Posts Tagged ‘solar power’

August 7 Energy News

August 7, 2022

Opinion:

¶ “30 Million EV Battery Packs In 2027?” • There are expected to be about 10 million EV battery packs shipped in 2022 globally, according to research firm Juniper Research. The company forecasts that number will rise to 30 million in 2027. A simple calculation shows that Juniper Research belives 25.8% of the global car market will be EVs in 2027. [CleanTechnica]

Tesla battery pack (Tesla image)

¶ “We Are Not Freaking Out Enough About Climate Change” • We could be facing a “climate endgame,” and the concept of climate change ending human existence is a “dangerously underexplored topic,” says a research paper. We know climate change will be really bad, but we’re completely unprepared for worst-case scenarios. [Gizmodo Australia]

Science and Technology:

¶ “New Way To Calculate Environmental Impact Of Ammonia Production” • Ammonia is a major ingredient in the production of fertilizers, and making it is a big part of global greenhouse gas emissions. A team at the US DOE’s Argonne National Laboratory modeled how much it would cost to produce ammonia in ways that have emissions reduced. [CleanTechnica]

Farm (Federico Respini, Unsplash)

World:

¶ “Zaporizhzhia: Real Risk Of Nuclear Disaster In Ukraine – UN Watchdog” • The UN’s nuclear watchdog has called for a prompt end to any military action near Ukraine’s Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant, warning of a “very real risk of a nuclear disaster.” This comes as Ukraine said parts of the facility were “seriously damaged” by Russian military strikes. [BBC]

¶ “Why The International Climate Community Isn’t Popping Champagne Over The US Energy Bill” • While the energy bill is welcomed overseas, there’s an overarching feeling that the US is simply catching up to its allies after years of inaction. Pressure has also increased for the US to take financial responsibility for its historic role in the crisis. [CNN]

Microburst (NOAA, Unsplash)

¶ “All-New Electric Jeep Caught Undisguised In Europe” • There’s a lot we don’t know about Stellantis’ upcoming, all-electric Jeep that’s set to debut in 2023. We don’t know the specs, for example. We don’t know the price – heck, we don’t even know what they’re going to call it! But now, at least, we know exactly what it’s going to look like! [CleanTechnica]

¶ “BYD Electric Vehicle Launch A Massive Success In Australia” • Not since Tesla brought a Model 3 to Brisbane back in 2018 (prior to deliveries in 2019) have I seen such a crowd at the launch of an EV. BYD received 600 RSVPs to the launch of the BYD Atto 3 at Indooroopilly’s Auto Mall in Brisbane. I think all of them were there on August 2nd. [CleanTechnica]

BYD Yuan Plus (Anonymousfox36, CC-BY-SA 4.0, cropped)

¶ “Hundreds Of Victorian Renewable Energy Projects In Limbo After Program Funding Ceases” • The Victorian government has not re-funded the Community Power Hub program, which ran in six areas across the state for the past 12 months. That decision is leaving hundreds of renewable energy projects important for de-carbonisation targets in limbo. [ABC]

¶ “From Melting Glaciers To Cloudbursts – How Climate Change Is Impacting Kashmir” • Glaciers in the Kashmir area are melting at an unusual pace, posing a big threat to the environment as well as to the people in the region, a study shows. Heat records are being shattered, even as frequencies of rainfalls, hailstorms, and flashfloods are on rise. [Zee News]

Kashmir countryside (Praneet Kumar, Unsplash)

¶ “Russia Planning To Disconnect Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant From Ukraines Power Grid, Cutting Off Power In Southern Ukraine” • Energoatom has said that Russian occupying forces are attacking the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant to destroy its infrastructure, disconnect it from the Ukrainian power grid and cut off power in southern Ukraine. [Yahoo News]

US:

¶ “How The Climate Bill Could  Save You Money On Electricity, Cars And Appliances” • With nearly $370 billion for energy and incentives, the energy bill is the largest climate investment in US history. In addition to emissions reductions, there’s a lot in the bill that could change both how Americans power their homes and what kinds of vehicles they drive. [CNN]

Home in the mountains (Vidar Nordli-Mathisen, Unsplash)

¶ “Report: Clean Energy Jobs Benefitting Every State” • As the Congress prepares to vote on the Inflation Reduction Act and the biggest investments in clean energy in US history, a report shows that every state benefits from clean energy job growth, regardless of politics, geography, or geology. Some red states are among those with the biggest gains. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “New BMW I4 EDrive35 Starts At $51,400” • BMW at long last brought another fully electric car to market, the i4. It is bringing a new version of the i4 to market in the US that offers a lower entry price. Instead of the previous low price of $55,300, the starting MSRP of the new trim is $51,400 (plus $995 destination and handling) in the US. [CleanTechnica]

BMW i4 eDrive35 (Courtesy of BMW)

¶ “Can ‘Green Banks’ Bring Clean Energy To The Masses? The US Is Betting $27 Billion On It” • With close to $370 billion on the table, one way that the Biden administration intends to distribute the billions of dollars that are meant to accelerate the adoption of solar, wind, geothermal, and the other forms of renewable energy is “Green banks.” [CBC]

¶ “Wrangling Over Renewables: Counties Push Back On Newsom Administration Usurping Local Control” • Many rural California counties have lots of land, sunshine and wind. That makes them focal points for renewable energy projects. Feeling a loss of local control over their local land, they are at the center of a statewide controversy, too. [Capital Public Radio]

Have a fully functional day.

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August 6 Energy News

August 6, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “The End Of Net Metering May Be Good For Community Resilience And National Security” • Net metering did a good job of getting people to adopt solar back when battery storage was prohibitively expensive, but the world has changed. We need more solar in most places, but we need the ability to store that energy for night-time. [CleanTechnica]

House with a rooftop solar system (Gus Ruballo, Unsplash)

¶ “LG Energy Solution Tapping Battery Startups To Try To Poach Their Goodies” • The LG Energy Solution Battery Challenge 2022 is now taking applications for startups to participate. LGES isn’t exactly coy about what it is trying to get out of it: “Through international competition, LGES aims to maintain leadership in battery industry.” [CleanTechnica]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Common Weed May Be ‘Super Plant’ That Holds Key To Drought-Resistant Crops” • Yale scientists describe how a weed, purslane, integrates two distinct metabolic pathways to create a novel type of photosynthesis that enables the weed to endure drought while remaining highly productive. Their paper was in the journal Science Advances. [Phys.org]

Purslane (ZooFari, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

World:

¶ “Russian Rockets Damaged Part Of Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Plant, Ukraine Says” • Ukraine’s nuclear agency says Russian rockets have damaged part of a giant Russian-controlled nuclear power plant, but there has been no radiation leak. Ukraine also accuses Russian forces of firing rockets at civilian areas from the site, employing “terror tactics.” [BBC]

¶ “E.ON And Alpitronic Team Up For 2,000 More Charging Stations” • Noting that the EV market is growing fast, E.ON is investing in thousands of new, ultra-fast charging stations across Europe. To install 2,000 of these charging sites by the end of 2024, E.ON has joined forces with alpitronic, a leading charger station manufacturer. [CleanTechnica]

E.ON charging station (E.ON press photo)

¶ “IKEA Aims For 1,000 EV Stations In Sweden” • IKEA has set a goal to “provide charging wherever the company offers parking.” So, unsurprisingly, the company recently announced plans to put 1,000 charging stations in the lots of its stores in Sweden, IKEA’s home country. They will be available for consumers, co-workers, and IKEA delivery vehicles. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “UK Boosts Renewable Target As Ukraine War Drives Up Prices For Energy” • With energy costs soaring, increased production of more cost-effective wind power is good news for consumers. It provides a potential to export excess UK energy to European countries, which are already struggling because of dependence on Russian energy supplies. [CGTN Europe]

Vacation home in Wales (ClwydianRanger, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “Renewable Energy Generation Accounts For 25% To 29% Of Total Power Amid High Demand: RK Singh” • Renewable energy made up 25% To 29% of the total power generation recently amid high demand for electricity, Union Power Minister RK Singh announced during a meeting of a Parliamentary Consultative Committee. [Devdiscourse]

¶ “TotalEnergies Completes 2-GW Asia Solar Joint Venture” • TotalEnergies and Eneos have received final merger clearance and have completed a joint venture agreement to develop 2 GW of solar projects across Asia over the next five years. The new joint venture will be called TotalEnergies ENEOS Renewables Distributed Generation Asia Pte Ltd. [reNews]

Solar array (TotalEnergies image)

US:

¶ “GM To Double Miles Of Highway That Super Cruise Works On” • General Motors announced that Super Cruise, which it says is the industry’s first true hands-free driver assistance system, will be expanded to allow it to operate on more roads. Hundreds of thousands of additional miles of roads in the US and Canada may now be driven hands-free. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Ford’s F-150 Lightning Now Delivered To Customers In All 50 States” • In only two months, Ford has delivered electric F-150 Lightning trucks to residents in all 50 states of the US, from the Kenai River in Alaska to Houston and even Hawaii. Though sales are greatest in California and Texas, people all over are looking to electrify their truck transport. [CleanTechnica]

F-150 Lightning in Alaska (Ford image)

¶ “Climate Activists Call On New Hampshire Officials To Invest In Renewable Energy, Divest From Fossil Fuels” • In response to recent electricity rate hikes, climate activists and organizers are demanding state officials expand New Hampshire’s renewable energy resources. The advocates met outside the State House at a press conference. [NHPR]

¶ “Revolve Renewable Power Gets Approval For 250-MW Solar-And-Storage Project From BLM” • The Canadian renewables company Revolve Renewable Power has received approval to build a 250-MW solar-and-storage project in La Paz County, Arizona, on land under management by the US Bureau of Land Management. [PV Tech]

Solar array in Arizona (Purina employee, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “CVS Health Advances Sustainability Efforts Through Purchase Of Renewable Energy” • CVS Health is closer to achieving its goal of using 50% renewable energy by 2040. The company signed a 15-year agreement with Constellation to purchase renewable energy equivalent to the energy use of 309 CVS Health locations in Illinois and Ohio. [Drug Store News]

¶ “Washington Sees Greener Energy Future For The Gulf Of Mexico” • As part of a push toward a green energy future for America, the Biden administration unveiled plans to develop wind farms in the Gulf of Mexico. Though still in their infancy, the initiatives could one day generate enough electricity to power over 3 million homes. [Voice of America]

Have a prodigiously splendid day.

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August 5 Energy News

August 5, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “Five Ways The Inflation Reduction Act Will Help American Families” • We were excited when senators Chuck Schumer and Joe Manchin announced the Inflation Reduction Act. It will lead to lower energy costs for families, create more job opportunities and make health care more affordable. Here are five ways that will come about. [CNN]

Neighborhood (Tom Rumble, Unsplash)

¶ “This Summer Made Americans Get It: Yes, Climate Change Is A Thing” • The headlines this summer have summed it up: It’s hot as hell and we really don’t want to take it anymore. Even if many Americans still don’t want to acknowledge that climate change is real, many are noticing that something is up in the air, and it isn’t pretty. [TriplePundit]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Geothermal Heating And Cooling: Renewable Energy’s Hidden Gem” • Often described as a pile of Jenga blocks, Boston University’s Center for Computing and Data Sciences shows no outward signs of leading in sustainable energy design. But water circulating through 31 geothermal boreholes will supply 90% of its heating and cooling. [Yale Climate Connections]

¶ “Lithium Carbon Battery From Allotrope Energy Can Recharge In 90 Seconds” • Allotrope Energy, in the UK, has developed a lithium carbon battery for mopeds and scooters that recharges in as little as 90 seconds. The new battery is being supplied by Mahle Powertrain, a global Tier One supplier to the automotive and mobility market. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ “Great Barrier Reef Sees Record Coral Cover, But It Is Highly Vulnerable” • Coral has recovered from storms and bleaching events to record levels across much of Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, a survey has found. But the new coral is of a particularly vulnerable type, so the progress could be quickly undone by climate change and other threats. [BBC]

Helicopter view of the reef (Sarah_Ackerman, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “France’s Auto Sales Crash 37%, BEVs Still Growing” • France, Europe’s second largest auto market, saw plugin electric vehicle share of 18.6% in July, up from 15.9% year on year. Battery EVs almost doubled in share, whilst plugin hybrids lost share. Overall auto volumes were 107, 548 units, down a big 37% from pre-2020 seasonal norms. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “VinFast’s Electric Scooters Are Enabling A Transportation Revolution In Southeast Asia” • VinFast produces four different models of electric scooters to meet the needs of Vietnam’s population, ranging from smaller Feliz S scooter up to the larger, more powerful Theon S. Scooters are the backbone of Vietnam’s transportation. [CleanTechnica]

Street in Hanoi (Elliot Andrews, Unsplash)

¶ “BMW Expands Battery Production, Tells Us About The Process” • BMW announced the start of production at Plant Leipzig’s second battery module facility. The new plant makes modules for the electric BMW i4, which is produced in Munich. The BMW Group’s goal for 2030 is to have fully electric vehicles account for at least half of sales. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Federal Government Declares Australia’s First Six Offshore Wind Energy Zones” • Federal Energy Minister Chris Bowen announced waters off the Gippsland coast, in Victoria’s south-east, would be the first offshore wind zone. Other areas will follow, with sites off the coasts of New South Wales, Victoria, Tasmania, and Western Australia. [ABC]

Offshore wind farm (Nicholas Doherty, Unsplash)

¶ “Ukraine Nuclear Power Plant Explosion Could Trigger ‘End For Europe’” • Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky has warned a missile explosion at the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant could spell the end for Europe. Western sources accuse Russian invaders of using the plant as a nuclear shield, after they began using the site for artillery. [Scottish Daily Express]

US:

¶ “Half The Country Is In Drought, And No Region Has Been Spared” • More than 50% of the country was in some level of drought for the fourth week in a row, the US Drought Monitor reported, as the combination of extreme heat and low rainfall is drawing the moisture out of plants and soil. And no region of the country has been spared. [CNN]

August 4 drought map (US Drought Monitor)

¶ “Sinema Says She Will ‘Move Forward’ On Economic Bill” • Senator Kyrsten Sinema offered critical support for President Joe Biden’s domestic agenda after party leaders agreed to change tax proposals at her request. She said she would “move forward” on the economic package that has been the product of intensive negotiations for over a year. [CNN]

¶ “As Lobstering Weakens With Climate Change, But Seaweed Farming Is Reviving An Industry” • The Maine marine economy has been almost entirely dependent on the nearshore landings of the American lobster. Now climate change has warmed Maine’s coastal waters dramatically, but lobster fishers have found a new source of income: Seaweed. [CleanTechnica]

Farming seaweed (NOAA image, public domain)

¶ “The US Power Grid Added 15 GW Of Capacity In 1st Half Of 2022” • According to the latest DOE inventory of generators, 15 GW of utility-scale electric generating capacity came online in the US during the first half of 2022. Based on the most recently reported plans, developers could add another 29 GW of capacity in the second half of the year. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Revolve Gets Nod To Advance 250-MW US Solar Project” • Revolve Renewable Power has been given the green light to proceed with its application for the 250-MW Parker solar and storage project in Arizona. The 1,530-acre site is situated in a ‘solar variance area’ designated by the US Bureau of Land Management. [reNews]

Have a thoroughly advantageous day.

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August 4 Energy News

August 4, 2022

Science and Technology:

¶ “The Next Extreme Floods Could Be Even Worse, A New Study Shows. But There’s A Way To Prevent That” • The world is getting better at managing extreme weather risk and adapting to changes brought by the climate crisis. But a study published in the journal Nature found that climate change-fueled flooding and droughts are still getting deadlier and more expensive. [CNN]

Flood (Jonathan Ford, Unsplash)

¶ “This Company Is Turning Heaps Of Plastic Trash Into Construction Building Blocks” • Los Angeles-based startup ByFusion has a plan for that waste. In fact, the business has created a system to collect the most troublesome type of plastic trash – the stuff that can’t be recycled. ByFusion hopes to be able to recycle 100 million tons of plastic by 2030. [CNN]

¶ “Rechargeable Silicon Redox Battery For Renewable Energy Storage” • Israeli researchers developed a device that combines a reversible silicon anode with halide cathodes and uses hybrid electrolytes to enable cell recharging. Silicon is dissolved during the battery discharge process, and upon charging, elemental silicon is deposited. [pv magazine Australia]

Battery concept (Technion – Israel Institute of Technology)

World:

¶ “Shell Staff Get Profits Bonus As Energy Bills Soar” • Energy giant Shell is to give its workers a one-off 8% bonus after the company reported record profits from high oil and gas prices. Most of the 82,000 staff it employs worldwide will get the pay boost but not top executives. Shell reported Q2 profits of £9 billion due to high oil and gas prices. [BBC]

¶ “UN Chief Guterres Slams Oil And Gas Firms’ ‘Grotesque Greed'” • UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres has called for oil and gas companies to face special taxes. His comments come as surging energy prices sparked by the war in Ukraine push industry profits to new highs. Mr Guterres said it was “immoral” for firms to be profiting from the crisis. [BBC]

¶ “Solaris Hits A Milestone With Its 2000th Electric Bus” • In 2012, only 15 electric buses were put into service throughout Europe’s urban areas. They are non-polluting, quiet, and very inexpensive to operate, so with falling prices of batteries, electric buses bus sales have boomed. Recently, Solaris signed a contract for its 2000th electric bus. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “VW China Unveils ‘Flying Tiger’ EVTOL Passenger Drone” • After thorough study, concept development, and prototyping, Volkswagen Group China completed its first EVTOL validation model. The initial prototype was unveiled in the Year of the Tiger, so it is the Flying Tiger, and was given a distinctive black and gold paint job. [CleanTechnica]

VW China drone (Volkswagen China image)

¶ “Spain To Hold 3.3 GW Renewables Auction In November” • Spain’s Ministry for Ecological Transition and the Demographic Challenge revealed that it will hold a 3.3-GW renewable energy auction in November. The Spanish government expects to allocate 1.8 GW of solar and 1.5 GW of wind power, to be built within two years. [PV Magazine]

¶ “First Power Exported From Hollandse Kuist Zuid Wind Farm” • The Hollandse Kust Zuid wind farm in the Dutch North Sea has generated its first electricity. So far, 36 of its turbines have been installed. When fully operational in 2023, it will be the world’s largest subsidy-free offshore wind farm, with 140 turbines and an installed capacity of 1.5 GW. [Offshore Magazine]

Already completed wind turbines of Hollandse Kust Zuid

¶ “EDF Cuts Output At Nuclear Power Plants As French Rivers Get Too Warm” • The state-owned French energy supplier EDF is temporarily reducing output at its nuclear power stations on the Rhône and Garonne rivers as heatwaves have increased river temperatures, reducing its ability to use river water to cool the nuclear power plants. [The Guardian]

US:

¶ “Congress Considers First Purchase Incentive For Commercial EVs” • The Inflation Reduction Act of 2022, the product of the agreement of Senators Manchin and Schumer, would establish a federal tax credit for businesses to purchase electric and plug-in hybrid trucks, buses, vans, shuttles, and other heavy-duty vehicles. [CleanTechnica]

Delivery vans (Courtesy of FedEx and GM)

¶ “Solar Tariffs Under Threat All Over The US” • Net metering helps solar customers by crediting them for the extra electricity their panels produce, and it’s a key reasons why solar has been able to grow so rapidly in the last few years. But now, utilities are starting to put up a fight against net metering, claiming that it’s unfair to non-solar customers. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “New Jersey School District Gets 390 KW Of Solar Power On Two Schools” • Wanaque Public Schools and Greenskies Clean Focus, a national renewable energy company, have energized 390 kW of new solar projects on two of the district’s schools. The solar projects were installed at no cost to the schools and reduces their electricity bills. [CleanTechnica]

Rooftop solar system (Greenskies Clean Focus image)

¶ “Solar Facility Now Supplying Renewable Energy For Two-Thirds Of University’s Electricity Use” • With a commitment from Johns Hopkins University, a solar facility is now providing the university with two-thirds of its annual electricity needs. So Johns Hopkins has now achieved its goal to cut greenhouse gas emissions 51%, by 2025. [JHU Hub]

¶ “Georgia Nuclear Plant Gets OK To Load Fuel At New Reactor” • Federal regulators have given a nuclear power plant under construction in Georgia approval to begin loading radioactive fuel into one of its two new reactors. With this key step toward generating electricity, it will soon be the first new nuclear reactor built in decades in the US. [Now Habersham]

Have a relaxingly cool day.

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August 3 Energy News

August 3, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “The Hollow Promise Of Small Modular Nuclear Reactors” • Nuclear power offers a great example of what happens when hype, advertisement, and belief in impossible promises are very much the norm. And Small Modular Reactors are one class of nuclear reactors that have been extensively promoted in this vein during the last decade. [Counterpunch]

Nuscale Small Modular Reactor (Nuscale Power image)

World:

¶ “The Promise And Danger Of Scotland’s Bog” • The ancient blanket bog of northern Scotland is reaching a turning point in its long history – degrade or flourish. Which way it goes will have significant consequences for climate change. This is critically important, because globally, peatlands store twice as much carbon as all the world’s forests. [BBC]

¶ “Tsunami-Engulfed Fukushima Prefecture Is The Target Of An EV Transport Program” • Eleven years after the Fukushima Disaster, the prefecture government has shifted itself from hosting a nuclear power plant to leading in renewable energy development. This occurred as a lot of the areas within the town have remained abandoned. [CleanTechnica]

Aikawa Solar Power Plant (Σ64, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “BYD To Begin Selling Cars In Germany And Sweden” • Shortly after announcing it will sell 3 models of EVs in Japan, BYD let it be known that it will soon begin selling cars in Germany and Sweden also. According to CnEVPost, BYD has partnered with European dealer group Hedin Mobility to provide electric cars for customers in those countries. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “The Good Car Company” • Anthony Broese van Groenou is importing used Nissan Leafs from Japan to an unquenchable market in Australia. Last time we could chat, he had backorders for 300 vehicles and was also looking into importing the Peugeot e-Expert and Nissan e-NV200 from the UK. These are now available as a special order. [CleanTechnica]

Good Car Company at Noosa Electric Vehicle Expo (NEVE)

¶ “City Of Windsor Turning Twelve Facilities Green By Shifting To Renewable Energy Consumption” • In Ontario, the City of Windsor is shifting twelve facilities to renewable energy as part of a $2.4 million investment to make city-owned buildings more efficient. Mayor Drew Dilkens and others announced the launch of the $2.4 million investment. [CTV Windsor]

¶ “Neoen Inks 40-MW Offtake For Oz Wind Farm” • Neoen has signed a power purchase agreement with Australian energy retailer Flow Power covering 40 MW of capacity at its Goyder South Stage 1 wind farm in South Australia. Construction of Stage 1, comprising 75 wind turbines with a total capacity of 412 MW, is already underway. [reNews]

South Australia (Neoen image)

¶ “UN Nuclear Chief: Ukraine Nuclear Plant Is ‘Out Of Control’” • The UN nuclear chief, Rafael Grossi, warned that Europe’s largest nuclear power plant in Ukraine “is completely out of control” and issued an urgent plea to Russia and Ukraine to quickly allow experts to visit it to stabilize the situation and avoid a nuclear accident. [WIVB]

US:

¶ “Grid-Scale Battery Storage In US Tripled In 2021” • The US Energy Information Agency posted preliminary findings from its latest energy survey, with generator-level specific information about existing and planned generators and their environmental equipment at electric power plants with 1 MW or greater of combined nameplate capacity. [CleanTechnica]

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

¶ “Tesla Files To Expand Its Gigafactory In Texas As Production Ramps Up” • Tesla is planning to expand the Gigafactory Texas general assembly area by 500,000 square feet, as revealed in a permit filed by the automaker with the city of Austin, Texas. An online document also shows that Tesla has already chosen a plumbing contractor for the project. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “All 50 States, DC, And Puerto Rico Have Submitted Plans For National Electric Vehicle Charging Network” • The Departments of Transportation and Energy announced all 50 states, DC, and Puerto Rico have submitted their plans for EV infrastructure deployment as required under the National Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Formula Program. [CleanTechnica]

EVolve chargers (EVolve NY, New York State)

¶ “Solar Technical Assistance Grants Available In Maryland” • The Maryland Energy Administration announced the opening of the Solar Technical Assistance Program. This program provides technical assistance to state and local government agencies to evaluate the potential for, and to site, solar arrays on or around government buildings. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “DOE Funds Research On Renewable Energy Resources For Grid Reliability” • The Biden-Harris administration, through the US DOE, is releasing $26 million to fund projects that will demonstrate that America’s electricity grid can reliably run with a mix of solar, wind, energy storage, and other clean distributed energy resources. [North American Windpower]

Wind farm (Anastasia Palagutina, Unsplash)

¶ “New Mexico To Get A Share Of $1 Billion In Energy Savings Via Federal Solar Power Program” • New Mexico has joined a six-state pilot community solar program created by the federal government as the state enacted its own state-level regulations to bring solar power and electric bill savings to low-income customers. [Carlsbad Current-Argus]

¶ “Louisiana Utility Regulators Blame Entergy For Creating Grid Dependent On Costly Gas” • With Louisiana residents receiving unprecedentedly high electricity bills, members of the Louisiana Public Service Commission blamed Entergy Louisiana for the “mess,” saying the utility ignored calls to diversify its sources of fuel for power generation. [Louisiana Illuminator]

Have an unimaginably perfect day.

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August 2 Energy News

August 2, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “Landmark Deal In Congress Is A Great Renovation Of US Climate And Clean Energy Goals” • In Washington, a broad deal on clean energy and climate policy greatly improves the outlook for global efforts to stop dangerous global warming. With $369 billion involved, it would be the most ambitious clean energy investment in US history. [CleanTechnica]

Time to act (Markus Spiske, Unsplash)

¶ “Energy Insecurity And The Price Of Gasoline Are Promoting Renewable Energy” • One thing that may help cure our addiction to fossil fuel is that their prices are subject to wild gyrations. We should notice that while energy insecurity has damaged America, our global fossil fuel companies are emerging from the recent turmoil with their wallets full. [State of the Planet]

World:

¶ “This Giant ‘Water Battery’ Under The Alps Could Be A Game-Changer For Renewable Energy In Europe” • Switzerland has unveiled a giant water battery. Beginning operations last month, the water battery, called Nant de Drance, is a pumped storage hydropower plant. It is a closed-loop system, which means it has no impact on rivers. [CNN]

Lower reservoir, Lac d’Émosson (BECK François, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “For Asia’s Migrant Workers, Extreme Heat Is ‘A Matter Of Life And Death'” • For years, scientists warned that the climate crisis would amplify extreme weather, making it deadlier and more frequent. Now, many parts of the world have dangerous levels of heat, with little relief in sight. Scientists predict even higher temperatures to come. [CNN]

¶ “Record EV Sales Month Globally! 12% Share For BEVs!” • The EV disruption many of us have dreamed of is finally happening, and the proof is that despite all the stuff happening right now – pandemic(s), war, inflation, material shortages, etc, etc – global plugin vehicle registrations were up 54% in June 2022 compared to June 2021. [CleanTechnica]

BYD S7 (Mohammad Fathollahi, Unsplash)

¶ “Renewable Energy: 10 Most Attractive Countries” • The cost of new solar and wind projects is less than the cost of existing coal-fired plants, several studies have found. Economics is becoming favorable to renewable energy because of the twin threats of geopolitical insecurity and climate change. Here are the most attractive countries to invest in. [Prysmian Group]

¶ “Japanese Nuclear Power Plant Leaks 7 Tonnes Of Radioactive Water” • About seven tonnes of water containing radioactive elements leaked from a reactor of the Mihama nuclear power plant in Fukui Prefecture, central Japan, The Nikkei reported, citing the operator Kansai Electric Power Company. The reactor is currently out of service. [CGTN]

Mihama Nuclear Power Plant (Alpsdake, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “Russia is firing artillery from a captured nuclear power plant, leaving Ukraine reluctant to shoot back” • Russian troops are firing artillery at Ukrainian targets from a nuclear power plant, The New York Times reported. Russia selected the Zaporizhzhia site because it made it difficult for Ukrainian troops to retaliate, Ukrainian officials said. [Yahoo]

¶ “US Accuses Russia Of Using Ukraine’s Zaporizhzhia Power Plant As ‘Nuclear Shield’” • The US accused Russia of using the Zaporizhzhia power plant as a “nuclear shield” by stationing troops there, preventing Ukrainian forces from returning fire, and risking a nuclear accident. The Zaporizhzhia plant is the largest such plant in Europe. [South China Morning Post]

Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant (Ігор Діклевич, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

US:

¶ “Two Ultra-Rare Floods In One Week; A Wildfire Generating Its Own Weather. Here’s The Connection” • Extreme weather of different sorts thrashed parts of the US over the past week. There were two ultra-rare floods, one in the St Louis area and one in eastern Kentucky, just as drought induced wildfires in California. Scientists say it’s all related to climate change. [CNN]

¶ “Manchin, Democratic Leadership Strike Deal To Advance Controversial Natural Gas Pipeline In Appalachia” • West Virginia Sen Joe Manchin and Democratic leadership agreed to advance a stalled natural gas pipeline in Manchin’s home region as part of a deal to reform federal environmental permitting, according to a summary Manchin’s office shared with CNN. [CNN]

Senator Manchin (MDGovpics, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “California Wildfire: Two Dead As Firefighters Battle Mckinney Blaze” • Two people have been found dead amid a huge wildfire that forced thousands of people from their homes in northern California. The bodies of the two dead were found inside a car in the driveway of a property caught in the blaze. They seem to have been trying to escape. [BBC]

¶ “Connecticut’s Largest Solar Power Plant Completed” • The renewable energy portfolio of Gibraltar Industries, Terrasmart, announced completion of Connecticut’s largest solar plant in Canterbury. The solar array has 150,000 modules for a capacity of 66.5-MW (AC). The project would normally have taken 130 weeks, but it was finished in just 33. [CleanTechnica]

Terrasmart project (Courtesy of Terrasmart)

¶ “Heavy Duty Electric Trucks May Be Eligible For $40,000 Federal Incentive” • The Inflation Reduction Act introduced in the Senate this week will include a sizable federal incentive for the purchase of heavy duty electric trucks that weigh more than 14,000 pounds. The incentive is limited to 30% of the purchase price or $40,000, whichever is less. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Small-Scale Solar Is Changing New England’s Hourly Utility Electricity Demand” • Despite New England’s less favorable solar resources, the area’s solar capacity has increased by 3.8 GW since 2016. Small-scale solar generation increases faster than demand in the morning and rapidly decreases in the evening, resulting in rising electricity demand at that time. [CleanTechnica]

Have a charmingly resplendent day.

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August 1 Energy News

August 1, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “Is The Tesla Model Y The World’s Best Selling Vehicle Right Now?” • My answer is “maybe,” depending on how you measure sales and how sales of last year’s best sellers have increased or decreased. Since sales figures lag 3 to 6 months, we won’t know for sure until next year, but I’ll present the evidence I found and you can judge for yourself. [CleanTechnica]

Tesla Model Y (Daniel.Cardenas, CC-BY-SA 4.0, cropped)

¶ “Ten Ways Methane Gas Companies Are Misleading The Public” • Methane has been responsible for nearly half of global warming to date. Not only does methane gas use threaten to destabilize the climate, but burning gas in the home is bad for our health. Most Americans are unaware of this, and that is partly due to corporate greenwashing. [Environment Maine]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Mapping The Battery Data Genome For Better Batteries” • Energy storage is the key to electrified transportation and the rapidly evolving power grid, cornerstones of a decarbonized future. An open exchange of battery data is integral to meeting energy goals. An emerging collaboration between NREL and industry partners supports this effort. [CleanTechnica]

Tesla batteries (Tesla image)

¶ “Solar Is The Cheapest Power, And A Literal Light-Bulb Moment Showed Us We Can Cut Costs And Emissions Even Further” • We need to transition to renewable energy quickly. Newly published research points to a way we can drive down costs of the shift using cheaper forms of silicon for highly efficient solar panels. [The Conversation]

World:

¶ “The Rebellious Gardeners Defying Their Local Climate” • All over the world, rebellious gardeners have discovered that they can grow edibles generally considered unusual for their climate, upturning commonly held perceptions about what one can and cannot grow oneself. In the face of a changing climate, they grow unexpected crops. [BBC]

Calamondin grown in Virginia (David J Stang, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “India’s First Green Hydrogen Project Founded By PM” • In the Union Territory of Ladakh, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi laid the foundation for India’s first public use green hydrogen transportation project. The project will be built by National Thermal Power Corporation over the course of the following 18 months. [Northlines]

¶ “How Bangladesh Can Benefit From Japan’s Super Grid” • Japan has sped up efforts to materialize its decade-old plan to de-carbonize Asia by connecting some of the biggest economies and the power-hungry populations through a 36,000 km integrated grid of renewable energy. Bangladesh is part of the “Asia Super Grid” initiative. [Dhaka Tribune]

Asia Super Grid (Renewable Energy Institute, Japan)

¶ “Russia Transfers $20 Billion To Turkey For Nuclear Power Plant” • According to a Bloomberg report, senior Turkish officials said that the Russian state-owned company Rosatom sent around $5 billion last week to the Turkish company Akkuyu Nuclear JSC, which is building the plant in the city of Mersin. And $15 billion more will be sent soon. [Middle East Monitor]

¶ “Hinkley B: UK’s Most Productive Nuclear Power Plant To Close” • Hinkley Point B in Somerset has been making power since 1976 and currently contributes about 3% of the UK’s total power needs. Now, it is shutting down for good. The shutdown is expected to increase the cost of electricity on the short term, because it implies increased use of natural gas. [BBC]

Western End of Hinkley Point Nuclear Power Station
(Richard Baker, CC BY-SA 2.0)

US:

¶ “McKinney Fire Spreads Rapidly In North Of California” • The McKinney Fire, which started in the northern Siskiyou county on Friday, has already burnt 52,500 acres (21,000 hectares), the state fire service said. At least 2,000 residents and visitors have left the area, authorities say. Some homes have been destroyed. It was 0% contained as of Sunday. [BBC]

¶ “All Eyes Turn To Sinema As Democrats Face A Week That Could Transform Biden’s Presidency” • Democrats have a chance to accomplish something big. But to do that, they must push the Manchin-Schumer compromise climate and health care bill through the Senate. And to do that, they need to get the crucial vote of Arizona Senator Kyrsten Sinema. [CNN]

Senator Kyrsten Sinema (Gage Skidmore, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “What Does The Growing US EV Supply Chain Look Like? We Mapped It” • The deal between Senators Schumer and Manchin to extend and revise the incentives for EVs put the spotlight on the EV supply chain. It would require car makers to source a rapidly increasing share of battery materials and components domestically or from trade allies. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Tesla Reveals Its Q2 Capital Expenditures And Expectations Moving Forward” • Tesla revealed that it focused intensely on its Gigafactories during the second quarter of 2022, to the tune of about $1 billion in capital expenditures. Tesla intends to continue to put an emphasis on battery development to solidify its corporate plan and mission. [CleanTechnica]

Home powered by Tesla (Tesla image)

¶ “EV Sales Are Growing, And More And More US Drivers Want To Go Electric” • A Consumer Reports survey found a record amount of interest in going electric for their transportation. The nationally representative survey of 8,027 American consumers found that 71% of respondents expressed some level of interest in buying or leasing an EV. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Installing Home EV Chargers Just Got Much Easier (And Cheaper)” • Of all the obstacles between the car-buying public and the EV revolution, the American home is one of the stickiest. EV charging at home can be expensive to get started or even impossible. Siemens and ConnectDER have come up with a solution to the problem. [CleanTechnica]

Have a truly beautiful day.

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July 31 Energy News

July 31, 2022

Opinion:

¶ “How The Storm-Ravaged Bahamas Can Be A Model For Resilient Energy” • Multiple Category 4 and 5 hurricanes have hit The Bahamas in the past seven years. After Hurricane Irma slammed into Ragged Island in 2017, the country started building microgrids for resilience. One goal is to set an example for the rest of the world. [CleanTechnica]

Street in Nassau (Ivan Curra, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “Tesla Model Y Is #1 Top Selling Car In China, #1 Top Selling EV In Europe – Why?” • Despite their similarities, the Model 3 has continued to sell well while the Model Y has shot to the top of the charts in the European EV market and in the overall Chinese auto market. In a market full of EVs, what makes the Model Y (and Model 3) so compelling? [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Oil & Gas’s Pivot To Blue Hydrogen Is Falling Through” • The Oil & Gas industry’s plan to convince the world to switch from natural gas to hydrogen made from natural gas is being upended by an unexpected cause: economics. The argument against green hydrogen is that we can’t afford it. But that argument is falling flat as costs of renewable energy fall. [The Intercept]

¶ “‘Soon It Will Be Unrecognizable’: Total Climate Meltdown Cannot Be Stopped, Says Expert” • The publication of Bill McGuire’s latest book, Hothouse Earth, could not be more timely. Appearing in the shops this week, it will be perused by sweltering customers who have just endured record high temperatures across the UK. [The Guardian]

¶ “Green Hydrogen Can Help Latin America’s Energy Transition” • With the world’s countries and energy companies looking to accelerate their transitions to cleaner energy, Latin American nations are developing plans to scale up the production, use, and export of so-called green hydrogen, which is generated from clean energy resources. [Oil Price]

Wind farm in Chile (czdiaz61, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

World:

¶ “Is The UK Heading For A Drought And Will There Be A Hosepipe Ban?” • England and Wales had the driest start of the year since 1976, when water was rationed. There are concerns that the UK could be heading for a drought. July saw temperature records broken multiple times and rainfall is down 76%. Further periods of dry and hot weather are forecast. [BBC]

¶ “Gazprom Stops Latvia’s Gas In Latest Russian Cut To EU” • Russian energy giant Gazprom says it has suspended gas supplies to Latvia, the latest EU country to experience such action. Giving no details, Gazprom accused Latvia of violating purchase conditions. Latvia’s government says it does not expect Gazprom’s move to have a major impact. [BBC]

Riga, Latvia (Darya Tryfanava, Unsplash)

¶ “Tory MP Urged To Quit Job As Adviser To ‘Climate Denier’ Us Fossil Fuel Firm” • A Tory MP has been urged to quit his second job as a £325-an-hour adviser to a US fossil fuel firm that was accused of using “classic climate denial” tactics to delay action on the climate crisis. His story has led to renewed calls for tighter rules on MPs’ second jobs. [The Guardian]

¶ “The Wave Power Generator Experts Say ‘Proves Ocean Energy Can Work’ Is Already Powering Australian Homes” • For the first time in Australia’s history, a wave energy converter trial has successfully generated energy from the chaotic and wild ocean waves to power homes. The project on King Island proves wave power can work, experts say. [ABC]

UniWave200 generator (Supplied by Wave Swell)

US:

¶ “Kentucky: At Least 25 Dead In Worst Appalachia Floods For Years” • The devastating flash floods in eastern Kentucky have killed at least 25 people. Climate change is triggering more extreme weather events like the Kentucky flooding, scientists say. The flooding comes as the state recovers from last December’s tornadoes, the deadliest in its history. [BBC]

¶ “Intersect Power Orders 2.4 GW Of High-Performance Modules From First Solar” • First Solar, Inc, based in Arizona, announced that it signed an agreement to supply 2.4 GW of its high-performance, advanced thin film PV modules to Intersect Power, LLC. The modules are scheduled to be delivered from 2024 to 2026. [CleanTechnica]

First Solar plant (Courtesy of First Solar, Inc)

¶ “San Diego Electric School Buses Shuttling Electricity Into The Grid Now” • San Diego Gas & Electric, the Cajon Valley Union School District, and vehicle-to-grid technology company Nuvve have just kicked off a V2G trial with eight electric school buses. The plan is to help stabilize the grid and lower costs when there’s high demand for electricity. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Eugene Becomes First City In Oregon To Ban Natural Gas” • The Eugene City Council voted to mandate that all new homes be built 100% electric by June 1, 2023; push for new commercial and industrial construction to be all electric; and have the City Manager formalize a goal of electrifying all existing residential and commercial buildings by 2035. [CleanTechnica]

Farmers’ Market, Eugene, Oregon (Visitor7, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “Federal Grant To Help The Oneida Nation in Exploring Renewable, Resilient Energy” • The America Rescue Program involves a $100 million grant to help tribal governments and indigenous communities with renewable projects that will boost their economies. Oneida received $648,339, which will especially help in solar exploration. [Microgrid Media]

¶ “Advisory Panel Still Wary of Pilgrim Nuclear Wastewater” • As Holtec International is decommissioning the Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station, the Nuclear Decommissioning Citizens Advisory Panel remains skeptical of how the wastewater from the facility will be handled. State legislators put forward a commission to study the question, reports say. [CapeCod.com]

Have a politely gorgeous day.

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July 30 Energy News

July 30, 2022

World:

¶ “PM Tells Workers To Stop Wearing Ties To Save Energy” • Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez called on workers in the public and private sector to stop wearing ties, as an energy saving measure in the heat. He said the move will ensure people stay cooler and therefore lower energy costs, because air conditioners will be used less often. [BBC]

Seville (Agustín Núñez, Unsplash)

¶ “Mercedes-Benz Electric Trucks Now Shipping, More Coming” • Mercedes-Benz announced that it has begun production of its own large electric truck, the eEconic. The eEconic is not a long-haul semi truck, however. It’s an inner-city truck targeted at municipal uses. This model supplements and follows the Mercedes-Benz eActros. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Tesla Model Y And Model X Are First Electric Vehicles To Reach Mt Everest Base Camp” • Five years back, no one would have imagined an EV reaching anywhere near Mount Everest. But the ever-expanding network of Tesla Superchargers made it possible. A Tesla Model X and a Tesla Model Y have reached the Mt Everest Base Camp. [CleanTechnica]

Tesla Model X and Model Y (Courtesy of Tesla Greater China)

¶ “13% Of New Car Sales In Europe Electric (21% Plugins)” • With the overall European car market still in the red, down 17% last month year over year, the European passenger plugin vehicle market has also started to be affected. It was down 8% last month. Battery EVs managed to grow last month, even if only 4%. That’s a lot better than the rest of the market. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “XBus Camper Is EVerything The ID. Buzz Should Have Been – Quirky, Lovable, And Cheap!” • Germany’s Electric Brands has just unveiled its latest XBus, a camper van that is everything the Volkswagen ID. Buzz could have been but isn’t. It’s quirky, cute in an insouciant sort of way, and it is underpowered, just like the original VW bus. [CleanTechnica]

XBus Camper (Electric Brands image)

¶ “Delivering Renewable Energy To Maria Island” • Construction has begun on a solar array and battery energy storage system on spectacular Maria Island, Tasmania. As the new project delivers energy from renewable sources, it will reduce demand for diesel power generation and provide greater renewable energy capacity for the Darlington precinct. [Premier of Tasmania]

¶ “Kenya Aims To Generate 100 GW Of Renewable Power By 2040” • Kenya set a bold and ambitious target to have 100 GW of installed capacity of power produced from renewable sources by 2040, the Ministry of Energy said in its blueprint of the sector. Kenya will leverage its geographic advantage and clean energy abundance to achieve the goal. [Xinhua]

Kenya (Thomas Bennie, Unsplash)

¶ “Germany Says It May Leave Its Final Three Nuclear Energy Plants Running For Longer Than Planned” • Germany is thinking about delaying the shutdown of the country’s remaining three nuclear plants as Russia reduces natural-gas supplies. This is a big deal as Germany has been phasing out nuclear energy since the Fukushima Disaster in March 2011. [Yahoo Finance]

US:

¶ “New Mexico Governor Declares State Of Emergency As One City’s Drinking Water Supply Is Threatened By Ash And Debris From A Wildfire” • Las Vegas, New Mexico, has a two-month supply of water, but flooding threatens to contaminate the supply with fire debris and ash. The river supplies 90% of the water for the city’s 13,200 people. [CNN]

Downtown Las Vegas, NM (Asaavedra32, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “At Least 16 People Are Dead After Kentucky’s Catastrophic Flooding” • At least 16 people are dead, including children, and the toll is “going to get a lot higher” following catastrophic flooding in Kentucky, Governor Andy Beshear said. An unknown number of people were missing, as rescuers scrambled to reach areas that are difficult to access. [CNN]

¶ “USDA Announces $1 Billion In Community Wildfire Defense Grants From Bipartisan Infrastructure Law” • Climate change is making wildfires worse, both in terms of when they happen and how bad they are when they get started. Shifting rain patterns, drought, dry air, and dry lightning all make for nasty conditions. New grants of $1 billion address that. [CleanTechnica]

Forest fire (Kari Greer, USFS via NASA)

¶ “Ford Reveals Police Version Of Ford F-150 Lightning” • After Ford got a Mustang Mach-E police-rated and partnered with the New York Police Department with a custom Mach-E, it is ready to move on to other police EVs. The latest is an electric pickup truck purpose-built for police: the 2023 Ford F-150 Lightning Pro Special Service Vehicle. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Midwest Power Grid Capacity Opens Up, Boosting Renewable Projects” • After the Midcontinent Independent System Operator approved a $10 billion investment for 18 long-term transmission projects for its Midwest Subregion, three utilities announced plans to expand renewable energy output by building lines from elsewhere to central Minnesota. [KNSI]

Line work (American Public Power Association, Unsplash)

¶ “CenterPoint Energy Requests Approval For 130 MW Of Renewable Energy” • CenterPoint Energy announced that an electric and natural gas subsidiary, CenterPoint Energy Indiana South, is seeking approval from the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission to acquire a 130-MW solar array as part its long-term electric generation transition plan. [StreetInsider]

¶ “NRC Moves To Issue Final Design Certification For NuScale Nuclear Module” • The NRC indicated it will certify NuScale’s 50-MW small modular reactor design, marking a definitive milestone for the reactor vendor and its technology prospects. The NRC said it directed staff to issue a final rule that certifies the standard SMR design. [POWER Magazine]

Have an abundantly sufficient day.

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July 29 Energy News

July 29, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “US Renewable Energy Has Its Ups And Down In First Six Months Of 2022” • Renewable energy has had a bumpy ride in the US so far this year, thanks in large part to policy failures by the federal government. China is eating everyone’s lunch when it comes to electric cars, batteries, and solar panels because of its government policies. [CleanTechnica]

Renewable energy and storage (America Clean Power image)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Greener Air Conditioning For A Warmer World” • New research from Pacific Northwest National Laboratory provides a roadmap outlining how more efficient cooling systems are feasible with development and support from industry. The invited research study appeared in the journal, Accounts of Chemical Research. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Inefficient Building Electrification Risks Prolonging Fossil Fuel Use” • A new study finds that decarbonizing will require more efficient electric heating and that more renewable generating capacity be available for the cold of December and January. Otherwise, harmful fossil fuels will continue to power seasonal spikes in energy demand. [Phys.org]

Old buildings (Pixabay, CC0 Public Domain)

World:

¶ “End Fossil Occupy Plans Massive Student Protests” • How many of us have read the headlines this year about the horrific heat waves and wildfires taking place around the world and wondered if there was not something we could do to end the mass insanity of continuing to burn fossil fuels? End Fossil Occupy says enough is enough. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “China Electric Car Market – 28% Share Of Auto Sales In June!” • Plugin vehicles continue to be all the rage in the Chinese auto market. Plugins got back into the fast lane, growing 132% year over year. They scored over 565,000 registrations in June, a new record. Plugin hybrids grew faster, at 179% year over year. Battery EVs grew 121%. [CleanTechnica]

Tesla Model Y (Evnerd, CC-BY-SA 4.0, cropped)

¶ “Dundee To Host Battery Megafactory” • AMTE Power has selected Dundee in Scotland as the preferred site for its first Megafactory to produce homegrown battery cells for energy storage and e-mobility markets. The factory will directly create up to 215 high skilled on-site jobs and 800 more across the supply chain for battery cells. [reNews]

¶ “Siemens Gamesa Bags 112-MW Offshore Wind Order In Japan” • Siemens Gamesa has been awarded a firm order from Green Power Investment for the 112-MW Ishikari offshore wind power project in Japan. The order includes 14 SG 8.0-167 DD offshore wind turbines, each with a capacity of 8 MW, powered by a 167-meter rotor. [reNews]

Offshore wind farm (Siemens Gamesa image)

¶ “Ireland ups offshore wind ante with new 7GW target” • The Irish government has increased the 2030 offshore wind target from 5 GW to 7 GW. This is part of the setting emissions targets calling for a 75% reduction in GHG emissions from the electricity sector. Dublin also doubled the solar goal to 5.5 GW and set a 2-GW green hydrogen goal. [reNews]

US:

¶ “Clean Energy Package Would Be Biggest Legislative Climate Investment In US History” • Senator Joe Manchin’s stunning reversal on a clean energy package has suddenly put Democrats in a position to pass the largest climate investment in US history. It will be by far the biggest legislative win for the environmental movement since the Clean Air Act. [CNN]

Smoke in Yosemite (Bailey Zindel, Unsplash)

¶ “Tesla, GM Buyers Would Get EV Tax Credits Again Under Democrats’ Climate Bill” • Automakers like Tesla and General Motors would regain the ability to offer federal tax credits to customers who buy their EVs, under the new green energy bill. The proposed legislation would remove the 200,000 vehicle-per-manufacturer cap for EV incentives. [CNN]

¶ “Senate Climate Deal Includes Incentives For Renewables, Hydrogen, Nuclear” • The climate bill includes nearly $370 million on energy and climate change initiatives, with $60 billion for tax credits for clean energy manufacturing and a $30 billion production tax credit for wind and solar. It also supports storage, hydrogen, and nuclear power. [Power Engineering]

Solar panels (Flash Dantz, Unsplash)

¶ “Flash Drought Intensifies, Causing Agriculture Concerns In The Plains And Water Shortages In The Northeast” • Flash drought conditions intensified in the Northeast and across the southern Plains, causing agriculture concerns across the regions, the latest US Drought Monitor shows. The area of Oklahoma that is in Extreme drought quadrupled to 27%. [CNN]

¶ “VW Starts US Production Of ID.4 Electric Crossover” • The Volkswagen ID.4 compact SUV made its debut in Chattanooga, as the company’s first electric automobile produced in the US. It was already being imported from Germany, but now Volkswagen dealers will get American-built cars to sell to eager buyers who are paying too much for gas. [CleanTechnica]

VW ID.4 in bright-city-camo trim (Rainer Zietlow, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “Kentucky Hit With Deadly Flooding Following Second 1,000-Year Rain Event In Three Days” • For the second time in a week, parts of Kentucky hit by extreme rainfall that caused deadly flash flooding. Several inches of rain in the eastern part of the state turned towns into raging rivers that swept away homes and the people who lived in them. [AOL]

¶ “Hawaii Receives Its Final Shipment Of Coal Amid Push To Move To Renewable Sources” • Starting next month, Hawaii will no longer burn coal for electricity. Oahu has taken its final shipment of coal from Indonesia, as it moves toward renewable energy. And with that, Hawaii’s only coal-fire power plant will shut down. [Hawaii News Now]

Have an amusingly active day.

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July 28 Energy News

July 28, 2022

Science and Technology:

¶ “UCS Study Shows Lifetime EV Emissions Are 50% Lower Than Conventional Vehicles” • The Union of Concerned Scientists published a study that finds the total lifetime emissions from an EV are 50% less than those from a comparable vehicle with a combustion engine. The study takes emissions from generating electricity into account. [CleanTechnica]

Please click on the image to enlarge it.

¶ “Adsorbent Material Filters Toxic Chromium And Arsenic From Water Supplies” • Researchers at the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory are tackling a global water challenge with a unique material designed to target two toxic, heavy metal pollutants, chromium and arsenic, for simultaneous removal. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ “Oil Permits Up For Auction In Congo’s Virunga Park, Putting Endangered Gorillas At Risk” • Despite growing pleas from climate change activists, the Democratic Republic of Congo says it is moving forward with its plans to auction off a vast majority of oil and gas drilling blocks located in the country’s rainforest and peatland. [CNN]

Gorilla (Simbi Yvan, Unsplash)

¶ “Schools In The Sunshine State Smash Solar Power Target” • A record number of Queensland schools had solar panels installed to help reduce electricity costs and cut CO₂ emissions. Education Minister Grace Grace said the Advancing Clean Energy Schools program exceeded targets to deliver more panels at more schools than originally planned. [Media Statements]

¶ “Montem Signs Agreement With Piikani Nation For Renewable Energy Complex In Alberta” • Montem Resources entered into a framework agreement with the Piikani Nation to build a long-term co-operative and mutually beneficial relationship with regards to Montem’s proposed Tent Mountain renewable energy complex. [Canadian Mining Journal]

Tent Mountain complex (Montem Resources image)

¶ “Denmark To Accelerate Renewable Power Development To Overcome Dependence On Russian Gas, Says GlobalData” • The Russia-Ukraine conflict has hit Denmark’s gas supply, as nearly 75% of the country’s gas imports come from Russia via a pipeline through Germany, says GlobalData. So Denmark is stepping up renewable power development. [GlobalData]

¶ “Policy Gaps Being Filled For Irish Farmers Who Want To Install Solar On Idle Roofs” • There is “a lot of interest” in Solar-energy technology among Irish farmers, according to Mel Gavin of the AgroRes project. Addressing that demand has come over time, and policy gaps that stood in the way of on-farm adoption have now been filled, he said. [Irish Examiner]

Herd of Irish cattle (K Mitch Hodge, Unsplash)

US:

¶ “US Power Companies Secretly Spending Millions To Protect Profits And Fight Clean Energy” • In 2019, a Florida state senator proposed a law allowing landlords to sell rooftop solar power to tenants. The CEO of Florida Power & Light sent out in an email, “I want you to make his life a living hell … ” It went to a PR firm, and it has been leaked. [The Guardian]

¶ “Manchin And Schumer Announce Deal For Energy And Health Care Bill” • Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Senator Joe Manchin announced a deal on an energy and health care bill, representing a breakthrough after more than a year of negotiations that have collapsed time and again. The deal is a major reversal for Manchin. [CNN]

Capitol building (Harold Mendoza, Unsplash)

¶ “Governor Newsom Sets Bold Clean Buildings Goals” • Against the backdrop of extreme heat fueled by the climate crisis, California Governor Gavin Newsom set a direction toward clean and efficient fossil-fuel-free buildings by signing a letter to the California Air Resources Board that sets much-needed clean energy targets for buildings. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Biden-Harris Admin Launches New Solar Initiatives To Lower Electricity Bills And Create Clean Energy Jobs” • The US DOE, together with the US Department of Health & Human Services, announced that five states and Washington, DC, will support the pilot of the Community Solar Subscription Platform to connect families to solar energy. [CleanTechnica]

Solar array (Courtesy of Vistra “Vision Zero”)

¶ “Activists Push Back On We Energies’ Plans To Delay The Retirement Of The Oak Creek Coal Plant” • Environmental activists and elected officials gathered outside We Energies’ downtown Milwaukee office on Wednesday to express their opposition to the company’s plans to delay the closure of a coal-fired power plant. [Milwaukee Journal Sentinel]

¶ “New York Plans 2-GW Offshore Wind Auction” • New York Governor Kathy Hochul outlined plans to hold a third offshore wind solicitation for 2 GW of projects. NYSERDA will administer the procurement exercise. It will include the first phase of the state’s $500 million investment in manufacturing, offshore wind ports, and supply chain infrastructure. [reNews]

Offshore wind turbine (Wolfgang Hasselmann, Unsplash)

¶ “Energy Department Selects Idaho For Nuclear Test Reactor” • Idaho has been selected as the site for a proposed nuclear test reactor that would dramatically reduce the time needed to develop nuclear fuels and components for a new generation of nuclear reactors that could help reduce global warming, the US DOE said. [East Idaho News]

¶ “NextEra Plan For 200 MW solar, 75 MW Storage At Shuttered Nuclear Plant Approved By Iowa Regulators” • The Iowa Utilities Board approved plans by NextEra Energy to build 200 MW of solar and a 75-MW, 300-MWh battery storage facility through two subsidiaries at the site of its shuttered Duane Arnold nuclear plant in Palo, Iowa. [Utility Dive]

Have a magically worthwhile day.

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July 27 Energy News

July 27, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “Why Is Shell Making Electric Micromobility Products?” • Shell offers oil. Lots of oil. But, now Shell is starting to offer clean energy products, such as an electric scooter and battery storage products. That leaves us with a question: Why is Shell is doing this? We don’t have any solid answers, but we can make some educated guesses. [CleanTechnica]

Shell Ride brand scooter ad

World:

¶ “The UK’s Hottest Day Destroyed Their Homes. They Fear It’s A Sign Of Worse Ahead” • Fires around the capital destroyed dozens of shops and houses. London Fire Brigade described last Tuesday as its busiest day since WW II, saying in a statement that the blazes were yet another example of how climate change is increasing challenges. [CNN]

¶ “The EU Has Agreed To Ration Gas, But Some Countries Put Up A Fight” • The EU has agreed to ration its natural gas this winter to prevent a severe supply shock. EU energy ministers agreed to a voluntary target to reduce gas usage by 15% between August and March 2023. But the bloc is offering countries some significant leeway. [CNN]

Burning natural gas in Poland (Marek Piwnicki, Unsplash)

¶ “Sono Reveals Final Designs For Sion And Solar Bus Kits” • Sono Motors hosted its first “Celebrate the Sun” community event. At the event, it celebrated the debut of the world’s first affordable solar EV, the Sion, in its production design, and it unveiled its novel ‘Solar Bus Kit,’ a scalable B2B solution for public transportation. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Whyalla’s Hydrogen Plant To Trigger Boom In Renewable Energy Projects” • Renewable-energy projects worth $20 billion will be triggered by Whyalla’s planned hydrogen plant, according to the South Australian government. It said sixty proposals from around the world had been received for ventures linked with the hydrogen plant. [Victor Harbor Times]

Steel works in Whyalla (Bahnfrend, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “PGE Gets Green Light For 200-MW Polish Battery” • PGE Group secured a license to build a 200-MW battery project in Poland. It was issued by the President of the Energy Regulatory Office, and it is the first license approved in Poland for a battery storage project. It will be located at the 716-MW pumped hydro Szczytowo-Pompowa Power Plant. [reNews]

¶ “Manor Renewable to power Dogger Bank construction” • SSE Renewables and Equinor awarded Manor Renewable Energy a contract to provide temporary power for the construction of the 3600-MW Dogger Bank offshore wind project. Dogger Bank will have 277 x GE Haliade-X 13-MW and 14-MW turbines. It will be the world’s largest offshore wind farm. [reNews]

Work at sea (Manor Renewable Energy)

¶ “IAEA Concerned By ‘Increasingly Alarming Situation’ At Ukraine Nuclear Power Plant” • The Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency said reports about Ukraine’s Zaporizhzya Nuclear Power Plant indicate that the situation is increasingly alarming, and he called for maximum restraint to avoid any accident. [Homeland Security Today]

¶ “EDF To Redesign British Reactors After Leaks At Chinese Nuclear Power Station” • French state-owned energy company EDF has reportedly been forced to redesign Britain’s proposed reactors after leaks at a major nuclear power station in China. A reactor at the Taishan nuclear power plant was shut down after an investigation of fuel damage. [Energy Live News]

Nuclear plant construction (EDF image)

US:

¶ “US DOE Announces New EV Infrastructure And Development Funding” • A $96 million funding opportunity is now available from the DOE to assist with decarbonizing the US transportation industry. The funding is to enhance EV charging availability, develop alternative-fueled non-road vehicles, and help further develop electric drive systems. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “California’s Oak Fire Destroys At Least 42 Structures As It Burns More Than 18,000 Acres” • California’s Oak Fire has burned through over 18,000 acres and destroyed more than 40 structures since it started near Yosemite National Park on Friday. It is now 26% contained, according to an update from Cal Fire, the state fire management agency. [CNN]

Pyrocumulus cloud from Oak Fire (Roc0ast3r, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “Renu Energy Solutions Doubles Solar Power Production For UNC Asheville” • Renu Energy Solutions, a locally-owned and operated solar installer in North Carolina and South Carolina, announced completion of a new solar system at the University of North Carolina Asheville. The system will offset roughly 30 tons of CO₂ emissions per year. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “MISO Approves 18 Transmission Projects In The US Midwest, Integrating More Renewable Energy” • The board of MISO, the Midwest power grid operator, voted unanimously to approve a tranche of transmission projects representing investments of $10.4 billion. The projects will integrate about 53 GW and create more than 200,000 jobs. [Utility Products]

Transmission lines (Matthew Henry, Unsplash)

¶ “GE Reports Deepening Q2 Renewables Losses” • The GE renewables unit reported losses of $419 million for the second quarter of 2022, compared with a loss of $99 million in the same quarter in 2021. For the first half of 2022 the renewable business reported a loss of $853 million compared with a loss of $333 million in the first half of 2021. [reNews]

¶ “Proposal To Dump Contaminated Water In Cape Cod Bay Meets Opposition In Plymouth” • Plymouth residents, politicians and environmental advocates are opposing a proposal that could involve dumping contaminated wastewater into Cape Cod Bay as part of the cleanup of Pilgrim nuclear power plant. Pilgrim shut down in 2019. [WBUR]

Have a fascinatingly energetic day.

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July 26 Energy News

July 26, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “Searching For More Oil As The World Heats Up” • The world needs to cut down on oil production, but it is going in the wrong direction. Namibia, Botswana, and Congo want to get the same benefits from their land that Western countries used to become wealthy, but their need is to address poverty. “Our priority is not to save the planet,” one official said. [CNN]

Gaborone, capital of Botswana (Justice Hubane, Unsplash)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Bloomberg Declares That The Tipping Point Has Been Reached!” • A report by BloombergNEF declares that the tipping point for battery EV ascendency has been reached globally. Although acceptance of EVs varies from country to country, a pattern has emerged. “Once 5% of new-car sales go fully electric, everything changes …” [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Will Renewable Energy Destabilize The Grid? Yale 360 Has The Answer” • An article in Yale 360 tackles the lies, distortions, and half-truths that surround the question of whether renewable energy can provide a reliable source of electricity at all times or needs thermal generation “base load” capacity to be dependable. Three myths are examined. [CleanTechnica]

Hybrid offshore renewable energy (Courtesy of SINN Power)

World:

¶ “Russia Waging Gas War With Nord Stream 1 Cuts: Zelensky” • Russian energy firm Gazprom announced it is reducing gas flows into Germany again to allow work on a turbine on the Nord Stream 1 pipeline. It has been running well below capacity for weeks. Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky said this was simply “gas blackmail” against Europe. [BBC]

¶ “The Queensland Government Is Electrifying” • To speed up the process of electrifying the vehicles on the road in Australia’s Sunshine State, the Queensland government is proposing to transition its fleet to electric over the next four years. That means 100% of eligible Queensland government fleet passenger vehicles would be zero emission by 2026. [CleanTechnica]

City of Gold Coast (City of Gold Coast, Unsplash)

¶ “European Logging And Forest Management Company Unveils Electric Timber Truck” • SCA, a manager of forestry operations in over 2.6 million hectares of forest land in northern Sweden, Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania, unveiled a new logging truck for its wood business. The world’s first electric timber truck, it has a capacity of 80 tonnes. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Scania Helps DB Schenker Go Fossil-​Free On Swedish Island Of Gotland” • Gotland is trying to counter the effects of climate change by working towards a goal of being fossil-free in 2040, five years ahead of Sweden’s national deadline. For its part, Schenker Åkeri AB is to change all distributional transportation to fossil-free with the help of Scania. [CleanTechnica]

Windmill on Gotland (Nikola Johnny Mirkovic, Unsplash)

¶ “India Adds Energy Storage Obligation Policy To Renewable Energy Purchase Scheme” • India’s government has added an Energy Storage Obligation alongside its Renewable Purchase Obligation for the first time. A government thinktank predicted around 180 GWh of demand for batteries for stationary energy storage systems by 2030. [Energy Storage News]

¶ “Nordex Swoops On 148-MW Finnish Wind” • Nordex has secured a 148-MW turbine order for the Karahka wind project in Finland. The contract is for 25 N163/5.X turbines and includes a 35-year service contract. Nordex will supply and install the turbines in spring 2024. The company will install its Advanced Anti-Icing System on the turbines. [reNews]

Wind turbines (Nordex image)

¶ “Victoria Bans Private, Embedded Power Networks – Unless They’re 100% Renewable” • The Victorian state government has made good on its election promise to stop private embedded power networks in the state, announcing plans to start banning them in 2023, with the exception of networks that run on 100% renewable energy. [Renew Economy]

¶ “In France, The Reactor Of The Oldest Nuclear Power Plant Was Shut Down Due To Heat” • The largest French energy generating company, EDF, has shut down several of its managed nuclear power plants due to record heat and a swollen river, according to reports. It also seems that Russia has had similar problems. [News84Media.com]

Saint-Laurent nuclear plant (Remi Jouan, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

US:

¶ “Green Ammonia To Rescue US Farmers From Fertilizer Supply Woes” • Much of the global ammonia fertilizer supply chain relies on natural gas, and the ongoing spike in natural gas prices is pushing up fertilizer prices worldwide. One solution is to make ammonia locally, wherever there is distributed energy and water, from green hydrogen. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “US Developer Acquires Four Texan Storage Projects” • Cypress Creek Renewables has added 400-MW, 600-MWh to its storage portfolio after acquiring four Texas standalone energy storage projects from Black Mountain Energy Storage. The projects, each 100 MW, are currently under development and expected to be placed in service in 2024. [reNews]

Solar + storage (Cypress Creek Renewables image)

¶ “Governor Hochul Announces Approval Of New York’s Largest Solar Facility In Genesee County” • New York Governor Kathy Hochul announced that the State Office of Renewable Energy Siting has approved a permit to Hecate Energy Cider Solar LLC to develop a 500-MW solar facility in the Genesee County towns of Oakfield and Elba. [WIVB]

¶ “Polis Sets Goal For Achieving 100% Renewable Energy In Colorado” • According to a news release from the Office of Governor Jared Polis, Colorado is “on the path” to achieving 100% renewable energy by 2040. In 2021, Colorado agreed with New Mexico, Wyoming, and Utah to develop a collective “Western Inter-States Hydrogen Hub.” [OutThere Colorado]

Have a remarkably gratifying day.

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July 25 Energy News

July 25, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “Another Sign Hybrid-Electric Aircraft Are The Future” • Pratt & Whitney Canada has signed an agreement with consulting firm Ricardo to co-develop hybrid-electric aircraft technology. This is not a level or stage of development that CleanTechnica typically covers. However, it seemed to deserve a brief note due to what it signals about the industry. [CleanTechnica]

Pratt & Whitney Canada hybrid-electric (Ricardo image)

¶ “Russian Aggression An Opportunity For Faster Switch To Renewable Energy, Says COP President” • The world’s leading economies must use Russia’s war in Ukraine as an opportunity to accelerate a transition to renewable energy, COP26 president Alok Sharma says, even if some nations will need to rely on more fossil fuels in the short term. [Sydney Morning Herald]

Science and Technology:

¶ “The Cornish Farm That Plans To Last 1,000 Years” • Merlin Hanbury-Tenison explained the benefits of a Large Black pig named Gloria. He then gestured to distant hills. “That’s a green desert,” he said. “There’s nothing living in it. We really need the chaos, the mosaic, the messiness that a pig like Gloria can bring to the natural world.” [BBC]

Large Black Pigs (Keith Evans, CC BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “SVolt Energy Readies Solid-State Battery With 400 Wh/kg Energy Density For Production” • CnEVPost reports that Svolt Energy is the first company to create prototype 20 Ah solid-state battery cells. With an energy density of 350 to 400 Wh/kg, the cells could enable EVs to drive 1,000 km or more on a single charge, the company says. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ “Airlines Banking On Capturing Carbon From The Air” • In the EU, airlines are under pressure to cut carbon emissions or pay for the emissions they create. Airbus and several airlines have signed Letters of Intent “to explore opportunities for a future supply of carbon removal credits from direct air carbon capture technology.” [CleanTechnica]

Airbus carbon scheme (Airbus image)

¶ “Tesla Gets Its Own Lane At Mexican Border Crossing” • Tesla sources parts from six companies that have factories in the Mexican state of Nuevo Leon. The state wants to ease congestion at the border for local companies doing business with companies in the US, especially Tesla. One way to do that is to add dedicated lanes for their business. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “UK Government Publication Debunks EV Myths” • Car makers (finally) want to sell their EVs, and governments are promoting them, but they need to do more to educate the driving public. The UK’s Department for Transport has taken a step in the right direction with a new publication, “Common Misconceptions About Electric Vehicles.” [CleanTechnica]

Charging an EV (Andrew Roberts, Unsplash)

¶ “Solar Panels Begin Installation In Northern Goldfields” • The first solar panels have started being installed this week at BHP’s massive solar farm at Leinster Nickel Operation in the Northern Goldfields of Western Australia. By the end of 2022, over 20,000 solar panels will be installed at this site alone, helping to power BHP Nickel West’s operations. [BHP]

¶ “Global Gas Expansion Endangers Climate Targets” • Rebuffing the still widespread narrative that natural gas is a “bridge” fuel, a team of German energy economists is warning that the massive global expansion of gas infrastructure now under way puts both climate mitigation efforts and the transition to renewable energy at risk. [The Energy Mix]

Halliburton frack job (Joshua Doubek, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “Dangerous Volcano Erupts Near Nuclear Reactor In Japan, Highest Alert Issued, Area Evacuated” • Sakurajima Volcano, on the Kyushu Islands in Japan, has once again erupted dangerously. The entire area was evacuated after lava erupted in this volcano. The explosion is only a few kilometers away from the Sendai nuclear reactor. [News Day Express]

US:

¶ “Oak Fire: Wildfire Grows As Firefighters Battle Punishing Heat” • The Oak Fire has now burned 15,603 acres of land and is still “zero per cent uncontained,” California’s fire department said on Sunday night. More than 6,000 people have been evacuated and 10 structures destroyed. A further 3,271 structures, homes and businesses, are under threat. [BBC]

Firefighting airplane (Ben Kuo, Unsplash)

¶ “Charging Up To Drive Cheaper And Cleaner Just Got A Lot Easier In Virginia” • Virginia’s primary electric utility, Dominion, will now commence with well-designed EV charger offerings, to get more EVs out on the road, putting dollars back in Virginians’ pockets while reducing air pollution by nudging more expensive polluting cars off the road. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Court Fights Raise Caution Flags On Green Energy Push In Nevada” • Opposition from friends, not foes, is creating potential roadblocks to President Biden’s green energy agenda on federal lands in the blue-leaning state of Nevada. Conservationists are taking issue with a pair of lithium mines and a geothermal power plant. [Los Angeles Times]

Have an honestly wonderful day.

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July 24 Energy News

July 24, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “If You Think A 40°C Heatwave Was Bad, Things Will Only Get Worse Until We Hit Net Zero Carbon Emissions” • This week’s record-breaking heatwave shocked many meteorologists and climate scientists. Although they thought that the UK would eventually see temperatures exceed 40°C, they did not expect it to happen so soon. [The Scotsman]

Heat (Eelco Böhtlingk, Unsplash)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Recycling Lead-Acid Batteries Is Easy. Why Is Recycling Lithium-Ion Batteries Hard?” • The lithium-ion batteries EVs outperform older lead-acid batteries by almost every measure, except one. Lead-acid batteries are the single-most recycled product in the world. But for lithium-ion batteries, recycling is still being worked out. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Bacteria Could Help To Capture Greenhouse Gases” • In a paper published in Nature Chemical Biology, King and others from Simon Fraser University examined the important role CO₂ plays in cyanobacteria, photosynthetic organisms found in water. Cyanobacteria use carbon to create essential nutrients that sustain their life cycle. [CleanTechnica]

Cyanobacteria culture (Dennis Schroeder, NREL)

World:

¶ “Flooding Kills 21 In Drought-Hit Iran” • Flash flooding has killed at least 21 people in Iran’s southern Fars province. The city of Estabhan was hardest hit with heavy rain swelling the Roudbal river, governor Yousef Kargar said. Floods in Iran have been worsened by droughts, because rain water is unable to permeate through the sun-baked earth. [BBC]

¶ “Baby Steps For EV Chargers In Australia” • Slowly and with baby steps, Australia’s charging network is being built out. As well as large networks of high-speed chargers being built by state governments, along the coastal highways circling this vast country, motoring associations and commercial providers are ramping up their provisions. [CleanTechnica]

Australian charger (Courtesy of Ampol/AmpCharge)

¶ “Northvolt Partners With Stora Enso For Lignin-Based Battery Anodes” • Lignin is a polymer found in the cell walls of plants. It gives trees their strength, and it could be used as a renewable carbon source. Swedish battery maker Northvolt wants to source more of its raw materials locally, so it is working with Stora Enso, a Finnish firm, on lignin. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Solar Park Powering Astronomical Observatory In Chile’s Atacama Desert” • A solar plant with a capacity of 9 MW has now been completed at the European Southern Observatory’s Paranal Observatory in Chile. The PV installation is also intended to power the world’s largest telescope, which is currently under construction at the site. [CleanTechnica]

Rendering of ESO’s Extremely Large Telescope (ESO image)

¶ “Germany Could U-Turn On Plan To Scrap Nuclear Power As Energy Costs Soar” • Germany’s government is facing its biggest test yet as it faces Russian threats to cut gas supplies, with the country’s chancellor, Olaf Scholz, reportedly considering undoing the decade-old Merkel legacy policy of closing the country’s nuclear plants. [MSN]

US:

¶ “Emergency Declared As Wildfire Rages Near Yosemite National Park” • A state of emergency has been declared in part of California as a wildfire continues to rapidly spread near Yosemite National Park. The Oak Fire has exploded in size since starting on Friday, and it has already burned 11,900 acres (4,815 hectares) of land. [BBC]

Wildfire (CalFire image)

¶ “New Mexico Submits First Infrastructure Bill EV Charging Plan, Ignorance Breeds Controversy” • Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham announced that New Mexico is the first state to submit its EV charging plan to the federal government, a requirement to get funding from the infrastructure bill’s EV charging fund. But the plan wasn’t without controversy. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “PNM Inundated With Companies Seeking Clean Energy” • Public Service Company of New Mexico announced that it commissioned a 50-MW solar facility to provide clean energy to a Facebook data center in Los Lunas. PNM is supplying nearly 400 MW of clean power to Facebook, but other companies are expected to follow. [Albuquerque Journal]

49.5-MW solar facility for a Facebook data center (PNM image)

¶ “We Spent $95 To Drive 2,700 Miles On A Summer Roadtrip. Life With An EV Is Sweet Indeed” • My family embarked on a massive EV road trip. We rented a Model 3 and drove 2,661 miles across the Northeast to see family and friends and enjoy seven beautiful states. What blew our mind is how little we spent on fuel for our vacation. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Kinder Morgan Is Diving Deeper Into Renewable Energy” • Kinder Morgan is one of the largest energy infrastructure companies in North America. Its assets transport, process, store, or export fossil fuels. While that makes it a key player today, there are questions about the company’s future as the economy transitions to cleaner energy. [Nasdaq]

Have a pleasingly comfortable day.

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July 23 Energy News

July 23, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “The Audacious PR Plot That Seeded Doubt About Climate Change” • Thirty years ago, at a little-known meeting between some of America’s biggest industrial players and a PR genius, a devastatingly successful strategy was forged to create doubt about climate change. It endured for years, and the consequences are all around us. [BBC]

Emissions (Alexander Tsang, Unsplash)

Science and Technology:

¶ “With Climate Change, Nights Are Warming Faster Than Days. Why?” • Studies show that temperatures have increased more at night than during the day, in general, across the globe. This is due to clouds. With global warming, more water evaporates, and this creates clouds. Clouds tend to cool the days, but they act like a blanket at night. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Vertical Solar Systems Reduce The Need For Electricity Storage” • Solar panels are usually installed facing south at an angle. In a new study, a research team from HTWK Leipzig shows it would make sense in the future to primarily install bifacial solar modules vertically and to use agricultural land for this, for example. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

Vertically installed, bifacial solar modules (Next2Sun GmbH)

World:

¶ “Germany Bails Out Its Biggest Natural Gas Importer” • The German government has stepped in to bail out one of its biggest energy companies, a casualty of Europe’s natural gas crisis. Months of Russian supply cuts and soaring spot market prices have brought gas distributor Uniper to its knees. It will receive up to €15 billion from the government. [CNN]

¶ “Temperatures Of 40°C Expected This Weekend In China” • Parts of China are set to experience searing temperatures over the next ten days as a heatwave takes hold. In some provinces, authorities are predicting levels to rise to at least 40°C (104°F). The national government has warned that there could be forest fires in the hot weather. [BBC]

Great Wall (Diego Jimenez, Unsplash)

¶ “In Germany, 26% Of New Car Sales Have A Plug, 14% Are Fully Electric” • With the disruptions affecting it, the overall German automotive market is still in the red, with the market dropping 11% last month year over year. And it seems all this doom and gloom has finally got to EVs, with sales of battery EVs dropping in June by 4% year over year. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Wind Power Returning To Open Seas, Now With AI” • A 20% savings in fuel efficiency for a two-day retrofit is noteworthy, and that explains why Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha, Ltd, a leading shipping company, is adding more wind power to its roster of cargo ships. “K” Line also expects to leverage artificial intelligence for greater improvements. [CleanTechnica]

K Line ship partly powered by wind (Courtesy of Airseas)

¶ “Nofar Preparing To Build Romania’s Biggest Solar Power Plant” • Nofar Energy, based in Israel, expanded its Romanian renewable energy portfolio with an advanced 255-MW solar power project. Nofar expects to start building the project next year. It would currently be the biggest solar PV project in the country by far. [Balkan Green Energy News]

¶ “Nuclear Power Plants Are Struggling To Stay Cool” • In this heatwave, it’s no longer possible to use river water to cool reactors without killing aquatic life. A few weeks ago, EDF began powering down some reactors. Heat-related cuts, malfunctions, and maintenance have reduced the nuclear power output in France by nearly 50%. [Ars Technica]

Cooling towers (Markus Distelrath, Pexels)

¶ “Japan’s Nuclear Regulator Approves Treated Fukushima Water Release Plan” • Japan’s nuclear regulator officially approved a plan to discharge into the sea water that has been contaminated but treated from the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant. Huge amounts of the water have been accumulating since the Fukushima disaster of 2011. [The Japan Times]

US:

¶ “Amazon’s Rivian Deliveries Begin” • People in ten US cities are about to see a new delivery vehicle from Rivian on their roads delivering Amazon packages. The e-commerce giant has been working with Rivian to create a more sustainable fleet of vehicles. This is part of Amazon’s plan to reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2040. [CleanTechnica]

Electric delivery vans (Amazon image)

¶ “Federal Aviation Administration Partners With NREL For Holistic Look At Energy Needs Of Electrified Aircraft” • With analysis from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, the Federal Aviation Administration can create safety standards and recommend efficient and resilient airport infrastructure able to support new aircraft designs. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Ford Has Battery Supply For 600,000 EVs A Year, Will Add LFP Batteries From CATL” • Ford released details of a $50 billion investment in EVs between now and 2026, when it expects to be selling 2 million EVs a year. Ford says it has commitments from three battery manufacturers that will allow it to build 600,000 EVs per year by the end of 2023. [CleanTechnica]

Ford’s expected EVs sales in 2023 (Ford image)

¶ “Georgia Power Expands Plans To 9 GW Of Renewable Energy By 2035” • The Georgia Public Service Commission recently approved Georgia Power’s Integrated Resource Plan, which the utility releases every third year. The plan was recently revised in a vote before the PSC to increase the utility’s renewables plan for 2035 from 6 GW to 9 GW. [pv magazine USA]

¶ “Wisconsin Utility Regulators Open A Docket To Clarify Financing Tools For Customer-Sited Renewable Energy” • The Wisconsin Public Service Commission agreed to open a docket to determine whether individual residents and businesses may access renewable energy produced on their premises using equipment owned by third parties. [WisPolitics.com]

Have an excusably exuberant day.

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July 22 Energy News

July 22, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “The Solution To Grid Reliability? Go Bigger And Bolder On Renewables And Energy Storage” • Power generation based on fossil fuels is vulnerable to extreme weather. Doubling down on old technologies is a mistake when we have renewables, storage, and flexible demand that can help ensure reliability while they address climate change. [CleanTechnica]

Wind turbines in Texas (Sam LaRussa, Unsplash)

¶ “Time For The Government To Tell The Truth About Nuclear Power” • The UK is becoming habituated to officially sponsored propaganda about nuclear power. But government data shows this technology to be, in reality, an expensive, slow, unreliable, risky, and unpopular way to deliver what the UK needs – secure, affordable, zero-carbon energy. [The Guardian]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Monarch Butterflies Could Become Extinct If We Don’t Take These Three Steps” • One of the most popular insects is at risk of extinction, says a global organization focused on conservation and sustainability. The International Union for Conservation of Nature added the migratory monarch butterfly to its Red List of Threatened Species as endangered. [CNN]

Monarch butterfly (Erin Minuskin, Unsplash)

¶ “Graphmatech, Graphenea, And Northvolt: ‘Breakthrough In Battery Recycling'” • Graphmatech, Graphenea, and Northvolt have come up with a new battery recycling technology. After the metals are extracted, the rest of the battery is not trashed. It is turned into graphene oxide, and while that material is not used in batteries, it has other uses. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ “Europe’s Economy Is In Dire Straits. This Week Presents A Crucial Test” • Europe’s economy, which accounts for almost a fifth of the world’s output, is facing its toughest test since the pandemic erupted more than two years ago. A cocktail of risks threatens to throw growth into reverse at a moment of deep uncertainty. [CNN]

German coal-burning power plant (Tobias Tullius, Unsplash)

¶ “War And Energy Woes Push The Climate Crisis To The Back Seat In An Endless Vicious Cycle” • Russia’s war in Ukraine is presenting challenges and inflation out of control. Nevertheless, even as temperature records are being broken in all continents of the northern hemisphere, Europe is returning to the use of coal, to avoid using Russian natural gas. [CNN]

¶ “Is Europe set for its worst wildfire season?” • So far this year, the amount of land burnt by fires across the EU is more than three times greater than what you would expect by the middle of July. In some places fires are becoming more expected, such as across the Mediterranean, and they are seeing better safeguards and awareness campaigns. [BBC]

Wildfire near Athens in 2021 (Anasmeister, Unsplash)

¶ “Renault And Phoenix Mobility Are Partnering To Convert Commercial Vehicles To Electric” • Renault Group seems to be optimistic about EV conversions again. It is partnering with a startup, Phoenix Mobility to do EV conversions of commercial vehicles. The engines and associate systems are removed, and the vehicles are made into EVs. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Cow Manure Will Power A Renewable Energy Plant In Japan” • Anaergia, based in Canada, partnered with Japanese firm Toyo Energy Solution to build a biogas plant that digests cow manure into renewable energy. It will be built in Kasoka, Okayama, Japan. Anaergia is known for providing clean energy solutions using organic waste across the world. [Inhabitat]

Cows (Daniel Quiceno M, Unsplash)

¶ “Cambridge Power Wins Consent For 100-MW Battery” • The UK energy storage developer Cambridge Power has secured planning permission for a 100-MW grid battery site in Suffolk. The Bramford battery will provide local grid storage services in order to assist in the transition to net zero and low carbon forms of electricity. [reNews]

¶ “Formosa 2 Achieves First Power” • The 376-MW Formosa 2 offshore wind farm off Taiwan has achieved first power, following the installation of 12 turbines. More than half of the foundations have been installed. Formosa 2 is being jointly developed by JERA (49%), Macquarie’s Green Investment Group (26%) and Swancor Renewable Energy (25%). [reNews]

Formosa 1 (Swancor image)

US:

¶ “Amazon Claps Back At Walmart, Launches New Electric Vehicle” • Amazon and Walmart in the zero emission delivery race. The two behemoths in the shipping and delivery field have been going against each other in a to be first to have its own EV on neighborhood streets. It’s all good news for startup EV makers Canoo and Rivian. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “USPS Says That Up To 40% Of New Delivery Vehicles Will Be Electric” • Under pressure from the Biden administration, several states, and the UAW, the USPS this week announced “at least 50% of newly ordered NGDVs in the current contract are expected to be battery electric vehicles.” NGDV is postal-speak meaning “next generation delivery vehicle.” [CleanTechnica]

USPS Next Generation Delivery Vehicle (Oshkosh Defense image)

¶ “Coalition Criticizes Duke Energy Carbon Plan In North Carolina” • Environmental and renewable energy groups have challenged the proposal by Duke Energy Corp subsidiaries on how to reduce greenhouse gases in North Carolina in the next decade, saying it relies too much on natural gas and unproven technologies to succeed. [USNews.com]

¶ “No Plan For A False Alarm: Seabrook Nuclear Plant Mishap Exposes Gap In NH Protocols” • An unrealized omission in New Hampshire’s emergency management plan may have added to the extended time it took to alert the public on July 12 that sirens broadcasting an emergency at Seabrook’s nuclear power plant were a false alarm. [Concord Monitor]

Have a terrifically untroubled day.

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July 21 Energy News

July 21, 2022

Science and Technology:

¶ “Sustainable Aviation Fuel From Solar Energy: Not A Dream Any More” • The search for sustainable aviation fuel was once dominated by biofuel stakeholders, but the aviation industry could take off in a new direction that skips the plant-based middleperson in favor of a straight line from solar energy to liquid kerosene. [CleanTechnica]

Solar power to make kerosene (Courtesy of ETH Zurich)

World:

¶ “Nord Stream: Key Russian Pipeline Resumes Pumping Gas To Europe” • Russia has restarted gas supplies to Europe through its biggest pipeline, Nord Stream 1, after a maintenance break. Some people had feared Moscow would not resume the flow because of EU sanctions over the war in Ukraine. Last year, Russia supplied Europe with 40% of its natural gas. [BBC]

¶ “The Amount Of Greenland Ice That Melted Last Weekend Could Cover West Virginia In A Foot Of Water” • Temperatures in northern Greenland have been running around 60°F, which is 10°F warmer than normal for this time of year. Several days of unusually warm weather have triggered rapid melting. Rivers of meltwater are rushing into the ocean. [CNN]

Streams and rivers (NASA Goddard SFC, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “Germany Scrambles For Energy With No Faith In Russian Gas” • Claudia Kemfert, Germany’s leading energy expert, says she tried for fifteen years to warn politicians and the public that the country was too reliant on Russian energy. She advised Berlin to find other sources and focus more on renewables. Now, the nightmare she foresaw is real. [BBC]

¶ “Roam Launches Next-Generation Electric Motorcycle – The Roam Air” • Roam announced the launch of its next-generation electric motorcycle, the Roam Air. The Roam Air is designed both for urban and rural environments. Several years of research and development were dedicated to building the optimal electric motorcycle for Africa. [CleanTechnica]

Roam Air (Roam image)

¶ “Volkswagen Pilots Reuse Of ID.4 Battery Packs” • By the time a battery pack loses too much range to be useful, the capacity is still around 50% to 60% of what it originally was. Volkswagen is starting to make use of that fact to employ used batteries at charging stations to reduce their peak demand for power. One benefit is lower overall cost. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Lords Call For UK Net Zero Delivery Plan” • The Government of the UK should publish a net zero delivery plan which takes account of energy security, and makes clear what decisions are needed by when, a House of Lords report says. It identified a number of issues needing action now for UK to meet its goal to be net zero by 2050. [reNews]

Wind farm (Alex Eckermann, Unsplash)

¶ “Increased Installation Of Decentralized Renewable Energy Is Needed To Achieve India’s Promised 2030 Targets” • ​India has made great strides in the utility-scale deployment of renewable energy. Still, the targets promised by Prime Minister Narendra Modi for 2030 can be achieved only by increased decentralized renewables, experts warn. [The Weather Channel]

¶ “UK Government Gives Go-Ahead To Sizewell C Nuclear Power Plant” • The UK government has given planning consent to the £20 billion Sizewell C nuclear power plant in Suffolk. The decision by the business secretary, Kwasi Kwarteng, which had been repeatedly delayed, went against advice of the independent Planning Inspectorate. [The Guardian]

Rendering of Sizewell C (EDF image)

US:

¶ “Biden Unveils $2.3 Billion Plan To Fight Climate Change” • Speaking in Massachusetts, President Joe Biden has announced $2.3 billion to help build infrastructure that can withstand extreme weather and natural disasters. But he stopped short of formally declaring a climate emergency, which would grant him further powers. [BBC]

¶ “GAF Building Second Solar Shingle Factory In Texas” • After GAF Energy spent $1 billion to build a solar shingle factory, some people wondered if anyone would used them. But enough are selling for GAF Energy to build a second 450,000 square foot factory in Georgetown, Texas, to manufacture its Timberline Solar Roof products. [CleanTechnica]

House with Timberline Solar Roof (GAF Energy image)

¶ “Tesla Vehicle Deliveries Up 27%, Superchargers Up 34%, Tesla Solar Up 25%” • Tesla has released its second quarter report. In it, the company provided an update on vehicle delivery growth, rooftop solar installation growth, Supercharger growth, service center growth, mobile service fleet growth, and more. Here is a look at the trends. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “As Texas Energy Demand Increases, Enel Green Power Installs More Renewable And Storage Capacity” • Enel Green Power said it has completed Azure Sky Wind + Storage, its first large hybrid wind project. It added battery storage at other renewable project sites also, helping ensure energy availability for Texans in high demand periods. [PR Newswire]

Windpower and storage (Enel Green Power image)

¶ “Energy Prices, Policy Play Role In Race For Ohio Governor” • Nan Whaley, the Democrat trying to unseat Ohio Governor Mike DeWine in November, released her energy policy proposals as high gas prices continue to fuel voters’ concerns. Her main focuses include investing in renewable energy and cracking down on corruption. [13abc]

¶ “Rhode Island limits solar power property taxes” • The Rhode Island state legislature has said that land values may no longer be increased due to the presence of renewable assets. The vote was on an amendment to RI House Bill 8220, Levy and Assessment of Local Taxes. There was a bit of a dance to get the amendment passed, the local press said. [pv magazine USA]

Have a comfortably cool day.

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July 20 Energy News

July 20, 2022

Opinion:

¶ “The Oil Industry’s Grip On Public Lands And Waters May Be Slowing Progress Toward Energy Independence” • Of public lands in the western US 77% that are ideal for renewable energy projects are in areas with low or no oil and gas potential, yet they are still prioritized for oil and gas leasing. That imbalance can slow progress. [Center for American Progress]

Public land (Ethan Wright-Magoon, Unsplash)

¶ “Nuclear Revival Won’t Solve Japan’s Energy Crisis” • After the Fukushima disaster, Japan shut down its nuclear plants due to safety concerns. Japan’s energy self-sufficiency was largely lost, leaving the country vulnerable to price volatility in global energy markets. But calling for nuclear reactors to be restarted is not the answer to the current energy crisis. [Asia Times]

World:

¶ “China Endures Summer Of Extreme Weather As Record Rainfall And Scorching Heat Wave Cause Havoc” • Towns and farmlands are inundated by floods, homes and roads are being buried by landslides, crops wither under scorching heat, and hazmat-suited Covid workers collapse from heatstroke. China is feeling the impacts of climate change. [CNN]

Flooding in China (Jéan Béller, Unsplash)

¶ “Records Fall As Extreme Heat Bakes Western Europe” • Heat records tumbled and firefighters faced new blazes as much of Western Europe baked in a grueling heatwave. Heatwaves have become more frequent and more intense, and they last longer because of human-induced climate change. Weather forecasters say there is worse to come. [BBC]

¶ “Fires Blaze As UK Passes 40°C For First Time” • In the UK, over thirty locations went past the previous record of 38.7°C, set in 2019. At Coningsby in Lincolnshire, hit 40.3°C (104.5°F). With the heat comes a surge of fires. Some train service was canceled when rails buckled and overhead cables failed. With such heat, there were more fires. [BBC]

Burned homes (South Yorkshire Fire & Rescue Service)

¶ “Global Electricity Demand Growth Is Slowing, Weighed Down By Economic Weakness And High Prices” • Worldwide electricity demand growth is slowing sharply in 2022. Renewable power generation is growing faster than overall demand, leading to slight decline in global power sector CO₂ emissions despite rising coal use in Europe amid gas crisis. [IEA]

¶ “Government Approves 8 GW Of Offshore Wind In Major Milestone For Renewable Energy” • Plans for the UK to meet its net zero and energy security commitments received a major boost as six fixed offshore wind projects, with the potential to generate electricity for more than 7 million homes, were given the green light. [Business News Wales]

Offshore wind farm (Theodor Vasile, Unsplash)

¶ “GWEC Provides Renewables Action Plan For Policymakers” • The Global Wind Energy Council published an action plan to help policymakers adopt more renewables and address energy and climate change crises. The plan addresses the need to restore order to energy markets, meet climate goals, and create a secure, stable energy transition. [reNews]

¶ “Octopus Announces $10 Billion Renewable Investment Funds, Acquires Australia’s Largest Solar Project” • Octopus Investments Australia, a subsidiary of Octopus Group, has launched two renewable energy investment vehicles totaling $10 billion. The Octopus funds’ first joint acquisition is the 333-MW Darlington Point Solar Farm. [pv magazine Australia]

Darlington Point Solar Farm (Edify Energy image)

¶ “Reports Russian Soldiers Dead Or Injured Following ‘Event’ At Occupied Ukrainian Nuclear Power Station” • Several Russian soldiers occupying a Ukrainian nuclear power station have died following an unexplained “event” at the plant, the region’s mayor has claimed. A Kyiv news site has reported that Russian troops had “violated safety rules.” [News.com.au]

¶ “No Life Extension For Belgium’s Doel 3 And Tihange 2” • Two nuclear plants in Belgium will be shut down as scheduled, one in September and the other next February. Operations at unit 2 of Belgium’s Tihange NPP and unit 3 of the Doel NPP cannot be extended for technical and safety reasons, owner-operator Engie Electrabel said. [Nuclear Engineering International]

Tihange nuclear power plant (Courtesy of Engie)

US:

¶ “Biden Preparing Executive Action On Climate After Manchin Sinks Legislative Approach” • The White House is preparing a plan to take executive action on climate after Democratic Sen Joe Manchin last week torpedoed his party’s efforts on sweeping legislation. White House official tells CNN that as of Tuesday morning, all options remain on the table. [CNN]

¶ “Massive $8 Billion SunZia Renewable Energy Project Is On Again, For Now” • The biggest renewable energy infrastructure project in US history is on track to begin construction next year. It is a 550-mile transmission line running between New Mexico and Arizona and a 3,000-MW wind farm. Both projects are being developed by SunZia. [CleanTechnica]

Western Spirit (Pattern Energy via prnewswire.com)

¶ “In AP Interview, GM’s Mary Barra Explains Her Strategy To Catch Tesla By 2025” • GM’s goal of catching up to Tesla for EV sales by 2025 seems like an impossible climb. GM still only sells around 1/10 the electric vehicles Tesla does. Mary Barra says she thinks they’re still going to pull it off, by focusing on parts of the market where Tesla is having trouble. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “‘Higher Ambition’ For Climate Action, Post-Manchin, Looks To Locals” • Senator Joe Manchin (D-Coal) has stymied national climate action legislation single-handedly. Senator Ed Markey (D-MA) has forecast that there will be a “higher ambition” for states and municipalities across the country to enact climate mitigation policies. [CleanTechnica]

Have an enviably amusing day.

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July 19 Energy News

July 19, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “Why The US Is So Horribly Incapable Of Meaningful Climate Action” • Runways are melting in the UK. Lakes are drying up in the US. Fires are raging all over. But the US government is frozen in time. For now, while the climate crisis continues, the biggest plans to fight it are on ice. There are many reasons for this, and there’s plenty of blame to go around. [CNN]

Dry river bed (Markus Spiske, Unsplash)

¶ “Your Electric Bills Are Skyrocketing. Blame Our Failure To Invest In Renewable Energy” • Utilities that generate power from natural gas and coal face fuel costs two or three times as high as they were just a couple of years ago. Those costs are passed on to customers. The increase will depend on how much your utility generates from fossil fuels. [Virginia Mercury]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Greener Pastures: Can Ancient Eco-Engineering Help Fix Our Degraded Landscapes?” • Land management is one of the key issues facing the planet in the 21st century. As a result of climate change droughts are becoming longer and more intense and severe flooding is getting worse. But the land can be restored by use of old techniques. [CNN]

Restoration from 2018 to 2020 (Courtesy of Justdiggit)

World:

¶ “UK Heatwave: Hottest Day On Record Likely With Highs Of Up To 42°C” • The UK’s current record high temperature of 38.7°C (101.7°F) was set in 2019. A high of 38.1°C was reached in Suffolk on Monday, but it is getting hotter. The UK is set to see its hottest day on record, with temperatures on Tuesday expected to reach up to 42°C (107.6°F). [BBC]

¶ “Hot Records Are Outpacing Cool By More Than 10-To-1 This Year As Europe And US Brace For Dangerous Heat” • Records for high temperatures are far outpacing cool records worldwide this year as Europe and the US brace again for dangerous heat waves. Globally, 188 all-time heat records were broken this year versus 18 records for cold weather. [CNN]

Dry weather (Wolfgang Hasselmann, Unsplash)

¶ “ACT First State In Australia To Ban Conventional Cars” • The Australian Capitol Territory announced that the sale of new cars and light trucks with internal combustion engines within the ACT will be prohibited beginning in 2035. To ramp up to that goal, at least 80% of new light vehicles sold in the ACT are to be zero-emission models by 2030. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Australia’s Environment In ‘Shocking’ Decline, Report Finds” • Australia’s environment is in a shocking state and faces further decline from amplifying threats, the latest five-year survey of Australia’s ecological systems says. The declining condition can be blamed on climate change, habitat loss, invasive species, pollution, and mining. [BBC]

Australian outback (Tarryn Myburgh, Unsplash)

¶ “GreenZo To Develop 50-MW Green Hydrogen Capacity In Nepal” • India’s GreenZo Energy has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Nepal-based renewable power producer API Power to develop 50 MW of green hydrogen capacity in Nepal. It will install green hydrogen plants at various locations in Nepal over three years. [pv magazine India]

¶ “Siemens Gamesa Bags 277-MW Swedish Wind Order” • The 277-MW Kölvallen wind project in Sweden will have 42 Siemens Gamesa turbines, each of 6.6 MW capacity. Siemens Gamesa is working with Arise and Foresight Group on the project. It is due to be installed in early 2025, close to the Skaftåsen project, which is currently being installed. [reNews]

Wind farm in Sweden (Siemens Gamesa image)

¶ “Macron Pays Out £8.2 Billion To Nationalize EDF – And Faces Even Bigger Bill To Fix Nuclear Fleet” • The French Government agreed to buy out EDF at about €12 (£10.2, $12) per share, for the 16% it does not own. The company has immense debts, as nuclear reactor flaws and cost overruns on nuclear plants in France and Britain have cost billions of euros. [Daily Express]

¶ “Iberdrola Opens 1.1-GW Portuguese Pumped Hydro” • The 1158-MW Tamega Giga Battery pumped storage hydroelectric facility in Portugal was commissioned by Iberdrola. The €1.5 billion Tamega plant can store 40 GWh, enough energy for 11 million people during 24 hours in their homes. It is in northern Portugal on the Tamega river. [reNews]

Iberdrola pumped hydro plant (Iberdrola image)

US:

¶ “Bernie Sanders Just Accused Joe Manchin Of ‘Intentionally Sabotaging’ Joe Biden’s Agenda” • As West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin plays for more time to consider a climate and tax legislative package, his colleagues are venting their frustrations with him and his tactics. Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders made a statement that reflects this. [CNN]

¶ “US Senate Democrats Urge Biden To Declare Climate Emergency” • Two US Senate Democrats, Sheldon Whitehouse and Jeff Merkley, urged President Joe Biden to declare a climate emergency and use the Defense Production Act to ramp up production of a wide range of renewable energy products and systems including solar panels. [MSN]

US Capitol Building (Andy Feliciotti, Unsplash)

¶ “Zinc-Air Energy Storage Race Just Got Hotter, Too” • The Canadian battery maker Zinc8 Energy Solutions has been trialing a new rechargeable zinc-air battery in New York State. Earlier this month it let out the word that the company is also considering the Empire State as home base for its new battery manufacturing plant. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Governor Hochul Announces Charging Discount Programs For EV Drivers Across New York” • Governor Kathy Hochul announced that the State Public Service Commission approved New York’s investor-owned utilities’ active and passive-managed programs to charge EVs. This is a key element in developing New York’s EV infrastructure. [CleanTechnica]

Have a certifiably marvelous day.

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July 18 Energy News

July 18, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “US EIA Projected The Future Of Electricity Generation In 2001. Why Were They So Wrong?” • Back in 2001, the US Energy Information Administration used its crystal ball and forecast the future of the US electricity supply through 2020. They forecast more coal, a small role for renewables, and steady growth in demand. So what went wrong? [CleanTechnica]

Upside-down image (Photoholgic, Unsplash)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Are Wildfires Happening More Often?” • Wildfires are burning in France, Portugal, and Spain. There are fires in Alaska, north of the Arctic circle, and across northern Canada. Experts say that “extreme fire weather” is getting more frequent and worse, in nearly all regions of the world. Climate change is an important factor, but other factors are at work. [BBC]

¶ “Investing In Plant-Based Alternatives Cuts Climate Emissions More Than Other Green Investments” • The Boston Consulting Group, a global consultancy firm, has issued a report that finds, for each dollar, investment in plant-based alternatives results in way more greenhouse gas savings than lots of other investment opportunities. [CleanTechnica]

Plant-based alternative (From Beyond Beef media kit)

¶ “Humanity Is On Track To Cause One Million Species To Go Extinct, According To UN Report” • According to a report by the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services, a UN body, one million animal and plant species face extinction. And their problem is, ultimately, going to be humanity’s problem. [Salon]

World:

¶ “Europe Battles Wildfires In Intense Heat” • Authorities across southern Europe battled on Sunday to control huge wildfires in countries including Spain, Greece, Portugal, and France. At least 1,000 deaths have been attributed to the heatwave in Portugal and Spain so far. Temperatures in Spain have reached as high as 45.7°C (114°F) [CNN]

Heat wave (Lucian Dachman, Unsplash)

¶ “UK Heatwave: Country May Have Hottest Day On Record With 41°C Forecast” • The UK could set a record for hottest day this week, with temperatures forecast to hit up to 41°C (106°F). The current record in the UK is 38.7°C, in Cambridge in 2019. The Met Office issued a red extreme heat warning for Monday and Tuesday in much of England. [BBC]

¶ “Volkswagen Battery Modules Power Fast Charging Park, Sales Up 27% Year Over Year” • Like all other car makers, Volkswagen has been hit with production challenges of late. Nevertheless, the latest press release from the company says deliveries of its battery EVs were up 27% year on year through the first six months of 2021. [CleanTechnica]

Showing off an EV charging park (Volkswagen image)

¶ “Solar Panel Recycling Is About To Become BIG Business!” • It used to be that solar PVs went to the landfill at the end of their life. But just as companies like Redwood Materials find they can recycle EV batteries and make money, some companies are seeing the opportunities that old solar panels represent and are pursuing ways do the same. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Construction Kicks Off At 99-MW UK Storage Site” • UK developer Harmony Energy and Fotowatio Renewable Ventures have started initial construction works at the 99-MW, 198-MWh Clay Tye energy storage project in Essex, south-east England. Clay Tye will have 52 Tesla megapack batteries, managed by Tesla’s Autobidder AI software. [reNews]

Clay Tye battery site (FRV image)

¶ “MENA Power Projects Forum To Focus On $250 Billion Worth Of Projects” • The Middle East and North Africa sees $250 billion investment in power projects between 2021 and 2025, as power and utility providers gear up for more business at the MENA Power Projects Forum 2022. The event will be from September 7 to 8, 2022, in Abu Dhabi. [Trade Arabia]

¶ “Cadeler Lined Up For Baltic Power Turbine Installation” • Cadeler has secured a reservation agreement to install turbines at Orlen and Northland Power’s 1200-MW Baltic Power offshore wind farm, with over 70 turbines, off Poland. Cadeler said it has secured a large vessel reservation agreement to execute the transport and installation. [reNews]

Working ship (Cadeler image)

¶ “Indian Railways Tenders 2.6 GW Of Renewable Power Projects” • REMC Limited unit of Indian Railways invited bids to install 1 GW of renewable power projects for round-the-clock power supply to various railways. It also tendered to install 1.548 GW of land-based solar plants near the traction sub-stations across different zonal railways. [pv magazine India]

US:

¶ “Sunrun Installs 700,000 Solar Roofs – How About 700,000 More For Ford F-150 Lightnings?” • Sunrun, the Number One rooftop solar installer in the US, just installed its 700,000th rooftop solar system. Now, Sunrun has partnered with Ford to combine solarizing homes with electrifying their transport via the Ford F-150 Lighting. [CleanTechnica]

Ford F-150 Lightning (Ford image)

¶ “Biden-Harris Administration: $56 Million To Advance US Solar Manufacturing And Lower Energy Costs” • The Biden–Harris Administration announced a slate of new initiatives and $56 million in funding, including $10 million from President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, to spur innovation in solar manufacturing and recycling. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “New Economic Drivers Envisioned To Replace Palisades Nuclear Plant Loss” • Despite efforts to save Palisades under a $6 billion federal program to rescue old nuclear plants set to close, and Holtec’s willingness to entertain a potential buyer, no such proposals have come forward. So the community with the plant has to find new employers. [MiBiz]

Have an impressively delightful day.

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July 17 Energy News

July 17, 2022

Science and Technology:

¶ “University Of Florida PhD Candidate Proposes USAF-Style Vehicle To Vehicle Charging” • A PhD candidate in electrical and computer engineering at the University of Florida has, along with his co-authors, proposed a two-battery system for EVs. If it works, it will allow one vehicle to charge another, even as they’re driving down the road! [CleanTechnica]

In-flight refueling (US Air Force image, public domain)

¶ “Longer Lasting Sodium-Ion Batteries On The Horizon” • Cheap and abundant, sodium is a prime candidate for new battery technology. One problem is limited performance. Now, a team from the DOE’s Pacific Northwest National Laboratory has developed a sodium-ion battery with greatly extended longevity in laboratory tests. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ “Europe Heatwave: Deadly Wildfires Spread In Mediterranean” • Thousands of firefighters contine to battle wildfires in Portugal, Spain and France, as a heatwave shows no sign of easing. A pilot died when his waterbombing plane crashed in Portugal. The Portuguese authorities say at least 238 people have died from the heat over the past week. [BBC]

Portuguese airtanker (Jacek Ulinski, Unsplash)

¶ “AP Has Immense Potential To Produce Renewable Energy” • With an immense potential to produce renewable energy and export power, the government of the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh devised a policy to attract investments for establishing wind, solar and hybrid projects on a massive scale, an officer of the state’s transmission company said. [The Hindu]

¶ “Gippsland Dairy Farmers Rein In ‘Unsustainable’ Irrigation Costs With Solar Power” • A major investment in renewable energy has helped an organic dairy farm in the Gippsland region of New South Wales reduce irrigation-related electricity costs from almost $100,000 per year to just $15,000. The farm has 300 milk cows. [ABC]

Dairy farm in NSW (Rebecca Ritchie, Unsplash)

¶ “Old Mine Could Bring Renewables And New Life To An Eastern Ontario Town” • In the small eastern Ontario town of Marmora, an old open-pit mine offers an opportunity for hydroelectric energy production and – perhaps even more exciting – storage for renewable energy. It is a big pit, and it could store a lot of energy. [The Narwhal]

¶ “In A Twist, Old Coal Plants Help Deliver Renewable Power” • Across Pakistan, aging and defunct coal-burning power plants are getting new lives as solar, battery, and other renewable energy projects, partly because they have a decades-old feature that has become increasingly valuable: They are already wired into the power grid. [Technology Times]

Coal-fired power plant in Pakistan (VileGecko, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “War In Ukraine: EU Wants To Adopt New Sanctions Against Russia” • EU foreign ministers will discuss tougher sanctions against Russia, as Moscow is accused of deploying launchers to fire missiles from the Zaporizhia nuclear power plant in the southern Ukraine. In particular, they will examine a proposal to ban gold purchases from Russia. [California18]

US:

¶ “Volvo Trucks Building An Electric Semi Charging Corridor” • Volvo is set to partner with Shell Recharge Solutions, Western Truck Center, TEC Equipment, and Affinity Truck Center to develop a medium- and heavy-duty electric vehicle charging network that connects several of California’s most important port cities and industrial centers. [CleanTechnica]

Truck charging (Volvo Trucks image)

¶ “Will Tesla Lower Prices If Inflation Falls? Elon Says Yes” • CEO Elon Musk said Tesla may be able to lower prices of its cars if inflation falls enough. Musk replied to a Tweet about pandemic and supply chain influences on Tesla car prices to a follower named Jaehwan Cho. “If inflation calms down, we can lower prices for cars,” Musk said. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Regional Investment Strategies Can Unlock Clean Energy Opportunities” • As Congress keeps debating investing in the US clean energy transition, RMI has released a report outlining how regional investment strategies can unlock emerging and growing clean energy opportunities for everything from offshore wind to EVs and green hydrogen. [CleanTechnica]

Wind turbines (Bastian Pudill, Unsplash)

¶ “Retailer Meijer Signs Renewable Purchase Deal With NextEra Energy” • Midwestern retailer Meijer signed a renewable power purchase agreement with NextEra Energy Resources to take the majority of energy generated by the Lacy Creek Wind Energy Center in Texas. The project will have 108 wind turbines and is to generate 800 GWh annually. [GreentechLead]

¶ “Georgia Power Critics Want Less Coal, More Renewables” • Georgia Power’s plan to meet the power needs of its customers would keep the utility on a path toward using less coal and more renewable energy. But environmental and consumer advocates are asking the Public Service Commission to require Georgia Power to do more. [The Rome News-Tribune]

Have a marvelously magnificent day.

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July 16 Energy News

July 16, 2022

Science and Technology:

¶ “This Supercharged Tree Might Help Fight Climate Change” • Trees draw down carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, but most trees grow much too slowly to be of much help with climate change. To reverse climate change, someone has to come up with a tree that grows much faster. A San Francisco company, Living Carbon, says it’s done exactly that. [CNN]

Seedling (Austin D, Unsplash)

World:

¶ “Thousands Escape Wildfires In France, Spain, And Greece” • Over 11,000 people have been forced to leave a region in south-western France in the past few days. Dozens of fires are burning in Portugal and Spain where temperatures have surged above 40°C. At least 281 deaths in both countries were linked to the heat and several towns in Spain were evacuated. [BBC]

¶ “Australia Is Grappling With Its Worst Ever Energy Crisis. Does Victoria Hold The Key To A Fix?” • At issue is whether Victoria will get on board with a proposed fix for a grid in crisis. A board serving as the top adviser to state and federal energy ministers proposes a policy to help keep the lights on during the transition, but it may mean burning some coal. [ABC]

NSW’s Snowy 2.0 (Supplied by Snowy Hydro)

¶ “Volkswagen Group Reaches 217,100 EV Sales In First Half Of 2022” • Sitting between Chinese EV startups XPeng and NIO and American EV powerhouse Tesla, Volkswagen Group made 217,100 full EV sales in the first half of 2022. NIO delivered 50,827 vehicles in that time period, XPeng delivered 68,983, and Tesla delivered 564,743. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “French Nuclear Cuts Extend To Next Week As Temperatures Soar” • EDF’s nuclear plant output cuts are expected to stretch into next week as a heat wave sweeping across Europe pushes up river temperatures, reducing its ability to cool its plants. EDF said that two power stations on the Rhone River will produce less electricity in the coming days. [Regina Leader Post]

Tricastin nuclear plant (Marianne Casamance, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “Russian Forces Accused Of Storing Weapons In Nuclear Plant” • Russia is using Europe’s largest nuclear power plant as a base to store weapons, including missile systems, and to shell nearby areas in Ukraine, an official with Kyiv’s nuclear agency said. The nuclear plant has been under Russian control since the early weeks of Moscow’s invasion. [The Guardian]

UK:

¶ “Hypothetical Weather Forecast For 2050 Is Coming True Next Week” • Two years ago, UK Met Office scientists tried a thought experiment to project what our forecasts will look like in 2050. “Not actual weather forecast,” they said. “Examples of plausible weather based on climate projections.” Well, on Monday and Tuesday, it’s here, 28 years early. [CNN]

Hot weather (Scott Goodwill, Unsplash)

¶ “National Emergency Declared After UK’s First Red Extreme Heat Warning” • A national emergency was declared after the first ever red extreme heat warning was issued. Temperatures could hit 40°C (104°F). The Met Office’s highest warning covers an area including London, Manchester, and York. This means a risk to life, and daily routines need to change. [BBC]

¶ “UK Power Market Needs Rapid Expansion Of Capacity” • The UK’s future power market must rapidly expand its generating capacity, including a maintaining an ongoing role for Contracts for Difference and Capacity Market mechanisms but with changes to ensure they remain fit for purpose, according to a report from Energy UK. [reNews]

Grid control room (National Grid image)

US:

¶ “Biden Vows To Use Executive Action After Manchin Torpedoes Climate Agenda” • After Senator Joe Manchin dealt a devastating blow to Democrats’ hopes for sweeping legislative action this year, President Joe Biden vowed to take “strong executive action” in response. The president aims toward writing broad climate action and tax legislation. [CNN]

¶ “Solectrac Partners With Nolan Manufacturing To Produce More Electric Tractors” • Solectrac, based in Northern California, makes battery-electric tractors for farming and utility operations. Solectrac announced it has entered into a partnership with Nolan Manufacturing to begin producing its battery-electric tractors in a facility in North Carolina. [CleanTechnica]

Solectrac tractor (Solectrac image)

¶ “June Was Tesla’s Best Production Month Yet, Despite Low Q2 Deliveries” • Tesla’s deliveries in Q2 were plagued by COVID-19 lockdowns that caused a 22-day production pause at its Shanghai Gigafactory. Nevertheless, Tesla’s new Gigafactories in Berlin and Texas are already showing their value, beginning with impressive production in June. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “GM And Pilot Company To Roll Out US EV Fast Charging Network” • GM and Pilot Company are collaborating on a US ‘coast to coast’ DC fast charging network that will be installed, operated and maintained by EVgo through its eXtend offering. The network of 2,000 charging stalls will be powered by EVgo eXtend and open to all EV brands. [Energy Digital]

EVgo charging station

¶ “Extreme Heat Is Getting Worse” • Duke Energy announced a summertime record for electric use in North Carolina and South Carolina on June 15, 2022. That was six days before summer started. With climate change, the number of annual heat waves in the US increasing from two per year in the 1960s to six per year during the 2010s. [NC State News]

¶ “As Massachusetts Lawmakers Consider Energy Bills, Power Suppliers Press To Continue Residential Retail Choice” • The end of the two-year legislative session is coming, and Massachusetts legislators are in conference over energy bills. A petition led by retail electricity suppliers in the state was circulated to support residential retail choice. [Utility Dive]

Have a uniformly unblemished day.

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July 15 Energy News

July 15, 2022

World:

¶ “Can Rocket Launches Ever Be Green?” • Environmental effects of commercial space launches are a growing concern. There were 144 commercial launches last year, and at least three scientific research papers have already been published this year on the impact of rocket emissions on the atmosphere, temperatures, and the ozone layer. [BBC]

SpaceX Falcon (SpaceX, Unsplash)

¶ “Satellites Give Clues About The Coming Global Harvest” • As harvest time looms for the world’s primary wheat producers, countries that import wheat hope for a bumper global crop so record high prices might fall. But analysis on the health of crops around the world suggests that’s unlikely, and that Russia could be the only big winner. [BBC]

¶ “Hyundai Ioniq 6 Rocks V2L Technology With 379 Mile Range WLTP” • The new battery-electric sedan from Hyundai has a range of 379 miles using the WLTP standard common in Europe, Hyundai says, though some estimates are slightly lower. Hyundai says the car only needs 14 kWh of electricity to go 100 km (22.5 kWh for 100 miles). [CleanTechnica]

Hyundai Ioniq 6 (Hyundai image)

¶ “Scatec JV Signs Green Ammonia Offtake Deal In Oman” • The Norwegian developer Scatec and ACME Group signed a term sheet with Yara for the offtake from the first phase of a green ammonia plant in Oman. Fully developed, it will have a second phase, and the project could produce up to 1.1 million tonnes of green ammonia annually. [reNews]

¶ “Renewables Generation Costs Fall In 2021” • In 2021, the global weighted average cost of new renewable projects fell despite rising materials and equipment costs, a report from IRENA said. The global levelized cost of electricity of onshore wind projects added in 2021 fell to 3.3¢/kWh, while that of solar fell to 4.8¢/kWh. [reNews]

Renewable energy (IRENA image)

¶ “Two-Thirds Of New Renewables Were Cheaper Than Coal In 2021” • In 2021, 163 GW – nearly two-thirds – of new renewable power added was cheaper than the cheapest coal-fired power plants in G20 countries, a report released by the International Renewable Energy Agency says. Costs for solar and windpower fell 13% to 15% in 2021. [Electrek]

¶ “Kishida Wants Up To Nine Nuclear Reactors Online This Winter” • To deal with concerns about electricity shortages this winter, Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said that he will push to have up to nine nuclear reactors in operation by then. Economy minister Koichi Hagiuda said that the highest priority will be put on safety. [The Japan Times]

¶ “Low French Nuclear Output Is Bad News For The UK” • The UK power system faces another winter like last year’s, when thin supply buffers resulted in surging electricity prices, according to Fintan Slye, director of National Grid ESO, the UK network operator. The potential problem is partly caused by low output from nuclear plants in France. [Oil Price]

US:

¶ “Renewable sources generate 25.5% Of US Electricity” • The amount of Electricity generated by renewable sources continues to grow month over month and year over year in the US. In April 2022, the share of US electricity coming from renewable energy was up to 29.3%. Over the first four months of 2022, renewables provided 25.5% of US electricity. [CleanTechnica]

Renewable energy (Pixabay, Pexels)

¶ “Republican Attorneys General Fight SEC Over Corporate Climate Disclosures” • The SEC announced plans in March to require companies to disclose their climate risks within their operations as they compile required documents. Attorneys general from 24 states call the plan “an ill-advised misadventure into environmental regulation.” [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Panasonic To Build $4 Billion Tesla Battery Factory In Kansas” • Kansas Governor Laura Kelly announced that a battery factory will be built De Soto, Kansas. It is expected to create 16,500 construction jobs and 4,000 permanent jobs in the community. It would be the largest economic development project in the history of Kansas. [CleanTechnica]

Tesla battery (Tesla image)

¶ “BLM Approves Construction Of Power Line From Arizona To California” • The US Bureau of Land Management authorized construction of a 125-mile-long transmission line across Arizona and Southern California. The transmission project is intended to carry electricity from renewable energy sources to customers in the two states. [E&E News]

¶ “Critics Push For Coal Ash Cleanup As State Panel Considers Georgia Power 12% Rate Hike” • State regulators are set to vote next week on Georgia Power’s long-term plan. Clean energy and environmental advocates say the plan fails to go far enough to expand renewable energy and falls short of responsibly closing coal-fired power plants. [Georgia Recorder]

Plant Scherer (Altamaha Riverkeeper image)

¶ “New York Power Plant To Be Repurposed For Renewable Energy Storage” • New York is taking a major step to achieve its climate ambitions. Long Island City’s infamous Ravenswood power plant, which is highly recognizable for its red and white smokestacks, was recently purchased by renewable energy giant, Rise Light & Power. [Green Matters]

¶ “Alaska’s Largest Coal Plant Closes, As Green Energy Takes Hold” • Healy Unit 2, Alaska’s largest coal plant, has been plagued by operational issues for five years. It needs costly repairs, and the board of the Golden Valley Electric Association voted to shut it down, invest in wind energy, and install pollution controls on Healy Unit 1. [Popular Science]

Have a fabulously peachy day.

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July 14 Energy News

July 14, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “The ‘Cheap Food’ Era Could Soon Be Over. Here’s What Comes Next” • Farmers across Ukraine will try to bring in their wheat harvests in the coming weeks. They may have landmines in their fields. Their crops be stolen by Russia. And their one Ukrainian port is being blockaded. It could be make-or-break for global food supplies. [CNN]

Harvest (James Baltz, Unsplash)

¶ “Supreme Court’s EPA Decision Is A Wake-Up Call. Congress Must Act Now” • The US Supreme Court’s ruling limiting the EPA’s authority to regulate greenhouse gas emissions is a wake-up call for Congress to pass urgent and meaningful legislation on climate and clean energy. We cannot allow climate action to remain a deeply entrenched political issue. [CNN]

World:

¶ “Heat Wave Threatens Power Shortages And Higher Pork Prices In China” • A scorching heat wave in China has forced a major manufacturing region to appeal to businesses and households to use less power, while fear of crop failure is sending pork prices soaring. Dozens of the country’s cities have been experiencing record-high temperatures. [CNN]

Beijing (zhang kaiyv, Unsplash)

¶ “VinFast Is On A Roll, Intends To Use Solid-State Batteries To Roll Faster” • VinFast/Vingroup has invested tens of millions of dollars into solid-state battery manufacturer ProLogium. They may set up a factory in Vietnam. They have not given a clear arrival date, so any hope for EVs powered by solid-state batteries has to be tempered. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “You Can Now Order A Volkswagen ID Buzz – UK Prices Out” • You can now order a Volkswagen ID Buzz in the UK. And, to put it simply, this 21st century “hippie bus” is not cheap. There are three trim levels. The low-end “Life,” starts at £57,115. The middle trim “Style” starts at £61,915. And the high-end “1st Edition” has a price starting at £62,995. [CleanTechnica]

Volkswagen ID Buzz (Courtesy of Volkswagen)

¶ “EU Lawmakers Stop Controversial Biofuels From Fueling Planes” • The European Parliament has barred some biofuel feedstocks from the EU’s aviation green fuel mandate, including intermediate crops and palm oil by-products. Transport & Environment called on the three main European institutions to ban animal fats also. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “RES Launches 58.8-MW Northern Ireland Bid” • RES has filed a planning application for the almost 59-MW Unshinagh wind farm in Northern Ireland. The 14-turbine proposal is expected to involve a £61 million investment. The wind farm would generate enough electricity to power 70,000 households while creating “skilled, sustainable jobs.” [reNews]

RES windfarm (RES image)

¶ “India Has Achieved Clean Energy Targets Before Deadline, Says RK Singh” • India has achieved clean energy targets nine years ahead of schedule Power Minister RK Singh said at the Sydney Energy Forum in Sydney, Australia. India has installed 162 GW of renewable energy capacity which is 41% of the 402 GW of electricity installed. [The Hindu]

¶ “Renewables Remain Cost-Competitive Amid Global Energy Crisis, Says IRENA” • Renewables are maintaining an extremely cost-competitive position with prices in the industry dropping last year, even as the energy market tackles a global fossil fuel crisis, according to a report by the International Renewable Energy Agency. [The National]

Renewable energy (Kervin Edward Lara, Pexels)

¶ “Tokyo Court Orders Ex-TEPCO Execs To Pay $95 Billion Damages Over Fukushima Disaster” • The Tokyo district court ordered four former executives of TEPCO to pay ¥13 trillion ($95 billion) in damages to the operator of the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant, the plaintiff’s lawyers said. The suit was brought by shareholders. [CNN]

US:

¶ “NREL OpenPATH Tool Enables Expanded E-Bike Pilot Program To Demonstrate Energy-Efficiency Benefits” • The transportation sector is one of the largest contributors to the nation’s carbon emissions. The fastest-growing form of EV made to help combat climate change, however, is not the electric car. It is the electric bike. [CleanTechnica]

E-bike on the road (David Marcu, Unsplash)

¶ “Mississippi Adopts New Solar Net Metering Rules” • The Mississippi Public Service Commission voted to adopt updated Net Metering and Interconnection Rules. The new rules expand the state’s net metering program by raising the participation cap for rooftop solar and prioritizing solar PVs for low-to-moderate income customers, among other things. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Walmart Orders 4500 Electric Delivery Vehicles From Canoo” • Walmart is locked in a titanic struggle with Amazon to survive in the fiercely competitive world of online retailing. To do that, it needs to find ways to reduce delivery costs. So it signed a deal with Canoo, the southern California EV startup, to buy 4500 of its battery-EV delivery vehicles. [CleanTechnica]

Canoo EV (Canoo image)

¶ “BLM Approves Start Of Construction Of Oberon Solar Project” • The Bureau of Land Management issued final approval for construction of the Oberon solar project on BLM-managed land in Riverside County, California. The Biden administration is seeking to permit at least 25 GW of renewable energy on public lands by 2025. [Bureau of Land Management]

¶ “Governor Lujan Grisham Statement On Nuclear Regulatory Commission Decision To Approve Holtec Project” • Gov Lujan Grisham issued a statement of strong objection after the NRC said it intends to issue a license to Holtec International to build and operate an interim nuclear waste storage facility in New Mexico. [Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham]

Have an admirably successful day.

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July 13 Energy News

July 13, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “EVs Provide Energy Security, Aid Energy Transitions During Conflicts” • Society has had to transition from and use backup energy sources multiple times. The problem can be caused by political conflicts, shortages caused by natural disasters, financial troubles, and environmental issues, and wars. EVs offer a degree of energy security. [CleanTechnica]

Tesla Model X charging (Tesla image)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Developing Nations Now Have A Scientific Basis For Legal Action Against Us, China For Climate Damages” • In a Dartmouth College study, researchers put dollar figures on economic harm caused by the countries most responsible for the climate crisis. The data could serve as a starting point for legal action against the world’s wealthiest nations. [CNN]

World:

¶ “Volvo Cars Withdraws From EU Automakers Organization” • The European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association formed in 1991 so European vehicle makers could have a common voice. Stellantis quit last month because it thinks the EU wants change too soon. Now Volvo Cars has quit because the EU’s plans are not aggressive enough. [CleanTechnica]

Volvo XC40 Recharge (George Sargiannidis, Unsplash)

¶ “80% Of New Offshore Wind Capacity In 2021 Was Installed By China” • Offshore wind had a great year in 2021, with over 21 GW installed. If you read CleanTechnica regularly, you may have heard of several offshore wind installations in the North Sea. But 17 GW of the 21 GW of offshore wind power, about 80% of the total, was installed in China. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Federal Government Puts Up $10 Million For Clean Energy Projects For Saskatchewan First Nations” • Five Indigenous-led initiatives have been given boosts by the federal government. Canada’s Minister of Natural Resources John Wilkinson has announced that $10 million would be dedicated to five projects in Saskatchewan. [CBC]

Solar array in Saskatchewan (computer_saskboyCC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “German Official: Nuclear Would Do Little To Solve The Gas Issue” • Germany’s vice chancellor defended the government’s commitment to ending the use of nuclear power at the end of this year, arguing that keeping its few remaining reactors running would be complex and do little to address the problems caused by a possible natural gas shortfall. [KSTP]

Australia:

¶ “Labor’s Renewables Target Is Ambitious But Achievable” • In Australia, renewable energy is set to speed up. To achieve its 82% target, Labor has to build renewables around five times faster than the past two decades, and build storage at about ten times the rate of the past five years. Energy economist Bruce Mountain offers a blueprint. [Michael West Media]

Wonthaggi wind turbines (Simon Yeo, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “Renewable Energy On The Rise As Household Energy Bills Soar” • Amid an energy crisis and rising inflation rates, trying to navigate your household energy bills can be daunting. And as Australia is on track to getting half its electricity from renewable resources, environmental experts will tell you that the best move is to switch to gas-free lifestyle. [News.com.au]

¶ “Queensland To Install Batteries At Coal Plants” • Queensland will install renewable energy components at coal-fired plants but remains ambiguous about future plans for fossil fuels. Energy Minister Mick De Brenni says that adding battery storage and hydrogen production facilities to power plant sites will be in the government’s 10-year energy plan. [Eden Magnet]

Gladstone power station (LBM1948, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

US:

¶ “More Than 200 Congressional Staffers Urge Pelosi And Schumer To Act On Climate” • In a rare move, more than 200 congressional staffers have sent a letter to Democratic leadership in the House and Senate, demanding they close the deal on a climate and clean energy package and warning that failure could doom younger generations. [CNN]

¶ “25,000 PG&E And Tesla Customers Invited To Form World’s Largest Distributed Battery To Support Grid Reliability” • Pacific Gas and Electric Company and Tesla launched a virtual power plant pilot to support grid reliability and save customers money. Tesla invited about 25,000 PG&E customers with Powerwalls to join the VPP. [CleanTechnica]

Tesla Powerwall (Tesla image, cropped)

¶ “Funding Notice: Community Geothermal Heating And Cooling Design And Deployment” • The US DOE announced a funding opportunity for Community Geothermal Heating and Cooling Design and Deployment. It will award some funding for projects that help communities design and deploy geothermal district heating and cooling systems. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Solar Sal Electric Boat Cruises All Day On Nothing But Sunshine” • The Solar Sal 24 electric boat can cruise all day on sunshine alone. Sure, it has batteries onboard that can be used to power the boat after dark, but by careful attention to the natural world, ten people can enjoy a day on the water and never burn a drop of fuel or stop to recharge. [CleanTechnica]

Solar Sal boat (Solar Sal image)

¶ “New York Officials Explore Large Scale Renewable Energy At Two Municipally Owned Sites” • Two municipally owned sites in New York may get renewable energy development. NYSERDA signed memorandums of understanding with Dannemora and Brookhaven to explore the feasibility of developing renewable energy projects. [Solar Builder]

¶ “False Alarm At Seabrook Nuclear Power Plant” • There was an accidental warning about an emergency at the Seabrook nuclear power plant on Tuesday morning. Reports of a problem at the plant and potential evacuations surfaced about 11 a.m. But the reports were unfounded, and multiple Seacoast first responders said it was a false alarm. [Yahoo News]

Have an unusually nice day.

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July 12 Energy News

July 12, 2022

Science and Technology:

¶ “High-Tech Hard Sails Transform Old Cargo Ships Into Racing Yachts” • Wind power is making a comeback on the high seas, and the global shipping industry beginning to be down for it. Rigid sails for cargo ships are still in the tryout phase, but that could change as Russia continues to pinch the global fuel supply and climate goals kick in. [CleanTechnica]

Rigid sails on a cargo ship (Photo via Cision PR Newswire)

¶ “Hydrogen Fuel Cell Truck Is Here To Help EV Batteries, Not Harm Them” • London-based EV maker Tevva has come up with a formula combining EV batteries and hydrogen fuel cells. The company’s newly launched battery-electric truck has a fuel cell range extender to get it through the working day with maximum efficiency and lowest cost. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ “India Will Overtake China In 2023, Says The UN” • India is set to be the world’s most populous country next year, overtaking China with its 1.4 billion people, according to UN figures. By this November, the planet will be home to 8 billion. But population growth is now at its slowest rate since 1950 and may peak by the 2080s, at about 10.4 billion. [BBC]

Street in India (Vishal Bhutani, Unsplash)

¶ “Persistent Expands Its Electric Mobility Venture Building To West Africa, Partners With SolarTaxi” • Persistent believes in the power of carbon-neutral economic development in Africa. It is a leading expert and pioneer investor in the renewable sector on the African continent. It announced that it has invested in the Ghanaian company SolarTaxi. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Catholic Groups Oppose EU Vote To Designate Gas And Nuclear Energy As ‘Green'” • Catholic organizations in Europe denounced a move by European Union lawmakers to designate gas and nuclear energy as “green” options for sustainable investing as part of the 27-nation bloc’s efforts to combat climate change. [National Catholic Reporter]

Cooling towers at a nuclear plant (Jiří Sedláček, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

Australia:

¶ “Most Of South Australia’s Energy Via Renewables: Report” • South Australia got almost 70% of its electricity from renewables in the last financial year, data shows. The Open National Energy Market Report also shows that SA’s solar and wind resources can sometimes generate more than the state needs. On November 27, it provided 150%. [The New Daily]

¶ “Australia’s Most Affordable Energy Generation Is Renewable, Says CSIRO, AEMO” • Wind and solar have been reported by Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation and the Australian Energy Market Operator to be Australia’s most cost-efficient and affordable energy generation and storage options. [Utility Magazine]

Windy Hill Wind Farm (Leonard Low, CC-BY 2.0)

¶ “‘Step Change’: $12 Billion Plan For New Electricity Grid” • In the 2022 Integrated System Plan, released on 30 June, AEMO says $12.7 billion investment in electricity transmission projects will be needed to accommodate the rapid change. But overall savings elsewhere will deliver net benefits that far outweigh the initial costs. [Australian Renewable Energy Agency]

¶ “Australia ‘On Track’ To Generate Half Its Electricity From Renewable Sources By 2025, Report Finds” • Australia is on track to meet half its electricity needs from renewable sources within three years, according to a report from the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering. The changes are coming at an extraordinary pace. [ABC]

PV plant in the ACT (Grahamec, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

US:

¶ “Extreme Temperatures Will Challenge The Texas Power Grid This Week” • Summer is always hot in Texas, but this is hotter than hot – it’s a record-breaking, sizzling hot, sweaty summer. The high temperature in Dallas has topped 100°F every day since July 3, and the heat is continuing. The electric grid is being challenged. [CNN]

¶ “It’s Time For Clean Truck Rules In Illinois” • By adopting two clean truck regulations, Illinois could generate net societal benefits of roughly $26 billion through 2050. So says an analysis by the Environmental Resources Management Group evaluating the impact of the Advanced Clean Trucks and Heavy-Duty Omnibus rules on Illinois. [CleanTechnica]

Mack Trucks electric garbage truck (Courtesy of Mack Trucks)

¶ “Indiana Government Stops Solar Net Metering, Costs Voters Thousands!” • Thanks to lobbying by the oil industry and utilities, anyone who wants to install rooftop solar systems in Indiana’s investor-owned utility areas will no longer be able to sell power back to the grid for what they’d pay for it. It’s all about slowing the growth of solar power. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Utah’s Great Salt Lake Is Still Drying Up” • Salt Lake gets less Great all the time. If things don’t change soon enough, the most populated part of the state will face toxic dust clouds and a loss of lake effect snows, which will dry the place out even more. Scientific groups have warned the state about water issues, but change has not come. [CleanTechnica]

Great salt lake (Patrick Hendry, Unsplash)

¶ “Ford Tells 200,000 SUV Owners To Park Outside” • Ford is telling owners of some of its most popular, current, fossil-fuel-powered SUVs to park their vehicles outside after a series of engine fires that took place even when the ignition switches were off. It is one of two recalls for internal combustion engine fires, totaling 206,000 cars. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Renewable Sources Powered 88.5% Of MidAmerican Iowa Customers’ Energy In 2021” • MidAmerican Energy provided 88.5% of customers’ annual power needs from renewable energy last year, the Iowa Utilities Board has verified. That is five percentage points higher than 2020, according to a news release from the utility. [The Des Moines Register]

Have a relaxingly noteworthy day.

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July 11 Energy News

July 11, 2022

Science and Technology:

¶ “Converting Mines Into Hydro-Powered Batteries” • A group of researchers at Michigan Technological University argues that a fully renewable energy grid could be achieved if mines in the US are converted into hydro-powered batteries. Such mines could clear the path for the “most ambitious” renewable energy goals in much of the country. [CleanTechnica]

Converted mine (Michigan Technological University)

¶ “Solid-State Battery Race Just Got Hotter With New VinFast-ProLogium Mashup” • Not too long ago, solid-state battery technology was lingering in the lab like a lonely ghost. Now, Vietnamese electric vehicle startup VinFast has big plans for high performance EVs through a newly announced partnership with the battery maker ProLogium. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “China’s Wind Farms Have A Role In Its Renewable Energy Future. Can They Also Ease Effects Of Dust Storms?” • In spring, northwest winds carry large amounts of sand from the Gobi Desert, covering China’s north with yellow dust and sand. The Great Green Wall was created to mitigate this. Some believe wind farms can help also. [South China Morning Post]

Gobi Desert in Inner Mongolia (User: me, CC-BY-SA 2.5)

World:

¶ “Tesla Leads June EV Sales Surge In China” • China’s wholesale sales of new energy passenger vehicles reached 571,000 units in June, surpassing last December’s 505,000 units, data released by the China Passenger Car Association showed. The vast majority of the sales were battery EVs, with wholesale sales of 452,000, or 79% of the plugin pie. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Glencore Places Order For Battery-Powered Mining Vehicles” • Glencore is one of the world’s largest mining and raw materials companies. Its Sudbury Integrated Nickel Operations division recently placed an order with Sweden’s Epiroc for a full fleet of battery-electric mining equipment for use at the Onaping Depth Project in Ontario. [CleanTechnica]

Epiroc electric loader (Courtesy of Epiroc)

¶ “NIO Announces 500 KW EV Charger And 3rd Generation Battery Swap Technology” • The race is on in China to offer the fastest possible EV charging. XPeng and GAC Aion say they have 480-kW chargers coming, but NIO announced that it will have 500-kW, 640-amp chargers in operation by the end of this year in both China and Europe. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “VSB To Sell 190-MW Wind Double To Finnish Utility” • VSB Group is to sell the 150-MW Karahka and 40-MW Juurakko wind farms in Finland to national utility Helen. The transaction will increase both Finland’s energy security and local generation of emission-free electricity, said VSB. The Juurakko wind farm will be completed by the end of 2022. [reNews]

Wind farm construction (VSB image)

¶ “Scatec And Partners Begin Building Solar Facility In Brazil” • Norwegian renewable energy company Scatec and its partners started construction at the 531-MW Mendubim solar project in Rio Grande do Norte, Brazil. They have signed a 20-year power purchase agreement with alumina supplier Alunorte, to be paid in US dollars. [Power Technology]

¶ “Solar21 Submits Application For £3 Billion Energy Park” • A £3 billion renewable energy project backed by Irish company Solar21 has been accepted for examination by the UK’s national planning body. Solar21 anticipates that some 760,000 tonnes of waste will be diverted from landfill each year, and it will then be converted into energy at the site. [The Irish Times]

Computer image of proposed waste-to-energy plant (Solar21)

¶ “Renewable Energy The Cheaper Option For Australia” • A report by the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation shows that renewable energy options remain the cheapest new-build electricity generation option in Australia, although inflation and supply chain disruptions will likely put cost reductions on hold for a while. [Mining Weekly]

¶ “Slow, Expensive And No Good For 1.5° Target: CSIRO Crushes Coalition Nuclear Fantasy” • Australia’s leading scientific research organisation, the CSIRO, has delivered a damming blow against the renewed push by the federal Coalition for nuclear power, saying it is expensive and too slow for a significant contribution to any serious climate targets. [Renew Economy]

Nuclear power plant in France (Stefan Kühn, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “UK Energy Minister’s Nuclear Plants Plea Rejected By Scottish Government” • The Scottish Government has rejected UK Energy Minister Greg Hands plea to “rethink” its stance on new nuclear power stations in Scotland. The Scottish Greens said the minister’s plea shows that the Tories “cannot be trusted with the environment.” [The National]

US:

¶ “Property Owners And Officials Find Ways Around Some Century-Old Laws As The West Runs Out Of Water” • With a megadrought draining water reserves in the West, states are looking for alternatives to handle water rights, many of which were set more than 100 years ago when water supplies were far more abundant. [CNN]

Cattle country (K Mitch Hodge, Unsplash)

¶ “Maine Energy: How One Hydropower Project Sparked A $100 Million ‘Hoohah'” • New England Clean Energy Connect was supposed bring 1,200 MW of clean electricity from Canada to Massachusetts, but Maine voters rejected it. The legality of that has been put into question, and Maine’s Supreme Court could rule on the matter any day. [BBC]

¶ “Yosemite’s Giant Sequoias: Wildfire Threatens World’s Largest Trees” • A California wildfire is threatening the largest grove of giant sequoias in Yosemite National Park. The Washburn Fire has doubled in size over the past 24 hours. Firefighters are working in difficult terrain to protect some of the largest and oldest redwood trees in the world. [BBC]

Have a wonderfully fulfilling day.

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July 10 Energy News

July 10, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “How Inflation Could Be Cut By FERC And Renewable Energy Doubled” • Inflation is one of the chief financial challenges in America. A solution lies in plain sight, because technologies like wind and solar power can help stabilize domestic energy prices and prevent future price spikes due to over-reliance on volatile international fuel markets. [CleanTechnica]

NREL Flatirons Campus (Werner Slocum, NREL)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Using Microorganisms To Separate And Purify Rare-Earth Elements” • Using naturally occurring and engineered proteins and bacteria, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory scientists and their collaborators will leverage advances in microbial and biomolecular engineering to separate and purify rare-earth elements from domestic sources. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “The Sustainable Cities Made From Mud” • Mud buildings are remarkably good at keeping us cool in summer and warm in winter, and withstanding extreme weather. In the search for more sustainable buildings, architects are returning to the age-old construction material. Mud could be the perfect sustainable alternative to concrete. [BBC]

Rammed earth buildings in Yemen (LBM1948, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “MIT Scientists Think They Have Discovered How To Fully Reverse Climate Change” • Scientists at MIT think they may have finally found a way to reverse climate change. Or, at the least, help ease it some. The idea is to create a raft-like structure out of bubbles in space to act as a shield to reduce harm caused by the solar radiation. [BGR]

¶ “Electric Vehicle Battery Supply Chains 101” • EV sales are taking off in major markets around the world. With increasing demand for EVs comes increasing demand for batteries. We have to build sustainable battery supply chains and ensure they limit environmental and human health harms. Here, we look at the problems and the options. [CleanTechnica]

Blue Arc chassis with Proterra battery system (Proterra image)

World:

¶ “Oxford, Fastned, Tesla, Wenea, And Pivot Power Commission Europe’s Most Powerful EV Charging Hub” • The charging capacity at Energy Superhub Oxford is greater than at any other charging station in Europe, the team behind the project says. Eventually, 400 electric cars could charge at the new Energy Superhub Oxford at one time. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Evolito Buys Aerospace Battery Company Electroflight” • In the electric aviation arena, electric propulsion company Evolito has acquired aerospace battery company Electroflight. The two companies have collaborated in the past to make electric drive trains for aircraft. One of their products was used by Rolls-Royce to set an air speed record. [CleanTechnica]

Evolito motor system (Evolito image)

¶ “Carbon Capture And Storage Tech Too Risky” • There is a lack of quality data to show that carbon capture is commercially ready and cost competitive, says a report from the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis. Instead, the world should prioritize renewable energy, grid modernization, and electrification. [South China Morning Post]

¶ “Morocco, A Top Fertilizer Producer, Could Hold A Key To The World’s Food Supply” • Morocco is one of the world’s top four fertilizer exporters, following Russia, China and Canada. This is because it has over 70% of the world’s phosphate rock reserves. A key to increasing the output of fertilizer is increasing the supply of renewable energy. [The Conversation]

Moroccan desert (Taryn Elliott, Pexels)

¶ “Shell, EPI Support Philippine Energy Plan” • Shell Overseas Investments BV declared it has established a joint venture with Emerging Power Inc to support the Department of Energy’s latest Philippine Energy Plan. The joint venture’s goal aims to contribute 1 GW to the country’s power systems by 2028 using alternative energy sources. [The Manila Times]

¶ “Porsche-Backed HIF Global Wants To Build An E-Fuel Plant In North-West Tasmania” • Porsche-backed HIF Global has lodged plans with Tasmania’s Environment Protection Authority to build Australia’s first commercial e-fuel facility. Porsche plans for 80% of its cars to be electric by the end of the decade, but is working on synthetic fuel for the others. [ABC]

Burnie, Tasmania (Gary Houston, public domain)

¶ “EDF Nationalisation Means It Is Unlikely To Spearhead Future UK Nuclear Power Projects, Says Top Industry Insider” • The nationalization of French energy giant EDF means it is unlikely to spearhead future UK nuclear power plants, an industry insider said. The Hinkley Point C developer will instead put investments into reactors in France. [This is Money]

US:

¶ “Biden Administration Takes Key Step In Controversial Alaska Oil Drilling Project, Angering Environmental Groups” • The US Department of Interior released a draft environmental impact statement for the ConocoPhillips oil drilling project, known as Willow. The statement is not a final decision, but is an important step toward developing oil wells. [CNN]

National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska (US BLM, public domain)

¶ “Grid Operator: Renewable Energy Likely To Supplant Fossil Fuels As New England’s Predominant Source For Electricity” • A report released by the operator of New England’s electric grid said the generation of renewable energy will ultimately replace the burning of fossil fuels as primary source of electricity to meet customer demand. [CT Insider]

¶ “Seeing More Big Fish? Climate Change Might Be Responsible” • People are seeing bigger fish in places, but NOAA’s director of scientific programs Francisco Werner told the Washington Post that fish “aren’t growing larger, they are relocating to new environments.” They are moving out of bodies of water that are too warm because of climate change. [InsideHook]

Have a punctiliously developing day.

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July 9 Energy News

July 9, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “Is Nuclear Sustainable? Read The Label” • The EU decided that nuclear is sustainable, but it’s getting some major pushback from scientists, sustainable investor groups, and the finance advisers of the European Commission itself. They argue the rules will divert money from truly green projects to prop up legacy industries and allow emissions to rise further. [Politico]

Nuclear plant (Petar Avramoski, Pexels)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Carbonfuture Announces Catalyst For Carbon Removal, Partnering With Heimdal, Lithos, Ucaneo” • Carbonfuture has launched a program called Catalyst, partnering with upcoming carbon removal companies for no-strings-attached carbon credit pre-purchases and methodology support. Three companies have joined the program. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Could Iron-Based Catalysts Make Fuel Cells Viable?” • The main factor holding back use of fuel cells is cost. Most catalysts that are used to make electricity from hydrogen are based on precious metals. Researches at the University of Buffalo report they have created an iron-based catalyst that could significantly reduce the cost of fuel cells. [CleanTechnica]

Fueling a car (Alternative Fuels Data Center, US DOE)

World:

¶ “Tesla Pausing Production At Giga Berlin And Shanghai To Upgrade Assembly Lines” • Even with the new Gigafactories in Berlin and Shanghai, Tesla is working to expand production. The company plans to take costly production breaks to upgrade both plants over the next month or so, so it can increase production capacities significantly. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Lloyd’s Register Gets Behind Wind Power For Cargo Ships” • Lloyd’s Register is old enough to see wind power come, go, and come back again. The firm has put its seal of approval on a type of sail that will help cargo ships meet the goals of a key index of the International Maritime Organization for energy efficiency and carbon emissions. [CleanTechnica]

Wind-powered ship (Courtesy of Anemoi Marine)

¶ “Microsoft’s Dublin Datacenter To Help Take Pressure Off Ireland’s Renewable Energy” • Later this year, Microsoft is to deploy its “grid-interactive UPS technology” at its datacenter in Dublin to demonstrate how such technology may be used to help decarbonize power grids. It will work with power management specialist Eaton on the project. [TheRegister]

UK:

¶ “Iberdrola Prepares Sixteen Renewable Energy Projects for Development” • The Iberdrola group is developing sixteen new renewable projects in the UK after obtaining Contracts for Difference with the UK government that ensure their financial viability. The sixteen projects will have a combined capacity of 2,122 MW. [North American Windpower]

Wind turbines (Efe Kurnaz, Unsplash)

¶ “Strong Tides Along UK Coast Could Create Electricity For Less Than Cost Of Nuclear Power” • The tides along Britain’s west coast could produce huge amounts of clean electricity for less cost than nuclear, Sky News was told. The tides are only second to Canada’s, peaking in the Bristol Channel, off the coast of north Wales, and off northwest England. [Sky News]

¶ “UK Government Delays Sizewell C Decision” • In a written statement to the House of Commons, Business Minister Paul Scully said that Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng’s decision on the Sizewell C nuclear power plant would be given by 20 July. The decision had been scheduled for July 9. [World Nuclear News]

Sizewell B reactor dome (Dave Croker, CC BY-SA 2.0)

US:

¶ “Biden-Harris Administration Takes Drive Forward To Combat Climate Change” • To combat climate change and bring down costs for families, the Department of Transportation’s Federal Highway Administration announced a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking for states and municipalities to track and reduce GHG emissions. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Ford’s June Sales Numbers Impress Again” • Ford is doing some really impressive things with EV sales in new categories with slim competition. Overall EV sales for June are up, totaling 4,353 units. That is 76.6% more than they sold last year at this time. So Ford is making progress on EVs and is doing better than they’ve ever done. [CleanTechnica]

Ford electric van (Ford image)

¶ “Rivian Says It Is On Track To Deliver 25,000 Vehicles This Year” • Rivian is enduring “production hell,” the period most manufacturers face after they get new production lines set up. Rivian remains undaunted, however, telling the media this week it plans to deliver a total of 25,000 battery EVs to customers by the end of this year. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “SCOTUS EPA Ruling Will Not Stop Plans For Public Power Decarbonization” • The recent ruling by the Supreme Court that limits the EPA’s authority to cap greenhouse gas emissions will not materially affect public power utilities’ credit quality or the move away from fossil fuels, Fitch Ratings says. Any benefits for fossil fuels should be short lived. [Fitch Ratings]

Solar panels (Karsten Würth, Unsplash)

¶ “McCain’s Will Use 100% Renewable Energy By 2030” • Global potato processor McCain Foods is constructing five solar facilities in Aroostook County, Maine, that they say will power half of one of their largest plants. McCain’s has committed to using 100% renewable electricity by 2030, according to a spokesman for the company. [Bangor Daily News]

¶ “Power Distributor Shares Concerns Over Grid Reliability With Kentucky Lawmakers” • One of the country’s largest electricity transmission operators, the Midcontinent Independent System Operator, warned Kentucky lawmakers that coal-fired power plants are retiring faster than new renewable energy is coming online to replace it. [WFPL]

Have a happily composed day.

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July 8 Energy News

July 8, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “Four Ways Governments Can Encourage Businesses To Meaningfully Lower Their Carbon Emissions” • If we hope to limit global warming to 1.5°C, greenhouse gas emissions must peak before 2025 and decline 43% by 2030, the UNIPCC says. Governments cannot achieve that by themselves. Here are ways to encourage businesses to help. [CNN]

Emissions (Chris LeBoutillier, Unsplash)

¶ “Five Reasons To Switch To Renewable Energy No Matter What Your Current Plans Are” • Even though it can be scary to think about leaving what feels like a familiar space, you should switch to renewable energy. Here are five main reasons why switching to renewable energy is something you must do, regardless of your current thinking patterns. [Energy Industry Review]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Ozone Depletion Over North Pole Causes Weather Anomaly” • Many people know that ozone depletion can lead to excessive UV radiation. Swiss scientists showed that the depletion of ozone over the Arctic in spring causes abnormal weather throughout the northern hemisphere, with many places warmer than usual and either too dry or too wet. [CleanTechnica]

Atmosphere (NASA image)

¶ “Seaweed Diet Cuts Cow Methane Emissions 90% To 95%” • A seaweed, asparagopsis, can cut the methane emissions of cows by up to 95%, and authorities have approved it as a feed additive. CH4, a global company based in South Australia, announced that it made the first global sale of asparagopsis to CirPro, a South Australian meat processor. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ “Honda Offers Cooler Limited Edition Version Of Cool, Limited Electric City Car” • It was clear from the beginning: The Honda e (that’s the name) is a super cool, cute, fun little electric car … that will never see a large number of sales. Now, Honda is offering an even cooler, even more limited-production version, the Honda e Limited Edition. [CleanTechnica]

Honda e (Honda image)

¶ “Ford Factory In Craiova Going Electric” • Ford has gotten much more serious about going electric in the past few years, and that is more evident in Europe this week as Ford Otosan takes over the Craiova Manufacturing Plant in Romania and aims to invest half a billion dollars into it to bring it into the bright clean electric future. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Minesto Delivers Tidal Power In The Faroe Islands” • Marine energy developer Minesto commissioned the first 100-kW unit of its Dragon 4 tidal power plant in grid-connected operation in Vestmannasund, Faroe Islands. According to Minesto, first phase of electricity generation shows that predicted performance is achieved. [reNews]

Minesto tidal power (Minesto image)

¶ “Tata Power Plans To Invest $9.5 Billion In Clean Energy Push” • Tata Power Co said it will invest more than ₹750 billion ($9.5 billion) in renewables over the next five years, as it aims to almost double the share of clean energy in its portfolio. The company will also expand into new areas such as solar irrigation pumps and EV charging. [The Edge Markets]

¶ “Price Of Offshore Wind Power Falls To Cheapest Ever Level In UK” • The price of offshore wind power in the UK has fallen to an all-time low, which could ease the pressure on future household energy bills. Offshore windfarm operators will sell power for as little as £37.35/MWh ($45.02/MWh), 5.8% below the lowest bid in the most recent auction in 2019. [The Guardian]

Wind turbine (Expect Best, Pexels)

Germany:

¶ “Germany Plugin EV Share Grows, Fiat 500e Bestseller, And Grim Warnings” • Europe’s largest auto market, Germany, saw plugin EVs take 26.0% market share in June, up from 23.6% year-over-year. Overall auto volumes were down 18% YOY, to 224,558 units, the second lowest June in 25 years. At least one projection of problems to come is noted. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Volkswagen Starts Construction On First Of Six Battery Factories” • Volkswagen Group is pushing forward aggressively into the electric car future. It has committed to an investment of $20 billion between now and 2030 to create a new company called PowerCo. This week, it broke ground on the first of six new European battery factories. [CleanTechnica]

Volkswagen battery factory in Salzgitter (Volkswagen image)

¶ “Germany Approves Largest Renewable Energy Expansion Plan In History” • In a bid to reduce dependence on fossil fuels and reach climate targets, Germany approved what is seen as the largest renewable energy expansion in its history, with the legal package passing the parliament. The plan is for 80% renewable electricity by 2030. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

US:

¶ “Wind And Solar Produce More Electricity Than Nuclear For The First Time In The US” • In April, for the first time, wind and solar produced 17.96% of the US electricity. They generated more electricity than the US nuclear power plants. Renewable sources generated nearly 30% of US electricity, according to the SUN DAY Campaign. [Electrek]

Solar array (American Public Power Association, Unsplash)

¶ “I Want My Child To Grow Up To Be A Doctor, Lawyer – Or Environmental Economist!” • Did your high school guidance counselor ever tell you that you could become an environmental economist? How about a biomass plant technician? Or a wind energy operations manager? Today, those are a few of the green jobs that pay really well. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “DSD Completes 6.8-MW Community Solar Portfolio For The City of White Plains, New York” • DSD Renewables and The City of White Plains completed construction of a nine-site, 6.8-MW community solar portfolio. It is the largest municipal solar PV deployment in Westchester County, New York and will power about 700 homes. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

Have an unreservedly happy day.

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July 7 Energy News

July 7, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “Big Hike In Natural Gas Prices Will Accelerate Change In Utility Industry” • The economics of providing electricity to consumers using wind and solar has changed in the last year with soaring natural gas prices. The cost of natural gas generation has been increased by inflation to a much greater degree than the cost of solar and wind. [CleanTechnica]

Please click on the image to enlarge it.

World:

¶ “European Parliament Says Natural Gas Projects Can Be Considered ‘Green’ For Investments” • EU lawmakers voted in favor of calling natural gas and nuclear power “sustainable” or “green” sources of energy, backing a proposal from European Commission, the EU’s executive arm, that has spurred criticism from scientists and environmentalists. [CNN]

¶ “Fossil Gas Labelled Green In ‘Biggest Act Of Greenwashing In History'” • The European Parliament voted by 328 to 278 in favor of the EU Commission’s proposal to label gas as “green” in the EU’s taxonomy of sustainable investments. The vote is a disaster for the climate and a gift to Putin, according to Transport & Environment. [CleanTechnica]

Ursula von der Leyen (Courtesy of the Government of Finland)

¶ “Sri Lanka President Asks Russia’s Vladimir Putin For Help To Buy Fuel” • Sri Lanka’s president says he has asked Russia’s Vladimir Putin to help his cash-strapped nation import fuel, as it faces its worst economic crisis since independence from Britain in 1948. Gotabaya Rajapaksa said he “had a very productive” discussion with Mr Putin. [BBC]

¶ “Europe Wants A High-Speed Rail Network To Replace Airplanes” • A network of modern, super-fast and comfortable trains could run between every major city in the EU, as a reliable, comfortable and sustainable alternative to air travel. That was the vision outlined by rail industry leaders in Lyon, as they seek big increases in numbers of passengers. [CNN]

High speed train (Winston Chen, Unsplash)

¶ “Dutch BEV Market Up 82%, Fossil Fuel Vehicles Down 16%” • The Dutch battery electric vehicle market is slowly recovering. It is up 82% in the first half of 2022 compared to the first half of 2021, thanks to 29,428 registrations. At the same time, the internal combustion engine vehicle market is down 16% to 124,280 registrations. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Hexicon Secures First Ever CfD For UK Floating Wind” • Hexicon’s 32-MW TwinHub has become the first ever floating wind project to land a Contract for Difference in the UK, securing a strike price of £87.30/MWh in the latest auction round. The project involves two turbines built on a single foundation off the coast of Cornwall. [reNews]

Hexicon’s 32-MW TwinHub floater (Hexicon image)

¶ “Biggest Renewables Auction Accelerates Move Away From Fossil Fuels” • The UK’s fourth round of Contracts for Difference scheme secures almost 11 GW of clean energy, enough to power around 12 million homes. The per unit (MWh) price of offshore wind secured in this round is almost 70% less than that of the first allocation round, in 2015. [GOV.UK]

¶ “France Seeks To Nationalize Nuclear Giant EDF To Ride Out Energy Crisis” • The French government intends to nationalize its financially-struggling nuclear giant Electricite de France to help it ride out Europe’s worst energy crisis in a generation. EDF, already 84% state-owned, has been trying to deal with high costs of nuclear energy for years. [Energy Voice]

Hinkley Point C nuclear power station (EDF image)

US:

¶ “FCC Approves Starlink For Planes, Ships, And Trucks” • The US Federal Communications Commission recently authorized SpaceX to use the Starlink satellite internet network with moving vehicles, a move that will give impetus to the company’s plan to expand broadband offerings to commercial airlines, ships, and trucks, though not yet cars. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Hydropower: Retrofitting Untapped Dams” • Although the US has more than 92,000 dams, 89,000 do not generate electricity through hydropower. Researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory are assessing the viability of retrofitting some of these non-powered dams. They may add up to 12 GW more electricity to the grid. [CleanTechnica]

Non-power dam in Tennessee (Scott DeNeale, ORNL, US DOE)

¶ “Electricity Grid Operator Expecting More Demand And Renewables In New England” • New England’s electricity grid is in for major changes, according to a yearly report from ISO New England, which manages the region’s grid. Decarbonization will become the way of life in New England, with transportation and heating becoming electrified. [NHPR]

¶ “Grand Canyon National Park Is Now More E-Bike Friendly” • In late 2020, the US government ordered public land managers such as the Bureau of Land Management, US Forest Service, and National Park Service to expand recreational offerings for people riding e-bikes. Now, Grand Canyon National Park has announced changes to e-bike access policy. [CleanTechnica]

Grand Canyon (Gabriel Tovar, Unsplash)

¶ “Update: Offshore Wind Bill Signed Into Law By Rhode Island Governor” • A law signed by Rhode Island Gov Daniel McKee says that PPL Corp, which operates Rhode Island Energy, will be required to buy up to 1,000 MW of offshore wind power. Rhode Island has enough offshore wind potential to meet the state’s needs eight times over. [Environment America]

¶ “State Requests Input On Vermont’s Renewable Electricity Programs” • The Public Service Department announced the start of a comprehensive review of Vermont’s clean electricity policies and programs. The Department is issuing a Request for Input to solicit feedback about Vermonters opinions on the state’s supply of electricity. [Bennington Banner]

Have a powerfully uplifting day.

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