S&P: New U.S. coal plant retirements likely to hit 28GW through 2023

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享S&P Global Market Intelligence ($):Despite continued attempts by the current federal administration to restore coal production in the United States to its former peak, economic forces driving wholesale electricity markets present a dim reality for coal-fired generation.S&P Global Market Intelligence projects that coal’s market share will continue to erode in the coming five-year period as a slew of announced retirements take place and the economic picture forces out additional coal plants that are exposed to the market. The increasingly favorable economics of zero-fuel cost renewables have contributed to a continued expansion in the market share of carbon-free generation, while the aging coal fleet continues to retire regardless of political backing. Additionally, natural gas-fired generation continues to claim market share from coal due to increased flexibility in unit dispatch, greater unit efficiency, and a prolonged stretch of low natural gas prices.Due to these headwinds, S&P Global Market Intelligence estimates that 28 GW of U.S. coal-fired generation will retire in 2019-2023. The Eastern Interconnect accounts for the majority of the retirements, with approximately 11 GW of announced capacity retirements coming offline by 2023 and another 9 GW forecast to retire due to poor economics. More than half of the anticipated retirements located in the East are within PJM. Approximately 8 GW of coal-fired generation is also expected to retire in the Western Interconnect.As a result of these retirements, conservative estimates suggest that demand for thermal coal will fall by more than 150 million tons over the coming five-year period. It is likely that coal pricing will be heavily exposed to the downside during this time while coal production struggles to ratchet down at the same pace as the contraction within the sector. Falling global coal prices will hinder the export markets from offering much of a reprieve as the outlook there also looks bleak. There is little chance of a recovery on the demand side of the equation, with 85 anticipated retirements of coal units in the next five years.Analysts have cited lower expected electricity demand this summer as a possible drag on coal volumes. Added to the prospect of lower electricity demand is a continued surplus of natural gas supply out of the Permian and Marcellus regions, which have depressed spot and forward prices. Henry Hub futures currently trade at $2.40/MMBtu for the balance of 2019, with much of the Midwest, West and Texas trading at discounts ranging from $0.15-$1.15/MMBtu. If these price levels should persist through the summer, significant additional volumes of coal could be displaced in the second half of 2019.The S&P Global Market Intelligence coal forecast currently projects a 91 million ton decline in power sector consumption from 2019-2020. Coal displacement at current price levels could bring half of this decline forward into 2019, pushing forecast power coal consumption for 2019 down to approximately 515 million tons, or 116 million tons lower than 2018.More ($): Facing increasingly grim economics, U.S. coal plant retirements may surge again S&P: New U.S. coal plant retirements likely to hit 28GW through 2023last_img read more

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Total, EDF joint venture signs agreements for 716MW of new solar in India

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享PV Tech:Total Eren and EDF Renewables have signed 25-year power purchase agreements (PPAs), for four solar power projects totaling 716MW of capacity in northern India.A 50:50 joint venture between the two firms, known as EDEN Renewables India, signed a PPA with Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI) for a 450MW project in the state of Rajasthan at the end of June. It has also last year signed PPAs for two 98MW projects and one 70MW installation with the Uttar Pradesh Power Corporation Limited (UPPCL) – a distribution company based in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh.The projects, with a planned production of nearly 1,200 GWh per year, will be able to supply power to the equivalent of 1.1 million Indian households. Their construction is due to start by the end of this year and commissioning is expected towards the end of 2020.EDEN Renewables India has been developing, building and operating solar projects in India since 2016 and the two parties have four projects totaling 207MW already deployed in Rajasthan, Uttarakhand and Madhya Pradesh. It has participated in several competitive tenders as part of this.Frédéric Belloy, EVP, International Operations at EDF Renewables, added: “These large-scale projects are a lever for local economic development, they enable us to strengthen our presence in India and consider new projects in this country which represents a strategic market for EDF Renewables. These landmarks projects fit perfectly with the EDF Group’s Cap 2030 strategy of doubling its renewable energy capacity in operation between 2015 and 2030 in France and worldwide.”More: Total Eren and EDF sign PPAs for 700MW of solar in India Total, EDF joint venture signs agreements for 716MW of new solar in Indialast_img read more

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German utility EnBW to build 180MW, subsidy-free solar project, country’s largest to date

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Greentech Media:German utility EnBW has signed off on the investment for a 180-megawatt subsidy-free solar farm. As well as becoming Germany’s largest solar farm, EnBW says it will be the first major unsubsidized solar project in the country.Work on the Weesow-Willmersdorf plant, in the state of Brandenburg, will begin at the start of next year. The company expects commissioning to take place before the end of 2020.EnBW CTO Hans-Josef Zimmer said he was confident in the project’s economics without subsidies, but cautioned that it, and future projects, would require priority dispatch rules to remain viable.The priority dispatch rule is part of Germany’s landmark renewable energy act, known as the EEG. It attempts to limit the curtailment of renewable sources by putting them at the head of the queue for grid access.But the European Union has ruled as part of its post-2020 energy package that new renewable energy projects in member states should not benefit from priority status. An exception was granted for solar installs up to 400 kilowatts. Existing plants won’t be affected.Developer BayWa r.e. is in the construction phase of a small 8.8-megawatt, subsidy-free project that it refers to as a test case. It will be one of the country’s very first to go forward without subsidies.More: Germany’s largest solar farm will also be subsidy-free German utility EnBW to build 180MW, subsidy-free solar project, country’s largest to datelast_img read more

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Fracking U.K.: Company plans ‘goodwill payments’ after earth tremors

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享BBC:Fracking has been suspended after it began in Little Plumpton in October 2018The energy firm Cuadrilla will make small “goodwill payments” to residents who claim their homes were damaged by an earthquake at its fracking site.Fracking, which extracts gas from shale rock, stopped at the Lancashire site after a 2.9-magnitude tremor in August.Cuadrilla boss Francis Egan said no “major damage” had been reported by locals near the Preston New Road site.But he said residents would get a few hundred pounds each to help with any redecorating.A number of earth tremors have happened at the site since fracking began in Little Plumpton in October 2018.On 26 August, residents reported being woken up by the 2.9 magnitude quake, which is more than 250 times bigger than the 0.5 limit placed by government rules.However, a report from the National Audit Office (NAO) found no evidence that prices would be lowered and said there was uncertainty over whether fracking could viably produce gas in meaningful quantities.Concerns have been expressed about risks to the environment and public health, and the adequacy of safety rules, the NAO said.Protests against fracking have been regularly held at the Little Plumpton site.Lancashire Constabulary reported that between 25 and 100 officers were directly involved in the policing of fracking sites every day between January 2017 and June 2019, at a cost of £11.8m.More: Fracking: Cuadrilla plans ‘goodwill payments’ after tremor Fracking U.K.: Company plans ‘goodwill payments’ after earth tremorslast_img read more

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U.S. offshore wind set to provide 12 percent of electricity demand in Massachusetts

first_imgU.S. offshore wind set to provide 12 percent of electricity demand in Massachusetts FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享GreenTech Media:Massachusetts on Wednesday selected an 804-megawatt project backed by Mayflower Wind, a joint venture of Shell and EDP Renewables, as the winner of its second offshore wind procurement.The announcement brings another major project into focus in the rapidly evolving U.S. market. Mayflower will build the offshore wind farm 20 miles south of Nantucket, with an anticipated start-up date in 2025.Mayflower beat out two other development groups in the solicitation: Vineyard Wind (comprising Avangrid and Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners) and Bay State Wind (Ørsted and Eversource). It will now negotiate a final contract with the state’s distribution utilities, a process expected to wrap up in December.EDP Renewables, a unit of Portuguese utility EDP, is among the world’s leading renewables developers, with a major presence in U.S. onshore wind.Mayflower’s win comes a year and a half after Massachusetts awarded an 800-megawatt project in its first solicitation to Vineyard Wind. Put together, the 1,600 megawatts of capacity from Vineyard and Mayflower’s projects are expected to generate the equivalent of 12 percent of Massachusetts’ annual electricity demand.The state is likely to procure another 1,600 megawatts in the early 2020s, helping to maintain momentum for the supply chain. Some analysts believe Massachusetts will eventually expand its offshore wind target even further as it competes for jobs with states like New York and Connecticut.More: Massachusetts to hit 1.6 GW offshore wind requirement with 804 MW from Mayflower Wind projectlast_img read more

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Private sector shows little interest in India coal mine auction

first_imgPrivate sector shows little interest in India coal mine auction FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Reuters:India received no bids for 15 of the 38 mines to be auctioned as a part of its plan to open up coal mining to private companies, reflecting little investor appetite for the sector clouded by environmental concerns and low margins.“A total number of 82 bids from 46 companies have been received off-line/physically in the office of the nominated authority for 23 coal mines/blocks,” the coal ministry said in a statement late on Monday.Coal production in India has largely been restricted to state-run Coal India Ltd and another smaller government-controlled company. Prime Minister Narendra Modi opened up coal mining to the private sector this year.In a statement released after the deadline for the submission of the technical bids passed, the coal ministry said only 23 of the 38 mines received bids, with only 20 of them getting more than one bid.The world’s second largest consumer, importer and producer of the fuel offered a range of financial incentives in a bid to attract investment and reduce imports.India’s largest coal trader, Adani Enterprises Ltd, and Jindal Steel and Power Ltd were among the companies that submitted bids, according to two sources familiar with the matter.[Sudarshan Varadhan]More: India gets no bids for two-fifths of coal mines up for auctionlast_img read more

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RailRiders Eco-Speed-T

first_imgMy quest to find the ultimate summertime T-shirt for outdoor activity has led down many avenues. This month, the route took a turn and accelerated when it hit upon a shirt made by RailRiders, a Belmont, Mass., company with roots in the world of sailing.Today, RailRiders is more known in outdoor-adventure circles, and its clothing — which I have worn for years — is touted as the “toughest on the planet.” The company’s Eco-Speed-T is advertised to be quick-wicking, sun protective, and durable in the outdoors.I tested the shirt, which costs $36 and comes in men’s and women’s builds, in a six-hour adventure race last weekend. Temps peaked past 90 degrees and the sun blazed. I was soaked with sweat much of the day.The Eco-Speed-T at first might seem slightly too thick for hot days. It’s made of a nylon-polyester blend with a “waffle-weave” that gives it a tiny bit of bulk. But that’s where the wicking mojo comes from: Moisture and sweat are slurped off the body by this shirt and exposed to the air. At one point in the adventure race, I jumped in a lake to cool off. An hour later, after two miles of running and then 20 minutes in the wind on a bike leg, the shirt was almost bone dry.As an alternative to a cotton T-shirt, the RailRiders short-sleeve is an immense upgrade. There are mesh panels under the arms and up each side of the Eco-Speed-T for maximum airflow — a nice touch. The fabric is cited as offering UPF 20+ sun protection.The Eco-Speed-T also holds its own against some of my favorite hot-weather tops, including thinner synthetic and merino wool pieces that can cost twice as much. The thinner shirts at first feel airier than the RailRiders top, but in use they do not dry out as fast.In my quest for the perfect T, the RailRiders “waffle-weave” shirt is now near the top of my list. It’s a good value, and in my hot-weather test it proved its propensity to perform. RailRiders - Eco-Speed-T center_img Stephen Regenold is founder and editor of www.gearjunkie.com. Connect with Regenold at Facebook.com/TheGearJunkie or on Twitter via @TheGearJunkie.last_img read more

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Rounding Out the Gift List

first_imgGoLite’s Malpais Trinity Jacket and Tumalo Pertex Pant round out Habitual Hiker’s Holiday Gift Guide.GoLite's Malpais Trinity Jacket and Tumalo Pertex Pant round out Habitual Hiker's Holiday Gift Guide.Here’s a few more items I’ve used this past year that may help you round out your holiday gift list.Long time BRO readers know that I have gone through a number of sets of rain gear in the continuing quest to lighten my pack. I liked the performance and weight of the very lightest rain suits I could find, those made by Frogg Toggs and Rain Shield. However, they are both made of materials that are not very abrasion or tear resistant, so they’re great if you’re only going to be out for a weekend or so.With GoLite’s (www.golite.com; 888-546-5483) Malpais Trinity Jacket ($250) and Tumalo Pertex Pant ($100), I think I have finally found a fairly durable rain suit at a light weight. Only two ounces heavier than the suits I had been using, together the two items are a mere 13.3 ounces.Both have nylon exteriors for durability over time or during a long-distance hike. Waterproof-breathable membranes and fully taped seams keep you dry during inclement weather. The jacket has waterproof zippers, a fixed hood, hand pockets, and cuff closures. The pants have an elasticized waist, calf zips for easy on and off over boots, and ankle closures.If either item is beyond your budget, consider giving your hiking partner GoLite’s Dome Trekking Umbrella. It’s just $35 and weighs only 7 oz., yet with a canopy of 45 inches it provides coverage large enough to keep both hiker and pack dry.I’m sorry to say that this will be my last Habitual Hiker blog post for blueridgeoutdoors.com. About every year or so, the management brings in new bloggers to provide a different perspective on things. I’ve been privileged to be kept on board for almost three years. It’s been a great run. I’ve visited many and diverse places just so that I could write about them for you, and it’s been fun keeping up with hiking and related topics so that I could keep you informed of issues and items that may have a bearing on your times in the outdoors. I’d also like to thank those of you who took the time to write me with your comments, insights, and tips on places I should check out.However, I’m not going to stop hiking. In fact, with this break in writing responsibilities, Laurie and I are heading to New Zealand within the next few weeks to fulfill a nearly lifelong dream of traversing the Milford Track (billed as the “Finest Walk in the World”) and some other tramping opportunities on the South Island. You can always keep up with this and our other adventures by taking a look at my website, www.habitualhiker.com, to see where we are and what we are doing.Of course, the Blue Ridge and Appalachian Mountains are our home, so we’ll often be in the woods looking for new places and revisiting familiar and favorite haunts. I look forward to meeting many of you out there. Happy trails.last_img read more

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Weird Science: Cville Bike Lab

first_img The Cville Bike Lab Spencer Ingram, the mad scientist of the Cville Bike Lab. Follow the rules. Used bike frames hang from the ceiling awaiting a rebuild and new owner.center_img Spencer Ingram applies axle grease to the inside of a hub while explaining cup and cone mechanics. The Lab.The Cville Bike Lab opened a couple months ago on West Main St. in Charlottesville, the chief thoroughfare between downtown and the University of Virginia, with the intent of creating a community space where cyclists of all types can gather to exchange everything from ideas to parts.Equal parts bike shop, co-op and community center, the Cville Bike Lab is more than a place to buy a bike.“We lead as a bike shop so we can have solid revenue generation to help us pursue the ideas we really want to scratch,” explains Richmond native and UVa graduate Spencer Ingram. “Part of that idea is having a space, a DIY garage, for folks to come in and work on their own bikes, but have some professional instruction, some manuals, and the opportunity without breaking the budget to pick up the tools and learn.”If the space is a lab, Ingram is its mad scientist. Ingram started the bike lab with four other partners to try and jump-start what he says is a missing – or at least a minimal – element of a very vibrant cycling scene in Charlottesville: urban riding.“[Charlottesville] has great shops. We have a spectacular racing scene; and all this with a very small population. But I feel we have an anemic urban culture and need a place for people to learn by example, both traffic safety rider skills and mechanics, and just bikes in general. This is an interaction space as oppose to purely a transaction space,” Ingram says. “It may be idealistic, but democratizing the bike shop space through individuals who are driven to bring something to bicycling in Charlottesville through this resource is our goal.”Indeed, you can feel the community aspect of the space as soon as you walk through the doors. Old bike frames hang from the ceiling, a new workbench is under construction and the main bench is littered with parts, tools and rags, all covered with a satisfying layer of use and grease. Along the walls hangs art for sale by a local painter and merchandise ranging from lights and saddles to hoodies and handmade refurbished wheel post bottle openers. A dry erase board lists prices for simple repairs as well as mechanics classes and membership information.“I want to cater our program towards commuters who have no other option but a bicycle, so lets make it a good bicycle. Let’s give them a resource for the flat tire and the maintenance,” he says.Classes include beginner and advanced mechanics classes and Traffic Skills 101 – Confident City Bicycling, all part of the broader education aspect of the project. Attending classes earns you a membership and access to the tools needed for any repair, along with advice and tips from resident mechanics, almost like a private bike repair lesson. According to Ingram, this enabling of the individual is what powers the Bike Lab and reduce the barriers to going out and riding.While we chatted, I received a tutorial on the inner workings of the front hub on my fixie, which seized up at the tail end of last fall. I had briefly taken it apart in my own garage, but as ball bearings began falling out I realized I was in over my head. A quick tutorial on cup and cone mechanics, a dismantling and replacement of the ball bearings, a little grease and I was back on the bike. Having it fixed was great, but the important part of the experience was watching Ingram work and having him explain how it all fit together. Next time, I’ll be able to fix it myself.But Ingram doesn’t just want the Lab to be a place to turn a wrench and pedal away; he wants it to be an urban bicycling community meeting space. Events hosted at the garage include indoor cycling comps, scavenger hunts, and Friday evening rides around town. Experienced city riders lead by example on Friday night rides, which when combined with safety in numbers, induces a casual learning atmosphere for safe riding habits. These events also help create a familiarity between the different subsets of riders – commuters, tri-athletes, road, mountain, bike polo players, etc. – in a “we’re all in this together” mentality.“Recognize who is riding a bike. We are not ‘others.’ We are your councilmen, business owners, sandwich makers, doctors. We are all riding,” Ingram says.While we chatted, two UVA co-eds swung by the shop and inquired about buying a used, reliable, cheap bike to ride to class. This, says Ingram, is their bread and butter: taking a trashed ten-speed and replacing the right parts to make it a solid city commuter and selling it on the cheap. After all, they do have to keep the lights on.For more information on the Cville Bike Lab, including rates and how to become a member, visit their website: www.cvillebikelab.com.last_img read more

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Pipe Dream: Hiking the Keystone XL Pipeline

first_imgKen Ilgunas hikes past refineries along the 1,700-mile proposed route. Photo: Woody WelchThough he makes his home in North Carolina, Ken Ilgunas has lived in Alaska, New York, Ontario, and in a van parked in a Duke University campus parking lot. For his most recent adventure, he thru-hiked the 1,700-mile route of the proposed Keystone XL pipeline from the Tar Sands oil fields of Alberta to the Gulf of Mexico over 146 days. We caught up with Ilgunas just after his completed trek and just before he set off for Washington, D.C. for a rally against the pipeline.How did you come up with this idea to hike the Keystone XL Pipeline route?It actually was a friend’s idea. In the fall of 2011 we were living in probably the most miserable place on earth: Deadhorse, Alaska, which is up near the oil fields of Prudhoe Bay. Surrounding the town was an unblemished, pristine landscape. We started talking about the Keystone itself and what that might mean for the landscape in the lower 48. He suggested that we hike the Keystone XL. When you’re a dishwasher and working these miserable jobs you just begin to dream big; you’re just so pointless, you want have some sort of purpose.Once you got on trail, what was the hardest part of the trek?I would say fear, for sure. I had plenty of hiking experience, but this was just a really unconventional, never-done-before hike. I didn’t have a guidebook. I didn’t have campsites to sleep at every night. I was basically trespassing across the continent and going across private property for a great portion of the trip. There was so much I didn’t know and there’s a lot of fear that comes into play when there are so many unknowns. I was constantly worried about getting shot by a property owner. But those fears eventually dwindled when I realized that they were largely unfounded. People are good. Coming from a suburban community in western New York where I grew up, I didn’t know anything about cattle. I’d seen the running of the bulls and bullfighters getting gored and stuff like that. The prospect of walking through herds everyday was terrifying. Ranchers laugh at me when I talk about this terror, but it was very real.Did you have any run-ins with landowners?No, I think most people are okay with it. When you think of Americans and their private property, you get the impression they are going to be very protective of it and they won’t have any of people walking on their land. But once we talked and they realized what I was doing, it’s almost like they become part of the journey.What was the reaction on the local level about the pipeline?It varied by region. Climate change is not something that most people out in the Heartland worry about. That’s the big issue with the Keystone XL. Yeah, it’s a private property issue and yeah, it might contaminate ground water, but I think most environmentalists are concerned because of the sheer amount of greenhouse gases that the Tar Sands pipeline will result in. There is certainly resistance in certain pockets of the country, but it wasn’t until Nebraska that I saw more widespread resistance to the XL.What was the most memorable part of the hike?There were a lot of moments bordering on ecstasy when I was walking across this largely wild landscape. When I crossed the Alberta prairie or the hills in Montana or the canyons in South Dakota and saw ahead of me no buildings, no roads as far as the eye can see, it feels like I was seeing what Lewis and Clark might have seen. In those moments there would just be this wild joy that would swell in my chest and I was just overcome with the beauty of the land.How did your perspective evolve over the course of the trip?The more I learned, the more I was convinced this was a terrible idea. I was constantly told this was going to bring a whole bunch of jobs, and it was going to bring energy security and national security, but it’s not going to do any of those things. While I rarely shared the same political opinions as the people I met, it seemed that on the things that matter most, we agreed perfectly. I received so much support from people red and blue, Republican, Democrat, for the pipeline, against the pipeline. So often I was offered food, or a floor to sleep on, or a ride. You could say I became far less cynical after this hike. To walk the way I did is to fall in love with humankind and to be proud of being North American.Do you think you accomplished what you set out to do?I don’t even really know what I set out to do except to go on a journey, and give the journey a chance to transform my character in whatever way it would. Going from one end of the country to the other, I completed my goal in that sense, and I guess I’m happy with how it’s changed me as well.Walden on WheelsFollowing three nomadic years working to pay down student loans, Ken Ilgunas went to grad school at Duke University in North Carolina. Not so prestigious were his living quarters: a van in an on-campus parking lot. For the next two years, he lived a frugal life in his confined space with the aim of accumulating no more debt. Facing the challenges of living in a van, in secret, head on, Ilgunas challenged himself to make it work. He turned his experience into a book, Walden on Wheels: On the Open Road from Debt to Freedom, a funny and poignant take on debt in America, education, and making the most out of life. Available May 14, 2013 from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing.What do you think? Comment below or on our Keystone XL Pipeline debate page!last_img read more

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