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In the headlines: Volkswagen Group to invest over €56bn in low carbon vehicles & more international news

25 November 2013
In the headlines: Volkswagen Group to invest over €56bn in low carbon vehicles & more international news

Clean Revolution news stories you may have missed:


The Warsaw Summit closed with an agreement late on Saturday evening, after a last-ditch deal was reached on plans for a loss and damage mechanism designed to help developing nations cope with climate change impacts. Forty-eight hours of tense negotiations including a stand-off between the US and developing nations culminated in a compromise deal that set out a timeline for discussions in the run up to the Paris Summit in 2015 and commits countries to a new loss and damage mechanism. BusinessGreen, November 23.

Weak government action on climate change will lead to a projected 3.7°C of warming by 2100, around 0.6°C higher than the original promises made in Copenhagen, says a new report. The annual assessment by the Climate Action Tracker (CAT), produced by Climate Analytics, Ecofys and the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research shows that the world has a one in three chance of exceeding 4˚C by 2100. RTCC, November 21.

Asia – Pacific

Kyushu Electric Power Co. will build a 5-megawatt geothermal power station in Japan’s southwestern prefecture of Oita. A wholly owned unit of the Fukuoka-based utility will begin construction of the plant in March, the companies and the town of Kokonoe, where the station will be built, said in a statement today. The plant will start in March 2015. Bloomberg New Energy Finance, November 22.


Head of the Chinese delegation to the United Nations climate talks on Saturday urged developed countries to make clear financing pledges for fighting climate change. Xie Zhenhua, also deputy chief of China's National Development and Reform Commission, made the statement when commenting on the draft text for the climate finance negotiations. "On the issue of climate finance, we think the current text is not balanced," Xie told the negotiators., November 23.

"China will continue to step up its efforts to address climate change in a bid to achieve the target of reducing CO2 emissions per unit of GDP by 40 to 45 percent by 2020 from the 2005 levels," reiterated Xie Zhenhua, head of the Chinese delegation and vice chairman of the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) during the high-level segment of the Warsaw Climate Change Conference on Nov. 20., November 21.


The European Union and China have signed a deal to collaborate on a new low-carbon city pilot project in the city of Tianjin. Climate-KIC, the EU's main climate innovation initiative, signed a memorandum of understanding with the mayor of Tianjin at the EU-China summit, taking place in Beijing this week. The two partners will collaborate on projects that aim to boost green growth, such as programmes to retrofit buildings with energy-efficient technologies and initiatives to trial various 'smart city' systems. BusinessGreen, November 22.


A unit of Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd. (MM), India’s biggest sports utility-vehicle maker, plans to almost triple solar capacity by adding plants in the state of Tamil Nadu where a power deficit is spurring clean-energy investment. The company’s Mahindra EPC Services unit expects to add 150 megawatts of solar capacity in the state over the next 18 months, Basant Jain, the unit’s chief executive officer, said by phone yesterday. Mahindra EPC has already designed and installed 80 megawatts of photovoltaic plants in India as the contractor for solar investors. Bloomberg, November 22.

India’s renewable energy producer Bharat Light and Power (BLP) has teamed up with the US International Business Machines corporation (IBM), with the aim to expand its wind power output by fivefold, according to Bloomberg. The 10 year agreement will allow BLP to use IBM’s SoftLayer cloud capabilities, IBM analytics and mobile solutions to boost its wind power generation capacity. Renewable Energy Technology, November 21.

North America

Former U.S. energy secretary Steven Chu says he'd like to see more collaboration between Canada and the United States on renewable energy. Chu told a Calgary business audience Friday that the energy debate between the two countries has been dominated by a single issue - the Keystone XL oil pipeline and the oilsands crude that would run through it. The Nobel Prize-winning physicist said Canada and the U.S. should work together on hydroelectric and wind energy and boost transmission infrastructure between the two countries. The Vancouver Sun, November 23.

U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel announced on Friday the Pentagon's first Arctic strategy to guide changes in military planning as rapidly thawing ice reshapes global commerce and energy exploration, possibly raising tensions along the way. Ice on the Arctic Ocean shrank last year to its lowest levels since satellite observations began in the 1970s, and many experts expect it will vanish in summers by mid-century due to climate change. Reuters, November 22.

The SUN DAY Campaign, a renewable energy advocacy group, reports that the U.S. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's (FERC) latest infrastructure update shows that solar, biomass and wind sources provided 694 MW of new electrical generating capacity in October - representing 99.3% of all new generation placed in-service. North American Wind Power, November 22.


The UK secretary of state for energy and climate change Ed Davey has pledged to end financing coal-fired power plants overseas except in “rare circumstances in which the poorest countries have no feasible alternative”. The country joins the US where in June President Barack Obama announced his Climate Action Plan that included a commitment to mobilise clean energy investments to the developing world and help “accelerate their transition to a green, low carbon economy.” The two governments will work together to secure the support of other countries and Multilateral Development Banks to adopt similar policies. RTCC, November 20.


German auto giant Volkswagen Group has underlined its commitment to becoming a leading player in the fast-expanding low carbon vehicle market, confirming that it is to invest over €56bn over the next five years in "efficient vehicles, drives and technologies, as well as environmentally friendly production". The company unveiled an €84.2bn investment plan for its automotive division late last week, in which it confirmed over two-thirds of the total investment will be targeted at more efficient and low carbon vehicles. BusinessGreen, November 25.

Good Energy and BMW have announced they have signed a partnership to offer drivers of the new BMW i series electric cars access to green power to recharge their vehicle. Just days after announcing a similar agreement with SolarCity in the US, BMW confirmed it would work with Good Energy to promote green energy tariffs to purchasers of its new BMW i3 and BMW i8 vehicles when they launch next year. BusinessGreen, November 22.

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