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In the headlines: Ericsson and Philips launch new connected LED street lighting model and Bhutan to introduce EVs

Date
24 February 2014
In the headlines: Ericsson and Philips launch new connected LED street lighting model and Bhutan to introduce EVs

Clean Revolution news stories you may have missed:

Global

Half of the UN-backed Green Climate Fund’s financial support for climate adaptation is set to be directed towards small island states and other vulnerable regions. At a meeting in Bali board members agreed to aim for a “50:50 balance between mitigation and adaptation over time”, additionally guaranteeing that at least 50% of the adaptation funding allocation would be diverted to high risk areas. Responding to Climate Change, February 21.

Nine new emissions trading schemes (ETS) were launched worldwide in 2013, and as many as five of them were set up in various cities and provinces in China, according to a recent report released by the International Carbon Action Partnership (ICAP). This is the highest number of new schemes launched since the European Union began the world’s first carbon trading system in 2005. The four other trading schemes which also started last year were in California in the United States, Switzerland, Kazakhstan and Quebec in Canada. Eco-Business, February 14.

Asia – Pacific

Iceland and Japan, two nations rich with underground sources of renewable energy, can tackle climate change together by promoting the use of geothermal power, Iceland’s environment minister said. “We can cooperate both in Japan and Iceland,” Sigurdur Ingi Johannsson said in an interview in Tokyo. “It is the know-how we have for how to utilize geothermal in many ways” such as power generation, heating, and fish farming, he said. Bloomberg New Energy Finance, February 19.

Alternative-energy investment firm Equis Funds plans to raise US$500 million over the next year to fund solar-energy projects in Japan where the use of renewable energy is expected to at least double over the next 15 years. Equis had already collected funds from foreign investors keen to tap a rare opportunity to invest in Japanese infrastructure, a sector largely financed by domestic corporations, company partner Adam Ballin said on Wednesday. South China Morning Post, February 14.

China

China was this week named as the world's leading market for smart grid technologies for the first time, after overtaking the US as the biggest investor in smart grid deployment. Analyst firm Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) published the new figures on the global smart grid market, confirming that overall investment reached a record $14.9bn in 2013, up from the $14.2bn recorded in 2012. BusinessGreen, February 21.

China could slash its greenhouse gas emissions by using renewable energy for 80% of its power generation by mid-century, and at a far less a cost than relying on coal, a new report said today. For this to happen, the world’s largest emitter would need to phase out the use of coal completely by 2040, engineer high carbon prices through emissions trading schemes and impose rigorous standards of energy efficiency, WWF said in its report. Responding to Climate Change, February 20.

Europe

The European Green Party (EGP) gathered national members to adopt a common programme for the EU elections and motivate national sympathisers to fight negative polling results, in an electoral convention in Brussels on Saturday (22 February)…The main point of the convention was the adoption of the Greens’ manifesto: a common programme that will be used in national green parties’ campaigns. The text spells out a ‘Green New Deal’ that focuses on the promise of green jobs and sustainability in Europe. EurActiv, February 24.

India

India’s solar power cost fell to a new low, edging closer to coal, as declining panel prices and increased competition drew offers to build plants from groups backed by BlackRock Inc. and Electricite de France SA. India, which uses competitive bidding to select companies offering to generate clean energy at the lowest cost, awarded 750 megawatts of permits on Feb. 21, half of that eligible to use imported equipment. The government also offered grants to offset project costs for the first time, helping attract bids for triple the capacity auctioned. Bloomberg New Energy Finance, February 24.

Renewable energy and energy efficiency projects in India are set to get a push with a €200 million line of credit from the European Investment Bank given to the Indian Renewable Energy Development Agency (IREDA). “The line of credit is secured by a sovereign guarantee from Government of India,” an official statement from the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy said. The total loan period is 20 years. The Hindu Business Line, February 23.

North America

Stanford University scientist Mark Jacobson has developed a 50-state roadmap for transforming the United States from dependence on fossil fuels to 100 percent renewable energy by 2050…The motivation for the 50-state plan, he said, is to address the negative impacts on climate and human health from widespread use of coal, oil and natural gas. Replacing these fossil fuels with clean technologies would significantly reduce carbon dioxide emissions that contribute to global warming and spare the lives of an estimated 59,000 Americans who die from exposure to air pollution annually, he said. Stanford University, February 15.

UK

Ed Davey, the UK energy secretary, will confirm plans before Monday's cabinet meeting for a major new investment in the UK's first carbon capture and storage scheme at Peterhead power station in Alex Salmond's Holyrood constituency. Davey said the funding, expected to cover design and development costs for plant, which will capture CO2 emissions before pumping them into former oil fields in the North Sea, would be a "world first" for a gas-fired power station. The Guardian, February 24.

George Osborne has distanced himself from the climate sceptic wing of the Conservative party, saying that the UK should fight climate change in the cheapest possible way and that environmentalists should stop opposing nuclear power and shale gas. In a speech in Hong Kong, the chancellor said he disagreed with those in his party that deny manmade climate change. He said he firmly believed that climate change was caused by humans. However, he added, “Where I would differ from some is I would say: ‘Let’s try and do this in as cheap a possible way as we can’. Blue and Green Tomorrow, February 21.

Innovation

Ericsson and Royal Philips, the global leader in lighting, have jointly launched an innovative new connected LED street lighting model. The partnership solves two major issues that cities are facing today: providing citizens with improved network performance in dense urban areas as well as high quality, public lighting that is energy efficient. Philips and Ericsson combine the benefits of mobile connectivity and LED lighting in a ''lighting-as-a-service'' model for cities. It allows city authorities to offer space within their connected lighting poles to network service providers for mobile broadband infrastructure. Morningstar, February 24.

Bhutan has partnered with Nissan to roll out electric cars across the isolated mountain kingdom. The country aims to become a zero emission nation and envisages the capital Thimphu as a "clean-electric" city in which transportation for its 100,000 citizens is powered by clean energy. BusinessGreen, February 24.

Electric car maker Tesla Motors ended a year of dramatic growth in 2013 by announcing in its fourth quarter and full year earnings report on Wednesday that it plans to significantly boost the number of its Model S cars shipped in 2014, and also confirmed that a massive battery production factory is planned with partners. Tesla said it plans to boost the number of Model S cars shipped by over 55 percent in 2014 to 35,000 cars. Tesla shipped its first Model S about 20 months ago and in 2013 delivered 22,477 Model S cars. Tesla says it was able to hit its goal of 25 percent gross margin on these cars by the end of 2013 and will reach 28 percent gross margin by the end of 2014. Gigaom, February 19.

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