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Member since: Fri Dec 19, 2003, 02:20 AM
Number of posts: 29,798

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Someone noticed Trump's chin looks like a frog...

More versions: https://www.indy100.com/article/donald-trump-chin-looks-like-frog-trolled-twitter-sirmitchell-7719156

China Installed 7.21 Gigawatts Of Solar In Q117

China Installed 7.21 Gigawatts Of Solar In Q1’17
May 5th, 2017 by Joshua S Hill

China installed an impressive 7.21 gigawatts of new solar capacity in the first quarter of 2017, and generated 21.4 billion kilowatt-hours of electricity, up 80% over the same period a year earlier.

According to a statement from the country’s National Energy Administration, China added 7.21 gigawatts (GW) of new solar capacity in the first quarter, made up of 4.78 GW of utility-scale solar, and 2.43 GW of distributed solar PV. This brings the country’s cumulative solar PV capacity up to almost 85 GW.

However, curtailment issues still plague various regions in China...


China's inclination towards a command and control economy is showing incredible results on the solar and wind front. I just wish they'd get their act together coordinating the transmission and distribution. That said, 7GW of installed solar in 3 months is an incredible feat.

We need to recognize that the ACA needs to go.

I believe D's will continue to drift politically until and unless we unite to propose transitioning to Medicare for everyone.


But that doesn't mean the design created by the ACA works long term. In the area of controlling costs it leaves the public and insurance companies as price takers with the medical delivery system being virtually unchallenged price makers. We the users have virtually no power to shop and consequently effect consumer directed change on the health care delivery system.

That's why everyone else uses some form of single payer system where, by having the government act as one buyer of health care services the public can use their political voice to actually "shop" for health care services. This turns the medical delivery system into price takers.

This is a simple, easy to understand explanation of the data that Joe Walsh can't bring himself to even consider in the exchange with Ali Velshi. Note how easy it is for Joe to slide his mind around the statistics. I've found personally, that if you go a step beyond the statistics and explain (as above) WHY the stats are what they are, then it aligns perfectly with their belief about what is right and wrong.

Germany Breaks Record: 85% of Energy Comes From Renewables Last Weekend

Germany Breaks Record: 85% of Energy Comes From Renewables Last Weekend

Germany's "Energiewende"—the country's low-carbon energy revolution—turned another successful corner last weekend when renewable energy sources nearly stamped out coal and nuclear.

Thanks to a particularly breezy and sunny Sunday, renewables such as wind and solar, along with some biomass and hydropower, peaked at a record 85 percent, or 55.2 gigawatts, and even came along with negative prices for several hours at the electricity exchange.

Conversely, coal use was at an all-time minimum. According to DW, on April 30, coal-fired power stations were only operational between 3 and 4 p.m. and produced less than eight gigawatts of energy, well below the maximum output of about 50 gigawatts.

"Most of Germany's coal-fired power stations were not even operating on Sunday, April 30th," Patrick Graichen of Agora Energiewende told RenewEconomy. "Nuclear power sources, which are planned to be completely phased out by 2022, were also severely reduced."...


CEO (UK) National Grid: The idea of large power stations for baseload is outdated

Steve Holliday, CEO (UK) National Grid: “The idea of large power stations for baseload is outdated”

September 11, 2015 by Karel Beckman

Steve Holliday, CEO of National Grid, the company that operates the gas and power transmission networks in the UK and in the northeastern US, believes the idea of large coal-fired or nuclear power stations to be used for baseload power is “outdated”. “From a consumer’s point of view, the solar on the rooftop is going to be the baseload. Centralised power stations will be increasingly used to provide peak demand”, he says, in an exclusive interview for World Energy Focus, a publication of the World Energy Council produced by Energy Post. The chief of National Grid also notes that energy markets “are clearly moving towards much more distributed production and towards microgrids”.

“This industry is going through a tremendous transformation. We used to have a pretty good idea of what future needs would be. We would build assets that would last decades and that would be sure to cover those needs. That world has ended. Our strategy is now centred around agility and flexibility, based on our inability to predict or prescribe what our customers are going to want.”

As CEO, since 2007, of a company active on two continents, and being responsible for both gas and electricity transmission and distribution, Steve Holiday finds himself smack at the centre of the whirlwind developments in the energy sector. And since National Grid is a regulated (albeit publicly listed) company, he can speak from a reasonably independent position. Which makes it fascinating to talk to him.

“What is crucial”, says Holliday, “is what consumers will want. In the past all consumers got the same. One size fits all. Now one size will not fit all. People will want to interact with energy in many different ways.” This is why he warns against people who think they can predict the future. “Some people think they have the answer, whatever it may be. But I believe there will be different answers for different places, rural and cities, and for different customers. That’s why flexibility and agility are key.”

Nevertheless certain trends that are currently taking place are unmistakable, says Holliday. “The world is clearly moving towards much more distributed electricity production and towards microgrids. The pace of that development is uncertain. That depends on political decisions, regulatory incentives, consumer preferences, technological developments. But the direction is clear.”



Uruguay will offer dirt-cheap legal weedunder certain conditions

Uruguay is one step closer to becoming the first country in the world with a legal, nationwide pot market. Today the government started registering people to buy marijuana for recreational purposes, a requirement under the country’s 2013 marijuana legalization law. Pot is expected to hit the shelves by July.

Legal marijuana will be remarkably cheap: $1.30 a gram. In the US state of Washington, one of the few other spots on the planet where marijuana is sold like beer, the average price per gram so far this year is more than $7, according to market research firm Headset.

But pot enthusiasts around the world shouldn’t rush to pack their bags. The merchandise will be for citizens and permanent residents only.

The strict rules are part of an elaborate regulatory apparatus that Uruguay has set up to ensure that pot doesn’t get diverted into the wrong hands. Drug-legalization advocates and public officials around the world have been watching closely how the Uruguayan experiment unfolds.

It’s been a slow and deliberate process that started with allowing people to grow their own weed at home, and then ...


Heritage Foundation board ousts president Jim DeMint

By Tom Hamburger and Matea Gold May 2 at 7:15 PM
The board of the Heritage Foundation on Tuesday ousted president Jim DeMint after days of turmoil and internal debate, blaming him for management and communication problems that have roiled the venerable conservative think tank.

Thomas A. Saunders III, chairman of the Heritage Foundation’s Board of Trustees, said in a statement that the 22-member board unanimously requested and received the resignation of DeMint, the firebrand former senator from South Carolina. Heritage founder Ed Feulner will serve in his place until a permanent successor is chosen.

“After a comprehensive and independent review of the entire Heritage organization, the board determined there were significant and worsening management issues that led to a breakdown of internal communications and cooperation,” Saunders said. “While the organization has seen many successes, Jim DeMint and a handful of his closest advisers failed to resolve these problems.”

In his own statement, DeMint called the critique “puzzling,” saying the board had praised his work for the past four years and approved annual performance bonuses for the entire management team.


Good article worth reading.

NRAs Wayne LaPierre calls Bernie Sanders a dangerous political predator

NRA’s Wayne LaPierre calls Bernie Sanders a dangerous ‘political predator’ at Friday rally with Trump
David Ferguson
28 APR 2017 AT 15:03 ET

In his speech opening the National Rifle Association (NRA)’s 2017 Leadership Conference in Atlanta, the organization’s president Wayne LaPierre attacked Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, calling the former presidential candidate a kind of Pied Piper — a “political predator” who lures young Americans astray.

TheHill.com reported on the Friday afternoon speech, in which LaPierre said, “Bernie Sanders was not a movement, as a fawning media called his campaign. Bernie is a political predator of young voters who were lied to by school teachers and college professors.”...


Three studies: solar-plus-storage ... the technology will disrupt the power sector

Is grid defection still a threat to the utility business model?
Three studies debate solar-plus-storage economics, but all agree the technology will disrupt the power sector

Peter Maloney@TopFloorPower
April 18, 2017

Grid defection has become a much discussed topic in the energy storage world. It has been the subject of academic papers, including a recent paper by researchers from the University of Texas at Austin and another paper by researchers from the Rochester Institute of Technology, that examined the economics of combining energy storage with rooftop solar panels.

Those papers referenced an earlier 2014 paper on the Economics of Grid Defection by analysts at the Rocky Mountain Institute. The key points of the RMI paper were that solar-plus-storage technology has reached grid parity in some locations and continued technology cost declines will lead to wider adoption and, as a result, further utility “revenue decay” as customers reduce their reliance on the grid.

These changes are all happening within most utilities’ 30-year planning horizon, RMI said, and, therefore, grid defection could disrupt their business models and leave them with stranded investments in outdated assets.

... more at http://www.utilitydive.com/news/is-grid-defection-still-a-threat-to-the-utility-business-model/440272/

CRS: Westinghouse Bankruptcy Filing Could Put New U.S. Nuclear Projects at Risk

Westinghouse Bankruptcy Filing Could Put New U.S. Nuclear Projects at Risk
April 19, 2017 (IN10689)

Mark Holt, Congressional Research Service
Specialist in Energy Policy (mholt@crs.loc.gov, 7-1704)

Westinghouse Electric Company, a major nuclear technology firm that supplied nearly half of the 99 currently operating U.S. commercial reactors, filed for bankruptcy reorganization on March 29, 2017. The bankruptcy filing raised fundamental questions about the future of the U.S. nuclear power industry, and particularly whether four new reactors that Westinghouse is constructing for electric utilities in Georgia and South Carolina will be completed. The four reactors are the first to begin construction in the United States since the mid-1970s, and the nuclear industry had hoped they would pave the way for many more.

Because the Georgia two-reactor project, whose lead owner is Georgia Power, received $8.3 billion in loan guarantees from the Department of Energy (DOE), concerns have also been raised about potential federal liability should the borrowers default. The South Carolina project, with lead owner South Carolina Electric and Gas (SCE&G), did not receive DOE loan guarantees.

The Japanese industrial conglomerate Toshiba Corporation bought the majority of Westinghouse in 2006. In 2008, Westinghouse signed fixed-price contracts to build two 1,150 megawatt AP1000 reactors at the Vogtle nuclear plant in Georgia and two more at the V.C. Summer plant in South Carolina. The fixed-price nature of the contracts meant that Westinghouse and Toshiba were to bear most of the risk for schedule delays and cost overruns. The four reactors were originally scheduled to be completed by 2016-2018 at a cost (excluding interest) of about $4.8 billion per unit at Vogtle, according to Georgia Power's most recent progress report, and $5.7 billion for each of the new Summer units, according to a recent SCE&G regulatory filing. (Cost estimates by the two states differ in scope and methodology.)

Schedule delays and rising costs occurred at both plants soon after major construction began. Resulting lawsuits were settled at the end of 2015 with the utilities agreeing to pay for some of the rising costs but with Westinghouse and Toshiba agreeing to pay for any future delays and cost overruns. Toshiba announced February 14, 2017, that the cost estimates for completing the four units had risen another $6.1 billion since the 2015 settlements. Westinghouse filed for bankruptcy six weeks later. In a statement released with the bankruptcy filing, Toshiba said total debt accrued to Westinghouse and related companies was $9.8 billion, including the nuclear cost overruns...

Full 3 page report here: https://fas.org/sgp/crs/misc/IN10689.pdf
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