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October 14 Green Energy News

Science and Technology:

  • The International Energy Agency has reassessed the roles of both photovoltaic and thermal solar energy sources and published its findings in a new Technology Roadmap (for) Solar Thermal Electricity. The agency predicts reduced medium-term prospects for solar thermal electricity, but the long-term prospects are unchanged. [CleanTechnica]
  • This past September was the warmest since records began in 1880, according to new data released by NASA this weekend. The announcement continues a trend of record or near-record breaking months, including last May and August. This means 2014 will become the warmest year on record. [Huffington Post]

World:

  • Onshore wind is cheaper than coal, gas or nuclear energy when the costs of ‘external’ factors like air quality, human toxicity and climate change are taken into account, according to an EU analysis. The report says that onshore wind costs roughly €105 per MW/h, while gas comes in at €164, coal at €233, and nuclear at €125. [The Guardian]
  • Of the total €120 billion to €140 billion in energy subsidies handed out by the 28 EU member states in 2012, coal accounted for €10.1 billion, exactly the same amount as onshore wind, despite it being a markedly more mature industry and its central role in driving up greenhouse gas emissions and air pollution. [Business Green]
  • The University of Glasgow in Scotland has taken a page from Stanford and other US colleges. It has become the first EU academic institution to divest fossil fuel holdings. The university court voted to divest $29 million (£18 million) of investments in the fossil fuel industry. [CleanTechnica]
  • The Australian town of Uralla is vying with five others to become the first town in the country to rely solely on renewable energy. Mayor Michael Pearce says the move will cut power bills for the town’s ratepayers and businesses. It could also mean wind turbines become a fixture on the Uralla landscape. [Armidale Express]
  • Remote communities in Australia’s Northern Territory will reap the benefits of solar power thanks to a $55 million (US) project funded by the Australian Renewable Energy Agency and the Northern Territory Government, and managed by Power and Water Corporation. [solarserver.com]
  • Despite weak momentum at the moment, energy from sources such as wood, manure and agricultural by-products could go a long way toward replacing coal in Europe over the next two decades, a leading consultancy says. McKinsey & Company sees bio-energy being cost-competitive with coal. [Sourceable]
  • IKEA Group may introduce an internal carbon emissions price to help its drive to protect the environment and create a “new and better” company. IKEA, seen as global trend-setter among retailers on green issues, is also on target to invest $1.5 billion in solar and wind power by 2015. [Voice of America‎]

US:

  • In the report, Climate Change Adaptation Roadmap, US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said uncertainty in climate change projections cannot be an “excuse for delaying action.” The 20-page report was released as Hagel attended a conference in Peru with his counterparts from North and South America. [International Business Times]
  • The US is creating opportunities to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, while delivering net economic benefits, according to a report by World Resources Institute. The report also says emerging technologies could help the US achieve deeper reductions even faster with targeted policy support. [Environmental Leader]
  • Webster Groves, Missouri is the latest city to have been officially designated by the US EPA as a Green Power Community (GPC). To become a GPC, the city, including local government, businesses and residents must collectively use enough green power to meet or exceed EPA’s Green Power Community purchase requirements. [Fierce Energy]

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