Morning Brief: Germany’s solar panels produced record amounts of electricity, Pittsburgh goes renewable for a day


Germany’s solar panels produced record amounts of electricity: Gin-clear skies over central Europe helped photovoltaic plants produce 32,227 megawatts on Monday, beating the previous record on March 23. The government forecasts that green power will make up about 80% of the electricity mix by 2038, compared with just over 40% in 2019. Sunny conditions meant solar generated as much as about 40% of Germany’s power Monday, compared to the 22% produced by coal and nuclear, according to Agora Energiewende. “Every year there’s more installed solar, so the record gets broken nearly every spring,” BloombergNEF analyst Jenny Chase said. Source: Time

Pacific Gas & Electric is tapping into two Li-ion battery storage projects — totaling 43.25 MW/173 MWh​ to address reliability needs in the Oakland area, the utility said in an application filed with the California Public Utilities Commission. The projects are part of the Oakland Clean Energy Initiative, a “first-of-its-kind” utility-community choice aggregator collaboration aimed at promoting clean energy alternatives in the region, and replacing a 165 MW jet fuel power plant that’s been in operation for 40 years. The projects are part of the larger shift away from traditional generation and transmission to more distributed energy resources, PG&E spokesperson Paul Doherty told Utility Dive.​ Source: Utility Dive

In recognition of Earth Day, a number of Pittsburgh city and Allegheny County entities have announced that the will 100% powered by renewable energy… but just for that one day. The City of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority, Allegheny County, Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium, The Sports and Exhibition Authority, Urban Redevelopment Authority of Pittsburgh and Carlow University are all to be powered entirely by renewable energy on Earth Day. The accomplishment has been made possible through collaboration with Direct Energy. Direct will acquire locally-sourced renewable energy attributes generated directly from a new Pennsylvania solar farm, equivalent to one day’s consumption from the 120,227 MWhs annually used by consortium members. A strange announcement but good for them. Source: Direct Energy

Montana high school students are replacing their canceled Earth Day plans by donating funds to the installation of solar arrays at two local elementary schools. So far, members of the Bozeman High School Solar Schools Club have raised nearly $7,000 to put towards installations on Bozeman, as well as Morning Star and Emily Dickinson elementary schools. The school district also just won a grant from NorthWestern Energy that will pay half the cost of installing solar panels on those two elementary schools. Source: Bozeman Daily Chronicle

A startup from Germany, SunCrafter has developed a disinfection station that promises to sanitize hands using just ultraviolet light powered by solar cells. The project won a $22,000 ‘hackathon’ grant for the manufacturing of the sanitizer units. Popular mechanics takes a stab at the efficacy of this feel-good solution. Source: Popular Mechanics

And to end the brief, let’s take time to recognize the the runner who planned to run a route that would read ‘Boston Strong’ but forgot a letter.

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