On the Blogs: Where Apple Energy Is Going Others Will Follow

first_imgOn the Blogs: Where Apple Energy Is Going Others Will Follow FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Tim Healy for Forbes.com:Apple has quietly dropped a bombshell in the energy industry, launching an entirely new subsidiary called Apple Energy that will manage the complexities of its renewable energy efforts.The only information available on Apple Energy is in the company’s filings with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, but what can be gleaned from that illustrates a foundational shift underway in the energy world.Essentially, Apple is seeking the ability to sell the renewable energy it generates to other businesses and consumers at retail prices. Without FERC’s approval, Apple will only be able to sell its energy to energy providers and utilities at wholesale prices. Apple Energy would more or less act as an energy provider itself, enabling the company to leverage its investments in renewable energy like wind and solar to generate new revenue from an entirely new market.Apple’s decision to go this route might be unique, but a close look at the path it took to get here reveals a broader shift in the way businesses think about energy. And whether you’re a bleeding-edge company with substantial financial resources like Apple, or a smaller-scale enterprise that’s just starting to dip your toes in the water, there are a few lessons to learn from Apple’s energy evolution.Apple was one of the early names to sign onto RE100, a group of the world’s biggest companies committed to 100% renewable power. In its 2016 Environmental Responsibility Report, Apple said it’s already well on its way, claiming 93% of its worldwide energy usage comes from renewables. Like most big companies that have made aggressive public commitments to renewables in the past decade, Apple has pursued these goals through a combination of strategies, including the purchase of renewable energy certificates (RECs).If a company is drawing any power from the grid, the original source of power is indistinguishable, a mix of coal, natural gas, nuclear, or renewable. By purchasing RECs, businesses essentially pay a premium to ensure that for every megawatt of energy they consume from the grid, the energy supplier is procuring at least the equivalent amount from renewable resources.While RECs have become an increasingly popular way for companies to hit their renewable targets, some have claimed businesses that use them are misleading consumers. Critics argue that a company cannot claim to be 100% renewable while relying entirely on grid power.But Apple critics—and critics of RECs at large—are missing a few key points: 1) RECs are more than an expensive way of buying positive PR—they play an important role in the economics of renewable energy development, which accelerates the integration of these resources into our nation’s resource mix; and 2) Apple’s claims are based on more than just purchasing RECs as financial instruments on the open market. Like other firms in the RE100, Apple has influenced the transformation of the electricity grid by agreeing to purchase renewable energy on a large scale.Full post: Why Apple Energy Is A Wake-Up Call For Businesseslast_img read more

Holding the middle ground

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New Zealand could delay election after virus return

first_imgNew Zealand’s looming general election could be delayed, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern warned Wednesday, as the shock re-emergence of the coronavirus sent the country’s largest city into lockdown and forced nursing homes nationwide to shut their doors.Ardern said authorities were scrambling to trace anyone who had been in contact with four Auckland residents whose positive tests on Tuesday ended the country’s envied run of 102 days without community transmission.A three-day stay-at-home order for Auckland — a city of 1.5 million people — went into force at lunchtime on Wednesday, ending weeks of near normality, when thousands had flocked to restaurants and filled rugby stadiums. Topics : Election ‘very difficult’New Zealand had been held up by the World Health Organization as an example of how to contain the disease after recording only 22 deaths in a population of five million, and halting community transmission for more than three months.Ardern described the new cases as “unsettling” but said all efforts were being made to retrace the steps of the Auckland family of four who contracted it from an unknown source.Her center-left Labor Party has been riding high in opinion polls, largely on the back of its success containing the virus through a strict seven-week lockdown earlier this year.With campaigning temporarily halted by the latest virus scare, the conservative National Party said it was open to a delay if circumstances warranted.”It’s going to be very difficult to have an election in mid-September when we are now mid-August. It is very little time,” National leader Judith Collins told TV3.The initial lockdown is only for three days but University of Otago epidemiologist Amanda Kvalsvig said it could last much longer if the source of the infection was not found swiftly.”The aim is to return to alert level one (New Zealand’s lowest) and regain elimination status — but that won’t happen overnight,” she said.”Even after we stop seeing new cases it’ll take time and extensive testing to be sure the virus is once more under control.”The outbreak has already eroded some of the everyday freedoms New Zealanders had enjoyed, with Ardern urging Aucklanders to wear masks and restricting gatherings in the city to a maximum of 10 people.The final match of Super Rugby Aotearoa — which had been set to take place in front of a sold-out 43,000 crowd at Eden Park on Sunday — is also in doubt.The Auckland Blues said its players had been sent home to await advice on whether they can host the weekend’s blockbuster match against newly-crowned champions, the Canterbury Crusaders. In a statement, the legislature said that step “will no longer be held today” but could be done any time before 13 October 2020, potentially pushing the election out by months.Health officials were also locking down aged care homes across the country because they could act as transmission hotspots.”I realize how incredibly difficult this will be for those who have loved ones in these facilities, but it’s the strongest way we can protect and look after them,” Ardern said.Director-general of health Ashley Bloomfield acknowledged the heartbreak of many Kiwis as they come to terms with the return of a virus many thought had been defeated.”I know the virus re-remerging in our community has caused alarm and the unknown is scary,” he said. “[But] we’ve been here before, we can get through it if we work together.” Panic buying returned to supermarkets, huge queues formed at COVID-19 testing stations and face-masked police manned roadblocks on major roads to enforce the new measures. Ardern warned the September 19 election may be have to be delayed if the outbreak could not be contained.”We’re seeking advice from the Electoral Commission, just so that we make sure we have all options open to us,” she said. “No decisions yet, as you can imagine, have been made.”New Zealand’s parliament had been due to be dissolved Wednesday, to allow the election to go ahead.last_img read more

Local residents published in Guideposts Magazine

first_imgFRANKLIN COUNTY, Ind. — A member of the Whitewater Valley Retired Teachers Association (affiliated with Indiana Retired Teachers Association) has a short story published in the February 2017 issue of Guideposts Magazine.In this current issue, Mary-Alice Helms shares an experience she had as she began to fall down the steep basement stairs at her home.Previously, Mary Alice had a story published in Guideposts’, The Joys of Christmas.In that story, she describes an experience of her early years in teaching music at Laurel School.This February issue of Guideposts also has a story by another Franklin County resident, Mike Bogan.Guideposts Magazine stated this is the first time it has had an issue with stories by two individuals from the same town.last_img read more