GreenBiz article contributed by Tatsatom Gonçalves & Yuning Liu
Originally published by the World Resources Institute
California and Texas accounted for about 84 percent of the total renewable energy purchased by cities between 2015 and early 2020. The prominent role of these two states is no surprise, given that they are the country’s largest electricity consumers and enjoy easy access to abundant wind and solar resources. Both also allow electric retail choice and have the local autonomy needed to access renewable energy options such as community choice aggregations (CCAs). In doing so, local governments can aggregate the power demand of their residents and businesses to get more leverage to choose cleaner power sources, which could contribute to their higher rates of procurement. There is also a lot of progress in other regions, including through community solar projects in Minnesota, Massachusetts and Washington. Collectively, there were more than 120 clean energy transactions by local governments in the other most active states. Read more here.
FROM UTLITY DIVE
Biden outlines $2T plan to invest in renewables, electrification, by Emma Penrod
In a Tuesday afternoon speech, presidential candidate Joe Biden outlined his plan for nearly $2 trillion in infrastructure spending, focused mostly on renewable energy and electrification, which he described as a “one-time” opportunity to reestablish the U.S. as a global economic and political leader.
His comments mirror the findings of the American Council on Renewable Energy’s (ACORE) third-annual investor survey, also released on Tuesday, which found that investors ranked energy storage as the most desirable sector to invest in, despite the reality that energy storage still secures a minority of the overall investment dollars dedicated to renewable energy. An increase in government incentives for storage projects, according to ACORE, could change this trend.
GTM’s POLITICAL CLIMATE PODCAST
How Joe Biden’s Climate Plan Stacks Up
On this week’s episode of Political Climate, we discuss the details and political implications of Biden’s clean energy and infrastructure plan. The Biden climate plan comes on the heels of the Biden-Sanders Unity Task Force recommendations on addressing climate change and environmental injustice, as well as House Democrats’ 500-page report on solving the climate crisis. In theory, there’s a lot in all of these proposals for leaders across the political aisle to love.
PEW RESEARCH CENTER SURVEY
US Citizens Want More Action From The Government For Climate Change, CEOWORLD Magazine
Pew Research Center conducted a new survey for climate change and what American citizens believe about the way the government is handling it. 65% of Americans say that the federal government is doing too little to reduce the effects of climate change. Citizens are dissatisfied not only with the way the government deals with climate change but also with protecting air and water quality and wildlife.
CLIMATE FINANCE CENTER
JPMorgan, Bank of America, Wells Fargo, Goldman Sachs back launch of climate finance center, by Dan Ennis, Banking Dive. The Rocky Mountain Institute, a clean energy nonprofit, launched the Center for Climate-Aligned Finance on Thursday with financial backing from JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, Wells Fargo and Goldman Sachs. With the goal of cutting carbon emissions to net zero by 2050, the center aims to collaborate with banks to design guidance for working with carbon-heavy sectors such as steel or utilities, and to help banks determine which climate benchmarks and data to follow.
PV MAGAZINE’S MORNING BRIEF
California ISO brings the largest battery storage resource in the nation online
Also in the brief: IREC on energy storage interconnection, Wunder Capital and partners to invest more than $100 million in U.S. commercial solar, Photosol buying land rights near coal plants with eye toward transmission, and NREL on recycling solar panels.
JINKO’S PRO TIGER SERIES SOLAR PANELS
A closer look at Jinko’s 565 W to 585 W panel, PV Magazine
The module – which measures 2,411 mm × 1,134 mm × 35 mm, weighs 31.1 kg and features 156 p-type monocrystalline cells – is available in five versions with power outputs of 565 W to 585 W and efficiencies of 20.6% to 21.4%. Jinko says the Pro Tiger series will become the company’s main revenue stream in 2022, surpassing the Tiger 475 W panel.
HYBRID SOLAR ENERGY CONVERTER
Scientists build high-performing hybrid solar energy converter, Tulane University, ScienceDaily
Tulane University researchers are part of a team of scientists who have developed a hybrid solar energy converter that generates electricity and steam with high efficiency and low cost. The hybrid converter utilizes an approach that more fully captures the whole spectrum of sunlight. It generates electricity from high efficiency multi-junction solar cells that also redirect infrared rays of sunlight to a thermal receiver, which converts those rays to thermal energy.
The thermal energy can be stored until needed and used to provide heat for a wide range of commercial and industrial uses, such as food processing, chemical production, water treatment, or enhanced oil recovery. The team reports that the system demonstrated 85.1 percent efficiency, delivered steam at up to 248°C, and is projected to have a system levelized cost of 3 cents per kilowatt hour.
The World Needs a Cash-for-Coal-Clunkers Program, Greentech Media article contributed by Justin Guay, director for global climate strategy at the Sunrise Project.
For just 5 percent of what the U.S. has spent on its COVID-19 recovery package, it could have bought out and retired every coal plant in the world. Instead, the U.S. coal industry is benefiting from recovery programs while the world continues to subsidize old uneconomic coal plants rather than retire them. As we debate a green recovery, now is the time to add an important approach to our tool kit: a cash-for-coal-clunkers program, to help buy the only thing we can’t make more of — time. In the U.S., even the most optimistic estimates say we are on track to get coal off line as late as 2035 — five years too late.
DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY NEWS RELEASE
DOE Announces $139 Million in Funding for 55 Projects to Advance Innovative Vehicle Technologies. Funded through the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE), projects will conduct research in advanced batteries, electrification, and manufacturing in support of DOE’s Energy Storage Grand Challenge. Announced by Secretary Brouillette in January 2020, the Energy Storage Grand Challenge is a comprehensive strategy to create and sustain U.S. global leadership in energy storage technology, utilization, and exports. Learn more about all of the projects selected today here.
Belgian school selling solar power to neighbors, PV Magazine International
Belgium is testing its first energy community by giving special status to a solar energy pilot near Brussels. The project will help to create a large-scale legal framework to apply the European Directives to energy communities.
FEATURED SOLAR INSTALLATION
Solar energy makes local car wash even ‘greener’, The Winchester Star
Owner Ned Browning of Winchester said the car wash has been incorporating green technology for years, including water conservation, pollution prevention and biodegradable soap options. Adding clean solar energy was “the next level,” he said. The solar array went into operation in April and is expected to pay for itself in five years.
Photo Credit: Jeff Taylor/The Winchester Star
FEATURED CLIMATE & ENERGY EDUCATIONAL RESOURCES
The Climate Literacy & Energy Awareness Network (CLEAN) maintains a collection of 700+ free, ready-to-use climate and energy educational resources that have been rigorously reviewed by educators and scientists. They are geared toward secondary through higher education classrooms.