NewEnergyNews: QUICK NEWS, May 20: INSURANCE COMPANIES PREPARE FOR CLIMATE CHANGE; UK’S GREEN BANK BRINGS THE BIG BUCKS; UTILITY GOES FOR BETTER SUN, WIND FORECASTS

NewEnergyNews

Gleanings from the web and the world, condensed for convenience, illustrated for enlightenment, arranged for impact...

While the OFFICE of President remains in highest regard at NewEnergyNews, this administration's position on climate change makes it impossible to regard THIS president with respect. Below is the NewEnergyNews theme song until 2020.

The challenge now: To make every day Earth Day.

YESTERDAY

  • FRIDAY WORLD HEADLINE-Is ‘Game Of Thrones’ About Climate Change?
  • FRIDAY WORLD HEADLINE-Surprises In The New Global Solar Rankings
  • FRIDAY WORLD HEADLINE-Denmark’s Vestas Wins Mexico’s Biggest Wind Deal
  • FRIDAY WORLD HEADLINE-Supervolcanoes Could Grow Cars With Plugs
  • THE DAY BEFORE

    THINGS-TO-THINK-ABOUT THURSDAY, August 17:

  • TTTA Thursday-Is The White House Hiding DOE’s Grid Study?
  • TTTA Thursday-Will The White House Hide The Climate Report?
  • TTTA Thursday-Crucial Transmission Line For Wind Denied
  • TTTA Thursday-Wind And Solar Are Saving Lives
  • THE DAY BEFORE THE DAY BEFORE

  • ORIGINAL REPORTING: Organizing California’s Distributed Energy Efforts
  • ORIGINAL REPORTING: A Deep Look At Evolving U.S. Efforts To Support Solar
  • THE DAY BEFORE THAT

  • TODAY’S STUDY: Big Growth In Customer-Sited Wind
  • QUICK NEWS, August 15: New Forest To Offset Bad U.S. Climate Policies Has 120,000 Pledges; Wind Becoming The Go-To Power; 88,000 Jobs And The Fight Over Solar Imports
  • AND THE DAY BEFORE THAT

  • TODAY’S STUDY: The Work On Tomorrow’s Grid So Far
  • QUICK NEWS, August 14: Climate Is The Elephant In The Room; Long-Term, NatGas Is Not The Answer; Why Wind Is Such A Good Choice
  • THE LAST DAY UP HERE

  • Weekend Video: Al Gore Talks With Bill Maher
  • Weekend Video: The U.S. Celebrates Its First National Wind Week
  • Weekend Video: Wind Is Just Beginning To Show Its Power
  • --------------------------

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    Founding Editor Herman K. Trabish

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    Research Associate and Contributing Editor Jessica R. Wunder

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    Some details about NewEnergyNews and the man behind the curtain: Herman K. Trabish, Agua Dulce, CA., Doctor with my hands, Writer with my head, Student of New Energy and Human Experience with my heart

    email: herman@NewEnergyNews.net

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      A tip of the NewEnergyNews cap to Phillip Garcia for crucial assistance in the design implementation of this site. Thanks, Phillip.

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    Pay a visit to the HARRY BOYKOFF page at Basketball Reference, sponsored by NewEnergyNews and Oil In Their Blood.

  • ---------------
  • WEEKEND VIDEOS, August 19-20:

  • Colbert On The Newest Climate Fiasco
  • Consumer Reports’ Tesla Vs. Bolt Face-Off
  • All About The Eclipse And The Power Grid

    Monday, May 20, 2013

    QUICK NEWS, May 20: INSURANCE COMPANIES PREPARE FOR CLIMATE CHANGE; UK’S GREEN BANK BRINGS THE BIG BUCKS; UTILITY GOES FOR BETTER SUN, WIND FORECASTS

    INSURANCE COMPANIES PREPARE FOR CLIMATE CHANGE For Insurers, No Doubts on Climate Change

    Eduardo Porter, May 14 2013 (NY Times)

    “…[N]atural catastrophes across the United States pounded insurers last year, generating$35 billion in privately insured property losses, $11 billion more than the average over the last decade…And the industry expects the situation will get worse…Most insurers, including the reinsurance companies that bear much of the ultimate risk in the industry, have little time for the arguments heard in some right-wing circles that climate change isn’t happening…[and accept that it is caused by humans. But]…the focus of insurers’ advocacy efforts is zoning rules and disaster mitigation [instead of prevention].

    …[The concentration of heat-trapping carbon dioxide in the atmosphere [recently] reached 400 parts per million…The milestone puts the earth nearer a point of no return, many scientists think, when vast, disruptive climate change is baked into our future…[So] why hasn’t corporate America done more to sway its allies in the Republican Party to try to avert a disaster that would clearly be devastating to its own interests?”

    “…[The insurance industry may want to avoid] controversies over energy policy. But perhaps its executives simply don’t feel so vulnerable. Like farmers, who are largely protected from the ravages of climate change by government-financed crop insurance, insurers also have less to fear than it might at first appear…The federal government covers flood insurance, among the riskiest kind in this time of crazy weather. And insurers can raise premiums or even drop coverage to adjust to higher risks. Indeed, despite Sandy and drought, property and casualty insurance in the United States was more profitable in 2012 than in 2011, according to the Property Casualty Insurers Association of America.

    “But the industry…[is evolving. Insurance companies] dropped their support for [the Heartland Institute, and Heartland VP Eli Lehrer, who led an insurance-financed project, left to help]…start the R Street Institute, a standard conservative organization…[that] believes in climate change and supports a carbon tax…[I]t is financed largely with insurance industry money…[Some Republicans in the House and Senate] would be open to legislation to help avert climate change…[and Exelon is sympathetic, probably] because a carbon tax would give an edge to gas over its dirtier rival, coal…[but] with the exception of 2004 and 2005, when a string of hurricanes from Ivan to Katrina caused damage worth more than $200 billion…they haven’t yet experienced hefty, sustained losses attributable to climate change…[T]he best hope for those concerned about climate change…[is] that global warming isn’t just devastating for society, but also bad for business.”

    UK’S GREEN BANK BRINGS THE BIG BUCKS UK Green Investment Bank mobilises £2.3bn investment in UK’s low-carbon infrastructure

    09 May 2013 (Green Investment Bank)

    “The UK Green Investment Bank plc (GIB)…investment impact of its first five months of operation (up to 31st March 2013)…[1] Committed funds to 11 transactions with a total value of £2.3 billion…[2] Directly committed £635 million, resulting in a funding ratio that sees £1 from GIB mobilising almost £3 of private sector money…[3] Supported transactions in all of its priority sectors: offshore wind, energy efficiency and waste; and…[4] Completed all transactions on fully commercial terms in line with co-investors.

    “…[P]rovisional results indicate that, once operational, these investments will, on an annualised basis…[1] Save over 2.5 million tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions; the equivalent today of taking around 1 million cars off UK roads; and…[2] Generate around 10TWh of renewable electricity; the equivalent today of the annual domestic electricity consumption of around 2.3m UK homes.”

    “Projects that have been backed include…[1] A new clean energy centre at Addenbrookes Hospital, Cambridge to help the NHS Trust reduce their emissions and save money…[2] An equity stake in an offshore wind farm; and…[3] A local authority managed recycling centre in Wakefield, West Yorkshire to reduce waste sent to landfill and capture energy from waste.

    “GIB has also made progress in building an enduring institution…[1, The] Bank will move into a new permanent home [in Edinburgh] in August…[2] A team of 74 people has been recruited and…[it] rise to 100 by the end of this calendar year…[3] A strong transaction pipeline is in place…[and, 4] An investment alliance with Abu Dhabi backed clean energy firm, Masdar has been signed to bring in additional funding…over the next seven years…”

    UTILITY GOES FOR BETTER SUN, WIND FORECASTS Xcel Energy and NCAR power up renewable energy forecasts

    2013 May 8 (Xcel Energy)

    “Xcel Energy…expanded [its] agreement with the National Center for Atmospheric Research for sophisticated renewable energy forecasting…[A]n existing relationship… has saved Xcel Energy’s 3.4 million electricity customers in eight states millions of dollars [including more than $6 million in 2010]…

    “In the next two years, NCAR scientists and engineers will develop custom forecasting systems to enable Xcel Energy control centers in Minneapolis, Denver, Golden, Colo., and Amarillo, Tex., to anticipate sudden changes in wind, shut down turbines ahead of potentially damaging icing events and even predict the amount of energy generated by private solar panels [and it will eventually publish the results]…”

    “The new project represents the latest venture by NCAR into renewable energy, which includes a three-year, nationwide project to create 36-hour forecasts of incoming energy from the sun for solar energy power plants…The systems will help Xcel Energy provide reliable power…and reduce costs while…[using more] wind and solar…in its territories served by Public Service Co. of Colorado, Northern States Power Co.-Minnesota, NSP-Wisconsin and Southwestern Public Service Co…

    “…The specialized system relies on a suite of tools, including highly detailed observations of atmospheric conditions, an ensemble of powerful computer models, and artificial intelligence techniques to issue high-resolution forecasts for wind farm sites…[They] will provide ‘probabilistic forecasts,’ estimating the chances that a particular weather event will occur. This means that utility managers will be able to make decisions based on whether there is an 80 percent chance of certain weather events at a wind farm the next day or a 20 percent chance…Ultimately, Xcel Energy will control the systems…”

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