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Planned Newfoundland Wood Pellet Plant Still Inactive (Ind. Report)
Active Energy
Date: 2019-11-06
Following up on our 24th May, 2017 coverage, London, UK-based Active Energy PLC's planned and long delayed proposed woody biomass-pellet plant on Newfoundland's Northern Peninsula is "far from a done deal but isn't dead in the water", according to Provincial Minister Gerry Byrne.

Active Energy's Newfoundland subsidiary Timberlands secured timber rights a year ago but to date no timber has been cut or delivered to the proposed project which has not yet broken ground. The provincial government issued two five-year commercial cutting permits to the company in November 2018 to harvest 100,000 cubic mpy of timber for the wood pellet plant in Hawke's Bay.

Active energy is best known for its CoalSwitch product which is made from woody biomass including pulp and saw mill by-products such as bark, sawdust and thinnings, and wood which is over-age, under-quality, blow-down, beetle-kill, forest-fire damaged, or industrial waste. CoalSwitch can be burned by old, coal-fired generation facilities without the need for a retrofit. (Source: Active Energy, CBC, Nov., 2019) Contact: Active Energy Group PLC, Richard Spinks, CEO, +44 (0)20 3021 1500, www.active-energy.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Active Energy,  Biomass,  


Nova Scotia Touts Tough 10-Year Emissions Target (Reg. & Leg.)
Coal,Climate Change,Nova Scotia Ministry of Environment
Date: 2019-11-04
Reporting from Halifax, the province of Nova Scotia nvironment Ministry reports the introduction of legislation aimed at cutting the province's greenhouse gas emissions by 53 pct below 2005 levels by 2030 as well as moving the province to a net-zero carbon footprint by 2050.

The new legislation updates the 12-year-old Environmental Goals and Sustainable Prosperity Act which lays out new goals to fight climate change and grow the green economy. The legislation also requires the government to develop a province-wide plan with specific targets to reduce emissions by the end of next year. The legislation also calls for a government fund to support community projects aimed at climate change mitigation. (Source: Nova Scotia Ministry of Environment, Halifax Herald, Nov., 2019) Contact: Nova Scotia Ministry of Environment, Hon. Gordon Wilson, (902) 424-3600, www.novascotia.ca › nse

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


Renewables Supply Near Half German Power Consumption (Int'l.)
Solar Energy and Hydrogen Research Baden-Wurttemberg (ZSW)
Date: 2019-11-04
Data from the Stuttgart, Germany-based Centre for Solar Energy and Hydrogen Research Baden-Wurttemberg (ZSW) and the German Association of Energy and Water Management (BDEW) is suggesting that if wind and solar energy yields in Q4 this year equal the average of the last few years, renewable energy could amount to 42 pct of the country's energy consumption in 2019 -- a nearly 5 pct increase over the same period in 2018 (38.1 pct).

The data noted that solar, wind and other renewable sources generated around 183 billion kWh of electricity in the first three quarters of 2019. Renewables accounted for nearly 50 per cent more energy production than lignite and bituminous coal, which contributed 125 billion kWh to the total. Onshore wind power remained the leading source of renewable energy in the period under review with nearly 72 billion kWh followed by PV at 41 billion kWh. (Source: Solar Energy and Hydrogen Research Baden-Wurttemberg, Power Engineering, 2 Nov., 2019)Contact: Solar Energy and Hydrogen Research Baden-Wurttemberg (ZSW), +49 (0)711 78 70-0, +49 (0)711 78 70-100 - fax., info@zsw-bw.de, www.zsw-bw.de; German Association of Energy and Water Management, en.dwa.de

More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Energy,  Germany Renewable Energy,  Wind,  Solar,  


Korean Corporations Urged to Cut GHG Emissions (Int'l Report)
Korea
Date: 2019-11-04
The Korean Times is reporting Korean companies consume over 50 pct of the electric power generated from coal-fired power plants and contribute 30 to 40 pct of the country's greenhouse gas emissions. The Times notes that Korean companies, the main consumers of electricity generated by the coal-fired plants, need to transition to renewables but to date have been largely noncommittal to dropping fossil fuels.

According to Kim Ji-seok, a climate and energy specialist at Greenpeace Seoul, "there are two ways for local companies to replace their energy sources with renewable energy. One is to build their own power plant and the other is to purchase the energy from a renewable resources power generator. However, the latter is not legal here. Besides, electric power generated by such plants accounts for only 3.5 pct of the total electricity used in Korea, which is way too small to meet market demand," Kim said.

The state-run Korean Electric Power Corp. (KEPCO), which controls the majority of the country's electric power generation, is reportedly slow to adopt renewables. Another major factor attributing to high rate of greenhouse gases in Korea is the auto industry with Hyundai and Kia Motors emitting 401 million gross tons of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e) in 2018. (Source: Korea Times, Nov., 2019)

More Low-Carbon Energy News GHGs,  Korea Carbon Emissions,  Carbon Emissions,  Climate Change,  


Holland Fine-Tunes Climate Change Plan with Energy Efficiency (Ind Report)
Holland Michigan
Date: 2019-11-04
In Michigan, the city of Holland (pop. 35,000 +-) reports it is upgrading its Community Energy Plan -- the city's strategy to bring per capita GHG emissions down to 10 metric tons of carbon dioxide per capita over 40 years.

With the recent the decommissioning of the coal-powered James DeYoung power plant and the opening of the Holland Energy Park natural gas plant, the city has already cut emissions from 24 metric tons per capita in 2010 to an estimated 17 metric tons as of 2017. Moving forward the the city plans retrofitting all city buildings for better energy efficiency, replacing streetlights with LEDs to cut energy costs, further cutting the use of fossils fuels and increasing reliance on renewable energy sources, and refining its Energy Plan to include:

  • reaching a total of 1,000 homes retrofitted through the Home Energy Efficiency Retrofit program

  • growing capacity so that an additional 250 homes can be retrofitted annually

  • create local residential, commercial and industrial Energy Waste Reduction programs to replace expiring state programs

  • pilot and then study district heating at the Holland Civic Center to determine its effectiveness

  • achieve the highest rate of per-capita electric vehicle ownership in the state, twice the state average

  • draft a five-year plan for adapting the city's infrastructure for autonomous vehicles

  • secure a $3 million endowment for the Holland-Hope College Sustainability Institute.

    If all interim goals for 2021 are met, the changes are predicted to bring CO2 emissions levels down to 15.75 metric tons per capita. With 82 percent of the city's electricity delivered to commercial or industrial facilities, Holland's business sector will be key to the continued progress toward its goals. (Source: City of Holland, Holland Sentinel, 3 Nov., 2019)

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


  • Queensland Coal Emissions Killing Great Barrier Reef (Int'l.)
    Climate Analytics,Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority
    Date: 2019-10-30
    A report from Berlin-based Climate Analytics GmbH notes that Queensland, Australia's current carbon emissions would "virtually guarantee the extinction of most of the Great Barrier Reef" within 12 years if replicated worldwide.

    The report recommends Queensland stop burning coal for power by 2030 to play its part in keeping global heating to 1.5 Celsius under the UN's Paris Agreement targets, agreed to by Australia in 2016. The report also notes hitting the necessary emissions reduction target would spell the end of Queensland thermal coal exports by 2040, as part of a "rapid and almost complete global phase-out" of coal for electric power genearation.

    Queensland is Australia's biggest carbon-emitting state and will blow its total "carbon budget" of 1.2 gigatonnes by 2031 if its CO2 emissions remain at their 2017 rate, the report found.

    The UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has forecast that 70-90 pct of coral reefs worldwide will be lost at a 1.5C rise, with more than 99 per cent lost at 2C. Queensland accounts for 24 pct of Australia's energy and industry emissions and is targeting zero-net emissions by 2050. (Source: Climate Analytics, Australia Broadcasting Corp., 27 Oct., 2019) Contact: Climate Analytics, Bill Hare, Director, +49 (0)30 259229520, www.climateanalytics.org; Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, Josh Thomas, CEO, www.gbrmpa.gov.au; Great Barrier Reef Foundation, www.barrierreef.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Climate Analytics,  Carbon Emissions,  Coal,  Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority ,  


    Vistra Announces CO2 Emissions Reduction Targets (Ind. Report)
    Vistra Energy
    Date: 2019-10-30
    Irving, Texas-headquartered electric power generator and provider Vistra Energy is reporting its long-term emissions reduction targets to achieve a greater than 50 pct reduction in CO2 equivalent emissions by 2030 as compared to a 2010 baseline and a greater than 80 pct reduction in CO2 equivalent emissions by 2050 as compared to a 2010 baseline. The company also aims to reach net-zero carbon emissions in the same timeframe assuming necessary advancements in technology and supportive market constructs and public policy, according to a release. Since 2010 Vistra's combined power generation portfolio has decreased CO2 equivalent emissions by more than 31 pct, removing nearly 170 million metric tons of CO2 equivalent emissions from the atmosphere, according to the company which recently announced the anticipated retirement of approximately 2.5 GWs of coal assets in Illinois. The Illinois closure will further reduce the company's CO2 equivalents an additional 11 pct compared to a 2010 baseline.

    In total, since 2010, Vistra and its predecessor companies have retired, or announced plans to retire, nearly 13 GW of fossil generation, including 14 coal generation plants and 3 natural gas generation plants.

    Vistra notes it believes a national or regional, economy-wide carbon fee is the ideal public policy solution to appropriately incentivize investments in carbon-free and carbon-reducing technologies. (Source: Vistra, PR, 29 Oct., 2019) Contact: Vistra Energy, Curtis Morgan, CEO, www.vistraenergy.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Vistra Energy,  CO2,  Carbon Emissions,  Coal,  


    Automakers Rally to Trump's Banner in Calif. Vehicle Emissions Fight (Ind. Report, Reg & Leg)
    Association of Global Automakers
    Date: 2019-10-30
    In the Golden State, the Sacramento Bee is reporting General Motors, Toyota and other major automakers are supporting the Trump administration's lawsuit regarding California's higher than national standards for vehicle fuel economy and carbon emissions to address climate change.

    The Association of Global Automakers and the Coalition for Sustainable Automotive Regulation -- a group including GM, Toyota, Mazda, Fiat Chrysler and Mitsubishi -- split with four other automakers that had agreed to follow tougher rules enacted by California. The coalition said it simply wants to avoid a two-track system in which carmakers have to follow one set of rules for California, and the states that are supporting California, and another set of rules imposed by the federal government. Such a scenario would create chaos in the industry, the group argued. (Source: Sacramento Bee, 29 Oct., 2019) Contact: Association of Global Automakers, www.globalautomakers.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Vehicle Emissions,  CO2,  GHGs,  EPA,  California Vehicle Emissions,  Climate Change ,  


    BOEM Announces South Carolina Offshore Wind Plans (Ind. Report)
    Bureau of Energy Management
    Date: 2019-10-28
    The Bureau of Energy Management (BOEM) reports it is in the planning stage to lease wind energy areas along the South Carolina coast to develop offshore wind energy.

    According to the Energy Information Administration (EIA), only 6 pct of the Palmetto State's energy comes from renewable sources, but none of that is wind which is now cheaper than gas, coal, and nuclear energy. The International Energy Agency reports lower costs of offshore wind could totally eliminate the need for using fossil fuels.

    BOEM plans to establish wind energy areas off the sc coast this year. More information on offshore wind leasing is HERE. (Source: BOEM, PR, 26 Oct., 2019) Contact: BOEM, (202) 208-6474, www.boem.gov

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Bureau of Energy Management,  Offshore Wind,  


    Marquette BLP Touts Energy Efficiency Rebate Program (Ind. Report)
    Marquette Board of Light and Power
    Date: 2019-10-28
    In Michigan, the Marquette Board of Light and Power (BLP) is working to spread the word about the statewide energy optimization program that can provide rebates for consumers who purchase energy-efficient items, such as LED light bulbs or ENERGY STAR rated appliances.

    From 2008 to 2017 the rebate program generated significant customer savings and reduced BLP customers' electric usage by over 31.3 million kWh and saving customers over $17 million in energy costs. In terms of greenhouse gas emissions, saving 31.3 million equates to burning 24,188,356 pounds of coal or consuming 51,226 barrels of oil, according to the EPA.

    This energy optimization program is part of a larger statewide effort that stems from Public Act 295 of 2008, which expanded energy efficiency efforts, supported the development of clean and renewable energy and aimed to improve air quality through a number of measures. Beyond saving energy at homes and businesses, the program also helps BLP reduce the need for costly new generation equipment.

    Marquette BLP is one of 13 municipal and cooperative utilities that is part of the Michigan Electric Cooperative Association collaborative -- a group of electric service providers that offer energy optimization programs. (Source: BLP, PR, Mining Journal, 28 Oct., 2019) Contact: BLP. Toby Smith, Customer Service Manager, 906-228-0311, www.mplb.org, www.michigan-energy.org/utility/Marquette; Michigan Electric Cooperative Association, 517-351-6322, www.meca.coop

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Energy Efficiency,  Energy Efficiency Rebate,  ENERGY STAR ,  


    Carbon Tracker Recommends Complete Coal Phase-Out by 2030 (Int'l.)
    Carbon Tracker
    Date: 2019-10-28
    According to Apocoalypse Now, a new report from the European think-tank Carbon Tracker, 80 pct of Europe's often inefficient and polluting coal-fired power plants can't compete with renewable energy and are operating at a loss -- €6.6 billion ($7.3bn) this year alone even with substantial subsidies.

    The report finds the combination of strict air pollution regulations, falling renewable prices and rising carbon prices is making coal energy more and more unpalatable. In 2017, 46 pct of EU coal capacity was running at a loss. But now, the fraction has increased to 79 pct.

    Carbon Tracker -- which is funded by various European and US foundations -- argues that governments should loan money to fund the closure of coal-fired power plants, on the condition that utilities use those funds to build renewables and in turn repay the debt from future power sales. Based on its findings, the report recommends coal should be fully phased out by 2030. (Source: Carbon Tracker, Al Jazeera News, 23 Oct., 2019) Contact: Carbon Tracker, Matt Gray, Report Co-Author, Head of Power & Utilities at Carbon Tracker, www.carbontracker.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon Tracker,  Coal,  Carbon Emissions,  


    US Wood Pellet Shipments to Netherlands €11.4Bn Subsidized (Int'l)
    Woody Biomass,Wood Pellet,Enviv,RWE
    Date: 2019-10-28
    Electricity power producer RWE and others will reportedly import thousands of tonnes of wood pellets from the US next year to burn in Dutch biomass power plants, with the help of a reported €11.4 billion of government subsidy. In total, 628 biomass installations in the Netherlands will receive subsidies, of which €2.6 billion is going to the RWE power plants in Geertruidenberg and Eemshaven, the paper said.

    One US wood pellet producer -- Enviva in North Carolina -- has a contract to ship at least 200,000 tpy of wood pellets to RWE between 2020 and 2024. As previously noted, the European Academies Science Advisory Council (EASAC) warns governments should stop subsidizing biomass power plants because it is unsustainable. In addition, "burning wood does not produce very much energy and the net amount of CO2 which is released is greater than when burning coal or gas," the researchers said. It also noted that CO2 released by burning the wood pellets in the Netherlands is registered to the US which is a misleading "book-keeping trick imperiling the climate," according to the Dogwood Alliance. (Source: DutchNews.nl, 28 Oct., 2019) European Academies Science Advisory Council, www.easac.eu; Enviva Holdings LP, Enviva Biomass, Dr. Jennifer Jenkins, VP and CSO, www.envivabiomass.com; RWE, www.rwe.com

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


    Insurer Limits Fossil Fuel Underwriting, Investments (Ind. Report)
    AXIS Capital Holdings
    Date: 2019-10-25
    Bermuda-headquartered insurance and re-insurance major AXIS Capital Holdings Limited is reporting a new policy addressing underwriting and investments related to thermal coal and oil sands. The policy is in keeping with the company's commitment to a low-carbon economy and addressing the challenges of climate change.

    Under the new policy, which takes effect January 01, 2020, AXIS will not provide new insurance or facultative reinsurance for the construction of new thermal coal plants or mines, oil-sands extraction and pipeline projects, and their dedicated infrastructure, nor insure companies that generate 30 pct or more of their revenue or generate 30 pct or more of their power from thermal coal, or hold more than 20 pct of their reserves in oil sands.

    AXIS Capital is the first US insurer to restrict insurance for both coal and oil sands -- a move that won praise from environmental advocacy groups. (Source: AXIS Capital, Insurance Business America, Oct., 2019) Contact: AXIS Capital Holdings, Albert Benchimol, CEO, www.axiscapital.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Coal,  Climate Change,  Oil Sands,  Carbon Emissions ,  


    Biofuels Coalition Challenges EPA's "Hardship Waivers" (Ind Report)
    Growth Energy, U.S. Grains Council,Renewable Fuels Association
    Date: 2019-10-25
    Previously this week in Washington, a coalition of the American Coalition for Ethanol, Growth Energy, National Biodiesel Board, National Corn Growers Association, National Farmers Union, and Renewable Fuels Association filed a petition with the Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, challenging the process by which the U.S. EPA issue economic "hardship waivers" to over 30 small refineries from their respective Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) biofuel blending obligations for 2018.

    The coalition's brief noted, "Even as the Trump Administration indicates it is taking steps to account for future small refinery exemptions, the coalition remains concerned that EPA's abuse of the small refinery exemption program diverges from the spirit and letter of the Clean Air Act. From a substantive and procedural perspective, this is not the way for a federal agency to make such a momentous decision." (Source: Growth Energy, U.S. Grains Council, and Renewable Fuels Association , 23 Oct., 2019) Contact: Growth Energy, Emily Skor, CEO, Elizabeth Funderburk, (202) 545-4000, EFunderburk@GrowthEnergy.org, www.growthenergy.org; U.S. Grains Council, Tom Sleight, Pres., (202) 789-0789, (202) 898-0522, www.grains.org; Renewable Fuels Association, Geoff Cooper, (202) 289-3835, www.ethanolrfa.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News RFS,  Growth Energy,  U.S. Grains Council,  Renewable Fuels Association,  


    Longview Power Developing 70-MW, W.VA Solar Field (Ind. Report)
    Longview Power
    Date: 2019-10-23
    In West Virginia, Maidsville-headquartered Longview Power LLC reports it is in the developmental phase of constructing a 185,000 panel, 70-mw utility grade solar field along the Monongahela River. The $76 million project is slated for commissioning late in 2021, according to a news release from the Greene County Tourism Promotion Agency.

    As previously reported, Longview's 705 MW coal-fired power plant in Maidsville operates at a level of efficiency 15 pct better than the U.S. coal fleet average. (Source: Longview Power, Observer-Reporter, 22 Oct., 2019) Contact: Lonview Power, Jeff Keffer, CEO, 304-599-0930, www.longviewpower.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Longview Power,  Solar,  


    France Calls for Aviation, Maritime Fuel Carbon Tax (Int'l Report)
    France Carbon Tax
    Date: 2019-10-18
    According to a Reuters report, French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire is calling for a tax on maritime shipping and aviation fuels as part of a drive to reduce carbon emissions. The proposed tax would complement plans supported by France and Germany for a carbon border tax that would shield European companies from competition from countries with lower emissions standards.

    The Finance Minister noted France would also review its public export guarantees in line with its Paris Climate Agreement commitment to stop financing coal-related projects that increase the growth of carbons emissions. (Source: ShipInSight, Reuters, 17 Oct., 2019) Contact: French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bruno_Le_Maire

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon Tax,  Maritime Fuel,  Aviation Fuel,  Fuel Carbon Tax,  


    Neste Lauded by East Bay Clean Cities Coalition (Ind. Report)
    Neste,East Bay Clean Cities Coalition
    Date: 2019-10-18
    In the Golden State, the East Bay Clean Cities Coalition in California, US has awarded its 2019 Clean Air Champion Award to renewable diesel producer Neste for its "exemplary work with renewable fuels and focus on sustainability as a core part of your (its) mission and operations."

    Neste supplies its "drop-in" Neste MY Renewable Diesel to 17 cities in the East Bay area, and other west coast areas.

    The East Bay Clean Cities Coalition (Oakland) works with vehicle fleets, fuel providers, community leaders, and other stakeholders to save energy and promote the use of domestic alternative fuels and advanced vehicle technologies in transportation. (Source: East Bay Clean Cities Coalition, PR, 16 Oct., 2019) Contact: East Bay Clean Cities Coalition, www.cleancitieseastbay.org; Neste, +358 10 458 4128, (713) 407-4400 - Houston, Texas office, www.neste.us www.neste.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Neste,  Clean Cities,  Renewable Diesel,  


    Irish Carbon Tax Raises €3Bn (Int'l. Report)
    Carbon Tax
    Date: 2019-10-14
    In Dublin, Ireland, the Oireachtas Public Accounts Committee has announced the country's National Oil Reserve Agency has raised more than €3billion ($3.309 billion) in carbon tax revenue since 2010 while at the same time subsidizing coal and turf (peat). The National Oil Reserve Agency has also accumulated a surplus of more than €200 million that will be rolled into a climate action fund.

    Both coal and turf (peat), which are used for heat and electric power production, are expected to be eventually phased out because of their high contribution of CO2 to greenhouse gas emissions. (Source: Oireachtas Public Accounts Committee, 10 Oct., 2019) Contact: Oireachtas Public Accounts Committee, www.oireachtas.ie; National Oil Reserve Agency, +353 1 676 9390, www.nora.ie

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon Tax,  


    NIPSCO Seeks Massive Boost to Renewables Capacity (Ind. Report)
    NIPSCO
    Date: 2019-10-14
    In the Hoosier State, the Merrillville-based utility NIPSCO is reporting issuance of solar energy request for proposals (RFP)as it looks to retire coal-fired power generation by 2028 and replace it with renewables in keeping with its goal of reducing its greenhouse gas emissions by 90 pct by 2030.

    NIPSCO, the largest natural gas provider and the second-largest electricity provider headquartered in Indiana, currently generates power from natural gas, coal, hydroelectric, purchased wind power and customer-owned renewables. The utility is specifically soliciting proposals for thermal energy, 300 MW of wind capacity, and 2,300 MW of solar or solar paired with storage. NIPSCO's RFP seeks to produce more solar than is reportedly currently installed in Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Ohio, Minnesota and Wisconsin combined. (Source: NIPSCO, NWI.COM, 12 Oct., 2019) Contact: NIPSCO, www.nipsco-rfp.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News NIPSCO,  Solar,  Renewable Energy,  


    Energy Costs Must Rise Sharply to Avoid Climate Crisis (Int'l.)
    IMF,International Monetary Fund
    Date: 2019-10-14
    According to the Washington, DC-based International Monetary Fund (IMF), avoiding dangerous global warming-climate change will require world government's to impose stringent taxes on fossil-fuel usage -- equating to a 43 pct hike in household energy bills over the next decade. The IMF notes the battle against climate change could only be won if the average carbon tax levied by its member states increased from $2 to $75 a ton.

    IMF's economists show that a $75-a-ton carbon tax would also lead to an average 214 pct increase in the cost of coal and a 68 pct increase in natural gas. For the UK, the increases would be 157 pct for coal, 51 pct for natural gas, 43 pct for electricity and 8 pct for gasoline.

    The IMF said it was calling for a substantially higher carbon tax because the CO2 from fossil fuels accounted for almost two-thirds of global greenhouse gas emissions and was the most immediately practical to control. (Source: International Monetary Fund, Various Media, Guardian, Oct., 2019) Contact: International Monetary Fund, www.imf.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News International Monetary Fund,  ,  Carbon Tax,  


    Masdar-led Consortium Launches $331Mn Serbian Wind Farm (Int'l)
    Masdar
    Date: 2019-10-14
    A consortium led by Masdar, a subsidiary of Mubadala Investment, is reporting inauguration of the $331 million Cibuk 1, the largest utility-scale commercial wind project in Serbia and the Western Balkans. The project incorporates 57 GE Renewable Energy 2.75-125 onshore wind turbines totaling 158 MW -- sufficient power for roughly 113,000 homes.

    Cibuk 1 was developed by Vetroelektrane Balkana (WEBG), a Serbian company which is wholly owned by Tesla Wind, a joint venture between Masdar (60 percent), the Taaleri SolarWind I fund, managed by Finnish renewable energy infrastructure fund manager and developer Taaleri Energia (30 pct), and German development finance institution Deutsche Investitions und Entwicklungsgesellschaft GmbH (10 pct).

    The project supports Serbia's pledge to produce 27 pct of its domestic power needs from renewable energy sources by 2020, while helping to reduce its dependence on coal-fired power generation. (Source: Masdar, Arabian Business News, 13 Oct., 2019) Contact: Masdar, Mohamed Jameel Al Ramahi, CEO, Shaima Al Jarman, Marketing & Communications, +971 02 8109365, saljarman@masdar.ac.ae, www.masdar.ca.ae

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Masdar,  Wind,  


    Irish Carbon Tax Raises €3Bn (Int'l. Report)
    Carbon Tax
    Date: 2019-10-14
    In Dublin, Ireland, the Oireachtas Public Accounts Committee has announced the country's National Oil Reserve Agency has raised more than €3billion ($3.309 billion) in carbon tax revenue since 2010 while at the same time subsidizing coal and turf (peat). The National Oil Reserve Agency has also accumulated a surplus of more than €200 million that will be rolled into a climate action fund.

    Both coal and turf (peat), which are used for heat and electric power production, are expected to be eventually phased out because of their high contribution of CO2 to greenhouse gas emissions. (Source: Oireachtas Public Accounts Committee, Irish Times, 10 Oct., 2019) Contact: Oireachtas Public Accounts Committee, www.oireachtas.ie; National Oil Reserve Agency, +353 1 676 9390, www.nora.ie

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon Tax news,  


    Pacificorp Transitioning from Coal to Renewables (Ind. Report)
    Pacificorp
    Date: 2019-10-11
    In its just released $3.1 billion Energy Vision 2020 -- Integrated Resource Plan Berkshire Hathaway Energy subsidiary PacifiCorp Energy reports it plans to continue its transition away from coal with the closing of three Wyoming coal-fired power plants totaling 1,159 MW by 2037, and a nearly 60 pct expansion or upgrading of its current owned and contracted wind fleet. (Source: Pacificorp, Cody Enterprise, 7 Oct., 2019))Contact: PacifiCorp, www.pacificorp.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Pacificorp,  Coal,  Renewables,  


    Cdn., Japanese Emissions Reduction, CCS MoU Inked (Ind. Report)
    International CCS Knowledge Centre
    Date: 2019-10-09
    Tokyo-based Japan CCS Co., Ltd. and the Regina, Saskatchewan-headquartered International CCS Knowledge Centre are reporting a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) outlining plans to collaborate on accelerating the use and understanding of carbon capture utilization and storage (CCS/CCUS).

    Japan CCS Co., Ltd. is conducting the Tomakomai CCS Demonstration Project to demonstrate the viability of full-chain CCS in Japan. The International CCS Knowledge Centre will share the experience and lessons-learned from the construction, operation and maintenance of SaskPower's Boundary Dam 3 CCS Facility - the world's first commercial scale, post-combustion CCS facility on a coal-fired power plant.

    The International CCS Knowledge Centre was established by BHP and SaskPower with a mandate to advance the global understanding and deployment of large-scale CCS to reduce global GHG emissions. (Source: Japan CCS, International CCS Knowledge Centre, PR, 8 Oct., 2019) Contact: International CCS Knowledge Centre , Mike Monea, President & CEO, www.ccsknowledge.com; Japan CCS Co., Ltd., www.japanccs.com/en

    More Low-Carbon Energy News International CCS Knowledge Centre,  CCS,  Boundry Dam,  Saskpower,  ,  


    Coalition Calls for 10 GW of Calif. Offshore Wind Power (Ind Report)
    Equinor,Aker Solutions,NREL
    Date: 2019-10-07
    A new Offshore Wind California coalition of renewable energy companies is calling for the Golden State to commit to a goal of at least 10 GW of primarily floating offshore wind power in California waters by 2040.

    The group that counts Equinor and offshore engineering company Aker Solutions among its members notes that U.S. East Coast states have about 22 GW worth of offshore wind commitments and are projected to see an estimated $70 billion in related supply chain spending by 2030.

    The US DOE National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) estimates California's potential for offshore wind at about 112 GW, including about 8.4 GW in three Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) designated study areas. NREL also notes that floating wind platforms are a basic requirement for most of the state's offshore waters, which are too deep to support monopile or multi-leg jackets. (Source: NREL, Maritime Executive, Oct., 2019) Contact: NREL, www.nrel.gov; Aker Solutions, Fredrik Berge, Inv. Relations, +47 22 94 62 19, fredrik.berge@akersolutions.com, www.akersolutions.com; Equinor, Pal Eitrheim, VP New Energy Solutions, www.equinor.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Offshore Wind,  Floating Offshore Wind,  BOEM,  NREL,  Equinor,  Aker Solutions,  Offshore Wind,  


    ASE Calls for New Energy Efficiency Tax Incentives (Ind. Report)
    Alliance to Save Energy
    Date: 2019-10-04
    The Washington, DC-based Alliance to Save Energy (ASE) and a broad coalition of businesses, trade associations, and advocacy groups has called on Congress to pass bipartisan legislation to modernize and reinstate expired tax incentives that help homeowners lower their energy bills through energy efficiency improvements.

    The legislation would encourage high-efficiency new home construction and efficiency improvements for existing homes, stimulate billions of dollars in economic activity and sharply reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the residential buildings sector.

    The legislation would reinstate and reform two key energy efficiency tax credits that expired on 31st December 2017 -- the 25C credit for homeowner efficiency improvements and the 45L credit for new home construction. Under the reformed 25C legislation-- the Home Energy Savings Act -- homeowners could receive up to $1,200 in tax credits over their lifetime for installing home equipment and components that meet certain efficiency levels, including insulation, doors, windows, air conditioners, heat pumps, water heaters, boilers, and furnaces.

    The 45L new home construction bill -- the New Home Energy Efficiency Act -- would give home builders a $2,500 incentive for building high-efficiency new homes. (Source: Alliance to Save Energy, 3 Oct., 2019) Contact: Alliance to Save Energy, 202.857.0666, www.ase.org

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


    RWE Aiming for Climate Neutrality by 2040 (Int'l. Report)
    RWE AG
    Date: 2019-10-02
    Bloomberg is reporting the German utility giant RWE AG is aiming to cut carbon emissions by 70 pct by 2030 compared with 2012 levels and become climate neutral by 2040.

    To that end, the utility is decommissioning its last remaining coal-fired power plant in the UK next year, converting two other coal-fired power plants in the Netherlands into biomass facilities, and shuttering six remaining German coal-fired power plants by 2038. (Source: RWE AG, Carbon Brief, 1 Oct., 2019) Contact: RWE AG, Rolf Martin Schmitz, CEO, www.rwe.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News RWE AG,  Coal,  Carbon Emissions,  Carbon Neutral,  


    ION Clean Energy Awarded $5.8M for Carbon Capture Tech (Funding)
    ION Clean Energy,Nebraska Public Power District
    Date: 2019-10-02
    Boulder, Colorado-based solvent-based CO2 capture technology specialist ION Clean Energy, Inc. reports it has been selected by the U.S. DOE National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) and awarded $5.4 million to complete a Front-End Engineering Design (FEED) study for a 600-mw equivalent, CO2 capture system designed to be retrofitted into Nebraska Public Power District's (NPPD) Gerald Gentleman Station in Sutherland, NE.

    The project will provide critical data and insight into the transformative potential of ION's CO2 capture technology when deployed at existing coal-fired power plants.

    ION Clean Energy is commercializing its proprietary liquid absorbent process and working with local and global partners to commercialize and deploy its CO2 capture technology. (Source: ION Energy, PR, 1 Oct., 2019) Contact: ION Clean Energy, Alfred "Buz" Brown, CEO, 303.997.7097, info@ioncleanenergy.com, , www.ioncleanenergy.com; Nebraska Public Power District, Pat Pope, CEO, Pres., www.nppd.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Nebraska Public Power District,  ION Clean Energy,  Carbon Capture,  CCS,  


    Solar, Wind Now Cheaper Than Coal, says IPPC (Ind. Report)
    Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change
    Date: 2019-09-30
    According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPPC) order to keep global temperatures from rising more than 1.5 degrees C over pre-industrial averages within this century -- the goal set by the Paris climate agreement -- the entire world would have to transition to 100 pct clean energy by the middle of the century -- a lofty goal. But up until now, clean energies haven't bee cost competitive in a market flooded with cheap natural gas, coal, and oil. But now, renewables that one needed financial incentives to be adopted at any serious scale, have fallen in price to the point that no government subsidies are required.

    Download the report HERE. Source: Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Yahoo Finance, 26 Sept., 2019) Contact: IPCC, www.ipcc.ch

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change,  Renewable Energy,  Solar,  Wind ,  


    Major Steelmakers Ink MOU to Cut Carbon Emissions (Int'l. Report)
    Rio Tinto, China Baowu Steel Group
    Date: 2019-09-30
    London, UK-headquartered Anglo-Australian multinational metals and mining giant Rio Tinto and China Baowu Steel Group, one of the China's largest steel producers, are reporting a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to "develop and implement new methods to reduce carbon emissions."

    "The MOU will enable the formation of a joint working group tasked with identifying a pathway to support the goal of reducing carbon emissions and improve environmental performance across the steel value chain. The working group will establish a joint action plan on how to best utilize the parties' complementary strengths in research and development, technologies, processes, equipment, logistics, industry coordination and policy advisory capacities to combat climate change and improve environmental performance."

    World-wide, the steel industry produced 9 pct of the world's carbon emissions, according to the Rio Tinto a news release. Rio Tinto notes it divested its coal assets last year. (Source: Rio Tinto, Xinhua, Kitco News, 26 Sept., 2019) Contact: China Baowu Steel, www.baowugroup.com; Rio Tinto, www.riotinto.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Rio Tinto ,  China Baowu Steel Group,  


    Notable Quote from the Land Down Under
    Climate Change
    Date: 2019-09-30
    "You (Australia) are the keepers of an extraordinary section of the surface of this planet, including the Barrier Reef, and what you say, what you do, really, really matters,"

    "And then you suddenly say: 'No it doesn't matter ... it doesn't matter how much coal we burn ... we don't give a damn what it does to the rest of the world." -- Sir David Attenborough, an English broadcaster and natural historian commenting on Australia's attitude to addressing climate change. (Source: Business Insider Australia, Sept., 2019) Contact: Sir David Attenborouhj, www.imdb.com/name/nm0041003

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Climate Change,  Carbon Emissions,  Great Barrier Reef,  Australia Climate Change,  


    EIA Annual Energy Outlook 2019 -- Projections to 2050 (Ind. Report)
    US EIA
    Date: 2019-09-30
    According to the recently released U.S. Energy Information Administration's (EIA) Annual Energy Outlook 2019 -- Projections to 2050 report, despite renewable energy investment more than tripling globally during the current decade compared to the last 10-year period, most of the power delivered to the world's electric grids during the recent decade was from coal -- still the world's largest source of electricity, providing 38 pct of world electrical generation in 2018, about the same as 1997.

    The world spent about $2.6 trillion on renewable energy projects during the decade, over three times the amount spent from 2000 to 2009. Solar PV investments totaled around $1.3 trillion, and onshore and offshore wind investment totaled around $1 trillion. Globally, solar energy capacity increased by 638 GW between 2009 and 2019, while coal-fired capacity increased by 529 GW, wind capacity increased 487 GW, and natural gas capacity increased 436 GW. In 2018, $41 billion was invested in coal worldwide.

    China's spending on renewable electricity was the highest in the world at $758 billion from 2000 to the first half of 2019. The US was second with $356 billion, followed by Japan at $202 billion. The European nations spent around $698 billion on wind, solar, and other renewable energy sources, with Germany and the UK spending the most. It is expected that 330 GW of new wind power capacity will come online over the next five years, driven primarily by onshore wind power projects in the US and China. Investments in renewable power capacity in 2018, however, dropped 38 pct in China and by 6 pct in the US, while rising 45 pct in Europe.

    The report predicts that electric power demand for coal will fall to 17 pct of total generation by 2050. Moody's Investors Service predicts coal will represent 11 pct of total U.S. power generation by 2030 -- down from 27 pct in 2018. The over 50 pct drop in coal demand from utilities by 2030 implies that coal demand would decline by about 7 pct per year on average over the next 10 years.

    Download the US EIA Annual Energy Outlook 2019 -- Projections to 2050 report HERE. (Source: US EIA, Sept., 2019) Contact: US EIA, www.eia.gov

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Coal,  Renewable Energy,  US EIA,  


    Pittsburgh Firms Support Methane Emissions Ruductions (Ind. Report)
    Equitrans Midstream Corporation
    Date: 2019-09-27
    In the Steel City, Equitrans Midstream Corp. (ETRN) and EQM Midstream Partners LP (EQM) have come out in support of the US oil and gas industry's ongoing efforts to reduce methane emissions and therefore oppose the US EPA's proposed rollback of methane regulations.

    The EPA's April 2019 inventory report showed total methane emissions are down 15.8 pct since 1990 -- insufficient to achieve regulatory compliance on methane emissions in order to address the global impacts of climate change.

    ETRN and EQM currently utilize various methane mitigation methods across their operations and are evaluating additional enhancement and mitigation efforts, such as: expansion of the Leak Detection and Repair (LDAR) programme; pneumatic controller upgrades; re-compression of pipeline gas prior to maintenance procedures; and upgrading existing stations with air or electric starts.

    ETRN is a member of the Environmental Partnership -- a voluntary reduction programme offered through the American Petroleum Institute (API) and the ONE Future Coalition of natural gas companies working together to voluntarily reduce methane emissions across the natural gas supply chain to 1 pct pct. (Source: ETRN, PR, Sept., 2019) Contact: Equitrans Midstream Corporation, Diana Charletta , Pres., CEO, www.equitransmidstream.com; EQM Midstream Partners, www.eqm-midstreampartners.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Methane,  EPA,  


    Maritime Giant Maersk Aims for Zero Emissions Vessels by 2030 (Int'l)
    Maersk.Martime Emissions
    Date: 2019-09-25
    At the UN climate action summit in New York. senior figures from the maritime, infrastructure, energy and finance sector, including shipping giant Maersk and oil company Shell, joined the "Getting to Zero Coalition" and pledged zero emissions shipping will be a commercial reality by the end of next decade.

    To that end, the companies will seek to coordinate the launch of clean fuels and vessels while making sure that these are supported by adequate ports, finance and policy incentives.

    The initiative is in keeping with UN International Maritime Organization's (IMO) pledge to halve emissions from 2008 levels by 2050. Currently responsible for 2 - 3 pct of annual global emissions, the international shipping industry could see its emissions jump up to 250 pct by 2050 in the absence of any action. (Source: Maersk, PR, 23 Sept., 2019) Contact: Maersk Line, Soren Skou, CEO,www.maerskline.com International Maritime Organization Stefan Micallef, Director of Marine Environment Division, +44 (0) 20 7735 7611, www.imo.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News International Maritime Organization,  Maritime Emissions,  Maersk,  Climate Change,  


    Germany Plans Multi-Billion Euro Climate Deal (Int'l. Report)
    Carbon Tax, German Carbon Tax
    Date: 2019-09-23
    In Berlin, German chancellor Angela Merkel's coalition government has reportedly agreed on a carbon price -- tax to meet its targeted 55 pct cut in carbon emissions by 2030. The price -- tax -- for CO2 emissions in transport and buildings is expected to come into force in 2021 at an estimated cost of €54 billion ($60 billion) by 2023.

    The German system will be based on a trade in emissions certificates under the EU's emissions trading scheme (EU ETS). Germany is on course to miss its 2020 target of reducing 1990 greenhouse gas emissions by 40 pct, according to the Times of Aman report. (Source: Times of Oman, 22 Sept., 2019)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News EU ETS,  Carbon Tax,  Climate Change,  German Carbon Tax,  


    DOE Invests $56Mn in Coal Technology Projects (R&D, Funding)
    US DOE,DOE Office of Fossil Energy
    Date: 2019-09-23
    The U.S. DOE is announcing 32 winners for $56.5 million in federal funding for cost-shared R&D projects for advanced coal technologies and research under six separate funding opportunity announcements (FOAs). The projects further the (Trump) Administration's commitment to strengthening clean coal technologies and cover a range of topics, including carbon capture, utilization, and storage; rare earth element recovery; coal to products; crosscutting coal R&D; steam turbine efficiency; and advanced materials. The awards are as follows:
  • $10 million for ten projects under DE-FOA-0001992, Maximizing the Coal Value Chain. The projects will develop innovative uses of domestic coal for upgraded coal-based feedstocks used to produce power and make steel and for producing high-value products from coal or coal by-products.

  • $11.9 million under DE-FOA-0001996, Advancing Steam Turbines for Coal Boilers. The two projects selected under this FOA seek to improve the performance of steam-based power cycles, resulting in lower cost electricity with reduced emissions per megawatt-hour from coal fueled boilers.

  • $9.3 million for ten projects under DE-FOA-0002001, Crosscutting Research for Coal-Fueled Power Plants. This effort supports DOE's Crosscutting Research Program, which develops technologies that can be applied to a range of fossil energy uses.

  • $5 million under DE-FOA-0002002, Advanced Materials for High-Efficiency, Flexible and Reliable Coal-Fueled Power Plants. DOE selected five projects to support its Crosscutting Research program, which fosters the development and deployment of innovative systems for improving efficiency and environmental performance.

  • 3 projects will receive up to $15 million under DE-FOA-0002003, Process Scale-Up and Optimization/Efficiency Improvements for Rare Earth Elements (REE) and Critical Materials (CM) Recovery from United States Coal-Based Resources.

  • 2 projects will receive $5.3 million under DE-FOA-0001998, Transformational Sensing Systems for Monitoring the Deep Subsurface. This award seeks to reduce uncertainty of and enable real-time decision-making associated with subsurface carbon dioxide (CO2) storage. The selected projects support DOE's Carbon Storage Research Program by improving characterization and prediction of subsurface fluid movement and enhancing real-time measurement of critical subsurface properties.

    DOE's National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL)will manage the selected projects. (Source: US DOE, 20 Sept., 2019) Contact: US DOE Office of Fossil Energy, www.energy.gov/fe; NETL, www.netl.doe.gov

    More Low-Carbon Energy News DOE Office of Fossil Energy,  NETL,  Coal,  Clean Coal,  US DOE,  


  • Aviation Emissions Rising Faster Than Predicted (Int'l Report)
    International Council on Clean Transportation
    Date: 2019-09-20
    According to new analysis from the International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT), commercial aviation emissions have increased by one-third since 2013 -- faster than aviation industry predictions and equivalent to the construction of 50 new coal power plants over the last five years.

    In 2018, emissions from passenger and cargo aircraft totaled 918 million metric tonnes (MMT), or 2.4 per cent of global emissions.

    The US, China, the UK, Japan, and the United Arab Emirates had the highest emissions from passenger aviation, while less developed countries accounted for just 10 pctof all emissions. (Source: International Council on Clean Transportation, Business Green, Sept., 2019) Contact: ICCT, www.theicct.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News International Council on Clean Transportation,  ICCT,  Aviation Emissions,  


    Minnesota Governor's Biofuels Council Launched (Ind. Report)
    Minnesota Ethanol
    Date: 2019-09-18
    In St.Paul, Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz (D) has announced the signing of an executive order creating the 15-member Governor's Biofuels Council. The council will include representatives from the agriculture, biofuels and transportation industries, as well as from environmental and conservation groups.

    The Council will be commissioned to create a report advising Walz -- chairman of the national Governors' Biofuels Coalition -- and his cabinet on to how to expand the use of biofuels and increase their carbon efficiency. The Council will also look at using biofuels as part of the state's goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in transportation. Walz's executive order mandates that the biofuels report be completed by November 2020. (Source: Office of Gov. Tim Walz, Star Tribune, 16 Sept., 2019) Contact: Office of Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz, 651-201-3400, https://mn.gov/governor

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Gov. Tim Walz,  Ethanol,  Minnesota Ethanol,  


    Fifth Ill. Coal-Fired Power Plant Closure Announced (Ind Report)
    Vistra Energy
    Date: 2019-09-18
    In Illinois, Irving, Texas-headquartered Vistra Energy on Monday reported it will shut-down the coal-fired E.D. Edwards power plant -- reportedly among the state's dirtiest such facilities -- south of Peoria within three years. The closure will eliminate the millions of pounds of carbon dioxide the coal plant emitted each year, an amount equivalent to taking more than 337,000 cars off the road.

    The closure resolves a six-year old federal lawsuit filed by environmental groups, which documented various power plant owners failure to install modern pollution-control equipment. Four other Illinois coal-fired power plants -- Coffeen Power Plant, Duck Creek Power Plant in Canton, Havana Power Plant, and Hennepin Power Plant -- will be closed by the end of the tear in order to comply with the Illinois Pollution Control Board's (IPCB) recently approved revisions to the Multi-Pollutant Standard rule. (Source: Various Media, Chicago Tribune, 16 Sept., 2019) Contact: Vistra Energy, Curtis Morgan, CEO, www.vistraenergy.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Vistra Energy,  CO2,  Carbon Emissions,  Coal,  


    Turkish Daily Wind Power Generation Sets Record (Int'l. Report)
    Turkey
    Date: 2019-09-18
    In Ankara, the Electricity Transmission Corporation (TEIAS) in Turkey is reporting the country produced 132.90 GWh of wind generated electricity on Sunday, 14th Sept. -- 19 pct of the total power being generated. In this particular time period, wind power became the third largest energy source after imported coal, which generated 157.87 GWh of electricity. Lignite came second with 144.18 GWh. Throughout the period, wind power generation per hour remained above 5 GWh.

    According to TEIAS, Turkey's total installed power capacity was 90.39 GW as of Sept. 15. Wind power installed capacity was 7.27 GW in the same period.

    Turkey has announced plans to boost its wind and solar capacity by 10,000 MW) each in the coming decade through renewable energy resources zone (YEKA) tenders. (Source: Electricity Transmission Corporation, Daily Sabah, 16 Sept., 2019) Contact: Electricity Transmission Corporation, www.teias.gov.tr

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Turkey Wind,  Wind,  


    Utilities Coalition Challenging Trump's ACE Plan (Ind. Report)
    Power Companies Climate Coalition
    Date: 2019-09-18
    Reuters is reporting New York-based Con Edison and eight other U.S. utilities -- the Power Companies Climate Coalition -- have filed a legal challenge to the Trump administration's Affordable Clean Energy (ACE) plan to cut carbon emissions from power plants. Trump's plan replaces the Obama administration's Clean Power Plan that would have cut power plant carbon emissions by more than a third from 2005 levels by 2030 by virtually eliminating coal-fired power production.

    According to the filing, Trump's Affordable Clean Energy (ACE) rule undermines efforts already under way to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by investing in renewable energy, electric vehicle infrastructure and energy efficiency and other clean technologies.

    ACE allows states three years to devise their own plans to cut emissions mainly by encouraging coal-fired power plants to improve efficiency.

    The coalition members include: Con Edison, Exelon Corp, National Grid, PG&E Corp, Public Service Enterprise Group Inc, Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, Seattle City Light, Sacramento Municipal Utility District and New York Power Authority. (Source: Con Edison, Guardian, Reuters, 16 Sept., 2019)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Power Companies Climate Coalition,  Obama Clean Power Plan,  Affordable Clean Energy Plan ,  


    Carbon Tax Included in Germany's €40Bn Climate Pkg. (Int'l.)
    Climate Change
    Date: 2019-09-16
    In Germany, Chancellor Angela Merkel's Christian Democratic Union of Germany (CD) governing coalition is reportedly expected to release it latest plan to cut its greenhouse gas emissions by 55 pct by 2030 compared to the 1990 levels. The government's package of measures, which could cost well over €40 billion ($44.6 billion) until 2023, is slated to be released on Friday, September 20.

    The government's plans are expected to include a broad range of issues such as extending grants for electric car buyers, expanding a network of charging stations, raising road taxes for polluting vehicles, improving building energy efficiency, raising a green surcharge on air travel and a possible carbon tax.

    As previously reported, Germany is expected to miss its own emissions goals for 2020. (Source: DW, 15 Sept., 2019)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Climate Change,  German Climate Change,  


    DOE Announces $110Mn Grant Funding for CCUS R&D (R&D Funding)
    US DOE,NETL
    Date: 2019-09-16
    The U.S. DOE Office of Fossil Energy (FE) has announced approximately $110 million in federal funding for cost-shared R&D projects under three funding opportunity announcements (FOAs). Approximately $75M is for awards selected under two FOAs announced earlier this fiscal year; $35M is for a new FOA.

    These FOAs further the (Trump) Administration's commitment to strengthening coal while protecting the environment. Carbon capture, utilization, and storage (CCUS) is increasingly becoming widely accepted as a viable option for coal-fired energy sources or gas-fired power plants and other industrial sources to lower their CO2 emissions.

    Under the first FOA award, Front-End Engineering Design (FEED) Studies for Carbon Capture Systems on Coal and Natural Gas Power Plants, DOE has selected nine projects to receive $55.4 million for cost-shared R&D. The selected projects will support FEED studies for commercial-scale carbon capture systems.

    Under the second FOA award, Regional Initiative to Accelerate CCUS Deployment, DOE selected four projects to receive up to $20 million for cost-shared R&D. The projects also advance existing R&D by addressing key technical challenges; facilitating data collection, sharing, and analysis; evaluating regional infrastructure; and promoting regional technology transfer.

    Under the new FOA, , DOE is announcing up to $35 million for cost-shared R&D projects that will accelerate wide-scale deployment of CCUS through assessing and verifying safe and cost-effective anthropogenic CO2 commercial-scale storage sites, and carbon capture and/or purification technologies. These types of projects have the potential to take advantage of the 45Q tax credit for each ton of CO2 sequestered or utilized. The credit was recently increased to $35/metric ton for enhanced oil recovery and $50/metric ton for geologic storage.

    Projects selected under this new FOA shall perform the following key activities: complete a detailed site characterization of a commercial-scale CO2 storage site (50 million metric tons of captured CO2 within a 30 year period); apply and obtain an underground injection control class VI permit to construct an injection well; complete a CO2capture assessment; and perform all work required to obtain a National Environmental Policy Act determination for the site.

    DOE's National Energy Technology Laboratory NETL) will manage the selected projects. (Source: US DOE, Office of Fossil Energy, PR, 13 Sept., 2019)Contact: US DOE Office of Fossil Energy. www.energy.gov/fe/foa-2058-front-end-engineering-design-feed-studies-carbon-capture-systems-coal-and-natural-gas, www.energy.gov/fe; NETL, www.netl.doe.gov

    More Low-Carbon Energy News NETL,  CCS,  US DOE,  CCUS,  CO2,  Office of Fossil Energy,  


    Aviva Launches Climate Transition European Equity Fund (Int'l.)
    Aviva Investors
    Date: 2019-09-13
    In the UK, London-headquartered Aviva Investors is reporting the launch of its Climate Transition European Equity Fund that will focus on the transition to a low-carbon economy. The new fund has received €100 million seed investment from Aviva France.

    The fund will invest in companies that derive revenues from goods and services that address climate change mitigation and adaptation, and companies aligning their business models with a warmer, low-carbon world. It will not invest in stocks exposed to coal, unconventional fossil fuels, Arctic oil and gas production, or thermal coal electricity generation. (Source: Aviva Investors, City Wire, 12 Sept., 2019) Contact: Aviva Investors, Euan Munro, CEO, www.avivainvestors.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Aviva Investors,  LowCarbon Energy,  


    Chinese Data Center Emissions on the Rise (Int'l. Report)
    Greenpeace East Asia
    Date: 2019-09-11
    According to a report by Greenpeace and the North China Electric Power University, in 2018, China's data centers consumed just over 2 pct of the country's power production and produced 99 million metric tons of carbon dioxide -- equivalent of about 21 million cars on the road. Of the 44 data centers surveyed for the report, 39 were powered by coal fired electricity.

    The report predicts that within 5 years China's data center carbon emissions will spike from 99 million to 163 million metric tons -- the equivalent of 35 million vehicles.

    Download the Greenpeace East Asia Powering the Cloud: How China's Internet Industry Can Shift to Renewable Energy report HERE. (Source: Greenpeace East Asia, CNN, 10 Sept., 2019)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon Emissions,  


    Valmet Announces BS Energy Biomass Boiler Order (Int'l. Report)
    Valmet, BS Energy
    Date: 2019-09-06
    Espoo, Finland-headquartered Valmet is reporting it will supply a biomass-fired boiler and a flue gas treatment plant to BS Energy's combined heat and power (CHP) plant in Braunschweig, Germany. The roughly €50 million boiler with its auxiliary equipment is in line with BS Energy's energy production strategy 2030 which aims to remove and replace coal-fired boilers by 2022.

    The biomass-fired CHP plant will produce approximately 20 MW of electricity and 60 MW of district heat. The CYMIC circulating fluidized bed boiler included in Valmet's delivery will use recycled wood as its primary fuels to generate 27 kg/s of high-pressure steam at a pressure of 75 bar and a temperature of 525 C. The flue gas cleaning system included in the delivery will enable fulfilling the tightening emission standards.

    BS Energy, a subsidiary company jointly owned by the City of Braunschweig, Veolia Deutschland GmbH, and Thuga AG, is the regional energy supplier in Braunschweig. (Source: Valmet, PR, Globe Newswire, 3 Sept., 2019) Contact: Valmet, Kai Janhunen, VP, www.valmet.com, www.twitter.com/valmetglobal; BS Energy, +49 531 3838000

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Valmet,  BS Energy,  Biomass,  Woody Biomass,  


    Rice Univ. Researching CO2 As Fuel Feedstock (New Prod & Tech)
    Rice University
    Date: 2019-09-06
    In Houston, researchers at Rice University report they've developed a cleaner and more efficient process to turn CO2 into a feedstock for chemicals and fuel -- including ethanol and propanol -- for electric power generation without using oil, natural gas or coal. Researchers developed an electrolyzer that uses carbon dioxide and electricity from renewable sources to produce purified, high concentrations of formic acid, a feedstock in the petrochemical industry for various products.

    Typically, producing liquid fuel with an electrolyzer is costly and energy-intensive, since the process requires mixing CO2 in a liquid electrolyte, such as salty water, to conduct electricity. At the end of the reaction, the salts have to be removed from the end product, which takes more energy and money. The Rice research team was able to eliminate the need for the salt by using solid, highly conductive fibers to conduct the electricity. As a result, the end product is a purer fuel and cheaper to produce.

    Using CO2 to produce liquid fuels could allow more power to be stored in less space. Formic acid can produce 1,000 times the energy of the same volume of hydrogen gas. Similarly, the process can provide a use for excess energy generated by renewable energy sources, providing the electricity to power the electrolyzer to create fuels. In essence, the excess energy is being stored as a new product. The electrolyzer could also be used to create ethanol and propanol fuels. (Source: Rice University, Houston Chronicle, 5 Sept., 2019) Contact: Rice University, Chemical and Biomolecular Engineer Haotian Wang, Lead Researcher, 713-348-0000, htwang@rice.edu, chbe.rice.edu

    More Low-Carbon Energy News CO2,  Carbon Dioxide,  Rice University,  Alternative Fuel,  Ethanol,  Propanol,  


    Kenyans Investigating Water Hyacinth Biofuel Production (Int'l)
    Kenya
    Date: 2019-08-28
    In Kenya, the free floating, highly invasive water hyacinth (Eichhornia crassipes), an aquatic plant native to South America, is being investigated as a possible biofuel feedstock because of its high ratio of carbon to nitrogen and its abundance and ready availability in Lake Victoria, Kisumu, Kenya.

    In 2014, Nigerian academics reported better water hyacith biogas yields when the plant was mixed with sanitised chicken manure in anaerobic digestors. Kenyan scientists agree with the Nigerian claim that animal dung enhances the process of converting water hyacith into biogas. In India, scientists experimented with mixing water hyacinth with Cannabis sativa for better biogas yields.

    The Nairobi-based Biogas International company, the pharmaceutical firm AstraZeneca and the University of Cambridge's Institute for Sustainability are collaborating on a project to test whether water hyacinth biogas can provide an effective alternative to firewood and charcoal for cooking and other uses in rural Kenyan communities. (Source: Biogas International, Bhekisisa Centre for Health Journalism, Guardain, Aug., 2019) Contact: Biogas International, Dominic Kahumbu Wanjihia, CEO, +254 722 700530, www.biogas.co.ke

    More Low-Carbon Energy News water hyacinth,  Biofuel,  


    Vectren's RFP Responses Dominated by Renewables (Ind. Report)
    Vectren
    Date: 2019-08-26
    Evansville, Indiana-based Vectren reports its "all-source" request for proposals (RFP) to supply up to 700 MW of power has received approximately 100 proposals for various means of energy generating capacity. The RFP was issued in consideration of the company's intention to close its coal-fired A.B. Brown plant in Posey County and most of its F.C. Culley plant in Warrick County by 2023.

    According to the company's website, solar and wind generation dominated the proposals. Other proposals included combining solar power with energy storage technology. The utility originally sought to replace the coal-burning plants with an 850-MW natural gas-fueled combined cycle but the proposal was nixed by the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission which suggested Vectren consider various combinations of less expensive alternatives such as renewable energy sources. (Source: Vectren Website, Evansville Courier & Press Published , 23 Aug., 20190 Contact: Vectron, 800-227-1376, www.vectren.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Vectren,  Renewable Energy,  


    Climate Action Network Questions G7 Climate Commitment (Int'l)
    Climate Change,Climate Action Network Canada
    Date: 2019-08-26
    In its report on the recent G7 meeting, the Ottawa-based Climate Action Network, a global association of more than 1,300 climate groups, notes that the world's wealthiest countries -- including Canada -- are lagging instead of leading and need to do more in the fight against global warming.

    The report also notes Canada's current policies are consistent with global warming exceeding 4 C compared to pre-industrial levels, more than twice the stated goal of the Paris agreement of staying as close to 1.5 C as possible. The U.S. and Japan are also both in the 4 C category, while France, Italy, Germany and the UK -- the other four G7 members -- have policies consistent with more than 3 C in warming.

    The Climate Action Network ranks Canada's climate plan as having the same impact on global warming as the policies of the United States, where President Donald Trump has rejected the Paris agreement. Even so, the report applauds Canada's plan to eliminate coal as a source of electricity by 2030, the national price on pollution and the goal to stop selling combustion-engine cars by 2040. But it says all of the government plans "remain insufficient to meet Canada's targets and the Paris Agreement." Canada's current targets call for cutting emissions 30 pct of 2005 levels by 2030. (Source: Climate Action Network, Canadian Press, 24 Aug., 2019) Contact: Catherine Abreu,Exec. Dir., (855) 254-6638, nhattan@climateactionnetwork.ca, www.climateactionnetwork.ca

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Climate Action Network,  Climate Change,  Canada Climate Change,  

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