Ohio, ‘for Ideological and Political Reasons,’ Ranks 46th in Utility-Scale Wind Capacity FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Cleveland Plain Dealer:Ohio businesses, farmers and industries have been installing small, medium and even large wind turbines for more than a decade, and the state is now ranked sixth in the nation for the amount of power these turbines can generate for on-site use or nearby delivery.In an annual market report issued this week, the U.S. Department of Energy said by the end of 2016, non-utility wind turbines in Ohio had a total generating capacity of 42.5 megawatts, or 42.5 million watts.In marked contrast, in a companion market report on utility-scale wind capacity issued simultaneously with the small distributed wind report, the DOE found that Ohio ranks 26th in the nation for large turbine wind farm capacity.The agency noted that Ohio’s wind farm capacity grew by 102 megawatts late last year, the first significant growth in several years, when Amazon Web Services contracted in November for a new wind farm in Paulding County.That Amazon order boosted Ohio’s total utility-scale wind generating capacity to 545 megawatts, far behind other Great Lakes states, including Michigan, at 1,611 megawatts, Indiana at 1,897 megawatts and Illinois at 4,026 megawatts.Across the nation, utility-scale wind farms added 8,203 megawatts of new generating capacity in 2016, or the equivalent of more than eight Davis-Besse nuclear power plants, the report shows.Wind developers in some parts of the nation are now able to offer 20-year, fixed price contracts to customers, making wind competitive with power from gas turbines.Ohio’s low ranking for big wind follows years of efforts by GOP leadership in the Ohio Senate and House to stymie wind development, either for ideological or political reasons.A years-long effort to get rid of the state’s renewable energy mandates, which stalled in the spring, is expected to return this fall. Gov. John Kasich has vowed to veto any legislation that scraps the state’s laws requiring power companies to provide a growing percentage of renewable energy — up to 12.5 percent by 2027.More: Small wind turbines in Ohio are the next big thing, says Department of Energy (photos)
FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Greentech Media:Siemens Gamesa, the leading turbine manufacturer, is looking to go beyond wind — into hybrid systems with solar and storage. The company’s chief technology officer, Antonio de la Torre Quiralte, told GTM that Siemens Gamesa remains committed to the wind market. However, it is increasingly interested in other technologies to reduce renewable energy intermittency. “Following the merger about one year ago, we realized that our two former companies were quite interested in resolving the renewable problem, which is discontinuity,” he said. “As part of our business strategy, there is a clear mandate from our CEO and our board that we will resolve, with a huge investment in new technologies, solutions for the market that will allow, quite soon, stable renewable procurement of energy.”The development of systems that can provide baseload or near-baseload capacity could involve the hybridization of potentially complementary generation technologies such as wind and solar. But storage is a big part of the equation.De la Torre said the manufacturer is focused on solutions rather than products, integrating energy storage with renewable plants at the project level. He also said Siemens Gamesa is looking beyond today’s existing utility-scale battery storage capacities, which typically run to tens of megawatt hours, to gigawatt-hour levels of storage.Batteries will remain the company’s technology of choice for standalone hybrid and off-grid systems, which demand storage capacities of between 500 kilowatt-hours and 50 megawatt-hours for onshore wind and PV plant balancing. But Siemens Gamesa is also investigating a thermal storage system called the Future Energy Solution, which could boast much higher capacities. A demonstration plant currently under construction in Hamburg will be able to deliver 1.5 megawatts of power for 24 hours.Customer interest in hybrid systems with storage has grown in the last six to nine months, de la Torre said. One example is the Bulgana Green Power Hub project owned by Neoen in Australia, where Siemens Gamesa will be acting as an engineering, procurement and construction contractor, and will be integrating a 194-megawatt wind farm with 34 megawatt-hours of Tesla storage.More: Siemens Gamesa Pursues Hybrid Wind and Solar Projects With Energy Storage Siemens Gamesa Looks to Hybrid Systems to Tame Variable Wind Generation
FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Reuters:The European Union’s progress towards increasing the use of renewable energy and improving energy efficiency is slowing, putting its ability to meet its 2020 and 2030 targets at risk, the European Environment Agency (EEA) said on Monday.Rising energy consumption, particularly in transport, is to blame for the slowdown, the EEA said in an annual report on EU efforts on its renewables and energy efficiency targets.Renewable energy, such as wind and solar, accounted for a 17.4 percent share of gross final energy consumption in the EU last year, according to the EEA’s preliminary data, up from 17.0 percent in 2016. This indicates that the EU remains on track to reach its target of a renewables share of 20 percent by 2020, although the report said the pace of growth had slowed.Preliminary EEA data for 2017 showed 20 member states were on track to reach their individual targets on renewable energy by 2020, a decline from 2016 when 25 countries were on track.The continued growth in energy consumption, particularly in transport but also in other sectors, made achieving the 2020 target increasingly uncertain, the report said.The EU also has new targets for 2030 but the report said current trends would not be enough to reach them, and additional and more ambitious efforts would be needed in the coming decade. By the end of this year, member states must submit the first draft of their national energy and climate plans to help them achieve targets for 2030.More: EU progress on renewable energy, efficiency targets slows – EEA EU renewables growth continues, but transport demand remains a concern, environment agency says
FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享E&E News:Texas regulators released the details of a plan yesterday to cut oil production as other states looked for ways to reduce the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the energy industry.The Texas Railroad Commission, which regulates the state’s oil and gas production, is scheduled to consider the production cuts Tuesday. The state is proposing to cut its oil production by 20%, according to an online agenda, but only after other state or national governments commit to making “complementary” reductions in addition to the oil cuts that have already been announced by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries.The statewide curtailment, known as prorationing, would last until other governments stop curtailing their output or until oil demand increases to roughly 85% of its level before the virus struck, according to the plan.There’s no guarantee it will pass, because only one of the three elected commissioners has publicly endorsed the idea. Texas hasn’t used prorationing to control oil production since 1973.Still, the proposal shows the state’s officials are trying to foster a discussion among oil-producing states and countries, said Tom Sanzillo, a proponent of prorationing who’s director of finance at the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis. “The challenge is to the other countries — this is how much we’ll do, and we want you to do something similar,” he said. “This is important leadership coming from a very big regulator.”The Texas Oil and Gas Association, along with other trade groups, opposes the idea. The association set up a website this week asking people to send a pre-written email to members of the Railroad Commission. “Pro-ration is a bad idea no matter how you package it,” association President Todd Staples said in a statement. “If it costs you $8 a pound to make barbecue and you can only sell it for $4 a pound, you stop making barbecue. You don’t need government to tell you this.”[Mike Lee]More: Texas releases plan to cut oil production Texas regulators float plan to cut state’s oil production
Dear EarthTalk: How can I determine if it is more eco-friendly to fly or drive somewhere? — Christine Matthews, Washington, DC The simple answer is that driving in a relatively fuel efficient car (25-30 miles per gallon) usually generates fewer greenhouse gas emissions than flying. In assessing the global warming impact of a trip from Philadelphia to Boston (about 300 miles), the environmental news website Grist.org calculates that driving would generate about 104 kilograms of carbon dioxide (CO2)—the leading greenhouse gas—per typical medium-sized car, regardless of the number of passengers, while flying on a commercial jet would produce some 184 kilograms of CO2 per passenger. What this also means, of course, is that while even driving alone would be slightly better from the standpoint of greenhouse gas emissions, carpooling really makes environmental sense. Four people sharing a car would collectively be responsible for emitting only 104 kilograms of CO2, while the same four people taking up four seats on a plane would generate some 736 kilograms. Journalist Pablo Päster of Salon.com extends the comparison further to a cross country trip, and comes to similar conclusions. (Differences in the math are attributable to the use of slightly varying assumptions regarding fuel usage and source equations.) Flying from San Francisco to Boston, for example, would generate some 1,300 kilograms of greenhouse gases per passenger each way, while driving would account for only 930 kilograms per vehicle. So again sharing the drive with one or more people would lower each individual’s carbon footprint from the experience accordingly. But just because driving might be greener than flying doesn’t mean it always makes the most sense. With current high gas prices, it would cost far more in fuel to drive clear across the United States in a car than to fly non-stop coast-to-coast. And that’s not even factoring in the time spent on restaurants and hotels along the way. Those interested in figuring out driving fuel costs can consult AAA’s nifty online Fuel Cost Calculator, where you can enter your starting city and destination as well as the year, make and model of your car to get an accurate estimate of what filling ‘er up will cost between points A and B. Once you’ve made your decision whether to drive or fly, consider purchasing carbon offsets to balance out the emissions you are generating with cash for renewable energy development. TerraPass, among others, makes it easy to calculate your carbon footprint based on how much you drive and fly (as well as home energy consumption), and then will sell you offsets accordingly. (Monies generated through carbon offsets fund alternative energy and other projects, such as wind farms, that will ultimately take a bite out of or eliminate greenhouse gas emissions). Of course, an individual’s emissions from riding a bus (the ultimate carpool) or a train (many of which rely solely on electric power generated by their own motion) would be significantly lower. Paster adds that a cross-country train trip would generate about half the greenhouse gas emissions of driving a car. The only way to travel greener might be to bicycle or walk—but the trip is long enough as it is. CONTACTS: Grist, www.grist.org, Salon, www.salon.com; AAA Fuel Cost Calculator, www.fuelcostcalculator.com; TerraPass, www.terrapass.com. GOT AN ENVIRONMENTAL QUESTION? Send it to: EarthTalk, c/o E/The Environmental Magazine, P.O. Box 5098, Westport, CT 06881; submit it at: www.emagazine.com/earthtalk/thisweek/, or e-mail: [email protected] Read past columns at: www.emagazine.com/earthtalk/archives.php.
Every year in late March and early April, thousands of would-be thru-hikers begin their northern journey on the Appalachian Trail.Most will quit before they hit the North Carolina border. And the hardy few that press on will face horrendously schizophrenic weather, big mountain climbs, blisters, second thoughts, third thoughts…By the time they hit the burly 5,000- and 6,000-foot mountains of North Carolina, they need some love; a gentle nudge and a bit of encouragement. They need beer.Hi-Wire Brewing is partnering with former thru-hiker Zach Davis to perform a beautiful act of kindness known as “Trail Magic,” where good Samaritans set up on the trail and hand out free stuff, like burgers, burritos, and beer.Hi-Wire is supplying the beer and Davis is manning the Trail Magic station somewhere along the trail near Asheville on April 26.I’m not sure what beer Davis will hand out—Hi-Wire’s flagship Lager would be a welcome addition to a hot mountain hike—and of course it really doesn’t matter. I’d imagine anything tastes good after you’ve hiked several hundred miles.And I like the thoughtful effort behind this small act. I think craft breweries in our region can follow suit here. I haven’t consulted a map, but there are a lot of breweries located near the Appalachian Trail. I think it should be written into the Constitution that any Appalachian Trail thru-hiker that wanders into one of these breweries should get one, no, two free beers. And some peanuts.And if your brewery isn’t close enough to attract straggling A.T. thru-hikers, why not send a good citizen onto the trail with a cooler of your finest like the good folks of Hi-Wire. That free beer might be just what a beaten down hiker needs to push on toward Katahdin.Cheers!Follow more of Graham’s work at Daddy-Drinks.com.
Now’s your chance to put all those snowsports skills you’ve been honing all winter to the test! On Saturday, February 28, Snowshoe Mountain Resort will host the WV Open Ski and Snowboard Competition.This annual slopestyle competition gathers skiers and boarders from throughout the region to compete for the Best in West Virginia title. Anyone can participate in the event, no matter your level, so don’t be afraid to come try your hand!The WV Open will feature four categories: Men’s Ski, Men’s Snowboard, Women’s Ski and Snowboard, and Youth 11 and Under Ski and Snowboard. The competition will begin on Saturday evening at 5 p.m. at the Mountaineer terrain park, with registration available from 10 to 2 and practice from 2 to 5. Afterwards, an awards ceremony will take place on the Mountaineer deck to honor the winners and celebrate a successful season.Pre-registration is available for $30 online, and day-of for $35. All participants must also hold a lift ticket, but registered competitors can purchase one for a discount at $45.There’s still plenty of snow on the mountain, so come enjoy it while it lasts at the 2015 WV Open!
We want to hang out! That’s part of the reason why we hit the road in the first place. Check back on our blog and social media handles regularly for updates on when and where we’ll be near you, but in the meantime, browse through our May schedule for event presences and meet-ups this month.June 3rd -4th: Lyons Outdoor Games:A jam-packed weekend covering the entire adventure sport spectrum will surely keep you satisfied. Cap it all off with the Burning Can Beer Festival and what more could you ask for? Stop by the Elevation Outdoors booth on Saturday for a huge giveaway!June 9th-12th: GoPro Mountain Games:Come tango with us amongst one of the largest outdoor festivals in the country. No matter what outdoor sport you come to find, it’ll be there. Make sure to stop by the Elevation Outdoors booth for Mountain House tastings and daily giveaways.June 16th– 19th: FIBark:FIBark is the country’s oldest and boldest whitewater festivals to date. I mean, come on, how could you miss this? The mountain town of Salida, Colo., is located on the Arkansas River and is a hub for the true Colorado experience. Come on down!!! Again, check with the Elevation Outdoors booth for giveaways and extravagant dance parties.June 19th: Trail Clean Up with Salida Mountain Trails and Salida Mountain Sports:Want to make dad feel good about himself this Father’s Day? How better to do that than to sign him up for some trail work? We’ll be teaming up with SMT and SMS to clean up the trails of Salida after the heavy traffic they will receive from FIBark. We are meeting at the F-Street Bridge parking area in Salida, Colo., at 9am and then will proceed to the trails. Pants and boots required. Gloves recommended. Bring food and water while we are on the trail. Salida Mountain Sports will be providing lunch afterwards.June 21st: Mountain Bike Ride with Kristi Mountain Sports:That’s right. Come check out Kristi Mountain Sports’ new location in Del Norte. We plan to meet at 4pm at the shop, ride bikes, and then head back to Three Barrel Brewing for some brewskies.June 24th -25th: Royal Gorge River Festival:RGRF is another awesome opportunity to enjoy the Arkansas River. With an in-town play park, plenty of food, beer, and fun what else do you need? They claim it’s all about “Boats, Bands, and Beer.” I’d have to agree.June 30th: La Sportiva Shoe Demo/ Sanitas Brewing Co.Looking to try out some new kicks? Here’s your chance. La Sportiva trail running shoes will be available to demo. Afterwards we’ll all head over to Sanitas Brewing Co to grab a beer and relax.
For a city of 60,000, Greenville certainly knows how to integrate green spaces and family friendly parks amid an otherwise metropolitan scene. Situated at the base of the Blue Ridge mountains, Greenville is a popular home base among some of the region’s top athletes like world-renown paddler Adriene Levknecht, who is just an hour away from the put-in to the Green River Narrows, and George Hincapie, Lance Armstrong’s former domestique.There’s no denying Adam and I are, how do you say, “small town folk,” but there’s something about Greenville that speaks to that community-style living while still seamlessly integrating its culture. Here’s how we chose to #gooutsideandplay in #yeahthatgreenville.PlayThe Greenville Health System Swamp Rabbit Trail is a 21-mile multiuse trail that spans from downtown Greenville to the nearby town of Travelers Rest. Paved, flat, and well-marked, this trail is used by a wide range of people, from tourists, to local families, to cyclists training on Hincapie’s team. If you have an afternoon to spend, we recommend parking in Travelers Rest for an out-and-back day on the Swamp Rabbit Trail. Your turnaround point is Falls Park on the Reedy River. An in-city oasis, you can easily spend hours walking around the gardens and along the riverfront here.Have another day to play? Head an hour northwest to Lake Jocassee, a pristine 7,500-acre reservoir bordered on all sides by mostly undeveloped land. Take a SUP, kayak, or canoe and paddle along its shores for glimpses of mountain-fed waterfalls. In the summertime, this is the place to be if you’re looking to cool down. StayCampers will instantly fall in love with Lake Jocassee, which offers lakefront camping in Devils Fork State Park. For those looking to stay closer to town, the Swamp Rabbit Inn is a swanky “hotel alternative” right in the heart of the city. Arranged hostel-style, visitors here can have the luxury of their own rooms in addition to a community-style kitchen, which comes complete with a self-serve continental breakfast. Need a bike to explore the Swamp Rabbit Trail? The Inn has its very own Bike Shed out back, where you can rent bikes for a half- or full day. EatFrom southern inspired farm-to-table fare to ethnic food trucks, Greenville literally has every genre of food to fit whatever your tastebuds are craving. Looking for a mid-ride eatery along the Swamp Rabbit Trail? The Swamp Rabbit Cafe has killer sandwiches and coffee drinks, not to mention an awesome community feel and locally inspired grocery. Tandem Creperie and Coffeehouse in Travelers Rest is too good for us to do any justice, so just take our word on it and go there.Need coffee? Everybody does. Our favorite is Methodical Coffee right downtown. The vibe is cool, the people are too, and the coffee is just out-of-this-world-delicious. We didn’t think we were coffee snobs until we had some cold brew here, so be forewarned—once you go Methodical, it’s hard to go back. Like any of the stuff we’re rockin’ in the images above? Check out the IceMule Cooler to meet all of your beverage-cooling, adventure needs, LifeStraw for clean water no matter where you go, Farm to Feet socks for bar-hoppin to thru-hikin, and ENO for chillaxin wherever there be two trees.
A summary released last week by the U.N.’s Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services has found that there are dire, unprecedented threats to biodiversity and human survival currently taking place across the globe. The report, which will be released in full later this year, found that approximately 1 million plant and animal species face extinction and that in the last 120 years the number of living land species has decreased by 20 percent. In the water, 40 percent of amphibians and a third of coral species and marine mammals also face extinction. The summary found that the losses are a direct result of human action and threaten the foundations of our economies, food security and quality of life. U.N. report finds unprecedented loss of biodiversity threatens humanity The Allegheny Trail Alliance will partner with Rails-to-Trails Conservancy to make the Great Allegheny Passage a part of the “Great American” bike route, a cross-country, non-motorized, multi-use path that will eventually span 3,700 miles from the east coast to the west coast of the United States. The Great Allegheny Passage (GAP) forms a critical link of the longer route, providing nearly 150 miles of pathway from Cumberland, Maryland to Pittsburg. The GAP already receives over a million visitors a year and is maintained by residents and volunteers of Allegheny, Westmoreland, Fayette, Somerset, and Allegany Counties. The “Great American” route is already 50 percent finished. Once completed, it is expected to serve approximately 50 million people that live within 50 miles of the route. University of Georgia sprinter recovering after being impaled with a javelin A sprinter at the University of Georgia was seriously injured during practice last week when he ran into a javelin sticking out of the ground and was impaled. Elija Godwin was running backwards when he collided with the javelin, which pierced his back and punctured and collapsed his left lung. Team trainers responded immediately, applying pressure to the wound. When first responders arrived they used a battery-powered angle grinder to cut the protruding parts of the javelin off so that Godwin could be transported to the hospital. Godwin underwent surgery to repair his lung and is expected to make a full recovery. Allegheny County, Maryland to be a part of the new Great American Rail-Trail