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In the headlines: UK wind power smashes monthly record and NYC GHG emissions have dropped 19% since 2005

Date
06 January 2014
In the headlines: UK wind power smashes monthly record and NYC GHG emissions have dropped 19% since 2005

Clean Revolution news stories you may have missed:

Global

Five events taking place through January will shape how the world talks about climate change in 2014 and beyond. Responding to Climate Change, January 2.

The Earth’s climate is far more sensitive to carbon dioxide emissions than previously thought, heightening the likelihood of a 4C temperature rise by 2100, new Australian-led research of cloud systems has found. The study, published in Nature, provides new understanding on the role of cloud formation in climate sensitivity – one of the key uncertainties in predictions of climate change. The Guardian, December 31.

Asia – Pacific

According to the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO), all new electricity generation capacity in Australia will be from renewable energy. It will mostly be from wind energy, while 13% of that is expected to be from large-scale solar PV, and 3% from biomass. After years of hearing very little about Australia’s transition from fossil fuels, there has been Sydney’s plan to go 100% renewable by 2030 and a lot of big news in 2013. But the next several years will be even bigger. According to an IEEE article about the coming growth of renewables in Australia: ”There are nearly 15 800 megawatts of proposed wind generation projects, according to the AEMO. More than 780 MW of the wind power is expected to come online in 2014-2015.” Clean Technica, December 31.

China

China’s ambition to become the world’s largest solar power generator has been boosted with news that Trina Solar plans to build a one gigawatt plant in the Xinjiang region. The company made the announcement on Monday, with work expected to commence early this year. Nuclear power plants typically have a capacity of 1GW, while the vast Three Gorges Dam is rated at 22GW. According to state news agency Xinhua, China installed 10GW of solar photovoltaic in 2013, including the world’s highest solar plant, a 10 megawatt plant in Tibet. Responding to Climate Change, January 2.

China, the world’s biggest emitter of greenhouse gases, will assign credit ratings to companies in industries with heavy pollution or overcapacity based on their efforts to protect the environment. The rating will provide a reference to banks for reviewing credit for the companies and to authorities for arranging subsidies, the Ministry of Environmental Protection said yesterday in a statement on its website. Companies will be ranked on a four-level color-coded scale, with green representing the best and red the worst. Bloomberg News, January 2.

Europe

The share of renewable energy among EU member states rose to 14.4% in 2012, compared to 13.1% in 2011, according to the European renewable energy barometer EurObserv’ER. EU countries have a 20% target for the share of clean energy by 2020. The latest figures say that in 2012, the 27 member states increased their renewables consumption by 1.3 percentage points. Blue & Green Tomorrow, December 24.

India

Kerala can meet over 95 per cent of its energy demand using renewable energy sources by the year 2050, according to a report released the other day. The Energy Report - Kerala, prepared by WWF-India and the World Institute of Sustainable Energy (WISE) Pune, is a state-specific report that provides a vision for a 100-per cent renewable and sustainable energy supply in another three decades…The estimation of solar power potential in Kerala, as per the report, is around 44,456 MW. Out of this, 31,145 MW alone can be got from rooftops of households and commercial establishments. The New Indian Express, January 1.

Vestas is to supply Powerica with 51.8MW for two onshore wind projects in India. The contract covers the delivery, installation and commissioning of 26 turbines to the Jangi and Charbara projects in Gujarat. The first 21.8MW is expected to go live in July of this year, followed by a further 30MW in March 2015. Renews, January 2.

North America

New York City's greenhouse gas emissions have dropped by 19 percent since 2005, outgoing Mayor Michael Bloomberg said on Monday, putting the city nearly two-thirds of the way to meeting the goal that Bloomberg set five years ago. Bloomberg announced the progress report as he prepares to leave the mayor's office on Wednesday after 12 years in office. Reuters, December 30.

A judge in the United States has for the first time ruled that solar power supplied without subsidies is more cost effective than natural gas, in a move that could result in 20 solar farms being constructed in Minnesota, while also sending shockwaves through the US energy sector. Xcel Energy, one of the state's biggest utilities, is expecting to add 500MW of new capacity to the grid by the end of the decade, and requested proposals from developers to identify the most suitable sources for the additional capacity. BusinessGreen, January 6.

UK

The stormy weather that has battered the UK in recent months has driven a surge in renewable energy generation, with new figures showing that a raft of wind power records were broken during December. Data released yesterday by trade association RenewableUK confirmed that both the amount of wind power generated and the percentage of UK power sourced from wind hit a record high in December, as a result of both high winds and an increase in overall capacity over the course of the year. BusinessGreen, January 3.

Britain needs to face up to a radical change in weather conditions that could be the result of global warming, and spend much more on flood defences, Sir David King, the government's special envoy on climate change, has said. Amid the worst floods for decades, King said the UK must do more to manage the problem, potentially doubling spending to £1bn a year by 2020, as extreme weather events are likely to become more frequent. BusinessGreen, January 6.

Innovation

Ford has confirmed it will use the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas to unveil an innovative new concept car that promises to use its own rooftop solar panel to power the vehicle. A number of manufacturers have sought to integrate solar cells into car chassis in the past to run the vehicles' electronics, but Ford claims to have delivered a "first-of-its-kind" hybrid that uses solar power to drive the motor. BusinessGreen, January 3.

China's LED lighting market will more than double to US$7.4 billion in 2017 from US$3.1 billion, as ongoing urbanization, local energy savings targets, and price cuts make the technology more appealing, according to Lux Research. DigiTimes, January 3.

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