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Coalition Seeks Renewed Energy Efficiency Tax Incentives (Ind. Report)
Alliance to Save Energy
Date: 2019-05-03
The Alliance to Save Energy and a coalition of manufacturers, advocacy groups, and trade associations representing millions of American workers has called for Washington to modernize and extend expired energy efficiency tax incentives. If so enacted, the updated incentives that would sharply reduce US carbon emissions. create employment and cut millions of dollars in energy bills.

The coalition, led by the Alliance to Save Energy, includes leading manufacturers of windows, air conditioners, insulation and other components alongside environmental and efficiency advocates such as the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), Citizens for Responsible Energy Solutions (CRES), and the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE).

The proposed tax incentives call for broadly supported improvements to the expired 45L tax incentive for high-efficiency new home construction and the 25C tax incentive for homeowner efficiency improvements -- installing insulation, replacing windows, or purchasing high-efficiency heating and cooling equipment. The improvements include strengthening the efficiency level that must be met to receive the incentives, while also increasing the dollar value of the incentives.

The coalition also called for extending the 179D incentive for efficiency improvements in commercial buildings. (Source: Alliance to Save Energy, PR, May, 2019) Contact: Alliance to Save Energy, (202) 857-0666, www.ase.org

More Low-Carbon Energy News Alliance to Save Energy,  Energy Eficiency,  


Notable Quote -- German Chancellor Angela Merkel Talks Carbon Tax
Carbon Tax
Date: 2019-05-03
"We would be ignorant if we did not include the latest reports in our considerations -- We have regulatory law as an option, we have fiscal incentive measures, and we have general CO2 pricing, which we are looking at but for which we have not yet decided. We will, however, include them (in our climate cabinet's further discussions)" -- German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

Merkel's government is under pressure to complete measures and legislation that will ensure greenhouse gas reductions of 55 pct by 2030, so as to avoid target failure and costly payments for emission allocations under the EU effort sharing regulation. To that end, the government is exploring the introduction of a CO2 tax. (Source: Various Media, Clean Energy Wire, 11 April, 2019)

More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon Tax,  


NEIF Lauds Home Energy Efficiency Financing Plan (Ind. Report)
National Energy Improvement Fund
Date: 2019-05-03
The Allentown, Pennsylvania-based National Energy Improvement Fund, LLC, (NEIF), a licensed lender and national expert in energy efficiency financing, is trumpeting the availability of its its new NEIF Home Energy Improvement Plan.

The plan helps qualifying homeowners finance home improvement and energy efficiency upgrades such as heating and cooling, windows, doors, siding and roofing, air sealing and insulation, electrical and plumbing, geothermal and whole home energy projects. All work must be completed by NEIF-approved contractors.

The NEIF Home Energy Improvement Plan is currently available in Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania and West Virginia with other states being added shortly. Separately, Maine homeowners can use Efficiency Maine financing, administered by NEIF.

The NEIF Home Energy Improvement Plan is simple interest, longer term, fixed rate installment financing from $2,500 to $25,000. There is no lien on the borrower's home, no fees to the borrower and no penalty for pre-payment. The interest rate and monthly payment are locked in for the full term of the loan, up to ten years. To date, $700 million in energy efficiency financing has been placed through the NEIF program. NEIF also provides financing for commercial energy improvements through its NEIF Commercial Energy Finance division and advance funding to contractors for rebates through its Rebate Bridge program. (Source: National Energy Improvement Fund, LLC, PR, 2 May, 2019) Contact: NEIF, Peter Krajsa, NEIF, Co-Chair and Founder, (484) 838-5460, www.neifund.org

More Low-Carbon Energy News Energy Efficiency,  Energy Efficiency Finance,  


Carbon Farming in the Golden State (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)

Date: 2019-05-03
"Agriculture is responsible for one-third of global carbon emissions, but an increasing number of farmers and ranchers think it can be a powerful ally in the fight to slow climate change, through a set of techniques called carbon farming.

"The underlying principle of carbon farming is straightforward -- to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, where it drives climate change, and put it back into plants and the pedosphere, the Earth's living soil layer. One way farmers do this is by fertilizing their lands with nutrient-rich compost.

"As plants grow, they store carbon in their leaves and roots and bank it in organic matter, such as decomposing plant pieces in the soil. Soil microorganisms, including bacteria and fungi, also store carbon. This prevents the carbon from escaping into the atmosphere and joining oxygen to form carbon dioxide.

"Carbon farming has taken hold in California, which is increasingly stepping up as a pioneer of progressive climate policy in the U.S., even as the Trump administration denies the reality of climate change.

"Today, more than 80 ranchers and farmers in the state are implementing the practice. And the number is likely to increase, since the 2018 Farm Bill includes provisions for a pilot program that gives farmers an incentive to farm carbon.

"Grassland soils naturally absorb and store carbon in soil organic matter, but common agricultural practices, like plowing and tilling, diminish this ability by breaking apart the soil and releasing its stored carbon into the atmosphere. The good news is that carbon can be reabsorbed by the very same soil. Dozens of farming methods, including composting, managed grazing, no-till agriculture and cover crops, are thought to achieve this feat. Many of them mirror age-old, organic farming techniques.

"The potential for land-based carbon sequestration in California is significant. Rangelands cover about 56 million acres, half the state's overall land area. According to The New York Times, if 5 pct of that soil is treated with compost, the carbon sequestered would offset about 80 pct of the state's agricultural emissions, the equivalent of removing nearly 6 million cars from the road. If scaled to 41 pct, it would render the state's agricultural sector -- now accounting for 8 pct of the state's overall emissions -- carbon neutral for years. This amount is anything but negligible: California is the most populous state in the U.S. and the country's second-largest emitter of greenhouse gases. Overall, it's responsible for 1 pct of global greenhouse emissions.

"Ultimately, carbon farming may only pull a limited amount of carbon from the atmosphere. But in California, grasslands appear to be a less vulnerable carbon storage option than fire-prone forests. With global greenhouse gas emissions on the rise, we need to commit to using carbon farming." (Source: NPR, High Country News, May, 2019)

More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon Emissions,  Carbon Sequestration,  Carbon Farming,  CO2,  Carbon Emissions,  


ABM Initiates Bryan County Georgia EPC Contract (Ind. Report)
ABM
Date: 2019-05-03
Facility solutions specialist ABM reports the initiation of an Energy Performance Contract (EPC) program that is expected to save Bryan County, Georgia ABM's customized solution is projected to save the county more than $16.4 million in energy and operating costs over a 15-year period. The project is scheduled for completion in early 2020. Highlights of Bryan County project include:
  • upgrading HVAC systems and building automation controls at 36 facilities;
  • roof repairs and replacements;
  • sealing building envelopes to control airflow;
  • installation of water conservation measures at several facilities;
  • upgrading lighting systems to energy-efficient LED lighting;
  • installation of Cool Play Synthetic Turf and LED lighting at North Bryan County's Hendrix Park;
  • installation of full-building emergency electricity generation systems at the Bryan County Courthouse and the Bryan County Administrative Building, and other facilities, and other upgrades that drive energy savings.

    Download details on ABM's Energy Performance Contracting Program at www.abm.com/services/energy. (Source: ABM, PR, 2 May, 2019) Contact: ABM, www.abm.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News ABM,  Energy Efficiency,  


  • ERG Snares 25-MW Graiggmore Wind Project (Int'l. M&A)
    ERG UK, Renewable Energy Systems
    Date: 2019-05-03
    UK-based Renewable Energy Systems Ltd (RES) is reporting the sale of its Craiggore Energy Ltd ., 10-turbine Craiggore wind farm project in County Londonderry, Northern Ireland, to ERG UK Holding Ltd for a reported £ 37 million ($4 48.3 million. Construction on the 25-MW project is expected to get underway in Q4, 2019 for a 2021 commissioning and startup. (Source: Renewable Energy Systems, 2 May, 2019) Contact: ERG, www.erg.eu; Renewable Energy Systems

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Energy Systems news,  ERG UK news,  Wind news,  


    SCE Touts Major Energy Storage Resources Acquisition (Ind. Report)
    Southern California Edison
    Date: 2019-05-03
    In the Golden State, Southern California Edison (SCE) reports it has secured seven contracts for 195 MW of battery-based energy storage resources as a means of meeting local capacity requirements in the Santa Clara sub-area.

    SCE noted the resources include demand response and energy storage resources , one of which will become one of North America's largest operational lithium-ion battery systems when it comes online in December 2020. (Source: Southern California Edison, Energy Insider, 2 May, 2019) Contact: Southern California Edison, Colin Cushnie, VP Energy Procurement & Management, www.sce.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Battery,  Lithium-ion,  Southern California Edison,  SoCalEd,  Energy Storage,  


    RePower Renewable Fuel Production Underway in SC (Ind Report)
    RePower South
    Date: 2019-05-03
    North Charleston, South Carolina-based RePower South (RPS) reports it is now processing more than 50 tph -- 120,000 tpy -- of locally sourced mixed waste to recover recyclables and produce a fuel feedstock at its new recycling and recovery facility in Berkeley County, S.C.

    The plant also makes use of non-recyclable papers and plastics to produce ReEngineered Feedstock (ReEF), a clean, low-carbon renewable fuel sold to industry, cement and utility customers to replace coal in production processes. The EPA has classified the product as a low-carbon, non-waste fuel. (Source: RePower South, Waste360, 2 May, 2019) Contact: RePower South, Brian Gilhuly, CEO, 800-917-4526, www.repowersouth.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Fuel,  


    Microsoft Joins Climate Leadership Council (Ind. Report)
    Climate Leadership Council
    Date: 2019-05-03
    Following up on our 17th April coverage, Microsoft reports it has joined the Climate Leadership Council. The Climate Leadership Council was founded by former secretaries of state James Baker and George Shultz, renowned scientist Stephen Hawking, BP, ExxonMobil, and Shell, General Motors and others. Membership includes 3500+ economists, 27 Nobel laureates and 15 former Chairs of the Council of Economic Advisers.

    According to the organization's website, The founding Members of the Climate Leadership Council believe that America needs a consensus climate solution that bridges partisan divides, strengthens our economy and protects our shared environment."

    The Council's carbon dividends solution embodies the conservative principles of free markets and limited government. It also offers an equitable, popular and politically-viable way forward, paving the way for a much-needed bipartisan climate breakthrough. The Council's carbon dividends program is based on four interdependent pillars:

  • A gradually rising and revenue-neutral carbon tax;
  • Carbon dividend payments to all Americans, funded by 100 pct of the revenue;
  • The rollback of carbon regulations that are no longer necessary; and
  • Border carbon adjustments to level the playing field and promote American competitiveness.

    Alongside a growing carbon tax, the Climate Leadership Council wants to rollback carbon regulations that are no longer necessary and pay these carbon taxes back to citizens in the form of dividends. The group also plans to push for rising carbon taxes in replacement of other climate legislation while protecting its members from historic climate damage payments, according to its website.

    Microsoft recently committed to a $15 per ton internal carbon tax and announced that its campus will soon be run with 100 pct carbon-free electricity. It also ramped up its data center plans to run on 70 pct renewable by 2023. (Source: Microsoft, Climate Leadership Council, WinBuzzer, 2 May, 2019) Contact: Climate Leadership Council, www.clcouncil.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Climate Leadership Council,  Carbon Emissions,  Carbon Tax,  


  • Verbio Snares Atlantic Biodiesel Plant in Ontario (M&A)
    Verbio
    Date: 2019-05-03
    Verbio Snares Atlantic Biodiesel Plant in Ontario (M&A) Verbio Diesel Canada Corp., a Canadian subsidiary of Germany-based Verbio Vereinigte BioEnergie AG reports it will purchase Atlantic Biodiesel Corp.'s 45 MMgy biodiesel production facility in Welland, Ontario, Canada. The sale is expected to close by mid-year.

    Verbio produces about approximately 470,000 tpy of biodiesel as well as ethanol and biomethane. (Source: Verbio, May, 2019) Contact: Atlantic Biodiesel, (888) 339-3132, www.atlanticbiodiesel.com; Verbio, +49 (0) 3493 747-40, www.verbio.de/en

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Verbio,  Biodiesel,  


    Notable Quote from Microsoft
    Microsoft
    Date: 2019-05-03
    "We are getting extremely impatient, frankly, for policy action on climate change. We support a carbon fee because we believe it's a policy mechanism that works and accords with economic principles." -- Lucas Joppa, Chief Environmental Officer, Microsoft,

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Microsoft,  Carbon Tax,  Carbon Fee,  


    Fortistar Touts RNG to Decarbonize Transport Fuel Supply (Ind. Report)
    Fortistar, TruStar,Beacon Energy
    Date: 2019-05-03
    White Plains, New York-based Fortistar reports it is extracting methane from landfills, converting it to RNG and, working with its affiliate TruStar Energy, paving the way for a sustainable transportation fuel supply chain.

    For over 25 years, Fortistar has operated in dozens of landfill gas-to-energy projects in the U.S. and Canada while TruStar Energy has constructed 250 natural gas fueling stations.

    Fortistar owns and operates lower carbon energy generating companies -- cogeneration facilities; waste-heat recovery power plants; compressed natural gas fueling stations; landfill power plants; projects that reduce carbon in industrial facilities and biomass facilities -- in Canada and the US.

    Fortistar's portfolio of associated companies includes: Generational Power, TruStar Energy, Primary Energy, Fortistar Methane Group, Fortistar Biomass Group, Carbonfree Chemicals, Golden Renewable Energy and ClockIN. (Source: Fortistar, PR, May, 2019) Contact: Forttistar, Mark Comora, CEO, (914) 421-4937, MComora@fortistar.com, www.fortistar.com; TruStar Energy, www,turstarenergy.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Fortistar,  Methane,  RNG,  Renewable Natural Gas,  Landfill Gas,  Beacon Energy,  


    EPA Signals No Timeline for Decisions on RFS Exemption Requests (Reg. & Leg.)
    EPA
    Date: 2019-05-03
    Reuters is reporting the EPA's decision relative to Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) obligation small refiner "hardship waiver" may come in late May, although the date remains uncertain.

    Although the DOE has provided their scoring of the exemption requests to EPA relative to the 40 requests that have been received for the 2018 compliance year, the agency has not yet to acted on any of those requests. "No decisions regarding 2018 SREs [small refiner exemptions] have been made," Michael Abboud, a spokesman for the EPA said. "Many aspects of the decisions for exempting individual refineries are based on confidential business information."

    As previously noted, "hardship waivers" were intended for refineries producing 75,000 bpd or less and suffered "disproportionate economic hardship" from the costs of RFS compliance. The waiver frees the refineries from an obligation to provide the EPA with biofuels credits proving compliance. In 2017, the number of small refineries filing for exemptions retroactively for 2016 jumped from 14 the previous year to 20. The rate in which EPA granted these petitions also increased dramatically from 53 pct to 95 pct. (Source: EPA, Various Media, Progressive Farmer, 3 May, 2019)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News EPA,  RFS,  "Hardship Waiver",  Biofuel Bleand,  


    50,000,000 Trees per year for 30 years Needed for UK to Reach Zero Carbon Emissions by 2050 (Int'l Report)
    Committee on Climate Change
    Date: 2019-05-03
    In the UK, according to the Committee on Climate Change(CCC), a stark increase in woodland expansion -- 50,000,000 new trees per year -- is needed in the UK if the country is to achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. The CCC analysis outlines that 32,000 hectares annually of net woodland increase is required for the next 30 years. This moves the UK from 13 pct to 17 pct woodland cover. This equates to a million new hectares of woodland cover, and around 1.5 billion trees. (Source: The Committee on Climate Change, May, 2019) Contact: Committee of Climate Change, +44 (0) 207 591 6252, www.theccc.org.uk

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Committee on Climate Change,  Reforestation,  Climate Change,  


    Lamar Univ.Claims $20,000,000 in Energy Savings (Ind. Report)
    Schneider Electric
    Date: 2019-05-03
    In the Lone Star State, Lamar University in Beaumont reports it has reached a $20 million energy savings milestone as a result of its 15-year-long energy efficiency project with energy and sustainability expert, Schneider Electric. To date, this project has generated $21,276,086 million in energy savings and cut campus-wide utility consumption by 43 pct saving on average $1.63 million in annual utility costs.

    The savings came from a wide variety of Schneider Electric implemented measures that improved energy efficiency and enhanced the learning environment, including:

  • Replacing HVAC equipment to increase comfort for staff, faculty and students;
  • Updating hot water heaters, water fixtures and the chiller plant to increase the life of equipment:
  • Installing new energy management systems to decrease staff maintenance time; and
  • Retrofitting campus lighting for a brighter learning environment. (Source: Schneider Electric, PR, May, 2019) Contact: Schneider Electric, Kate Plourde, 615-739-8342, kate.plourde@schneider-electric.com, www.schneider-electric.com, www.schneider-electric.us.; Lamar University, Dr. Alicen Flosi, Instructor and Director of Sustainability www.lamar.edu

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Schneider Electric,  Energy Efficiency,  


  • Ending Woody Biomass Power Gen. Subsidies Urged in UK (Int'l)
    Committee on Climate Change
    Date: 2019-05-03
    In the UK, the Committee on Climate Change (CCC) and other environmental groups are calling for an end to the government's multi-billion pound subsidy programme for wood-fired electric power generation on the grounds that woody biomass does not fit the government's net-zero GHG by 2050 plan.

    Environmental groups, including to Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), Biofuelwatch, the Dogwood Alliance, and the Southern Environmental Law Center, have noted that relying on woody biomass with carbon capture and storage (BECCS) to achieve climate targets is "misguided" and will prove overly expensive. Biomass power generation reached a record 35.6 TWh in 2018, up by 12 pct year-on-year, according to government statistics.

    The environmental organizations say the UK should rely on genuinely zero-emission renewables like wind, wave, and solar power, energy efficiency and conservation, and smart resources like energy storage, rather than woody biomass power generation. (Source: Committee on Climate Change, Renewables,May, 2019) Contact: Committee on Climate Change, www.theccc.org.uk

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Woody Biomass,  Biomass,  Committee on Climate Change ,  


    McLean County Ill. Wind Farms Underway (Ind. Report)
    EDP,Invenergy
    Date: 2019-05-03
    In Illinois, Bright Stalk Wind Farm and McLean County Wind Energy Center (MCWEC), separate developments near Lexington and Chenoa, are reportedly ramping up to full-scale construction, with Bright Stalk to start running first -- possibly this fall.

    Houston-based EDP Renewables North America (EDP) Bright Stalk is expected to cost $348 million and generate up to $2.6 million in local taxes annually. Invenergy's MCWEC project is expected to incorporate between 90 and 100 turbines totaling 250 MW at a cost of approx. $300 million. (Source: Invenergy, Pantagraph, 3 May, 2019) Contact: Invenergy, (309) 365-2777, mcleanwindoutreach@gmail.com, www.mcleancountywind.invenergyllc.com; Brightstalk Wind Farm, (800) 557-5183, updates.brightstalkwindfarm.com, brightstalk@edpr.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Wind,  EDP,  Invergy,  


    German Q1 Onshore Wind Installations Becalmed (Int'l Report)
    FA Wind
    Date: 2019-05-01
    Fachagentur-Windenergie (FA Wind), the German onshore wind agency, is reporting onshore wind installations in Germany dropped 87 pct in Q1 of 2019. The agency reported only 41 turbines totaling 134MW went online -- 13 pct of the average first quarter performance for between 2016 and 2018 period.

    Thirteen Vestas turbines, 11 Enercon, seven Nordex, six Senvion, three ENO Energy and a single Siemens Gamesa model were spread across seven of the country's 16 states, with 13 turbines in the western state of Rhineland Palatinate alone. Eight turbines were part of repowering projects meaning net capacity growth was lower than 134MW.

    Out of 730 turbines that won an allocation in 2017, only 35 have been commissioned, five of them in the first three months of 2019. The permitting situation has slightly improved with 111 turbines (413MW) getting the green light in the first quarter, a third more capacity than the average of the same periods of 2017 and 2018. (Source: FA Wind, WindPower, 30 April, 2019) Contact: FA Wind, +49 30 64 494 60-60, www.fachagentur-windenergie.de

    More Low-Carbon Energy News FA Wind,  Onshore Wind.Wind,  Germany Wind,  


    Orsted Proceeding with Tiawan Offshore Wind Project (Int'l)
    Orsted
    Date: 2019-05-01
    Danish offshore wind farm developer Orsted reports it has taken the final investment decision (FID) on the Changhua 1 and 2a offshore wind farm in Taiwan and has inked a power purchase agreement (PPA) with Taipower.

    Changhua 1 and 2a will be located 35-50 kilometers off the coast of Changhua County and will have a capacity of approx. 900MW, enough to supply around 1 million Taiwanese households with green power. The offshore wind farm will be constructed in 2021 and 2022.

    Orsted is the co-owner of Taiwan's first commercial-scale offshore wind project, the 128MW Formosa 1 offshore wind farm, which is currently under construction for commissioning by end of 2019. The company operates more than 1,100 offshore wind turbines. Orsted has installed approx. 5.6GW of offshore wind capacity with a further 4.3GW under construction including Changhua 1 and 2a. The company is aiming for a total of 15GW offshore wind capacity world-wide by 2025. (Source: Orsted, PR, 30 April, 2019) Contact: Orsted, Martin Neubert, Exex. VP and CEO of Offshore, Daniel Lerup, Inv. Relations, +45 99 55 97 22, danil@orsted.dk, www.orsted.dk

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Orsted,  Wind,  Offshore Wind,  


    Tesla, SolarCity Slashing Solar Panel Prices 38 pct (Ind. Report)
    Tesla,Solar City
    Date: 2019-05-01
    Following a reported Q1 slide in solar installations, SolarCity owner Tesla Inc reports it is selling solar panels and related equipment online for up to 38 pct below the national average price, according to New York Times coverage.

    Tesla acquired SolarCity in 2016 for $2.6 billion and planned to offer solar panels and home battery storage systems to consumers through its retail stores and online. In 2018, Tesla cut prices on its residential solar systems. The company's ballyhooed and long awaited solar roof tiles that unveiled in late 2016 have not yet been produced on a commercial scale. (Source: Tesla, NY Times, 29 April, 2019) Contact: Tesla, www.teslamotors.com; SolarCity Corp., (650) 638-1028, www.solarcity.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News SolarCity,  Tesla Solar,  Solar Roof,  


    African Nations Share Climate-Smart Agriculture Funds (Int'l)
    UNDP,Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa
    Date: 2019-05-01
    The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) are reporting the African countries of Zimbabwe, Uganda, Madagascar, eSwatini and Seychelles will share a total of $3.49 in grant funding to support a three-year scale-up of climate change projects aimed at promoting climate aware, conservation farming.

    The funds, which will be managed by the UNDP under an agreement signed with Comesa, will support the adoption of climate smart agriculture practices and technologies among farmer co-operatives and schools. The programme is part of COMESA's European Union supported Global Climate Change Action Plus Programme focused on mainstreaming climate change in national policies, strategies and development plans of member states, promoting, supporting, and piloting appropriate adaptation and mitigation projects. (Source: Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa, The East African, 27 April, 2019) Contact: Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa, www.comesa.int; UNDP, www.undp.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News UNDP,  Climate Change,  


    O'Rourke Floats Climate Proposal (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
    Beto O'Rourke
    Date: 2019-05-01
    2020 Dem. presidential candidate Beto O'Rourke has released what he's calling "the most ambitious climate plan in the history of the United States and the most comprehensive climate policy proposal put out by any 2020 contender to date."

    O'Rourke's proposal calls for halving greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 and net-zero emissions by 2050 through a program of: executive action; a $5 trillion over 10 years investment in a clean energy transition; and preparing vulnerable communities for the impacts of climate change.

    Although the plan is focused on climate and energy -- cutting emissions and creating alternatives -- approximately $3.5 trillion is allocated through tax incentives, loans, and other financing mechanisms for infrastructure, research, resilience, and clean energy deployment. The outlay would be funded by "structural changes to the tax code" that end tax breaks to fossil fuel companies and raise rates on corporations and top earners. Of the remaing $1.5 trillion, $1.2 trillion would go to grants for sustainable housing, transportation, public health, farming, and start-ups.

    As opposed to a carbon tax or a cap-and-trade system, O'Rourke is advocating a legally-binding net-zero emissions standard by 2050. The plan doesn't rule out pricing carbon but instead focuses on setting definitive goal posts. If elected, O'Rourke noted will re-enter the Paris climate agreement, implement rules to cut methane and other "super-potent" GHG emissions, tighten clean air rules, ramp up appliance efficiency standards, demand clean energy procurement from federal contractors, and end new fossil fuel leases on public lands. (Source: Vox, Various Media, 30 April, 2019)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Climate Change,  Carbon Emissions,  Carbon Tax,  Methane,  Clean Air,  


    ERM Offers Small Customer Renewables Deals (Int'l Report)
    ERM Power
    Date: 2019-05-01
    In the Land Down Under, business electric power retailer ERM Power reports it is inviting wind and solar farm developers to offer short-term electricity supply from their projects to support its launch of a new product the would offer renewable power purchase agreements (PPA) to smaller customers unwilling to lock into a 10- or 15-year contract or lacking the internal resources to negotiate their own deal.

    Under its new offering, ERM will match-up supply on offer from wind and solar power ventures in NSW and Victoria States with the demands of energy users looking to source a part of their supply from renewables. Customers would pay an agreed upon fixed price for renewable energy over three years, sourcing 5 pct -- 10 pct of their power from that source. The customer can choose their level of participation in increments of 5 pct. Additionally, ERM will aggregate multiple business customers to gain access to large PPAs, giving smaller commercial energy users access to the terms normally available only to larger customers. (Source: ERM Power, Aust. Financial Review. 29 April, 2019) Contact: ERM Power, David Guiver, Wholesale Markets, www.ermpower.com.au

    More Low-Carbon Energy News ERM Power,  Renewable Energy,  


    Azure Power Commissions 150 MW Indian Solar Project (Int'l Report)
    Azure Power
    Date: 2019-05-01
    In New Delhi, Indian solar power specialist Azure Power reports commissioning of a 150 MW solar power plant in Bhadla solar park in Rajasthan. This section is the first phase of 200 MWs allocated to Azure Power by Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI), a Government of India enterprise. Azure Power will supply power to SECI under a 25-yera PPA.

    With this project commissioned, Azure Power has 1600 MWs of high-quality operational solar assets. In 2015, Azure developed the first-ever SECI solar power plant in the state of Rajasthan, which was also the largest solar power project under India's National Solar Mission at the time of its commissioning. (Source: Azure Power, PR, 30 April, 2019) Contact: Azure Power, Inderpreet Wadhwa, CEO, Samitla Subba, +91-11-4940-9854, pr@azurepower.com, www.azurepower.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Azure Power,  Solar,  India Solar,  


    GBCA Upgrades Building Green Star Ratings (Int'l. Report)
    Green Building Council of Australia
    Date: 2019-05-01
    In the Land Down Under, with more than 2250 projects under its belt the Green Building Council of Australia (GBCA) reports it is evolving its Green Star rating system and encouraging the built environment to achieve greater energy savings and net-zero carbon emissions.

    To that end, GBCA is honing in on carbon emissions to encourage a net-zero carbon future for the built environment, harnessing renewable energy and low-emissions technologies, offset and/or reduce the use of fossil fuels in buildings, and encouraging building developers and owners a to consider a building's total energy and environmental impact. For example, new credits will encourage a holistic approach to address and minimize a building's impact on neighboring buildings. (Source: Green Building Council Australia, InfraStructure, 30 April, 2019) Contact: Green Building Council of Australia, Romilly Madew, CEO, +61 2 8239 6200, new.gbca.org.au

    More Low-Carbon Energy News GBCA,  Green Star,  Energy Efficiency,  Green Building Council of Australia ,  Green Building,  Energy Efficiency,  


    CO2 Solutions Completes Que. Carbon Capture Project (Ind. Report)
    CO2 Solutions Inc
    Date: 2019-05-01
    Following up on our 15th March report, Quebec City, Quebec-based CO2 Solutions Inc. is reporting completion, commissioning and successful operation of its first commercial carbon capture unit.

    The project, with Fibrek General Partnership, a subsidiary of Resolute Forest Products Inc., and Serres Toundra Inc., deployed a 30-tpd CO2 capture unit and ancillary equipment at the RFP pulp mill in Saint-Felicien, Quebec and the commercial reuse of the captured CO2 by the Serres Toundra greenhouse facility. (Source: CO2 Solutions, Gas World, 30 April, 2019) Contact: CO2 Solutions, Richard Surprenant, CEO, Jeremie Lavoie, (418) 842-3456, ext. 223, jeremie.lavoie@co2solutions.com, www.co2solutions.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News CO2 Solutions Inc.,  Carbon Capture,  CO2,  


    High Prairie Wind Farm Plans Advancing in Mo. (Ind. Report)
    Terra-Gen,Ameren Missouri,Wind
    Date: 2019-05-01
    Following up on our 21st May, 2018 coverage, the planned construction of the 175-turbine High Prairie Wind Farm Project in northeast Missouri's Adair and Schuyler counties are reportedly moving forward.

    Last May, Terra-Gen and Ameren Missouri announced plans to build the wind farm, which will be the largest facility of its kind in the state. Terra-Gen will develop, finance and construct the project which upon completion will be purchased by Ameren Missouri, subject to regulatory approvals. (Source: Ameren Missouri, KTVO, 29 April, 2019)Contact: Ameren Missouri, Michael Moehn, Pres., Ajay Arora, VP Power Operations and Energy Management, www.Ameren.com/Missouri; Terra-Gen, www.terra-gen.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Ameren Missouri,  Terra-Gen,  Wind,  


    Princeton Planning Zero GHG Emissions by 2046 (Ind. Report)
    Princeton University
    Date: 2019-05-01
    In the Garden State, Princeton University is touting its new Sustainability Action Plan targeting GHG emissions reductions and the goal of net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2046.

    To that end, the 300 year old private Ivy League research university aims to cut campus greenhouse gas emissions to zero by 2046 by eliminating fossil fuel combustion, expanding solar power generation on campus, converting from a natural gas-fueled campus steam system to a heating hot water system; energy-efficiency improvements; and investigating long-term fuel alternatives.

    The school also plans to reduce water usage; expand high-performance storm water management; increase sustainable transportation options; reduce waste and expand sustainable purchasing; design and develop responsibly; and improve natural ecosystems on campus. (Source: Princeton University, Energy Manager, 30 April, 2019) Contact: Princeton, www.princeton.edu

    More Low-Carbon Energy News GHG,  Energy Efficiency,  Net Zero Emissions,  


    EPA Urged to Reconsider E15 (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
    American Petroleum Institute
    Date: 2019-05-01
    NMMA, the American Petroleum Institute (API) and the American Motorcyclist Association (AMA) have joined forces in opposition to the EPA's proposal to allow year-round sale of E15 gasoline:

    "We are not fighting against year-round E15 sales just for fun -- we oppose EPA's reckless proposal because it will increase the availability of a fuel that destroys marine engines and jeopardizes the safety of boaters," said NMMA senior VP of government and legal affairs Nicole Vasilaros. "With more than three in five Americans mistakenly assuming that any gas sold at gas stations is safe for all of their products, it is clear that the federal government has shirked its responsibility to effectively protect consumers from a fuel deemed so dangerous that its federally prohibited from being used in countless consumer products. And the last thing the government should do is pump more E15 into the fuel supply. Instead of jamming through a policy that almost nobody likes, EPA should focus on preventing consumers from misfueling -- including better labeling and stronger safeguards at the pump.

    "EPA's decision to expand the sale of E15 gasoline to the summer months makes no sense. It is clearly contrary to the law and it reverses nearly 30 years of statutory interpretation from the agency. Studies have shown that E15 gasoline can damage vehicle engines and fuel systems -- potentially leaving Americans with expensive car repair bills as a result of bad policy from Washington. In fact, nearly three out of four vehicles on the road today were not designed for E15." said API VP of downstream and industry operations Frank Macchiarola.

    "To make matters worse, the agency's proposed changes to the RINs market could increase costs for fuel producers and lead to higher prices for consumers. Additionally, fuel producers who have complied with the law and have already made capital investments and business decisions based on the existing RFS and RINs program will be faced with uncertainty and a moving goal post." (Source: American Petroleum Institute, NMMA, PR, 30 April, 2019) Contact: API, Frank Macchiarola, Dir., (202) 682-8114, www.api.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News RFS,  American Petroleum Institute,  E15,  Ethanol,  Ethanol Blend,  Biofuel,  


    April's US Green Energy Expected to Best Coal Production (Ind Report)
    Institute for Energy Economics & Financial Analysis
    Date: 2019-05-01
    According to the Cleveland, Ohio-headquatered Institute for Energy Economics & Financial Analysis (IEEFA), April is projected to see renewable energy produce 2.322 million megawatt-hours per day, while coal will produce 1.997 million megawatt-hours.

    Senator Ed Markey (D-MA), a co-sponsor of the Green New Deal tweeted "For the first time in history, we now have enough solar and wind installed in the US to generate more electricity from renewables than from coal." (Source: Institute for Energy Economics & Financial Analysis, IFL Science, April, 2019) Contact: Institute for Energy Economics & Financial Analysis, Sandy Buchanan, Exec. Dir., 216-688-3457 www.ieefa.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Energy,  Coal,  Institute for Energy Economics & Financial Analysis,  


    Hawkeye State Ag Sec. Supports Year-Round E15 (Ind. Report)
    E15
    Date: 2019-05-01
    Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig submitted the following comments in support of the US EPA's proposed changes to E15 fuel-blend regulations to allow year-round sales of E15:

    "The Iowa renewable fuels industry accounts for more than $5 billion (roughly 3 pct) of Iowa's GDP, generating $2.5 billion of income for Iowa households and supporting almost 50,000 jobs throughout the state. Year-round access to E15 represents a long-overdue step toward creating a truly competitive fuel market, where cleaner, lower-cost biofuel blends are available to all consumers. This means stronger markets for farm families across Iowa who have been struggling with ongoing low commodity prices and trade tensions." Naig said.

    "In addition to allowing year-round sales of E15, the EPA's proposed regulatory changes would modify certain elements of the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) compliance system to improve the renewable identification number (RIN) market." Iowa is expected to have nearly 1,000 E-15 pumps at 200 stations statewide by the end of 2019. (Source: Iowa Dept. of Agriculture, Crop Life, 30 April, 2019) Contact: Iowa Dept. of Agriculture, Mike Naig, Sec., (515) 281-5321, www.IowaAgriculture.gov

    More Low-Carbon Energy News RFS,  Ethanol Blend,  E15,  


    ABFA Acts Against Additional EPA "Hardship Waivers" (Reg. & Leg.)
    Advanced Biofuels Association
    Date: 2019-05-01
    Further to our 11 March coverage, on April 24th, the Advanced Biofuels Association (ABA) filed a motion for a preliminary injunction to prevent U.S. EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler from granting additional small refinery "hardship waivers" until the resolution of its pending lawsuit against EPA.

    "Since EPA began granting these additional exemptions behind closed doors, we have seen devastating market impacts and dropping prices for renewable identification numbers (RINs). We need to stop the bleeding and prevent EPA from ABFA's lawsuit against EPA challenges its methodology for granting these exemptions, arguing the agency more than doubled the number of exempted refineries by illegally changing its petition review process behind closed doors," said ABFA Pres. Michael McAdams.

    "Administrator Wheeler has indicated his intention to move forward on decisions for as many as 39 additional exemptions this year. ABFA cannot stand by while EPA unilaterally and illegally undermines the integrity of the RFS program. These new exemptions provide a financial windfall to refineries at the expense of biofuel producers and distributors. EPA is punishing the parties who have worked to increase the amount of renewable fuel blended into the U.S. transportation fuel supply as Congress intended by enacting the RFS first in 2005 and expanding it in 2007.

    "For the first time since the inception of the RFS, we are seeing reductions in U.S. renewable fuel blending, and EPA's actions are to blame. Until the court is able to rule on the merits of ABFA's pending lawsuit, the agency should be prevented from taking further action."

    "Hardship waivers" were intended for refineries producing 75,000 bpd or less and suffered "disproportionate economic hardship" from the costs of RFS compliance. The waiver frees the refineries from an obligation to provide the EPA with biofuels credits proving compliance. In 2017, the number of small refineries filing for exemptions retroactively for 2016 jumped from 14 the previous year to 20. The rate in which EPA granted these petitions also increased dramatically from 53 pct to 95 pct. (Source: Advanced Biofuels Association, 30 April, 2019)Contact: Advanced Biofuels Association, www.advancedbiofuelsassociation.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News "Hardship Waiver",  Advanced Biofuels Association ,  


    Black Carbon Emissions Underestimated (Ind. Report, R&D)
    Blabk Carbon
    Date: 2019-05-01
    Although researchers have developed several historical inventories of black carbon (soot) emissions, new US EPA research suggests that U.S. soot emissions were 80 pct higher during the late 20th century than previously indicated.

    In particular, the researchers determined that the emissions from several key sources -- pre-1980 residential boilers and heating stoves, specific off-road engines, and heavy-duty diesel and light-duty gasoline-powered vehicles assembled prior to 1970 -- should be increased significantly.

    According to the research, between 1960 and 1980, the updated U.S. emissions totaled approximately 690 gigagrams per year in 1960 and 620 gigagrams per year a decade later. The revised inventory also exhibits a decreasing trend through 1980 that is not apparent in earlier reports. (Source: EPA, Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres, 2019)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Black Carbon,  


    Energy Efficiency Specialist Redaptive Opens in Denver (Ind Report)
    Redaptive
    Date: 2019-05-01
    Energy efficiency as a service provider Redaptive is reporting the opening of an office in Denver, Colorado where it has 20 projects.

    Redpative offers energy efficiency as a service, covering all the upfront costs. The company designs the project, pays for the equipment and construction, maintains the equipment and monitors the building's systems to verify the energy savings which, according to the ACEEE can save up to 25 pct in energy costs.

    The company presently manages over 1,300 sites, covering more than 100 million square-feet of commercial and industrial facilities in 44 states, according to the company. (Source: Redaptive, Denver Post, 29 April, 2019) Contact: Redaptive, (415) 413-0445, www.redaptive.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Redaptive,  Energy Efficiency,  


    NORESC, Keesler AFB Ink Energy Savings Contract (Ind. Report)
    NORESCO
    Date: 2019-05-01
    Westborough, Mass.-based energy efficiency specialist NORESCO reports it is implementing self-funding facility improvements at Keesler Air Force Base (AFB) in Biloxi, Mississippi, through a $32.7 million guaranteed energy savings performance contract (ESPC).

    The project, contracted through DLA Energy and in collaboration with the Air Force Civil Engineer Center, will help the base advance resiliency, security and renewable energy usage while reducing deferred maintenance and energy costs.

    The scope of work includes: a 1.5MW solar photovoltaic (PV) array; chiller plant optimization controls; outdated building controls replacement; installation of 30,000 LED light fixtures; and others. The project also includes oversight of the controls and maintenance of the PV array throughout the contract term. (Source: NORESCO, PR 30 April, 2019) Contact: Noresco, www.noresco.com; Keesler AFB, www.keesler.af.mil

    More Low-Carbon Energy News NORESCO,  Energy Efficiency,  


    Notable Quote from Natural Resources Canada
    Natural Resources Canada
    Date: 2019-05-01
    "Energy efficiency is key to Canada's transition to a clean energy future." -- Amarjeet Sohi, Minister, Natural Resources Canada Contact: Natural Resources Canada, Vanessa Adams, (343) 543-7645, Vanessa.Adams@canada.ca; www.nrcan.gc.ca

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Natural Resources Canada,  Energy Efficiency,  


    CDN Energy Efficiency Labor Force to Add 36,000 (Ind. Report)
    ECO Canada
    Date: 2019-05-01
    According to Calgary-headquartered ECO Canada's recently release Energy Efficiency Employment in Canada report, the country's energy efficiency goods and services sector directly employed an estimated 436,000 permanent workers in 2018 and is poised to add more than 36,000 jobs in 2019.

    These workers were employed across approximately 51,000 businesses within Construction, Manufacturing, Wholesale Trade, Professional & Business Services, Utilities and Other Services and industries generating a total of $82.6 billion (Canadian) in revenue in 2018.

    The report released by is believed to be the first of its kind in Canada and offers a comprehensive breakdown of revenue, employment figures, hiring challenges and this year's outlook by industry. In 2018, the industry employed over 287,000 workers across 39,000 establishments.

    Access the Energy Efficiency Employment in Canada report HERE. (Source: ECO Canada, Renewable Energy, 30 April, 2019) Contact: ECO Canada, Keith Nilsen, CEO, 403-233-0748, www.eco.ca

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Energy Efficiency,  ECO Canada,  


    Marquis Energy Shelves $500Mn Ill. Ethanol Plant Plans (Ind. Report)
    Marquis Energy
    Date: 2019-05-01
    Hennepin, Illinois-based Marquis Energy LLc has reportedly abandoned plans to invest $500 million to construct an ethanol plant in Scott County, Illinois.

    The company cited "trade uncertainty" and Illinois' "anti-business and high tax policies" as well as labor wage legislation for its decision. (Source: Marquis Energy, Jacksonville Journal-Courier, Illinois News Network, 29 April, 2019) Contact: Marquis Energy, Mark Marquis, CEO, Tom Marquis, VP, (815) 925-7300, inquiries@marquisenergy.com, www.marquisenergy.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Marquis Energy,  Ethanol,  


    EPA Stalls on RFS "Hardship Waiver" Transparency (Ind. Report)
    RFS
    Date: 2019-05-01
    Reuters is reporting the U.S. EPA has suspended work on its plan -- as announced on 12 April -- to publish the names of refineries granted "hardship waiver" exemptions from federal biofuels law after receiving blowback from the White House and parts of the oil industry.

    The EPA currently does not name companies that apply for or receive the waivers, arguing the information is confidential. The corn industry wants that changed because it believes profitable companies are securing waivers, which is hurting farmers. Small refineries owned by profitable oil majors like ExxonMobil and Chevron are among those that have gotten waivers since 2017, according to the Reuters report.

    "Hardship waivers" were intended for refineries producing 75,000 bpd or less and suffered "disproportionate economic hardship" from the costs of RFS compliance. The waiver frees the refineries from an obligation to provide the EPA with biofuels credits proving compliance. In 2017, the number of small refineries filing for exemptions retroactively for 2016 jumped from 14 the previous year to 20. The rate in which EPA granted these petitions also increased dramatically from 53 pct to 95 pct. (Source: Yahoo Finance, Reuters, 30 April, 2019)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News RFS,  "Hardship Waiver",  Ethanol Blend,  


    $40Mn Mass. Energy Efficiency Partnership Announced (Funding)
    Gov. Charlie Baker
    Date: 2019-05-01
    In the Bay State, the office of Gov. Charlie Baker (R) has announced a three-year, $40 million energy efficiency partnership with the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA), Eversource and National Grid.

    The partnership aims to cut energy consumption across dozens of MBTA stations and facilities, reduce MBTA operating costs, improve lighting and substantially reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

    This initiative will reduce MBTA electricity use by 7 pct -- 30 million kWh annually -- and save MBTA $2.7 million in energy costs while eliminating 10,000 metric tpy of carbon emissions.

    The MBTA will invest approximately $30 million in the projects which include new lighting and lighting controls, upgrading HVAC equipment and building automation controls.

    The Nass. Department Energy Resources (DOER) will provide $3.5 million in funding while Eversource and National Grid provide and estimate $9 million in cost cutting incentives. (Source: Framingham Source, 30 April, 2019) Contact:Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources, (617) 626-7300, doer.energy@mass.gov, www.mass.gov/doer; Office of Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker, (617) 725-4005, www.mass.gov/governor

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Energy Efficiency,  Gov. Charlie Baker,  DOER,  


    New Energy Risk Backs $260Mn Plastics-to-Fuel Plant (Ind. Report)
    RES Polyflow,Brightmark Energy,
    Date: 2019-04-29
    Menlo Park, California-headquartered New Energy Risk, the leader in customized insurance solutions for renewable technology projects, reports it has provided RES Polyflow, a leading plastics-to-fuel technology company, with a performance insurance program for its ground-breaking Ashley, Indiana plant -- the country's first commercial-scale plastics-to-fuel project.

    When fully operational, the facility will convert 100,000 tpy of plastic into 18 million gpy of fuel and 6 million gpy of wax. By working with New Energy Risk (NER), RES Polyflow has reduced the overall cost of project capital, increased the certainty of execution, and made the bond offering more attractive to investors.

    RES Polyflow and its San Francisco-based parent development company, Brightmark Energy, raised an aggregate amount of $260 million, including $185 million in Indiana green bonds, underwritten by Goldman Sachs & Co. To streamline the financing, the companies approached NER, an affiliate of the global reinsurance group AXA XL, a division of AXA, to design a custom performance insurance policy that would mitigate technology risk for financiers interested in investing in this revolutionary project and the company's process that can convert 500,000 tpy of waste into 50 million gpy of biofuel .

    The Indiana plant superheats and then converts plastic into ultra-low sulfur diesel and naphtha blend stocks, as well as commercial grade wax. (Source: AXA XL, PR, 23 April, 2019) Contact: AXA AL, www.axaxl.com; New Energy Risk, (650) 204-4279, contact@newenergyrisk.com, www.newenergyrisk.com; Brightmark Energy, Bob Powell, CEO, (415) 689-8395, info@brightmarkenergy.com, www.brightmarkenergy.com; RES Polyflow, www,respolyflow.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Brightmark Energy,  RES Polyflow,  Plastic-to-Fuel,  


    Tesla Report Benchmarks Company-Wide Carbon Impact (Ind. Report)
    Tesla
    Date: 2019-04-29
    As part of its inaugural sustainability report, electric vehicle and energy storage industry leader Tesla has revealed its carbon impact but has not yet set specific targets to bring down its energy usage or carbon emissions.

    According to the report, Tesla Tesla noted it is directly and indirectly responsible for 282,000 metric tpy of carbon emissions across its facilities, energy operations, logistics and charging network, according to its baseline 2017 data. Tesla previously promised to run its operations on 100 percent renewable energy at some undetermined future date.

    Download the full Tesla report HERE. (Source: Tesla, April, 2019) Contact: Tesla, www.tesla.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Tesla,  Carbon Emissions,  Carbon Impact,  


    Quantum Fuel, QBI Announce Calif. Biogas Collaboration (Ind. Report)
    Quantum Fuel
    Date: 2019-04-29
    Ventura, California-based alternative fuel systems provider Quantum Fuel Systems reports it has partnered with Quantitative BioSciences (QBI) on a new dairy biogas project in Modesto, California.

    Under the agreement, QBI will purchase Quantum's newest ten Virtual Pipeline trailers for use in the biogas facility funded by the California Energy Commission. The project is being developed by QBI and Fiscalini Cheese Company, and will result in the construction of a biofuels production facility to purify and compress biomethane from anaerobic digesters into transportation fuel. When fully operational, the he project is expected to produce 450 diesel gallon equivalent of CNG per day, According the Quantum, (Source; Quantum Fuel Systems, BioiEnergy Insights, 25 April, 2019) Contact: Quantum Fuel Systems, Mark Arnold, Pres., 805-308-6067, www.qtww.com; Quantitative BioSciences Inc., Natalie Cookson, CEO, https://ca.linkedin.com/company/quantitative-biosciences-inc

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Biogas,  Methane,  Niomethane,  Anaerobic Digestion,  CNG,  


    UK BEIS Planning Building Energy Efficiency Consultation (Int'l)
    Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy
    Date: 2019-04-29
    In London, the UK Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) reports it will launch a consultation aimed at identifying actions that would drive improved energy efficiency and reduced emissions in the commercial built environment sector.

    According to the BEIS release, around 60 pct of the built sector is rented, creating barriers to improve energy efficiency due to complex contracts between landlords and commercial tenants which often clash with the ownership, maintenance and long lifetimes of technological improvements. Roughly 40 pct of the UK's carbon emissions come from energy consumed in buildings, according to the release. BEIS estimates a 20 pct cut in building emissions will reduce energy costs for businesses by £6 billion, £2.7 billion of which will be saved by SMEs, with a new energy efficiency targeting scheme set to be introduced to assist smaller businesses. The government's Minimum Energy Efficiency Standard (MEES) came into effect on 1st April 2018, imposing new rules on both domestic and commercial properties within the private rental sector. The new rules prohibit landlords from granting a tenancy to new or existing tenants if the property has an inefficient Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating. (Source: UK BEIS, edie News, 25 April 2019, Contact: BEIS, Ben Golding, Director of Energy Efficiency, +44 0 20 7215 5000, enquiries@beis.gov.uk,www.gov.uk/government/organisations/department-for-business-energy-and-industrial-strategy

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Department for Business,  Energy and Industrial Strategy,  Energy Efficiency ,  


    UAE-Carib. Renewable Energy Fund Supports Caribbean Solar (Int'l)
    UAE-Caribbean Renewable Energy Fund
    Date: 2019-04-29
    The UAE-Caribbean Renewable Energy Fund (UAE-CREF) is reporting funding for three solar power projects in the Bahamas, Barbados, and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines. The $50 million UAE-CREF is a partnership between the UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, the Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD) and Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company (Masdar). The fund is the largest renewable energy initiative of its kind in the region,

    The three projects, all of which broke ground in November, 2019, will deliver 2.35MW of solar and 637kWh of battery storage capacity, while displacing more than 2.6 million tpy of CO2 and saving over 895,000 lpy, worth about $1.1 million, in diesel fuel.

    The UAE-CREF was launched in 2017 and intends to deploy renewable energy projects in 16 Caribbean countries in three cycles to reduce energy costs, increase energy access, and enhance climate resilience. UAE foreign aid for renewable energy projects now totals almost $1 billion since 2013, supporting more than 40 countries. (Source: UAE-Caribbean Renewable Energy Fund, PR, April, 2019) Contact: UAE-Caribbean Renewable Energy Fund, https://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/contact, www.sustainabledevelopment.un.org/partnership/?p=14199

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Energy,  UAE-Caribbean Renewable Energy Fund ,  


    Calif. Eateries Adding Climate Change Surcharge (Ind. Report)
    Carbon Tax,Perennial Farming Initiative
    Date: 2019-04-29
    In the Golden State, a new program created as a collaboration with the California Air Resources Board (ARB), the California Food and Agricultural Department and the not-for-profit Perennial Farming Initiative gives California restaurants the option to adhere to the voluntary Restore California Renewable Restaurant program and add a voluntary 1 pct surcharge-carbon tax to diners' bills as part of the fight against climate change. The extra money will go to support environmentally friendly farming practices. (Source: The Hill, NY Post, Various Media, 27 April, 2019) Contact: Perennial Farming Initiative, www.perennialfarming.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News CARB,  Carbon Tax,  


    ADM Planning Three Ethanol Plant Spinoff (Ind. Report, M&A)
    Archer Daniels Midland
    Date: 2019-04-29

    Last Friday, Chicago-headquartered biofuel pioneer Archer Daniels Midland (ADM) reported it may spin off three large dry mill ethanol plants after the unsuccessful search for a buyer came up empty. ADM's move is being seen as a sign of the industry's troubles with U.S. President Trump's punitive tariffs and trade wars, thin margins, overproduction, and the motoring public's growing love affair with electric vehicles and fuel efficient vehicles, all of which is forcing the biofuels industry to seek new markets -- such as China -- for their overproduction.

    Last week, U.S. ethanol production hit 1.05 million bpd, highest in at least five years seasonally, and inventories climbed to 22.75 million barrels, not far from the record of 24.45 million hit in March, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. (Source: ADM, Reuters, Grainews, 26 April, 2019) Contact: ADM, Juan Luciano, Pres., CEO, (312) 634-8100, Collin Benson, VP Bioactives, Jackie Anderson, ADM Media, (217) 424-5413, www.adm.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Archer Daniels Midland ,  Ethanol,  Biofuel,  


    Junction Solar Seeks 100-MW Solar Farm Permitting (Ind. Report)
    Junction Solar LLC
    Date: 2019-04-29
    In the Land of Lincoln, Junction Solar LLC is seeking permitting and regulatory approval from Lee County for construction of a 100-MW solar farm in Alto and Reynolds townships. If constructed, the 760-acre facility would generate sufficient power for as many as 20,000 homes.

    Junction Solar would be developed by Minnesota-based Geronimo Energy, which also owns the 13,000 acre Green River Wind Farm in Lee and Whiteside counties. The proposal is slated for the County Zoning Board agenda later this week. If approved, the project could break ground as early as spring 2020 for completion with 6 months. (Source; Junction Solar LLC, saukvalley.com, 27 April, 2019) Contact: Junction Solar LLC, Geronimo Energy, Lee County, www.leecountyil.com; Geronimo Energy, Ben Adamich, (952) 988-9000, info@geronimoenergy.com, www.geronimoenergy.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Geronimo Energy,  Junction Solar LLC,  Solar,  


    EPA Says Brace for Climate Change Impacts (Report Attached)
    EPA
    Date: 2019-04-29
    In Washington, the US EPA has released a 150-page report in the Federal Register on coping with the fallout from climate change related natural disasters and how to address the debris left in the wake of floods, hurricanes and wildfires.

    Various recent studies have identified how climate change is already affecting the U.S. and the globe -- regional temperatures have increased by almost 2 degrees Fahrenheit since the 1970s, early snow-melts extending the fire season by three months and quintupling the number of large fires. Another EPA co-authored paper found that unless the U.S. slashes carbon emissions, climate change will probably cost the United States hundreds of billions of dollars annually by 2100.

    Download the EPA report HERE. (Source: EPA, Washington Post, 27 April, 2019)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Climate Change,  Climate Change Mitigarion,  EPA,  


    B.C. Ups Energy Efficiency, Emissions Cutting Incentives (Ind. Report)
    BC,Carbon Emissions
    Date: 2019-04-29
    In Victoria, the NDP government of British Columbia Premier John Horgan reports its Better Buildings program is increasing incentives and rebates to as much as $20,000 per project to help homeowners and businesses save energy and cut greenhouse gas emissions.

    The plan allows for $14,100 for a home and $220,000 for a commercial business to make the energy-saving changes. The program is aimed at encouraging the switch to high-efficiency heating equipment and improve building envelopes, which include walls, windows, roofs and foundations.

    The incentives aim to help replace fossil fuel heating systems with electric air-source heat pumps, improve insulation, encourage upgrades to high-efficiency natural gas furnaces and install more windows and doors that minimize heat loss. (Source: BC News, 26 April, 2019)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon Emissions,  Energy Efficiency,  Energy Efficiency Incentives ,  

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