Monday, November 30, 2015

Expert: how Canada can move beyond empty promises in Paris

Just setting a target for reducing Canada’s CO2 emissions does not mean much. Mark Jaccard, professor of sustainable energy at Simon Fraser University, Vancouver, remembers several targets set and then missed by federal governments during last 20 years. He thinks that another ambitious Canadian target will not help in Paris. But applying the lessons from dismal target-policy charade just might.

Friday, November 27, 2015

Paris climate summit: if not now, then when?

Nearly 200 countries were expected to agree on collective action to fight climate change in Copenhagen in 2009. For the first time, the United Nations claimed, countries were on the verge of reducing the greenhouse gas emissions. However hopes were buried during two weeks of misunderstanding and mistrust. 

Thursday, November 26, 2015

IEA's key messages for UNFCCC COP21

International Energy Agency presented its four key messages for the upcoming UN climate negotiations, which could help UNFCCC shift the energy sector onto a low-carbon path while supporting economic growth and providing energy to more people. The four messages emphasise necessity to :

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Five technologies signaling about energy revolution happening now

The 2015 Revolution…Now report, recently released by the U.S. Department of Energy, shows a dramatic increase in deployment and a decrease in cost of  transformational technologies: wind turbines, solar technologies, electric vehicles (EVs) and light-emitting diodes (LEDs). 
Between 2008 and 2014, land-based wind turbines accounted for 31 percent of all new generation capacity installed in the U.S., while their cost was reduced by about 40%. 

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Underwater compressed air energy storage in Toronto

Canadian company Hydrostor Inc. has developed first utility scale underwater energy storage solution that addresses intermittent (solar & wind) load balancing, reserve capacity, and peak-shaving. The system uses electricity to compress air in a building on Toronto Island and then pumpe through a pipe into six large balloons anchored on the lake bed about three kilometres offshore, 60 metres below the surface.

Monday, November 23, 2015

French experts propose Carbon Price-and-Rebate Plan

Suggested mechanism simultaneously sets a price on emissions above a certain threshold and defines how the revenues raised should be used. The price-and-rebate mechanism is inspired by the “bonus/malus” scheme in France, in which buyers of new cars are taxed or given a bonus depending on the vehicle’s CO2 emissions. Under the mechanism, a country exceeding the worldwide average for per capita emissions would pay a specified amount on every ton of CO2 (or its equivalent) above a set threshold. The specific carbon price would depend on the objectives of the agreement.

Friday, November 20, 2015

Global coal consumption in 2015: largest drop on record.

Total world coal consumption fell by between 90 and 180 million tonnes (2.3% to 4.6%) in the first half of this year.  China's 3-5% decrease  (43-69 Mtce) accounts for more than half of the world’s coal consumption reduction.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Fifty years since the first-ever government report warning of the dangers of climate change

Report prepared by advisory committee and presented  in November 1965 to US President Lyndon B. Johnson warned, that releasing carbon dioxide into the atmosphere would lead to higher global temperatures, causing ice caps to melt and sea levels to rise rapidly. Report accurately predicted that the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere would increase by close to 25% over the course of the twentieth century. Another landmark report, the 1979 “Carbon Dioxide and Climate: A Scientific Assessment”, prepared by the US National Academy of Sciences, estimated that doubling the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere would warm the earth by about 3° Celsius – a number that is well confirmed today.

Monday, November 16, 2015

Exxon Mobil under climate related investigation

The New York attorney general’s office opened an investigation of Exxon Mobil  to determine whether the company lied to the public about the risks of climate change or to investors about how such risks might hurt the oil business. Many oil companies have funded lobbying efforts and research on climate change, and resisted pressure for years from environmental groups to warn investors of the risks that stricter limits on carbon emissions could have on their businesses.  

Friday, November 13, 2015

China dominates global clean energy market

Solar capacity in China has expanded almost five times since 2012, and about 17 percent of the world’s solar capacity now is in the country. China was the biggest renewables market in the world with 433 gigawatts of generating capacity at the end of 2014, more than double the U.S. in second place with 182 gigawatts.

Thursday, November 12, 2015

EBRD financing for sustainable energy has grown from 15% in 2005 to 34% in 2014.

For the first time the Bank’s investments in renewables overtook those for thermal power generation. Between 2006 and the end of 2014, the EBRD invested €16.4 billion in sustainable energy and climate change projects under the framework of the Sustainable Energy Initiative. Financing for renewable energy generation represented roughly 23 per cent or approximately €4 billion. 

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

The House of Energy in Germany generates five times more energy than it uses

It has an annual heating demand of only 8 kWh / sq m (0.7 kWh / sq ft) and a 250 sq m (2,691 sq ft) photovoltaic system on the roof. The building in Kaufbeuren, Germany, is the first to receive Passive House Premium certification.

Monday, November 9, 2015

National Geographic: Half of Weather Disasters Linked to Climate Change

Such conclusion was made by researchers who examined 28 weather extremes on all seven continents to see if they were influenced by climate change or were just normal weather. From a deadly snowstorm in Nepal to a heat wave in Argentina that crashed power supplies, at least 14 extreme weather events last year were related to human-caused climate change.

Friday, November 6, 2015

U.S. Energy Policy Simulator

San Francisco-based think tank Energy Innovation (EI) unveiled its Energy Policy Simulator, a powerful tool for testing dozens of decarbonization strategies in the U.S. economy and evaluating their costs. The simulator is capable of calculating changes in generation capacity, emissions of greenhouse gas and other pollutants, and economy-wide investments and costs for more than 50 separate policies, among other impacts.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

The Renewable Energy Era?

Last year, for the first time in four decades, the global economy grew without an increase in CO2 emissions.  70 percent of new power capacity added in Europe in 2011 were renewables. Developing countries became home to more than one-third of global wind power capacity.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

World Bank Group will increase climate financing by one-third

Jim Yong Kim, President of the World Bank Group announced that Group will increase climate financing to potentially $29 billion annually with the support of its members, giving a huge boost to global efforts to mitigate climate change and move toward low-carbon growth. Currently, 21 percent of the Bank Group’s funding is climate related, but it could be risen to 28 percent in 2020 in response to client demand.

Monday, November 2, 2015

India on the way to become a solar super power

Last year India's Prime Minister has outlined his vision for increasing country’s renewable energy capacity more than five-fold from 30 GW to 175 GW, including a boost in solar power generation from 20 GW to 100 GW, by 2022. Taking advantage of 300 to 330 sunny days a year, India could easily install around 1,000 GW of solar generation — equivalent to four times the current peak power demand (about 250 GW) — using just 0.5 percent of its land.