U.S. solar industry on course for full-year record
Developers installed 930 megawatts of photovoltaic solar capacity in the United States during the third quarter and are on pace to almost double that, according to the Solar Energy Industries Association, writes Bloomberg. Total installed solar power grew 35 percent from last year. A capacity of 1.83 gigawatts is expected to be installed this quarter, putting the country on pace to reach 4.27 gigawatts for this year that will be a record year for the U.S. solar industry.
Latin American nations to open electricity markets
Extensive policy initiatives have been drafted and efforts made across several Latin American countries to enhance the security of the electricity supply and boost economic growth through opening electricity markets for competition, writes GWEC Newsletter. For example, Mexico will open the energy sector for private investment, aligned with a greater share of renewables in the energy mix. Brazil's opening for wind power could serve as an excellent reference.
Global fuel cell market to undergo massive growth
The use of stationary fuel cells is expected to increase significantly in several applications. Installations will increase manifold and the global market is forecast to grow at an annual rate of near 45 percent by 2020. The cost of fuel cell systems would fall by at least half, says a report from GlobalData. Drivers behind this development are increasing interest in fuel cell technology and the help of governmental subsidy programs.
Canadian fund to invest in Indian renewables
One of the world's largest pension fund that managers with over USD175 billion in assets has put India on its priority list for infrastructure investments, preferring the country over China for long-term core sector bets, writes The Economic Times. The Quebec-based Caisse De Depot fund is also interested in investing in India's renewable energy, for example in wind power, but wants to ascertain if there is good quality data about past wind conditions in such projects.
Tackling solar's big challenge - soaring soft costs
The non-hardware "soft costs" of a solar energy system now account for up to 64 percent of the total price of installing residential solar energy systems in the United States, says a EERE blog article. These costs stand as the greatest barrier to deploying more residential solar energy systems throughout the country. The Energy Department's SunShot Initiative is working to lower soft costs in order to make solar energy fully cost-competitive with traditional energy sources by 2020.
Small-wind power to experience strong growth
With growing incentives announced by various governments and larger end-user awareness, the global small-wind power market is expected to grow almost five-fold to USD3 billion and capacity more than six-fold to 4.6 gigawatts by 2020, according to a new report from GlobalData. Streamlining the permitting process will be crucial towards ensuring that the growth of wind installation is not hampered by administrative issues.
Building energy resilience in Central Asia
Tajikistan is one of the least developed countries in Central Asia. Two-thirds of the population live in rural areas and depend on agriculture for livelihoods but the productivity remains low, partly due to energy shortages. The World Bank has started to help the Government of Tajikistan to move towards secure and sustainable energy that is a key requirement for country's future development. After completion of this task, the Bank will focus on regional studies.
China launches pilot carbon trading schemes
China launched today a new pilot carbon trading scheme in Beijing and will launch new scheme in Shanghai on Thursday. China's most populous and heavily industrialized Guangdong province is to launch a carbon trading next month. This will be the world's second biggest scheme after the European Union, writes Reuters. The schemes belong to the seven pilot markets that generate experience for a national trading scheme later in this decade.
UN talks step towards global 2015 climate deal
Governments at UN climate talks in Warsaw agreed that a new deal in 2015 would consist of a patchwork of national offers to curb emissions, and would blur a 20-year-old distinction between the obligations of rich and poor nations, writes Reuters. The two-week meeting also set up a new Warsaw International Mechanism to help the poor cope with loss and damage from climate change - although rich nations refused to pledge new cash.
Business, government must join forces for climate
It's time for businesses and governments to step up to the climate challenge and match words to actions, says an article published by WRI Insights. The world clearly needs to accelerate its response to the climate challenge. Businesses and governments need to work together constructively to raise the level of action and ambition. The article gives three ideas for how businesses and policymakers can work together and advance.
Green Climate Fund moves towards operations
The Green Climate Fund is on track towards completing the final steps that will enable it to mobilize funding and start its operations. "The fund is on target and will soon be ready to help developing countries foster climate-friendly development," stated the board's co-chair Manfred Konukiewitz at UN climate talks in Warsaw. "..... developing and developed countries alike must now get ready," said Ms. Héla Cheikhrouhou, the fund's executive director.
Placing renewables center of climate action
REN21 is gearing up for its participation at the climate change talks in Warsaw. While climate is not a central theme to REN21's work, renewables should be a central element of any climate action plan, says a reegle blog article. This kind of future demands international efforts and strategic investments in best practices and the most effective methods of advancing renewables. The article asks: Can we collectively rise to the challenge?
UN talks on new carbon markets break down
International negotiations on how to set up new carbon markets to cut greenhouse gas levels broke down over the weekend in Warsaw - after developing nations refused to progress the issue before rich nations increase efforts to cut their own emissions, writes Reuters. Environment ministers will discuss carbon markets on Tuesday, but observers said nothing on new markets was likely to be agreed. Talks on the issue have been shelved until June 2014.
Policies power renewables growth in Asia-Pacific
Government policies and incentives in the Asia-Pacific region have become an important tool to boost the renewable energy industry, says a report from GlobalData that provides insights to major policy initiatives implemented by the region's countries. The report details promotional measures in different countries both for the overall renewable energy industry and for specific renewable energy technologies - providing a platform for comparison of various renewable policies across countries.
Australia's new government to repeal carbon tax
Australian new Prime Minister Tony Abbott stuck to an election pledge on Wednesday to quickly repeal a carbon tax, introducing legislation as the new parliament met for the first time, writes Reuters. The previous government's carbon pricing plan was aimed at taxing major polluters before moving to a cap-and-trade by mid-2014. Instead, the government will set up a plan, including an emission reduction fund and a market-based incentive for businesses to reduce greenhouse emissions.
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