Time is running fast this year, it’s already March and the weather has been giving us a foretaste of spring with temperatures about 18°C degrees all around Europe. The last months have been quite busy at the EUROSOLAR office in Bonn. We are still in full preparations for the upcoming 13th IRES Conference on March 12 to 14 in Düsseldorf. There is also progress made in our aim to give the magazine SOLARZEITALTER (Solar Age) – a more international twist, so stay excited for new updates! We will keep the overview, inform you continuously and we are happy about new ideas and feedback from the reader’s perspective!
Last chance to get tickets for the 13th IRES Conference in Düsseldorf
The world of energy storage technologies will once again be visiting Düsseldorf from 12 to 14 March 2019. For the 5th time already, the International Conference for the Storage of Renewable Energies (IRES) organized by EUROSOLAR will take place together with Energy Storage Europe (ESE) in cooperation with Messe Düsseldorf. The two conferences and the associated trade fair create the platform for Europe's largest industry meeting. EUROSOLAR members receive a voucher for the trade fair or a 20 percent discount on conference tickets.
The IRES programme includes scientific presentations on sector coupling topics such as power-to-heat and power-to-gas, on specific storage technologies such as thermal and battery storage as well as case studies and energy system analyses are available here: www.energystorageconference.org
Book recommendation: Peter Droege’s Urban Energy Transition II
The international compendium with 33 chapters by over 60 authors from all over the world contains measures and tools for cities and regions to convert quickly and completely to renewable energy.
As far as the existential challenges of the climate catastrophe are concerned, cities are simultaneously the scene, the trigger and the solution. The key to the success of our social and economic structures lies in the rapid construction and reconstruction of a renewable energy infrastructure. Municipalities, cities and regions as central places for human activity play a decisive role in this. "Urban Energy Transition" is modern reading for citizens, companies, teachers, researchers and students as well as for employees in communities ranging from villages to megacities and metropolitan regions who are striving for a rapid transition to renewable energies.
The interdisciplinary handbook covers a wide range of topics that are decisive for the successful implementation of the energy system transformation. The topics range from the politics and practice of carbon dioxide emissions, the planning of thermal performance in cities, energy efficiency services, networks to support renewable communities and global trends in urban mobility to the effects of intelligent energy networks and decentralised energy supply.
Peter Droege (Ed.): Urban Energy Transition. Renewable Strategies for Cities and Regions, Elsevier 2018, 706 pages, 195 dollars, ISBN: 9780081020746
Deadline for Renewables in Cities Global Status Report ending next week!
The Renewable Energy Policy Network for the 21st Century, REN21, is producing the first edition of a new report series: the Renewables in Cities Global Status Report. Cities and local action play a key role in the energy transformation. There is, however, little information available and too little focus on how renewable energy is being scaled up in cities. This is why data is being collected.The data collection is an effective way for stakeholders to contribute their perspectives, targets, policies or innovative business model promoting the uptake of renewable energy at city-level.The deadline has been extended to 18 March. City experts are warmly invited to share your renewable energy stories and actions, and be part of the collaborative effort to create the first global report on renewable energy in cities. To get involved, participants visit the website and fill out the questionnaire.
Germany: Support from Angela Merkel for “Fridays for Future” protests
Last Friday, thousands of high school students in the city of Hamburg protested together with the Swedish initiator of the movement Greta Thunberg against climate change. All across the world, students have been leaving school to demand action and to show their support for the other protesters.
In advance of the event, some of the German politicians have criticised the students for avoiding compulsory school attendance and that they might face disciplinary action. Support for the movement comes from the German chancellor Angela Merkel. In a video released on her official website, the chancellor said that she welcomes the protest of the young generation because the countries’ ambitious climate goals could be only reached by a range of support across the wider society.
The southern Italian town of Taranto is likely to host the first offshore wind project in the Mediterranean Sea. According to the consultancy and owner of the project the financial close has been reached. Offshore installation and construction for the 30 MW bottom-fixed project are now about to start at the end of the year, with an estimated begin of commercial operations in 2020In the meantime, there also plans for offshore wind projects with a new floating technique in the French part of the Mediterranean Sea, which are expected to be online in 2021.
It seems like the offshore wind energy boom, which has benefit especially the wind wealthy countries in the north and west, is now swapping over to south of Europe.
The Spanish government approved the country’s national integrated energy and climate plan (NECP 2021 - 2030), which is proposing that renewables make up 42% of the final energy consumption in 2030. In detail, the country will aim at 120 GW of installed renewable energy capacity by 2030, primarily with investments in wind and solar energy facilities. The plan also includes new targets for greenhouse gas emissions (21% reduction, compared to the 1990s), improvements in energy efficiency and a larger share of renewables in transport sector by 2030.
The NECP (2021 - 2030) aims to push the development of renewables to reach the overall goal of 100% renewables share in the electricity sector by 2050, which is in line with the climate strategy set by the European Union.
Find out more about the energy transition in Spain by clicking here.
United Kingdom: World’s biggest offshore wind farm produces first power
The first wind turbine at the Hornsea One development started to generating power on Friday, 15 February 2019. Hornsea One is together with Hornsea Two and Hornsea Three part of the large scale wind energy farm, which is developed by the Danish company Ørsted. Only the Hornsea One site covers an area with the size of more than 58.000 football pitches and when the farm is fully operational in 2020, it is capable of producing energy for more than a million homes in the UK. Each of the 174 turbines at the Hornsea One site will measure 190m high – which is larger than The Gherkin tower – and is produced in the Siemens factory in Hull.
The efforts of the industry to drive down costs in production and supply chain, are likely to push such projects in future even more and the UK with its plenty amount of wind intensive regions, seems to benefit by this trend in both ways, economically and ecologically.
Find out more about the Hornsea project, by clicking here.
Africa: Progress in de-risking renewable energy projects
The potential for renewable energies is immense in Africa, there is plenty of solar, wind and water energy available that could reduce the energy deficit of the continent, by providing a viable and cost-efficient alternative towards fossil fuels. To strengthen the energy transition in Africa, the African Trade Insurance Agency (ATI) and the German business development bank KfW, created a joint initiative, the Regional Liquidity Support Facility (RLSF).
The RLSF has signed previously an agreement with the countries of Benin, Burundi, Malawi, Uganda and Zambia to secure and to protect their Independent Power Producers (IPPs) against payment and business risks that often harm investments into the energy sector. The Facility, which has an initial budget of US$74mn, supports small and mid-scale renewable energy projects of IPPs, by providing assistance and finical assets.
The agreement could also help to ensure lower tariffs for consumers, on average, the cost for energy produced by non-renewables are between US$0.40 to US$0.50 compared to just US$0.10 to US$0.18 per KW hour produced be renewable energies. Therefore, the development of the renewable energy sector in Africa might be also chance to boost economic development, by providing coast-efficient energy to industry and consumers.
Find out more about renewable energies in Africa, by clicking here.
Being dedicated to the cause of completely substituting for nuclear and fossil energy through renewable energy, EUROSOLAR acts to change conventional political priorities and common infrastructures in favor of renewable energy, from the local to the international level.
For different (international) conferences, political symposia as well as the award ceremony for the German and European Solar Prize and many more activities EUROSOLAR brings together expertise from the fields of politics, economy, science and culture to promote the deployment of solar energy (including wind, water, waves, biomass and geothermal sources!) and to develop and encourage political and economic action plans and concepts for the fast and decentralised transition to a 100 % renewable supply with energy, heat and mobility.