Peabody’s Bankruptcy May Speed Up Clean Energy Growth

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Claudi Assis for MarketWatch:Last year, electricity generation from renewable sources accounted for 13% of total U.S. electricity, with solar the fastest-growing, according to the Energy Information Administration. That share is projected to increase to 18% by 2040. The share of natural gas, however, is expected to grow to 30% by the same year.But the EIA is expecting coal to remain in the electricity-generation equation for longer.Coal’s share is seeing declining to 34% in 2040 from 39% in 2013, although the EIA has cautioned its projections are highly dependent on natural gas prices in relation to coal plants and renewables.The EIA has also forecast that 2016 will be the first year that natural gas-fired generation exceeds coal-fired generation in the U.S., with 33% of U.S. residents getting their electricity from gas and 32% from coal.Peabody Energy’s leadership has not been able to adjust to new energy markets in which coal is being displaced by new energy sources, said Tom Sanzillo, director of finance at the Institute of Energy Economics and Financial Analysis.“That said, the coal industry is not dead, but faces a time now in which it must innovate in ways that it hasn’t done before. That means smaller markets and fewer mines,” he said.Full article: Peabody’s bankruptcy may speed up clean energy growth Peabody’s Bankruptcy May Speed Up Clean Energy Growthlast_img read more

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38% Drop in Production at Top 2 U.S. Mines

first_img38% Drop in Production at Top 2 U.S. Mines FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Taylor Kuykendall for SNL:The latest data shows that the nation’s two top mines — the only two in the country that have recently demonstrated annual production capacity of over 100 million tons — have drastically cut production in the first quarter. The move signals a potential willingness to take major sectorwide action to rein in an oversupplied thermal coal market.S&P Global Market Intelligence reported April 15 sharp cuts at Peabody Energy Corp.’s North Antelope Rochelle mine preceding its bankruptcy filing and layoff notices. New data recently posted to the MSHA database shows the only mine close to competing with North Antelope, Arch Coal Inc.’s Black Thunder, also significantly slashed at its own production.Peabody’s North Antelope production was down by one-third year over year. Production at Black Thunder was down 42% off the year-ago period.Together, Black Thunder and North Antelope produced about 208.8 million tons of coal in 2015. That is roughly 23.3% of the entirety of the 896.8 million tons of cumulative U.S. coal production in 2015 and more than half of the 405.0 million tons of coal produced in the Powder River Basin in that year.The two mines cumulatively trimmed about 38.4% of production. More than two-thirds of the coal coming from the Powder River Basin now comes from a company recently filing for bankruptcy.Full article ($): Twin coal giants in Powder River Basin deliver drastic supply cuts early in ’16Additional article ($): Nearly every Powder River Basin coal mine struck with major supply cut in Q1’16last_img read more

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Iberdrola planning major U.S. renewables expansion

first_imgIberdrola planning major U.S. renewables expansion FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Reuters:Iberdrola SA, the world’s biggest wind power producer, plans to expand its renewable capacity in the United States by about 50 percent over four years as part of the Spanish electric utility’s global plan to reduce carbon emissions, its chief executive told Reuters on Monday.Ignacio Galan, who was in New York to speak at the United Nations’ Global Compact Leaders’ Summit, said the company expects to spend about $15 billion in the United States on its transmission and distribution system and increase its renewable generation to around 10,000 megawatts (MW) by the end of 2022.“More and more investors are looking for companies with clean energy and sustainability goals,” Galan said, noting Iberdrola sells the energy that helps those companies meet those targets.Iberdrola committed to reduce its carbon dioxide emissions intensity by 50 percent by 2030 compared to 2007 levels and become carbon neutral by 2050. More than half of its 48,800 MW of generation around the world is renewable with the remainder fueled mostly by natural gas, nuclear and coal. Galan said the company wants to shut its last two coal plants, which are located in Spain, by 2020.Through its majority-owned Avangrid Inc subsidiary, Iberdrola has over 6,500 MW of renewables in the United States. It is the country’s third-biggest wind power provider behind NextEra Energy and Berkshire Hathaway.Galan said Avangrid’s customer base was changing as more companies seek to buy energy directly from wind farms to meet climate change and sustainability goals. “In recent years, large customers are also coming to us to buy renewable power directly because it is cheaper and cleaner,” Galan said, noting Iberdrola has long-term power purchase agreements with companies including Amazon.com, Alphabet’s Google and Nike.More: Iberdrola plans to boost U.S. renewable power by about 50 percent: CEOlast_img read more

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Australian solar installations set records in 2018

first_imgAustralian solar installations set records in 2018 FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享PV Magazine:2018 was a record year for Australia’s solar PV sector across all segments, with more than 2 GW of large-scale PV added, and over 40% increase in residential PV.Based on data collected by Green Energy Trading, Australia added over 3,775 MW of solar capacity last year, up from 1,270 MW in 2017. There was 2,083 MW of big PV added last year, around half of it in Queensland, up from a meager 119 MW in 2017.This boom is set to spill over to 2019, which is in line for even bigger figures given the capacity of large-scale solar project currently under construction. According to the Clean Energy Council’s figures released in December, there are over 9 GW of large-scale solar projects currently under construction or soon to start. This totals an investment of almost $11.5 billion, creating 8,834 jobs.As the number of Australian rooftop solar PV systems passed the two million mark late last year, with an average six panels installed a minute, both residential and commercial grew by more than 40%, reaching 1,227 MW and 351 MW respectively. The main drivers for home owners to install PV continue to be high electricity prices and falling costs of solar accompanied by a shorter payback period.The analysts remind that while the stabilisation in electricity prices after large rises in prior years could lead to drop off in the residential segment, a noticeable decline in sales seems unlikely. “A lot of the growth in capacity has been driven by upsizing not just growth in number of installations,” Edis says, noting that the residential sector is effectively hitting a ceiling on its ability to upsize system size.Last year, small power stations with the capacity between 100 kW – 5 MW took off big time and grew by more than 132%. This new solar sector, which comprises mainly rooftop systems and a bit of ground mount mixed in, will be the segment to watch this coming year.More: Solar PV capacity triples in 2018 amid utility-scale boomlast_img read more

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Philippines power company Ayala to be coal-free by 2030

first_imgPhilippines power company Ayala to be coal-free by 2030 FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Bloomberg Green:Ayala Corp., the Philippines’ oldest conglomerate, aims to fully divest from coal by 2030, a rare rebuke of the fuel in a region where its use is expected to grow.Ayala’s power-generation unit, AC Energy Philippines Inc., will also boost investments in renewable generation as it transitions to a low-carbon portfolio, President Eric Francia said in a live-streamed annual stockholders meeting in Manila on Monday.The company will “now focus on renewable investments and we will not be making additional investments in coal plants,” Francia said. However, it remains open to natural gas- or diesel-fired power “that complement our renewable assets and developments.”The company joins a growing chorus of commitments by conglomerates, banks and governments to move away from coal, the most widely used and most-polluting fossil fuel for power generation. Southeast Asia is one of the last remaining growth markets for the fuel, as it’s seen as a cheap and reliable electricity source for rapidly developing economies.Ayala owns shares in two coal-fired power plants and a third that’s under construction. It plans to accelerate its transition away from coal as fast as possible, but needs to continue to serve its customers with reliable power as it builds up renewable capacity, an outside spokeswoman said by email.AC Energy plans to grow its attributable capacity to about 1,500 megawatts this year, from 1,100 megawatts in the first quarter, Chairman Fernando Zobel de Ayala said during the event Monday. Within that portfolio, the company aims to expand the share of renewables this year to 50%, from 44% in the first quarter, he said.[Claire Jiao, Dan Murtaugh]More: Philippines’ oldest conglomerate to get out of coal by 2030last_img read more

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Korea’s KB Financial Group to stop coal plant financing

first_imgKorea’s KB Financial Group to stop coal plant financing FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享The Korea Herald:KB Financial Group said Sunday it has decided to halt financing construction of coal-fired power plants and to expand investment in infrastructure projects aimed at improving and conserving environment.As part of its corporate roadmap to combat global climate change, the South Korean financial giant will no longer participate in financing of new thermal power plant construction in and out of the country, and instead, increase investment in new eco-related investment opportunities, such as green vessels and vehicles.The group‘s key unit, KB Kookmin Bank, and 12 other subsidiaries will scale up current lending programs for renewable energy businesses as well as issuance of ESG bonds, officials said.The decisions were made during a ESG committee meeting attended by KB Financial Group Chairman Yoon Jong-kyu. The intraboard meeting discusses ways to enhance the financial group’s capability in handling environmental, social and gender issues, as well as to improve transparency in its governance.In August, KB Financial unveiled a management slogan for sustainable growth dubbed the “KB Green Way 2030.” Under the new slogan, KB aims to cut its carbon dioxide emissions by up to 25 percent by 2030 and increase the value of ESG products from the current 20 trillion won to 50 trillion won.[Choi Jae-hee]More: KB Financial to halt financing of coal-fired power plantslast_img read more

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Clips of the Week: New GoPro, Ditch Kayaking, Fly Fishing the World, Chicken Cam

first_imgOur favorite outdoor videos for the week that was:1. The New GoPro VideoThere is a new GoPro camera out. That means there is a new GoPro video.2. Speaking of GoPro……they better watch their back. This could be the next big thing in POV video.3. Speaking of Animals……FISH! OMG! FISH! Bones, Bulls, Tigers, Permits, GTs, Chromes, the works. One of the most epic fly fishing movie trailers. Ever.Waypoints from Confluence Films – Fly Fishing Film from The Fly Fishing Guide Directory on Vimeo.4. Speaking of Epic……this dude goes HAM on a drainage ditch with his kayak.5. Speaking of Going Ham……this is another Arc’teryx/Duct Tape Then Beer vid to inspire you/make you feel bad about yourself.last_img read more

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November 2013 Issue of BRO Out Now!

first_imgAnother issue of Blue Ridge Outdoors is out on newsstands and online, and we could not be happier. Our November, 2013 issue brings you the results of our Best Mountain Towns in the Blue Ridge reader poll! After 34,000 votes, you chose the winners, we featured them, and they did not disappoint. Find out which towns came out on top in the four categories: Best Trail Town, Best River Town, Best Beer Town, and Best Music Town. We then head underground for two amazing stories on caving in the Blue Ridge. The first is a unique look at the history and future of Mammoth Cave National Park and its extensive system of caves, underground rivers, and unique species of critters that thrive in the dark and dank environment. We then head to Georgia’s Pettijohn’s Cave where we examine caving in the time of the devastating White Nose Syndrome.Hop in the saddle for two very cool biking features. BRO contributor Graham Averill enlists a couple of his buddies to cycle Newfound Gap Road through Smoky Mountains National Park, one of the most scenic, but also the most dangerous, roads to cycle in the Southeast. They live to tell the tale, which is hilarious. Pro cyclist and Virginia native Ben King traded his skinny tires for fat ones and won the Shenandoah Mountain 100 mountain bike race. We also enlist outdoor writer and fly fishing guide book author Beau Beasley to shed some light on the current state of the King’s Grant land use issues that are getting anglers and paddlers in hot water with the law across the state of Virginia. Our November issue wraps up with a debate on prescribed burns in the Linville Gorge Wilderness, a look at the emergence of aerial media in the outdoor industry, and an interview with Asheville, N.C.’s Town Mountain who won Band of the Year at the International Bluegrass Music Association Awards.LET US KNOW WHAT YOU THINK ABOUT THIS ISSUE OR OTHER ISSUES IN THE COMMENTS BELOW!FeaturesBest Mountain Towns 2013Mammoth Cave: The Next FrontierWho Owns the Hazel River?EssaysKing of the Mountain: Ben King Wins the SM100Caving in the Time of White Nose SyndromeCycling the Most Dangerous Road in the SoutheastDepartmentsDebate: Prescribed Burns in the Linville Gorge Wilderness?Eye in the Sky: Drones are Watching You PlayMountain Lion MysteryTown Mountain Wins Big at the IBMA Awardslast_img read more

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Beer Blog: Lonerider Brewing, Raleigh N.C.

first_imgI love cans, you love cans, but you know who loves cans more than anyone? The good folks at Lonerider Brewing, in Raleigh N.C. The brewery has just made a big move, ditching their entire bottling line in order to package their beers entirely in cans.Plenty of breweries are turning to cans for a piece of their packaging pie, but very few go “full can” all at once. That’s what we in the beer world call “ballsy.”Lonerider is one of these breweries operating in the middle of North Carolina that doesn’t get the attention that they deserve because most of the press is focused on what’s happening in and around Asheville, the state’s self-proclaimed Beer Capital. Lonerider might not have a hip area code to rely on, but they certainly have good beer to be proud of. Their Peacemaker Pale Ale is hopped to the bejeezus, coming off more like a pushy IPA with a hell of a lot of hoppy zest. Shotgun Betty is a solid Hefeweizen that’s crisp and playful, the way an easy-drinking Hefe should be. And don’t get me started on those beer labels. Is there anything better than a hot chick carrying a gun?But I digress. I have to admit, I haven’t tried any of Lonerider’s seasonals, but if their year-round lineup is any indication, I’ll be looking forward to picking up those limited release beers in cans soon too.The new cans should hit North Carolina stores right about now, and follow in the rest of Lonerider’s distribution by the end of the month.Long live the can.Lonerider-Shotgun-Betty-Canslast_img read more

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Instagram Takeover | Robert Stephens

first_imgThis month’s Instagram Takeover features Georgia native and avid hiker Robert Stephens.“Photography is my passion and nature is my refuge,” Robert says. “Combine the two, and that is where I am most at peace.”Robert is a self taught photographer and writer. Over the past seven years he has traveled the Southeast extensively, all the while chronicling his adventures in two self-published books.With the final stages of winter finally here, we asked Robert to submit his favorite winter landscapes, and the results were amazing. See them for yourself below and follow Robert in Instagram here. “An Entrance To Winter” – Rime ice on the Craggy Pinnacle Trail on the Blue Ridge Parkway north of Asheville. I believe you’ve shared this one in the past, but it seems every time it gets shared it really catches on. Plus, it’s a finalist in the Appalachian Mountain Photography Competition in the Landscape category. “Cascading Winter” –  taken along the Margarette Falls Trail near Greeneville, TN. This was shot after the first big snow of the year back in January.“Icing On Top” – my most recent image, shot Thursday as I hiked the four mile stretch of the Blue Ridge Parkway between Soco Gap and Waterrock Knob Overlook near Cherokee, NC. Rime ice and snow only covered the very highest elevations, hence the title. This was shot just below the Waterrock Knob Overlook. “Deep Woods Winter” – a very familiar spot on the Appalachian Trail near Carver’s Gap/Roan Mountain, in its winter guise. “Maggie Valley Winter Barn” – this was also taken after that first big snow of the year began clearing out of my area in Maggie Valley, NC. I explored the town by foot and caught this burst of sunlight peeking through the clouds as the snow fell.[divider]Q & A with Robert Stephens[/divider]BRO: How did you cut your teeth in the world of outdoor photography?RS: I have always traveled and hiked, but with the advent of social media in the mid-2000’s I was able to share my journeys with friends, illustrated with photos; first, taken with a primitive camera phone (circa 2005) then, with a point-and-shoot, then finally a digital SLR in 2011. My friends liked the images I shared, so I decided to develop my skills further, and here we are!BRO: Where do you take most of your photos?RS: I take the vast majority of my images in the Appalachian Mountains, though occasionally I’ll make a beach trip to change things up. I hope to expand much further in years to come. So many places to see.BRO: 5 favorite trails in the Blue Ridge?RS: I don’t really consider myself as skilled or avid of a hiker as some, though of course I still enjoy hiking for the joy of it, and to get images. My favorite trails are Craggy Pinnacle Trail, Alum Cave Bluffs, The Roan Mountain stretch of the Appalachian Trail, The Cascades Trail in Virginia, and Waterrock Knob Trail on the Blue Ridge Parkway close to home, as it offers some of the most incredible vistas I’ve ever witnessed.BRO: What’s your favorite outdoor activity when you’re not taking photos?RS: I’ve always loved playing golf, and I prefer walking while playing. It’s relaxing, and good exercise too.BRO: Is there one piece of gear, aside from your camera, that you won’t go into the field without?RS: Two pieces actually! Gotta have my tripod and remote shutter! A lot of images I shoot are either high contrast or in low light; so with the smaller apertures and slower shutter speeds necessary to capture what I want I need to keep my camera as still as possible.last_img read more

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