Morning Brief: 184 GW of renewables were installed globally in 2019, Alabama Power to add gas units


Report shows 184 GW of renewable energy installed globally in 2019, a new record: The global deployment of wind and solar projects reached a new record level in 2019, as falling costs and a push to zero emissions energy sources presented new opportunities that could be expanded in a post-Covid-19 economic recovery. The latest Global Trends In Renewable Energy Investment report, published as a collaboration between BloombergNEF, the Frankfurt School and the United Nations Environment Program, estimated that 184 GW of new renewable energy capacity, excluding hydro, was added in 2019, representing a 12% annual increase and setting a new annual record. Source: Renew Economy

Alabama regulators voted today to give the go-ahead to Alabama Power Company’s request to add energy from natural gas sources to its capacity to generate electricity. The plan, proposed last year, would include a new 726-megawatt gas unit at its Plant Barry near Mobile. The commission also voted to delay consideration of Alabama Power’s additional request to add 400 megawatts in solar-plus-storage generation to its inventory. Combined, the requests are estimated to cost Alabama Power $1.1 billion, which ultimately would be paid by its customers. Daniel Tait of Energy Alabama accused the PSC of “a complete abdication” of responsibility. “They caved in to Alabama Power’s (request) despite the company’s own analysis that solar-plus-storage was the least-cost resource,” he said. Source: WBHM

Geronimo Energy, a National Grid company, announced the start of construction activities for two Michigan solar projects for which Consumers Energy previously executed power purchase agreements. The projects, Bingham Solar and Temperance Solar, are part of a solar portfolio called MiSolar Portfolio and are located in Clinton and Monroe counties, respectively. Both projects are expected to begin operations by the end of this year. Geronimo has contracted with Michigan-based EPC, J. Ranck Electric, to construct the projects. Combined, the projects will produce 40 MW of clean, solar energy  Source: Geronimo Energy

New Hampshire Sen. Maggie Hassan (D) is asking for more information on the Defense Department’s progress toward meeting its renewable energy consumption goals under the Energy Policy Act of 2005. In a letter Wednesday, Hassan wrote that she is “encouraged by the Department’s commitment to using renewable energy, [but] there is still more that can be done.” Under the law, federal agencies are required to get 7.5% of their annual electricity consumption from renewables by 2013. The Defense Department “fell short of this goal,” Hassan wrote, with the department’s renewable energy consumption reaching 5.9% of total usage in 2018. Source: Politico

Nelnet, an educational services, technology solutions, telecommunications, and asset management company, has launched a spin-off company, Nelnet Renewable Energy, offering community solar developers scalable subscriber acquisition, management, and support services. To help community solar developers fill their subscriptions, Nelnet Renewable Energy starts with a project-specific, multi-channel marketing plan and pairs this with subscriber education content, flexible enrollment options, and ongoing customer engagement. For the customer, Nelnet provides customer service, billing, payment processing, utility coordination and management and subscriber replenishment. Source: Nelnet Renewable Energy

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