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Concentration of CO2 in the Atmosphere

March 31 Green Energy News

Headline News:

  • “GCL Plans To Invest $2.5 Billion In World’s Largest Solar Panel Factory” • A report published by Power Technology says China’s GCL Systems Integration Technology plans to invest more than $2.5 billion to build the world’s largest solar panel factory. It will reportedly be able to produce enough solar panels to meet half of global demand. [CleanTechnica]

Solar Farm (GCL image)

  • “Northland Makes Canadian Offshore Move” • Northland Power, a Canadian company, is to buy an early-stage offshore wind development from NaiKun Wind Energy Group off British Columbia, Canada. The deal, which is expected to close in mid-2020, will see Northland take 100% ownership of the NaiKun offshore wind farm. [reNEWS]
  • “This Company Wants To Turn Your Windows Into Solar Panels” • What if every window could generate electricity? MIT spin-off Ubiquitous Energy has developed transparent solar cells. Its ClearView Power windows are “solar glass” that turn sunlight into energy without the blue-grey opaque panels we generally associate with solar energy. [CNN]
  • “Coronavirus And The States: Plastic Bag Bans On Hold; Nuclear Plants Run Low On Gloves, Masks, Wipes” • Several states have put their plastic bag bans on hold or banned the use of reusable bags to stem the spread of the novel coronavirus. The Plastic Industry Association called bag bans “a public safety risk.” Greenpeace disagreed. [Missoula Current]
  • “States Quietly Pass Laws Criminalizing Fossil Fuel Protests Amid Coronavirus Chaos” • At least three states, Kentucky, South Dakota, and West Virginia, have passed laws putting new criminal penalties on protests against fossil fuel infrastructure. The laws were passed in just the past two weeks amid the chaos of the coronavirus pandemic. [HuffPost]

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

ABX 2020 is Seeking Dynamic Speakers for its Educational Program: Call for Proposals Deadline is April 17, 2020

ABX | ArchitectureBoston Expo is seeking industry leaders, educators, consultants, researchers, and technical experts to share their knowledge and business expertise as presenters for the educational conference program.

Taking place November 4-5, 2020, at the Boston Convention & Exhibition Center, the educational conference program addresses a wide range of topics relevant to the AEC and design industries.

“With ABX being more than seven months away, we are diligently moving forward with development of a compelling educational program featuring challenging and substantial content, to address the leading topics and issues in the industry,” said Lindsay Roberts, Group Director. “When we begin to emerge from these uncertain times, face-to-face education will be more important than ever and ABX will deliver an impactful and engaging educational conference program.”

The primary audience of the educational conference program includes architects, builders,  contractors, engineers and other design professionals who are looking for quality content that challenges them and provides real world-solutions that they can take back to the office and implement immediately.

There are no pre-defined topics for workshop submissions and all topics relevant to the AEC and design industries are welcomed. All proposals must be submitted online no later than Friday, April 17, 2020, at 11:59 pm EDT via http://www.abexpo.com/cfp.

Questions should be directed to Jennifer Hughes, Senior Education Manager, at program@abexpo.com. For information about ABX, please visit www.abexpo.com or call 972.536.6444. Additional show information can be found on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube.

2020 National Home Performance Conference Update

Dear attendees, members, partners, and friends,

As you know, Building Performance Association has been monitoring coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic over the last few weeks and the impact on the 2020 National Home Performance Conference & Trade Show.

In light of the CDC recommendation to cancel large scale gatherings of 50 or more, we are canceling the in-person 2020 National Home Performance Conference & Trade Show in New Orleans, LA. This was not an easy decision, but we are grateful to the home and building performance community for continuing to engage with us throughout this process. We value your continued partnership as we navigate all of this.

Because we feel our industry is too important and the content too valuable to cancel this event entirely, we have moved the conference online. Visit the 2020 National Home Performance Virtual Conference site to learn more.

Thank you for your patience as we work through this difficult situation alongside you and determine how best to serve the industry. We know you will have a lot of questions about the changes to the conference and we will be providing answers to those questions in the coming days.

For now, know that BPA is here to support you, your business, and our industry. We will be posting updates regularly as plans for an alternative conference experience develops. Please check back here and on our social media channels for more information in the days ahead. In the meantime, please do everything you can to remain healthy.

We truly believe that by working together we can navigate these challenging times and come out stronger in the end.

As always, please contact BPA with questions. To ensure you receive the latest developments about future conference alternatives, sign up for our Education and Events communications here.

All the best,

Nate Natale
Vice President of Education and Events
Building Performance Association
(412) 424-0041
nnatale@building-performance.org

March 30 Green Energy News

Headline News:

  • “BYD Unveils New Fire-Resistant And Explosion-Resistant Blade Battery” • BYD announced its new Blade Battery. The company says it can withstand all sorts of punishments that cause ordinary lithium battery cells to burn or explode. These are things like being punctured by a nail, crushed, bent, heated to 300°C, or overcharged by 260%. [CleanTechnica]

BYD Blade Battery (Image credit: BYD)

  • “No One Is Buying Canada’s Oil: A Preview Of The Near Future New Normal” • As Saudi Arabia and Russia engage in a price war, lower grades of oil get hard to sell. One result is that Alberta’s crude oil is selling for less than it costs to ship it. Western Canada Select, the domestic heavy oil benchmark, has come in at $4.58 (US) per barrel. [CleanTechnica]
  • “Coal Miner’s Coronavirus Calamity” • Troubled Pan-Pacific coal miner Coronado Global Resources had to idle its Central Appalachian thermal and metallurgical coal mines. It blamed the COVID-19 induced economic downturn in much of the world. All hourly employees will be laid off. Essential salaried workers will keep working. [mining-journal.com]
  • “Plastic-Eating Bacteria Could Be Small Step Toward Tackling World’s Pollution Crisis” • When products are made out of polyurethane, a synthetic chemical compound, they typically end up being buried in a landfill. Now, scientists have discovered a strain of bacteria that can degrade the harmful compounds in polyurethane. [CNN]
  • “US Rig Count Crashes As Oil War Takes Hold” • The oil price war and impact of COVID-19 has hit the US fracking sector like a sledgehammer las the number of active oil rigs slumped by 40 or 8% in just one week. That is 8% of the total. The fall was one of the largest ever recorded and followed a week in which the number fell by 19. [ShareCafe]

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

March 29 Green Energy News

Headline News:

  • “US Coal Exports Declined In 2019” • In 2019, US coal exports fell to 93 million short tons, down 20% from the previous year, the Energy Information Administration’s Annual Coal Report says. Steam coal exports were affected by the downturn in global coal demand, dropping 30% in 2019 from 2018. Metallurgical coal was down 12%. [Beckley Register-Herald]

Wyoming coal train (Greg Goebel, Wikimedia Commons)

  • “Exxon May Crush Bailout Hopes For Suffering Fracking Companies” • In a remarkable interview on March 26, CEO Scott Sheffield of shale firm Pioneer Natural Resources gave great clarity to why shale companies are unlikely to get bailed out and why the American Petroleum Institute has been touting free markets and opposing bailouts. [EnerCom Inc]
  • “‘Misinformation Kills’: The Link Between Climate Denial And Coronavirus Conspiracies” • Misinformation is being spread, scientific warnings are being ignored, and leading Republicans have said that addressing the problem is either too expensive or too difficult. No, this isn’t climate change: This is the new reality of the novel coronavirus. [Grist]
  • “Off-The-Radar Renewable Energy Explosion After COVID-19 Dust Settles” • Renewable energy advocates raised the alarm when it became clear that the new $2 trillion stimulus package will not shine so kindly on wind, solar, and other clean tech. But the groundwork for a low carbon revolution was laid by another stimulus bill, passed 11 years ago. [CleanTechnica]
  • “Trump’s Dangerous War On Science” • Long before the onset of the COVID 19 pandemic, the world knew that Donald Trump plays fast and loose with science. In his approach to the subject, Trump is following in the footsteps of autocrats of the past. Will the result be similarly disastrous for the US, and for the rest of the world as well? [The Globalist]

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

March 28 Green Energy News

Headline News:

“Volvo Moves To Rail Transport To Reduce Carbon Emissions” • Volvo is just one of the many companies switching from over-the-road trucks to rail transport to move cars from its factories to storage depots across Europe, China, and the US. The switch to rail reduced CO₂ emissions by nearly 75% (!) on one European delivery route. [CleanTechnica]

Car traveling by train (Image: Volvo Cars)

  • “Renewables Set To Win During China’s COVID-19 Lockdown” • In China, lower demand for electricity during the COVID-19 downturn is affects power generation sectors unevenly. Thermal power generation dropped 9% year-on-year during the first two months of the year, but wind generation increased by 1% and solar generation was up 12%. [Smart Energy]
  • “US Renewable Energy Increases In 2019” • The production of US energy from solar sources increased by 13.85% in 2019 while output from windpower grew by 10.06%, according to a SUN DAY Campaign analysis of newly-released data from the Energy Information Administration’s latest issue of the Monthly Energy Review. [North American Windpower]
  • “The Coronavirus Is a Fast-Motion Climate Crisis” • We were told that “everything was under control” or that the worry was nothing more than “a hoax.” Instead of acting competent, the president has tried to lie, bluster, and bluff his way through the threat. The mishandling of the coronavirus has terrifying parallels to the climate crisis. [Rolling Stone]
  • “Oil Price Volatility Will Give A Boost To Renewables” • You might think that a low oil price is good news sales of fuel-burning electricity generators, but that may not be true. The financing that makes building new facilities possible relies on stable prices during the term of the loans. So the growth of renewables is not related to the price of oil. [CleanTechnica]
  • “Groups Selected For NYSERDA’s Clean Energy Integration Challenge” • Five teams won awards in the first two rounds of the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority’s Future Grid Challenge. The challenge is aimed at developing solutions to integrate clean and renewable energy into the electric grid. [Solar Power World]

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

March 27 Green Energy News

Headline News:

  • “Federal Judge Rules Permits For Dakota Access Pipeline Are Invalid” • Even though the Dakota Access pipeline has been completed and placed in service, a federal judge ruled this week that all the environmental permits for it were granted without adequate review or input from the Indigenous communities impacted by it. [CleanTechnica]

Tribal land (Credit: Standing Rock Sioux Tribe)

  • “UK Renewables Bask In Record 2019” • Renewable energy generated a record 37% of the UK’s electricity demand in 2019, with wind contributing more than half of the amount, according to new statistics released by the UK government. Onshore and offshore wind farms each contributed 9.9% of the total amount of electricity generated. [reNEWS]
  • “AEMO Warns Any Further Delays In Renewables Transition Could Hit Gas Supplies” • Australia’s Energy Market Operator has warned that any delays to at least 30 GW and up to 47 GW of new renewable energy capacity required to realize its draft Integrated System Plan could force it to lean more heavily on costly and polluting gas. [RenewEconomy]
  • “Renewables Leader to Washington, DC: More Than 300,000 Jobs Are Not ‘Ridiculous’” • A renewables energy leader strongly urges lawmakers to ensure the clean energy industry, particularly wind and solar jobs, is included in the next phase of federal stimulus spending to defend against the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic. [EnerCom Inc]
  • “In Australia, One Climate Change Denier Comes Back To Science (Because Coronavirus)” • Over two months, Australian blogger Jo Nova has kept her readers abreast of the pandemic, as her climate conspiracy theory posts have dried up and she covers coronavirus. She calls for quick and drastic measures to deal with the problem. [Red, Green, and Blue]

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

INVITE: Conversation with GMP–Energy & Climate Resilience

We hope you can join REV next Tuesday, March 31 @ 12:30 pm for a conversation with GMP about energy and climate resilience.   

Speakers:

Brian Otley, Senior Vice President & Chief Operating Officer, GMP
Josh Castonguay, Vice President, Chief Innovation Officer, GMP
Olivia Campbell Andersen, Executive Director, REV

GMP recently filed a Climate Plan with the Vermont Public Utility Commission (ePUC Case No. 20-0276-PET), proposing resiliency and reliability investments to mitigate the increasing impacts of storms damaging the grid. Renewable Energy Vermont invites you to a webinar briefing and conversation with GMP executives to learn more about the proposed plan.

The extensive $67+ million multi-year plan includes: projects to address at risk energy infrastructure including hydro generation and substations in flood zones; IT upgrades to improve distributed energy management, grid, & customer resilience; new resiliency zones with energy storage projects, and more.

RSVP to join our conversation about creating a renewable and more resilient energy system in Vermont.

BRIEF NEWS UPDATE: EIA’s Year-End 2019 Data

SUN DAY CAMPAIGN

 EIA’s 2019 YEAR-END ENERGY REPORT:

 DRIVEN BY STRONG SOLAR AND WIND GROWTH, U.S. PRODUCTION AND CONSUMPTION OF RENEWABLE ENERGY INCREASE SLIGHTLY IN 2019

 CO2 EMISSIONS FROM ENERGY USE DIP AND FALL BACK TO 2017’s LEVEL

The production of domestic energy* from solar sources increased by 13.85% in 2019 while that from wind grew by 10.06%, according to a SUN DAY Campaign analysis of newly-released data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA).

The latest issue of EIA’s “Monthly Energy Review” (with data through December 31, 2019) reveals that – for the first time – in 2019, energy from solar sources (1.044 quadrillion Btus or quads) topped 1% of total U.S. energy production while that from wind reached nearly 3% (2.71%).

However, the strong growth in solar and wind energy’s contribution to the nation’s energy mix was largely offset by declines in hydropower (down 6.41%), biomass (down 3.67%), and biofuels (down 2.92%). Geothermal remained unchanged.

Consequently, energy production by all renewable energy sources combined (i.e., biofuels, biomass, geothermal, hydropower, solar, wind) increased just marginally last year (0.24%) compared to 2018. Consumption of renewable energy also expanded – but by only 0.53%.

While energy production by the combination of all renewables did register very modest growth, a 7.06% expansion in output by fossil fuels resulted in renewables’ share of total energy production actually dropping from 12.14% in 2018 to 11.52% in 2019. But renewables’ share of domestic energy consumption did increase slightly from 11.27% to 11.45%.

Other key findings in EIA’s report include:

**Biomass remained the dominant renewable energy source in 2019: 2.833 quads compared to wind (2.736 quads), hydropower (2.496 quads), biofuels (2.327 quads), solar (1.044 quads), and geothermal (0.209 quads).

**Energy production by coal fell to its lowest level in 50 years (14.322 quads in 2019 compared to 14.607 quads in 1970).

**Production of natural gas (dry) increased by 10.17% and accounted for 34.52% of total domestic energy production. Crude oil production rose by 11.11% and accounted for 25.15% of the U.S.’s total output. Natural gas plant liquids accounted for another 6.27%.

**Energy contributed by nuclear power changed only slightly (8.462 quads in 2019 compared to 8.438 quads in 2018) but its share of the total energy production mix declined from 8.82% to 8.37%.

**Carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from energy consumption (i.e., oil, gas, coal, biomass) fell by 2.71% resulting mostly from a 13.97% decline in coal-related emissions. However, CO2 emissions in 2019 were at essentially the same level as they were in 2017.

**While domestic use of fuel ethanol rose slightly (up 0.82%), production of the fuel fell by 1.91%. A sharper drop was reported for biodiesel (down 7.17%); consumption of biodiesel also declined – by 4.94%.

# # # # # # # # #

 *“Energy” refers to more than just electricity (for which EIA separately provides data in its “Electric Power Monthly” reports). It also includes other forms such as liquid transportation fuels, thermal end-uses, and feedstocks for petrochemicals.

The latest issue of EIA’s “Monthly Energy Review” was officially released on March 26, 2020.
For the data cited in this news update, see the following tables:

https://www.eia.gov/totalenergy/data/monthly/pdf/sec1_3.pdf

https://www.eia.gov/totalenergy/data/monthly/pdf/sec1_5.pdf

https://www.eia.gov/totalenergy/data/monthly/pdf/sec1_7.pdf

https://www.eia.gov/totalenergy/data/monthly/pdf/sec10_3.pdf

https://www.eia.gov/totalenergy/data/monthly/pdf/sec10_7.pdf

https://www.eia.gov/totalenergy/data/monthly/pdf/sec10_8.pdf

https://www.eia.gov/totalenergy/data/monthly/pdf/sec11_3.pdf

https://www.eia.gov/totalenergy/data/monthly/pdf/sec11_10.pdf

 

March 26 Green Energy News

Headline News:

  • “Wind Capacity Grows By Over 60 GW In 2019” • Global wind energy capacity increased by over 60GW in 2019, making it the second highest year for new installations, according to a report from the Global Wind Energy Council. The 15th edition of the “Global Wind Report” said year-on-year growth in 2019 was 19%, with 60.4 GW installed. [reNEWS]

Attaching a blade (GWEC image)

  • “Coal power remains in global decline, despite Chinese surge” • The impact of coronavirus has prompted a surge in coal-fired power plant construction permits in China, with the government issuing more permits in a couple of weeks of March than it did all of last year. However, would-be developers are having difficulty finding financing. [The Sydney Morning Herald]
  • “Nature Is Trying To Tell Us Something. Is There Anybody Listening?” • The coronavirus has upended our society. The head of the Federal Reserve predicts a 50% reduction in America’s GDP in the 2nd and 3rd quarters of this year with unemployment of 30% or more. Meanwhile, President Trump is pushing for the pandemic to be over by Easter. [CleanTechnica]
  • “This Giant Glacier In Antarctica Is Melting, And It Could Raise Sea Levels By Five Feet, Scientists Say” • In the last 22 years, one giant glacier in Antarctica has retreated almost three miles. If it fully thaws, sea levels would rise almost five feet, according to researchers at the University of California, Irvine and NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. [CNN]
  • “Coal’s Demise Is Fueling A Wave Of Green Energy Solutions” • In Europe, the US, and China, renewables are now cheaper than coal – by a lot. And now, the industry is facing another challenge: COVID-19. The slow and painful death of the coal industry is creating some interesting new opportunities for investors in green energy solutions. [OilPrice.com]

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