EREN Network News
November 22, 2000
News and Events
- Report: Clean Energy Policies Can Help Meet Kyoto Goals
- PG&E Corporation to Build Wind Plant Near Palm Springs
- First Solar Seeks Partners for Photovoltaic Product Rollout
- Hawaii to Test 15 Hyundai Electric SUVs Starting in 2001
- Thirteen States to Pursue New Standards on Diesel Trucks
Energy Facts and Tips
About this Newsletter
- IEA: Energy Use, Carbon Emissions to Grow Through 2020
- U.S. Year-to-Date Temperatures are Hottest on Record
News and Events
Report: Clean Energy Policies Can Help Meet Kyoto Goals
A report released last week by five DOE national laboratories
finds that the United States can meet up to three-quarters of
its emissions reductions goal under the Kyoto Protocol by
instituting policies that encourage the use of clean energy
technologies. The report finds that the economic benefits of
such policies would be essentially equal to their costs.
According to the report, the most important policies in terms
of reducing greenhouse gas emissions are enhanced
appliance efficiency standards, a domestic carbon cap and
trading system, electric industry restructuring, increased
research and development, and voluntary agreements to
promote energy efficiency in vehicles, buildings and
industrial processes. See the press release from DOE's Oak Ridge National Laboratory, with a link to the full report.
The Kyoto Protocol is an international treaty to reduce global
greenhouse gas emissions. A meeting is currently underway
at The Hague in the Netherlands as an attempt to finalize the
climate change agreement. See the United Nations Environment Programme Web site.
PG&E Corporation to Build Wind Plant Near Palm Springs
PG&E Corporation and SeaWest WindPower, Inc.
announced last week the construction of a new wind facility
near Palm Springs, California. The San Gorgonio Pass the
site of several wind energy installations in the early 1980s
will be the location for the new 44.4-megawatt facility, which
is expected to reach commercial operation in April 2001.
SeaWest will build the facility, then PG&E Corp. will buy it.
See the PG&E Corp. press release.
Like PG&E Corp.'s wind facility in New York State, the power
from the California project will be sold into the electrical grid
as regular power, and the environmental benefits of the
power will be sold separately, as wind energy "certificates."
See the story from the September 20th edition of the EREN Network News.
In related news, the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA)
dedicated its new Buffalo Mountain Wind Park in Tennessee
last week. The 2-megawatt facility will produce enough
power to serve more than 400 households in the Tennessee
Valley. See the TVA press release.
First Solar Seeks Partners for Photovoltaic Product Rollout
First Solar the producer of thin-film photovoltaic products
that is starting up a 100-megawatt facility in Toledo, Ohio
is now looking for "charter partners" to develop solar electric
projects in 2001. First Solar's Charter Partner Program is
intended for solar original equipment manufacturers,
integrators, utilities, and government agencies with grid-
connected and hybrid projects ranging in size from
30 to 100 kilowatts. First Solar claims it will provide its
photovoltaic products at $2 per watt for charter partners. See
the First Solar Web site.
In related news, Siemens Solar announced last week that it
has hit a milestone of having produced 200 megawatts worth
of solar cells and solar modules. In the photovoltaic industry,
production is typically measured by the total peak capacity of
all the photovoltaic products sold. Siemens Solar, in
business for more than 20 years, only achieved the
100-megawatt milestone in 1996. The growth of the industry
is demonstrated by Siemens Solar's ability to double that
number in just four years. Of course, once the First Solar
facility is able to achieve its full capacity, it will take only one
year to achieve the 100-megawatt milestone. See the
Siemens Solar press release.
Hawaii to Test 15 Hyundai Electric SUVs Starting in 2001
The State of Hawaii announced Monday that it will test
15 electric sport utility vehicles (SUVs) in four fleets on the
island of Oahu. The electric Santa Fe SUVs, produced by
Hyundai Motor Company, will be delivered in June 2001 for
a two-year trial run at Hickam Air Force Base, Hawaiian
Electric Company, the City and County of Honolulu, and the
State of Hawaii. The state's High Technology Development
Corporation will manage the project and Enova Systems will
maintain the vehicles. See the Enova press release.
In related news, General Motors Corporation (GM)
announced last week that it has successfully tested a new
gasoline processor that produces hydrogen at 80 percent
efficiency. GM says the accomplishment will help the
company put a fuel-cell-powered vehicle on the road by
2002. GM credits a new catalyst for cutting the processor
weight and size in half while reducing the startup time to
about three minutes. See the GM press release.
Thirteen States to Pursue New Standards on Diesel Trucks
Thirteen U.S. states including all of the Northeast plus
Georgia, Nevada, North Carolina and Texas announced
Monday that they are prepared to follow California in
enacting tough clean-air restrictions on diesel trucks and
buses. Under the Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990, only
California can set its own emissions standards, but other
states can adopt California's programs once they are
approved by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The
thirteen states are aiming to sharply reduce soot emissions
from diesel engines starting in 2004. See the press release
from the Natural Resources Defense Council.
To learn more about California's plans to control diesel
emissions, see the California Air Resources Board Web site.
In related news, New York has adopted California's new,
cleaner low-emissions vehicle standard, called LEV II. The
standard will apply to all light- and medium-duty motor
vehicles, starting in model year 2004. See the press release
from Governor George Pataki.
British BioGen is the trade association to the United
Kingdom's bioenergy industry. The site provides an
introduction to bioenergy, including how it works, its role in
sustainable development, how it fits in the global energy
market, and its future outlook. It also offers specific
information on energy crops, anaerobic digestion, and using
bioenergy as a source of heat and electricity.
For this and other recent additions to the EREN Web site,
Energy Facts and Tips
IEA: Energy Use, Carbon Emissions to Grow Through 2020
Despite current efforts to limit carbon emissions, the world's
energy-related carbon dioxide emissions are expected to
increase 60 percent above 1997 levels by 2020, according to
a new report by the International Energy Agency (IEA). The
"World Energy Outlook 2000," released yesterday, attempts
to account for current policies and measures to combat
climate change, but still predicts a steady 2 percent annual
growth in world energy use through 2020. Although
renewables other than hydropower are projected to be the
fastest-growing energy source during this period averaging
2.8 percent growth per year their share of the world energy
supply climbs to only 3 percent from today's 2 percent share.
Noting that these are "sobering statistics," the IEA report
also examines additional policy options for reducing carbon
emissions, including emissions trading schemes, efforts to
reduce emissions from transportation, and efforts to reduce
emissions from power generation. See the IEA press release.
The full report is available for a fee, but the executive
summary and several summary charts are available on the Web.
In related news, the U.S. Agency for International
Development (USAID) has released a new report on
U.S. international activities related to climate change.
"Climate Technology Cooperation Activities" summarizes
projects underway by a number of U.S. agencies, including
DOE, in Africa, Asia and the Pacific, Europe, Eurasia, Latin
America, and the Caribbean. See the report on the USAID
U.S. Year-to-Date Temperatures are Hottest on Record
Although cold weather is currently gripping most of the
United States, the year from January to October is the
warmest yet on record, according to the National Oceanic
and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). Every state in the
contiguous United States was warmer than normal for this
ten-month period. See the NOAA press release.
On a global scale, October was the eighth warmest on
record, at 0.35 degrees Celsius (0.63 degrees Fahrenheit)
above the average. See the NOAA Web site.
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