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Author Topic: The Big Picture of Renewable Energy Growth  (Read 18091 times)

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    • Renwable Revolution

January 22, 2020

U.S. renewable investment hits record high, Rhode Island commits to 100% clean power, Subaru will only sell EVs by 2030s, and more

January 22, 2020: Renewable energy investment in the U.S. hit a record high of $55.5 billion last year. Rhode Island Governor Gina Raimondo signed an executive order committing the state to 100 percent renewable energy by 2030. Subaru will only sell electric vehicles by the mid 2030s and Kia will release 11 new electric vehicle models by 2025. Arizona’s largest utility, Arizona Public Service, committed to provide 100 percent carbon-free power by 2050.

"“It’s notable that in the third year of the Trump presidency, which has not been particularly supportive of renewables, U.S. clean energy investment set a new record by a country mile,” said Ethan Zindler, head of Americas for Bloomberg New Energy Finance."

Renewable energy investment in the U.S. hit a record $55.5 billion last year, second only to China, despite the Trump administration’s lack of support for clean energy. Part of the surge was driven by solar and wind companies scrambling to take advantage of federal tax credits before they started scaling back in the new year. Major offshore wind investments also boosted renewable capacity, which grew 13 percent globally in 2019. Worldwide, $282.2 billion was invested in renewable energy last year, but this figure remains below its 2017 peak of $315 billion. (Bloomberg)

Governor of Rhode Island Gina Raimondo signed an executive order committing the state to get all of its electricity from renewable energy by 2030 in order to fight climate change. The state plans to add energy storage projects, increase solar and wind power, and improve overall energy efficiency to meet the goal. Several other states have also set targets for 100 percent clean energy, including Hawaii, California, New Mexico, Maine, New York, Washington and Virginia. Rhode Island is ultimately aiming to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 80 percent below 1990 levels by 2050. (New York Times $)

Democratic presidential hopeful Michael Bloomberg released details of a climate plan that would require all buildings to be zero-carbon by 2025. As part of his goal to cut U.S. emissions in half by 2030, the plan would swap out fossil-fuel use in homes, including natural gas for heating and cooking, by switching to zero-carbon appliances and furnaces. The plan calls for providing financial assistance -- including tax credits, low-interest loans, and block grants -- for clean energy and energy efficiency measures. Bloomberg also unveiled another portion of his climate plan that would require all new vehicle sales in the country to be electric by 2035. (Washington Post, The Hill)

Tri-State Generation & Transmission, which includes 43 cooperative members, released its plan to generate 50 percent of its power from renewable energy by 2024. It calls for closing all of the coal plants operated by the cooperative, and includes details for eight new solar and wind projects that will help Tri-State reach over 2,000 megawatts of renewable energy capacity on its system. The plan comes amid pressure from its member co-ops, including those in New Mexico and Colorado, to transition to cleaner sources of energy. Tri-State also included details for electric vehicle charging station expansion, energy efficiency and demand-side management. (Utility Dive)

Subaru announced it will only sell electric vehicles by 2035, while Kia released plans for 11 electric vehicle models by 2025. The automaker recently strengthened ties with Toyota, following a global trend of automakers forging partnerships to cut the cost of producing new vehicle tech. Alongside Toyota, Subaru is developing a battery electric vehicle along with a “strong hybrid” that will debut later this decade. By 2030, the automaker plans for at least 40 percent of global sales to be battery electric or hybrid vehicles. Separately, Kia is planning for electric vehicles to account for 20 percent of sales in key regions by 2025, and wants to reach 500,000 annual electric vehicle sales by 2026. (Electrek)

Arizona’s largest utility, Arizona Public Service, pledged to reach 100 percent carbon-free power by 2050. By 2030, the utility plans to reach 65 percent carbon-free power, with 45 percent coming from renewable energy -- leaving room for other sources of zero-carbon power. The utility also pledged to move completely off coal by 2031. It plans to replace natural gas with “dispatchable capacity”, although the utility is not yet clear on the exact pathway to carbon-free power. Arizona Public Service has been a leader in pairing solar generation with battery storage, and envisions growing market demand for more technologies that can help make the transition to carbon-free energy. (Greentech Media)

Rob not the poor, because he is poor: neither oppress the afflicted in the gate:
For the Lord will plead their cause, and spoil the soul of those that spoiled them. Pr. 22:22-23


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