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June 21 Green Energy News

Headline News:

  • MidAmerican Energy Co, based in Des Moines, provided its Iowa customers with more than half of their electricity from renewable sources last year. The Iowa Utilities Board verified that MidAmerican Energy served 50.8% of its retail electric load using renewable generation and expects this percentage to grow each year. [North American Windpower]
Iowa wind farm

Iowa wind farm

  • The United States imposed an additional 25% tariff on imported Chinese solar cells and modules last week in America’s steadily escalating trade war with one of the world’s most dominant economies and international powers. The newly imposed tariffs will impact $50 billion worth of Chinese products, including solar cells and modules. [CleanTechnica]
  • A California Senate panel has narrowly advanced a contentious proposal to link oversight of California’s power grid with other western states. The committee’s vote keeps alive a plan that has divided environmentalists and sparked passionate debate about the best way to expand renewable energy in the state and its neighbors. [Electric Light & Power]
  • India’s Ministry of New and Renewable Energy has clipped the wings of state energy bodies by abolishing the requirement that renewable energy projects receive state approval. Three solar projects that have been slowed down, with a total 7,750 MW of grid-connected PV capacity, are among those that will now move ahead more quickly. [pv magazine India]
  • Chicago, which has committed to power its 900 municipal buildings with 100% renewable electricity by 2025, has joined a seven-city collaboration to request price estimates for renewable electricity. The collaboration, led by Boston Mayor Marty Walsh, also includes Los Angeles; Houston; Orlando; Portland, Oregon; and Evanston, Illinois. [pv magazine USA]

For more news, please visit geoharvey – Daily News about Energy and Climate Change.

June 20 Green Energy News

Headline News:

  • “The Lifesaving Benefits of Offshore Wind Power” • As an environmental health and climate researcher, I’m intrigued by how offshore wind power may improve public health. Replacing fossil fuels with wind and solar energy, research shows, can reduce risks of asthma, hospitalizations and heart attacks. In turn, that can save lives. [US News & World Report]
Offshore wind farm (Sean Gallup | Getty Images)

Offshore wind farm (Sean Gallup | Getty Images)

  • Cost reductions of up to 30% have been realised on elements of the 28-MW Nissum Bredning offshore wind farm demonstration project off the coast of Jutland in Denmark, according to Siemens Gamesa. The project showcases a several different engineering innovations that reduce costs of installation and the efficiency of electricity transmission. [reNews]
  • New Hampshire Republican Gov Chris Sununu vetoed two energy-related bills that he says would have cost ratepayers about $110 million over three years. But key members of his party are bristling at the move, calling one bill a vital lifeline for the biomass and timber industry. And they say they have the votes to override a veto. [Concord Monitor]
  • The American Council on Renewable Energy, a national business group made up of companies that finance, develop, manufacture, and use all forms of renewable energy, announced the launch of a new campaign that aims to reach $1 trillion in new US private sector investment in renewable energy and enabling grid technologies by 2030. [Business Wire]
  • Hydro-Québec and Central Maine Power Company have successfully concluded contract negotiations with the electric distribution companies in Massachusetts for the New England Clean Energy Connect, 100% hydropower project. Now, the agreement will go to the Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

For more news, please visit geoharvey – Daily News about Energy and Climate Change.

Electric Car Show: You’re Invited! Saturday in Concord

Drive Electric NH, Concord, NH

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE JUNE 18, 2018 Contacts:

Randy Bryan:  randy@converdant.biz, 603-496-3501 c Cathy Corkery: catherine.corkery@sierraclub.org, 603-224-8222

WHEN: Saturday, 23 June 2018,  10am to 4pm

WHAT: An Electric Car Show:  Concord will turn its picturesque Main St into a pedestrian mall.  All manner of shops and vendors set up on the Main Street, to the delight of Concord residents. Drive Electric NH and NH Sierra Club will have an EV Show and Tell event there, too. EV owners are invited to join our group of EVs for a one day event on Saturday 23 June, 10am-4pm to educate the public about plug-in cars. EV owners enjoy a weekend drive in beautiful New Hampshire and the public gets to learn from the source.

New Hampshire dealers and owners will display their electric vehicles to educate the public and to highlight the enjoyment, practicality, cost savings, clean-air benefits of these cars.  This event is open to the public and free.

Plug-in vehicles by Nissan, Chevrolet, BMW, Honda, Tesla, Toyota, Chrysler, Kia and others will be present. EV charging demonstrations will take place during the day.

 WHERE:  Main Street, Concord, NH  [north end at Centre Street]

Guests will be able to speak with owners, see and touch the EV’s up close, and see car charging demonstrations .

Sponsors: Drive Electric NH, New Hampshire Sustainable Energy Association, New Hampshire Sierra Club,

Dealers Participating: Banks Automotive, Grappone Auto Group [Toyota, Ford, Honda, Hyundai], O’Brien Kia, Tulley BMW, Bonneville Chrysler, Revision Energy [chargers], and others

Other Participants: Tesla S-X-3 owners, Chevrolet Bolt-Volt owners, Nissan Leaf owners, BMW i3 owners, and more.

June 19 Green Energy News

Headline News:

  • Pennsylvania conservation officials released a plan to confront climate change on public land as flooding, wildfires and warmer bodies of water threaten wildlife, landscapes and recreation. The state will identify the most resilient microclimates, then try to physically connect them by acquiring the land or developing easements. [StateImpact Pennsylvania]
Pennsylvania wetland (Nicholas, Wikimedia Commons)

Pennsylvania wetland (Nicholas, Wikimedia Commons)

  • “US Offshore Wind Upends Plans For Saving Coal & Nuclear Power Plants” • If the latest news out of the US DOE is any indication, the Trump Administration’s newest stratagem for keeping old coal and nuclear power plants in operation – make the taxpayers pay extra to keep uneconomical power plants running – is going nowhere fast. [CleanTechnica]
  • Electricity and natural gas distributor National Grid released “Northeast 80×50 Pathway,” outlining various measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 80% by 2050. The program includes in-depth modelling and analysis addressing the three most carbon-intensive sectors in the Northeast: power generation, heating, and transportation. [Power Technology]
  • “Could the U.S. Retire Most of Its Coal-Fired Power Plants by 2040?” • The Energy Information Administration said coal could still generate 22% of US electricity in 2050, but there is a reason why it may be wrong. Utilities and electricity generators are far more eager to get away from coal than market outlooks seem to take into account. [Motley Fool]
  • The technology group Wärtsilä is leading the way to the power industry’s transformation towards a future that utilises 100% renewable energy. Wärtsilä is making a call to action since the technologies required to achieve this vision are already available. In a changing energy sector, Wärtsilä is harnessing its extensive capabilities to lead that change. [SteelGuru]

For more news, please visit geoharvey – Daily News about Energy and Climate Change.

June 18 Green Energy News

Headline News:

  • President Donald Trump ordered a rescue of the nation’s struggling coal and nuclear power industries, but that does not mean utilities are reconsidering the shutdown of unprofitable plants. Many said Trump has not altered their plans to retire old units despite the prospect of his trying to force grid operators to buy power from old plants. [Bloomberg]
Cross Generating Station (Photo: Luke Sharrett | Bloomberg)

Cross Generating Station (Photo: Luke Sharrett | Bloomberg)

  • In a world first, Siemens is opening a £1.5-million pilot project in Oxfordshire employing ammonia as a form of energy storage. The proof-of-concept facility will turn electricity, water, and air into ammonia without releasing carbon emissions. The ammonia can be stored and burned for electricity, sold as a fuel, or used for industrial purposes. [businessgreen.com]
  • “Global warming cooks up ‘a different world’ over 3 decades” • We were warned. On June 23, 1988, a sultry day in Washington, Dr James Hansen told Congress that global warming was not approaching – it had already arrived. Thirty years later, it’s clear that Hansen and other doomsayers were right. And the change has been sweeping. [The Denver Post]
  • Tesla’s cobalt usage will soon be a thing of the past if Elon Musk has his way. And it makes sense. Cobalt prices are soaring. There is an ethical dilemma with cobalt’s primary sourcing, as much of its mining is tainted with corruption and human rights violations, including child labor. And Panasonic announced it is developing cobalt-free batteries. [CleanTechnica]
  • Eastern Australia is home to the world’s largest battery. It is increasingly integrating renewable energy into one of the world’s longest interconnected energy systems. And in the past six months, about 180 MW of new demand response resources have entered the ancillary services markets. The effects on obsolete technology are disruptive. [RenewEconomy]

For more news, please visit geoharvey – Daily News about Energy and Climate Change.

June 17 Green Energy News

Headline News:

  • The Indian city of Chennai has the potential to harness solar energy enough to reduce the demand by at least 20% says a report by Greenpeace India and Gujarat Energy Research and Management Institute. The report found that the total rooftop potential of the city was 1,380 MW and that at least 46% can come from residential areas. [Deccan Chronicle]
Chennai vendor (Photo: PlaneMad, Wikimedia Commons)

Chennai vendor (Photo: PlaneMad, Wikimedia Commons)

  • For a split-second after the demolition plunger went down, the cooling towers at St Johns River Power Park stood as if they would remain for 30 more years as Jacksonville landmarks. Then the burst of 1,500 pounds of dynamite ripped through them, and they collapsed into dust. From the crowd, a child’s voice called out: “Do it again.” [The Florida Times-Union]
  • Research by two Harvard University scientists concluded that the Trump administration’s environmental policies could result in an additional 80,000 deaths per decade. The research, which was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, examined the health impacts of the EPA’s policies on toxic chemicals and air pollutants. [The Hill]
  • China fired back in a spiraling trade dispute with President Donald Trump by raising import duties on a $34 billion list of American goods including soybeans, electric cars, and whiskey. The Chinese government said it was responding in “equal scale” to Trump’s tariff hike in a conflict over Beijing’s trade surplus and technology policy. [ETEnergyworld.com]
  • The US split from other Group of 20 member countries over the future of the coal industry and the 2015 Paris climate accord. At a press conference at the close of the G-20 meeting of energy ministers in Bariloche, Argentina, Germany’s director of energy policy Thorsten Herdan said G-20 member countries “have to get out of coal.” [The Japan News]

For more news, please visit geoharvey – Daily News about Energy and Climate Change.

June 16 Green Energy News

Headline News:

  • Massachusetts moved closer to embracing an economy-wide price on carbon, as the Senate approved an energy bill with a “market-based compliance mechanism.” One of New England’s largest utilities backed the move, saying a carbon price is needed for the region to have a chance of meeting its greenhouse gas emission targets. [CommonWealth magazine]
Electric vehicle charging

Electric vehicle charging

  • “Despite Tariffs, Solar Energy Is Cheaper Than Ever” • The cost of solar power continues to fall to new lows in the US, even as tariffs are imposed in favor of keeping the coal and natural gas industries afloat. One expert pointed out that it is cheaper to build a new PV plant than just to operate an existing coal or natural gas plant. [The Weather Channel]
  • The Boring Company announced a project with the Chicago Transit Authority to develop a set of tunnels connecting Chicago’s O’Hare Airport and downtown Chicago. The new route, the Chicago Express Loop, would get passengers from O’Hare to downtown in just 12 minutes for around $20–25. That’s half the price of a cab. [CleanTechnica]
  • In India, excessive demand, mismanaged water resources, erratic weather patterns, and climate change have led to a water shortage that is only getting worse. According to a report by NITI Aayog, India is facing its worst water crisis and about two lakh (200,000) people die every year due to inadequate access to potable water. [India Times]
  • Japan’s SoftBank is planning to invest between $60 billion to $100 billion in a solar power project in India, a Japanese report said. The report by broadcaster NHK comes after SoftBank announced in March it would partner Saudi Arabia on a multi-billion dollar solar project that the company’s founder called the largest in the world. [Daily Times]

For more news, please visit geoharvey – Daily News about Energy and Climate Change.

MA Senate Bill 2545 – Mind Boggling PV Progressive legislation!

The Senate passed S.2545 unanimously – in a decisive bi-partisan message to the House. The bill includes almost everything we could want in a clean energy bill.

The Senate bill eliminates net metering caps, eliminates the Eversource residential demand charges for solar customers, restores full retail net metering for low income and community solar, allows net metering credits to transfer across load zones, all with the goal of providing fair and equitable access to solar for all of Massachusetts residents. It creates a working group to study requiring solar installations on all new buildings.

The bill requires utilities to offer optional time of use rates to all customers. Time of use rates will reduce peak demand and electricity costs all while encouraging the adoption of solar energy and electric vehicles.

The bill sets a 2,000 MW target for energy storage by 2025. And as a bit of a bonus, it prohibits utilities from owning behind the meter energy storage systems.

It raises the RPS standard from 1% increase a year to 3% a year.

It requires that the Commonwealth develop a plan by 2023 for meeting Global Warming Solutions Act targets for 2030, 2040 and 2050.

It requires that the utilities report lost and unaccounted for natural gas from leaks and prohibits imposing a pipeline tax on ratepayers for funding new pipelines. It requires that the Commonwealth consider alternatives to natural gas before building new pipelines and gives new authority to local authorities in the approval of compressor stations and establishes requirements for air monitoring near existing compressor stations.

It provides consumer protections from predatory competitive electricity suppliers.

Surprisingly, it asks the Commonwealth to develop plan to create new municipal light districts, including ways for communities who want to establish a municipal light district to acquire the assets of the existing Investor Owned Utility.

It requires that 50% of the Commonwealth’s vehicles be zero emission by 2025, and that 100% of all new vehicles purchased or leased after 2026 be zero emission. It asks the MBTA to implement a pilot program to evaluate regenerative braking vehicles to conserve energy.

It establishes a moratorium on fracking or storing fracking waste in Massachusetts.

Please call your Senators and thank them for their excellent work.

It was a truly excellent result and very inspiring to see such strong bi-partisan cooperation for the common good!

 This is what we need to keep Solar working in Massachusetts.

June 15 Green Energy News

Headline News:

  • “NRDC, 19 Other Groups Challenge EU’s Mistaken Climate Decision” • EU policymakers agreed on a new Renewable Energy Directive that failed to fix Europe’s broken bioenergy policies. The decision to continue to label the indiscriminate burning of wood as “carbon neutral” undercuts the EU’s climate targets. [Natural Resources Defense Council]
Clearcut forest (MO Stevens, Wikimedia Commons)

Clearcut forest (MO Stevens, Wikimedia Commons)

  • Volkswagen’s diesel emission scandal is still ongoing with German prosecutors fining the automaker €1 billion (£882 million, $1.16 billion) for cheating. The one-billion-euro fine is one of the highest fines ever imposed by German authorities against a company, according to Reuters. However, things aren’t slowing down for VW. [Yahoo News UK]
  • At an upcoming meeting of the G20 countries, one of the topics on the agenda will be increasing natural gas production investments by as much as $1.6 trillion by 2030. A report by Oil Change International finds doing so will use up the entire remaining carbon budget limits needed to meet the climate goals of the Paris climate accords. [CleanTechnica]
  • Connecticut selected a city fuel cell company and a major offshore wind farm developer to help bring more than 250 MW of clean electricity to the state’s consumers. Gov Dannel P Malloy and other officials announced that FuelCell Energy of Danbury and Deepwater Wind were selected from among the 27 bidding companies. [Danbury News Times]
  • Massachusetts utilities have signed an agreement to bring hydropower from Quebec through Maine via a new 145-mile transmission corridor. The agreement is a necessary step for the New England Clean Energy Connect transmission project, which will bring power from Hydro-Quebec to markets in the Bay State. [Kennebec Journal & Morning Sentinel]

For more news, please visit geoharvey – Daily News about Energy and Climate Change.

Energy Plan in Hartford

Energy Update Hartford vt