Industry News
Renewable Energy
Top stories summarized by our editors
7/9/2020

The Albany County Planning and Zoning Commission in Wyoming voted 4-1 against attorney Mitch Edwards' proposal to tighten the county's rules for wind development by enacting a minimum setback distance and other changes. The proposal was designed to kill the ConnectGen's 504-megawatt Rail Tie project and is not "in the best interest of the county," says Commissioner Keith Kennedy.

7/9/2020

Low-carbon concrete will be among the environment-friendly materials used in construction of The Plus furniture factory in Norway, designed by BIG together with Vestre. Local timber and recycled reinforcement steel also will be used to reach a minimum of 50% lower carbon dioxide emissions than comparable factories.

7/9/2020

States can't keep up with coronavirus testing demands logistically or financially, which is why it's important to introduce a nationwide wastewater testing program, write Anna Mehrotra of CDM Smith, David Larsen of Syracuse University and Ashish Jha of the Harvard Global Health Institute. "Doing so will provide a cost-effective method of understanding the pandemic and an early warning system for increased and decreased transmission as the pandemic waxes and wanes," they write.

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Syracuse University
7/9/2020

The Ohio & Lee Water & Sewer utility company has been eyeing improvements to its wastewater treatment system for two decades, but it has been unable to carry out a project because of the cost. Misty Tolzda of the Great Lakes Community Action Partnership is helping the utility weigh two options -- a $24 million wastewater treatment facility and $16 million step-system -- but says neither may be feasible financially.

7/9/2020

The Navajo-Utah Water Rights Settlement Act under consideration in the House of Representatives is critical for building out the Navajo Nation's drinking water infrastructure, according to its president, Jonathan Nez. Over 40% of households in the Navajo Nation lack running water, and $220 million in federal and state funding can help address the problem, Nez says.

7/9/2020

Rain can pose a real threat to the environment when it hits impermeable surfaces, mixes with trash and pollutants and runs into waterways, writes Felix Stith of Blue Ridge Resource Conservation & Development in North Carolina. Plants are one of the best options for filtering and reducing stormwater runoff because oxygen and compounds generated by photosynthesis help neutralize pollutants, he writes.

7/9/2020

Part of the challenge of achieving financial and social buy-in for flood management projects is that their benefits often only become apparent when flooding does not occur. Universities, government agencies, and environmental organizations are embracing interactive simulations to create a new form of public outreach for the stormwater sector.

7/9/2020

The Water Environment Federation recognizes 17 new life members, including Chibby Alloway of the California Water Environment Association and Patricia Cleveland of the Water Environment Association of Texas.

7/8/2020

Vestas has been using Sulzer & Schmid and DJI's drone-based rotor blade inspection technology in Australia and will now begin offering it to customers in the Asia-Pacific region. The technology uses autonomous drones, high-resolution imaging and has a software component to help companies predict maintenance needs and lower their costs, says Sulzer & Schmid CEO Tom Sulzer.

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Tom Sulzer, Vestas
7/8/2020

Dominion Energy, Great River Energy, the Alabama Power Company and other utilities are shifting away from coal generation toward cleaner energy sources, but are finding it difficult to replace natural gas with renewables due to flexibility and reliability concerns. Dominion is deeply committed to wind and other renewables, and is investing in battery storage, but the technology is still too costly to deploy at the scale needed to offset natural gas, says executive Katharine Bond.