NewEnergyNews: QUICK NEWS, June 26: FIRST SOLAR PLANT OK ON TRIBAL LANDS; CALIFORNIA WITHOUT SONGS; BIOGAS BUILDING UP FAST

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    Tuesday, June 26, 2012

    QUICK NEWS, June 26: FIRST SOLAR PLANT OK ON TRIBAL LANDS; CALIFORNIA WITHOUT SONGS; BIOGAS BUILDING UP FAST

    FIRST SOLAR PLANT OK ON TRIBAL LANDS Department Of The Interior Approves 350 MW Solar Project In Nevada

    22 June 2012 (Solar Industry)

    “U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar has approved a 350 MW solar energy project on tribal trust land of the Moapa Band of Paiute Indians in Clark County, Nev…the first-ever utility-scale solar project approved for development on tribal lands…[The approval specifies] construction, operation and maintenance of a low-impact PV facility and associated infrastructure on about 2,000 acres of the tribe's reservation, located 30 miles north of Las Vegas.

    “Proposed by K Road Moapa Solar LLC, the project will be built in three phases of 100 MW to 150 MW. In addition to PV arrays, major additional project components include a 500 kV transmission line to deliver power to the grid and a 12 kV transmission line to the existing Moapa Travel Plaza after Phase I is complete. About 12 acres of U.S. public land administered by the Bureau of Land Management will be required for the 500 kV transmission line.”

    click to enlarge

    “To minimize and mitigate potential environmental impacts, a Desert Tortoise Translocation Plan, Bird and Bat Conservation Strategy and Weed Management Plan will be implemented, and natural-resources monitoring by qualified biologists will be conducted during all surface disturbing activities.

    “The project will generate lease income for the tribe, create new jobs and employment opportunities for tribal members, and connect the existing tribally owned Travel Plaza to the electrical grid, decreasing the Travel Plaza's dependence on a diesel-powered generator…”

    CALIFORNIA WITHOUT SONGS California energy officials plan for life without San Onofre; As officials make short-term plans to cope while the San Onofre plant is off line, they're also starting to think about the possibility of a nuclear-free future.

    Abby Sewell. June 24, 2012 (LA Times)

    “California energy officials are beginning to plan for the possibility of a long-range future without the [San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station (SONGS)]…The plant's unexpected, nearly five-month outage has had officials scrambling to replace its power this summer and has become a wild card in already complicated discussions about the state's energy future.

    “That long-range planning process already involves dealing with the possible repercussions of climate change, a mandate to boost the state's use of renewable sources to 33% of the energy supply by 2020 and another mandate to phase out a process known as once-through cooling, which uses ocean water to cool coastal power plants, that will probably take some other plants out of service…”

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    “…Before the current shutdown at the plant, officials had planned only for a scenario in which one of the reactors would be off line. No one had anticipated a complete shutdown…The plant's 2,200 megawatts of power provide electricity to about 1.4 million homes, but the facility also provides voltage support to the transmission system that allows power to be imported from elsewhere…Plant operator Southern California Edison has not yet submitted a plan to fix the issues…and has said the plant will remain shut down at least through the summer…Officials said that with contingency plans in place for this summer, including temporarily bringing two retired gas-fired units in Huntington Beach back on line, Southern California should not see rolling blackouts under most circumstances. But an extreme heat wave or outage at another power plant or on a major transmission line could strain the system.

    “California ISO officials said they are beginning to plan for the possibility that the plant will still be off line next summer…One of the main solutions cobbled together for this summer, bringing the Huntington Beach units back into service, will not be available next summer because that plant's air emission credits will go to a new plant opening in the City of Industry…That plant should be on line by summer 2013, but it's not as well situated as the Huntington Beach units to make up for the power lost from San Onofre…The ISO is also beginning to look at long-range scenarios in which California would use no nuclear power from either San Onofre or the state's one other nuclear plant, Diablo Canyon…”

    BIOGAS BUILDING UP FAST Global Biogas Market to Nearly Double in Size to $33 Billion by 2022

    June 21, 2012 (Pike Research)

    “Although a relatively minor player within the overall bioenergy sector, the market for biogas sits at the confluence of a number of forces, including increasing demand for distributed generation, tightening environmental regulations, and accelerating buildout of infrastructure for natural gas and for vehicles powered by natural gas…

    “A byproduct of anaerobic digestion (AD), a process in which microorganisms break down organic matter in an oxygen-starved environment, biogas is gaining traction as a versatile energy carrier with significant potential to meet growing demand within the power, heat, fuel, and chemical markets. According to a new report from Pike Research, this fast-growing market reached $17.3 billion in global revenue in 2011 and will nearly double by 2022, hitting $33.1 billion in that year…”

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    “…[German] design-build firms and project developers are seeking to…tap opportunities across Europe, the Americas, and Asia Pacific…among farmers, municipalities, and industrial processors for waste treatment technologies, on the one hand, and widening opportunities for renewable natural gas in transportation and cogeneration applications on the other…

    “Global installed production capacity is now more than 800 billion cubic feet per year, representing nearly 14.5 gigawatts (GW) of installed distributed and grid-scale renewable generation capacity. With at least 11 billion cubic feet per year of production capacity expected to come online worldwide by the end of 2012, renewable natural gas (RNG) is a growing segment within the diverse biogas landscape. While opportunities abound for high-Btu RNG in gas-to-grid injection and vehicle fuel applications, low fossil natural gas prices are expected to restrict market growth in the absence of strong policy incentives.”

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