Today is Global Wind Day, and it's significant because wind has a major role to play in meeting global climate commitments, but scaling the energy source will require overcoming major challenges. The solution lies in collaboration, says Global Wind Energy Council CEO Ben Backwell. In this interview, Backwell shares considerations for accelerating wind deployment, as well as barriers to growth, such as outdated permitting and planning systems.
The US added a record 5 gigawatts of new installed solar capacity in the first quarter and now has a total capacity of more than 100 GW, reports the Solar Energy Industries Association and Wood Mackenzie. "While we're poised for more growth, we must accelerate solar and storage deployment to address the climate crisis and reach President Biden's ambitious clean energy goals," said SEIA President and CEO Abigail Ross Hopper.
Equinor has made some changes to its sustainability strategy in response to demands made by some investors and politicians. The company will continue to expand oil and gas production until 2026, but has moved up its targeted timeline to have an installed renewable energy capacity of 12 to 16 gigawatts from 2035 to 2030. Equinor will also increase its investment in carbon dioxide capture technologies and renewables 50% by 2030.
OhmConnect thinks so, and it's going to test the idea by spending $100 million to distribute 1 million smart thermostats to ratepayers. "We're building capacity that allows us to produce megawatts for the grid," said CEO Cisco DeVries. "Instead of a peaker power plant, this is a lot of little devices given away to people's homes."
The Electric Reliability Council of Texas on Monday urged customers to reduce their power consumption through Friday due to tightening grid conditions. ERCOT attributed the warning to "[a] significant number of forced generation outages and potential record electric use for the month of June."
The Workforce Housing Group is spearheading a program in Brooklyn's Crown Heights neighborhood that will give low-income families free Wi-Fi. NY Green Bank and the New York State Housing Finance Agency are providing loans to install solar panels on 18 buildings overseen by Workforce Housing, and the utility bill savings will be used to both repay the loans and provide free high-speed broadband services in 22 buildings.
China has pledged to achieve carbon neutrality by 2060, but little progress is being made to transition the nation away from coal-fueled power generation. China's 14th Five-Year Plan, released this year, calls for renewables to account for 20% of the nation's energy mix by 2025, but doesn't place a limit on coal consumption. "The fact is coal is still the king here in this country," says Li Shuo of Greenpeace East Asia.
Marine energy is attractive for coastal locations that lack existing renewables, and Orbital Marine Power and Mocean Energy are separately working on different technologies in Scotland that may make this form of energy harvesting more accessible. Orbital's modular O2 tidal turbine has a capacity of about 2 megawatts, while Mocean's Blue Horizon system harnesses the kinetic energy of surface waves.
Many companies are setting environmental, social and governance goals, but achieving them is challenging because related projects require a hefty investment and Gregg Lemos-Stein of S&P Global says returns may not be realized for more than a decade. Xcel Energy and CenterPoint Energy are investing in clean energy solutions such as wind and solar, while General Motors and Ford are investing in electric vehicles to boost their ESG strategies.
Shell Ventures, Mitsui & Co., Daimler, ABB Switzerland and other entities have invested $500 million in G2 Venture's Fund II. The fund will support entrepreneurs who are working to reduce resource intensity in energy, manufacturing, logistics and other industries.
- Page 1