Posts Tagged ‘nuclear’

June 13 Energy News

June 13, 2019


¶ “Why networks think battery storage may be smarter choice than more poles and wires” • Transmission companies worldwide are increasingly considering energy storage to supplement a fundamental part of our electric power infrastructure: the poles and wires that carry high-voltage current from power plant to end-users. [RenewEconomy]

Energy storage

¶ “Confessions Of A Climate Activist: Don’t Blame Yourself, Go After The Criminals Who Sold Out Humanity For Profit” • Don’t blame yourself. Out of all the companies in the world, just one hundred have been responsible for 71% of the global emissions that cause global warming since 1998, according to the Carbon Majors Database. [CleanTechnica]


¶ “Adani Mine: Australia Approves Controversial Coal Project” • Australia has given the final approval for construction to begin on a controversial coal mine to be built by Indian company Adani. The mine, in Queensland’s Galilee Basin, has been the subject of years of hold-ups over environmental approvals, but it has both state and federal approval. [BBC]

Coal export point (Getty Images)

¶ “India Invites Proposals For Gravity-Based Energy Storage Projects” • India’s Ministry of New and Renewable Energy is looking beyond batteries to push energy storage in the grid balancing and support sector and for renewable energy. It has issued a document calling upon companies to submit proposals for gravity storage projects. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Vietnam To See A Gigawatt Of Onshore Wind Installed By 2021” • The Global Wind Energy Council expects Vietnam to install 1 GW of onshore wind capacity by 2021, a move that could make the country a regional wind power leader. The Vietnamese government is said to be considering increasing a wind energy target to 6 GW by 2030. [CleanTechnica]

Wind project in Vietnam (Credit: TSV Investment)

¶ Onshore Wind Farms In UK Could Cut £50 A Year Off Energy Bills” • Government ministers face calls to lift a block on onshore wind farms to help meet the UK’s ambitious climate targets and reduce home energy bills. Some of Europe’s largest energy investors have urged ending an effective ban on new onshore wind farms in England. [The Guardian]

¶ “Siemens Gamesa Storage Rocks In Hamburg” • Siemens Gamesa has started operating an electric thermal energy storage system in Hamburg, Germany, that uses about 1000 tonnes of volcanic rock as a storage medium. The pilot project was developed in partnership with Hamburg Energie and Hamburg University of Technology. [reNEWS]

Storage in stone (Image: Siemens Gamesa)

¶ “Renewable Energy Jobs Move South And East, As Industry Shifts To Middle Income Economies” • Currently 39% of all renewable energy jobs are in China. Other important jobs markets include Brazil, the US and the EU, but the most notable trend is the emergence of renewable energy industries in more corners of east and southeast Asia. [Forbes]

¶ “Japan Sets Carbon-Neutral Goal By 2050” • Japan’s cabinet has adopted an new energy policy, which is intended to bring the country to net zero carbon emissions by 2050. It aims to reduce reliance on nuclear energy while also tackling the “reduction of CO₂ emissions from thermal power generation” fired by fossil fuels like coal. [Japan Today]

Mount Fuji (AFP image)


¶ “A Former EPA Chief Says The Trump Administration Is ‘Hamstringing Scientists'” • The Trump administration is “hamstringing scientists and their ability to do their work” to tackle climate change, according to Christine Todd Whitman. She was one of three Republican EPA chiefs who slammed Trump administration policies. [CNN]

¶ “Seven Top Takeaways From Tesla’s Shareholder Meeting” • At Tesla’s yearly shareholder meeting, Elon Musk delivered the company’s “state of the union” for 2019. A few takeaways include that Tesla will make vegan steering wheels and that Elon actually does have a submarine car (though he is not James Bond). But they are not in the top seven. [CleanTechnica]

Teslas (Photo: Megan Gale via Twitter)

¶ “New Jersey 100% Renewable Energy Plan: More Fiber, Less Fluff” • New Jersey has declared it will use only zero carbon energy by 2050. Lots of other states and many municipalities have announced similar goals. The difference, according to PV Magazine, is that New Jersey has an actual plan to make its 100% renewable energy goal a reality. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Up To $9,500 Incentive Offered For EVs Or Hybrid Vehicles In Bay Area” • The Clean Cars for All program is offering up to $9,500 for the purchase or lease of an EV or hybrid vehicle for Bay Area residents who qualify. The $9,500 option is available for certain residents who replace older vehicles (which are dismantled) with plug-in cars. [CleanTechnica]

Charging an EV (Screenshot)

¶ “Target Commits To 100% Renewable Electricity By 2030” • Target says it is taking a major step forward by committing to get 100% of its electricity from renewable sources by 2030. The goal applies to all of Target’s domestic operations. It will help power Target’s stores, distribution centers, and offices more sustainably and responsibly. [Windpower Engineering]

¶ “Renewable Energy Vermont Becomes First SEIA Affiliate In New England” • Solar Energy Industries Association announced that Renewable Energy Vermont is an official affiliate, its 15th state affiliate, and the first in New England, growing a network of organizations committed to advancing solar markets around the country. [Solar Power World]

Have a particularly sweet day.

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June 12 Energy News

June 12, 2019


¶ “Leonardo DiCaprio Spotlights Urgency Of Climate Crisis In New Film” • Leonardo DiCaprio is weighing in on climate change this week with a documentary he co-produced, “Ice on Fire.” It is a better-than-most film on the topic that gets beyond the dire warnings to contemplating what can actually be done to help turn the tide. [CNN]

Ice on Fire image (Courtesy of HBO)

¶ “Chernobyl Survivors Assess Fact And Fiction In TV Series” • Engineer Oleksiy Breus was a member of staff at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant, and he was there on the morning of 26 April 1986. He knew and worked with people depicted in the HBO/Sky miniseries. Appraising it, he spoke about what was true and what was fiction. [BBC]

Science and Technology:

¶ “GE: Hydrogen Trumps CCS In Preserving Gas Turbines In A Carbon-Free Grid” • General Electric sees hydrogen as the key to natural gas’ participation in a 100% carbon-free electric grid, its chief marketing officer said. He said adding increasing amounts of hydrogen to the gas is a better solution than carbon capture and sequestration. [Utility Dive]

GE gas turbine (GE Power image)


¶ “IEA Hails UK As Climate Leader” • The UK has made “major progress” in reducing its energy-related CO₂ emissions and introducing energy policies and reforms to promote sector decarbonization and clean energy technology, the International Energy Agency says. The IEA adds that the UK must now continue its global climate leadership. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “UK Government To Commit To 2050 Target” • Greenhouse gas emissions in the UK will be cut to almost zero by 2050, under the terms of a new government plan to tackle climate change. Prime Minister Theresa May said reducing pollution would also benefit public health and cut National Health Service costs. The UK is the first country to adopt the goal. [BBC]

Cleaning solar panels (Getty Images)

¶ “Taking A Cue From EU, Canada Plans To Ban Some Single Use Plastics” • Plastic trash used to be a problem with a simple solution: Ship it to China. That worked well until China stopped taking plastic waste. Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau said his government is considering an alternative solution: Ban some single use plastics. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “China Stands Ready To Become Offshore Wind Powerhouse” • China’s offshore wind turbine manufacturers could grow to be some of the most dominant in the industry without ever having to succeed overseas, according to Wood Mackenzie Power & Renewables. China’s offshore wind market could add 40 GW of capacity over the next decade. [CleanTechnica]

Project in Jiangsu, China (Goldwind image)

¶ “Queensland Budget Delivers $250 Million To Kick-Start CleanCo” • The Queensland Government has delivered on its promise to allocate $250 million to CleanCo. The new publicly owned electricity generation and trading company has a mandate to build, own and operate new commercial renewable energy generation in Queensland. [RenewEconomy]

¶ “Cheap Solar And Wind Can Re-Boot Australia’s Economic Advantage” • Australia’s abundant wind and solar resources will reduce costs for electricity up to 30%, lead to the electrification of much of transport, building and industrial use, and re-position Australia as major manufacturing center, now with low cost and low carbon power. [RenewEconomy]

AGL wind farms


¶ “Climate Change Poses Major Risks To Financial Markets, US Regulator Warns” • A top financial regulator is opening a public effort to highlight the risk that climate change poses to the nation’s financial markets, setting up a clash with a president who has mocked global warming and whose administration continues to suppress climate science. [Forbes India]

¶ “America’s Oil Boom Will Break More Records This Year” • US oil production is on track to spike to a record 13.4 million barrels per day by the end of 2019, according to a report by research firm Rystad Energy. Texas alone is expected to top 5 million barrels per day in oil production, more than any OPEC member other than Saudi Arabia. [CNN]

Pump jacks (Nick Onford | Reuters)

¶ “Electrify America And ChargePoint Enter Into Roaming Agreement” • In a joint press release, Electrify America and ChargePoint announced that they entered into a roaming agreement that will allow the customers of each company to use the other’s charging equipment seamlessly, with no membership or payment hassles. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Are Old Midwest Coal Plants Pushing Renewables Offline?” • State utility commissions in Minnesota and Missouri are looking at the way companies run older coal plants, even when those units aren’t the cheapest option. By doing so, they may be squeezing out lower-carbon resources and raising costs for consumers. [E&E News]

Transmission lines (Ian Muttoo | Flickr)

¶ “Utility-Scale Wind Becoming Top Renewable Energy Resource This Year, EIA Says” • The annual power production from wind energy will surpass hydropower and become the top US clean energy resource for the first time this year, the DOE’s Energy Information Administration forecast in an outlook it released. [Power Engineering Magazine]

¶ “Solar-Fueled Oversupplies Drive Record Renewable Energy Waste In California” • As California increases renewable energy use, its primary power grid is wasting more. In this year’s first five months, the state’s ISO curtailed about 37% more available renewable energy than it did in all of 2018, S&P Global Market Intelligence analysis said. [S&P Global Platts]

Have an amazingly cheerful day.

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June 11 Energy News

June 11, 2019

Science and Technology:

¶ “Plant Extinction ‘Bad News For All Species'” • Almost 600 plant species have been lost from the wild in the last 250 years, according to a comprehensive study. The number is based on actual extinctions rather than estimates. Scientists say plant extinction is occurring up to 500 times faster than what would be expected naturally. [BBC]

Extinct St Helena Olive (Rebecca Cairn Wicks)

¶ “Trina Tests Half-Frame Solar Panels To Trim Cost By 2%” • Trina Solar is now field testing a half-frame solar panel for use with solar trackers. The company hopes to lower the cost per watt for solar by one cent or about 2% overall, according to Steven Zhu, the president of the company’s America Region, who was speaking in an interview. [CleanTechnica]


¶ “Electric Cars And Renewable Energy Could Drive New Outback Mining Boom” • Electric cars and wind turbines could be pivotal to fueling the next outback mining boom. Elements such as lithium, for the batteries in EVs and grid storage, and dysprosium, for the magnets in wind turbines, are becoming the objects of new mining activity. [ABC News]

Lithium ore (Photo supplied by Tawana Resources)

¶ “In A First, Indian Developer Seeks Buyers For 1 GW Of Solar Power Through Auction” • India’s largest power generation company, NTPC Limited, has issued a tender inviting consumers to purchase solar power. This is a first, as to date only consumers or their representatives have issued tenders inviting developers to set up projects. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Costa Rica’s Renewables Produce 99.99% Of Power In May” • Costa Rica obtained 99.99% of its electricity from renewable sources in May, according to the country’s power utility Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad.  Five renewable sources were responsible for the production of 984.02 GWh. Other producers provided 0.17 GWh. [Renewables Now]

Wind farm in Costa Rica (Christian Haugen, CC BY 2.0 Generic)

¶ “MP Power Management Invites Bids For 500 MW Of Grid-Scale Energy Storage” • The MP Power Management Company has invited expressions of interest from private firms for setting up 500 MW with 8 hours of continuous discharge of grid-scale energy storage service and a storage facility in the Indian state of Madhya Pradesh. [LiveMint]

¶ “NSW Quietly Cancels 200-MW Virtual Power Plant, Redirects Funds To Solar Loans” • The government of New South Wales has quietly cancelled a $50 million program to establish a 200-MW virtual power plant, to cover the costs of an election promise to provide interest-free loans to households for solar and batteries. [RenewEconomy]

New South Wales (Grahamec, Wikimedia Commons)


¶ “Barclays Commits To 100% Renewable Electricity, Joins RE100” • Barclays, one of the UK’s four “Big Banks,” committed to use 100% renewable electricity for global operations by 2030, with an interim goal of 90% by 2025, and a reduction to its global emissions of 80% by 2025. Barclays has recently been under fire for financing fossil fuels. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “UK MPs Call For End To Support For Overseas Fossil Fuel Projects By 2021” • UK Members of Parliament called on the government to stop financing fossil fuel projects in developing countries by 2021. Fossil fuels only serve to lock countries into dependency and make achieving global warming temperature reductions more difficult. [CleanTechnica]

Air pollution (Getty Images)

¶ “Scotland Will Build A Massive Battery To Store Excess Wind Power” • UK energy supplier Scottish Power plans to launch a massive battery-storage system to capture renewable power from its 214 wind turbines. The 50-MW  lithium-ion battery will allow Scottish Power to store energy when wind speeds are high and release it when they’re low. [Engadget]


¶ “BLP Replaces Canceled Wind Investment With Lower-Cost Solar” • In Grand Haven, Michigan, the Board of Light & Power is banking on renewable energy. When a wind project to which the BLP had committed, was recently canceled. Instead of wind, the local utility will be getting increased solar power. It is the BLP’s second solar project. [Grand Haven Tribune]

JB Sims plant, closing next year (Alexander Sinn | Tribune photo)

¶ “A Vision For Midwest Zero-Carbon Power Starts To Take Shape” • The Midwest’s energy landscape has changed a lot over the last 10 years. Market dynamics have been pushing coal-fired power offline and low-cost utility-scale wind and solar projects are being developed. Also, there has been a surge of consumer interest in PVs. [Natural Resources Defense Council]

¶ “US Renewable Energy Generating Capacity Has Now Surpassed Coal” • According to an analysis by the SUN DAY Campaign, using newly published data from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, US electrical generating capacity of renewable energy sources is now – for the first time – greater that of coal. [Windpower Engineering]

Wind farm

¶ “Puerto Rico’s Latest IRP Increases Solar And Storage Targets” • The Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority has filed the latest edition of its 2019-2038 integrated resource plan. It calls for higher deployment of solar and storage, which already rivaled some of the most ambitious plans for the mainland, and more flexibility on natural-gas. [Greentech Media]

¶ “Murphy’s Clean Energy Goals Include Nuclear In Long-Awaited Master Plan” • New Jersey Gov Phil Murphy unveiled his long-awaited energy master plan for the state, calling for more investment in renewable energy, such as solar and wind, and throwing support behind nuclear energy to lower New Jersey’s contribution to global warming. []

Have a manageably glorious day.

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June 10 Energy News

June 10, 2019


¶ “Beyond Renewables: How To Reduce Energy-Related Emissions By Measuring What Matters” • Despite the uptick in renewable energy usage, global emissions have grown steadily. John Woolard, of the World Resources Institute, argues that commitments to 100% renewables will not alone curb the worst impacts of climate change. [Eco-Business]

Albany Wind Farm in Western Australia
(Image: Juan Alberto Garcia Rivera, CC BY 2.0)

¶ “Conservatives Should Change How They Think About Global Warming. I Did.” • I worked at a libertarian thinktank for 23 years, arguing against climate action. But my views have changed. I now embrace decarbonization. Why? For one thing, I’ve come to better understand risk management. We need to hedge our bets on climate change. [The Guardian]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Sea-Based Renewable Hydrogen Storage Project Could Fuel Ships” • A renewable hydrogen storage project, known as the Deep Purple project, aims to convert electricity generated from wind into hydrogen. This hydrogen would then be stored on the seabed and supplied to offshore facilities located on Norway’s continental shelf. [Hydrogen Fuel News]

Ocean floor

¶ “Jet Fuel From Plastic Bottles? It’s Possible, Say Washington State University Researchers” • Landfills in the US take in about 28 million tons of plastic waste each year, the EPA says. It could take centuries to decompose. Now, Researchers at Washington State University claim they have created a way to make jet fuel from plastic waste. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Alberta Wildfires Linked To Climate Change, Scientist Says” • Recent fires were connected to climate change in two research papers published by scientists with Environment and Climate Change Canada. Fires like the one near Fort McMurray in May 2016, which forced more than 80,000 people to flee, are much more likely with climate change. []

Wildfire (Rodney Schmidt)

¶ “Industrial Methane Emissions Far Higher Than Expected” • Methane emissions from US industrial operations have been thought to be just under 9,000 tons. But when researchers from Cornell University and the Environmental Defense Fund decided to do some real world testing, they found their measurements showed much greater amounts. [CleanTechnica]


¶ “How Countries Can Learn From Jordan’s Renewable Energy Pivot” • Jordan, with a total generation capacity of about 4,000 MW, has 285 MW of wind and 771 MW of solar power. It wants to have 2,000 MW of renewable capacity by 2021. Its move toward renewables, started in 2015, is impelled by both economic and humanitarian pressures. [The National]

Jordan’s sunny and windy Wadi Rum

¶ “Hurdles Cleared For 480-MW Saint-Nazaire Offshore Wind Project” • The Conseil d’Etat, the French supreme administrative court, turned down an appeal against the  480-MW Saint-Nazaire wind farm, which EDF Renewables and Enbridge plan for French waters, moving the long-delayed project forward. The permit had been granted in 2016. [Renewables Now]

¶ “Korean Firms Eye Investment In Renewable Energy In Vietnam” • Korean investors hope to work on renewable energy in Vietnam because of the country’s potential and incentives, an official said. Vietnam plans to cooperate with the Korea to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, adapt to climate change, and protect its environment. []

Installing PVs in Quang Ngai province (Photo: VNA)

¶ “900 GW Of Coal To Be Repaced By Renewable Energy – IRENA” • A report from IRENA convincingly concludes that by 2020 the entire world will be able to install renewable energy for considerably less cost than existing fossil fuel plants. Renewable energy has fallen in cost faster than even IRENA had forecast, and the cost keeps declining. [Utilities Middle East]

¶ “Welsh Farming Was Paralyzed For 26 Years After Chernobyl Nuclear Plant Disaster” • The Chernobyl nuclear plant disaster in 1986 released deadly radioactive clouds to drift across Europe contaminating land and livestock. It left Welsh farming paralysed for 26 years with sheep remaining radioactive for years after the explosion. [Kent Live]

Sheep grazing in Wales (Eirian Evans, Wikimedia Commons)


¶ “Ex-Governor Strickland Frustrated To See Ohio Dumping Renewable Energy Goals” • In 2008, Ohio Gov Ted Strickland signed into law a bill pushing the coal-dependent state toward renewable electricity. The Republican controlled legislature had passed the bill with one negative vote. Now, that law is being undone, and he is not happy. [Toledo Blade]

¶ “Walt Disney World Solar Panels Now Span 270 Acres” • At 50 MW, the Walt Disney World solar array is one of the biggest in Florida, and it generates enough renewable energy to operate two of Disney’s four Florida theme parks. The Walt Disney Company has a 2020 goal to reduce emissions by 50% compared to 2012. [CleanTechnica]

Walt Disney World solar array (Image: Cynthia Shahan)

¶ “Renewable Energy Microgrid To Power Oakland Conference” • The VERGE 19 conference and expo, Oct 22-24 in Oakland, is a platform for companies, cities and communities accelerating the clean economy. The conference will be powered by a renewably powered, fully functional microgrid, a demonstration of radical efficiency and resilience. [GreenBiz]

¶ “Climate Change Causing Lake Michigan To Experience Rapid Shifts Between High And Low Water Levels” • New high water level records were set on Lakes Erie and Superior, and there has been widespread flooding across Lake Ontario for the second time in three years. Only a few years ago, water levels were at a low point. [Milwaukee Independent]

Have a marvelously productive day.

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June 9 Energy News

June 9, 2019

Science and Technology:

¶ “Arctic Melt: Threat Beneath The Ice” • The Arctic is heating up twice as fast as the global average, causing massive melting of sea ice. While we know climate change is warming the Arctic air, there is a lot more happening under the ice that we don’t fully understand. We have known the ice was melting, but the effects on microflora may be far-reaching. [CNN]

Arctic ice (Brice Laine | CNN)

¶ “Cautioned Urged Over Modular Nuclear Reactors” • Energy heavyweights are urging caution over the idea that small modular reactors can replace cancelled and decommissioned UK nuclear power projects. National Infrastructure Commission chief economist James Richardson sited the industry’s past failures to deliver on technology promises. [New Civil Engineer]

¶ “New Delivery Drone Focuses on Efficiency, Stability, And Safety” • The latest Prime Air drone can do vertical takeoffs and landings like a helicopter. It can fly with an airplane’s efficiency. As a hybrid, it transitions easily between the two modes, from vertical mode, to airplane mode in sustained forward flight, and back to vertical mode. [CleanTechnica]

Prime Air drone


¶ “Tesla Outsold Porsche And Jaguar Globally In First Quarter” • In the first quarter of 2019, for the third quarter in a row, Tesla outsold Porsche and Jaguar globally. Jaguar and Porsche sell several more models than Tesla, but as Tesla expands its vehicle lineup, its sales consistently grow. The lower-cost Tesla Model 3 exploded Tesla’s sales. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “UK Village Considers The Unfathomable: Tearing Itself Down Before Nature Does” • Fairbourne, a village in northwest Wales, was built on a natural flood plain. The reinforced embankment that protects it from flooding was upgraded after a flood 2014 at a cost of £6.8 million ($8.7 million), but it will only hold for so long, as the sea keeps rising. [CNN]

Fairbourne, northwest Wales (CNN image)

¶ “India Offers $360 Million Subsidy For 5,000 Electric Buses” • The Indian government plans to incentivize cities to include electric buses to their public transport fleet through financial subsidies. It will offer subsidies worth ₹2,500 crore ($360 million) for the deployment of 5,000 electric buses in a total of 40 large cities. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “EnBW pumps up Austrian hydro” • EnBW and Vorarlberger Illwerke have opened the 360-MW Obervermunt 2 pumped hydro storage plant in Austria. The project in Montafon took four and a half years to build and has two turbines and two pumps. Obervermunt 2 uses existing water reservoirs, Lake Silvretta and Lake Vermunt. [reNEWS]

Obervermunt 2 (Image: Vorarlberger Illwerke)

¶ “Renewable Energy Capacity Target Of 175 GW Will Be Achieved: Power Minister R K Singh” • Indian Power and New and Renewable Energy Minister Raj Kumar Singh has expressed confidence that the renewable energy target of 175 GW by 2022 will be achieved. He said 80 GW is already in place and another 24 GW is being installed. []

¶ “New Rules Give Households Right To Sell Solar Power Back To Energy Firms” • Britain’s biggest energy companies will have to buy renewable energy from customers under new laws to be introduced this week. Homeowners who install new rooftop solar panels from 1 January 2020 will be able to sell the energy they do not need to their supplier. [The Guardian]

Solar installation (Photo: David Pearson | Alamy)

¶ “Russia Wants An Alternative Ending To HBO’s Show On The Nuclear Accident Of Ukraine” • The Hollywood Reporter reports that the Russian state TV network NTV is developing its own, more pro-Russia version of the 1986 nuclear disaster. The NTV drama will reportedly alter history to claim that the CIA was involved in the disaster. [News Nation]


¶ “Volkswagen Does Something No Other Manufacturer Is Doing – Advertise Electric Cars” • Volkswagen of America kicked off an ad campaign designed to promote electric cars and rehabilitate the company’s image. It will be featured during the NBA playoffs. It is the first time a car company promoted in EV in the US. But some people aren’t buying it. [CleanTechnica]

Volkswagen Lemons and Lemonade (Volkswagen image)

¶ “US Automakers Warn Of Dire Consequences If Trump Takes A Sledgehammer To Emissions Rules” • The Trump administration is getting set to release less restrictive exhaust emission rules, but California and the 13 other states that subscribe to stricter rules are not about to relax their standards. That puts the car makers in a real bind. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “‘We All Owe Al Gore An Apology’: More People See Climate Change In Record Flooding” • A string of natural disasters has hit the central US in recent weeks, from tornadoes to heavy rainfall that floods fields, inundates homes and threatens levees. For many people, there is a clear connection between new weather patterns and climate change. [WAMU 88.5]

Floodwaters in Arkansas (Nathan Rott | NPR)

¶ “White House Blocks Testimony Calling Climate Change ‘Possibly Catastrophic’ Because It Didn’t ‘Jibe’ With Trump Administration Views” • The reason written testimony from an intelligence staffer was barred from being submitted to congress was that it didn’t “jibe” with Trump administration views, news reports say. [Newsweek]

¶ “Bankruptcy Court Asserts Sole Authority Over PG&E Power Contracts” • In a sharply worded ruling, a federal judge scolded a federal regulator for its “power play,” without statutory or Supreme Court authority, to claim jurisdiction over Pacific Gas and Electric’s power supply contracts after the embattled utility declared bankruptcy. [Courthouse News Service]

Have an utterly charming day.

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June 8 Energy News

June 8, 2019

Science and Technology:

¶ “Faster, Better, Cheaper – Fraunhofer Dry Film Battery Electrode Process Revealed” • Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Materials and Beam Technology IWS developed a way to make lithium-ion batteries using a dry film. It is a better, cheaper battery that is kinder to the environment. And it is already in small scale production! [CleanTechnica]

Dry film battery electrode (Credit: Fraunhofer Institute)


¶ “After The Sun, Delhi Metro To Source Power From Waste” • Delhi Metro Rail Corporation is India’s largest subway system and one of the world’s largest. DMRC is the first metro project in India to source power from a waste-based power plant. It also uses a large-scale solar power project in Madhya Pradesh and 28 MW of rooftop PV systems. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “GreenWay Reaches 100 EV Fast Chargers In Poland!” • The Slovakian EV fast charging leader, GreenWay, has populated the country of Poland quickly with 100 EV fast chargers. GreenWay opened its first Polish fast charger in December of 2016. Its hundredth charging station in Poland is at a large shopping mall in Warsaw. [CleanTechnica]

Charging EVs in Poland

¶ “Grenergy Closes Financing On Two Wind Farms In Peru” • Grenergy, a Spanish renewable energy company, signed a financing agreement of $40 million (about €35.5 million) for the construction and development of two wind farms in Peru. The Duna and Huambos wind farms will have an installed capacity of 36.8 MW. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

¶ “Santiago (Chile) Adding 200 Electric Buses In 2019” • This summer, 183 more BYD electric buses will arrive in Santiago, Chile, the Minister of Transport and Telecommunications said. They will join the 100 electric buses that BYD and local partner Enel brought to the capital last December. And 25 more will arrive in the fourth quarter. [CleanTechnica]

BYD buses in Santiago in 2018 (BYD image)

¶ “German States Say Renewables Roll-Out Need Not Wait On Grid Expansion” • Germany’s federal state premiers agreed to push ahead with the renewables roll-out without waiting for grid improvements, an article in Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitungreport said. Green power can be used locally to produce hydrogen, synthetic fuels, or heat. [Clean Energy Wire]

¶ “Japan Plans Carbon Emission Cuts, More Nuclear Energy” • Japan is calling for further efforts to cut its carbon emissions by promoting renewable energy while also pushing nuclear power despite its 2011 Fukushima nuclear plant disaster. An energy policy paper adopted by the cabinet sited an urgent need to reduce carbon emissions. [Japan Today]

Unit 4 reactor building at Fukushima Daiichi (AP file photo)

¶ “Glasgow And Edinburgh Could Be Contaminated With Radiation If EDF Decides To Reopen Two Nuclear Reactors With 400 Cracks In The Core Walls, Experts Warn” • Dr Ian Fairlie, an independent consultant on radioactivity in the environment, and Dr David Toke, of the University of Aberdeen, both warn against attempts to reopen the reactors. [Daily Mail]


¶ “White House Blocked Intelligence Aide’s Written Testimony On Climate Change” • White House officials barred a State Department intelligence staffer from submitting written testimony this week to the House Intelligence Committee warning that human-caused climate change could be “possibly catastrophic.” [The Philadelphia Inquirer]

Melting ice (Rodrigo ABD | AP, file)

¶ “Automakers, Fearing Prolonged Regulatory Uncertainty, Tell Trump To Cut A Deal With California On Emissions” • A group of 17 world automakers wrote to President Trump asking him to abandon his plans to scrap the emissions standards. Instead, they want a compromise with California and the other states that use its tougher standards. [CNN]

¶ “Hot! Tesla Opens First Public 250-kW Supercharging Station In Fremont, California” • Tesla opened up its first public 250-kW Supercharging V3 with the addition of 8 V3 stalls at its Fremont, California, factory. The V3 stalls were opened to the public just 3 short months after Tesla’s first announcement of the 250-kW charging standard. [CleanTechnica]

Tesla Fremont factory

¶ “Campaigns Go Public With Anger At Democratic National Committee As First Debate Looms” • The Democratic National Committee’s rules on debates have made some presidential candidates angry enough to complain publicly. Qualification for debates is an issue, but some candidates are angry that there will be no debate on climate change. [CNN]

¶ “Hydropower Project – Carson Dives Into Water-Generated Energy” • In Colorado, leaders at Fort Carson signed to purchase water-powered electricity starting in May 2019, increasing the installation’s commitment to investing in renewable energy. The electricity is generated at a new 7.5-MW power facility at Pueblo Dam. []

Power plant at Pueblo Dam (Photo courtesy of Chris Woodka)

¶ “Consumers Energy Starts New Era For Renewable Energy In Michigan with Approval Of Clean Energy Plan” • Consumers Energy received approval from state regulators for its Clean Energy Plan. It puts Consumers Energy on a path to eliminate coal and reduce carbon emissions over 90% by 2040 through use of clean energy resources. [EnerCom Inc]

¶ “Crown Chooses Wind Power In Long-Term Renewable Energy Initiative” • Crown Holdings, Inc signed a 15-year Virtual Power Purchase Agreement with Longroad Energy to use wind power in all of its US and Canadian beverage can plants, starting July 1, 2020. The electricity will come from a wind farm in Knox County, Texas. [Windpower Engineering]

Have a dazzlingly brilliant day.

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June 7 Energy News

June 7, 2019

Science and Technology:

¶ “Large Ebola Outbreaks New Normal, Says WHO” • The world is entering “a new phase” in which large outbreaks of deadly diseases like Ebola are a “new normal,” according to the World Health Organization. Climate change, rainforest exploitation, emerging diseases, population pressures are among the issues making outbreaks worse. [BBC]

Grave of an Ebola victim (Getty Images)

¶ “Global Aquaculture Poses Serious Risks To The Environment” • Global aquaculture, one of the fastest growing food sectors on the planet, is putting lots of seafood on our plates these days. Scenarios of change require that the aquaculture industry design effective and efficient use and protection of the oceans if it is to be sustainable. [CleanTechnica]


¶ “France Among Members Putting EU 2020 Renewables Target At Risk” • France is one of six EU nations unlikely to hit their 2020 renewable energy targets, putting the EU’s 20% goal at risk, a report from the European Court of Auditors says. The French goal is to source 23% of its energy from renewable sources by 2020. []

Renewable energy

¶ “All New British Columbia Light-Duty Vehicles Will Be Zero Emissions By 2040” • The government of British Columbia passed the Zero-Emission Vehicles Act, requiring all new light-duty vehicles like cars and trucks sold there be zero emissions vehicles by 2040. A BC Energy, Mines and Petroleum division representative answered questions. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Atlassian Is First Australian Tech Company To Join RE100 Initiative” • Atlassian, an enterprise software company, is the first Australian tech company to join RE100, a global corporate initiative bringing together businesses committed to 100% renewable electricity. Its new goal is to be 100% renewably powered by 2025. [Architecture and Design]

Interior of Atlassian Sydney office

¶ “Europe’s Second Hybrid Renewable Power Park Opens On Off-Grid Greek Island” • Greece’s Public Power Corp launched Europe’s second hybrid renewable energy park, combining wind and hydroelectric power, on the Aegean island of Ikaria. The 6.9-MW project will replace part of the power now produced by an oil-fired station. []


¶ “Renewables Offer UK ‘Nuclear Gap’ Insurance” • Increasing renewable energy capacity would provide an insurance policy against a possible ‘nuclear gap’ in the UK’s low-carbon power pipeline caused by early closure of ageing reactors, according to a new report, “Cracks in the System,” by the Energy and Climate Intelligence Unit. [reNEWS]

Wind farm (reNEWS image)

¶ “Fossil Fuel Pain Increases For Auto Makers As Ford Shutters Bridgend Engine Factory” • Nothing shows the approaching disaster for traditional automakers more clearly than having to close an engine making facility due to lack of demand for internal combustion engines. And lack of demand is why Ford is closing an engine factory in Wales. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Northern Ireland On Brink Of Meeting 40% Green Energy Target” • Northern Ireland is closing in on a target of generating 40% of all electricity from renewable sources by next year. Data from the Department for the Economy indicate that 38.6% of the country’s electricity came from homegrown green sources over the 2018-19 fiscal year. [Belfast Telegraph]

Wind turbines (Giuseppe Milo, Wikimedia Commons)


¶ “GM Claims It Can Sell Affordable Electric Cars That Are Profitable” • GM president Mark Ruess told an audience at the UBS Global Industrials and Transportation Conference that GM will soon be able to sell electric cars at “very average transaction prices.” He said GM’s EVs are being engineered to make money at low cost. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “GE Bet On Fossil Fuels, Lost Nearly $200 Billion Misjudging Renewable Energy Transition, Study Says” • General Electric’s profitability collapse over the past few years can be largely attributed to the company’s inability to judge the accelerating pace of the global energy transition away from fossil fuels and toward renewables, a study claims. [Electrek]

GE Haliade-X turbine

¶ “Michael Bloomberg Promises $500 Million To Help End Coal” • Michael R. Bloomberg, the former mayor of New York City, will donate $500 million to a new campaign to close every coal-fired power plant in the United States and halt the growth of natural gas, his foundation said. The campaign will focus on state and local governments. [The New York Times]

¶ “US Offshore Wind Race Heats Up, Now Connecticut In The Mix” • All that lies between The Constitution State and 2,000 MW of clean electricity is Governor Ned Lamont’s signature, and it looks like he’ll sign the state onto offshore wind just in time to knock Connecticut’s Millstone nuclear power plant out of the picture. [CleanTechnica]

Block Island wind farm (Photo, cropped, via Ørsted)

¶ “Navajo Tribal Utility Authority To Receive $94 Million Loan Supporting Renewable Energy” • The Navajo Generating Station is expected to close in December 2019, and the Four Corners region is transitioning from coal to renewables. A $94 million loan from USDA to build a solar farm should help the transition. [Utah Public Radio]

¶ “US Senators Collins, King Announce $200,000 in Grant to Ocean Renewable Power Company” • Susan Collins (R) and Angus King (I), the US Senators from Maine, announced a $200,000 DOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy grant to the Ocean Renewable Power Company, based in Portland. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

Have a magically superb day.

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June 6 Energy News

June 6, 2019

Science and Technology:

¶ “Engie’s HomeBiogas Turns Household Waste Into Renewable Natural Gas With Ease” • Engie invested in HomeBiogas in the middle of last year and is now working with its team to grow the business. HomeBiogas sells its products directly to consumers, so Engie’s global reach and significant capital represent huge opportunities. [CleanTechnica]

Homebiogas unit


¶ “Low Margins, Cheaper Modules Make India Lowest-Cost Producer Of Solar PV” • IRENA issued a report, Renewable Power Generation Costs in 2018, comparing costs of solar installations in 19 countries. The report finds India as the country with lowest cost. The cost of installations in India was $793/kW, compared to $1,427/kW in the US. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Sydney Opera House Has Star Ambitions With Renewable Energy PPA And Sustainability” • The Sydney Opera House might have “sustainability in its DNA” but there is still a huge energy bill to take care of every year. Now with a new power purchase agreement (PPA), that energy bill will be both stabilized and renewable. [The Fifth Estate]

Sydney Opera House

¶ “Spain’s Iberdrola Seeks To Build Europe’s Largest Solar Farm” • Iberdrola SA is working to build what it says will be Europe’s largest solar farm at a cost of €300 million ($337 million). The Spanish utility said it has started the process with the country’s Ecological Transition ministry to build a 590-MW farm in the Western region of Extremadura. [Bloomberg]

¶ “Jaguar Land Rover And BMW Will Collaborate On Electric Car Powertrains” • Driven by the need to develop efficient, affordable electric car powertrains, convergence in the auto industry continues. Jaguar Land Rover and BMW are the latest companies to say they will work together to create EV technologies that both will share. [CleanTechnica]

Jaguar i-PACE

¶ “Nation’s top solar university commits to 100% renewable energy” • Australia’s top solar university research hub, the University of New South Wales, has announced it will switch to 100% renewable energy by 2020. The university underpinned the goal with a 15-year PPA with the Sunraysia solar farm in western NSW. [Energy Matters]

¶ “Household Energy Bills ‘Subsidizing’ Scotland’s Nuclear Submarines” • The cost of energy in the UK is inflated partly because it subsidizes nuclear submarines, academic research suggested. Experts told MPs the UK government remains committed to civilian nuclear power as it cross-subsidises the country’s nuclear deterrent. [The Scotsman]

Nuclear submarine at the Firth of Clyde

¶ “African Wnd Pipeline ‘Hits 18 GW'” • Africa’s wind project pipeline stood at 18 GW at the end of the first quarter of 2019, according to a report by Wood Mackenzie Power & Renewables. Some 6.5 GW is at an advanced stage of development, although the report noted that the project realization rate remains low in the region. [reNEWS]

¶ “Home Solar Panel Installations Fall By 94% As Subsidies Cut” • The UK’s Labour party has accused the government of “actively dismantling” the solar power industry after new installations by households collapsed by 94% last month. The accusation is that the government is prioritizing fracking over household costs, jobs, and emissions cuts. [The Guardian]

Installation (Ashley Cooper | Global Warming Images | Alamy)


¶ “Inslee Unveils Plan To Combat Climate Change Through Foreign Policy” • Democratic presidential candidate Jay Inslee released a plan that looks to reimagine American foreign policy to combat climate change. The plan is the third policy roll out from Inslee’s campaign that aims to link a range of issues to climate change. [CNN]

¶ “US Energy Storage Market Grows 232% In First Quarter” • The US deployed a total of 148.8 MW of energy storage in the first quarter of 2019, making it the strongest quarter ever for energy storage. It broke the previous record, set in the previous quarter, by 6% and grew 232% over the amount deployed in the first quarter of 2018. [CleanTechnica]

Energy storage (GE Renewable Energy image)

¶ “Value Of Solar Debate Accelerates In Minnesota” • The total value of residential solar installations for utilities consists of two parts: the value of generated electricity to the grid, and the value of avoided infrastructure costs. That second part is difficult to assess, but the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission is trying to learn what it is. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Anheuser-Busch Signs 310-MW PPA With Recurrent Energy To Secure 100% Goal By 2021” • Anheuser-Busch signed a PPA for the electric output of a 310-MW solar farm to be built in West Texas. The Maplewood solar project is to be operational by 2021, at which point 100% of Anheuser-Busch’s electricity will be from renewable energy sources. [CleanTechnica]

Anheuser-Busch graphic (Anheuser-Busch image)

¶ “Madison-Backed Rural Solar Energy Projects To Begin Operations” • The first of five new rural solar energy projects getting financial support from the city of Madison, Wisconsin, will begin operations in Argyle by mid-June, city officials said. The city is investing $1.4 million to support the five new solar PV systems. []

¶ “Solar Park Of 340 MW To Power Pegasus’ Arizona Data Center” • Pegasus Group Holdings, a renewable energy project and technology infrastructure developer, plans to build a 340-MW solar park in Arizona to power a new data center in Mohave County. The solar-powered data center is touted as the largest facility of its kind globally. [Renewables Now]

Have a remarkably exhilarating day.

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June 5 Energy News

June 5, 2019


¶ “How Utility Schemes Make Customers Pay $1 Billion A Year To Bail Out Dying Coal Plants” • Big electric utilities are cooking their books to get customers to bail out old plants, as they push to keep operating costly, dirty, and dangerous coal, nuclear, and natural gas plants instead of using less costly clean renewable energy. [Environmental Working Group]

Coal-burning power plant

Science and Technology:

¶ “Global Carbon Dioxide Measurements Spike To Record High” • The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has announced that global carbon dioxide concentrations measured last month were the highest since it started recording them more than half a century ago. CO₂ peaked at 414.7 parts per million in May. [HuffPost]

¶ “Climate Change Is Seriously Threatening Human Health” • Climate change poses a major threat to human health and is already having global impact by spreading infectious diseases and exacerbating mental health problems, a report warned. Extreme heat and more frequent floods increase the risk of diseases and injuries. [CNN]

Children playing (Yasuyoshi Chiea | AFP | AFP | Getty Images)


¶ “Climate Change Will Cost Companies $1 Trillion. It Also Means Huge Opportunities” • A CDP study says that climate change is likely to cost the world’s largest public companies nearly $1 trillion over the next five years. But the opportunities for new products and services to reduce environmental damage could be worth much more. [CNN]

¶ “Row Over Chinese Coal Plant Near Kenya World Heritage Site Of Lamu” • Kenyan campaigners who fear their country is turning its back on its green goals hope to stop construction of a coal plant that would increase Kenya’s greenhouse gas emissions by 700%. The coal-fired plant they are protesting would be the country’s first. [BBC]

Lamu, proposed site of coal-burning plant (Getty Images)

¶ “Chile’s Cheap Power – Sign Of A Solar Future?” • In Chile, Spain’s Solarpack Corp Tecnologica has begun installing the solar panels at its Granja Sola plant. The plant is due to be online by the end of this year. When it is, it will become the cheapest generator of electricity anywhere in the world, at $29.10/MWh, or 2.91¢/kWh. [Forbes]

¶ “Swedish Electric Autonomous Truck Now In Operation Through 2020” • T-Pod, a fully autonomous electric truck, is operating on Swedish roads, with approval from government authorities. German logistics company DB Schneker and Swedish transport company Einride, a specialist in self-driving vehicles, are behind the project. [CleanTechnica]

T-Pod autonomous truck (Photo courtesy of Einride)

¶ “Concentrated Solar Power Costs Fell 46% From 2010 To 2018” • According to IRENA, the weighted average levelized cost of energy (LCOE) of CSP projects in 2018 was 18.6¢/kWh, down 26% from 2017 and 46% lower than in 2010. IRENA said the main reason behind the decline in the LCOE is improved supply chain in China. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Renewable Hydrogen Getting Cheaper, Australia Could Lead Global Market” • Some of Australia’s leading energy experts say that renewable hydrogen is beginning to reach cost parity with some fossil fuel equivalents. Hydrogen could emerge as a high potential export industry for Australia, worth tens of billions of dollars. [RenewEconomy]

Hydrogen plant

¶ “Chile To Close Eight Coal-Fired Power Stations Amid Renewables Push” • Chile announced it would close eight coal-fired power stations over the next five years as part of a plan to switch to 100% renewable energy by 2040. Chile had been increasing reliance on coal, as imports of natural gas from Argentina stopped. [Buenos Aires Times]

¶ “Wind To Help Drive Finnish Carbon Neutral Plan” • Finland is planning to cut taxes on wind turbines as part of a national plan to go carbon neutral by 2035. Policy measures would include reducing property tax on wind turbines and eliminating double taxation of electric energy for both pumped storage and smaller batteries. [reNEWS]

Ajos wind farm in Finland (OX2 image)


¶ “Wall Street Issues ‘Peak Car’ Warning” • A number of Wall Street cognoscenti have begun warning that the world has reached the “peak car” point. Last week, John Murphy, managing director of Bank of America, told a conference, “The industry is right now staring down the barrel of what we think is going to be a significant downturn.” [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Judges Give Both Sides A Grilling In Youth Climate Case Against The Government” • In the case of Juliana v United States, three federal judges heard arguments about whether young people have a constitutional right to be protected from climate change. They pushed skeptically on the arguments of both sides of the issue. [The New York Times]

Lead plaintiff Kelsey Juliana greeting supporters outside the Portland Oregon courthouse (Andrew Selsky | Associated Press)

¶ “Warren Kicks Off Midwest Swing With Plan For What ‘Green New Deal’ Might Look Like” • Sen Elizabeth Warren rolled out a multifaceted plan that offers new insight into how she would implement the Green New Deal, ahead of a two-day Midwest presidential campaign swing aimed at repudiating President Trump’s economic policies. [CNN]

¶ “Arizona’s Salt River Project Utility Challenged On High Rooftop Solar Rates” • The Center for Biological Diversity took legal action in Arizona federal court this week to challenge the Salt River Project, an Arizona utility, for ongoing discrimination against residential solar customers who had their rates bumped up 60% in 2015. [CleanTechnica]

Have a comfortably glorious day.

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June 4 Energy News

June 4, 2019


¶ “UK And Trump Miles Apart On Climate Change” • The British parliament declared a ‘climate emergency’ in May, and a day later the government’s chief advisory committee on climate change recommended cutting the UK’s greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2050. Meanwhile, Trump mocks science and promotes fossil fuels. [CNN]

Protest (Chris J Ratcliffe | Getty Images Europe | Getty Images)

¶ “500 Gas Car Fires Per Day – Can We Please Get Serious About Electric Car Battery Fires?” • A recent FEMA report said that in the US fires in conventional vehicles give us an “annual average of 345 deaths; 1,300 injuries; and $1.1 billion in property loss.” But the headlines we read and the news we hear focus on the few fires that happen in EVs. [CleanTechnica]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Environment Insurance Risk Assessment In The Face Of Climate Change” • The last few years have seen increases in the frequency and intensity of extreme weather events. Adverse atmospheric events are poignant reminders of how vulnerable our society is across a broad range of threats posed by extreme environmental events. [Advanced Science News]



¶ “Greenko Raises $495 Million In Equity Funding For 2.4 GW Of Storage Projects” • Renwable energy company Greenko Energy Holdings secured Equity Commitment for two Storage Projects, each with a capacity of 1.2 GW. The projects are expected to be constructed and operational in 2022, with a capital outlay of $2 billion. [The Hindu BusinessLine]

¶ “Electric Vehicle Sales Up 70% In Europe” • The European passenger plug-in vehicle market saw 37,000 registrations in April, growing 30% compared to the same period last year. It was a good performance considering that the overall market is still in the red (-1% in April). And April’s fully electric vehicles jumped 70% year over year. [CleanTechnica]

Renault ZOE

¶ “70% Of India’s Top 100 Corporates Are Moving Towards Renewable Energy” • A new WWF-India report, ‘Renewable Energy Demand in India: Corporate Buyers’ Perspective’, says corporates constitute over 50% of India’s electricity demand. And about 70% of the top 100 companies on the NSE are already procuring renewable energy. [India Today]

¶ “The Winds Of Change Blow For Japan’s Energy Mix” • Japan was once thought of as a nuclear pioneer. Then the Fukushima Disaster made it scramble to import fossil fuels. Now, the fossil fuels are being replaced with renewable energy. A recent report produced by Wood Mackenzie says offshore wind could increase 62-fold over the next decade. [Power Technology]

Wind farm (Credit: Σ64)

¶ “Gupta Secures China EPC Contract For $350 Million Cultana Solar Farm” • Sanjeev Gupta’s 280-MW Cultana solar farm, near his Whyalla Steelworks in South Australia, is a step closer to construction. His majority-owned Simec Energy Australia signed a partnership agreement with Shanghai Electric to build and complete the plant. [RenewEconomy]

¶ “South Korea Confirms Plans To Step Up Shift To Renewable Power” • Asia’s fourth-largest economy is shifting towards clean energy amid growing criticism of its air quality. South Korea’s energy ministry said it finalized plans to raise the share of the country’s power output generated from renewable sources to as much as 35% by 2040. [The Indian Express]

Air pollution

¶ “Germany Goes 47% Renewable So Far This Year” • So far this year, renewables have produced 47% of all electricity supplied to the public grid in Germany, according the Fraunhofer Institute’s Head of Department New Devices and Technologies. This is significantly above last year’s clean energy’s share, which was 40.6% of generation. [Energy Live News]

¶ “Coal And Defence Leaders Demand ‘Drastic’ Climate Action” • The end of human civilization could come as soon as 2050, a report warns. It was written by David Spratt, a Research Director at the Melbourne center, and Ian Dunlop, former chairman of the Australian Coal Association and an international oil, gas and coal industry executive. [The Mandarin]

Climate change (Getty Images)


¶ “Joe Biden Unveils ‘Middle-Ground’ Climate Plan With 2050 Target, Room For Fossil Fuels” • Joe Biden promised to reverse the Trump administration’s deregulatory effort and set the US on course to hit net-zero emissions by 2050 with a plan he released as an alternative to the Green New Deal. His plan is short on details, however. [HuffPost]

¶ “Wisconsin Solar Dispute Goes To Court After Regulators Punt” • Five years after a victory on a similar issue in Iowa, Barry Shear, the owner Iowa-based Eagle Point Solar LLC, sued We Energies and the Wisconsin Public Service Commission. The utility had refused to let solar arrays on Milwaukee city buildings connect to its power grid. [E&E News]

Solar energy system (Eagle Point Solar image)

¶ “Teen Activists Face US Government In Crucial Hearing Over Climate Trial” • Youth activists are facing off with the US federal government in an Oregon courthouse, where their attorneys will petition a panel of judges to let their climate case go to trial. Until it does, their attorneys will argue, fossil fuel development should be halted on public lands. [The Guardian]

¶ “Three Waters To Flow For Minnesota Agency” • Scout Clean Energy is to supply electricity to the Minnesota Municipal Power Agency from the 200-MW Three Waters wind farm in Jackson County. The project will feature up to 71 GE 2.82-MW turbines spread across about 18,200 hectares. Construction is slated for 2021. [reNEWS]

Have a simply magnificent day.

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June 3 Energy News

June 3, 2019


¶ “China Is Eating Our Lunch, And What We Can Do About It” • Solar, wind, batteries, and their industrial mass production use common raw materials and processes that are available in most countries. There is nothing in them that is exclusive to China. And rare earth metals are not all that rare. But we cannot afford to be complacent. [CleanTechnica]

Clean resources (NRDC courtesy photo)

¶ “Ohio Utilities May Do Politics Better Than Electricity” • Ohio electric companies seem to spend as much time on politics as on electricity. Consider House Bill 6, which the Ohio House passed 53-43. It’s a ratepayer-funded bailout of two nuclear plants, pushed by electric companies that only recently had panted for “deregulation.” []

Science and Technology:

¶ “Some Of Pennsylvania’s Iconic Tree Species Might Not Survive Climate Change” • Thousands of acres of the mountain maple, American beech, balsam fir, paper birch, and quaking aspen that produce some of Pennsylvania’s most vibrant spring, summer, and fall scenes are at risk because of climate change, a state agency said. [The Philadelphia Inquirer]

Trees in Pennsylvania (Pennsylvania Bureau of Forestry)


¶ “China Electric Vehicle Sales Up To 5.4% Market Share” • After a first quarter with surging sales, April saw the Chinese plug-in EV market cool down a little, to some 100,000 registrations. That means it was up only 34% year over year. With the mainstream market still in the red, the April plug-in EV share reached an amazing 6.2%. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “PM To Challenge Trump’s Approach On Climate” • Theresa May will raise the issue of climate change with Donald Trump during his upcoming visit to the UK, Downing Street has told BBC News. The confirmation coincides with UK climate researchers asking the prime minister to “robustly challenge” President Trump on the topic. [BBC]

Protest (Jim West | Science Photo Library)

¶ “MNRE Invites Preliminary Proposals For Gravity-Based Storage Project” • India’s Ministry of New and Renewable Energy requested proposals for projects that store energy by gravity or  that make hydrogen from seawater by use of PVs. The ministry believes that with growing renewable generation, more energy storage will be needed. [Mercom India]

¶ “Vena Commissions 95-MW Solar Park In South Australia, Plans Extension, Storage” • Vena Energy Australia said it has opened its 95-MW Tailem Bend solar park in South Australia. It is working on a similar-sized second phase project and a battery storage plan. The PV park is expected to supply enough for about 40,000 homes. [Renewables Now]

Solar park (Image: Equis Pte Ltd)

¶ “Total Inaugurates 2nd Solar Power Plant In Japan” • Natural gas and low-carbon electricity provider Total started up commercial operation of its second solar power plant in Japan. The 25-MW solar power plant in Iwate Prefecture on Japan’s Honshu Island, will generate enough energy to serve over 8,000 typical Japanese households. [Smart Energy]

¶ “Energy Prices Drop In Europe As Cheaper Renewable Energy Fights For Market Share” • Gas and coal prices are plunging in Europe, hurt by the relentless threat of ever-cheaper clean energy that’s gaining market share and pushing out the fossil fuels in the process. [The National]

Burbo Bank wind farm (Reuters)


¶ “Lyft Offers Portland Drivers Free EV Charging” • Until Lyft and Uber can replace all of their traditional cars with robotaxis, both are encouraging drivers to use plug-in hybrid or battery electric cars. According to Mashable, Lyft drivers in Portland, Oregon, will be able to recharge their plug-in hybrid or fully electric cars for free, starting in July. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Massachusetts Officials Recommend Another 1.6 GW of Offshore Wind” • Massachusetts officials have recommended that the state double down on its offshore wind program and sign contracts for another 1,600 MW of capacity in two solicitations to be held in the early 2020s. They were encouraged by low bids in recent auctions. [Greentech Media]

Building the Block Island wind farm

¶ “Illinois Solar Energy Association Announces 2019 Tesla Model X Raffle” • The Illinois Solar Energy Association has been hosting annual fundraising raffles to win a Tesla for the past six years. This year, anyone in the US can help support the ISEA’s solar advocacy and enter for a chance to win a Tesla Model X by visiting the ISEA store. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Irish Solar Energy Developer BNRG Strikes Financing Deal For Us Projects” • Irish solar energy developer BNRG renewables has struck a financing deal for the first projects in a US portfolio which it predicts will grow to a total value of $375 million (€336m). The first $40 million investment is for development of a 33 MW of US projects. [Irish Times]

Have an irrefutably gorgeous day.

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June 2 Energy News

June 2, 2019

Seventh Anniversary Post!


¶ “Trump War On Climate Science Will Cost American Lives” • Because of Trump maladministration policies, Americans will have more health issues and die sooner. It is truly amazing how many people are okay with killing their friends, family members, and even themselves, with fossil fuel pollution for the sake of gaining political power. [CleanTechnica]

Pump jack

¶ “No Joke: We Should Build More Solar & Wind Than Needed – It’s Cheaper” • One entrenched, and very prevalent, idea is that all the power generated by renewable resources must be sold as it is generated. This old idea ignores a fundamental proposition: oversizing and proactively curtailing wind and solar when the demand is low.  [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Midwestern GOP: We Voted For Trump, But We’re Not Out To Wreck The Environment” • The reality of floods and the warnings from respected local university scientists make a difference with Midwestern Republican suburban-exurban voters. They assess climate change differently when they see risks to the Great Lakes and clean water. [The Hill]

Pigs in a flood (© Getty Images)

¶ “Climate Change: Australia’s Election Has Far-Reaching Consequences” • Despite being condemned by both the UN and the IPCC for continued inaction, newly re-elected, pro-coal Prime Minister Scott Morrison has repeatedly told Australian media outlets that the country is set to reach their emissions reduction targets “in a canter.” [Forbes]

Science and Technology:

¶ “El Niño Is Back. Is It To Blame For Our Severe Weather Woes?” • After a spring that soaked parts of California and saw destructive tornadoes rip through towns stretching from Texas to Pennsylvania, scientists are paying close attention to how much of the country’s recent severe weather is due to the return of El Niño. []

Arkansas flood (Yell County Sheriff’s Department via AP | AP)

¶ “NASA To Bore Beneath Europa With Nuclear-Powered ‘Tunnelbot’ In Alien Life Search” • The planet Jupiter has many moons. One of them, Europa, has liquid water ocean beneath its thick icy shell. NASA is planning for a nuclear-powered drone to drill through Europa’s icy shell in an attempt to find alien life in its oceans. []

¶ “Rising Temperatures Cause Epic Flood” • Storms have become much stronger than they ever were and the people who live in the central US have recently experienced one of those fierce storms that were currently in the news. The storms break the record of the wettest 12 months in the US since they began recording rain in 1895. [Science Times]

Cows on a temporary island (Photo: werner22brigitte)

¶ “Rise In Methane Emissions Threatens Paris Agreements” • The levels of methane in the atmosphere are rising with rapid and unexpected rates. According to the latest report by the UN climate science panel, one tonne of the gas is considered to have 28 times the global warming potential of one tonne of carbon dioxide. [The Green Optimistic]


¶ “Hyundai Debuts Electric Double Decker Bus With 186 Mile Range” • At the Land, Infrastructure, and Transport Technology Fair in South Korea last week, Hyundai unveiled a 70-passenger double decker electric bus. With a 384-kWh water cooled polymer battery, its range is 186 miles on one charge, and it can be recharged in just 72 minutes. [CleanTechnica]

Hyundai double decker electric bus

¶ “Chinese Tesla Model 3 Price Crushes BMW 3 Series And Mercedes C-Class Prices” • Tesla launched ordering for the Tesla Model 3 made in the Shanghai Gigafactory. The 328,000 RMB ($47,475) price for the Standard Range Plus is before local incentives, and crushes the fossil rivals in the same class that are made in China. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Nigeria’s Unreliable Electricity Costs Its Economy $29 Billion A Year – Solar Power Would Save Billions” • Lengthy power cuts are pretty much a daily experience in Nigeria. The country’s epileptic power supply has been identified by businesses as the second biggest obstacle to doing business in the country, after a lack of access to finance. [Quartz]

Cleaning solar panels (Noel Kokou Tadegnon | Reuters)

¶ “IRENA Says Falling Renewable Energy Costs Will Drive Global Climate Action” • Lower cost of production and cheaper rates of power will strengthen the business case and solidify the role of renewables as the engine of transformation for global energy, the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) said in its latest report. [Arabian Industry]


¶ “Coal Industry’s Survival In Question As Companies Go Green” • In May, at the Virginia Coal and Energy Alliance’s 40th Annual Conference, a lobbyist for Dominion Energy, the industry’s best local customer, gave the keynote speech. In it, he highlighted the company’s agreement with Smithfield Foods to use hog waste to generate electricity. [Voice of America]

Dominon Energy coal-burning power plant (AP photo)

¶ “US Farmers Hit By Triple Whammy – Torrential Rain, Tornadoes, And Trump” • Farming is one of the toughest ways to make a living. Despite fancy new technology, government price supports, and advances in science, it is still a hard struggle fraught with challenge from weather. And then there is the pressure put upon farmers by politicians. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Saturday Marks Start Of Glenwood Springs Being 7th US City To Use 100% Renewable Energy” • Glenwood Springs, Colorado, is now the seventh US city powered 100% by renewable energy. The city now gets 6.8% of its electric power from hydroelectric  generation, with the remainder being supplied by wind power sources. [Summit Daily News]

Have an extraordinarily positive day.

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June 1 Energy News

June 1, 2019


¶ “A Huge Energy Storage Deal Raises Major Doubts” • After a Japanese maker of gas turbines and a US owner of salt caverns teamed up to develop a massive energy storage project, based on hydrogen and compressed air, doubts have come up. Neither technology has a track record. Neither customers nor funding have been identified. [MIT Technology Review]

Wind turbines (Louis Moncouyoux, Unsplash)

¶ “Wood Mackenzie Highlights China’s Solar Dominance In New Stunning Visualization” • In a global solar PV market outlook, leading energy market intelligence firm Wood Mackenzie Power & Renewables published a stunning visualization that displays China’s rapid rise to dominance of the solar industry, starting in 2011. [CleanTechnica]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Microbe-Grown Electronics: An Alternative To Plastic” • Our cellphones, laptops, headphones, and watches are all objects that we depend on, that we use constantly, and that are filled with plastic. And while electronics are often thought of as inevitably reliant on plastic, there are natural alternatives. A company called Aivan is demonstrating them. [CleanTechnica]

Headphones (Photos via Aivan)

¶ “Climate Change Is Already Affecting Global Food Production – Unequally” • The world’s top 10 crops – barley, cassava, maize, oil palm, rapeseed, rice, sorghum, soybean, sugarcane, and wheat – supply in total 83% of all calories grown on cropland. Research shows climate change is affecting production of these key resources. [Science Daily]


¶ “UK Goes Two Weeks Without Coal Power” • The UK has gone two weeks without any power generated from coal-fired sources, setting a new record, according to the National Grid Electricity System Operator. The last coal generation came off the system at 3.12pm on 17 May, it said. The previous record was eight days, one hour and 25 minutes, set on 9 May. [reNEWS]

Polluting coal generation (Pixabay image)

¶ “1.5X Oversubscription In India’s Latest Solar Tender” • Finally, a ray of hope for the Indian renewable energy market with the latest and fourth national-level solar power tender issued by the Solar Energy Corporation of India oversubscribed. Recently, a slew of state and central-level tenders had been unsubscribed by project developers. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Communities Around Australia Are Taking Clean Energy Into Their Own Hands, The Indi Win Built On That” • The rural Victorian electorate of Indi is making history with the election of Independent Dr Helen Haines, after another Independent, Cathy McGowan, retired. She won partly because of a climate platform based on energy democracy. [The Guardian]

Dr Helen Haines (Supplied photo)

¶ “Breaking! Tesla Model 3 Blasts Into Asia Pacific Region As Configurator Opens For Six More Countries” • Tesla opened up the Tesla Model 3 vehicle configurator to a handful of new countries in the greater Asia Pacific region today as the electric car company began stretching its wings beyond its initial Asian beachhead in China. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Siemens Gamesa Confirms Yunlin Job” • Siemens Gamesa has been confirmed as turbine supplier for WPD’s 640-MW Yunlin offshore wind farm in Taiwan. The project will feature 80 of the 8.0-167 model, with the manufacturer also providing a 15-year long-term service agreement. Construction is expected to start in 2019. [reNEWS]

Siemens Gamesa turbine (Siemens Gamesa image)

¶ “Food markets in Madrid to be powered with renewables in 2019” • Spanish renewable power marketer Gesternova SA has won a contract to supply electricity to food markets in Madrid throughout 2019, the company announced. The customer is MercaMadrid SA, a food wholesaler and manager of produce markets in Madrid. [Renewables Now]

¶ “Hungary Plans €1 Billion Greenhouse City Powered By Renewable Energy” • Hungary has revealed plans to build a new carbon-neutral greenhouse-filled farming city to be powered by renewable energy sources. The €1 billion agricultural center is proposed for the border between Hungary, Austria and Slovakia. It will cover 330 hectares. [Dezeen]

Greenhouse (Pixabay image)

¶ “UK Clean Power Jobs ‘Fall 30%'” • UK jobs in the renewable energy sector have fallen by about 30% since 2015, according to a report from Prospect, a trade union for professionals. It said direct employment across offshore and onshore wind, solar, bioenergy and other renewables was about 26,200 in 2017, down from 36,700 in 2014. [reNEWS]


¶ “Duke Energy Acquires 60-MW Solar Project In Colorado” • Duke Energy Renewables, a subsidiary of Duke Energy, has acquired the 60-MW Palmer solar project in El Paso County, Colorado, south of Colorado Springs. With more than 200,000 solar panels, the project will supply enough energy for 19,000 households. [Compelo]

Solar project (Photo courtesy of Duke Energy Corporation)

¶ “Ohio’s Nuclear Bailout Plan Balloons To Embrace Coal” • While other states embrace renewable energy, Ohio is heading backward. A bill passed this week by the Ohio House would subsidize nuclear and coal power while cutting state support for renewable energy and energy efficiency. And utility customers will foot the bill. [InsideClimate News]

¶ “Pilgrim’s Shutdown Ends Nuclear Power Era In Massachusetts” • It took about five hours for the Pilgrim nuclear power plant in Plymouth to shut down permanently after 47 years of generating electricity. Technicians reduced Pilgrim’s power output gradually before launching the final step of inserting control rods at 5:28 pm. [Valley News]

Have an enjoyably easy day.

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May 31 Energy News

May 31, 2019

Science and Technology:

¶ “How Much Can Painting A Roof White Reduce Its Tempera-ture?” • It has long been known that painting a building’s roof white reflects sunlight and reduces its temperature. But by how much and are there downsides to doing it? A cool roof can save air-conditioning costs by as much as 40%, but it keeps the roof cool in the winter also. [BBC]

Keeping cool with a white roof (Getty Images)

¶ “‘They Just Keep Washing In’: Scientists See Evidence Of Climate Change In Deaths Of Thousands Of Seabirds In The Bering Sea” • Starting in October 2016, thousands of carcasses of tufted puffins turned, up one after another, on the shores of St Paul Island, in the Bering Sea. A paper explains how their deaths are evidence of climate change. [National Post]


¶ “India Allocates 720 MW In Second Solar-Wind Hybrid Auction” • Following the disappointing response of project developers to the Solar Energy Corporation of India’s second solar-wind hybrid tender, the financial bidding round of the tender was recently concluded. Bidders showed a lack of interest, but their prices were low. [CleanTechnica]

Hybrid plant, though probably not in India (Pexels image)

¶ “German Solar Association Calls For Removal Of Pending Subsidy Cap” • The German government has a 52-GW cap on its Feed-in Tariff for solar energy. The German solar capacity has skyrocketed, growing from 10 GW in 2009 to nearly 46 GW at the end of 2018, but growth is stalling, and the solar industry is calling for a continued tariff. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Spanish Floater Swings Into Action” • The W2Power multi-turbine floating offshore wind platform has started generating power at a shipyard in Gran Canaria, ahead of deployment at a test site in the Canary Islands. The platform has two 6MW turbines. Four companies involved are Ingeteam, EnerOcean, Ghenova, Tension Tech International. [reNEWS]

W2Power platform and turbines (Ghenova image)

¶ “Bill Gates Partners With EU To Launch New €100 Million Clean Energy Fund” • The European Commission, the European Investment Bank, and Breakthrough Energy Ventures chaired by Bill Gates, announced the establishment of a new €100 million fund to support clean energy investments in Europe across clean five energy sectors. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Welsh Grant Minesto Tidal Cash” • The Welsh government awarded €14.9 million of EU funding to marine energy developer Minesto for the next phase of the company’s tidal power project in Wales. The grant is to support the continued development and operations of Minesto’s Holyhead Deep site six kilometers off the coast of Anglesey. [reNEWS]

Minesto tidal kite (Minesto image)

¶ “IEA Predicts 250 Million EVs On The Road By 2030” • Last year, the International Energy Agency predicted there would be 125 million EVs on the road worldwide by 2030. This year, it has doubled that prediction to 250 million EVs by 2030, assuming the 25 nations that are part of the EV30@30 program honor their commitments. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Enercon, Enerjisa share 1-GW Turkish Onshore Spoils” • German company Enercon and local outfit Enerjisa have been successful in Turkey’s latest 1-GW onshore wind auction, according to the country’s Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources. The winners were awarded 500 MW each, covering four 250-MW projects in the country. [reNEWS]

Wind turbine (Enercon image)


¶ “Facebook Moving Closer To 100% Renewables By 2020” • According to its website, Facebook has contracted for over 3.5 GW of renewable electricity, which is 75% of what it uses. Now it is working on the last 25% by making direct investments, starting with the 379-MW Prospero Solar project in Andrews County, Texas. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Gov Polis Signs Seven Bills On Renewable Energy, But What Does That Mean For Colorado’s Energy Future?” • Signing seven bills on renewable energy, Colorado Gov Jared Polis explained, means cleaner air; “green” jobs that can’t be outsourced; and lower electric rates, thanks to the decreasing costs of wind and solar power. [The Denver Post]

Girls waiting for the signing (Joe Amon | The Denver Post)

¶ “Utah Solar Project To Deliver Clean Energy To Facebook” • First Solar Inc has announced that its 122-MW Cove Mountain 2 solar plant will support Facebook’s Eagle Mountain Data Center in Utah through a power purchase agreement (PPA) with PacifiCorp’s Rocky Mountain Power, which is part of Berkshire Hathaway Energy. [Solar Industry]

¶ “Utah Aims To Shatter Records With 1,000-MW Energy Storage Plant” • A one-of-a-kind facility in Utah would combine compressed air storage in salt caverns with hydrogen storage, large flow batteries and solid-oxide fuel cells. Utah’s electricity was 87% generated from coal in 2017, but its renewable energy sector is growing. [Greentech Media]

Salt Lake City (It’s down at the bottom.)

¶ “Vermont Public Power, Encore Renewable Complete Their First Solar Project As Partners” • Vermont Public Power Supply Authority and Encore Renewable Energy completed the 855-kW Trombley Hill Solar project, the first developed under their partnership formed last year. It is sited on property owned by Morrisville Water and Light. [Solar Builder]

¶ “After 46 Years, Pilgrim Nuclear Station Shutting Down” • The Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station, which weathered over four decades of nor’easters, protests, and lawsuits, in the end could not withstand energy market forces and the costs of operating an aging plant. It is undergoing its final shutdown today, May 31, 2019. [Cape Cod Times]

Have a fantastically cheery day.

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Month 30 Energy News

May 30, 2019


¶ “‘Stranded Costs’ Mount As Coal Vanishes From The Grid” • Milwaukee-based We Energies announced in 2017 that it would close the 1,210-MW Pleasant Prairie coal-fired plant to save both itself and its customers money. And so it will, despite the fact that the plant has not yet been paid down and will not be for another twenty years. [E&E News]

Pleasant Prairie plant (We Energies | MCT | Newscom)

¶ “Trump’s Bid To Weaken The Next Federal Climate Report Is Likely To Backfire” • As planet-warming gases reach record levels, the Trump administration’s bid to restrict the scope of the National Climate Assessment could backfire, becoming yet another loss for a president whose efforts often fail to meet even basic legal standards. [HuffPost]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Is Climate Change Fueling Tornadoes?” • The short answer: There is growing evidence that “a warming atmosphere, with more moisture and turbulent energy, favors increasingly large outbreaks of tornadoes, like the outbreak we’ve witnessed in the last few days,” said Penn State University climate researcher Michael Mann. [InsideClimate News]

Tornado outbreak in 2011 (Image: Jason Weingart |
Barcroft Images | Barcroft Media via Getty Images)


¶ “Vestas Leads Record-Breaking First-Quarter Wind Turbine Order Intake” • Global wind turbine order intake increased by 7% in the first quarter of 2019 to 13.69 GW, eclipsing the previous record set a year earlier by 875 MW, said Wood Mackenzie Power & Renewables. Increasing numbers of orders came from China and the Americas. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “China Reveals Floating Maglev Train With Max Speed Of 373 mph” • China unveiled a prototype maglev train with a top speed of 373 mph (600 km/h). The train was developed by the state-owned China Railway Rolling Stock Corporation, CNN reported. The train will go through further testing before scheduled production in 2021. [CleanTechnica]

Maglev train (CRRC image)

¶ “Cost Of Renewable Power Dropped To A Record Low In 2018: Report” • Renewable power generation costs declined in 2018, an IRENA report says. Global costs declined 26% year-on-year for concentrated solar power, 14% for bioenergy, 13% for PVs and onshore wind, 12% for hydropower, and 1% for geothermal and offshore wind. [Saurenergy]

¶ “Britain Nears 12 Days Without Coal” • Great Britain is on its way to going 12 days without burning any coal for electricity. This smashes the record set only a few weeks ago and shows coal’s increasing irrelevance in the British energy mix. May is definitely a record setting month, with a total of over 600 coal-free hours (25 days). [CleanTechnica]

Ratcliffe-on-Soar Power Station (Credit: Alan Murray-Rust)

¶ “Microsoft Partners With Vattenfall On Sustainable Datacenters In Sweden” • Microsoft said two future data centers in Sweden are to be among the most sustainably designed and operated to date. Microsoft is working with Vattenfall to power the data centers with 100% renewable energy and to develop emissions reduction systems. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

¶ “Enel Starts Spanish Wind Build” • Enel Green Power has started construction of the 12-MW Paradela wind farm in Spain, a six-turbine project  the province of Lugo. It is one of three wind farms the company is currently building in Galicia. The others are the 52-MW Serra das Penas and the 8-MW Pena Ventosa facilities. [reNEWS]

Wind turbine (Enel Green Power image)

¶ “China Gears Up To Use Rare Earths As A Weapon In Trade War As Summit Approaches” • Chinese media reports, including an editorial in the flagship newspaper of the Communist Party, raised the prospect of Beijing cutting exports of the commodities that are critical in the US defense, energy, electronics, and automobile sectors. [Los Angeles Times]


¶ “US Energy Officials Hail ‘Freedom Gas,’ ‘Molecules Of Freedom” • Two DOE officials referred to natural gas produced in the US as “freedom gas” and “molecules of US freedom” in a press release announcing the expansion of a natural gas facility in Texas. The expansion could double the output of the facility by 2020. [CNN]

Flaring natural gas (David McNew, Getty Images)

¶ “Washington State EV Tax Credit Reinstated” • In the state of Washington, EV tax incentives are being reinstated. They ended last year but were recently revived and will go into effect on August 1st of this year. Gov Jay Inslee was behind the revival. The goal in Washington is to get 50,000 of these kinds of vehicles on the roads by 2020. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “El Paso Seeks Greener New Mexico” • El Paso Electric has issued a request for proposals for renewable energy projects that can supply a minimum of 141,000 MWh of electricity a year from 2020 into the US state of New Mexico. The company said it will consider a single source or a combinations of solar and wind power with storage. [reNEWS]

Wind turbines (Pixabay image)

¶ “State Bill Requires Public Schools To Teach Science of ‘Human-Induced’ Climate Change” • The Connecticut House of Representatives passed a bill that would make Connecticut the nation’s first state to mandate teaching “human-induced climate change.” The bill was hotly debated for nearly five hours before eventually passing 103-43. [Law & Crime]

¶ “Bill That Subsidizes Nuclear, Scraps Renewable Standards Passes Ohio House” • The Ohio House passed a sweeping energy bill, HB6, that would bail out the state’s two nuclear power plants but wipe out green energy standards. The vote was 53-43. Ten Democrats voted for the bill while seventeen Republicans voted against it. [The Statehouse News Bureau]

Have a totally hunky-dory day.

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May 29 Energy News

May 29, 2019

Science and Technology:

¶ “A Warming Arctic Produces Weather Extremes In Our Latitudes” • Atmospheric researchers have shown that rising temperatures in the stratosphere are causing the jet stream to falter and follow a wave-like course. And the weakening of the jet stream is spreading downward from the stratosphere, producing weather extremes in lower latitudes. [Science Daily]

Midnight sun in Greenland (Credit: © Hortigüela | Adobe Stock)


¶ “BNP Paribas Cuts Ties With Polish Electricity Producers Over Coal Dependency” • French banking giant BNP Paribas has cut ties with electricity producers in Poland. The bank cited the producers’ continued dependence on the coal industry and absence of signs of a change in strategy towards renewable forms of energy. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “India Scouts For Wind Sites In Preparation For More Tenders” • Citing sources from India’s Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, multiple media reports claim that Indian states that are rich in renewable energy potential have been asked to identify land to set up large-scale wind energy projects to prepare for more tenders. [CleanTechnica]

Wind turbines (Pexels image)

¶ “‘Startling’ Inaction On Climate Change Must End, Pope Says” • Pope Francis said that to win the fight against climate change, its leaders must stop profiting from fossil fuels that threaten the survival and well-being of the planet and its inhabitants. He was addressing a Vatican climate change conference for world finance ministers. [Crux: Covering all things Catholic]


¶ “Vestas Strikes 227-MW Gold In Australia” • Vestas has secured an engineering, procurement and construction contract for Ratch-Australia Corporation’s 227MW Collector wind farm in the Australian state of New South Wales. The deal includes the supply of 54 Vestas V117-4.2MW turbines with an energy-based availability guarantee. [reNEWS]

Vestas wind turbines (Vestas image)

¶ “Australia On Track To Reach 50% Renewable Energy By 2030: RepuTex” • Australia is on track to achieve a 50% renewable electric energy target by 2030, regardless of federal policy intervention. This is due to the country meeting state renewable energy targets. That’s the finding of new modelling by energy analyst firm RepuTex. [Energy Matters]

¶ “Two New Solar Farms Connect To The Grid In Queensland” • Two solar farms have joined the grid in Queensland, including Adani Renewables’ Rugby Run project which finally sealed its connection some seven months after the project was built and mechanically complete. These are just two of several solar farms queued up to connect. [RenewEconomy]

Rugby Run project (Adani Renewables image)


¶ “Trump Administration Hardens Its Attack on Climate Science” • Donald Trump and his political appointees are launching a new assault. Parts of the federal government will no longer fulfill what scientists say is one of the most urgent jobs of climate science studies: reporting on the future effects of a rapidly warming planet. [The New York TImes]

¶ “Carbon Pricing Reaches US House’s Main Tax-Writing Committee” • A coalition of business and environmental groups, with the support of some major oil companies, took a carbon pricing plan to the US House’s main tax-writing committee. It was the Ways and Means Committee’s first climate-related hearing in a dozen years. [InsideClimate News]

Capitol Power Plant (Credit: Saul Loeb | AFP | Getty Images)

¶ “BYD Goes Green With 2 MW Of Solar Plus 2 MWh Of Storage On Its California Factory” • BYD announced that it has partnered with Apparent, Inc to develop a 2-MW solar installation at its Lancaster, California Coach & Bus plant. The installation will be paired with a 2-MWh stationary energy storage battery to maximize solar usage. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “USPS Goes Driverless Between Phoenix And Dallas With TuSimple” • The US Postal Service has entered into a contract with self-driving truck startup TuSimple to haul mail between Dallas and Phoenix. TuSimple will complete five round trips over the next two weeks while a safety engineer and licensed driver ride along in the cab. [CleanTechnica]

TuSimple self-driving truck (Credit: TuSimple)

¶ “Dallas To Cut Electricity Costs With New Renewable Energy Contract” • The City of Dallas has entered into a new electricity contract with TXU Energy to power all city facilities with wind and solar energy for 10 years. The city will initially draw power and renewable energy credits from the Foard City Wind Farm in west Texas. [North American Windpower]

¶ “Rhode Island Confirms Revolution Power Play” • Ørsted and the utility Eversource have secured a power purchase agreement for their 400-MW Revolution wind farm off Rhode Island, with PUC approval, a tweet from the Danish developer said. A further 300 MW from the lease zone is to be delivered to neighboring Connecticut. [reNEWS]

Offshore wind turbine (Ørsted image)

¶ “US Partners Saddle Up 300-MW Solar ‘Ranch'” • First Solar and Capital Dynamics have started commercial operations at a 280-MW PV farm. The California Flats facility is on land of the Hearst-owned Jack Ranch near the borders of San Luis Obispo and Monterey Counties, one of the largest cattle ranches in the country. [reNEWS]

¶ “Workers At Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station Prep For Permanent Shutdown” • To prepare for final shutdown, workers simulated shutting down of the Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station. On May 30, a team of workers will begin the process of reducing the plant’s power output from the current 40% of its capacity to zero, after 47 years of operation. [NBC10 Boston]

Have a wonderfully enjoyable day.

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May 28 Energy News

May 28, 2019


¶ “As Young People Lead On Climate Change, Adults Must Step Up!” • On Friday, May 24, over a million young people gathered in some 1,600 locations in 125 countries to plead for effective action on climate change. Greta Thunberg, the 16-year-old who inspired them, made an appeal, “We ask you adults, give us a future!” [CleanTechnica]

Greta Thunberg speaking in 2018

¶ “How 1 GW Of Grid Batteries Could See Yallourn Coal Generator Close In 12 Months” • Victoria is getting a lot of renewables. So much so, that 1 GW of battery storage could mean it no longer needs the 45-year-old Yallourn brown coal power station next year. Batteries can magnify the benefit of the new wind and solar projects. [RenewEconomy]

¶ “100% Renewable Does Not Necessarily Mean Zero Carbon” • 160 major corporations have signed pledges saying they will power all of their activities using 100% renewables in the near future. That does not necessarily mean the electricity they consume will be 100% carbon free, however. The devil is in the details. [CleanTechnica]

Wind farm (Credit: Stanford Earth)

Science and Technology:

¶ “This Swedish Cleantech Company Wants To Mass Produce Printable Organic Solar Cells” • Epishine, a Swedish cleantech company, has a solar technology that would make it possible to manufacture PVs on machines the size of newspaper presses, each printing solar cells at a rate equivalent to one nuclear reactor per month. [Forbes]


¶ “India Plans $1.8 Billion Transmission Projects For Renewable Energy Projects” • India has shared the details of large power transmission projects dedicated to supporting renewable energy projects in the western parts of the country. The transmission projects are part of a program aimed to achieve new renewable energy targets. [CleanTechnica]

Transmission lines (Pexels image)

¶ “India Cuts Solar Capacity Addition Target By 23% For 2019-2020” • In the face of issues of land acquisition, uncertainty over taxes and import duties, and slowdown in overall economic growth, India reduced its solar power capacity addition target. The target for fiscal year 2019-2020 is 23% lower than for 2018-2019. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “52% Of Consumers Likely To Buy An Electrified Vehicle In Canada Within 5 Years” • In a Canadian survey, 36% said they had “seriously considered buying a more fuel efficient vehicle, such as a hybrid electric, plug-in hybrid electric, or fuel cell vehicle.” Over half (52%) believe they are likely to buy such a vehicle in the next five years. [CleanTechnica]

Vancouver colored bike lanes

¶ “Spain Proposes EU Carbon Tax On Energy Imports” • In a letter to the European Commission, Spain’s newly elected government called on the EU to assess a potential carbon tax on power imports to protect the bloc’s interests and help it to pursue its environmental targets amid growing public concern over climate change. []

¶ “DHL And StreetScooter Trial Hydrogen Fuel Cell Powered Delivery Vans” • DHL and StreetScooter have been pioneers in zero emissions delivery vans. Originally intended for DHL’s own use, the StreetScooter concept has proven so popular, a second factory is under construction to service the demands of third party customers. [CleanTechnica]

DHL Streetscooter deliver van (DHN image)

¶ “Enel Commences Work On 140-MW Wind Park In South Africa” • The local renewables arm of Italian energy major Enel SpA  has started construction works on a 140-MW wind park in South Africa’s Eastern Cape province. The European firm expects to invest a total of €180 million ($201.5 million) in the Oyster Bay project. [Renewables Now]

¶ “AEMO Says WA Grid At Risk If Regulations Fail To Keep Up With Renewable Transition” • The Australian Energy Market Operator warned that regulators and rule-makers need to act quickly for adoption of new technologies to deal with Western Australia’s rapid uptake of rooftop solar and other renewable energy technologies. [RenewEconomy]

Vestas wind turbines

¶ “By 2025, Developed Countries To Lose Quarter Of Their Nuclear Capacity” • Developed countries, which have been gradually reducing their nuclear power generation, may lose one quarter of their nuclear capacity by 2025, and two-thirds by 2040, the International Energy Agency said in a report. The IEA said this would damage security. [TASS]


¶ “Renewable Energy Developer, Puerto Rico Utility Agree On Project Terms ” • Greenbriar Capital Corp said it had agreed with the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority on terms allowing the Montalva solar project to proceed. Among other things, PREPA asked for a 45% increase in capacity from the original proposal (145 MW total). [Streetwise Reports]

Solar system in Puerto Rico

¶ “Vail To Purchase 100% Of Its Municipal Power From Renewable Sources” • In Colorado, the Vail Town Council has agreed in a six-to-one vote to become the latest Eagle County government to purchase 100% of its municipally-used electricity from renewable sources. Town officials say, however, that more needs to be done. [Vail Daily News]

¶ “A Small Company Sees Opportunity In Revolutionizing Colorado’s Energy Supply” • Guzman Energy is looking to follow the Kit Carson Electric Association in exiting a contract with Tri-State Generation and Transmission. Kit Carson is on track to deliver solar power for all daytime needs at reduced power rates for customers. [Energy News Network]

Have an altogether excellent day.

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May 27 Energy News

May 27, 2019


¶ “At Vancouver’s Clean Energy Summit, Nuclear Is Making a Play” • As we face massive environmental challenges, a transition is clearly needed. The problem is that one significant focus of the global forum “Clean Energy Ministerial” is to find ways of preserving the existing energy infrastructure while greenwashing it. []

Cooling towers (Jiří Sedláček, Wikimedia Commons)

¶ “Turbines Arrive For Lekela’s 158-MW Wind Park In Senegal” • The first wind turbine components for the 158.7-MW Parc Eolien Taiba N’Diaye in Senegal have been delivered, according to developer Lekela. The wind park is West Africa’s first large wind farm. It will have 46 Vestas V126 machines, each of 3.45 MW capacity. [Renewables Now]


¶ “As Wildfires Burn, Environment Minister Mckenna Blasts Provincial Tories For Scrapping Carbon Tax” • As Alberta Premier Jason Kenney pushes a plan to scrap the province’s carbon tax, federal Environment Minister Catherine McKenna says he shouldn’t ignore climate science, especially in the face of wildfires raging in the province. []

After a wildfire in Alberta (Mrsramsey, Wikimedia Commons)

¶ “Greens surge as parties make strongest ever showing across Europe” • Green parties have swept to their strongest ever showing in European elections, boosting their tally of MEPs to a projected 71 compared with 52 last time. The result gives them every chance of becoming kingmakers in a newly fragmented parliament. [The Guardian]

¶ “Fortum Forms Norwegian Wind JV” • Finnish energy company Fortum has formed a joint venture with Norwegian wind farm operator Nordkraft to develop wind power projects in Norway. Fortum Nordkraft Vind builds on a partnership between the two companies in the wind market that has been in place since 2017. [reNEWS]

Fortum wind project

¶ “Quebec Provincial Leader Aims To Boost Use Of Hydro-electric Power” • Francois Legault, the premier of Canada’s hydroelectricity-reliant province of Quebec, said he has a sweeping plan to electrify public transport, along with heating and air conditioning, by the start of 2020. The plan will also expand subway lines. []

¶ “Iran Undertakes Measures To Boost Green Energy” • Non-Aligned Movement has called upon the Member States to develop renewable energy and thereby boost green energy. Policy makers in Iran have realized that long-term investment in the renewables sector would lead to greater self-sufficiency and address climate change. [New Delhi Times]

Wind farm (Shutterstock image)

¶ “Photovoltaic Power Plants In Slovenia” • The first PV power plant in Slovenia was set up in 2001. At the end of 2017, 4,231 PV power plants had been installed in Slovenia with a total power capacity of 267 MW. Now the Parliament and Government are in the process of amending energy legislation related to renewable energy. [Balkan Green Energy News]


¶ “Oil And Gas Majors Could Lead Australian Renewables Development By 2020” • Analysis is by independent oil and gas consultancy Rystad Energy says renewable energy investment in Australasia will overtake spending on upstream oil and gas projects as early as next year, in a shift led by the oil and gas industry itself. [RenewEconomy]

Pump jack

¶ “New Labor Leader Anthony Albanese Calls For End To Climate Wars” • Anthony Albanese has called for an end to the climate wars, saying he wants to work with Prime Minister Scott Morrison on an emissions reduction plan that benefits both the environment and the economy. “People want solutions, not arguments,” Albanese said. [The Guardian]

¶ “Tesla Model 3 Gets Certified In Australia, Orders Should Open Soon” • Tesla has received notification from the Government of Australia that its application to sell Model 3’s in Australia was approved. Based on the applications, it seems Tesla has only applied for the 1726 kg and 1856 kg weights, which correspond to the long range models. [CleanTechnica]

Tesla Model 3 charging

¶ “Queensland Looks To Extra Hydropower From Water Storage After Reboot Of Somerset Dam” • The Queensland government is exploring the potential to convert more of the state’s water storage dams into renewable energy generators, after returning to service a larger, restored version of its Somerset Dam and Hydro Electric Plant. [RenewEconomy]


¶ “Nickel Ride Finds EVs Are So Affordable … They Can Give Rides For Free” • Nickel Ride, which operates in some Florida cities, found a way to use the advantages of electric vehicles for a competitive edge. Customers can download a Nickel Ride app to request free rides. The company uses advertising revenue to pay for the drivers and cars. [CleanTechnica]

Nickel Ride cars (Courtesy of Nickel Ride)

¶ “Upstate Coal Plants Set To Go In New Directions” • Two coal-powered plants in upstate New York are looking at new futures, according to recent reports in local newspapers. The plants, located in Lansing in the Finger Lakes and Somerset in Niagara County, are slated to become data centers powered by renewable energy. [Evening Observer]

¶ “Glenwood to go 100% renewable June 1” • Glenwood Springs, Colorado, will become the seventh city in the US powered entirely by renewable energy, and plans to sign the deal 7,100 feet in the sky this week. The city’s electricity will be generated by wind power and supplied by the Municipal Energy Agency of Nebraska. [Glenwood Springs Post Independent]

Have an entirely copacetic day.

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May 26 Energy News

May 26, 2019


¶ “State of Global Air 2019 – A Special Report On Global Exposure To Air Pollution And Its Disease Burden” • Scientists, doctors, lung associations, medical journals, and another recent report, State of Global Air 2019, have conducted tens of thousands of studies on such topics. At this point, the message is clear – we need stronger policy action. [CleanTechnica]

Screenshot from The Human Element

¶ “The Dance of Nuclear, Coal, And Renewables in South Africa” • In 2010 South Africa planned to build 8 more nuclear reactors, in addition to two already running. Since then, there has been a shift in political positions, and amidst problems with finance and corruption, they have been cancelled. But the old reactors may stay for a while. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “The First Tribal Climate Emergency Declaration Is Here, And It Won’t Be The Last” • In the Arctic, people don’t have time to wait around for others to take action to stop climate change. An indigenous community in Canada’s Yukon territory recently declared a climate emergency. They are just the first indigenous peoples to do so. [Gizmodo Australia]

Some rely on caribou to survive. (Photo: G MacRae, Flickr)

¶ “2020 Is Team Oil vs Team Climate Change. There’s No Middle.” • 96% of Democrat or Democratic-leaning voters polled by CNN in April want a candidate who will take aggressive action on climate change. While an NBC News poll in December found 71% of Democrats saying climate change required immediate action, only 15% of Republicans agreed. [CNN]


¶ “BYD Delivers The First Fleet Of Electric Buses To Argentina” • A fleet of fully electric buses in Argentina was brought across the Chilean border and to its final destination in the City of Mendoza by manufacturer BYD after making a lengthy trek by freighter. The 12 new BYD K9 buses will be the first fleet of electric buses in Argentina. [CleanTechnica]

Three of the BYD buses delivered to San Antonio, Chile

¶ “Skyrocketing Tesla Sales Force Mercedes Dealer In Norway To Face A Kodak Moment” • With the Tesla Model 3 available in Norway since February, sales of competing brands have suffered. Mercedes dealer Bertel O Steen has seen its passenger car sales drop a full 33% in the first four months of the year, compared to the same period last year. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Adani Solar Aims At 50% Market Share In Two Years, Says Official” • With 80% of solar panels sold in India made in China, Adani Solar is making modules and panels cheaper and more durable, a company official told reporters. Adani Solar expects to get 50% market share in two years, the company’s business development chief said. []

Solar power plant

¶ “True Energy Gets First License To Help Secure Green Future” • Danish start-up True Energy received a ‘peak shaving’ approval from the country’s authorities. The license enables homes and individuals in Denmark to help balance an increasingly green energy grid, thereby assisting the transformation towards a greener energy future. [Smart Energy]

¶ “Microsoft Announces A New Wind Energy Deal In The Netherlands” • Microsoft announced a wind energy deal in the Netherlands. As part of this deal, Microsoft will purchase 90 MW from a wind farm owned by developer Eneco. Microsoft will use this green energy to power its datacenters for 15 years starting in 2022. [MSPoweruser]

Green energy

¶ “Coal Reigns In Vietnam’s Booming Energy Sector But Interest Growing In Renewables” • Vietnam has become a hot spot for energy investors eyeing a spend of up to $150 billion over the coming decade to meet surging power demand. Coal is expected to dominate the sector despite signs of a government effort to go green. [The Japan News]


¶ “ChargePoint And Chevron Partner To Bring More Fast Charging To More Gas Stations” • ChargePoint and Chevron partnered on DC Fast Charging stations along Interstate 5 in California to fill in key gaps in universal fast charging coverage. A California Energy Commission program will see 70 ChargePoint charging stations installed.  [CleanTechnica]

Two girls charging an EV (Credit: Zach Shahan | CleanTechnica)

¶ “Four US States Scoring Under-the-Radar Clean Energy Wins” • Across the country, from South Carolina to Nevada, states are taking new measures to harness wind and solar power. Since January, more than 10 state legislatures have enacted policies that encourage new renewable energy development. Here are four examples. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Coal’s US Slide To Continue As Renewables, Gas Fill The Gap” • Demand for coal to generate electricity will continue its slide in coming months, despite Trump administration efforts to shore up the industry, the EIA said. Renewable energy, including wind, solar, and hydropower, are expected to fill much of the gap left by coal’s decline. [Mayfield Recorder]

Have a wildly successful day.

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May 25 Energy News

May 25, 2019


¶ “Somebody Needs To Tell Ohio Farmers About Agro-photovoltaics” • Farmers in Ohio believe they are being forced to choose between the life style they know and the economic rewards of renewable energy. But the combination of farming and solar energy has been tested repeatedly. It works, and it creates greater opportunities. [CleanTechnica]

Please click on the image to enlarge it. (© Fraunhofer ISE)

¶ “Canada’s Amazing – And Invisible – Green Energy Sector” • We don’t hear much about the success story that is clean energy in Canada. But the clean energy sector is growing faster than the rest of the economy, and it is attracting billions of dollars of investment every year. In 2017 it employed nearly 300,000 people. []

Science and Technology:

¶ “For Nearly 20 Years, GRACE Has Helped Us Understand Climate Change” • In 2002, two satellites designed to take detailed measurements of the Earth were put into space. They provided detailed daily information on climate change for 15 years. Now, the GRACE Follow-On mission has been launched successfully to take their place. [CleanTechnica]

GRACE satellite system (Credit: JPL | NASA)

¶ “To Infinity And Beyond! The Boring Company Goes Plaid In New Demonstration” • Elon Musk’s Boring Company released a video demonstrating its proposed network of underground tunnels for electric vehicles. Two Teslas compete, one with its onboard Autopilot navigating a tunnel at a speed of up to 127 MPH, the other in LA traffic. [CleanTechnica]


¶ “Solar The Key To Progress On Global Access To Electricity” • The report showing the world is still falling short of the global energy targets has some good news also. The number of people without access to electricity continues to shrink as deployment of off-grid power solutions gathers pace. The empowerment is led by solar. [pv magazine International]

Off-grid solar PV system (Image: NwComp Solar)

¶ “Book Titled Empowering Africa Unveiled, Aimed At Enabling Energy Access” • The IEA estimated that Africa has a potential of 300,000 GW of solar PVs 7,000 GW of windpower, but many of its people go without. Enel Foundation and others published Empowering Africa to address the problem of African energy poverty. [ESI Africa]

¶ “Wind Keeps The Wine Flowing In The UK” • Accolade Wines has installed a wind turbine to power its Avonmouth distribution center near Bristol. The 2.5-MW machine was installed with the help of renewable energy specialists CleanEarth and following agreement with the landlord, which sees the turbine as adding value to the property. [reNEWS]

Accolade Park wind turbine (CleanEarth image)

¶ “The Bus Wars Are Over. Electricity – And China – Won.” • The bus wars are over and electricity has won, thanks to a big boost from China. With China’s massive investment in and support for electric buses, electrics are now racing past a 50% share of new bus sales worldwide, according to a recent analysis by Bloomberg NEF. [ThinkProgress]


¶ “US Offshore Wind At Risk Of Delays After ‘Redundant’ Defense And Interior Appropriations Language” • The American Wind Energy Association described language in the FY 2020 appropriations bills for the Defense and Interior Departments as threatening to delay development of the country’s offshore wind pipeline needlessly. [CleanTechnica]

Block Island wind farm (Ionna22, Wikimedia Commons)

¶ “Integrated Solar Roof Shingles From 3 IN 1 ROOF Up For UL Approval” • Solar roofing maverick 3 IN 1 ROOF is looking to leapfrog Tesla in its bid for UL approval for its solar roof shingle. The company, which is based in Fort Lauderdale, has submitted a plan for UL approval. It could come before Tesla’s solar shingle approval. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Freeport Brewery Launches Effort To Put More Clean Energy Into Its Beer” • Maine Beer Co wants to reduce the carbon footprint behind the beer it brews. The company already has a 50-kW solar PV system. It hopes to meet 60% to 70% of its energy needs by 2022 and to generate more clean energy than it uses by 2030. [Press Herald]

Working at Maine Beer Company (Brianna Soukup, PH Staff)

¶ “ComEd Customers Save $4 Billion Thanks To Energy Efficiency Offerings” • Customers of Commonwealth Edison Co, a unit of Exelon Corp, have saved a total of $4 billion on their electricity bills since it introduced its energy efficiency program in 2008. That’s the equivalent of about $84 per year for each customer. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

¶ “Puerto Rico Adopts New Climate Law, With Goal Of 100% Renewable Energy By 2050” • Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rosselló has signed into law a new climate change initiative that calls for the island commonwealth to reduce its carbon emissions 50% in the next five years and transition to 100% renewable energy by 2050. [Yale Environment 360]

Governor Ricardo Rosselló at the signing ceremony (PRFAA)

¶ “FPL Starts Building 750 MW Of New Solar On Its Way To 2 GW By 2020” • FPL still gets most of its energy from gas-fired plants, but utility officials also say Florida will soon be “a world leader” in solar energy. FPL has broken ground on ten solar PV projects, each with a capacity of 74.5 MW. They will increase FPL’s solar capacity by 60%. [Utility Dive]

¶ “Three Mile Island Plant, Site Of Nuclear Accident, To Close” • Three Mile Island, site of the worst nuclear power crash in the US, will begin a planned shutdown beginning June 1 now that it is apparent that it will not get a fiscal rescue Exelon Corp said. It has been two years since Exelon first threatened to shut the plant unless it got a bailout. [Mayfield Recorder]

Have a precisely perfect day.

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May 24 Energy News

May 24, 2019

Science and Technology:

¶ “Scientists Discover Sustainable Alternatives To Cement” • Cement manufacture is responsible for 8% of the global CO₂ emissions each year. Scientists at Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg say they have found environmentally friendly, low carbon alternatives to cement can be made from two types of industrial residues. [CleanTechnica]

Cement manufacturing plant


¶ “EDF And Masdar Enter Morocco Solar Market With Massive 800-MW Win” • The Moroccan Agency for Solar Energy has announced that it awarded 800-MW Noor Midelt I project to a consortium of EDF Renewables and Masdar Group. The project will host a combination of solar PV and concentrated solar power technologies. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “School Students Walk Out In Global Climate Strike” • In New Zealand and Australia, students went on strike again, starting off a worldwide day of climate change protests. Organizers expect more than a million young people will participate in at least 110 countries, calling for politicians and businesses to take action to fight climate change. [BBC]

Climate protest in Melbourne (Reuters)

¶ “Elmed Interconnector Aims To Bring Solar Power From The Sahara To Europe” • It’s been a long-held European dream to get solar energy from North Africa. Italy and Tunesia have taken a first step to make this dream come true. They entered into an agreement for the development and joint construction of a 600-MW electricity link. [Deutsche Welle]

¶ “Montenegro moves to halt small hydro power plants” • Under pressure from environmental groups, Montenegro’s government has decided to stop issuing permits for the construction of small hydro-power plants. It will also reconsider those awarded so far, the economy minister said. A boom in dam construction has drawn protests. []

Hydro dam

¶ “Senegal Imports Turbines For West Africa’s First Big Wind Farm Project” • Senegal started importing turbines for its first large-scale wind farm, the biggest such project in West Africa. It will supply nearly a sixth of the country’s power. Lekela, a British renewable power company, expects the wind farm to reach 158.7 MW by 2020. []

¶ “Offshore Supply Chain Jobs ‘At Risk’ In Germany” • A lack of offshore wind auctions in Germany is putting jobs at risk in the country’s supply chain, according to WindEurope. The trade body said the last auction was in April 2018 and no more are scheduled until 2021. This means order books in the supply chain are “drying up.” [reNEWS]

Offshore wind power (WindEurope image)

¶ “LEGO Is Running 100% On Renewable Energy Three Years Ahead Of Schedule” • A few years ago, LEGO’s corporate side set an ambitious goal of making its production facilities run entirely on renewable energy. Their original plan was to reach that goal by 2022, but things went faster than they expected. They reached it three years early. [GOOD Magazine]


¶ “Many States Squander VW Settlement Money, US PIRG Report Shows” • In its settlement with federal authorities over its diesel cheating scheme, VW agreed to provide nearly $3 billion to all 50 states. Nearly all states have reported what they will do with the funds, and US PIRG says many are failing to use the funds to do the most good. [CleanTechnica]

Electric school bus

¶ “$4,000 Used Plug-in Hybrid And EV Buyer Incentive Offered By Peninsula Clean Energy” • In San Mateo County, California, just south of San Francisco, Peninsula Clean Energy is offering a $4,000 incentive for qualifying residents who buy used plug-in hybrids and EVs. The incentive is part of a collaboration with Peninsula Family Service. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Providence, Rhode Island Trials Autonomous Shuttle From May Mobility” • Financed in part by money from the VW diesel cheating settlement, a fleet of 6 passenger autonomous shuttles supplied by May Mobility began operating this week on a 5.3-mile fixed route that connects downtown Providence with Olneyville Square. [CleanTechnica]

May Mobiity shuttle (May Mobility image)

¶ “Dairyland To Milk South Dakota Wind” • Dairyland Power Cooperative is to source 52 MW of electricity from Avangrid Renewables’ Tatanka Ridge wind farm in South Dakota. The 154.8-MW project will have 56 GE wind turbines. Construction is expected to start this year, with commercial operation starting by year-end 2020. [reNEWS]

¶ “QTS Buying Wind Power For Two Data Centers” • Data center service provider QTS Realty Trust agreed to buy electricity from wind farms in Illinois and Texas to cover 100% of the expected demand of two data centers. It said the 10-year PPA will offset consumption of its data centers in Chicago and Piscataway, New Jersey. [Renewables Now]

Wind park in Texas (Rockin’Rita, CC-BY-NC-ND 2.0)

¶ “Oregon Restricts Solar Development On Prime Farmland” • As Oregon’s climate policies steer the state toward renewable energy like solar, its land use laws are putting up roadblocks. The Oregon Land Conservation and Development Commission approved new rules that restrict commercial solar development on high-value farmland. [OPB News]

¶ “Energy Negotiations Unravel At The Capitol, Leaving Little Accomplished” • Minnesota will not join the states that have laws aimed at having 100% clean energy by 2050, at least not this year. Negotiations between the House and Senate broke down over numerous issues, including lifting the state’s ban on new nuclear plants. [Minnesota Public Radio News]

Have a positively enchanting day.

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May 23 Energy News

May 23, 2019


¶ “Republicans Aren’t Just Climate Deniers. They Deny The Extinction Crisis, Too” • In King Lear there is a famous line: “‘Tis the time’s plague when madmen lead the blind.” The words comment on the deadly consequences of greed, delusion, and folly, but they could serve just as well as a comment on today’s Republican Party. [The Guardian]

Endangered Mandarin duck (Yuri Smityuk | TASS)

¶ “Despite Coalition Victory, The Clean Energy Transition Will Continue” • With an inadequate renewable energy policy at the federal level, a significant amount of grassroots support for climate action and renewable energy development will be a main driver to stimulate new policy. And economics also support new renewable energy projects. [RenewEconomy]

¶ “State Efficiency Standards Are Good For Everyone” • The US federal government has been missing legal deadlines for energy efficiency standards for appliances, equipment, and electronics. Seventeen standards are aready overdue for review. Fortunately, more states are setting efficiency standards in the absence of federal action. [CleanTechnica]

Los Angeles (Henning Witzel | Unsplash)

¶ “Reality Check: Does Wind Energy Kill Birds And Cause Cancer?” • According to US Fish and Wildlife Service, wind turbines kill up to 300,000 birds a year. That’s low compared to other sources. Communication towers kill 40 million, power lines kill 140 million. Also, the American Cancer Society says it is unaware of links to cancer. [WCCO | CBS Minnesota]

¶ “World’s Fifth-Largest Bank Drops Stink Bomb On US Coal Industry” • Japan’s Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group, Inc said that it will no longer finance the construction of new coal power plants. While this does not mean it will stop supporting projects already underway, it also indicates strong support will continue for renewable energy. [CleanTechnica]

Renewable energy in Japan

Science and Technology:

¶ “Bosch Steps Into the Electric Air Taxi Industry To Help Cars Fly” • Bosch is getting into the electric vertical take-off and landing business with a sensor box for autonomy. According to the Boston Consulting Group, there will be 1 billion air taxi flights by 2030. Bosch sees a market for air taxis using its sensor technology for safe automated flights. [CleanTechnica]


¶ “BHP Sees Early End For Thermal Coal, Plugs In To Electric Future” • Just as the Coalition government ramps up efforts for the Adani coal mine and new investments in coal generation, Australia’s biggest mining group, BHP, said thermal coal is likely to exit quicker than most people expect. BHP is getting ready for a decarbonised economy. [RenewEconomy]

Heavy coal mining equipment

¶ “Nigeria’s 100% Renewable Electricity Achievable By 2050 – Report” • Nigeria is among countries whose electricity supply can be fully based on renewable energy sources and storage by 2050. It states that 100% renewable electricity systems would be 60% to 70% cheaper than nuclear power or fossil fuels with the carbon capture and storage. [Pumps Africa]

¶ “Tariff Bids Rise Further In Indian State’s Solar Power Auction” • Tariff bids by project developers continued to rise in Indian auctions, with several major developers avoiding large-scale auctions. A recent auction for 250 MW of PVs received only three bids, which ranged between ₹2.87/kWh (4.12¢/kWh) and ₹2.91/kWh. [CleanTechnica]

Solar panels in Bhopal (Stefan Krasowski, Wikimedia Commons)

¶ “Twenty-five New Renewable Energy Facilities to Be Built in Zhambyl region” • Two wind power stations are being developed in the Zhambyl region of Kazakhstan and will be completed in the third quarter of 2019 and 2020. An additional 25 renewable energy facilities will be commissioned by 2023, with a total capacity of 1,392 MW. [Kazakh TV]


¶ “Southern California Fleet Owners Learn How To Go Electric” • Southern California Edison has launched a program, Charge Ready Transport, that aims to install charging stations designed for medium- and heavy-duty electric vehicles at a minimum of 870 commercial sites within the utility’s 50,000 square-mile service area. [CleanTechnica]

Charging station (Credit: Penske Truck Leasing)

¶ “Maryland CEJA To Become Law Without Governor Signature” • Maryland’s Clean Energy Jobs Act, recently passed by the state’s General Assembly, is set to become law, but without the signature of governor Larry Hogan. He said in a letter that Senate Bill 516 is not clean and affordable enough and will not produce the anticipated jobs. [Offshore WIND]

¶ “US Wind Industry’s Response To Solar’s Rise: Embrace It” • Amid the changes going on in the renewable power industries, the American Wind Energy Association trade group announced that its flagship annual Windpower conference and exhibition will expand to include solar and storage, starting next year in Denver. [Greentech Media]

Wind turbines and horses in Wyoming (AWEA image)

¶ “Traverse City Switching To 100% Renewable Energy” • Traverse City is known for its beauty, and city officials want to protect that by switching to 100% green energy. Municipal buildings will be powered entirely by solar and wind energy by 2020. The local utility will use 40% renewables by 2025, and it will be completely green by 2040. [9&10 News]

¶ “Ohio House Lawmakers Amend Nuclear Plant Bailout Bill” • The Ohio House has dramatically changed the energy bill that would bailout the state’s nuclear power plants and repeal renewable energy standards. Under the changes neither wind nor solar power can qualify for “Clean Air Credits.” It seems the bill benefits only nuclear plants. [WCBE 90.5 FM]

Have a delightfully ducky day.

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May 22 Energy News

May 22, 2019


¶ “AOC! AOC! Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Lays It On The Line For Green New Deal” • One speech by AOC may well stand the test of time. In it, she rips feckless politicians of all political parties for selling out to fossil fuel interests and refusing to protect the American people from the pollution caused by burning oil, gas, and coal. [CleanTechnica]

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (Credit: C-Span on YouTube)


¶ “African Solar PV Market Could See 29 GW Installed Annually In 2030” • A new study from German Solar Association and the Becquerel Institute has concluded that with the right policies and support, Africa could be adding as much as 29 GW of new annual solar capacity in 2030. The report looked at the solar market in ten countries. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Lilium Reveals Long-Awaited New Air Taxi And Celebrates Maiden Flight In The Same Swoop” • Lilium, based in Germany, says it is nearly ready to manufacture and operate the Lilium Jet and offer on-demand air taxi service around the world. It showed a new 5-seat electric air taxi prototype, whose maiden flight was earlier this month. [CleanTechnica]


¶ “Countries falling short on providing electricity, renewable power” • According to a report produced by the World Bank, the International Energy Agency, and other international bodies, many countries around the world are failing to meet their goals to provide electricity for those without power and to reduce pollution and CO₂ emissions. [Devdiscourse]

¶ “China Approves 20.76 GW Of Subsidy-Free Solar, Wind Power Projects” • China has approved its first batch of subsidy-free wind and solar projects with a combined capacity of 20.76 GW, the country’s top planning agency said. China vowed in January to launch a series of unsubsidized renewable power projects this year. []

Renewable energy

¶ “Big Firms Join New Task Force Looking To ‘Make Best Use’ Of UK Wind Power” • Big energy companies agreed on a research project to “make best use” of UK wind resources. The Offshore Wind Industry Council said it will work to see that the UK’s low-carbon energy system is generating the most amount of power from renewable sources. [Energy Voice]

¶ “Ausgrid Seeks To Expand Virtual Power Plant To Cut Back On Network Costs” • New South Wales utility Ausgrid is seeking proposals to expand its virtual power plant, following a successful pilot project. It looked to co-ordinate battery storage systems to support network services and help avoid the need for further network investment. [RenewEconomy]

One part of a virtual power plant

¶ “Canada A Leader Among G20 For Plan To Phase Out Coal, Says Report” • Canada, France, Italy, and the UK lead the group of G20 countries when it comes to plans compatible with the Paris Agreement to phase out coal by 2030, according to a report from Climate Transparency. The agency is made up of 14 global environmental groups. []


¶ “Offshore Drilling Has Become A Liability For Republicans” • The issue of offshore drilling has created a schism between Republicans in states where constituents depend on fishing and beach tourism, like Florida and Georgia, and the White House, which wants virtually all US waters to be open for oil industry exploitation. [CleanTechnica]

Deepwater Horizon fire (US Coast Guard image)

¶ “Texas Cooperatives Agree to Purchase 7 MW of Distribution-Scale Solar Energy” • Five electric distribution cooperatives in Texas signed agreements to purchase 7 MW of distribution-scale solar generation. This is to provide increased supplies of cost-effective and clean energy to their members while increasing local system resilience. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “eMotorWerks’ New JuicePlan Rolls All EV Charging Costs Into One Simple Monthly Bill” • eMotorWerks, an Enel Group Company, is introducting a subscription-based home charging plan called the JuicePlan. The JuicePlan replaces what can be a steep up-front purchase price and installation with an easy to understand monthly bill. [CleanTechnica]

JuiceBox EV charger and Bolt

¶ “NASA To Provide $6 Million For Electric Aircraft Research At University Of Illinois” • NASA will pay $6 million dollars over the next three years to support electric aircraft research at the University of Illinois. The program will work on developing fuel cell and cryogenic liquid hydrogen energy storage technologies for completely electric aircraft. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “GE Renewable Energy Secures More Than 2 GW In US Onshore Wind Energy Orders Through May 2019” • GE said it had orders for more than 700 wind turbines in the first five months of the year, which is enough to power about 800,000 US households. GE’s 2-MW platform will have 15 GW installed by the end of 2019. [REVE]

Wind turbine

¶ “General Assembly Passes Bill To Promote Renewable Energy Projects For Universities” • The Illinois House of Representatives and Senate have voted to pass a bill to allow public universities and state agencies to enter into renewable energy contracts for up to 25 years. The House favored the bill by a vote of 108 to 8, and it is going to the governor. []

¶ “Pressure Mounts On NC Lawmakers To Reject Duke Energy Rate Increase Bill” • Opposition is growing to legislation, written by Duke, that would allow it to use major storm costs to charge North Carolinians billions of dollars for unnecessary projects to continue its reliance on coal, fracked gas, and nuclear sources of energy. [Environmental Working Group]

Have an absolutely peachy day.

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May 21 Energy News

May 21, 2019

Science and Technology:

¶ “One-Quarter Of West Antarctic Ice Is Currently Unstable Due To Changing Climate” • In the last 25 years, warming oceans and changing climatic conditions have caused ice throughout West Antarctica to thin. A study published in Geophysical Research Letters says as much as 24% of West Antarctica’s glaciers are impacted. [IFLScience]

West Australian ice (Tarpan | Shutterstock)

¶ “Report: Cities Designed To Shape And Enable New Mobility” • Urban areas that are designed to shape and enable new mobility can lower emissions, enhance health, and improve equity. A report says experimentation is key to best realize the potential of new mobility while avoiding possible negative and unintended consequences. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Global Sea Level Rise Could Have ‘Profound Consequences'” • Scientists believe that global sea levels could rise far more than predicted, due to accelerating melting in Greenland and Antarctica. A study says the greater melt doubles the estimated maximum sea level rise during the 21st century, from one meter to two meters. [BBC]

Supply ship at an ice shelf (Jonathan Bamber)


¶ “Ships Spend Hundreds Of Thousands Of Hours A Year Trawling In Europe’s Marine-Protected Areas” • Using data from Global Fishing Watch and the World Database of Protected Areas, we found that in 2016, fishing vessels spent over 930,000 hours trawling Marine Protected Areas off the coasts of the Netherlands, Italy, and Spain. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “ExxonMobil Eyes Clean Energy Partnership In India” • ExxonMobil is reportedly in talks with an Indian company to initiate a clean energy partnership. ExxonMobil seems to have been attracted by the clean energy policies in India and an increase interaction between Indian and American businesses over the last few years. [CleanTechnica]

Wind Energy (Pexels image)

¶ “French Retailer Boulanger To Source Renewable Power From Voltalia” • French specialised retailer Boulanger has entered into an exclusive partnership with Voltalia SA to source 100% of its energy from renewable sources. Under terms of the partnership, Boulanger will source 100% of its energy from renewable sources from July 1, 2019. [Renewables Now]

¶ “Tesla Shanghai Gigafactory – Main Structure Now Being Completed (Video Update)” • The latest aerial video from the Tesla Shanghai Gigafactory site, courtesy of Jason Yang, shows the main structure of the factory very close to completion. Focus is now shifting to work on the loading bays and the factory’s internals. [CleanTechnica]

Tesla Gigafactory in Shanghai

¶ “Renewable Energy Now Accounts For 33% Of Global Power” • Data from the International Renewable Energy Agency shows 171 GW of renewable energy was added globally in 2018. That is two-thirds of the all generation capacity added for the year. This is in part because, for the first time, renewables generate at a lower price than fossil fuels. [ThomasNet News]
(Please NOTE: I believe the 33% report is not correct. – George)

¶ “Could The Notre Dame Be Reborn As An Energy-Positive Eco-Cathedral?” • Could the Notre Dame be reborn as an energy-positive cathedral? Paris-based Vincent Callebaut Architectures says that is exactly how it should be rebuilt. It has released new concept plans to repair the eight-century-old Notre-Dame cathedral after the fire. [Energy Live News]

Notre Dame design (Image: Vincent Callebaut Architectures)

¶ “How A Remote Togo Village Is Getting Transformed By Solar Power” • BBOXX, a UK-based power company, in partnership with France’s EDF Group, launched a program to power an entire village in southern Togo with solar PVs. Currently, all electricity in the village of Sikpe-Afidegnon comes from expensive and polluting fuel oil. []


¶ “Chevron Dabbles In EV Charging, Installs EVgo Fast Chargers At Select Stations” • EVgo and Chevron have partnered to bring EV fast charging capability to a select set of Chevron fueling stations in California. Chevron has over a dozen EVgo fast charging stations in operation or under construction at five California stations. [CleanTechnica]

Tesla Model X at an EVgo charging station (EVgo image)

¶ “Salt Lake City Moves Up Goal To Be Entirely On 100% Renewable Energy To 2030” • Salt Lake City has moved up its goal to be on 100% renewable energy. In a recent interview with FOX 13, Salt Lake City Mayor Jackie Biskupski said the original goal to have the entire city on renewable energy has changed from 2032 to 2030. []

¶ “Xcel Energy Fast-Forwards Minnesota Coal Plant Closures But Extends Nuclear Window” • Xcel Energy plans to close its last two coal-fired power plants in Minnesota by 2030, a decade earlier than scheduled, while keeping its nuclear power plants running through at least 2040. It plans to have 100% carbon-free electricity by 2050.  [Greentech Media]

Coal-burning power plant in Minnesota

¶ “New Hampshire Legislators Quintuple Net Metering Cap By Veto-Proof Margin” • As more states to meet their net metering caps, the legislature in New Hampshire has sought to encourage further adoption by increasing the maximum amount of distributed solar capacity that would receive credit for power sent to the grid. [Utility Dive]

¶ “Reactor Shut Down After Electrical Cable Fails At Plymouth Nuclear Plant” • A degraded electric cable led to a manual scram of the Pilgrim Nuclear Power Plant in Plymouth on May 17. The NRC reported that operators shut down the reactor when a circulating-water pump lost power. Pilgrim is scheduled to close permanently on May 31. [Wicked Local Plymouth]

Have a perfectly auspicious day.

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May 20 Energy News

May 20, 2019


¶ “Don’t despair about the climate emergency. Coal is not the future” • The Coalition government has been re-elected. But there are strong international pressures, most of the Australian business community does not want the economy stuck in the past, and the states will not accept a vacuum on climate and energy policy. [The Guardian]

Low-cost renewable energy (Tim Phillips Photos | Getty Images)

¶ “Unlocking The Economic Potential Of Adapting To Climate Realities – Jay Inslee Gets It” • Among Democrats running for president, Jay Inslee has distinguished himself with a bold zero-carbon climate plan. He says it will create 8 million clean tech jobs at a cost comparable to what has been spent on wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. [CleanTechnica]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Scientists Fear Impact Of Deep-Sea Mining On Search For New Medicines” • Scientists who view the deep ocean and its wealth of unique and undocumented species as a prospecting ground for new medicines, fear such potential will be lost in the rush to exploit the deep sea’s equally rich metal and mineral resources. [The Guardian]

Ocean life (Office of Ocean Exploration and Research)

¶ “‘Earthworm Dilemma’ Has Climate Scientists Racing To Keep Up” • Worms are wriggling into Earth’s northernmost forests, creating major unknowns for climate-change models. The forests have had no earthworms since the last ice age. Now the worms are invading, and scientists fear possible negative environmental effects. [The New York Times]


¶ “Eskom Woes Pushing SA Business Toward Green Buildings” • As Eskom, South Africa’s public utility, keeps failing to meet demands for electric power, businesses are moving to produce their own. Property company Redefine recently noted that installing renewable energy interventions is an area with scope for growth. [TechCentral]

Modern buildings

¶ “China Invests In Renewable Energy In Cuba” • Cuba began investing in renewable energy back in 2014. Now China is ramping up its efforts in a push to make renewables Cuba’s principal source of electricity by 2030. According to Xinhua News, China is one of the leading investors in Cuba’s renewable energy program. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “China Sets Renewable Power Quotas For 2019 And 2020” • Reuters reported that China set mandatory renewable power quotas for each of its region for 2019 and 2020, based on their energy structure. The 2019 targets for local grid companies range from 10%, in the eastern province of Shandong, to 88%, in the southwestern province of Sichuan. [SteelGuru]

Solar panels over water (Reuters image)

¶ “Wärtsilä And Lut University To Collaborate On Research For 100% Renewable Energy Systems” • Technology group Wärtsilä and Lappeenranta-Lahti University of Technology have signed a research agreement on strategic power system modelling. Their aim is to  understand and develop paths towards 100% renewable energy systems. [Golden Casino News]

¶ “Japan’s Orix To Buy Seven 874 MW Wind Energy Plants Of IL&FS” • Debt-ridden IL&FS said Japan’s Orix Corporation, which owns 49% share each in its seven operating wind farms, expressed intent to buy the remaining stake in those assets. The plants are in 12 Indian states and have a total generation capacity of 874 MW. []

Wind turbines

¶ “India Is Now Investing More in Solar than Coal, but Will Its Energy Shift Continue?” • Renewable energy investments in India are outpacing spending on fossil fuel power generation, a sign that the world’s second-most populous nation is making good on promises to shift toward cleaner power. But coal is still growing. [InsideClimate News]

¶ “The Gas-Addicted Scots Have Europe’s Worst Record On Renewable Heat” • New statistics reveal the country, despite an excellent record on clean electricity, remains dangerously dependent on burning climate-change-causing gas to stay warm. Only 6% of all heating in Scotland is sustainable, just a tenth of the proportion in Sweden. [HeraldScotland]

Gas terminal


¶ “Repowering Old Mines With New Energies In The US  Southwest” • Across the US, there are swaths of mine lands that are now prime locations for renewable energy. Rocky Mountain Institute’s Sunshine for Mines Initiative has a goal of helping the mining industry shift from a paradigm of extraction to one of stewardship. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Bolt Mobility Unveils $9,999 Electric Car Designed For Car-Sharing In Cities” • An electric car startup based in Florida called Bolt Mobility has unveiled its first car, the B-Nano, which it says it has been working on in secret for the past two years. The B-Nano is designed for car-sharing, and the base model will sell for a mere $9,999.  [CleanTechnica]

Usain Bolt showing off the B-Nano (Credit: Bolt Mobility)

¶ “Maine Solar Bill Would Expand Access And Increase Net Metering Cap” • A bipartisan bill making its way through the Maine Legislature would set the state on a path to develop 400 MW of distributed solar energy. The legislation would allow more people to participate in community solar projects and raise caps for net metering. [Energy News Network]

¶ “Ads Flood Airwaves As Debate Continues Over Nuclear Bailout Bill” • Ohioans are being bombarded by an ad campaign focused on an energy bill, House Bill 6, that is under debate in the state legislature. FirstEnergy Solutions is in bankruptcy proceedings and may need to shut two Ohio nuclear plants down for economic reasons. [WKSU News]

Have an appreciably rewarding day.

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May 19 Energy News

May 19, 2019


¶ “Climate Change: One Man’s Fight To Save A California Tree” • After a huge wildfire killed a forest in San Diego, California, in 2002, Cody Petterson set his heart on replanting the trees. He planted hundreds of Bigcone Douglas-firs, but they are being killed by heat and drought. Their only habitat is California, where climate change is killing them. [BBC]

Cody Petterson (Photo: Cody Petterson)

¶ “One Size Doesn’t Fit All: How Commercial Electric Vehicles Present Unique Challenges For Charging Infrastructure” • In the climate crisis, reducing emissions requires an all-hands-on-deck approach to goods and services, including how they are designed, produced, sourced, and transported. Transportation is the biggest source of emissions in the US. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “The heat is on over the climate crisis. Only radical measures will work” • Drowned cities; stagnant seas; intolerable heatwaves; entire nations uninhabitable. A four-degree-warmer world is the stuff of nightmares and yet that’s where we’re heading in just decades. Meeting our emissions targets may seem hard. It will be far harder for our children if we don’t. [The Guardian]

As permafrost melts, grave markers tumble.
(Mark Ralston | AFP | Getty Images)

Science and Technology:

¶ “ABB Unveils Blockchain Inverter Pilot As Tech Emerges From Buzzword Status” • Inverter manufacturer ABB has launched a blockchain pilot to examine how the technology could boost the role of solar in peer-to-peer energy trading and smart grids. If successful, the firm intends to ensure that all inverters in the same class are blockchain ready. [PV-Tech]

¶ “New Report On Plastics And Climate – The Hidden Costs Of A Plastic Planet” • The Center for International Environmental Law published Plastic & Climate The Hidden Costs of a Plastic Planet. It says that greenhouse gas emissions associated with plastic “threaten the ability of the global community to keep global temperature rise below 1.5°C.” [CleanTechnica]

CIEL report


¶ “Australia Poll Result Divides The Nation” • The result of yesterday’s election in Australia triggered rage and disgust for those hoping for a change of government deemed fairer and kinder to the environment. Many took to social media to express dismay after an election in which climate change was a major issue. [The Straits Times]

¶ “Climate Change Concerns Sour Germany’s Love For Cars” • In car-loving Germany, climate change has become a leading – but divisive – issue for voters going into European elections. A new Deutschland Trend poll by national broadcaster ARD, shows that 48% of respondents listed climate change as their biggest concern. [CNN]

Protest (Christoph Soeder | DPA | AFP | Getty Images)

¶ “India: Share Of Non-Fossil Fuel Generation Tops 22% In 2018–2019” • Data released by India’s Central Electricity Authority and analyzed by CleanTechnica shows that the share of non-fossil fuel generation, including renewable energy, nuclear power, and large hydropower, topped 22.2% in the financial year 2018-19 (April 2018 to March 2019). [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Energy Ministry To Support Private Renewable Power Plants For Electricity Exports” • The Iranian Energy Minister, Reza Ardakanian, said the country’s renewable power plants operated by the private sector will be provided with necessary facilities to export electricity to the neighboring countries, Tasnim news agency reported. [Tehran Times]

Solar power system in Iran

¶ “UN Urges Universities To Be Catalysers Of Sustainability” • Young people are driving a global wake-up call on climate change and the need to reduce our carbon footprint. Many universities struggle with the concept of ‘greening,’ however, and their achievements to date have been “scattered and unsystematic”, UN Environment warned. [University World News]

¶ “Seven Solar Energy Projects Worth $1.5 Billion Unveiled In Saudi Arabia” • In Saudi Arabia, as part of its Vision 2030 economic diversification push, seven PV solar power projects with a combined capacity of 1.52 GW and worth $1.51 billion were launched on the side-lines of the recently concluded Saudi Elenex exhibition. [Utilities Middle East]

Large solar system

¶ “Guardian Drops Neutrality In Climate Crisis Reporting” • The Guardian updated its style guide to introduce terms that more accurately describe environmental crises. “Climate emergency, crisis, or breakdown,” are preferred to “global warming,” and “global heating” is favoured over “global warming.” The original terms are not banned. [Outside the Beltway]


¶ “Children Of The Sun Solar Initiative Rises Out Of Devastating Fire” • The 2016 Cayuse Mountain Fire burned over 18,000 acres, destroyed 14 tribal homes on the Spokane Indian Reservation, and burned transmission lines for buildings and wells. The tribe has a solar system designed to foster resilience, autonomy, and sustainability. [CleanTechnica]

Solar installation

¶ “Republican Justin Amash Calls For Trump Impeachment” • Rep Justin Amash is the first Republican congressman to call for impeachment of Pres Donald Trump. He accused AG William Barr of misleading the public about the Mueller report, which found 10 instances where Mr Trump possibly attempted to impede the investigation. [BBC]

¶ “Nonprofits Using Community Solar To Help Veterans, Families” • Community solar usually comes with barriers such as credit score checks that can put it out of reach for some of those who have the most to potentially gain, but several Minnesota nonprofit organizations are turning to community solar as a tool to fight poverty. [Minneapolis Star Tribune]

Have a triumphantly agreeable day.

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May 18 Energy News

May 18, 2019


¶ “Who’s Behind The War On Electric Cars?” • According to two attendees at a closed-door meeting of the American Legislative Exchange Council, here was a contentious discussion between utility companies, which stand to benefit financially from sales of electricity for electric cars, and the fuel companies, which stand to lose. [CleanTechnica]

VW e-Golf Envoys

¶ “Cities Hold The Keys To Greener, More Efficient Homes” • Our homes may be a source of safety, comfort, and stability, but they also represent a considerable slice of our country’s carbon emissions, estimated by the Energy Information Administration to be 20%. Addressing this piece of our energy system is essential to achieving our climate goals. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Stalling Renewables Growth Raises Concern About Global Decarbonization Efforts” • In 2018, for the first time this century, global growth rate of new renewable energy capacity did not show a year-to-year increase. This leveling off has raised concern that efforts to advance a low-carbon energy transition may be stalling at just the wrong time. [Forbes]

Wind Farm (Getty Images)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Air Pollution Is Slowly Killing Us All, New Global Study Claims” • A comprehensive global study by the International Respiratory Society’s Environmental Committee appeared in the official publication of the American College of Chest Physicians. It says that air pollution may damage every organ in the human body. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Another Electric Vehicle Benefit: No Carbon Monoxide Poisoning” • Several hundred Americans die each year from carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning, and far more are made sick. A number of the deaths occur in gas-powered vehicles where CO can build up without the occupants knowing, because the gas is colorless and odorless. [CleanTechnica]

Nissan LEAF


¶ “German Brands Recover Ground In German Electric Car Market – April EV Sales Report” • The German plug-in electric vehicle market continued on the right track in April, having scored 7,771 registrations. Fully electric vehicles grew at 50% year over year, and plug-in hybrids grew at 14%. The overall market was stagnant and fell 3%. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “In A First, India’s Quarterly Solar Generation Exceeds 10 TWh” • According to data reported by the Central Electricity Authority, India generated 11.3 TWh of solar power during the quarter of January-March 2019. This marks a 16.5% increase from the previous quarter and a huge 57% jump from the same quarter last year. [CleanTechnica]

Please click on the image to enlarge it.

¶ “NB Green Party Makes Progress In Bill That Promotes Municipality-Based Renewables” • New Brunswick’s Green Party is pushing to increase the amount of renewable energy for municipal governments and First Nations. The plan is to allow local governments and First Nations to partner with local renewable energy producers. [Huddle Today]

¶ “BYD Lands Deal For 15 Electric Buses In Madrid” • BYD has taken another step forward in electrifying mass transit in Spain, as the company has landed a deal with EMT Madrid for 15 BYD 12-meter buses. The new order marks the first order of fully electric buses from BYD for EMT Madrid, the city’s primary public surface transit operator. [CleanTechnica]

BYD 12-meter bus in Santiago, Chile (BYD image)

¶ “It Just Became Much Easier For Businesses To Move Off Eskom’s Grid – Here’s Why” • Business Day reported that South Africa’s Minister of Energy gave the country’s energy regulator leave to licence 500 MW for small-scale embedded generation projects, sized between 1 MW and 10 MW, without his signing off on them. [Business Insider South Africa]

¶ “OPT PowerBuoy Passes MWh Milestone” • Ocean Power Technologies PB3 PowerBuoy system has delivered more than 1 MWh of electricity since deployment in the Adriatic Sea in November. The company said the wave device has operated “continuously and error-free” while being controlled remotely from its New Jersey facility. [reNEWS]

OPT PowerBuoy (Ocean Power Technologies image)


¶ “Deadly Flooding Is Rocking Texas. Scientists Say This Is Our Future Under Climate Change.” • Across the US, trends indicate that flooding is becoming the new normal. Climate scientists say it is a challenge to connect isolated events to climate change, but they have linked the wider trend uptick in rain and disasters to global warming. [ThinkProgress]

¶ “White Cloud To Deliver For Enel In Missouri” • Enel Green Power is to supply electricity to Associated Electrive Cooperative from the White Cloud wind farm in Missouri under a long-term power purchase agreement. The White Cloud wind farm will have a capacity of over 236 MW and is expected to be operational by the end of 2020. [reNEWS]

Wind turbine (Enel Green Power image)

¶ “New York Updates Price Signals To Recognize Full Value, Spur Distributed Energy Resources” • New York regulators continue to hone the state’s rates and policies to expand the use of clean, distributed energy resources. Commissioners want distributed energy resources to increase on the grid, but also must ensure customer bills are fairly assessed. [Utility Dive]

¶ “Plant Vogtle Update: Further Behind Schedule, Still Billions Over Budget” • The Georgia Public Service Commission has been reviewing the status of the Vogtle nuclear expansion project this week after receiving a required update from Georgia Power. The update shows each reactor is now one more month behind schedule.  [Georgia Public Broadcasting]

Have a fabulously fine day.

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May 17 Energy News

May 17, 2019


¶ “Five Reason’s Why HB 6, Ohio’s Nuclear Plant Subsidy Proposal, Should Be Rejected” • By giving a blatant handout to the nuclear and fossil fuel industries at the expense of renewable energy and energy efficiency, the latest proposal for a “Clean Air Program” in Ohio is bad for consumers, the economy, and the environment. [Union of Concerned Scientists]

Davis Besse power plant

¶ “Australia’s climate election: Where do parties stand on renewables?” • Australia’s 2019 federal election has been dubbed “the climate election” for a reason. The nation has just had its hottest summer on record, and greenhouse gas emissions rise without federal regulation. Many voters are concerned about climate change. [pv magazine International]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Instability Spreading In West Antarctic Ice Sheet” • Almost a quarter of the West Antarctic ice sheet is now affected by ice thinning, according to a study. It found that the ice sheet has thinned by as much as 122 meters in some places, and thinning has left glaciers unstable, according to scientists at the University of Leeds in England. [CNN]

Antarctic glacier melt (Andrew Shepherd)

¶ “414 Million Pieces Of Plastic Found On Remote Australian Islands: Study” • A study published in the journal Scientific Reports, found that Australia’s remote island territory of Cocos was littered with 238 tonnes of plastic. The group of 27 islands, home to about 500 people, is marketed to tourists as “Australia’s last unspoilt paradise.” [CNN]


¶ “Engie Wins 200 MW Of Wind In India’s Latest Auction” • Due to undersubscription, the Solar Energy Corporation of India decided to auction just 480 MW of capacity, the smallest amount in its windpower auction history. Engie made a 200-MW bid at ₹2.79/kWh (3.98¢/kWh), matching its highest-ever win in India’s wind energy auctions. [CleanTechnica]

Wind turbines (Pexel image)

¶ “Vattenfall And GE Renewable Energy To Co-operate On Next-Generation Turbine” • Offshore wind developer Vattenfall and GE Renewable Energy are joining forces to deploy GE’s new offshore wind turbine, the Haliade-X. With a capacity of 12 MW, the Haliade-X is the largest offshore wind turbine currently being marketed. [Offshore Wind Journal]

¶ “Tilt Makes 130-MW New Zealand Power Play” • Australian renewables developer Tilt Renewables is to sell electricity to Genesis Energy from the 130-MW Waverley wind farm in New Zealand. Their 20-year power purchase agreement will allow Tilt to complete the remaining development activities. The project is to be online in September, 2021. [reNEWS]

Wind project construction (Tilt Renewables image)

¶ “2K MW Of Solar, Wind Energy Added To Egypt’s National Network” • The total amount of electricity generated from renewable energy in Egypt has reached 6,000 MW. The country had adopted the strategy of incorporating renewable energy in the mix a few years ago to reduce the reliance on traditional energy resources. [Egypttoday]

¶ “BC Renewable Energy Efforts Extend To Its Costal Lighthouses” • British Columbia is working on powering its lighthouses with green energy. After getting experience with renewable energy, the Canadian province wants to transition its 27 staffed lighthouses from diesel power to renewably sourced sustainable energy. [Hydrogen Fuel News]


¶ “UK Solar Output Hits Record Peak Of 9.55 GW” • According to the Solar Trade Association, the UK’s solar fleet broke its peak output record on May 13, when it hit 9.47 GW. This was followed a day later by yet another announcement of yet another record, after peak solar output reached 9.55 GW at around 12:30 pm on May 14. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Canberra Will Be First Australian City To Run On 100% Renewable Energy From October” • Canberra will be effectively powered by renewable energy from October 1, with completion of the third stage of the Hornsdale wind farm. It will be the first Australian jurisdiction to do so, the Australian Capital Territory’s Climate Change Minister said. [ABC News]

Solar panels (Jake Evans | ABC News)


¶ “Inslee Releases $3 Trillion Jobs Plan Centered On Clean Energy, Green Infrastructure” • Washington Gov Jay Inslee has unveiled his presidential campaign’s jobs plan, providing details of a proposal that has a laser-like focus on combating climate change. The proposal projects the creation of 8 million jobs over the next 10 years. [CNN]

¶ “Jay Inslee Calls Out Joe Biden On Combating Climate Change: ‘We Have To Live In The Real World Here'” • Washington Gov Jay Inslee repeatedly called out Joe Biden for his approach on climate, suggesting that the former vice president is naive about working with Republicans on the issue. Biden said critics are not looking at his record. [CNN]

CNN Town Hall with Jay Inslee (Karen Ducey | Getty Images)

¶ “Clearway Cash Rich For 419-MW Texas Titan” • US company Clearway Energy Group has closed financing of the 419-MW Mesquite Star wind farm in Texas and has started construction. Mesquite Star will have a total of 118 Siemens Gamesa turbines. It is being built by Blattner Energy, and commercial operations are to begin in early 2020. [reNEWS]

¶ “Hawaii Court Halts Biomass Plant Over Climate Concerns” • The Hawaii Supreme Court stopped plans by a biomass company to burn locally grown eucalyptus trees to provide energy to the state’s largest utility. The court ruled that the state Public Utility Commission approved the plant without considering Hawaii’s emissions goals. [Climate Liability News]

Have a stunningly lovely day.

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May 16 Energy News

May 16, 2019


¶ “Volkswagen Continues To Ramp Up Its Electric Car Push” • VW’s board of supervisors announced that it is prepared to invest €1 billion in a battery cell factory. The preferred site is Salzgitter in Lower Saxony, where pilot production of battery cells is to begin later this year. The new factory siting is contingent on negotiations with the government. [CleanTechnica]

VW Scania truck (Image: Scania)

¶ “Project Developers Continue To Avoid Renewable Energy Auctions In India” • Project developers in India are unwilling to bid for large-scale solar and wind energy tenders, sounding alarms across government circles. The western state of Gujarat witnessed significant under-subscription of solar and wind energy tenders last week. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Ireland Failing To Meet EU Energy Targets – Report” • Ireland will fall short of 2020 EU renewable energy targets, according to a report from the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland. The report predicts that 13% of the country’s energy will be derived from renewable sources next year. Ireland’s European target is 16%. []

Wind turbines and a colorful sky

¶ “India’s Largest Power Company Shifts Away From Coal” • Tata Power, India’s largest integrated power company, announced that it will build no new coal-fired plants. In India, over 40 GW of coal-fired power plants are financially stressed, and new additions are coming to a near halt. Peak coal capacity may be closer than anticipated. [Sierra Magazine]

¶ “Scottish Renewables Firms Exporting To More Than 70 Countries” • Industry body Scottish Renewables found that businesses have exported renewable energy goods or services to a total of 72 countries. The most popular export destination was the US. Nine of the 15 Scottish businesses that responded to the survey export to the US. [Energy Voice]

Scotrenewables SR2000 deployment (Scotrenewables image)

¶ “Labour Reveals Plans To Fit Solar Panels To 1.75 Million Homes” • The UK Labour Party announced plans to fit solar panels to 1.75 million homes of socially housed or low-income households as part of its promised “green industrial revolution” to try to combat climate change and boost jobs. Another goal is free energy for needy people. [The Guardian]

¶ “Floating Wind ‘Buoys’ RE Investment In France” • While China and the US have maintained the top two places, in that order, in the EY Renewable Energy Country Attractiveness Index, France has moved up two notches into third place on the back of developments in floating offshore wind and bigger onshore targets. [reNEWS]

Floating offshore windpower (Image: Naval Energies)

¶ “ACT Declares Climate Change Emergency – Slams Federal Government Failure To Act” • The Australian Capital Territory has become the first state or territory in the country to make a formal declaration of a climate change emergency. The passage of the motion follows similar declarations made in the UK and Ireland. [RenewEconomy]


¶ “2-GW Offshore Bill Advances In Connecticut” • Connecticut’s House of Representatives voted 134 to 10 in favor of legislation that would see the state buy or develop up to 2 GW of offshore wind power. The proposed legislation now goes to the state’s Senate for consideration. Connecticut Gov Ned Lamont is in favor of the measure. [reNEWS]

London Array (reNEWS image)

¶ “Renewable Energy Capacity In Texas REC Program Grew By Almost 10% In 2018” • For Texas’ voluntary Renewable Energy Credit program, including areas not in the Electric Reliability Council of Texas, the total capacity increased by about 2.6 GW, almost 10%, between 2017 and 2018. Analysts differ over whether the growth can continue. [S&P Global Platts]

¶ “Florida PSC Deems TECO Shared Solar Program ‘In The Public Interest’” • The Florida Public Service Commission has approved Tampa Electric Co’s optional solar energy tariff. This permits electric service customers to purchase energy from a designated TECO solar energy resource to replace all or part of their monthly energy consumption. [Solar Industry]

Tampa, Florida

¶ “Colorado Town Commits To 100% Renewable Electricity By 2035” • The Frisco Town Council unanimously voted to approve a resolution committing the community to shift away from fossil fuels and transition to 100% clean, renewable electricity by 2035. Eleven Colorado cities have made clean energy commitments since 2017. [Windpower Engineering]

¶ “Icebreaker Inches Towards Construction” • The Lake Erie Energy Development Corporation has reached an agreement with the staff of the Ohio Power Siting Board about the 21-MW Icebreaker offshore wind project. The next step is to get formal board approval. The company is “optimistic that the permit will be issued later this year.” [reNEWS]

Icebreaker test installation (LEEDCo image)

¶ “More Renewable And Clean Energy Is Coming To The Northland” • Minnesota Power and parent company Allete have announced more investments in clean energy. It recently sold a water company in the Twin Cities area for nearly $300 million, and some of those funds will allow them to invest in more solar and wind energy. [FOX 21 Online]

¶ “Santee Cooper Sues VC Summer Contractor Westinghouse Over Abandoned Nuclear Equipment” • Santee Cooper sued the lead contractor of its failed VC Summer nuclear plant project. The lawsuit is the latest swing in a fight over who owns the abandoned equipment and parts left at the massive construction site in South Carolina. [Greenville News]

Have a charmingly pleasant day.

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May 15 Energy News

May 15, 2019


¶ “Donald Trump Can’t Stop America From Going Green” • Despite Donald Trump’s vows to save coal, American oil companies (!) are investing in cleaner technology, according to a report from two World Bank economists. And state governments are filling the regulatory breach left by the do-nothing regime occupying Washington. [WBUR]

Coal mine in Wyoming (US BLM image, public domain)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Army Research Lab Water-Based Battery Is Lighter, Uses No Cobalt Or Nickel” • Researchers at the Army Research Lab in Adelphi, Maryland report they have created lighter batteries with high energy density that use no flammable electrolyte and operate without cobalt or nickel in their chemistry. The concept needs to be field-proven. [CleanTechnica]


¶ “187 Nations Signed UN Plastics Waste Protocol, But The US Was Not One Of Them” • After China stopped importing waste, delegates from 187 countries met in Geneva to figure how to deal with plastic refuse. They agreed that waste may not be shipped to a country, if it refuses its permission. The US did not sign the protocol. [CleanTechnica]

Plastic waste (Image: CC0, Public Domain)

¶ “Germany’s SCHMID Plans Saudi Energy Storage JV With GW-Scale Production” • German technology group SCHMID and two Saudi investors plan to form a joint venture in Saudi Arabia to develop and manufacture vanadium redox flow batteries. They plan a GW-scale manufacturing facility in the kingdom to enter production in 2020. [Renewables Now]

¶ “Ørsted Divests Danish Coal Station And Transit Harbor” • Ørsted announced that it had signed an agreement with Danish consortium Stigsnæs Industripark A/S for the sale of a coal-burning power, transit harbor, and coal terminal, near Skælskør, in Denmark. The buyer has experience in demolition and cleanup. It will develop the site. [CleanTechnica]

Stigsnæs Transit Harbour (Ørsted image)

¶ “China Still Most Attractive Renewables Market Despite Subsidy Cuts – EY” • China is the most attractive market for investment in renewable energy for the fourth year in a row and growth there is set to continue despite the country’s efforts to trim subsidies, a report by UK accountancy firm Ernst & Young showed. The US is number two. []

¶ “Aussie Businesses Take Renewable Energy To The Next Level” • A customer-owned bank has become the first Australian bank to switch to 100% renewable electricity amid a growing push for clean energy in the business sector. Bank Australia joins Westpac and tech company Atlassian as recent Australian companies to join RE100. [Pro Bono Australia]

Wind farm


¶ “UK Solar Soars To Record High” • Solar generation records were broken in the UK on 13 May on the back of clear and bright weather conditions, according to the Solar Trade Association. STA said a generation peak of 9.47GW was achieved, surpassing the previous record of 9.38GW set in May 2017. Another  new record may be set today. [reNEWS]

¶ “Glasgow Aims To Be The UK’s First ‘Net-Zero’ City” • Plans unveiled by Glasgow would make it the first UK city to reduce its greenhouse emissions to net-zero. The city wants to reach the target before 2045, beating the Scotland-wide ambition of the Scottish government. Glasgow’s plan includes mass EV charging stations. [BBC News]

Glasgow at night (Barnabas Csomor, Wikimedia Commons)

¶ “Scots To Reap £2 Billion Pumped Hydro Benefits” • Scottish companies are set to benefit from £2 billion investment in three pumped hydro schemes in Scotland, according to ILI Group chief executive Mark Wilson. Speaking on the eve of the All-Energy 2019 trade fair in Glasgow, he said the projects will create thousands of jobs. [reNEWS]


¶ “Teachers Grapple With Climate Change: ‘A Pretty Scary Topic'” • The Climate Literacy and Energy Awareness Network reviewed more than 30,000 free online resources and found only 700 acceptable for use in schools. The rest include materials from climate change doubters, the oil industry, and others with misleading information. [NBC 10 Philadelphia]

Teaching science (Sarah Blake Morgan | AP)

¶ “Boulder City Looks To Make More Than $1.6 Million Per Year With New Renewable Energy Plant” • Nevada has the best solar power potential in the nation, the US EIA says. Boulder City, which sits between Las Vegas and Lake Mead, is looking to capitalize on a renewable energy push that Nevada is particularly ripe for. [News3LV]

¶ “Students press Portland school board to adopt climate curriculum promised 3 years ago” • Dozens of students packed the auditorium at Portland school district headquarters to demand a science and social studies curriculum that addresses climate change. The school board passed a resolution three years ago promising just that. []

Students attending
(Eder Campuzano)

¶ “Springtime Showers Brings State Legislation In The US Friendly To Solar And Wind Energy” • In the months of March and April alone, eight states in the US passed legislation in an attempt to either make the permitting process easier for solar and wind power or to commit to the use of renewable power by a certain date. [The National Law Review]

¶ “A Strong Bipartisan Vote For Wind Power In Connecticut” • Connecticut’s House of Representatives voted overwhelmingly for a bipartisan measure that proponents say would make Connecticut a reliable customer of electricity produced by offshore wind turbines, a step to match the output of the aging Millstone nuclear power station. [The CT Mirror]

Have a thoroughly delightful day.

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May 14 Energy News

May 14, 2019


¶ “China, Japan, And South Korea Lie To Themselves (And Us) About Renewable Energy Intentions” • There are about 67 GW of new coal plants scheduled to receive foreign funding in countries around the world. According to, more than 80% of them are being financed by China, Japan, and South Korea. [CleanTechnica]

Mountaintop removal coal mining

Science and Technology:

¶ “Scientists Say They Have Created An Environmentally Friendly Alternative To Styrofoam” • From an environmental perspective, styrofoam is a disaster. Scientists at Washington State University say they have developed an environmentally friendly material derived from plants that works better than Styrofoam for insulation. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Deepest Ever Dive Finds Plastic Bag At Bottom Of Mariana Trench” • An American undersea explorer, Victor Vescovo, has completed what is claimed to be the deepest manned sea dive ever recorded, 10,927 meters (35,853 feet). He returning to the surface with the depressing news that there’s plastic trash down there. [CNN]

Victor Vescovo piloting (Discovery | Five Deeps Expedition)

¶ “Cement Giant Heidelberg Pledges Carbon Neutral Concrete By 2050” • The world’s fourth largest cement manufacturing company, Heidelberg Cement, pledged to bring its emission reduction targets in line with the goals of the Paris Agreement, in a first for the industry. The cement sector accounts for around 7% of CO₂ emissions. [Climate Home]

¶ “New Breakthroughs In Fuel Cell Technology Announced” • Scientists at the University of Waterloo announced that they have succeeded in making fuel cells that last ten times longer than the ones commercially available today. They have the potential to make electric cars that cost no more than cars powered by fossil fuels. [CleanTechnica]

Fuel Cell and Green Energy Lab, University of Waterloo


¶ “Gupta’s Cultana Solar Farm Gets Green Light” • The first solar farm in Sanjeev Gupta’s ambitious plans for Whyalla received planning approval from the South Australian government. The Cultana project will see the construction of a 280-MW solar farm he wants to develop to support steel manufacturing plants in the region. [RenewEconomy]

¶ “43 Cities Score ‘A’ Grade In CDP Climate Change Ranking” • A total of 43 cities, including Barcelona, London, Paris, Cape Town, and Hong Kong, populate a new “A List” ranking cities’ action to cut emissions and set climate strategies published this week by environmental impact non-profit CDP to celebrate the start of EU Green Week. [CleanTechnica]


¶ “Business, Homes Urged To Turn To Renewable Energy” • Industrialists have called on the business sector and individuals in Zimbabwe to adopt renewable energy sources as a long-term solution to the country’s power shortages. The call came after utility Zesa Holdings started a load-shedding regime due to low water levels in Kariba Dam. [NewsDay]

¶ “‘Step-Change’ In Energy Investment Needed To Meet Climate Goals: IEA” • The world must double spending on renewable power and slash investment in oil and coal by 2030 to keep the Paris climate treaty temperature targets in play, the International Energy Agency said. That would mean reversing the energy trends of 2018. [Phys.Org]

Solar farm in China

¶ “French Watchdog Investigates Potential Nuclear Safety Fraud” • French nuclear regulator ASN said it was looking into possible fraud and falsification regarding nuclear safety, after receiving several warnings from whistleblowers. The ASN said since November it had received 22 warnings and passed four of them to criminal courts. []


¶ “US Offshore Wind Industry Sucking Up Talent From Oil And Gas” • The US oil and gas industry is facing a workforce crisis in the next five years or so, and now here comes the red-hot US wind industry to add fuel to the fire. It seems that the offshore wind industry is beginning to steal talent from its offshore oil and gas competition. [CleanTechnica]

Offshore wind industry at work at Block Island

¶ “Jury Returns $2 Billion Verdict Against Monsanto For Couple With Cancer” • A jury awarded $2.055 billion to a couple who blamed Monsanto’s weed killer Roundup for their cancers, their attorneys said. They spoke of a “mountain of evidence showing Monsanto’s manipulation of science, the media and regulatory agencies to forward their own agenda.” [CNN]

¶ “Renewable Energy Center Coming To Brayton Point” • The former Brayton Point power station has become the Anbaric Renewable Energy Center, with a 1,200-MW HVDC converter. Commercial Development Company also plans to develop a 400-MW battery storage facility at the site, which is in Somerset, Massachusetts. []

Anbaric Renewable Energy Center (AREC image)

¶ “‘No Middle Ground’: Ocasio-Cortez And Activists Take Aim At Biden At Green New Deal Rally” • Sen Bernie Sanders and Rep Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez made the case for radical action to combat climate change at a rally in Washington. “There is no ‘middle ground’ when it comes to climate policy,” Sanders tweeted. [KRTV Great Falls News]

¶ “Venetian Resort Las Vegas, NV Energy Reach Long-Term Agreement” • The Venetian hotel-casino and Nevada utility NV Energy announced that they have reached a long-term energy supply agreement committing to a partnership that advances renewable energy. The resort had considered leaving NV Energy over the issue. [KTNV Las Vegas]

Have a terrifically rewarding day.

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May 13 Energy News

May 13, 2019


¶ “These Days, It’s Not About the Polar Bears” • Social-science investigators have found that the most effective tools for engaging the public in the subject of climate change are those that appeal to core human tendencies. For example, people tend to focus on personal and local problems that are happening right now. [The New York Times]

Children protest (Chris J Ratcliffe | Getty Images)

Science and Technology:

¶ “There Is More CO₂ In The Atmosphere Today Than Any Point Since The Evolution Of Humans” • According to data from the Mauna Loa Observatory in Hawaii, the concentration of CO₂ in the atmosphere is over 415 ppm, far higher than at any point in the last 800,000 years, since before the evolution of the species Homo sapiens. [CNN]


¶ “Yes, The International Monetary Fund Is Waking Up To Financial Risks Of The Climate Crisis” • The IMF is exploring ways in which it can help address the climate crisis. It is working to reflect climate resilience, assess the fiscal impacts of climate policy choices, and evaluate climate risks in its assessments of countries. [CleanTechnica]

Extraction machine at a coal mine (Max Pixel)

¶ “Elonroad EV Charging System To Get First Trial In Sweden” • After eight years of research by the University of Lund, with funding from the Swedish government, the city of Lund is about to begin installing the first kilometer of Elonroad track along a heavily used bus route to recharge electric bus batteries as they drive. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “EDF Climate Corps Fellows Unearth Energy Savings For BYD” • As a leader in not only plug-in vehicles, but also in stationary energy storage, and grid scale solar, BYD is always looking for ways to reduce its carbon footprint. It reached out to the Environmental Defense Fund’s Climate Corps program for external expertise. [CleanTechnica]

BYD Electric Truck factory (Kyle Field | CleanTechnica)

¶ “Australian Islanders To Lodge Landmark UN Complaint On Climate Change” • According to lawyers involved in the action. a group of indigenous people is filing an unprecedented legal complaint against the government of Australia, accusing it of breaching their human rights by falling short on its Paris climate accord pledges. []

¶ “Climate And Energy Goals Can Be Met Without Sacrificing Rivers: WWF” • A report from the Nature Conservancy and the WWF showed that the renewable energy transition can solve the world’s climate and energy challenges without sacrificing its remaining free-flowing rivers and the benefits they provide to people and nature. [Saurenergy]

Renewable energy and river

¶ “Renewables MMI: World Bank Launches Fund For Sustainable Mining Practices” • As the world increasingly moves toward having its energy needs met by renewables, the environmental impact of the metal mining needed for renewable energy has come into focus. So the World Bank launched a Climate-Smart Mining Facility. [MetalMiner]

¶ “German Onshore Wind ‘Collapse’ Jeopardises EU Renewable Energy Goals” • The “collapse” in the growth of onshore wind energy in Germany is jeopardising renewable energy targets, Trade body WindEurope says. Only 134 MW of German onshore wind capacity was installed in Q1 of 2019. It was the worst first quarter since 2000. [Energy Live News]

Onshore wind turbines (Shutterstock image)

¶ “UN Chief: Climate Change ‘Running Faster Than We Are'” • UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said “Climate change is running faster than what we are.” He pointed out that Countries are not living up to their commitments under the 2016 Paris Agreement, even though the last four years have been the hottest in history. []

¶ “TEPCO tests halting water injection into crippled reactor at Fukushima No 1 nuclear power plant” • The operator of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant conducted a test, temporarily halting the water injection into one of the reactors that suffered a core meltdown in 2011. The test will provide core temperature data. [The Japan Times]

Fukushima Daiichi (Kyodo image)


¶ “Tech Giants Get Antsy In Northern Virginia: Give Us Renewable Power, There’s A Planet To Save… And PR To Harvest” • A letter signed by Apple, Microsoft, and several other businesses demands that “energy providers” in Virginia – which basically means Dominion – offer more solar and wind power to data center operators. [The Register]

¶ “On Climate, Washington State Back In The Lead” • The state of Washington closed out its 2019 legislative session with some big wins for the climate. The legislature passed a 100% clean electricity standard, new efficiency policies, and regulation of super-pollutants. But there is more to do, especially in regards to transportation emissions. [CleanTechnica]

Charging station (Washington State Dept of Transportation)

¶ “Minnesota Power Offers Renewable Energy Programs” • Some energy resources are more environmentally friendly than others. Minnesota Power has rolled out several different options for home and business owners to use clean energy sources with its EnergyForward program for customers looking to turn to clean energy. [KBJR 6]

¶ “Tucson Electric To Save $13 Million Through Partnership With ‘Real-Time’ Wholesale Power Market” • Tucson Electric Power Co announced that it will join the Western Energy Imbalance Market, a move it says will save $13 million a year. It signed with the California Independent System Operator to participate starting in April 2022. [Arizona Daily Star]

Have a transcendentally gleeful day.

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