United Uses Biofuel for LAX-SFO Flights
United Airlines has started to use sustainable aviation biofuels on regular commercial flights from Los Angeles to San Francisco, making it one of the first U.S. airlines to use commercial-scale volumes beyond demonstration and test flights. United is using the biofuel in its daily operations at Los Angeles International Airport, storing and delivering it in the same way as traditional fuel. The flights will use a blend of 30% renewable jet fuel and 70% conventional jet kerosene. United has agreed to buy up to 15 million gallons of sustainable biofuel from AltAir Paramount over a three-year period.
Economic Growth with Lower CO2 Emissions
Early data for 2015 released by the International Energy Agency show that global energy-related carbon dioxide emissions of 32.1 billion tons stayed flat for the second year in a row. The data suggest that electricity generated by renewables played a critical role, having accounted for around 90% of new electricity generation in 2015. In parallel, the global economy grew by more than 3 percent, suggesting that the link between economic growth and emissions growth may be weakening. In the more than 40 years in which the IEA has provided information on CO2 emissions, there have been four other periods in which emissions stood still or fell compared to the previous year. Three of those – the early 1980s, 1992 and 2009 – were associated with global economic weakness. But the recent stall in emissions comes amid economic expansion: according to the International Monetary Fund, global GDP grew by 3.4 percent in 2014 and 3.1 percent in 2015.
Battery Array to Bolster Island’s Use of Renewables
Construction is underway on a fully automated 3.2 megawatt-hour intelligent battery park on an island in the Azores, according to intelligent energy storage grid solutions provider You nI cos. The Berlin-based company provides software for grid-connected battery storage. The planned system will use lithium-ion cells, and will allow the Portuguese island to be powered by wind and solar energy. The project will enable 100% spontaneous renewable power penetration when put into “island mode,” as the You ni cos software and controls will enable the battery power plant to balance short-term power fluctuations. This will allow the island to replace two-thirds of its fossil fuel needs with renewable energy. Fossil fuels will only be needed for back-up power during prolonged periods of unfavorable weather.