December 2020

Bloomberg: In Poland, ‘Wind Farms Now Come With the Threat of Jail’

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Jessica Shankleman for Bloomberg News:One of Europe’s most promising markets for renewable energy is being threatened by legislation that would impose new fees and potential jail terms for operators of wind farms, an industry lobby group said.Poland’s governing Law and Justice Party is proposing laws that would require new turbines to be situated away from homes, schools and natural reserves at a distance of more than 10-times their height. That would be about 1.5 kilometers (0.9 miles), according to data compiled by Bloomberg New Energy Finance. The law also would subject existing wind farms to audits every two years.The law would raise annual wind farm costs by as much as 150 million zloty ($37.6 million) even if no more turbines were built, according to the draft legislation. While the government is attempting to clamp down on rising electricity bills and empower communities concerned about the installations, the wind industry says the rules would choke off development and eliminate a clean source of electricity.Poland’s plans “will tie projects up in red tape and make life difficult for developers by imposing arbitrary rules that serve no other purpose than to prevent wind turbine deployment,” said Oliver Joy, a spokesman for the European Wind Energy Association. “This draft law is a clear statement of intent and should not be allowed to stand.”The government says it’s worried a surge in new installations is creating a conflict between communities and investors. It’s also seeking to curb subsidies for renewables and support its ailing coal industry, which has been undercut by falling commodity prices. While the country was among more than 195 nations that backed the Paris deal on climate change in December, it has sought a special status for coal and forecasts the fossil fuel will form a key component of its energy security for decades.Piotr Naimski, the Polish government official in charge of supervising gas and power grids, said Thursday the country needs to adopt a strategy of letting renewables compete with coal-fired plants without subsidies. He wants to change the current merit system that gives wind power priority over coal generation, according to an interview with’s energy ministry declined to comment on the draft law.Poland, Europe’s top coal producer, notched up the continent’s second-highest number of wind-power installations last year. Developers rushed to install 1.26 gigawatts of new capacity ahead of expected changes to government subsidies, that will require developers to bid in auctions for support. The country now has 5.1 gigawatts of installed wind capacity, equivalent to about 9 percent of the installed base in neighboring Germany.“Poland has excellent wind resources and has the potential to be a European power house in wind energy,” The threat to imprison turbine operators for violating potential rules is “deeply concerning and misguided,” Joy said.Concerning for the wind lobby group are rules embedded in the legislation that would require wind farm owners to pay fees for operating plants and sign up for a new permit every two years. Those who fail to comply might face prison sentences, and the rules would be applied retroactively to existing plants, said Joy.Instead of imposing tough restrictions, the government may find ways to boost the benefits that communities enjoy from wind power, including opportunities to co-invest, said David Hostert, an analyst at Bloomberg New Energy Finance.“There are also a host of technical solutions available today to limit the impact of wind turbines, such as noise-reduction technology or automatically stopping the turbine at certain times of day to avoid flickering shadows on nearby properties,” he said.Wind Farms Now Come With the Threat of Jail Bloomberg: In Poland, ‘Wind Farms Now Come With the Threat of Jail’last_img read more

Iberdrola to replace its last two coal plants in Spain with subsidy-free solar, wind

first_imgIberdrola to replace its last two coal plants in Spain with subsidy-free solar, wind FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Recharge:Utility Iberdrola is submitting a plan to build 550MW of subsidy-free wind and solar to replace the group’s last Spanish coal-fired power plants.Speaking at the opening of the COP25 UN climate summit in Madrid, Iberdrola group chairman Ignacio Galan said the renewables projects would replace two coal generators that are scheduled to be decommissioned next year.The proposal, to be presented on Monday to Spain’s Ministry for the Ecological Transition, would see 420MW of new wind and PV deployed in Velilla in the province of Palencia, and four wind farms with a joint capacity of 130MW in Lada, in Asturias, both in the country’s north.The new renewables capacity – due online in 2022 – will be underpinned by power purchase agreements (PPAs), reflecting the strong appetite for such deals in the Spanish renewables market and the competitiveness of wind and solar, Iberdrola told Recharge.With a combined capacity of 874MW, Velilla and Lada are Iberdrola’s last remaining coal-fired power plants. An application for their phase-out was filed in 2017 and the Spanish government is expected to give a final ruling on the matter next year.“Over the course of 15 years, Iberdrola will have completed the process of phasing out a total of over 8.5GW of coal-fired and fuel oil power generation capacity in several countries,” said Galan.More: Iberdrola launches huge renewables plan for coal wind-down in Spainlast_img read more

Navajo Power CEO sees potential for 10GW renewable buildout on tribal lands as coal plants close

first_imgNavajo Power CEO sees potential for 10GW renewable buildout on tribal lands as coal plants close FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享PV Magazine:“We believe you can go to 10 gigawatts of renewable resources” across the Navajo Nation, as coal plant retirements in the area open up transmission capacity, said Navajo Power CEO Brett Isaac, in a pv magazine interview. The Navajo Nation extends across parts of Arizona, Utah and New Mexico.Navajo Power is preparing a bid to build 200 MW of solar power, after the Arizona utility Salt River Project issued a bid request specifying solar on Navajo Nation lands. The solar project selected by the utility will help make up for generation capacity lost last November when the coal-fired Navajo Generating Station closed; the utility will pay the Navajo Nation for the use of its transmission lines.The 10 GW renewables potential, Isaac said, will emerge as three other coal plants in the area retire, largely due to the “price competitiveness” of solar, wind and storage projects. The three plants are the San Juan Generating Station, which is scheduled to close in 2022, the Cholla Power Plant, “just off the Navajo Nation along I-40,” where one of the three units will retire this year, and the Four Corners power plant on Navajo Nation lands. The Four Corners plant is scheduled to close in 2031, but Isaac said “the economics will probably force” an earlier closure.Navajo Power’s proposed 200 MW project would be sited on lands currently used for grazing in the Coalmine Canyon Chapter—chapters are the community level of government within the Navajo Nation—and would need transmission access across the Cameron Chapter to interconnect to the grid, according to reporting by Rima Krisst for the Navajo Times. The company’s project has obtained “overwhelming” approval from both chapters to proceed to the next stage of development, Isaac said. The company is also pursuing the protocols to obtain Navajo Nation approval, he said.Looking to the future, the Navajo Nation “can play a very strong part in the Southwest” if it becomes “a friendly environment for the development of these resources, because we have the land base and the transmission,” said Isaac, a member of the Navajo Nation. “But all those elements need to be carefully thought about and prioritized by the government’s own regulatory side, in order to see this through.” Projects must be efficient in order to sell power to markets such as Los Angeles, Phoenix, and Las Vegas, he said, as those markets are “heavily competitive.”[William Driscoll]More: Navajo Power CEO sees 10 GW renewable potential across the Navajo Nationlast_img read more

Daily Dirt: Outdoor News for May 30, 2013

first_imgYour outdoor news bulletin for May 30, the day Mariner 9 launched on its mission to Mars in 1979, revealing the secrets of the Red Planet including dried riverbeds and huge mountains but sadly no hidden, underground, alien forged, mega oxygen producing machine. You’ve seen Total Recall right?Climbing and Rendezvous Report From the NewThe New River Rendezvous happened a couple of weeks ago and by all accounts was a huge success. After taking a hiatus in 2012, the ‘Vous came back in 2013 and was better than ever. Always a fun climbing festival and celebration of climbing in the New River Gorge, the ‘Vous also incorporates many, um, different types of events throughout the weekend. It’s all there in the wrap-up, so you may want to consider attending next year. One person who did attend and lived to tell the tale was pro climber and Mountain Hardwear athlete Matt Wilder. He gives and interesting take on climbing in the gorge and the New River Rendezvous on the Mountain Hardwear blog, along with some great photos.Check it out here.Pedaling Towards EquityA new report from the Sierra Club and the League of American Bicyclists is shedding some light on the current state of cycling in America and what the future holds. According to the report, titled “The New Majority: Pedaling Toward Equity,” biking boomed from 2001 to 2009, with the amount of trips by bike doubling from 1.7 billion to 4 billion. So who is driving this growth? Turns out, it’s women, youth, and people of color. Bicycling is fastest growing among African Americans, Hispanic, and Asian Americans. The report also delves into the issues of certain groups of people (poor, non-white) being marginalized by not having access to safe and accessible biking infrastructure. Very interesting stuff from this first-of-its-kind study.Read more about it here, on the Sierra Club Blog.Virus on A.T. Moving Toward PennsylvaniaThe norovirus outbreak among Appalachian Trail thru-hikers is spreading, and it’s no surprise. Moving north with the north-bounders, the outbreak has hiked from it’s starting point along the Tennessee/North Carolina border and has moved into Pennsylvania. There were a dozen cases reported in Shenandoah National Park a couple of weeks ago, but there is no confirmed number of cases in 2013. Norovirus is a stomach bug that can cause the usual gross stomach bug issues we need not mention, but can be transmitted three to 14 days after a victim has recovered. Also, the virus can only be killed with a bleach-and-water solution. They suggest avoiding certain campsites, washing hands with soap and water frequently, being generally clean, and treating all water. Because those things are so easy on a thru-hike.last_img read more

The Compromise

first_imgI think it’s fascinating to wonder what the insides of the Blue Ridge Mountains look like. Layers of bedrock stripped down over time can reveal stories no different than the pages of a book. Having seen the impressive granite spires of the Sierra Nevada Mountains and the jagged peaks of the Northern Cascades, it is safe to say I found inspiration on a different scale. With that said though, the Blue Ridge Mountains still capture my attention just the same._MG_2586Ancient geology amongst the Appalachian Mountain range captivates those that visit them and for good reason. In an effort to continually explore these mountains we call home, Jess and I visited Old Rag Mountain in the Shenandoah National Park near Sperryville, Va. Course granite features made of white feldspar and the unique blue quartz, shaped one billion years ago, standing at 3,284 feet make this hike one of the most unique places to visit in the Blue Ridge. Because of its unique characteristics and compelling hike to the summit, Old Rag has become one of the most popular hikes in the region._MG_1912We set off on a Wednesday, early in the morning with the intent to beat the crowds. To our surprise though, we pulled into a parking lot at the base of the mountain filled with people. Slightly jaded by what we saw, but still excited, we set out on the 9.5-mile circuit hike to the summit and back._MG_1908You start by climbing for nearly three miles, meandering through beautiful stands of old forest on a well-graded trail. We passed people occasionally, but it wasn’t until the bottleneck at mile three where the serenity of the walk really took a hit. People began to move slowly as the infamous rock scramble of Old Rag took its toll. Now, almost in single file, I started feeling quite uncomfortable. There were two miles left to climb and people were everywhere. Loud hip-hop music blasted from a speaker close behind me. How could this be? The obnoxious music and voices filled the crevasses in the rock. It’s out of respect for the place you are and the people around you to remain quiet, peaceful even, when present in such a beautiful place._MG_1917_MG_1932As Jess and I climbed and crawled through the ancient rock we began to separate ourselves from the circus down below. I was thankful to hear nothing but the wind and the occasional caw of a crow, which I’m still convinced was yelling at the people down below. As we reached the summit, we quickly located a place of solitude to hunker down for a while. Old Rag Mountain’s summit is a powerful place to say the least. The large igneous rock displays, towering over the valley floor are an amazing exhibit of power and time. I was grateful for the quiet time we received at the top.editIMG_0581 _MG_2602The rest of the hike descends from the summit. Feeling the sunburn on our winter-white skin, we made our way back to our van. With mixed feelings about the day I gazed up on the rocky summit where we just were. Inspired by the magnitude of natural beauty, but wearied by the people, I decided instead to be grateful for the day spent outside in hopes that future visitors to Old Rag, and any outdoor destination, will consider a compromise. The compromise is this —let us all seek unity with the natural world while still respecting the people, the experience, and most importantly, the place.Adam Ritterlast_img read more

Anthem Go Outside Festival

first_imgThe Anthem Go Outside Festival will be celebrating its eighth year this October 13-15 and there is an overwhelming amount of cool stuff to try. There are more than 150 free activities, demos, clinics, shows, and events for you to participate in on site, so deciding what to cram into your action-packed weekend can be tough.Here is a list of some of our favorite “must try” activities. Check out our full mobile-friendly schedule of events to build your own perfect weekend of adventure at cat ride: It’s a scavenger hunt on a bike. Test your riding and navigation skills with fun antics and shenanigans featured at stops along the way.Ultimate Air Dogs: Watch dogs compete in categories like “longest jump” or enter your pup to jump. In 2015, a world record was set at GO Fest, by a black lab named Storey.Cast a line: Learn to fly fish or perfect your tying or casting technique with the pros at the Orvis Fishing Village.Get in the pool: Test drive a kayak or learn to stand up paddleboard (the water’s not that cold).Chill in an ENO: Take a break in an ENO hammock at the amazing Lotus Lounge (it’s the perfect reward after a race or ride). The lounge will also feature a Silent Disco and DJ at different times throughout the weekend.Huffy Toss: See how far you can throw a kid-sized bike (and earn bonus points for style). Competitors battle for bragging rights, prizes, and the craziest trophies you’ve ever seen.Perfect your downward dog: From first-timers to seasoned practitioners, the outdoor yoga class is the perfect spot to breathe. New for 2017 is a goat yoga session. (It’s all the rage!)Join the Walkabout Outfitter Wild Gear Chase: Go on an urban scavenger hunt that ends in a giant gear tent. Runners are ranked by the place they finished and number of check points completed, and get to enter the giant gear tent every 30 seconds to frantically select an item from $15,000 worth of outdoor gear. Everyone is a winner in this popular event.Participate in a race: Pick a competitive event and give it your all! From the family- and dog-friendly Superhero 5K to the new Strava based King and Queen of the Mountain Challenge, there is something for every fitness level.Keen Lumberjack Show: Over the top antics from logrolling to climbing are a fan favorite.No matter who you are, the Anthem Go Outside Festival has something for you. Even if you don’t want to try anything new this year (we won’t judge), you can always just grab a delicious craft beer, sample food from 15 regional food trucks, and sit back and enjoy the show.Festival entry, tent camping, and shows are all 100 percent free to the public thanks to our amazing sponsors.last_img read more

Trail Mix: Brittany Howard

first_imgTo make Jaime, Howard traveled to Los Angeles to work with engineer Shawn Everett (Weezer, War on Drugs) and a core band that included keyboard ace Robert Glasper and her Shakes bandmate Zac Cockrell (bass). She came back to the South, though, to film the video for “Stay High,” a twinkling R&B gem that soundtracks footage of actor Terry Crews moving through a mundane day in Howard’s hometown of Athens, Ala. The song, written for Howard’s father, is a celebration of finding comfort in the familiar, and a revealing look at how an innovative artist needed a career detour to find her way back home.  October 11-13 | Charlottesville, Va.  But just as anticipation was starting to boil over for a third Shakes album, Howard dropped a surprise—her first solo effort, Jaime, which came out late last month. The album gets its name from Howard’s late sister, whom she lost to cancer as a teenager, and accordingly the record is full of personal introspection. Brittany Howard Pauses Popular Band to Release New Solo Record Lead single “History Repeats” is a retro room-shaker with industrial beats and angular guitar lines, but within the infectious groove Howard sings about her inevitable shortcomings as a flesh-and-blood human being. The slow-burning “He Loves Me” hits hard, too, with a lean, psychedelic arrangement that leaves room for Howard to ponder her relationship with God after an extended period in the spiritual wilderness.  The Festy Blue Ridge Jam Jam-grass pranksters Leftover Salmon developed a high-octane string sound in their native Colorado, but for the fourth year in a row, the group will head to the mountains of western North Carolina to host the Blue Ridge Jam. Held on the outdoor stage at Pisgah Brewing Company, the one-day fest will also feature sets from Perpetual Groove, Acoustic Syndicate, and the Rev. Jeff Mosier.  October 11-13 | Richmond, Va. Catch an array of sounds under the crisp autumn air at these regional events. “The title is in memoriam, and she definitely did shape me as a human being,” Howard explained in a statement on her new album. “But, the record is not about her. It’s about me. I’m pretty candid about myself and who I am and what I believe. Which is why I needed to do it on my own.” Richmond Folk Festival Brittany Howard will perform at the AfroPunk Festival in Atlanta on October 13. October 10-13 | Livingston, Ky. The Festy is rebooting for its 10th running, moving from the mountains of central Virginia into the city limits of Charlottesville. Bands performing on the stage of the event’s new downtown home at the IX Art Park include Dawes, Della Mae, Samantha Fish, and Robert Randolph & the Family Band.  October 6 |  Black Mountain, N.C.  Eclectic roots artists from around the world converge on the RVA waterfront for this annual fest that turns 15 this year. A variety of genres and cultures will be represented at the always-free event; this year set to feature sets from Cajun stalwarts BeauSoleil, honky-tonk ace Dale Watson, Tuareg guitarist Bombino, Tuvan throat-singing group Huun-Huur-Tu, and a taste of home with Appalachian pickers Lonesome River Band.  Highlands Food and Wine Festival Moonshiner’s Ball For Brittany Howard, the safest bet would’ve been to make another Alabama Shakes record. As the frontwoman and guitarist of the soul-driven Southern garage-roots outfit, Howard found fast success earlier in the decade. The group’s 2012 debut Boys & Girls was a breakout hit that earned the band an immediate, fervent fanbase, and the 2016 follow-up Sound & Color was an experimental step forward that, including nods for the hard-hitting single “Don’t Wanna Fight,” notched three Grammy Awards.  As the organizers of the Moonshiner’s Ball put it, this is “not a corporate mega-festival.” Instead expect a homegrown hoedown in the hills of Kentucky with a carefully curated line-up of roots artists, including Tauk, Rayland Baxter, Sinkane, Brass Against, Lilla Mae, and Ghost of Paul Revere. A mix of music, art, poetry, and yoga, the event takes place at Rockcastle Riverside, a scenic hideaway on the banks of the Rockcastle River. Shake It Up November 7-10 | Highlands, N.C.  Five Fall Fests Roots music heroes and regional culinary innovators both take center stage at this increasingly popular festival in western North Carolina. While you’re enjoying dishes from some of the South’s best chefs, sounds will come from the Infamous Stringdusters, Anderson East, the Wood Brothers, and Nicole Atkins. highlandsfoodandwine.comlast_img read more

Happy Earth Day!

first_img“The great thing about the project is it will help retain and attract a great work force,” said Lee Brown, Erwin Utilities President and CEO. “It will be a major tourist attraction for people who will visit here, stay overnight and spend money… there will be a lot of people who will visit this world-class park.”  Photo of Earth from Getty Images Earlier this week, the Erwin, TN Board of Mayor and Aldermen approved a lease on 115 mountainous acres for development of a “multi-modal biking and hiking park developed with a planning grant from the International Mountain Bike Association,” the Johnson City Press reports. Construction of the park is expected to cost approximately $1.9 million. Most Tennessee State Parks to reopen Friday After closing April 4 due to coronavirus, Tennessee Governor Bill Lee announced this week that most state parks will reopen on Friday, April 24. Parks will be open for day use only. The parks that will remain closed will be announced online before Friday. Pavilions, playgrounds, cabins, and campgrounds will remain closed.  Watch Earth Day Live, digital programming that starts at 9am EST and cover topics like “The Fight to Save Our Species” presented by the San Diego Zoo and a panel discussion on fighting climate change with diet change.  “We are eager to serve once again but we urge Tennesseans to continue to practice physical distancing when visiting parks,” deputy commissioner of the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation, Jim Bryson, told WJHL News Channel 11. “We have implemented policies designed to prevent the spread of COVID-19, and we will monitor all aspects of the issue to ensure safety among visitors and our staff.” Take 24 Hours of Action as the Earth Day Network issues a new call to action every hour. Today marks the 50th anniversary of Earth Day—and it truly is an Earth Day unlike any other. While large Earth Day events around the world have been canceled, Earth Day Network encourages people to take action in three ways. Join the Global Digital Surge by filling the digital landscape with global conversations and calls to action. Town of Erwin, TN plans world class mountain bike parklast_img read more

Special Forces from Armies of 25 Countries Will Participate in Exercise in El Salvador

first_imgBy Dialogo April 18, 2011 Members of the special forces of the armies of twenty-five countries in Latin America and the Caribbean will participate in a skills exercise in El Salvador in June, which will be coordinated by the United States, the Salvadoran defense ministry announced. The Fuerzas Comando exercise, which will be held from 15 to 23 June, “is designed to increase regional and multinational cooperation and mutual trust and improve the training, readiness, and interoperability of the region’s special forces,” the ministry indicated in a statement. Teams from the special forces of the armies of Argentina, Colombia, Peru, Ecuador, Mexico, Brazil, Chile, Paraguay, Panama, Guatemala, Honduras, and the Dominican Republic and a commando squad from the police of Costa Rica (which does not have an army), among others, will participate in the exercise, which will be coordinated by the U.S. Southern Command, the ministry noted. The commando teams will be evaluated by a panel of military personnel on the basis of their abilities, tactics, techniques, and procedures during the exercise.last_img read more