first_imgEuropean Companies Win Big in Taiwan Offshore Wind Auction FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Reuters:Taiwan is becoming the next battleground for the world’s top offshore wind developers as they seek a foothold in Asia for a technology that has been expanding fast in Europe.Taiwan announced results on Monday of its first major offshore wind farm auction that aims to add 3.8 gigawatts (GW) of capacity to its existing network of just 8 megawatts (MW).The island’s offshore wind market is expected to expand to 5.5 GW by 2025, and the government aims to invest $23 billion on onshore and offshore wind projects by 2025, law firm Jones Day says.Taiwan is making a big push to attract investments in renewable technology as it phases out nuclear power by 2025, after the 2011 Fukushima disaster in Japan highlighted the risks of using nuclear energy in a region prone to earthquakes.For developers in Europe, where expanding offshore wind projects particularly in the North Sea has driven down costs, Taiwan is seen as a route into Asian markets, such as Japan and South Korea, where the technology is still barely used.Denmark’s Orsted and Germany’s wpd were Monday’s biggest winners, securing contracts to install 900 MW and 1 GW of capacity, respectively.“We see Taiwan as a stepping stone into Asia-Pacific,” said Matthias Bausenwein, the regional general manager for Orsted, the world’s largest owner of offshore wind power sites that was previously known as DONG Energy.More: Offshore Wind Power Firms See Taiwan As A Battleground To Expand In Asialast_img read more

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享The Canadian Press:The federal government’s purchase of the Trans Mountain Pipeline will add significantly to the deficit next year, according to a study by a sustainable energy research group.Buying the Kinder Morgan Canada assets, plus planning and construction costs, will put $6.5 billion in unplanned spending on the books for the 2018-19 fiscal year, the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis said in its analysis released Tuesday.Until Ottawa clarifies how it plans to account for the spending, there’s a risk the purchase could add 36 percent to the projected $18.1-billion deficit, according to the study written by Tom Sanzillo and Kathy Hipple.However, conclusions from the study are “completely incorrect,” according to an emailed response from the federal finance department. The government would receive an asset of significant value in its deal with Kinder Morgan Canada, and as such it doesn’t expect the purchase would have an immediate impact on the federal debt or deficit, said an unnamed official in the email.Sanzillo, a former first deputy comptroller of New York State, said the government does have other ways to account for the funds, but that it shouldn’t be borrowing for a speculative asset. “A speculation on a pipeline is far outside what would be a reasonable and responsible investment by a public sector entity. The absorption by a public sector entity of something that the private sector has rejected is a risk, a substantial risk.”Canada’s ability to sell the pipeline without taking a loss is in doubt because it has already signaled it is a reluctant buyer and because of the poor growth prospects of the oil sands in the latter half of the next decade, the study said.The authors call on the government to do more to disclose how it arrived at the purchase price, what cost-benefits were weighed, what potential costs the public is exposed to, and whether Kinder Morgan attempted to sell the pipeline elsewhere.More: Study predicts Trans Mountain pipeline purchase could add 36 percent to federal deficit Trans Mountain Pipeline a bad investment for Canada—IEEFAlast_img read more

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享The Guardian:The amount polluters pay for emitting carbon in the EU has hit a 10-year high, in a blow for coal power station owners and a boost for renewable energy. The price of carbon in the bloc’s emissions trading scheme reached €18 (£16) per tonne on Monday, triple the level a year ago.About 12,000 factories and power stations have to pay for every tonne of carbon they emit under the scheme, but for years an oversupply of permits has meant the cost has languished at about €5 per tonne. That is too low to spur companies to lower emissions.However, observers said the carbon price rises and further anticipated increases would begin to hurt coal operators’ profit margins and influence investment decisions.Phil MacDonald, the head of communications at Sandbag, a group that monitors the carbon market, said: “It will already be cutting into coal profits … Renewables get a big win from this and so does nuclear.”Mark Lewis, the head of research at the Carbon Tracker think tank, said although coal plant owners were bearing the brunt of the higher carbon price, they would pass it straight through to consumers.Sandrine Ferrand, a market analyst at Engie Global Markets, said the extra cost would be significant for coal, at about €11-12 extra per megawatt hour. But the incentive to switch fuels would be limited because gas prices had also increased, alongside oil prices. “So far, the carbon price is not high enough to trigger a large switch from coal-fired power generation to less polluting gas-fired power generation,” she said.More: Blow for coal power as EU carbon emissions price hits 10-year high Rise in European carbon prices a ‘big win’ for renewableslast_img read more

first_imgFrench firm completes world’s largest floating solar project in China FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Renew Economy:French-based Ciel & Terre International has announced that its 70 MW floating solar power plant located on top of an old coal mining area in the province of Anhui, China, is now officially complete after several months of tests and monitoring.Ciel & Terre has been developing floating solar PV projects since 2011 and has developed over 120 floating solar PV farms around the world – including in Cambodia, Taiwan, and South Africa.At the end of 2018 construction was completed on a 70MW (peak) floating solar plant in the Chinese province of Anhui, in the country’s east, the largest floating solar plant in the world.The project was constructed by China Energy Conservation Solar Technology and engineering, procurement, and construction (EPC) was completed by China Energy Engineering Group Shanxi Electric Power Design Institute.Built atop a former coal-mining area in the Yongqiao district, Suzhou city, the new project will primarily be used to improve the energy structure in the province and the quality of the environment on-site.The idea of floating solar projects continues to gain traction as the economics of solar power generation becomes more attractive and available land becomes harder to come by. Utilising bodies of water for solar generation solves several issues while still generating clean electricity. Further, company’s like Ciel & Terre also focus their efforts on installing floating solar systems on brown fields or remediation ponds in an effort to transform polluted land and water into clean energy generating sites.More: China completes new 70MW floating solar PV project on old coal arealast_img read more

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Eco-Business:Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) will henceforth reject requests for loans for new coal projects, the bank’s head, Tadashi Maeda, was reported saying on Wednesday, making it the third Japanese financial institution to signal a shift away from the world’s dirtiest fossil fuel this month.The government-run firm, which has lent billions to coal developers over the years, will no longer accept loan applications for new coal-fired power stations, said the governor in an interview with Japanese business magazine Diamond Online, explaining that assessments of coal investments took too long, which could lock countries into energy technology that could be outdated by the time a decision was reached.For now, JBIC’s coal exit remains a mere statement, as it yet needs to be enshrined in a formal policy, said Julien Vincent, executive director of Australian non-governmental organisation Market Forces, which has been campaigning for Asian banks to ditch coal. It is still unclear when such a policy will be released.One of the world’s top providers of subsidised government capital for coal power development, JBIC has handed out US$14 billion in loans for nearly 30 new coal power plants, helping add at least another 37.7 gigawatts of new polluting coal power capacity from Mexico to Indonesia, data by Market Forces shows.But it is not alone. Major lenders in Japan, including Mizuho, Mitsubishi UFJ and Sumitomo Mitsui, have been the biggest coal financiers globally. In the five years since the Paris climate accord was signed, they have poured US$282 billion into fossil fuels, revealed a report released last month. However, this also puts Japan in a unique position to drive Asia’s shift away from dirty coal. Earlier this year, the nation’s environment ministry said it would review its export policy on coal-fired power stations in response to global criticism over the government’s backing of coal projects in countries like Indonesia and Vietnam.“If Japan puts an end to exporting coal power and focuses exclusively on catalysing renewable technology, South Korea and China may be under tremendous pressure to change due to stresses on their balance sheets,” said Sara Ahmed, an energy finance analyst for the US-based Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis.[Tim Ha]More: JBIC becomes third Japanese bank in a month to signal move away from coal Japan Bank for International Cooperation takes first steps away from coal-plant financinglast_img read more

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Greensboro News & Record:North Carolina environmental officials have denied a key permit that would allow a proposed natural gas pipeline to be built along the Triad’s eastern border.In a letter that was posted online by N.C. Policy Watch on Tuesday, the director of N.C. Division of Water Resources said the division has determined that the proposed MVP Southgate project “is inextricably linked to, and dependent upon, completion of the under-construction Mountain Valley Pipeline,” which has several federal permits suspended or pending, with some in litigation.“Approving construction activities and thereby allowing the most adverse environmental impacts — without certainty of the project’s utility upon completion — is inconsistent with principles of minimization,” division director S. Daniel Smith wrote. “In addition, the project would unnecessarily risk impacting high-quality waters and protected and critical drinking water supplies of North Carolinians,” he said.N.C. Division of Water Resources denied both a Water Quality Certification and Jordan Lake Riparian Buffer Authorization. MVP has 60 days to appeal the decision.The $468 million Southgate project would be a 75-mile extension of the Mountain Valley Pipeline. The “mainline” project originates in West Virginia and then crosses Virginia on a 303.5-mile route, before its Southgate spur enters North Carolina near Eden. The Southgate extension would follow a southeasterly course through the Dan River and Haw River basins to an endpoint near Graham.Southgate developer Mountain Valley Pipeline LLC is a Delaware-based partnership led by five energy companies that include Con Edison Transmission, EQM Midstream Partners, NextEra Energy, RGC Midstream and WGL Midstream. Much of its mainline project already has been built. But the remainder is blocked by lawsuits and regulatory actions that so far have prevented it from going through Jefferson National Forest in Virginia and West Virginia, traversing certain areas where endangered species live and making a number of stream crossings.More: N.C. denies key water permit for MVP Southgate gas pipeline that would go through Rockingham, Alamance counties North Carolina denies key water permit for planned southern extension of Mountain Valley Pipelinelast_img read more

first_imgMoody’s: Much of proposed U.S. LNG export capacity likely to be delayed for years FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享S&P Global Market Intelligence ($):Oversupplied global LNG markets are struggling to rebalance from the shock of the coronavirus pandemic, and new export capacity under construction in the U.S. and elsewhere risks extending the gas glut into the mid-2020s, according to Moody’s Investors Service. This dynamic has created a significantly more difficult environment for commercially sanctioning new LNG projects, and it may cull their number in the U.S., the rating agency said.“The U.S. is still within reach of becoming the world’s largest LNG exporter by the mid-2020s,” Moody’s said in an Oct. 15 report, pointing to some 14 U.S. LNG projects that have federal permits but have not advanced to construction. “But virtually all of these new U.S. projects are still awaiting contract backing before beginning construction, and today’s oversupplied global LNG markets will likely delay much of this proposed capacity until at least well into the decade.”The gas glut in the early 2020s will create greater challenges in obtaining the long-term supply deals and pricing commitments that underpinned previous investments in LNG projects, Moody’s said.“The pandemic-related downturn has trimmed expectations of growth in fundamental long-term demand for LNG in the next five years and has increased investment risks on future capacity expansion projects designed to meet LNG demand beyond 2025,” Moody’s said.Competitive and financial hurdles have increased for LNG projects, which involve multibillion-dollar investments, high capital intensity, and long-term payback periods, according to the rating agency. Project developers also face increased competition, both from renewable energy sources that are growing at a rapid clip and from proposed large-scale expansions of LNG plants in Russia and Qatar. The large national LNG producers benefit from lower construction costs and low downstream costs, as well as sovereign backing and ownership of most of the local competitive resources.The growth of global LNG supplies will slow in 2021 and 2022, following a wave of capacity that came online last year, especially in the U.S. The world is struggling to absorb this increase in supply because of a sharp drop in demand that resulted from the coronavirus exacerbating already weak market conditions.[Corey Paul]More ($): Pandemic disruption may curb a raft of US LNG projects, Moody’s sayslast_img read more

first_imgPhoto courtesy of Eric Albitz, http://www.ericalbitz.com/Healthy Tip #35218: Catch a SunriseSet those early alarms, get the sleep out of your eyes, and follow this week’s healthy tip: Catch a Sunrise.Getting up early always feels good, except the actual process of climbing out of that comfy sleeping bag or warm covers. Get past that first obstacle of physical movement and suddenly the day is yours. If you can manage to see the morning darkness disappear, you have a fresh start and ample sunlight to enjoy the first day in a life of many.So crawl out of bed, stretch those sleepy-bones and shake things up a bit. For too many people, every day starts with obligations and hard work. Catch a sunrise and all those responsibilities can trail behind. Every day is an adventure; sleep can wait. Follow along and find fun in the sun, from sunrise to dawn and far, far beyond. Follow along as I try and quench that everlasting Adventure Thirst.Greetings from the trail,-BradFor past posts and previous adventures, check out the original blog at www.adventurethirsty.blogspot.com Foggy Sunrise Dragons Tooth Sunrise Photo courtesy of Eric Albitz, http://www.ericalbitz.com/center_img Photo courtesy of Eric Albitz, http://www.ericalbitz.com/ Sunrise in the forestlast_img read more

first_imgIn 1912, the Tallulah River was dammed above Tallulah Falls, once known as the Niagara of the South, creating the nation’s first controlled river. What had been a major tourist attraction ceased to be until the mid-1990s when American Whitewater and other advocates worked with the power company to secure three weekends of release a year. The Tallulah became an instant classic, and is celebrated with unrestrained enthusiasm at Tallulah Fest, a weekend-long whitewater jamboree on the banks of the river.The festival corresponds with the second of two spring dam releases, drawing paddlers from across the region and country – the festival has doubled in size each year since its inception. Along with paddling down the ancient, 1,000-feet deep Tallulah River Gorge, festival-goers delight in one of the wildest weekends in the South. Whitewater adventure films loop on huge screens, bluegrass blares through the night, and paddlers exchange war stories of the day’s activities and more around bonfires that burn through the morning. This year’s fest is headlined by Americana rocker Adam Hood and sponsors like Dagger, Jackson, Bomber Gear, and Immersion Research use the weekend’s dam release to test their prototypes and giveaway their latest. While the weekend is dedicated to paddling, camping, and good times, proceeds go to American Whitewater.This year’s festival is happening this weekend, April 12-14, 2013 on the banks of the Tallulah River in Cohutta National Forest. A free shuttle will be provided from the put in/take out and new this year is a video contest that will determine the winner of a new Wave Sport Recon. Don’t miss one of the wildest whitewater events of the year.View Larger Maplast_img read more

first_imgIn 2010, I was training for my first ultra, logging training runs in the New River Gorge. I wanted to run a 50-miler. But I wrecked some ankle tendons during my training and a subsequent marathon. My gait compensation caused me to develop plantar fasciitis. After that, I struggled to run long distances and gave up my dream of running an ultra.My family and I moved, in 2012, to Farmville, Virginia from Fayetteville, West Virginia. Now I work for my father-in-law’s business, Appomattox River Company, and I’m the BRO athlete kayak fisherman—not exactly bipedal endurance material.This year, on a whim, I decided to join my brother-in-law, John Waite, and his aptly named Team Bonkers at the Virginia 24 Hour Run for Cancer in Hampton on April 25 and 26. My beloved grandmother died from cancer in 2008, and it still stung. I thought running in her honor, as well as all who’ve fought that fight, would be cathartic.When the day arrived, I was anxious. I hadn’t done any training. Though I still told people my goal was 50 miles when asked. I always set ridiculous goals and blurt them out. It’s some sort of absurd personal challenge Tourettes. What was I thinking?The 24 Hour Cancer run was held at Sandy Bottom Nature Park on a 3.75-mile lollipop loop. My sister was running too, and her goal was to stay active for 12 hours and walk/run at least a marathon. The race started at 7:30am. I ran the first lap as planned and then met my sister. We walked the second lap together and chatted about our families.I fell in love with this event from the start. The trails were full of determined people. The atmosphere was warm, and the cause was just. Because of the course layout, you passed people over and over. It created an intimacy, a sense of strong camaraderie between “strangers” on the trail. Everyone smiled in passing, slapped high fives and offering encouraging words. Each lap started and ended in the same spot. So you got a chance to visit your team tent and recharge after every loop. Big props to the volunteers who manned the start station and counted everyone’s laps!The rain came at 10 a.m., way earlier than expected. The temperature never rose into the 60’s as forecasted. At 15 miles, I changed my socks for the first time. It’d been raining steady and changing socks, then sitting in my truck for a moment, felt like heaven.Screen Shot 2015-05-14 at 11.32.17 AM Photo by Brian VincentThe miles and the rain wore on. Soon I was in uncharted territory. As I rounded the bend to reach 33.75, I spotted my sister at the .625 marker.  She was doing an out and back to the marker to finish with her first 50K! She persevered through some pain, and now she was closing in on her personal best mileage. We ran her last .625 in together. Pumping our limbs, we both started giggling and asking, “My arms are moving, REALLY fast, are my legs moving?” It was my favorite moment of the race.Two of my buddies, Joe O’Brien and Shane Cochran, also finished with personal best distances. I felt proud of everyone’s efforts, especially given the conditions. By now the trail was a wet, muddy mess and the rain was still steady.After my sister’s triumph, I hit lap number 10. It was a struggle. The sun began to drop below the horizon and the temps went with it. I finished up lap 10—37.5 miles—and stumbled to my truck. I’d forgotten gloves and my hands were frozen. I wanted one more change of socks and an overhaul of my clothing. I sank into my seat, heat pumping in the truck, and thought about quitting. I could be proud of 37.5 miles for my first ultra.Screen Shot 2015-05-14 at 11.31.49 AMI switched the Farm To Feet Asheville Lows for the Blue Ridge Compression socks around mile 15. The compression socks served me extremely well over 22 plus miles. I was reluctant to strip them off. But when I changed into a fresh pair of Roanoke ¼ Crews I started to rally. The Farm To Feet socks impressed me.I slipped out of the truck and back into the rain soaked night. As I passed our tent my brother-in-law spotted me, “ I thought you were done.”“So did I,” I replied.He’d run a marathon in the morning, pacing a friend, gone to my niece’s soccer games, then come back to our tent, brewed chicken broth and cheered us on. Now he was suited up for a couple nighttime miles. He had 4 more laps to hit 40, a good training run for his upcoming race, the Massanutten 100. My brother-in-law is an ultra running beast.There were a lot of beasts out there. So many people endured the weather and pounded out miles. I saw folks carrying American flags and people carrying the names of loved ones lost. I saw elite endurance athletes pushing the limits and shattering records, and everyday folks pushing their personal limits. The Men and Women’s winners crushed 133.25 and 131 miles! It was truly awe-inspiring.I had three laps to go, plus an out-and-back 1.25 to finish with 50. The next few laps were a blur of pain, ankle deep mud and rain. There were some tough moments in those last 12.5 miles. With the rain beating down and my headlamp lighting the muddy trail, I finally rounded the bend and hit the start-stop line for mile 48.75.At 12:50 a.m., I started the walk to the .625 mark. At .25 my left foot exploded with searing pain. I stopped and cursed. I wondered if I could finish. When I got to the marker I just stood there, thinking about my grandmother and that long month my family spent by her bedside as she fought the cancer eating away at her bones. I thought about all the other folks in my life who’ve been touched by this disease, and I started walking back.I noticed a discarded protein packet, on the side of the trail and remember saying, “I don’t think I can stop, stoop, and pick that up.”  No one else was around. I could just leave it.But in those moments, funny stuff enters your head. I looked at the trash and realized that if I didn’t grab it, my whole journey would be tainted. So I bent over and picked it up. It seemed to take forever. I walked, looking at the trash in my hand. It felt so burdensome. I limped, favoring that busted foot, towards the finish line where I knew I’d find my team and a trashcan.In the end, I got my 50. It took 18 hours. Elite ultra runners crush 100’s in that time. I know that, but for me it was a huge triumph. The Virginia 24 Hour Run for Cancer was a magical moment. I want to thank all the volunteers and the race director, George, for all they do. This is a great event, even with bad weather. I may have to climb out of my kayak for another ultra. There is fun to be had out there past the marathon, just make sure you train first. The “off the couch” 50 is not recommended. Team Bonkers finished ninth out of 18 teams, and I’m proud of every person who put in those miles. Well done!last_img read more