Posts Tagged ‘wind power’

May 28 Energy News

May 28, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “A Year After The Shell Ruling: Big Victories And Next Steps For Climate Litigation” • A year has passed since a precedent-setting court ruling in the Netherlands ordered Shell to cut its activities’ carbon emissions by 45% compared to 2019 levels to align with the Paris climate agreement. Since then, other climate litigation has followed and more is to come. [CleanTechnica]

Tesla Model S charging up at a Shell gas station (Shell image)

¶ “Electric Trucks Are Viable Today” • Many people think that electric trucks can’t do the job – they won’t have a long enough driving range, they will be too heavy, truckers won’t like them. But that couldn’t be farther from the truth. RMI Principal Dave Mullaney said that electric trucks could effectively replace up to half of all trucks in use today. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ “G7 Commits To Decarbonizing Electricity By 2035 But Leaves Wiggle Room For Fossil Fuels” • The G7, which represents the world’s seven biggest advanced economies, agreed to achieve “predominantly decarbonized” electricity sectors by 2035, a goal that experts say is of major importance to help the world avert catastrophic climate change. [CNN]

Power plant emissions (Marcin Jozwiak, Unsplash)

¶ “Dutch BEV Sales Up 98%, Tailpipe Vehicles Down 19% In April 2022” • The Dutch battery EV market continued its recovery in April as it started to do in Q1, up from weak performance in 2021. The sales nearly doubled to 4,717 battery EVs, and market share increased from 10% to 21.4%, YOY. Sales of vehicles with tailpipes were 19% lower. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Shark Lake Renewables Hub Cuts Esperance Emissions By 50%” • The green new deal announced for Esperance, Western Australia, took a big step forward when Horizon Power and Pacific Energy were joined by WA Premier Mark McGowan and Minister for Energy Bill Johnston to formally open the Shark Lake Renewables Hub. [pv magazine Australia]

Shark Lake Renewables Hub (Horizon Power image)

¶ “Renewable Energy Underpins Boost In Moroccan Electricity Production” • Morocco’s local electricity production grew by 4.1% in the first quarter of 2022. Data from the Treasury and External Finance shows a 19.9% increase in renewable energy production and an increase of 34.4% in electricity production by the National Electricity Office. [Morocco World News]

¶ “UK Developer Signs 500-MW Deal In Chad” • UK company Savannah Energy has signed an agreement with the Ministry of Petroleum and Energy of Chad to develop up to 500 MW of renewable energy projects in the North African country. The first project is a solar farm of up to 300 MW with a battery energy storage system. It will be in Kome. [reNews]

Signing the deal in Chad (Savannah Energy image)

¶ “Economically Distressed Turkey Abandons Plans To Buy Shares In Nuclear Plant Built By Russia” • Turkey will not be a shareholder in the Akkuyu nuclear plant under construction by Russia in southern Turkey, Nordic Monitor learned. Lawmakers were told that being a partner in the $20 billion nuclear power plant is not on their agenda. [Nordic Monitor]

¶ “Ukraine Nuclear Inspectorate Accuses IAEA Of Falling For Russian Propaganda” • The Ukrainian state nuclear inspectorate accused the International Atomic Energy Agency of falling for Russian propaganda that said Ukraine was building nuclear weapons. Ukraine demanded it back efforts to expel Russian forces from a major power plant. [Reuters]

Russians in Czechia protest the war (AlexVolter, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

US:

¶ “Massachusetts Court Rules Suit Against Exxon Can Move Forward” • The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court has ruled against Exxon in its bid to stop a suit filed by Attorney General Maura Healey from going to trial. Massachusetts alleges that Exxon lied about the climate crisis and covered up the fossil fuel industry’s role in it. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “What Are Geophones?” • Geothermal energy is renewable, sustainable, and carbon free. A key factor to unlocking that energy could be through innovation in subsurface seismic sensors, or geophones. The DOE is offering the $3.65 million American-Made Geothermal Geophone Prize to support developmetn of geophones. [CleanTechnica]

Pipeline at a Nevada geothermal plant (BLMNevada, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “Parks Reserve Forces Training Area Increases Renewable Energy: Solar Array Ribbon Cutting Ceremony” • PRFTA is one step closer to uninterrupted access to electricity. On May 24, the Army Reserve-funded installation held a ribbon-cutting to celebrate the addition of 2 MW of renewable energy through a newly activated solar array. [DVIDS]

¶ “Entergy Mississippi To Bring Sunflower Solar Station Online” • Construction is complete on a 100-MW solar power station in the Mississippi Delta, providing energy to Entergy Mississippi’s 461,000 customers. The Sunflower Solar Station is the largest solar project in Mississippi and provides enough energy to power 16,000 homes. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

Sunflower Solar Station (Entergy Mississippi image)

¶ “Plugging Into Offshore Wind Will Power Up California’s Renewable Energy” • California has a goal of transitioning to 100% clean retail electricity by 2045. Now, it is looking to its 840 miles of coastline to power its communities and economy. Soon, two new offshore wind energy areas could provide bountiful clean energy to the state. [NREL]

¶ “Interior Approves Big Power Line For Renewables In US West” • The Interior Department announced final approval to construct a 416-mile transmission line to move renewable energy across three Western states. The line is set to run from Medicine Bow, in southeastern Wyoming, through northwest Colorado, and end outside of Mona, Utah. [E&E News]

Have a charmingly lovely day.

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May 27 Energy News

May 27, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “Should The War In Ukraine Spur A Nuclear Security Rethink?” • With Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, nuclear facilities have been caught up in the midst of conventional warfare for the first time in history. That scenario, a nightmare that has now turned into a reality, is one of the things that few of the industry’s players had ever anticipated. [France 24]

Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant (Ralf1969, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Jeff Dahn And The 100-Year Battery” • Jeff Dahn is a world renowned scientist and researcher at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia. He has a contract with Tesla to do battery research. He and his researchers have published a paper in the Journal of the Electrochemical Society that suggests a battery that can last for 100 years is possible. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “2022 Atlantic Hurricane Season Will Be Above Average (Again), NOAA Predicts” • Forecasters at NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center predict a 65% chance of an above-normal season, a 25% chance of a near-normal season and a 10% chance of a below-normal season. It could be the seventh consecutive above-average hurricane season. [CleanTechnica]

Panama City Beach, Florida (Craig Cameron, Unsplash)

World:

¶ “Steel Giant Comes Out Swinging Against Fossil Fuel” • Steel giant ArcelorMittal is deploying green hydrogen to cut down on the amount of natural gas used to process iron, using its plant in Canada as a test site. Last fall it announced a $9 billion renewable energy program aimed at decarbonizing its operations in India. Now, it is going further. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “UK Electric Vehicle Sales Continue To Soar In Green Revolution” • EVs have more than doubled in the north of England, the latest figures show. More than a quarter of a million EVs now travel on UK roads and sales of plug-in vehicles have reached all-time highs, with 327,000 registered last year. That is a 77% rise compared to 2020. [CleanTechnica]

Vauxhall (Image courtesy of Vauxhall)

¶ “Ontario loses out on LG Chem plant. Business groups blame Ford’s cancellation of renewable energy contracts” • The Ontario government’s decision to scrap hundreds of renewable energy projects early in Premier Doug Ford’s tenure may have cost the City of Windsor a major chemical plant and over a thousand jobs, business groups say. [Toronto Star]

¶ “Victoria Urged To Go ‘Faster, Further’ In The Race To 100% Renewables” • A parliamentary inquiry into renewable energy recommended that Victoria explore feed-in tariffs options for renewable energy exports and speed up its Virtual Power Plant pilot program. This is to enable a rapid statewide transition to renewables. [pv magazine Australia]

Melbourne (Image from Visit Melbourne)

¶ “Cancer Patients In Japan’s Fukushima Seek Damages From Nuclear Plant” • A Tokyo court began hearings on 26 May in a lawsuit seeking nearly $5 million in damages for six people who were children in Fukushima at the time of its 2011 nuclear power plant disaster and later developed thyroid cancer. They are suing the operator of the nuclear plant. [Firstpost]

¶ “Tata Power Has Commissioned A 100-MW Solar Project In Maharashtra” • Tata Power announced its subsidiary Tata Power Renewable Energy Ltd commissioned a 100-MW solar project in Maharashtra. The installation has over 411,900 PV modules. It will supply power to Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Company Ltd. [pv magazine India]

100-MW project in Andhra Pradesh (Tata Power Solar image)

US:

¶ “Supreme Court Allows Biden Administration To Continue Counting The Costs Of Planet-Warming Emissions, For Now” • The US Supreme Court will allow the Biden administration to continue to use a metric that estimates the real-world cost of the climate crisis while legal challenges play out. The states opposed to the metric say the estimates are speculative. [CNN]

¶ “Energy Secretary Blasts Russia For ‘Weaponizing’ Energy” • Speaking at a GE wind turbine testing facility, Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm said Russia is “weaponizing energy, which is another reason why as a nation, we should move to energy sources that cannot be weaponized.” She pointed out that wind and solar power can’t be weaponized. [CNN]

Wind turbines (Karyatid, Unsplash)

¶ “Soaring Fertilizer Prices Force Farmers To Rethink” • Rachael Sharp, a third-generation farmer in South Carolina, saw fertilizer prices for her crops soar 320% last year. The costs are up in a time of extreme weather, transport disruptions, and now the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Some farmers aren’t planting anything due to the excessive costs. [BBC]

¶ “Alaska Utilities Plan $200 Million Investment In Grid To Boost Renewable Power, Increase Reliability” • Five electric utilities in Alaska will invest more than $200 million to upgrade the ageing transmission system from Homer to Fairbanks, in a step they say could boost low-cost renewable power opportunities in the state, benefitting ratepayers. [Anchorage Daily News]

View at Homer, Alaska (Wonderlane, Unsplash)

¶ “Stellantis And Samsung SDI To Build New Battery Factory In Indiana” • Stellantis, the parent company of Dodge, Jeep, and Chrysler, has selected Kokomo, Indiana, as the site for its next electric vehicle battery factory. The plant will be built in a partnership with South Korea’s Samsung SDI and cost between $2.5 and $3 billion. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Mayflower Wind Files PPAs For Approval” • Mayflower Wind filed 20-year power purchase agreements with the Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities to supply three of the state’s largest utilities for 1200 MW of electricity generated by offshore wind facilities. Mayflower Wind won bids for the electricity in 2019 and 2021. [reNews]

Have a perfectly placid day.

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May 26 Energy News

May 26, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “Engie’s US LNG Reversal: Emissions Cuts Helped Clinch The Deal, But Are They Legit?” • The Financial Times reported that French energy company Engie signed a 15-year supply deal for liquified natural gas from a proposed NextDecade project in Texas. Engie rejected a similar proposal in 2020, but some things have changed since then. [CleanTechnica]

LNG storage in Massachusetts (Fletcher6, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “‘It’s Almost A Revolution’: What Labor Means For Renewables Investment” • The 2022 Australian election result will go down in history as a turning point in the country’s renewable energy transition. In his victory speech, Anthony Albanese pledged to end the climate wars and turn the country into a renewable energy superpower. [Sydney Morning Herald]

World:

¶ “Big Oil, Flush With Cash, Is Failing On Climate Pledges” • In 2020, with profits down due to pandemic and lockdowns, fossil fuel companies responded to pressure and announced bold plans to invest in clean energy. Now, with profits high and oil giants back to their pre-pandemic profitability, the push toward green reform appears to have taken a back seat. [CNN]

Oil rig (Arvind Vallabh, Unsplash)

¶ “Shell Escaped Liability For Oil Spills In Nigeria For Years. Then Four Farmers Took Them To Court And Won” • Four farmers from the Goi and Oruma communities in the country’s oil-rich but impoverished Niger Delta region said their farms were left in ruins after major spills from underground pipelines. They sued Shell and won. [CNN]

¶ “Volkswagen To Pay Out £193 Million In Another ‘Dieselgate’ Settlement” • Volkswagen is to pay £193 million to more than 90,000 drivers in England and Wales after it settled a High Court claim over the installation of emissions cheating devices in its vehicles. The group has already paid out more than €30 billion (£26 billion, $32 billion) worldwide. [BBC]

Volkswagen interior (Gabe Pierce, Unsplash)

¶ “Put Values Over Profits, NATO Chief Tells Countries” • The war in Ukraine has highlighted how countries need to put values before profits, NATO’s chief has warned. Speaking at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Jens Stoltenberg said the war had shown “how economic relations with authoritarian regimes can create vulnerabilities.” [BBC]

¶ “China Electric Car Market – 29% Market Share In April!” • Plugin vehicles continue to be all the rage in the Chinese auto market. Despite the overall market being completely disrupted by Covid lockdowns (-43% year over year), plugins scored over 260,000 registrations in April, up 61% YOY. And 22% of China’s auto sales were full battery EVs! [CleanTechnica]

BYD Song EV (Jengtingchen, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “Fennovoima Withdraws Building Permit Application For Nuclear Power Plant” • Fennovoima announced it has withdrawn its application for a building permit for a nuclear power plant in Pyhäjoki, Ostrobothnia, delivering what many believe was the final blow to the project. It terminated the project because of its Russian funding and dependencies. [Helsinki Times]

¶ “Jacobs Develops Robot For Fukushima Debris Sampling” • The USA engineering group Jacobs has designed and built a remotely-operated robotic tool to investigate debris in damaged reactors at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in Japan. Eleven years after the meltdown at Fukushima, in March, 2011, it will be possible to get samples. [World Nuclear News]

Robot for debris collection at Fukushima Daiichi (Jacobs image)

¶ “Warming French Rivers Could Take More Nuclear Supply Offline” • An unseasonably warm May has led to high water temperatures in several rivers throughout France, putting some nuclear plants’ output at risk during a period of historically high unavailability, Refinitiv Eikon data showed. River water is often used for cooling reactors. [Reuters]

US:

¶ “Interior Department Announces $33 Million To Clean Up 277 Methane-Spewing Wells On Federal Land” • Officials from the Interior Department and the White House announced they will spend $33 million to clean up 277 orphan oil and gas wells on federal lands in nine states. States have identified over 130,000 orphan wells to work on. [CNN]

Pump jack in Texas (Eric Kounce, public domain)

¶ “Walmart To Begin Drone Deliveries In Six States” • Walmart says it will be delivering packages that weigh 10 pounds or less to customers in parts of Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, Texas, Utah, and Virginia by drones that lower the packages to the ground by cable. The service will be provided in cooperation with DroneUp and should begin this year. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “US EV Registrations Surge For Q1 2022, Largely Driven By Tesla” • A recent article at CarScoops gives us some great news about EV sales so far in 2022! According to Experian, 158,689 EVs were registered in the US in January through March of this year. Tesla took most of these sales, with an estimated 113,882 vehicles coming from the company. [CleanTechnica]

Tesla Model 3 (Vlad Tchompalov, Unsplash)

¶ “Lawmakers Call For Better Clean Truck Rule” • A group of 61 federal lawmakers recently wrote a letter to the EPA asking it to finalize the strongest clean truck rules it can. They want the EPA to follow California’s lead and require a growing percentage of trucks to be zero emissions because heavy trucks tend to stay in service for decades. [CleanTechnica]
Tesla semi truck (Tesla image)

¶ “DOE Announces $38 Million To Launch Decarbonization Initiative At National Laboratories” • The US Department of Energy announced $38 million to begin decarbonizing four of its seventeen National Laboratories in support of President Biden’s goal to reach net-zero greenhouse gas emissions no later than 2050. [Department of Energy]

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May 25 Energy News

May 25, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “Australians Voted For Stronger Action On Climate Change. Will They Get It?” • Australia’s new prime minister mentioned the words “climate change” four times within two minutes of his maiden international speech. But experts say it won’t be easy to turn around a coal-powered ship that has been chugging in the wrong direction for years. [CNN]

Outback (Meg Jerrard, Unsplash)

¶ “Limits On Renewables ‘Will Keep UK Energy Bills Higher This Winter’” • Consumers will face higher energy bills than necessary next winter because of a decision by the government to limit new renewable energy generation. It is called a “missed opportunity” by the renewables industry, and “outdated thinking” by a green campaign group. [The Guardian]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Elon Musk, Alphabet, And Joe Biden (USA) Are Just A Few Investing Billions Into Carbon Removal” • As the world shifts toward clean energy in its automobiles and its energy generation tactics, experts say there’s still a lot of work to do to ensure global temperatures don’t keep rising. One costly but effective solution is carbon removal technology. [CleanTechnica]

Climeworks direct air capture plant (Photo by Climeworks)

World:

¶ “Mining Giant Pleads Guilty To UK Bribery Charges” • A subsidiary of Glencore, the mining and commodities trading giant, has pleaded guilty in a London court to seven counts of bribery. The UK’s Serious Fraud Office said it had exposed “profit-driven bribery and corruption” by Glencore Energy UK’s oil operations in five African nations. [BBC]

¶ “Vancouver Requires Gas Stations And Parking Lots Without EV Chargers To Pay $10,000 Per Year” • Vancouver’s city council approved a $10,000 annual fee for gas stations and commercial parking lots that don’t install EV chargers by January 2025. To be compliant, Gas stations must have at least one DC fast charger, and parking lots will need to have four. [CleanTechnica]

Vancouver (Mike Benna, Unsplash)

¶ “Powering Australia Under New Leadership” • For ten years, Australian states and territories have had to go it alone in the transition to renewables. Now it looks like they will have federal support for powering Australia in a clean manner. Just in time, too, as the eastern grid struggles to add more renewables and coal-fired power stations retire early. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “India’s Hindustan Salts Tenders 1 GW Of Solar Capacity” • A government-owned company has floated a tender inviting developers to set up and operate a 1-GW solar power project in the western state of Gujarat. Hindustan Salts will provide 5,000 acres of land to the successful developers and charge them an annual rent. [CleanTechnica]

Rural Gujarat (sambit nayak, Unsplash)

¶ “ReNew Power Signs Deal For ₹50,000 Crore Renewables And Storage Project In Karnataka” • ReNew Power has signed an agreement with the Indian state of Karnataka to invest ₹50,000 crore ($6.5 billion) over seven years. Ministers are authorizing contracts for about 12 GW of new renewable capacity, to start construction this year. [pv magazine India]

¶ “Italy Introduces Domestic Renewable Energy To The EU’s Common Agricultural Policy Plan” • Italy formally backed a plan to allow farmers to sell renewable energy to European power grids, following talks between Italian Agricultural Minister Stefano Patuanelli and European Agriculture Commissioner Janusz Wojciechowski. [China.org]

PVs in the Po Valley (Rosapicci, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “Europe’s Bold New Energy Plan Will Need Wartime-Like Planning To Meet Goals, Rystad Says” • Rystad Energy, Norway’s energy intelligence group, said analysis indicates the European Commission’s cost estimate may fall short of objectives, as the plan will require at least €1 trillion ($1.07 trillion) in investment to meet its renewables objective. [Offshore Energy]

US:

¶ “Blue Bird Will Manufacture Electric Medium Duty Trucks And Vans” • A school bus is basically a truck chassis with a passenger compartment bolted on. So it should come as no surprise that Blue Bird, which currently manufactures electric school buses, is preparing to start producing medium duty Class 5 and Class 6 electric trucks. [CleanTechnica]

Blue Bird chassis (Image courtesy of Blue Bird)

¶ “Doerr Donation Will Create A Much Needed Climate School At Stanford” • Stanford University has been given a $1.1 billion endowment to fund a sustainability and climate school. The gift, by John and Ann Doerr, is the largest ever to establish a new school at a university. The Doerr donation supports climate change research and scholarship. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Middletown Taps Into Renewable Energy Program” • Ampion Renewable Energy is a community solar company connecting Middletown residents to a clean-energy subscription service from a hyper-local solar farm. When they subscribe, they receive a credit on their utility bill for the power that’s been generated into the system. [Spectrum News]

Middletown, New York (Daniel Case, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “Tesla To Texas: Help Us Help You” • Tesla is pushing Texas for changes to its energy market rules so anyone with solar panels or battery storage could sell excess power back to the grid. The company wants residential owners to be able to participate in the market, including, of course, owners of the Tesla residential products, like its Powerwall. [Protocol]

¶ “Plans For Palisades Nuclear Plant Have Decommissioning Over 19 Years” • The Palisades nuclear plant in Michigan has shut down. Following the removal of used fuel from the reactor, the facility will be turned over to Holtec International, which will take over the facility to decontaminate and decommission, a task that could take nearly 20 years. [WWMT]

Have a politely ecstatic day.

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May 24 Energy News

May 24, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “What Would A Flying-Free World Look Like?” • Air travel is incredibly polluting, but what would happen if people across the world suddenly stopped flying completely? A world of no flights would present some serious logistical challenges, but could also open up the door to huge changes to other, lower-carbon forms of transport. [BBC]

Bullet train in Tokyo (Fikri Rasyid, Unsplash)

¶ “How Big Tech Companies Fund Fossil Fuel Emissions” • The Big Tech companies – such as Apple, Microsoft, Amazon, and Google/Alphabet, – all emphasize sustainability and tout efforts to reduce their carbon footprint. But they may unwittingly be providing fossil fuel companies the money they need to go on extracting their destructive products. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Big Oil Investors Put To The Test At Annual Shareholder Meetings” • This is a week of annual shareholder meetings for some major oil and gas companies. Climate-related shareholder proposals are on the agenda for Shell, ExxonMobil and Chevron, and climate advocates are urging major investors to vote for climate action. [CleanTechnica]

Offshore oil rigs (NOAA image, public domain)

¶ “Why Nuclear Energy May Not Be The Silver Bullet In Clean Energy” • We need to decarbonize, and building nuclear plants is seen as a way to do that. But a nuclear plant typically takes ten to fifteen years or more to construct, from planning to operation. Given the pressing need to decarbonize quickly, that is clearly too slow. [News Center Maine]

World:

¶ “The Changing Face Of The North Sea Oil Industry” • Faced with the climate emergency, Aberdeen is having to move away from an industry that has created half a million jobs and brought almost incalculable wealth to north east Scotland. Some young people still count on a career in the oil industry, but others are focusing on a future in renewable energy. [BBC]

North Sea oil rigs (Ben Wicks, Unsplash)

¶ “Why Africa Couldn’t Get Urgent Global Deal On Drought” • Africa has been hit by fourteen extreme droughts in the past two years alone, and the UN is warning that some 20 million people are at risk in East Africa this year after the rains failed once more. Sadly, not much was achieved at the two-week-long meeting in Abidjan to tackle these crises. [BBC]

¶ “More Electric Semi Trucks Coming To US And Europe” • Private car owners may still be undecided about EVs, but commercial fleet managers are rushing to reap the benefits of battery-operated vehicles, with their greatly reduced costs of fuel and maintenance. Electric semi trucks are enjoying a surge of orders in both the US and Europe. [CleanTechnica]

Scania electric semi truck (Image courtesy of Scania)

¶ “India’s Acme Solar Plans 7-GW Renewable Energy Green Ammonia Plant” • Acme Solar Holdings, one of India’s leading independent solar power producers, reportedly plans to set up 7 GW of renewable power and green ammonia facilities in the southern state of Tamil Nadu. The venture is expected to entail an investment of $6 billion. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “EU Oil Ban ‘In Days,’ Russia-China Closer” • The EU is likely to agree an embargo on Russian oil imports “within days”, as Moscow says it anticipates its economic ties growing with China after being isolated by the West over its invasion of Ukraine. The EU has offered up to €2 billion to central and eastern nations most dependent on Russian fuel. [Crikey]

Tanker (Fredrick Filix, Unsplash)

¶ “Contractor Quitting Puts Shell In Spotlight Over Climate” • A longtime contractor who consulted Shell on safety issues has publicly called out the oil and gas company’s climate plans, accusing the company of “double talk” by saying it wants to cut greenhouse gas emissions while working on tapping new sources of fossil fuel. [AP News]

¶ “UAE Records Largest Increase In Renewable Energy Capacity Globally In The Past Decade” • The UAE recorded the largest increase in renewable energy capacity worldwide in the past ten years, a report showed, reflecting the nation’s ambition to get to net-zero emissions. Its renewable capacity grew from 13 MW in 2011 to 2,540 MW in 2020. [The National]

Shams solar plant, Abu Dhabi (Masdar Official, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

US:

¶ “California Governor Pleads For More Water Conservation” • As the California drought goes on, Governor Gavin Newsom is warning local officials that more needs to be done to save water, and to make sure all residents realize how urgent the crisis is. If not, he said, California could face mandatory statewide water restrictions this summer. [CNN]

¶ “Solar Array Transforms Hardwick Gravel Pit Into Renewable Energy Resource” • Encore Renewable Energy and the Electric Department of Hardwick, Vermont, held a ribbon-cutting at a 1.65-MW solar array at a former Hardwick gravel pit. The system is expected to provide annual electricity needs of approximately 340 homes. [Vermont Business Magazine]

Hardwick solar array (Encore Renewable Energy image)

¶ “Solar On Pennsylvania Schools Doubles In Five Years” • The solar capacity in Pennsylvania schools has doubled in the last two years, according to a report by Generation180. The study covered solar in schools across the US. It includes a number of success stories and provides a how-to guide for any schools that have interest in installing solar PVs. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “New Vistra Energy Battery Facility Designed To Increase Reliability, Value Of Renewables” • Winter weather may be what gets Texans to worry about the power grid, but its greatest strain comes during the summer. Monday, Irving-based Vistra Energy officially launched a battery facility they hope will help supply in times of need. [WFAA]

Have a magnificently fortunate day.

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May 23 Energy News

May 23, 2022

World:

¶ “Canada Storms: Nearly A Million Homes Lose Power In High Winds” • Nearly 900,000 homes in southern Canada were left without power on Saturday after a severe storm hit the provinces of Ontario and Quebec. Power company Hydro One, which covers Ontario, said it would take several days to reconnect every home that is without power. [BBC]

Supercell (Raychel Sanner, Unsplash)

¶ “Could Hydrogen Be The Victor In UK’s Hydrogen Vs Electric Truck Probe?” • The UK government launched a £200 million investigation into the future of its road freight. Over a three-year period, it will look to understand advantages of hydrogen and electric trucks, as well as the infrastructure needed for road freight to be decarbonized. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Ireland Allocates 1.53 GW Of PV In Second Renewables Auction” • Grid operator EirGrid announced provisional results of Ireland’s second renewable energy auction. Overall, EirGrid selected 80 of the 130 projects that were submitted. The projects range in size from 0.5 MW to 104.4 MW and are mostly located in central and southern Ireland. [PV Magazine]

Ireland (Nils Nedel, Unsplash)

¶ “Eamon Ryan Rules Out Nuclear Power As An Option In The Transition From Fossil Fuel Dependence” • Irish environment minister Eamon Ryan told the Irish Examiner it would be too expensive and cumbersome for Ireland to build a nuclear industry, insisting offshore wind is a far better and less expensive way to fight against climate change. [Irish Examiner]

¶ “EDF Crew Signs Up BW Ideol For French Floaters” • BW Ideol has signed an agreement with the consortium made of EDF Renouvelables and Maple Power, a joint venture between CPP Investments and Enbridge, to cooperate on the design of floating foundations for the 500-MW AO6 floating offshore wind tender in France. [reNews]

Floating wind turbine (BW Ideol image)

¶ “Nuclear Expert Reaffirms Harm Of Dumping Contaminated Water Into Ocean” • After Japan initially approved the discharge plan last week, experts have reaffirmed that radioactive pollution will inevitably be caused by dumping nuclear-contaminated water from storage tanks at the Fukushima nuclear plant into the Pacific Ocean. [Global Times]

Australia:

¶ “Australia Aspires To Be ‘Renewable Energy Superpower’ After Decisive Climate Change Election” • While it’s possible Labor will win a lower-house majority of at least 76 seats, it’s also likely the party will need to negotiate with the Green party and a slew of climate-warrior independent lawmakers who want more ambitious targets. [Energy Voice]

Wind turbine in Australia (Kshithij Chandrashekar, Unsplash)

¶ “EV Surge Likely After Labor Wins In Australia” • For ten years, Australia’s Liberal federal government has denied climate change science and slow-walked the transition to renewable energy. The historic defeat for this coalition will change all that and likely lead to an EV surge. The Labor government is set to introduce large tax incentives for EVs. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Outback Town Teams With CDU To Research Renewable Energy Future” • The Northern Territory town of Alice Springs is turning to renewable energy to power its isolated grid. Scientists from Charles Darwin University have announced they will help investigate how it can facilitate its transition towards a future dependent on renewables. [pv magazine Australia]

Alice Springs (ARENA image)

US:

¶ “Tesla’s 100-Stall Supercharger Oasis In The Mojave Desert Will Be The Largest In The US” • Tesla is reportedly building a 100-stall Supercharger station, which will be the largest such station in this country to date. The location is in the Mojave Desert town of Barstow, California, around 115 miles outside of Los Angeles. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “With Climate Change Fueling Wildfires, Changes Are Needed To Prevent Worse Scenarios” • A study published this month in the journal Ecology Letters found that wildfire risks are going to increase in states like New Mexico because of climate change. Scientists say humans need to make changes to prevent worse fire risks. [The NM Political Report]

Wildfire (USDA Forest Service)

¶ “Climate Change Will Force Big Shift In Timing, Amount Of Snowmelt Across Colorado River Basin” • Research by Los Alamos National Laboratory predicts that changes in mountain snowmelt will shift peak streamflows to much earlier in the year for the Colorado River Basin, altering reservoir management and irrigation across the entire region. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Palisades Nuclear Power Plant Retires Early” • Palisades nuclear plant in Michigan shut down eleven days earlier than planned. Control room operators removed the 805-MW plant’s nuclear reactor from service on May 20. The plant was originally scheduled to shut down on May 31. It will be decommissioned by Holtec International. [Power Engineering]

Have an unfathomably excellent day.

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May 22 Energy News

May 22, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “From Alternative Fuels To Rationing Trips: A Guide To More Sustainable Flying” • Aviation accounts for just 3.5% of our total planet-warming emissions. Matteo Mirolo, aviation policy officer at Transport & Environment, a European campaign group for cleaner transportation, said there are lots of solutions, but they are not ready yet. Others agree. [CNN]

Rail, an alternative to flying (Amtrak image)

¶ “Why We Can Send A Rover To Mars, But We Can’t Send An Electron From New York To California” • Space missions are a federal matter, but states determine energy policy and decisions on infrastructure. Right now, states and the federal government can choose how to define our country’s options for clean energy and plan the challenges ahead. [CleanTechnica]

Science and Technology:

¶ “What Is Biodiversity And How Are We Protecting It?” • The UN has declared Sunday, May 22, to be the International Day for Biodiversity to raise awareness of the extinction risk facing animals and plants. Nearly a third of all species are currently endangered due to human activities. Governments will meet on the issue this year in China. [BBC]

Cotton Top Tamarins (Rebecca Campbell, Unsplash)

World:

¶ “Ukraine’s Natural Environment Is Another Casualty Of War. The Damage Could Be Felt For Decades” • The destruction Russian forces caused to the Ukrainian landscape here is brutal and omnipresent: Scorched earth, forest floors ravaged by missiles, and trees broken down and uprooted, and abandoned military equipment litters the ground. [CNN]

¶ “Australian Voters Deliver Strong Message On Climate, Ending Conservative Government’s Nine Year Rule” • Australian voters have delivered a sharp rebuke to the center-right government, ending nine years of conservative rule. They have voted in favor of the center-left opposition that promised stronger action on climate change. [CNN]

Sydney Harbor (Photoholgic, Unsplash)

¶ “Hyundai And Kia Plan Electric Car Ramp In Korea” • Hyundai and Kia recently confirmed that they will build a new electric car factory in Georgia at a cost of nearly $6 billion. And this week, Hyundai Motor Group announced it plans to invest $17 billion between now and 2030 to ramp up electric car production in South Korea. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Spain Heatwave Brings Record May Temperatures” • Parts of Spain are experiencing their hottest May ever with temperatures of more than 40°C (104°F) in some places, according to the state weather agency, AEMET. The agency issued heat warnings in ten regions for Saturday, saying it could be “one of the most intense” heatwaves in years. [BBC]

Madrid (Florian Wehde, Unsplash)

¶ “Sizewell C ‘May Cost Double Government Estimates And Take Five Years Longer To Build’” • The proposed Sizewell C nuclear power station could cost UK taxpayers more than double what is estimated and take five extra years to build, research by the University of Greenwich Business School shows. The plant could cost taxpayers £25.40 a year extra. [The Guardian]

US:

¶ “It’s Going To Be Hot With A Chance Of Blackouts” • In a reliability assessment for the coming summer, NERC, the regulating authority that oversees the health of the US electrical grid, predicted that excessive temperatures and ongoing drought could cause the power grid to buckle. And weather extremes are guaranteed because of the climate crisis. [CNN]

Beach (Aliko Sunawang, Unsplash)

¶ “In A Parallel Universe, Oil Companies Included In S&P 500 ESG Index While Tesla Kicked Out” • In a weird parallel universe, the S&P 500 Environmental, Social, and Governance Index dropped Tesla but added oil companies. Oh, wait, that’s this universe. Exxon and Marathon Oil were added to the index at the same time that Tesla was removed. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Emboldened By Climate Change, Ticks Are Killing Off Moose In Maine” • Outside of Alaska, Maine has the country’s largest population of moose. But Maine’s moose are under threat. In parts of Piscataquis and Somerset counties, 86% of calves tracked by scientists have died. The culprit is most often a huge number of winter ticks. [Popular Science]

Moose (Cora Leach, Unsplash)

¶ “Three Ways US Cities Broke Clean Energy Records In 2021” • After remaining undaunted in their pursuit of renewables in 2020, US cities, counties and tribal governments made 2021 another record-breaking year for renewable energy development in the United States. Here are three ways American cities are excelling. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Village Of Canton Working To Offer Renewable Energy To Residents” • The village of Canton, New York, is working to offer residents Community Choice Aggregation. Residents and small businesses could get a renewable electricity supply in this way. The program would pool local electricity demand to leverage the collective buying power. [InformNNY.com]

Have an enormously fun day.

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May 21 Energy News

May 21, 2022

World:

¶ “Human-Induced Climate Crisis Is Making Japan’s Cherry Blossoms Bloom Earlier” • Japan’s world-famous cherry trees are flowering much earlier than normal due to human-induced climate change, a study has found. The cherry blossoms have special cultural importance, and the dates of flowering have been recorded for centuries. [CNN]

Cherry blossoms in Tokyo (Alan Godfrey, Unsplash)

¶ “China Needs Russian Coal. Moscow Needs New Customers” • China is buying record amounts of cheap Russian coal, even as Western nations slam Moscow with sanctions over the invasion of Ukraine. Russia has overtaken Australia as China’s second biggest supplier since last year and now accounts for 19% of its coal imports, up from the 14% share it had in March. [CNN]

¶ “Russia halts gas supplies to Finland” • Russia has halted its gas supply to Finland in the latest escalation of an energy payments row with the West. Russia’s gas giant Gazprom confirmed it had completely halted exports to Finland at 04:00 GMT on May 21. Finland said all the deliveries had stopped, but added that there would be no disruption to customers. [BBC]

Building a gas pipeline in Finland (Jukka Isokoski, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “Ukraine says giant Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant can’t supply Russia” • Russia’s deputy prime minister said Russia would connect a Ukrainian nuclear plant with Russia’s energy system if Kyiv refused to pay for its electricity. Ukraine dismissed the Russian plan to connect the Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant to the Russian electricity grid as “wishful thinking.” [BBC]

¶ “Baltic Sea Floating Offshore Wind Party Just Getting Started, But Mind That Fleet!” • Sweden, as it is getting set to join NATO, is also getting ready to park 4.75 GW worth of floating offshore wind turbines in the Baltic Sea. That same sea happens to be the stomping grounds of the Baltic Fleet of the expanding Russian Navy. What could possibly go wrong? [CleanTechnica]

Russian Missile Cruiser (LPhot Seeley, Royal Navy, OGL v1.0)

¶ “Electric Farms Are Using Solar Power To Grow Profits And Crops” • A farm in Japan is part of a global movement called agrivoltaics. It involves the simultaneous use of farmland for producing crops and generating power, and it is growing as a global push to replace fossil fuels is encouraging innovation for renewable energy. [Yahoo Finance]

¶ “175 GW Renewable Energy Goal Could Have Saved India From Power Shortage” • India could have averted the power crisis in April if progress towards the 175 GW renewable energy goal had been on track, a new analysis by think tank Climate Risk Horizons said. April’s power shortage was due to unavailability of coal supplies. [ummid.com]

Wind farm (Abby Anaday, Unsplash)

¶ “‘Torturous’ Heat Is Breaking Records And Livelihoods In India, And It’s Only Going To Get Worse.” • Millions of laborers in India and Pakistan have had to toil through the hottest spring on record. Scientists fear that the heat and drought conditions will soon regularly afflict billions across the globe and contribute to a looming food crisis. [NBC News]

US:

¶ “Harris And EPA Will Announce Schools Can Apply For $500 Million To Replace Diesel School Buses With Zero-Emissions Buses” • The Biden administration is announcing that school districts around the US can apply for the first round of funding to transition to zero emissions buses. It is $500 million out of $5 billion in the bipartisan infrastructure law. [CNN]

School bus (Denisse Leon, Unsplash)

¶ “Forest Service Officials Are Hitting A Pause On Prescribed Fires After A New Mexico Burn Escaped Containment” • The US Forest Service is pausing prescribed fire operations in all of its lands because of extreme conditions, it announced. The Forest Service will conduct a 90-day review of protocols, practices, and the decision support tools. [CNN]

¶ “Zoox Shows Off Its Battery-Electric Autonomous People Pod” • Amazon has an autonomous robotaxi division, Zoox, which is preparing to bring its battery-electric autonomous people mover to market soon. The Zoox is designed from the ground up to transport people from point A to point B as conveniently as possible. [CleanTechnica]

Zoox robotaxi (Zoox image)

¶ “Li-Cycle’s Battery Recycling Plant In Arizona Now Open” • An Li-Cycle lithium-ion battery recycling plant in Arizona is now open. This is the company’s third operational Spoke facility in North America and it has a capacity to process up to 10,000 tonnes of manufacturing scrap and end-of-life batteries, the equivalent of 20,000 EVs, annually. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Nez Perce Tribe Eyes Renewable Energy Utility Cooperative” • The Nez Perce Tribe has announced its intention of building a tribe-to-tribe solar and renewable energy utility. They hope to recruit other tribes to install solar arrays plus battery storage with the goal that each tribe be energy independent and create jobs on reservations. [Lewiston Tribune]

Entering Nez Perce Reservation in Idaho (Ken Lund, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “Energy Secretary: We Must Find A Solution For Nuclear Waste” • It is critical to find a solution for storing the nation’s spent nuclear fuel, US Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm said during a visit to a nuclear power plant in Connecticut. Granholm was invited to tour Millstone Nuclear Power Station in Waterford by US Rep Joe Courtney (D). [Texarkana Gazette]

¶ “Entergy Shuts Down The Palisades Nuclear Power Plant Ten Days Early” • After more than 50 years in operation, Entergy Corp announced that it had decided to shut down the Palisades Nuclear Power Plant in Covert Township over a week ahead of schedule. Entergy said the nuclear reactor will be removed from service for the last time on May 20. [WMUK]

Have an abundantly rewarding day.

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May 20 Energy News

May 20, 2022

World:

¶ “Mitsubishi Tops EV Sales In Germany In April” • Multiple crises are raging (chips, batteries, covid, Ukraine war…), and the German car market has been hit hard. Overall, it dropped 22% last month, and even full battery EVs were down 7%, YOY. Still, the plugin maket share is growing, and a 30% result by year end seems not only possible, but likely. [CleanTechnica]

Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross PHEV (Alexander Migl, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “European Commission Plans Shift Away From Russian Coal, Oil, And Gas” • The EU assumed it would be able to rely on fossil exports from Russia during the transition to green energy. The Russian invasion of Ukraine ended that. Ursala Von der Leyen, the president of the European Commission, announced a $315 billion package to speed up the shift. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “150 GW Of Wind Power From The North Sea – Deal Signed In Denmark” • Probably the most ambitious renewable energy agreement ever was signed on the harbor of Esbjerg, Denmark. The Esbjerg Declaration, which has the subtitle The North Sea as a Green Power Plant of Europe, has targets for offshore wind up to at least 150 GW by 2050. [CleanTechnica]

Building an offshore wind turbine (Rscbelgium, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “CIP To Build A Green Hydrogen Island” • Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners is looking to build an artificial island in the Danish North Sea. The BrintØ island will be able to produce around 1 million tonnes of green hydrogen per year by the end of the decade, which is about 7% of the EU’s expected hydrogen consumption in 2030. [reNews]

¶ “Renewables Restart GB Power System” • Renewable energy sources have played a role in restarting Great Britain’s electricity system after a successful world-first trial. A live trial in Scotland saw a hydro generator connected to the distribution network self-start, energize the local transmission and distribution network, and power up wind turbines. [reNews]

Hydropower plant (SXC image)

¶ “Alcoa Signs Contract For Renewable Power To Support Restart Of Aluminum Smelter” • Alcoa Corporation announced that it signed a contract for renewable energy to support the planned restart of aluminum smelting in 2024 at the San Ciprián smelter in Spain. The agreement would commence in 2024 and extend to the end of 2033. [Saur Energy International]

¶ “Europe Admits It’ll Have To Burn More Coal As It Tries To Wean Itself Off Russian Energy” • The European Commission fleshed out details of a plan to ramp up use of the EU’s renewable energy and reduce its reliance on Russian fossil fuels. As it did, it acknowledged that existing coal facilities may have to be used for “longer than initially expected.” [CNBC]

German coal-burning power plant (Bodoklecksel, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “Australian Telecom Giant Announces Transition To Renewable Energy” • Optus, Australia’s second largest telecommunications company, announced its plan to rely solely on renewable energy by the end of 2025, making it the last major phone network in the nation to do so. Telecommunications companies are among Australia’s largest energy users. [Macau Business]

¶ “Hinkley Point C Nuclear Power Station Delayed A Year By Covid” • The nuclear power station being built at Hinkley Point in Somerset will start operating a year later than planned and will cost an extra £3 billion, it was announced. The delay means the first reactor unit is now scheduled to start operating in June 2027, a year later than planned. [The Guardian]

Construction of new power station at Hinkley Point
(Nick Chipchase, CC BY-SA 2.0)

US:

¶ “Energy Secretary Says Administration Is Working On Relief For Solar Industry Amid Tariff Investigation” • Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm said the Biden administration is “working on a few things” to help a panicked solar industry that is seeing projects grind to a halt amid a tariffs probe by the Commerce Department. [CNN]

¶ “DOE Announces Multibillion-Dollar Project To Kickstart A Carbon Dioxide Removal Industry In US” • The US DOE is announcing a massive investment in direct air carbon removal projects, in hopes of kickstarting an industry that energy experts say is critical to getting the country’s planet-warming emissions under control. [CNN]

Climeworks carbon capture (Climeworks image)

¶ “Manchin And Republican Lawmakers Grill Interior Chief Over Oil And Gas Drilling Plans Amid High Prices” • Interior Secretary Deb Haaland squared off with lawmakers at a contentious Senate hearing that addressed high gas prices, oil and gas drilling and delays in the department’s plan to hold more drilling lease sales. [CNN]

¶ “Sila Silicon Anode Batteries To Power Mercedes G Class EV” • Mercedes says a version of its battery-electric G Class will use cells from Sila, which has been working for the past 10 years on replacing the conventional graphite anodes in today’s lithium-ion batteries with silicon alternatives. Sila will open a battery facility in Moses Lake, Washington. [CleanTechnica]

Mercedes G Class EV Concept (Image courtesy of Mercedes)

¶ “Energy And Maritime Leaders To Convene For The DOE InnovationXLab Summit” • Top scientists and officials from government, academia, Alaskan Native communities, and industry are heading to the Dena’ina Center in Anchorage, Alaska, to focus on driving energy technologies for a more sustainable Arctic region. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “EIA Expects Solar And Wind To Be Larger Sources Of US Electricity Generation This Summer” • “In our Summer Electricity Outlook, a supplement to our May 2022 Short-Term Energy Outlook, we expect the largest increases in US electric power sector generation this summer will come from renewable energy sources.” [CleanTechnica]

Have an enchantingly superior day.

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May 19 Energy News

May 19, 2022

World:

¶ “How Climate Is Making Australia More Unliveable” • Climate change is a key concern for voters in Australia’s election on Saturday. So is the cost of living – and these issues are coming into focus like never before. Record-breaking bushfire and flood events in the past three years have killed more than 500 people and billions of animals. [BBC]

Flooding in Queensland (Kgbo, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “EU Reveals Its Plans To Stop Using Russian Gas” • More details have come from the European Commission on how it plans to end Europe’s dependence on Russian fossil fuels and speed up its shift to green energy. Russia supplies 40% of the EU’s natural gas and 27% of its imported oil. The EU sends Russia roughly €400 billion per year in payment. [BBC]

¶ “Tesla China Exported Two Batches Of Over 4,000 EVs In One Week” • According to Kankanews, two batches of EVs were shipped from Tesla China recently. The first one had 4,767 EVs. And then this second batch was shipped within a week. This shows a rapid comeback after businesses in Shanghai were closed by the pandemic. [CleanTechnica]

Tesla Gigafactory Shanghai export vehicles (Courtesy of Tesla)

¶ “Tesla Opens Superchargers To All EVs In Five More Countries” • Last year, Tesla announced a pilot program in which owners of EVs would gain access to Tesla Superchargers even if their cars aren’t made by Tesla. Now, Tesla has opened its Supercharger network to five more countries in Europe to encourage more people to drive EVs. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “‘Fossil Fuels Are A Dead End’: UN Chief Emphasizes Renewable Energy Projects” • United Nations general secretary Antonio Guterres, noting the global energy crises which prompted large economies to open new oil and gas fields, has proposed five critical actions to jump-start the transition to renewable energy. [Hindustan Times]

Coal-burning power plant (Sam LaRussa, Unsplash)

¶ “UN Calls For Trebling Of Renewable Energy Investment In Face Of Climate Crisis And Russia’s War” • UN Secretary-General Antonio Gutteres has unveiled a new five-point plan for speeding up the global energy transition, stating that renewables are “the only path to real energy security.” He called the plan “peace project of the 21st century.” [Edie.net]

¶ “Australian Rainforests Are Dying At Their Fastest Rate In Decades, Prompting A Climate Warning” • Tropical trees in the vast, green rainforests that cover northern Queensland are dying at double the previous rate since the 1980s, a study published in Nature found. The trees’ life expectancy is potentially halving with increased climate change and cyclones. [9News]

Rainforest (Ajit Singh, Unsplash)

¶ “Shell And Air Liquide Sign Ten-Year Contract For Renewable Electricity In Italy” • Shell Energy Europe Limited has signed a ten-year contract with the French industrial gas producer Air Liquide to provide 52 GWh per year of renewable electricity to power its industrial and medical gas production operations in north-east Italy. [PV Magazine]

US:

¶ “Electrify America Partners With Terra-Gen For 75 MW Of Renewable Energy” • Electrify America announced that it entered into a 15-year virtual power purchase agreement with developer Terra-Gen to build a 75-MW solar plant in San Bernardino, California. Solar Glow 1 is expected to generate 225,000 MWh per year. [CleanTechnica]

Solar Glow 1 solar power plant (Electrify America image)

¶ “Tesla Model 3 And Model Y Outsell All Other New Cars In California In Q1 2022” • Tesla Models 3 and Model Y EVs outsold all other new cars in California in the first quarter of 2022, even gas-powered vehicles. This is a major achievement for Tesla and a win for EV advocates, especially as California is the 5th-largest economy in the world. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Center Advancing Beyond-Lithium Battery Tech Generates Over 30 Patents” • Since 2013, DOE researchers have invented a diverse range of technologies in the ​“beyond lithium-ion” space. The primary focus has been on flow, lithium-sulfur, multivalent and solid-state batteries. It has yielded over 30 patents that are now available for licensing. [CleanTechnica]

Materials scientists (Image by Argonne National Laboratory)

¶ “Consumers Energy Agrees On 300-MW US Solar PPA” • In Michigan, Consumers Energy has agreed to a 300-MW PPA for two solar projects being developed in Genesee and Hillsdale counties by Chicago-based Ranger Power. The agreements are currently being reviewed by the Michigan Public Service Commission. [reNews]

¶ “NOAA Wind Forecasts Result In $150 Million In Energy Savings Every Year” • As electricity providers increasingly add renewable energy to their portfolios, a study in the Journal of Renewable and Sustainable Energy shows that more accurate wind forecasts generated by a NOAA weather model is saving large amounts of money. [NOAA Research]

Wind turbines (NREL image)

¶ “Minnesota’s High Winds This Spring Spark A Jump In Green Energy Production” • In one measure of how windy it was in Minnesota, utilities reported generating much more wind power this year. In Willmar, the gusty spring months have translated into record-breaking power production for the city power utility’s two wind turbines. [MPR News]

¶ “DOE Throws PG&E Lifeline To Keep The Aging Diablo Canyon Nuclear Plant Operating” • The US DOE is extending the deadline for Pacific Gas & Electric to submit required documents for getting part of a $6 billion federal fund to keep the aging Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant operating. But the lifeline may violate DOE guidance. [Common Dreams]

Have an utterly delightful day.

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May 18 Energy News

May 18, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “The ‘Lucky Country’ Is Facing A Crucial Test. The Result Will Affect Us All” • Australia is called the “Lucky Country” because of its vast resources. But it’s now sitting on the frontier of a climate crisis, with droughts and floods getting worse. The government response to climate change is among the world’s worst, and the voters are set to go to the polls. [CNN]

Australia (Graham Holtshausen, Unsplash)

¶ “How President Biden Can Win The Energy War With Russia And Lower Gas Prices” • Vladimir Putin is clearly weaponizing Europe’s dependence on Russian fossil fuels to deter support for Ukraine. This should serve as a wake-up call on energy and its connection to security, telling us why a rapid transition to clean energy is imperative. [CNN]

Science and Technology:

¶ “The Uncertain Fate Of Asia’s Monsoons” • Covid-19 slowed economic activity and decreased emissions of aerosols in India. The result was that in 2020, researchers were able to study the effects of a sharp decline in aerosols in the atmosphere, and at a broader level, map the impacts on the Indian and East Asian summer monsoons. [BBC]

Monsoon (Frankie Lopez, Unsplash)

World:

¶ “Europe Is Still Confused About How To Pay Its Russian Gas Bills” • Several European gas buyers have been preparing to work around the Kremlin’s demand that gas bills be paid in rubles. But the European Commission said companies opening an account in Russia’s Gazprombank to allow conversions from euros to rubles would fall foul of EU sanctions. [CNN]

¶ “India Offered To Help Fix The Global Food Crisis. Here’s Why It Backtracked” • A month ago, as Russia’s war in Ukraine pushed the world to the brink of a food crisis, India’s prime minister Narendra Modi offered to help countries facing shortages. Now, life-threatening heat worsened by climate change is set to stunt output, putting an end to that goal. [CNN]

Indian wheat crop (Wandering Indian, Unsplash)

¶ “Climate Change Swells Odds Of Record India, Pakistan Heatwaves” • Climate change makes record-breaking heatwaves in northwest India and Pakistan 100 times more likely, a Met Office study finds. The region should now expect a heatwave that exceeds the record temperatures seen in 2010 once every three years. It should be once every 312 years. [BBC]

¶ “Ford, Volvo Cars, And Broad Industry Coalition Appeals To EU For All New Cars And Vans Are Zero Emissions From 2035” • A broad cross-industry coalition including Ford of Europe and Volvo Cars are appealing to the EU to ensure all new cars and vans in Europe are zero emission from 2035 and to establish charging infrastructure targets. [CleanTechnica]

Volvo XC40 (Image courtesy of Volvo)

¶ “It’s Now Cheaper To Switch From Coal To Renewables Instead Of Coal To Gas, Report Shows” • According to the findings of climate analytics firm TransitionZero, it is now cheaper to switch from coal to clean energy, compared to switching from coal to gas, thanks to the falling cost of renewables and battery storage, coupled with the volatility of gas prices. [CNBC]

¶ “Brazilian Community Leaders Call On EU To Stop Promoting ‘Ecocide'” • Industrial soybean farming is causing destruction and conflict in Brazil, in part driven by the EU’s biofuel policies. Community leaders from Brazil have asked the EU to stop this ecocide in a joint press release from Transport & Environment and Rainforest Foundation Norway. [CleanTechnica]

Soybean field (James Baltz, Unsplash)

¶ “Japan Nuclear Regulator Grants Initial Nod to Fukushima Water Release Plan” • Japan’s Nuclear Regulation Authority granted an initial approval for a TEPCO plan for releasing water from the destroyed Fukushima nuclear power plant into sea. A decision on final approval will follow after a one-month public comment period. [USNews.com]

US:

¶ “Arcimoto Announces Manhattan Pilot Program For Last-Mile Delivery Drivers” • Arcimoto and JOCO, the world’s first light EV sharing platform for delivery drivers, have announced a pilot program in Manhattan, New York City, to field test the Arcimoto Deliverator, a three-wheel EV designed by Arcimoto for local and last-mile delivery. [CleanTechnica]

Arcimoto Deliverator (Photo courtesy Arcimoto)

¶ “Ford Mustang Mach-E Is Best Overall Car For 2022 – AAA” • You know electric vehicles are going mainstream when the American Automobile Association calls one their overall best car for the year. This time, the Ford Mustang Mach-E rose to the top of AAA’s Car Guide by scoring the most points, securing the Best Overall Car spot. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Renewable Energy Industry Warns Of ‘Concerning’ Impact Of Regulatory Uncertainty” • Regulatory uncertainty could restrain the growth of the renewable energy industry in coming years, according to a report by the American Clean Power Association. It said about 10 GW of the renewable energy capacity set to go online last year was delayed. [The Hill]

Solar PVs (American Public Power Association, Unsplash)

¶ “Governor Lamont Signs Key Climate Change And Energy Legislation” • Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont announced that he has signed into law two bills that further demonstrate the state’s commitment to mitigating the impacts of the climate crisis by decarbonizing the electric sector and expanding existing renewable energy programs. [CT.gov]

¶ “Environmentalists Oppose More Life For Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant” • There are dozens of environmental and anti-nuclear organizations opposing any attempt to extend the operating life of California’s last running nuclear power plant. They say the Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant is old, unsafe, and too close to earthquake faults. [KSBY]

Have an amazingly fine day.

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May 17 Energy News

May 17, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “What If States Turn Pavement Into Charging Stations?” • We are at a “What if?” moment with the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. What if states use the funds to build new traffic-clogged highways? Or what if they take a share of those funds and invest it in ways that will reduce our dependence on oil and help deliver a cleaner future? [CleanTechnica]

EVgo charging station (EVgo image)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Can Gravity Batteries Solve Our Energy Storage Problems?” • For energy storage, there are some placing their bets not on chemistry, but the limitless force that surrounds us all: gravity. And there are lots of ways to store energy by gravity, including pumped storage, moving weights up and down mine shafts, and with tanks of water in big buildings. [BBC]

World:

¶ “Sri Lanka Down To Last Day Of Petrol, New Prime Minister Says” • Sri Lanka’s new prime minister says the country is down to its last day of petrol as it faces its worst economic crisis in more than 70 years. In a televised address, He said the nation urgently needs $75 million of foreign currency in the next few days to pay for essential imports. [BBC]

Bread van in Colombo (Psubhashish, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “Will Swapping Out Electric Car Batteries Catch On?” • Chinese electric carmaker Nio is a new player in the EV scene in Norway, and it has a new approach to batteries. The customer buys the car and leases a battery, but instead the battery being charged, it gets completely swapped out for a new one every time it gets low. The swap takes only five minutes. [BBC]

¶ “Carbonfuture Partners With Bioenergie For 17,500 Tonnes Of Carbon Removal” • Switzerland’s Bioenergie is joining forces with Carbonfuture (the carbon removal platform) for a 17,500 tonne carbon removal delivery. The plant will take residual biomass in the form of wood and convert it into biochar through pyrolysis. [CleanTechnica]

Carbonfuture biochar (Carbonfuture image)

¶ “Altris Commits To Sodium-Ion Battery Factory In Sweden” • The cost of lithium has increased by 700% since the beginning of this year, so sodium-ion batteries are attractive. Altris, a Swedish company deeply involved in sodium-ion batteries, will build its first commercial facility at the Sandvik Materials Technology site in Sandviken, Sweden. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “African Renewable Energy To Power UK Homes With New Subsea Cable” • Octopus Energy Group and Xlinks will partner to build a subsea cable to deliver 3.6 GW of renewable energy from Morocco to the UK. Once complete, the project will be capable of supplying 8% of Great Britain’s electricity needs at £48/MWh ($59/MWh). [ESI Africa]

Morocco-UK subsea cable (Courtesy of Xlinks)

¶ “Enel Unveils Plans To Decarbonise Grid Networks” • In a meeting with industry stakeholders in Rome, Enel detailed how it intends to collaborate more generally with the industry on standards for network components that meet the criteria of efficiency, safety, quality, and sustainability, in compliance with the requirements of net zero emissions. [reNews]

¶ “How Drax Plans To Build A Massive Power Station Inside A Scottish Mountain, Creating 900 Jobs” • Bosses at Drax said plans have been submitted to expand their existing Cruachan Power Station to increase the total amount of energy the site can produce to 1.04 GW. The enlarged hydro plant will be used for pumped storage. [Yorkshire Post]

Cruachan hydro plant (Drax image)

¶ “KKR Boosts Renewable Power Presence With $2.2 Billion Deal For ContourGlobal” • US firm KKR agreed to buy London-listed power company ContourGlobal for £1.75 billion ($2.16 billion) in an effort to expand its presence in renewable energy. Under the deal, KKR will pay a 36% premium to the company’s closing price on Monday. [US News Money]

¶ “Lightsource BP To Build Aquaculture PV Plant In Taiwan” • Lightsource BP is working with Green Rock Energy on the co-development of a 150-MW project co-locating solar with aquaculture in Taiwan. The Budai project will be one of the largest fishery solar farms in Taiwan. Construction is expected to commence in June 2023. [reNews]

Floating solar power (SolarWriter, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “Germany To Reject EU Green Investment Label For Nuclear Power” • Germany will oppose EU plans to include nuclear energy as a sustainable investment in its taxonomy for labelling green investments, the government said. The German position is that Nuclear energy is not sustainable and should therefore not be part of the taxonomy. [News Today]

US:

¶ “Spiral Welding Can Bring Taller Wind Turbines To The US Southeast” • The Southeast’s low wind speeds are holding back wind energy in the region. The problem could be resolved by taller wind turbines to harvest more optimal wind speeds higher off the ground. Taller turbines can be made at the site by special welding technology. [CleanTechnica]

Building taller turbines (Courtesy of Keystone Tower Systems) Please click on the image to enlarge it.

¶ “Tesla Semi Order Books Are Open” • The Tesla Semi has had a 4-year gestation period, but customers can now place orders for the trucks. Until now, companies could reserve them but could not actually order one. The truck will have four electric motors powering the rear wheels and will be available with a range of either 300 or 500 miles. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “GM Teams Up With Red Hat For Linux Vehicle Operating System” • GM announced that it is working with a well-known Linux company, Red Hat, to work on vehicle operating systems. This could be a big deal. It means that the operating system at the core of GM’s vehicles will be based on Linux, the same OS that runs most of the internet. [CleanTechnica]

Have a sensationally pleasant day.

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May 16 Energy News

May 16, 2022

Opinion:

¶ “The East Coast Diesel Crisis Highlights The Urgency For Widespread EV Adoption” • News on availability of diesel oil has some trucking companies worried, according to a report from FreightWaves. There are solutions that would help both truckers and everyone else. One critical solution is switching from diesel vehicles to EVs. [CleanTechnica]

Tesla Semi (Image courtesy of Tesla)

¶ “Elon Musk On Tesla’s Aspiration Of Reaching 20 Million Cars Made Per Year By 2030” • Elon Musk shared his thoughts on his aspiration to produce 20 million electric cars annually by 2030 in an interview. The basis of the aspiration is his belief that Tesla must replace 1% of the world fleet per year to have a meaningful effect on climate change. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “How The US Can Speed Its Shift To Climate-Smart Energy” • In the US, President Biden has set goals consistent with the IPCC findings, but will the country act fast enough to meet this fast enough to have the effects we need? One thing is clear: To make the changes needed to stop global warming, we need to build a lot of infrastructure, very quickly. [CleanTechnica]

EV charging from Electrify America (Electrify America image)

¶ “Russian Energy Insecurity Fuels the Green Transition” • The last few months make it perfectly clear that overdependence on foreign energy is a national vulnerability. IEA Executive Director Fatih Birol said, “Nobody is under any illusions anymore.” The rush to offload Russian energy gives the offshore wind industry a powerful new argument. [The Maritime Executive]

World:

¶ “European Ministers Back CO₂ Emission Standards For Cars And Vans” • Environment Committee MEPs are in favor of a pathway towards zero-emission road mobility in 2035 for new passenger cars and light commercial vehicles. The plan would mitigate negative economic impact of the transition with targeted funding. [CleanTechnica]

Volvo Car charging (Image courtesy of Volvo)

¶ “Tesla’s Move Into India Is On Hold According To Reports” • Tesla’s move into India is currently on hold, Reuters reports, adding that Tesla has abandoned a search for a showroom space while reassigning some of its domestic team. This, according to three anonymous sources, is after Tesla failed to secure lower import taxes in India. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Malaysia Prime Minister Wants Tesla To Open A Plant” • Malaysian Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob wants Tesla to open a plant in Malaysia. He recently invited several Fortune 500 companies to invest in his nation, but he especially mentioned Tesla. “I’ve suggested to Tesla to invest in Malaysia in producing electric cars.” [CleanTechnica]

Tesla logo (Austin Ramsey, Unsplash)

¶ “Government To Ban New Fossil Fuel Electricity Generation” • The Government of New Zealand is planning to ban electricity companies from investing in new baseload generation from fossil fuels like coal and gas. New Zealand had already banned new offshore oil and gas exploration in 2018, and committed to 100% renewable electricity by 2030. [NZ Herald]

¶ “Researcher Says $8 Million May Get Stewart Island Off Diesel Energy” • A research fellow at Victoria University of Wellington says $8 million in capital expenditure can get Stewart Island off diesel power. Dr Soheil​ Mohseni​ has designed an energy network for the island as part of his PhD studies at Victoria University of Wellington, in New Zealand. [Stuff.co.nz]

Dr Soheil​ Mohseni​ (Education NZ Think New Initiative)

¶ “Hundreds Protest Over Building Of £20 Billion Sizewell C Nuclear Plant As Government Delay Decision” • With banners reading “chaos coast coming soon”, “EDF-off” and “we don’t want to be beside the C”, a crowd of protestors marched from Leiston to Sizewell beach in Suffolk, protesting construction of the proposed £20 billion Sizewell C plant. [ITV]

US:

¶ “California Is In A Water Crisis, Yet Usage Is Way Up. Officials Are Focused On The Wrong Problem, Advocates Say” • A group advocating for affordable access to clean water, said that urban communities don’t seem to understand the severity of the water crisis in the way that rural communities do, where water could literally stop flowing out of the tap. [CNN]

Napa Valley (Fredrick Lee, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “Consumers Can Soon Buy Solar Panels At IKEA: Here’s When The National Rollout Begins” • A leading furniture and home furnishings retailer is stepping up its commitment to renewable energy with a new solar panel launch. IKEA has partnered with SunPower Corporation to make home solar panels more easily accessible to US customers. [Benzinga]

¶ “Ørsted To Acquire 121-MW Illinois Wind Project” • Ørsted has agreed to acquire the 121-MW Ford County wind farm in Illinois from funds managed by the Ares Management Corporation’s Infrastructure Opportunities strategy for an undisclosed price. Ford County is contracted via power purchase agreements with Mars, Silgan Containers, and BHJ USA. [reNews]

Wind project (Ørsted image)

¶ “US Wildfire Dangers Seen Spreading East As Climate Risks Grow” • From New Jersey to Georgia, states thousands of miles from wildfire hotspots in the west face a growing risk from forest blazes as global warming makes “safe havens” increasingly rare, researchers warned. Wildfires pose at least a moderate risk to more than 30 million US properties. [Devdiscourse]

¶ “Citizen Science Shows That Climate Change Is Rapidly Reshaping Long Island Sound” • A study based on decades of student work shows how rapidly temperatures in eastern Long Island Sound have increased over the past forty years. At 0.45°C per decade, Long Island sound is warming four times faster than the global ocean. [Yahoo News]

Have an astutely guided day.

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May 15 Energy News

May 15, 2022

Opinion:

¶ “How We Can Stop Lithium Mining From Depleting Water Resources, Draining Wetlands, And Harming Communities In South America” • To deal with climate change, we must move away from fossil fuels and toward clean energy. However, many green technologies depend on lithium, and extracting lithium can be destructive. [CleanTechnica]

Uyuni Salt Flat (Samuel Scrimshaw, Unsplash)

¶ “Building US Infrastructure Fast And Smart” • The Biden Administration released a Permitting Action Plan this week. The plan promises to deliver infrastructure investments on time and on budget that will revitalize communities across the country. The plan is built on five key elements, but they needs actions that are not in the plan. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Creaky US Power Grid Threatens Progress On Renewables, EVs” • The nation’s transmission network, plagued by outages and increasingly severe weather, needs a trillion-dollar overhaul to handle the Biden administration’s promised clean-energy revolution and deal with climate change. Unfortunately, no one is taking charge of that problem. [Reuters]

Transmission lines (Ernest Brillo, Unsplash)

¶ “Iceland Serves As A Role Model To Other Countries For Renewable Energy” • Iceland runs entirely on renewable energy, harnessing the land’s natural hydro and geothermal power sources to sustainably power the country. In contrast, only 16% of our energy in North Carolina comes from renewable resources. Iceland may be worth studying. [WRAL]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Study Says Climate Change, Water Sports Posing Threat To Sea Turtles” • A new study conducted by the University of Exeter has found that climate change and water sports are posing a threat to sea turtles. The study, which was published in the journal Endangered Species Research, shows that thousands of sea turtles are dying every year. [WION]

Sea turtle (Giorgia Doglioni, Unsplash)

¶ “Size Matters For Speeding Up Nuclear Waste Cleanup” • A team of researchers at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory designed and demonstrated a particle separation technology that may decrease the time and money needed for cleanup. The application is described in Chemical Engineering & Processing: Process Intensification. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ “£200 Million Boost To Rollout Of Hundreds More Zero-Emission Heavy Goods Vehicles” • Transport Minister Trudy Harrison announced at the Logistics UK’s Future Logistics Conference that over £200 million of UK government funding will be injected into an extensive zero emission road freight demonstrator program. [CleanTechnica]

FUSO eCanter in London (Daimler image)

¶ “BYD Atto 3: As Easy As Ordering Takeaway” • At a time when it seems almost impossible to buy a new car, one Australian has found that buying a BYD Atto 3 was as easy as ordering takeaway. Not only that, but the car is available with only a 3 month waiting period. EV Direct is making 1500 BYD Atto 3 electric crossovers available per month starting in July. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Supply Chain Issues Are Getting Worse, And Climate Change Is A Main Culprit” • Supply chain disruptions have caused problems from bare grocery store shelves to shortages of microchips. The product shortages are caused in part by the fact that most of our goods are transported across long distances to be used for manufacturing. [Salon]

Shipping (Dominik Lückmann, Unsplash)

¶ “Investors Eye Renewable Power Plants In The Philippines” • Negros Occidental governor Eugenio Jose Lacson revealed that two investors were eyeing to build renewable power plants in the province. According to Lacson, investors were eyeing to build a hydro power plant along the Bago River and a solar power plant in the town of Hinoba-an. [Panay News]

¶ “Drones Seized At UK Nuclear Bases After A ‘Swarm’ And Reports Of ‘Red Lights’” • Drones have been seized by security personnel at nuclear facilities with one report of a ‘swarm’ at a UK installation, newly released files show. The unmanned aerial systems were sighted at plants across the country amid concerns over the security threat they pose. [Metro]

Drone (Dose Media, Unsplash)

US:

¶ “Texans Asked To Turn Up Thermostats After Sweltering Heat Knocks Six Power Plants Offline” • The Electric Reliability Council of Texas made the appeal in a statement saying that soaring temperatures increased demand and caused six power generation facilities to trip offline. That resulted in the loss of about 2,900 MW of electric power. [CNN]

¶ “Hydrogen Valley Vision For Washington Gets Boost From Aussies’ Proposed Plant” • An Australian company, Fortescue Future Industries, is eying property next to the soon-to-close coal power plant in Centralia, Washington, to build a big hydrogen fuel production facility. The company publicized its plans during a hydrogen symposium. [OPB]

Hydrogen production plant (Fortescue Future Industries)

¶ “Elon Musk Is Confident In Tesla’s Ability To Sell All The EVs It Makes” • Tesla CEO Elon Musk is confident of Tesla’s ability to sell all of the EVs it makes. Elon Musk’s statement was part of an answer to a question about the Twitter purchase in an interview with Peter Campbell of the Financial Times during the Financial Times Future of the Car summit. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Massive Solar Project Proposed In Rio Rancho” • The City of Rio Rancho could become home to one of the largest solar farms in New Mexico. Clenera, a private renewable energy company based in Boise, Idaho, wants to build a solar plant of up to 400 MW capacity on about 3,100 acres of unused land on a part of Quail Ranch. [Albuquerque Journal]

Have a delightfully peaceful day.

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May 14 Energy News

May 14, 2022

World:

¶ “Climate Change Doubled Chance Of South African Floods That Killed 435 People, Analysis Shows” • Human-induced climate change made the extreme rainfall that triggered deadly floods in South Africa in April heavier and twice as likely to happen, according to a rapid analysis published by the World Weather Attribution project. [CNN]

Subtropical Depression Issa (NASA, public domain, cropped)

¶ “Drax Renewable Energy Storage Scheme Approved” • Plans to create a battery storage facility for renewable energy at Drax, in Yorkshire, have been approved, despite objections. The site will hold energy produced at Drax Power Station when demand from the National Grid is low. Selby District Council gave permission for the 0.7 hectare (1.73 acre) site. [BBC]

¶ “East Africa Drought: ‘The Suffering Here Has No Equal'” • In a desolate village in Turkana, Northern Kenya, villagers pray for rain, but it just won’t come. A fourth season of failed rains is causing one of the worst droughts that East Africa has seen in decades, and this village, which is home to 3,600 families, is one of the areas hardest hit. [BBC]

Turkana, Kenya in 2020 (Imani Manyara, Unsplash)

¶ “Russian Operator To Suspend Electricity Supply To Finland” • Citing problems with payments, Russian energy supplier RAO Nordic says it will suspend deliveries of electricity to Finland from May 14. The Finnish grid operator said Russia provided only a small percentage of the country’s electricity and that it could be replaced from other sources. [BBC]

¶ “Fiat 500e Shines In 21% Plugin Share Market Of France” • Plugins continue to rise in France, with last month’s plugin vehicle registrations divided between 12,692 battery EVs (12% of the overall auto market) and 10,234 plugin hybrid EVs (9% share of the auto market). The former jumped 33% year over year while the latter was down by 8%. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Volkswagen Extends The Life Of The E-Up!, Plans ID.2 And ID.1 Models” • Volkswagen announced that the e-Up!, a small electric car the company started selling in 2013, will continue in the lineup until 2025. In addition, a decision has been made to move forward with an ID.2 model and to begin development of an ID.1 car as well. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Norway Turns Its Back On Gas And Oil To Be A Renewable Superpower” • Norway has unveiled plans for a major expansion of its offshore wind energy production by 2040, aiming to turn a country that has built its wealth on oil and gas into an exporter of renewable electricity. The government set a target to develop 30 GW of offshore wind capacity by 2040. [Euronews]

Offshore wind turbine (Grahame Jenkins, Unsplash)

¶ “The Top 5: The Net Zero Commitments of Mining Firms” • Going green comes with expensive up-front costs for mining companies. In some cases, there also arises the need for the invention of new, lower emissions technologies to squeeze out the carbon. Here is a list of the top five companies for net zero commitments. [Saur Energy International]

¶ “France’s Power Sector Further Strained By Extended Outages And Repairs” • France’s nuclear power plants are to have repairs and extended outages, leading to a 25% decrease in power output next winter, an analysis from Baringa Partners LLP said. The shortage will happen just as EU countries scramble for energy as they reduce imports from Russia. [Oil Price]

Cruas nuclear power plant (Yelkrokoyade, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “Uganda To Build East Africa’s First Nuclear Power Plant” • Uganda is set to build East Africa’s first nuclear power plant after acquiring land for the project, according to Bloomberg. The government did not reveal where the plant will be located. In 2017, Uganda said that it wanted to build a 2,000-MW nuclear power plant by 2032. [AF24NEWS]

¶ “Rolls Royce Explains Why Wylfa And Trawsfynydd Are Top Targets For Mini-Nuclear Plants In The UK” • Rolls Royce SMR says North Wales sites are among its top targets for mini-nuclear plants in the UK. The venture is developing SMR tech with plans to roll-out 12 plants in the UK. The company hopes to provide power to the UK grid by 2029. [North Wales Live]

Artist’s impression of plant (Rolls Royce image)

US:

¶ “Could Solar Power Solve Puerto Rico’s Energy Nightmare?” • After two hurricanes and a major earthquake left Puerto Rico’s power grid in tatters, the US government’s disaster agency set aside a support package of roughly $10 billion. The funds were released nearly two years ago, but almost nothing has been spent. It is a golden opportunity for solar installations. [BBC]

¶ “Interior Nixes Oil And Gas Lease Sales In Alaska And Gulf Of Mexico” • The Department of Interior is cancelling three oil and gas lease sales off the coasts of Alaska and in the Gulf of Mexico. The leases would have opened up more than a million acres for development in oceans ecosystems vital to endangered species, fishermen, Native peoples, and others. [CleanTechnica]

Alaska (Landon Arnold, Unsplash)

¶ “Ford’s EV Sales Are Way Up, With The F-150 Lightning Leading The Way” • Ford announced very good sales numbers for its EVs, with overall, sales up 139% from 2021. The new F-150 lead in sales, sales of Mustang Mach-E electric crossovers were up 61% in April from May, and April’s E-Transit electric work van sales were up 62.3%. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “US Energy-Related CO₂ Emissions Rose 6% In 2021” • In 2021, US energy-related CO₂ emissions increased by 296 million metric tons, or 6%, compared with 2020 levels. This increase followed a rise in economic activity and energy consumption when the initial economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic began to subside. [CleanTechnica]

Have an ineffably enthralling day.

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May 13 Energy News

May 13, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “Fight Fascists And Save Money: Go Electric” • The price of a gallon of gasoline is surging, straining drivers’ pocketbooks. At the pump prices seem extreme, but we’ve been here before. Gas prices were similarly high in 2006, 2008, and for a while after 2011. For US consumers, a switch from fossil fuels to electricity is one solution. [CleanTechnica]

Please click on the image to enlarge it.

¶ “A Fair Green Deal For The Last Coal Plant In Mississippi” • Some power plants are protected by complex arrangements of long-term contracts that insulate them from competition. RMI has developed a novel approach to accelerate the transition of these plants to clean energy and provide fair compensation to impacted workers and communities. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Six Years Late And 250% Over Budget: Georgia’s Newest Nuclear Plant” • The Municipal Energy Authority of Georgia, announced that the Vogtle 3 and 4 nuclear generating stations approaching completion in that state are now likely to cost roughly $34 billion. They were originally estimated to cost $14 billion and be operational in 2017. [Oil Price]

Vogtle construction in 2011 (Charles C Watson Jr, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

World:

¶ “Queensland Floods: Residents Evacuate As Australia Faces New Emergency” • Hundreds of Australians have been told to evacuate their homes as Queensland faces another flooding emergency. The storm system causing the problem has now moved south towards Queensland’s heavily populated southeast, which includes Brisbane. [BBC]

¶ “Europe Is Running Out Of Time To Find Alternatives To Russian Gas” • The security of Europe’s gas supplies is getting shakier. Soon after Ukraine reduced the flow of natural gas across its territory into Europe, blaming interference by Russian troops, Gazprom suspended supplies through a Polish pipeline and cut off gas to a distributor in Germany. [CNN]

¶ “LPG Price: Millions Hit Hard As Cooking Gas Cost Soars In India” • Food and fuel costs have been soaring. Last week, India’s central bank announced its first interest rate hike in two years in an attempt to slow inflation. Experts say any increase in the price of essential commodities such as cooking gas cylinders will force people to change priorities. [BBC]

¶ “Saving The Books And Cooking The Planet” • Oil and gas companies are increasingly using mergers and acquisitions to offload emissions from their balance sheets and meet corporate climate targets without actually reducing emissions, according to an Environmental Defense Fund report that examined mergers and acquisitions in 2017 through 2021. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Green Genius Plans To Develop 700 MW Of Renewable Energy Capacity” • Renewable energy firm Green Genius plans to develop 500 MW of solar power plant capacity in Lithuania by 2025. The company also intends to develop wind farms with 200 MW of capacity in the country. An investment of €750 million ($783 million) will be required. [Power Technology]

¶ “GM Plans To Return To European Market With EVs And Mobility Services” • For 90 years, GM had a presence in Europe through its Opel and Vauxhall brands, though it struggled to make a profit there. But recently, as the EV revolution picks up steam, CEO Mary Barra said that GM is looking to re-enter the EU as an all-EV player. [CleanTechnica]

Electric delivery vans (Courtesy of FedEx)

¶ “Household Energy Bills Could Rise Even MORE To Cover Costs Of Building New Nuclear Plants” • Britons already struggling to pay their energy bills may be asked to have to pay even more to fund the Government’s nuclear power push in the form of a new monthly levy, according to Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng. [Daily Mail]

US:

¶ “As Water Runs Short In California, Commission Rejects $1.4 Billion Desalination Plant” • As a water crisis looms in California, the state’s coastline protection agency unanimously rejected the development of a $1.4 billion desalination plant in Huntington Beach that would have converted ocean water into municipal water for Orange County residents. [CNN]

Canal, Venice California, May 2016 (NewtonCourt, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “Coastal Fire: California Mansions Burn As Wildfires Spread” • Hundreds have been forced to evacuate from their homes due to a swift-moving wildfire in southern California that has torched some 20 mansions so far. The Coastal fire in Orange County, south of Los Angeles, has grown to 199 acres since it began on Wednesday. [BBC]

¶ “US Distributed Wind Energy Potential Can Meet Half Of National Electricity Demand” • A study funded by the Wind Energy Technologies Office used highly detailed data and new modeling techniques to identify sites with the highest potential for distributed wind energy. Distributed wind has nearly 1,400 GW of economic potential. [CleanTechnica]

Wind turbines in Alaska (James Brooks, USCG, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “Two Affordable Used Electrified Cars Available Nationwide” • One basic problem for finding a good used EV is that the more affordable models don’t have the range or fast charging for trips. A top solution to this problem is to rent a car for trips. Hertz is now renting out Teslas, which opened up new possibilities! Now you have choices for good used EVs. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Two Dozen States Can Meet 100% Of Electricity Demand With Renewables By 2035” • Since its founding in 2017, the US Climate Alliance has grown to 24 states and one territory. They represent 56% of the US population, generate 62% of the country’s gross domestic product, and are responsible for 43% of the country’s annual carbon emissions. [CleanTechnica]

Have an exquisitely pretty day.

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May 12 Energy News

May 12, 2022

Science and Technology:

¶ “Reducing Harmful Air Pollution Has Led To A Surprising Effect – More Hurricanes In The North Atlantic” • A study published in Science Advances found that as aerosol pollution decreased in the decades following the US Clean Air Act and similar actions in Europe, the ocean could absorb more sunlight, which fueled more storms. [CNN]

Hurricane Sam (NASA image)

World:

¶ “Ukraine Halts Some Russian Gas Flows To Europe” • Ukraine suspended the flow of some Russian natural gas to Europe, blaming Moscow for diverting supplies from the vital pipeline network. The Ukrainian gas transmission system operator said it decided to suspend operations at a major transit point because of “interference by the occupying forces.” [CNN]

¶ “33% Of New Cars Sold In Netherlands Now Plugin Cars” • In the context of a falling overall market, down 7% YOY in April, the Dutch plugin EV market has continued to grow, reaching 33% last month. Pure electrics had 20% of all new vehicle sales, a surge of 98% YOY last month. Overall, the YTD market share for plugin vehicles rose to 30%. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Stellantis EV Plans Save Canadian Automotive Plants” • The future of two automotive plants in Ontario has been up in the air, but Stellantis announced that it will invest $3.6 billion to update the plants. While the plants will make combustion cars in addition to EVs, Stellantis will also partner with LG to build a $3 billion battery factory. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “European Energy And Vestas Forge Offshore Turbine Team” • European Energy and Vestas have teamed up for a joint venture aiming to develop and build three of Vestas’ new V236 15.0-MW offshore wind turbine at three test positions which are now under development by European Energy about four km off the coast near the city of Frederikshavn. [reNews]

Wind turbines (European Energy image)

¶ “EU’s Renewable Power Capacity Additions Jump 30% In 2021” • The EU added a record 36 GW of renewable power capacity in 2021, exceeding the 2020 additions by 30%. The world also set a fresh record in new renewables capacity in 2021, adding almost 295 GW, up 6% against the 2020 growth, an International Energy Agency report says. [Balkan Green Energy News]

¶ “BP Bids For New Dutch Offshore Wind Leases” • BP submitted bids for two offshore wind leases in the Netherlands that together have the potential for generating capacity of 1,400 MW. The bids were submitted in the tender process for rights to develop the Hollandse Kust West Wind Farm Zone sites numbered 6 and 7, about 53 km off the country’s west coast. [reNews]

Netherlands (BP image)

¶ “IAEA Restores Remote Transmission Of Safeguards Data From Ukraine’s Chernobyl Plant” • Remote transmission of safeguards data from the war-inflicted Ukraine’s Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant to the International Atomic Energy Agency has been “fully re-established,” Director-General of the IAEA Rafael Mariano Grossi, said. [Republic World]

¶ “First Floating Tidal Power Delivered To Nova Scotia Grid” • Sustainable Marine said it has successfully harnessed the tidal currents in Canada’s Bay of Fundy, delivering the first floating in-stream tidal power to Nova Scotia’s grid. The project has enabled Sustainable Marine to acquire skills and resources to deliver turnkey projects. [Marine Link]

Tidal turbines and installation ship (Sustainable Marine image)

US:

¶ “House Natural Resources Committee Refers Investigation Involving Former Trump Officials To DOJ” • The House Natural Resources Committee is referring an investigation involving “potentially criminal conduct” about a policy reversal involving former Trump administration officials to the Department of Justice, a letter obtained by CNN shows. [CNN]

¶ “This California Desert Could Hold The Key To Powering All Of America’s Electric Cars” • Lithium is abundant in the Salton Sea Basin. People working to extract it say there could be enough to make batteries for all the electric cars expected to be built in this country for many years, freeing the US from reliance on foreign lithium suppliers. [CNN]

Salton Sea (Sherman Yang, Unsplash)

¶ “Elon Musk Hints CCS Plugs Coming To Tesla Supercharger Locations In The US” • In a Financial Times interview, Elon Musk said, “We’ve already opened Tesla Superchargers to other electric cars in Europe, and we intend to roll that out worldwide. It’s a little trickier in the US because we have a different connector than the rest of the industry.” [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Just Don’t Say “Climate Change,” And Manchin Is On Board With West Virginia Wind Power” • West Virginia wind power is on the rise, just don’t mention the term “climate change” to Senator Joe Manchin. Black Rock’s 23 state-of-the-art wind turbines are now part of an “all-of-the-above” approach to West Virginia’s energy policy. [CleanTechnica]

Wind turbines (Clearway Energy image)

¶ “US Ammonia Prices Rise In Response To Higher International Natural Gas Prices” • The US price of ammonia, the primary source of nitrogen fertilizer, has risen by a factor of six in the past two years, mostly since March, 2021. Ammonia prices generally follow natural gas prices because ammonia is produced primarily from natural gas. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “New 68-MW Solar Project Will Power 30 Electric Co-Ops In Georgia” • Green Power EMC, the renewable energy supplier for 38 Georgia Electric Membership Corporations, and Silicon Ranch were joined today by elected officials and leaders from Houston County to dedicate the new 68-MW (AC) Houston Solar project near Perry, Georgia. [Solar Power World]

Have an endlessly superb day.

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May 11 Energy News

May 11, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “The Insanity Of Expanding Nuclear Energy” • Former nuclear regulatory top dogs from the US, France, Germany and Great Britain issued a joint statement in January strenuously opposing any expansion of nuclear power to combat climate change. There is not a single good reason to build new nuclear plants, and many reasons not to. [E/The Environmental Magazine]

Old sign (Ilja Nedilko, Unsplash)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Tulane Scientists Develop Powerful Family Of 2-D Materials” • A team of scientists at the Tulane University School of Science and Engineering has developed a new family of two-dimensional materials. Researchers say the development has some promising applications, including in advanced electronics and high-capacity batteries. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ “Great Barrier Reef Suffers Sixth Mass Bleaching Event With 91% Of Reefs Surveyed Affected” • Warmer waters from climate change caused coral bleaching in 91% of reefs surveyed along the Great Barrier Reef this year, an Australian government agency said. It was the sixth mass bleaching event of the reef on record and the fourth since 2016. [CNN]

Bleached coral (Vardhanjp, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “Putin Tells Local Officials To Do Better On Fighting Siberian Fires” • Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered regional officials to do more to tackle fires raging in Siberia, after at least eight people were killed over the weekend and hundreds of buildings burned. Putin warned against any repeat of last year’s fires, which set a record for Russia. [CNN]

¶ “Australia Election 2022: What Will The Vote Mean For Climate Policies?” • When Australia heads to the polls on 21 May, the outcome could be significant for the planet’s future. Still reliant on coal for most of its electricity, it is one of the dirtiest countries per capita. But it’s also one of the nations most at risk from climate change. [BBC]

Wind farm in Western Australia (Harry Cunningham, Unsplash)

¶ “Which Corporations Pledge To Reduce Business Flying?” • A new ranking of corporate air travel reveals that work is underway to reduce emissions by businesses, but more action is needed. The ranking, launched as part of T&E and Stand.Earth’s new Travel Smart campaign, grades 230 US and European companies according to nine indicators. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Glacier Dam Overwhelmed By South Asian Heatwave” • A record heat wave accelerated ice and snow melt, feeding a lake near the Shishpar glacier in northern Pakistan’s Hunza District so quickly it breached its ice dam and dumped 10,000 cubic feet of water per second down the valley. It wiped out a bridge and two power plants, and it flooded a village. [CleanTechnica]

Hassanabad, Hunza (Zachaboi, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “Green Power Growth To Flatline Without Stronger Policies ‘In Next Six Months’, IEA Warns” • The next six months will be crucial to shaping the outlook for renewable energy beyond 2023, according to the International Energy Agency. Green power growth is set to flatline unless governments strengthen policy measures. [Recharge News]

¶ “Renewables ‘Primed For Record 2022’” • Renewable power is set to break global records in 2022, despite higher costs and supply chain bottlenecks, according to the International Energy Agency. The world added a record 295 GW of renewable power capacity in 2021, but 320 GW of renewable capacity is expected to be added this year. [reNews]

Offshore wind workers (EnBW image)

¶ “SA Renewables Surge Bringing Down Energy Prices, But Consumers Miss Out” • South Australia has “substantially lower” wholesale electricity prices because of its world-leading uptake of renewable energy, but the savings are not being passed through to customers, a report confirmed. Reforms will be needed for consumers to benefit. [Renew Economy]

¶ “Norway Unveils 30-GW Offshore Wind Goal By 2040” • The Norwegian Prime Minister, Jonas Gahr Store, has unveiled plans to build 30 GW of offshore wind off Norway’s coast by 2040. The government said the ambition is that almost as much new power will be produced from offshore wind as is produced in total in Norway today. [reNews]

Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Store (Government of Norway)

US:

¶ “In Las Vegas, Grass Lawns Are Outlawed” • The removal of lush green grass is happening a lot these days in Las Vegas, as it is now illegal to grow even small lawns for aesthetic use. There are many issues with lawns, including build-ups of chemicals, but the biggest problem is that there just isn’t enough water anymore to irrigate them. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Hyundai And Kia Pondering New EV Factory In Georgia” • Hyundai wants to construct a factory in the US to build EVs, and is considering locating it in Georgia. Rivian says it wants to build a new $5 billion factory there, too. But a political fight is raging over the factories, with one candidate for governor claiming they threaten aquafers. [CleanTechnica]

Kia (Image by Kia)

¶ “Fifth Third Sets New Operational Sustainability Targets By 2030” • In Cincinnati, Fifth Third Bank announced six new sustainability targets to be achieved by 2030. These targets build upon the bank’s initial five goals set in 2017, which established the foundation for Fifth Third to reduce the environmental impact in its own operations. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “The Navajo Nation’s Transition To Renewable Energy: What And Where To Expect It” • Since the closure of the Peabody Black Mesa coal mine near the four corners region in northeast Arizona, the Navajo Nation has established a transition from coal to renewable energy sources, including a solar power plant in Kayenta, Arizona. [Navajo-Hopi Observer]

Have an insightfully inspired day.

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May 10 Energy News

May 10, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “Ford Is Making Electric Vehicles That Deliver Stuff, So Why Can’t USPS?” • The new Ford E-Transit van is quiet, compact, connected, and only weighs one metric tonne. So, why doesn’t the US Postal Service insist that its fleet contractor build delivery vans along those lines instead of pushing more gasmobiles onto neighborhood streets? [CleanTechnica]

Ford electric van (Courtesy of Ford Motor Company)

Science and Technology:

¶ “NREL Scientists Advance Renewable Hydrogen Production Method” • An Analysis from scientists at the US Department of Energy National Renewable Energy Laboratory shows evidence that perovskite materials could hold the potential to play an important role in a process to produce hydrogen in a renewable manner. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

World:

¶ “Climate Change: ‘Fifty-Fifty Chance’ Of Breaching 1.5°C Warming Limit” • The likelihood of crossing a key global warming threshold has risen significantly, according to a new analysis. UK Met Office researchers say that there’s now around a fifty-fifty chance that the world will have warmed by more than 1.5°C within the next five years. [BBC]

Climate crime scene (Ehimetalor Akhere Unuabona, Unsplash)

¶ “UK Climate Refugees Who Won’t Leave” • The Welsh village of Fairbourne is facing an existential crisis. The tiny village has been identified as being at high risk of future flooding because of climate change, with residents told it is beyond saving. The Gywnedd Council plans to “decommission” the entire village and turn it back into marshland. [BBC]

¶ “World’s Largest Solar Power Carport Launched” • A 35-MW solar power carport with 90,000 solar panels was activated in the Netherlands. It is located on the parking site used for the annual Lowlands music festival, which has tens of thousands of visitors each year. The parking area covers 35 hectares and has 15,000 parking spaces. [CleanTechnica]

Carport groundskeeper hard at work (Solarfields image)

¶ “Volkswagen ID.3 GTX – Dual Motor Hot Hatch Coming In 2023” • The Volkswagen ID.3 is the spiritual successor to the Golf – a battery-electric 5-passenger hatchback for the 21st century. It will have the same powertrain as its ID.4 GTX and ID.5 GTX siblings, giving it 299 horsepower and 339 pound-feet (460 Nm) of torque. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “BYD K6 Minibuses Being Piloted In Kenya’s Matatu Industry” • A huge chunk of the pollution in large cities such as Nairobi is from emissions from the transport sector. Adoption of electric buses is bound to help reduce emission levels. The electric BYD K6 minibus, with a seating capacity of around 20 passengers could be a big help. [CleanTechnica]

BYD K6 Minibus (Wahsaw, CC BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “BP Stake Swoop To Lead $36 Billion Asian Renewable Energy Hub Green Hydrogen Mega-Project: Report” • BP will soon announce a deal for an about 30% equity stake in the $36 billion AREH, which plans to tap 16 GW of onshore wind and 10 GW of PV for production of renewable H2 and ammonia, according to The Australian. [Recharge News]

¶ “Avoid Using Gas As ‘Transition’ Fuel In Move To Clean Energy, Study Urges” • Countries should move from coal to renewable energy without shifting to gas as a “transition” fuel to save money, as high gas prices and market volatility have made the fossil fuel an expensive option, according to analysis from TransitionZero. [The Guardian]

Earth (NASA image, Unsplash)

¶ “Nuclear Power Company Westinghouse To Build 2 GWh Of Pumped Heat Storage In Bulgaria” • Pennsylvania-based Nuclear power firm Westinghouse Electric Company has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with a state-owned energy company to build 2 GWh of pumped thermal energy storage capacity in Bulgaria. [Energy Storage News]

¶ “Green Party Leaders Urge Saskatchewan Government To Halt Small Nuclear Reactor Plans” • The interim Leader of the Green Party of Canada made a stop in Regina Monday to urge Premier Scott Moe to abandon plans to develop small nuclear reactors. Amita Kuttner said developing nuclear power will take too long in the climate emergency. [CBC]

NuScale Power Module (NuScale Power)

US:

¶ “Goodyear Follows The Bouncing Soybeans For Sustainable Rubber Tires” • Rubber trees are threatened by blight. Goodyear announced that some of its tires are getting a soybean makeover, reducing use of synthetic rubber with no performance sacrifice. Goodyear noted that the soybean tires use surplus oil left over from food applications. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “GM Reveals More Cadillac Lyriq Specs” • Cadillac has begun series production of the Lyriq, its first battery-electric offering. The Debut Edition lists for $59,990 and comes with a single rear motor making 340 hp and 325 pound-feet of torque. The first of those cars to be produced are expected to be delivered to their owners in June. [CleanTechnica]

Cadillac Lyriq (Image courtesy of Cadillac)

¶ “How This Big Project Will Turn The High Desert In Central Utah ‘Green’” • What is touted to be the world’s largest industrial green hydrogen production and storage facility received a conditional commitment of more than $504 million in federal funding, a big development for the Advanced Clean Energy Storage project. [Deseret News]

¶ “CenterPoint Energy Receives Approval For 335 MW Of Renewable Energy For Southwestern Indiana” • CenterPoint Energy, Inc announced that its Indiana-based electric utility, CenterPoint Indiana South, has received approval to add 335 MWs of solar energy into its long-term electric generation transition plan. [Daily Energy Insider]

Have an enjoyably thoughtful day.

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May 9 Energy News

May 9, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “Refining, Tesla’s Next Frontier” • Now that Tesla has spent 2 years getting the 4680 battery to production and it has paid almost all its debt, it is time for Tesla to make another BIG bet. That could mean financing mining, but refining the minerals needed to make the huge numbers of batteries seems to be a more exciting option. [CleanTechnica]

Cathode structure (Tesla image)
Please click on the image to enlarge it.

World:

¶ “Tesla Visited The DRC And Argentina For Environmental And Societal Risk Assessments” • In its 2021 Impact Report, Tesla announced that it visited the Democratic Republic of Congo and Argentina to assess both environmental and societal risks. Tesla sent out a delegation with members of its Responsible Sourcing Committee to visit suppliers. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Coal Shortage And Heatwave Spark India’s Power Woes” • Beginning in April, power outages have rippled across India, slowing factories, closing schools, and sparking demonstrations. Two in three households said they were facing power outages. The main reason why electricity is in such short supply is a shortage of coal. [BBC]

Coal worker (Amir Arabshahi, Unsplash)

¶ “Hong Kong Utility Unveils 150-MW Offshore Wind Plan” • HK Electric unveiled plans to develop an offshore wind farm off the coast of Hong Kong with capacity of about 150 MW. The project would cover about 600 hectares about 4 km away from Lamma power station. It would feature 13 to 19 turbines, with capacity between 8 MW and 12 MW each. [reNews]

¶ “Sold Out! Every EV Volkswagen Can Manufacture In 2022 Is Already Spoken For” • Herbert Diess, CEO of Volkswagen Group, says it is “basically sold out on electric vehicles in Europe and in the United States” for all of this year, The Verge reports. That means anyone hoping to buy an EV from VW, Audi, or Porsche may have to wait until 2023. [CleanTechnica]

Volkswagen ID.Buzz (Image courtesy of Volkswagen)

¶ “Wind Hits April High Note In Ireland” • In April 2022, wind energy provided 32% of Ireland’s electricity, up 7% on April 2021, according to the latest Wind Energy Ireland monthly report. Last month was the most power ever provided by wind in the month of April and follows a strong first quarter where wind provided around 39% of Ireland’s electricity. [reNews]

¶ “Siemens Gamesa To Supply 192-MW Canadian Wind Farm” • Siemens Gamesa is to supply turbines to Capstone Infrastructure Corporation’s 192-MW Wild Rose 2 wind farm, about 35 km southeast of Medicine Hat, Alberta. The deal is for 38 of Siemens’ 5.2-145 model, Capstone said. The energy will be sold through a 15-year power purchase agreement. [reNews]

Wind turbine (Siemens Gamesa image)

¶ “‘Great Uncertainty’ Over Nuclear Plants’ Delivery Following Opposition To Chinese Investor” • The delivery of Essex-based nuclear plant Bradwell faces “great uncertainty” after political opposition mounted against involvement of a Chinese investor. EDF said that without Chinese backing, it is no longer obliged to continue funding the project. [CityAM]

US:

¶ “A First In The US, Unions Announce Deal To Build Offshore Wind Farms (Video)” • Offshore wind developer Ørsted and North America’s Building and Trade Unions agreed to a “historic” national project labor agreement for offshore wind projects along the Atlantic Coast. The agreement sets better standards for an industry set to grow. [CleanTechnica]

Jack-up ship (Arnold Price, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “Tesla’s Recycled Batteries: Almost 92% Reuse Of Raw Materials” • Tesla’s recycled batteries have provided almost 92% of their original raw materials back to Tesla for future use, according to new information in Tesla’s 2021 Impact Report. Tesla’s factories are already using an in-house, closed-loop recycling system. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Rivian’s Venture Into Its First Renewable Energy Project” • Rivian, based in California, produces distinctive EVs, but it is looking to do this while eliminating all of the greenhouse gas emissions from its supply chain. The company is now working with a partner, Clearloop, to develop its own solar power project in Nashville, Tennessee. [Sustainability Magazine]

Rivian R1T (Rivian image)

¶ “Electricity Shortage Warnings Grow Across US” • From Texas to California to Indiana, electric grid operators are warning that power generating capacity is struggling to keep up with demand, a gap that could lead to rolling blackouts during heat waves or other peak periods as soon as this year. In Texas, tight conditions could start as soon as next week. [MSN]

¶ “California Sets 3-GW Floater Goal For 2030” • California set a floating offshore wind target of 3 GW by 2030 as part of a raft of new goals for the state. The California Energy Commission believes that with that end-decade goal, the state can deliver up to 15 GW by 2045 and possibly 20 GW by 2050. The targets are contained in a draft AB 525 report. [reNews]

Towing a floating wind turbine (Principle Power image)

¶ “Start Making Preparations For An Active Hurricane Season Now” • Researchers at Colorado State University predicted an above-average Atlantic hurricane season for 2022. Experts expect at least 19 named storms, nine of which will become hurricanes, and four of which will be significant hurricanes with a category 3 or higher intensity. [Lake County News]

¶ “Georgia Nuclear Plant’s Cost Now Forecast To Top $30 Billion” • A nuclear power plant being built in Georgia is now projected to cost its owners more than $30 billion. A financial report from one of the owners pushed the cost of Plant Vogtle near Augusta to a forecast cost of $30.34 billion. Vogtle is the only nuclear plant under construction in the US. [CBS 46]

Have a simply magnificent day.

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May 8 Energy News

May 8, 2022

Science and Technology:

¶ “The Metals Company Success: Deep-Water Collector Vehicle Tested At Depth Of Almost 2,500 Meters” • A polymetallic nodule collector vehicle has been successfully tested in the Atlantic Ocean at a depth of almost 2,500 meters. The vehicle shows that polymetallic nodules can be mined while disturbing the environment minimally. [CleanTechnica]

Deep-water vehicle (Photo courtesy of The Metals Company)

¶ “Climate Change Is Affecting Global Mental Health” • Young people answering a survey mentioned inadequate government responses to climate change alongside feelings of betrayal by their governments. “These psychological stressors threaten health and wellbeing,” a study in the Lancet said, “and could be construed as morally injurious and unjust.” [MSN]

¶ “Invasive Species And Climate Change Impact Coastal Estuaries” • Native species in California’s estuaries are expected to experience greater declines as invasive species interact with climate change, according to a study from the University of California, Davis, which was published in the Ecological Society of America’s journal, Ecology. [Eurasia Review]

Non-native and native colonial ascidians (Ben Rubinoff, UC Davis)

World:

¶ “Mine E-Waste, Not The Earth, Say Scientists” • The recycling of e-waste must urgently be ramped up because mining the Earth for precious metals to make new gadgets is unsustainable, scientists say. The Royal Society of Chemistry says there now needs to be a global effort to mine that waste, rather than mining the Earth. [BBC]

¶ “Glencore And Li-Cycle Partner For Battery Recycling” • Li-Cycle and Glencore have announced a long-term battery supply agreement to improve the EV battery supply chain. They came to a global feedstock supply agreement: Glencore will supply a variety of manufacturing scrap as well as end-of-life lithium-ion batteries to Li-Cycle. [CleanTechnica]

Batteries going to a recycling shredder (Li-Cycle image)

¶ “Tesla Plans German Factory Expansion” • Production at the Tesla factory in Grünheide, Germany near Berlin is barely under way and already Tesla is making plans to expand the facility. Quoting local broadcaster RBB, electrive says Tesla wants to buy about 100 hectares of land near the current site for additional storage space and a goods station. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Arctic Town Attempts To Design Wind And Solar Devices Against Climate Change And Energy Crisis” • The arctic town of Qaanaaq, Greenland, plans to incorporate renewable energy to save the lives of financially-stricken residents, who were gripped by the burdens to pay for fossil fuels required to heat and power their homes. [Nature World News]

¶ “India Added 15.5 GW Of Non-Hydro Renewable Energy Capacity” • India added 15.5 GW non-hydro renewable energy capacity during FY22, compared to just 7.7 GW installed in the preceding fiscal year, a CEEW Centre for Energy Finance Market Handbook says. But to get to India’s 2030 goal of 500 GW, 40 GW will be needed each year. [GreentechLead]

¶ “Soon we’ll have too MUCH energy!” • Britain is predicted to have an excess amount of electricity by 2030 due to huge investments in wind and solar power, according to new analysis. It predicts that huge amounts of electricity could go to waste by 2030. The government also wants to build eight nuclear plants by 2050. [Daily Mail] (So, what’s the point of nuclear?)

Wind turbines (Arteum.ro, Unsplash)

US:

¶ “Huge Wildfire in New Mexico Could Worsen This Weekend” • The so-called Hermits Peak Fire in New Mexico is the second biggest wildfire the state has ever seen. It has been burning for more than a month and has torn through an area larger than the city of Chicago. Winds, near-record heat, and dry conditions are expected to make it worse. [BBC]

¶ “Mary Barra Says By Mid-Decade GM Will Be Selling More EVs In The US Than Anyone – Including Tesla” • General Motors CEO Mary Barra told Yahoo! Finance that the company plans to sell more EVs in the US than other automakers, including Tesla, by the middle of the decade. She also said that EVs are a huge opportunity for the company. [CleanTechnica]

Chevy Silverado EV (Courtesy of GM)

¶ “The Two Largest Reservoirs In California Are Already At ‘Critically Low Levels’ And The Dry Season Is Just Starting” • Against the backdrop of the water crisis in the Colorado River Basin, where the country’s largest reservoirs are plunging at an alarming rate, California’s two largest reservoirs, Shasta Lake and Lake Oroville, are facing a similar struggle. [CNN]

¶ “Tesla’s 2021 Impact Report – Exiting The Fossil Fuel Era” • Tesla released its 2021 Impact Report and shared details about the environment, supply chain, and how it’s leading the exit from the fossil fuel era. Last year alone, Tesla customers avoided 8.4 million metric tons of CO₂e. This statement is an incredible milestone, but more is coming. [CleanTechnica]

Have a beautifully restful day.

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May 7 Energy News

May 7, 2022

Science and Technology:

¶ “Rechargeable Molten Salt Battery Freezes Energy In Place For Long-Term Storage” • For long-term energy storage, researchers at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory showed that freezing and thawing a salt solution can be the basis for a rechargeable battery that can store energy cheaply and efficiently for weeks or months at a time. [Scientific American]

World:

¶ “India’s Poor Bear The Brunt Of Blistering Temperatures” • As a blistering heatwave sweeps through India, the country’s poor are again the most vulnerable. The brutal heatwave has upended lives of millions of people in India who struggle to cope with the highest temperatures in over 100 years in cities that are yet to develop climate action plans. [BBC]

¶ “Ford Increases Tow Rating, Reduces Charging Time For Mustang Mach-E In Europe” • Ford increased the Mustang Mach-E’s towing capacity and lowered its charging time for customers in Europe. Ford says the charging time was reduced with an over-the-air update. Towing capacity has been increased with free hardware updates. [CleanTechnica]

Mustang Mach-E towing a boat (Image courtesy of Ford)

¶ “Germany’s Plugin EV Share Up To 24.3%, Economic Pressures Mounting” • Germany, the EU’s largest auto market, saw plugin EVs take 24.3% share in April 2022, up from 22.1% YOY. Overall auto volume was down by over 21% YOY, and over 40% compared to pre-pandemic seasonal norms. Supply chain disruptions and cost inflation reduced sales. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “2021’S Top Ten Countries In The Global EV Revolution” • We should have come to this point in global EV progress earlier, and to save the climate, we need to move even faster. But at least we are finally moving at something resembling the required pace for EVs. Here is a list of the top ten countries for the EV revolution, a long story in two parts. [CleanTechnica]

Wuling Hongguang Mini EV Cabrio
(JustAnotherCarDesigner, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “Spotlight On Renewable Energy In Kenya” • Renewable energy is changing the way that energy is produced, distributed, and consumed. In Kenya, renewable energy accounts for 73% of power generation capacity, and 90% of electricity is generated by green energy sources such as wind, solar, hydroelectric and geothermal power. [Africa Outlook Magazine]

¶ “GE Renewable Energy Buys Minority Stake In 3D Printing Firm” • GE Renewable Energy has acquired a minority stake in Danish 3D printing firm COBOD International. The investment will give GE Renewable Energy greater access to COBOD’s 3D printing technology, which can be used to make wind turbine towers onsite at wind farms. [Power Technology]

3D printing equipment (COBOD International)

¶ “In April, 50% Of Power In Spain Came From Renewables” • Span’s national grid operator Red Electrica de Espana announced in its estimates report that Spain had produced a little over half of its electricity from renewable sources of energy last month. It said that in April, 50.1% of the Spanish power came from clean energy resources. [Saur Energy]

¶ “Gravity-Based Storage Team Kick Off Construction In China” • Energy Vault, Atlas Renewable, and China Tianying have started construction of a 100-MWh gravity-based storage system adjacent to a wind farm and national grid site at Rudong in Jiangsu province, China. The EVx system will be the first to be deployed in the country. [reNews]

Energy storage system (Energy Vault image)

US:

¶ “Solar Energy Projects Are Grinding To A Halt In The US Amid Investigation Into Parts From China” • The solar energy industry has been thrown into a panic and projects are grinding to a halt after the Biden administration launched an investigation into whether parts from Southeast Asia might actually have been made in China which has higher tariffs. [CNN]

¶ “Texas Is In Turmoil, As Green Finance Is Very Appealing To Major Funds” • Last year the Texas legislature passed a law to stop fund portfolios that don’t include fossil fuel companies from doing business in the state. They may not business with companies the State Comptroller says are “boycotting” fossil fuels. But loopholes are being used. [CleanTechnica]

Oil platform (Photo by NASA, public domain)

¶ “Tesla Financing Rates Are The Lowest In The Industry” • It’s true that Teslas are premium-priced, but their financing deals can make them compelling. CarsDirect outlines some good news for potential Tesla buyers: If you choose a Tesla, you could be getting a surprisingly good deal, thanks to the lower interest rates than you could get for other cars. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “New Mexico Adopts Clean Car Rule” • The Environmental Improvement Board and the Albuquerque-Bernalillo County Air Quality Control Board each adopted the Clean Car Rule in a joint public hearing. They both approved the Clean Car Rule, allowing California’s Advanced Clean Cars to be put in place statewide in New Mexico from July 1, 2022. [CleanTechnica]

New Mexico (Raychel Sanner, Unsplash)

¶ “AES Corporation Nails Down Another Microsoft Renewable Energy Agreement” • AES Corporation, a Fortune 500 electrical power company based in Arlington, Virginia, has inked another multi-year renewable energy agreement with Microsoft Corp. It is for 110 MW of electric power, available 24/7, from solar PVs and battery storage. [Daily Energy Insider]

¶ “Senator Markey Secures Environmental, Financial Protections For Pilgrim Nuclear Power Plant” • Senator Edward J Markey got commitments from Holtec, the company decommissioning the Pilgrim nuclear plant, that it would not discharge radioactive, contaminated water into Cape Cod Bay without the consent of stakeholders. [Senator Edward Markey]

Have a greatly appreciated day.

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May 6 Energy News

May 6, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “REpowerEU: Europe’s Chance To Say Bye To Fossil Fuels” • REpowerEU is the EUʼs flagship strategy to reduce its energy dependence on Russia. It is planned for publication on May 18. The strategy provides the perfect opportunity for the EU not only to wean itself off Russia energy but to reduce hugely its demand for fossil energy. [CleanTechnica]

Wind farm (Efe Kurnaz, Unsplash)

¶ “How Europe Could Cut 35% Of Its Transport Oil Demand” • As the EU plans a ban on imports of Russian oil and oil products, a paper assesses how the EU could end the imports by reducing oil demand instead of creating new dependencies on producers that are similarly authoritarian and human rights abusers, such as Saudi Arabia or Iran. [CleanTechnica]

Science and Technology:

¶ “This Solar-Powered Plane Could Stay In The Air For Months” • The solar powered airplane Solar Impulse 2 circumnavigated the Earth powered entirely by sunlight in 2016. In 2019, the airplane was sold to Skydweller Aero, a US-Spanish startup, with the intention of turning the plane into the world’s first commercially viable “pseudo-satellite.” [CNN]

Skydweller taking off (Skydweller Aero Inc)

World:

¶ “Europe Is Planning To Ditch Russia’s Oil. Will It Go After Its Gas?” • Europe has proposed a ban on Russian oil, but has again stopped short of sanctioning Russia’s natural gas, a more potent move. The European Commission’s sixth package of sanctions against Russia over the war in Ukraine, would phase out all crude and oil products by the end of the year. [CNN]

¶ “New Law In France: Green Roofs On All New Commercial Buildings” • The French Parliament approved a law requiring all new commercial buildings to partially have their roofs covered with plants or solar panels. The law will apply to all new buildings in commercial zones. Environmentalists had wanted the roofs to be completely covered by greenery. [CleanTechnica]

Green roof in Paris (cocoparisienne, Pixabay)

¶ “UK Plugin Share 16.2%, BEVs Grow 66% YOY, Supplies Can’t Keep Up” • The UK market saw plugin electric vehicles take 16.2% share in April, up from 13.2% YOY. Full battery electrics grew strongly YOY, while plugin hybrids fell. Overall auto volumes were down over 25% from pre-pandemic seasonal norms, at 119,167 units. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Volvo, Alison Seek To Clean Up Diesel Truck Emissions With Electric Drivetrains” • Volvo Trucks says it will work with Bucher Municipal to electrify sewer cleaner trucks. By the end of 2023, the two companies expect to deliver up to 80 fully electric sewer cleaner trucks to cities in Europe. Bucher is a leading supplier of municipal street vehicles. [CleanTechnica]

Volvo electric sewer cleaning truck (Volvo Trucks)

¶ “Energy Vault Signs Deal With India For Gravity-Based Energy Storage” • Indian utility NTPC Ltd and Energy Vault, based in Switzerland, signed a memorandum of understanding to forge a long-term strategic partnership for EVx gravity-based energy storage technology and software solutions to support its clean energy initiatives. [pv magazine Australia]

US:

¶ “Drought Expands In The Southwest, Worsening The Region’s Fire Risk And Water Crisis” • Drought conditions worsened in much of the Southwest over the past week, according to the latest update from the US Drought Monitor, deepening the region’s water crisis and fueling record-setting wildfires. More than 98% of the Southwest is in drought this week. [CNN]

Drought in the US on May 3 (droughtmonitor.unl.edu)
Please click on the image to enlarge it.

¶ “DOJ Announces New Office To Enforce Laws Around Climate Crisis, Toxic Pollution” • Attorney General Merrick Garland announced that the Justice Department is opening an office specializing in environmental justice efforts. The Office of Environmental Justice is part of a strategy to prioritize the issue, with a focus on the climate crisis. [CNN]

¶ “Foundational Agrivoltaic Research For Megawatt Scale” • The DOE’s Solar Energy Technologies Office has announced the Foundational Agrivoltaic Research for Megawatt Scale (FARMS) funding opportunity, which will award $8 million in funding for projects that examine how agrivoltaics can be scaled up for new opportunities. [CleanTechnica] (Horrible acronym!)

FARMS publication (Solar Energy Technologies Office)

¶ “Offshore Wind Can Be The Future Of Renewable Energy In South Carolina” • The Carolinas could get all their energy from offshore wind. North and South Carolina could capture enough wind off the coast that they could abandon all other sources of energy, if everything were converted to run on electricity, an Environment America report says. [WSPA]

¶ “BOEM Completes California Offshore Environmental Study” • The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management concluded offshore wind energy activities will have no significant environmental impact in the Humboldt Wind Energy Area, off the coast of northern California. The finding follows a BOEM review of potential environmental impacts. [reNews]

Humboldt Bay (Humboldt Bay HR&C District)

¶ “Ohio Democratic Party Sues DeWine Over FirstEnergy, Nuclear Bailout Law Records” • The Ohio Democratic Party filed a lawsuit against Gov Mike DeWine’s administration, saying it is breaking the state’s public records law by providing documents with information blacked out. The documents relate to a nuclear bailout corruption scandal. [The Statehouse News Bureau]

¶ “Site Of Retired Iowa Nuclear Plant To Become A Solar Farm” • Iowa’s only nuclear power plant shut down in 2020. Now there are plans to build the state’s biggest solar farm on and around the site. It will include enough solar photovoltaic panels to power tens of thousands of homes and batteries to store energy for times when it’s needed. [Yale Climate Connections]

Have a stunningly beautiful day.

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May 5 Energy News

May 5, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “Everything To Know About The Three Mile Island Accident” • Netflix has a new four-part docuseries, “Meltdown: Three Mile Island.” The series details the terrifying partial meltdown of a nuclear power plant in central Pennsylvania in 1979. It features testimonials from the plant’s chief engineer and whistleblower, Richard Parks, and others. [Yahoo]

Three Mile Island plant (Smallbones, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

World:

¶ “Shell Profits Nearly Triple As Oil Prices Surge” • Energy giant Shell made $9.13 billion (£7.3 billion) in the first three months of the year, nearly triple its $3.2 billion profit it announced for the same period last year. But the company said pulling out of Russian oil and gas due to the Ukraine conflict had cost it $3.9 billion (£3.1 billion). [BBC]

¶ “Ukraine War: How Germany Is Getting Rid Of Russian Oil” • Since the invasion the German government has dramatically reduced its dependence on Russian oil from 35% to 12%, all of which comes to the refinery in the town of Schwedt, in north-eastern Germany. Germany has managed to pivot away from Russian oil quicker than expected. [BBC]

Petrochemical plant in Schwedt (© Ralf Roletschek, via Wikimedia)

¶ “Enough Raw Metals To Make 14 Million Electric Cars Globally In 2023 – Study” • There is enough lithium and nickel available to produce 14 million electric cars globally in 2023 even without Russian supplies, a study into the short-term availability of raw materials shows. The study was carried out by Transport & Environment. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Sweden Plugin EV Share At 48.2%, Kia Niro On Top” • Sweden saw plugin EVs take 48.2% market share in April, up from 43.1% YOY. Overall auto market volume was down 19% from last year. Sweden’s best selling auto was the Kia Niro. In April, 24.7% of cars sold were full battery BEVs, up from last year’s 22.2%, and 23.4% were plugin hybrids, up from 20.8%. [CleanTechnica]

Kia Niro (Hyundai Motor Group, Unsplash)

¶ “RenewableUK Calls For 5-GW Hydrogen Plan” • RenewableUK has published a series of key policy recommendations in a report to help the UK Government achieve its target of 10 GW of low carbon hydrogen by 2030, including at least 5 GW from green hydrogen production. Green hydrogen is made from water by electrolysis powered by renewables. [reNews]

¶ “World’s Second-Largest Hydropower Plant Set For 14-Year Upgrade After Deal With GE” • GE Renewable Energy has signed a deal that will see it carry out upgrades to the 14-GW Itaipu hydropower plant, a vast facility straddling the border between Brazil and Paraguay. Itaipu started production in 1984. The upgrade will last 14 years. [CNBC]

US:

¶ “Officials Worry Southern California Won’t Have Enough Water To Get Through Summer Without Unprecedented Cuts” • As Southern Californians brace for unprecedented restrictions on water use, officials worry some communities won’t have enough water to get through the summer, unless residents and businesses cut back more than restrictions require. [CNN]

¶ “Stanford University Announces New Climate Change School With $1.1 Billion From Renowned Venture Capitalist” • Stanford University announced it is launching a new school with a focus on climate change. Renowned Silicon Valley venture capitalist John Doerr and his wife donated $1.1 billion to fund the Stanford Doerr School of Sustainability. [CNN]

Hoover Tower, Stanford University (Y S, Unsplash)

¶ “In California, 12.5% Of New Light-Duty Vehicle Registrations Were Plug-In Electric Vehicles In 2021” • In California, 12.5% of new light-duty vehicle registrations were plug-in EVs in 2021. Next highest were the District of Columbia, Hawaii, Washington, and Oregon, which each had PEV registrations accounting for more than 7% of new registrations. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Jamestown: America’s First English Settlement Is Now Endangered” • One of the most important historic sites in the US has been put on a list of endangered places. Preservation groups warn that Jamestown, Virginia, the first successful English colony in America, may not survive another generation because of climate change. [BBC]

Historic Jamestown (Pi3.124, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “Austin Semiconductor Factory Moves To 100% Renewable Power” • Austin semiconductor maker Infineon Technologies announced that it is switching to 100% renewable power for its local factory. Infineon was one of the first semiconductor makers to set a carbon neutrality goal for its global operations, according to the company. [KVUE]

¶ “Sila To Build Next Generation Batteries In Washington State” • Sila Nanotechnologies is working with Mercedes and BMW on batteries that use silicon for anodes instead of carbon. The result is batteries that are less expensive and more energy dense. The company announced it will convert a facility in Washington State to produce 10 GWh of batteries. [CleanTechnica]

Batteries (Sila Nanotechnologies image)

¶ “Wyoming Starts Energy Partnership With Idaho Laboratory” • Wyoming Governor Mark Gordon announced in a press release that his state has signed a memorandum of understanding with Batelle Energy Alliance, the operating contractor of the Idaho National Laboratory to collaborate on such advanced energy technologies as nuclear and hydrogen. [K2 Radio]

¶ “Another $61M In Refunds For SC customers In Nuclear Plant Lawsuit” • A judge has approved a second round of refunds for electric ratepayers of Dominion Energy South Carolina totaling $61 million as part of the settlement agreement over a failed nuclear plant. The VC Summer plant never came online despite customers paying over $2 billion for it. [WCBD]

Have a comfortably victorious day.

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May 4 Energy News

May 4, 2022

Science and Technology:

¶ “How Spiral Welding Is Revolutionizing Wind Turbine Manufacturing” • Colorado-based Keystone Tower Systems is changing how wind turbines can be manufactured, transported, and installed. They have been using a spiral-welding technique, borrowed from the steel-pipeline industry, to build some of the largest turbine towers on the market. [CleanTechnica]

Audi plant in Mexico (carlos aranda, Unsplash)

¶ “‘One Earth Climate Model’ Shows How To Cut Global Emissions” • One of the most comprehensive and rigorous attempts to detail emissions cuts is a study recently published in the journal Energies. It examined how to keep warming below 1.5°C by 2050 on an industry by industry basis. The study is the topic of a webinar on May 4. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ “EU Unveils Plan To Ban Russian Oil Imports” • The EU has been outlining plans this morning to ban imports of Russian crude oil within six months and refined oil products by the end of the year. Exceptionally, Hungary and Slovakia would be able to continue buying Russian crude oil until the end of 2023 under existing contracts. [BBC]

Pump jack (David Thielen, Unsplash)

¶ “Delhi Propels Final-Mile Deliveries In Bid To Become India’s Electric Vehicle Capital” • A report by RMI India, RMI, and the Dialogue and Development Commission of Delhi offers a novel on-the-ground analysis of fleet electrification efforts in Delhi. It assembles findings from electric delivery deployment and the implementation of pilot project. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Li-Metal Gets Grant To Advance Lithium Metal Solid-State Batteries” • Li-Metal, a company based in Canada, is developing technologies for producing lithium metal anodes and lithium metal. It has a patent-pending production process to replace lithium chloride as a raw material with lithium carbonate, which is easily available. [CleanTechnica]

Model of Li₂CO₃ crystal structure (Ben Mills, public domain)

¶ “Victorian Big Battery Drives Major Revenue Jump For Neoen” • Renewable energy developer Neoen said that its revenue for the first quarter of 2022 was up a staggering 36%, a performance the French company said was largely attributable to the addition of the Victorian big battery, which was switched on in December of last year. [pv magazine Australia]

¶ “New Class Of Hydrogen Ship Design From C-Job” • C-Job Naval Architects designed a new class of liquid hydrogen tanker that may revolutionize the renewable energy market. The tanker concept, developed in partnership with LH2 Europe, is a critical element in realizing a green end-to-end liquid hydrogen supply chain. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

Hydrogen ship (Courtesy of C-Job Naval Architects)

¶ “Denmark Wants To Build Two Wind Energy Islands To Supply More Renewable Energy To Europe” • Dan Jørgensen, Denmark’s energy minister, said Denmark and Europe “must be free of Russian fossil fuels as fast as possible.” The country plans to build two islands to facilitate offshore wind farms, with one eventually providing for 10 GW. [Evwind]

¶ “Ukraine To Build Five Nuclear Power Units Together With Westinghouse” • NNEGC Energoatom and Westinghouse are doing joint research on construction of new power units at Ukrainian nuclear plants. Noting that two Russian missiles flew over the Zaporizhia nuclear plant, the CEO of NNEGC said the new plants would have higher security. [menafn]

Westinghouse AP1000 at Sanmen (, CC-BY-SA 3.0, cropped)

US:

¶ “Lake Powell Officials Take Unprecedented, Emergency Steps To Delay Water Releases As Level Plummets” • The federal government announced unprecedented steps to help boost water levels at Lake Powell. The measures are intended to buy the surrounding communities more time to plan for what happens if the reservoir runs out of water. [CNN]

¶ “NREL Builds Out National Capability To Reduce Risk In Big Changes In Grid Infrastructure” • The transition to renewable and distributed energy requires a deep look at how to develop, control, and deploy upcoming power electronic devices for energy systems. This is now possible with the Power Electronic Grid Interface platform at NREL. [CleanTechnica]

NREL researcher Jin Tan (Image from NREL)

¶ “Tesla Now Makes More Money Than GM And Ford” • For the longest time, GM and Ford have been the kings of this industry, but that is no longer true. Tesla is now making more money than General Motors and Ford. An article in The Street highlighted this Tesla achievement, noting that the world leader in EVs is taking trophies GM and Ford used to win. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Biden Admin: $3.16 Billion From Bipartisan Infrastructure Law To Boost Domestic And Battery Manufacturing” • The US DOE said that $3.1 billion from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law will fund more batteries and components in America, bolster domestic supply chains, create good-paying jobs, and help lower costs for families. [CleanTechnica]

Stationary battery (Dennis Schroeder, NREL)

¶ “Study Finds Offshore Wind Could Drive Down Energy Costs In New England” • A new analysis led by North Carolina State University researchers found offshore wind power could help lower wholesale electricity prices on average for six states in New England, with relatively low risk of wind turbines failing during extreme winter storms. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Should Gavin Newsom Keep Diablo Canyon Open? SLO Anti-Nuclear Group Has Concerns” • San Luis Obispo Mothers for Peace questioned “whether the governor has the power to make any decisions about how long Diablo Canyon should operate,” and noted several difficulties they see with attempting to keep the plant open. [San Luis Obispo Tribune]

Have an unequivocably exquisite day.

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May 3 Energy News

May 3, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “California AG Subpoenas Exxon Over False Plastics Recycling Claims” • The Attorney General of California has launched an investigation into plastics and Big Oil. Exxon is one of the biggest contributors to the global plastics pandemic. It is also the poster child for everything that is wrong with capitalism as it has evolved over the past 50 years. [CleanTechnica]

Rubbish washed up on a beach (Antoine GIRET, Unsplash)

¶ “Outdated Zoning Laws Are Holding Renewable Energy Back” • The cost of renewable energy has plummeted in the past ten years, but it faces legal barriers. One of the reasons there isn’t more solar and wind is that there are costs associated with installing them that haven’t decreased so significantly. Experts refer to them as “soft costs.” [Popular Science]

Science and Technology:

¶ “How Phantom Forests Are Used For Greenwashing” • Drawing down carbon by increasing forest cover has become central to the fight against climate change. But sometimes the forests exist on paper only, because promises have not been kept, or because planted trees have died or even been harvested. A new effort will now be made to track success and failure. [BBC]

Planting volunteer (Mikhail Nilov, Pexels)

World:

¶ “India And Pakistan Heatwave Is ‘Testing The Limits Of Human Survivability,’ Expert Says” • Temperatures in parts of India and Pakistan have reached record levels, putting the lives of millions at risk as the effects of the climate crisis are felt across the subcontinent. The average maximum temperature in central India in April was 37.78°C (100°F). [CNN]

¶ “Germany Will Support An EU Oil Embargo On Russia” • Germany is ready to support a European ban on imports of Russian oil, and won’t be “blackmailed” by Moscow into paying for natural gas in rubles. Finance minister Christian Lindner said Germany would agree any new sanctions on Russia with its partners in the EU. [CNN]

Pumpjack (Jeremy Morris, Unsplash)

¶ “France Plugin EV Share 21.1% In April, New Bestseller” • In France, plugin EVs took 21.1% of the auto market in April, up from 14.8% year-on-year. Full battery electrics continued to dominate over plugin hybrids. The overall passenger auto market was down 22.6% YOY, and down 44.2% compared to pre-pandemic April 2019. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “BP Profits Soar As Calls For Windfall Tax Grow” • BP’s profits for the first three months of this year have more than doubled after oil and gas prices soared. The energy giant reported an underlying profit of $6.2 billion (£4.9 billion) compared to $2.6 billion in the same period last year. Rising profits have prompted calls for a one-off windfall tax. [BBC]

Thunder Horse platform (Andyminicooper, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “Danish Giant Reveals Details Of Giga-Scale Renewable Hydrogen Plans In Murchison” • Details have emerged of the Murchison Hydrogen Renewables project proposed for Western Australia. It includes over 5 GW of wind and solar, a big battery, a 3-GW electrolyser, and production of about 2 million tonnes a year of green ammonia. [Renew Economy]

US:

¶ “Biden Administration Making $3 Billion Investment In Lithium Ion Battery Production” • President Joe Biden is building on his EV goal with a $3 billion investment aimed at boosting the US supply of lithium ion batteries. The move is aimed at fighting climate change, but also to respond to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. [CNN]

Tesla (Matt Weissinger, Pexels)

¶ “Electric Vehicle Manufacturers Mobilize Behind Charging Cybersecurity At NREL” • With more EVs in use, vehicle security is drawing more interest. Members of the EV industry gathered at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory to evaluate enhanced cybersecurity for the connections between EVs and charging infrastructure. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Ford F-150 Lightning Home Integration System Priced At $3,895” • Ford chose Sunrun as its partner to install the Home Integration System needed to take advantage of the vehicle-to-home capability of the F-150 Lightning. Now, Matthew Stover, the director of charging and energy services at Ford, has revealed a price of $3,895. [CleanTechnica]

‘Home of the Future’ with a Ford F-150 Lightning (Sunrun image)

¶ “US Offshore Wind Says The Quiet Part Out Loud: Fossil Fuel Is Toast” • The technical electricity generation potential for wind turbines located in US waters is more than 2,000 GW, but almost none of it has been tapped as yet. But the Interior Department’s Bureau of Ocean Energy Management has laid the groundwork for growth. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Climate Change Is Coming For New England’s Highest Peak” • Mount Washington in New Hampshire is famous for some of the world’s worst weather. But Mount Washington’s weather is starting to shift significantly because of climate change. A study from the Appalachian Mountain Club found areas on and near Mount Washington warming. [NHPR]

View from Mount Washington (Kelly Sikkema, Unsplash)

¶ “Avangrid Unleashes 200-MW Oregon Wind Farm” • Avangrid Renewables has achieved commercial operation at its 200-MW Golden Hills wind farm in Oregon. Golden Hills features 41 Vestas V150 4.3-MW turbines and 10 GE 116 2.5-MW turbines. The new wind farm increases PSE’s owned and contracted wind fleet to over 1,150 MW. [reNews]

¶ “Counterfeit Parts Found In US Nuke Plants: Here Is What NRC Is Doing About It” • In response to an audit report that found three instances of counterfeit, fraudulent, and suspect items in the nation’s nuclear power plants, the NRC will implement eight improvements to guard against such component problems in the future. [Seacoastonline.com]

Have fundamentally enchanting day.

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May 2 Energy News

May 2, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “Five Ways To Cut Oil And Gas Use With Clean Transportation” • Oil and gas prices are burgeoning due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine, with gas prices rising above $4 a gallon in the US and above $10 a gallon elsewhere. The world is already experiencing the deadly effects of climate change. It is time to reduce oil and gas use in vehicles. [CleanTechnica]

Traffic in Montreal (Jp Valery, Unsplash)

¶ “Macron Won On The Back Of The ‘Green’ Vote. Here’s How He Can Repay Their Trust” • In his first term as President of France, Emmanuel Macron managed to convince just enough young, green minded voters to put their trust in him. He must not betray their confidence. What he does on transport will be a good test case. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “The West Can Cut Its Energy Dependency On Russia And Be Greener” • Russia’s invasion of Ukraine amplified the importance of national-security considerations in western countries’ energy policies. But governments must maintain their environmental focus, especially on GHG emissions. Both goals are urgent. They should be evaluated together. [The Guardian]

Solar farm (Gunnar Ridderström, Unsplash)

World:

¶ “The End Of The European ICE Age” • A recent report from Boldt and Avere examined the state of progress of European automakers’ attitudes to the uptake of electric vehicles. Although there was some reluctance to go first, it appears now that there is a greater aversion to be the last to abandon internal combustion engines and promote EVs. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Tesla Thrives In Italy As Broader Plug-In Market Falls In March” • As expected, Italy’s auto market is in a rout. Europe’s fourth largest market posts in March its first battery EV decline in many years of growth, though hybrid sales grew slightly. The overall market has been down badly. The Tesla Model Y did its best performance to date. [CleanTechnica]

Tesla Model Y (Esteban Chinchilla, Unsplash)

¶ “ÖBB Earmarks €1 Billion For Investment In Renewable Energy For Traction Power” • ÖBB, the Austrian national railway, aims to invest around €1 billion through 2030 in renewable energy such wind, solar and water. The company is moving to generate an additional 280 GWh, it announced at its annual results presentation. [RailTech.com]

¶ “There’s Value In Old Power Generation Components” • The market for recycled power equipment components is getting a boost due to ongoing global supply chain issues, particularly for those in the renewable energy sector. The so-called “circular” supply chain provides a solution for companies finding it difficult to source raw materials. [Power Magazine]

Bike shelter made from a part of a recycled wind
turbine blade (Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy)

¶ “Large-Scale Hydrogen Projects Take Shape As Technology Continues To Evolve” • Some people think green hydrogen could be decades away, but they may be wrong. A great deal of money is being spent on hydrogen technology, and serious projects are getting done. The effects of the investments could be felt sooner rather than later. [Power Magazine]

¶ “Finnish Group Cancels Rosatom Nuclear Plant Contract Over Risks Exacerbated By Ukraine War” • Finnish group Fennovoima says it has canceled a contract on cooperating with Russian state-owned nuclear power giant Rosatom to supply a nuclear power plant, saying Moscow’s war in Ukraine has “worsened” risks for the project. [Radio Free Europe]

Nuclear plant in Finland (Fennovoima, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “‘Operating Normally’: Russia Shows Seized Ukraine Nuclear Plant” • There has been deep international concern over the situation at the plant, which has six of Ukraine’s 15 reactors and can create enough energy for four million homes. Russia invited journalists to the site to tell them all necessary precautions are being taken at the plant. [France 24]

US:

¶ “Lake Powell Officials Face An Impossible Choice In The West’s Megadrought: Water Or Electricity” • Lake Powell, the country’s second-largest reservoir, is drying up. The situation is critical: if the water level at the lake drops 32 feet more, power generation will be halted at the Glen Canyon Dam. Levels have dropped 100 feet in the last three years. [CNN]

Glen Canyon Dam, July 2021 (Jeremy Bezanger, Unsplash)

¶ “California 100% Powered By Renewables For The First Time” • Renewables met 100% of California’s electricity demand for the first time on April 30, most of it from solar power produced along Interstate 10, an hour east of the Coachella Valley. The milestone lasted almost 15 minutes before edging back down to about 97% renewables. [Yahoo]

¶ “River-Powered Villages To Hydropower Water Power Successes: WPTO Accomplishments Report” • This year, several of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory’s recent water power successes earned spots in the 2020–2021 Accomplishments Report, which was published by the US Department of Energy’s Water Power Technologies Office. [CleanTechnica]

Small hydropower (US DOE photo)

¶ “Tesla’s Unconventional Sales Model Could Mark The End Of Traditional Car Dealerships” • Tesla’s direct-to-consumer model changes the game for buyers, a MarketWatch opinion piece says. It eliminates days of haggling prices at dealerships, when buyers prefer to buy online. And it removes the need for dealerships to stock hundreds of cars. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Big Week For Clean Energy In Michigan” • A lot has happened in Michigan this week: release of a report from the Union of Concerned Scientists and the Michigan Environmental Justice Coalition, submission of a proposed settlement agreement by the utility Consumers Energy, and news of Governor Whitmer’s MI Healthy Climate Plan. [CleanTechnica]

Have a superbly copacetic day.

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May 1 Energy News

May 1, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “Batteries Included, Thanks To Tesla” • Bloomberg New Energy Finance believes that the energy storage decade has arrived. BNEF forecasts there will be 1 TWh of batteries installed around the world by 2030. This may prove to be a conservative estimate in the light of some of the comments Elon Musk made recently in a Ted talk. [CleanTechnica]

Tesla Megapack (Tesla image)

¶ “Point vs Counterpoint: Tesla’s CEO Should Focus On Tesla And Ignore Twitter” • During a week in which Tesla reported another record quarter and smashed Wall Street estimates for revenue and profit, CEO Elon Musk has been derided for his attempts to take over Twitter. Is the criticism valid? Here we examine points and counterpoints. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Marching Under A Radioactive Cloud” • It was May 1, 1986, and one of the biggest holidays in the Soviet year, a celebration of workers and peasants. Of course, the Kremlin never passed up an opportunity to hold a parade, even in the middle of the worst nuclear disaster in history, so what was happening at Chernobyl had no effect on celebrations. [CNN]

Abandoned amusement (Dasha Urvachova, Unsplash)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Planet-Warming Emissions From Cow Burps Have Been Seen From Space” • Methane emissions in cow burps have been observed from space. The emissions were detected by GHGSat’s high-resolution satellites in February, the company said. In April GHGSat analysis confirmed that the emissions came from a cattle feedlot in California. [CNN]

¶ “Tri-Cities Scientists “Magically” Mining Metals From Water” • Scientists at the DOE’s Pacific Northwest National Laboratory are working with industry to test an approach that uses magnetic nanoparticles surrounded by an adsorbent shell to capture critical materials, such as lithium, from various water sources, possibly including seawater. [CleanTechnica]

Wave (Silas Baisch, Unsplash)

¶ “Climate Change May Increase Risk Of New Infectious Diseases” • Climate change will result in thousands of new viruses spread among animal species by 2070, and that’s likely to increase the risk of emerging infectious diseases jumping from animals to humans, according to a study. This is especially true for Africa and Asia. [Sentinel-Tribune]

World:

¶ “Will Gigafactory Berlin–Brandenburg Give Tesla An Unfair Advantage In Europe?” • Tesla could take back EV market share in Europe overall with its new Gigafactory Berlin, according to a report from The Wall Street Journal. Many people believe that once production ramps up, Tesla could have an unfair advantage in the European auto market. [CleanTechnica]

Elon Musk at Gigafactory Berlin (SEC image via Unsplash)

¶ “Electric Car Sales Soar Despite Ballooning Battery Costs” • According to estimates from EV-Volumes.com, global EV sales soared by nearly 120% in the first quarter of this year. Tesla delivered a record 310,000 EVs in the first quarter, despite the fact that the company implemented several price increases in 2021, and another in March 2022. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Climate Change Storm Threatens Kenya’s Tea Production” • Kenya’s tea production is likely to drop significantly within the next decade because of climate change, threatening the country’s foreign earnings from the crop. A senior researcher at the Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organization’s Tea Research Institute voiced concerns on the issue. [KBC]

Picking tea leaves in Kenya (CIAT, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “Russia’s Rosatom Is Trying To Take Complete Control Of The Zaporizhzhya Nuclear Power Plant, IAEA Says” • A group of eight Rosatom specialists had been sent to the Zaporizhzhya plant to demand “daily reports on confidential issues.” The International Atomic Energy Agency confirmed that the plant’s personnel is working “under immense pressure.” [Yahoo News]

¶ “France’s Nuclear Shutdown Hits 50% Of Reactors Amid EU Energy Crisis” • Energy supplier Electricité de France said some 28 of the country’s 56 reactors were shut down due to routine maintenance or defects. The latest shutdown forced EDF to buy electricity from the European grid “to compensate the lack of production of our nuclear plants.” [Press TV]

Saint-Laurent nuclear plant (T.A.F.K.A.S., CC-BY-SA 3.0)

US:

¶ “Largest US Grid Operator Puts 1,200 Mostly Solar Projects On Hold For 2 Years” • The largest US electrical grid operator has approved a new process for adding power plants to the grid system it manages, including a two-year pause on reviewing some 1,200 projects, mostly solar power, that are part of a controversial backlog. [Courier-Journal]

¶ “Geothermal Company Looks To Augustine As A Source Of Renewable Energy” • An Alaska company could start prospecting for energy on the active volcano on Augustine Island, in Cook Inlet. The state of Alaska is considering leasing land to GeoAlaska LLC so it can see if Augustine could potentially be a good site for a geothermal project. [KDLL]

Augustine Island (ML Coombs, US Geological Survey)

¶ “Climate Change And Health” • Dr Sedden Savage, a doctor at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in New Hampshire, has already found three fully embedded ticks on her this spring. The early start to tick season is becoming the norm in northern New England. Anyone who likes to spend time outdoors should be concerned about Lyme disease. [Rutland Herald]

¶ “USDA Invests In Renewable Energy Infrastructure For Three Wyoming Small Businesses” • State Director Glenn Pauley announced that the US Department of Agriculture is investing over $38,000 in Wyoming renewable energy infrastructure for three small businesses. They are among 165 projects to receive funding for clean energy or safe water. [The Fence Post]

Have a fulfillingly elated day.

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April 30 Energy News

April 30, 2022

Opinions of Various Authors: 

¶ “Electric Vehicle Misinformation: How Do You Deal With It?” • When I bought my first electric car in 2011, I didn’t plan on promoting them as a disruption to the auto industry. I also didn’t see a lot of attacks on EVs, because people I knew just looked at them as a joke and nobody really felt threatened by them. But I had to learn to deal with attacks. [CleanTechnica]

Tesla Model Y (Tyler Casey, Unsplash)

¶ “225 Reasons Why People Buy Electric Cars” • The reddit EV forum has a post, “Why Have You Gone Electric?” When I saw that it had 225 responses, I looked to see what all those people said. These folks were already driving electric and talking about the factors that motivated them move to EVs. Some of what they said is worth thinking about. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ “Ukraine War: Clean Energy Tipping Point?” • The US and its allies have also tried to sanction Russia as severely as possible for their aggression in Ukraine. To do that, it is necessary to greatly reduce our dependence on fossil fuels. Solar and wind electricity generation are already less expensive than electricity from coal or fossil gas. [CleanTechnica]

Howitzer similar to 72 going to Ukraine (US Army photo)

¶ “Do-It-Yourself Electric Vehicles” • “I love Teslas,” says Graeme, owner of Oz-DIY Electric Vehicles, “they make great spare parts!” Graeme knows a lot about cars, both fossil fueled cars and EVs. Looking around his workshop, I see a number of cars in various stages of retrofit. He also makes and sells kits for those who want to do their own conversions. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Clorox Company Signs A 47-MW Virtual Power Purchase Agreement” • The Clorox Company said it signed a 12-year, 47-MW virtual power purchase agreement with Enel Green Power North America for renewable electricity. The deal should provide about half of the renewable electricity Clorox needs in the US and Canada. [Environment + Energy Leader]

Clorox products (Kelly Sikkema, Unsplash)

¶ “Azure Power Global Signs An Expression Of Interest With Government Of Karnataka To Develop 1700 MW Renewable Energy Projects” • Azure Power, an Indian power producer, signed an Expression of Interest with Government of Karnataka to develop solar, wind, and hybrid renewable energy projects aggregating to 1,700 MW capacity. [MarketScreener]

¶ “Solar Delivered 15% Of 201 GW Peak Demand On April 26” • Renewable energy has come to the rescue during the ongoing power crisis triggered by surging demand amid the heat wave condition in India, especially when the peak electricity supply hit the record level of 201.06 GW earlier this week, a senior official said. [Saur Energy International]

Solar parking canopy in India (Rsrikanth05, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “TC Energy Wants To Power The Oilsands With Small Nuclear Reactors” • The head of Canadian pipeline giant TC Energy Corp said he sees an opportunity to get involved in providing small-scale nuclear power for Alberta’s oilsands. TC Energy already has a 48.4% ownership stake in the nuclear generating company Bruce Power. [Canada’s National Observer]

US:

¶ “A Watershed Moment: Key Findings About Potential Drinking Water Contamination” • Every day, people across the US turn on their faucets for a glass of drinking water, but few of them ever think about where their water comes from. Researchers at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory found a wide range of potential contamination. [CleanTechnica]

Areas of contamination (Sean Turner, PNNL)
Please click on the image to enlarge it.

¶ “Approximately 5,000 More EV Chargers Coming To Southern California” • There was a time when there were no drive-in gas stations, but despite that, the number of gas-powered vehicles grew. Today, critics of EVs say there aren’t enough public EV chargers, which is true, but that situation is changing. California is acting to get them installed. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Time To Shine: Solar Power Poised To Surpass Wind As Michigan’s #1 Renewable Energy Source” • DTE, southeast Michigan’s largest energy provider, says it’s working to reduce carbon emissions by 80% by 2040, and net-zero carbon by 2050. Wind will continue to be important, but solar is likely going to be DTE’s driving force moving forward. [WXYZ]

Wind turbines in Michigan (NOAA via Flickr)

¶ “Video: Yes, Renewable Energy Plants Are Cheaper To Operate Than Non-Renewables” • In March, the US generated 18% of its electricity from renewable sources like wind and solar, according to a study from Ember, a global energy think tank. Some people wanted to know if renewable energy saves money as well as the environment. It does. [WCNC]

¶ “RFPs Solicited By Dominion For Renewable Energy Projects In Virginia” • Dominion Energy Virginia issued a request for proposals for up to 1,200 MW of new solar and onshore wind projects, as well as about 125 MW of energy storage. Another RFP, looking proposals for power purchase agreements, will be issued in September. [North American Windpower]

Solar panels in Virginia (USDA via Flickr)

¶ “South Carolina Companies Team Up For Renewable Energy Project At McCall Farms” • A new facility at the McCall Farms plant in South Carolina turns waste into usable natural gas. It filters natural gas gathered from nearby wastewater lagoons, which hold the parts of fruits and vegetables that don’t make their way into food. [WBTW]

¶ “California Governor Reconsidering The Future Of PG&E’s Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant” • Concerns about the power grid in California, especially with the shutdowns Californians have seen in the past two summers, have prompted Governor, Gavin Newsom to think again about shutting down the Diablo Canyon Power Plant. [KSBY]

Have a particularly enjoyable day.

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April 29 Energy News

April 29, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “Should People Get Rid Of Their Garden Lawns?” • Many of us create or maintain lawns in our gardens without giving it a second thought. But could these innocent patches of greenery be a colossal waste of space? They are relatively easy and cheap to maintain, but there are many more environmentally friendly ways to use the space they take up. [BBC]

Lawn (Paul Moody, Unsplash)

World:

¶ “Europe Has Bought $46 Billion Worth Of Russian Energy Since The Ukraine War Began” • Russian revenues from fossil fuel exports to the EU soared during the first two months of the Ukraine invasion, up by more than double from what it was last year, despite some buyers shunning Russian energy and finding alternative suppliers, a report shows. [CNN]

¶ “Soaring Costs And Shortages Push German Industry To The Brink” • Many of Germany’s manufacturing businesses, which provide almost a fifth of its GDP, are finding it difficult to buy raw materials and energy, according to the World Bank. The problem is acute for small and medium-sized businesses, which provide over half of the country’s output. [CNN]

Heavy industry (Ant Rozetsky, Unsplash)

¶ “Trillions In Unpaid Health And Environmental Costs” • The five biggest oil majors in Europe pocketed €47 billion – mostly in profit for shareholders and management – in 2021, taking their total profits to €850 billion since 1993, a study shows. The study also shows that their pollution, public health effects, and carbon emissions total €13 trillion. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Meet The 200 MPH Gen 3 Formula E Race Car” • Described as “a seriously quick and agile racing car” by the only driver to drive it thus far (three-time Le Mans winner Benoit Treluyer), the eagerly anticipated Gen 3 version of the Formula E race car made its debut in Monaco. The power, applied to both front and rear, comes to 800 hp. [CleanTechnica]

Gen 3 EV (Jaguar image)

¶ “Steel Company Shifts To Renewable Energy” • A steel manufacturer and property developer based in the Philippine province of Cebu is set to be a carbon-neutral firm by 2025, after shifting to renewable energy by tapping First Gen Corp as its power supplier. The power supply is coming from the EDC geothermal plant in Leyte. [The Manila Times]

¶ “Candela Opens Electric Boat Experience Center On The French Riviera” • Candela has announced it will open an electric boat experience center this September in Cannes on France’s Côte d’Azur, as a joint effort with the leading French recreational boat dealer, Sud Plaisance. Potential customers can get test drives during the Cannes Yachting Festival. [CleanTechnica]

Candela C-8 (Image courtesy of Candela, cropped)

¶ “Xlinks wants CFD support for UK-Morocco link” • Xlinks is in talks with the UK government about possible Contract for Difference support for a project that would link power generated at a solar and wind facility with storage in Morocco to the UK. The project aims to cover connect 3,800 km (2,361 mi) of HVDC subsea cables, the company said. [reNews]

¶ “Origin Bags 900-MW Oz Solar Project” • Australian energy retailer Origin has acquired a solar project of up to 900 MW in New South Wales as part of plans to boost renewables in its portfolio. The Yarrabee Solar Farm, in the Riverina district, consists of a 450-MW initial project. There is a potential to double its capacity. [reNews]

Solar array (Red Zeppelin, Unsplash)

US:

¶ “EV Conversions Are Awesome, But You’ll Have To Wait” • Some people with old cars they love would rather perform EV conversions, switch them over to electric power, and get the best of both worlds, than buy a new EV. The LA Times recently went out and talked to the owners of EV conversions and the shops that do the work. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Sixteen States, DC, And Environmental Groups Sue USPS Over Gas-Powered Trucks” • Attorneys general from sixteen states and the District of Columbia, along with a coalition of environmental groups, are suing the US Postal Service in an effort to stop the purchase of thousands of gasoline-powered trucks instead of electric trucks. [CNN]

USPS delivery trucks (Sam LaRussa, Unsplash)

¶ “In Atlantic City, Optimistic Offshore Wind Advocates Acknowledge Uncertainty” • To hear advocates tell it, prospects have never looked so good for the US offshore wind industry, after its record-setting $4.37 billion sale of wind power leases in the New York Bight. Some uncertainty does arise with concerns over inflation and supply issues. [WorkBoat]

¶ “FPL Package Deal – EV Charger, Installation, And Unlimited Off Peak Charging For $38 A Month” • Florida Power & Light has a deal for EV drivers that sounds rather tempting. For just $38 a month, it will install an EV charger at your home and provide unlimited off-peak electricity to charge your car for one low fee. A ten year contract is required. [CleanTechnica]

Dream of the future (FPL image)

¶ “Biden-Harris Administration Advances Three Transmission Projects To Connect More Clean Energy To The Grid” • The Department of the Interior and the Bureau of Land Management announced significant milestones on three transmission projects that will potentially carry 10,000 MW of renewable energy across the West. [US Department of the Interior]

¶ “US Nuclear Power Agency Seeks Staff Documentation Of NuScale’s Quake Protection” • An official with the US NRC has ordered staff to supply documents that could lead to a review of a 2020 approval of a the NuScale nuclear reactor after an engineer raised concerns about its ability to withstand earthquakes, documents showed. [Financial Post]

Have a gloriously serene day.

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April 28 Energy News

April 28, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “How Can Urban Landscapes Modulate Their Carbon Footprint?” • What comes to mind when you think of a city? Is it concrete and urban sprawl? Or can you envision an exciting life filled with economic and cultural opportunities? Cities need to transcend their reliance on stifling, toxic, deadly fossil fuels and suppression of the natural world. [CleanTechnica]

Urban landscape (Photo retrieved from NOAA, public domain)

Science and Technology:

¶ “The Most Devastating Hurricanes Could Double By 2050 In Nearly All Regions Of World, Scientists Say” • Intense hurricanes and typhoons of category 3 or stronger, the most devastating storms on the planet, could more than double by 2050 in nearly all regions of the world because of climate change, according to a report in Science Advances. [CNN]

¶ “Some Experts Fear These Forests Could Shift From Absorbing Carbon Dioxide To Emitting It” • Wildfires burning in the vast and pristine forests of Canada, Europe, and the far Northern US could release an enormous amount of planet-warming emissions between now and 2050, putting the world’s climate goals in peril, scientists reported. [CNN]

Alaskan boreal forest (LB Brubaker, NOAA, public domain)

¶ “Korean Researchers Develop Battery Tech With Blistering Charge Speeds” • The Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology say they did some battery development that is pretty astonishing. They claim to be able to make a hybrid lithium-ion battery that could theoretically reduce the charging time for an electric car to one minute. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Photovoltaics vs Nuclear Power On Mars” • Researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, have compared how PV or nuclear energy could power a crewed outpost for an extended period on Mars and have determined that solar offers the best performance. The team considered four scenarios, one with a nuclear reactor and three with PVs. [PV Magazine]

Mars colony (Davian Ho, University of California, Berkeley)

World:

¶ “India Has Seen Months Of Extreme Heat And This Week It Will Only Get Hotter” • Life-threatening heat waves arrived in India a month earlier than normal, shattering temperature records, with highs reaching over 100°F (38°C) – and it will only get hotter. Over one billion people will be subjected to excessive heat, one expert said. [CNN]

¶ “Ukraine War: Russia Gas Supply Cuts ‘Blackmail’, Says EU” • Russia’s decision to cut off gas exports to Poland and Bulgaria is an “instrument of blackmail”, the EU says. Ursula von der Leyen, president of the European Commission, said the move showed Russia’s “unreliability” as a supplier. Russia supplies over a third of the EU’s natural gas. [BBC]

Ursula von der Leyen (Kuhlmann, MSC, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “22% Of New Cars In Europe Have A Plug!” • Despite declining growth rates, the European passenger plugin vehicle market is still growing significantly, up 10% in March. This is especially significant, as the overall market continues to fall off a cliff, down 19% year over year last month, marking its ninth consecutive month on the red. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Caribbean Must Speed Renewable Energy Transition To Manage Oil Shocks” • Caribbean countries must transition to renewable energy quickly because of high costs of fossil fuels, the president of the Caribbean Development Bank said. Imported petroleum provides about 80% of the energy for the nineteen countries that borrow funds from the bank. [Reuters]

Antigua (Mark Jordan, Unsplash)

¶ “Russian Hackers Are Targeting Europe’s Renewable Energy Infrastructure” • A European wind power industry association says three cyberattacks on German wind farms may be linked to hackers sympathetic with Russia who aim to cause havoc on European renewable energy systems as Europe looks to cut its reliance on Russian fossil fuels. [Oil Price]

¶ “Safety warning at Europe’s largest nuclear plant held by Russian troops” • Safety at the largest nuclear power plant in Europe has been a “red light blinking” since Russia’s invasion, the head of the International Atomic Energy Agency warned. He said the IAEA is struggling to get access to Zaporizhzhia plant, which is occupied by Russian troops. [Yahoo News]

Zaporizhzhia briefing, March 4 (IAEA Imagebank, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

US:

¶ “Southern Californians told to reduce outdoor watering in ‘unprecedented’ order amid historic drought” • Facing extreme drought conditions caused by a “changing climate,” Southern California officials are demanding businesses and residents in parts of Los Angeles, Ventura, and San Bernardino counties cut outdoor watering to one day a week. [CNN]

¶ “California Sets Standards For 100% EV Sales” • In just over a decade, all cars sold in California will be electric, based on new proposed standards from the state’s Air Resources Board. The proposed standards require about 35% of vehicles sold by car manufacturers to be EVs starting in model year 2026 and 100% in model year 2035. [CleanTechnica]

EV charging in California (Kindel Media, Pexels)

¶ “US DOE Launches $84 Million Enhanced Geothermal Energy Systems Program” • The DOE issued a request for information to support $84 million in geothermal systems pilot demonstration projects. The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law authorizes the DOE to support four competitively selected pilot projects for different types of geology. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Purdue And Duke Energy To Explore Potential For SMR Nuclear Power Source For Campus” • Purdue University and Duke Energy plan to explore the feasibility of using advanced nuclear energy to meet the campus community’s long-term energy needs. They intend to study power produced through Small Modular Reactors. [Green Car Congress]

Have a wonderfully agreeable day.

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April 27 Energy News

April 27, 2022

Opinion: 

¶ “Green Jet Fuel Is Here – So Why Are Airlines Not Using It?” • The ingredients of Sustainable Aviation Fuel include used cooking oils or agricultural waste. The first commercial flights using SAF took off in 2011. And yet in 2019, SAF accounted for just 0.1% of all jet fuel used worldwide. There are reasons why the industry is not using much of it. [CNN]

Electric aircraft, another approach (Eviation image)

¶ “Lessons From Sweden’s Anti-Putin, Pro-Climate Energy Model” • Buyers of Russian gas created the conditions for the war and could not take economic steps to deter it. But there is a model not dependent on gas or so much oil. What it delivers is prosperity, an end to fossil fuel politics, and climate justice to future generations. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “A $6 Billion Bailout For US Nuclear Power Plants?” • The massive bipartisan infrastructure bill that was signed into law in mid-November included $6 billion for the DOE to establish a program to keep unprofitable nuclear reactors going. It might do that (which might not be safe), but it might even fail to save any reactors or jobs. [Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists]

Palisades nuclear plant (NRC image, public domain)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Capturing Carbon With Inspiration From Battery Chemistry” • Using seed money provided through the Laboratory Directed Research and Development Program, an initiative of the US DOE, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory is working with an array of emerging technologies to draw down carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ “Ukraine War: Poland Says It Will Manage Without Russian Gas” • Last month, Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered “unfriendly” countries to pay for gas in rubles. Poland’s deputy foreign minister says Warsaw can cope without Gazprom’s gas. It has “options to get the gas from other partners,” according to a deputy foreign minister. [BBC]

Polish wind turbines (Przykuta, CC-BY-SA 3.0)

¶ “Ukraine War To Cause Biggest Price Shock In 50 Years – World Bank” • The war in Ukraine is set to cause the “largest commodity shock” since the 1970s, the World Bank warned. In a new forecast, it said disruption caused by the conflict would contribute to huge price rises for goods ranging from natural gas to wheat and cotton. [BBC]

¶ “‘Vampire devices’ cost UK households £147 a year” • UK households could save an average of £147 per year by switching off so-called vampire devices, electronics that drain a surprising amount of power even when they are on standby. British Gas research shows that UK households spend £3.16 billion annually just to leave vampire devices on standby. [BBC]

Infrared led inside remote (Peter Hebels, public domain)

¶ “Turkey’s Karsan Is Building The Electric Buses Customers Want, Today” • Turkey has established itself as a key builder of commercial vehicles, with the majority of those flowing through export channels to Europe, thanks to the favorable customs agreements established in 1995. Karsan, a Turkish company, is now making electric buses. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Japan’s Main Railway Is Now Powered Solely By Renewable Energy” • Tokyu Railways trains switched to power generated solely by renewable sources. This means that carbon dioxide emissions from Tokyu’s sprawling network of seven train lines and a tram service are now zero, and green energy is being used at all its stations. [The Bharat Express News]

Tokyu Corporation railroad (MaedaAkihiko, CC-BY-SA 4.0)

¶ “Carbon Removal Pioneer Climeworks Raises $650 Million To Grow Faster” • With new customers, Climeworks, a leading player in the field of carbon removal technology, announced an equity round of $650 million. This marks a milestone in the carbon removal industry and the future trajectory of Climeworks as a company. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Russian Capture Of Chernobyl Put World On “Brink Of Disaster”: Ukraine’s Zelensky” • Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said that Russia’s capture of the Chernobyl nuclear power plant soon after Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine had pushed the world towards the “brink of disaster” because Russia treated the area like a normal battle ground. [NDTV.com]

Red Forest, beyond buildings (Jorge Franganillo, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

US:

¶ “Biden Flips The Switch On Trump’s Incandescent Light Bulb Plan” • In yet another rollback of a Trump-era policy, President Joe Biden’s Department of Energy finalized a new efficiency rule to phase out older, high-energy incandescent light bulbs. The move is the culmination of a decades-long, bipartisan effort to phase out inefficient light bulbs. [CNN]

¶ “New Law Could Boost Labor Union Presence In Maine Renewable Energy Projects” • As Maine expands its investments in renewable energy, organized labor is winning policy victories aimed to boost union workers’ presence in the green economy. A new law will require developers to pay prevailing wages on many renewable energy projects. [Maine Public]

Mars Hill wind farm (Michael Surran, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “Duke Energy Renewable Energy Growth Soars By 20% In 2021” • Duke Energy had its best year ever for adding renewable energy as the company posted a 20% jump in wind and solar power in 2021. This information was detailed in Duke Energy’s 16th annual disclosure on environment, social, and governance topics. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

¶ “Nuclear Energy Generation Surpassed By Renewable Energy In 2021” • Electric power sector generation from renewable sources totaled 795 million MWh in the US during 2021. This surpassed nuclear generation, which totaled 778 million MWh, but it did not surpass coal, according the US Energy Information Administration. [Solar Industry]

Have a totally peachy day.

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