U.K. Geological Study Shows Shale is Below Water Sources
Layers of shale in the U.K. are well below water aquifiers, thereby minimizing the risk of contamination when drilled, says a study by the British Geological Survey and Environment Agency. They found that 92 percent of the shale in the Bowland basin is 800 meters below the principal water sources. And in the Weald in southern England, the shale lies 650 meters below the water table. The U.K. government is offering tax breaks to shale drillers to spur extraction of the resource that is seen to have the potential of meeting decades of domestic gas demand even if only 10 percent is extracted.
Brazil’s Renova Adds 294 MW of Wind Power in Bahia
Renova Energia SA , a Brazilian renewable energy company, secured an approval to build a 294.4 MW project in the northeastern state of Bahia, two years behind schedule due to grid connection delays. ANEEL, the country’s electricity regulator, approved the 14 wind parks of Alto Sertao I to start working last July 4. Having 184 turbines, the wind complex is Latin America’s largest. Renova had also secured a $1.4 billion-real loan for its 386 MW-Alto Sertao II project also located in Bahia state. The project is expected to deliver electricity to the grid in 2015.
Solar Thin-Film Panels Soars to 11-Month High on Trade Tension
Thin-film solar panel prices surged to an 11-month high after U.S. regulators proposed new tariffs to close a loophole on Chinese-made solar modules. Spot prices rose 5.2 percent in the past month to 61.2 cents per kilowatt for the week ending in July 4, the highest since July 31 of last year. On June 3, the department proposed a 19 to 35 percent duty on modules made in both China and Taiwan to close the loophole used by Chinese producers by shipping panels by way of Taiwan.
Obama Sets Off Independence Day with $4 Billion Energy Loan Guarantee
President Obama marked this 4th of July with a new round of $4 billion in loan guarantees for projects aimed at greenhouse gas control as well as clean energy sources. Qualified for this round of funding are: Advanced grid integration and storage, Drop-in biofuels, Waste-to-energy, Enhancement of existing facilities, and Efficiency improvements. The loan guarantee, which was initiated in 2005, was conceptualized to kick-start cutting edge clean-energy technologies that were not able to attract private sector backing.