Britain on Tuesday approved plans to expand an offshore wind farm project that could ultimately have more than 600 turbines spread across an area of the North Sea more than twice the size of London. The Hornsea Two windfarm project, to be built by DONG Energy, is part of Britain’s push to invest in new electricity generation capacity needed to overcome a squeeze on power supplies in the next decade.
Kansas state Rep. Tom Sloan is the rare Republican who voices some support for the Obama administration’s climate rule and still wins elections. The moderate from a split district in Douglas County has held the seat since 1995. Before that, he also served as a chief of staff to leaders in the Kansas Senate. His district, which includes the college town of Lawrence, is about one-third Republican, one-third Democrat and one-third independent, he said. Voters there have re-elected him for 11 terms, including in 2014, when he faced a GOP challenger who criticized his opposition to repealing renewable energy standards.
California Gov. Jerry Brown (D) is still working with lawmakers to authorize state-run carbon auctions through 2030 in the waning days of the state’s legislative session. Brown’s administration has offered language that would expressly extend the state’s cap-and-trade program through 2030, The Sacramento Bee reported yesterday. The language would amend S.B. 32, which as currently written would merely authorize overarching greenhouse gas targets, rather than a specific method of reaching them. The 2030 goal would be 40 percent below 1990 emissions levels, in line with an executive order Brown signed last year.
A commercial wind project in southern Vermont that’s been delayed for seven years is finally moving ahead. The Public Service Board has approved an agreement between Iberdola Renewables and the Agency of Natural Resources that will protect bear habitat near the site. Developers now say construction on the Deerfield Wind project will start within the next few months.
Opponents of a planned transmission line across Arkansas and parts of Oklahoma and Tennessee said Friday they have filed a federal lawsuit objecting to the U.S. Department of Energy’s participation in the project. Golden Bridge and Downwind, two organizations representing landowners who oppose the Plains & Eastern Clean Line project, said they filed the suit in U.S. District Court in Little Rock. The suit was not available on the court’s website Monday evening, and the groups did not immediately provide a copy to the Arkansas News Bureau.
Ken Salazar and Jennifer Granholm will be helping to pick agency leaders and map out policy goals and could be in line for top administration jobs if Hillary Clinton clinches the White House. The former Interior secretary and former Michigan governor — familiar faces in the energy policy world — will be leading Clinton’s Washington, D.C.-based transition, the campaign announced today. Salazar has been picked as chairman of the team, where he’ll be flanked by four co-chairs: Granholm, Center for American Progress President Neera Tanden, former Obama national security adviser Tom Donilon and longtime Clinton aide Maggie Williams.
Just after noon on a 110-degree summer day, the 5.6-square-mile Desert Sunlight Solar Farm — the biggest of its kind erected on U.S. federal land — is proving why this desolate spot is such a good one for harnessing the sun’s rays. With few clouds above, the seemingly endless 8-million-panel array is churning out 551.3 megawatts, or million watts, of electricity, more than enough to power 160,000 homes some 175 miles west of here in Los Angeles. “This is fairly typical, that as the sun moves through the sky, this is about the time of day that we hit that sort of number,” said Steve Stengel, a spokesman for the plant’s co-owner, NextEra Energy Resources.
The Northeast Atlantic coast has some of the world’s strongest offshore winds, according to developers who have long waited for the opportunity to build commercial-scale wind farms on the outer continental shelf from Maine and New Jersey. But those same winds are highly volatile, posing unique challenges to those same developers, according to researchers at the University of Delaware and Stony Brook University who reviewed a decade’s worth of wind data off the Massachusetts coast.
Australia might soon start harvesting solar energy from its roads. Colas Group, a French construction firm, is developing solar panels that can be used to pave roads — thin, resilient tiles that can generate as much as 116 watts of electricity each. One of the main challenges was ensuring that the product could handle the weight of vehicles. The producers are creating prototypes that are as tough as pavement. They expect that tiles on busy roads could last up to a decade and those placed in car parks would remain functional for twice as long.
n 2004, Colorado voters passed an initiative establishing, for the first time, a renewable energy standard (RES) through a popular vote. The legislative declaration for the initiative, Amendment 37, started with: “In order to save consumers and businesses money. . .” and concluded with the idea that renewable energy should be developed to the “. . . maximum practicable extent. . .”. Colorado voters bet that costs for wind and solar renewable energy would drop as they were used more. It looks like the initiative’s promise could be coming true.