Renew On Line (UK) 66

Extracts from NATTA's journal
Renew, Issue 166 March-April 2007
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Contents

1. Energy Policy: White paper delay, EAC blown away

2.Wind power : Micro-wind doubts, Offshore wind boom

3. Carbon Policy: Zero Carbon Houses, Carbon rationing

4. NCC: Green power reality check

5. Regional policy: Wales and Scotland

6. FoE say no to Severn Barrage: it could crowd out alternatives

7. News Roundup: Biofuels, Planning, Solar Fine, Clean Coal plant

8. Global Climate Worsens: IPCCC 4th report

9. European Roundup: EC on Energy Efficiency

10. USA: Bush unmoved on Climate

11. Around the world: Australia, China, Asia-Pacific Climate Pact

12. Nuclear News: UK, US, Germany and Bulgaria

Around the world

Australia goes solar

Australia is to build a 154MW focussed-solar heat concentrator for electricity generation in Victoria. Similar plants have been built in the past in the US & Italy and Spain is building a 354MW unit. The Australian federal government has also announced a £146m project to produce cleaner energy through brown coal drying and carbon capture and storage. Australia has refused to ratify the Kyoto protocol and so far has taken little advantage of its enviable climate, but now climate change worries seem to be getting though. The country' s leading science body, the Commonwealth Scientific & Industrial Research Organisation, said wine growers needed to re-think plans to cope with climate change or face possible ruin: ' In some regions it will become too warm to produce balanced wines from some- or maybe all- the grape varieties growing there now' .

Renewables in China

As a signatory to the Kyoto Protocol, China has set a voluntary target to supply 10% of its energy (60 GW) from renewables by 2010, including 50 GW from hydro and 5 GW each from wind and biomass. Its 2020 targets are an overall 16% contribution from renewables with 30GW each from wind and biomass. The longer term potentials are huge: e.g. up to 400GW from hydro and 3TW from wind, plus a vast biomass potential.

RenewableEnergyAccess noted that renewables have grown at an annual average of 25% in China over the past few years, and according to RETPS, the DTI Trade &Promotion service, ' China already has capabilities in solar photovoltaics and has the world' s largest installed capacity of hydropower and active solar heating. China is now increasing its manufacturing capacity for these technologies. Other areas of interest are biomass and biofuels, offshore wind and marine technologies. There is much activity by manufacturers of onshore wind turbines, responding to government requirements for local content.'

The Chinese Government passed its Renewable Energy Act in Feb. 2005 and in 2006 announced details of its support scheme. In parallel, supported by the World Bank, the China Renewable Energy Scale-up Programme will implement technology improvement in both wind and biomass. The first phase of CRESP is worth $40m. And as Chinawatch has noted, while in 2005, $38bn was invested in renewables worldwide, China topped the list with $6bn, excluding spending on large hydro.

Asia-Pacific Climate Pact

While the UNFCCC meeting in Keyna was trying for a post-2012 Kyoto agreement (see Groups) the rival/parallel Asia-Pacific Partnership on Clean Development and Climate, which involves the US, Japan Australia, China, India & S. Korea, said it will help to ' overcome barriers' for 24 renewable energy projects-1.8GW in all, mainly solar, but also hydro & biomass. See: www.state.gov/g/oes/rls/fs/2006/75369.htm

World roundup

* Turkey has installed a 20-turbine windfarm in Bandirma taking its capacity to 50 MW. The Energy Minister said there was potential to install 330 more windfarms in the area.

* Over 10,000 homes in the Philippines using solar energy were unaffected by a power cut that hit Luzon following the collapse of transmission towers after typhoon Milenyo.

* Google plans to install a total of 1.6 megawatts of PV solar onsite at its HQ in California, with more than 9000 solar panels.

* Bulgaria' s third-largest bank, United Bulgaria Bank, is to promote energy efficiency and the use of renewables with a Euro 10m loan from the European Bank for Reconstruction & Development (see ' Belene doubts' later)

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