Renew On Line (UK) 69

Extracts from NATTA's journal
Renew, Issue 169 Sept-Oct 2007
   Welcome   Archives   Bulletin         


1. UK takes a lead on offshore wind  

2. Biofuels – good or bad?  

3. Tidal Surges - and wave too 

4. After the Energy White Paper 

5. Energy Policy developments 

6. Domestic Energy plans go awry 

7. New Waste Recycling plan 

8. World Developments  

9. EU Developments  

10. Around the world  

11. Nuclear developments 

9. EU Developments  

EU plan will cost €1.1 trillion  

The EU’s new climate change policy, with emissions to be cut by 20% by 2020, will cost up to €1.1 trillion (£747bn) to implement over the next 14 years, according to a  study ‘A Cost Curve for Greenhouse Gas Reduction’ by the consulting firm McKinsey. ‘On the basis of a balanced, sensible application of the most easily accessible technology, we’re calculating that the EU states will face annual costs of between €60bn to €80bn up until 2020’.  It suggests that energy saving technology and green energy supply technology is capable of reducing three-quarters of greenhouse gas emissions, and that the potential in building insulation should be given much more attention, since there is a wealth of low cost possibilities that would neither negatively effect our lifestyles nor our comfort.  For example, insulating a building could save €150 for each tonne of carbon dioxide reduced.

Overall the study says it is possible for the world to reduce CO2 levels by 27bn tonnes by 2030, but warns that the EU should not give priority to reducing emissions in electricity generation, which has the potential to lower its CO2 emissions by 6bn tonnes by 2030, while failing to give at least equal attention to the forestry industry that could reduce its share by 7bn tonnes through improved management. Source: Guardian 28/3/07 

  • It’s been estimated that the loss of carbon sinks via land clearance is responsible for around the 30% of the extra CO2 in the atmosphere, so reafforestation is clearly vital- source: Prospect  March.


Solar Europe 

* Portugals 11MW €61m solar PV power plant, a joint US and Portuguese energy company project, is spread across a 150 acre hillside in Serpa, 124 miles southeast of Lisbon, with 52,000 cells! Portugal is almost entirely dependent on imported energy, but is developing solar and wave projects and building wind farms.  It plans to invest €8 bn in renewables over the next five years, which it’s claimed would create about 10,000 new jobs. Prime Minister Jose Socrates said in January that his Socialist government wanted 45% of power to come from renewable sources by 2010. And it wants 5.7GW of wind capacity and 250MW of wave energy by 2012 -and hopes to get  60% of its electricity from renewables by 2020.

*The EU’s first commercial concentrating solar power (CSP) plant, an 11MW array built by Solucar, has been inaugurated near the southern Spanish city of Seville.  A 30MW CSP system is also planned in Morocco part of a 470MW CCGT plant.

See Feature in Renew 169 for more on CSP and 

* Italy has launched new feed-in tariffs for Solar PV. Small rooftop systems get $0.74 USD/kWh, among the highest payments for PV in Europe. Building integrated PV will get $0.80 USD/kWh, putting Italy on a par with tariffs in Germany and France. And given its climate the output will be higher  However, the Italian PV programme still includes net metering and payments for wholesale generation costs- the feed-in tariffs are on top of the net-metering rate. And only PV has been shifted out of the country’s RPS programme. But, the new programme has lifted the annual installation cap and increased the total programme cap to 1.2GW.   Sources: Paul Gipe, Sun & Wind Energy


 El Hierro, a small island in Spain’s Canary Islands, will generate 100% of its electricity from renewables. The 10,500 residents will rely on a 10MW hydro plant and a windfarm will generate electricity for a pumping station that will store water in two reservoirs. Excess wind energy will power two desalination plants and an existing diesel plant will be maintained for backup. The €54m scheme will, it’s claimed, cut the island’s annual CO2 emission by 18,700 tonnes.

Green Ireland 

 ‘By 2020 one third of electricity consumed in this economy will come from renewable sources,’ Irish Natural Resources minister Noel Dempsey said in a speech following publication of a White paper policy document on sustainable energy. About 8% of electricity consumed in the Republic last year came from green sources, up from 6.8% in 2005. With nuclear generation banned and limited potential for hydro, the country would have to rely on natural gas for 70% of fuel needs in 13 years time if steps were not taken to encourage more diverse energy supplies. ‘Wind energy will provide the pivotal contribution to achieving this target’, the government said in its policy paper. Other potential green energy sources include biomass and ocean energy- the government said it wanted to have working technology in place producing electricity from waves or marine currents within a decade, and at least 500MW of  ocean power capacity in place by 2020.  In line with EU targets, it aims to have  5.75% of vehicle fuel met from biofuel sources by 2010, 10% by 2020. In addition it looked to renewable heat suppliers producing 5% of heat by 2010 and 12% by 2020. Potential ‘clean coal technologies’ may  also  make a long term contribution. Energy intensity would continue to be reduced, with total energy use falling by 20% by 2020, in line with EU targets. There was also interest in the idea of an EU Supergrid- an important issue, in terms of energy security and balancing, for a island with relatively small population.

Ireland’s Green Party said the plans fell-short, however, pointing to a lack of firm goals for heating and transport. 

Source: ‘Delivering A Sustainable Energy Future For Ireland’ Government White Paper, The Energy Framework 2007-2020; 

EU PV map  

A new on-line Geographical Information System interactive map published by the European Commission allows users to work out the photovoltaic solar energy potential of different parts of Europe- with the sunnier south getting twice the amount of energy than in more northerly areas such as Scotland or Northern Scandinavia.  

* The EU has also produced some useful fact sheets on renewable policy, achievements and targets in each EU country: 

Flying Dutchman back 

The European Commission says it will back Dutch plans to extend assistance to wind-propelled commercial cruising vessels. (CCV) The fiscal measure aims to make the Netherlands more attractive to shipping companies that are active in operating wind-propelled CCVs. 


EU Biogas feed-in law?  

‘Biogas can replace natural gas in the EU  by 2020’ says a study on behalf of the German Green’s who want a biogas feed-in law like the REFIT electricity law.

Norway wants to cut its net greenhouse gas emissions to zero by 2050

Travel wars The EU wants to include shipping in the EU Emission Trading System, while Eurostar says it will cut emissions by 25% per train  passenger by 2012. And Virgin says it will test a biofuelled 747 plane next year!

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