Latest U.S. Energy Information Agency data: solar and wind costs trend down

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Agri-Pulse:The cost of building some renewable energy generators is down, according to a data analysis released this week by the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA). Among newly constructed utility-scale electric generators in 2016, annual capacity-weighted average construction costs for solar photovoltaic (PV) systems and onshore wind turbines fell.New construction for wind and solar power were among the year’s most popular generation additions, with natural gas rounding out the top three. These three technologies accounted for approximately 93 percent of added capacity. Total electric generating capacity increased 50 percent over 2015.Solar PV construction has steadily declined since 2013 when costs were $3,705 per kilowatt (kW) for construction. In 2016, the construction cost was $2,436 per kW as 500 PV generating units added 8 gigawatts (GW) to the energy mix. The EIA could not predict how 2018 tariffs on imported panels might affect future solar PV costs.Wind capacity additions were the most popular in 2016. Utilities added 84 wind turbine projects with a total of 8.8 GW. Construction costs were down slightly from 2015, at $1,630 per kW. The data show capacity-weighted costs were lower for larger wind plants due to shared infrastructure costs.Unlike PV solar and wind generation, construction costs for natural gas generators increased slightly in 2016. In 2016, 100 natural gas-fired generators, totaling 9.8 GW, were added to the electric grid.More: Construction costs decline for wind, solarKallanish Energy:Nearly 500 PV generating units totaling 8,000 megawatts (MW) were added to the electric grid in 2016, making it the second-most common technology installed in 2016, after wind turbines.Utilities added 84 wind turbine projects, totaling 8,800 MW, to the electric grid in 2016. The construction costs for onshore wind generators in 2016 reached $1,630/kW, a slight decrease from 2015.Capacity-weighted costs tend to be lower for larger wind plants. In the past three years, most new wind capacity has been larger plants — 89% of 2016 wind turbine additions were to sites with more than 100 MW. As the capacity added at a site increases, the capacity-weighted construction cost decreases because the siting and infrastructure costs are shared by more turbines and capacity.Wind class — the wind speeds for which a wind turbine is optimized — can also affect wind generator costs; wind turbines designed for high- and medium-speed winds (classes 1 and 2) averaged about $100/kW more than turbines designed for low wind (class 3).In 2016, 100 natural gas-fired generators, totaling 9,800 MW, were added to the electric grid. Costs averaged $895/kW, an increase from $812/kW in 2015. Of the 9,00 MW added, 3,600 MW were combustion turbines.More: Average U.S. construction costs for solar, wind fell in 2016 Latest U.S. Energy Information Agency data: solar and wind costs trend downlast_img read more

Russia stares down WWII controversies 75 years on

first_imgRape in GermanyRapes committed by Soviet soldiers as they captured Berlin in April 1945 permeated German collective memory, but are largely overlooked in Russia.A Russian blogger in January was charged with “Nazi apologism” for satirical social media posts that referenced Soviet abuses committed in Germany.In 2016, a newspaper in the Russian enclave of Kaliningrad was handed an official warning over an article about atrocities committed by the Red Army during the takeover of the German city in 1945. Ahead of this year’s parade on Wednesday, postponed from May because of the coronavirus pandemic, here are five World War II episodes that continue to fuel tensions.  Topics : World War II erupted after Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union invaded and carved up Poland in September 1939 under a secret clause of the pact.The agreement, which remained classified in the Soviet Union until 1989, has been described by Putin as necessary because Western powers had abandoned the USSR to face Germany alone.He has also lauded the pact as a triumph of Stalin-era diplomacy.Putin was angered last year by a text published by the European Parliament saying the pact helped pave the way for World War II. Invasion or liberation?Soviet soldiers are celebrated in Russia for liberating Europe from Nazism, but for some countries in eastern Europe the Red Army is remembered as an occupying force.The Baltic countries of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania were forcibly integrated into the Soviet Union, and revile Nazi and Soviet forces alike.Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda said last month that the war did not end until 1993 “when the last Russian soldier left” his country. Russia says this narrative is an unacceptable rewriting of history and routinely protests at the removal of Soviet-era military monuments in eastern and central Europe. The Soviet victory over Nazi Germany in 1945 is a pillar of national pride in Russia, used by the Kremlin to stir patriotic sentiment and rebuff criticism of the USSR and its army.Yet Russia’s state-backed narratives about the war and its legacy regularly lead to disagreements with other European countries.Russia celebrates its victory in World War II every year on May 9 with a massive military parade on Red Square in front of the president and other world leaders. Mass deportations During the war, Stalin accused minority ethnic groups of collaborating with the Nazis and deported hundreds of thousands of Crimean Tatars, Kalmyks, Chechens, Balkars, Germans and others to Central Asia in harsh conditions.Deported populations were rehabilitated after Stalin’s death, but tensions linger with those that returned.Crimean Tatars, for instance, were deported from their homes and as a result opposed Russia’s annexation of the Crimea peninsula from Ukraine in 2014.Many Soviet soldiers and officers returning home after captivity in Germany were also likened to traitors and sent to forced labor camps. Pact with Hitler The 1939 Molotov-Ribbentrop pact between Soviet leader Joseph Stalin and Nazi leader Adolf Hitler remains a point of contention between Moscow and European countries to this day. Polish massacre One of many points of friction with Poland is the massacre at Katyn, named after a forest near the Russian city of Smolensk where Soviet secret police shot thousands of Polish officers in 1940 on Stalin’s orders.Until 1990, the Soviet Union claimed the executions were carried out by the Nazis.Moscow has since admitted responsibility, but the legacy of the massacre has been overshadowed in Russia by wider Stalinist repressions.In 2010, during a thaw in relations between Moscow and Warsaw, the plane carrying Poland’s president to a commemorative event in Smolensk crashed, killing all 96 people on board.Investigations into the accident have become a new source of tension between the two countries.last_img read more