Wind to soar past solar in the US following tariff
Following the tariff that the Trump administration placed on the imports of foreign-manufactured solar panels, it appears that the nation’s wind industry is taking off.
The presidency launched a tariff through a Section 201 safeguard clause, claiming that imported goods are “a substantial cause of serious injury to domestic manufacturers”.
With the implementation of the tariff, solar panels are to be taxed a tariff of 30% during the first year, followed by a decline to a 15% fee after four years.
According to analysts, in order to replace the whole in the solar sector, wind power will be used even more.
The renewable power generation was already set to have a successful year, which is now likely to be catalysed by the tariff.
The American Council on Renewable Energy has predicted that the introduction of the tariff could lead to a loss of 5GW of solar installation in 2018.
“What’s going to take its place? There are states where you have renewable energy requirements, and some of that will be taken up by wind,” commented Todd Foley, Senior Vice President of Policy and Government Affairs at the American Council on Renewable Energy.
“Solar is a player in the overall power market. … It’s not competing against other solar. It’s competing against low-cost natural gas, wind, coal.”
The US may be seeing states such as California, which are required to meet a renewable energy demand, opting for cheaper alternatives to solar – wind.
“While tariffs in this case will not create adequate cell or module manufacturing to meet U.S. demand … they will create a crisis in a part of our economy that has been thriving, which will ultimately cost tens of thousands of hardworking, blue-collar Americans their jobs,” stated Abigail Ross Hopper, President of the Solar Energy Industries Association.
Drax advances biomass strategy with Pinnacle acquisition
The Group’s enlarged supply chain will have access to 4.9 million tonnes of operational capacity from 2022. Of this total, 2.9 million tonnes are available for Drax’s self-supply requirements in 2022, which will rise to 3.4 million tonnes in 2027.
The £424 million acquisition of the Canadian biomass pellet producer supports Drax' ambition to be carbon negative by 2030, using bioenergy with carbon capture and storage (BECCS) and will make a "significant contribution" in the UK cutting emissions by 78% by 2035 (click here).
This summer Drax will undertake maintenance on its CfD(2) biomass unit, including a high-pressure turbine upgrade to reduce maintenance costs and improve thermal efficiency, contributing to lower generation costs for Drax Power Station.
In March, Drax secured Capacity Market agreements for its hydro and pumped storage assets worth around £10 million for delivery October 2024-September 2025.
The limitations on BECCS are not technology but supply, with every gigatonne of CO2 stored per year requiring approximately 30-40 million hectares of BECCS feedstock, according to the Global CCS Institute. Nonetheless, BECCS should be seen as an essential complement to the required, wide-scale deployment of CCS to meet climate change targets, it concludes.