Saturday, February 29, 2020

Governments are planning to produce 50% more fossil fuels by 2030 than would be consistent with a 2°C pathway...

...,  and by 120% more than would be consistent with a 1.5°C pathway. Coal production planning is above numbers compatible with the climate goals by 150% and 280%, respectively.
These numbers are pointing at a huge challenge of  bringing the use of fossil fuels in line with climate goals, states The Production Gap report published by a group of leading research organisations supported by UNEP.
According to IEA, coal, oil, and natural gas remain the world’s dominant sources of energy accounting for 81% of total primary energy supply. These fuels are a source of over 75% of global GHG emissions, including about 90% of all CO2  emissions. IPCC estimates that CO2 emissions from fossil fuels will need to decline rapidly, by approximately 6% per year to remain on a 1.5°C-compatible pathway, and by roughly 2% per year to remain on a 2°C-compatible one. 

Sunday, February 23, 2020

Heliogen, a solar energy company backed by Bill Gates, made a breakthrough

Heliogen, a solar energy company, has discovered a way to use artificial intelligence and a field of mirrors to focus reflected sunlight so precisely that it generates extreme heat - up to 1500ºC. For the first time, concentrated solar energy can be used to create the high-temperature heat required to make cement, steel, glass and other industrial products. The Heliogen’s technology could eventually be used to create carbon-free, green hydrogen which could then be turned into fuel for cars, trucks and airplanes. 

Saturday, February 22, 2020

Germany, Spain, Ukraine and Netherlands are the leaders of European PV market

There was a sharp growth during the  last year in solar demand across multiple markets in Europe after several years of modest growth. Demand is concentrated within the top four markets of Germany, Spain, Ukraine, and the Netherlands. At 13 GW of installations, they are collectively representing almost 60% of the European  PV market in 2019.
This rapid rate of utility-scale growth allowed ground-mount installations to pass rooftop installations in 2019 for the first time in four years. Utility-scale installations are expected to account for 43% of total European installations in 2019, but distributed PV (both residential and commercial) are remaining a large and growing market segment, as self-consumption becomes increasingly important. 

Sunday, February 16, 2020

About a role of hydrogen in transition to clean energy and economy decarbonisation

Hydrogen Energy Ministerial Meeting (HEM) 2018 in Japan declared  that "hydrogen can be a key contributor to the energy transitions underway to a clean energy future and an important component of a broad based, secure, sustainable and efficient energy portfolio". The meeting brought together over 300 stakeholders, including ministerial officials, top executives from related companies and representatives from 21 countries, regions and organizations from around the world.
Key economic sectors, including transportation, industrial manufacturing, heat and power generation, can use hydrogen. Fuel cell technologies are can efficiently generate electricity and heat from hydrogen. And, what is very important, hydrogen stands out for its versatility and storage capability. 
Hydrogen can be produced from various sources, including renewable energy, nuclear and fossil fuels, using carbon dioxide capture, utilization and storage. Sourcing options can be categorised as “grey” (fossil fuel-based), “blue” (fossil fuel-based production with carbon capture, utilisation and storage) and “green” (renewables-based) hydrogen when considering associated CO2 emissions. Green hydrogen produced through renewable-powered electrolysis is projected to grow rapidly in the coming years, and this could create opportunities for decarbonisation of a number of economic sectors where it is difficult to essentially reduce CO2 emissions. 

Saturday, February 15, 2020

Federal government will invest $183 million in Low Carbon Cities Canada


Low Carbon Cities Canada (LC3)  is an initiative that will support and accelerate urban carbon emission reduction actions, helping Canada meet the 2030 and 2050 climate change mitigation targets. LC3 is a partnership between  the Federation of Canadian Municipalities and seven local centers located in largest metropolitan areas -  Vancouver and the Lower Mainland, Edmonton, Calgary, the Greater Toronto & Hamilton Area, Ottawa, Montreal Metropolitan Community, and the Halifax region, representing 43 per cent of the country’s population, and working in partnership with the Federation of Canadian Municipalities. These centers will be serving more than 100 cities and towns all over the country. 

Sunday, February 9, 2020

EU boosts the circular economy among SMEs

Source: EC, 2016

Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are well aware of the benefits and advantages of improving resource efficiency, such as saving material costs, creating competitive advantages, and accessing new markets.  However, small and medium businesses are facing various barriers and challenges in their transition to a circular economy, major of which are a lack of financial resources and lack of technical skills.
After adopting an ambitious Circular Economy Package in 2016,  the European Commission is introducing  measures to cut resource use, reduce waste and boost sustainable production and consumption, which will impact SMEs through  reinforcement of waste management (e.g.: reuse, recycling), measures on the usage of critical raw materials (e.g.: lithium) and support to implement the circular economy strategies and practices.

Sunday, February 2, 2020

Life cycle CO2 emissions for EVs are twice lower than for gasoline cars

Currently EV production results in higher emissions than the making of gasoline cars - mostly due to manufacturing of the EV lithium-ion battery.
Based on the average U.S. electricity grid emissions, producing a midsize, mid-range (84 miles per charge) EV similar to a Nissan LEAF typically results in 15 percent greater emissions than in manufacturing a similar gasoline vehicle. At the same time, replacing gasoline use with electricity reduces overall emissions by 51 percent over the life of the car.
A full-size long-range (265 miles per charge) EV similar to a Tesla Model S, increases manufacturing emissions by 68 percent over the gasoline version.

Saturday, February 1, 2020

How to boost the transition to low carbon technologies?

Source: UK BEIS, 2019

Luck of the strategic incentives is an important reason behind the slow progress in the transition to low carbon technologies. Three major overlapping transition phases may explain where and how technological transition actually occurs: emergence of new technology, diffusion through markets, and reconfiguration of socioeconomic systems.
Based on the detailed analysis of these transitional phases, authors of the report Accelerating the Low Carbon Transition considered ten key economic sectors (see above figure) in a broad sense, including not just the technology and its production, but also the systems of its use, financing, ownership, infrastructure and governance.

The key message for policymakers on a national level is that it is not enough just put a price on carbon or adopt ambitious emissions reduction goals.