NewEnergyNews: QUICK NEWS, August 27: VERIZON’S $40MIL SOLAR BUY; WIND PRICES HIT RECORD LOWS; NUKE INSPECTOR SAYS DIABLO CYN IS UNSAFE

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    Wednesday, August 27, 2014

    QUICK NEWS, August 27: VERIZON’S $40MIL SOLAR BUY; WIND PRICES HIT RECORD LOWS; NUKE INSPECTOR SAYS DIABLO CYN IS UNSAFE

    VERIZON’S $40MIL SOLAR BUY Verizon Announces $40 Million Solar Energy Investment

    Kiley Kroh, August 25, 2014 (Climate Progress)

    “…Verizon Wireless Inc. [the biggest U.S. wireless carrier] will invest $40 million into 10.2 megawatts (MW) of solar power…at eight Verizon network facilities in California, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, and New York…[They] will nearly double the amount of power the company derives from solar energy…[Solar is] a key component of the company’s sustainability plan…[according to the company, and] the steadily declining cost of solar power made it a smart financial move…Rhone Resch, president of the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), said the latest move by Verizon puts the company at the top of U.S. telecom companies investing in solar power…[and by year’s end] Verizon will be among the top 20 of all companies nationwide [in number of solar installations and solar generating capacity]…Last year, Verizon announced a $100 million investment in a combination of solar panels and fuel cell technology, a decision it predicted would not only lower utility bills and emissions but also improve the reliability of its operations…” click here for more

    WIND PRICES HIT RECORD LOWS How Low Can Wind Energy Go? 2.5¢ Per Kilowatt-Hour Is Just The Beginning

    Tina Casey, August 23, 2014 (Clean Technica)

    “…[A] new Department of Energy report on the US wind energy market…came up [with a new low] average cost for wind energy…[But the] 2013 Wind Technologies Market Report repeatedly cautions that the 2013 sample size is small compared to previous annual wind energy reports...[T]he 2014 sample will be much larger, at 16 projects totaling more than 2 GW (gigawatts)…Power purchase agreements (PPAs) are quickly becoming the financing deal of choice for wind as well as solar power. The report notes that PPAs for wind energy reached a new low on 2013, pegging the figure at $25 per MWh or 2.5¢ per kWh…[M]ost of the projects in the sample are located in the…high-quality wind interior, where costs are lower…[but] the latest generation of wind turbines is on a technology trend that enables a continued decline [in PPA price], even in less than optimal wind areas…[T]he report is confident that wind PPAs will give natural gas a run for the money over the next 25 years, at least in the Interior…[and] beat the pants off other fossil fuels in some regions…” click here for more

    NUKE INSPECTOR SAYS DIABLO CYN IS UNSAFE Hearings planned after call for nuke-plant closure

    Michael R. Blood, August 25, 2014 AP via Yahoo News

    A verified confidential filing with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission by former Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant on-site inspector Michael Peck, a PHD in nuclear engineering and senior NRC instructor, recommends shutting down the California plant until its two reactors can be shown capable of withstanding earthquake forces unanticipated when the facility was built, a recommendation made more central by the recent magnitude-6 earthquake in Northern California. Pacific Gas and Electric Co., which owns and operates Diablo Canyon, argues the 1,122 megawatt unit 1, which went online in 1985, and the 1,118 megawatt unit two, which went online in 1986, have had thorough NRC analysis and are "seismically safe" since being retrofitted during construction in the 1970s. Environmentalists argue its 50-mile proximity to a half million people requires higher standards and Peck cited PG&E 2011 research that determined any of three nearby faults is capable of producing significantly more “peak ground acceleration” than was expected in the 1970s. Senate Environment and Public Works Committee Chair Barbara Boxer (D-CA), a supporter of the NRC’s directive to U.S. nuclear plants to reevaluate seismic risks by March 2015 since the 2011 magnitude-9 earthquake and tsunami caused a meltdown at Japan’s Fukushima Daiichi plant, will hold hearings on why Peck’s July 2013 filing has gone unanswered. click here for more

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