy Project” • Capstone Turbine, based in California, has secured a 400-kW microturbine sale to power a biogas-to-energy project in France. The order for the C400 Signature Series package was secured by Biogaz Services, Capstone’s distributor for renewable energy in France. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

Biogas facility (Capstone Turbine image)

¶ “New Probe Into Fukushima Nuclear Disaster” • Japan’s nuclear regulator says it will have a new investigation into the Fukushima Disaster, to look into how radiation leaked from damaged reactor containment vessels and other factors. When three reactors at Fukushima Daiichi melted down, 160,000 people to were forced to evacuate. [Western Advocate]

¶ “Japan’s New Environment Minister Shinjiro Koizumi Wants To Scrap Nuclear Reactors” • Japan’s new environment minister, Shinjiro Koizumi, wants to close down nuclear reactors in the country to avoid a repeat of the Fukushima Disaster of 2011. His comments are likely to prove controversial in the ruling Liberal Democratic Party. [South China Morning Post]

Shinjiro Koizumi (Photo: Bloomberg)


¶ “India Wind Energy Tariffs Rise In Undersubscribed Tender” • Wind energy developers quoted higher tariff bids in the latest auction conducted by the Solar Energy Corporation of India. The marginal jump in tariff bids comes at a time when developers are shying away from participating in large solar as well as wind energy auctions. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “NLC India Exceeds 1 GW Installed Renewable Energy Capacity” • Public sector company NLC India Ltd, formerly Neyveli Lignite Corporation Ltd, said it has surpassed 1 GW of installed renewable energy capacity. It passed the mark when it commissioned 95 MW of capacity at a new 109-MW solar PV power plant. []

Solar PV power plant

¶ “NTPC, NLC India And Other State-Run Companies To Make Green Energy Parks Across The Country” • As part of India’s energy security efforts, NTPC Ltd, NLC India Ltd, Power Grid Corp of India Ltd, and other state-run companies present in the conventional power space are being roped in to build massive green energy parks. [Livemint]


¶ “Tesla & Green Mountain Power Launch New Flat Rate Solar + Storage Bundles” • Tesla and Vermont’s Green Mountain Power kicked off an initiative that lets customers lock in a flat monthly price for a solar-plus-storage system. Tesla’s tiered approach to solar rentals and loans can include two Tesla Powerwalls for $30 per month extra. [CleanTechnica]

House with Tesla solar + storage system (Tesla image)

¶ “Mall At Short Hills Gets Renewable Energy Initiative, 9,000 Solar Panels” • In New Jersey, The Mall at Short Hills had nearly 9,000 solar panels installed, solar developer Safari Energy said. The solar panels span 225,500 square feet of the mall’s roof and parking deck. The 3.49-MW system will produce up to 4,200 MWh annually. []

¶ “Renewables, Storage Poised To Undercut Natural Gas Prices, Increase Stranded Assets: RMI” • If all proposed gas plants are built, 70% of those investments will be rendered uneconomic by 2035, according to two new reports from the Rocky Mountain Institute. Carbon-free resources are now cost competitive with new natural gas plants. [Utility Dive]

Have a productively copacetic day.

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