Indian farmers to set up small solar power plants
Karnataka - a state in South West India - has launched a scheme that allows farmers to set up small solar plants for water pumping in their farms and sell electricity at fixed price, writes Business Standard. The farmers would get subsidy up to 90 percent and hope to get 10,000 pumpsets. In addition to pumping water for their fields, the farmers will get electricity where it is not available. India's government has allocated 100,000 pumpsets to all the states.
Building green economy advances worldwide
Green economy policies are spreading worldwide at an increasing pace, with more than 65 countries now actively pursuing green economy policies and 48 of them taking steps to develop national green economy plans, said UNEP at the Green Economy Coalition's meeting in London. UNEP also released three new reports to guide countries interested in advancing their national green economy transitions. One of these outlines how indicators can be used to measure progress.
China's national carbon market to start in 2016
China has already launched seven regional pilot markets in a bid to gain experience and plans to roll out its national market for carbon permit trading in 2016, writes Reuters. The National Development and Reform Commission will send over the national market regulations to the government for approval by the end of the year. When fully functional, the Chinese market would dwarf the European emissions trading system, which is currently the world's biggest.
Japan to boost fuel cells, energy-saving measures
Japan plans to increase the budget to boost the use of fuel cells and install more energy-saving devices, writes Bloomberg. Part of the allocation will help factories and offices install equipment consuming less electricity. But more than double the budget will be used for hydrogen-related projects such as setting up hydrogen stations as Japan prepares to begin sales of fuel cell cars by March. The budget will also subsidize installations of home fuel cells.
Policy uncertainty could slow renewables momentum
Renewable power is a cost-competitive option in an increasing number of cases, but facing growing risks to deployment over the medium term, says IEA forecast. Global renewable generation is seen rising by 45 percent and making up nearly 26 percent of global electricity generation by 2020. However, the expansion will slow over the next five years unless policy uncertainty is diminished. The report also calls for more solid frameworks for biofuels and renewable heat that remains underdeveloped.
German utility pushes renewables as profits rise
Germany's top utility E.ON expects profits in renewable energy business to rise and aims to continue expanding in the United States and Europe. Having joined the renewable energy frenzy too late, the utility is dashing into solar and wind power as it tries to make up for a slump in profits from traditional power stations, writes Reuters. Since 2007, E.ON has invested about EUR10 billion in renewables – having about 10,900 megawatts of renewable capacity worldwide.
Delivering air quality data for European's health
A system to deliver essential air quality data to environmental officials, doctors, hospitals, and the public has been developed by an EU-funded project. The system is expected to support the improvement of public health and living conditions in European cities and regions where health can be most affected by air quality. The data provided by system is customisable, and the information can be adapted to the specific needs of a certain city or region.
Sub-Saharan Africa's renewables booming
Sub-Saharan Africa is emerging as one of the most exciting new markets for renewable energy technologies such as onshore wind, small-scale and utility-scale solar and geothermal power, according to research company Bloomberg New Energy Finance. The region will see more capacity come online this year in non-hydro renewable energy than in the whole of the 2000-2013 period. South Africa, Ethiopia, Kenya lead this renewables spurt.
Developing sustainable bioenergy for Southeast Asia
Pursuing sustainable bioenergy opportunities in Southeast Asia without threatening food security is not just possible but achievable. It can transform rural development across the region, helping to extend modern electricity to deprived areas, as well as reduce carbon emissions and the impact of climate change, said leading experts at a recent workshop in Bangkok. But for the region to fulfil its bioenergy potential, countries must address a complex array of policy, technical, institutional and financial challenges.
U.S. company launches solar leasing in Australia
SunPower, the second-largest U.S. solar manufacturer, has launched a new pilot leasing program to help residential customers in Melbourne finance solar system for no money down. The company will install its solar panels for qualified homeowners, providing clean electricity at a predetermined and cost-competitive monthly rate for 25 years. The company also provides monitoring and any necessary maintenance at no additional cost.
Tidal stream and wave power deployment slows
A year ago global installations of tidal stream and wave power were set to grow to 167 and 74 megawatts respectively by the end of this decade, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance. But its latest forecast represents a downward revision from the figures published a year ago. Harsh conditions and taking devices from the small-scale demonstrator stage to the pre-commercial array stage is proving even more expensive and time-consuming than expected.
More action needed on home heating controls
Signifcant energy savings are achievable from the increased application of heating controls in residential properties across the EU, shows a recent report prepared for the European Building Automation and Controls Association. According to the Association, it should be a priority to ensure that every home in the EU has individual room temperature controls to reduce waste while delivering comfort, plus central time and temperature control so that the space heating appliance will run as efficiently as possible.
EU states urged to enforce energy efficiency law
EU regulators have begun legal proceedings against 24 member states, including Germany, for failing to enforce a law on energy efficiency, the European Commission said on Wednesday, according to Reuters. Energy saving has shot up the list of EU priorities since the conflict in Ukraine increased concerns about energy security. Member states have two months to reply to warning letters. Non-compliance with EU law can lead to tough fines.
Mexico, Central America boost renewable energy
Plentiful resources of wind, solar, geothermal, and hydro-electric energy, combined with a need for new, more economical power capacity, are fuelling strong momentum in clean energy investment in Mexico and the six main countries of Central America, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance. Policy is being amended in most countries to encourage stronger investment in wind, solar and geothermal. These countries are likely to install just over 1 gigawatt of wind power this year.
Biogas industry - an opportunity for U.S. farmers
A comprehensive, interagency strategy to reduce methane emissions and promote cutting-edge technologies that help farmers and communities convert methane into a renewable energy has been launched by Obama Adminstration. The Roadmap outlines voluntary actions for the expansion of the country's biogas industry and help it live up to its full potential. The efforts could capture increased revenues with reduced emission, offering a "win-win", particularly for farmers.
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