Largest Residential Solar Project in US History
Without any government subsidies or loans guarantees, SolarCity and Bank of America Merrill Lynch have announced a project that will more than double the total residential solar installations in the US—the largest residential solar project in US history.
Over the next fiver years, SolarCity will work with SolarStrong to build over $1 billion in solar power projects for privatized US military housing communities across the country. Partnering with the country's leading privatized military housing developers to install, own and operate rooftop solar installations, SolarCity plans to provide solar electricity at a lower cost than utility power.
“This project demonstrates the long term viability of large-scale, distributed solar generation,” said Jonathan Plowe, head of New Energy and Infrastructure Solutions at BofA Merrill in a press release. “We are excited to see the project through with SolarCity and extend our expertise and financing capabilities to propel residential solar to the next level.”
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The company expects to create up to 300 megawatts of solar generation capacity that could power as many as 120,000 military housing units. Additionally, thousands of jobs will be created, many of which will go to US veterans and military family members. Since the recession began in December of 2007, SolarCity has already added over 1,200 new, full-time workers.
With these new projects, the Department of Defense, the largest energy consumer in the country, will be able to secure more energy needs from renewable sources, while military housing developers save money on energy costs.
"This is a groundbreaking transaction that represents a key milestone for the U.S. solar industry," said Tim Newell, managing director for USRG Renewable Finance. "We’re proud to be part of this project that will invest in military communities across the United States.”
Trafigura and Yara International explore clean ammonia usage
Reducing shipping emissions is a vital component of the fight against global climate change, yet Greenhouse Gas emissions from the global maritime sector are increasing - and at odds with the IMO's strategy to cut absolute emissions by at least 50% by 2050.
How more than 70,000 ships can decrease their reliance on carbon-based sources is one of transport's most pressing decarbonisation challenges.
Yara and Trafigura intend to collaborate on initiatives that will establish themselves in the clean ammonia value chain. Under the MoU announced today, Trafigura and Yara intend to work together in the following areas:
- The supply of clean ammonia by Yara to Trafigura Group companies
- Exploration of joint R&D initiatives for clean ammonia application as a marine fuel
- Development of new clean ammonia assets including marine fuel infrastructure and market opportunities
Magnus Krogh Ankarstrand, President of Yara Clean Ammonia, said the agreement is a good example of cross-industry collaboration to develop and promote zero-emission fuel in the form of clean ammonia for the shipping industry. "Building clean ammonia value chains is critical to facilitate the transition to zero emission fuels by enabling the hydrogen economy – not least within trade and distribution where both Yara and Trafigura have leading capabilities. Demand and supply of clean ammonia need to be developed in tandem," he said.
There is a growing consensus that hydrogen-based fuels will ultimately be the shipping fuels of the future, but clear and comprehensive regulation is essential, according to Jose Maria Larocca, Executive Director and Co-Head of Oil Trading for Trafigura.
Ammonia has a number of properties that require "further investigation," according to Wartsila. "It ignites and burns poorly compared to other fuels and is toxic and corrosive, making safe handling and storage important. Burning ammonia could also lead to higher NOx emissions unless controlled either by aftertreatment or by optimising the combustion process," it notes.
Trafigura has co-sponsored the R&D of MAN Energy Solutions’ ammonia-fuelled engine for maritime vessels, has performed in-depth studies of transport fuels with reduced greenhouse gas emissions, and has published a white paper on the need for a global carbon levy for shipping fuels to be introduced by International Maritime Organization.
Oslo-based Yara produces roughly 8.5 million tonnes of ammonia annually and employs a fleet of 11 ammonia carriers, including 5 fully owned ships, and owns 18 marine ammonia terminals with 580 kt of storage capacity – enabling it to produce and deliver ammonia across the globe.
It recently established a new clean ammonia unit to capture growth opportunities in emission-free fuel for shipping and power, carbon-free fertilizer and ammonia for industrial applications.