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Nat. Gas Methane Leaks Surpass Previous Estimates (Ind. Report)
NOAA
Date: 2018-06-25
A 10-year National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Global Monitoring Division study of the U.S. oil and gas industry has found that leaks of potent greenhouse gas methane -- the main ingredient in natural gas -- amounting to 13 million metric tpy. is 60 pct higher than the EPA's previously estimated 8 million metric tpy.

In comparison, the environmental effect of methane leaks in 2015 reached the same level of the climate impact of carbon dioxide emissions from all U.S. coal-fired power plants combined in the same year.

Essentially, the amount of methane loss due to leakage would have been enough to power 10 million homes, and calls into question claims that natural gas is friendlier to the environment than the use of coal fuels.

Methane is as much as 80 times more harmful to the atmosphere than carbon dioxide and can contribute about 25 pct to global warming, and its effect can last over the first 20 years after being released. The study was published in the journal Science on June 21. (Source: NOAA, Inosurhoy, 23 June, 2018)Contact: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Benjamin Friedman, (301) 713-1208, www.noaa.gov

More Low-Carbon Energy News Methane,  GHG,  NOAA,  Natural Gas,  


EU Finalizes 2030 Renewable Energy, Climate Targets (Int'l)
EU
Date: 2018-06-25
After 18 months of negotiations, the European Union last week finalized new climate targets increasing the present 17 pct share of renewable energy to 32 pct, and setting an energy efficiency target of 32.5 pct by 2030.

Germany reportedly blocked a previous effort to set an even higher renewables target of 35 pct called for by the European Parliament and member states including Spain and Italy, saying it is unrealistic. The country, which still relies on coal to generate much of its electricity, announced last week that it would not meet its 2020 emissions target due to economic and population growth.

In addition to the newly agreed targets, the EU set a wider goal of bringing greenhouse gas emissions to 40 pct below levels in 1990. Member state governments will now devise their own plans to meet these goals, in line with the Paris Agreement.

Green Group MEPs and environmental campaigners, however, said the new targets are not sufficient to meet goals set by the Paris Agreement, particularly limiting warming to below 2 degrees Celsius. The final deal allows the EU to revisit climate goals in 2023 and increase the agreed targets if so desired. (Source: EU, European Scientist, 23 June, 2018)

More Low-Carbon Energy News EU,  Renewable Energy Targets,  Climate Change,  Emissions,  Energy Efficiency,  


Wisc. County Climate Action Plan Wins Support (Funding)
Dane County Office of Energy and Climate Change
Date: 2018-06-25
In the Badger State, the Dane County Office of Energy and Climate Change is reporting receipt of $29,500 in grant funding from the Minneapolis-based Carolyn Foundation. The grant will support Dane County's efforts to model various polices, programs and projects to be included in a Dane County Climate Action Plan.

The Dane County Office of Energy and Climate Change (OECC) has convened a 37 stakeholder member Council on Climate Change to help the county develop a Climate Action Plan that will reduce greenhouse gas emissions. To that end, the OECC contracted with Sustainable Energy Economics, the proprietary owner of the Framework for Analysis of Climate-Energy-Technology Systems (FACETS) model. (Source: Dane County Wisc., Sun Prairie Star, 23 June, 2018)Contact: Dane County Office of Energy and Climate Change, https://climatechange.countyofdane.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Climate Change,  


ArcelorMittal Cleveland Steel Mill DOE 50001 Ready (Ind. Report)
ArcelorMittal
Date: 2018-06-25
ArcelorMittal USA, a US Department of Energy (DOE) Better Plants partner, attained the US DOE's 50001 Ready designation for the energy management system at its large steel mill in Cleveland, Ohio. This achievement is helping the plant meet long-term corporate energy goals established in partnership with the Better Plants program and sustain its energy savings over time.

The DOE 50001 Ready program is a self-guided approach for facilities to establish an energy management system and self-attest to the structure of ISO 50001, a voluntary global standard for energy management systems in industrial, commercial, and institutional facilities. The program does not require external audits or certifications. ArcelorMittal USA was the first steel company to join DOE's Better Plants program with 17 of its US plants.

ArcelorMittal USA produces 3.8 million tpy of steel. (Source: ArcelorMittal USA, Green Car Congress, 23 June, 2018) Contact: DOE 50001 Ready, https://betterbuildingsinitiative.energy.gov/50001Ready; ArcelorMittal USA, usa.arcelormittal.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News ArcelorMittal,  Energy Efficiency,  DOE 50001 Program,  


Brazil's 61st Biodiesel Auction Tops 264Mn Gallons (Int'l Report)
Brazilian Agency of Petroleum, Natural Gas and Biofuels
Date: 2018-06-25
The Rio de Janeiro-headquartered Brazilian Agency of Petroleum, Natural Gas and Biofuels (ANP) reports 1.01 billion litres (264.17m gallons) of biodiesel totaling $700 million from 38 producers were contracted in the 61th biodiesel auction last week. Almost 90 pct of the total bear the Social Fuel Seal, which gives producers incentives to source raw materials from small farms, ANP said.

Brazil's biodiesel auctions are designed to meet the legal requirement for the 10 pct minimum blend of biodiesel in diesel sold at the pump. The 61th tender will ensure the biofuel supply in the domestic market from July 1 to August 31, 2018, the agency noted.

Brazil's National Agency of Petroleum, Natural Gas and Biofuels (ANP) is the regulatory agency that oversees activities undertaken by the oil, natural gas and biofuel industries in the country. It is in charge of issuing non-statutory regulations (resolution, norms) for these sectors, awarding exploration, development and production licenses and concessions, and conducting regulatory inspections, directly or through other state entities. The agency also defines interests for the government and third parties, as well as taxes -- such as royalties -- that oil companies are obliged to pay by contract. (Source: Agency of Petroleum, Natural Gas and Biofuels, Renewables, Others, 25 Fune, 2018) Contact: Brazilian Agency of Petroleum, Natural Gas and Biofuels, +55-21-21128100

More Low-Carbon Energy News Brazil Biodiesel,  Biodiesel,  


EPA Stalls Biofuel Blend Quota Announcement (Ind. Report)
EPA
Date: 2018-06-25
Bloomberg and others are reporting oil industry criticism has caused the Trump Administration to reconsider a proposal to require large refineries to blend more biofuel to make up for "hardship" exemptions granted to smaller refineries. Accordingly, the EPA has put a planned announcement on proposed biofuel quotas for 2019 on hold.

Ethanol producers and farm-state lawmakers say that recent waivers granted to small refiners have undercut the Renewable Fuels Standard. The Trump administration's plan to make up for the lost biofuel gallons would have put the burden on non-exempted refineries, prompting an outcry from the two top oil industry trade groups.

As previously reported, "hardship waivers" were intended for refineries producing 75,000 bpd or less and suffered "disproportionate economic hardship" from the costs of RFS compliance. The waiver frees the refineries from an obligation to provide the EPA with biofuels credits proving compliance. (Source: Various Media, Bloomberg, HoosierAg Today, 24 June, 2018)

More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Fuel Standard,  Ethanol Blend,  Pruitt,  


EU Palm Oil Biofuel Ban Stalled Until 2030 (Ind. Report)
EU, Palm Oil
Date: 2018-06-25
A recent meeting between the European Parliament, Commission, and European Council has suspended the implementation of a policy that would have banned the use of crude palm oil as a basic material for biofuel in 2020 and instead set a target of 2030 for the complete ban of palm oil.

The EU's new policy will start reducing crude palm oil imports gradually in 2023 before the complete banning effective in 2030. Until then, the percentage of palm oil in EU biofuel will be kept at 2019 levels.

Indonesia and Malaysia, which account for 85 pct of the world's palm oil supply, reportedly expressed relief in response to the EU decision while the Malaysian Palm Oil Council (MPOC) said that although the EU decision was "very welcome" the upcoming ban would cause it to aggressively seek new markets.

Under current EU law, palm oil must come from certified sustainable plantations. Even so, environmentalists note that palm oil diesel still produces three times the carbon emissions of fossil diesel. Environmental organizations and green activists accuse the palm oil industry of causing massive deforestation and rainforest destruction, thus hastening climate change. (Source: Malaysian Palm Oil Council, Citizen Truth, 24 June, 2018)Contact: Malaysian Palm Oil Council, www.mpoc.org.my

More Low-Carbon Energy News Palm Oil,  Biofuel,  


AEP's $4.5Bn Wind Project Wins Another Approval (Ind. Report)
AEP Corp,Invenergy
Date: 2018-06-22
In the Buckeye State, Columbus-based utility American Electric Power (AEP) is reporting its proposed $4.5 billion Wind Catcher Energy Connection project has landed required approvals from Louisiana and Arkansas -- two of the four states it will ultimately serve. Texas and Oklahoma have not yet approved the proposed 2,000-MW wind farm to be constructed in Texas and in Cimaroon County on the Oklahoma panhandle.

The project would be developed by Chicago-based Invenergy LLC and will incorporate about 800 wind turbines supplied by GE Renewable Energy. Invenergy would sell the farm upon completion, expected in in 2020. AEP's Southwestern Electric Power Co. will own 70 pct of the project and Public Service Company of Oklahoma will hold the remaining 30 pct. Southwestern Electric Power Co. says the project will save customers $4 billion over its 25-year life, compared to what it would cost to buy the power on the open market, noting no fuel costs, tax credit benefits and cost-efficient delivery thanks to the dedicated power line. It serves 231,000 customers in Louisiana. AEP serves 5.4 million customers in 11 states. It has 33,000 megawatts of energy generation capacity, including 4,200 megawatts of solar energy as well as 224,000 miles of distribution lines. (Source: AEP, Columbus Business First, 20 June, 2018)Contact: AEP, (614) 716-1000, www.aep.com Southwestern Electric Power, www.swepco.com; Invenergy, Invenergy Wind LLC, (312) 224-1400, https://invenergyllc.com/what-we-do/wind

More Low-Carbon Energy News Invenergy ,  AEP,  American Electric Power,  Wind,  


ADM, DuPont Collaborate on Cellulose Enzymes (Ind. Report)
Archer Daniels Midland Co. (ADM), DuPont Industrial Biosciences
Date: 2018-06-22
Chicago-headquartered Archer Daniels Midland Co. (ADM) and DuPont Industrial Biosciences report they are collaborating to develop, produce and market cellulase enzymes for grain-based ethanol production.

Cellulase enzymes assist in hydrolyzing the corn kernel fiber which, broken down, releases more sugars to be fermented into ethanol.

Ethanol from corn kernel fiber may qualify for D3 RINS under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) which encourages producers to utilize non-starch components of grains and other waste products in the production of biofuels. Initial product prototypes have proven successful in both laboratory and ethanol plant scale testing, and more evaluations are planned, the companies say. (Source: ADM, DuPont, World-Grain, 21 June, 2018) Contact: DuPont Industrial Biosciences, Troy Wilson, www.biosciences.dupont.com; ADM, Juan Luciano, Pres., CEO, (312) 634-8100, Collin Benson, VP Bioactives, Jackie Anderson, ADM Media, (217) 424-5413, media@adm.com, www.adm.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Archer Daniels Midland ,  DuPont Industrial Biosciences,  Cellulosic,  Enzyne,  


EDF Renewables, PGGM Ink US Wind, Solar Projects Deal (Ind. Report)
EDF Renewables
Date: 2018-06-22
In the Golden State, San Diego-based independent power producer EDF Renewables reports it has sealed a Purchase and Sale Agreements (PSA) that will see Dutch cooperative pension fund manager PGGM Infrastructure Fund acquire 50 pct ownership in: Red Pine Wind, Rock Falls Wind, Switch Station 1 Solar and Switch Station 2 Solar with a total capacity of 588 MW. The transaction is subject to regulatory approval and customary conditions precedent. EDF Renewables will remain involved in the projects as a co-owner providing management services and provider of operations and maintenance services.

EDF Renewables is one of North America's largest renewable energy developers with with 10 gigawatts of wind, solar, storage, biomass and biogas projects in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico. (Source: EDF Renewables, BusinessWire, 21 June, 2018) Contact: EDF Renewables, Raphael Declercq, Exec. VP Strategy, Sandi Briner, (858) 521 3525, Sandi.Briner@edf-re.com, www.edf-re.com; PGGM, +31 (0)30 277 1500, www.pggm.nl

More Low-Carbon Energy News EDF Renewables,  Wind,  Solar,  


Growth Energy Predicts 2,800 New E15 Retailers by 20121 (Ind. Report)
Growth Energy,Prime the Pump
Date: 2018-06-22
According to the biofuel trade association Growth Energy, over 2,800 retail sites will sell 350 million gpy of E15 by 2021.

The Growth Energy release credits the not-for-profit Prime the Pump market development campaign for: doubling the number of E15 stations four years in a row to include 1,400 stations across 30 states; securing commitments of more than 2,800 retail sites that will offer E15 by 2021 generating approximately 350 million new gpy of ethanol; and adding three major new retailers to the program in 2017, including a game-changing partnership with Kwik Trip which successfully rolled out E15 at 300 sites in just four months.

Both Growth Energy and Prime the Pump are arguing for relief from the current Reid Vapor Pressure (RVP) limitations to further spur the growth of E15 sales. Volatility defines its evaporation characteristics of a liquid fuel; RVP -- expressed in pounds per square inch (psi) -- is a common measure of and generic term for gasoline volatility. The RVP of gasoline can range from 7 to 15 psi. Ethanol itself has a very low volatility: -2 psi RVP. The higher the RVP of a fuel the worse its emissions are. (Source: Growth Energy, Green Car Congress, 21 June, 2018)Contact: Growth Energy, Emily Skor, CEO, (202) 545-4000, www.growthenergy.org; Prime the Pump, http://primethepumpfund.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Growth Energy,  Ethanol Blend,  E15,  Biofuel,  Prime the Pump,  


New Internet-Based Biomass Feedstock Supply System Touted (Int'l)
Valmet,Turun Seudun Energiatuotanto
Date: 2018-06-22
Finland-based engineering company Valmet and Turun Seudun Energiatuotanto Oy (TSE) are reporting the development of DNA Fuel Chain Management, an internet-based system to support the delivery of woody biomass, straw, peat, coal, refinery gas and refuse-derived feedstock.

The system is being implemented at utility company TSE's new €240 million multifuel plant in Naantali, which became operational at the end of last year. The facility will process up to 1.2 million cubic metres per year of woody biomass an generate 146 MW of electricity and 250MW of heat.

The DNA system creates the fuel purchasing plan and distributes it to suppliers. This includes the exact amount, type of fuel and delivery time slot desired from each supplier. (Source: Valmet, Ends Waste&Bioenergy, 19 June 2018) Contact: Turun Seudun Energiatuotanto Oy, Tapani Bastman, CEO, +358 40 5778122, www.tset.fi; Valmet, Bertel Karlstedt , Pres. Pulp & Energy, +358 (0) 10 672 0000, www.valmet.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Valmet,  Biomass,  


Friends of Science Society Challenges Cdn. Carbon Tax, Climate Change Policy (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
Friends of Science Society
Date: 2018-06-22
The Canadian carbon tax and climate change policy revolt gained strength as Conservative Premier-elect Doug Ford gave notice he would scrap the present cap-and-trade deal with California and Quebec, as reported by CBC News on June 15, 2018. Ford also has stated he is willing to go to court to challenge the Liberal Canadian federal government's intention to impose a carbon tax on provinces.

The scientific justification for carbon taxes, cap-and-trade, and the Paris Agreement took another hit on June 20, 2018, when the Financial Post published an article by economist Ross McKitrick laying out flaws in climate simulations (models) upon which carbon taxes and climate policies are based. The article noted: "It also means that greenhouse gas emissions do not have as big an impact on the climate as has been claimed, and the case for costly policy measures to reduce carbon-dioxide emissions is much weaker than governments have told us. For a science that was supposedly 'settled' back in the early 1990s, we sure have a lot left to learn," the McKitrick article said.

The Friends of Science Society, an independent group of earth, atmospheric and solar scientists, engineers, and citizens, says CO2 from human industrial emissions has nominal impact on climate, there is no significant climate risk and no need to phase out fossil fuels or enact related climate policies.

Download the Friends of Science Society Challenging the Canadian Federal Government's Carbon Pollution Pricing System Results Report HERE. (Source: Friends of Science Society, PR WEB, June, 2018) Contact: Friends of Science Society, (888) -789-9597, contact@friendsofscience.org, www.friendsofscience.org

More Low-Carbon Energy News Canada Carbon Tax,  Carbon Tax,  Climate Change,  


Notable Quotes
RFA
Date: 2018-06-22
"(The) EPA is trying to undermine the RFS program under the cover of night. And there's a reason it has been done in secret -- it's because EPA is acting in contravention of the statute and its own regulations, methodically destroying the demand for renewable fuel." -- RFA Pres. Bob Dineen discussing the EPA's recent granting of numerous RFS "hardship" waivers. Contact: RFA, Bob Dineen, Pres., (202) 289-3835, www.ethanolrfa.org

More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Fuel Standard news,  Hardship Waiver news,  RFA news,  


Aloha State Pledges Carbon Neutrality by 2045 (Reg & Leg)
Hawaii
Date: 2018-06-22
The Hawaiian State Legislature has inked legislation committing to 100 pct renewable energy and to becoming carbon neutral by 2045. The legislature also committed to eliminate fossil fuels in ground transportation by 2045, and that the rise in sea levels be considered when proposed developments projects are being scrutinised. Hawaii reportedly could be hit by $19 billion in damage due to rising sea levels, according to the Hawaii Sea Level Rise Vulnerability and Adaptation report. The legislation has been described as "just plain common sense."

Hawaii is the ninth lowest producer of energy-related CO2 emissions among the 50 US states, according to the US Energy Information Administration. It is also a member of the United States Climate Alliance, a group of state governors that have agreed to abide by the 2015 Paris climate agreement. (Source: Various Media, Compelo, June, 2018)

More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon Neutral,  Carbon Emissions,  


EIA Details Energy Efficiency Incentives Results (Ind. Report)
US EIA
Date: 2018-06-22
According to a US Energy Information Administration (EIA) survey (EIA-861) of electric power sales, revenue, and energy efficiency, U.S. electric utilities reported spending $3.6 billion on energy efficiency customer incentives in 2016, for an average of $24 per customer.

Most reported spending supported residential and commercial energy efficiency: 43 pct of spending targeted residential customers, 49 pct targeted commercial customers, and the remaining 8 pct targeted industrial customers. Average reported spending per customer varied by state, from $0 in Alaska to $128 in Massachusetts. High-spending states and low-spending states tend to be concentrated in particular regions. By U.S. census region, average utility spending ranged from $11 per customer in the South to $47 per customer in the Northeast. Spending also was higher in certain states with high electricity prices, such as Hawaii, or in certain states with climates that require more energy for heating and cooling, such as Illinois and Arizona.

Incremental savings as a result of energy efficiency spending for reporting year 2016 totaled 27.5 billion kWh or 0.7 pct of nationwide retail electricity sales. Projected lifecycle savings were much greater, at 354 billion kWh over the lifetime of the efficiency measures used, because some measures that affect heating, cooling, and water heating equipment can provide benefits for several years. Like spending, most savings occurred in the residential and commercial sectors.

Annual incremental savings also varied by state, from near 0 pct of electricity retail sales in Kansas and Alaska to 3 pct of retail sales in Massachusetts and Rhode Island. Average electricity savings by U.S. census region was the highest at 1.2 pct in the Northeast, and the lowest at less than 0.4 pct in the south. (Source: EIA, Today in Energy, 20 June, 2018) Contact: US EIA, www.eia.gov

More Low-Carbon Energy News US EIA,  Energy Efficiency Incentive,  


Ontario Renewables, Green Renovation Rebates Chopped (Ind. Report)
Energy Efficiency
Date: 2018-06-22
Hard on the heels of the election of Ontario's new Conservative Premier Doug Ford's announcement to scrap the province's 2017 vintage carbon tax -- cap-and-trade program, a post on the GreenOn.ca website announced the closing of several renewable energy and residential and commercial energy efficiency rebate programs. Existing rebate program commitments will be honoured.

The rebate program was funded through proceeds from the province's cap-and-trade program through a provincial agency called the Green Ontario Fund. Ontario has earned approximately $3 billion in a series of cap-and-trade auctions since the system was introduced by the Liberals last year. (Source: Green Ontario Fund, Bell Media, 20 June, 2018) Contact: Green Ontario Fund, www.GreenOn.ca

More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Energy,  Ontario Cap-and-Trade,  Doug Ford,  Energy Efficiency,  Energy Efficiency Rebate,  


Governors' Partnership on Carbon Capture Growing (Ind. Report)
Governors' Partnership on Carbon Capture
Date: 2018-06-22
Wyoming Public Media is reporting Montana and Wyoming Governors Steve Bullock and Matt Mead have joined the Governors' Partnership on Carbon Capture. Louisiana, Kansas, Oklahoma, and Utah are also participating.

The Partnership aims to create a unified voice on policies related to the topic at both state and federal level. One of the first projects from the group will be getting carbon capture technology on the ground. To that end, the partnership will work to:

  • Elevate carbon capture, storage and its use as a national priority for American energy independence, job creation, environmental stewardship and global technology leadership;
  • Encourage congressional and presidential action to expand the portfolio of federal policies to put carbon capture on an equal footing with other low- and zero-emission energy technologies;
  • Foster carbon capture and CO2 pipeline infrastructure deployment in states and regions by identifying state policies and programs to complement federal policies;
  • Forge public-private partnerships to support critical projects and overcome barriers to developing, financing and implementing them. The partnership has invited 17 states to join the initiative. The coalition will be staffed by another working group of officials from 15 states also focused on carbon capture. (Source: Wyoming Public Media, 21 June, 2018)


  • CPUC OKs Regional Energy Network Efficiency Plan (Ind. Report)
    California Public Utilities Commission
    Date: 2018-06-20
    In Sacramento, the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) reports it has approved an Energy Efficiency Business Plan submitted by the Tri-County Regional Energy Network (3C-REN) allowing local governments greater flexibility over program design to meet local needs and bring ratepayer dollars directly to their region. The plans outline proposed energy efficiency programming and budgets that will be implemented across the state through 2025.

    The Tri-County Regional Energy Network (3C-REN) -- Ventura, Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo counties -- is a group of local governments designated as program administrators for energy efficiency programs and can receive ratepayer funding directly from the CPUC rather than through Investor-Owned Utilities. Specific programming anticipated to be offered in the Tri-County Region includes: workforce education and training programs; codes and standards compliance programs; and residential (including multi-family) energy efficiency programs.

    The CPUC directed 3C-REN to put special emphasis on customers without easy access to program information or who generally do not participate in energy efficiency programs. (Source: Santa Barbara County, Public News, 12 June 2018) Contact: California PUC, www.cpuc.ca.gov

    More Low-Carbon Energy News California Public Utilities Commission ,  Energy Efficiency,  


    Waterloo U. Wins Zero-Carbon Green Building Award (Ind. Report)
    Canada GReen Building Council
    Date: 2018-06-20
    The Canada Green Building Council (CaGBC)reports reports Cora Group's "evolv1" project at the University of Waterloo in Ontario has been awarded the the CaGBC Zero Carbon Building Award. The Cora Group project is a commercial multi-tenant office building now under construction.

    A project fact sheet notes the building's sustainability elements included: a ventilation system that meets a defined threshold for thermal energy demand intensity; onsite renewable energy systems that provide a minimum of 5 pct of building energy consumption; maximized day-lighting opportunities; the building is oriented to minimize heat gain, using sustainable materials and high-performance building systems; and green roofs on 50 pct of the roofs throughout the campus. The facility achieved LEED Gold certification. (Source: Canada Green Building Council, DCN News services, 19 June, 2018) Contact: Canada Green Building Council, Thomas Mueller, Pres., CEO, (613) 241-1184, www.cagbc.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Canada Green Building Council,  Energy Efficiency,  LEED Certification,  


    Portugal Joins 206-Member Under2 Climate Coalition (Ind. Report)
    Under2 Coalition
    Date: 2018-06-20
    The Under2 Coalition is reporting Portugal has became the latest national government to endorse the Under2 Coalition, the global network led by state and regional governments committed to reducing their greenhouse gas emissions to fight climate change.

    With the addition of Portugal, the Under2 Coalition now includes 206 governments across six continents and 43 countries that collectively represent more than 1.3 billion people and $30 trillion GDP -- nearly 40 pct of the global economy. Under2 Coalition members commit to reducing greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to 80-95 pct below 1990 levels or to less than two annual metric tons per capita by 2050.

    The Coalition was founded in 2015 by California and the German state of Baden-Wurttemberg to galvanize climate action from sub-national governments in the build up to the COP21 climate summit when the historic Paris Agreement was reached. (Source: Under 2 Coalition, Climate Group, Website, June, 2018) Contact: Under2 Coalition, Tim Ash-Vie, Director of the Under2 Coalition Secretariat at The Climate Group,www.under2coalition.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Under2 Coalition,  Climate Change,  


    Buena Vista Biomass Power Auction Sale Set for July (M&A)
    Buena Vista Biomass Power
    Date: 2018-06-20
    Maas Companies of Rochester, Minnesota reports it will sell the Buena Vista Biomass Power Plant via auction. The assets will be sold via a sealed bid auction with a deadline for offers set for Thursday, July 19, 2018.

    The Ione, California plant has 18 megawatts of base-load electric generating capacity and is capable of powering 16,000 homes, according to the auction website, www.powerplantauction.com. (Source: Maas Companies, IONE Calif., PR Web, 15 June, 2018) Contact: Maas Companies, (507) 285-1444, www.powerplantauction.com; Buena Vista Biomass, www.calbiomass.org/facilities/buena-vista-biomass-power

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Buena Vista ,  Biomass,  


    Beijing Adds 25 pct Import Duty on US Ethanol (Int'l Report)
    China,Ethanol
    Date: 2018-06-20
    It is being widely reported that as Trump's trade war between the world's two largest economies escalates, Beijing has announced it will slap another 25 pct import duty on a range of US products, including ethanol. (Source: Various Media, 18 June 2018)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Ethanol,  China Ethanol,  


    EU Compromises on Paris Climate Agreement Energy Efficiency (Int'l)
    Paris Climate Agreement,Energy Efficiency Directive ,European Environmental Bureau
    Date: 2018-06-20
    Meeting in Brussels, the European Union reports it has agreed to increase its 2030 energy efficiency target and a set of binding measures defined in the Energy Efficiency Directive (EED) by 32.5 pct by 2030. Energy efficiency stakeholders from across industry and civil society had been calling for a binding 40 pct energy efficiency target which would reflect the most cost-effective energy savings potential in the path to meeting the Paris Climate Agreement.

    As part of the compromise the Directive continues the annual energy savings obligation set by Article 7 of the EED, requiring Member States to establish policies that deliver new action and delivering new savings for households, the service sector and small businesses. (Source: EU, European Environmental Bureau , 19 June, 2018) Contact: Energy Efficiency Directive, EEB, Anton Lazarus, +32 2 289 13 09, anton.lazarus@eeb.org, www.eeb.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Paris Climate Agreement,  Energy Efficiency Directive,  European Environmental Bureau,  Climate Change,  Paris Climate Agreement,  Energy Efficiency,  


    Hexicon's Korean Floating Wind Partnership Expanded (Int'l)
    Hexicon
    Date: 2018-06-20
    In Stockholm, Swedish engineering company Hexicon AB notes it it has inked a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for mutual cooperation with Busan Techno Park and Renewable Energy Center in Busan, South Korea , for the development of floating offshore wind technology for the Korean market. To that end, the Swedish company has received grant funding from the Korean Business and Energy Agency to investigate how multi-turbine platforms can be adapted to local conditions.

    Hexicon previously announced plans to transfer its floating wind platform technology to a new joint venture with Coens in South Korea, where it wants to offer serial production of locally-made units. (.Source: Hexicon AB, Renewables Now, 20 June, 2018) Contact: Hexicon AB, +46 (0) 8 525 064 00, info@hexicon.eu, www.hexicon.eu

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Hexicon,  Offshore Wind,  Floating Wind,  


    Fortum-Rusnano Wins Russian Wind Tenders (Int'l Report)
    Fortum,Rusnano
    Date: 2018-06-18
    Finnish utility Fortum Oyj reports it has won the right to build 110 MW of solar PV parks in Russia in the country's latest clean energy tender. The PV parks are slated for commissioning in the 2021-2022.

    Meanwhile, Fortum Oyi's equal JV with Moscow-based Russian nanotechnology company Rusnano plans to add 823 MW of wind power capacity in the years between 2019 and 2023.

    Investment decisions related to both projects will be made on a "case-by-case basis", Fortum said, reiterating its previously announced plans for an equity commitment of up to RUB 15 billion ($240 million) to back Russian projects secured in 2017 and 2018. Last summer, the Fortum-Rusnano JV was awarded the right to install 1,000 MW of wind parks in Russia by 2022. About 50 MW of that capacity is reportedly under construction.

    The Finnish company's goal is to have a gigawatt-scale solar and wind portfolio. Currently it owns 362 MW of PV and wind assets, 70 MW of which are in Russia. (Source: Fortum Oy1, Various Media, 16 June, 2018) Contact: Rusnano, en.rusnano.com; Fortum Oyi, www3.fortum.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Fortum,  Wind,  Russia Wind,  Rusnan,  


    EU Affirms Palm Oil, Palm Oil Biofuels Import Position (Int'l)
    EU Renewable Energy Directive
    Date: 2018-06-18
    In a written statement issued in Jakarta on Saturday, EU Ambassador to Indonesia Vincent Guerend stressed that based on the outcome of a June 14 meeting between the European Commission, the European Parliament and the European Union Council on the revision to the EU Renewable Energy Directive (RED II), the EU remains the most open market for Indonesian palm oil.

    The EU June 14 meeting agreed on a revised EU Renewable Energy Directive including a gradual reduction of certain biofuels calculated to meet ambitious renewable energy use target of 32 pct by 2030. According to the ambassador, there is no specific or explicit reference to palm oil in the RED II Text and no prohibition or restriction on palm oil imports or palm oil based biofuels. The relevant provisions in RED II are only aimed at regulating the extent to which certain biofuels can be calculated by EU member states to achieve their sustainable energy targets. (Source: EU, Neutral English, Various Media, 17 June, 2018)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News EU Renewable Energy Directive,  EU,  Palm Oil,  Palm Oil Biofuel,  Palm Oil Biodiesel ,  


    Mass. Legislating 100 pct Renewables by 2047 (Reg. & Leg.)
    Massachussets ,Renewable Energy
    Date: 2018-06-18
    In Boston, the Bay State senate is reporting the passage of legislation enabling Massachusetts to run on 100-pct renewable energy by 2047 by tripling the state's 1 pct per year renewable portfolio standard (RPS) to 3 pct per year.

    The Senate bill also removes caps on non-governmental solar net metering and sets new 2030 and 2040 emission targets under the Global Warming Solutions Act. The act creates the framework for a revenue-neutral, market-based carbon fee; sets a 2,000-MW energy storage target, and opens the door to large renewable energy procurements in the offshore wind sector. The legislation needs the state's House of Representatives approval. (Source: Various Media, pvbuzz, 17 June, 2018)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Energy,  Net-Metering,  Solar,  Wind,  


    Cannabis Weeded Out of Efficiency Maine Grant Funding (Funding)
    Efficiency Maine
    Date: 2018-06-18
    In the Pine Tree State, Efficiency Maine reports it is excluding the new but fast growing cannabis industry from its energy efficiencg grants program on the grounds that it is "too risky." The agency's logic is based on the fact that although the cannabis business is state licensed, it operates outside of federal law and could be forced to close before it can achieve the energy savings needed to justify Efficiency Maine's investment.

    Efficiency Maine has no idea how much energy the state's cannabis industry consumes but, fter meeting with some of the state's larger commercial growers, has concluded that greening Maine's big producers would be quite expensive. Nationally, cannabis growers consumed about 1 pct of the overall electrical output in 2016, which is enough to power 1.7 million houses, according to New Frontier, a national cannabis research firm. The Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission wants adult-use growers there to cap electricity use at 36 watts per square foot of grow space. (Source: Efficiency Maine, Portland Herald, June, 2018)Contact: Efficiency Maine, Michael Stoddard, Exec. Dir., (866) 376-2463, www.efficiencymaine.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Efficiency Maine,  


    Incentivizing Solar Energy: An In-Depth Analysis of U.S. Solar Incentives, 2018 (Ind. Report)
    Consumer Energy Alliance,Competitive Enterprise Institute
    Date: 2018-06-18
    Incentivizing Solar Energy: An In-Depth Analysis of U.S. Solar Incentives, 2018, a new report by the Consumer Energy Alliance (CEA) examines solar power incentive programs in 25 states. The report considers five categories of direct incentives: federal tax incentives, state tax credits, state rebates, utility programs (such as net metering), and Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs).

    In eight states -- Massachusetts, California, New Jersey, Rhode Island, Connecticut, Arizona, New Hampshire, and Minnesota -- incentives exceed 100 pct of the costs of installing solar PV systems. Massachusetts leads the pack, with incentives equaling 218 pct of installation costs. Subsidies equal or exceed 77 pct of costs in all but five of the states surveyed in the report.

    "Residential solar PV systems receive, on average, between 104 pct and 140 pct of total system costs in incentives while utility-scale solar installations receive about 45 pct of total system costs in incentives," the CEA report notes.

    Download the Consumer Energy Alliance Incentivizing Solar Energy: An In-Depth Analysis of U.S. Solar Incentives, 2018 report HERE. (Source: Consumer Energy Alliance, Competitive Enterprise Institute, ScottMadden, Inc., June , 2018) Contact: Consumer Energy Alliance, (202) 331-1010 , info@cei.org, www.cei.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Consumer Energy Alliance,  Competitive Enterprise Institute,  Solar,  Solar Incentive,  


    Azelio Touts Low-Cost Solar Energy Storage (New Prod. & Tech.)
    Azelio
    Date: 2018-06-18
    Gothenburg, Sweden-headquartered Azelio -- fka Cleanergy -- is reporting the recent launch of a demo unit of its solar energy storage technology. Based on Stirling Concentrated Solar Power (CSP) with multi-hour Thermal Energy Storage (TES), Azelio modular technology is suitable for small to very large installations with maintained low cost and high efficiency.

    Azelio's technology uses aluminum alloy as a storage media that does not need refilling to maintain its efficiency, as opposed to common storage technologies using salt or water.

    Initially, Azelio is targeting projects in 500 kW to 20 MW range and plans to construct a verification project in Moracco in partnership with the Moroccan Agency for Sustainable Energy. (Source: Azelio, TradeArabia , 17 June, 2018) Contact: Azelio, Jonas Eklind, CEO, +46-709-40-35-80 jonas.eklind@azelio.com, www.azelio.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Cleanergy,  CSP,  Solar,  Energy Storage,  


    Global Biomass Pellet Market -- Report Available (Ind. Report)
    Biomass
    Date: 2018-06-18
    The Global Biomass Pellet Market research report from QY investigates both historical data and current advancements in the market to provide map a reasonable trajectory of the biomass pellet market for an unbiased overview of the biomass pellet market.

    The report includes market trends, essential variables, difficulties, opportunities, and future market development and prospects. The report also tracks the emerging applications, innovative technologies, and mergers & acquisitions.

    According to the report, key players include: German Pellets, Enviva, Pinnacle Renewable Energy Group, Pacific BioEnergy Corporation, Vyborgskaya Cellulose, Rentech, Graanul Invest Group, RWE Innogy, Lignetics, E-pellet, Drax Biomass, General Biofuels, BlueFire Renewables, Pfeifer Group. Geographis areas covered include: Asia-Pacific, Latin America, Europe, Middle-East & Africa and North America.

    Pellet biofuels are made from a wide variety of compressed organic matter -- biomass including industrial waste and co-products, food waste, agricultural residues, energy crops, and virgin lumber. The factors driving the growth of the market include low GHG emission from biomass, increased government initiatives for renewable technologies, need for constant energy supply and massive untapped biomass potential.

    Global Biomass Pellet Market report details are available HERE. (Source: QY Reports, Pr, June, 2018) Contact: QY Reports, +91-9764607607, sales@qyreports.com, www.qyreports.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Biomass,  Woody Biomass,  Wood Pellet,  


    IPCC March Meeting Claims Carbon Neutrality (Int'l. Report)
    Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change
    Date: 2018-06-18
    The forty-seventh session of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) in Paris in March has become the first to achieve carbon neutrality. The Geneva, Switzerland-headquartered IPCC worked with the Climate Neutral Now initiative of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) to offset carbon emissions involved in participants' travel to the meeting and arising from the meeting itself.

    A carbon offset is a reduction in emissions of carbon dioxide or other greenhouse gases made to compensate for an emission made elsewhere. (Source: IPCC, Public Service News Australia, 17 June, 2018)Contact: Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, www.ipcc.ch; Climate Neutral Now initiative, https://unfccc.int/climate-action/climate-neutral-now; UNFCCC, https://unfccc.int

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change,  UNFCCC,  


    AfDB Supports Kenyan Geothermal Power Project (Int'l, Funding)
    African Development Bank
    Date: 2018-06-15
    The Ivory Coast-headquartered African Development Bank (AfDB) Climate Investment Fund (CIF) Clean Technology Fund (CTF) is reporting approval of $49.5 million in loan funding -- a senior loan of $29.5 million and a concessional loan of $20 million -- to support Quantum Power East Africa GT Menengai Ltd. 35-MW geothermal project in Kenya.

    To support the project, the Government of Kenya is creating an enabling environment to enhance private sector investment through a competitive tender processes intended to lower the unit costs of geothermal power generation as well as lowering the cost of doing business in Kenya.

    The project is expected to save up to 95,100 tons of CO2 equivalent and supply sufficient energy to as many as 48,800 households per year at a low generation cost of seven cents/kWh. (Source: AfDB, CPI, 10 June, 2018) Contact: AfDB, Amadou Hott, VP Power, Energy, Climate and Green Growth, +225 2026 3900, www.afdb.org/en

    More Low-Carbon Energy News African Development Bank ,  Geothermal,  


    SBTi Approves IKEA's 80 pct Emissions Cutting Target (Ind. Report)
    Science-Based Targets Initiative
    Date: 2018-06-15
    One of the world's largest home furnishings retailer, the Ikea Group , reports it aims to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from its 363 stores in 29 markets as well as its supply and value chains by 80 pct by 2030 against a 2016 baseline, as approved by the Science-Based Targets Initiative (SBTi).

    The new plan for 2030 additionally sets targets of slashing GHG emissions from customer and employee travel and customer deliveries in half, while achieving a minimum 15 pct reduction in absolute terms across the Group's value chain. In a statement, the company added that if the targets are met, they will represent a 70 pct reduced carbon footprint on the average product. (Source: IKEA, edie newsroom, 15 June, 2018) Contact: Ikea Group, Pia Heidenmark-Cook, Chief Sustainability Officer, www.ikea.com; Science-Based Targets Initiative, www.sciencebasedtargets.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News IKEA,  Carbon Emissions,  Science-Based Targets Initiative,  


    Energy Efficiency Stretches Rubber Maker's Savings (Ind. Report)
    Rocky Mountain Power
    Date: 2018-06-15
    In Salt Lake City, rubber manufacturer Weir Minerals reports it saved enough energy to power 160 average homes through Rocky Mountain Power's "Wattsmart" business energy efficiency incentives program. Weir noted it completed $332,597 in upgrades as recommended by Rocky Mountain Power, which paid Weir a $150,901 incentive for the the upgrade work.

    According to Weir, the upgrades have saved the company approximately $97,112 in energy savings and more than 1.4 million kilowatt hours. (Source: Rocky Mountain Power, Weir Minerals, Energy Insider, 14 June, 2018) Contact: Rocky Mountain Power, Rita Meyer, VP, (800) 222-4335, www.rockymountainpower.net

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Rocky Mountain Power,  Energy Efficiency,  Energy Efficiency Incentive,  Energy Efficiency Rebate,  


    Is Sun Setting on Chinese Biofuel Producer Sunshine Kaidi? (Int'l)
    Sunshine Kaidi
    Date: 2018-06-15
    In Wuhan, China's largest biofuel producer Sunshine Kaidi New Energy Group Co. Ltd. is reported to be struggling to sell its controlling stake in a subsidiary because it is demanding that a potential purchaser must first pay several billion yuan to bail it out of its own financial problems. To add to it's financial woes, the company's debt-laden subsidiary, Kaidi Ecological and Environmental Technology Co. Ltd., announced last month that it had missed a payment on a 698 million yuan ($109.0 million) bond and failed to meet a margin call on a trust product.

    In 2016, Sunshine Kaidi announced plans to invest in and construct a €1 billion ($1.18 billion) biofuel refinery in Kemi, Finland, via its subsidiary Kaidi Finland. The Finnish government supported the plan and granted an emissions license to the Kaidi Finland project, which now seems unlikely to be developed. (Source: Sunshine Kaidi New Energy Group, Caixin, Other Media, 15 June, 2018) Contact: Sunshine Kaidi New Energy Group, +86 27 6786 9001 - fax, +86 27 6786 9028 - tel., www.kaidihi.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Sunshine Kaidi,  China Biofuel,  Biofuel,  


    Dutch PM Wants EU to Increase CO2 Emissions Cuts (Int'l)
    EU,Carbon Emissions
    Date: 2018-06-15
    Europe needs to reduce its carbon emissions by more than currently planned to limit global warming as agreed under the Paris climate agreement, Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte told the European Parliament on Wednesday.

    Rutte told a plenary session of the European Parliament in Strasbourg, the European Union's aim to reduce carbon emissions, which scientists hold responsible for global warming, by at least 40 pct below 1990 levels by 2030, "is not enough" and proposed a 55 pct reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030.

    Studies have shown that reducing carbon emissions has become less costly as the price of generating electricity from renewable energy has come down over the past years. Still, climate policy remains a contentious issue in the European Union which often pits countries looking for tougher reduction targets against newer member states in the East which rely more on coal-powered plants for energy. (Source: Cyprus Mail Online, 13 June, 2018)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon Emissions,  Emissions Targets,  Climate Change,  


    Freshman Premier Scraping Ontario Cap-and-Trade to Lower Gasoline, Beer Prices (Ind.Report)
    Carbon Tax
    Date: 2018-06-15
    At Queens Park, Ontario's freshman Conservative premier Doug Ford reports he will give notice of the province's withdrawal from the linked carbon pricing market with Quebec and California and issue clear rules for an "orderly wind down" of the system. The newly elected premier will also instruct his equally wet-behind the ears attorney general to challenge the Liberal federal government of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau rules requiring provinces to establish a carbon tax or have a tax imposed on them by the feds.

    According to Ford, eliminating the cap-and-trade system will help him deliver on a campaign promise that the electorate doesn't expect him to keep -- cutting retail gasoline prices by roughly 4 cents per litre -- which is apparently more important to him than the roughly $3 billion the carbon tax contributed to the provincial coffers since the system was introduced by the then Liberal government in 2017. And, in a move that rings of Trump political posturing, the new Premier also reportedly promised to lower the price of beer to $1.00 per can in an effort to appeal to his base. (Source: Various Media, Canada Press, 15 June, 2018)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Ontario Carbon Tax,  Ontario Cap-and-Trade,  


    Heavy User Battery Energy Storage Scheme Launched in UK (Int'l)
    Thrive Renewables,Aura Power
    Date: 2018-06-15
    In the UK, Bristol-based Thrive Renewables and Aura Power are reporting a (JV) energy storage business offering for medium and large-scale corporate energy users. The offering includes free battery installation and operation in exchange for a share of energy savings revenues.

    The offer is targeting businesses spending £500,000 or more per year on electricity with steady rate of consumption and spare import capacity.

    Thrive brings its 104MW portfolio of wind, hydro and solar assets to the collaboration, while Aura offers its experience developing utility-scale batteries.

    The partners estimate that companies with a mid-range 2 MW battery could save more than £1 million over a 15-year contract. (Source: Thrive Renewables, PowerTech, 14 June, 2018) Contact: Aura Power, Simon Coulson, http://aurapower.co.uk; Thrive Renewables Plc, Matthew Clayton, Managing Dir., +44 0 117 428 1850, www.thriverenewables.co.uk

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Thrive Renewables,  Battery,  Energy Storage,  


    $1bn BEV Fund Supports Energy Storage Startups (Funding)
    Breakthrough Energy Ventures
    Date: 2018-06-15
    Breakthrough Energy Ventures (BEV), the $1 billion fund launched by Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos, Richard Branson, Mark Zuckerberg, Jack Ma, Mukesh Ambani, and George Soros in 2016 to create new energy technologies and fight climate change, is making its first investment. Focusing on the area of energy storage, the fund is investing in two startups: Form Energy Inc.and Quidnet Energy.

    BEV will invest $6.4 million along with Evok Innovations in Quidnet Energy and $9 million along with Prelude Ventures in Form Energy. Both startups are developing new technologies to store power.

    Quidnet is developing pumped hydro into underground shale rock wells. Form Energy is developing batteries that can store large amounts of energy for extended time periods and overcome the limitations of lithium-ion batteries that can only store energy for short periods.

    BEV is "risk-tolerant" and will only invest companies that are capable of cutting global carbon emissions by 500 million metric tons annually. The fund aims aims to focus on grid-scale energy storage, zero-carbon liquid fuels, low-carbon building materials, and geothermal energy. (Source: Breakthrough Energy Ventures, PR, NewsBytes, 14 June, 2018) Contact: Breakthrough Energy Ventures, www.b-t.energy/ventures; Form Energy Inc., https://www.linkedin.com/company/form-energy; Quidnet Energy, www.quidnetenergy.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Energy Storage,  Form Energy,  


    Linde Submits Hydrogen Low-Carbon Fuel Standard Pathway Application in California (Ind. Report)
    Linde LLC,California Low-Carbon Fuel Standard
    Date: 2018-06-15
    Linde LLC reports it has submitted a Tier 2 application for the California Low-Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS) for a Tier 2 pathway for hydrogen as a co-product from the commercial electrolytic production of sodium chlorate from a facility located in Quebec, Canada.

    The produced hydrogen is liquefied and transported via truck to California fueling stations where it is "re-gasified" and compressed before being dispensed.

    The LCFS currently has 14 certified pathways for hydrogen, with CIs ranging from 165.88 gCO2e/MJ (Linde Canada production of hydrogen from central reforming of natural gas), to 0 (hydrogen production via electrolysis using solar electricity) to -46.91 (landfill gas to on-site hydrogen production via cracking of methane). (Source: Linde, Green Car Congress, 14 June, 2018)Contact: California Low-Carbon Fuel Standard, www.energy.ca.gov/low_carbon_fuel_standard; Linde LLC, www.lindeus.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Linde LLC,  Hydrogem,  California Low-Carbon Fuel Standard,  


    Gulf States Renewable Energy Investments Found Wanting (Int'l)
    Strategy& Middle East
    Date: 2018-06-13
    According to a new study by Beirut-based management consultancy Strategy& Middle East, middle-eastern Gulf state governments (GCC) must develop a carefully planned strategy and framework to maximize the impact of renewable energy projects which could see a cumulative total of $40 billion invested in the GCC between 2016 and 2020, provided the correct decisions and policies are adopted.

    The study finds that renewable energy continues to attract an increasing share of global investment, with annual investments expected to grow by $130 billion, compared to 2016 figures, reaching around $370 billion in 2020. The global investment cumulative total is estimated at $1.5 trillion between 2016 and 2020.

    The report notes that GCC countries thus far have made little investment in renewables technology -- less than $1 billion in 2016 -- and are at risk of falling further behind other countries if they do not create a supportive, coherent policy framework to facilitate renewables investment.

    While several factors in the GCC make rapid deployment of renewables attractive, there are major structural and institutional factors behind current underinvestment in renewable energy. These include generous fuel subsidies, a mindset that prefers building very large conventional plants to meet rapidly growing demand, concerns over transmission and distribution networks and unclear regulatory and policy frameworks that discourage the development of renewables. (Source: Strategy& Middle East, Arabian Business, 5 June, 2018) Contact: Strategy& Middle East, +961 1 985 655, www.strategyand.pwc.com/me/home


    Punjab Promoting Paddy Straw CNG/Bio-Ethanol Production (Int'l)
    Punjab Energy Development Agency
    Date: 2018-06-13
    In India, the government of Punjab Energy Development Agency (PEDA) reports it has entered into Memorandums of Understanding (MoU) with four companies to construct and operate CNG/bio-ethanol from paddy straw plants. Currently, 20 million tpy of paddy straw is produced in the state, with 75 - 80 pct be being burned as waste.

    Under the MoUs, Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Limited, Indian Oil Corporation, Verbio India Private Limited and Rika Biofuel Development Limited will produce Biogas/bio CNG/bio-ethanol from paddy straw. he said. When fully operational, each plant is expected to use about 500 tpd pf paddy straww to generate 100 kilo litre of bio-ethanol. (Source: Punjab Energy Development Agency, Business Standard, 11 June, 2018) Contact: Punjab Energy Development Agency, +91 172 266 3382, www.peda.gov.in

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Biofuel,  Biofue;,  CNG,  Biomass,  


    Scotland Claims World's Toughest Climate Targets (Int'l Report)
    Scotland Climate Change
    Date: 2018-06-13
    At Holyrood, the Government of Scotland has introduced draft Climate Change legislation which it claims is among the "toughest climate change and emission legislation in the world."

    The new bill sets an immediate emissions reduction of 56 pct reduction by 2020, 66 pct by 2030, 78 pct by 2040, and rising to a 90 pct by 2050. The legislation ultimately aims for a "net-zero", 100 pct reduction by an undertermined, "as soon as possible" date. These reductions are measured against baseline carbon emissions in 1990.

    Even so, a number of countries have set targets to become 100 pct carbon neutral before Scotland. T Costa Rica has pledged to become carbon neutral by 2021. Norway's parliament has agreed to cut the country's net greenhouse gas emissions to zero by 2030, moving its target forward by 20 years, and Sweden has cimmited to carbon neutrality by 2045. Sweden also has a more ambitious carbon neutral target than Scotland, with a commitment to reaching the 100 per cent cut by 2045. (Source: The Ferret, June, 2018)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon Emissions,  Emissions Targets,  Climate Change,  


    China, World Green Building Councils Promoting Chinese Programs (Int'l Report)
    World Green Building Council,China Green Building Council
    Date: 2018-06-13
    The World Green Building Council (WorldGBC) reports it is partnering with China Green Building Council (China GBC) to improve and increase green building practices, cut carbon emissions and promote building sustainability in the world's largest building construction market. China is currently adding up to two billion square metres of building per year, and growing fast.

    The partnership aims to see the World GBC work with the China GBC in much the same way as it would work with an established Green Building Council. As part of the partnership, China GBC has committed to introducing a nearly net zero standard to its Three Star program, aligning with the WorldGBC's Advancing Net Zero project.

    Indoor air quality is another key component of the partnership, with the China GBC keen to get involved with the Better Places for People project, which focuses on the health benefits of green buildings.

    China is projected to have the second-highest level of growth in green building activity over the next three years, behind Brazil, according to Dodge Data and Analytics. (Source: World Green Building Council, The Fifth Estate, April, 2018) Contact: China Green Building Council, chinagreenbuildings.blogspot.com; World Green Building Council, Terri Willis, CEO, www.worldgbc.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News World Green Building Council,  


    World Green Building Council Launches Net-Zero Carbon Buildings Challenge (Ind. Report)
    World Green Building Council
    Date: 2018-06-13
    The World Green Building Council (WGBC) is reporting the issuance of The Net-Zero Carbon Buildings Commitment challenge to the global building sector calling for the elimination of carbon emissions from building use by 2030.

    Participating companies will track, verify and report publicly on their buildings' energy and carbon metrics and encourage their supply chains and partners to make a similar commitment to reach net zero by 2030. The challenge comes on top of the WGBC's Advancing Net Zero program to promote and support the target that all buildings be net zero by 2050.

    The Net Zero Carbon Buildings Commitment was developed in partnership with a wide stakeholder group including The Climate Group and C40. It forms part of EP100, a global corporate leadership initiative for energy-smart companies, delivered by The Climate Group in partnership with the Alliance to Save Energy.

    Challenge details are at From Thousands To Billions: Coordinated Action Towards 100 pct Net-Zero Carbon Buildings By 2050 REPORT. (Source: World Green Building Council, The Fifth Estate, June, 2018)Contact: World Green Building Council, Terri Willis, CEO, www.worldgbc.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News World Green Building Council,  Carbon Emissions,  Net-Zero,  


    States Act Against EPA Over Landfill Methane Rules Delays (Ind. Report, Reg. & Leg.)
    Methane, EPA
    Date: 2018-06-13
    The AGs from eight states plus the Pennsylvania DEP have together filed suit in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California against the US EPA for its alleged failure to implement the Obama administration's 2016 municipal landfill emissions guidelines in accordance with the timeline mandated by the Clean Air Act (CAA).

    The complaints are asking the court to issue a mandatory injunction compelling the EPA to implement and enforce the emissions guidelines without further delay.

    The guidelines for existing landfills and the jointly issued New Source Performance Standards (NSPS) were revised primarily to control methane emissions that contribute to climate change.

    The EPA estimated that the two rules will reduce methane emissions by approximately 330,000 metric tons -- with a global warming potential equivalent to 8.2 million metric tpy of CO2 by 2025. That is roughly equivalent to the annual emissions of 1.8 million cars on the road. (Source: Various Media, EPA, EHS Daily Advisor, 12 June, 2018)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Methane,  GHGs,  Emissions,  EPA,  Landfill Gas,  


    Steel City Adopts Climate Action Plan Update (Ind. Report)
    NRDC
    Date: 2018-06-13
    In the Keystone State, Pittsburgh City Council reports it has approved Climate Action Plan 3.0 -- a holistic vision for how the city will achieve dramatic greenhouse gas reductions.

    Unlike the previous 2008 and 2012 versions, the new plan tracks progress and adds new measures to further slash emissions as needed with a new goal of cutting the city's CO2 emissions by 80 pct below 2003 levels by 2050.

    Under the new plan, the city will have divested city funds from fossil fuels and transitioned city operations to use 100 pct renewable electricity and a fully fossil fuel free fleet of vehicles, by 2030. The plan also identifies a wide range of additional strategies for buildings to achieve a mid-term goal of 50 pct energy reduction by 2030. For example, the city intends for all newly constructed buildings to be carbon neutral by 2030 by using passive house standards and to use energy usage transparency to reduce consumption among residential buildings, using energy labeling and transparency strategies. The city also plans to implement a PACE program to fund building energy efficiency retrofits, upgrades and renewables projects. (Source: City of Pittsburgh, NRDC, June, 2018)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Climate Change,  Carbon Emissions,  NRDC,  


    SCCS Research Confirms CO2 Storage Safety (R&D, Ind. Report)
    CCS,Scottish Carbon Capture & Storage
    Date: 2018-06-13
    In Edinburgh, Scottish Carbon Capture & Storage (SCCS) has reported on new research indicating that captured carbon dioxide (CO2) can be safely stored for thousands of years by injecting the liquefied gas deep underground into the microscopic pore spaces of common rocks. The findings increase confidence in the widespread roll-out of engineered carbon capture and storage (CCS).

    Researchers from SCCS's partner institutes, the Universities of Aberdeen and Edinburgh, compiled a worldwide database of information from natural CO2 and methane accumulations and hydrocarbon industry experience -- including engineered gas storage, decades of borehole injection, and laboratory experiments. Computer simulations were used to combine all these factors and model storage of CO2 for 10,000 years into the future. Previous research in this area had not fully accounted for the natural trapping of CO2 in rock as microscopic bubbles, or the dissolving of CO2 into the salty water already in the rocks.

    SCCS is the largest Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) research group in the UK. Founded in 2005, SCCS is a partnership of the British Geological Survey, Heriot-Watt University, the University of Aberdeen, the University of Edinburgh and the University of Strathclyde working together with universities across Scotland. SCCS is funded by the Scottish Funding Council (SFC). (Source: Scottish Carbon Capture & Storage, Gasworld, 12 June, 2018) Contact: University of Edinburgh, Dr. Stephanie Flude, www.research.ed.ac.uk/portal/en/persons/stephanie-flude(7fc05249-dbeb-4603-a5ec-ac2ca605d200).html; University of Aberdeen, Dr. Juan Alcalde, www.abdn.ac.uk/geosciences/people/profiles/juan.alcalde; Scottish Carbon Capture & Storage, +44 (0)131 651 4647, info@sccs.org.uk, www.sccs.org.uk

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Scottish Carbon Capture & Storage ,  CCS,  Carbone Storage,  Carbon Sequestration,  

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