For the First Time, Wind on the Plains Supplied More Than Half Region’s Power

Source: By Chris Martin, Bloomberg • Posted: Tuesday, February 14th, 2017

Wind turbines across the Great Plains states produced, for the first time, more than half the region’s electricity Sunday. The power grid that supplies a corridor stretching from Montana to the Texas Panhandle was getting 52.1 percent of its power from wind at 4:30 a.m. on Sunday, Little Rock, Arkansas-based Southwest Power Pool Inc. said in a statement Monday.

Bipartisan coalition presses Trump on wind and solar

Source: Christa Marshall, E&E News reporter • Posted: Tuesday, February 14th, 2017

In a letter today, Govs. Sam Brownback (R) of Kansas and Gina Raimondo (D) of Rhode Island said renewable energy growth “is an American success story built on federal research and development, state policy leadership, private sector investment and ingenuity.” They wrote, “Last year, the country’s solar industry employed over 200,000 and added 31,000 new jobs. Most of the installations are in rural areas and have provided landowners another income option.”

Governors of Red, Blue States Urge Trump to Back Wind, Solar

Source: By Joe Ryan, Bloomberg • Posted: Tuesday, February 14th, 2017

“The nation’s wind and solar energy resources are transforming low-income rural areas in ways not seen since the passage of the Homestead Act over 150 years ago,” Kansas Republican Sam Brownback and Rhode Island Democrat Gina Raimondo wrote in the letter, on behalf of eight Republican governors and 12 Democrat state leaders. Trump’s America First energy plan posted on the White House website calls for increasing coal, oil and natural gas production — making no mention of renewables. He has derided wind and solar power as uneconomical. The White House didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment Monday.

Wind energy sector sees massive expansion in North Dakota

Source: By April Baumgarten, Bismark Tribune • Posted: Monday, February 13th, 2017

The construction of wind farms in North Dakota began in the late 1990s and only recently have started to surge, Christmann said. The potential for capturing wind for energy in North Dakota is high, particularly in the western and south-central part of the state, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, which ranked North Dakota sixth in 2014 for wind energy potential and 11th in utility-scale generation. “We see incredibly strong activity across the country,” AWEA senior analyst Hannah Hunt said. “We do expect to see this success story continue.”

Vestas Leaps to Top Spot in U.S. Wind Market

Source: By Jacob Gronholt-Pedersen, Reuters • Posted: Monday, February 13th, 2017

Vestas came back from the brink of bankruptcy just four years ago. Now the wind industry is entering a new phase with slower growth and more steady demand for turbines, prompting producers to turn to servicing and replacement of older turbines to grow revenue. Vestas, the world’s biggest wind turbine maker, supplied 43 percent of the 8.2 GW of wind power capacity connected to the U.S. power grid last year, the American Wind Energy Association said in a quarterly report. That was up from 33 percent in 2015 and just 12 percent in 2014.

Europe to Invest in Renewables Despite Trump-Electricity Lobby

Source: By Robert-Jan Bartunek, Reuters • Posted: Monday, February 13th, 2017

European utilities will not reduce their investments in renewables if U.S. President Donald Trump lowers U.S. climate goals, encouraged by Chinese and EU political commitments to low carbon energy, electricity lobby Eurelectric said. Trump, who campaigned on a pledge to bolster the U.S. oil, gas and coal industries, said during the campaign he would pull the United States out of a global pact reached in Paris in 2015 to cut greenhouse gases, although he has not yet acted on that pledge.

Jimmy Carter: From Peanuts to Solar Panels (video)

Source: By CHRIS CARMICHAEL, NIKO KOPPEL and KAITLYN MULLIN , New York Times • Posted: Monday, February 13th, 2017

Former President Jimmy Carter, 92, unveiled a solar energy project to help power his hometown. While President Trump has depicted himself as a champion of coal, Mr. Carter’s project aims to be a model for energy self-sufficiency and job growth.

Jimmy Carter Makes a Stand for Solar, Decades After the Cardigan Sweater

Source: By ALAN BLINDER, New York Times • Posted: Monday, February 13th, 2017

The solar panels — 3,852 of them — shimmered above 10 acres of Jimmy Carter’s soil where peanuts and soybeans used to grow. The panels moved almost imperceptibly with the sun. And they could power more than half of this small town, from which Mr. Carter rose from obscurity to the presidency. Nearly 38 years after Mr. Carter installed solar panels at the White House, only to see them removed during Ronald Reagan’s administration, the former president is leasing part of his family’s farmland for a project that is both cutting edge and homespun. It is, Mr. Carter and energy experts said, a small-scale effort that could hold lessons for other pockets of pastoral America in an age of climate change and political rancor.

Almost 90% of new power in Europe from renewable sources in 2016

Source: By Adam Vaughan, Guardian • Posted: Monday, February 13th, 2017

Renewable energy sources made up nearly nine-tenths of new power added to Europe’s electricity grids last year, in a sign of the continent’s rapid shift away from fossil fuels. But industry leaders said they were worried about the lack of political support beyond 2020, when binding EU renewable energy targets end.

China Widens Wind Power Lead Over U.S., World With Another 23 GW

Source: By Bloomberg News • Posted: Monday, February 13th, 2017

China installed almost three times more wind power than the U.S. last year, continuing its clean-energy investment blitz to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and increase air quality. China led new global wind-power installations with 23.3 gigawatts, compared with 8.2 gigawatts in second-place U.S., according to a report published Friday by the Global Wind Energy Council. About 54.6 gigawatts of new turbines were installed globally, raising total capacity to about 487 gigawatts worldwide.