Tuesday, October 6th, 2009
Article appearing courtesy of Yale Environment 360.
The European Union will unveil a proposal this week calling for $73 billion (50 billion euros) in research over the next decade into improving wind, solar, and nuclear power technologies, as well as the development of carbon capture and sequestration projects and energy-efficient “Smart Cities.”
The report, prepared by the European Union’s executive body, the European Commission, says the surge in investment is necessary if Europe hopes to meet its goal of slashing greenhouse gas emissions by 80 percent by 2050.
Thursday, October 1st, 2009
This article by Susan Kraemer, appearing courtesy of Celsias, was originally posted on CleanTechnica.
An amazingly high percentage of people who live down the Mid-Atlantic Seaboard from New York to Virginia want wind turbines off their coast.
Even if they can be seen from the shoreline, 67 percent support off-shore wind power, according to a new poll of coastal residents of New York, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, and Virginia .
If the turbines are out of sight, the level of support goes up to an astounding 82 percent.
Monday, September 14th, 2009
With steady growth in wind power capacity each of the last five years, China is expected to pass the United States as the fastest-growing market for wind installations this year. But this may only hint at the potential for wind energy in China, according to a new study published in the journal Science.
After modeling China’s wind availability and profitability, researchers from Harvard University and Tsinghua University in Beijing calculated that wind resources, particularly in the country’s northern and western regions, could meet all of China’s electricity demands until at least 2030.
Monday, August 10th, 2009
The rapid growth of wind power in Texas is already reducing consumption of natural gas and lowering the cost of electricity generation in the state, according to a Wall Street research group. Bernstein Research reports that the rising output of wind turbines in Texas — the world’s sixth-largest producer of wind power — has eliminated the need to fire up natural gas-powered generators to meet the last bit of demand during periods of low energy usage.
Powering up natural gas generators is expensive, and Bernstein reports that the spreading use of wind turbines “can have a material impact on the price of power.” The report predicted that the “growth of wind power in (Texas) over the next three years will markedly lower the consumption of gas and coal by conventional generators.”
Saturday, August 1st, 2009
The Pacific Northwest just finished four days of triple digit temperatures, which put the heat on renewable energy sources to keep up with demand. Just as records were being set for power consumption, wind power generation slowed due to the calm air from the locked-in high pressure system.
The extreme weather highlights the reality that wind — and to a lesser extent hydropower — may not be a panacea for power production.
Southern Washington and the Portland metro area had a record breaking streak of warmth that pushed energy demand to record highs, but the high pressure system also featured calm breezes. The local utility Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) had to quickly balance the reduction in wind power with increases in hydropower.
Thursday, July 30th, 2009
The Turkish Statistical Institute announced that the Turkish economy shrank 13.8% and that the unemployment rate increased to 14.9% in the first quarter. Despite these difficult economic conditions, the Turkish wind industry is still one of the fastest growing industries in the country. One reason is that Turkey may face electricity shortages in the near future, furthermore Turkey has just ratified [the] Kyoto agreement which is going to result in carbon emission reduction targets for the post 2013 period.
Among other renewable resources, wind has been the most popular and most approachable power source in the last four years. The use of wind power started around 1,000-1,200 AD in Anatolia, as early as in other European countries. However, Turkey’s development throughout the centuries has not been as fast as that of its counterparts. At the time when Turkey installed its first 0.5 MW wind turbine in Izmir in 1998, Germany had already installed almost 3,000 MW.
Monday, July 27th, 2009
The “locavore” movement is big, especially in California. With the bounty of food found locally in the Bay Area, living off the land — and sea — is not only possible, but also a delicious exercise.
But there’s another, less obvious, revolution brewing here in the Bay Area: the “locavolt” movement. In response to high gasoline and natural gas prices, global warming and an increasingly unstable, scary world, people are looking to generate power right in their own homes and neighborhoods with free energy from nature.
Technology advances in computers, telecommunications, generators, inverters, and even cars, are all giving the locavolt new tools to harness renewable energy and lead a fairly normal life.
Within the next few years, plug-in hybrid cars in California will be able to serve as a mini-power generator for your home and store renewable energy from your solar photovoltaics system or your small wind turbine. Plug-in hybrids may also help balance out a smarter electricity grid capable of easily sending power back and forth between generators and consumers, much like we send and receive e-mails on the Internet today.
Thursday, July 16th, 2009
IQwind, an Israel-based start-up developing variable gear technology that improves the energy generation efficiency of wind turbines, has raised $500,000 from ISRAEL G-TEK LLC, according to an announcement by the U.S.-based investors.
IQwind received a first round of investment from Terra Venture Partners in 2007.
Sami Shiro and Uri Benhamron, principals at ISRAEL G-TEK, explain that the investment in IQWind is part of their “plan to create a balanced portfolio of greentech companies with a special focus on Israel as a breeding ground for technology.”
Friday, July 10th, 2009
What would you do if you were worth $3 billion? T. Boone Pickens? Propose to build one of the largest wind farms in Texas, of course!
T. Boone Pickens, American financier and Chairman of BP Capital Management, ironically grew his wealth initially through mergers and acquisitions of oil and gas companies. From there, Pickens expanded his company, Mesa Petroleum, to be one of the largest independent oil companies in the world by 1981.
With his continued success came much criticism. During his peak, Pickens has been accused of being a “corporate raider” – investors who essentially direct or execute a hostile takeover of a company, often with the agenda of breaking up and selling various assets of the company to gain large profits. Though most of his attempts at corporate raiding failed, his endeavors drove the targeted company’s stock up, making Pickens and other investors millions of dollars.
Monday, July 6th, 2009
China will break ground this month on a gigantic, $17 billion wind power farm in the northwestern part of the country that will produce 5 gigawatts of power by next year and 20 gigawatts by 2020, according to the official Xinhua news service. The installation in Gansu Province is known as the “Three Gorges of Wind Power” after the gigantic Three Gorges hydroelectric dam on the Yangtze River. As the Wall Street Journal notes, the Gansu wind power installation is scheduled by 2020 to produce five times the power of T. Boone Pickens’ proposed wind power project on the U.S. Great Plains.