Regulation, Solar, Sourcing Renewables, Wind - March 11, 2023
Weekend Reads: Defining Green Hydrogen; Decarbonization's Market Opportunity
It's the weekend! Kick back and catch up with these must-read articles from around the web:
The fight to define 'green hydrogen' could determine America's emissions future (Grist) With the passage of the Inflation Reduction Act last year, a decades-long effort to get a major climate package through Congress is over. But the work of ensuring this unprecedented bundle of funding for clean energy actually leads to reduced emissions is just beginning. A decision with profound implications for that goal now lies with the Treasury Department, which must settle a debate over the best way of crafting a tax credit designed to advance the production of clean hydrogen.
Getting Real on the Inflation Reduction Act (Center for Strategic & International Studies) The Biden administration’s industrial policy action is built around four major legislative initiatives: the American Rescue Plan Act, the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA), and the CHIPS and Science Act. Among these, a key measure is the Inflation Reduction Act. Specifically, the act includes a broad range of subsidies, incentives, and domestic manufacturing requirements meant to spur green technological innovation in wind, solar, and hydrogen, among others. It also is designed to encourage the purchase of U.S.-made green energy products, no doubt a necessary provision to ensure its passage.
Recent legislative changes create a massive market opportunity for decarbonization (Fortune) Climate technologies, which combat climate change through reduced emissions, are critical to company-level decarbonization and reaching global net zero. They also hold enormous potential as new sources of economic opportunity. Low-carbon hydrogen alone is estimated to cut emissions by as much as three to five gigatons per year by 2050 (about 8% of global greenhouse gas emissions), creating a $3 trillion to $4 trillion global market.
Wind, solar, and batteries increasingly account for more new U.S. power capacity additions (EIA) Wind, solar, and battery storage are growing as a share of new electric-generating capacity each year. In 2023, these three technologies account for 82% of the new, utility-scale generating capacity that developers plan to bring online in the United States, according to our Preliminary Monthly Electric Generator Inventory. Utility-scale solar capacity didn’t start ramping up in the United States until 2010. As the cost of solar panels dropped substantially and state and federal policies introduced generous tax incentives, solar capacity boomed.
How Floating Solar Panels Are Being Used to Power Electric Grids (Bloomberg) In a world of finite land, solar farms can take up a lot of space. But there’s a solution for that scarcity: panels that float. In nearly a dozen countries around the world, floating solar farms are providing a welcome alternative to ground-mounted modules, with the potential to significantly boost clean power as the world races to cut carbon emissions. Massive solar farms can now be found atop bodies of water in China, South Korea, Japan, Thailand, Portugal, Singapore and Switzerland.