Markets

Southeast Asia attempts to kick the coal habit

Despite significant renewables potential in Laos, Vietnam and Indonesia, the burning of coal remains an important element of the economy. Changing attitudes and the climate emergency mean these countries are looking for an exit route but it will not be easy

Most read this month

Japan’s relationship with nuclear clouds net-zero plans

A small molecule with big potential

The North Sea region must lead the just transition of the oil and gas industry

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Supporting the mission and journalistic principles behind FORESIGHT Climate & Energy

We face a fundamental change of the cost structure on the supply side and a need for a fundamental change.

Jochen Kreusel

- Market innovation manager in the power grids division at ABB Power

They [the European Commission] are looking at this stuff backwards. I still think they are convinced the short-term market model could work even though they are also starting to realise that you need something parallel, with long term price signals that give investors confidence to invest in infrastructure and allow them to see a decent market return.

Francesco Venturini

- Global head of renewables for Italian utility Enel

Despite tremendous cost decline of wind and solar technologies, electricity prices will probably remain too low to attract the level of investment needed.

Fatih Birol

- Executive director of the International Energy Agency

The greatest barrier to overcome is the integration of variable renewables into electricity systems. This will require developing power system flexibility and also a friendly deployment of variable renewables.

Fatih Birol

- Executive director of the International Energy Agency

The revised EU ETS can accelerate the decarbonisation of cement

Facing the prospect of huge bills for emissions allowances by 2030, cement companies must act now to accelerate the decarbonisation of the industry, says Fleming Voetmann at FLSmidth

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Cities warmed by heated PPA market

Demand for clean energy is continuing to increase due to a mixture of regulation and lower costs of renewables. Power purchase agreements (PPAs), which have to date mostly attracted corporations, could soon entice city authorities into unlocking further growth in clean energy capacity

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Transport transition lies in a rail renaissance

Shifting some of Europe’s transport needs to the rails can contribute to the energy transition. But complicated and differing cross-border regulations and carbon-intensive power mixes are minimising the rail sector’s impact     

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Grid operators target next-generation weather forecasts

New technologies and faster computers are allowing improvements in weather forecasting. Understanding short-term weather patterns are helping grid operators cut costs and carbon emissions while keeping the lights on

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More accurate energy certificates can drive green investment

Time-stamped certificates would allow customers to know where their power is coming from at any given time and could provide another signal for investors by driving up prices for green energy certificates when supply is short. Regulators are taking steps to ensure that consumers signing up for green tariffs are really helping to progress the energy transition

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A small molecule with big potential

Green hydrogen is expected to become a commercially viable energy carrier soon. The coming decade could see it become a vital part of the energy transition, says Frank Wouters from the MENA Hydrogen Alliance

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A different kind of vehicle charging to cut emissions

Low-emissions zones are a popular feature in many European cities, with more than 260 schemes in operation across the continent. But with questions over their efficacy, authorities are turning to other approaches to curb emissions from city centres and promote the use of transport that uses clean energy

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The North Sea region must lead the just transition of the oil and gas industry

Ahead of this autumn’s climate change conference, the UK, Norway and Denmark can demonstrate leadership on the energy transition by backing up their words with serious action, say Andrzej Błachowicz from Climate Strategies and Gökçe Mete of the Stockholm Environment Institute

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Markets

Japan’s relationship with nuclear clouds net-zero plans

Japan is one of more than 130 nations pledging to reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. However, its path may be more complicated than anticipated given Japan’s reliance on both fossil fuels following public scepticism over nuclear power

Europe’s start-ups dig into battery recycling

United States baulks at the political cost of a carbon price

Local opposition threatens Europe’s wind targets

Surpassing $100 billion in climate finance requires stronger whole-of-government diplomacy

Emerging markets gain from the digital evolution of energy

ESG investing will speed-up the energy transition

Local energy auction trials made possible by digitalisation

The political stars have aligned but are not shining

Energy efficiency will power industry’s decarbonisation efforts

Sound business case needed for viable microgrids

The rise of microgrids

What our editors are reading

Carbon pricing will not help green hydrogen

Reports

Carbon dioxide emission prices in the 2020s will not be high enough to deliver stable demand for renewable hydrogen, concludes German think tank Agora Energiewende and Guidehouse. Even with a tripling of prices in the EU emissions trading system (ETS) to €200/tonne, additional support will be necessary for a “considerable period of time”. To ramp up the market for green hydrogen, the report recommends: carbon contracts for difference in industry; an aviation quota; auctions for combined heat and power plants; measures to encourage markets for decarbonised materials; and hydrogen supply contracts.

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Green energy investments could create 10 million jobs

Reports

The pipeline of 13,000 renewable energy projects across 50 countries could create up to 10 million direct and indirect green jobs, says EY-Parthenon. Renewables can be particularly effective in creating jobs outside of urban economic centres, especially when a deliberate effort is put into strengthening local supply chains. The pipeline represents $2 trillion in investment opportunities for one terawatt (TW) of generation capacity and could avoid 2.5 gigatonnes of CO2-equivalent emissions. Over 90% of the required investment for an accelerated renewables deployment can be provided by the private sector.

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Biden’s clean energy plan’s $1.43 trillion benefit

Reports

The Clean Energy Futures project finds that President Joe Biden’s clean energy plan would benefit the economy by $637 billion while costing $342 billion over 30 years. It would generate estimated present value health benefits of $1.13 trillion because of cleaner air, especially in minority communities, bringing the estimated present value net benefits to $1.43 trillion by 2050. The researchers were from Harvard and Syracuse Universities, the think tank Resources for the Futures and the Georgia Institute of Technology. Biden is calling for 80% clean energy by 2030 including a clean energy standard (CES) for utilities.

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