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Wind farm to take over former nuclear site in New Jersey

Former nuclear site in N.J. set to become key part of new offshore wind farm,, By Michael Sol Warren | NJ Advance Media for

When the Danish wind developer Orsted won its bid to build a massive wind farm in the ocean off of Atlantic City earlier this year, it immediately faced a new challenge: how to bring that future electricity to land.

Orsted found its solution in a shuttered nuclear power plant.

Last week
, the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities approved Orsted’s purchase of interconnection rights at the former Oyster Creek nuclear power plant in Lacey Township from the plant’s owner, Exelon Generation. The purchase means that Oyster Creek could be used as a landing point for the electricity generated by the company’s Ocean Wind project. ……

The Oyster Creek site is appealing because it already has the infrastructure needed to feed power into the regional electric grid.

According to NJBPU documents, Orsted estimated that it would save $25 million by using an existing interconnection point with the grid, like Oyster Creek, instead of building a totally new one…….

Ocean Wind will be capable of producing 1,100 megawatts of electricity once it goes online; that’s enough to power about 500,000 homes. Orsted expects the project to be completed in 2024. The NJBPU gave its blessing to the Ocean Wind project in June. …..


September 19, 2019 Posted by | renewable, USA | Leave a comment

Study: Germany needs clean energy surge to replace coal, nuclear

September 17, 2019 Posted by | Germany, renewable | Leave a comment

China dominates worldwide solar and wind energy generation

Nikkei Asian Review 17th Aug 2019 China has come to dominate worldwide solar and wind energy generation, in
terms of both its own capacity and its companies’ share of global markets,
leaving previous powerhouses — particularly the U.S. and Japan — to play

August 20, 2019 Posted by | China, renewable | Leave a comment

Renewables – onshore wind from Europe- enough to power the world

August 20, 2019 Posted by | EUROPE, renewable | Leave a comment

Solar power is now cheaper than grid electricity in cities across China

Independent 13th Aug 2019 Solar power is now cheaper than grid electricity in cities across China
which could drive a surge in uptake, according to new research. Some
experts thought China would have to wait decades until solar generation
cost the same as electricity from the grid.
However, thanks to a
combination of technological advances and support from the government,
“grid parity” has already been reached. Scientists found that all of the
344 cities they looked at could have cheaper electricity powered by solar
energy, according to the study published in the journal Nature Energy.
Twenty-two per cent of cities could also have solar systems that would
generate lower cost electricity than coal, according to the researchers,
led by Jinyue Yan from the Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm.

August 15, 2019 Posted by | China, renewable | Leave a comment

No it wasn’t the wind turbines that caused a UK blackout

Dave Toke’s Blog 13th Aug 2019 . No it wasn’t the wind turbines that caused the blackout but batteries
likely to benefit from reaction In the aftermath of last Friday’s blackout
the usual suspects are blaming wind turbines’, but that’s not what the
electricity market nerds are saying.
They are pointing to the fact that big
power outages have happened before the age of large-scale renewable energy
penetration and that stories of crisis at the National Grid are well
overblown. I certainly remember the blackout of 2008 which was caused by
the near simultaneous disconnection of Sizewell B (nuclear) and Longannet
(coal), but then of course we did not see anything in the media about how
it was all the fault of nuclear or coal-fired power plant.
This time a large gas fired power plant tripped, followed a little later by a big
offshore windfarm. Now there is talk of how the grid has become more
unstable because of increasing renewable energy penetration (now around 35%
of electricity on an annual basis) and how, depending on people’s interest
a) we ought to stop this nonsense and get back to having real large power
plant or b) we need more batteries and/or other stuff.
In fact such an approach is decried by top electricity system management experts such as
Nigel Cornwall. He tweeted in response to stories that the National Grid
was beset with a splurge of ‘near misses’ and last-gasp efforts: “Near
misses” and “last minute contracts” is the way the system – and all
electricity systems – is designed to operate. (National Grid) has done a
huge amount to modernise its balancing services, and I am struggling to
understand whose agenda this is. Two large power stations failed at the
evening peak, when the system was already calling for more output/demand
turndown. This was almost an occurrence of Titanic probabilities. You can
of course contract for a huge amount of extra reserve but at immense cost
to consumers’

August 15, 2019 Posted by | ENERGY, UK | Leave a comment

Renewable energy providing more electricity than coal and nuclear power combined in Germany

Renewable energy providing more electricity than coal and nuclear power combined in Germany Independent  Solar, wind, biomass and hydroelectric power generates nearly half of country’s output.   Emma Snaith, 25 Jul 19, 

Renewable sources of energy produced more electricity than coal and nuclear power combined for the first time in Germany, according to new figures.

Solar, wind, biomass and hydroelectric power generation accounted for 47.3 per cent of the country’s electricity production in the first six months of 2019, while 43.4 per cent came from coal-fired and nuclearpower plants.

Around 15 per cent less carbon dioxide was produced than in the same period last year, according to figures published by the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems (ISE) in July.

However, some scientists have attributed the high renewable power output to favourable weather patterns and “market-driven events”.

Fabian Hein, from the think tank Agora Energiewende, told Deutsche Welle the 20 per cent increase in wind production was the result of particularly windy conditions in 2019……..

Renewables accounted for 40 per cent of Germany’s electricity consumption in 2018, according to government figures.

While in the UK, 29 per cent of electricity was sourced from renewables last year.

Germany is aiming to phase out its nuclear power plants by 2022. Its renewable energy has been rising steadily over the last two decades thanks in part to the Renewable Energy Act (EEG), which was reformed last year to cut costs for consumers.

But Germany still relies heavily on coal, gas and lignite for its energy needs.

Germany’s reluctance to end its dependence on coal saw hundreds of climate activists storm one of the country’s biggest open-pit coal mines in June to protest against fossil fuel use.

..electricity production from solar panels rose by six per cent, natural gas by 10 per cent, while the share of nuclear power in the country’s electricity production has remained virtually unchanged.


July 25, 2019 Posted by | Germany, renewable | Leave a comment

Great Britain GB electricity system operator – demand-side response (DSR) is more reliable than nuclear power

The Energyst 18th July 2019 The GB electricity system operator has suggested demand-side response (DSR) is more reliable than nuclear power in its latest Capacity Market auction
guidelines. National Grid ESO has given DSR a de-rating factor of 86 per
cent, while nuclear is de-rated to 81 per cent.

DSR is also deemed to be
marginally more reliable than biomass, coal and most interconnectors, per
the guidelines. Industry participants suggested the move reflected the
expertise of DSR providers in managing their portfolios. “Presumably [the
de-rating factors] reflects recent reliability of the UK nuclear fleet, and
superior performance of aggregators in delivering contracted response,”
wrote Jon Ferris, strategy director at energy blockchain firm Electron.

His comments were welcomed by the Association for Decentralised Energy.

July 22, 2019 Posted by | ENERGY, UK | Leave a comment

In 2019, in Germany, renewables are providing more electricity than are coal and nuclear

German renewables deliver more electricity than coal and nuclear power for the first time, DW,17July19

In Germany, sun, wind, water and biomass have so far produced more electricity in 2019 than coal and nuclear power combined. But it’s a snapshot of a special market situation and might not be a long-term trend.

In Lippendorf, Saxony, the energy supplier EnBW is temporarily taking part of a coal-fired power plant offline. Not because someone ordered it — it simply wasn’t paying off. Gas prices are low, CO2 prices are high, and with many hours of sunshine and wind, renewable methods are producing a great deal of electricity. And in the first half of the year there was plenty of sun and wind.

The result was a six-month period in which renewable energy sources produced more electricity than coal and nuclear power plants together. For the first time 47.3% of the electricity consumers used came from renewable sources, while 43.4% came from coal-fired and nuclear power plants.

In addition to solar and wind power, renewable sources also include hydropower and biomass. Gas supplied 9.3% while the remaining 0.4% came from other sources, such as oil, according to figures published by the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems in July.

A vision of the future

Fabian Hein from the think tank Agora Energiewende stresses that the situation is only a snapshot in time. For example, the first half of 2019 was particularly windy and wind power production rose by around 20% compared to the first half of 2018.

Electricity production from solar panels rose by 6%, natural gas by 10%, while the share of nuclear power in German electricity consumption has remained virtually unchanged.

Coal, on the other hand, declined. Black coal energy production fell by 30% compared to the first half of 2018, lignite fell by 20%. Some coal-fired power plants were even taken off the grid. It is difficult to say whether this was an effect of the current market situation or whether this is simply part of long-term planning, says Hein………

The increase in wind and solar power and the decline in nuclear power have also reduced CO2 emissions. In the first half of 2019, electricity generation emitted around 15% less CO2 than in the same period last year, reported BDEW. However, the association demands that the further expansion of renewable energies should not be hampered. The target of 65% renewable energy can only be achieved if the further expansion of renewable energy sources is accelerated.

July 18, 2019 Posted by | Germany, renewable | 1 Comment

UK reaching zero carbon emissions by 2050 – it is achievable

National Grid ESO 12th July 2019 Reaching net zero carbon emissions by 2050 is achievable but requires immediate action across the energy system. National Grid Electricity System
Operator’s Future Energy Scenarios report maps out credible pathways and
scenarios for the future of energy for the next 30 years and beyond.

Based on input from over 600 experts, it looks at the energy needed in Britain,
across electricity and gas – examining where it could come from, how it
needs to change and what this means for consumers, society and the energy
system itself.

The report outlines five potential energy futures –
including net zero by 2050 – and is intended to stimulate debate rather
than provide definitive predictions. It highlights the importance of
different parts of the energy industry working together and details the
critical actions needed to accelerate the decarbonization of the system.

The analysis shows the positive role electric vehicles can play in
decarbonization, with a predicted 35 million electric vehicles by 2050
providing greater flexibility and supporting increased energy from
renewable sources. During periods of oversupply EVs could be used to store
excess electricity with the potential to store roughly one fifth of GB’s
solar generation for when this energy is needed. It also outlines large
scale changes in how power is generated, including growth in wind and solar
generation as coal plants close. There are domestic actions too – homes in
2050 will need to use at least one third less energy for heating than
today, with over 7 million hybrid heat pumps installed by 2050 to provide
continued flexibility.

July 18, 2019 Posted by | ENERGY, politics, UK | Leave a comment

A Fukushima Ghost Town Seeks Rebirth Through Renewable Energy

A Fukushima Ghost Town Seeks Rebirth Through Renewable Energy

Devastated by Japanese nuclear plant’s meltdown in 2011, Namie hopes a new hydrogen-fuel facility can generate a turnaround. WSJ, By River Davis, July 12, 2019

NAMIE, Japan—Fukushima prefecture, a place synonymous in many minds with nuclear meltdown, is trying to reinvent itself as a hub for renewable energy.

One symbol is just outside Namie, less than five miles from the nuclear-power plant devastated by an earthquake and tsunami in 2011. At the end of a winding road through miles of barren land, construction is nearing completion on one of the world’s largest hydrogen plants.

The government hopes to show that hydrogen, a hard-to-handle fuel that hasn’t been used for large-scale power generation, can supplement intermittent solar and wind power.

……….. By 2040, Fukushima aims to cover 100% of its energy demand with non-nuclear renewable energy. Since 2011, the prefecture’s generating capacity from renewable energy, excluding large-scale hydropower, has more than quadrupled. More than a gigawatt of solar-energy capacity has been added—the equivalent of more than three million solar panels—while other projects are under way in offshore wind power and geothermal energy………

July 13, 2019 Posted by | Japan, renewable | Leave a comment

Renewable energy racing ahead, close to beating nuclear power

When you see an article like this, from a basically pro-nuclear writer, in a journal that is the propaganda voice of the nuclear industry – well, isn’t this a cause for some shadenfreude?

Nuclear power remains ahead of renewables, but just barely. Further, it is losing ground. In 2017, the world produced 22% more power from nuclear than it did from modern renewables. In 2018, the nuclear lead was less than 9%. Based on current trends, modern renewables will surpass nuclear power production either this year or next year.

Renewables Catching Nuclear Power In Global Energy Race Forbes, Robert Rapier 7 Jul 19, This article is the fifth in a series on BP’s recently-released Statistical Review of World Energy 2019
Today, I want to cover global trends in renewable energy.

The Review separates renewables into two categories called Hydroelectric and Renewables. The former consists of hydropower, which has been around for a long time. Hydropower still produces more electricity globally than the Renewables category, which consists primarily of rapidly-growing wind and solar power, as well as more mature renewable technologies like geothermal power and power produced from biomass

Coal is still the dominant source of electricity around the world, although natural gas has taken over the top spot in the U.S. But, renewables have grown rapidly over the past decade, and are on the cusp of overtaking nuclear globally.

In 2018, nuclear power was responsible for 2,701 Terawatt-hours (TWh) of electricity generation, compared to 4,193 TWh for hydropower and 2,480 for renewables. In comparison, coal produced more power than all three categories combined.

However, the growth rates of the different categories of electricity generation tell a different story. Over the past decade, from 2007 to 2017, global electricity generated by coal grew at an annual average of 1.7%. Nuclear generation over that time actually declined annually by 0.4%, a consequence of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster in 2011. Hydropower generation grew at an average annual rate of 2.8%. These growth rates are indicative of mature power sources.

But contrast those growth rates with those of modern renewables.

From 2007 to 2017, the Renewables category grew at an average annual rate of 16.4%. But within that category, power from geothermal and biomass grew at an annual average of 7.1%. Wind and solar power, by contrast, grew at an annual average of 20.8% and 50.2%, respectively, over the past decade.

What does a 50% average annual growth rate over the past decade look like? Here are the global trends in solar power since 2000:  (in graph at top

I will note that in 2007 I wrote an article called The Future is Solar, a few years before solar took off).

The world’s leading producer of solar power in 2018 was once again China, with a 30.4% share globally. China maintained a blistering growth rate in 2018, with solar generation increasing by 50.7% over 2017. From 2007 to 2017, China increased solar generation at an average annual rate of just over 100%.

The U.S. remains in second place globally with a 16.6% share. U.S. solar power generation increased by 24.4% over 2017, and over the decade the U.S. has increased solar power at an average annual rate of 53.2%. Rounding out the Top 5 countries in solar power generation are Japan (12.3% share), Germany (7.9% share), and India (5.3% share).

Wind power is still ahead of solar in global electricity generation. In 2018, wind power was used to generate 1,270 TWh of power, versus 585 TWh for solar power. But solar power is on a trajectory to surpass wind power during the next decade.

Globally, China was also the top producer of wind power with a 28.8% global share. Again, the U.S. was second with a 21.9% share, followed by Germany (8.8% share), India (4.7% share), and the UK (4.5% share).

Nuclear power remains ahead of renewables, but just barely. Further, it is losing ground. In 2017, the world produced 22% more power from nuclear than it did from modern renewables. In 2018, the nuclear lead was less than 9%. Based on current trends, modern renewables will surpass nuclear power production either this year or next year. (I will add that nuclear is firm power, and renewables are intermittent, and that is an important distinction).

The rapid growth rate for renewables is a positive development in a world trying to rein in carbon dioxide emissions. However, renewables have not yet reached a level at which they are actually causing fossil fuel demand to contract.

Modern renewable energy consumption (mainly wind and solar power) grew by 71 million metric tons of oil equivalent in 2018. But global energy consumption grew much faster than that, with fossil fuels carrying most of the load. Global consumption of coal, oil, and natural gas grew by 276 million metric tons in 2018, nearly four times the growth in renewables. As a result, global carbon dioxide emissions set a new all-time high in 2018…….

July 9, 2019 Posted by | 2 WORLD, renewable | 1 Comment

Nuclear power – unsustainable – half Scotland’s reactors offline – but renewables supplying the load

The simple reason why nuclear power is finished – Dr Richard Dixon

Half of Scotland’s nuclear reactors are off-line over safety concerns, but the lights still stayed on, writes Dr Richard Dixon. July 3  2019

Nuclear power is the ultimate unsustainable form of energy. For some electricity today, we are leaving a thousand generations of future humans dangerous radioactive waste.

During the 1990s public inquiry into the Hinkley Point C nuclear station, I saw a poster showing a Roman legionary standing outside a nuclear plant and carrying the message “If the Romans had had nuclear power, we would still be guarding the waste”.

I thought it was terribly clever but it took me quite a while to realise that Roman Britain was far too close at hand. To cover the generally accepted 25,000 years, it would need to have referred to Cro-Magnon humans.

The politics of Scotland mean that new reactors here are almost unthinkable and the price of the renewable energy alternatives has fallen so far below the cost of nuclear that you would have to be crazy to go for new nuclear.

Labour’s Jack McConnell was the First Minister who said he would block new nuclear plants until there was a solution to the waste problem (14 years later, there is none). And while it is in the SNP’s DNA to oppose nuclear power. EDF and some unions do still try to lobby Scottish Ministers and officials, but to no avail. Meanwhile the industry is doing a great job of showing how terrible a bet nuclear is.

The nuclear industry is almost unique in that every new reactor costs more than the last, while everything else gets cheaper, including offshore wind power which is now coming in at just over half the price of nuclear for a unit of energy.

Hinkley Point C, the only nuclear station under construction in the UK, was supposed to be cooking the Christmas turkey in 2017. It is now expected to be producing electricity at the end of 2025 at the earliest. The only way it could be built was for the UK Government to agree that electricity consumers would pay bills well over the odds for the next 35 years.

The same sort of reactor is being built in Finland. It may start producing electricity next year – 11 years late. The other one of the same design is in France and is currently running 12 years late, at twice the original budget.

The latest wheeze the industry has come up with is to ask the UK Government to agree to pay any costs more than 30 per cent above the original budget for any more reactors. Not a good bet given their history.

Of course we already have four reactors in Scotland. The two at Torness are the second newest in the UK, having been opened by Margaret Thatcher in 1989. The two at Hunterston in Ayrshire are already well past their sell-by date, having started up in 1976. They were supposed to have closed in 2006 but have had three extensions with planned closure now in 2023. Because of a large number of cracks in their cores one reactor stopped generating in March last year and the other in October. Owners EDF are arguing with regulators about whether they can safely restart.

Did you notice the lights going out across Scotland with Hunterston not producing a single electron for eight months? No, thanks largely to renewables having a record first quarter of 2019 and supplying nine out of ten households in Scotland.

We certainly don’t need new nuclear and, with renewables rapidly on the rise, we should not take the unnecessary risk of starting up the Hunterston reactors ever again.

Dr Richard Dixon is director of Friends of the Earth Scotland.

July 4, 2019 Posted by | renewable, UK | Leave a comment

Nuclear power, fossil fuels finished? Los Angeles launches world’s cheapest solar + battery-storage project

New Solar + Battery Price Crushes Fossil Fuels, Buries Nuclear, Forbes, Jeff McMahon ,2 July 19. Los Angeles Power and Water officials have struck a deal on the largest and cheapest solar + battery-storage project in the world, at prices that leave fossil fuels in the dust and may relegate nuclear power to the dustbin.Later this month the LA Board of Water and Power Commissioners is expected to approve a 25-year contract that will serve 7 percent of the city’s electricity demand at 1.997¢/kwh for solar energy and 1.3¢ for power from batteries.

“This is the lowest solar-photovoltaic price in the United States,” said James Barner, the agency’s manager for strategic initiatives, “and it is the largest and lowest-cost solar and high-capacity battery-storage project in the U.S. and we believe in the world today. So this is, I believe, truly revolutionary in the industry.”

It’s half the estimated cost of power from a new natural gas plant.

Mark Z. Jacobson, the Stanford professor who developed roadmaps for transitioning 139 countries to 100 percent renewables, hailed the development on Twitter Friday, saying, “Goodnight #naturalgas, goodnight #coal, goodnight #nuclear.”

The anti-nuclear activist Arnie Gunderson, who predicted storage prices under 2¢/kwh four years ago on the night Elon Musk unveiled the Tesla Powerpack, noted Saturday that his 2015 prediction was too high. He too said, “Goodbye coal, nukes, gas!”………..–battery-price-crushes-fossil-fuels-buries-nuclear/#59a3e2355971

July 2, 2019 Posted by | renewable, USA | Leave a comment

The huge threat that air-conditioning poses to the global climate

Air conditioning is the world’s next big threat , By Chris Bryant, June 29, 2019  The vast majority of Americans and many Australians have air conditioning, but in Germany almost nobody does. At least not yet.

So when temperatures in Berlin rose to an uncomfortable 37 Celsius this week – a record for the month of June – I was uncommonly delighted to go to the Bloomberg office, where it’s artificially and blissfully cool.

By letting people in overheated climates concentrate on their work and get a good night’s sleep, air conditioning has played a big part in driving global prosperity and happiness over the past few decades – and that revolution has still barely begun.

About half of Chinese households have this modern tool, but of the 1.6 billion people living in India and Indonesia, only 88 million have access to air conditioning at home, Bloomberg New Energy Finance noted in a recent report.

For many, relief is in sight. Because of the combination of population growth, rising incomes, falling equipment prices and urbanisation, the number of air-conditioning units installed globally is set to jump from about 1.6 billion today to 5.6 billion by the middle of the century, according to the International Energy Agency.

That’s encouraging news for US manufacturers of cooling systems such as Carrier (United Technologies Corp), Ingersoll-Rand and Johnson Controls International.

And because much of this growth will happen in Asia, Chinese companies such as Gree Electric Appliances, Qingdao Haier, Midea Group and Japan’s Daikin Industries Ltd should be big beneficiaries.

There’s just one glaring problem: What will all this extra demand for electricity do to the climate?

Vicious cycle

Carbon dioxide emissions rose another 2 per cent in 2018, the fastest pace in seven years. That increase was alarming in its own right, given what we know about the unfolding climate emergency.

But the proximate cause was especially troubling: Extreme weather led to more demand for air conditioning and heating in 2018, BP explained in its annual review of energy sector.

It’s not too hard to imagine a vicious cycle in which more hot weather begets ever more demand for air conditioning and thus even more need for power. That in turn means more emissions and even hotter temperatures.

That negative feedback loop exists at a local level too. Air-conditioning units funnel heat outside, exacerbating the so-called “urban heat island” effect, which makes cities warmer than the countryside.

BNEF expects electricity demand from residential and commercial air conditioning to increase by more than 140 per cent by 2050 – an increase that’s comparable to adding the European Union’s entire electricity consumption. Air conditioning will represent 12.7 per cent of electricity demand by the middle of the century, compared to almost 9 per cent now, it thinks.

Thankfully, much of that extra demand will be met by solar power (the need for cooling is highest during daylight hours). But because temperatures don’t always return to comfortable levels when the sun goes down, there’s a danger some will be supplied by fossil power.

‘Passivhaus’ and LED revolution

Buildings have long been a blind spot in climate discussions even though they account for about one-fifth of global energy consumption. The inefficiency of air-conditioning systems or badly designed homes and offices simply aren’t as eye-catching as electric cars and making people feel ashamed about flying.

At least Germany’s “passivhaus” movement, a way of building homes that require very little heating or cooling, voluntary standard for energy efficiency in buildings, shows some people are starting to recognise the danger.

There are lessons to be learned from the world of lighting too. The LED revolution was spurred by innovation but also by better energy efficiency labelling on products and the phasing out of out-of-date technology. Something similar needs to happen with air conditioning.

There was a big step forward in January when the Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol came into force. Though not well known, its aim is to phase out the use of potent greenhouse gases called hydrofluorocarbons, which are used widely in air conditioning systems. Unless substituted, these alone could cause 0.4C of additional warming by the end of the century.

Yet true to form, President Donald Trump’s administration hasn’t yet submitted Kigali to the Senate for ratification, even though American manufacturers would benefit from demand for the new technologies that it would spawn.

Trump knows all about the importance of good air con. He spends much of his time at his Palm Beach country club, a place that couldn’t exist without it.

So he’d do well to remember this: You can air condition the clubhouse but not the golf course. And it’s starting to get awfully hot outside.

Chris Bryant is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering industrial companies. He previously worked for the Financial Times.

July 1, 2019 Posted by | 2 WORLD, climate change, ENERGY, Reference | Leave a comment