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Concentration of CO2 in the Atmosphere

November 15 Green Energy News

Resilience and Sustainability:

  • The first article in a new series in The Guardian about individuals helping to make cities more resilient: There are many lessons to be learned from Alex Wilson’s farm in Vermont. Building durable, well-insulated buildings with simple, redundant systems out of easy-to-fix local, renewable materials in strong, caring communities makes sense just about anywhere. [The Guardian]

Opinion:

  • “Dark Money Makes The Utility World Go ‘Round” A so-called consumer advocacy group from with ties to the fossil fuel-loving Koch brothers recently submitted 2,500 signatures from Wisconsin ratepayers to the Wisconsin Public Service Commission asking for rate increases and a hefty tax on solar-powered consumers. [CleanTechnica]
  • “Watching the Watchdogs: 10 Years of the IEA World Energy Outlook” The IEA World Energy Outlook has gradually moved from rosy to what may be called “increasingly reality-based.” Nevertheless, it seems that politics continues to play a strong role in what is allowed to be published. [Resilience]

World:

  • India’s Energy Minister Piyush Goyal has announced that India plans to completely stop coal imports within 2 to 3 years. India, China, and the US account for about ¾ of the world’s coal consumption. China and the US are both cutting use of coal, so the Indian announcement looks bad for coal exporters. [CleanTechnica]
  • Quebec is looking to update its 10-year energy plan, with a new wind energy policy being a vital part of it. Quebec’s Natural Resources and Energy Minister is reopening consultations on a new ten-year energy plan. One information source is a report advocating a further push in clean energy, including wind energy. [CleanTechnica]
  • The China-US climate agreement between the world’s top two polluters puts pressure on India to become more energy efficient and use more renewable energy. “The international community will now expect India to make some firm commitments,” said a former head of India’s Environment Ministry. [Longview News-Journal]
  • The Asian Development Bank and the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs today signed an agreement to fund the South Asia Sub-regional Economic Cooperation Power Expansion Project with a grant of approximately $60 million. The grant will be used to address problems in Nepal’s energy sector. [Himalayan Times]
  • Gaelectric launched its £58 million Dunbeg Wind Farm in Northern Ireland. The 42-MW wind farm comprises 14 Enercon wind turbines, with the capacity to generate up to 3 MW. It will generate sufficient renewable power to meet the electricity demand of nearly 24,000 homes on an annual basis. [PennEnergy]
  • World’s first renewable energy plant to combine geothermal and biomass is underway after Enel announced the biomass unit has begun construction adjacent to existing Cornia 2 geothermal plant in Tuscany. The biomass unit will be fed with locally sourced forest biomass to fuel a 5-MW boiler. [CSP World]

US:

  • Republicans in the US approved legislation, 252-161, for the ninth time to authorize construction of the Keystone XL oil pipeline. The Senate is expected to vote Tuesday on the bill. If it overcomes a 60-vote threshold it will head to President Barack Obama’s desk where he will either sign it into law or veto it. [Great Falls Tribune]
  • The much-maligned Department of Energy loan guarantee program that funded solar manufacturer Solyndra and electric vehicle maker Fisker Automotive is now making money for U.S. taxpayers. Further losses are not expected, and interest on the loans will ultimately net up to $6 billion for taxpayers. [Utility Dive]
  • Google, Yahoo and Microsoft are part of a growing number of tech and other major companies that are entering into long-term “power purchase” agreements (PPAs) with wind farms to ensure a steady stream of power, at a fixed cost, over a period as long as several decades. [Independent Online]
  • In great news for the US wind industry, the latest data shows it leads the world on wind energy production. Even though China has a third more wind turbines installed, US wind farms are pumping out 20% more electricity, accounting for over 5% of US electricity this year for the first time. [SustainableBusiness.com]
  • Facebook has a new data center in Iowa that is 100% powered by renewables. Rights have gone to Berkshire Hathaway’s MidAmerican Energy to own and operate it.  Over 140 MW of renewable energy is added to the grid, which is more than enough to power the new Facebook Data Center. [InvestCorrectly]
  • The Electric Reliability Council of Texas says that wind-powered generation recently set another record. The record was set at 10:39 a.m. on Nov. 2, when instantaneous output reached 10,301 MW, providing 33.4% of the power within ERCOT. The old record, set on March 26, totaled 10,296 MW. [North American Windpower]

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