Global Energy News Roundup: December 15

Rick Perry speaking at a campaign event for Ted Cruz in February 2016

The Forum on Energy weekly news roundup brings together a mix of global energy stories from around the web. It is published every Thursday and is available on Twitter via @forumonenergy

Trump Names Energy Secretary

U.S. President-Elect Trump has named his nominee for Secretary of Energy as former Texas governor Rick Perry. Perry has no experience specific to science and energy, but Texas is one of the richest regions of fossil fuels in the world, and Perry was an ardent supporter of their extraction during his tenure. His nomination is already causing controversy, given his stated intention to eliminate the Department of Energy back when he campaigned for President in 2011.

Source: The New York Times,

Japan, Hitachi to Contribute Substantial Sum to UK Nuclear Project

The government of Japan and a unit of Hitachi Ltd are slated to contribute a package worth about ¥1 trillion ($8.5 billion) for the Horizon nuclear power project in the UK. The Hitachi Horizon project plans to construct at least 5.4 gigawatts of new nuclear capacity across two sites in Britain; this financial contribution will be provided specifically for the first planned plant at Wylfa Newydd in Wales.

Source: Reuters

Greenpeace Blocks EDF Headquarters

Greenpeace protesters scaled the facade of the Paris headquarters of French utility EDF, unfurling a large banner protesting the company’s nuclear activities claiming €74 billion ($79 billion) debt has been caused by these activities. Others blocked the entrance to the building, along with large oil drums painted to look like nuclear waste. EDF stated it will file a complaint against Greenpeace over the action.

Source: Reuters

 Greenpeace activists block the entrance of EDF headquarters to protest nuclear energy on December 14, 2016


India, Vietnam Sign Energy Agreement

Meeting in India, Indian PM Narendra Modi and President of Vietnam’s National Assembly Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan signed four pacts covering aviation, energy efficiency, parliamentary cooperation, and nuclear cooperation. On his website, PM Modi stated, “The bilateral Agreement on Cooperation in Peaceful Uses of Atomic Energy, being signed today, will further strengthen the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership between India and Vietnam.”

Source: Tech Wire Asia

Bill Gates Spearheads Launch of Clean Energy Fund

Bill Gates announced that he and other business leaders- including Jeff Bezos, Reid Hoffman, Jack Ma, and John Arnold- are launching a $1 billion clean technology fund that in 2017 will start investing in companies developing low-cost, low-carbon technologies. The technologies can span from power generation and storage, to transportation, to industrial applications, to agriculture, to energy system efficiency.

Source: The Wall Street Journal

 Bill Gates was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by Pres. Obama in November 2016