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Concentration of CO2 in the Atmosphere

October 8 Green Energy News

Science and Technology:

  • Researchers at the Ohio State University have succeeded in combining a battery and a solar cell into one hybrid device, thus creating the world’s first solar battery. A mesh solar panel allows air to enter the battery, and light and oxygen enable different parts of the chemical reactions that charge the battery. [EE Times India]
  • To meet global climate change commitments, the International Energy Agency recently called on the United States, the European Union, China and India to invest a combined $380 billion in energy storage by the middle of the century. A large variety of companies are developing many technologies. [New York Times]
  • The 2014 Nobel prize for physics has been awarded to three scientists for their invention of energy-efficient blue light-emitting diodes, a breakthrough that was a cornerstone in the development of energy-saving lighting. This invention made white light from LEDs possible. [Renewable Energy Magazine]

World:

  • UK Energy Secretary Ed Davey has broken ranks within government to launch a stinging attack against his coalition partners in the Conservative Party for undermining the onshore wind sector. He accused Tory Communities Secretary Eric Pickles of verging on “abusing ministerial power.” [reNews]
  • Global energy consultants Pöyry published a report suggesting the cost of solar and wind power may drop to the same level as fossil fuels within a decade, ending a need for renewable subsidies in Europe. Pöyry’s report suggest that Spain could achieve wholesale grid parity in solar power as early as 2021. [pv magazine]
  • The Clean Energy Council, the peak body for wind and solar power in Australia, has defended a plan to exempt the aluminium industry from the federal renewable energy target, saying it would come at only a trivial cost to consumers. They believe it might salvage bipartisan support for the target. [Sydney Morning Herald]
  • For Carnegie Wave Energy, the expensive, decade-long process of developing its wave technology – to convert ocean swell into renewable power and freshwater – is approaching a critical moment, as the company prepares to deploy its underwater buoys at a commercial test site off the Australian coast near Perth. [BRW]
  • In its half-yearly report for 2014, the World Wind Energy Association said the overall volume of global added capacity came in at 17,613 MW in the six months to June – up from 13,978 and 16,376 in the first half of 2013 and 2012 respectively. This is a clear indication of recovery for the industry. [Sourceable]
  • In the past, over the years, Australia’s electricity supply industry grew ­accustomed to the inexorable growth in electricity demand. That growth was constant and reliable. Beginning 2007, demand growth flattened, and then began to decline. This was a big surprise. [The Australian Financial Review]
  • Britain won EU approval for a new nuclear power plant at Hinkley Point on Wednesday, allowing the government to commit to 35 years of financial support for Europe’s biggest and most controversial infrastructure project. EU commissioners from at least five countries voiced opposition to the plan. [Financial Times]

US:

  • The state of New York will provide $750 million dollars for a huge solar plant in Buffalo Governor Cuomo announced this week. The facility will be used by SolarCity, and Elon Musk has pledged 5 billion dollars for the project, which could create 5,000 jobs in the state. [CleanTechnica]
  • Offshore wind power is not usually associated with lower-cost energy, at least not in the public imagination. But it turns out that installing 54 GW of offshore wind power off America’s coasts can cut the cost of electricity in the US by an astounding $7.68 billion a year. [Natural Resources Defense Council]
  • As the drought in California continues to strain the state’s hydropower resources, natural gas and renewables are locked in competition to determine which will capture the lion’s share of the lost hydropower capacity. Natural gas output has an inverse relationship with hydropower generation. [Platts]
  • The electricity market is very complex and changing. The 40-year-old Ginna nuclear plant on the shore of Lake Ontario in upstate New York is becoming an example of an emerging trend. Its income is down because cheap natural gas and renewable energy have depressed the market. [New York Times]
  • The results of a Natural Resources Defense Council poll were overwhelming: nearly 8 in 10 New Yorkers support a moratorium on fracking, and support crosses geographical, ideological and racial divides. At the same time, respondents showed tremendous support for renewable energy. [Natural Resources Defense Council]

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