Theft and Damage Are Putting a Damper on India’s Solar Electrification Efforts

Bloomberg: The Dark Secret Behind India's Solar Plan

Maharashtra, home to the financial capital of Mumbai, declared itself fully electrified in 2012, relying on solar panels or small wind turbines to cover remote areas. India considers a village electrified if at least 10 percent of the households and public places such as schools have electricity.

But theft and damage have plunged 288 villages and 1,500 hamlets in Maharashtra back into darkness, according to Saboo. “Most of the equipment is either stolen or not working,” he said. “Now we have decided that a majority of these villages will be electrified in the conventional way.”

Reuters: RWE Weighs Options as Utility M&A Talk Picks Up

German utility RWE is considering options including tie-ups with rivals and the sale of a stake in its Innogy business, its chief executive said, raising the prospect for large M&A deals in the crisis-hit sector.

“We are in regular contact with a large number of market participants. We are constantly examining all strategic options our company is faced with,” RWE Chief Executive Rolf Martin Schmitz told journalists at a news conference on Tuesday to present the company's annual earnings.

Atlantic: The House Republicans Calling for Climate Action in the Trump Era

At a time when President Donald Trump is working to dismantle former President Barack Obama’s environmental legacy, more than a dozen House Republicans are calling for action to confront the threat of a changing climate.

Seventeen Republican lawmakers, including Elise Stefanik of New York, Carlos Curbelo of Florida, Mark Sanford of South Carolina, Mia Love of Utah, Don Bacon of Nebraska, and Ryan Costello of Pennsylvania, introduced a resolution on Wednesday that urges the House of Representatives to “address the causes and effects” of climate change,  according to a press release sent out by Costello’s office.

The resolution, which revives a call to action endorsed by nearly a dozen House Republicans in 2015, describes environmental protection as a “conservative principle.” And it warns that “if left unaddressed, the consequences of a changing climate have the potential to adversely impact all Americans.”

Washington Post: Here are the Federal Agencies and Programs Trump Wants to Eliminate

President Trump's budget blueprint proposes to counterbalance a $54 billion increase in defense spending with a slew of steep cuts to discretionary spending programs, including by scrapping federal funding

Those cuts include the complete elimination of a number of agencies and programs across the federal government. They include some familiar names, like the Energy Star program and the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP), as well as more obscure programs that do things like fund airports in rural areas, help low-income families, fight climate change and develop clean energy technologies.

In the budget blueprint the administration asserts that many programs, like LIHEAP, are targeted for elimination because of a failure to demonstrate efficacy. Others, like the Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E), are being eyed for elimination due to a belief that the private sector can handle those functions better. Still others, like the Emergency Refugee and Migration Assistance Account, are said to be duplicative with other federal functions.

Energy Collective: Energy and Blockchain Go Global: Utilities, Startups, and Use Cases

Presently, there are approximately 40 startups operating globally in the energy blockchain space (see taxonomy later in this piece). These startups are working with the underlying technology of bitcoin and particularly on the Ethereum platform.

The technology still needs time to mature and the core developer network estimates that this may be 2-5 years away, however the emergence of  initiatives such as the Enterprise Ethereum Alliance and the Energy Web Foundation will speed up standards and help to create both interoperability and shared design between public & private chains.

Although blockchain may provide an opportunity to transform some existing utility processes, the major opportunities in the near term will focus on the changes in the energy industry, and in particular, the interplay between distributed energy resources and utility analytics.

from GTM Solar https://www.greentechmedia.com/articles/read/theft-and-damage-are-putting-a-damper-on-indias-solar-electrification-effor

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