Other Energy Issues

Briefly Noted … Worldwide Renewable Energy News

– Electric utilities in Canada will face increasing costs over the long term that are related to environmental concerns, according to an industry review by DBRS. In its annual assessment of changes and an outlook for the industry, the rating service says the growing electricity market in the U.S. will continue to offer opportunities for utilities in provinces with inter-tie connections with the U.S., but warns that a risk of saturating the U.S. market would put downward pressure on prices and limit the growth potential of Canadian utilities. – The Alliance for Energy & Economic Growth, a coalition of energy consumers and producers in South Dakota, has called on the U.S. Senate to pass a comprehensive energy bill similar to that already passed by the House of Representatives. It wants to stimulate alternative fuels and innovative energy technologies as part of a sound plan to improve energy security and improve the economy. The group says agriculture is among the primary industries in the state and a reliable supply of low-cost energy is one of the industry’s primary needs. – Seventeen companies are founding members of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Combined Heat & Power Partnership. The use of cogeneration was promoted in President Bush’s National Energy Policy Report. – The U.S. Air Force says fuel cell systems being tested by its Air Expeditionary Force Battlelab have performed as hoped, showing that they can be used as interchangeable power sources for aircraft support needs. H Power Corp says its hydrogen powered fuel cell systems performed successfully in a variety of tests and have the potential to provide the core of all AEF power production, from powering an office in a tent city to aircraft ground support equipment on the flight line. – The government of Newfoundland is assessing the results of a study by aluminium producer Alcoa to develop a 2,000 MW hydro project on the Churchill River at a cost of C$2.6 billion. The feasibility study looks at the viability of reviving the stalled Lower Churchill hydroelectric project and building aluminium production facilities in the remote Labrador region. – In the light of the bankruptcy of Enron Energy, opposition parties in the U.S. are calling on Vice President Dick Cheney to disclose details of any meetings between the White House and executives of that company. Democratic rep Henry Waxman says Enron, which contributed heavily to President Bush’s campaign, may have exerted “significant influence” on the energy plan formulated by Cheney’s task force last spring, which calls for oil and gas drilling on public land and investment in nuclear power. Since the spring, Cheney has refused to tell which power industry lobbyists met with his task force. – Nuclear Solutions Inc of Idaho has signed a US$50 million agreement with the Photodeactivation & Transmutation Institute of Europe, to develop and use NSOL’s photodisintegration process to clean nuclear waste and provide efficient generation of electricity. Development of the patented technology could eliminate nuclear waste and produce a generation of reactors that can burn their own waste. Photodeactivation involves the irradiation of specific radioactive isotopes to force the emission of a neutron, thereby producing an isotope of reduced atomic mass, which is not radioactive or radioactive with a short half-life.


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