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Ecoark, Magnolia Solar Merger Finalized (Ind. Report, M&A)
Magnolia Solar,EcoArk
Date: 2016-04-01
Following on our Feb. 29th coverage, New York-based thin-film solar cell module specialist Magnolia Solar Corp. reports it has completed its previously announced merger deal with Ecoark Inc., an Arkansas-based developer of intelligent technologies and consumer products, and changed its name to Ecoark Holdings Inc. As a result, Ecoark Holdings Inc. will consolidate the operations of Ecoark Inc. and Magnolia Solar Inc., its current subsidiary. (Source: Magnolia Solar, Various Others, 28 Mar., 2016) Contact: Magnolia Solar, (518) 618-4200,; EcoArk, Randy May, CEO, (479) 259-2977,,

More Low-Carbon Energy News Magnolia Solar,  Ecoark,  Solar,  

Austin Energy Solar Energy Storage Initiative Funded (Funding)
Austin Energy,Pecan Street
Date: 2016-04-01
In the Lone Star State,the city of Austin's city run utility, Austin Energy (AE), reports it has received $4.3 million in grant funding from the U.S. DOE Sustainable and Holistic Integration of Energy Storage and Solar PV (SHINES) program. The funds will be used to explore new energy storage methods that will allow utility customers to receive more of their energy from renewable sources, particularly solar power. The utility will contribute $4.37 million to the initiative which also received $1 million grant from the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality and $60,000 from Ideal Power, a local energy tech firm.

AE will eventually be testing the new technology in partnership with Pecan Street Inc., a local nonprofit focused on research on emerging energy technologies. Through that partnership, homeowners who already have solar panels on their homes will be able to add "smart" inverters and battery storage systems. .(Source: Austn Energy, Austin Monitor, 30 Mar., 2016) Contact: Austin Energy, Dan Smith, VP, Cameron Freberg, Utility Strategist, (512) 494-9400,; Pecan Street Inc., (512) 782-9213,; SHINES,

More Low-Carbon Energy News Austin Energy,  Solar,  Energy Storage,  

SonnenBatterie Launches Solar Energy Storage in Australia (Int'l)
SonnenBatterie,True Value Solar
Date: 2016-04-01
German lithium-ion battery storage systems specialist SonnenBatterie reports it will partner with Australia's largest solar installer -- True Value Solar -- to offer an all-in-one rooftop solar panel and energy storage system.

The SonnenBatterie system integrates battery modules, inverter, a smart energy manager and the measurement and communication technology in a single package available in sizes ranging from 2kWh to 16kWh. The company adds that the composition of the lithium-ion-phosphate battery gives it a long life in terms of its competitors, with 10,000 charge and expend cycles. (Source: SonnenBatterie, PR, 30 Mar., 2016) Contact: SonnenBatterie, Boris Von Bormann, CEO, Philipp Schroder,Marketing,; True Value Solar,

More Low-Carbon Energy News Sonnen,  Battery,  Lithium-Ion Battery,  Energy Storage,  

GM Claims Fifth ENERGY STAR® Rating (Ind. Report)
Date: 2016-04-01
In the Motor City, General Motors reports it has earned its fifth U.S. EPA ENERGY STAR® Partner of the Year award for leadership in protecting the environment through superior energy efficiency.

The automaker says it cut manufacturing energy consumption per vehicle by 5.6 percent at its U.S. manufacturing plants 2015 and avoided $237 million in energy costs and reduced 1.8 million metric tons of carbon emissions by engaging 73 of its facilities in an EPA ENERGY STAR energy-reduction challenge since 2010.

GM also uses EPA SmartWay® to redesign shipping routes, optimize drop-off locations and alter delivery schedules to avoid 116,000 tons of carbon emissions in 2015. This is equivalent to the carbon emissions from over 13 million gallons of gasoline burned. (Source: EPA ENERGY Star, GM, 28 Mar., 2016) Contact: ENERGY Star, Kristinn Leonheart, Brand Manager, (202) 343-9062,,

More Low-Carbon Energy News EPA ENERGY Star,  Energy Efficiency,  

Clean Up U.S. Power Plants, say NRDC (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
Date: 2016-04-01
"Climate change is the greatest environmental threat of our time, linked to rising sea levels, raging storms, searing heat, ferocious fires, severe drought, and punishing floods. It threatens our health, communities, economy, and national security. In the United States, power plants represent the single-largest source of carbon pollution, spewing two billion tons into the air each year. In response, President EPA set the first-ever national limits on carbon pollution from power plants in August 2015.

"By starting to cut the carbon pollution created by power plants in 2022 -- ramping up to a 32 percent reduction from 2005 levels by 2030 -- the Clean Power Plan represents the most important step the United States can take right now to combat climate change and help spur climate action around the globe. It will help America build a cleaner, healthier environment for future generations while ensuring an ongoing supply of reliable, affordable energy for economic growth. The plan would save up to $54 billion and thousands of lives a year—plus create tens of thousands of new jobs.

"NRDC has long been an advocate for this national standard as well as for clean energy policies on the state level that are critical to effective implementation. With the Clean Power Plan in place, we are focusing on defending its pollution limits and making its goals a reality. Through in-depth economic and energy analyses, we are helping state policymakers build reliable and affordable clean energy solutions to help them meet this goal. To combat attacks from fossil-fuel companies and their allies in Congress, we are rallying support from lawmakers, businesses, and public-health leaders; helping statehouses vote down bills designed to undermine the plan; and defending the carbon limits in court.

"Time might be running out to fight climate change, but as the Clean Power Plan clearly demonstrates, we are not running out of solutions." (Source: NRDC, Mar., 2016)Contact: NRDC,

More Low-Carbon Energy News NRDC,  EPA,  Clean Power Plan,  

Boston High on Energy Star Certified Buildings List (Ind. Report)
Date: 2016-04-01
According to the EPA's 2015 list of U.S. metropolitan areas with certified Energy Star buildings, Boston is in the top dozen with 157 Energy Star buildings which are saving building owners and managers more than $75 million in annual utility bills.

. According to the EPA, energy use in commercial buildings accounts for 16 pct of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions at a cost of more than $100 billion per year. Since 1999, more than 27,000 buildings nationwide have earned EPA's Energy Star certification. On average, certified buildings consume 35 pct less energy than typical buildings. (Source: EPA, Energy Star, Mar. 30, 2016) Contact: Energy Star,,

More Low-Carbon Energy News ENERGY STAR,  Energy Efficiency,  Green Building,  

PG&E Expands GHG Reduction Commitment (Ind. Report)
Date: 2016-04-01
In San Francisco, Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) reports it has joined the U.S. EPA Natural Gas Methane Challenge as a founding partner, joining with 40 other U.S. companies.

The voluntary Natural Gas Methane Challenge calls on oil and natural gas companies to reduce methane emissions beyond regulatory requirements. As part of the Challenge, PG&E has committed to further reduce emissions from its natural gas transmission and distribution systems and will adopt five best management practices recommended by the EPA over the next five years. The best management practices focus on mitigation and improvements to venting, transmission blowdowns, pneumatic controllers, rod packing and excavation damages.

In 2015, PG&E formed an external advisory council to help guide the company's sustainability efforts. The council provides input and recommendations to PG&E as it seeks to address climate change and advance its clean energy, environmental stewardship, economic development and community vitality initiatives. (Source: PG&E, 30 Mar., 2016) Contact: PG&E, Nick Stavropoulos , Gas Pres., Melissa Subbotin, (415) 973-5930,; EPA Natural Gas Methane Challenge,

More Low-Carbon Energy News EPA Natural Gas Methane Challenge,  Methane,  PG&E,  

Xcel Energy Joins EPA's Methane Challenge Program (Ind. Report)
Xcel Energy,EPA Methane Challenge
Date: 2016-04-01
Minneapolis-headquartered Xcel Energy reports it has joined the launch of the U.S. EPA Natural Gas STAR Methane Challenge Program . As a founding member of the program, the company is committed to expanding its efforts to reduce methane emissions from its natural gas system.

Xcel Energy helped shape the Methane Challenge program and its design through its involvement with the American Gas Association and the Downstream Initiative—a collaboration of natural gas energy providers working to address technical and regulatory issues associated with reducing methane emissions from the distribution system.

The Methane Challenge provides an opportunity for partners to showcase efforts to reduce methane emissions, improve air quality and effectively capture this energy resource. (Source: Xcel Energy, 30 Mar., 2016) Xcel Energy Media Relations, (612) 215-5300; EPA Methane Challenge,

More Low-Carbon Energy News Xcel Energy,  Methane,  Carbon Emissions,  EPA Metrhane Challenge,  

Court Releases $1.5Mn for Abengoa Bioenergy Payroll (Ind. Report)
Abengoa,Abengoa Bioenergy
Date: 2016-04-01
In St. Louis, the U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Eastern District of Missouri, has released $1.5 million to bankrupt Abengoa Bioenergy's ethanol plants in Nebraska, Kansas, New Mexico, Illinois and Indiana.

The funds, which will cover payroll and other expenses for one week,be drawn from $41 million bankruptcy financing package from a unit of Sandton Capital Partners. On March 2, the bankruptcy court allowed Abengoa and its five affiliates to draw $8 million of the $41 million bankruptcy financing package. (Soure: Nebraska Rural Radio, Various Others, DTN/Progressive Farmer | March 30, 2016) Contact: Abengoa Bioenergy,

More Low-Carbon Energy News Abengoa Bioenergy,  Abengoa,  

Bio-refinery, Cellulosic Sugar Coop. Ink Supply MoU (Ind. Report)
Comet Biorefining,Cellulosic Sugar Producers Cooperative
Date: 2016-04-01
The Ontario Cellulosic Sugar Producers Cooperative reports that it has inked a MoU with Comet Biorefining to collaborate on the development of a sustainable agricultural biomass supply chain in southwestern Ontario.

Comet Biorefining recently chose Sarnia, Ontario as the location of its commercial-scale biomass-derived sugar facility. The plant will utilize more than 60,000 metric tpy of corn stover or wheat straw fore the production of dextrose sugar and co-products that have biochemical and biofuel applications. The project was funded by Bioindustrial Innovation Canada (BIC), Growing Forward 2, the Cellulosic Sugar Producers Cooperative, Comet Biorefining Inc., and Ontario Agri-Food Technologies. (Source: Cellulosic Sugar Producers Cooperative, 29 Mar., 2016) Contact: Cellulosic Sugar Producers Cooperative , Dave Park, Pres.,; Bioindustrial Innovation Canada, (519) 383-8303 X 237,; Comet Biorefining, Andrew Richard, CEO, (519) 494-7514,,

More Low-Carbon Energy News Cellulosic Sugar Producers Cooperative,  Comet Biorefining,  

Lorem Ipsum Takes $2.9Mn Stake in Green Plains Partners (M&A)
Green Plains Partners LP,Lorem Ipsum
Date: 2016-04-01
New York City-based Lorem Ipsum Management has added 5,872 additional shares to its existing share holdings in Green Plains Partners LP, according to a recent SEC disclosure. to the SEC. The investment management firm now holds a total of 215,138 shares valued at $2.9 million.

Green Plains Partners LP acquires,develops, owns and operates ethanol and fuel storage tanks, terminals, transportation assets and other related assets and businesses. (Source: Green Plains, Lorem Ipsum Management, 29 Mar.,2016) Contact: Lorem Ipsum Management, (646) 502-5621; Green Plains Partners, Jim Stark, VP Investor & Media Relations, (402) 884-8700,,

More Low-Carbon Energy News Green Plains Partners LP,  

Renewable Fuels Alliance Supports Policies to Cut Transport Emissions (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
Global Renewable Fuels Alliance
Date: 2016-04-01
The Toronto-based Global Renewable Fuels Alliance (GRFA) reports that it recently sent letters to the national leaders of 47 countries that committed to combating climate change as contributors to the historic agreement at the recent Conference of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP21).

The GRFA letter offered the expertise of its members to work with government leaders in the development of forward-thinking policies that maximize the advantages of biofuel technologies that are demonstrated to be effective, affordable and immediately available.

Given the scale of the challenge now being confronted, estimated to represent global CO2 emission reductions of 80 percent by 2050, countries will need to pursue all viable options to transition away from fossil fuel consumption in all sectors. It is estimated that the transportation sector produces 25-30 pcy of the world's GHG emissions, making it a priority for national governments as they revise their Intended Nationally Determined Contribution plans in the lead up to the 2020 implementation date of the COP21 agreement.

"National governments have a real opportunity to lead by example in developing enhanced biofuel-friendly policies that encourage the development of new technologies and support the production of renewable fuels with the smallest possible footprint. The GRFA encourages national governments to highlight the significant environmental and economic benefits that ethanol-supportive policies are making, and will continue to make, in order to encourage other countries to pursue domestic opportunities presented by biofuels," according to GRFA President Bliss Baker. he added. (Source: Global Renewable Fuels Alliance, March 30, 2016) Contact: Global Renewable Fuels Alliance, Bliss Baker, Pres., (416) 847-6497,

More Low-Carbon Energy News Global Renewable Fuels Alliance,  Biofuel,  Renewable Fuel,  

DuPont Industrial Biosciences Honored with Biorenewable Deployment Consortium's Outstanding Achievement Award (Ind. Report)
Biorenewable Deployment Consortium
Date: 2016-04-01
The Biorenewable Deployment Consortium (BDC) has honored DuPont Industrial Biosciences (DuPont) with the organization's 2016 Outstanding Achievement Award for the company's continuous contributions to the deployment of biochemical and advanced cellulosic biofuels.

"The BDC is proud to honor DuPont with its 2016 Outstanding Achievement Award," said BDC President and Co-Founder Masood Akhtar. "DuPont sets a strong example for others around the world who are working to expedite the transition from a petroleum-based to a biobased economy." "DuPont Industrial Biosciences is proud to be recognized by the BDC for our work in the ever-growing bioeconomy sector. We accept this award on behalf of a global team of innovators who are focused on providing market-driven, biobased solutions to meet the needs of a growing population, while protecting our environment for future generations," said DuPont Business Director for Cellulosic Ethanol Steve Mirshak, who received the award on DuPont's behalf.

Since 2006, the BDC has worked to bring together like minded companies to share ideas and partner to deploy bio-processes that can be economic in the long run without government subsidy, by holding two symposiums a year for its members, where leading edge information from various bio-companies is shared and tours are made of bio-facilities. BDC also acts as a resource to members and works to broker partnerships that can lead to the deployment of economic demonstration and commercial facilities. BDC recognizes the need for low cost feedstock, cost effective measures such as integration of processes, high value products, and good management to achieve the economics needed for success. (Source: Biorenewable Deployment Consortium, 31 Mar., 2016) Contact: BDC, Ben Thorp, (804) 873-6561,, Harry Seamans, (870) 501-1836,,; DuPont, Wendy Rosen, (650) 284-6429,,

More Low-Carbon Energy News Biorenewable Deployment Consortium news,  DuPont news,  

Philly Schools Consider Rooftop Solar Installations (Ind. Report)
Date: 2016-03-30
In the City of Brotherly Love, officials are considering the installation of over an acre of rooftop solar panels on the city's public school buildings. Under the current proposal, the school district would lease its rooftop to a solar company which would then pay for installation and ongoing maintenance of solar panels. The school district would pay the solar company for consumption of solar energy at an estimated $13 million savings over the 30 year expected lifespan of the installation.

According to estimates, the solar power project could also cut carbon emissions by 62,000 metric tp, equal to removing 13,700 vehicles off the road. (Source: Various, Philadelphia Trib, 25 Mar., 2016)

More Low-Carbon Energy News Rooftop Solar,  

TPI Confirms Mexican Wind Blade Production Plans (Ind. Report)
TPI Composites
Date: 2016-03-30
Wind turbine blade manufacturer TPI Composites reports it is constructing a 360,000-square-foot wind turbine blade manufacturing facility in Juarez, Mexico. The new plant will provide blades for Spanish turbine manufacturer Gamesa's wind energy projects in Latin America and the U.S. The new facility is expected to be fully operational by November of this year. TPI also operates factories in the U.S., China and Turkey. (Source: TPI, ElPaso Inc., 28 Mar., 2016) Contact: TPI Composites, Steve Lockard, Pres. & CEO, (480) 305-8910,,

More Low-Carbon Energy News TPI Composites,  Wind Turbine Blades,  

EIA Credits Fed. Tax Credits for Wind Energy Growth (Ind. Report)
Energy Information Administration
Date: 2016-03-30
According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), wind energy provided more growth in electric power generation in 2015 than any power source. Wind accounted for 41 pct of capacity additions in 2015 -- about 8.1 megawatts -- about 26 pct more capacity than natural gas at 6 MW. Utility-scale and distributed solar combined were third at 5.1 MW. Texas accounted for 42 pct of the additions in 2015, followed by Oklahoma, Kansas, Iowa, and North Dakota.

The driving force behind wind power's gains is the renewal of the federal production tax credit that provides a financial incentive for wind developers. The current credit, approved by Congress in December 2015, provides developers with $0.023 per kWh of electricity generated to the grid. It will be phased down over five years. (Source: Energy Information Administration, ECT, 28 Mar., 2016) Contact: EIA,

More Low-Carbon Energy News Wind,  Energy Information Administration,  

C&I Energy Storage Market to Hit $10.8Bn in 2025, says Navigant (Ind. Report)
Navigant Research
Date: 2016-03-30
A recently released report from Navigant Research finds that the U.S. commercial and industrial (C&I) energy storage market, led by California, will grow from $968.4 million this year to $10.8 billion in 2025. Capacity will expand from 499.4 MW this year to 9.1 GW by the end of the study period.

North America is expected to be the largest regional market in 2016, with an estimated 306.9 MW of new installations. However, it is anticipated that Asia Pacific will take over as the largest world market around 2021. Asia Pacific is also expected to be the fastest growing regional market, with annual deployments forecast to increase from 93.7 MW in 2016 to 3,700.9 MW by 2025, representing a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 50.5%.

According to Alex Eller, a research analyst at Navigant Research and author of the report, California is out in front because of the method used to compute charges. California uses peak demand charging. This approach combines a rate based on consumption with a charge determined by the amount of energy used during the busiest time (often, the peak 15 minute interval of the month). This leads to high costs. End users thus are incorporating storage as a strategy to keep lower the high consumption points.

California leads, but is not the only area in which C&I storage is growing. Eller says California represents about two-thirds of the North American market. New York is becoming active and the rest of the northeastern states are considered good prospects. Hawaii also is a growth area. (Source: Navigant Research, Mar. 28, 2016) Contact: Navigant Research, Alex Eller, (303) 997-7609,

More Low-Carbon Energy News Navigant Research,  Energy Storage,  

Abengoa Gets a Seven Month Break (Int'l, Ind. Report)
Date: 2016-03-30
Further to our March 11th coverage, Spain's troubled renewable energy giant Abengoa reports it had been given a seven-month reprieve by its creditors. The break gives the company time to restructure its approximate &euro:9.4 billion ($10.5 billion) debt and avoid immediate bankruptcy. The seven month extension is parallel to the company plans to file for Chapter 11 protection from creditors for its biofuels affiliates in the U.S..

In November, 2015, Abengoa announced it was filing for preliminary protection from creditors and had been given a March 28 deadline to come to an agreement with the majority of its creditors. (Source: Abengoa, MENAFN, Others, 28 Mar., 2016) Contact: Abengoa,; Abengoa Bioenergy,

More Low-Carbon Energy News Abengoa,  

LanzaTech, Aemetis Ink Waste Gas-to-Ethanol Tech Deal (Ind. Report)
Date: 2016-03-30
Illinois-based LanzaTech reports the signing of a 12-year deal giving giving Cupertino, California-based biofuels and biochemicals maker Aemetis exclusive rights to its patented technology to convert various types of waste gas to ethanol in California.

Under the terms of the agreement, Aemetis must meet certain milestones, the first of which is construction of an 8 million gpy processing unit no later than the end of 2017. Aemetis owns and operates a 60 million gpy corn-ethanol plant in Keyes, California.

LanzaTech's microbe technology ferments gas so it can be converted into ethanol and other high-value fuels and chemicals. The technology process can also be used for gas produced by oil and chemical refineries, forestry and agriculture, and municipal waste and coal. (Source: LanzaTech, Aemetis, Scoop Media, 29 Mar., 2016)Contact: LanzaTech, Jennifer Holmgren, CEO, (630) 439-3050,; Aemetis, Eric McAfee, CEO, (408) 213-0939,

More Low-Carbon Energy News LanzaTech,  Aemetis,  Biofuel,  

Yale Joins Carbon Pricing Leadership Coalition (Ind. Report)
Yale University
Date: 2016-03-30
On March 14, at the World Bank's Corporate Carbon Pricing Leadership Workshop in Mumbai, Yale University in Hew Haven, Connecticut, announced that it would join the Carbon Pricing Leadership Coalition (CPLC), a partnership of governments, nonprofits and private sector companies working to strengthen carbon-pricing policies.

Yale is the first university to implement a carbon-pricing program and the first university to join the coalition. As part of its membership, Yale will collaborate with CPLC member companies to research better ways to implement carbon pricing.

Yale's Office of Sustainability is currently in the process of measuring the University's greenhouse gas inventory for fiscal year 2015. The university also recently built a 1.34-mMW rooftop solar array on West Campus and invested $21 million in on-campus energy efficiency.

Yale has also established the Yale Community Carbon Fund (YCCF) which supports local carbon mitigation projects that go beyond the school's immediate campus. When money is donated, the Yale Community Carbon Fund staff invests it in ways that enable low-income people or organizations in New Haven to become more energy efficient and save money. (Source: Yale News, 29 Mar., 2016) Contact: Yale Office of Sustainability, Carbon Charge Project, Ryan Laemel, Coordinator, (202) 436-3571,,

More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon Pricing,  Carbon Footprint,  Carbon Emissions,  

EPA Defends Its' Clean Power Plan (Ind. Report, Reg & Leg)
Clean Power Plan
Date: 2016-03-30
In the nation's capitol, the EPA has filed a 200-page merit brief defending its "Clean Power Plan" proposal to regulate existing power plants. According to the filing, "climate change is a 'monumental threat' and that the agency is within its authority to take action." The agency says the Clean Power Plan will save 3,600 lives annually, prevent 90,000 child asthma attacks each year and save families almost $85 a year in energy bills.

The Plans detractors claim the EPA lacks authority to regulate power plants as that is the jurisdiction of states. The Feds respond that the Clean Air Act provides "well-established authority" to address public health threats.

Even if the rule is ultimately upheld, the Supreme Court's recently-reported stay on implementation of the rule could significantly impact compliance timelines for states and utilities. As it stands, the EPA will be unable to enforce its September deadline for states to submit compliance plans or request an extension. Without enforcement from the EPA, states may have to decide on their own whether to comply. Even so, the EPA will continue to work with states on compliance plans while litigation goes forward, according to the White House.

Download the EPA's defense filing HERE. (Source: EPA, EDF,Utility Dive, Various Others, 29 Mar., 2016)

More Low-Carbon Energy News EPA Clean Power Plan,  

GE's Haliade Turbines to Power Deepwater's Block Island Offshore Wind Farm (Ind. Report)
General Electric,Deepwater Wind
Date: 2016-03-28
GE announced earlier this month that it has completed the installation of the offshore platforms for Deepwater Wind's Block Island Wind Farm, set to be developed off the coast of Rhode Island -- America's first offshore wind farm. GE is providing the state-of-the-art, 6 MW, 170 meter Haliade turbines which, when fully operational, are expected provide approximately 90 pct of Block Island's electric power demand.

GE acquired the Haliade wind turbines as part of its 2015 purchase of Alstom last year. The first Haliade has already been produced, and left the factory in France for Denmark, where it will be installed on the Osterild site operated by the utility EDF EN. The same factory, located in Saint-Nazaire, France, will also make the five Haliades for the Block Island wind farm. (Source: GE Website, CleanTechina, Various Others, March 23rd, 2016)Contact: GE Renewable Energy, Jerome Decresse, CEO,; Deepwater Wind, Jeffrey Grybowski, CEO,(401) 274-2000,

More Low-Carbon Energy News Deepwater Wind,  Haliade,  General Electric,  Renewable Energy,  Offshore Wind,  

Cuomo Claims 112,000 N.Y. Energy Efficiency Projects (Ind. Report)
N.Y. Governor Andrew M. Cuomo
Date: 2016-03-28
In Albany, N.Y. Governor Andrew M. Cuomo reports that in the past four years, 112,000 residential and commercial energy efficiency projects have been completed or are currently under development through New York State clean energy programs. These projects will attract $766 million in private investment and will save customers $341 million on their energy bills each year. Homeowners are saving an average of $56 per month on electric and natural gas bills, and building owners are saving an average of $1,023 per month, according to the governor's announcement. The 112,000 energy efficiency projects include 90,000 individual homes and 22,000 commercial buildings, including apartment buildings, hospitals, schools, and officebuildings.

The projects will cutannual electricity demand by 2 million MWh per year, and reduce annual heating fuel demand by 9 trillion Btu, the equivalent of heating more than 85,000 average-size homes. The projects will reduce greenhouse gas emissions by more than 797,000 metric tpy, the equiva lent of taking 168,000 cars off the road.

Governor Cuomo has committed the State to increasing the energy efficiency of 500,000 households and 20,000 businesses by 2020. To meet this goal, the state will invest part of its Clean Energy Fund to help property owners and renters audit their current energy use to identify energy savings opportunities and replace inefficient systems and appliances with high-efficiency models wherever possible. (Source: Office of Gov. PR, 25 Mar, 2016) Contact: N.Y. Gov. Andrew Cuomo,; NY State Clean Energy Fund,

More Low-Carbon Energy News Energy Efficiency,  Clean Energy,  

Lloyds Launches Corp. Building Energy Efficiency Loans (Int'l)
Lloyds Bank
Date: 2016-03-28
In the UK, Lloyds Banking Group Plc reports it is offering £1 billion in cut-rate energy efficiency loans to qualified corporate property owners aiming to improve the energy efficiency of their buildings. This loan will offer discounts of up to 20 basis points on loan amounts of £10 million or more.

According to Lloyds, the initiative should help cut CO2 emissions by around 110,000 tonnes -- the equivalent to the annual energy use of more than 22,000 homes. Lloyds has collaborated with environmental consultancy Trucost to set benchmarks that will be used to assess individual buildings so that efficiency targets can be set. Clients that have borrowed on this scheme will need to meet their targets to continue receiving the improved loan margin. (Source: Lloyds Bank, Voltimum, 24 Nar., 2016) Contact: Lloyds Bank,

More Low-Carbon Energy News Lloyds Bank ,  Energy Efficiency,  

Honolulu Water Board, NORESCO Ink $33Mn Renewable Energy Projects Deal (Ind. Report)
NORESCO,Honolulu Board of Water Supply
Date: 2016-03-28
In the Aloha State, the Honolulu Board of Water Supply (HBWS) reports it has inked a $33 million deal with energy services specialist NORESCO that allows the water agency to implement energy efficiency, renewable energy and operational improvements while guarantee ing enough savings over the next 20 years to pay for the contract.

The proposed renewable energy and energy efficiency projects are expected to cut HBWS's annual electrical usage by about 9 pct of its total purchased electricity.

The $33 million project cost, which is being financed by a loan from the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund, will be repaid by the $3.3 million annual savings in energy costs during 17 years after the implementation of various conservation measures. Over a 20-year period, the HBWS expects to generate more than $56 million in savings through avoided electrical costs. (Source: Honolulu Board of Water Supply, Pacific Business, Mar 23, 2016) Contact: Honolulu Board of Water Supply, (808) 748-5000,; NORESCO, (808) 833-7777,

More Low-Carbon Energy News NORESCO,  Honolulu Board of Water Supply ,  

DTE Energy Installs 3,000,000 Smart Meters (Ind. Report)
DTE Energy
Date: 2016-03-28
In Detroit, DTE Energy reports it has completed the installation of the first 3,000,000 smart meters of a planned 4,000,000 smart meter installation 2 years ahead of schedule. The remaining 1 million meters are due to be installed by the end of the year.

DTE partnered with Itron, Inc., a technology and services company, to install smart electric meters and communication modules for gas meters which are owned, operated and maintained by DTE Energy. (Source: DTE Energyy, T&D World, 23 Mar., 2016) Contact: DTE Energy, Ron Ma , VP, Major Enterprise Projects,; Itron,

More Low-Carbon Energy News Itron,  DTE Energy,  Smart Meter,  

Sustainable Bioproducts Scores $300,000 for Biowaste-to-Energy Scale-up (Ind. Report)
Sustainable Bioproducts,EPA Small Business Innovation Research program
Date: 2016-03-28
In Montana, Bozeman-based Sustainable Bioproducts reports it was one of eight U.S. companies to receive a Phase II $300,000 EPA Small Business Innovation Research program grant to help develop technology that turns biological waste into oil-based products, that could have biofuels applications, using a microorganism from hot springs at Yellowstone National Park.

The $300,000 grant will be used to continue testing a similar process on municipal solid wastes, such as yard trimmings and food scraps. The company's technology can produce as much as 62 gallons of lipids per metric ton of waste with a two-week period. Part of the grant will help the company scale-up to a commercial level and a larger production facility near Bozeman. (Source: Sustainable Bioproducts, Bozeman Chronicle, 27 Mar., 2016) Contact: Sustainable Bioproducts, Mark Kozubal, Founder, (406) 624-0430,; EPA Small Business Innovation Research Program,

More Low-Carbon Energy News Waste-to-Energy,  Bioproducts,  

Thawing Arctic Permafrost Impact on Climate Change Investigated (Ind. Report)
Woods Hole Research Center
Date: 2016-03-28
According to an assessment from scientists from the Woods Hole Research Center in Falmouth, Mass., carbon emissions from the Arctic could threaten our ability meet a 2 degree Celsius target for limiting global warming as set by the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Paris Agreement.

The assessment focuses on the amount of carbon that will be released from the northern high latitudes by the end of the century. The majority of carbon in the Arctic is contained in permafrost, which is vulnerable to thawing and degradation under warming conditions. Models suggest that although some permafrost carbon emissions may be offset by increase plant growth, the new growth is unlikely to offset a significant percentage of the carbon emissions after 2050.

The assessment concluded that 85 pct of carbon emissions from the permafrost zone could still be avoided with aggressive international policies, but that window of opportunity is rapidly closing. (Source: Environmental Research Letters, Woods Hole, 27 Mar., 2016) Contact: Woods Hole Research Center, Brendan Rogers, (508) 540-9900,

More Low-Carbon Energy News Permafrost Carbon,  Woods Hole Research Center,  Carbon Emissions,  Climate Change,  Global Warming,  

NASA, UC Merced Testing Miniature Methane Sensors (Ind. Report)
UC Merced
Date: 2016-03-28
In California, researchers from the University of California Merced (UC Merced) Mechatronics, Embedded Systems and Automation Lab and NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) report the completion of testing of miniature methane gas sensors similar to one developed for use on Mars.

The controlled tests were conducted on the Merced Vernal Pools and Grassland Reserve using a small UAV equipped with an Open Path Laser Spectrometer (OPLS) sensor at various distances from gas sources to test the accuracy and robustness of the system.

The JPL-developed sensor enables detection of methane sources at much lower levels than previously available. The ability of the OPLS sensor to detect methane in parts per billion by volume, as opposed to the parts-per-million sensors that are commercially available, could help more accurately pinpoint small methane leaks.

This testing was funded by Pipeline Research Council International which seeks to further the development of small UAVs as an improvement to traditional natural gas pipeline inspection methods. (Source: UC Merced, University News, 24 Mar., 2016) Contact: UC Merced, (209) 228-4400,; NASA,

More Low-Carbon Energy News Methane,  UC Merced,  NASA,  GHG Emissions,  Climate Change,  

CarboCount-CH Monitors Methane, GHG Data (Int'l Report)
Swiss National Science Foundation
Date: 2016-03-28
Researchers at Empa, the University of Bern and ETH Zurich, funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF), are reported to have developed a method to independently monitor methane and other GHG emissions by making direct measurements of the gases in the atmosphere.

The researchers combined the data measured for methane with a transport model for air pollutants and found that the values for 2013 diverged little from the Swiss Federal Office for the Environment (FOEN) data and confirmed the estimated annual emission of approximately 200,000 tonnes of methane. They also found that methane emissions from livestock to be lower than previously estimated while Swiss gas pipeline methane leaks were only a minor source of methane.

The project CarboCount-CH can be considered a pilot for the pan-European observation network Integrated Carbon Observation System (ICOS), which is being established to monitor greenhouse gas emission at the European scale. (Source: Swiss National Science Foundation EurekSlert, 24 Mar., 2016) Contact: Swiss National Science Foundation Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology (EMPA), Dominik Brunner,; Swiss Federal Office for the Environment,; ETH Zurich, +41 44 632 1111,

More Low-Carbon Energy News GHG.Methane,  Methane Emissions,  

Big Ox Energy's Methane Facility Nears Completion (Ind. Report)
Big Ox Energy
Date: 2016-03-28
Denmark, Wisconsin-based Big Ox Energy reports it has broken ground on a $30 million - $40 million plant that will process organic waste from industrial plants into methane. The company's technology includes an anaerobic digestion process that extracts organic waste nutrients to create methane which is sold into the natural gas pipeline for customer use. Construction is expected to be completed by late spring.

The company operates other plants in Green Bay, Wisconsin, and Riceville, Iowa. (Source: Big Ox Energy, Souix Citry Journal, 27 Mar., 2016) Contact: Big Ox Energy, (844) 491-1953,,

More Low-Carbon Energy News Big Ox Energy,  Methane,  anaerobic digestion,  

Kentucky House moves to regulate methane plants

Date: 2016-03-27
Kentucky House members approved a measure Tuesday that would establish how far waste-to-energy facilities, such as controversial methane plants, should be from residential areas. The move comes less than a month after Louisville Metro Council slapped a six-month moratorium on companies seeking permits to build biodigesters that convert food waste into green energy. Under the proposal, which was introduced by state Rep. Tom Riner of Louisville, the state would bar methane plants from being located within a quarter of a mile from any residential property, school, hospital or place of worship. The legislation, which passed by a 74-24 vote, would only apply to facilities located in counties with more than half a million residents. The bill now moves to the Senate. STAR BioEnergy attorney Brian Zoeller said he hasn't spoken to his clients about the bill but believes the quarter mile setback is too far, discourages economic development and significantly reduces the likelihood of any such facility being developed in an urban area.” Zoeller said state lawmakers should let the city's moratorium —which also calls for a comprehensive study of the zoning rules and other potential regulations— run its course before stepping in with further regulations. The proposal would also allow state regulators to establish additional setback distances if those waste-to-energy facilities were set to be near other dangerous or vulnerable locations except for those built on landfills, wastewater treatment plants or agricultural property. An amendment to the bill says it would only apply to facilities in counties with a popular of more than 500,000 people. (Source: Courier Journal, 23 Mar., 2016)

More Low-Carbon Energy News Methane news,  

ASE Sets Ambitious Markers for Investment in Energy Efficiency and Innovation (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
Alliance to Save Energy
Date: 2016-03-23
"In Washington, congressional leaders have adopted an accelerated schedule to consider and approve funding levels for the federal government in the next fiscal year (Oct. 1, 2016, to Sept. 30, 2017). And so the Alliance to Save Energy (ASE) and our supporters in the U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate have responded with strong statements and actions in support for robust funding for energy efficiency programs at the U.S. DOE and the U.S. EPA. Generally, this year, the Alliance is advocating for funding in line with President Obama's budget and support for his significant 'Mission Innovation' initiative, which would increase funding for important R&D development activities in the DOE's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy and elsewhere across the department.

"The budget and appropriations cycle is in full swing. President Obama proposed his funding priorities on Feb. 9. Agency heads, including Energy Secretary Moniz, are appearing before the House and Senate Appropriations Committee. The Alliance and coalitions of like-minded organizations studied the president's budget and submitted letters of support for EPA ENERGY STAR and DOE energy efficiency programs to House and Senate appropriators. Alliance President Kateri Callahan also submitted testimony on funding levels to the Senate Energy and Water Development Appropriations Subcommittee and to the House Energy and Water Development, and Related Agencies Subcommittee.

"The Alliance is fortunate to have committed allies in both ends of the Capitol. Alliance Honorary Board Chair Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.) and Honorary Board Member Rep. Peter Welch (D-Vt.) are leading the charge and working with their colleagues to provide the funding necessary to carry out energy efficiency programs that deliver benefits and returns to American households and businesses many times greater than the public's investment. Likewise, friend-of-the-Alliance Sen. Jack Reed (D-R.I.) has marshaled support for critical funding for DOE's State Energy Program and Weatherization Assistance Program. Results have so far exceeded expectations: more senators and representatives have communicated their energy efficiency priorities to their colleagues serving as appropriators than last year.

"It is too early to know the outcome of this outreach or how it will affect funding for energy efficiency programs. Months of hearings, deliberations and negotiations are yet to happen. But even at this early stage, thanks to our energy efficiency champions in Congress, some important groundwork is set and ready to build on." (Source: Alliance to Save Energy, 21 Mar., 2016) Contact: Alliance to Save Energy,

More Low-Carbon Energy News Alliance to Save Energy,  Energy Efficiency,  

Penna. Regulators OK PPL's Energy Efficiency Plan (Ind. Report)
Pennsylvania Power & Light, Utilities
Date: 2016-03-23
In the Keystone State, regulators have approved Pennsylvania Power and Light's (PPL) $307.5 million energy efficiency program aimed at business customers. The program includes a demand-response plan that allows commercial customers to sign up for rate incentives in exchange for agreeing to scale back peak summer time energy consumption. PPL will hire a demand response-program implementer to recruit participants and administer the program.

Residential customers will offered ongoing existing programs to encourage recycling of energy-wasting appliances, education initiatives, home-energy efficiency programs and lighting efficiency improvements.

By law, Pennsylvania utilities are required to regularly create programs to help consumers reduce their energy bills. This year's plan, phase three of the program, is good for the next five years. The plan aims to reduce annual energy consumption by 1.4 million megawatts. (Source: PPL, Morning Call, Others, 22 Mar., 2016) Contact: PPL,

More Low-Carbon Energy News Pennsylvania Power & Light,  Utilities,  Energy Efficiency,  

Duke Seals Swine Methane Waste-to-Energy Deal (Ind. Report)
Duke Energy Corp.,Carbon Cycle Energy
Date: 2016-03-23
Charlotte-based Duke Energy Corp. reports it has sealed a deal with Boulder, Colorado-headqusrtered Carbon Cycle Energy which will build. own and operate a North Carolina plant that collects and processes swine and chicken waste methane. The processed methane will be trucked or otherwise transported to four Duke Energy plants which will use the methane to generate sufficient electricity to power 10,000 homes a year.

Duke Energy services 7.2 million customers in North and South Carolina, Ohio, Kentucky, Indiana and Florida. (Source: Duke Energy, ABC, Various Others, 21 Mar., 2016)Contact: Duke Energy,; Carbon Cycle Energy, Paul Metz, Bus. Dev., (855) 424-6427x707,,

More Low-Carbon Energy News Duke Energy,  Carbon Cycle Energy,  Methane,  Biogas,  

FNSB in the Running for $5Mn Energy Efficiency Prize (Ind. Report)
Georgetown University Energy Prize Competition
Date: 2016-03-23
In Alaska, the municipality of Fairbanks North Star Borough (FNSB) reports it could secure a $5 million award in the Georgetown University Energy Prize Competition for cutting its energy consumption by 12 pct next year. The borough is one of 50 semi-finalists participating in the Georgetown University Energy Prize Competition. The Golden Valley Electric Association (GVEA), the University of Alaska Fairbanks, and the Alaska Center for Energy and Power are partnering with the borough to help meet its goal.

Borough residents can help out in the competition by participating online using GVEA's Wattz-On initiative, which formally tracks electric usage for use in the competition. (Source: KTYF11, 21 Mar., 2016) Contact: Georgetown University Energy Prize, (202) 687-0100,; Fairbanks North Star Borough,

More Low-Carbon Energy News Energy Efficiency,  Georgetown University Energy Prize Competition,  Energy Efficiency,  

Off-Peak Power Could Cut UK CO2 Emissions by 1,560 tpd (Int'l)
Open Energi
Date: 2016-03-23
According to recently released research from London-based Open Energi, the UK could save about £1 billion and thousands of tonnes of carbon emissions by paying people to use electricity during non-peak hours. Open Energi calculated this would save 1,560 tonnes of carbon dioxide on an average winter weekday, helping Britain meet its climate targets

Shifting power usage patterns could transform UK energy policy, which is centred on trying to make sure the country has enough capacity on the system to satisfy sudden spikes in demand. According to the report, initial trials by the energy department suggest an eighth of the country's peak demand could be shifted by an hour. Half of that would come from domestic use and half from companies or other heavy users. Report author Remi Boulineau, said "Instead of building more capacity to satisfy our energy needs, we could simply displace the peak." (Source: Open Energi, FirstFT, 21 Mar., 2016) Contact" Open Energi, Remi Boulineau, +44 20 3051 0600,

More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon Emissions,  

Aviation Groups Advocate Mandatory Emissions Offsetting (Ind. Report)
International Civil Aviation Organization
Date: 2016-03-23
The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) is reporting the launch of a series of regional outreach and education sessions as negotiations continue towards the adoption of a global climate agreement for air transport. The regional events, under the title Global Aviation Dialogues (GLADs), are a key part of the agency's work in the lead up to the ICAO Assembly in September.

The aviation industry, represented by the Air Transport Action Group (ATAG), has been advocating for a market-based measure in the form of a mandatory global offsetting scheme. According to ATAG, the development of a global carbon offsetting scheme for aviation is crucial if aviation is to meet its climate obligations, whilst also continuing to meet economic and connectivity growth. The COP21 Paris Agreement on climate change provided positive momentum for discussions at ICAO, which already has its own mandate and an established programme for addressing aviation and climate change.

The GLADs continue previous discussions, with negotiators seeking balance between environmental and political acceptability. The air transport industry will be urging governments to secure the agreement in September, through a series of industry events, the global aviation dialogues and at the official negotiating sessions. (Source: ICAO,ATAG, Others, Mar., 2016) Contact: ATAG, Michael Gill, Exec. Dir., Haldane Dodd, +41 79 429 8710,,; ICAO, +52 55 52 50 3211,,

More Low-Carbon Energy News Aviation Emissions,  International Civil Aviation Organization,  

CARB Calls for SoCal Gas to Offset Methane Leak (Ind. Report)
California Air Resources Board, Aliso Canyon Methane Leak
Date: 2016-03-23
The California Air Resources Board (CARB) is calling for Sempra Energy's Southern California Gas unit to pay for offsetting the recent massive methane-greenhouse gas emissions leaked from the Porter Ranch gas leak at Aliso Canyon north of Los Angeles. The massive leak pumped about 100,000 tons of methane into the atmosphere over several months before it was finally plugged. That's the equivalent of 8 million metric tons of carbon dioxide -- several times more than the 1.5 million metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions that the Golden State reduced last year through its landmark climate change regulations.

The CARB mitigation plan was ordered by Governor Jerry Brown. The utility has agreed to pay for these pollution-slashing measures over the next 5 or 10 years, under the proposal. The utility will pay for plugging abandoned wells, fund purchase of more efficient furnaces and water heaters for property owners, reduce methane-producing waste at landfills, and install devices to capture methane at dairy farms across the state, according to the CARB proposal. (Source: CARB, East County Mag., Mar., 2016) Contact: Southern California Gas,; CARB, (916) 322-2990,

More Low-Carbon Energy News Porter Ranch,  Methne,  California Air Resources Board,  Aliso Canyon Methane Leak,  GHGs,  Methane,  

Forge Hydrocarbons Scores $4.2Mn for Biofuels Plant (Ind. Report)
Forge Hydrocarbons,Sustainable Development Technology Canada
Date: 2016-03-23
In Alberta, Edmonton-headquartered biodiesel producer Forge Hydrocarbons Inc., a University of Alberta spin-off company, is reporting receipt of $4.2 million in grant funding from Sustainable Development Technology Canada (SDTC).

The funds will be used for construction of a 19 million lpy biodiesel-from-used cooking oil production plant. The company plans to use technology created by University of Alberta bioresource scientist David Bressler. Construction is slated to get underway in 2017. (Source: University of Alberta, Forge Hydrocarbons, Edmonton Metro, 21 Mar., 2016) Contact: Forge Hydrocarbons, University of Alberta, Prof. David Bressler, (780) 492-4986,; SDTC, (613) 234 6313,

More Low-Carbon Energy News Forge Hydrocarbons,  Sustainable Development Technology Canada,  

Woods Hole Participates in Land Use GHG Study (Ind. Report)
Woods Hole Research Center
Date: 2016-03-21
A recent research study by 23 scientists from 16 institutions in 4 countries, including the Woods Hole Research Center in Hyannis, Massachusetts, has found that human activities result in significant GHG emissions releases from land to the atmosphere. Deforestation, especially in the tropics, is also an important source of CO2 emissions. But on the whole, land absorbs CO2 from the atmosphere, primarily because of regrowth of mid-latitude forests.

This study, written in part by researchers from the Woods Hole Research Center, shows that when two other greenhouse gases are taken into account, human activities on balance result in a strong warming influence from land.

According to the research report, "this finding reveals for the first time that human activities have transformed the land biosphere to act as a contributor to climate change." It also shows that the net effect of CO2, agricultural methane and nitrous oxide varies by region and that the net climate warming effect is largest in China, India, and Southeast Asia. (Source: Woods Hole,, Nature, 19 Mar., 2016)Contact: Woods Hole Research Center, (508) 540-9900,

More Low-Carbon Energy News GHGs,  Deforerstation,  Woods Hole Research Center,  Atmospheric Carbon,  Carbon Sequestration,  Forest Carbon,  

Maryland Aims for 40 pct CO2 Emissions Cut by 2030 (Ind. Report)
Maryland GHG,Maryland's Climate Change Commission
Date: 2016-03-21
In Annapolis, the Maryland House of Delegates has overwhelmingly adopted a measure requiring the state to cut its CO2 emissions by 40 percent by 2030, using a 2006 baseline. In February, the state Senate handily approved similar legislation. In 2010, the Old Line State's goal was to cut emissions by 25 pct by 2020. and was set six years ago. That law would expire if not reauthorized by lawmakers.

The new goal was proposed by Maryland's Climate Change Commission, which includes members from the legislature, nonprofit groups, private businesses and state agency secretaries appointed by Gov. Larry Hogan. Thursday night's vote was cheered by the Sierra Club, which says the emissions reduction program is an opportunity to fight climate change and create jobs in the clean energy industry. (Source: MarylandClimate Change Commission, Baltimore Sun, 18 Mar., 2016) Contact: Maryland Climate Change Commission, (410) 537-3255,,

More Low-Carbon Energy News GHGs,  Garbon Emissions,  

EPRI Lauds NYPA for CO2 Social Cost Assessment (Ind. Report)
New York Power Authority,EPRI
Date: 2016-03-21
In the Empire State, the The New York Power Authority (NYPA) reports it has been awarded the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) Technology Transfer award for research that contributes to the understanding of the social cost of carbon emissions.

In winning the award, NYPA Environmental Health and Safety VP John Kahabka participated in an analysis of US EPA's methodologies for determining the social costs of CO2 emissions while an EPRI team examined the modeling undertaken by federal agencies and identified several flaws. The team presented its findings at the COP21 climate change summit last December in Paris. Kahabka also received a second Technology Transfer award for his leadership and support of EPRI’s Occupational Health and Safety Research Conference held last May. (Source: NYPA, EPRI, RealEstateRama, March 18, 2016) Contact: NYPA, John Kahabka, VP Environmental Health and Safety, Maura Balaban, (914) 390-8171,;; Contact: EPRI, Mike Howard, Pres., CEO,

More Low-Carbon Energy News New York Power Authority,  EPRI,  Carbon Emissions,  

Dominion Virginia, Microsoft Announce 20MW Solar Farm (Ind. Report)
Dominion Virginia Power, Microsoft
Date: 2016-03-21
In the Old Dominion State, Richmond-headquartered Dominion Virginia Power reports it will develop a 20 MW solar power project in a public-private partnership involving Microsoft and the State of Virginia. The project, which will be constructed in Fauquier County, is expected to come online late in 2017, according to an AP report.

The state of Virginia has agreed to a power purchase agreement for all of the project's power generation and Microsoft will purchase and retire the project's green credits to help it meet its sustainability goals.

Dominion Virginia has committed to developing 400 MW of solar energy in Virginia by 2020. Microsoft previously announced PPAs for 175 MW of wind energy in Illinois to power its Chicago data center, and 110 MW of wind energy in Texas that powers its San Antonio data center. (Source: Microsoft, Dominion Virginia Power, Utility Dive, Others, Mar., 2016) Contact: Dominion Virginia Power , Thomas Farrell II, CEO, (804) 771-6115,

More Low-Carbon Energy News Data Center,  Dominion Virginia Power,  Microsoft,  Solar,  

Lockheed Martin Adds Tidal to Consolidated Energy Line (Ind. Report)
Lockheed Martin
Date: 2016-03-21
Grand Prairie-Texas-headquartered global manufacturing giant Lockheed Martin reports that its marine hydrokinetics unit will now operate as part of a newly established business line called Lockheed Martin Energy. The division, which Lockheed Martin Energy calls "Ocean Technologies", is joined by Energy Management, Energy Storage, Nuclear Systems and Bioenergy.

Lockheed Martin has been involved in numerous ocean energy projects in recent years, including the MeyGen array located in Scotland's Pentland Firth. (Source: Lockheed Martin, Mar. 16, 2016) Contact: Lockheed Martin Energy, Frank Armijo, VP, Carol B. Cala, VP Energy and Environment,,,

More Low-Carbon Energy News Lockheed Martin,  Tidal Power,  Hydrokinetics,  

Saft Providing Li-Ion Battery Power Back-UP Systems to Puerto Rican Utility (Ind. Report)
Saft Batteries,Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority,Windmar
Date: 2016-03-21
Paris-headquartered industrial battery specialist Saft Batteries reports receipt of a contract from Windmar Renewable Energy to provide three Intensium® Max 20P high-power lithium-ion (Li-ion) battery containers to provide ramp-rate control and frequency response for a 10MW PV facility in Puerto Rico.

Puerto Rico's Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) requires the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority (PREPA) to source 20 pct of its electricity from renewable sources by 2035. Windmar was the first company in Puerto Rico to supply solar energy to PREPA, and has to date installed more than 15MW of solar energy throughout the island.

Windmar will be able to meet PREPA's minimum technical requirements (MTRs) of 4.5MW of peak power for ramp-rate control and 1MW for frequency response with Saft batteries. The fully-integrated Intensium® Max containers include modular battery architecture, battery management and active cooling systems, fire suppression and power and communication interfaces. (Source: Saft Batteries, 15 Mar., 2016) Contact: Saft, Jim McDowell, Business Dev.,; Windmar,; Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority,

More Low-Carbon Energy News Saft Batteries,  Battery,  Energy Storage,  Renewable Energy,  

Murex, White Energy Seal Ethanol Marketing Deal (Ind. Report)
Murex LLC, White Energy
Date: 2016-03-21
Plano, Texas-headquartered ethanol marketer and distributor Murex LLC reports it has sealed a multi-year ethanol marketing agreement under which it will market all three of White Energy's production locations, two in Texas and one in Kansas, totaling 295mm gallons of permitted ethanol production annually.

Murex LLC maintains more than 30 million gallons of dedicated coastal ethanol storage capacity. In addition to domestic ethanol marketing and its focus on export ethanol, Murex LLC provides customer-based marketing services for crude oil, methanol and other gasoline blend stocks.

Dallas-based White Energy was established to build and acquire ethanol production projects and is the dominant producer in the LOne Star State. (Source: Murex LLC, Mar. 18, 2016) Contact: Murex, Robert Wright, Pres.,; White Energy, Don Gales, Pres.,

More Low-Carbon Energy News Murex LLC,  White Energy,  Ethanol,  

Palm Oil Producers Struggling to Meet Biodiesel Targets (Int'l)
Indonesian Palm Oil Producers Association
Date: 2016-03-21
In Jakarta, the Indonesian Oil Palm Estate Fund (BPDP) reports that the realization of subsidized diesel fuel getting mixed with 20 pct bio-content reached approximately 404,000 kiloliters during January and February. Even so, BPDP expects to reach the target of having 3 million kiloliters of diesel contain 20 pct biofuel by the end of the year. The mandatory biodiesel mix is part of the government’s policy to encourage the use biofuels -- especially made of palm oil -- to replace diesel fuel as part of the effort to reduce Indonesia's dependency on petroleum fuel and its carbon emissions.

The mandatory diesel/biofuel blend increased from 10 pct in 2013 to 15 pct in 2015 and to 20 pct this year. According to Indonesian Palm Oil Producers Association data, the country's CPO production, along with its derivatives, reached 32.5 million tons in 2015,the majority of which was exported. (Source: Indonesian Palm Oil Producers Association, Jakarta Post, 16 Mar., 2016) Contact: Indonesian Palm Oil Producers Association,

More Low-Carbon Energy News Palm Oil,  Biofuel,  Biodiesel,  

TransAlta Scuttling Canada's Oldest Wind Farm (Ind. Report)
Date: 2016-03-18
In Alberta, TransAlta Corp. reports it is shutting down the 57-turbine Cowley Ridge Wind Farm near Pincher Creek. The company says the facilities steel towers will toppled and recycled for scrap metal this spring. TransAlta acquired the 1993 vintage wind facility as part of its $1.6-billion takeover of Calgary-based Canadian Hydro Developers Inc. in 2009.

Alberta boasts the third-largest installed wind energy capacity in Canada with 1,500 MW and 958 turbines, according to CanWEA. (Source: TransAlta, CanWEA, Calgary Herald, Others, Mar., 2016)Contact: TransAlta, Dawn Farrell, Pres., CEO, Brent Ward, Dir. Corporate Finance and Investor Relations, (800) 387-3598, (403) 267-2540,,

More Low-Carbon Energy News TransAlta,  Wind,  

ORNL Touts Solar Cell Measurement Technology (New Prod & Tech)
Oak Ridge National Laboratory
Date: 2016-03-18
In Oak Ridge, Tennessee, the US DOE's Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) reports that its recently developed solar cell measurement and data analysis techniques could provide new insight into performance-robbing flaws in crystalline structures and ultimately improve solar cell performance.

The ORNL technology synchronizes microscopy, ultra-short pulses of laser light and data analytics to extract images with single-pixel precision, providing unprecedented detail. The experiment consists of optically pumping the thin film sample with a 50 femtosecond -- or 50 millionths of a billionth of a second -- laser pulse and then measuring changes in light absorption with a second laser pulse in the material resulting in a pixel-by-pixel map providing information researchers can use to improve solar cell performance.

The research was funded by DOE's Office of Science. Perovskite sample preparation was done at the Center for Nanophase Materials Sciences, a DOE Office of Science User Facility. (Source: DOE/Oak Ridge National Laboratory, PR, 15 Mar., 2016) Contact: ORNL,,

More Low-Carbon Energy News Solar,  Oak Ridge National Laboratory ,  

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