In today’s edition, flower power is back with a Japanese breakthrough, the ‘hydrangea solar cell’. Not everything is groovy, though: Australia’s renewable energy sector is already grinding to a halt, as the country might reduce its targets. Also, in the Carbon section, Guangdong, China’s biggest pilot carbon trading market, will hand out more emission permits than in 2013, therefore potentially reducing the price – and companies’ incentive to fight climate change.
Quote of the day
“Thermal power generation conjures up images of blistering hot dirty coal while solar panels take up a lot of space. Even wind power generation has problems with bird strikes and noise, but “Annabelle” doesn’t harm the environment.”
Hiroshi Segawa, a professor at University of Tokyo’s Research Centre for Advanced Science and Technology and creator of the “Annabelle” solar cell, in the AFP’s story Green power blooms as Japan unveils ‘hydrangea solar cell’
Green power blooms as Japan unveils ‘hydrangea solar cell’
A solar cell that resembles a flower is offering a new take on green energy in Japan, where one scientist is searching for renewables that look good.
MIT Study: Climate Talks on Path to Fall Far Short of Goals
John H. Cushman Jr., InsideClimate News
Experts at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology using a sophisticated computer model examined what they think is the most likely outcome of UN climate treaty negotiations and found that the talks are likely to come up short.
***LB: Also in this story “Under countries’ current climate pledges, greenhouse gas concentrations would exceed 530 or 580 parts per million by the end of the century.”
Rosneft to drill in Arctic with Statoil
Richard Milne, Financial Times
Rosneft is about to start drilling its first oil well in Norway with the help of Norwegian state-owned Statoil despite Russia’s oil industry being subject to extensive European sanctions.
Australia wind and solar fears rise as Abbott reviews policy
Ed King, RTCC (Responding to Climate Change)
Work on a 100 megawatt solar plant in the Australian state of Victoria has been suspended due to growing unease in the industry over the government’s plans for renewable energy.
EMA’s 18th Annual Meeting
Join the Environmental Markets Association and environmental industry professional for two days of dynamic sessions, two nights of networking receptions, and countless opportunities to increase your business contacts.
October 22 – 24, 2014
Santa Monica, CA
FT European Gas Summit
The FT European Gas Summit brings together leading and aspiring gas suppliers from around the globe, as well as energy industry experts, commentators and government decision makers to review the potential barriers to new gas supplies for Europe, and the impact on the region’s economic competitiveness. The summit will be chaired by Guy Chazan, Energy Editor, Financial Times.
23 October 2014
Guangdong adds 20 mln permits to China’s biggest carbon market
Guangdong, the biggest of China’s seven pilot carbon trading markets, will this year hand out around 6 percent more emission permits to companies than in 2013, potentially aggravating oversupply that sent prices tumbling earlier this year.
Natural gas / coal
US shale activity helps Wood Group
Nick Wilson, Financial Times
Strong US shale activity provided a welcome boost to Wood Group but was offset by the energy services company’s weaker upstream engineering and turbine activities.
RIL plans to invest $2 billion in US shale gas assets
Promit Mukherjee, Live mint and The Wall Street Journal
Reliance Industries Ltd, India’s biggest private sector company by revenue, plans to invest $2 billion in its three shale assets in the US, betting big on the potential of extracting natural gas and oil from the sedimentary rock formations.
UK energy dependence – five hidden costs expose truth about fracking
Jeremy Leggett, theguardian.com
The vision of an energy-independent Britain, free of the clear and growing problems of overseas fuel dependency, is deeply alluring.
UK lobbying to keep open one of Europe’s dirtiest coal power stations
Karl Mathiesen, theguardian.com
The UK government is lobbying the European commission (EC) to keep open one of Europe’s dirtiest coal power stations, even though its nitrogen oxide emissions exceed new legal limits by five times.
A New Frontier for Fracking: Drilling Near the Arctic Circle
Ed Struzik, Yale environment 360
Among the dozens of rivers that flow unfettered through the Canadian North, the Natla and the Keele may be the most picturesque and culturally important.
Promise of a ‘clean coal’ future far from reality
Hal Bernton, Seattle Times staff reporter
In 2003, President George W. Bush unveiled plans for the world’s first zero-emissions coal plant, a project that would serve as a global showcase of America’s ability to reduce carbon emissions from fossil fuels.
***LB: Also in this story “Last year the department designated the FutureGen alliance charged with building the project as a “high-risk” grant recipient that might not be able to meet a September 2015 deadline for spending $1 billon in federal stimulus dollars, according to a document reviewed by The Seattle Times.”
Ineos licence purchase from BG in move into shale exploration
James Wilson, Financial Times
Ineos has made a first move into shale gas exploration by purchasing part of a licence in Scotland covering the area around its Grangemouth petrochemicals complex.
DOE promotes wind power in reports
Timothy Cama, The Hill
The Department of Energy (DOE) is trying to promote wind power as an innovative, low-carbon energy source with a series of reports released Monday.
Scotland offers boost to community wind turbines
Jessica Shankleman, BusinessGreen
Community groups in Scotland seeking to install wind turbines, solar panels and other forms of local energy generation are being invited to bid for a share of a new £20m government fund.
Wind energy smashes UK electricity share record
Jessica Shankleman, BusinessGreen
Yesterday’s high winds may have been frustrating for anyone out and about, but they also helped set a new record for wind power on the grid.
GDF Australia Assets Said to Draw Interest From PTT, Keppel
Brett Foley and Elffie Chew, Bloomberg
GDF Suez SA’s sale of a stake in its Australian power business has drawn interest from companies including Thailand’s PTT Pcl and Singapore-based Keppel Infrastructure Trust, people with knowledge of the matter said.
Bihar’s first all-solar village flickers to life
Avik Roy, Thomson Reuters Foundation
Suresh Manjhi, 30, no longer has to walk five kilometres to and from Makhdumpur, the nearest town, to charge his mobile phone, or rely on kerosene-fuelled earthen lamps for light once darkness falls. These days, the street outside his home is brightly lit at night.
E-Bike Sales Are Surging in Europe
Danny Hakim, The New York Times
With a faint electric whir, Iris Marossek pedals her bicycle through concrete apartment blocks in the heart of old East Berlin, delivering mail to 1,500 people a day.
Seeing Purpose and Profit in Algae
Matthew L. Waldaug, The New York Times
Entrepreneurs have been trying for years to get something valuable out of algae.
***LB: Also in this story “A Nevada company, Algae Systems, has a pilot plant in Alabama that, it says, can turn a profit making diesel fuel from algae by simultaneously performing three other tasks: making clean water from municipal sewage (which it uses to fertilize the algae), using the carbon-heavy residue as fertilizer and generating valuable credits for advanced biofuels.”
Five things Wikileaks taught us about UN climate talks
Megan Darby, RTCC (Responding to Climate Change)
The Wikileaks founder has spent two years holed up in the embassy, trying to find a diplomatic solution to his tangle of legal problems.
Climate change may mean China could be top wine producer by 2050
Want China Times
Warmer temperatures caused by climate change may mean that the south of France will no longer be able to produce high-quality wine in the future, which may present new wine-producing opportunities for northern Europe and China in the future.
July ocean temperatures hit record again
Timothy Cama, The Hill
The Earth’s ocean surfaces were 62.56 degrees Fahrenheit on average last month, tying the record for the hottest July for which the federal government has data.