The way it is looking right now it sometimes seems like China is going to leave the US in the dust in the post fossil energy economy. Recent signs point to an increasingly green thinking China that is getting serious about greening its economy and making it much more energy efficient and one has a serious long term plan (and potential) to green its economy. Its wind and solar sectors are growing at a breakneck pace and are poised to continue doing so and within a few years — if this growth rate continues — will propel China into a world leading position in solar and wind energy production. In updated news the Pew Charitable Trusts has reported that China is now spending almost twice as much as the US is on investments in investments in clean renewable energy. Last year (2009) U.S. clean energy investments reached $18.6 billion, while China invested $34.6 billion in their clean tech energy.
The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has announced a $5 million grant to fund US as well as international organizations for reducing global climate pollution.
Aora Solar Energy Company, formerly known as EDIG Solar, an Israeli solar power startup has launched a small 100kw hybrid solar/gas turbine system that will provide power to kibbutz Samar located in the southern desert of Israel. Besides concentrated solar energy, this hybrid power station can also run on other alternative fuels, including bio-gas, bio-diesel and natural gas. By adding the flexibility to run the micro-turbine using an alternative energy source besides the sun this hybrid flexibility the power plant can continue to produce electricity when sunlight is insufficient, such as at night or when it is cloudy.
According to a new report put out yesterday by the United Nations, 2008 was a year of record-breaking investment for renewables. energy garnered more investments than fossil fuels. While wind power got the lion’s share of the investments, solar experienced the largest gains and geothermal saw the largest growth. The Global Trends in Sustainable Energy Investment 2009 Report estimates that $155 billion was invested in 2008 in clean energy companies and projects worldwide – not including large hydro.
Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd announced plans to buid a 1GW solar power plant in Australia, which would make it the largest solar-electricity plant in the world surpassing the current record holder in California. Details about the project will be released soon and successful bidders will be named in the first half of 2010. The project is expected to cost A$1.4 billion (US$1.05 billion) and will represent a major investment in solar power, which the Prime Minister hopes will help propel the country into a leadership role in solar energy. This is a big step, but only one of many towards Australia’s stated goal of obtaining 20 percent of its electricity from renewable sources by 2020.
By now, everybody has heard about the Studyt out of Spain that supposedly proves that Obama’s green jobs program is a loss cause that will hurt our economy. I think there are numerous flaws with that study. In this update, we have Spain’s response to his claims, proof that his data was falsified, an explanation of how the renewable energy investment did not have the major negative impact on business, in Spain, that his analysis was too simplistic to be applied in any real world model, and what most economists believe is the major cause of Spain’s high unemployment rate. I will also bring to light extremely relevant facts, that the study fails to mention or factor in to the study, and review the US’s history and results from past renewable energy investments. That’s right we have been investing in renewable energy for years.
Corporate responsibility, long seen as the preserve of companies in developed economies, is gaining ground in developing countries according to a review of ESG practices in 40 large emerging market companies – a new report published by Sustainable Investment Research Analyst Network (SIRAN), a working group of the Social Investment Forum (SIF).
SIRAN has partnered with global sustainable investment specialists EIRIS to assess 40 leading companies in ten emerging markets against key environmental, social and governance (ESG) criteria, including indicators on board practice, bribery, human rights, labor standards in the supply chain, health and safety, environment, climate change and biodiversity. Countries assessed in the study include Brazil, China, India, Indonesia, Israel, South Korea, Malaysia, Mexico, Russia and South Africa.
In a milestone for green computing, Citi‘s newly completed 230,000 sq ft data center in Frankfurt am Mein, Germany became the world’s first such facility to earn the prestigious Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Platinum rating. The environmentally-conscious building, designed by British architectural practice Arup Associates for Citi, has already been honored for its ground breaking eco-friendly design and now it has been awarded the most prestigious rating, the LEED Platinum rating.
American Superconductor Bags Large Order for Second Generation High Temperature Superconducting Wire
In a significant boost to the emerging high temperature superconducting wire sector, American Superconductor Corporation (AMSC), a leading supplier of super-conducting wire, announced that LS Cable Ltd. (LS Cable) has ordered approximately 80,000 meters of its 344 superconductors, AMSC’s proprietary brand of second generation (2G) high temperature superconductor (HTS) wire.
Superconducting cables are poised to play a critical and important role in the evolving smart grid. Superconducting cables are capable of carrying much more current and have significantly lower impedance than conventional cables; because of this they facilitate more efficient AC power flows within the grid.