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November 18 Green Energy News

Opinion:

  • “The U.S. Government Has Invested $34 Billion in Renewable Energy – and It’s Making a Profit” Is the United States government a savvier investor in green technology than Silicon Valley’s masters of the universe? It sure looks like it. A report shows that the DOE has far fewer failures than a typical venture capital firm, and is earning money for taxpayers. [TakePart]

World:

  • The Leader of the US Senate says that under the China-US climate deal, China can “do nothing at all for 16 years.” That turns out to be the very reverse of the truth. China is already leading the world in greening its energy supply, and has committed to add a massive 1.3 GW of renewable power capacity every week for 15 years. [The Ecologist]
  • In a huge victory for local communities, public health, and the rule of law, yet another enormous proposed coal plant has been denied clearance in India. In another major setback for the expansion of the coal industry, a panel of judges rejected the environmental clearance for a 3,600-MW coal-fired power plant in Tamil Nadu, India. [Energy Collective]
  • As critics of the Energiewende like to point out, in 2013, Germany’s emissions rose to 952 million tonnes. Nevertheless, while that is an increase, it is actually 23% lower than its figure for 1990, which is the baseline year adopted by nations who signed the Kyoto Accord. By comparison, the world’s emissions are now 61% higher than 1990 levels. [CleanTechnica]
  • Russia and China have signed two large natural gas deals in the last six months as Russia turns its attention eastward in reaction to sanctions and souring relations with Europe, currently Russia’s largest energy export market. But the move has implications beyond Europe, and will have effects on the natural gas producers in the US. [Resilience]
  • Australian senators opposed to wind energy are set to establish yet another inquiry into its alleged effects on power prices, human health and wildlife. The new inquiry, the latest in a long list of investigations into renewable energy and wind power, is proposed by senators who have favored abolishing the renewable energy target. [The Guardian]
  • The groundbreaking ceremony for the construction of a 71-MW c-Si solar panel manufacturing facility in the San Juan province of Argentina was attended by a number of important politicians. Completion is currently expected sometime next year, with the first solar panels coming off the lines sometime in late 2015. [CleanTechnica]

US:

  • Coal-fired power plants have been the backbone of US electricity production for decades, but 25% of them will be retired by the end of this decade. Some of their replacements will be fueled by LNG. Others will make way for a disruptive technology that can “switch from charging to discharging in less than 1 second” and has a “significantly higher capacity use factor.” [CleanTechnica]
  • Ikea, the largest furniture retailer, made its biggest renewable-energy investment to date by buying a 165-MW wind farm in southern Texas. Apex Clean Energy Inc is building the wind farm, which will have 55 Acciona SA 3-MW turbines. Ikea plans to invest a total of $1.9 billion in wind and solar power by the end of 2015. [Businessweek]
  • SunEdison can continue its growth even without the support of tax credits in the US, the company said on Monday, as it agreed to a $2.4 billion deal for privately owned First Wind that will make it the world’s largest developer of wind and solar power. First Wind has wind farms inseveral states, including Maine, New York, and Vermont. [Financial Times]
  • Earthjustice released an interactive map displaying where states currently stand on renewable energy in light of the Obama Administration’s proposed Clean Power Plan. It shows that many states can readily comply with the Clean Power Plan, and some are already aimed at achieving even achieve greater emissions reductions. [AltEnergyMag]
  • The Electric Reliability Council of Texas anticipates that implementation of the US EPA’s proposed rule for reducing greenhouse gas emissions will result in the retirement of up half of ERCOT’s coal generation capacity, raise retail energy bills up to 20% and lead to a greater likelihood of rotating outages. [Platts]
  • Altus Power America, Inc. announced a long-term solar Net Metering Credit Purchase Agreement with the Town of Belchertown, Massachusetts. The 20-year contract will help Belchertown save up to $160,000 annually with estimated savings of $2.7 million over the duration of the 20-year term. [Virtual-Strategy Magazine]

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