Month: December 2020

Study Sees Almost $1 Trillion Being Wasted on Coal-Plant Overbuild

first_imgStudy Sees Almost $1 Trillion Being Wasted on Coal-Plant Overbuild FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Ewa Krukowska for Bloomberg News:Power companies worldwide risk wasting investment of $981 billion in the coal-fired electricity plants they are seeking to build even though nations have pledged to reduce pollution, a report by researchers from non-government environmental organizations showed.“While the amount of electricity generated from coal has declined for two years in a row, the industry has ignored this trend and continues to build new coal-fired generating plants at a rapid pace, creating an increasingly severe capacity bubble,” according to the report published by green groups including CoalSwarm, the Sierra Club and Greenpeace.The industry has 338 gigawatts of new coal capacity under construction and 1,086 gigawatts in various stages of planning, comparable to the equivalent of 1,500 coal plants, according to the report, according to the report based on the Global Coal Plant Tracker database.Since 2010, 473 gigawatts of coal power capacity gas been added, with China building 298 gigawatts and India 101 gigawatts, the study found. The average coal plant in the “massively overbuilt” Chinese market is now used less than 50 percent of time and the rate is still decreasing.Increasing the number of coal-fired power plants could undermine the global goal to cap temperature increases since pre-industrial times to 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit), according to the report.“Even with no further building of coal plants, emissions from current coal plants will still be 150 percent higher than what is consistent with scenarios limiting warming to 2 degrees Celsius — meaning that most operating and new coal-fired plants will have to be phased out well before the end of their planned lifetime,” it said.Utilities May Waste $981 Billion on Coal Plants, Study Findslast_img read more

U.S. Wind Generation Up 16% in First Half of 2017

first_imgU.S. Wind Generation Up 16% in First Half of 2017 FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享SNL:U.S. wind generation increased 16% year over year during the first half of 2017, according to U.S. Energy Information Administration data.Nine of the 10 states with the most wind generation saw a first-half 2017 increase in electricity output of at least 3% year over year. Of those states, Kansas had the largest year-to-year increase in net wind generation, at 35.9%. North Dakota and Oklahoma also saw wind generation increase at least 30%. According to the analysis, 11,580 MW of wind capacity has come online since the beginning of 2016, including 6,681 MW in high-wind areas such as Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas.More ($): US wind generation up 16% in H1’17last_img read more

Xcel, steelmaker sign novel solar-tied power supply deal

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享The Pueblo Chieftain:Xcel Energy and EVRAZ Pueblo have agreed on a long-term electricity contract that guarantees the steelmaker price certainty for the next 22 years, the two companies announced Thursday. The agreement also clears the path for a potential major upgrade and expansion of the 1,000-worker mill.According to publicly available documents released in recent months by Xcel and state economic development officials, EVRAZ sought assurances of low electricity prices before committing to unspecified upgrade and expansion projects of about $500 million.The agreement between Xcel and EVRAZ awaits review by the state Public Utilities Commission as part of the regulatory agency’s consideration of Xcel’s plan to decommission two of the three coal-fired units at its Pueblo Comanche power plant and replace the electricity with solar, wind and natural gas power sources. A key feature is Xcel’s plan to build one of its planned new solar farms — a 240-megawatt solar facility — on EVRAZ property. The steelmaker is Xcel’s largest customer in Colorado.“We saw a great opportunity to retain a valued customer, assist in its expansion in one of Southern Colorado’s premier communities and increase use of cleaner energy,” Alice Jackson, Xcel’s Colorado president, said in a statement Thursday.Reaching an agreement with EVRAZ is part of Xcel’s Colorado Energy Plan, the utility’s long-term plan under review by the PUC that spells out how the power company will provide electricity in the future. Statewide, the plan calls for $2.5 billion of investments in more solar power and battery storage (700 megawatts); more wind power (1,100 megawatts); and purchasing 385 megawatts of gas-fired power. Many of the improvements will be built in the Pueblo area.More: Xcel, EVRAZ reach long-term power agreement Xcel, steelmaker sign novel solar-tied power supply deallast_img read more

Keystone XL pipeline fight heads to Nebraska Supreme Court

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Omaha World-Herald:Attorneys for opponents of the Keystone XL pipeline and TransCanada will square off Thursday morning before the Nebraska Supreme Court in a lawsuit that could erect a new roadblock to construction of the $8 billion project.Landowners who oppose the pipeline, as well as environmental groups and Indian tribes, are seeking to nullify the Nebraska Public Service Commission’s 3-2 approval a year ago of a pipeline route across Nebraska.The lawsuit claims, among other things, that TransCanada didn’t formally seek approval of the “mainline alternative” route that was approved, and didn’t prove that the pipeline is in the public interest of the state. The lawsuit maintains that the company should reapply for a pipeline route, which would delay the much-delayed project for several more months.Attorneys for the Canadian pipeline developer have argued that even though the PSC didn’t OK the “preferred route” suggested by the corporation, it followed all state laws in approving the alternative. That route, TransCanada attorneys have said, is a superior route because it affects fewer water wells and passes through 84.6 fewer miles of the migratory path of the endangered whooping crane.It could take the State Supreme Court several weeks to rule after hearing oral arguments.Nebraska has become ground zero in the national environmental debate over the Keystone XL pipeline. The 36-inch pipeline would carry up to 830,000 barrels a day of thick tar sands crude oil from Canada to refineries on the U.S. Gulf Coast that are specially set up to refine such oil. TransCanada officials have said they have sufficient commitments from shippers to use the Keystone XL, but the company has not yet made the final financial commitment to build it.More: Challenge to Keystone XL pipeline route goes before the Nebraska Supreme Court Keystone XL pipeline fight heads to Nebraska Supreme Courtlast_img read more

Money-losing fracking industry struggling to attract new investment

first_imgMoney-losing fracking industry struggling to attract new investment FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享The Wall Street Journal ($):The once-powerful partnership between fracking companies and Wall Street is fraying as the industry struggles to attract investors after nearly a decade of losing money.Frequent infusions of Wall Street capital have sustained the U.S. shale boom. But that largess is running out. New bond and equity deals have dwindled to the lowest level since 2007. Companies raised about $22 billion from equity and debt financing in 2018, less than half the total in 2016 and almost one-third of what they raised in 2012, according to Dealogic.The loss of that lifeline is forcing shale companies-which have helped to turn the U.S. into an energy superpower-to reduce spending and face the prospect of slower growth. More than a dozen companies have announced spending reductions so far this year, even as crude-oil prices have rallied more than 20% from December lows. More are expected to tighten budgets as they release earnings in coming weeks.The drop in financial backing is especially being felt by smaller, more indebted drillers. But even larger, better-capitalized frackers are facing renewed investor skepticism about whether they can keep spending in check and still hit growth and cash-flow targets.Wall Street support allowed shale companies to persevere through a plunge in oil prices that began in 2014, eventually helping the U.S. surpass Saudi Arabia and Russia as the world’s largest producer of oil, with 11.9 million barrels a day in November, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.More ($): Frackers face harsh reality as Wall Street backs awaylast_img read more

IM and Ayala complete Southeast Asia’s largest solar project

first_imgIM and Ayala complete Southeast Asia’s largest solar project FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享PV Tech:Vietnamese company BIM Group and Filipino firm AC Energy have completed and connected to the grid 330MW of PV capacity spread across three projects in Ninh Thuan, Vietnam, with one 250MW plant being the largest solar installation in Southeast Asia to date.Work began on the projects in January 2018 and took around nine months to complete, with a power purchase agreement (PPA) being signed with monopoly utility EVN at the end of last year. Grid connection for the BIM 1 (30MW), BIM 2 (250MW) and BIM 3 (50MW) solar power plants took place earlier this month.Rivalling these projects, a Thai and Vietnamese partnership are also working on a 420MW plant in Tay Ninh due for completion in June.Collectively, the BIM plants required VND7,000 billion (US$301 million) investment. They will provide power to the equivalent of 200,000 households, producing 600 million kWh annually.BIM Energy and AC Energy of major Filipino corporation Ayala Group had established a joint venture to develop renewable energy projects in Ninh Thuan Province. This province has high levels of irradiation but has also been subject to fears about grid and transmission capacity given the high concentration of solar plants being developed there. This is why the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MOIT) recently updated its next feed-in tariff (FiT) rules incentivising developers to set up projects in less sunny parts of the country and spreading the load.Doan Quoc Huy, vice chairman of BIM Group, general director of BIM Energy Renewable Energy, said: “BIM Group oriented to become the leading pioneer investor in renewable energy in Vietnam to 2022, the total clean energy capacity supplied by BIM Energy will reach a total scale of 1,000MWp of solar and wind power. With the inauguration of a cluster of three plants with the largest capacity in a short period of time is a testament to BIM Group’s long-term commitment to clean energy. We look forward to contributing and joining to protect the environment, fight climate change, support national energy security, build sustainable energy sources for the country’s future.”More: BIM and Ayala complete Southeast Asia’s largest solar projectlast_img read more

High-priced coal seen as a threat to economic growth in the Philippines

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享BusinessWorld:The Philippines’ stellar economic growth has been the talk of the world’s investors and financial leaders for the past several years. As the country powers through insurmountable odds — growing at a solid rate of 6.2% in 2018 despite mounting inflation, interest rates, and a depreciating peso— it remains to be seen whether such growth can be sustainable in the long term.Many challenges await the country’s economic future, from tensions in global trade, talks of the US Federal Reserve raising interest rates, to a worldwide economic downtrend. One such risk involves the Philippines’ current dependence on coal-fired power plants for energy.As power consumption continues to rise on pace with economic expansion, relying too much on coal in the long-term puts the Philippines subject to its fluctuating prices and over-dependence on a single fuel source. In addition to its negative effects on the environment and to health, it is clear that a more sustainable source of energy is needed to power the country’s future development.A cleaner, cheaper, and more reliable alternative that can even help the economy in the long-term is natural gas. Here’s how.In fact, the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA) said in a report in 2017 that the unpredictability of the coal market will drive higher electricity prices and will threaten the industrial strategy of the Philippines.“Excessive reliance on imported coal is one of the main reasons the Philippines has the highest electricity prices in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) region,” Sara Ahmed, an IEEFA energy finance analyst, said.More: Five reasons why natural gas can change the country High-priced coal seen as a threat to economic growth in the Philippineslast_img read more

Wisconsin utility to close four unit, 1,135MW Oak Creek coal-fired station by 2024

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Milwaukee Business Journal:We Energies will retire the oldest part of its coal-fired power plant complex in Oak Creek in 2023 and 2024 as its parent company shifts to more efficient power generation, including renewables, as part of its largest-ever capital projects outlay of $16 billion.The retirements will not include the Elm Road Generating Station in Oak Creek, which was part of the $7 billion Power the Future initiative completed a decade ago.We Energies parent company WEC Energy Corp. of Milwaukee previously indicated plans to retire some of its less-efficient coal-fired plants but didn’t specify the locations. The company’s executive chairman Gale Klappa said in August the company likely would close plants that are “on the bubble economically” and whose shutdowns would improve the environment.During a Tuesday conference call with investment analysts, Klappa referred to the five-year capital-spending plan including “some unit retirements in 2023 and 2024.” In response to a question from the Milwaukee Business Journal, company spokesman Brendan Conway Wednesday disclosed that will include units at the Oak Creek Power Plant.The company also will retire natural gas-powered units in Weston and Marinette as early as 2023, Conway said.The older Oak Creek units were constructed in stages that started in 1959 and ended in 1967. The units have a combined net generating capacity of 1,135 megawatts.[Rich Kirchen]More: We Energies will retire the oldest of its Oak Creek power plants by 2024 Wisconsin utility to close four unit, 1,135MW Oak Creek coal-fired station by 2024last_img read more

Video: TransEpic Mountain Bike Stage Race

first_imgThe Trans-Sylvania Epic in and around State College, PA is one of only a few mountain bike stage races in the country, and they do it right. With its summer camp vibe, high quality trails, and categories for all riding abilities, the Trans-Epic is the best seven days of riding one could ask for.Check out the video below and read the full story here.Trans-Sylvania Epic from Summit Publishing on Vimeo.last_img

Best Fests: River Festivals

first_imgWho says festivals have to be on dry land? Grab your paddle and head for the put-in at these river festivals:Gauley FestSeptember 20-21Summersville, Basics: Started back in 1983 as a victory dance to celebrate the derailment of a dam project that would have disrupted flows of the mighty Gauley, this bash has grown to become the largest paddling festival in the world. In addition to plenty of class V action, you can score some great gear deals and catch up with a who’s who of boat industry folks in the whitewater marketplace. By night, expect plenty of rowdy paddler hijinks in the campground, where moonshine drinking and late-night boxing have been known to occur.Bands: Not announced yet, but not typically the focus of this fest. Expect some local or regional acts that will keep the party going strong.Set Break Escape: Enjoy what you’ve come to celebrate and run the class V rapids of the Gauley. If you’re not a whitewater boater, jump in a raft with one of the area’s many outfitters.FIVE MORE…French Broad River FestivalMay 3-5Hot Springs, N.C.Many come for the stellar line-up of live music, which this year includes Langhorne Slim and the Law, Sol Driven Train, Yarn, and Col. Bruce Hampton. But this is also a great chance to enjoy the French Broad with a popular raft race, a Paddle with Pros clinic, and a river cleanup. Through the years, the good times at this fest have raised boatloads of cash for river access protector American Cheat River FestivalMay 4Albright, W.Va.Friends of the Cheat hosts this annual bash, which features a downriver race, 5K, live tunes, and an art market. It’s a fun day, held to help protect one of the Mountain State’s most important waterways.cheat.orgNew River FestivalJune 7-8Fayetteville, W.Va.This two-day party is taking place to raise awareness for clean water initiatives in the New River watershed. Camp at the Old Rivers Resort and catch live tunes from Dangermuffin and Gangstagrass. You can also take part in kayaking clinics, mountain bikes rides, and whitewater rafting trips.newriverfestival.comFestival for the EnoJuly 4-6Durham, N.C.A staple summer event in the Triangle, this festival raises funds for river protection with a full slate of live roots music, art booths, sustainability workshops, and local Russell Fork RendezvousOctober TBDElkhorn City, Ky.See some of the region’s best paddlers run the rowdy whitewater of Russell Fork, while you also enjoy live music, local food, and bonfires on the banks of the river.russellfork.infoCheck out the rest of our Outdoor Festival Guide!last_img read more