Kiwis pay extra $39 million for power

We're all about saving you energy and have rounded up the latest solar, climate and energy news so you don't have to.

Solar and batteries

One of Britain’s biggest energy companies has ditched fossil fuels and will add solar power to its windfarms, reports the Guardian.

The surge in large scale and rooftop solar and the relative inflexibility of Queensland's large coal-fired generators has again sent day-time wholesale electricity prices negative in the Australian state, reports Renew Economy.

Renewables and fossil fuels

Australia is to trial using solar and wind power to produce hydrogen for long-term energy storage in the Sydney gas network, reports PV Tech. And, NZ and Japan have signed an agreement to develop hydrogen technology together.

Tilt Renewables and Genesis Energy have announced they are forming a partnership to develop a wind farm in Taranaki, reports Stuff.

Climate change

New York has filed a lawsuit against Exxon Mobil that claims the company defrauded shareholders by downplaying the expected risk of climate change to its business, reports the New York Times.

A landmark decision by the Hague Court of Appeal ordering the Dutch Government to set a more ambitious target for the country's greenhouse gas emissions is a warning to New Zealand, reports Newsroom.

The world’s consumption of raw materials is set to nearly double by 2060 which is likely to contribute significantly to climate change, reports

People care about climate change but their concerns aren’t translating into action. David Hall, writing for The Spinoff, looks into what it will take to change that mindset. 

Power prices

Being on the wrong electricity plan may be costing consumers up to $39 million a year, according to a report of household energy prices, reports the NZ Herald. See the full report from MBIE here (pdf). And, RNZ reports that power companies are divided on how to ease the burden of price on low income families and bring greater competition into the sector.

Customers of Dunedin-based power company Aurora Energy are being told to expect a price increase within the next three years as the company plans to spend millions addressing a "backlog” in network investment. reports the ODT.

Electric vehicles

Electric-car charging stations in NZ will be added to Google Maps, says Green Car Reports.

Dyson, the British company best known for vacuum cleaners says it will build its new electric car in Singapore at a new plant due for completion in 2020, reports the NZ Herald.

Swedish researchers have proved that carbon fibres can be used to store energy which, in theory, means the entire body of an electric car cold be turned into a battery, reports Pocket-lint.