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

European Roundup

Climate Battles

Germany is to make fighting climate change a top priority now it has control of the G8 and will try to persuade the USA of its importance. Chancellor Angela Merkel said ' We urgently need agreements for the period after 2012 when the Kyoto Protocol expires. Germany will do all it can within its realm as president of both the G8 and the EU.' She added ' China, India and other countries are now much more aware of the risks. As a result, the ground is now more fertile than it once was.' But she said any efforts to stop global warming without the co-operation of ' our American partners' , the world' s largest producer of greenhouse gases, were doomed to failure. ' That means we' ve certainly got our work cut out for us.'

EC on Energy Efficiency

The long-awaited European Commission report on improving energy efficiency emerged at the end of last year, aiming to reduce energy wastage by an additional 20% by 2020. It said failure to use energy more efficiently would lead to direct costs of more than 100 billion euros by 2020.

The ' Energy Efficiency Action Plan' , which will be implemented over the next six years, identifies 10 priority steps the EU should take:

1. New standards for energy performance for 14 product groups including boilers, water heaters, consumer electronics, copiers,TVs, lights.

2. Better energy performance in buildings, including a strategy for low energy houses.

3. More efficient energy conversion & transmission- by 2008 the EC will develop minimum binding efficiency requirements for new electricity, heating and cooling capacity lower than 20 MW and consider, if necessary, such requirements for larger production units.

4. More efficient cars- if necessary, the EC will propose legislation in 2007 to limit car CO2 emissions at 120 g/km by 2012, since current voluntary commitments by the car industry may be insufficent

5. Better financing of energy efficiency measures for SMEs and ESCOs (Energy service companies)

6. Upgrade the use of taxation- the EC will prepare a policy paper on “indirect taxation” in 2007 and review energy tax rules to better integrate energy efficiency and environmental needs.

7. Use EU funds to boost energy efficiency in the new member states

8. Raise public awareness by education and information programmes

9. Develop a covenant with Mayors of large pioneering cities

10. An international framework with key external trading partners

Detailed savings

In all over 75 measures are outlined. The Plan underlines the importance of minimum energy performance standards for a wide range of appliances and equipment (from household goods such as fridges and air conditioners to industrial pumps and fans), and for buildings and energy services. In combination with performance ratings & labelling schemes minimum performance standards, it says these measures represent a powerful tool for removing inefficient products from the market, informing consumers of the most efficient products and transforming the market to make it more energy efficient. Minimum performance requirements for new and renovated buildings will be developed, and low energy consumption buildings will be promoted.

The Plan also emphasises the potential for reducing losses in the generation, transmission and distribution of electricity. It proposes targeted instruments to improve the efficiency of both new and existing generation capacity and to reduce transmission & distribution losses.

In transport, the Plan says that energy savings can be achieved by ensuring fuel efficiency of cars, developing markets for cleaner vehicles, and by improving the efficiency of urban, rail, maritime and aviation transport systems, and by seeking changes in consumer behaviour.

Industrial sectors are not covered in the plan, as they are expected to be covered by the EU Emissions Trading Scheme.

Overall the EC says that some progress has been made so far- see left- and it calculates that energy efficiency improvement would be 1.2% p.a. without the action plan (excluding structure changes). But by speeding up implementation of current legislation (such as the Directives on performance in buildings, ecodesign and energy services) the EU could achieve 0.7% extra p.a. and the new policy measures in the action plan would they add a further 0.8%, giving overall 2.7% higher energy efficiency improvement p.a.

Sources: Reuters, Greenprices, EC. For more see: http://ec.europa.euaction_plan_energy_efficiency index_fr.htm

Aviation

The EU plans to include emission from flights within the EU in the EU Emission

Trading System- from 2011. And fights from outside from 2012.

Wave for Portugal

The world' s first commercial wave energy project began delivering energy to the north of Portugal at the end of last year, using Pelamis wave devices manufactured by the Scottish firm Ocean Power Delivery. The 2.25MW Pelamis project is the first stage of the EU-funded programme, the result of two decades of research at Lisbon' s Superior Technical Institute. Power is brought ashore at Agucadoura, in northern Portugal, and, according to Inter Press Service, will supply1,500 homes via the national state run electricity grid.

Rui Barros, director of new projects at Enersis, the Portugese renewables company leading the development consortrium, commented ' This project, begun in 2003, is now in the world vanguard. Of all the varieties of renewable energy, perhaps harnessing the waves is the only one where Portugal might have a real future.'

As we noted in Renew 164, in Oct. 2004, the Archimedes Wave Swing pilot plant also exported power to the Portugese electricity grid, so they are well on the way with this source.

In an article published by Wordpress and relayed by RenewabeEnergyAccess, Rich Bowden noted that, ' with its geographical position and extensive coastline giving access to powerful Atlantic waves, official estimates from Portugal' s State Secretariat for Industry and Innovation have predicted wave power could account for up to 30% of the country' s gross domestic product by 2050. Renewable energy experts have determined wave farms in Portugal could yield as much as three times as much energy as that produced by a wind turbine park for the same investment cost.'

He noted that a report published by the Portuguese Wave Energy Center ' has confirmed the long-term economic benefits of wave energy for the country' and had called for ' a strategy to attract foreign investment into Portuguese wave power ventures' .

And he reported that ' As part of the government supported alternative energy plan, another 28 wave power devices will be installed in Portugal within a year, reaching a target of 22.5 MW of electricity produced using wave energy. The project is supported by state run power company Energias de Portugal.'

Sources: http://www.worldpress.org/Europe/2520.cfm

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