Suppliers to the automobile industry can challenge major manufacturers, but they face significant pressures, recently illustrated by the dispute between Volkswagen and Prevent Group. The federal state of Baden-Württemberg has now launched an advisory campaign to help medium-sized suppliers in the automobile industry to diversify into parts for electric vehicles. The aim is to help the 1,000 or more suppliers to gain a foothold in the market for systems and components in the electric mobility sector.
Hydro-Québec has announced it will provide a total of CA$100,000 over a 2-year period to research spearheaded by the MIT climate change think tank, Ouranos, located in Montréal, and the business school HEC Montréal, also in Montreal. The agreement provides for the development and implementation of a vital modeling tool that will be available for climate change researchers. The tool focuses on Québec and New England and will seek to identify opportunities for optimal expansion of renewable energy sources in the two regions, including expanded trade in electricity.
The fast-changing energy landscape and increasing amount of renewable generation on the system that results in frequency volatility have required National Grid to develop new and innovative ways to manage frequency to ensure that energy keeps flowing to where it is needed. A new, enhanced ability to control variations in frequency almost immediately will result in reduced costs of approximately 200 million pounds and streamline services to make them as efficient as possible meaning reduced costs for the end consumer.
Scientists at The Australian National University (ANU) have set a world record for efficiency for a solar thermal dish generating steam that could be used for power stations. The team designed and built a new receiver for the solar concentrator dish at ANU, halving losses and achieving a 97 percent conversion of sunlight into steam. The breakthrough could lead to the generation of cheaper base-load electricity from renewable energy and help lower carbon emissions which cause global warming.
d.light has announced it has secured $22.5 million in financing to grow its PayGo business globally and support its mission of providing solar energy solutions for households and small businesses around the world, transforming the way off-grid families use and pay for power. The company raised $15 million in Series D equity from KawiSafi Ventures Fund, Energy Access Ventures, Omidyar Network and NewQuest Capital Partners. Debt funding of $2.5 million was also raised through SunFunder.
General Motors plans to generate or source all electrical power for its 350 operations in 59 countries with 100 percent renewable energy — such as wind, sun, and landfill gas — by 2050. “Establishing a 100 percent renewable energy goal helps us better serve society by reducing environmental impact,” said GM Chairman and CEO Mary Barra. “This pursuit of renewable energy benefits our customers and communities through cleaner air while strengthening our business through lower and more stable energy costs.”
The UK Government, Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy has given development consent for the electrical system required to transmit the power that will be produced by the 900-MW Triton Knoll offshore wind farm. The Triton Knoll wind farm has been in development since 2004 and permission was given for the project’s offshore wind turbines in summer 2013. The government has now given the go-ahead for the electrical system needed to transfer the power into the grid.
The largest local authority owned solar farm in the UK, acquired for nearly £14.5 million, will be used to help protect the future of municipal services in Forest Heath. It announced that after months of negotiations it has bought Greenheath Energy Ltd and with it the 12.4MW solar farm at Toggam Farm in Lakenheath. The purchase has been made using capital – under Government finance rules, councils are not allowed to use capital to plug annual funding gaps as eventually, the money would simply disappear. Instead, they can use the money to invest in projects which generate an annual income.
BayWa r.e., a wholly owned subsidiary of global conglomerate BayWa AG, and Geenex Solar LLC, a leading North Carolina-based developer, have joined forces to develop an initial portfolio of projects in North Carolina and Virginia totaling 350 MW. The First project has started construction and is scheduled to be completed by the end of 2016. The parties plan to begin constructing the next projects over the coming months with energy deliveries from the portfolio expected in 2017 and 2018. The projects range in size from 20 to 100 MW and are in different stages of development. BayWa r.e. will provide turn-key engineering, procurement, construction, financing and O&M, while Geenex will utilize its local expertise to drive development activities.
IEnova has announced that it has agreed to the purchase of 100% of the equity interests in the “Ventika” wind generation facility. It is a 252 MW wind generation facility powered by 84 turbines, making it the largest wind farm in Mexico and one of the largest wind farms in Latin America. The facility is comprised of two adjacent wind farms located in the General Bravo municipality in the state of Nuevo Leon and was jointly developed by Fisterra Energy and Cemex, a global building materials company with presence in more than 50 countries. In December 2015, construction was completed and commercial operations commenced in April 2016.
Seven years after making its first move in Chile, German firm wpd has taken part in the largest energy tender for the supply of electricity in Chile’s history and distanced its competitors in the market. As the Energy Ministry officially announced on Wednesday evening, three projects with wpd’s participation have been accepted. In the process, wpd has secured so-called “Power Purchase Agreements” (PPA) for 786.8 GWh per year with a term of 20 years from 2021.
Global wind and solar energy company Mainstream Renewable Power was today awarded contracts by the National Energy Commission of Chile to build and operate seven utility-scale wind energy plants with a total investment value of USD $1.65bn. The projects are scheduled to begin supplying low-cost, clean energy into the grid from January 2021. Mainstream led the largest and most competitive energy tender in Chilean history with this award of 986MW. The Tender was 7 times oversubscribed – 84 companies submitted 85,000 gigawatt-hours (GWh) of bids for just over 12,000 GWh of available power.