Electrek Green Energy Brief: A daily technical, financial and political review/analysis of important green energy news. Featured Image Source

U.S. trade panel set to recommend solar trade tariffs – In documents filed last month, Suniva asked for a tariff of 25 cents per watt on solar cells and 32 cents per watt on panels. It is also seeking a minimum price on panels of 74 cents a watt, nearly double their current cost. SolarWorld has asked for an import quota. Still though, these are only recommendations. And in our current political climate, one doesn’t know exactly how the decision makers will act.  is going to be there today reporting via Twitter if you’re interested.

Whyalla steelworks to be powered by $700m solar, battery and pumped hydro project – It includes 200MW of photovoltaic solar panels, a 100MW/100MWh battery storage facility at Port Augusta, 120MW/600MWH pumped hydro storage facility in a disused mining pit in the Middleback Ranges and 100MW of demand response at the Arrium steelworks and other industrial sites. Project would be expanded by an additional 480MW of solar capacity “in due course” to support industry expansion at Whyalla and in SA more generally. Heavy industry being powered by solar and wind. Once you get to the point where you can mine silicon, build factories and produce aluminum via clean electricity – you’ve closed the loop. With wind and solar you hear a similar flawed argument that is also made against green cars – ‘if the grid is dirty, the cars are dirty.’ This isn’t really true since we can use about two years worth of CO2 from coal to produce clean electricity fr 30+ years from a solar panel system.

UN agency: CO2 concentrations grew at record rate in 2016 – While human CO2 emissions have flat lined globally for a few years, natural sources are up as we heat the world – plus – we’re still outputting CO2 at the highest levels we’ve ever outputted at. We’ve simply stopped at this point for now (though 2017/2018 might lead to global increases again). Additionally, concentrations of other greenhouse gases have kept their growth up. At 2016’s pace of adding 3 ppm – we’ll hit 500 in 33 years…that’s not good for us.

Energy efficiency labeling for homes has little effect on purchase price – What may be more important than whether your home has an energy rating of A or G is whether it is in a child-friendly area, or near shops, or has ocean views or other things that buyers are willing to pay a premium for. Looks like energy efficiency doesn’t matter that much in the Netherlands…the other factors above seemed to have more of an effect on buyers. I wonder what the $ difference per month was and if the numbers were much larger there’d be more of an effect. When you buy a house do you consider energy efficiency?

One of Greentech Media’s longtime moved on from their team – but left a list of eight rules that he thought would help the grid keep moving int0 the 21st century.

Featured image is of a good-looking solar system from the ‘Hit me with your SunShot’ program. A community solar farm harvesting electrons in Maine. Photo by William Byers.

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