Opinion

Aiming for systemic change

Transforming energy systems will not be enough to decarbonise our economies, argue Janez Potocnik, Co-Chair of the International Resource Panel and Partner at Systemiq, and colleague Julia Okatz. They call for the energy transition to be part of a wider shift to reduce the production of goods and consumption of all natural resources

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Hydrogen: the Northern Netherlands is ready

Tomatoes & Tulips

Europe explores sustainability standards for solar PV

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Targets and cheap construction costs boost wind

Reports

Just four states provided 52% of US wind energy in 2018, says a paper by the US Energy Information Administration. Texas, Oklahoma, Iowa and Kansas are not only very windy, but they also have either mandatory renewable energy requirements or voluntary goals as well as relatively cheap construction costs. Five other states—California, Illinois, Minnesota, North Dakota and Colorado—provided another 20% of total wind generation. US producers generated 275 million megawatt hours of electricity from wind power in 2018, says the federal agency. 

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Tax incentives to spur power sector innovation

Reports

Tax incentives are inherently less efficient than direct federal spending at transmitting incentives to the private sector, say researchers at Columbia University, US. But new predictable, long-term tax incentives are important to enable the deployment of technologies to make the power sector more flexible and integrate significant amounts of renewable energy, they add. Support should be ramped down as technologies mature, they insist. Eligibility for America’s federal tax credit for wind energy projects expires in December 2019 and the incentive for solar will start being phased out in 2020.

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Urgent need to overhaul US grid

Reports

The US power grid is ageing and urgently needs an update, says a report by the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA), Grid Vision: The Electric Highway to a 21st Century Economy. The American Society of Civil Engineers recently gave America’s electricity infrastructure a grade of only D+, highlights the report. Dozens of studies confirm that an investment in transmission will pay for itself many times over, says AWEA. Well-designed transmission projects provide consumer benefits two to four times greater than their cost, the trade group says. 

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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

Latest articles

The business case for hydrogen remains elusive

Questions around definitions, targets and the funding of green hydrogen in Europe still need answering

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Working together is essential for the energy transition

Ahead of Global Wind Day 2019, Malgosia Bartosik, Deputy CEO at WindEurope, insists on the need for a collective effort, with the wind industry working closely with other partners and sectors, to ensure a timely energy transition and avoid climate catastrophe

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Tjisse Stelpstra, Regional Minister of the Province of Drenthe, the Netherlands, offers an invitation to join policymakers and investors at EU Sustainable Energy Week to discuss the Northern Nether-lands’s plans to build a hydrogen economy

Hydrogen: making the energy transition deeper and cheaper

Tjisse Stelpstra, Regional Minister of the Province of Drenthe, the Netherlands, offers an invitation to join policy makers and investors at EU Sustainable Energy Week to discuss plans by the Northern Netherlands to build a hydrogen economy

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Standards and regulation creating a “closed loop supply chain” could help the wind industry better manage questions around recycling and reuse

Help to make end-of-life decisions for wind turbines

Standards and regulation creating a “closed loop supply chain” could help the wind industry better manage questions around recycling and reuse

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E-commerce has changed the way we shop, but it also means more delivery vans and lorries entering our cities, clogging roads and polluting the air. The sharing economy could help solve the problem, argue David Fernández and Ignacio Magallón from Bax and Company, an innovation consultancy

Transforming urban deliveries for zero-emission cities

E-commerce has changed the way we shop, but it also means more delivery vans and lorries entering our cities, clogging roads and polluting the air. The sharing economy could help solve the problem, argue David Fernández and Ignacio Magallón from Bax and Company, an innovation consultancy

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Let’s get real about the future role of gas

As this year’s European Gas Regulatory Forum, also known as the Madrid Forum, gets underway in Spain, Antoine Simon from Friends of the Earth Europe calls for the European Commission to think very carefully about what role gas can really play given the climate emergency the world is facing

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New Mexico’s ways of managing a just transition for the climate and workers is being watched closely across the US

How a just transition for US coal workers is becoming reality

New Mexico’s ways of managing a just transition for the climate and workers is being watched closely across the US

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On the same day that another earthquake hit Groningen, a province in the Northern Netherlands, our region was present in Lyon, France, to launch a new European Hydrogen Valleys Partnership that will help regions like ours achieve a full transition from natural gas to green hydrogen, says regional minister of the Province of Groningen Patrick Brouns

Hydrogen: the new business model for our region

On the same day that another earthquake hit Groningen, a province in the Northern Netherlands, our region was present in Lyon, France, to launch a new European Hydrogen Valleys Partnership that will help regions like ours achieve a full transition from natural gas to green hydrogen, says regional minister of the Province of Groningen Patrick Brouns

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Opinion

Why investing in biomass could be risky business

Converting coal-fired power stations to run on biomass is often sold as a way of reducing greenhouse gas emissions, but studies increasingly show that forest biomass is far from being low carbon. It is also a relatively expensive renewable energy and unlikely to be a good investment choice, says Peg Putt from the Environmental Paper Network

Europe explores sustainability standards for solar PV

New applications for surplus energy

Payback on reusing waste heat took less than three years

Catching up in the artificial intelligence race

The case for stopping methane leakage

Three smart ways to integrate EVs

The climate crisis needs clean energy leaders, not critics

Tomatoes & Tulips

Cooling in a warming world

Industrial heat demand: Hot cows and heat pumps

Technology at scale is key to decarbonised heating and cooling