Εμφάνιση αναρτήσεων με ετικέτα renewable energy. Εμφάνιση όλων των αναρτήσεων
Εμφάνιση αναρτήσεων με ετικέτα renewable energy. Εμφάνιση όλων των αναρτήσεων

Τρίτη, Οκτωβρίου 28, 2014

EU gears up for 2030 with more emissions reductions

European Commission , Press release, Brussels, 28 October 2014:

The Commission, assisted by the European Environment Agency, today releases its annual Progress Report assessing the headway on climate action. According to latest estimates, EU greenhouse gas emissions in 2013 fell by 1.8% compared to 2012 and reached the lowest levels since 1990. So not only is the EU well on track to reach the 2020 target, it is also well on track to overachieve it.

The Progress Report also for the first time provides data on the use of fiscal revenues from auctioning allowances in the EU Emission Trading System (ETS). This new source of revenues for Member States amounted to € 3.6 billion in 2013. From this, around € 3 billion will be used for climate and energy related purposes - significantly more than the 50% level recommended in the EU ETS Directive.
EU Climate Action Commissioner Connie Hedegaard said: "Delivering on 2020 climate goals shows that Europe is ready to step up its act. And better, still: it shows that the EU is delivering substantial cuts. The policies work. Therefore, the EU leaders last week decided to continue the ambition and reach at least 40% by 2030. This will require significant investments. That's why it is encouraging that Member States have decided to use most of their current ETS revenues to invest in climate and energy and continue the transformation to a low-carbon economy."
These revenues complement the funds from the EU's NER 300 programme which is devoting €2.1 billion to support 39 large-scale demonstration projects for low carbon technologies around Europe.

The Kyoto and EU 2020 Progress Report is an annual report from the Commission to the European Parliament and the Council. It is based on the data reported by Member States under the Monitoring Mechanism Regulation. The Report provides information about the progress made by the European Union and its Member States towards their greenhouse gas emissions targets. The decrease in emissions of 1.8% in 2013 compared to 2012 implies that total EU emissions are around 19% below 1990.
Since 2013 auctioning is the default method of allocating allowances within the EU ETS. Auction revenues accrue to Member States. The EU ETS Directive stipulates that at least half of the revenues from the auctioning of allowances should be used to combat climate change in the EU or other countries. 

Most countries have used these investments in fields like energy efficiency, renewables or sustainable transport. For instance, France, the Czech Republic and Lithuania use all their auctioning revenues in projects to improve the energy efficiency of buildings. Bulgaria, Portugal and Spain use most of their revenues to develop renewable energy. Poland uses most of its revenues that are dedicated to climate change in support of energy efficiency and renewable energy. In Germany, most of the revenues are directed to a specific climate and energy fund, which supports a wide range of projects including research and sustainable transport. The UK focusses in particular on energy efficiency, renewables, research and financial assistance to low income households in relation to energy expenses. The reported amounts represent only a proportion of total climate and energy related spending in Member States' budgets. 


Σάββατο, Οκτωβρίου 11, 2014

French parliament votes to cut nuclear energy reliance

Lawmakers in France, the world's most nuclear-dependent country, on Oct. 10 voted to cut reliance on the energy source from more than 75 percent to 50 percent within a decade.
The vote comes as part of an ambitious makeover of France's energy use promised by President Francois Hollande during his 2012 election campaign.
The measure calls for renewables to increase in the energy mix for electricity production, rising from 23 percent in 2020 to 32 percent in 2030.
Use of fossil fuels should drop to around 30 percent.

The measure also sets a goal for a reduction of 40 percent in greenhouse gas emissions from the 1990 levels by 2030 and a 75 percent reduction in 2050.
It also targets a 20-percent reduction in energy consumation by 2030, in line with a draft project EU leaders are set to consider at an October 23-24 summit in Brussels.
France's conservative opposition sharply criticised Hollande's anti-nuclear stance as "ideological" and driven by a need to satisfy green parties which helped get him elected.

 AFP - hurriyetdailynews.com

Κυριακή, Οκτωβρίου 05, 2014


(Maria Damanaki, Commissioner for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries)

" It has become clear over the past years that our seas and oceans can generate huge economic growth and create jobs, much needed in these times. That is why we have been working for the past five years on our Blue Growth strategy to foster sustainable blue economy. Ocean energy is part of this strategy. It is a very promising sector, capable to exploit an indigenous, predictable, safe source of clean energy.

Earlier this year, in April, we launched an Action plan on blue energy. Part of it is the creation of the Ocean Energy Forum, gathering all stakeholders to cooperate and elaborate the further development of the sector.

This Wednesday I was proud to take part in the very first high-level meeting of this Ocean Energy Forum. Together with EU Ministers and stakeholders we discussed the ways of overcoming the challenges of ocean energy but also the progress made.

I am convinced the time is now.

I told the stakeholders I met on Wednesday to “get ready”. We have set up a good basis for ocean energy, very much appreciated after the Ukrainian conflict. It is clear that renewable energy is the future the EU wants to invest in. There is an open door for blue energy to become an EU success story."
Maria Damanaki's blog  


Παρασκευή, Σεπτεμβρίου 26, 2014

South Africa nuclear plans 'huge risk'. (Greenpeace)

JOHANNESBURG. -(By Hassan Isilow.) -South Africa's plans to invest in nuclear energy are likely to put the country at risk due to the huge costs involved and the potential health risks, an international environmental group has warned.
"As far as Greenpeace Africa is concerned, investing in new nuclear energy is actually going to put this country at risk," Melita Steele, senior climate and energy campaign manager for Greenpeace Africa, told Anadolu Agency in an interview.
On Monday, Russia and South Africa signed an agreement for the construction of new nuclear power plants as part of South Africa's procurement and development program.
The deal, signed in Vienna on the sidelines of an International Atomic Energy Agency conference, calls for the construction by Russia's state-owned nuclear company Rosatom of eight nuclear power units in South Africa.

Rosatom put the estimated cost of the project at between $40 billion and $50 billion.
Steele said that apart from the huge cost of building nuclear plants, there were no long term solutions for nuclear waste.
She cited Japan's 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster, when nearly 120,000 people were evacuated from their homes – and still have yet to return – following a nuclear plant meltdown.
"As far as Greenpeace is concerned, investing in both coal and nuclear [energy] are nothing more than a dead end," said Steele.
"It [nuclear energy] will send this country into both electricity price crisis as well as electricity supply crisis," she insisted.
Greenpeace is an influential global advocacy group ostensibly devoted to protecting the environment.

-Renewable energy-
Steele urged the South African government to instead focus on renewable energy, such as solar and wind power.
"We think that, as far as the research we've done, South Africa has some of the best solar resources in the world," she told AA.
Steele saw no reason why South Africa should not become a climate leader.
South Africa currently generates almost 90 percent of its electricity from coal-fueled power stations.
Environmental groups say the use of coal has negative effects on human health and the ecosystem.  

Πέμπτη, Σεπτεμβρίου 18, 2014

50 Dirtiest U.S. Power Plants Huge Contributor to Carbon Emissions

U.S. power plants are an outsized contributor to the world’s carbon pollution, a new report released by Environment America Research & Policy Center and the Frontier Group says. It found that in 2012, they added more climate change-causing carbon to the environment than the entire economies of any nation other than China. 

The report, “America’s Dirtiest Power Plants: Polluter on a Global Scale,” demonstrated that U.S. power plants produced more than six percent of worldwide global warming emissions.

The report found that a relatively small number of primarily older, coal-fired plants were the main culprits. The 50 dirtiest power plants, less than one percent of all U.S. power plants, produced a whopping 30 percent of power-sector emissions in 2012, 12 percent of all U.S. carbon emissions, and nearly two percent of all the world’s carbon emissions. The U.S. has about 6,400 electricity-generating facilities. Yet a single one—the Scherer Power Plant in Georgia—produced .4 percent of U.S. carbon emissions, equivalent to the entire economy of Sri Lanka, which ranks 86th in the world.

“U.S. power plants are polluters on a global scale,” said Elizabeth Ouzts of Environment America Research & Policy Center. “That’s why clean power now must be part of the solution to the climate crisis.”

The report emphasized how much pollution the dirty plants produce relative to their energy production. Coal-fired plants produced 74 percent of U.S. power-plant pollution in 2012 but only 37 percent of its electricity. The 50 dirtiest plants contributed only 15 percent of the nation’s electricity.

“U.S. power plants make such an outsized contribution to global warming emissions because so many of them are old and inefficient, and because so many of them run on coal, one of the dirtiest fuels on the planet,” said the report, which said that 98 of the country’s 100 most carbon-polluting plants ran on coal.

The report recommended that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) “strengthen, finalize and implement the Clean Power Plan,” and that states begin to implement the plan to meet the standards as quickly as possible, working to quickly phase out the older, polluting plants and move to renewable energy sources. Its series of recommendations also includes urging Congress to pass a national renewable energy standard.

The Environment America Research & Policy Center is among many groups pushing for the Clean Power Plan. Six million comments have been submitted to the EPA and more than a thousand people have testified in hearing held across the country this summer in favor of the plan.

“For too long, power plants and other major polluters have enjoyed a holiday from responsibility,” said Rhode Island Senator Sheldon Whitehouse. “Rhode Island and some parts of the country have taken steps to cut carbon pollution and invest in clean energy, but this report shows why federal carbon pollution standards are necessary to protect public health, our communities and future generations from the dangerous threat of climate change.”

Anastasia Pantsios

Τρίτη, Αυγούστου 19, 2014

Completion of Australia’s largest solar plant at risk

Silex Systems, the company constructing Australia’s biggest solar plant, has suspended its funding following reports the national Renewable Energy Target (RET) could be scaled back or done away with altogether.

The 100-megawatt Mildura Solar Concentrator Power Station, a $70 million project in Victoria, was supposed to provide electricity to 40,000 homes. Now Silex Systems has said it is shelving the project.

"There are a number of factors, including low wholesale electricity prices and the uncertainty surrounding the Renewable Energy Target. They're the two main factors," ABC Radio quotes Michael Goldsworthy, the CEO of Silex Systems. 

On Monday, Prime Minister Tony Abbott called for a government review of the RET which could go as far as removing the target completely. Initially the scheme was aimed at reaching 20 percent of all electricity coming from renewable sources by 2020.

The government is expected to cut back the RET scheme with Tony Abbott blaming it for pushing up power prices. 

However research released on Monday by renewable energy advocates showed that power prices would rise if the RET was dismantled. 

Moreover the report says that coal and gas generators will gain $10 billion in extra profits over the next 15 years, with carbon emissions rising significantly as a result. 

The uncertainty over the RET is harming renewables said the Silex chief executive, but added that “concentrated photovoltaic technology has a strong future in delivering clean, low cost energy to supplement base load power in many suitable regions around the world.
READ MORE: Australia becomes first developed country to abolish carbon tax

Τρίτη, Απριλίου 22, 2014

New EU support to renewable energy and fighting climate change in the Pacific

European Commission, Press release, Brussels, 22 April 2014:

European Commissioner for Development, Andris Piebalgs, and New Zealand Foreign Minister, Murray McCully, will undertake a joint mission to the Pacific on 23-27 April to further strengthen development cooperation in that region. The visit will focus above all on renewable energy and energy efficiency projects, several of them co-financed by New Zealand and the EU in Samoa, Tuvalu, Kiribati (including Christmas Island) and the Cook Islands. Commissioner Piebalgs will also travel to Papua New Guinea from 28 – 30 April to discuss development challenges with members of the government and will launch two projects worth almost €60 million.

The Pacific islands are victims of the adverse effects of climate change where rising sea levels have an impact upon every aspect of citizens' lives and hamper economic development. The difficulties they face are exacerbated by extremely high fossil fuel costs due to their isolated location and by the lack of access to electricity in outer islands.
Ahead of the trip, European Commissioner for Development, Andris Piebalgs, said: "Renewable energy is something that I am strongly committed to. Energy is crucial for education and healthcare, for growth, tourism and even for the supply of water. In short, renewable energy is a country’s main route towards growth and development.
New Zealand Foreign Minister Murray McCully said: “New Zealand places great value on our partnership with the EU in the Pacific. Converting the region to renewable energy is critical and it is only happening at such a rapid pace because of our close cooperation with EU.
Examples of Programmes launched or visited:
• Solar panels to provide renewable electricity in three of Tuvalu's outer islands, which will make reliable clean electricity available for the first time. (€2.5 million)
• The construction of six photovoltaic power plants in the region, including the energy-dependant Cook Islands, co-financed with the Asian Development Bank,
• In Kiribati, a project will provide people with access to an environmentally-safe source of construction material, therefore protecting the vulnerable shores from perturbation caused by aggregate mining (€5.2 million).
• A Health Laboratory in Kiribati will be dedicated to monitoring and responding to environmental diseases, such as vector-borne diseases (vectors are small organisms such as mosquitoes, bugs and freshwater snails that can transmit disease from one person to another). (€500,000)
Development cooperation with Papua New Guinea
The high level visit will also include Papua New Guinea. Despite its fast-growing economy and richness in natural resources and biodiversity, the country is still facing great challenges. Around 80-85% of its population still depends on subsistence agriculture and lives in rural areas, and it is unlikely that any of the Millennium Development Goals will be achieved by 2015.
However, the change of government in 2012 came up with a number of laudable initiatives in health, education, infrastructure development and anti-corruption. During this visit, Commissioner Piebalgs will meet the country authorities and highlight that the EU stands ready to keep up the momentum initiated then.
Two new projects on human resources development (€26 million) and on rural economic development (over €32 million) will also be signed. The first one will focus on providing technical and vocational education to help the country’s labour markets absorb a growing young population and provide them with a skilled workforce adapted to the national needs. The second project will aim to accelerate income generation through infrastructure-related activities such as rural road rehabilitation and maintenance, or by increasing access to financial services for agricultural value chain financing.
Energy Partnership
These projects are the first fruits of the EU-NZ Energy Partnership for the Pacific, an outcome of the Pacific Energy Summit, held in Auckland in March 2013. Its aim was to move Pacific nations closer to achieving 50% of their electricity from renewable means. Around €400 million were secured for Pacific energy projects.
Providing clean and efficient modern energy, is an important step on the Pacific's way to sustainable development. Currently, the Pacific region meets around 80% of its energy needs from imported fossil fuels. This considerably affects health, education and trade opportunities in the region. The Partnership helps to reduce the Pacific's dependence on fossil fuels, thus generating savings.
For the European Union, the Energy Partnership for the Pacific is a concrete proof of its commitment to the UN's Sustainable Energy for All (SE4ALL). Through this initiative, the EU has committed to help developing countries provide 500 million people with access to sustainable energy services by 2030. Commissioner Piebalgs is a member of the SE4ALL Advisory Board.
The Pacific Island Countries and Territories have a total population of 10 million people, scattered across thousands of islands in the Pacific. These islands are very isolated developing countries which have already suffered from regular natural disasters, limited access to infrastructures and high dependence on natural resources. In the worst case scenario, some islands could disappear due to rising sea levels (in Kiribati and Tuvalu, a rise of sea level of merely 60cm will render the majority of these islands inhabitable) and increasing erosion occurring from intense storms. Moreover 80% of the Small Island States' population live in coastal areas which make them particularly prone to changes in the sea level or weather conditions.

Τρίτη, Ιανουαρίου 21, 2014

Germany seeks to trim subsidies for renewable energy

Germany's economy and energy minister laid out Tuesday proposals to curb renewable energy subsidies and cap electricity prices but opponents fear they could jeopardise the country's much vaunted green energy transition.
Just weeks after taking over as Economy and Energy Minister in Chancellor Angela Merkel's left-right "grand coalition", Social Democrat Sigmar Gabriel presented a blueprint to meet what he described as "the biggest challenge currently facing our country."
He wants to start by trimming subsidies for renewable sources of energy, a keystone in the so-called energy transition that Europe's top economy embarked on 15 years ago under its then Social Democrat chancellor Gerhard Schroeder.

The strategy has been pursued with even greater intensity by his conservative successor Merkel after the 2011 Fukushima disaster in Japan persuaded her to gradually abandon nuclear energy completely.
Generous subsidies -- financed via an energy tax -- have meant that renewables now account for around a quarter of energy production and consumption in Germany. And the aim is for renewables to meet as much as 80 percent of the country's energy needs by 2050.
But the tax has caused energy prices to shoot up, adding as much as 24 billion euros ($32 billion) to industry's power bills, according to Gabriel.
"We must be careful not to bite off more than we can chew," he argued, pointing out that the manufacturing industry remains the backbone of the German economy.
By the summer, the subsidy system has to be revamped to target "the most promising technologies," namely wind and solar power. And the pace of development in those sectors should be monitored more closely.
In the medium term, the Social Democrat minister hopes to introduce market mechanisms to the subsidy system.
That will help keep a lid on price rises but will not force prices down, Gabriel insisted.
Industry is satisfied
"It's a big step in the right direction," said the BDEW industry federation for the energy sector.
And Leonard Birnbaum, board member at Germany's biggest power supplier E.ON, said the proposals were "clearly positive."
The powerful BDI industry federation, which has been highly critical of the current system, also hailed "the first sensible steps."
It welcomed in particular the government's commitment to exempting high-consuming industries from all or part of the energy tax.
But such exemptions have come under fire from the EU Commission in Brussels and Berlin has been ordered to take action to appease the EU's competition authorities.
EU Energy Commissioner, Guenther Oettinger, gave Gabriel's plans the thumbs up.
"I fully back the plans of Mr Gabriel. They're important and are the right ones," Oettinger said.
By contrast, the head of the opposition Green party, Simone Peter, claimed that "Gabriel's proposals ... are putting the energy transition in jeopardy."
Fossil fuel is still the biggest energy source for Germany, and Gabriel's proposals will mean that the country will not meet its goals in reducing carbon emissions, warned Hermann Falk of the BEE industry federation for renewables.
"The planned measures are so radical that they resemble open heart surgery," the left-leaning Frankfurter Rundschau wrote in an editorial, expressing concern about the development of wind power.
Nevertheless, a revamp of the system of subsidies for renewables is just the first of many steps that Gabriel will have to take.
The minister must find a solution that allows fossil-fuel fired power stations to remain profitable. Many of them cannot compete with subsidised renewable energy sources. But Germany needs a guaranteed power supply on days when there is no sun or wind.
Peter Terium, head of Germany's number two power supplier RWE, urged the minister to tackle the problem.
"The situation for industry is catastrophic," he said.
RWE is planning to axe 7,000 jobs by 2016 as competition from renewables pushes the group into heavy loss. 

Δευτέρα, Ιανουαρίου 20, 2014

La Commission européenne veut développer l'énergie marémotrice

La Commission européenne a lancé lundi un plan d'action pour inciter les 28 à exploiter leurs vagues et marées, une source d'énergie renouvelable jugée prometteuse pour compléter éolien et solaire. Le secteur permettrait de créer plus de 25.000 emplois temps plein et 14.000 emplois temporaires.

L'énergie marémotrice est "une énergie à portée de la main, que l'on peut exploiter de manière écologique", a souligné lors d'une conférence de presse le Commissaire à l'Energie, Gunther Oettinger.

Selon sa collègue aux Affaires maritimes, Maria Damanaki, l'Europe est en pointe sur ce secteur, accueillant notamment la deuxième centrale marémotrice au monde, sur la Rance, en Bretagne (France), et des projets en Ecosse, Royaume-Uni, Portugal, France, Espagne et Scandinavie. "Mais les coûts de production sont actuellement très élevés", a-t-elle relevé, imposant le développement et la commercialisation de nouvelles technologies plus rentables. Autres problèmes à résoudre: des problèmes de raccordement au réseau, des barrières administratives et la prise en compte des incidences environnementales. 

Les groupes "Alstom (France), ABB (helvético-suédois) et Siemens (Allemagne)sont des leaders sur le marché mondial des turbines (...) nous pouvons être confiants" dans la capacité de l'industrie européenne à s'imposer sur ce marché, a jugé M. Oettinger. Industriels et scientifiques divergent toutefois sur le potentiel de l'énergie marémotrice: selon les premiers, elle pourrait d'ici 2020 couvrir jusqu'à 15% de la demande de l'UE en électricité, selon les seconds, sa part ne dépasserait pas 1% de la consommation européenne à la même date. L'objectif de la Commission est de pouvoir présenter en 2016 une feuille de route recensant objectifs et outils pour développer la filière. Elle doit être préparée par un forum réunissant tous les acteurs du secteur. Selon certaines estimations, le secteur pourrait créer plus de 25.000 emplois temps plein d'ici 2035. (Belga) 
  • Σχέδιο Ανάπτυξης Ανανεώσιμων Πηγών Ωκεάνιας Ενέργειας από την Ε.Ε.

Ένα σχέδιο δράσης με στόχο την ανάπτυξη του τομέα των ανανεώσιμων πηγών ωκεάνιας ενέργειας στην Ευρώπη παρουσίασαν σήμερα η Ελληνίδα επίτροπος αρμόδια για θέματα Θαλάσσιας Πολιτικής, Μαρία Δαμανάκη και ο Γερμανός επίτροπος αρμόδιος για θέματα Ενέργειας, Γκίντερ Έτινγκερ.
Όπως επισήμαναν η Μ. Δαμανάκη και ο Γκ. Έτινγκερ, η αξιοποίηση της ωκεάνιας ενέργειας θα συμβάλει στην απεξάρτηση της οικονομίας της ΕΕ από τον άνθρακα και θα εξασφαλίσει αξιόπιστες και ασφαλείς ανανεώσιμες πηγές ενέργειας στην Ευρώπη, μειώνοντας την εξάρτησή της από τα ορυκτά καύσιμα. Σύμφωνα με τη Μ. Δαμανάκη, οι θάλασσες και οι ωκεανοί διαθέτουν το απαιτούμενο δυναμικό για τη δημιουργία τεράστιας οικονομικής ανάπτυξης και θέσεων απασχόλησης.
«Διευκολύνοντας την πλήρη ανάπτυξη του τομέα της ωκεάνιας ενέργειας, μπορούμε να αξιοποιήσουμε αυτό το δυναμικό μέσω της καινοτομίας, εξασφαλίζοντας ταυτόχρονα "καθαρή" ενέργεια από ανανεώσιμες πηγές για την Ευρώπη.» πρόσθεσε η Μ. Δαμανάκη.
Από την πλευρά του, ο Γερμανός επίτροπος Γκ. Έτινγκερ τόνισε ότι η ανάπτυξη της ωκεάνιας ενέργειας θα μπορούσε να ενισχύσει σημαντικά την ασφάλεια του ενεργειακού εφοδιασμού. «Η δημιουργία ενός μεγάλου χαρτοφυλακίου ανανεώσιμων πηγών ενέργειας, συμπεριλαμβανομένης της ωκεάνιας ενέργειας, θα διευκολύνει επίσης την ενσωμάτωση των πηγών αυτών στο ευρωπαϊκό ενεργειακό σύστημα», ανέφερε ο Γερμανός επίτροπος.......................http://www.energia.gr/article.asp?art_id=78350

Τετάρτη, Νοεμβρίου 27, 2013

China’s path to green economy fraught with challenges, finds joint UN-Government report.

Photo: UNEP
27 November 2013 – China is facing significant environmental and social challenges that must be addressed if it is to achieve its sustainable development goals, according to a joint report released by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the Government.

“China’s Green Long March: A Study of Renewable Energy, Environmental Industry and Cement Sectors” notes that the country has a strong policy framework in place to support a national transition to a green economy.

For example, incentives, such as feed-in-tariffs, subsidies and tax advantages, already exist and are helping stimulate green investment, as are strict regulations to help phase out inefficient plants, halt water pollution and improve waste management.

The country is also a global leader in renewable energy technology investment, UNEP says in a news release. In 2012 alone, China’s renewable energy investment totalled $67.7 billion – the highest in the world and double the amount it invested in 2009.

At the same time, the joint report released this week by UNEP and China’s Ministry of Environmental Protection points out that the country is the world’s largest emitter of greenhouse gases, accounting for 27 per cent of the total emissions in 2012.

Also, while its gross domestic product (GDP) accounts for 10 per cent of the global output, it consumes 60 per cent of the world’s cement, 49 per cent of the iron and steel, and 20 per cent of the energy.

In addition, local pollution, particularly to air and water, is putting a strain on China’s economic growth. It is estimated that 90 per cent of the country’s urban water bodies are polluted, and outdoor pollution is estimated to contribute to 1.2 million premature deaths per year.

As China continues its urbanization, the report finds that the country “should not only develop more energy efficient buildings, but also create greener supply chains that reduce waste generation, water and material consumption, and energy use,” states UNEP.

Currently, buildings account for as much as one-third of global greenhouse gases, thus greening the building sector supply chain could be a key opportunity for the country, the agency says.

Among other findings, the report says there is a major technology gap between Chinese firms and their international competitors.

Τρίτη, Ιουλίου 23, 2013

Spain’s solar industry to collapse as govt introduces draconian profit caps

One of the main producers of renewable energy in Europe, Spain’s solar industry, is edging toward bankruptcy. Producers say they’ll be unable to repay credits after the government’s decision to cut subsidies. Banks will suffer and jobs will be lost.
Energy Minister José Manuel Soria has introduced a new compensation plan for calculating levels of "reasonable profitability" for renewable-energy production, distribution and transportation. It will reduce payments to companies serving the nation's electrical system by up to 2.7 billion euro annually. It’s hoped the move could help cope with the electricity system deficit that has been growing since 2005 and now exceeds 25 billion euro.

To sap the annual deficit, which has been estimated by the government at 4.5 billion euro this year, Spain is set to raise consumers' electric bills by about 3.2 percent starting from August, contributing about 400 million euro in extra revenue for the system this year and 900 million euro next year, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Experts are warning that with the increased levies on self-consumed solar energy so high many households will have to pay more for the electricity they generate themselves than they would for regular grid power. 

The main trade association for Spain's electric utilities which distribute most the country's electricity said "the cuts will compel our member companies to undertake a drastic reduction in jobs and review their investments in Spain," Asociación Española de la Industria Eléctrica (Unesa) warned.

Spain has over 4GW of installed capacity. For several years the government reportedly pushed electricity retailers to pay above-market, unaffordable prices to renewable-power producers.

This handout picture released by Gemasolar shows the Torresol Energy Gemasolar thermasolar plant in Fuentes de Andalucia near Sevilla, southern Spain. (AFP Photo/Gemasolar)
This handout picture released by Gemasolar shows the Torresol Energy Gemasolar thermasolar plant in Fuentes de Andalucia near Sevilla, southern Spain. (AFP Photo/Gemasolar)

Big subsidies triggered a boom in solar-power installations that, according to the Wall Street Journal, far exceeded official government targets. Between 2006 and 2012, when renewable-energy output doubled, Spain boasted the fourth-largest such industry in the world, according to the Economist.

In 2012 clean energy subsidies in Spain hit 8.6 billion euro, nearly 1 percent of GDP. To fund the expansion, Spanish banks lent the solar-energy companies nearly 30 billion euro. Potential loan defaults could worsen the already heavy burden on Spanish banks. The government is said to be in talks with banks to forestall bankruptcies, with five of the biggest utilities saying the new reforms will jointly cost them 1 billion euro a year.

With the new plan brought into action, the government has capped profits for the solar energy sector at 7.5 percent before tax to 5.5 percent after tax. Spanish trade associations have been shocked by the decision saying the new rate is less than the rate that industry insiders are able to borrow at, leading many to “bankruptcy because they won't be able to repay the credit that financed them.”

According to the energy minister, "this reform is not wedded to any part of the electric sector."

"We did what we had to do," Soria said. 


Πέμπτη, Ιουλίου 11, 2013

Ayrault : «Il est exclu d’exploiter des gaz de schiste en France»

Arnaud Montebourg avait évoqué la création d'une entreprise publique pour les exploiter. Après une journée de polémiques, le Premier ministre a balayé cette idée.

Jean-Marc Ayrault a recadré sévèrement jeudi Arnaud Montebourg pour ses déclarations sur le gaz de schiste, en affirmant que l’interdiction de l’exploiter serait «maintenue» et en prévenant qu' «il n’y avait qu’une politique au gouvernement».
En déplacement en Roumanie, le Premier ministre était interrogé sur les propos du ministre du Redressement productif qui a préconisé la création d’une «compagnie nationale publique» pour «exploiter de manière écologique le gaz de schiste».
«Aujourd’hui, il est exclu d’exploiter des gaz de schiste en France. Aucune autorisation n’a été donnée et cette position sera évidemment maintenue», a dit le Premier ministre à la presse qui l’interrogeait. La «position du gouvernement français consiste à travailler à préparer la transition énergétique, et le gaz de schiste n’est pas dans l’équation du gouvernement», a déclaré Ayrault.

Il a fait valoir que le gouvernement avait «deux objectifs»: le premier «est de réduire la consommation d’énergie et en particulier d’énergie fossile de notre pays par une politique offensive, d’efficacité energétique et donc d’économie d’énergie».
Le deuxième, a-t-il poursuivi, «c’est de modifier notre bouquet énergétique - aujourd’hui 75% de l’énergie est d’origine nucléaire, elle doit être à 50%-». «Cette politique, a expliqué le Premier ministre, doit être accompagnée d’une politique d’investissements offensifs dans les énergies renouvelables». «Voilà la politique du gouvernement. Il n’y a qu’une politique au gouvernement» qui, a-t-il insisté, «sur ce sujet comme sur beaucoup d’autres, elle est claire , elle est cohérente». «La condition de son efficacité, c’est qu’elle demeure claire et cohérente et elle le demeurera», a asséné le Premier ministre.

Παρασκευή, Ιουλίου 05, 2013

Με Ανεμογεννήτριες Siemens, Εγκαινιάστηκε το Μεγαλύτερο Υπεράκτιο Αιολικό Πάρκο του Κόσμου (2 VIDEO YT)

Με επιτυχία ολοκληρώθηκαν τα εγκαίνια του μεγαλύτερου υπεράκτιου σταθμού παραγωγής αιολικής ενέργειας στον κόσμο, του London Array.Η Siemens προμήθευσε τις 175 ανεμογεννήτριες και τη σύνδεση του δικτύου για το London Array. Σε συνεργασία με τη Dong Energy, η Siemens θα είναι επίσης υπεύθυνη για τις υπηρεσίες συντήρησης των ανεμογεννητριών, σύμφωνα με μακροπρόθεσμη συμφωνία. 
Η μονάδα αιολικής ενέργειας, η οποία ανήκει, αναπτύχθηκε και κατασκευάστηκε από κοινοπραξία αποτελούμενη από την Dong Energy, την E.ON και τη Masdar, έχει συνολική ισχύ 630 megawatts (MW) και θα παράγει καθαρή ηλεκτρική ενέργεια ικανή να τροφοδοτήσει 500.000 βρετανικά νοικοκυριά. Το London Array θα μείωσει τις ετήσιες εκπομπές διοξειδίου του άνθρακα (CO2) κατά περίπου 900.000 τόνους, ποσό που ισούται με τις εκπομπές 300.000 επιβατικών αυτοκινήτων.
«To London Array είναι η μεγαλύτερη στον κόσμο υπεράκτια μονάδα παραγωγής αιολικής ενέργειας και αποτελεί ένα ορόσημο της ανάπτυξης της υπεράκτιας αιολικής ενέργειας. 
Το έργο αυτό υπογραμμίζει την ηγετική θέση της Siemens σε αυτή την ελκυστική αγορά ανάπτυξης», δήλωσε οPeter Lφscher, Πρόεδρος και Διευθύνων Σύμβουλος της Siemens AG, με την ευκαιρία της τελετής εγκαινίων που πραγματοποιήθηκε στο Margate, στη Μεγάλη Βρετανία.Το υπεράκτιο αιολικό πάρκο London Array βρίσκεται στις εκβολές του ποταμού Τάμεση,περίπου 20 χιλιόμετρα από την ακτή του Κεντ και του Έσεξ. Η Siemens προμήθευσε και εγκατέστησε τις 175 ανεμογεννήτριες, κάθε μία από τις οποίες έχει διάμετρο ρότορα 120 μέτρα και ονομαστική ισχύ 3,6 MW. Επιπλέον, η εταιρεία προμήθευσε τη σύνδεση του δικτύου με ένα χερσαίο και δύο υπεράκτιους υποσταθμούς στη Βόρεια Θάλασσα. Η ηλεκτρική ενέργεια που παράγεται από τις ανεμογεννήτριες συγκεντρώνεται στη θάλασσα και μεταφέρεται μέσω υποβρύχιων καλωδίων υψηλής τάσης προς την ακτή. 
Η λειτουργία και η συντήρηση του αιολικού πάρκου θα πραγματοποιείται από μια purpose-built βάση στο λιμάνι του Ramsgate.«Έργα τέτοιου μεγέθους συμβάλλουν στην περαιτέρω βιομηχανοποίηση των σύνθετων διαδικασιών παραγωγής και logistics για τις υπεράκτιες εγκαταστάσεις αιολικής ενέργειας», δήλωσε ο Peter Lφscher. Κατά τη διάρκεια εκτέλεσης των έργων στο London Array, η Siemens είχε την ευκαιρία να τυποποιήσει περαιτέρω τις διαδικασίες υπεράκτιας εγκατάστασης, οι οποίες περιλαμβάνουν την κατασκευή, τη μεταφορά και τα logistics, καθώς και την εγκατάσταση των υπεράκτιων ανεμογεννητριών.
Η υπεράκτια αιολική ενέργεια διαδραματίζει ήδη σημαντικό ρόλο στα ενεργειακά συστήματα της Βόρειας Ευρώπης. Η Μεγάλη Βρετανία και η Γερμανία – οι μεγαλύτερες αγορές υπεράκτιας αιολικής ενέργειας – έχουν φιλόδοξα σχέδια ανάπτυξης. Και οι δύο χώρες σχεδιάζουν να επεκτείνουν άμεσα και ευρέως την παραγωγή της υπεράκτιας ενέργειας. Στη Γερμανία, η επιτυχημένη ενεργειακή μετάβαση για την κάλυψη των μελλοντικών αναγκών της είναι δυνατή μόνο με την περαιτέρω αύξηση των υπεράκτιων σταθμών αιολικής ενέργειας. Η γερμανική κυβέρνηση σχεδιάζει την εγκατάσταση υπεράκτιων μονάδων ισχύος 10 gigawatt (GW) έως το 2020. Η Μεγάλη Βρετανία στοχεύει στην παραγωγή αιολικής ενέργειας 18 GW μέχρι το 2020, αρκετής για να καλύψει περίπου το ένα πέμπτο της ζήτησης ηλεκτρικής ενέργειας στη Βρετανία.
Η Siemens βρίσκεται στην πρώτη γραμμή της αγοράς υπεράκτιων μονάδων παραγωγής αιολικής ενέργειας, συνδέσεων δικτύου και υπηρεσιών συντήρησης υπεράκτιων αιολικών πάρκων. Η εταιρεία έχει ήδη εγκαταστήσει περισσότερες από 1.100 ανεμογεννήτριες στη θάλασσα, συνολικής ισχύος 3,4 GW, πάνω από τα δύο τρίτα των οποίων βρίσκονται στη Μεγάλη Βρετανία. Συνολικά, οι παραγγελίες της εταιρείας περιλαμβάνουν υπεράκτια ισχύ 4,6 GW. Συμπεριλαμβανομένου τουLondon Array, η Siemens έχει υλοποιήσει πέντε έργα σύνδεσης δίκτυου στη Μεγάλη Βρετανία. 
The Prime Minister first attended the inauguration of London Array, the world's largest offshore wind farm located 12 miles off the Kent and Essex coasts in the outer Thames Estuary.

A ceremony was held to mark the occasion at the Turner Contemporary gallery in Margate, Kent, from where the wind farm's 175 turbines can be seen.

London Array will be able to power the equivalent of around half a million UK households and should help reduce harmful CO2 emissions by more than 900,000 tonnes a year. As well as marking a big step forward for UK renewable energy generation it will help ensure a reliable electricity source for the south east.

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