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2012: The International Year of Sustainable Energy for All

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2012: The International Year of Sustainable Energy for All

2012: The International Year of Sustainable Energy for AllThe United Nations General Assembly has declared 2012 the International Year of Sustainable Energy for All, recognizing that “…access to modern affordable energy services in developing countries is essential for the achievement of the internationally agreed development goals, including the Millennium Development Goals, and sustainable development, which would help to reduce poverty and to improve the conditions and standard of living for the majority of the world’s population.

In response, the Secretary-General is undertaking action to support the Year through a global initiative on Sustainable Energy for All. The initiative will mobilize action from governments, the private sector, and civil society partners globally. The Secretary-General has set three interlinked objectives for his initiative: ensuring universal access to modern energy services, doubling the global rate of improvement in energy efficiency, and doubling the share of renewable energy in the global energy mix. The International Year of Sustainable Energy for All will provide a vital advocacy platform for raising awareness of the challenge.

The UN General Assembly resolution that designates 2012 as the International Year of Sustainable Energy for All encourages Member States and other actors to increase the awareness of the importance of addressing energy issues and to promote action at the local, national, regional and international levels. Member States are at the heart of the success of the Year. To develop and promote strategies, commitments and activities related to the preparation and observance of the Year, and assume responsibility for reporting back on national contributions to the objectives of the Year, Member States are encouraged to appoint National Coordinating Mechanisms. The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) has prepared a guidance note to inform the formation of National Coordinating Mechanisms that can be a driving and pivotal force in advocating for commitments and accountability towards the goal of sustainable energy for all. For information on your country’s activities in the Year’s efforts, contact your national United Nations office or the department of public affairs of the agencies responsible for energy in your country. Other resource material regarding the 2012 International Year of Sustainable Energy for All can also be found here.

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Green energy: demand drives innovation

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The growing demand for power generated from renewable energy sources also drives innovation in the sector, according to research on the German renewables industry. An increase in the number of patents granted for green technologies in Germany was linked to both increased demand – driven by renewable energy policies – and increased public spending on the sector.

SETIS is the European Commission's Information System for the SET-Plan led by the Joint Research CentreUnder the Renewable Energy Directive (2009/28/EC), the EU has set mandatory national targets for the share of total energy to be generated from renewable sources by 2020.1 Germany is an example of a country with more ambitious goals for renewable energy. While the EU as a whole is committed to achieving a 20% share, Germany has set its 2020 target at 35%. The new study provides insights into how developing energy policy in the country has shaped the market for, and driven innovation in, renewable energy over the last two decades. 

Two key pieces of national legislation on renewable energies have influenced the adoption of green technologies in Germany. The Electricity Feed Law or Stromeinspeisungsgesetz (SEG) came into effect in 1991, requiring utilities providers to connect those generating renewable energy to the grid and to buy their electricity at 65-90% of the cost charged to consumers of that electricity. In 2000, the Renewable Energy Sources Act or Erneuerbare-Energien-Gesetz (EEG) extended the range of renewable energy technologies covered and set different tariffs for different types of energy. Between 2007 and 2010, Germany more than doubled the proportion of its energy mix made up by renewables – from 7% to 17%.2 The renewables industry in Germany currently produces 20% of total electricity generated, with around 382,000 jobs linked to the industry.3

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RENEWABEL ENERGY WEBINAR

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What are the prospects for competing solar electric technologies?

XIth World Congress of the OWHC - Sintra 2011: World Heritage Cities and Climate Change

Date: 20 September 2011, 10:00 EST, 15:00 GMT, 19:00 UAE
Duration: 1 hours

The argument about who wins – Solar Photovoltaics (PV), Concentrating Solar Thermal Power (CSP), or Concentrating PV (CPV) – is currently all the rage. But in reality it is too early to identify winners and losers in the overall solar industry.

The solar industry, while growing exponentially in recent times, remains in startup phase compared with conventional power, and is now beginning to experience challenges with rapidly decreasing incentives, subpar availability of transmission and distribution, and for PV, almost overnight growth from MW to multi-GW level of demand.

Moving forward, reductions in the cost of (and advances in) balance of systems (rather than the technology) will be key for PV and CPV, while advances in installation techniques are crucial for all technologies. And if CSP can overcome the cost of building thermal storage into the technology, it will have a compelling case that may tip the scale for utilities.

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DESERTEC

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Desertec Foundation


ABOUT DESERTEC

Sufficient clean power can be generated in the world's sunny deserts to supply mankind with enough electricity on a sustainable basis. DESERTEC is an integrated concept which includes energy security and climate protection as well as drinking water production, socio-economic development, security policy and international cooperation. 

The DESERTEC Concept "Clean Power from Deserts" was originally developed by a network of politicians, academics and economists around the Mediterranean, from which the DESERTEC Foundation has evolved. The non-profit DESERTEC Foundation promotes the fast implementation of its concept in all suitable regions of the world. In 2009 the DESERTEC Concept gained a lot of attention when the DESERTEC Foundation founded the industrial initiative Dii GmbH together with partners from the industrial and finance sectors. The mission of Dii is to accelerate the implementation of the DESERTEC Concept in the Mediterranean region.

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RENEWABLE ENERGY SCENARIOS

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"The Energy Report - 100% Renewable Energy by 2050", February 2011

Scenario by WWF and Ecofys, showing that a transition is not only possible but also cost-effective, providing energy that is affordable for all and producing it in ways that can be sustained by the global economy and the planet. The 1st part seeks to generate a discussion around the comprehensively researched scenario that is presented in the 2nd part, conducted by project partner consultancy Ecofys.

Download the report 256 p. pdf file (16 MB) from WWF's homepage:

wwf.panda.org/energyreport


"Energy [R]evolution: A Sustainable World Energy Outlook", 2010

Scenario by Greenpeace and EREC provides a detailed practical blueprint for cutting carbon emissions while achieving economic growth by replacing fossil fuels with renewable energy and energy efficiency.

Global CO2 emissions under the Energy [R]evolution scenario would peak in 2015 and drop afterwards. Compared with 1990 CO2 emissions will be more than 80% lower by 2050 if the energy supply is based almost entirely on renewable energies. By 2050 around 95% of electricity could be produced by renewable energy.

Download the report pdf file (9 MB) from Greenpeace's web site:

ttp://www.energyblueprint.info/fileadmin/media/documents/2010/0910_gpi_E_R__full_report_10_lr.pdf

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WHY RENEWABLES ARE IMPORTANT

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WHY RENEWABLES ARE IMPORTANT

Fossil fuels (oil, coal, and natural gas) currently provide about 85% of all the energy use in the US. These resources are being constantly depleted and can't be replaced within any practical time span. How long exactly would these resources last? The remaining amount of a particular resource is often characterized by so-called Reserves-to-Production ratio (R/P).

In a plain language, R/P basically gives us the length of time the reserves would last if its usage continues at the current rate. Here are estimated world total reserves-to-production ratios for the main conventional fuels: oil - 45 years, natural gas - 62 years, coal – 119 years.

Aside from being finite, energy production from fossil fuels results in by-products of combustion, or emissions. These emissions affect the environment and may be causing the climate change. In contrast, renewable energy (RE) resources, as the name implies, are constantly replenished naturally and will never be exhausted. Their use generally has a much lower environmental impact than that of conventional fuels, which is why the technologies that utilize them are often called "green". In addition, RE can boost US energy security by reducing our dependence on the imports. All these factors, coupled with the government incentives and mandates, result in growing public interest in using renewable sources of energy. While many green technologies are large-scale, most of them are also suited to private homes, especially in rural areas. This website provides quick reference information for using alternative power at home.

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CONCERTO INITIATIVE

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CONCERTO initiative

What is CONCERTO?

“The CONCERTO initiative, launched by the European Commission , is a Europe wide initiative proactively addressing the challenges of creating a more sustainable future for Europe’s energy needs. Today, there are a total of 58 communities in 22 projects, each working to deliver the highest possible level of self-supply of energy. CONCERTO is part of the framework research programme supervised by the DG Energy and Transport of the European Commission.

CONCERTO IN A NUTSHELL

CONCERTO supports local communities, as clearly defined geographical areas or zones, in developing and demonstrating concrete strategies and actions that are both sustainable and highly energy efficient. Interactions and relevant energy flows between centralised and decentralised energy supplies and demands can be identified, measured and assessed.

The CONCERTO initiative has been only possible as a result of the strong commitment from the relevant, local authorities and includes technical experts, academics, and private companies from across Europe.

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6th Asia Clean Energy Forum 2011: New Business Models and Policy Drivers-- Building the Low-Carbon Future

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6th Asia Clean Energy Forum 2011: New Business Models and Policy Drivers-- Building the Low-Carbon Future

6th Asia Clean Energy Forum 2011: New Business Models and Policy Drivers-- Building the Low-Carbon Future

ADB Headquarters, Manila, Philippines: 20-24 June 2011


Announcements:

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World Bank and Clean Technology Fund to Finance Turkey's Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Project

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According to reports from the World Bank on 28 May 2009, USD 600 million of financing has been approved for Turkey’s Private Sector Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Project.

World BankThe report stated that Turkey’s rapid economic growth in recent years has caused increasing demand for electricity, yet the real challenge is ensuring Turkey’s energy security and at the same time reducing greenhouse emissions that induce climate change.

The main objective of this project is to increase the efficiency and production capacity of electricity generating plants in the private sector, which will result in the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions.

Moreover, key measures in the project include tapping into Turkey’s significant potential in renewable energy such as wind, solar, biomass and geothermal and ensuring a more efficient use of energy to reduce waste in energy consumption.

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