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Energy

Executives from the energy industry have formed NuQuest Energy, a new company that will build utility-scale renewable energy ventures in the United States

NuQuest Energy LLC, a utility-scale solar energy manufacturing corporation undertaking ventures in the United States, was formed today by four prominent energy industry executives and early-stage investors. To be an industry-leading renewables production firm, the company plans to use its vast expertise in manufacturing, procurement, design, financing, land lease, environmental, project management, and operations.

“We’re adamant that our combined strengths will boost NuQuest Energy’s development and drive meaningful commercial and renewable environmental energy outcomes,” Kirk Barrell, NuQuest Co-Founder, stated. We are excited to develop a broad portfolio of clean energy and storage facilities that are both environmentally sound and profitable for all parties.

Denis Taylor, who serves as the Co-Founder & Partner at Audubon Companies, LLC; Bob Rosamond, who serves as the Co-Founder & Partner at Audubon Companies, LLC; as well as Alex Guitart, who is a Founder & President at New Orleans Land & Title Company, LLC are among the industry executives who will join Mr Barrell. The four co-founders do have a combined history of over 120 years in the electricity infrastructure market. This partnership seeks to provide transformative technologies that advance green infrastructure growth by leveraging each partner’s business expertise.

Bob Rosamond, CEO of NuQuest Energy, said, “NuQuest Energy shares Audubon Companies’ contribution to creating a more competitive renewable energy future.” “The recently founded business complements our existing range of decarbonization strategies and provides another mitigation tool for citizens now and potential generations to reduce their carbon footprint.” Alex Guitart, NuQuest Co-Founder, stated, “Our co-founding team has a strong tradition of achieving great results for our landowners as well as corporate customers.” “By focusing on technologies, we would be able to improve our site selection phase and ensure project success.”

TerraVoltTM, the firm’s patented site-selection method, combines power grid analyses, GIS, as well as predictive analytics. “Our proprietary technical system draws on decades of mapping as well as analytics expertise to identify high-quality renewable energy production sites,” Barrell said. NuQuest Energy, LLC is a clean energy construction firm with a goal of assembling and building a comprehensive portfolio of utility, manufacturing, and business ventures throughout the United States, with a current emphasis on Louisiana, Texas, as well as Mississippi. To create a powerful, scalable renewables portfolio, the organization draws on its established partnerships and project delivery expertise.

NuQuest Energy, LLC “develops to own,” which means that all of our ventures are given our full attention from start to finish, ensuring that our partners are satisfied. The corporation employs a patented technical framework that allows it to choose advanced renewables sites, increasing the likelihood of project completion and providing a major competitive edge.

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Energy

ComfortDelGro joins hands with Engie to bid for a pilot tender to install EV charging points in Singapore

Singapore public-traded transport company, ComfortDelGro has partnered with French energy firm, Engie to jointly bid for a pilot tender by the Urban Redevelopment Authority and Land Transport Authority. The tender seeks to install about 600 electric vehicles (EV) charging points across public car parks in Singapore. In a press release by the two companies on March 31, 2021, this collaboration will “explore and deploy clean energy solutions together.”

The project has attracted other bidders such as Shell and seeks to expand Singapore’s charging network. According to the press statement, the winning bidder will be responsible for installing and operating more than six hundred EV charging stations across two hundred public parks in the Asian country. The parks include those in community centers, public places, housing estates, and industrial places.

“The launch of the pilot tender marks a significant milestone in the expansion of Singapore’s public car park charging network. Data and insights obtained from this pilot tender will help to shape the design and phasing of future tenders, which will be issued in batches over the coming year,” said both companies in a statement. Once the bid’s winners are commissioned, the charging network is expected to be up and running by the third quarter of 2022.

The media report also noted that this partnership would install renewable energy charging farms on ComfortDelGro’s facilities to deliver “fast charging solutions to its cabbies and public use.” Engie is a multinational electric utility company headquartered in La Defense, France. It has offices in several regions, including Europe, Australia, and Southeast Asia. “[We are] taking transformation strides in advancing Singapore’s green mobility agenda to establish a strong and reliable green EV charging network to bolster EV adoption through the partnership,” said Thomas Baudlot, Engie Southeast Asia, chief executive officer.

ComfortDelGro recently unveiled a clean energy plan aimed at advancing renewable power technology and research. In the inaugural S$50 million, the firm will fund Singapore’s shift to electrified transport and other initiatives, including scaling energy efficiency and adopting cleaner power sources in the next half-decade. “Sustainability has become a key pillar of our foundation and one that we intend to build on going forward,” noted ComfortDelGro CEO Yang Ban Seng.

“Our partnership with Engie is another step in that direction as we hope to offer our expertise in the areas of EV charging and drive the adoption of clean energy solutions in the local transport industry,” added Seng. The Singapore administration is expanding the EV charging network in readiness for the increasing sale of battery-powered vehicles. By 2030, the government aims to install sixty thousand charging points across the nation. Sixty-six percent of these charging stations will be rolled out in public parks, and the remaining thirty-four percent will be built in private premises.

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Energy

Luminar partners with Chinese SAIC Motors to supply the EV maker with laser lidar sensors

Silicon Valley startup, Luminar, has won a contract to supply high-tech laser sensors and software to SAIC Motors, an electric vehicle (EV) manufacturer based in Shanghai, China. These lasers will be used in the Asian firm’s battery-powered R brand vehicles set to hit the road in 2022. The EVs will be self-driving, and the laser technology will come in handy to detect obstacles ahead.

The California startup, founded by the 26-year old billionaire, Austin Russell, will open an office in China to support this project. The Iris lidar will be installed in the autonomous cars alongside the Sentinel software for a flawless self-driving experience and automated safety capabilities. Luminar says this collaboration will be the first self-driven car production in China. “This is really our foray into China-and it won’t be the last. From a commercial standpoint, this is definitely the most significant event we’ve had in a year since Volvo,” said Russell.

Luminar has worked with big names in the auto sector since its establishment. In May 2020, the firm strike a deal with Volvo to supply sensors and software for automated passenger vehicles. Besides, Daimler Truck AG tagged the startup in its truck production to realize automated trucking and acquired a minority stake in the firm. The global leader in automotive lidar hardware and software gained significant returns in 2020 thanks to the sale of lidar sensors to automotive test fleets that earned approximately $ 14 million. According to its quarterly results report as a public company this year, Luminar was valued at $1.3 billion without the SAIC contract.

Lidar technology can be used during the day and night to enable an autonomous vehicle to detect obstacles in a 3-D view. Luminar uses a single laser beam technology. Unlike the multiple laser technology used by laser tech pioneer Velodyne, Luminar’s technology requires little energy to operate.

The lidar technology is a primary component of the autonomous car’s hardware, working together with cameras, radar, and servers. According to Luminar, the Iris lidar detects objects 250 meters ahead of a vehicle traveling at highway speed. This technology costs between $500 and $1,000.

SAIC Motors looks forward to this collaboration, saying it will enable them to realize their self-driving car goals. “Our new R brand line of vehicles will combine the best technology with luxury and comfort, and autonomous capabilities are central to that vision. The only autonomous vehicle company we seriously considered was Luminar,” said Yang Xiaodong, SAIC Motor vice president.

“They are in a league of their own in lidar technology and software, uniquely enabling us to achieve our vision in series production,” he added. Russell noted this deal would have a meaningful impact on Luminar’s returns. According to Forbes, the self-made billionaire, who founded the firm in 2012, is worth $2.8 billion.

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Energy

Scandals related to Germany’s renewable energy talks have halted the progress of the election

The Social Democrats of Germany (SPD) halted renewable energy projects’ progress after lobbying rumors emerged regarding a parliamentarian called Angela Merkel of the conservative side. Initially, the parties were going to discuss the amendments that should have been made to the Renewable Energy Act of 2021. Some of the issues they were going to discuss involved new strategies that would ensure the implementation of the renewable energy projects essential for Germany’s switch to clean energy. However, the SPD called off the meeting after news emerging that Joachim Pfeiffer, the CDU/CSU spokesperson of the energy policy in the negotiation proceedings, manages two companies whose activities might influence his credibility in this position he holds. Pfeiffer came to the limelight denying the allegations.

Another representative in this critical negotiation proceedings, Georg Nüßlein, who is also the CSU’s energy politician, resigned at the beginning of this month. The people who led to his resignation cited the allegations leveled against him regarding masks’ brokering in the pandemic period. The legislators stated that his inadequacy and involvement in this scandal are enough to dethrone him from this vital role. Additionally, a broadcaster highlighted how this politician benefited significantly from the reforms made to the regulations regarding renewables, which he happened to be part and parcel in the negotiations. Nüßlein denied these allegations with his lawyer, adding that he wouldn’t be making a public statement concerning the matter.

Bernd Westphal, the SPD parliamentary group’s energy policy spokesman, stated that they are shedding off the legislators and negotiators who might be in this discussion for their self-interests. The SPD added that the meetings would-be put-on hold until there is certainty and affirmation that all the negotiators have no personal reasons for arguing their way for the reforms that would benefit them alone.

The cancelation of talks to eliminate bias is considered a hindrance to the progress of the country’s transition to clean energy. SPD and CDU’s initial plan was to finalize the talks before Easter to ensure that the implementation strategies start taking shape after the Easter season. Additionally, these allegations come at a crucial period when the country is heading to the general elections.

Political analysts argue that this might be the season to sift some of the leaders seeking reelection to disqualify those that have utilized their roles for personal gains. Many of those who have been linked with the scandals have denied the allegations to pave the way for the rule of law to deal its part. Some are hopeful that they can be proved to be fit to boost their record before the elections start.

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Energy

SinglePoint on the quest to grab a lead role in renewable energy solutions and energy efficiency systems

SinglePoint displayed the performance of its shares and updates of the energy programs that it has already executed. The company proved that it is operating at par with its schedule concerning the renewable energy solutions and energy systems that it was hoping to implement. Some of the projects that the company was supposed to complete include the procurement of Energy Wyze, LLC and Box PureAir, LLC. Energy Wyze would enable the company to come into contact with 500 clients from the industry. On the other hand, Box PureAir would be securing the company $50 million from the bids made by schools to provide ventilation and indoor air systems.

SinglePoint is planning to utilize these two acquisitions to propel its vision of developing the first National network of renewable energy services and products. This move would facilitate the achievement of a clean, sustainable environment with reduced emissions. The head of SinglePoint, Wil Ralston, stated that the first half of this year has been crucial in creating the basis for the realization of the company’s objectives.

He added that the two acquisitions would generate revenue that they can utilize to expand the company’s operations and utilities. The company managed to do away with its convertible debt debentures and the resolution of its debts. Ralston explained that the company is heading towards listing on a national exchange program to ensure that it thrives in the competitive market.

The executives of the acquired companies stated that they intend to generate more revenue and secure more clients for the company. Energy Wyze is specifically reaching out to its solar-centric customers to ensure that they are all on board with the company’s agenda. Statistics show that less than 10% of the homes in the US local market have solar. The projects rolling out the solar programs have been sluggish due to the coronavirus pandemic.

However, the bids procured by Box PureAir to improve ventilation systems in schools have already started taking shape. The American Rescue Plan intends to pump $1.9 trillion into the renewable energy projects that will revive the economy and place schools among the utilities enjoying clean energy. Moreover, the bill advocates for investment in the renewable energy sector with the applied tax credits and the appropriation of $35 billion to sustain the industry. The legislators are also pushing for the introduction of energy storage system tax incentives to ensure the uptake of solar and battery backup storage systems.

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Energy

Turkey’s renewable energy sector has grown but needs better long-term carbon targets, say IEA

According to the latest evaluation by the International Energy Agency (IEA), Turkey has seen immense growth in the renewable energy sector. However, the agency noted that the European country needs to ramp up its efforts to ensure sustainable and long-term carbon reduction goals.

The government has laid out policies to ensure the green energy market grows and energy supply is reliable. As energy demands rise due to population and economic growth, the country has experienced a surge in import dependency on fossil fuels.

 The government has unveiled a new long-term plan centered on energy supply security to cut down on import expenditure. Firstly, Turkey is exploring domestic oil and gas for production. The administration has invested billions of dollars in the newly discovered Sakarya gas field found in the Black Sea regarding production and supply infrastructure.

Secondly, the European nation has expanded its renewable energy capacity and reduced energy consumption by employing efficient energy consumption policies. Through auctions, investors are drawn from various fields to drive the start and support of clean energy startups.

Lastly, the government uses a mix of new approaches to realize a combined effort of decarbonizing Turkey’s energy sector. With solar power projects, onshore wind projects, and nuclear power, the country is moving forward at an appealing rate. The 2023-scheduled launch of a nuclear power plant will further diversify the country’s cleaner energy sources.

“In the last decade, Turkey’s energy balance has become substantially more complex. Renewable energy, driven by hydropower, solar, as well as wind, has risen dramatically in recent years, aided by a favorable policy climate, ” Dr. Fatih Birol, the IEA’s Executive Director, stated.

The report adds that Turkey’s renewable energy sector has grown by fifty percent over the last five years. In2019, the country had the highest green energy additions across Europe. Globally, it was ranked at the fifteenth position for countries with the greatest improvement in cleaner energy.

However, the country is far from realizing a perfect score in renewable energy. Turkey currently utilizes barely three percent of its solar energy potential and less than 15 percent of its onshore wind capacity.

According to IEA, the Turkish administration should pull up the socks and rectify some areas pulling the green energy down. For instance, the government should rethink the significance of lignite-based power generation in the climate change dialogue. Besides, Turkey should also invest in the electric vehicle industry, energy storage, and digital technologies.

“Turkey has made significant progress in modernizing its energy markets, increasing the importance of renewables, and enhancing its energy stability over the last decade. I hope that this report will assist Turkish lawmakers in making informed decisions as they attempt to manage the country’s next step of energy growth in some of the most cost-effective, safe, and long-term manner possible, “Dr. Birol said.

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Energy

Grant Program proposal to fund EV charging stations in Florida advances

Electric vehicles are the future of the transport industry since they are clean products that give us safe rides and maintain a secure environment. In the past, Tesla was the domineering EV carmaker company since it is the pioneer of EVs. However, recently many carmakers have taken an interest in electrification settings. This evolvement is crucial since it entices more people to get an electric vehicle. However, significant concern has been rising regarding places to charge electric vehicles. Experts argue that electric vehicles’ development has to go hand in hand with charging infrastructure’ development.

There is a proposal running on an electric charging station in Florida whose primary goal is to encourage people to invest in cars. This proposal will allow local governments, state agencies, and others to get a grant to fund the development plan of charging station installation. The funding should cover equipment purchase and the installation cost.

How will the grants be paid? The bill proposes an increase in license covers for plug-in hybrid vehicles and electric vehicles to cover the funding. Sen Jeff Brandes sponsors this bill. He claims that the additional fees don’t go against anyone since electric car owners don’t pay for gas tax responsible for the Florida transportation Infrastructure.

In that case, the state administration has to look for an elegant and beneficial solution to deliver revenue from electric vehicles that use the states’ road just like the internal combustion engine vehicles. Jeff also claims that the fees are affordable in comparison to other states. Reports from other areas indicate that the prices are running up to $250 while Florida law will focus on the vehicle’s weight to charge a driver.

For example, for a vehicle like Tesla weighing 10,000 pounds, the charges are $135 from January 2025 but would rise to $150. Other cars weighing more will have higher payments. Nick Howe, Florida Tesla Enthusiasts club, the vice president, claims that he and the club are ready to support the license fees. Nick stated that they would pay for the tax share and not take advantage of other people. However, Nick claims that fixed charges are unfair since it doesn’t reflect how electric drivers use their cars.

He agrees with Sen Lori Berman, who claims that the best solution is charging depending on usage. For instance, the state calculates the annual vehicle miles a car travel and charges a driver instead of a fixed charge. Jeff Brandes explained that collecting tax from gas is simple since it deals with distributors who are a few, but for EVs, it is for every electric vehicle, a burden to the state. He also stated that the law stands the chance of changes.

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Energy

General Motors’ EV plans start to take shape with new less-expensive Chevy Bolts

The world is transiting from fossil-fuel cars to electric vehicles, and the shift is inevitable. This topic is one of the most trending news since the beginning of this year, with many carmakers making plans and setting targets. One of the companies that are moving to the electrification field is General Motors. It is a giant car manufacturer that has been running for years, creating traditional vehicles. Recently, the company announced its plans to become all-electric vehicle makers by 2035. Different people pointed out how ambitious the target is, but General Motors’ plan starts to take shape with their recent announcements.

Reports state that the automaker is working on launching two Chevrolet Bolt models this summer. Later before the year ends, it will release a $113,000 GMC Hummer EV pickup. The electric bolts, a redesigned hatchback, and a new crossover initial price are under $34,000. This start is the beginning of General Motors’ automaker hopes will grow to a full lineup of high-quality and affordable EVs.

The company is building scale to lower the upcoming electric vehicles’ cost, including the Hummer inputted with new battery systems and platforms. Jesse Ortega, the chief engineer of GM’s battery electric vehicle architectures, spoke of the upcoming launches. He said of the GMC Hummer EV and Bolts EVs as a representation of what the company can build in construction and performance.

It is the company’s two-pronged approach to address the luxury and mainstream markets. When you compare the two launches, it is inevitable to miss out on the price difference between the two cars, which comes down to the battery technologies. The upcoming Bolt models in the current company platform include batteries that provide less driving range than the next-generation batteries and Ultium platform, which will start on the Hummer EV.

All the three vehicles are part of GM’s plan to launch at least thirty new EVs by 2025 under a $27 billion investment. Tony Johnson, director of Chevrolet marketing, talked of the intentional price strategy that the company is putting in a place whose primary goal is to encourage customers to adopt the EVs. He stated that future launches all have a role to play in GM’s mission to electrify all the cars.

President Mark Reus and CEO Mary Barra spoke of future targets to deliver a profitable new generation of electric vehicles. Tony spoke of the company’s development team’s dedication and hard work to ensure excellent performance and driving cost out of their system. All these advancements are the reason why Bolt can lower the prices of the Bolt launches.

The company is offering lower-priced vehicles as part of its campaign to lure people into adopting EVs. Ortega stated that they are aiming for customers for life as they offer them affordable options.

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Energy

Hawaii is ahead of the timeline in the Renewable energy adoption

Different places are working on adopting renewable energy. However, the time taken to adapt to the energy transition varies from one state to another. There are various reasons why some states surpass others in the same venture. One of the states with an exceptional record in the renewable energy sector is Hawaii. Statics show that the state is ahead of the planned target by the government.

The state of Hawaii previously issued a mandate indicating that 30% of electric power by 2020 should come from renewable sources. However, with the recent reports, Hawaii has exceeded that figure and is working on the 100% clean energy program.

Hawaiian Electric is the state’s most significant utility, and in their recent reports, the utility 2020 generation ran up to 34.5% renewables in Oahu, Maui, and Hawaii Island. Their renewable production has a 21.5% increase from the 2019 data. Despite the lower demand thanks to the Covid-19 pandemic, this growth took place as a lot of things went to a halt globally. And this means that the denominator of the market-share fraction used is less than other years, despite the various patterns. At regular rates, Hawaii Electric is confident that the company would have hit the 32% target.

The utility’s spokesperson, Shannon Tangonan, spoke of the results and the hard work to achieve the figure. It results from a lot of work and effort in creating a renewable portfolio, and these are the benefits of the company staying true to its goals while keeping an eye on the final destination.

Other utility cooperatives are yet to report the final numbers for the 2020 energy report. However, their spokesperson, Beth Tokioka, spoke to Greentech Media, claiming that their figures are over 60% on renewable power. This figure is ahead of the state’s 30% renewable energy target and KIUC’s 2023 target of 50%.

In recent years, there are supposed impossibilities in the energy sector that different states have proven wrong. For instance, no state can commit to 100% renewables which Hawaii kicked off the list five years ago, with other states following closely. During the campaign period, President Biden talked of the 2035 phase-out of fossil fuel energy, which many are eager to see how it runs.

Setting a target is the first stage of making the transition increase its speed. With a timeline, corporations know what they are aiming at, and since it is mandatory, it involves putting effort into the matter. Hawaii is an island with limiting land but importing fossil fuel energy is also expensive to manage. This fact explains the state’s good response as it is working on committing to renewables by setting up plants and other energy infrastructure.

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Energy

The first wind farm in Lam Dong Province, Vietnam by GE Renewable Energy

In the recent news, GE Renewable Energy announced that the company has a contract with Ocean Renewable Energy to supply fifteen 4 MW-137 wind turbines for installation in a wind farm in Lam Dong Province. The Cau Dat wind farm facility is the first such facility in the province. Other than supplying the wind turbines, other terms in the contract indicate a 10-year agreement in the maintenance and functionality of the wind farm. This wind farm will mark Vietnam’s strength to venture into renewables in different parts of the country.

What is the GE 4.0-137 wind turbine? It is a 4 MW power output turbine whose rotor diameter measures up to 137 meters. This wind turbine is the upgraded version of the GE 3 MW platform series. The two turbines have similar hardware, but the performance of the 4 MW is better, resulting in high energy production. These turbines come with a hub height of up to 111.5 meters and are perfect for exploiting the wind conditions in the area. The installation location’s choice is great since it is the Central Highland of the country in the mountainous range.

This joint venture marks the first partnership between GE Renewables and the Ocean Renewable Energy Joint Stock Company. However, it is no secret that the two companies have been working closely on wind farm layout, design, engineering, and transportation for a year. The development team hopes the wind farm construction ends by the third quarter of this year. From the look of things, the project has multiple benefits, including creating jobs in the construction, operations, maintenance, and support services and improving the province’s economy. With these facts, the general economy of the country will rise.

Gilan Sabatier, GE Renewable Energy’s onshore wind business regional leader in South Asia and ASEAN, commented on the partnership. He started by thanking Ocean Renewable Energy for the opportunity to take part in this historic project. The General Director of Ocean Renewable Energy, Mr. Do Van Binh, spoke about how the project will assist the Lam Dong province in the energy sector. It will give the province a chance to contribute to the ongoing renewable energy goal of Vietnam. Besides, it is a way of setting up a portfolio for other areas to venture into renewable energy projects soon.

GE Renewable Energy is a long-term partner that has been helping Vietnam in the energy transition process. Over the last few years, there is an increase in demand for renewable energy, and this wind project will help Vietnam provide more renewable energy. With this project, GE can provide technological support for various power generation projects. Currently, GE has over 1,600 employees in Vietnam.