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Germany's solar industry back on track

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Germany is second in terms of installed solar power capacity, trailing only global leader China. German solar industry experienced tremendous increase in installed power capacity in 2008-2012 period but since then the new solar power installations have been declining steadily.

But it looks like Germany's solar industry is back on track, this time characterized by steady and slower growth and not like in its prime years by meteoric rise in PV installations.

It is expected that German solar power capacity growth should reach the 2.5GW annual expansion target this year. A few years ago, Germany introduced subsidy degression dependent on capacity growth. As a result of this solar subsidies declined gradually, and in 2016 Germany decided to shift subsidies for solar installations above 750kW from a guaranteed payment model to competitive tenders.

Last Updated on Monday, 09 April 2018 10:09 Read more...

Tidal power needs new evolving technologies

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Tidal power is renewable energy source that converts the energy of tides into electricity. Many areas in the world have constant and predictable tidal resources which can in turn lead to very efficient source of energy. However, tidal power technologies are still in infancy and in need of major evolution in order to become relevant in global energy supply.

Scientists estimate that about 80% of the energy from tides are located in areas of over 40 meters of depth, and this in combination with the current technological development leads to high construction costs. This is why tidal energy sector needs new technologies that are able to operate in areas where it is expensive to install first generation devices such as large structures held to the seabed.

Canada, and some European countries have already started testing first experimental parks based on devices set on the seabed, called of the first generation but lately there has also been talk about systems of the second generation which have anchors and a series of cables that hold the device to the seabed.

Last Updated on Friday, 23 March 2018 12:33 Read more...

Renewable energy holds the key to future energy security

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Human population continues with its rapid growth. By the end of this century there will likely be more than 11 billion people living on this planet. The increase in human population leads to increase in global energy demand. The next logical question that pops out is which energy sources will be used to satisfy growing demand for more power?

Many energy analysts agree that renewable energy sources will hold keys to future energy security. This doesn't mean that fossil fuels will be completely phased out in the foreseeable future, what it means is that renewable energy will play much bigger, even crucial role, in helping the global battle with ever-growing energy consumption.

According to the most recent estimates world will need 124 percent more energy in 2100, so there will be tremendous pressure on renewable energy sources to deliver the goods. This means that renewable energy sources will not only have to address certain issues such as intermittency but will also need to become more efficient.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 13 March 2018 09:17 Read more...

Intermittent renewable power not making the grid unreliable

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The opponents of renewable energy development usually point to the intermittency of renewable energy sources such as solar and wind when discussing the major setbacks of the current renewable energy development. They even say that the increased renewable energy generation can lead to unreliable grid and cause problematic energy supply.

Several studies have proved otherwise. Last year's study commissioned by the US government concluded that the stability of energy supply is not being threatened by the increase in renewable energy generation.

The latest report by the IEEFA (Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis) also says that major power systems can cope with increasing shares of intermittent renewable energy sources such as solar and wind, if the appropriate measures are taken.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 20 February 2018 08:12 Read more...

California - A perfect market for electric vehicles

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California continues to lead the nation in terms of renewable energy development. Solar, wind, geothermal - all these energy sources are becoming increasingly important in "The Golden State" but there is also one other important sector contributing to clean energy goals, namely electric vehicles.

California has more electric vehicles than any other U.S. state, around 350,000, and this number could increase 15 fold by 2030 if California Gov. Jerry Brown's new environmental initiative reaches its planned targets.

According to this initiative the state set a goal of 5 million zero-emission vehicles on the road by 2030, major increase from a previous target of 1.5 million by 2025, and a plan to spend $2.5 billion in new funding to buy cleaner vehicles. The state's eight-year plan is to spend $2.5 billion between now and 2025, expanding the number of electric-vehicle charging stations from roughly 14,000 now to 250,000.

Since transportation is still the largest source of greenhouse gases in California, accounting for about 39 percent of the total, going for more clean vehicles looks like the safest bet to significantly reduce state's greenhouse gas emissions.

Last Updated on Monday, 29 January 2018 13:07 Read more...

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