Biofuel offers a solution to the world’s renewable energy crisis

The New Economy | May 17, 2019

Solar cells and wind farms are commonly referenced in the fight against climate change, but there is another, often overlooked, form of energy production that is already playing a sizable role. Bioenergy, which includes both biomass and biofuel, has been adopted by governments around the world as a viable method for generating carbon-neutral power, at least until the reliability and cost of other renewables improves. A green delusion Of late, bioenergy has come under attack, both for pulling investment away from other green technologies and for not being low-carbon. In October last year, more than 100 organisations from across the world signed a joint declaration arguing against the expansion of bioenergy projects, referred to as the ‘Biomass Delusion’.

Spotlight

Environmental and other drivers have increased the focus on renewable sources of energy – in particular, wind and solar – over the past few decades. While these systems have many benefits, one downside is that they produce electricity only when nature cooperates. The intermittent nature of these energy sources means that the amount of electricity generated varies from zero to full capacity depending on conditions that are often beyond human control.

Spotlight

Environmental and other drivers have increased the focus on renewable sources of energy – in particular, wind and solar – over the past few decades. While these systems have many benefits, one downside is that they produce electricity only when nature cooperates. The intermittent nature of these energy sources means that the amount of electricity generated varies from zero to full capacity depending on conditions that are often beyond human control.

Related News

SOLAR+STORAGE

LG Releases Solar Panels with Better Energy Output

LG | February 12, 2021

LG Business Solutions USA today announced the release of two new solar panels with even higher output. According to LG, they are the company’s most powerful and highest-performing modules to date. LG’s new 66-cell NeON R and NeON R Prime modules with Back Contact Technology are available to US homebuilders and homeowners this spring. The LG NeON R 66-cell residential solar panel (left) has a power output up to 440W, while the LG NeON R Prime (above) comes in a 425W model. This puts both models at the maximum-range end of the spectrum of electricity output among solar panel manufacturers. Both LG models have an efficiency of up to 22.1%. The average solar panel efficiency falls between 15-20%, so this is higher than what’s generally currently available on the market. Solar panels usually produce between 250 and 400 watts of power, according to EnergySage, and of course other factors have to be taken into consideration in terms of efficiency, such as the size and quantity of the panels, the amount of sunlight they’re exposed to, how clean they are, and other environmental factors. Both panels feature Back Contact Technology, which enables all interconnectors to be positioned on the cell’s underside to increase the potential for sunlight absorption and decrease vulnerability to environmental damage, such as micro-cracks that potentially increase energy loss. The electrodes have also been moved to the back. Both panels come with a 25-year limited warranty that covers product, performance, and labor. They’re guaranteed to produce at least 92.5% of their labeled power output. LG makes its own solar panels in both South Korea and the US. The company opened a solar plant in Huntsville, Alabama in 2019.

Read More

ENERGY

EDP Renewables Begins Commercial Operation of ‘Crossing TrailsWind’ Farm in the United States

EDP Renewables | May 10, 2021

The project, which has a capacity of 104 MW, is located in Colorado. With the completion of this wind farm, EDPR now operates wind farms in 17 US states, totaling 6,495 MW of installed capacity. The project's sole offtake is Tri-State, a non-profit energy supply cooperative. EDP Renováveis, SA (“EDPR”), the world's fourth-largest renewable energy producer, has begun commercial operation of the 104 MW Crossing Trails wind farm through its affiliate EDP Renewables North America LLC has started commercial operation of the 104 MW Crossing Trails wind farm. The corporation signed a long-term power purchase agreement (PPA) with the non-profit energy supply cooperative Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association for this wind farm (Tri-State). The project, based in Colorado, is made up of twenty 4.3 MW wind turbines and five 3.6 MW turbines. These are among the most advanced systems ever installed in the region, distinguished by their reliability and cost-effectiveness. Annually, Crossing Trails can generate enough energy to fuel the equivalent of approximately 45,000 homes in Colorado. More than 100 employees were active in the project's commissioning, which increased jobs and created permanent roles to run and manage the wind farm. Furthermore, it will have a 12 million dollar effect on local municipalities and will return more than 20 million dollars to landowners during its life cycle. Colorado becomes the 17th US state in which EDPR NA runs a clean energy project with the start-up of Crossing Trails. The organization expects to extend its footprint in the country further through the successful completion of new PPAs that strengthen its low-risk profile and growth plan focused on the development of competitive projects with long-term visibility.EDPR presently has a gross installed capacity of 6,495 MW in the United States as of the first quarter of 2021. This project is part of EDPR's commitment to the energy transformation and its efforts to develop a Capex plan of approximately 19 billion euros as part of its overall plan to deploy approximately 20 GW of renewable energy by 2025.

Read More

INDUSTRY UPDATES

Dominion Energy Utah Introduces a New Program to Help Customers Reduce Their Carbon Footprint

Dominion Energy | March 10, 2022

CarbonRight is now available to Dominion Energy customers in Utah and Idaho. CarbonRight is a novel and affordable solution for customers to reduce their carbon impact dramatically. Customers will offset carbon emissions associated with natural gas use in their homes or company by contributing to projects that reduce greenhouse gas emissions, including those in Utah. The program is entirely voluntary and is open to all home users and companies, public buildings, and schools. Customers can contribute by purchasing carbon offsets in $5 increments on their monthly payment. A typical residential user can offset their entire carbon footprint by purchasing one $5 block per month, or $60 per year, achieving "net zero" carbon emissions from natural gas usage. Dominion Energy does not benefit from the carbon offset program and does not mark up the cost of the offsets. "Our customers are looking for ways to have a positive impact on the environment, We share their passion, and we're excited to deliver with this exciting new program. Our customers can now have more peace of mind knowing that their energy dollars are being spent to protect the environment." -Steven Ridge, Vice President and General Manager of Dominion Energy Utah. The carbon offsets offered by the initiative come from programs in Utah and Missouri that minimize landfill carbon emissions, as well as a Minnesota forest management project that absorbs emissions from the environment. Offsets are independently certified to meet the highest standards through a rigorous and open procedure. The new program is one manner in which Dominion Energy Utah assists its customers in reducing their carbon footprint. ThermWise, the company's energy conservation program, helps homeowners and businesses conserve energy and lower monthly utility bills. In addition, customers can participate in the voluntary GreenTherm program to support renewable natural gas projects that minimize greenhouse gas emissions from farms, food waste, and landfills, among other sources. Additionally, the company is promoting the usage of carbon-free hydrogen and carbon-neutral renewable natural gas to cut emissions generated by customers' houses considerably. Discover how the company is advancing renewable natural gas and hydrogen for the benefit of customers, the environment, and the climate.

Read More