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Schneider Electric eyeing Greece’s EUR 1.5 billion smart meter project
Schneider Electric
Date: 2019-06-04
Schneider Electric has contacted the Hellenic Electricity Distribution Network Operator (HEDNO) to express interest in the replacement of around 7.5 million conventional electricity meters with smart meters, The project to replace conventional electricity meters with smart meters, implemented by HEDNO, whose Greek acronym is DEDDIE, is worth €1.5 billion, the portal wrote. Schneider Electric, which is already cooperating with HEDNO on other projects, is now waiting for the Greek power grid operator to announce the details regarding tendering for the smart meter project, in which it will be participating, according to the report. According to the report, the scenarios on the table include the implementation of the project via private funds, through a public-private partnership (PPP), and by a strategic investor. The most likely scenario, presented in late April to the board of Public Power Corporation (PPC), envisages the creation of a subsidiary to which the existing analog meters will be passed on, and then the entry into that entity of a strategic investor with a 49% stake so as to ensure the financing of the project, the portal wrote.

Replacing the analog meters with digital ones will allow for the management of energy both by the grid operator and by consumers, while efficiently dealing with the problem of electricity theft for good, according to the report.

Schneider Electric recently installed an energy management system in the network of Italian power company Enel, which has led to savings of some 30%, the report adds. (Source: Schneider Electric, Balkan Green Energy News, 4 June, 2019)

More Low-Carbon Energy News Schneider Electric news,  


Slovenian Eco Fund Biomass Heating Grants Expanded (Int'l Report)
Woodd Biomass
Date: 2019-06-03
Slovenia's Environmental Public Fund (Eko Sklad) reports it has expanded it grants program for the installation of woody biomass fired heating equipment to replace inefficient old oil and gas-fired heating devices in residential buildings. Previously, the same grants were available in municipalities but are now offered nationwide. The grants cover 100 pcy of installation costs and are available to both low-income building owners and tenants, according the the release. (Source: Eko Sklad, Balkan Green Energy News, 30 May, 2019)Contact: Eko Sklad, +386 1 241 48 20, Fax - +386 1 214 48 60, ekosklad@ekosklad.si, www.ekosklad.si

More Low-Carbon Energy News Biomass,  Woody Biomass,  Biomass Heating,  


Xcel Energy Carbon Emissions Cuts Ahead of Schedule (Ind. Report)
Xcel Energy
Date: 2019-06-03
In its recently released annual Corporate Responsibility Report, Minneapolis-headquartered Xcel Energy reports that it reduced carbon emissions 38 pct from 2005 levels -- ahead of industry reductions -- as it aims by 2050 to deliver 100 pct carbon-free electricity. The company notes it is currently on pace to reach its interim goal to cut carbon 80 pct by 2030.

Xcel Energy's annual Corporate Responsibility Report tracks non-financial performance and includes information related to environmental impact, safety, economic development, community giving and workplace programs.

Download Xcel Energy's Destination 2050: Building the Future -- 2018 Corporate Responsibility Report HERE. (Source: Xcel Energy, PR, BusinessWire, 29 May, 2019) Contact: Xcel Energy Media Relations (612) 215-5300, www.xcelenergy.com

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


NRStor Acquires Ontario Energy Storage Facility (M&A, Ind. Report)
NRStor,Temporal Power
Date: 2019-06-01
Toronto-based energy storage specialist NRStor Inc. is reporting its acquisition of a 5MW connected energy storage facility, located in Clear Creek, Ontario. The Clear Creek facility was originally built by Mississauga-based Temporal Power to showcase its industry-leading flywheel energy storage technology. With this acquisition, NRStor expands its flywheel energy storage portfolio, which already includes Canada's first grid-scale flywheel energy storage facility in Minto, Ontario. NRStor expects to have the full hybrid battery and flywheel system operational in 2020.

The facility is optimally located adjacent to a 20 megawatt (MW) wind farm and existing Hydro One electrical infrastructure. With support from Sustainable Development Technology Canada (SDTC) and Hydro One, the facility originally demonstrated the effectiveness of distributed energy resources (DERs) and successfully completed reactive power validation and power quality testing. Ten 500 kilowatt (kW) flywheels were deployed in a modular arrangement to deliver 10 MW of flexible range (+/-5 MW) to the Ontario grid. (Source: NRStor Inc., PR, 30 May, 2019) Temporal Power, (905) 581-4474, www.temporalpower.ca

More Low-Carbon Energy News NRStor news,  Energy Storage news,  Flywheel news,  Temporal Power news,  


1,000-MW Utah Energy Storage Project Announced (Ind. Report)
Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems
Date: 2019-05-31
Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems and Holloday, Utah-based Magnum Development are reporting plans to develop 1,000 megawatts of renewable energy storage in a Magnum-owned salt cavern in central Utah.

The two firm's Advanced Clean Energy Storage (ACES) project will deploy four types of energy storage technologies at utility scale, which include renewable hydrogen, compressed air energy storage, large-scale flow batteries, and solid oxide fuel cells.

The project is sited adjacent to the coal-fired Intermountain Power Project and will connect with the Western US power grid using existing infrastructure, according to the company. (Source: Magnum Development , Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems, Energy Manager, 29 May., 2019) Contact: Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems, www.amer.mhps.com; Magnum Development, Craig Broussard, CEO , (801) 993-7001, www.magnumdev.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems,  Energy Storage,  


CO2 Emissions Monitoring Satellites to Launch in 2025 (Int'l)
European Space Agency
Date: 2019-05-31
In Paris, the European Space Agency (ESA) is reporting plans to launch three satellites to monitor world-wide carbon emissions collate emissions and climate change data for the UN global assessment of greenhouse gas emissions in 2028. The planned 2025 launch will form the world's first planet-wide emissions observation system.

Currently, CO2 emissions are measured by conducting "inventories" of fuel burning on a country-by-country basis which, while it can provide a workable estimate of global emissions figures, is affected by poor measuring and reporting protocols by a number of national governments. It is also limited by the scope of the observation equipment used on satellites presently used to measure emissions and track climate change. The new satellites will orbit the planet 14 times a day, passing over each individual source of CO2 emissions approximately every two to three days. (Source: European Space Agency, Government Europa, 29 May, 2019) Contact: European Space Agency, Mark Drinkwater, +33 1 53 69 76 54, www.esa.int

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


Big Pharma GHG Emissions Higher Than Auto Industry's (Ind Report)
The Conversation
Date: 2019-05-31
A recent study from The Conversation, an Australian not-for-profit media outlet that uses content sourced from academics and researchers, notes that the "global pharmaceutical industry is not only a significant contributor to global warming, but it is also dirtier than the global automotive production sector."

More than 200 companies represent the global pharmaceutical market, yet only 25 consistently reported their direct and indirect greenhouse gas emissions in the past five years. Of those, only 15 reported their emissions since 2012, the report notes.

According to the report, the total global emissions of the pharma sector amounts to about 52 megatonnes of CO2e in 2015, more than the 46.4 megatonnes of CO2e generated by the automotive sector in the same year. The reports calculates the value of the pharma market is smaller than the automotive market the pharma market is 28 pct smaller yet 13 pct more polluting than the automotive sector. (Source: The Conversation, 27 May, 2019) (Contact: The Conversation, www.theconversation.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News CO2 Emissions,  Carbon Emissions,  GHGs,  


Renewable Fuel Standard Integrity Act 2019 Introduced (Reg. & Leg.)
Renewable Fuel Standard
Date: 2019-05-31
Last week in Washington, Chairman of the US House Committee on Agriculture, Collin Peterson (D-Minn), together with Rep. Dusty Johnson (R-S.D.), Rep.Dave Loebsack (D-Iowa), Rep. Rodney Davis (R-Ill.) and Rep. Roger Marshall (R-Kan.) introduced the bipartisan Renewable Fuel Standard Integrity Act of 2019.

The Act, which is intended to bring transparency to the EPA's small refinery "hardship" exemption (SRE) programme under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), will also set a deadline for refineries to submit petitions for RFS exemptions of 1 June to ensure that any waivers granted are "prospectively reallocated to non-exempt obligated parties, as well as require that key information surrounding the SREs is publicly available" according to a statement from the American Coalition for Ethanol (ACE).

As previously noted, "hardship waivers" were intended for refineries producing 75,000 bpd or less and suffered "disproportionate economic hardship" from the costs of RFS compliance. The waiver frees the refineries from an obligation to provide the EPA with biofuels credits proving compliance. In 2017, the number of small refineries filing for exemptions retroactively for 2016 jumped from 14 the previous year to 20. The rate in which EPA granted these petitions also increased dramatically from 53 pct to 95 pct.(Source: ACE, Various Media, 29 May, 2019)

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


Cdn. Energy Efficiency Rebates Funded by Carbon Tax (Ind. Report)
Energy Efficiency, Carbon Tax
Date: 2019-05-31
Following up on our 6 March coverage, Canadian Environment Minister, Hon. Catherine McKenna is reporting the launch of a direct rebate program for small and medium-sized businesses. The rebates would cover approximately 50 pct of the purchase price energy-efficient equipment and appliances.

A separate program will allow businesses to apply for rebates for energy efficiency retrofits. That program, which will be about $106 million this year, will be for projects that cost up to $1 million. It's expected the rebates will be worth $44 million this year and the maximum rebate for any individual business will be $20,000.

The funds come from the revenues Canada is collecting from the $20 per-tonne carbon price imposed April 1, 2019. (Source: Canadian Environment Minister, Hon. Catherine McKenna, Canada Press, 30 May, 2019) Contact: The Hon. Catherine McKenna, Canada Minister of Environment and Climate Change, www.facebook.com/McKenna.Ottawa

More Low-Carbon Energy News Energy Efficiency Rebate,  Energy Efficiency,  Catherine McKenna,  


Jordanian Fund Supports Energy Efficiency Projects (Int'l)
Jordanian Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources
Date: 2019-05-29
Reporting fro Amman, the Jordanian Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources is reporting the Jordan Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Fund (JREEEF) has implemented projects worth JD50 million ($70,5 million) to mainstream renewable energy and energy efficiency projects in the Kingdom.

The funded projects covered a number of sectors including domestic, industrial, agricultural, tourism, places of worship and schools. Around 128 schools were funded for energy saving projects including heating upgrades, insulation, energy-saving lighting systems (LED bulbs), cooling, solar panels, general maintenance and others.

The fund also provided 50 pct of the cost of installing 22,000 solar water heaters for citizens, and offered a full grant for solar water heaters and LED bulbs and installations in 3,500 homes of poor families and royal grant housing units. The fund also installed 1,600 residential electric power generation systems, solar cells in 483 religous shrines, distributed some 50,000 LED bulbs with plans to distribute an additional 250,000 bulbs through electricity companies. (Source: Jordanian Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources, Ammon, 26 May, 2019) Contact: Jordanian Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources, +962 6 580 3060, https://jordan.gov.jo

More Low-Carbon Energy News Energy Eficiency,  


Candidate Klobuchar Proposes RFS Exemption Changes (Ind Report)
Klobuchar
Date: 2019-05-27
Last week while on the campaign trail in Iowa, Minnesota Senator and 2020 Presidential wannabe Amy Klobuchar (D) called for the revamping of the EPA's RFS "hardship waiver" rules governing small refineries.

According to Klobuchar, EPA waivers that allow small refineries to avoid the requirements are "misguided" and manipulated by financial institutions and the biofuels credit trading market. The senator proposed new compliance standards and additional oversight. Klobuchar also supports year-round sales of E15.

To date in the presidential primary race, Klobuchar is near the bottom of the pack and playing on the small refinery waiver program could play well in the Corn-husker State.

As previously noted, "hardship waivers" were intended for refineries producing 75,000 bpd or less and suffered "disproportionate economic hardship" from the costs of RFS compliance. The waiver frees the refineries from an obligation to provide the EPA with biofuels credits proving compliance. In 2017, the number of small refineries filing for exemptions retroactively for 2016 jumped from 14 the previous year to 20. The rate in which EPA granted these petitions also increased dramatically from 53 pct to 95 pct (Source: IJR, Various Media, Reuters, 25 May, 2019) Contact: Sen. Amy Klobuchar, www.klobuchar.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/mobile/email-amy

More Low-Carbon Energy News RFS,  Biofuel Blend,  


Ranger Touts $175Mn Indiana "Speedway Solar" Project (Ind. Report)
Ranger Power,Wabash Valley Power Association
Date: 2019-05-27
Brooklyn, New York- headquartered Ranger Power reports it will break ground on a $175 million, Indiana beginning in 2022. The project -- dubbed "Speedway Solar" -- is expected to come online in 2023 when it will generate sufficient electric power for 35,000 households.

Electricity generated by the project will be distributed through Indianapolis-based Wabash Valley Power Association, a wholesale electric supplier to 19 non-profit electric cooperatives in Indiana. The agreement extends through 2057.

Approximately 1,014 acres of the 1,200 acres of the Ranger Power project are devoted to panels; the balance is for buffer space and other project elements. Ranger has signed 17 lease agreements with private landowners in the county, which adjoins Indianapolis. The project is called Speedway Solar, a reference to the Indianapolis 500 racing tradition. It was approved by the Shelby County Council approval in March 2019. Four-hundred jobs will be created during construction; four will be required to operate the site. Ranger is developing a total of 3,000 megawatts of utility-scale solar projects in the Midwest. Wabash Valley partnered with Ranger Power on two large arrays in Illinois in 2017. (Source: Ranger Power, Building Indiana, 26 May, 2019) Contact: Ranger Power, Adam Cohen, CEO, info@rangerpower.com, www.rangerpower.com; Wabash Valley Power Association, Brian Anderson, Ec. Dev., (317) 481-2800, info@wvpa.com, www.wvpa.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Ranger Power,  Solar,  


"Climate Change: A Hoax to Weaken the U.S." (Opinions & Asides)
Climate Change
Date: 2019-05-27
The following appeared in a recent edition of the Exponemt Telegram newspaper in Clarksburg, West Virginia. The article and the opinions expressed in the article DO NOT represent those of LC Energy Publications.

"We know that the Earth is warming; years ago it was covered in ice. Several times since it has gone through periods of being encapsulated in ice!!! Fifty-five thousand years old samples drawn from Antarctic core drills indicate the Earth was 2% warmer than it is today. The reason for this is that the proximity between the sun and the Earth is in a constant state of flux., "The United Nations has propagated an agenda that has a goal of establishing income equality between all countries. To reach that objective, they have decided on the 'Robin Hood' approach -- rob from the rich and give to the poor. Guess who the villain is -- that's right, the USA. How do they accomplish this? They develop a 'Chicken Little' narrative and generate a villain -- that rich country whose people live in luxury.

"Please humor me while we address the UN's narrative. They repeatedly reiterate that 97 pct of the scientists say that the earth is warming and it is caused by humans and the use of 'fossil fuels.' In 1988, The UN formed a committee, The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, (IPCC) 11,944 scientists were questioned. Of those, 66.4 pct (7,930) said they did not believe that was true. Of the other 4,014, 1,344 said they did not know leaving 2,670 that agreed, which is 22 pct, not 97 pct. That is the first big lie!!! The question I have is: How many of those 22 pct have a parochial interest in the warming equation? Bear in mind that our government spent $22 billion in 2016 to have this warming theory authenticated, with most going to academics.

"Next, let's address the fossil fuel cause. 70.9 pct of the Earth's surface consists of ocean water. The National Oceanographic Survey Department states that the average depth of the ocean is 12,100 feet, which means there are 351,600,000,000,000,000,000 gallons of water in the ocean.

"Salt water weighs 8.5 lbs. per gallon. One pound of water uses 1 BTU to raise the temperature 1 degree Fahrenheit. All countries combined in 2015 produced 9 billion tons of coal. The heat factor of the Pittsburgh seam of coal is 12,000 BTU. Using the 35/65 pct factor with 35 pct used to generate electricity and 65 pct lost to the stack gases, allowing for 0 pct dissipated to the land masses or the atmosphere, all heat being transferred to the ocean, it would take 21,610 years to raise the temperature of the ocean 1 degree Fahrenheit!

"We (the U.S.) are the only industrialized country that has cut CO2 emissions since 2005. Following is a list of coal-fired power plants in several other countries: Europe has 480 and is building 27 more; Turkey- 56 and building 93; South Africa-79, building 24; India- 589, building 446; Philippines- 19, building 60; South Korea- 58, building 26; Japan- 90, building 45; China- 2363, building 1171; and the USA- 359, building 0 . Totals: 4,075 existing and 1,892 under construction not including Russia, North Korea and Eastern Europe, with most of their electric generation being coal fired.

"My fellow Americans, the most outrageous hoax that has ever been attached to any group of people since the beginning of mankind is attempting to be heaped on the United States of America -- all in the interest of taxing this country into oblivion. They are trying to do what two World Wars, communism and socialism could not accomplish, but it is being condoned and sanctioned from within by progressive liberals who apparently have had lobotomies, or missed a good chance, and our own politicians who gush with delight at the unending stream of $$$$ coming from this potential 'Cash Cow'"! (Source: WCWV, Exponent Telegram, 26 May, 2019) Contact: Exponemt Telegram, Mr. Phil Southern, (800) 982-6034, www.wvnews.com/theet/news

More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon Emissions,  Coal,  


Malaysia Committed to Palm Oil Biodiesel (Int'l. Report)
Palm Oil
Date: 2019-05-27
In Kuala Lumpur, the Malaysian Minister of International Trade and Industry (MITI) in a statement reported that his country, the world's largest exporter and second largest producer of the palm oil, will continue to play a key role in ensuring palm oil remains a sustainable and eco-friendly fuel replacement for domestic use and worldwide export.

The minister noted that while there had been opposition to the current practices of planting oil palm, the market is strong and "Malaysia is equipped with the necessary infrastructure and market size to improve the quality and production of palm-based energy products." He also noted agencies such as the Malaysia Palm Oil Board, Malaysia Automotive Robotics and IoT Institute and SIRIM Bhd had the technological capabilities necessary to make make palm oil biodiesel a "leading biofuel contender."

Malaysia introduced B10 biodiesel to the domestic transportation market in December 2018, increasing its blend from seven per cent (B7 Biodiesel) to 10 per cent. The government plans to introduce B20 biodiesel by 2020. (Source: Malaysian Minister of International Trade and Industry (MITI), Malay Mail, 24 May., 2019)Contact: Minister of International Trade and Industry, Datuk Darell Leiking, www.miti.gov.my

More Low-Carbon Energy News Palm Oil,  Biodiesel,  


Microsoft Netherlands to Run on Offshore Wind Energy (Ind. Report)
Blauwwind
Date: 2019-05-24
IT giant Microsoft reports the inking of a 15-year agreement with Eneco to purchase 90MW of power from the 731.5MW Borssele III & IV offshore wind farm in the Dutch North Sea. The contracted wind power will power Microsoft's datacenters for a period of fifteen years from 2022 onward.

The Borssele III & IV wind farm is being developed by the Blauwwind consortium -- Partners Group, Shell, Eneco,Van Oord -- and will incorporate 77 MHI Vestas 9.5MW wind turbines installed 22km offshore Zeeland. The project is slated for commissioning and operation in 2021. (Source: Microsoft, Offshore Wind, 23 May, 2019) Contact: Microsoft Netherland, Ernst-Jan Stigter, General Manager, +31 20 500 1500, www.microsoft.com/nl-nl/overnederland;Blauwwind ConsortiumBlauwwind , LinkedIn https://ca.linkedin.com/company/blauwwind

More Low-Carbon Energy News Blauwwind,  Microsoft,  Offshore Wind,  


ABC Decries Indiscriminate RFS Refinery Exemptions (Ind. Report)
American Biogas Council
Date: 2019-05-24
The American Biogas Council (ABC) released the following statement in response to the Trump Administration's continued attempts to erode the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) by the indiscriminate granting of small refinery "hardship" exemptions:

"The continued issuance of small refinery exemptions undermines the integrity of the Renewable Fuel Standard and imperils the ability of biogas and other renewable fuel producers to create new investments and jobs, especially in rural communities.

"As a program, the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) works for the biogas industry. It has boosted American production of renewable fuels, brought new revenue streams to farmers and catalyzed investment in biogas systems. In fact, the number of biogas systems that have been built or upgraded to participate in the RFS has grown at a rate of 30 pct annually supplying valuable renewable fuel that can replace conventional natural gas. In the RFS, biogas and renewable natural gas (RNG) related projects represent the fastest growing sector of the RFS and are therefore critical to addressing the gap between the congressionally mandated fuel volumes and the EPA-lowered fuel volumes.

"But the recent management of the RFS program, in particular, the Administration's frequent issuance of small refinery ("hardship") exemptions has killed demand in this market-based program and is now impeding growth, development, infrastructure investments and the creation of quality American jobs. The prevalent issuance of exemptions has created the impression that any refinery can get one. As a result, small refineries and some larger ones, both in growing numbers, have stopped purchasing biogas hoping that each one might also be granted an exemption by the Administration to not comply with this congressionally mandated program. Due to the volume of fuel that most biogas systems produce, a large proportion of biogas systems sell to small refineries.

"The Administration must dramatically slow the issuance of small refinery exemptions (SREs) to small refineries and stop granting SREs to large or unqualified refineries. Indiscriminate and frequent issuance of SREs undermine the integrity of the RFS and imperil economic prosperity and energy security. The Administration needs to follow the law that Congress passed." (Source: American Biogas Council, PR, 23 May, 2019) Contact: ABC, Patrick Serfass, Exec. Dir., (202) 640-6595, info@americanbiogascouncil.org, www.AmericanBiogasCouncil.org

More Low-Carbon Energy News RFS,  Hardship Waiver,  Biofuel,  American Biogas Council ,  Biogas,  


Barbados Pursuing Bioenergy to Meet Renewables Goals (Int'l)
Barbados
Date: 2019-05-22
According to the Barbados Advocate, the Bridgetown-based non-profit organization Design Council SIDS, the island nation can play a leading role in the adoption and use of bioenergy. That's according to Industrial Designer Mark Hill as he revealed that they are in the process of commissioning a 250-kilowatt Chicken Manure Biogas Plant in St. Lucy, and plans for a plastics-to-energy project, as well as a 1 MW biogas facility for food waste and a 1.5 MW ryngas project on the island.

"We can and will lead in bio-energy, in particular the production of biomethane/renewable natural gas, the production of wood pellets, syngas, and we will fully explore the economic potential in these resources in order to meet the goal of 100 pct renewable energy by 2030 and the Sustainable Development Goals," Hill said in an address to the recent Bio-Digestion: Benefits to Barbados conference in Bridgetown. Presently only an estimated 4 pct to 6 pct of Barbados' energy needs are being met by renewable. (Source: Barbados Design Council SIDS, Barbados Advocate, 18 May, 2019) Contact: Design Council SIDS, Mark Hill, www.facebook.com/designcouncilsids

More Low-Carbon Energy News Bioenergy,  Biogas,  Renewable Energy,  


Franklin County Adopting Energize NY C-PACE Financing (Ind. Report)
C-PACE
Date: 2019-05-22
In the Empire State, the Franklin County Legislature has voted to adopt the Energize NY Open C-PACE Financing Program to make money available for business energy efficiency upgrades, renewable energy and related improvements.

Borrowers participating in the program pay back the cost of the upgrades to the state Energy Improvement Corp. (EIC), which administers the loans on behalf of the county. The loan will be secured through a lien placed on the "Benefitted Property" by the EIC. (Source: Franklin County, Adirondack Daily Enterprise, Malone Telegram, 21 May, 2019) Contact: Franklin County Economic Dev., Russ Kinyon, Dir., www.fcadc.com; C-PACE Alliance, Cliff Kellogg (202) 744-1984, ckellogg@c-pacealliance.com, www.c-pacealliance.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News C-PACE,  Energize New York,  Energy Efficiency,  


Aerojet Rocketdyne, ZAF Partner on Energy Storage (Ind Report)
Aerojet Rocketdyne,ZAF Energy Systems
Date: 2019-05-22
Sacramento, California-headquartered Aerojet Rocketdyne and Joplim, Missouri-based next-generation battery technologies specialist ZAF Energy Systems report they will work together on an energy storage system utilizing ZAF's nickel-zinc batteries and Aerojet Rocketdyne's battery management system (BMS).

Aerojet Rocketdyne provides propulsion systems and energetics to the space, missile defense and strategic systems, as well as tactical systems, in support of domestic and international customers.

ZAF Energy Systems develops and commercializes next-generation battery technologies that use sustainable, nontoxic materials and can be safely and easily recycled. Its breakthrough battery technologies include a nickel-zinc (NiZn) chemistry and a zinc air chemistry, both of which deliver the highest power and energy density of any battery system in their class. (Source: Aerojet Rocketdyne, PR, 21 May, 2019) Contact: Aerojet Rocketdyne, Eileen Drake, Pres., CEO, Ashley Gudzak, In-Space Communications, (571) 236-4091, ashley.gudzak@rocket.com, www.rocket.com; ZAF, Randy Moore, Pres., CEO, (512) 215-4452, media@zafsys.com, www.zafsys.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Battery,  Energy Storage,  


Improving, Managing Wind Power Energy Production (Int'l Report)
National Science Foundation
Date: 2019-05-20
Portuguese scientists have released the first of several reports with findings that could help officials manage wind power facilities more efficiently and increase renewable energy production.

Among the findings, Perdigao, a field experiment in Vale do Cobrao, a valley in eastern Portugal, shows that the speed and direction of wind over complex terrain at the height of wind turbine hubs differ by as much as 40-50 pct from standard weather forecasts that wind turbine operators rely on to bring facilities online and supply wind power to the grid, according to a report published in the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society.

To be useful, wind power forecasts need to be made at least six hours in advance so electric grid operators can balance loads effectively. The Perdigao study aims to improve such forecasts by improving "microscale" models which capture the details of flow surrounding a wind turbine providing wind information at points separated by 100 meters compared to tens of kilometers in standard weather prediction models.

The study was funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) NSF Division of Atmospheric and Geospace Sciences. (Source: NSF, 19 May, 2019) Contact: NSF Public Affairs, (703) 292-8070, media@nsf.gov; www.nsf.gov

More Low-Carbon Energy News Wind,  National Science Foundation,  


Dalhousie Researcher Touts Perovskite Solar Cell Progress (R&D)
Dalhouse University
Date: 2019-05-20
In Halifax, Dalhousie University assistant professor Ghada Koleilat, one of eight early-career Dalhousie researchers awarded $375,000 in grant funding over three years from Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada's new frontiers in research fund, is working with perovskite to produce economical and more energy-efficient cells than existing silicon solar cells. Koleilat's solar cell can be used on a wide variety of applications and can be painted on many surfaces.

According to Koleilat, the problem with perovskite cells is their durability when exposed to oxygen and humidity. To address the issue, Koleilat and her team designing an environmentally friendly, hybrid organic-inorganic material with perovskite that can stand the test of time.

Koleilat's lab can produce more than 10 solar cells in 3 hours from perovskite film than can be created in just 15 minutes. Koleilat aims to perfect the molecular recipe of her hybrid material over the next few years. (Source: Dalhousie Univ., CBC, 19 May, 2019) Contact: Dalhousie University, Ghada Koleilat, Assist. Professor of Engineering, (902) 494 4177, ghada.koleilat@dal.ca, www.koleilatresearchgroup.com; www.dal.ca

More Low-Carbon Energy News Solar,  Solar Cell,  perovskite ,  


Cemex Invests in Swiss Energy Storage Startup (Ind. Report)
Cemex,Energy Vault
Date: 2019-05-20
Mexican materials Cemex has invested in Californian startup Energy Vault, a firm that has found a way to store energy inside concrete blocks using a system inspired by pump-storage hydroelectric plants. Energy Vault’s solution uses the same fundamentals of physics and kinetic energy as pumped hydro but replaces the water with custom made cylindrical blocks. According to Energy Vault, the low-cost blocks, combined with a patented system design and some control software, has allowed Energy Vault to deliver all the benefits of a pumped hydro system but at a much lower price, starting size and without the need for hard to find topography.

The tie-up with Cemex will provide Energy Vault with a network to distribute its “storage towers”. Gonzalo Galindo, Cemex Venture’s chief executive, said: “Energy storage that enables power to be delivered for less than the cost of fossil fuels is critical as the world shifts away from its reliance on carbon-based fuels to renewable energy. (Source: CEMEX, Global Construction Review, 20 May, 2019) Contact: Energy Vault, Robert Piconi, CEO, 1.626.535.2726, media@energyvault.ch, https://energyvault.ch; CEMEX Ventures, CEMEX USA, Ignacio Madridejos, Pres., Megan Lawrence, (713) 722-1799, www.cemexusa.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Energy Storage,  Energy Vault,  Cemex,  


Scottish Cities Chasing Ist Place in Net-Zero Emissions Race (Int'l)
Carbon Emissions
Date: 2019-05-20
Like most city-dwellers, Scots travel in polluting vehicles, use fossil fuels to heat their homes and work in an economy that produces greenhouse gases. But Scotland's two largest cities -- Glasgow (pop. 596,000) and Edinburgh (POP. 482,000) -- are racing to become the UK's first city with net-zero emissions.

To that end, both cities have set targets exceeding the Scottish government's 2045 net-zero target and that set by the UK government's Committee on Climate Change of 2050.

Achieving net-zero status involves more than reducing emissions, it also involves offsetting greenhouse gases released with initiatives such as planting trees.

Glasgow City Council is working with Scottish Power, the energy provider in charge of the UK's largest onshore wind farm near Glasgow. Glasgow's energy sector is dominated by wind power and continued investment in the electricity grid has allowed the city to focus on other parts of the economy such as transport and heating.

Edinburgh's carbon emissions have fallen by about a third since 2005, and the city council aims to continue that momentum by boosting renewable energy, making the city centre a low-emissions zone and encouraging low-carbon design for construction projects. The city also has schemes in place to reduce waste and increase recycling. Additionally, cyclists, pedestrians and public transport will have better access to the city centre, which will be off-limits to most cars to help cut emissions. (Source: World Economic Forum May, 2019)

More Low-Carbon Energy News Net-Zero Emissions,  Carbon Emissions,  


Brookfield Acquiring Indian Wind Farms (M&A, Int'l)
Brookfield Asset Management,Axis Energy Group
Date: 2019-05-17
Toronto-based Brookfield Asset Management Inc is reported to be acquiring two fully contracted Indian wind farms totaling 210 MW from Hyderabad-based Axis Energy Ventures for Rs 500 crore ($71,115,660). The acquisition would be Brookfield's first in the renewable energy space in India.

Axis Energy Ventures, the flagship company of Axis Energy Group, develops renewable and clean energy projects and has committed to develop 12,500 MW of renewable energy projects by FY 2022. (Source: Brookfield Asset Management, Economic Times India, 16 May, 2019) Contact: Brookfield Asset Management, (416) 363-9491, www.brookfield.com; Axis Energy Group India, https://ca.linkedin.com/company/axisenergygroup, www.axisenergy.in

More Low-Carbon Energy News Axis Energy Group,  Brookfield Asset Management,  Wind,  India Wind,  


IEA Pushing for Offshore Wind Energy (Int'l Report)
International Energy Agency
Date: 2019-05-15
At a recent high-level workshop on offshore wind energy, the International Energy Agency (IEA) noted technological improvements for offshore wind are improving performance and lowering the costs of the electricity it produces, and thus drawing interest from global markets. IEA added that tapping the potential of offshore wind alongside other low-carbon technologies will be critical to achieving global sustainable development goals.

The workshop covered the current status of and regional policy plans for the development of offshore wind, along with the key opportunities for accelerating deployment and the main challenges constraining growth. It took place in support of the first in-depth look at offshore wind in the World Energy Outlook (WEO), the IEA's flagship publication. (Source: International Energy Agency, OE Digital, 13 May, 2019) Contact: International Energy Agency, Dr. Faith Birol, Exec. Dir., +33 1 40 57 65 00, www.iea.org

More Low-Carbon Energy News International Energy Agency,  


"Your Polluting Buildings are Part of the Problem", de Blasio Tells Trump (Notable Quote)
Climate Change, Bill De Blasio
Date: 2019-05-15
"Our message is loud and clear. We're tackling climate change head-on with NYC's Green New Deal and are the first city in the world to require all big buildings to cut their emissions, with the goal of a carbon neutral city by 2050. President Trump -- you're on notice. Your polluting buildings are part of the problem. Cut your emissions or pay the price." -- New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio

Reducing emissions from buildings -- which are responsible for nearly 70 pct of all greenhouse gas emissions -- is a key strategy of New York City's Green New Deal and commit the city to carbon neutrality by 2050.

As we previously reported, Trump Tower uses more energy than 93 pct of New York City's large residential buildings. Across the Big Apple, Trump owns at least eight buildings that do not meet 2030 emissions levels under the law. These include the Trump International Hotel & Tower, the Trump Building, the Trump World Tower, the Trump Tower, Trump Park Avenue, Trump Parc, Trump Parc East and Trump Palace. If Trump fails to clean up these buildings, he will owe approximately $2.1 million in fines every year beginning in 2030. (Source: NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio, 6sqft,Various Media, 14 May, 2019) Contact: NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio, www1.nyc.gov/office-of-the-mayor

More Low-Carbon Energy News Bill De Blasio,  Carbon Neutral,  Carbon Emissions,  


Sub-Sea CO2 Storage Leakage Studied (Ind. Report)
Carbon Storage
Date: 2019-05-15
Researchers at GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel investigating the possibilities and limits of the sub-sea CO2 storage report it is possible to reduce anthropogenic CO2 emissions by separating CO2 from flue gases and storing the captured CO2 in geological formations. The researchers also note negative emissions can be achieved by coupling biogas production with CO2 separation and storage.

Assessments by the IPCC show that these approaches are essential parts of the technology mix needed to limit global warming to less than 2 degrees C.

In Europe the largest potential to store CO2 is located offshore in deep saline aquifers and other sub-seabed geological formations of the North Sea where over 10,000 oil and gas wells have been drilled. At many of these wells, methane gas from shallow biogenic deposits is leaking into the environment because the surrounding sediments were mechanically disturbed and weakened during the drilling process. The study notes that CO2 stored in the vicinity of these wells may leak and ultimately return into the atmosphere.

"We have performed a release experiment in the Norwegian sector of the North Sea to determine the footprint and consequences of such a leak", explains study lead author Dr. Lisa Vielstadte from GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel.

In the study, CO2 released at the seabed in 82 meters of water was tracked and traced using a remotely operated vehicle (ROV) equipped with chemical and acoustic sensors and additional measurements on board of Research Vessel Celtic Explorer. The resulting data showed that CO2 gas bubbles were completely dissolved close to the seafloor and the pH value of ambient bottom waters was lowered from a background value of 8.0 to a more acidic value of 7.0 at the release site as a consequence of the dissolution process. This bottom water acidification has detrimental effects on organisms living at the seabed", However, strong bottom currents induced a rapid dispersion of the dissolved CO2 such that the area at the seabed where potentially harmful effects can occur is small.

Accordingly, the study tentatively concluded it is possible to store CO2 safely in sub-seabed formations if the storage site is located in an area with a small number of leaky wells, the report summarizes. (Source: Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel , PR, 14 May, 2019) Contact: GEOMAR - Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel, Dr. Lisa Vielstadte, +49 431 600-0, Fax:+49 431 600-2805, www.geomar.de/en

More Low-Carbon Energy News CO2,  Carbon Emissions,  Carbon Sequestration,  CCS,  


DOE Offers $33.5Mn for Energy-Efficient R&D Projects (Funding)
DOE BETO
Date: 2019-05-15
In Washington, the US DOE reports the availability of up to $33.5 million in funding for the research and development of projects aimed at reducing energy bills through advanced building construction techniques for both existing and new, residential and commercial buildings.

According to the DOE, commercial and residential buildings account for roughly 40 pct of the nation's total energy demand at a cost in excess of $380 billion per year.

While an ideal project would address a combination of issues across areas such as heating, cooling, the building envelope, water heating and ventilation, funding applications should focus on one of three topics:

  • Advanced Technology Integration: including projects that concentrate on taking technologies from the laboratory to the field, in order to meet national, regional, state and local needs. Energy savings methods in this category focus on workforce training, service delivery methods and field validation of new technologies and building practices;

  • Integrated Building Retrofits: which concentrate on existing buildings, including technologies that aim to achieve greater energy-efficiency through combined space heating and cooling systems, hot water systems and light and durable, highly-insulated panels. The goal under this topic is to achieve 75 pct energy reductions;

  • New Construction Technologies which focus on innovative approaches to a building's design, construction and installation. Through advancements in robotics, digitalization, off-site manufacturing, improved modeling and automation, the goal for projects within this topic is to make buildings and homes 50 percent more energy efficient than current code requirements.

    Funding is issued through the DOE's Building Technology Office (BTO) which aims to find new, energy-efficient technologies while improving the efficiency of current technologies to help the department realize its goal for reducing the energy use of U.S. buildings by 30 pct by 2030.

    BETO programs currently include: HVAC; water heating and appliances; solid-state lighting; building energy modeling; sensors and controls; and buildings-to-grid integration. (Source: US DOE BETO, 14 May, 2019) Contact: US DOE BETO, www.energy.gov/eere/buildings/building-technologies-office

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Energy Efficiency,  DOE BETO,  


  • Green Valley News Comments on Arizona Energy Efficiency Standard (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
    Energy Efficiency
    Date: 2019-05-13
    With the approaching demise of Arizona's Energy Efficiency Standard, the Arizona Corporation Commission should note that from 2010-17, every $1 of ratepayer money invested in energy efficiency by Arizona Public Service and Tucson Electric Power returned about $4 in benefits to ratepayers. The Standard also helped reduce water consumption and contributed to job creation.

    The standard set aspirational yet rational requirements incorporating annual benchmarks and establishing accountability measures such as implementation plans. As the Commission deliberates its next steps on energy efficiency, here are a few considerations commissioners should keep in mind:

  • A strong standard will accomplish more than a goal. In large part, the reason Arizona's Energy Efficiency Standard has worked is due to requirements the Commission placed on utilities. Without a Standard, it is unlikely Arizona's utilities would have significantly increased the use of energy efficiency resources.

  • Arizonans support energy efficiency. According to an energy poll released earlier this year, 68 pct of those polled agree that regulations applied to utility providers, such as Arizona Public Service, Tucson Electric Power, UNS Energy Corporation, or Salt River Project should be increased to ensure they are offering energy efficiency to all their customers.

  • The recent trend among state policy makers and utilities in the Southwest is a shift to increased energy efficiency commitments. Just like it is realistic and no longer visionary to send a man (or a woman) to the moon; it is realistic and no longer visionary to increase Arizona's Energy Efficiency Standard.

    For the sake of ratepayers, air quality and public health, the Commission should vote on May 22 to advance Arizona’s Energy Efficiency Standard to at least 35 pct by 2030. (Source: Green Valley News, 12 May, 2019) Contact: Arizona Corporation Commission, (602) 542-3026, www.azcc.gov

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Energy Efficiency,  


  • Mich. State Univ. Touts Transparent Solar Panel (New Prod. & Tech.)
    Michigan State University
    Date: 2019-05-13
    Researchers at Michigan State University are reporting development of a transparent luminescent solar concentrator effectively creates a viable solution. It can be placed over a window to harvest solar energy without affecting the overall transmittance of light.

    The research team achieved it by using organic molecules capable of absorbing light wavelengths. These transparent panels primarily focus on infrared and UV light, All of the captured light is transported to the contour of the panel where it will be converted to electricity.

    Determining the commercial viability of these transparent cells will take up some time. If deemed commercially viable, this technology can easily offset most of the energy use of large buildings. For households and store owners, it can help them cut down on regular electricity bills as well. There are a lot of potential consequences to this research, albeit nothing has been set in stone at this time. (Source:Michigan State University, NULLTX, 12 May,

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Solar news,  Solar Cell news,  Solar Panel news,  


    Perovskite Solar Cells Waterproofed with Graphite (Ind. Report)
    Perovskite Solar Cell,University of Bath
    Date: 2019-05-13
    In the UK, the University of Bath Centre for Sustainable Chemical Technologies, in collaboration with the SPECIFIC team at Swansea University report the use of economical, readily available thermal graphite sheets and a mesoporous carbon scaffold to encapsulate metal-halide perovskites (CsPbBr3) as an inexpensive and efficient waterproofing strategy. Most solar cells currently on the market are made of silicon; these are expensive to make and require a lot of very pure silicon to manufacture.

    Perovskite solar cells, using materials with the same 3D structure as calcium titanium oxide, are cheaper to make, thinner and can be easily printed onto surfaces. They also work in low light conditions and can produce a higher voltage than silicon cells.

    The research team tested the waterproofing by submerging the coated perovskite cells in water and using the harvested solar energy to split water into hydrogen and oxygen. The coated cells worked underwater for 30 hours, roughly ten hours longer than the previous record. . The study is published in the open access journal Nature Communications. (Source: University of Bath Centre for Sustainable Chemical Technologies, Gren Car Congress, 13 May, 2019) Contact: University of Bath Centre for Sustainable Chemical Technologies, +44 0 1225 385820, csct@bath.ac.uk, www.csct.ac.uk

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Perovskite Solar Cell,  


    Vineyard Wind Offshore Transmission Approved (Reg. & Leg.)
    Vineyard Wind,Avangrid Renewables
    Date: 2019-05-13
    Vineyard Wind, a joint venture between Avangrid Renewables and Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners, reports the Massachusetts Energy Facilities Siting Board (EFSB) has granted it permits for the construction and operation of Vineyard Wind's transmission facilities to deliver the 800MW of offshore wind energy to the regional power grid.

    The Vineyard Wind Connector project will consist of sub-sea and sub-surface electrical transmission lines and a new substation that will connect the Vineyard Wind turbine array to the Massachusetts electric grid. Construction is scheduled to begin this year and is expected to be operational by 2021. (Source: Vineyard Wind, May, 2019) Contact: Contact: Vineyard Wind, Lars Thaaning Pedersen, CEO ,(508) 717-8964, www.vineyardwind.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Vineyard Wind,  Offshore Wind,  Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners,  


    NIPSCO Seeks Rate Hike to Replace Coal with Renewables (Ind Report)
    Northern Indiana Public Service
    Date: 2019-05-10
    The Northern Indiana Public Service Co. (NIPSCO) has filed a plan with the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission to remove coal from its electric power mix by 2028 and replace it primarily with electricity generated by solar power. The Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission (IURC) is considering a plan filed by Northern Indiana Public Service Co. (NIPSCO) to remove coal from its electric power mix by 2028 and replace it primarily with electricity generated by solar power.

    NIPSCO claims its recently completed analysis found its plan would save its 460,000 Indiana ratepayers and the state money over the long term.

    In its Integrated Resource Plan, NIPSCO proposes closing its Wheatfield coal plant by 2023 and its coal unit in Michigan City by 2028. With the closures, the percentage of electric power generated by coal would decrease from 65 pct today to 15 pct in 2023 and zero by 2028.

    NIPSCO proposes replacing the 1,800 MW of electric power generated by the two coal plants with a mixture of 1,500 mw of solar with battery backup, 150 mw of wind, 125 mw of reduced demand through efficiency and demand-side management programs, and 50 mw of electricity purchased from other utilities. Although NIPSCO says its electric power shift will save ratepayers more than $4 billion in the long run, it has asked IURC to approve a 12 pct rate hike to pay for decommissioning its existing power plants and building the renewable capacity to replace it. (Source: NIPSCO, Heartland Inst., May, 2019) Contact: NIPSCO, www.nipsco.com

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


    Illinois Gov. Inks Carbon Storage Pilot Legislation (Reg. & Leg.)
    Wabash Valley Resources
    Date: 2019-05-10
    This week in Indianapolis, Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb approved legislation allowing Wabash Valley Resources LLC to open a $450 million pilot project to produce anhydrous ammonia and store up to 50 million metric tons of CO2 at the former SG Solutions plant adjacent to Duke Energy's Wabash River Generating Station.

    The project is subject to US EPA approval. (Source: News & Tribune, 8 May, 2019) Contact: Wabash Valley Resources LLC, (929) 400-5230, www.wvresc.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News CCS,  Carbon Storage,  CO2,  


    USDA Forest Service 2019 Wood Innovation Grants Announced (Funding)
    USDA,USFS
    Date: 2019-05-10
    On May 7, the USDA Forest Service awarded over $8.9 million in matching funds through the Wood Innovations Grant program to 39 business, university, nonprofit and tribal partners in 20 states.

    This year the Forest Service received 140 proposals, demonstrating the expanding interest in using wood in traditional and unconventional ways as an innovative building material or a renewable energy source. Of the 41 projects selected, 29 focus upon expanding markets for wood products and 12 seek to increase markets for wood energy. Some of the proposed projects will help fuel small-scale, combined heat and power projects and biochar market development.

    Projects will take place in 20 states including Alaska, Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Massachusetts, Maine, Minnesota, Montana, North Carolina, Nebraska, Nevada, Oregon, Puerto Rico, South Carolina, Virginia, Vermont, Washington and Wisconsin.

    The Forest Service notes that over the past decade, low harvest rates, aging forests, mortality from insect and disease infestations, and extreme weather events have combined to create conditions prime for catastrophic wildfires. These grants support the development of consumer products that use the excess forest material.Download information on the Forest Service Wood Education and Resource Center HERE. (Source: U.S. Forest Service, PR, 8 May, 2019) Contact: U.S. Forest Service, www.fs.usda.gov

    More Low-Carbon Energy News U.S. Forest Service,  Woody Biomass,  Biomass,  


    New UK 3D Solar Cell Technology Announced (New Prod. & Tech.)
    Power Roll
    Date: 2019-05-08
    UK scientists at the University of Sheffield and energy technology company Power Roll are touting a unique 3D solar-cell surface embossed with micro-grooves. According to the researchers, the new light-weight architecture could drive down the cost of solar cell manufacturing, reduce optical losses and increase cell efficiency.

    The innovative 3D design removes many of the manufacturing process steps required by existing photovoltaics (PV) modules and allows new materials to be used that would not usually be appropriate in regular solar cells, according to a release. Other benefits of the design include the removal of expensive transparent conductive oxides and the use of simple and low cost electrical interconnections and the ability to tune electrical output to match user requirements. (Source: The Tribune, PTI, 2 May, 2019) Contact: Power Roll, Neil Spann, CEO, +44 (0)191 543 9254, info@powerroll.solar, www.powerroll.solar; University of Sheffield, Professor David Lidzey, Department of Physics and Astronomy , +44 (0)114 22 23501, d.g.lidzey@sheffield.ac.uk, www.sheffield.ac.uk/physics/people/academic/david-lidzey

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Solar,  Solar Cell,  


    Emerson, Vayu Alliance to Optimize Wind Energy (Ind. Report)
    Emerson
    Date: 2019-05-08
    St. Louis-headquartered Emerson is reporting an alliance with Pittsburgh-based Vayu, a Ystrategies Corp. company, to provide automation technology solutions for wind farm energy optimization in the Americas, Caribbean and Europe. The three-year collaboration combines the advanced power applications and networking capabilities of Emerson's Ovation™ automation platform with Vayu's cloud-computing wind energy optimization technology. Using this approach, Vayu has identified more than $500 million in revenue opportunities from just a fraction of the approximately 450 wind farms in the U.S.

    In traditional wind farms, each turbine is individually optimized. Each creates its own turbulence, or wake, which prevents downwind turbines from receiving full energy from the wind stream, significantly reducing wind energy production. Vayu estimates two-thirds of U.S. wind farms experience reduced capacity due to wind wake. Emerson and Vayu's solution leverages key data and machine learning to enable turbines to work cooperatively, adjusting the side-to-side movement of each turbine based on wind speed, wind direction and other parameters to extract the optimum energy from wind.

    Emerson's Ovation compact controller will communicate data from each turbine's wind sensor to the Vayu system every 1-2 seconds thus enabling near-real-time data to accurately calculate the optimum setting for each turbine.

    Ovation compact control technology can easily interface with any turbine controller, regardless of manufacturer, eliminating the significant time and expense associated with removing and replacing existing turbine controls. (Source: Emerson, PR, 8 May, 2019) Contact: Emerson, Bob Yeager, Pres. Power & Water, (314) 982-8608, www.emerson.com/en-us; Ystrategies Corp., www.ystrategies.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Emerson,  Wind,  


    Indonesia's 2019 Biodiesel Exports Could Decline Under EU Regulations (Int'l Report)
    Biodiesel
    Date: 2019-05-06
    In Jakarta, the Indonesia Biofuels Producer Association (APROBI) reports many Indonesian economists and government officials believe that the transition to cleaner energy products is necessary to help bolster the country's export sector and that tighter restrictions on Indonesian biodiesel deliveries to the EU could significantly cut biodiesel exports to only 1 million or 1.2 million kiloliters (kl) this year.

    In the face of EU palm oil environmental concerns, Indonesia has been working to make its palm oil-based fuel more environmentally-friendly after the EU and other countries called for a "cleaner" Indonesian biodiesel.

    Indonesia's B20 biofuel-biodiesel blend rate is expected to be raised to B30. According to Agra-Net, Indonesia exported 52,356 tonnes of palm oil biodiesel in February, 2019 Domestic markets have also shown increased consumption of biofuel during the first quarter of 2019. Reuters notes Indonesians consumed 1.5 million kl in Q1, this year. (Source: APROBI Business Times, 3 May, 2019) Contact: APROBI, +62 2129380882, office@aprobi.co.id, www.aprobi.or.id

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


    DOE Announces $79 Mn Funding for Bioenergy R&D (Funding, R&D)
    US DOE
    Date: 2019-05-06
    In Washington, the US DOE has announced over $79 million in funding for bioenergy R&D including biofuels, bioproducts, and biopower. This funding supports Agency's goal of providing consumers and businesses with a range of domestic energy options that are affordable, reliable, and secure.

    The FOA topics will advance DOE's Bioenergy Technology Office's (BETO) objectives to reduce the price of drop-in biofuels, lower the cost of biopower, and enable high-value products from biomass or waste resources. Topics areas for this funding opportunity include the following:

  • Cultivation Intensification Processes for Algae -- Develop technologies for outdoor algae systems that increase the harvest yield, reliability and quality of algae;

  • Biomass Component Variability and Feedstock Conversion Interface: Research to lower the cost and improve the reliability of biomass handling and preprocessing;

  • Efficient Wood Heaters -- Develop technologies to reduce emissions and increase efficiency of wood heaters for residential heating;

  • Systems Research of Hydrocarbon Biofuel Technologies -- Integrate new technologies and processes in experimental prototype systems to improve and verify real-world performance and lower the cost of drop-in Biofuels;

  • Optimization of Biomass-Derived Jet Fuel Blends -- Identify and develop cost-competitive drop-in renewable jet fuel with improved energy density and lower particulate matter emissions;

  • Renewable Energy from Urban and Suburban Wastes: Support academic research and educational programs that focus on strategies to produce bioenergy and bioproducts from urban and suburban waste feedstocks;

  • Advanced Bioprocessing and Agile BioFoundry -- Reduce the time and cost of developing biological processes for biomanufacturing fuels and products through the use of synthetic biology, low capital intensity methods, and continuous production systems;

  • Plastics in the Circular Carbon Economy -- Develop biobased plastics with improved performance and recyclability and lower the cost and energy-intensity of recycling existing plastics through enhanced degradation;

  • Rethinking Anaerobic Digestion: Develop anaerobic processes or alternative strategies to enhance carbon conversion efficiency and lower costs of smaller scale wet waste systems;

  • Reducing Water, Energy, and Emissions in Bioenergy -- Identify biofuels or bioproducts technologies with the greatest potential for reducing water consumption, energy consumption, and/or emissions relative to existing conventional fuels or products.

    This FOA also supports the Water Security Grand Challenge, a White House initiated, DOE-led framework to advance transformational technology and innovation to meet the global need for safe, secure, and affordable water. In particular, this funding will support R&D focused on anaerobic digestion, a technology that can help achieve the Grand Challenge's goal to double resource recovery from municipal wastewater. (Source: US DOE EERE, 3 May, 2019) Contact: US DOE EERE, www.energy.gov/eere

    More Low-Carbon Energy News US DOE EERE,  Bioenergy,  Biofuel,  Anaerobic Digestion ,  


  • Coalition Seeks Renewed Energy Efficiency Tax Incentives (Ind. Report)
    Alliance to Save Energy
    Date: 2019-05-03
    The Alliance to Save Energy and a coalition of manufacturers, advocacy groups, and trade associations representing millions of American workers has called for Washington to modernize and extend expired energy efficiency tax incentives. If so enacted, the updated incentives that would sharply reduce US carbon emissions. create employment and cut millions of dollars in energy bills.

    The coalition, led by the Alliance to Save Energy, includes leading manufacturers of windows, air conditioners, insulation and other components alongside environmental and efficiency advocates such as the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), Citizens for Responsible Energy Solutions (CRES), and the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE).

    The proposed tax incentives call for broadly supported improvements to the expired 45L tax incentive for high-efficiency new home construction and the 25C tax incentive for homeowner efficiency improvements -- installing insulation, replacing windows, or purchasing high-efficiency heating and cooling equipment. The improvements include strengthening the efficiency level that must be met to receive the incentives, while also increasing the dollar value of the incentives.

    The coalition also called for extending the 179D incentive for efficiency improvements in commercial buildings. (Source: Alliance to Save Energy, PR, May, 2019) Contact: Alliance to Save Energy, (202) 857-0666, www.ase.org

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


    NEIF Lauds Home Energy Efficiency Financing Plan (Ind. Report)
    National Energy Improvement Fund
    Date: 2019-05-03
    The Allentown, Pennsylvania-based National Energy Improvement Fund, LLC, (NEIF), a licensed lender and national expert in energy efficiency financing, is trumpeting the availability of its its new NEIF Home Energy Improvement Plan.

    The plan helps qualifying homeowners finance home improvement and energy efficiency upgrades such as heating and cooling, windows, doors, siding and roofing, air sealing and insulation, electrical and plumbing, geothermal and whole home energy projects. All work must be completed by NEIF-approved contractors.

    The NEIF Home Energy Improvement Plan is currently available in Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania and West Virginia with other states being added shortly. Separately, Maine homeowners can use Efficiency Maine financing, administered by NEIF.

    The NEIF Home Energy Improvement Plan is simple interest, longer term, fixed rate installment financing from $2,500 to $25,000. There is no lien on the borrower's home, no fees to the borrower and no penalty for pre-payment. The interest rate and monthly payment are locked in for the full term of the loan, up to ten years. To date, $700 million in energy efficiency financing has been placed through the NEIF program. NEIF also provides financing for commercial energy improvements through its NEIF Commercial Energy Finance division and advance funding to contractors for rebates through its Rebate Bridge program. (Source: National Energy Improvement Fund, LLC, PR, 2 May, 2019) Contact: NEIF, Peter Krajsa, NEIF, Co-Chair and Founder, (484) 838-5460, www.neifund.org

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


    ABM Initiates Bryan County Georgia EPC Contract (Ind. Report)
    ABM
    Date: 2019-05-03
    Facility solutions specialist ABM reports the initiation of an Energy Performance Contract (EPC) program that is expected to save Bryan County, Georgia ABM's customized solution is projected to save the county more than $16.4 million in energy and operating costs over a 15-year period. The project is scheduled for completion in early 2020. Highlights of Bryan County project include:
  • upgrading HVAC systems and building automation controls at 36 facilities;
  • roof repairs and replacements;
  • sealing building envelopes to control airflow;
  • installation of water conservation measures at several facilities;
  • upgrading lighting systems to energy-efficient LED lighting;
  • installation of Cool Play Synthetic Turf and LED lighting at North Bryan County's Hendrix Park;
  • installation of full-building emergency electricity generation systems at the Bryan County Courthouse and the Bryan County Administrative Building, and other facilities, and other upgrades that drive energy savings.

    Download details on ABM's Energy Performance Contracting Program at www.abm.com/services/energy. (Source: ABM, PR, 2 May, 2019) Contact: ABM, www.abm.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News ABM,  Energy Efficiency,  


  • RePower Renewable Fuel Production Underway in SC (Ind Report)
    RePower South
    Date: 2019-05-03
    North Charleston, South Carolina-based RePower South (RPS) reports it is now processing more than 50 tph -- 120,000 tpy -- of locally sourced mixed waste to recover recyclables and produce a fuel feedstock at its new recycling and recovery facility in Berkeley County, S.C.

    The plant also makes use of non-recyclable papers and plastics to produce ReEngineered Feedstock (ReEF), a clean, low-carbon renewable fuel sold to industry, cement and utility customers to replace coal in production processes. The EPA has classified the product as a low-carbon, non-waste fuel. (Source: RePower South, Waste360, 2 May, 2019) Contact: RePower South, Brian Gilhuly, CEO, 800-917-4526, www.repowersouth.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Fuel,  


    Microsoft Joins Climate Leadership Council (Ind. Report)
    Climate Leadership Council
    Date: 2019-05-03
    Following up on our 17th April coverage, Microsoft reports it has joined the Climate Leadership Council. The Climate Leadership Council was founded by former secretaries of state James Baker and George Shultz, renowned scientist Stephen Hawking, BP, ExxonMobil, and Shell, General Motors and others. Membership includes 3500+ economists, 27 Nobel laureates and 15 former Chairs of the Council of Economic Advisers.

    According to the organization's website, The founding Members of the Climate Leadership Council believe that America needs a consensus climate solution that bridges partisan divides, strengthens our economy and protects our shared environment."

    The Council's carbon dividends solution embodies the conservative principles of free markets and limited government. It also offers an equitable, popular and politically-viable way forward, paving the way for a much-needed bipartisan climate breakthrough. The Council's carbon dividends program is based on four interdependent pillars:

  • A gradually rising and revenue-neutral carbon tax;
  • Carbon dividend payments to all Americans, funded by 100 pct of the revenue;
  • The rollback of carbon regulations that are no longer necessary; and
  • Border carbon adjustments to level the playing field and promote American competitiveness.

    Alongside a growing carbon tax, the Climate Leadership Council wants to rollback carbon regulations that are no longer necessary and pay these carbon taxes back to citizens in the form of dividends. The group also plans to push for rising carbon taxes in replacement of other climate legislation while protecting its members from historic climate damage payments, according to its website.

    Microsoft recently committed to a $15 per ton internal carbon tax and announced that its campus will soon be run with 100 pct carbon-free electricity. It also ramped up its data center plans to run on 70 pct renewable by 2023. (Source: Microsoft, Climate Leadership Council, WinBuzzer, 2 May, 2019) Contact: Climate Leadership Council, www.clcouncil.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Climate Leadership Council,  Carbon Emissions,  Carbon Tax,  


  • EPA Urged to Reconsider E15 (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
    American Petroleum Institute
    Date: 2019-05-01
    NMMA, the American Petroleum Institute (API) and the American Motorcyclist Association (AMA) have joined forces in opposition to the EPA's proposal to allow year-round sale of E15 gasoline:

    "We are not fighting against year-round E15 sales just for fun -- we oppose EPA's reckless proposal because it will increase the availability of a fuel that destroys marine engines and jeopardizes the safety of boaters," said NMMA senior VP of government and legal affairs Nicole Vasilaros. "With more than three in five Americans mistakenly assuming that any gas sold at gas stations is safe for all of their products, it is clear that the federal government has shirked its responsibility to effectively protect consumers from a fuel deemed so dangerous that its federally prohibited from being used in countless consumer products. And the last thing the government should do is pump more E15 into the fuel supply. Instead of jamming through a policy that almost nobody likes, EPA should focus on preventing consumers from misfueling -- including better labeling and stronger safeguards at the pump.

    "EPA's decision to expand the sale of E15 gasoline to the summer months makes no sense. It is clearly contrary to the law and it reverses nearly 30 years of statutory interpretation from the agency. Studies have shown that E15 gasoline can damage vehicle engines and fuel systems -- potentially leaving Americans with expensive car repair bills as a result of bad policy from Washington. In fact, nearly three out of four vehicles on the road today were not designed for E15." said API VP of downstream and industry operations Frank Macchiarola.

    "To make matters worse, the agency's proposed changes to the RINs market could increase costs for fuel producers and lead to higher prices for consumers. Additionally, fuel producers who have complied with the law and have already made capital investments and business decisions based on the existing RFS and RINs program will be faced with uncertainty and a moving goal post." (Source: American Petroleum Institute, NMMA, PR, 30 April, 2019) Contact: API, Frank Macchiarola, Dir., (202) 682-8114, www.api.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News RFS,  American Petroleum Institute,  E15,  Ethanol,  Ethanol Blend,  Biofuel,  


    Energy Efficiency Specialist Redaptive Opens in Denver (Ind Report)
    Redaptive
    Date: 2019-05-01
    Energy efficiency as a service provider Redaptive is reporting the opening of an office in Denver, Colorado where it has 20 projects.

    Redpative offers energy efficiency as a service, covering all the upfront costs. The company designs the project, pays for the equipment and construction, maintains the equipment and monitors the building's systems to verify the energy savings which, according to the ACEEE can save up to 25 pct in energy costs.

    The company presently manages over 1,300 sites, covering more than 100 million square-feet of commercial and industrial facilities in 44 states, according to the company. (Source: Redaptive, Denver Post, 29 April, 2019) Contact: Redaptive, (415) 413-0445, www.redaptive.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Redaptive,  Energy Efficiency,  


    NORESC, Keesler AFB Ink Energy Savings Contract (Ind. Report)
    NORESCO
    Date: 2019-05-01
    Westborough, Mass.-based energy efficiency specialist NORESCO reports it is implementing self-funding facility improvements at Keesler Air Force Base (AFB) in Biloxi, Mississippi, through a $32.7 million guaranteed energy savings performance contract (ESPC).

    The project, contracted through DLA Energy and in collaboration with the Air Force Civil Engineer Center, will help the base advance resiliency, security and renewable energy usage while reducing deferred maintenance and energy costs.

    The scope of work includes: a 1.5MW solar photovoltaic (PV) array; chiller plant optimization controls; outdated building controls replacement; installation of 30,000 LED light fixtures; and others. The project also includes oversight of the controls and maintenance of the PV array throughout the contract term. (Source: NORESCO, PR 30 April, 2019) Contact: Noresco, www.noresco.com; Keesler AFB, www.keesler.af.mil

    More Low-Carbon Energy News NORESCO,  Energy Efficiency,  


    EPA Says Brace for Climate Change Impacts (Report Attached)
    EPA
    Date: 2019-04-29
    In Washington, the US EPA has released a 150-page report in the Federal Register on coping with the fallout from climate change related natural disasters and how to address the debris left in the wake of floods, hurricanes and wildfires.

    Various recent studies have identified how climate change is already affecting the U.S. and the globe -- regional temperatures have increased by almost 2 degrees Fahrenheit since the 1970s, early snow-melts extending the fire season by three months and quintupling the number of large fires. Another EPA co-authored paper found that unless the U.S. slashes carbon emissions, climate change will probably cost the United States hundreds of billions of dollars annually by 2100.

    Download the EPA report HERE. (Source: EPA, Washington Post, 27 April, 2019)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Climate Change,  Climate Change Mitigarion,  EPA,  


    B.C. Ups Energy Efficiency, Emissions Cutting Incentives (Ind. Report)
    BC,Carbon Emissions
    Date: 2019-04-29
    In Victoria, the NDP government of British Columbia Premier John Horgan reports its Better Buildings program is increasing incentives and rebates to as much as $20,000 per project to help homeowners and businesses save energy and cut greenhouse gas emissions.

    The plan allows for $14,100 for a home and $220,000 for a commercial business to make the energy-saving changes. The program is aimed at encouraging the switch to high-efficiency heating equipment and improve building envelopes, which include walls, windows, roofs and foundations.

    The incentives aim to help replace fossil fuel heating systems with electric air-source heat pumps, improve insulation, encourage upgrades to high-efficiency natural gas furnaces and install more windows and doors that minimize heat loss. (Source: BC News, 26 April, 2019)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon Emissions,  Energy Efficiency,  Energy Efficiency Incentives ,  


    Melting Arctic Permafrost Impact Costs Pegged at $70tn (Int'l)
    Methane
    Date: 2019-04-26
    A study of the economic consequences of a melting Arctic from the VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland (VTT) in Espoo has found that the release of methane and CO2 from thawing permafrost will accelerate global warming and add up to $70 trillion to the worlds climate bill.

    The study authors contend their study is the first to calculate the economic impact of permafrost melt and reduced albedo -- a measure of how much light that hits a surface is reflected without being absorbed -- based on the most advanced computer models of what is likely to happen in the Arctic as temperatures rise.

    The study notes that on the current trajectory of at least 3 degree C of warming by the end of the century, melting permafrost is expected to discharge up to 280 gigatonnes of carbon dioxide and 3 gigatonnes of methane, which is 10 to 20 times more damaging to the the afmosphere than carbon dioxide. This would increase the global climate-driven impacts by $70 trillion between now and 2300, the report concludes. (Source: VIT, Weekened Leader, 22 April, 2019) Contact: VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland, +358 20 722 111, +358 20 722 7001 - fax., www.vttresearch.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News VIT,  Permafrost,  Climate Change,  Methane,  

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