Posts Tagged ‘nuclear’

November 29 Energy News

November 29, 2021

Opinion: 

¶ “Will The EV Revolution Trigger Global Economic Crisis?” • The transition to EVs and renewable energy is already creating winners and losers. But fossil fuel industries keep investing vast sums to develop new oil and gas resources and infrastructure. There’s a real risk that in a few years they’ll be producing far more oil and gas than they can sell. [CleanTechnica]

Choice of what to maintain (Darius Soodmand, Unsplash)

¶ “Tesla’s Business Model Has Created Disruptive Growth” • Tesla, best known for its EVs, has disrupted a legacy industry with a new business model and consumer approach. In mid-2016, under CEO Elon Musk’s leadership, Tesla adapted a corporate mission “to accelerate the world’s transition to sustainable energy.” It has evolved since then. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Understanding ‘Greenflation'” • “Greenflation,” or the costs associated with going green, may be a concern in the short-term in many industries, Vaibhav Chaturvedi, fellow at the Council on Energy, Environment and Water, predicts. Nevertheless, the rising costs won’t be a long-term threat to the economic viability of clean energy. [CleanTechnica]

Wind farm (Vista Wei, Unsplash)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Researchers Try Producing Potato Resistant To Climate Change” • University of Maine researchers are trying to produce potatoes that can better withstand warming temperatures as the climate changes. Warmer temperatures and an extended growing season can lead to quality problems and disease, according to a professor of crop ecology and management. [Phys.org]

¶ “The Underwater ‘Kites’ Generating Electricity As They Move” • A pair of sleek, winged machines are “flying” – or swimming, at least – beneath the dark waters of the Faroe Islands in the North Atlantic. Known as “sea dragons” or “tidal kites”, they look like aircraft, but they are in fact high-tech tidal turbines, generating electricity from ocean currents. [BBC]

Ship towing a tidal kite into position (Minesto image)

World:

¶ “Musk Says ‘No Thanks’ To German Battery Factory Subsidy For Tesla” • Early in 2021, the German government announced a program to subsidize battery factories. Tesla applied to the program, but has recently withdrawn its application. The reason for this may be partly based on Tesla pursuing other options that would render it ineligible. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “New Hyundai Ioniq 5 Electric Car Runs Away With German Car Of The Year Award” • Hyundai just won the German Car of the Year award for its Ioniq 5 battery EV. That’s a giant feather in the cap for the car maker, which has faced its share of criticism over the years. Hyundai’s Ioniq 5 is billed as a fully-electric midsize compact utility vehicle. [CleanTechnica]

Hyundai Ioniq 5 EV (Hyundai Motors movie poster)

¶ “Innovative Hydrogen Storage Project Will Be Launched In Glasgow” • The UK government has given £9.4 million for the Whitelee green hydrogen project to construct the UK’s largest electrolyzer. The project will be near the UK’s largest onshore wind farm, near Glasgow. The funding came after the COP26 climate change meeting. [Nature World News]

¶ “TotalEnergies Launches Its Largest Solar Power Plant In France” • TotalEnergies has launched its largest PV solar power plant in France, with a capacity of 55 MW. The solar farm is northeast of Gien (Loiret) and has 126,000 PV panels spread out over 75 hectares (185 acres). The plant will produce around 64 GWh per year. [MarketWatch]

Solar farm (Zbynek Burival, Unsplash)

¶ “Aker Horizons Says Mainstream Renewable Power Funding Round Raised €90 Million” • According to Aker Horizons ASA, Mainstream Renewable Power raised €90 million ($101.7 million) to accelerate new market entries and the build-out of gigawatt-scale wind and solar assets across Latin America, Africa and the Asia Pacific region. [MarketWatch]

¶ “Nestlé Australia Switches To 100% Renewables With CWP Wind Farm Deal” • The Australian offshoot of global food giant Nestlé says it is switching to a 100% renewable energy supply after signing a 10-year power purchase agreement with CWP Renewables. The PPA is for energy from two wind farms with a combined capacity of 404 MW. [Renew Economy]

CWP wind farm (CWP photo)

¶ “Nuclear Talks Resume As West Asks Whether Iran Is Serious Or Stalling” • World powers and Iran will gather in Vienna to try to salvage their 2015 nuclear deal, but with Tehran sticking to its tough stance and Western powers increasingly frustrated, hopes of a breakthrough appear slim. Diplomats say time is running low to resurrect the pact. [Al Arabiya]

US:

¶ “US Seeks To Boost Oil Royalties To Account For Climate Change” • The Biden administration issued a long-awaited blueprint for overhauling oil and gas development on federal lands. The Interior Department report recommends higher fees and more limits on federal oil and gas leasing to better account for climate change. [World Oil]

Drilling rig ready to be towed to sea (Maria Lupan, Unsplash)

¶ “Community Systems Offer Alternative Paths For Solar Growth” • Larger than home rooftop systems but smaller than utility-scale complexes, they’re located atop buildings, or on abandoned factory grounds and farms. Individuals or companies subscribe to portions of energy sent to the grid and get credits that reduce their electricity bills. [USNews.com]

¶ “Climate change challenges Michigan’s power delivery” • Michigan utilities are struggling to provide reliable energy to customers as storms become more frequent and severe. This past summer, Consumers Energy replaced 1,600 utility poles in the aftermath of one especially bad storm, according to one of the the utility company officials. [The Daily Telegram]

Have a brilliantly fortunate day.

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November 28 Energy News

November 28, 2021

Science and Technology:

¶ “Electric Car FAQs: Do EVs All Use The Same Plug?” • Electric cars are mostly like regular cars. You step on the pedal on the right and the car goes, you turn the wheel and the car turns. 99% of the time the only difference is what kind of fuel goes into the car, but that last 1% is important. For that, you need to learn a bit, and it probably needs explaining. [CleanTechnica]

Chevy Bolt in an absurdly clean garage (GM image)

¶ “Transparent Solar Windows: You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet” • Researchers have worked on the challenge of using sunlight to generate electricity from see-through windows for years. Just look at any glass building and you can feel the possibilities blooming. There are many obstacles, but it looks like a real breakthrough may be at hand. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Power To X Highlights Process That Use Renewable Electricity To Create Products” • A Venture Taranaki paper explores creating more green energy than New Zealand may need, based on the current economy, to enable the economy to power-up and expand significantly into the manufacturing of green products to substitute carbon intensive ones. [Stuff.co.nz]

New Zealand (Casey Horner, Unsplash)

World:

¶ “China-Africa Cooperation Supports Africa’s Transition To Green Energy” • As the world is grappling with climate change in consensus to move to green energy, China-Africa’s renewable energy cooperation is bearing fruit. In various parts of Africa, China-Africa cooperation brings in clean electricity to boost the power supply. [Global Times]

¶ “MG Australia Gets It: If You Charge It, They Will Come” • MG, the seller of the second most popular electric car in Australia, the MG ZS EV, seems to have realized it must match the availability of Tesla’s almost ubiquitous chargers if it is going to improve on its sales figures in the country. And for getting to that goal, MG is a long, long way behind Tesla. [CleanTechnica]

MG chargers (From mgelectric.com.au)

¶ “Hydro Versus Batteries: Tasmania Pushes Its Undersea Cable Plan” • Tasmania has an abundance of hydroelectric power, quite a bit more than it needs. It would very much like to sell some of its excess electricity to the rest of Australia. But there’s a flaw in the Hydro Tasmania plan. The proposed Marinus Link would be up against big batteries. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “5-Hectare Solar Park Being Built Along French Highway” • PV Magazine reports that Vinci Autoroute, a unit of Vinci Group, is partnering with Tryba Energy, a solar project specialist, to build a ground-mounted PV facility along the A19 highway. In total, the area encompasses 5 hectares. It is near the town of Chantecoq in northern France. [CleanTechnica]

Site of French solar highway (Vinci Construction image)

¶ “A Second Significant Deal For Nofar Energy In Poland’s Renewable Energy Market” • Nofar Energy announced a second significant deal in Poland. The company reported that it had purchased a portfolio of solar projects with a total capacity of 185 MW. The projects are acquired from Paged Real Estate, which will continue developing them. [Tech Times]

¶ “Canadian City Uses AI For Renewable Energy Optimization” • The city of Summerside, Prince Edward Island, partnered with BluWave-ai to optimize its smart grid and ensure integration and optimization of more distributed renewable energy resources. They tested an AI-based platform as part of the city’s living lab program. [Power Engineering International]

AI optimization (ThisisEngineering RAEng, Unsplash)

¶ “Nation Lacks Resources For A Nuclear Disaster: Report” • A disaster at a nuclear power plant in Taiwan could require the resettlement of up to 10 million people, a report said. Taiwan has less funds available and less robust disaster-response procedures than Japan in the event of a nuclear disaster, said Control Yuan member Tien Chiu-chin. [Taipei Times]

US:

¶ “Interior Department Report Finds Significant Shortcomings In Oil And Gas Leasing Programs” • The Department of the Interior released a report on federal oil and gas leasing and permitting practices, after a review of onshore and offshore oil and gas programs. The report identifies significant shortcomings that should be addressed. [CleanTechnica]

Oil rig (Arvind Vallabh, Unsplash)

¶ “Oil Prices Are Gloomy, But The Energy Forecast Is Sunny In North Carolina” • Oil and gas prices are expected to climb this winter, and President Biden is tapping the Strategic Petroleum Reserve. But beyond the immediate price spikes for oil supplies, the prospect for cheaper and cleaner energy is literally sunny, especially in North Carolina. [Charlotte Observer]

¶ “2022 Massachusetts Solar Tax Credits And Other Incentives” • A couple of states stand out for green energy efforts. Despite not having the vast land of California or the year-round sun that Arizona has, the availability of a Massachusetts solar tax credit has long been a reason that this New England state is a top state for solar energy installations. [EcoWatch]

Have an extraordinarily hunky-dory day.

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November 27 Energy News

November 27, 2021

Opinion:

¶ “The Deceptive Charm Of Nuclear Power” • Green America is active by transitioning the US electricity mix away from its heavy emphasis on coal-fired and natural gas power. But all of that work will be wasted if we transition from fossil fuels to an equally dangerous source – nuclear power. Nuclear power is not a climate solution. [Colorado Daily]

Warning sign at Chernobyl (Ilja Nedilko, Unsplash)

World:

¶ “Audi E-Tron 55 Quattro Software Updates Give 12-Mile Range Boost” • Owners of the 2019/2020 model year Audi e-tron 55 Quattro are getting an early holiday gift this year in the form of free software updates that boosts the car’s range … in the UK, anyway. The new software gives the car a full 12.4 miles of additional driving range. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Rolls-Royce Sets Electric Airplane Speed Record” • After years of work on a battery-electric airplane Rolls-Royce Aerospace put Spirit of Innovation to its first extended flight in November, with a goal to exceed 300 mph (483 km/h). It hit 387.4 mph and set records for speed and rate of climb. RR sent the records data to the certifying authority. [CleanTechnica]

Spirit of Innovation (Courtesy of Rolls-Royce Aerospace)

¶ “XPeng Plans 50% Global Sales, Debuts G9 SUV In Guangzhou” • XPeng has announced its intention to become a serious global automobile company that gets half of its sales outside China. The company’s chairman said it would invest more in international markets, and expects to enter Denmark, the Netherlands, and Sweden next year. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Volkswagen Accepting Orders For Its ID.5 Coupe-Style SUV” • The Volkswagen ID.5 is basically an ID.4 with a stylish exterior. The company says it has only 12 mm less headroom for rear-seat passengers than the ID.4 but offers the kind of style buyers crave. In a press release, Volkswagen says customers can now place an order for an ID.5 online. [CleanTechnica]

Volkswagen ID.5 (Courtesy of Volkswagen)

¶ “Sustainable Marine To Deliver Atlantic Canada’s First Instream Tidal Energy In 2022” • Sustainable Marine is set to show that Nova Scotia can produce vast amounts of clean and predictable energy from its tidal streams, after completing construction of its substation at Grand Passage. It is due to be grid-connected early in 2022. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

¶ “China Adviser Says Energy Crisis Won’t Stall Climate Action” • China’s energy crisis won’t derail plans to make progress on curbing greenhouse gas emissions in the next few years, a top researcher involved in drafting proposals said. The 2025 energy blueprint will be centered on prioritizing renewables and energy efficiency, he said. [JWN Energy]

Beijing (zhang kaiyv, Unsplash)

¶ “UAE To Invest In Renewable Energy Projects Of 3 GW In Turkey” • The United Arab Emirates’ sovereign investment fund ADQ signed a strategic cooperation agreement with the Turkish Presidency Investment Office that includes 3 GW of renewable energy projects. One project getting funds will have 1 GW of solar power capacity. [Balkan Green Energy News]

¶ “Offshore Wind Farms Could Make Nova Scotia An ‘Energy-Exporting Region'” • Offshore wind is increasingly becoming part of a low-carbon future and, according to promoters in Halifax this week, Nova Scotia is an ideal location thanks to shallow seabed areas that can anchor offshore turbines and – of course – plenty of wind. [Yahoo News Canada]

Offshore wind farm (RhinoMind, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “Endesa To Invest $3.4 Billion To Increase Renewable Energy Capacity” • Spanish electric utility company Endesa has updated its Energy Transition strategy for 2022-24, under which it plans to invest €3.1 billion ($3.4 billion) to increase its renewable energy capacity to 12.3 GW. Endesa plans to reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2040. [Power Technology]

US:

¶ “$1.4 Billion Approved For Zero-Emissions Vehicles In California” • California is the leading electric vehicle state in the US both for the total number of EVs and public EV chargers, so it’s no surprise that the California Energy Commission approved $1.4 billion in funding to support zero emissions vehicles and the supportive infrastructure. [CleanTechnica]

Zero-emissions school buses (California Energy Commission)

¶ “Biden Administration Calls For Hike In Federal Drilling Fees In Report That Largely Sidesteps Climate Issues” • The Interior Department released a review of oil and gas drilling on federal lands and oceans that recommends an increase in leasing fees. But it does not recommend one of President Biden’s election promises, a halt to drilling. [CNN]

¶ “Interior Department Approves Second Major Offshore Wind Project In US Federal Waters” • The Biden-Harris administration has a goal to deploy 30 GW of offshore wind energy by 2030. As part of that, the Interior Department announced that it approved the construction and operations of the South Fork Wind project off Rhode Island. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

Offshore wind turbines (Tho-Ge, Pixabay)

¶ “Fisker Secures Long-Term Battery Supply In CATL Deal” • Automotive design diva Henrik Fisker, who was best known for styling the BMW Z8 roadster, has been a big part of the EV and hybrid conversation for some time. Now, it looks as if he’s forged a deal with battery supplier CATL that will ensure he remains a big part of it for years to come. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Regenyx Confirms Transition To 100% Renewable Energy In Oregon Facility” • Circular recycling company Regenyx says it is using 100% renewable energy at its Oregon facility. The company is a joint venture of Agilyx Corp, a leader in recycling postuse plastics based in Oslo, and polystyrene producer AmSty, based in The Woodlands, Texas. [Recycling Today]

Have an impressively felicitous day.

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November 26 Energy News

November 26, 2021

Science and Technology:

¶ “Britain’s Ancient Fortresses For Nature” • Though made by man, hedgerows form a vital reservoir of biodiversity in human-dominated landscapes where many species might otherwise struggle to survive. By nurturing pollinating insects, they can enhance the yield of crops. And they do it all while pulling carbon out of the atmosphere. [BBC]

Hedgerow (Tony Hand, Unsplash)

¶ “Mining Nickel From Plants Is Possible And Could Cut CO₂ Emissions” • We eat plants every day for their mineral content, but actively growing plants that contain massive amounts of minerals such a nickel and extracting that mineral for industrial purposes? This is agro-mining, growing plants specifically to absorb metals from the soil. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ “Politicians Are Failing To Deliver Climate Justice. Lawyers And Scientists Could Do It In Court” • In the UK, three young climate activists are seeking to sue the prime minister and other cabinet members, claiming that slow climate action threatens not only their right to life, but also their right to family life, which they argue includes their relatives abroad. [CNN]

Foreign Minister Simon Kofe addressing the COP26 conference
from Tuvalu (Tuvalu Ministry of Justice image, via Facebook.)

¶ “German Government Deal: 2030 Coal Phaseout, But Plenty Of Questions Remain” • An accelerated 2030 coal phaseout is inevitable for Germany to meet the EU’s environmental, energy, and climate targets, and Paris Agreement goals. Also, coal profits have collapesed, coal is uneconomic, and subsidizing it would be an intolerable waste of public money. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Twiggy Forrest Pushing To Redirect Australia’s Diesel Rebate To Fund Green Hydrogen” • Andrew (Twiggy) Forrest, non-executive chairman of Fortescue Metals, has managed to upset farmers and miners alike by privately lobbying the Australian government to divert fossil fuel subsidies away from them and towards “green” hydrogen. [CleanTechnica]

Outback in New South Wales (Elsa Guyader, Unsplash)

¶ “MG Motor India’s Halol Facility To Use Wind-Solar Hybrid Power From February 2022” • MG Motor India has joined hands with CleanMax Enviro Energy Solutions for the supply of 4.85 MW of wind-solar hybrid power to its manufacturing facility in Halol. The facility is expected to begin drawing the solar plant’s electricity in February of 2022. [India.com]

¶ “Madeira Island Will Reach 50% Renewable Energy With New Battery Storage System” • The Portuguese island of Madeira will be able to reduce its fossil fuel use radically while keeping its electricity supply stable and reliable, thanks to battery energy storage system technology. The battery system capacity is to be 22.5 MVA, 15.6 MWh. [Energy Storage News]

Rendering of the battery project (Siemens image)

¶ “Australia Passes Legislation To Develop Offshore Wind Energy Industry” • Australia is set to be the next country to incorporate offshore wind energy into its efforts to expand its renewable power supply. After years of advocacy by environmentalists, Parliament approved laws to support the offshore electricity infrastructure. [The Maritime Executive]

¶ “Estonia To Invest Heavily In Renewables, Bring Power Prices Down Long-Term” • Estonia has organised a reverse auction of 450 GWh of power from renewable energy resources. The country recognizes that high energy prices are related to dependence on fossil fuels, according to the Estonian public broadcaster ERR. [Baltic News Network]

Wind turbines (distelAPPArath, Pixabay)

¶ “Tepco Finds Melting Of Ice Wall At Japan’s Fukushima Daiichi Plant” • Tokyo Electric Power Co will launch remedial works at the stricken Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant to strengthen an ice wall intended to halt the flow of groundwater after testing indicated partial melting. The work could begin as early as the start of December. [Yahoo]

¶ “Greek €2.27 Billion Aid Scheme For Renewables Approved By EU” • The European Commission has approved, under the EU’s state aid rules, the Greek support mechanism of €2.27 billion for the production of electricity from renewable energy sources and high-efficiency combined heat and power with a combined capacity of 4.2 GW. [Balkan Green Energy News]

Solar array (fabersam, Pixabay)

US:

¶ “Rivian Encounters ‘Production Hell.’ R1S Deliveries Pushed Back 3 Months – Or More” • A few years ago, Tesla experienced what Elon Musk called “production hell,” as it struggled to ramp up manufacturing of the Model 3. Now Rivian is having a similar problem getting its R1S electric SUV out the door and into the hands of customers. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Gridtractor Launches Fleet Electrification For Farmers” • Gridtractor set its sites on electrifying the world’s fleet of tractors and diesel-powered farm equipment a decade ago. There is now an opportunity to get this transformation rolling. Farmers resonate profoundly with the idea of producing their own fuel and saving up to 75% in fuel costs. [CleanTechnica]

Bringing in the hay (Gozha Net, Unsplash)

¶ “FLO Installs The Northernmost Fast Chargers In North America” • If Santa ever trades in his reindeer for battery power, he might rest easier knowing there’s a public charging station conveniently close to home. That’s because FLO installed a pair of DC fast chargers in Fairbanks, Alaska. FLO charging stations are certified to operate at -40°. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Southern Celebrates Glass Sands Success In Oklahoma” • Southern Power has brought online the 118MW Glass Sands wind farm in Murray County, in Oklahoma. The project, Southern Power’s 15th wind facility, is the company’s fifth in Oklahoma. Glass Sands consists of 28 Vestas turbines. It has a power purchase agreement with Amazon. [reNews]

Have a relaxingly upbeat day.

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November 25 Energy News

November 25, 2021

Opinion: 

¶ “Bright Future For Landfill Solar – Yes, Landfill Solar” • There are over 10,000 closed landfills in the US. A report from the RMI, The Future of Landfills Is Bright, estimates that 4,312 of these sites alone – those for which adequate data is available – could host at least 63 GW of solar capacity. That is enough to power about 7.8 million homes. [CleanTechnica]

Landfill solar (From ‘The Future of Landfills is Bright’)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Why Cellular Agriculture Could Be The Future Of Farming” • Raising livestock contributes a significant proportion of the food industry’s climate emissions, but now scientists and a growing number of companies are hoping that growing meat from cell cultures in laboratories may offer a solution. They are working on everything from beef to fish. [BBC]

¶ “The Arctic Ocean Began Warming Decades Earlier Than Previously Thought, New Research Shows” • A study published in Science Advances found that the expansion of warm Atlantic Ocean water flowing into the Arctic has caused Arctic water temperature in the region studied to increase by around 2°C since 1900. [CNN]

Ship in the Arctic (Hubert Neufeld, Unsplash)

¶ “Big Batteries On Wheels Can Deliver Zero-Emissions Rail While Securing The Grid” • Diesel freight trains emit 35 million metric tons of CO₂ annually and produce air pollution that leads to $6.5 billion in health costs and an estimated 1,000 premature deaths each year. With the dramatic decline in battery prices, freight trains can be electrified. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ “Renewables To Drive Down Prices As Fossil-Fuel Generators Exit Australian Electricity Market” • Growth in renewable generating capacity and big batteries is expected to drive down household power bills in Australia’s National Electricity Market in the coming years even as several of Australia’s ageing fossil-fuel fired power stations close. [PV Magazine]

Solar farm (Tranex Solar image)

¶ “Government Announces £20 Million For Tidal Power Schemes” • Tidal energy will be backed by £20 million per year of Government investment as part of the shift away from fossil fuels. The UK’s Business Secretary, Kwasi Kwarteng, said tidal power could be a key part of the “next generation of renewable electricity projects.” [Yahoo News UK]

¶ “SSE Renewables, Equinor Sign Power Purchase Agreements For Dogger Bank C” • SSE Renewables and Equinor, the joint venture partners co-developing the 3.6-GW Dogger Bank Wind Farm in the North Sea, have signed a 15-year offtake power purchase agreement for the third phase of the offshore wind farm. [North American Windpower]

GE Haliade-X wind turbine (GE Renewable Energy image)

¶ “Nuclear Energy Can’t Solve Global Warming, Will Strain Financial, Natural Resource” • Power and policy analyst Shankar Sharma said the IAEA’s “unsubstantiated advocacy” of nuclear power is associated with “diversion of considerable amounts of scarce resources, both financial as well as natural, of many developing countries, such as India.” [Counterview]

¶ “Gas Leak At Spanish Nuclear Power Plant Leaves One Dead And Three People In Hospital” • A gas leak at a Spanish nuclear power plant has left one person dead and three people in hospital, local emergency services said. The carbon dioxide leak happened at the Ascó nuclear power plant, which is around 80 miles west of Barcelona. [Daily Mail]

Ascó nuclear power plant (Willtron, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

US:

¶ “White House Creates New Climate-Focused Division Within Office Of Science And Technology Policy” • Underscoring its commitment to tackling the climate crisis, the White House announced it has created a new climate-focused division within its Office of Science and Technology Policy and tapped Stanford professor Sally Benson to lead it. [CNN]

¶ “San Francisco Declares A Water Shortage Emergency And Urges Residents To Cut Usage” • California has had a rough year, suffering through high temperatures and low precipitation, both driven by the climate crisis. Because of this, San Francisco has declared a water shortage emergency and is calling for a 10% reduction across its regional system. [CNN]

Low water level at Lake Powell (Scotwriter21, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “Federal Officials Green-Light Wind Farm Off Coast Of Rhode Island In Quest To Expand Renewable Energy” • Federal officials are green-lighting plans for a wind farm off the Rhode Island coast as the Biden administration aims to grow renewable energy capacity. The South Fork wind farm will provide enough power for 70,000 homes on Long Island. [CNN]

¶ “Utilities Seek OK From West Virginia Regulators For Five Solar Projects” • Mon Power and Potomac Edison have asked the Public Service Commission of West Virginia to approve five solar energy projects spread through the companies’ service territory in the state. Together, the facilities would generate 50 MW of renewable energy. [pv magazine USA]

West Virginia’s New River Bridge (dafacct, pixabay)

¶ “Coltura Poll: US Voters Support Full Transition To EVs By 2030” • In a national poll by Coltura, an environmental group focused on phasing out the use of gasoline, US voters said they support a full transition to EVs by 2030. The strong voter support reflects the concerns of the impacts of localized air pollution as well as the climate crisis. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Pilgrim Nuclear Plant May Release A Million Gallons Of Radioactive Water Into Bay. What We Know” • One of the options being considered by the decommissioning company working on the closed Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station is to release around one million gallons of potentially radioactive water into Cape Cod Bay. [Cape Cod Times]

Have a joyously glad day.

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November 24 Energy News

November 24, 2021

Opinion: 

¶ “Will Russia Ever Leave Fossil Fuels Behind?” • In Russia, oil and gas provided 39% of the federal budget revenue and made up 60% of Russian exports in 2019. The share of all fossil fuel rents (the price of fossil fuels minus the cost of producing them) amounted to 14% of GDP that year. The country is very aware of the climate crisis, but will that help? [BBC]

Kremlin (Michael Parulava, Unsplash)

¶ “In Midst Of Climate Crisis, Focus On Fossil Fuel Subsidies, Not Elon Musk’s Wealth From Shares Of Transformative Companies” • I’ve seen lots of vehement Twitter posts regarding Elon Musk, Tesla, subsidies, and a government loan that Tesla repaid American taxpayers with interest. The real target should be on the fossil fuel industry. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “The Deception Continues As Companies Hide Behind Fake Environmental Promises” • Companies run zero emissions ad campaigns that arose from public pressure to reject the fossil fuel industry. But behind the scenes, those same companies continue to maintain the same long-standing relationships that perpetuate carbon-emitting practices. [CleanTechnica]

Nodding donkeys (NASA, open source)

World:

¶ “16% Plugin Vehicle Share In Chinese Auto Market!” • Plugin vehicles are getting to be all the rage in China, having scored 325,000 registrations in October, up 113% year over year. That’s an especially impressive performance when we consider that the overall market was down 5%. And it pulls the year-to-date tally to over to 2.3 million units. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “British People Are More Concerned Than Ever About Climate, Ahead Of Covid And Brexit, Poll Shows” • People in the UK think that climate change, pollution and the environment are together the most important issues they face, well ahead of the pandemic, the impacts of Brexit, and the country’s troubled National Health Service, a poll from Ipsos MORI shows. [CNN]

Cottage in Plymtree, Devon (Derek Harper, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “Egyptian Green Hydrogen Project Awards Contract” • Scatec and its partners, OCI NV, Fertiglobe, The Sovereign Fund of Egypt, and Orascom Construction have selected Plug Power as the electrolyser technology provider for a 100-MW green hydrogen facility in Egypt. The electrolyser is expected to be the world’s largest when it comes online. [reNews]

¶ “Power Producers Had To Pay To Send Electricity Into South Australia Grid” • Big plants in SA had to pay to operate when the state “became the first gigawatt scale grid in the world to reach zero operational demand when the combined output of rooftop solar and other small non-scheduled generators exceeded all the local customer load requirements.” [CleanTechnica]

Wattle Point wind farm (ScottDavis, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “PLN To Offer 1.2 GW Of New And Renewable Energy Projects” • Indonesian electricity company PLN will tender 21 new and renewable projects for the 2021-2022 procurement period. The energy minister said the projects are estimated to have a total generating capacity of 1.2 GW and are part of a procurement plan for 2021-2030. [The Jakarta Post]

¶ “The Silent Strength Of Indigenous Renewable Energy Micro-Grids” • For the first time since the 1970s, silence descended on the tiny, isolated village of Old Crow in Canada’s Arctic in August. The incessant drone of a diesel generator was silenced for the first time in decades as the nation brought its micro-grid online, powered by solar energy. [Yahoo News Canada]

Old Crow, Yukon (Murray Dewing, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “RWE Building 117-MW Battery Storage System In Germany” • RWE is building one of the largest battery storage systems in Germany, with a capacity of 117 MW. Set to be installed in Lower Saxony, the project will provide new services including grid stability to support fluctuations in energy supply in addition to simple energy storage. [Energy Live News]

US:

¶ “Biden Announces Release Of Oil Reserves, But Says Gas Prices Will Not Drop Overnight” • President Joe Biden announced the release of emergency oil reserves to combat high energy prices, though it will take weeks to affect the price, he said. The DOE will release 50 million barrels of oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, the White House said. [CNN]

Tank farm at McMurdo Station, Antarctica (NOAA image)

¶ “White Households In US Emit Most Carbon Despite Greater Energy Efficiency” • Researchers from McGill University and the University of Michigan found that even though energy-efficient homes are more often found in white neighborhoods, carbon emissions from these neighborhoods are higher than in African American neighborhoods. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Leeward Secures Financing For 145-MW Panorama” • Leeward Renewable Energy has closed construction financing and secured tax equity commitments for its 145-MW Panorama wind farm in Colorado. The Panorama wind project’s construction has already commenced, and it is expected to be completed in the second quarter of 2022. [reNews]

Wind farm (Leeward image)

¶ “Utilities And Financial Investors Are Investing In Renewables, Especially Hydrogen, Like Never Before” • Ernst & Young released a report detailing transactions in power and utilities for Q3 2021. It shows that utilities are putting significant financial support behind their environmental, social, and governance initiatives. [pv magazine USA]

¶ “US Hits Davis-Besse Nuclear Plant In Ohio With 5 Safety Violations” • The NRC has released of a 65-page report outlining more problems at Energy Harbor’s Davis-Besse nuclear plant in Ottawa County, Ohio. Its contents were described as “deeply disturbing” by one of America’s most high-profile nuclear watchdogs. [Pittsburgh Post-Gazette]

Have a seriously merry day.

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November 23 Energy News

November 23, 2021

Opinion:

¶ “Outlook On The Renewable Energy Infrastructure” • The transition from fossil fuels to renewable energies is inevitable for the energy sector, but it looks to be similar territory for investors in the long term. Current contracts for renewable energy are structured almost identically to those in the current energy infrastructure industry. [Nasdaq]

Wind turbines (Pexels, CC0)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Rivers Are ‘Rising’ Due To Climate Change And Play A Role In Coastal Floods” • People who live far away from coastal areas could still be affected by floods caused by climate change due to changes in rivers, according to a study. University of South Carolina scientists showed that climate change has caused more effects of river flooding. [Yahoo News]

¶ “World’s First Autonomous Electric Container Ship Completed Its First Trip” • Yara Birkeland, the world’s first all-electric and emission-free container ship has completed its maiden voyage in Norway. Birkeland has traveled for about 8.7 miles (14 km) from Porsgrunn to the port of Brevik, according to a press release from its maker, Yara. [Interesting Engineering]

Yara Birkeland (Yara image)

World:

¶ “Portugal’s Power Production Goes Coal-Free Long Before Deadline” • Portugal shut down its last remaining coal plant over the weekend, ending the use of the polluting material for electricity generation. It is the fourth country in the EU to do so. Belgium, Austria and Sweden had already stopped using coal for power generation. [CNN]

¶ “Australia Declares La Niña Weather Event Has Begun” • A La Niña event has developed for the second year in a row, Australia said. This means there is a greater risk of floods and cyclones. Last time the La Niña contributed to “once in a century” rains in parts of Australia, but the phenomenon has significant weather effects across the world. [BBC]

Flood in Australia (Advanstra, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “Can South Africa Embrace Renewable Energy From The Sun?” • South Africa’s state power utility Eskom, Africa’s biggest carbon emitter, has a $10 billion plan to close most of its coal-burning power stations by 2050 and embrace renewable energy. Other countries promised $8.5 billion to help, but Eskom is staggering under a $27 billion debt burden. [BBC]

¶ “Without Support For Renewable Energy General Motors Won’t Invest In Mexico” • General Motors CEO in Mexico, Francisco Garza, said that GM and other companies won’t invest in Mexico in the short and medium term without a legal and structural framework that supports the production of renewable energy. [Mexico News Daily]

¶ “Husk Power Systems Provides Clean Energy For Rural People In Developing Countries” • Electricity is scarce in the rural parts of the poorest countries, and where it exists, it is powered mostly by diesel. Husk Power Systems is trying to change that. It puts in the power systems and charges people only for the energy they use, with no up-front cost. [CleanTechnica]

US:

¶ “Chevy Bolt Production Halted Through End Of 2021” • Some Chevy Bolt EVs have problems with batteries, and GM has issued a recall. It stopped production to deal with the issue in new cars, but it restarted for a brief while to replace recently recalled cars. Now it has told the plant’s employees that the plant will be closed for the rest of the year. [CleanTechnica]

Chevy Bolt (Image courtesy of GM)

¶ “Electric Vehicle Education Increases Likelihood Buyers Will Consider Purchasing EVs” • Pew Research Center conducted a survey of over 13,700 US adults in April 2021. A more recent examination of the numbers shows that those people who had learned about EVs were much more likely to buy one than those who knew little about them. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Biden’s Infrastructure Act Bets Big On Three Types Of ‘Green’ Energy Tech” • A report from Princeton University’s ZERO Lab shows that by itself, the signed infrastructure package won’t do much to bring down the country’s greenhouse gas emissions. The package backs hydrogen (in ways mostly not ‘green’), carbon capture, and nuclear power. [Popular Science]

Millstone nuclear plant in Connecticut (JJBers, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “Several Renewable Energy Plants To Open In Astoria” • A part of the Astoria Energy Complex, which had once generated power via fossil fuels, will be transformed into an emissions-free converter station through a project that was announced by New York Governor Kathy Hochul in September. The electricity will come from Canadian hydropower. [Sunnyside Post]

¶ “Ørsted Acquires 302-MW Illinois Wind” • Ørsted has acquired the 302-MW Lincoln Land onshore wind farm in Illinois from funds managed by Ares Management’s Infrastructure and Power strategy. Lincoln Land reached commercial operation last week. The project is fully contracted by power purchase agreements with McDonald’s and Meta (Facebook). [reNews]

Lincoln Land wind farm (Ørsted image)

¶ “Caterpillar To Launch Demonstration Project Using Hydrogen Fuel Cell Technology” • Caterpillar Inc has launched a three-year project with collaboration with Microsoft and Ballard Power Systems to demonstrate a power system with a large hydrogen fuel cell to produce reliable and sustainable backup power for data centers. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

¶ “First Solar Gets Multi-Year Orders For 5.4 GW Of Modules” • First Solar announced that global solar leader Lightsource bp and integrated energy company bp have placed multi-year orders for up to 5.4 GW combined of First Solar PV solar modules. There are firm orders for about 4.4 GW of modules, with options for another 1 GW. [Energy Industry Review]

Have a majestically exquisite day.

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November 22 Energy News

November 22, 2021

Opinion: 

¶ “Why Schools Are Failing Children On Climate Change” • Ever since Greta Thunberg started her campaign on climate change, children have been taking center stage in the fight against a rapidly warming world. And as they do, many are pushing for schools to add climate change to their curriculum. In some places, that is not easy. [BBC]

Student in Indian school (Nikhita S, Unsplash)

¶ “Tesla Model A – The Tesla Mini Car We Want To See” • Do you remember back in 2018 when Elon Musk tweeted that Tesla was working on a mini car that could “squeeze in an adult?” Sadly, years have passed and we have yet to see a mini Tesla EV come into production. But what would a Tesla mini car look like? Here, we take a look at one possibility. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Comic Relief Department: Shell CEO Says The Best Way To Finance Clean Energy Is To Consume More Oil” • Climate scientists agree that we have to stop burning fossil fuels very soon, to avoid climate catastrophy. Not slightly reduce it – end it. Ben van Beurden, Chief Executive of Royal Dutch Shell, says the best way to finance that is by buying oil. [CleanTechnica]

Oil rig (Photo courtesy of Pixabay/Pexels, CC0)

Science and Technology:

¶ “UN Highlights Ultra-Low Carbon Footprint Of Nuclear And Renewables” • The UN Economic Commission for Europe identified nuclear as the lowest carbon electricity source and the low carbon technology with the lowest impacts on land use and mining and metal use. The report said it has a fractionally lower carbon footprint than renewables. [Business Green]
(The assessment calculated the carbon footprint of an unknown – and unknowable – way to deal with waste. It has other issues.)

¶ “Can The Sun’s Eleven-Year Cycle Explain Global Warming?” • Climate sceptics have long argued that solar activity can explain global warming. The finding of a controversial near 11-year cycle in solar activity prompted comparison with a similarly long cycle related to climate change. A study published in Climate Dynamics found they do not match. [SciTechDaily]

Sunrise (Dawid Zawiła, Unsplash)

World:

¶ “‘Greenflation’ A Risk For Renewable Energy, But Long-Term Viability Intact” • Rising prices of commodities needed for renewable energy will increase the costs of setting up new green power projects, but his will be balanced by better access to funds and economies of scale, a European Bank for Reconstruction and Development officer said. [Yahoo Finance]

¶ “Asia-Pacific Investors Toast 40-MW Vietnamese Wind” • The Blue Circle and its partner ACEN have completed the 40-MW second phase of the Mui Ne wind farm in Binh Thuan province, south Vietnam. The project features eight 5-MW turbines. They are the first turbines to use blades in two pieces assembled on site, the developers said. [reNews]

Wind turbine in Vietnam (Image by The Blue Circle)

¶ “Shell Increases Stake In Australia’s Electricity Market With Powershop Takeover” • Energy giant Royal Dutch Shell has expanded its presence in Australia’s electricity market, buying retailer Powershop from New Zealand’s Meridian Group as part of a $729 million deal that may upset some customers who want to avoid fossil fuel companies. [The Guardian]

¶ “Greek Developer Targets 90-MW Polish Wind Farm” • Greek developer Terna Energy is developing four wind farms in Poland with a total capacity of 90 MW. All four wind projects are in the licensing stage and Terna Energy will build and operate them. The developer already runs eight wind farms in Poland with a total installed capacity of 102 MW. [reNews]

Wind farm (Anastasia Palagutina, Unsplash)

¶ “Nofar Energy Enters Poland’s Renewable Energy Market With Significant Initiative” • Nofar Energy is expanding its global traction by entering Poland’s renewable energy market. The company reported that Nofar Europe and Electrum SP ZOO formed a joint venture to develop and manage PV and wind energy projects of up to 1,250 MW. [Yahoo Finance]

¶ “BASF, Covestro Clinch Renewable Energy Deals In China To Achieve Emission-Reduction Goals” • In China, energy-intensive multinational chemical companies are getting renewable energy supplies to help them keep up with decarbonization demands as part of their global climate commitments. BASF and Covestro are examples. [South China Morning Post]

Shanghai (Li Yang, Unsplash)

¶ “Major Chinese-French Wind Power Project In Jiangsu Linked To Grid” • A major Chinese-French wind power project has been completed ahead of schedule and was connected to the power grid in Dongtai, East China’s Jiangsu Province. It is a significant step in renewable energy cooperation between Chinese and foreign companies. [Global Times]

US:

¶ “The On Again, Off Again Apple Car Project Is Back On Again, Again” • For almost 7 years, Apple has threatened to build a car, presumably an EV. Project Titan’s leadership has changed many times in that time, we’ve had little hard information, and the project recently looked dead. Insiders now say Apple’s goal is fully autonomous cars by 2025. [CleanTechnica]

Apple and elusive cars (Andy Wang, Unsplash)

¶ “Build Back Better Plans Ambitious Growth For Renewables” • The ‘Build Back Better’ bill has passed in the House. Its budget reconciliation framework is $1.75 trillion, with $555 billion for the climate and clean energy, the largest amount ever. Now, it will go to the Senate, where moderate Democrats are not entirely happy with it. [Power Engineering International]

¶ “Consumers Energy To Add Clean Energy From Three Solar Projects” • Michigan utility company Consumers Energy says it will add enough renewable energy through three solar projects in 2023 to power nearly 190,000 homes. The company says the projects in the southern-central part of the state are expected to produce 375 MW of clean energy. [WZZM 13]

Have an incomparably pleasing day.

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November 21 Energy News

November 21, 2021

Opinion: 

¶ “Revisiting Elon Musk’s 2018 Predictions On Tesla’s Market Cap” • Remember the compensation plan that Tesla unveiled back in 2018? At the time, the New York Times called it “perhaps the most radical in corporate history,” and its “experts” called “laughably impossible. It was based on the company being worth $1 trillion by 2028. [CleanTechnica] (Heh!)

Tesla (Michael Förtsch, Unsplash)

World:

¶ “Petrol Rations After Canada Storm” • British Columbia is rationing petrol over fuel shortage fears after a major storm cut off road and rail links. The province issued travel restrictions and rations on petrol, just days after declaring a state of emergency. Canadian Armed Forces personnel are moving in to help with recovery efforts in the region. [BBC]

¶ “How Morocco Went Big On Solar Energy” • Morocco has a huge natural potential to produce solar, wind, and hydropower, and has taken significant steps to realize it. Morocco’s action on climate change dates back to the mid-2000s, when the country decided to become a regional leader in clean energy and to push forward massive renewables projects. [BBC]

Noor III Solar Tower (Marc Lacoste, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “China’s Installed Capacity Of Renewable Energy Reaches One Billion Kilowatts: NEA” • At the end of October, China’s installed capacity for renewable energy reached one billion kW, according to the country’s National Energy Administration. It said that 43.5% of China’s total installed generating capacity is now renewably powered. [Global Times]
(Please note that the numbers in this article don’t add up.)

¶ “Tasmania Is Pursuing 200% Renewable Energy, But Not Everyone Is Sold On The Path To Get There” • An investment in a wind farm will help Tasmania reach the government’s target of generating 200% of the state’s energy with renewable resources by 2040 and supply energy to the mainland. Local anti-wind activists oppose the plan, however. [ABC]

Cape Grim wind farm (Ian Cochrane, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

US:

¶ “Path To Net-Zero Emissions Runs Through US Buildings” • In support of the ambitious goal to achieve net-zero emissions economy-wide by 2050, the DOE and the General Services Administration have issued a request for information to identify technologies that help reduce greenhouse gas emissions from commercial buildings. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Senior Pentagon Official Warns The US Military Is ‘Not Ready’ For Climate Change” • A senior Pentagon official warned the US military is “not ready” to handle climate change, a security issue that touches nearly every aspect of planning at the Pentagon. It is not just about ice melting and seas rising. It is about trade routes, supply chains, and much more. [CNN]

No longer functional (Error 420, Unsplash)

¶ “Ford Romance With Rivian Cools As Bromance Heats Up With Volkswagen” • According to Automotive News, after Ford invested $1.2 billion in Rivian, the two have decided to end their development relationship and focus on their own EVs. Ford is keeping its shares in Rivian, but has signed a new deal with Volkswagen to develop an EV. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Macrogrid Study: Big Value In Connecting America’s Eastern And Western Power Grids” • In the US, the eastern grid has a generating capacity of 700,000 MW and the western has 250,000 MW. They have transmission lines to share 1,320 MW, which is not all that much. Better lines to share power would benefit both of them, a study says. [EurekAlert!]

Interconnections Seam Study (NREL image)

¶ “NASA Wants To Put A Nuclear Reactor On The Moon. Got Any Ideas?” • NASA wants to put a nuclear fission power plant on the Moon and is accepting proposals for an initial system design, according to reports. Solar power seems not to be sufficient for their needs, probably because they are looking at nuclear power as a step along the way to Mars. [The Federal]

¶ “$4 Billion Advanced Nuclear Power Demo Set At Wyoming Coal Plant Site” • TerraPower LLC’s demonstration of its Natrium advanced nuclear reactor in Wyoming is now projected to cost $4-billion. Earlier this year, it said the cost would be $1 billion. It said the reason for the increase was that demonstration projects cost more. [Engineering News-Record]

Have a day of wonderful possibilities.

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November 20 Energy News

November 20, 2021

Opinion: 

¶ “A Look At China’s Largest Coal Mine And China’s Coal Lie (Video)” • ADVChina, a YouTube channel that focuses on the adventure lifestyle and exploring China, shared an in-depth look at one of China’s largest open-pit coal mines. The hosts of the channel held a discussion about China’s obsession with coal. The video is very informative. [CleanTechnica]

ADVChina hosts (Screenshot via Youtube)

Science and Technology:

¶ “A Recent Aptera Video Gives Us A Peek At Its Repairable Guts” • A video by Aptera shows us that the company is committed to making the vehicle repairable by normal people. It also gave us a peek at how some of that is actually going to happen. These are development vehicles, but it appears that the Aptera is going to have some underbelly access. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Real-Life ‘Lego’ Wind Turbines Coming Soon To A Wind Farm Near You” • Denmark happens to be the home base of both the leading wind turbine manufacturer Vestas and the toymaker Lego. Vestas seems to be taking a page out of Lego’s modularity book to help accelerate the pace of manufacturing wind turbines and drop the costs, too. [CleanTechnica]

Vestas wind turbines (Photo courtesy of Vestas)

¶ “Beginning Of The End Of The Great Pacific Garbage Patch? (Video)” • The Ocean Cleanup achieved proof of technology at the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, and is ready to return to begin cleanup. In celebration of this milestone, a marine parade welcomed the offshore crew in Canada. The video captures just a bit of that celebration. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ “How cities are going carbon neutral” • More than half of the world’s population currently live in cities, and cities are the sources of 60% of our greenhouse gas emissions. But cities are also becoming leaders in the fight against climate change. They are adopting aggressive strategies to reduce both global warming emissions and other pollutants. [BBC]

Cyclists in Amsterdam (Noralí Nayla, Unsplash)

¶ “Tesla Drivers Left Unable To Start Their Cars After Outage” • Some Tesla drivers say they have been locked out of their cars after an outage struck the carmaker’s app. Dozens of owners posted on social media about an error message on the mobile app that was preventing them from connecting to their vehicles. The problem has reportedly been addressed. [BBC]

¶ “Teslas Multiplying In The ‘Burbs Of Australia” • It wasn’t long ago when my Model 3 was the only Tesla in Bracken Ridge, a suburb of Brisbane. Then it was the only Model 3. Then it was the only red Model 3. Those days are over, as Teslas multiply out in the suburbs. Things are changing. Bracken Ridge is not part of the yuppie wealth belt. [CleanTechnica]

Tesla Model 3 (Robin van Geenen, Unsplash)

¶ “GM Flags Concern Over Renewable Energy In Mexico, Sees Investment Risk” • A senior executive of carmaker General Motors raised concern about the future of renewable energy usage in Mexico. He said that without a solid legal basis for renewables, automotive investment in Latin America’s number 2 economy would suffer. [Investing.com]

¶ “India’s State Coal Companies Target Installing 5.56 GW Renewable Power By 2030” • India’s state-run coal companies aim to install 5.56 GW of renewable capacity by 2030 and take other measures designed to reduce CO₂ emissions, to meet pledges made at the COP26 Conference in Glasgow, the Ministry of Coal said. [Hellenic Shipping News Worldwide]

Wind farm, Tamil Nadu (Raj, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “Japanese Island Ditches Diesel For Microgrid Renewables” • Plans are underway for a microgrid that will combine renewable generating capacity and batteries for tiny Okinoerabu Island in the southern part of Japan. Detailed plans for the project are due to be completed by the end of March 2022, with construction to start soon thereafter. [Microgrid Knowledge]

US:

¶ “Ford Doubles EV Production Plans And GM Books 18,000 BrightDrop Order” • Ford CEO Jim Farley announced on Twitter that his company is doubling its EV production goal to 600,000 vehicles by 2023. General Motors is moving on its own plans to build BrightDrop battery electric delivery vans. It already has one order for 12,600 EV600 vans. [CleanTechnica]

Ford F-150 Lightning (Courtesy of Ford Motor Company)

¶ “New Mexico Co-Op Dumps Monopoly Supplier To Offer More Solar” • Rural areas are sometimes isolated, disconnected from modern conveniences and the latest technologies. The digital divide is real, but one New Mexico cooperative is proving to be an exception, as it connects customers to affordable solar energy and reliable Internet service. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “House Passes Build Back Better Act In US” • The House of Representatives has passed the Build Back Better Act, which includes support for clean energy and contains several provisions that directly impact the offshore wind industry. The legislation includes long-term clean energy tax credits. It is now going to the Senate for consideration. [reNews]

US Capitol (US Government, public domain)

¶ “Intersect Secures €2.3 Billion For US Clean Power Push” • The developer Intersect Power has secured €2.3 billion ($3.09 billion) in financing for the construction and operation of a six-project renewable portfolio in the US totaling 2200 MW. The generating capacity includes late-stage solar projects and 1.4 GWh of storage that will be in operation by 2023. [reNews]

¶ “Southern Co To Build Landmark Small Nuclear Reactor” • Southern Co announced plans to build a small, experimental nuclear reactor in Idaho using technology from TerraPower, a company backed by Bill Gates. The project, partially funded with federal money, is considered a key step in bringing new nuclear technologies to scale. [E&E News] (Waste of money – ghh)

Have an exceptionally fine day.

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November 19 Energy News

November 19, 2021

Opinion:

¶ “New York Must Act On Clean Trucks” • The future of clean, zero-emission trucks is now in the hands of the New York Department of Environmental Conservation. The must decide whether to adopt the Advanced Clean Truck rule. We believe the answer is clear: It is imperative that the Department adopt the rule before the end of 2021. [CleanTechnica]

Mack Trucks electric garbage truck (Mack Trucks image)

¶ “Entergy’s Big Bet On Renewables” • It doesn’t seem all that long ago when Entergy had grand plans for nuclear power. But the company is now all-in on renewable energy. The surprising thing is how fast renewables will grow. The company gets 1% of its energy from renewables now, but that figure will rise to 17% in three years and 33% in five. [starherald.net]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Bamboo Has Been Used For Thousands Of Years In Asia. Now, It Could Help Solve Construction’s Sustainability Problem” • Strong and flexible, bamboo grows fast. While soft and hard woods can take between 40 and 150 years to mature, bamboo is ready to harvest in as little as three years. When treated and engineered, it can last for decades. [CNN]

Bamboo growing (Eleonora Albasi, Unsplash)

¶ “The Crazy Dream Of A Flow Battery Electric Vehicle Is Not So Crazy Any More” • Researchers once dreamed of a flow battery to make an EV that could range as far and wide as a gasmobile. Talk about that died down a while back, but the US DOE has just bet $3 million on a new energy storage project that could turn the dream into reality. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “The Ingenious Living Bridges Of India” • The Indian state of Meghalaya gets so much rain that modern bridges would wash away, but the living bridges stand up to the torrents. Indigenous groups in north-east India have crafted intricate bridges from living fig trees for centuries. Now this ancient skill is making its way to European cities. [CNN]

Double living bridge (Arshiya Urveeja Bose, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

World:

¶ “Deforestation In The Amazon Increased By 33% In First Ten Months Of 2021, Analysis Shows” • The rate of deforestation in the Amazon increased by 33% in the first ten months of 2021, compared to the first ten months of 2020, according to an analysis published by the Institute for Man and the Environment of the Amazon. [CNN]

¶ “Plugin Vehicles Have 23% Of New Car Sales In France” • In France, plugin car sales grew in October, with registrations ending at 27,109 units, divided between 15,582 battery EVs and 11,527 plug-in hybrid EVs. The former jumped 55% year over year, while the latter were up 13%. The overall market was down 31% compared to October 2020 [CleanTechnica]

Renault ZOE (Grey Geezer, placed into the public domain)

¶ “30% Plugin Vehicle Share In German Auto Market!” • The German plugin vehicle market scored over 54,000 registrations last month, a 12% improvement year over year. This is an impressive performance considering the overall market crashed 35%. As a result, last month’s plugin share ended at 30%, with 17% of all sales battery EVs. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Siemens Gamesa And RES Grow Canadian Partnership With 100-MW Turbine Order” • Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy has signed its first project with Renewable Energy Systems in Canada for the 100-MW Hilda wind project in Alberta. Siemens Gamesa will supply 20 SG 5.0-145 turbines, sufficient to power about 50,000 homes. [North American Windpower]

Siemens Gamesa wind turbines

¶ “Global Net-Zero Goals Need 85-140 TWh Of Storage” • To enable power grids to become carbon net-zero, between 85 and 140 TWh of long duration energy storage of more than eight hours can be deployed globally, according to a report prepared by the Long Duration Energy Storage Council in collaboration with McKinsey & Company. [reNews]

US:

¶ “$2.6 Billion Committed To New Solar Projects in Texas, California” • Intersect Power announced it has closed eight separate deals, representing a total of $2.6 billion in financing commitments for construction and operation of six late-stage solar energy projects with 2.2 GW of generating capacity in California and Texas. [Power Magazine]

Wind farm in California (Niranjan Arminius, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “Tesla And Buc-Ee’s Plans For Superchargers Span 26 Stores In Seven States” • The best way to describe Buc-Ee’s may be as a gas station on steroids with BBQ, fudge, and shopping. Now Buc-Ee’s and Tesla have an agreement to install Superchargers at 26 stores in seven states: Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, and South Carolina, Tennessee, and Texas. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Adaptive Headlights Coming To US Within Two Years” • The infrastructure bill passed by Congress and signed into law by the President includes an amendment to Section 108 of the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard “to allow for the use on vehicles of adaptive driving beam headlamp systems.” The change will take effect within two years. [CleanTechnica]

Adaptive headlights (Image courtesy of Porsche)

¶ “Entergy Louisiana Signs 350-MW Solar Project Portfolio with DE Shaw Renewable” • DE Shaw Renewable Investments, a US renewable energy producer, has signed three renewable energy off-take agreements with Entergy Louisiana LLC. They are to begin supplying solar energy to ELL and its Louisiana customers in 2024. [T&D World]

¶ “Nuclear Regulators Uphold Violations At Georgia Reactors” • Nuclear power regulators affirmed that the NRC will be giving greater scrutiny to two nuclear reactors under construction at Georgia Power Co’s Plant Vogtle after a special inspection found electrical cables were not properly separated. There were 600 instances of failure reported. [The Middletown Press]

Have an intriguingly gorgeous day.

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November 18 Energy News

November 18, 2021

Opinion: 

¶ “UK-Led COP Aviation Declaration Too Weak To Clean Up Flying” • The UK-led international climate ambition declaration for aviation is too weak to reduce flying’s climate impact, says Transport & Environment. In relying on the UN’s International Civil Aviation Organisation, the signatories make the same mistakes as earlier efforts. [CleanTechnica]

Future United Airlines electric airplane (United Airlines image)

¶ “Ride In A Century-Old Detroit Electric Car Warped My Mind” • Recently I had the exquisite pleasure of getting a ride in an original 1913 Detroit Electric car built by the Anderson Electric Car Company. On several levels it was a surprising experience. In fact, I really had a hard time projecting what I was perceiving as being part of reality. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ “COP26: The Truth Behind The New Climate Change Denial” • As world leaders met at COP26 to debate how to tackle climate change, misleading claims and falsehoods about the climate spiralled on social media. Scientists say climate change denial is now more likely to focus on the causes and effects of warming, or how to tackle it, than to outright deny it exists. [BBC]

Sun with a very large sunspot (NASA image)

¶ “Europe Was Already Facing A Winter Gas Crisis. The Risks Just Got Even Bigger” • When Germany announced this week that it had suspended certification of a controversial new Russian gas pipeline, Nord Stream 2, the response in energy markets was immediate. European natural gas futures finished up almost 18% on Tuesday and rose again on Wednesday. [CNN]

¶ “India’s Fossil Fuel Giants Announce Renewable Energy Partnership ” • India’s largest oil refining company and thermal power generation company have announced a partnership to develop renewable energy assets. Reportedly, NTPC will develop renewable energy generation and energy storage applications for Indian Oil Corporation. [CleanTechnica]

Telangana II solar plant (Thomas Lloyd Group, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “India Enhances Solar Module Manufacturing Incentive To $3 Billion” • India’s Minister for New and Renewable Energy, RK Singh, recently told media outlets his government has enhanced the production linked incentive package for manufacturing solar modules. Initially, the incentive package was worth $600 million. They just raised that to $3 billion. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Wind Energy Ireland Strives For A Reduction In Energy Prices” • Wind Energy Ireland, the representative body for Irish windpower, called for the reduction of renewable energy prices and overall electricity bills for ratepayers in Ireland. The leader of the organisation said that Ireland has some of the world’s best resources but high energy costs. [Energy Digital]

Irish wind farm (RTG, CC-BY-SA 4.0, cropped)

¶ “Orion Collaboration Will Achieve Net-Zero CO₂ Emissions” • Orion Minerals’ Prieska Power Reserve™ is aimed at generating electrical energy from renewable sources and storing this energy as green hydrogen and ammonia on a long-term basis. The project intends to be energy independent, as it supplies energy for mining zinc and copper. [Mining Review Africa]

US:

¶ “Fires In The Sierra Nevada Likely To Grow In Frequency” • Research from the University of California, Irvine says that by 2040, as humans continue to change the climate, fire-conducive heat waves will become so common that the number of blazes throughout the Sierra stands to increase about 50%. The study appears in the journal Science Advances. [UCI News]

Burnt forest (Brian Bell, UCI)

¶ “Microgrids Powered By Renewables Will Generate 500,000 Jobs And $72 Billion In GDP Growth By 2030” • Microgrids are a solution for resilience, for both the climate and the economy. A Guidehouse Insights report says that every $1 million invested in renewable energy microgrids will create $500,000 in economic benefits and 3.4 skilled jobs. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “US Navy, KIUC, AES, And NREL Innovate And Collaborate For Resilience And Cost-Effective Clean Energy Project On Kauai” • The National Renewable Energy Laboratory partnered with the US Navy to complete a groundbreaking project at the Navy’s Pacific Missile Range Facility on the west side of the Hawaiian island of Kauai. [CleanTechnica]

Pacific Missile Range Facility (US Navy image)

¶ “Massachusetts Could Have An All-Renewable Energy Future, But Challenges Remain” • If wind, solar, and geothermal energy maintain the growth rates they have shown over a decade, those three sources alone could meet the nation’s electricity demand by 2035, Environment Massachusetts said in a report. But more must be done to maintain those rates. [WBUR]

¶ “Solar Developers Commission Maryland PV” • Solar energy developers One Energy Renewables, CleanChoiceEnergy, and Standard Solar have completed four of a nine-project pipeline of projects in Maryland totaling 24 MW in capacity. The portfolio is projected to benefit over 5,000 Maryland households through community solar subscriptions. [reNews]

Solar panels from below (Asia Chang, Unsplash)

¶ “Maine Voters Reject Renewable Energy Transmission” • The Citizens of Maine voted to pass Maine Question 1 in Tuesday’s election. It called for the revocation of approvals previously issued by Maine regulators for a proposed $1 billion power line called the New England Clean Air Connect. Doing so, they made the energy transition harder in several states. [Forbes]

¶ “America’s Nuclear Power Sector Is Getting $6 Billion Bailout” • After failing to grow for years, the US nuclear industry is finally radiating positivity: fine print of the $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill that just became law has $6 billion in grants for struggling reactors. The sudden enrichment is because nuclear is back in vogue for “low carbon emissions.” [Nasdaq]

Have an admirably great day.

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November 17 Energy News

November 17, 2021

Opinion: 

¶ “Nuclear Power Won’t Save the World. It Won’t Even Help” • Putting money into nuclear power goes beyond being a huge waste. It detracts from the vital issue of dealing with climate change now by making money unavailable for dealing with the problem using less expensive, more flexible energy that can be built much more quickly. [Green Energy Times]

San Onofre nuclear plant (awnisALAN, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

World:

¶ “Climate Change: What Did The Scientists Make Of COP26?” • Those who spoke to the BBC praised the conference for getting countries to agree to meet next year to pledge deeper emissions cuts. They welcomed agreements on forests, innovation, and especially methane from fossil fuel extraction and livestock. But they fear politicians won’t deliver. [BBC]

¶ “This City Had Its Hottest Day On Record This Summer. 140 Days Later, It Had Its Wettest” • Abbotsford, British Columbia, recorded its hottest day ever with a temperature of 109°F during an unprecedented heat wave in June. Just 140 days later, it broke another record with 4 inches of rain in 24 hours. Climate change can bring “weather whiplash.” [CNN]

Flood near Abbottsford, 2009 (Murray Foubister, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “Germany Suspends Approval For Nord Stream 2 Gas Pipeline” • Germany suspended its approval process for the controversial Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, which would double its reliance on Russian gas following growing geopolitical pressure to scrap the project. It is a big setback to Kremlin-backed Gazprom’s plans to extend Russian gas dominance. [The Guardian]

¶ “Delhi Smog: Schools And Colleges Shut As Pollution Worsens” • Authorities in Delhi shut all schools and colleges indefinitely amid the worsening air pollution. Construction work has been banned until 21 November, though with specific exceptions. Only five of the eleven coal-based power plants in the city have been allowed to operate. [BBC]

Smog in Delhi (Government of India)

¶ “ZeroAvia Announces Regional Jets Partnership” • ZeroAvia has announced a partnership for regional jets with hydrogen-electric propulsion systems with Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Regional Jet Aviation. ZeroAvia will develop the powertrain technology and Mitsubishi will cover design, certification, and the support experience. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “India To Replace Thermal Power With Renewables Under Existing PPAs” • India’s Power Ministry issued revised guidelines for thermal generation companies to set up renewable power capacity, by themselves or through developers. The companies will supply the bundled power to the consumers under existing power purchase agreements. [PV Magazine]

Power plant (NTPC image)

¶ “First Nations Clean Energy Network Set Up To Deliver Cheap And Reliable Power To Indigenous Communities” • Australian First Nations groups, unions, industry bodies, and academics have launched a new network to build renewable energy projects for Indigenous communities to provide reliable power and end energy insecurity. [ABC]

US:

¶ “Utility-Scale Solar Reaches LCOE Range Of 2.8¢ To 4.1¢ Per kWh In The USA (Record Low)” • Utility-scale solar has reached another record low in Levelized Cost of Energy, at 2.8¢/kWh to 4.1¢/kWh, according to Lazard’s latest LCOE report, version 15.0. Lazard found that renewables are increasingly outcompeting other forms of energy. [CleanTechnica]

Lazard’s LCOE chart (Lazard image)
Please click on the image to enlarge it.

¶ “Study Shows NC Third In Nation For Solar Energy Growth, Tenth In Renewable Energy Overall” • A nonprofit based in North Carolina released a study showing the state is among the top ten in renewable energy development. Environment North Carolina Research & Policy Center analyzed renewable energy development in all states. [Carolina Coast Online]

¶ “EDPR Cuts Ribbon At Indiana Crossroads” • EDP Renewables North America and Northern Indiana Public Service Company celebrated the completion of the 302-MW Indiana Crossroads wind farm at a ribbon cutting ceremony. Commercial operations will start by the end of this year, generating power sufficient for 80,000 Indiana homes. [reNews]

Ribbon cutting ceremony (EDPR image)

¶ “America’s Largest Energy Customers Set A Bold Ambition To Achieve A 90% Carbon-Free US Electricity System By 2030 And Accelerate Clean Energy Globally” • The Clean Energy Buyers Alliance organizations announced a goal to have a 90% carbon-free US electricity system by 2030 and a global community of energy customers driving clean energy. [Business Wire]

¶ “$1.1 Billion Renewable Energy Project Touted For Caldwell County” • The Central Texas business corridor is growing yet again, with a massive $1 billion investment from a California company, Chem-Energy, to build two power plants in Caldwell County. The power plants will be solar facilities with and battery storage for energy. [San Antonio Express-News]

Solar farm (American Public Power Association, Unsplash)

¶ “Con Edison Expands Clean Energy Commitment On Path To Net-Zero Emissions” • Con Edison expanded its Clean Energy Commitment, reflecting its strategy to lead the nation in the transition to renewables, give customers more control over their energy use, and prepare the company’s energy-delivery system for the impacts of climate change. [PR Newswire]

¶ “$4 Billion Nuclear Power Plant Backed By Bill Gates And Warren Buffett Is Set For Construction In Wyoming” • Pending federal and local approval, TerraPower will build a $4 billion, 345-MW nuclear facility at the Naughton Power Plant in Kemmerer, Wyoming, about 130 miles northeast of Salt Lake City, the company announced. [USA Today]

Have a profoundly composed day.

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November 16 Energy News

November 16, 2021

Opinion: 

¶ “Toyota’s Team Japan Aims To Save Internal Combustion Engine From Extinction” • Toyota’s embrace of hydrogen and the internal combustion engine has become ridiculous. Headed up by Akio Toyoda, Toyota is celebrating its own refusal to sign a pledge to eliminate infernal combustion engines in Glasgow last week by forming Team Japan. [CleanTechnica]

Toyota pickup truck (Dusty Barnes, Unsplash)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Ford And Purdue University Created A Cable That Fully Charges An EV In 5 Minutes” • Ford has teamed up with Purdue University to build a prototype of a cable that could fully charge an EV’s battery in just five minutes without overheating. It could help overcome one of the last major obstacles standing in the way of EVs achieving mass acceptance. [Yahoo]

¶ “Harnessing The Power Of The Tides In Scotland” • The most ambitious of the tidal energy devices operating in the Orkney Islands is the Orbital O2 from Orbital Marine. It has an output of 2 MW, enough to heat the tea kettles and run the lights in 2,000 UK homes. The Orbital O2 is 240 feet long, weighs 650 tons, and is as big as a floating jumbo jet. [CleanTechnica]

Tidal turbine (Image courtesy of Orbital Marine)

World:

¶ “Indian State Of Andhra Pradesh To Buy 7 GW Of Solar Power” • The power distribution utilities of Andhra Pradesh secured approval from the state regulator to procure 7 GW of solar power from projects auctioned by the Solar Corporation of India. Power will be supplied in tranches between September 2024 and September 2026. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Electrification Of Rail Freight Industry Takes One (Just One) Giant Step Forward” • Everybody knows that transportation by rail freight is fuel efficient. The missing link for sustainability is full electrification. Now we can see some hope in the form of a 100% electric locomotive soon to ply the rails for the Canadian railway company CN. [CleanTechnica]

Battery electric locomotive (Courtesy of Wabtec Corporation)

¶ “Epson Becomes The Manufacturing Industry’s First To Switch To 100% Renewable Electricity At All Sites In Japan” • Epson is the first company in the Japanese manufacturing industry to convert to 100% renewable electricity for all its domestic sites. As a result, Epson will reduce its annual CO₂ emissions by about 250,000 tonnes. [MarketScreener]

¶ “China To Encourage Power Users To Directly Buy Renewables In Cross-Province Spot Trading” • China will encourage power consumers to trade directly with renewable power generators in spot electricity trading, and will gradually add bulk power users and power sellers into the trade, the National Development and Reform Commission said. [MarketScreener]

Solar panels in China (Davidzdh, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “UK, US Partnership Eyes 20-GW Clean Power Goal” • UK-based Low Carbon and the Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company joined forces to build a renewable energy independent power producer of 20 GW by 2030. Focusing on international projects, it will leverage proven technologies including solar, storage, windpower, and waste-to-energy. [reNews]

¶ “Global Storage Market ‘Set For Boom’” • Global energy storage installations will reach a cumulative 358 GW by the end of 2030, according to the latest forecast from energy research company BloombergNEF. BNEF forecasts 358-GW, 1028 GWh by the end of 2030, more than 20 times larger than the 17-GW, 34-GWh at the end of 2020. [reNews]

Energy storage (Engie image)

US:

¶ “Biden Signs ‘Once-In-A-Generation’ $1 Trillion Infrastructure Bill Into Law” • US President Joe Biden has signed into law a $1.2 trillion spending bill. The legislation pledges funding to upgrade highways, roads, and bridges, to modernize transit and passenger rail networks, and for clean drinking water, high speed internet, and a nationwide network of EV charging points. [BBC]

¶ “11% Of Ford F-150 Lightning Pre-Orders Are From Tesla Owners” • A Lightning Owners forum for F-150 Lightning buyers tracks the pre-orders for Ford’s all new electric pickup truck and analyzes the data. One thing it tracks is what vehicle those people will be getting rid of to put an F-150 Lightning in their driveway. It turns out 11% are Teslas. [CleanTechnica]

Ford F-150 Lightning (Ford Motor Company)

¶ “Tesla Semi Spotted Charging At Megacharger At Giga Nevada” • A Twitter user shared photos of a white Tesla Semi charging at the Megacharger at Giga Nevada. Whether or not Pepsi will be receiving its first Semi this year isn’t known, but what is known is that those old rumors of the Tesla Semi not existing can be put to bed – again. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Jericho’s Two New Solar Plants Will Generate Enough Power For 7,800 Vermont Homes” • Two utility-sized solar plants have come online in Jericho, Vermont, topping a former gravel pit and a closed-down landfill. They are expected to generate enough electricity for 7,800 homes, according to their developer, Encore Renewable Energy. [Burlington Free Press]

Solar array in Jericho (Encore Renewable Energy)

¶ “Solar Project Now Powers Five New England Colleges” • The 76.5-MW Farmington solar project in Maine has entered service, and will supply power to five New England colleges, Amherst, Bowdoin, Hampshire, Smith, and Williams, as part of a 20-year power purchase agreement. A unit of NextEra Energy Resources built the facility. [pv magazine USA]

¶ “Rising Sea Levels: How Climate Change Has Affected South Carolina” • While climate projections look to the future and discuss the worst impacts of climate change, we are already experiencing its effects across the US. Here are descriptions of what is happening in South Carolina and neighboring states, along with a link to the national story [WCBD]

Have a thrillingly easy day.

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November 15 Energy News

November 15, 2021

Opinion: 

¶ “How Much Is Spent Supporting Fossil Fuels And Green Energy?” • Despite pledges to limit support, governments around the world spend more than $420 billion each year subsidizing non-renewable energy, according to the UN Development Programme. How do fossil fuel subsidies work and which countries are spending the most? [BBC]

Abandoned open pit mine (Aedrian, Unsplash)

¶ “Don’t Underestimate Local Knowledge Of Agriculture In Dealing With Climate Change” • In Senegal, the harvest depends on rain. But a study from the Institute of Environmental Science and Technology of the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona shows that local knowledge of crops and climate can make a huge difference in how much there is to eat. [Forbes]

COP26:

¶ “COP26 Ended With The Glasgow Climate Pact. Here’s Where It Succeeded And Failed” • Nearly 200 countries adopted the Glasgow Climate Pact at the COP26 talks, after wrangling nearly two weeks. The pact will not get us to the goal we need to reach, but in some important ways, the talks were successful in moving us forward. Here are some major points. [CNN]

Demonstration (francis mckee, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “How Might Decisions At The Climate Summit Change Our Lives?” • A deal has been agreed upon and signed at the COP26 climate summit in Glasgow. You might be left wondering what, if anything, it will mean for you. There a a number of ways in which the decisions made at COP26 could change your life. Here are some of the most important. [BBC]

¶ “Climate Deal Sounds The Death Knell For Coal Power – PM” • The Glasgow climate deal is a “game-changing agreement” which sounds “the death knell for coal power,” Prime Minister Boris Johnson said. Although countries only agreed to “phase down” rather than “phase out” coal, a change India insisted on, he said this was a fantastic achievement. [BBC]

Microburst (NOAA, Unsplash)

¶ “COP26 – Best Summary Out There” • We’ve had the speeches and the briefings, the commitments and the backstepping, big things happening and deals being done. COP26 has dominated the news cycle for many of us. Some see progress, and some see blah blah blah. Here is an “Honest Government” commentary video with highly offensive language. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ “NFI Expands Its Partnership With Li-Cycle To Recycle Heavy-Duty EV Batteries At Scale” • NFI Group, the maker of New Flyer buses, announced the expansion of its partnership with Li-Cycle. This will facilitate heavy-duty battery recycling at scale as heavy-duty EV adoption grows. The deal is Li-Cycle’s first program in the heavy-duty vehicle space. [CleanTechnica]

New Flyer Excelsior bus (New Flyer image)

¶ “Ghana Advances Clean Energy With Eight New Solar Plants” • A Ghanaian state entity, Bui Power Authority, announced plans to build eight solar plants in the northern part of the country. The sites are close to substations of the Ghana Grid Company where the solar plants have potential capacities of 10MW to 100MW. [Power Engineering International]

¶ “Renewable Energy Revolution Is Powering Australia’s $720 Billion Mining And Resources Industry” • Along with a solar farm and a battery, five giant wind turbines are powering much of the operations at the Agnew gold project in Western Australia. It is the first resources project in Australia to have a wind farm, but it is unlikely to be the last. [ABC News]

Wind farm (Gold Fields image)

¶ “EDF To Power JPMorgan Chase’s UK Operations With 100% Renewable Energy” • EDF announced a deal with the investment bank and financial services company JPMorgan Chase to power its UK offices with 100% renewable energy. JPMorgan Chase’s electricity consumption will be matched to renewable generation on a 24/7 basis. [Energy Live News]

US:

¶ “This Colorado ‘Solar Garden’ Is Literally A Farm Under Solar Panels” • A Colorado solar garden is also growing vegetables, with help from researchers at nearby Colorado State University and the National Renewable Energy Lab. They had been studying how to turn all the otherwise unused land beneath solar panels into a place to grow food. [WPRL]

Growing produce under solar panels (Kirk Siegler, NPR)

¶ “New Mexico Utilities Can Invest Over $11 Million Into EV Infrastructure And Education” • The New Mexico Public Regulation Commission approved plans for two utilities to speed up deployment of EVs over the next two years. Their plans include charging infrastructure at single-family and multi-family homes as well as public spaces. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “While Nations Dither, US Cities, Counties, And States Are Suing Fossil Fuel Companies” • How the nations at COP26 will act on climate change is yet to be seen, but US states, counties, and cities are acting. At least 29 of them have filed climate lawsuits in state courts against major fossil fuel companies for fraud, damages, or both. [CleanTechnica]

Have a meticulously uncomplicated day.

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November 14 Energy News

November 14, 2021

COP26:

¶ “COP26 Climate Deal Includes Historic Reference To Fossil Fuels But Doesn’t Meet The Urgency Of The Crisis” • Nearly 200 nations reached a climate agreement at COP26. It references the role of fossil fuels in the climate crisis for the first time. India made an 11th-hour objection, however, that watered down the language about reducing the use of coal. [CNN]

Machinery in a German lignite mine (C M, Unsplash)

¶ “Evasive Words And Coal Compromise, But Deal Shows Progress” • The COP26 Climate Pact is an ambitious attempt to rein in rising temperatures, but the last-minute row over coal has cast a shadow over the deal. India was joined by China in pushing for a watering down of a key commitment, insisting on “phasing down” rather than “phasing out” coal. [BBC]

¶ “It Won’t Save Us From Drowning” • The COP26 climate deal plans to reduce the world’s reliance on coal and promises more money to help poor countries cope with the impacts of global warming. But those who are most exposed are largely pessimistic about the outcome of the summit, believing that the agreements aren’t enough to save their homelands. [BBC]

Tina Stege, Climate Envoy for the Marshall Islands
(PeaceActionMaine, CC-BY-SA 3.0, cropped)

¶ “Blah Blah Blah…: A Brief Summary Of COP26, Says Greta Thunberg” • UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres warned of an impending “climate catastrophe,” while climate campaigner Greta Thunberg dismissed Saturday’s COP26 climate conference deal as “blah, blah, blah.” Even those who welcomed the deal said a huge amount of work remains. [India Today]

¶ “What Is COP26 And What Has Been Agreed At Glasgow Climate Conference?” • Extreme weather events linked to climate change are intensifying. The past decade was the warmest on record and governments agree urgent collective action is needed. COP26 was the latest of a series of meetings on what to do about it. Here are some things agreed on. [BBC]

Evidence of climate change (NOAA image)

World:

¶ “Putin Warns Belarus Over Gas Threat To EU” • President Lukashenko of Belarus threatened to cut off gas supplies to the EU after it threatened sanctions over a growing migrant crisis on the Belarus-Polish border. Russian President Vladimir Putin warned that stopping natural gas supplies from Russia to the EU would be a breach of contract with Russia. [BBC]

¶ “Korea Needs To Invest More To Meet Wind Power Target” • South Korea needs more aggressive investment in the renewable energy sector to achieve its offshore wind capacity goal by 2030 and address the country’s geographical weaknesses in wind energy, according to a report from London-based consulting firm Ernst & Young. [The Korea Herald]

Korean offshore wind farm (Korea South-East Power Co)

¶ “Li-Cycle And Atlis Motor Vehicles Partner On Recycling Lithium-Ion Batteries” • Li-Cycle, based in Toronto, entered into an agreement with Atlis Motor Vehicles, an Arizona startup mobility technology company, according to an announcement. Li-Cycle, which focuses on recycling lithium-ion batteries, is the largest battery recycler in North America. [CleanTechnica]

US:

¶ “Solar PV And PV+Storage Costs Keep Dropping, New NREL Reports Show” • The National Renewable Energy Laboratory has released its annual cost breakdown of installed solar PV and battery storage systems. US Solar Photovoltaic System and Energy Storage Cost Benchmark: Q1 2021 details installed costs for PV systems as of the first quarter of 2021. [CleanTechnica]

Change in costs (NREL image)

¶ “Delta Boss Says Climate Change Means Flying Will Cost More” • Delta Air Lines chief executive Ed Bastian told the BBC that tackling climate change will make flying more expensive. Atlanta-based Delta, the world’s second biggest airline, says that it spends $30 million per year on carbon-offsetting and has been carbon neutral since March 2020. [BBC]

¶ “XPRIZE & Musk Foundation Announce 23 XPRIZE Carbon Removal Student Award Winners” • Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk along with his foundation are funding the XPRIZE Carbon Removal competition, which is aimed at fighting climate change. XPRIZE announced that $5 million of that prize was been awarded to 23 student-led teams. [CleanTechnica]

Have an amply enriching day.

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November 13 Energy News

November 13, 2021

Opinion: 

¶ “It Would Be A Mistake To Re-Evaluate The Closing Of Diablo Canyon” • MIT and Stanford researchers published a report encouraging California to revisit the decision to close the Diablo Canyon nuclear plant. I read over the report and was surprised to find myself concluding that it would be a bad idea to re-evaluate the closing of Diablo Canyon. [Almanac Online]

Diablo Canyon (Tracey Adams, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “World Leaders: Phase Out Sales Of New Gas Cars By 2030” • Global leaders can do something at COP26 that would not just protect the environment but also improve air quality in the millions of communities plagued with toxic tailpipe emissions: commit to phasing out sales of new combustion-powered cars, trucks, and SUVs by 2030. [CleanTechnica]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Regenerative Agriculture: A Way To Sequester Carbon” • Regenerative agriculture is a system of farming that seeks to rehabilitate and enhance the entire ecosystem of the farm by placing a heavy premium on soil health, with attention also paid to water management and fertilizer use. Such practices will help us fight the climate crisis. [CleanTechnica]

Farming (Image retrieved from NASA, open source)

¶ “New Scalable Method Resolves Materials Joining In Solid-State Batteries” • Scientists at the DOE’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory developed a scalable, low-cost method to improve the joining of materials in solid-state batteries, resolving one of the big challenges in the commercial development of safe, long-lived energy storage systems. [CleanTechnica]

COP26:

¶ “COP26 Goes Into Overtime As Deep Divisions Remain Over Key Issues Around Money And Markets” • Negotiations may run through the night Friday at COP26, as stark divisions remain on some key issues. A note from COP26 President Alok Sharma said a new draft of the agreement would likely be published at around 8:00 AM local time on Saturday. [CNN]

COP26 experts and stakeholders (IAEA Imagebank, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “Coal Compromise As Leaders Near Climate Deal” • A draft agreement at COP26 has watered down commitments to end the use of coal and other fossil fuels, as countries race to reach a deal after two weeks of talks. While the language around fossil fuels has been softened, the inclusion of the commitment in a final deal would be seen as a landmark moment. [BBC]

¶ “Crunch Time As Climate Deal Talks Pass Deadline” • Sticking points include phasing out coal, subsidies on other fossil fuels, and financial help to poorer nations. The draft agreement has watered down commitments to end the use of unabated coal and inefficient subsidies on other fossil fuels. Meanwhile, small island nations are fast disappearing to rising seas. [BBC]

Goodbye Bikini Atol (Kurt Cotoaga, Unsplash)

World:

¶ “Volkswagen Says Its EV Sales In China Surpass Nio, XPeng, And Li” • China EV Post reported a quote from Volkswagen Group CEO Herbert Diess: “The ID. family continues its steady growth momentum in the China market. In October, ID. models sold nearly 13,000 …, surpassing domestic competitors including NIO, XPeng, and Li Auto.” [CleanTechnica]

¶ “New Delhi Braces For Emergency Measures As Toxic Smog Worsens” • India’s federal pollution control board ordered states and local bodies to be in “complete readiness” to tackle New Delhi’s worsening smog. A thick haze of toxic smog hung over the Indian capital, exacerbated by a spike in the burning of crop waste in surrounding farmlands. [CNN]

Smoke in New Delhi (Tarun Anand Giri, Unsplash, cropped)

¶ “Africa-Focused Lekela Plans To Spend $2 Billion To Doubcle Renewables Capacity” • Africa-focused renewables developer, one of Africa’s largest renewables companies with a focus on solar and wind power, plans to invest around $2 billion to more than double its renewable power capacity on the continent over the next five years, its chief executive said. [Nasdaq]

¶ “Greece’s Policy Reform Fever: Storage, Net Metering And Sub-500 kW Solar” • The Greek government has completed its wide-ranging policy framework that is expected to reshape the energy sector and also benefit energy storage projects. The bill is now headed to parliament. The reform includes policies that target three categories of storage. [PV Magazine]

Parthenon of Athens (Dimitris Kiriakakis, Unsplash)

US:

¶ “Lehigh University Energy Research Center Is Working To Cut Mercury Emissions From Coal Plants And Other Sources” • The Lehigh University Energy Research Center is working out how to reduce mercury emissions. Such emissions usually come from coal-fired plants, cement kilns, industrial boilers, steel mills and waste incinerators. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Turning The Tide For Renewables In Alaska” • A highly energetic corner of the Pacific Ocean, Cook Inlet holds one of the greatest tidal resources on Earth. All that energy has the potential to reduce Alaska residents’ dependence on declining oil and gas production and provide excess renewable energy that could stimulate the Alaskan economy. [AltEnergyMag]

¶ “Voices Of 100%: Des Moines Commits To Clean Electricity Around The Clock” • Though it’s insulated from sea level rise, the state of Iowa faces many dangerous climate change impacts. These in turn threaten the nation’s food supply. Fortunately, the state is rich in renewable energy potential and eager advocates who hope to harness it. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “PJM IMM Identifies Market Design Issues As Gas Prices Drive Up PJM Power Prices” • PJM Interconnection real-time, load-weighted average power prices increased 68.1% in the first nine months of 2021, driven mostly by natural gas price increases. PJM IMM serves 65 million customers in the Eastern US from Pennsylvania to Virginia and Illinois. [S&P Global]

Have a simply magical day.

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November 12 Energy News

November 12, 2021

COP26:

¶ “Draft Deal Calls For Stronger Carbon Cutting Targets By End Of 2022” • Countries are being urged to strengthen their carbon-cutting targets by the end of 2022 in a draft agreement published at the COP26 Glasgow climate summit. The document says vulnerable nations must get more help to cope with the deadly impacts of global warming. [BBC]

Ursula von der Leyen (Dati Bendo, CC0 with attribution)

¶ “Fear Of Failure As Climate Summit Enters Final Day” • The COP26 climate summit is entering its final day, amid growing fears that the goal of limiting global warming to 1.5°C is unlikely to be met. UN Secretary General António Guterres said the summit would probably not see governments make the pledges needed to cut CO₂ emissions sufficiently. [BBC]

¶ “Young People Call For Fossil Fuel Non-Proliferation Treaty As Delegates Spar Over Coal, Oil, And Gas” • At the COP26 climate summit, a group of young climate activists gave delegates a sharp rebuke, demanding that a fossil fuel non-proliferation treaty be put in place and calling out global leaders for their continued closeness to the coal, oil and gas industries. [CNN]

COP26 protest (Fraser Hamilton, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “China And India Among 22 Nations Calling For Key Section To Be Cut From COP26 Agreement” • In the fiercest opposition to the COP26 draft agreement, Bolivia’s chief negotiator said his country and 21 other allied nations – including major emitters China, India and Saudi Arabia – would oppose the entire section on climate change mitigation. [CNN]

World:

¶ “Subaru Reveals Its First Electric SUV, Co-Developed With Toyota” • The Subaru Solterra all-electric SUV has been made public in Japan. The Subaru Solterra model was co-developed with Toyota and is a close replica to that company’s BZ4X. Solterra has a 71.4-kWh battery pack with the buyer’s choice of one or two electric motors. [Newsweek]

Subaru Solterra (Subaru image)

¶ “Tesla’s Robyn Denholm At APEC CEO Summit: ‘Every Nation Has A Critical Role To Play'” • Tesla’s Chair, Robyn Denholm, was a keynote speaker at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation CEO Summit. She made the urgency of the climate crisis clear and pointed out that we are past the tipping point of the renewable energy transformation. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “How Powering Northern Ireland Has Changed” • A new energy strategy for Northern Ireland is expected soon, but its electric power has already changed enormously over two decades. The country now gets 46.4% of its electricity from renewable sources, mostly from the wind. Developing additional technologies is important, and hydrogen is a place to start. [BBC]

Wind farm in Northern Ireland (Giuseppe Milo, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “Adani Green Targets 45 GW Of Renewables Capacity By 2030” • In India, Adani Green Energy, the world’s largest solar power developer, aims to reach 45 GW of renewable energy capacity by 2030, with the average tariff below the average power purchase cost at the national level. AGE had 5.4 GW of renewable capacity operating on September 30. [PV Magazine]

¶ “BASF Signs Longest Offshore Wind Power Purchase Deal With Ørsted” • German chemicals giant BASF and Ørsted concluded a 25-year fixed-price corporate power purchase agreement, under which BASF will offtake the output of 186 MW from Ørsted’s planned Borkum Riffgrund 3 offshore wind farm in the German North Sea. [Splash 247]

Ørsted wind farm (Ørsted image)

¶ “Oz Metals Outfit To Transform Operations With Green Hydrogen” • Energy consultancy Xodus signed a memorandum of understanding with Unique Metals for a green hydrogen project in Australia. Unique HyMetals aims to build and operate a hydrogen energy ecosystem with 65 tonnes of green hydrogen production annually. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

¶ “Five EU Countries Form Anti-Nuclear Alliance At COP26” • In face of a French-led push to revive nuclear power in Europe, five EU countries led by Germany have banded together to urge the European Commission to keep nuclear out of the EU’s green finance taxonomy. Austria and Luxembourg are fierce opponents of nuclear power. [EURACTIV.com]

Chernobyl Exclusion Zone (Kilian Karger, Unsplash)

US:

¶ “Hertz Is Educating Its Customers About Tesla And EVs” • Hertz is doing for Tesla something that many Tesla supporters have been divided about Tesla doing for itself: advertising and giving consumers factual information about EVs. As it advertises its new fleet of EVs, Hertz has stepped up to the plate for Tesla. And Hertz isn’t holding back. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Menlo Park Police To Purchase Tesla Model Ys And Ford Mustang Mach-Es” • In California, Menlo Park is upgrading its police fleet. The city council approved purchase three Tesla Model Y cars for a pilot program as well as six Ford Mustang Mach-Es, The Almanac reports. The city has a goal to reduce its carbon footprint. [CleanTechnica]

Downtown Menlo Park (LPS.1, placed into the public domain)

¶ “Tesla Attends 2021 Society Of Hispanic Professional Engineers National Convention Looking For Talent” • The Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers is holding its 2021 National Convention in Orlando, Florida. Tesla has a booth and is actively looking for engineers at the convention. The convention has over 9,000 people attending. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “$1 billion renewable energy project planned for Central Texas” • Chem-Energy Corp, a California-based energy company, is planning to invest $1.15 billion in Caldwell County, Texas, over nine years to build and maintain two power plants near Kyle and San Marcos. The plants will combine solar generation and battery storage. [Austin American-Statesman]

Have an incomparably enjoyable day.

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November 11 Energy News

November 11, 2021

Opinion: 

¶ “Financial Markets May End Up Killing Off Fossil Fuels Before Governments Do” • An interesting email from Bloomberg Green discusses how the cost of capital is going up for fossil fuels and down for renewables. The concluding sentence goes like this: “Markets may end up killing off fossil fuels before governments do.” Why is that? Let’s dig into it. [CleanTechnica]

Wind farm (Mark König, Unsplash)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Canadian Electric Vehicle-To-Grid Project Uses Blockchain” • In Canada, a V2G project is using a Nissan Leaf connected to a technology platform created by SWTCH that allows electricity to flow from the Leaf’s battery to a multi-tenant building. SWTCH’s CEO, Carter Li, answered some questions about the project for CleanTechnica. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Coastal Saltmarsh ‘Engineered’ To Fight Climate Change” • Re-flooding coastal wetlands could provide an opportunity to “work with nature” and use sea level rise to fight climate change, scientists say. An ongoing study of a coastal marsh in Scotland that was was restored in 2018 has shown the potential to lock carbon emissions into mud. [BBC]

Salt Marsh (JD Doyle, Unsplash)

World:

¶ “China Surprises Climate Summit With Pledge To Work With US, But Doesn’t Budge On Climate Goals” • The US and China surprised the COP26 climate summit when representatives of the countries announced an agreement to ramp up their climate ambitions, just days before the end of the conference in Glasgow. China and the US agreed to have a virtual summit. [CNN]

¶ “Top Automakers Won’t Commit To Selling Only Zero-Emission Cars By 2040” • Toyota, Volkswagen, BMW, Nissan, Stellantis, and other car makers refused to back a commitment to sell only zero-emissions cars and vans by 2040. The UK, Canada, India and Poland, and 19 other countries signed the pledge, but not the US and China. [CNN]

Traffic (Musa Haef, Unsplash)

¶ “COP26: Draft Deal Calls For Stronger Carbon Cutting Targets By End Of 2022” • Countries are being urged to strengthen their carbon-cutting targets by the end of 2022 in a draft agreement published at the COP26 Glasgow climate summit. The document says countries should submit long-term strategies by the end of next year for reaching net-zero. [BBC]

¶ “South African Retail Firm Woolworths Introduces Electric Vans On Its Delivery Routes” • Retail firm Woolworths is trialing electric panel vans as part of its online shopping delivery fleet, a first in South Africa, according to an announcement on Twitter. Woolworths is one of South Africa’s premier clothing, grocery, beauty, and home retailers. [CleanTechnica]

Woolworths electric delivery van (Woolworths image)

¶ “Netherlands Reaches 24% BEV Share In October!” • The Dutch plugin EV (PEV) market was down in October, but not as much as the overall car market. Last month’s PEV share of the overall passenger auto market reached an amazing 35%, with 24% battery EVs (BEVs), pulling the year-to-date PEV share to 24% (14% BEV) and the total tally to 61,701 units. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “NSW Formally Declares Australia’s First Renewable Energy Zone” • The government of New South Wales has established Australia’s first Renewable Energy Zone, formally declaring the Central-West Orana zone. It will host at least 3 GW of solar, wind, and storage. NSW will use such REZs to replace its coal-fired power stations. [Renew Economy]

Wind farm in New South Wales (CWP Renewables)

US:

¶ “NVIDIA’s New DRIVE Hyperion 8 Released, Includes Radar And Lidar” • NVIDIA announced a computer architecture, sensor set, and full-self driving software (in some scenarios), DRIVE Hyperian 8. The company says the system is designed for the highest levels of safety and cybersecurity and is available to buy now for 2024 vehicle models. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “US Oil Companies Are In No Rush To Solve Biden’s Gas Price Problem” • Gasoline prices have surged to seven-year highs and Wall Street banks are warning that $100 or even $120 oil is on its way. But US oil companies are in no rush to come to the rescue, leaving the White House facing pressure from its own party to intervene in energy markets. [CNN]

Gas station (Jean-christophe Gougeon, Unsplash)

¶ “NM To Focus On Renewable Energy With Infrastructure Funds” • New Mexico’s infrastructure has been chronically underfunded, officials say. The state could receive $3.7 billion from the federal infrastructure package. The money would support renewable energy, roads, broadband access, and water supply improvements. [Government Technology]

¶ “US Electricity Customers Experienced Eight Hours Of Power Interruptions In 2020” • On average, US electricity customers had just over eight hours of electric power interruptions in 2020, the most since collecting electricity reliability data began in 2013. The high number is due to high numbers of major events. Other interruptions have held steady. [CleanTechnica]

Graph of interruptions (Energy Information Administration)

¶ “New Solar Array Combines Farming Land With Renewable Energy” • BlueWave Solar has covered 10 acres of wild blueberry fields in Rockport, Maine, with solar panels. The dual purpose of the land is called agrivoltaic, and it’s the first of its kind in Maine. The research and design were done by the University of Maine Cooperative Extension. [WABI]

¶ “Entergy Mississippi Announces Plans To Add 1,000 MW Of Renewables In Five Years” • Entergy Mississippi has announced its largest commitment to renewable resources. It will replace aging natural gas plants with 1,000 MW of renewable capacity over the next five years, giving customers an effective hedge against volatile gas prices. [Solar Power World

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November 10 Energy News

November 10, 2021

Opinion: 

¶ “You Can’t Crop An Entire Continent Out Of The Fight Against Climate Crisis” • In Uganda, it used to be that few people really talked about climate change. It was taught in school as if it were a far-off threat. Now, Africans are losing their incomes, and even their lives, but the entire continent is often ignored in global discussions on climate change. [CNN]

Farmland in Uganda (Random Institute, Unsplash)

¶ “Breaking News: Fusion Recedes Into Far Future For The 57th Time” • When Lewis Strauss, then chairman of the US Atomic Energy Commission, talked about nuclear being “too cheap to meter” in 1954, he was talking about fusion, not the fission power we use. Now, 67 years later, the advent of fusion power seems to be as far off as ever. [CleanTechnica]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Turning Crop Waste To Fertilizer Could Fight Air Pollution In India” • After their rice harvest, millions of Indian farmers clear the leftover stubble by setting entire fields alight to prepare for the upcoming wheat crop. This creates a lot of smoke. A young entrepreneur, may have a solution that would help reduce the air pollution and generate revenue for locals. [CNN]

Indian farmer at a rice field (Nandhu Kumar, Unsplash)

¶ “Microgrid Fast Charging Station Design And Operation Software Passes Key EV Charging Test” • There are big challenges for building a charging network for electric trucks. A study by Xendee Corporation and the Idaho National Laboratory shows the technical and economic feasibility of building out charging stations optimized for the challenges. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “New Material Could Pave Way For Better, Safer Batteries” • To have safer, more powerful batteries, researchers are working to replace liquid electrolytes used in batteries with solids. A team from Brown University and the University of Maryland came up with a material for use in solid-state batteries that’s derived from an unlikely source: trees. [CleanTechnica]

Trees in a forest (Lukasz Szmigiel, Unsplash)

World:

¶ “Greenpeace Germany Sues Volkswagen Over CO₂ Emissions Targets” • Environmental activist Clara Mayer and the heads of Greenpeace Germany have sued Volkswagen in a German court. Greenpeace accuses the automaker of failing to do its part on climate change. One of the demands is that VW stop making internal combustion engine cars by 2030. [CNN]

¶ “COP26: PM Calls On Nations To Pull Out The Stops As Draft Agreement Published” • Prime Minister Boris Johnson is going back to the COP26 climate summit and urging nations to “pull out all the stops” to limit warming. The agreement’s first draft has been published. It sets out how countries will cut emissions to avoid temperature rises of above 1.5°C. [BBC]

Boris Johnson at COP26 (Prime Minister’s Office, OGL v.3)

¶ “Daimler Busted For Eight Illegal Emissions Control Defeat Devices In Diesel Emissions Scandal” • Testimony from an automotive software expert showed that Daimler AG was deeply involved in the diesel emissions scandal than thought. He found eight previously unknown defeat devices in a Mercedes-Benz E-Class with Euro 6 Diesel. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Project To Examine Whether Electric Car Batteries Could Power Homes” • Researchers are exploring how EV charging technology could be used to power homes, even making money for EV owners. The project, which involves the Universities of Nottingham and Warwick, is looking at how the batteries could store electricity and support the grid. [BBC]

Professor Lucelia Rodrigues (University of Nottingham)

¶ “Investors Will Reject EU ‘Green’ Label For Gas And Nuclear” • The European Commission is currently considering including gas and nuclear in its ‘green’ labelling system. An international group of 60 investors representing around €9 trillion has warned against including gas and nuclear in the new European taxonomy [classification] on sustainable finance. [EUobserver]

¶ “France To Relaunch Construction Of Nuclear Reactors, Macron Announces” • French President Macron announced that France would launch a drive to build new nuclear energy plants in order to better meet growing energy and environmental challenges. Macron said the new reactors would be of the third generation EPR type. [The Local France]

Flamanville-3, late and over budget (schoella, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

US:

¶ “GE Is Splitting Into Three Companies” • General Electric, founded by Thomas Edison in 1892, is breaking up. GE will be three separate companies for aviation, healthcare and energy, in 2023 and 2024. GE has struggled since it made a disastrous bet on building combustion gas turbines when the world was turning toward cleaner renewable energy solutions. [CNN]

¶ “Cadillac Is Buying Out Dealers That Don’t Want To Modernize In Order To Compete With Tesla” • Reuters reported that Cadillac is buying out dealers who don’t want to sell EVs. It wants to sell a new EV and has 40% fewer US dealers than it had in 2018. Even with fewer dealers. Cadillac still has more US dealers than any other luxury brand. [CleanTechnica]

Cadillac Lyriq (Image courtesy of Cadillac)

¶ “Plus Power Lines Up Financing For 565-MWh Storage Project” • Energy storage developer Plus Power said it has funding for its 185-MW, 565-MWh Kapolei Energy Storage project, now under contract with Hawaiian Electric. It said the financing serves as a “strong signal” of capital market support for standalone energy storage projects. [pv magazine USA]

¶ “Entergy Louisiana Set To Purchase 475 MW Of Solar Power” • In a press release, Entergy Louisiana announced it will be buying 475 MW of additional solar power from four solar facilities in the state. Construction on the facilities start this year, but they will have different types of contracts. The utility has about 240 MW of renewable energy now. [KPLC]

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November 9 Energy News

November 9, 2021

Opinion: 

¶ “The World’s Fight For ‘Climate Justice'” • As the temperature of our planet creeps up, for many people the fight to stop climate change is truly a matter of life and death. But exactly how it should be stopped, and who should take what action to stop it, is still far from settled. This matter is at the heart of the push to achieve international climate justice. [BBC]

Marshall Islands (Christopher Michel, CC-BY-SA 2.0, cropped)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Wind And Solar Could Meet 85% Of Current US Electricity Needs” • Wind and solar power could meet around 85% of US electricity needs, a paper published in Nature Communications says. Batteries, capacity overbuilding, and other storage options could increase that figure. Pooling resources across regions could cover shortfalls. [Engadget]

¶ “$1 Billion Bet On Clean Technology That Is Not Supposed To Happen” • Three pie-in-the-sky areas of clean technology are sustainable aircraft fuel, hydrogen, and carbon capture. They are beginning to creep from the impossible to the possible. An EU investment fund of up to $1 billion has been set up to push all them into the realm of probability. [CleanTechnica]

ZeroAvia airplane (ZeroAvia via prnewswire.com)

World:

¶ “Rwanda Goes Electric With Locally Made Motorbikes” • There are around 25,000 motorbike taxis operating in Kigali, the capital of Rwanda. Some drive up to 10 hours a day, covering hundreds of kilometers. Start-up Ampersand hopes that over the next five years, electric motorbikes will be adopted so almost all of Rwanda’s motorbikes will be electric. [BCC]

¶ “BP Won’t Quit Controversial US Oil Lobby. Its CEO Explains Why” • French oil giant Total made waves early this year when it broke with the American Petroleum Institute, the largest and most powerful oil lobby in the US, because of its stance on climate issues. BP pledged to reduce oil production by 40% this decade, but it won’t quit API. Its CEO tells why. [CNN]

Refinery (Robin Sommer, Unsplash)

¶ “Tesla Sold 54,391 Vehicles In China In October, And Giga Shanghai Ceremony For New Construction Phase” • October sales figures from the China Passenger Car Association are in. They show that Tesla’s delivery total was 54,391 units, with 40,666 exported, despite a one-week closure of Giga Shanghai due to China’s National Day celebrations. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Obama Tells Young People To Stay Angry On Climate Fight” • Barack Obama has called on young people to “stay angry” in the fight against climate change at the COP26 summit. The former US president urged them to apply political pressure to make a change, but warned they would need to accept compromises along the way. [BBC]

Climate protest (Mika Baumeister, Unsplash)

¶ “Shell And Norsk Hydro Team Up For Green Hydrogen” • Royal Dutch Shell and Norsk Hydro are looking into jointly producing hydrogen from renewable electricity in a push to decarbonize their operations and supply heavy industry and transport customers, Hydro said. They are looking for locations where green H₂ can be made and used. [FX Empire]

¶ “UK Joins Rolls-Royce And US Power Group For $550 Million SMR Funding” • The launch of a fleet of SMRs (small modular nuclear reactors) is a step closer as Rolls-Royce was joined by co-investors and the UK government to fund development of the technology. It claims to offer rapidly deployable zero-carbon energy competitive with renewables. [Recharge News] (“Claims”)

Rendering of a Rolls-Royce SMR (Rolls-Royce image)

US:

¶ “Pepsi Is Preparing For Its First Tesla Semi Truck Delivery This Year” • Pepsi CEO Ramon Laguarta told CNBC’s Jim Cramer that Pepsi is getting its first deliveries of Tesla Semi trucks this year. He also emphasized the importance of clean energy. The answer was to a question from Cramer about Pepsi’s plan to reduce emissions. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Tesla Energy Ventures Will Provide Retail Electric Services In Texas” • According to the Public Utility Commission of Texas, Tesla Energy Ventures, a subsidiary of Tesla, will provide retail electric services throughout the area serviced by the Electric Reliability Council of Texas. ERCOT’s grid is separate from the rest of the country. [CleanTechnica]

Tesla residence (Tesla image)

¶ “Native-Owned Renewable Energy Companies To Receive More Than $6.5 Million From DOE” • The DOE awarded Native Sun Community Power Development over $6.5 million to purchase a fleet of EVs for official use by the Red Lake Tribal Nation in Minnesota and the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe in North and South Dakota. [Native News Online]

¶ “RFP Alert: Georgia Power Seeks 1,030 MW Of Renewable Generation” • Georgia Power, a utility with more than 2.6 million customers, issued a request for proposals for 1030 MW of new renewable energy generating capacity. Applicable projects will be 3 MW or greater in size, and would reach in-service dates in 2023 and 2024. [pv magazine USA]

Silicon Ranch 102.5-MW solar farm (Silicon Ranch image)

¶ “AEP Remains On Path To Get Half Its Power From Renewable Sources By 2030” • American Electric Power, one of the biggest US power companies, says it is on track to generate half of its electricity from renewable sources by 2030 as it moves away from coal. AEP says it plans to reduce its CO₂ emissions by 80% by 2030. [The Columbus Dispatch]

¶ “Encore Renewable Energy Completes Two Brownfield Solar Projects In Vermont” • Encore Renewable Energy and Vermont Electric Cooperative announced that two new solar projects with a total capacity of 4.5 MW are now operating in Jericho, Vermont. They are on a former municipal landfill and a former gravel pit for the town. [Solar Power World

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November 8 Energy News

November 8, 2021

Opinion: 

¶ “Did You Turn Off The Gas?” • Carbon Tracker’s key findings should have investors in gas taking note. They found that 22% of European and around 31% of US gas-fired power generation capacity included in their model is unprofitable. And countries dependent on gas have found the volatile prices of 2021 damage their economies. [CleanTechnica]

Gas burners (Kwon Junho, Unsplash)

¶ “Rethinking Humanity’s Future: A Video Series By Tony Seba And James Arbib” • Tony Seba has been at the forefront of predictions about disruption and change for over a decade. Now, he is tackling the biggie: Can civilization survive the current catastrophes that are occurring? His answer is yes, but humanity must use a different approach. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Five Ways Rural Drivers Benefit From Electric Vehicles” • An electric lifestyle would be a boon to our rural heartland. Rural drivers stand to benefit most from switching to EVs, regardless of the state they live in or the type of vehicle they currently drive. All rural drivers share certain characteristics, and all could find the change a benefit. [CleanTechnica]

Rivian R1T (Ben Moon, Rivian)

¶ “Pledges, Progress, And PR Spin? What You Need To Know As The COP26 Climate Talks Enter The Final Week” • Ministers arriving in Scotland’s largest city of Glasgow early this week will strive to resolve any outstanding sticking points and conclude the talks with an agreement that is sufficient to avoid more frequent and progressively worse climate impacts. [CNBC]

Science and Technology:

¶ “New High-Resolution Climate Model Predicts More Extreme Weather Events In The Future” • A first-of-its-kind study uses a new high-resolution climate model to highlight local extreme weather risks decades in advance. It shows that impacts of extreme rainfall could be more frequent and severe due to climate change than had been thought. [CNN]

Rainfall (Kevin Wong, Unsplash)

World:

¶ “What do the poorest countries want from climate summit?” • Developing countries have historically contributed a very small portion of the damaging emissions that drive climate change. The richest 1% of the global population account for more than twice the combined emissions of the poorest 50%. The poorest are also most vulnerable. [BBC]

¶ “Fossil Fuel Industry Has Largest Delegation At Climate Summit” • Campaigners led by Global Witness assessed the participant list published by the UN at the start of this meeting. They found that 503 people with links to fossil fuel interests had been accredited for the climate summit. That is more than are associated with any single country. [BBC]

Oil & Gas industry (Patrick Hendry, Unsplash)

¶ “Inox Wind Bags Order Of 150 MW Wind Power Project” • Inox Wind bagged an order for a 150 MW wind power project from NTPC Renewable Energy, to be commissioned in the Indian state of Gujarat. NTPC has a target of having over 60 GW of Renewable Energy capacity, accounting for nearly 50% of its generating capacity, by 2032. [Business Standard]

¶ “China Could Kickstart A New Nuclear Energy Revolution” • Nuclear is still one of the most controversial sources of energy on the planet. The EU stands completely divided on the issue of nuclear power at the COP26 Climate Summit. China is betting big on a nuclear future, however, aiming to bring over 150 new reactors online over the next 15 years. [Oil Price]

Nuclear plant (Frédéric Paulussen, Unsplash)

US:

¶ “Americans Should Expect To Pay Higher Heating Costs This Winter, Granholm Says” • Americans should expect to pay more to heat their homes this winter, a result of high gas prices caused by the coronavirus pandemic, according to Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm. Households that rely on natural gas for heat could spend 30% more than last year. [CNN]

¶ “Verdict On First US Fuel Economy & Emissions Program For Trucks” • A decade ago, the EPA and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration finalized the first fuel economy and global warming emissions standards for heavy-duty trucks. The EPA has released its first scorecard on how truck makers are faring with the standards. The answer: Quite well. [CleanTechnica]

Truck in California (Sander Yigin, Unsplash)

¶ “Working Toward A Clean Energy Future” • The director of Pacific Northwest National Laboratory held a virtual meeting with labor leaders and CEOs of companies leading clean energy innovation. Washington State Governor Jay Inslee started it by reminding all that clean energy is a $23 trillion international industrial sector. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Vail Resorts Reaches 85% Renewable Energy Milestone” • Vail Resorts is prioritizing efforts to mitigate the impacts of climate change. Earlier this Fall, Vail reported that its 34 North American mountain resorts had reached an 85% renewable electricity rate, a key milestone as the company aims to have a zero net operating footprint by the year 2030. [DCSki]

Vail Resorts ski area (Vail Resorts image)

¶ “Hawaiian Electric Pledges To Help US Achieve Greenhouse Gas Emissions Goal” • Hawaiian Electric framed its goal in the 25-year period of 2005 to 2030 as a 70 % reduction in emissions of greenhouse gases. Through the end of 2020, its CO₂ emissions from power generation were down 24%. It now envisions 50,000 more solar rooftops by 2030. [Yahoo News]

¶ “Texans Face Greater Risk Of Heat, Drought And Hurricanes, But Abbott Administration Has No Plan To Tackle Future Threats Of Climate Change” • While science on climate change clearly says that Texas will face a future of more extreme heat, drought, fire and hurricanes, Governor Greg Abbott’s administration has no policy on how to address those risks. [WFAA]

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November 7 Energy News

November 7, 2021

Science and Technology:

¶ “What’s The Difference Between 1.5°C And 2°C Of Global Warming?” • Really, what is the difference between 1.5°C and 2°C of warming? “At 1.5°C, there’s a good chance we can prevent most of the Greenland and west Antarctic ice sheet from collapsing,” said climate scientist Michael Mann at Pennsylvania State University. At 2°C, we lose that chance. [Reuters]

Calving glacier (NOAA, Unsplash)

¶ “Ice on the edge of survival: Warming is changing the Arctic” • The Arctic is warming three times faster than the rest of the planet and is on such a knife’s edge of survival that the UN climate negotiations underway in Scotland this week could make the difference between ice and water at the top of the world, according to scientists. [CTV News]

World:

¶ “Delhi Pollution: Are Diwali Fireworks To Blame?” • Around 57,000 people died prematurely in Delhi in 2020 as a result of exposure to air pollution according to Greenpeace, despite the Covid lockdown. During Diwali, fireworks make air pollution even worse than usual. Several Indian states have banned them, but enforcement is often weak. [BBC]

Diwali in Jodhpur (Anirudh, Unsplash)

¶ “Countries Must Make Bold Compromises At Summit – PM” • Ministers and negotiators at COP26 should “pull together and drive for the line” to secure ambitious action on climate change, Boris Johnson said. He said countries must be ready to “make the bold compromises and ambitious commitments needed” at the final week of the climate summit. [BBC]

¶ “AXA Restricts Investment In And Insurance Of New Oil & Gas Projects” • How can you build it if you can’t insure it? It is getting harder and harder to insure those activities that are increasing the risk of climate events. AXA, multinational insurance firm based in France with roughly a trillion dollars worth of assets, is leading the way on decarbonizing risk. [CleanTechnica]

Tanker (Ian Simmonds, Unsplash)

¶ “EVs Help Lower Total Emissions In Norway By 3.5% In 2020” • The latest report from Statistics Norway says the country’s EV policies are working. In 2020, total emissions for the country were down 3.5% from the prior year. Elbil, the Norwegian electric car association, says the greater number of EVs on the roads was a big factor in that reduction. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Geothermal Power Plants In Japan Quadruple Since 2011 Nuke Accident” • The number of geothermal power plants in Japan has quadrupled since the 2011 nuclear disaster at Fukushima Daiichi, industry data shows. Nevertheless, geothermal power accounts for only 0.3% of the country’s total power output because many of the plants are of small scale. [Kyodo News]

Geothermal power plant (Yuzawa Geothermal Power image)

¶ “Tesla Opens A New Factory For Battery Manufacturing Equipment In Canada” • Tesla opened a new factory to produce battery manufacturing equipment in Canada, Reuters reports. Frank Scarpitti, the mayor of Markham, Ontario, took to Twitter to share his excitement about Tesla’s presence in his city, in an official statement. [CleanTechnica]

US:

¶ “Ford Slips EV Version Of Popular Transit Van Past Mustang Media Fuss” • Everybody is making a big fuss about Ford Motor Company’s EV version of its iconic Mustang line, but Ford has been working on an EV version of its super-popular Ford Transit van, too. The company has released a preproduction model to at least two leading customers. [CleanTechnica]

Ford E-Transit (Photo courtesy of Ford Motor Co)

¶ “Ford’s CEO Says Tesla Needs To Be Taken Seriously As The Dominant Player In The EV Market” • There was a time when Tesla and Elon Musk were butts of legacy auto jokes. But Ford CEO Jim Farley recently held an internal meeting with 20,000 Ford employees, and a good portion of that meeting was about Ford’s competition, primarily Tesla. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Professor Collaborates With DOE On A Nuclear Waste Project” • University of North Texas Professor Haifeng Zhang is working on a project for the DOE, to find new ways to monitor the storage of nuclear waste. Other researchers on the project are from the National Energy Technology Laboratory and Oak Ridge National Laboratory. [North Texas Daily]

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November 6 Energy News

November 6, 2021

Opinion: 

¶ “How Might The World Meet Its Clean Energy Needs” • With the world trying to reach net zero by the middle of this century, what sources of energy could replace fossil fuels? Projects like Hywind’s floating wind farm off the northern coast of Scotland offer one present-day glimpse of what that future could look like. But it is not the only technology we have. [BBC]

First floating wind turbine (Lars Christopher, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “One Simple Tax Change Could Unlock More Critical Clean Energy Infrastructure” • The current design of the Build Back Better Act addresses many limitations that prevented incentives from maximizing clean energy usage in the past. But a simple change in the tax rules for stand-alone batteries and transmission could make the bill more effective. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Want To Make Energy Cheap? Build Renewables Fast, Not Gradually” • At the UN climate summit, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi pledged to quintuple India’s current 100 GW of renewable capacity to 500 GW by 2030, more than India’s entire capacity today. He could do this because the faster we install renewables, the faster the price goes down. [Salon.com]

Solar array in Telangana (Thomas Lloyd Group, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Electric Car FAQs: How Long Do Electric Cars Last?” • Most of the time, the only difference between EVs and old fuel burners is what powers the car. But the other differences probably need explaining in order for mainstream buyers to buy electric cars. Here, we look into the questions of how long EVs last, how they are maintained, and more. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “New COP26 Pledges Could Limit Warming To 1.8°C” • An analysis from the International Energy Agency shows that new pledges announced at the COP26 climate conference could keep global warming below 2°C if they’re actually implemented. Based on the new pledges, countries could limit the Earth’s warming to 1.8°C above pre-industrial levels in 2100. [The Hill]

Wind turbine (Sander Weeteling, Unsplash)

World:

¶ “What Happened When The Royal Ecowarriors Descended On COP26” • Prince Charles is a without doubt a pioneer on green issues. He delivered his first speech on the topic way back in 1970 when he warned about plastic waste. Recently, his focus has been on climate change and his warnings have become ever more stark. He has been active at COP26. [CNN]

¶ “Tesla Model 3 Wins Overall Silver Medal In New Zealand In September” • New Zealand is a land that is dominated by sheep, powered by hydro, and financed by farmers. The highest selling vehicle in New Zealand in September was still the Ford Ranger. This is to be expected. But in an unexpected twist, the number 2 place went to the Tesla Model 3! [CleanTechnica]

New Zealand countryside (Martin Bisof, Unsplash)

¶ “BMW’s EV Sales Double In 2021, But Still Can’t Catch Tesla” • During an earnings call, the BMW Group announced it had a 42.4% increase in third quarter net profits to $2.99 billion, a result of higher prices and BMW’s EV sales that counterbalanced lower deliveries due to scarce chips. BMW’s EV sales grew by 121.4% in the first 9 months of 2021. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Siemens Gamesa Signs Licensing Deal With China Energy To Boost Offshore Biz” • Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy signed a Memorandum of Understanding with China Energy United Power Technology, advancing its licensing business model. Siemens Gamesa plans to license its 11-MW Direct Drive offshore technology to United Power. [GreentechLead]

Siemens Gamesa wind turbine (Siemens Gamesa image)

US:

¶ “GOP Push To Shake Label Of Climate Crisis Denier Runs Into Trump” • As global temperatures rise, some congressional Republicans are feeling the pressure to show they’re embracing climate change and offer up their own plan for how to deal with it. But they are also running smack dab into a familiar obstacle: former President Donald Trump. [CNN]

¶ “US Lawmakers Approve $1 Trillion Infrastructure Spending Package” • The US Congress has passed a landmark $1 trillion (£741 billion) infrastructure spending package, delivering a major domestic win to President Joe Biden. The infrastructure package, billed as a “once-in-a-generation” measure, now heads to Mr Biden’s desk to be signed into law. [BBC]

Williamsburg Bridge (Zac Ong, Unsplash)

¶ “The State Taking On An Oil Giant For Greenwashing” • The question of responsibility for the effects of global warming is going through tests in court. In one case, Massachusetts is using consumer laws to take on ExxonMobil. If the state wins, it will be the first case to successfully prosecute a fossil fuel company for greenwashing and misleading the public. [BBC]

¶ “Buffalo Region Leads The Way In Renewable Energy And Sustainability” • When you think of Buffalo, New York, your mind could go to lost Super Bowls, snow, and chicken wings. But the real news coming out of Buffalo is renewable energy. For over a century, the Western New York city has been a leader in clean energy. [American City and County]

Buffalo City Hall (Mikerussell, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “Project Looks To Improve The Reliability Of Wind Energy In Wyoming” • The Seminoe Pumped Storage Project is looking to increase the reliability of wind energy in Wyoming. It would need a new reservoir above Seminoe Reservoir. It’s still in the feasibility study phase, but rPlus Hydro CEO Matthew Shapiro is optimistic about the location. [Wyoming Public Media]

¶ “Maine Voters Reject Transmission Line – How NIMBY Blocks Renewable Energy Expansion” • Voters in Maine rejected the New England Clean Energy Connect project, which aims to move Canadian hydropower to customers in Massachusetts, by a margin of 59% to 41%. Avangrid Inc has filed a lawsuit in Maine state court challenging the referendum. [Forbes]

Have a scrupulously gleeful day.

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November 5 Energy News

November 5, 2021

Opinion: 

¶ “More And More: Five Offshore Wind Stories I’m Watching” • I am a person who spends a lot of time thinking about climate change and consumption. Need a little clean energy pick-me-up? Offshore wind is offering more and more excitement as it looks to become a large-scale reality off our shores. Here’s what’s going on in five categories I’m watching. [CleanTechnica

Please click on the image to enlarge it. (BOEM image)

¶ “Is It Green, Or Forever Toxic? Nuclear Rift At Climate Talks” • Nuclear power is a central sticking point as negotiators plot out the world’s future energy strategy at the climate talks in Glasgow. While many see a need for it, critics decry its mammoth price tag, the disproportionate damage caused by nuclear accidents, and the radioactive waste left behind. [WREX]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Australia’s Great Barrier Reef Will Survive If Warming Kept To 1.5°C, Study Finds” • A study by an Australian university focused on the Great Barrier Reef and global warming. If global warming is kept to 1.5°C, the mix of corals on the Barrier Reef will change but it could still thrive, according to the study’s lead author, Professor Terry Hughes. [CNN]

Healthy corals, Great Barrier Reef (Toby Hudson, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

World:

¶ “Gasoline Prices Are Soaring. OPEC And Russia Aren’t Coming To The Rescue” • OPEC and its allies disregarded calls from US President Joe Biden to do more to tame soaring energy prices that fuel inflation and hurt vulnerable households. They decided to stick to their plan to increase production gradually by only 400,000 barrels per day in December. [CNN]

¶ “Indonesia Criticises ‘Unfair’ Deal To End Deforestation” • Indonesia’s Environment Minister Siti Nurbaya Bakar criticized terms of a global deal to end deforestation by 2030, signalling that the country may not abide by it. She said the authorities could not “promise what we can’t do.” However, President Joko Widodo signed the deal. [BBC]

Deforestation in Indonesia (Hayden, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “Climate Change: Facebook Fails To Flag Denial, Study Finds” • Climate change denial is spreading unchecked on Facebook, two studies by disinformation researchers have found. The Center for Countering Digital Hate and the Institute for Strategic Dialogue said less than 10% of misleading posts were marked as misinformation. [BBC]

¶ “Will Brazil Really Save The Amazon?” • Deforestation is by far Brazil’s biggest emissions problem. Destruction of the Amazon, one of the world’s most important carbon sinks, accounts for nearly half of Brazil’s annual share of emissions. If Brazil does not bring deforestation under control, the country will struggle to reach carbon neutrality. [BBC]

Deforestation of the Amazon in Brazil (Ibama, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “US Oil Giants Top List Of Lobby Offenders Holding Back Climate Action” • ExxonMobil and Chevron are the world’s most obstructive organisations when it comes to governments setting climate policies, according to research into the “prolific and highly sophisticated” lobbying ploys used by the fossil fuel industry. Toyota is number three. [The Guardian]

¶ “Renewables Provided 92.3% Of Kenya’s Electricity Generation In 2020!” • As the world races to decarbonize, Kenya’s electricity sector is well on the way to being powered by 100% renewables. And the country’s clean electricity puts Kenya in a very nice position to take a lead in the transition to electric mobility on the continent. [CleanTechnica]

Wind turbines (Image courtesy of Opibus)

US:

¶ “Coastal Flood Event Mirroring A Hurricane Is Underway In Charleston, South Carolina” • A potentially historic flood event is taking shape across Charleston Harbor, South Carolina, and portions of coastal Georgia, including near Savannah, as water levels will be at heights usually found in powerful hurricanes, above 10.5 feet near Savannah. [CNN]

¶ “New NREL Tool Provides Cybersecurity And Savings For Hydropower Plants” • A tool from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory and Argonne National Laboratory provides hydropower operators custom assessments of their cybersecurity risks and demonstrates how different investments will help improve overall resilience. [CleanTechnica]

Hydro dam (American Public Power-Association, Unsplash)

¶ “Seattle City Light Explores Renewable Hydrogen Fuel At The Port Of Seattle With DOE Awards” • Two studies exploring the potential of shifting from fossil fuel to clean hydrogen to power medium and heavy vehicles are getting underway, led by a team from Seattle City Light, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, and Sandia National Laboratories. [Powerlines]

¶ “Entergy Arkansas Cuts Plans For Natural Gas Plant, Seeks More Renewable Energy Resources” • Entergy Arkansas, a utility of Entergy Corp, released its 2021 Integrated Resource Plan. It doesn’t include plans to build a new natural gas-fired power plant that was included in the previous long-range plan, but it does look to add renewable energy resources. [KATV]

Solar farm (American Public Power Association, Unsplash)

¶ “The GIANT Company Signs Agreement With Constellation To Power Pennsylvania Operations With Renewable Energy” • The GIANT Company has announced a long-term agreement with Constellation to supply its Pennsylvania operations, including select stores, fuel stations, and a perishable distribution center, with renewable energy. [Yahoo Finance]

¶ “Nuclear Plant Price Doubles To $28.5 Billion As Other Owners Balk” • The cost of two nuclear reactors being built in Georgia is now $28.5 billion, more than twice the original price, and other owners of Plant Vogtle argue Georgia Power Co has triggered an agreement requiring Georgia Power to shoulder a larger share of the financial burden. [Statesboro Herald]

Have a perfectly happy day.

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November 4 Energy News

November 4, 2021

Opinion: 

¶ “Climate Change Poses Great Risk For Florida’s Military Bases” • In the Pentagon’s Climate Risk Analysis, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin wrote, “To keep the nation secure, we must tackle the existential threat of climate change.” The report identified climate threats that exacerbate existing risks while creating new security challenges for the US. [Military Times]

MacDill Air Force Base (Senior Airman Tiffany Emery, USAF)

World:

¶ “The Effort To Phase Out Fossil Fuels Gains Momentum At COP26” • The effort to phase out all fossil fuels is gaining momentum at the COP26 climate summit. At least 20 countries have agreed to end financing for fossil fuel projects abroad, a UK official told CNN. The deal goes beyond coal, to include ending financing for oil and natural gas. [CNN]

¶ “Global Finance Pledge Could Mean $100 Trillion For The Climate” • Banks, insurers, pension funds, money managers, and others in finance signed up to tackle the climate crisis, swelling the ranks of a coalition led by former Bank of England governor Mark Carney. With a total $130 trillion in assets, the coalition has control of over 40% of global banking assets. [CNN]

Wind turbines (Dan Meyers, Unsplash)

¶ “Carbon Emissions Show Rapid Rebound After Covid Dip” • CO₂ emissions are set to rebound globally to near the levels they were at before Covid, a finding that has surprised scientists. The amount of planet-heating gas released in 2020 fell by 5.4% during the pandemic. But a report by the Global Carbon Project predicts CO₂ emissions will rise by 4.9% this year. [BBC]

¶ “190 Nations And Organisations Pledge To Quit Coal” • Major coal users including Poland, Vietnam, and Chile committed to shift away from the fossil fuel, in pledges made at the COP26 climate summit, the UK government says. Some 190 nations and organisations vowed to quit coal. But Australia, India, China, and the US, did not sign up to the pledge. [BBC]

Coal-burning power plant (Robert Linder, Unsplash)

¶ “Solar On The Roof Goes Through The Roof In Australia” • Australia is fast becoming the country with the most solar power generation per person in the world. The domestic market is very different to most other countries, as it is dominated by rooftop PV. Electricity for the people by the people – 13 GW are now on the nation’s rooftops. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Volkswagen Introduces ID.5 In Standard And GTX Trim” • In Germany, Volkswagen unveiled the ID.5 and ID.5 GTX. The new models are a variation of the ID.4 and ID.4 GTX cars already on sale, but with a more svelte and swoopy roofline that appeals to many of today’s buyers who want to pretend they really have a sportscar instead of a people-hauler. [CleanTechnica]

Volkswagen ID.5 GTX, on left, and ID.5 (Volkswagen image)

¶ “Sweden Holds Above 50% Plugin EV Share In October, Despite Slow Month For Tesla” • October saw Sweden’s plugin EV market remain above 50% for the second month in a row, gaining 50.9% share, up from 36.2% a year ago. battery EVs alone took 22.9% of the market, up 2.8 times year-on-year. The overall auto market volume was down 28.5%. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Australian Fossil Fuel Projects Given $36.7 Billion In Foreign Public Financing Over A Decade” • Public financial institutions overseas, including export credit agencies, poured $36.7 billion into Australian fossil fuel projects over a decade, according to a report. That amount is eleven times as great as what was put into renewable energy. [The Guardian]

Solar plant in Australia (Jeremy Buckingham, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “Greening Deserts: India Powers Renewable Energy Ambitions With Solar Push” • Solar power is a cornerstone of India’s bid to be a clean energy powerhouse. Coal powers 70% of the nation’s electricity now, but Prime Minister Narendra Modi pledged that by 2030, India will produce more energy through solar and other renewables than its entire grid does now. [Forbes India]

¶ “China’s Climate Goals Hinge On A $440 Billion Nuclear Buildout” • Nuclear power once seemed like the world’s best hope for a carbon-neutral future. After decades of cost-overruns, public protests and disasters elsewhere, China is now the world’s last great believer, with plans to generate eye-popping amounts of nuclear energy soon. [BNN]

Nuclear plant in China (Placed into the public domain)

US:

¶ “Rep Hoyer Introduces $9 Billion Bill To Meet Biden’s COP26 Deforestation Pledge” • After President Joe Biden entered the US into a global pledge at COP26 to end and reverse deforestation, House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer introduced a bill to put $9 billion behind Biden’s commitment. The bill would create a fund to help end deforestation globally. [CNN]

¶ “NREL Researchers Point Toward Energy Efficiency Instead Of Long-Term Storage” • Incorporating energy efficiency measures can reduce the amount of storage needed to power the nation’s buildings entirely with renewable energy, according to analysis conducted by researchers at the US DOE’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory. [CleanTechnica]

Solar array (Dennis Schroeder, NREL)

¶ “City Of Riverton, Riverton Senior Citizen Center Celebrate New Solar Project” • The City of Riverton, Wyoming, and the Riverton Senior Citizen Center commissioned a solar project that will help the non-profit group provide the best possible social environment for seniors to gather, while focusing on promoting their independence. [County 10]

¶ “Penn State Recognized For Green Power Leadership” • The US EPA recently recognized Penn State in its latest Top 30 College & University List of the largest green power users from the Green Power Partnership. Penn State ranks Number 14 nationally and Number 2 in the Big Ten in terms of total kilowatt-hours used of green energy. [Penn State University]

Have a constructively pleasant day.

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November 3 Energy News

November 3, 2021

Opinion: 

¶ “My Island Home Is Threatened – We Have No Hill To Run To” • The Marshall Islands are only 2 meters above sea level and we are one of the most threatened countries in the world, due to the sea level rise caused by climate change. Unlike many other island nations, we have no high ground to go to. At COP26, I follow the loss and damage negotiations. [BBC]

Kathy Jetn̄il-Kijiner (350 Pacific)

¶ “How China Shapes The World’s Coal” • China, the world’s largest funder of coal, is closing down its finance for the industry overseas, as it announced in September. China provided half of overseas public finance to coal-fired power plants from 2013 to 2018. But developing countries reliant on China could now find their energy policies turned on their heads. [BBC]

Science and Technology:

¶ “NREL Gets Ready To Perform Ground-Truth Evaluation Of Artificial Intelligence For Equitable Decarbonization And Energy Savings” • In Basalt, Colorado, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory is installing its award-winning foresee™ software in local homes to field-test smart energy management and energy aggregation at the community level. [CleanTechnica]

Basalt Colorado (Habitat for Humanity Roaring Fork)

World:

¶ “US, UK And EU Will Help Fund South Africa’s Coal Phaseout, Offering A Model For The Developing World” • The US, UK, EU, France, and Germany will help fund South Africa’s move away from coal. The effort could serve as a model for other nations. The mood at COP26 had been low after the G20 leaders’ summit failed to put an end date on the use of coal. [CNN]

¶ “South Africa Hails Deal To End Reliance On Coal” • South Africa is set to receive $8.5 billion to help end its reliance on coal in a deal announced at the COP26 climate summit. President Ramaphosa has called it a “watershed moment.” The country is a major emitter of greenhouse gases due to its addiction to coal, which it uses to generate electricity. [BBC]

Coal-burning Arnot Power Station (Gerhard Roux, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “CIP Plans To Invest $115 Billion In Renewable Energy By 2030” • At the COP26 summit in Glasgow, Danish investment firm Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners announced plans to invest €100 billion ($115 billion) in renewable energy by 2030. The company said that the investment goal is ‘well-supported’ by a pipeline of renewable projects. [Power Technology]

¶ “Deforestation: Which countries are still cutting down trees?” • World leaders at the COP26 climate summit in Glasgow have pledged to end and reverse deforestation by 2030. There have been earlier attempts to protect forests, but the forests are still in decline. The worst losses are in Brazil, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and Indonesia. [BBC]

Logging road (Jonathan Lampel, Unsplash)

¶ “NuScale Power To Build Small Modular Reactor Plant In Romania – White House” • The United States and Romania, in partnership with US private company NuScale Power, plan to build a small modular reactor plant in Romania, the White House said. The commercial agreement will be for a NuScale plant with six modules. [SeeNews]

US:

¶ “Biden Announces New Methane Rules And Launches Global Pledge To Reduce Planet-Warming Emissions” • President Joe Biden targeted planet-warming methane emissions from the UN climate summit. He announced strong new regulations from the EPA and launched a Global Methane Pledge, in partnership with the EU. It has been signed by about 100 countries. [CNN]

Liquefied natural gas tanker (kees torn, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “Volkswagen Working On High Power Wireless Charging With ORNL And UT” • Oak Ridge National Laboratory announced it is partnering with Volkswagen’s Innovation Hub in Knoxville and the University of Tennessee on wireless charging for production cars. Wireless systems were once limited to 6.6 kW, but ORNL is already working on 120-kW systems. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “US DOE Announces $199 Million To Reduce Emissions From Cars And Trucks” • Vice President Kamala Harris and Secretary of Energy Jennifer M Granholm announced that the US DOE awarded $199 million to fund 25 projects aimed to put cleaner cars and trucks on US roads, including long-haul trucks powered by batteries and fuel cells. [CleanTechnica]

Charging an electric truck (Volvo trucks image)

¶ “Tesla Model 3 SR Gets Range Boost, And Tesla Offers Wall Charger With J1772 Connector” • A new item in the Tesla Store is a Tesla Wall Charger with a J1772 connector for non-Tesla EVs. Providing up to a 9.6-kW power output for a single vehicle, the J1772 Gen 2 Wall Connector is priced at $415. The Model 3 SR also got a 10 mile range boost. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Large Solar, Storage Project Planned At Former Nuclear Power Site” • Alliant Energy announced a plan for a solar energy and storage facility at the site of the former Duane Arnold nuclear power plant near Cedar Rapids, Iowa. The project when complete would position Alliant as the largest combined solar and storage operator in the state. [POWER Magazine]

Duane Arnold plant, now closed (NextEra Energy Resources)

¶ “Microsoft Signs 15-year Deal With Renewable Energy Provider AES To Reduce Carbon Emissions” • In a bid to boost the use of renewable energy and reduce CO₂ emissions, AES Corporation, an electric power distribution company, said it signed a 15-year deal with Microsoft to help the IT firm to achieve net zero carbon emission by 2030. [Nasdaq]

¶ “‘Concrete Cancer’ Spreading At Seabrook Nuclear Plant” • The Seabrook nuclear plant seems to have been born to lose. It was intended to have two reactors, at a cost of $1 billion. Ten years on, one reactor had cost $10 billion, and the other was cancelled. Now, it has been found that the concrete at the site has “concrete cancer,” as cracks develop and spread. [OB Rag]

Have an awesomely copacetic day.

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November 2 Energy News

November 2, 2021

Opinion: 

¶ “What’s Different About This World Climate Summit” • At the UN’s COP26 climate change summit, countries acknowledge the danger of climate change and say they’re committed to doing something about it. But there is increasing alarm that countries won’t do enough to hold world temperatures below the key threshold most scientists have set. [CNN]

Losing time and resources (Matt Palmer, Unsplash)

¶ “What Makes A Good Net Zero Carbon Emissions Pledge?” • The number of net zero targets that have been set, by national governments, industries, companies and others, has burgeoned in recent years. Pledges to reach net zero now cover almost 80% of the global economy. But not all targets are created equal and the difference is a bit complicated. [BBC]

¶ “Questions Remain Over The UK’s Nuclear Power Plans” • In 2007, Vincent de Rivaz, at that time the EDF chief executive, said Britain would be “cooking our Christmas turkeys” with electricity from Hinkley Point C nuclear station by 2017. Instead the first concrete was poured that year and the turkey is now scheduled for late 2026. [The Guardian]

Hinkley Point construction, 2017 (Nick Chipchase, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

World:

¶ “Brazil Brings Big Green Plans To COP26. But Its Track Record Is Dismal” • Brazil is heading to the Glasgow UN climate summit with some ambitious environmental promises, including cutting emissions 50%, ending illegal deforestation entirely by 2030, and becoming carbon neutral by 2050. But time will tell whether any of this is to be believed. [CNN]

¶ “Over 100 World Leaders Will Agree To End Deforestation By 2030 At COP26” • More than 100 world leaders representing more than 85% of the planet’s forests will commit to ending and reversing deforestation and land degradation by 2030, a British government statement says. It would be the first substantial deal of the COP26 climate talks. [CNN]

Deforestation (Maksim Shutov, Unsplash)

¶ “XPeng Deliveries Grow 233%” • XPeng delivered 10,138 smart electric vehicles in October. That’s a 233% increase over October 2020. As astounding as that seems, it is actually the trend. In the first 10 months of the 2021, XPeng delivered 66,542 vehicles. The October result wasn’t all that high, considering its in a year with a 289% increase year over year! [CleanTechnica]

¶ “India PM Narendra Modi Pledges Net Zero By 2070” • India has promised to cut its emissions to net zero by 2070. Prime Minister Narendra Modi made the pledge, the first time India has set a net zero target, at the Glasgow summit. However, the pledge misses a key goal of the COP26 summit for countries to commit to reach that target by 2050. [BBC]

PM Narendra Modi (Ms Sarah Welch, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “France Hits Record 23% Plugin EV Share In October” • France, Europe’s second largest auto market, saw plugin electric vehicle share climb to a new record 22.9% for September, up from 11.8% last year. Petrol share was down to a record low of 36.0% from almost 44% a year ago. Overall auto market volume was down some 34% over seasonal norms. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Student Transportation Of Canada Orders 1000 Electric School Buses From Lion Electric” • Student Transportation of Canada placed a conditional order for 1000 electric school buses from Lion Electric, based in Quebec. STC is a subsidiary of Student Transportation of America, a North American leader in student transportation. [CleanTechnica]

Lion Electric school bus (Crenaissanceman, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “Sunny But Isolated, Cyprus Toils To Boost Green Energy” • Cypress has 340 sunny days per year. In the past year, the number of solar panels increased by 16%, according to the Electricity Authority of Cyprus. But in 2019, just 13.8% of the energy came from solar and wind, and Cyprus is still struggling to increase its use of renewable power. [RFI]

¶ “Carbon Capture Storage Trial In Queensland To Demonstrate Morrison’s Promise To Reduce Emissions Via ‘Technology” • A trial to capture and sequester CO₂ in the exhaust of a coal-fired power station is underway in Queensland. One analyst said the move is “horrendously expensive,” and will increase the cost of electricity from the plant by over 80%. [ABC News]

Moonie sequestration site (Low Emission Technology Australia)

US:

¶ “Joe Biden Wants America To Lead The World Against The Climate Crisis. That Goal Faces A Big Test This Week” • President Joe Biden’s ambitions to lead the world in slowing the planet’s warming will be tested on two continents this week. He is in Scotland for important climate talks, while lawmakers come closer to realizing his visions back home. [CNN]

¶ “NREL Explores Innovative Manufacturing Approach For Next-Generation Wind Turbine Blades” • National Renewable Energy Laboratory researchers are furthering their revolutionary use of recyclable thermoplastics and additive manufacturing (better known as 3D printing) to manufacture advanced wind turbine blades. [CleanTechnica]

Wind turbines in the desert (Dennis Schroeder, NREL)

¶ “Renewable Energy Could Drive Healthcare Costs WAY Down, According to Experts” • Researchers from Columbia and Duke Universities have looked at the implementation of renewable energy sources as a way of driving down medical costs. Their findings suggest that the positive effects of moving away from fossil fuels are almost immediate. [Tech Times]

¶ “Indiana Utility Breaks Ground On 465-MW PV” • Northern Indiana Public Service Company has announced that ground has been broken on two solar farms totaling 465 MW. They are the 265-MW Dunns Bridge 1 in Jasper County and the 200-MW Indiana Crossroads in White County, Indiana. They are are expected to be operational in 2022. [reNEWS]

Have a very amusing day.

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November 1 Energy News

November 1, 2021

Opinion: 

¶ “COP26 Climate Talks Off To An Ominous Start After Weak G20 Leaders’ Meeting” • The G20 leaders’ meeting that just ended suggests that leaders are finally listening to the science, but they still lack the political unity to make the ambitious decisions required to meet the moment. For one thing, they failed to put a date on the end of use of coal. [CNN]

Coal mining equipment and plant (Arcticbear1, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “Saving Us By Katharine Hayhoe Review” • To say that Saving Us: A Climate Scientist’s Case for Hope and Healing in a Divided World is one of the more important books about climate change is not an exaggeration. This book by Katharine Hayhoe, a renowned climate scientist, could result in a massive expansion of interest in the subject. [The Guardian]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Climate Change: Extreme Weather Events Are ‘The New Norm'” • Extreme weather events are now the new normal, says the World Meteorological Organisation. The State of the Climate report for 2021 highlights a world that is “changing before our eyes.” The report says the world is entering “uncharted territory,” with increasing impacts across the planet. [BBC]

Tornado (Nikolas Noonan, Unsplash)

World:

¶ “COP26: World Leaders Need To Act On Climate Change – Boris Johnson” • The world is at “one minute to midnight”, after running down the clock on waiting to combat climate change, Prime Minister Boris Johnson has said. He was speaking as world leaders gather in Glasgow for the landmark COP26 climate change conference. [BBC]

¶ “G20 Agrees On Key Climate Goals Around Global Warming Limits And Coal Financing, But Lacks Firm Commitments” • The G20’s leaders’ summit ended with an agreement on climate that commits its member nations to end coal financing by the end of the year and to aim to contain global warming to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels. [CNN]

Heads of G20 nations (Government of Brazil, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “Revolving Door Provides Window Into Big Oil’s Dirty Secret” • Six oil companies and their lobby groups stand accused of dirty tactics designed to slow down, or even block, climate action and the move to a zero-emission transport fleet in the EU. Shell, BP, Repsol and Eni are among the companies caught red handed in 72 revolving door cases. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Trucks With Onboard Solar Are Becoming A Thing” • Vehicles like the “never charge” Aptera and the Sono Sion are proving that solar can power at least a good chunk of people’s driving, but can it work for larger vehicles? Fraunhofer has an electric truck on German roads right now with 3500 watts of solar power on the trailer for 5% to 10% of its needs. [CleanTechnica]

Truck with solar panels (Image provided by Fraunhofer)

¶ “Investors Bet Big On Renewables While Solar Takes On Coal” • According to a report by the International Energy Agency, India will be the main driver of rising demand for energy over the next two decades, accounting for 25% of global growth. India has 33 GW of coal-fired capacity under construction, soon to become stranded assets. [pv magazine India]

¶ “South Australia To Get Another Big Battery” • South Australia has granted development approval for the state’s largest battery project, which will be able to power 40,000 homes. Maoneng Australia expects to start building the $150 million facility 22 km north of Adelaide late in 2022. It should be up and running in about another 12 months. [7NEWS]

Wind farm in South Australia (Mattinbgn, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “New Zealand Strait Crossed For First Time By Electric Plane” • Gary Freedman made history as the first person to fly an electric plane across the body of water that separates New Zealand’s two main islands. His 40-minute solo flight in the small two-seater came 101 years after the first person flew a conventional aircraft over the Cook Strait. [KDVR]

¶ “China Pushes Ahead Major Renewable Energy Projects” • The construction of wind power and solar power stations with an installed capacity of 30 million kilowatts in China’s northern and northwestern sandy areas, rocky areas and deserts kicked off in mid-October, according to a statement by China’s top economic planner. [Global Times]

Dual axis trackers in China (Vinaykumar8687, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “JCB Signs Deal To Import ‘Green’ Hydrogen From Australia To UK” • The construction equipment maker JCB has signed a multibillion-pound deal to import and supply hydrogen made with renewable energy. Australia’s Fortescue Future Industries will start selling “green” H₂ through a specialist division, Ryze Hydrogen, early next year. [The Guardian]

US:

¶ “Proposed US EV Incentives Have Created A Storm Of International Outrage” • The current EV rebate proposal (which has not passed either of the houses of Congress) would make the rebate higher for an EV made in America by American workers, and higher still if those workers are part of a labor union. Other countries are not happy. [CleanTechnica]

Cars ready for shipment (Volkswagen image)

¶ “89% Of Democrats, 42% Of Republicans Believe Big Oil To Blame For Climate Crisis” • When oil executives testified before Congress, they acknowledged that burning their products was driving climate change but said they had not mislead the public. But a majority of Americans want to see oil and gas companies held accountable for lying. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Americans In Climate-Threatened Regions Anxious For Solutions From World Summit” • The IPCC says we can stop climate change. For Pam McVety, a Florida scientist, and Sean Casten, a chemical engineer and congressman from Illinois, fighting climate change is a moral imperative driven by their love of their families. [Georgia Recorder]

Have a thoroughly entertaining day.

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October 31 Energy News

October 31, 2021

Opinion: 

¶ “Here To Stay Or Gone In 30 Years? Inside The Fight Over The Future Of The Oil Industry” • Oil is back above $80 per barrel, but production has been on the decline since the turn of the century. Even without a need to stop use of fossil fuels, the oil industry cannot last forever. The companies extracting oil and gas want to explore for more anyway. [CNN]

Oil rig and oil spill (Arvind Vallabh, Unsplash)

¶ “Can COP26 Really Save The Planet?” • Will COP26 be a “turning point” as Boris Johnson wants, or more “blah blah blah,” that Greta Thunberg condemns? At face value, things do not look promising. The previous 25 of these conferences failed to turn off the tap of the greenhouse gases that are driving up global temperatures. But there is hope. [BBC]

¶ “No, EVs Aren’t Going To Overload Electric Grids” • Anti-EV media have been running out-of-context quotes saying EVs will overload the grids. None of this is true. Here is the lowdown on the grid situation for you. I can give you some factual arguments you can use the next time people start sharing that kind of alarmist nonsense. [CleanTechnica]

Aptera (Image by Aptera, cropped)

¶ “Reasons To Be Hopeful: The Climate Solutions Available Now” • The climate emergency is the biggest threat to civilization we have ever faced. But there is good news: we already have every tool we need to beat it. The challenge is not finding solutions, but rolling them out with great speed. The problem is turning that possibility into reality. [The Guardian]

Science and Technology:

¶ “COP26 Climate Summit: Experts Warn Leaders 1.5°C Is ‘real Science’, Not A Political Number” • Ahead of COP26 in Glasgow, leading climate scientists warned that the 1.5°C temperature limit politicians will talk about is a vital physical threshold for the planet’s climate and not an arbitrary political construct that can be haggled over. [Republic World]

Greenland ice (William Bossen, Unsplash)

World:

¶ “Flooding Destroyed His Home Four Times In Three Years. This Is The Reality Of Climate Change For India’s Poor” • For his entire life, a concrete retaining wall protected Anish Yadav and his neighbors from increasingly severe monsoon storms. But the wall collapsed. Unprotected in a changing climate, he has had to rebuild his home four times in three years. [CNN]

¶ “New Zealand Says It Will Cut Greenhouse Emissions By 50% By 2030 As COP26 Starts” • At the start of the UN COP26 climate conference, New Zealand pledged to reduce its net greenhouse gas emissions by 50% by 2030. The country’s leaders said its previous target was not consistent with global efforts to limit global warming to 1.5°C. [CNN]

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, 2020 (Eesan1969, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “G20: World Leaders Agree To Historic Corporate Tax Deal” • Leaders of the world’s 20 major economies approved a global agreement to have the profits of large businesses taxed at least 15%. It follows concern that multinational companies re-route their profits through low-tax jurisdictions. All the leaders at the G20 summit in Rome agreed to the pact. [BBC]

¶ “‘Moment Of Truth’ As World Meets For Climate Summit” • The COP26 climate change summit is beginning in the Scottish city of Glasgow. Delegates from about 200 countries will be there to announce how they will cut emissions by 2030. With a need for urgent action, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson said we are at the “world’s moment of truth.” [BBC]

Boris Johnson (Ben Shread, Cabinet Office, OGL v.3)

¶ “Tesla To Buy 45 GWh Of LFP Batteries From CATL” • A report says Tesla agreed to buy 45 GWh of lithium-iron-phosphate (LFP or LiFePO₄) batteries from CATL to meet its expected demand for the Model 3 and Model Y in 2022. This is enough to power about 800,000 vehicles. LFP is becoming the chemistry of choice for medium- and low-price EVs. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Toyota Reveals Specs For BZ4X Electric SUV” • Toyota put out some details about its BZ4X. It will have a 71.4-kWh battery. One version will offer a single front-mounted motor with 201 hp (150 kW), a 0–100 km/h time of 8.4 seconds, and a range of 310 miles. A slightly faster dual motor version will have 214 hp (160 kW), and a range of 285 miles. [CleanTechnica]

Toyota BZ4X (Toyota image, cropped)

US:

¶ “Exxon CEO Accused Of Lying About Climate Science To Congressional Panel” • ExxonMobil CEO Darren Woods was accused of lying to Congress. After he and other oil and gas company heads testified under oath at a congressional hearing, Rep Carolyn Maloney wants to issue subpoenas to force the firms to reveal what they knew. [NationofChange]

¶ “After Widespread Flooding, No Relief Yet For The DC Metro Area As 14 Million People Remain Under Alerts” • Heavy flooding inundated communities across the Maryland-Virginia area on Friday, with forecasters expecting the rain to continue. Nearly 14 million people were under a coastal flooding warning Saturday, the National Weather Service said. [CNN]

Flooding in Washington, DC (National Weather Service image)

¶ “Danos Applying Oil And Gas Skills To Renewable Energy” • Danos, based in Louisiana, is taking its 74 years of experience serving the oil and gas industry and putting it into the renewable energy sector. Danos formed a partnership with SOLV, a division of Swinerton Renewable Energy, and has completed five solar contracts to date this year. [mySA]

¶ “Residents Push Task Force To Adopt 100% Renewable Energy By 2030” • Residents of Columbia, Missouri, gathered at a meeting of the Integrated Electric Resource and Master Plan Task Force to urge a more aggressive path to renewable energy. They backed a call for reaching 100% renewable energy by the “earliest practical date.” [Columbia Missourian]

Have an abundantly amazing day.

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October 30 Energy News

October 30, 2021

Opinion: 

¶ “Takeaways From The Big Oil Congressional Hearing” • Under withering questioning from Congress, oil executives bobbed and weaved, making no admission of guilt. But Thursday’s hearing marked the first time ever that the leaders of America’s biggest oil companies acknowledged, under oath, that their products are causing global warming. [Sierra Club]

Emissions (Kamran Ch, Unsplash)

¶ “The Oil And Gas Industry Knew About Climate Change In The 1950s” • Four years ago, I traveled around America, visiting historical archives, looking for documents that might show when the major coal, oil and gas companies became aware of climate change. They knew what the problems were in 1959. Now they are testifying before Congress. [The Conversation]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Solid-State Batteries Are Coming! Solid-State Batteries Are Coming!” • Two announcements suggest we are moving into the solid-state battery era. Solid Power and SK Innovation entered into a partnership to make solid-state EV batteries. And Hyundai announced a development agreement with Factorial Energy of Woburn, Massachusetts. [CleanTechnica]

Solid state batteries (Solid Power image)

World:

¶ “Australia’s 2050 Net Zero Emissions Plan Relies On ‘Gross Manipulation’ Of Data, Experts Say” • The Australian federal government’s 2050 net zero emissions plan relies on a “gross manipulation” of data that suggests trees and soil can absorb far more carbon dioxide than is actually possible, according to experts in the field. [The Guardian]

¶ “UK Wants To Be The First Major Economy To Require Companies To Reveal Climate Risks” • The UK is pushing ahead with legislation that will make more than 1,300 of its largest companies to disclose climate risks. The UK government said it plans to be the first major economy to require corporations to report climate-related risks and opportunities. [CNN]

Big Ben (Jurica Koletić, Unsplash)

¶ “Volkswagen Group’s In-Depth Conference Call Highlights Company’s Focus On Transition” • Volkswagen Group held its 3rd quarter shareholder conference call, and there is one thing the call made very clear. Even a glance at what Volkswagen is doing clearly shows that battery electric vehicles are front and center in 2021 and beyond. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “The Everyday Ingredient That Harms The Climate” • Much of Indonesia’s vast tropical forest – the third largest in the world – grows on peatlands, which sequester huge amounts of carbon dioxide. But the oil palm, a non-native plant originally from West Africa, prefers dry land. So the forest is burned, the land is dried, and CO₂ is released. [BBC]

Oil palm plantation in Africa (Marco Schmidt, CC-BY-SA 2.5)

¶ “Ireland To Open Its Second Renewable Electricity Auction By End Of 2021” • Ireland will have a second renewable electricity auction to support its ambition of having 80% of its electricity be renewably generated by 2030. The new auction has been brought forward from the initial timetable and is now set to be open before the end of the year. [Silicon Republic]

¶ “New Life From The Void – Another Coal Hub Repurposed” • In New South Wales, the coal-burning Liddell power plant is slated to begin closing down next year, and the Bayswater plant may follow. Hundreds of jobs will be lost. But a pumped storage project is to be built at their site, with solar, batteries, and green hydrogen, creating new jobs. [CleanTechnica]

Liddell Power Station (Webaware, public domain)

¶ “Bentley Travels 455 Miles Across Iceland On Renewable Power” • Using only energy from waste straw and the power of the planet, an engineering prototype of the Bentley Flying Spur Hybrid has driven 733 km (455 miles) across Iceland in a single stint. Bentley claims the journey is validation both of the grand touring range of its new Hybrid. [Tech Digest]

¶ “UK Renewable Energy Figures Shows Boom In Project Starts During 2021” • Renewable energy projects that started work in 2021 jumped in value by 70% year-on-year to over £5 billion, a report by Glenigan showed. And that number is set to increase dramatically. The government plans to have 40 GW of offshore wind power capacity by 2030. [New Civil Engineer]

Wind farm in Wales (Dara Jasumani, CC BY-SA 2.0)

US:

¶ “After Touch-And-Go Negotiations, Climate Emerges As Big Winner In Biden’s Economic Framework” • As the dust settles on Democrats’ $1.75 trillion economic framework, climate has emerged as a big winner. The framework crafted by President Joe Biden and congressional leaders includes $555 billion for climate and clean energy provisions. [CNN]

¶ “Supreme Court To Review EPA’s Ability To Address Climate Crisis and Regulate Greenhouse Gases” • The Supreme Court agreed to hear a case that was brought by Republican-led states and coal producers to challenge the Environmental Protection Agency’s authority to regulate greenhouse gases and address the climate crisis. [CNN]

Coal-burning power plant (Wim van ‘t Einde, Unsplash)

¶ “New York Says No To Two Natural Gas Thermal Generating Plants” • New York governor Kathy Hochul’s administration has done something unheard of. It has denied permits to repower two unnatural gas generating plants. When it denied the permits, the Department of Environmental Conservation was following the New York climate law. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Pueblo Citizens Voice Concerns About Nuclear Power To Colorado Public Utilities Commission” • Nuclear Free Pueblo was formed to oppose nuclear power in Pueblo County, after it was suggested at a town hall event in July that nuclear energy could be used to replace Xcel Energy’s Comanche 3 Power Plant. That plant will close before 2040. [Pueblo Chieftain]

Have a brilliantly untroubled day.

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October 29 Energy News

October 29, 2021

Opinion: 

¶ “Ford Performance Is Treating EVs Like The Cool Thing They Are” • Ford Performance took Vaughn Gittin, Jr to the Faroe Islands to make a neat video. Without making a huge deal of the vehicle’s efficiency, range, or green credibility, they just had some fun with the vehicle and showed customers that EVs can be as much fun as any other Mustang. [CleanTechnica]

Ford Mustang Mach-E in Iceland (Ford Performance via Twitter)

 

¶ “Too Expensive, Too Slow: Even The Baseload Argument Doesn’t Work For Nuclear” • Voices are being raised in various quarters in support of building nuclear power plants. This is of concern, because every dollar invested in nuclear power makes the climate crisis worse by diverting investment from renewable energy technologies. [Renew Economy]

World:

¶ “Pope Urges ‘Radical’ Climate Response In Exclusive BBC Message” • In a message recorded exclusively for the BBC, Pope Francis has called on world leaders meeting next week at the UN Climate conference in Glasgow to provide “effective responses” to the environment emergency and offer “concrete hope” to future generations. [BBC]

Pope Francis (Xonn, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “Wolfsburg vs Grünheide – Volkswagen To Revolutionize Its Main Manufacturing Plant, Inspired By Tesla” • Recently, Volkswagen Group CEO Herbert Diess and VW brand chief Ralf Brandstätter called 120 top-level executives to company HQ in Wolfsburg for a crisis meeting. They announced a “struggle against Grünheide,” meaning Tesla. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Some Good News: Ten Countries Generate Almost 100% Renewable Electricity” • Sometimes it’s good to notice the small victories and celebrate them, and find ways to learn from them. Today’s small victory is that there are already ten countries in the world whose electric power generation comes from 97 to 100% renewable energy sources. [CleanTechnica]

Geothermal plant in Iceland (Gretar Ívarsson, public domain)

¶ “South Africa Picks 25 Preferred Bidders In 2.6-GW Renewable Power Tender” • The government of South Africa has selected 25 preferred bidders in an effort to beef up the renewable electricity supply as the country grapples with power shortages. The tender for 2.6 GW was launched in April to find the quickest options to ease the power shortages. [TechCentral]

¶ “Mainstream Renewable Power Projects To Deliver 1.27 GW Of New Wind And Solar For South Africa” • Mainstream Renewable Power-led consortium was awarded 50% of the total allocation in the latest round of the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme in South Africa. It won bids on twelve solar and wind projects. [ACROFAN]

Wind farm in South Africa (Warren Rohner, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “Tata Power Raises Renewable Energy Target To 60% By 2025” •Tata Power is raising its target for renewable energy supply from 4 GW to 25 GW by 2030. Currently, approximately 30% of Tata Power’s power supply comes from renewables, and the company is expecting to increase the percentage to 60% of its installed capacity by 2025. [DigiTimes]

¶ “Jellyfish Attack Nuclear Power Plant” • Scotland’s only working nuclear power plant shut down in an emergency procedure this week when jellyfish clogged its sea water-cooling intake pipes, according to the Scotland Herald. Without access to cool water, a nuclear power plant risks overheating, with potentially disastrous results. [Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists]

¶ “Japan Looks To Renewables, Role Of Nuclear Elusive Ahead Of Election” • Japan aims to increase its reliance on renewable energy in achieving net-zero emissions, but the role of nuclear power will play in that appears to be elusive even in the energy plan approved by the Cabinet about a week ahead of Sunday’s general election. [The Mainichi]

US:

¶ “Forecasters Predict One Of The Biggest Tidal Flood Events Of The Past Two Decades” • Over 20 million people are under alerts for coastal flooding, including the residents of Baltimore and Washington, DC, as a large and powerful low pressure system shifts from the central US toward the Northeast. Two to four feet of coastal flooding is likely. [CNN]

Coastal flooding (North Carolina DOT, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “Oil Executives Testify About Climate Disinformation” • The heads of six oil companies and major lobbying groups have testified before the House Oversight Committee about climate disinformation and their organizations’ role in it. This article is a collection of reports relating to what the oil companies have done and said. [CNN]

¶ “Six bid for space at New Jersey wind port” • The New Jersey Economic Development Authority has received 16 non-binding offers from six bidders to become tenants at the New Jersey wind port from six of the largest turbine manufacturers and offshore wind developers in the world. The 16 offers will now be scored in the coming days. [reNews]

New Jersey wind port (New Jersey Governor)

¶ “Biden Lands In Europe With Domestic Spending Plans In Limbo” • US President Joe Biden has arrived in Europe for two international summits, leaving his $2.75 trillion domestic agenda in limbo. Mr Biden had hoped to trumpet his environmental package at next week’s global climate summit in the UK, but his whole platform is still up in the air. [BBC]

¶ “US DOE Announces $209 Million For EV Battery Research” • The DOE announced $209 million in funding for 26 laboratory projects focusing on EVs, advanced batteries, and connected vehicles. Advanced, lithium-based batteries play an integral role in 21st century technologies such as EVs, stationary grid storage, and defense applications. [CleanTechnica]

Have a terrifically peaceful day.

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