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    • Martyn1981
    • By Martyn1981 9th Jun 15, 7:25 AM
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    Martyn1981
    Green, ethical, energy issues in the news.
    • #1
    • 9th Jun 15, 7:25 AM
    Green, ethical, energy issues in the news. 9th Jun 15 at 7:25 AM
    I thought it might be a good idea to have a thread for posting general news items that may be of interest.

    PV and the 'Solar in the news' thread attract a lot of interest, so here's a thread for all the other goings on.

    Mart.
    Mart. Cardiff. 5.58 kWp PV systems (3.58 ESE & 2.0 WNW)

    For general PV advice please see the PV FAQ thread on the Green & Ethical Board.
Page 51
    • zeupater
    • By zeupater 9th Jan 18, 5:54 PM
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    zeupater
    I agree.

    What may help even more would be for all new builds to be "passive house" standard.
    Originally posted by NigeWick
    Hi

    I agree, the building industry really does need to try better than just meet minimum standards ...

    Personally, I don't like the 'passivhaus' standard as the compliance criteria needs a serious update ... fill the house with enough plasma TVs and the 'passive' heating is sorted, booked against the massive allowable electricity budget ... ... someone we know uses more energy to directly heat theirs since TV &lighting technology has been upgraded, not a lot, but noticeable!

    Anyway, energy usage can be seriously reduced through employing efficiency measures (insulation, LED lighting, TVs etc) and then bolting on various other measures ... the people running the blog on the following site .. Energy Efficient Home: Gas Jan 2013-Sept2017 ... seem to have seriously addressed both their heating and electricity usage in a way which doen't require the majority of UK housing stock to be condemned & rebuilt ...

    HTH
    Z
    "We are what we repeatedly do, excellence then is not an act, but a habit. " ...... Aristotle
    • Martyn1981
    • By Martyn1981 10th Jan 18, 1:34 PM
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    Martyn1981
    I'm not sure I quite understand what this article is about, and whether it reflects energy and storage costs in the US, but it does seem very promising, both the low costs per MWh, but also the significant reduction in costs.

    ‘Incredible’ low prices for renewables-plus-storage in Xcel’s solicitation

    Median bids received by US utility Xcel Energy in a solicitation for energy resources for energy storage paired with solar came in at US$9 per megawatt lower than the previously observed record.
    Wind with battery storage: 11 bids were received, representing 5,700MW across eight projects, for a total 5,097MW minus duplicate bids. Bids were priced at US$21 per MWh.

    Wind and solar with battery storage: 7 bids were received, with 4,048MW, with a corresponding number of projects and megawatts. Bids were priced at US$30.60 per MWh.

    Solar PV with battery storage: 87 bids, for 16,725MW, for a total 59 projects and 10,813MW minus duplicates. Bids were priced at US$36 per MWh.
    Mart. Cardiff. 5.58 kWp PV systems (3.58 ESE & 2.0 WNW)

    For general PV advice please see the PV FAQ thread on the Green & Ethical Board.
    • Martyn1981
    • By Martyn1981 10th Jan 18, 7:46 PM
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    Martyn1981
    New York City plans to divest $5bn from fossil fuels and sue oil companies

    New York City is seeking to lead the assault on both climate change and the Trump administration with a plan to divest $5bn from fossil fuels and sue the worlds most powerful oil companies over their contribution to dangerous global warming.

    City officials have set a goal of divesting New Yorks $189bn pension funds from fossil fuel companies within five years in what they say would be among the most significant divestment efforts in the world to date. Currently, New York Citys five pension funds have about $5bn in fossil fuel investments. New York state has already announced it is exploring how to divest from fossil fuels.

    New York City is standing up for future generations by becoming the first major US city to divest our pension funds from fossil fuels, said Bill de Blasio, New Yorks mayor.

    At the same time, were bringing the fight against climate change straight to the fossil fuel companies that knew about its effects and intentionally misled the public to protect their profits. As climate change continues to worsen, its up to the fossil fuel companies whose greed put us in this position to shoulder the cost of making New York safer and more resilient.
    Mart. Cardiff. 5.58 kWp PV systems (3.58 ESE & 2.0 WNW)

    For general PV advice please see the PV FAQ thread on the Green & Ethical Board.
    • Martyn1981
    • By Martyn1981 11th Jan 18, 8:41 AM
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    Martyn1981
    Looks like the Welsh Government is giving the Swansea tidal lagoon a push. It's an expensive project (per MWh) but could open the door to far cheaper/larger lagoons. The Q&A (link in article) is particularly informative.

    Swansea tidal lagoon: 'Substantial' offer from Carwyn Jones
    Mart. Cardiff. 5.58 kWp PV systems (3.58 ESE & 2.0 WNW)

    For general PV advice please see the PV FAQ thread on the Green & Ethical Board.
    • Martyn1981
    • By Martyn1981 12th Jan 18, 12:50 PM
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    Martyn1981
    I'm not sure I quite understand what this article is about, and whether it reflects energy and storage costs in the US, but it does seem very promising, both the low costs per MWh, but also the significant reduction in costs.

    Incredible low prices for renewables-plus-storage in Xcels solicitation
    Originally posted by Martyn1981
    More on this, and the prices appear to be correct, that is, insanely cheap, possibly explained by the fact it's for 2023 and costs of RE and storage are falling fast.

    Note that by storage they mean 4-10hrs, but even at just 4hrs, that's the whole evening peak period in the UK.

    Wind & Solar + Storage Prices Smash Records
    Mart. Cardiff. 5.58 kWp PV systems (3.58 ESE & 2.0 WNW)

    For general PV advice please see the PV FAQ thread on the Green & Ethical Board.
    • Ben84
    • By Ben84 15th Jan 18, 11:21 PM
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    Ben84
    Thinking about energy storage, I remember reading years ago about cars in India which run on compressed air. Basically, instead of filling up with petrol, you use a compressor to fill a tank. In terms of energy storage, maybe they're on to something. Even moving a lightweight car a moderate distance would require a a decent amount of potential energy, and unlike batteries these tanks and compressors don't require any rare minerals/metals, shouldn't reduce capacity with cycles, and potentially if well made could last a long time. I'd like to know some numbers, but I imagine a plant storing energy could work on some principle of compressing a gas.
    • Martyn1981
    • By Martyn1981 16th Jan 18, 8:10 AM
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    Martyn1981
    Thinking about energy storage, I remember reading years ago about cars in India which run on compressed air. Basically, instead of filling up with petrol, you use a compressor to fill a tank. In terms of energy storage, maybe they're on to something. Even moving a lightweight car a moderate distance would require a a decent amount of potential energy, and unlike batteries these tanks and compressors don't require any rare minerals/metals, shouldn't reduce capacity with cycles, and potentially if well made could last a long time. I'd like to know some numbers, but I imagine a plant storing energy could work on some principle of compressing a gas.
    Originally posted by Ben84
    Hiya Ben, you're not wrong. There are two forms of storage as you describe, CAES and LAES, compressed air energy storage and liquid air energy storage.

    Compressed air can be used to 'supercharge' a gas generation plant, lifting its efficiency, or just to turn turbines. The same for LAES, but this means even greater storage (per tank) and if combined with a waste heat stream, when releasing the air, can actually exceed 100% efficiency. These ideas also use off the shelf kit/tech from the industrial chemical industry.

    There is also an interesting idea to use mountains for CAES. You make a hole, add air locks, then pump it up. This recently got a boost when 'they' found a way to remove and store the heat, as pressure builds, then return it as the air is needed for generation. ALACAES

    The LAES idea is explained here (Highview Power) with scaleable plants of 200MW/1,200MWh.

    This is my idea, so I don't know if it's viable, but if you sited a gas generation plant, alongside CAES & LAES and ideally a bio-gas plant such as those described by Ecotricity, or a power to gas (P2G) storage system that uses excess leccy to produce hydrogen / methane, then you'd have a lot of on-site storage, plus RE generation on demand when demand is high and or supply is low.

    I'm not convinced that we (or any country) will need seasonal storage, as even FF gas used say 10% will be acceptable for CO2 targets, but gas storage (again ideally bio-gas) would allow storage of days, even weeks, v's hours for most forms of storage.
    Mart. Cardiff. 5.58 kWp PV systems (3.58 ESE & 2.0 WNW)

    For general PV advice please see the PV FAQ thread on the Green & Ethical Board.
    • Martyn1981
    • By Martyn1981 16th Jan 18, 8:57 AM
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    Martyn1981
    More on this, and the prices appear to be correct, that is, insanely cheap, possibly explained by the fact it's for 2023 and costs of RE and storage are falling fast.

    Note that by storage they mean 4-10hrs, but even at just 4hrs, that's the whole evening peak period in the UK.

    Wind & Solar + Storage Prices Smash Records
    Originally posted by Martyn1981
    Further to this again, two very interesting articles from Cleantechnica.

    Firstly IRENA and their ever cheaper RE price reports

    IRENA Proclaims Onshore Wind Now As Affordable As Any Other Technology, Solar To Halve By 2020

    But more importantly, an explanation that may stop me pulling out my hair, as to why reported costs for RE always seem to be far, far higher than the cost of new schemes being rolled out. I'd suggest this article is required reading as it pretty much shows that 'the fight' is over, and RE won - what can compete with wind and storage (4hrs) at $21/MWh, or PV + storage at $36/MWh?

    Renewable Energy Grid Parity Confusion, Old Data, & Media Errors
    Mart. Cardiff. 5.58 kWp PV systems (3.58 ESE & 2.0 WNW)

    For general PV advice please see the PV FAQ thread on the Green & Ethical Board.
    • michaels
    • By michaels 16th Jan 18, 11:35 AM
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    • 96,403 Thanks
    michaels
    Thinking about energy storage, I remember reading years ago about cars in India which run on compressed air. Basically, instead of filling up with petrol, you use a compressor to fill a tank. In terms of energy storage, maybe they're on to something. Even moving a lightweight car a moderate distance would require a a decent amount of potential energy, and unlike batteries these tanks and compressors don't require any rare minerals/metals, shouldn't reduce capacity with cycles, and potentially if well made could last a long time. I'd like to know some numbers, but I imagine a plant storing energy could work on some principle of compressing a gas.
    Originally posted by Ben84
    I believe Peugeot group about 2 years ago suggested they would use this technology for stop-start energy recovery in the same way Toyota use a small battery in the prius. I suspect it may now have been superseded by battery/electric but worth a google.
    Cool heads and compromise
    • Martyn1981
    • By Martyn1981 16th Jan 18, 12:41 PM
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    Martyn1981
    Wind (as at time of post) is hitting 12.7GW or metered wind at 9.77GW on Gridwatch, nudging the dial limit of 10GW!
    Mart. Cardiff. 5.58 kWp PV systems (3.58 ESE & 2.0 WNW)

    For general PV advice please see the PV FAQ thread on the Green & Ethical Board.
    • Martyn1981
    • By Martyn1981 17th Jan 18, 7:46 AM
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    Martyn1981
    Wind (as at time of post) is hitting 12.7GW or metered wind at 9.77GW on Gridwatch, nudging the dial limit of 10GW!
    Originally posted by Martyn1981
    Well, well, wind went 'off the dial' on Gridwatch last night, hitting 10.4GW. And the 'owner' of this site just said that he'll need to change his 13GW dial as that's been 'hit' too.

    [Edit - As at 8am it's off the dial again on Gridwatch with 10.2GW. That won't make the author of the site happy, as he doesn't like RE. M.]
    Last edited by Martyn1981; 17-01-2018 at 8:00 AM. Reason: Added an edit
    Mart. Cardiff. 5.58 kWp PV systems (3.58 ESE & 2.0 WNW)

    For general PV advice please see the PV FAQ thread on the Green & Ethical Board.
    • ASavvyBuyer
    • By ASavvyBuyer 17th Jan 18, 4:02 PM
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    ASavvyBuyer
    Not sure if Martyn has posted this before, but details of the battery system at the Pen y Cymoedd Wind Farm in South Wales (not far from where we live).

    https://corporate.vattenfall.co.uk/projects/batterypyc/
    Rhondda Cynon Taf, 4kWp, W roof, 30 pitch, 16 x 8.33 Eternity 250w E+10 panels, Solar Edge SE4000-16A Inverter + P300 Optimisers & REUK Diverter
    + Toshiba RAS-10G2KVP-E Ultra High Efficiency Air Conditioner/Heat Pump
    • lstar337
    • By lstar337 18th Jan 18, 9:06 AM
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    lstar337
    Not sure if Martyn has posted this before, but details of the battery system at the Pen y Cymoedd Wind Farm in South Wales (not far from where we live).

    https://corporate.vattenfall.co.uk/projects/batterypyc/
    Originally posted by ASavvyBuyer
    Sweet! Now I know where to go when I need some batteries!
    • Martyn1981
    • By Martyn1981 18th Jan 18, 2:43 PM
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    Martyn1981
    Sweet! Now I know where to go when I need some batteries!
    Originally posted by lstar337
    Should I be worried, could you clarify which S. Wales location you intend to 'visit'?

    Need to get a large dog.
    Mart. Cardiff. 5.58 kWp PV systems (3.58 ESE & 2.0 WNW)

    For general PV advice please see the PV FAQ thread on the Green & Ethical Board.
    • Martyn1981
    • By Martyn1981 18th Jan 18, 2:49 PM
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    Martyn1981
    Very big news, and I mean big news. This article suggests that off-shore wind could deliver an enormous amount of additional capacity (30GW up from 6GW) with a subsidy free CfD. That is a CfD based on average prices, so net subsidy will be zero, but it gives developers the assurance to invest and build.

    UK could support 30GW by 2030

    Aurora suggested by awarding Contracts for Difference (CfD) support deals that are effectively subsidy free but give revenue stabilisation; and by allowing offshore wind projects to "revenue-stack" permitting entrance in to the capacity market, for example offshore wind capacity would grow from the 6GW currently installed, to up to 30GW by 2030.
    Aurora's research found offshore wind can expect a 25-30% reduction in capital costs to 2025 due to the growth in turbine ratings, which many in the industry believe to reach 13-15GW in that period.
    Beyond the report, Aurora said it has modelled some scenarios in which UK offshore capacity could reach 40GW. That would require the implementation of the measures above, plus a carbon price reaching 100 per tone by 2030, no further nuclear build beyond the delayed and overpriced Hinkley Point C, a limited onshore wind build-out, and a greater reduction in offshore wind capex and opex through technological advancement.
    For context, an increase of 24GW of off-shore wind, with a capacity factor of 50% (the bigger WT's are approaching these cf's), would be an average of 12GW.

    Average UK demand is approx 40GW, so this additional generation would be 30%, roughly equal to all renewable generation last year which was somewhere in the high 20's as a percentage.
    Mart. Cardiff. 5.58 kWp PV systems (3.58 ESE & 2.0 WNW)

    For general PV advice please see the PV FAQ thread on the Green & Ethical Board.
    • michaels
    • By michaels 18th Jan 18, 4:12 PM
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    michaels
    Very big news, and I mean big news. This article suggests that off-shore wind could deliver an enormous amount of additional capacity (30GW up from 6GW) with a subsidy free CfD. That is a CfD based on average prices, so net subsidy will be zero, but it gives developers the assurance to invest and build.

    UK could support 30GW by 2030







    For context, an increase of 24GW of off-shore wind, with a capacity factor of 50% (the bigger WT's are approaching these cf's), would be an average of 12GW.

    Average UK demand is approx 40GW, so this additional generation would be 30%, roughly equal to all renewable generation last year which was somewhere in the high 20's as a percentage.
    Originally posted by Martyn1981
    Isn't there a problem here though that the more wind you have the more often it will be generating at times where there is a 'glut' of power and spot prices are bid right down. Thus just because wind is competitive with the 'average' spot price doesn't mean that the average price that wind leccy is sold at will be the average market price. IE still needing a subsidy and perhaps the more wind you build the more subsidy it will need?
    Cool heads and compromise
    • zeupater
    • By zeupater 18th Jan 18, 5:34 PM
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    zeupater
    Isn't there a problem here though that the more wind you have the more often it will be generating at times where there is a 'glut' of power and spot prices are bid right down. Thus just because wind is competitive with the 'average' spot price doesn't mean that the average price that wind leccy is sold at will be the average market price. IE still needing a subsidy and perhaps the more wind you build the more subsidy it will need?
    Originally posted by michaels
    Hi

    Seems that you've missed the 'cunning-plan' email .. it must be lurking at the bottom of your inbox ...

    With all of this talk about Brexit, people are completely forgetting that Europe will still be as many miles away as it is now (give or take a few yards as the tide changes!), so there's a massive 'cheap' energy export potential .. the UK effectively becoming the 'Saudi Arabia' of the north with sovereign wealth funds etc ...

    Now, just to upset up to 48% of the population to some degree or other .... as the UK economy grows, the EU considers that they're due more into their pot to pay for sandwiches & wine in Brussels & maybe some 'Partially financed by .." advertising billboards which seem to clutter every corner of the continent ... Brexit's just a cunning plan to keep all of those squillions in HMTreasury's money-box not someone else's ... well isn't that what everybody else's secret email (the red,white&blue one that says that we're not supposed to tell anyone with an EU security ID dangled around their neck!) says ? ... ...

    Rather flippant, but the truth is out there (or in there) somewhere ...

    HTH
    Z
    Last edited by zeupater; 18-01-2018 at 5:37 PM.
    "We are what we repeatedly do, excellence then is not an act, but a habit. " ...... Aristotle
    • Martyn1981
    • By Martyn1981 19th Jan 18, 8:00 AM
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    Martyn1981
    Isn't there a problem here though that the more wind you have the more often it will be generating at times where there is a 'glut' of power and spot prices are bid right down. Thus just because wind is competitive with the 'average' spot price doesn't mean that the average price that wind leccy is sold at will be the average market price. IE still needing a subsidy and perhaps the more wind you build the more subsidy it will need?
    Originally posted by michaels
    It also means more off-shore wind selling into the higher and peakier price range, which can be many times greater than 'average'.

    Also don't underestimate storage/arbitrage. The cheaper leccy gets at peak supply, the greater the profit margin of selling it at peak demand, combined with falling storage costs. So this will act as a natural balance to prevent prices moving too far (either way) from average.

    Also consider that whilst nuclear is relatively predictable to generate during peak demand times, it's also just as predictable to generate during low demand times, so whilst less peaky than wind, it raises similar issues but at nearly double the price giving a lot of headroom for storage.

    And no I'm not nuclear bashing, just looking for the alternative, and 30% of UK demand by 2030 at zero subsidy (net) is a hell of a challenge to nuclear deployments of 5-7% of demand each from 2030 onwards at a much higher price.
    Mart. Cardiff. 5.58 kWp PV systems (3.58 ESE & 2.0 WNW)

    For general PV advice please see the PV FAQ thread on the Green & Ethical Board.
    • Martyn1981
    • By Martyn1981 19th Jan 18, 12:03 PM
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    Martyn1981
    Detailed article on CSP and the tumbling costs. Sadly not a UK option. Phooey.

    24-Hour Solar Energy: Molten Salt Makes It Possible, and Prices Are Falling Fast
    Mart. Cardiff. 5.58 kWp PV systems (3.58 ESE & 2.0 WNW)

    For general PV advice please see the PV FAQ thread on the Green & Ethical Board.
    • Martyn1981
    • By Martyn1981 19th Jan 18, 6:44 PM
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    Martyn1981
    Brexit aside, this is good news:

    European Union Votes To Increase 2030 Renewable Energy Goal To 35%

    Just for clarity, that's 35% of energy, not electricity. I think the UK is now around 10%.

    Also whilst not wishing to play with numbers, an increase from 27% to 35% is quite substantial, as the increase (in the target) is nearly 30%, so certainly a positive move.
    Mart. Cardiff. 5.58 kWp PV systems (3.58 ESE & 2.0 WNW)

    For general PV advice please see the PV FAQ thread on the Green & Ethical Board.
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