Too eager to drill for Arctic oil

Esperanza and Crew Protest Statoil Commissioned. 08/27/2014 © Nick Cobbing / Greenpeace

Greenpeace’s ship, the Esperanza, is still on station in the Arctic to expose renewed Norwegian efforts to drill for oil in this pristine environment.

Last week we successfully headed off attempts by an oil company to complete controversial seismic testing, commissioned by the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate in the absence of any political discussion, by revealing it in prime time TV news.

Norwegian oil interests are persistent but we’re determined to stop them. This week the Esperanza approached the Statoil oil rig Transocean Spitsbergen located over the Isfjell well, just south of Bear Island in the Barents Sea. Here’s a video of Professor Richard Steiner speaking to the rig that explains why drilling in the Barents Sea is such a risky business.

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They are really eager to drill. Too eager. When the Esperanza arrived on site, drilling was about to begin despite an ongoing official complaints procedure that should rule out any drilling until 18 September.

It’s not the only time that oil companies have started drilling before the official complaints procedure is concluded. In fact, it’s how they go about their business. The major Norwegian newspaper VG reported this week that in 156 cases out of 162 the Environment Directorate gave permission to drill before complaints procedures had been concluded.

The sneaky and scandalous tactic the oil companies are using to put pressure on the Environment Directorate is to apply late for permission to drill while they get their rigs early into the drilling position. The head of the directorate has admitted that the department has been put under undue pressure.

This dirty game needs to end. That is the message that the Esperanza is sending to Norwegian politicians and particularly to the Minister of Environment, Tine Sundtoft.

Erlend Tellnes is an Arctic campaigner with Greenpeace Nordic.

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German Solar Manufacturing Survivor Say Shipments Reach Record

The one major German solar panel manufacturer that survived a plunge in prices triggered by competition from China said it shipped near-record modules this month and seeks to keep selling at that level.

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The Fantasy of Distributed Generation, Efficiency, and Storage Raising Electric Rates

In 2012, the Virginia Governor proposed a tax for the sales of energy efficient cars because they use less gasoline, which means less money goes into the highway trust fund to repair roads. Hybrid and electric car owners, like myself, went nuts — why should those saving gasoline and significantly reducing pollution be penalized? By the end of 2013, a bipartisan coalition abolished the law.

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SMA Sunny Bear Flash Dances the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge

In accepting the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge from SolarEdge, SMA Sunny Bear took the donation drive to the next level by recreating the iconic water scene from the 1980’s move classic Flash Dance.  SMA employees will be donating to this deserving cause and encourage others to join in their support by visiting www.alsa.org and contributing as well. Who

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Divesting from Fossil Fuels: Last One Out Loses

A new report written by Nathaniel Bullard at Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) highlights the difficulties large institutional investors would have divesting from fossil fuels. What it does not specifically discuss is that these difficulties could lead to large financial losses for investors who see the difficulty of divesting as a reason to delay.

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Floating nuclear power stations – history’s warnings

Nuclear power is a Mickey Mouse climate solutionAfter an unsuccessful try at selling floating nuclear power stations all over the world, including to Indonesia and Cape Verde, Rosatom, the main nuclear operator in Russia, is now trying to tie up a deal with China.

Russia is currently finishing the construction of the Akademik Lomonosov, whose two adapted KLT-40 reactors run on 14,1% enriched uranium (just low enough to “make it unattractive for production of mass destruction weapons”). The reactors are to deliver 70 MW of electricity to the Siberian town of Vilyuchinsk. The reactor can be categorised as second generation. Not really the latest technology.

There has been one “floater” before in history: the US MH-1A mounted on an old Liberty barge called “Sturgis”, which provided the Panama canal zone with 10 MW electricity from 1968 to 1976. This was a one-loop pressurized water reactor that, after it was taken out of operation, received so much damage during a storm on its voyage back to the US that it needed structural repairs before it could go to its temporary mooring place in the James River outside Fort Eustis, Virginia.

Storms are, of course, a bit of a different risk for ships than for land-based nuclear power stations – who had thought of that? The fuel of the “Sturgis”was unloaded and now awaits some kind of final disposal in Oak Ridge… if there ever is some kind of final disposal, of course.

The ship itself will have to be dismantled in the coming four years in Galveston, Texas. That will be almost 40 years after it was taken out of operation!

One keeps wondering: why do engineers constantly come up with these kinds of ideas when there are suitable and clean alternatives? The floater looks like just another form of nuclear addiction.

Jan Haverkamp is nuclear expert consultant at Greenpeace Central and Eastern Europe

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Stadium Power Releases New LDP LED Power Supply Series with Optional Dimming

The new range includes the LDP series, offering 24, 36 and 48V constant current outputs over the range 25, 40 and 60 watts, with an optional dimming function via a signal from a dimming controller with PWM/1-10Vdc control signal and a 3 year warranty. Typical applications include industrial LED lighting and moving sign applications

Designated LDP25, LDP40 and LDP60 standard features include; wide universal AC input range from 90-305 VAC, active power factor correction (PFC) > 0.9, low inrush current <5 A, low profile, narrow footprint for ease of installation, low flicker for stable lighting output, continuous short circuit and over voltage protection, fully isolated plastic case and optional IP67 water proofing for outdoor or harsh environmental conditions. The LDP60 model may be specified as dual 30 W outputs or a single 60 W output.

Stadium Power now offers customers the ability to buy its LED Drivers and a wide range of other standard products direct from the website Buy Online. The “buy online” range also includes AC-DC power supplies, DIN Rail PSUs, EN54 power supplies, battery chargers and EMC Filters. Online orders will be available for fast delivery from stocks held in the UK. Discounts of up to 50% are possible on high volume orders placed for online stock and delivery is free on orders over £20.

For more information on the Stadium Power LED Driver range visit Stadium Power or email sales@stadiumpower.co.uk

About Stadium Power:
Stadium Power provides custom and standard power supplies, dc-dc converters, LED drivers, battery chargers and EMC filters. We specialise in designing power supply solutions for industries such as LED lighting, fire, security, vending, instrumentation, medical and transport.

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