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GTM: Trump’s tariffs will reduce US PV installations by 11 percent over the next 5 years
23.01.2018: According to new analysis by GTM Research, the tariffs on imported solar cells and modules set forth by the Trump administration will result in an eleven percent decrease in U.S. solar PV installations over the next five years. This represents a reduction of 7.6 GW of installed solar PV capacity between 2018 and 2022. The biggest impact will be reached in 2019. Projects under construction or with modules already in inventory will damper the effect on 2018 installations.
GTM Research notes that the tariffs result in an average $0.10/W increase of prices to modules in the first year, stepping down to a $0.04/W premium by the fourth year. According to the analysis, the utility-scale solar segment will be more heavily affected than the residential and commercial solar segments, taking 65 percent of the expected 7.6 GW of reductions over the next five years.
At the beginning of 2018 (before the President’s decision), the consultancy expected that the total installed US PV capacity will more than double over the next five years and by 2022, nearly 15 GW of PV capacity will be installed annually.
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"We're warming up pretty much at the rate we anticipated a decade ago. Basically all of the warming of the past 60 years is attributable to human activities."
—Gavin Schmidt, director of NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies, announcing that 2017 was the third-hottest year on record.
In 2011, Hideo Tsurumaki watched a giant tsunami sweep away cars filled with people trying to escape. If the cars had been able to float, he thought, fewer people would have perished. Two years later, he started to build a small, watertight electric vehicle that can float in floods, or even cruise at low speeds. By 2020, Tsurumaki hopes to take the company public.
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A water crisis often precipitates some level of civic unrest—see Nigeria, Syria, Somalia, and Iran. Climate change is expected to make water stress, and therefore global unrest, even worse.
Energy Secretary Rick Perry hugged coal executive Robert Murray during a meeting. A photographer who captured the moment was placed on administrative leave after making the pictures public.
Climate change predictions may be a lot less uncertain according to a new study in Nature. Researchers claim they've narrowed potential warming from a range of 3 degrees to a range of 1.2 degrees Celsius, which could have implications for how climate goals are set.
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17.01.2018: Origis Energy USA, Inc, a Miami based solar development and construction firm, and Reedy Creek Improvement District announced a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) for a 50 MW solar facility to be constructed in Orange County, Florida. Once complete, the solar facility developed, built and owned by Origis Energy, will be located on approximately 270 acres and will generate approximately 120,000 MWh each year.
The Origis Energy designs call for the use of single axis tracking technology, approximately 518,000 solar panel modules and will interconnect to the Reedy Creek Improvement District power distribution system. The project is anticipated to start by late spring 2018 and be completed by year end 2018.
16.01.2018: The global clean energy investment totaled $333.5 billion in 2017, up 3 percent from 2016 and the second highest annual figure ever, taking cumulative investment since 2010 to $2.5 trillion, according to the latest findings of Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF). The US was the second biggest investor in clean energy after China at $56.9 billion, up one percent from 2016 »despite the less friendly tone towards renewables adopted by the Trump administration,« says the consultancy. Markets such as Australia, Brazil, Mexico and the UAE also saw increased investment in clean energy, whereas investment declined in Japan, Germany and the UK.
Typical utility-scale PV systems were about 25 percent cheaper per megawatt in 2017 than they were two years earlier. Solar investment globally amounted to $160.8 billion in 2017, up 18 percent on the previous year despite these cost reductions. China invested just over half of the world total in solar at $86.5 billion. This was 58 percent higher than in 2016, with an estimated 53 GW of PV capacity installed – up from 30 GW in 2016.
»China installed about 20 GW more solar capacity in 2017 than we forecast,« said Justin Wu, head of Asia-Pacific for BNEF. The cost of solar continues to fall in China, and more projects are being deployed on rooftops, in industrial parks or at other distributed locales. These systems are not limited by the government quota. Large energy consumers in China are now installing solar panels to meet their own demand, with a minimal premium subsidy, said Justin Wu.
Large wind and solar project financings pushed Australia up 150 percent to a record $9 billion, and Mexico up 516 percent to $6.2 billion. On the downside, Japan saw investment decline by 16 percent in 2017, to $23.4 billion, while Germany slipped 26 percent to $14.6 billion and the UK 56 percent to $10.3 billion in the face of changes in policy support. Europe as a whole invested $57.4 billion in renewables, down 26 percent year-on-year.
According to BNEF, the two biggest solar projects »of all to get the go-ahead« last year were both in the United Arab Emirates: the 1.2 GW Marubeni Jinko Solar and Adwea Sweihan plant, at $899 million, and the 800 MW Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum III installation, at an estimated $968 million.
Bloomberg: U.S. energy companies keep raising money: U.S. oil and gas exploration and production companies, pipeline operators and liquefied natural gas firms have a knack for raising new money in the capital markets. For most of the past decade, that money has split fairly evenly between equity and high-yield bonds, with a few exceptions. But in 2016, energy companies raised money in equity almost entirely and then, in 2017, turned to debt. Last year, in a record 12 months for new capital, they raised 80 percent of their money — more than $50 billion — through debt.
In addition to the $18 billion in wall funding, the CBP also requested $8 billion for additional personnel and training, $5 billion for new border technology and at least $1 billion to build more access roads. The final price tag for the CBP spending plan would exceed $33 billion over the next decade, according to a copy of the document obtained by The Washington Post.
The $33 billion would not include what are likely to be additional funding requests for the other Department of Homeland Security agencies central to Trump’s plans for an immigration overhaul, including Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), which is looking to add 10,000 more officers and dramatically expand the number of beds it has available for immigration detention.
Seminole Electric seeks PSC approval to build new gas plant, shut down coal plant," by POLITICO Florida's Bruce Ritchie: Seminole Electric Cooperative Inc. is seeking approval from the Public Service Commission to build a new natural gas plant and shut down an existing coal-fired plant near Palatka. Seminole Electric is a Tampa-based wholesale electricity provider to nine rural cooperatives providing service to 1.6 million people in 42 counties. In a Dec. 21 determination-of-need petition filed with the PSC, Seminole Electric says it is losing power purchase agreements by 2021 that will create the need for 901 megawatts of power. The new gas-fired generating plant, proposed at the Seminole Generating Station near Palatka, will provide 1,050 megawatts of power and is expected to be completed on Dec. 1, 2022, according to the petition. The plant will cost $727 million, a Seminole Cooperative spokesman said Tuesday.
January 2, 2018
Ontario Becomes First Province to Cover Prescriptions for Children and YouthPrescription medications are now free for everyone under the age of 25 in Ontario. As of January 1, the province has made the biggest expansion to medicare in Ontario in a generation, providing drug coverage to over four million children and youth across the province. The launch of OHIP+: Children and Youth Pharmacare is a national milestone as Ontario becomes the first province to provide prescription drug coverage to children and youth.
Premier Kathleen Wynne was in downtown Toronto to celebrate this national milestone with some of the young people and parents who now have access to over 4,400 medicines, completely free of charge. Some of the now publicly funded prescriptions include depression and anxiety medications, insulin and diabetic test strips, antibiotics, asthma inhalers and birth control pills.
This expansion of medicare marks a turning point for Ontario families, who now have access to life-saving drugs without having to worry about affordability. Coverage will be automatic for children and youth with an OHIP card and a valid prescription. There will be no upfront costs, no co-pays and no strings attached.
The launch of OHIP+ is just one of the historic ways Ontario has changed with the new year. The government's plan to build a fairer, better province also includes a raise to the minimum wage to $14 an hour, effective January 1. The minimum wage will further increase to $15 per hour as of January 1, 2019.
Ontario's plan is creating fairness and opportunity during this period of rapid economic change. The plan includes a higher minimum wage and better working conditions, free tuition for hundreds of thousands of students, easier access to affordable child care, and free prescription drugs for everyone under 25 through the biggest expansion of medicare in a generation.
- Ontario is the first province to provide prescription medication coverage at no cost for all children and youth under 25 who are OHIP-insured.
- An estimated 1.2 million people in Ontario without drug coverage will benefit from OHIP+. This is according to a recent report by the Conference Board of Canada that estimates a drop from 13.2 per cent to four per cent in the number of people not currently eligible for drug coverage under a public or private insurance plan in Ontario.
- OHIP+ covers prescription medications listed on the Ontario Drug Benefit Formulary and additional medications eligible for funding through the Exceptional Access Program and prescribed by a doctor or nurse practitioner.
- Ontario's public drug programs already help to pay for needed prescription medications for seniors, people with high drug costs and other vulnerable populations. It marks one of the many ways the Ontario government is leading a national discussion on the future shape of pharmacare in Canada.
- Increasing the minimum wage is part of the Fair Workplaces, Better Jobs Act, 2017, which responds to the final report of the Changing Workplaces Review. The report estimated that more than 30 per cent of Ontario workers were in precarious work in 2014. Today part-time work represents nearly 20 per cent of total employment.
- Since the global recession, more than 800,000 net new jobs have been created in Ontario. By 2020, Ontario is expected to create over 200,000 more net new jobs. The unemployment rate in Ontario is currently at a 17-year low.
"On January 1, people across Ontario woke up to a new year and a new province — one that is fairer and better for children and their families. When your child is sick, you press pause on life. I want every parent to know that, whatever health challenges may arise, finding the money for much-needed prescription drugs is one less thing for you to worry about — and an important way that we are fighting for fairness so that we all share in Ontario's economic success."
— Kathleen Wynne, Premier of Ontario
"Cost should never be a barrier that prevents our young people from receiving the health care they need. We are protecting the health and lives of all children and youth in Ontario, 24 years of age and younger, by providing easy access to prescription medication at no cost that will also lift the financial burden off parents who are without coverage. We will not give up on our vision of a universal pharmacare system, so that one day all Ontarians will have access to free drug coverage to keep them healthy and strong."
— Dr. Eric Hoskins, Minister of Health and Long-Term Care
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