Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Alternative Clean Energy Roundup: 10 September 2014

X-ray imaging paves way for novel solar cell production
9 September 2014 - The sharp X-ray vision of DESY's research light source PETRA III paves the way for a new technique to produce cheap, flexible and versatile double solar cells. The method developed by scientists from the Technical University of Denmark (DTU) in Roskilde can reliably produce efficient tandem plastic solar cells of many metres in length, as a team around senior researcher Jens W. Andreasen reports in the journal Advanced Energy Materials.

The scientists used a production process, where the different layers of a polymer (plastic) solar cell are coated from various solutions onto a flexible substrate. This way, the solar cell can be produced fast and cheap in a roll-to-roll process and in almost any desired length - up to several kilometers long single solar cell modules have already been manufactured. read more>>>

Solar power rules to boost India’s energy security
As power cuts strike northern India, new rules mean solar panels could answer energy security problems

9 September 2014 - A power crisis crippled north India this summer, with daily power cuts of up to five hours in the capital city of New Delhi.

Regional governments are increasingly looking to solar power to solve the problem. An estimated 300 million Indians have no access to electricity.

The governments of four Indian states – Tamil Nadu, Gujarat, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh – have already put in place policies to support solar power. read more>>>

Sun Jack - world's most powerful solar charger!

Interest in Solar Water Heating Spreads Globally
SEPT. 3, 2014 - To produce milk and cheese for the world, dairies need cows and grass. But they also go through enormous amounts of hot water each day to flush out milk lines and clean other equipment. And so farmers on King Island, part of the Australian state of Tasmania, were delighted when workers began installing solar arrays on their dairies’ rooftops to capture the energy of the harsh Australian sun and use it to heat water.

“They actually look quite attractive, believe it or not,” said Troy Smith, who heads a farmers’ group on the island. He estimates that the solar hot water gear, set up earlier this year, will lower power costs 10 to 15 percent. The Tasmanian government financed the equipment with a $188,000 grant, and the dairy farmers paid for related expenses like roofing and electrical upgrades. read more>>>

UN official: New York climate summit a 'major turning point'
09/08/14 - The United Nations climate summit in New York is expected to be a "major turning point" for negotiations on an international pact to address global warming, according to officials organizing the event.

Selwin Hart, director of the U.N. climate team under Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon, said on call with reporters Monday that the summit "will be a major turning point in the way the world is approaching climate change," and is meant to put the issue "back on top of the international agenda."

Over 100 heads of state and government leaders, including President Obama, are expected to attend the summit on Sept. 23. read more>>>

California Successfully Emphasizes Renewable Energy Commitment
September 8, 2014 - Over the years, California has justifiably claimed the exalted position of originator of new ideas in fashion, entertainment, social media, and even electric cars. The state’s Silicon Valley is the shining symbol of the world’s breakthrough communications technology.

But now it seems that a significant escalation of solar energy and, to a lesser extent, “wind” is lending credibility to the once improbable California campaign to generate one-third of its power from renewable resources by 2020. This now realizable objective is personified by “NextEra Resources’ Blythe Solar Project” by the U.S. Department of the Interior.

Although originally eclipsed by the 1,000 megawatt photovoltaic farm originally proposed, conceivably the largest solar project in the world, the implementation of “Blythe” will generate enough power to service 485,000 homes, and reduce gas emissions by 400,000 metric tons per year. read more>>>

'Blue-Green Economy' Needed for Island Nations Threatened by Rising Sea, Says UN
Sep 02, 2014 - Small island nations have been facing increasing difficulties as the state of the world continues to change. Now the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) is recommending that small island developing states (SIDS) adapt a new strategy for socioeconomic purposes to weather the storm of climate change.

Experts are calling the bulk of this strategy a "blue-green economy," which was detailed in the UNEP's Global Environment Outlook SIDS Outlook report.

The report recommends that SIDS take significant action to break away from "business as usual" - where island nations are left further and further behind even other developing states in areas like economics and technology. read more>>>

How to make a community microgrid: Follow San Francisco?
September 02, 2014 - If neighborhoods controlled their power supply, chances are many would opt for clean and efficient energy, especially if it’s cost-effective.

But energy choices aren’t left to the locals in the United States. Instead, utilities, cities and states determine our mix of power plants.

Communities might have more say if they develop their own microgrids. But there are some practical issues to resolve before we see community microgrids emerge in great numbers. read more>>>

State governments pushing cities and utilities to get microgrids
Sep 2, 2014 - A giant snowstorm knocked out power to Connecticut's Wesleyan University three years ago. University officials hope it will never happen again thanks to a recently installed microgrid. Wesleyan can now generate its own power during an outage. It can also serve as a disaster coordination center for the region.

The microgrid concept is gaining popularity especially in Connecticut, Massachusetts, Maryland, New Jersey and New York, all of which have microgrid initiatives. With severe weather becoming more common, these states are turning to microgrids to minimize the impact. read more>>>

Africa: Momentum Building for a Greener and More Inclusive Economy
1 September 2014 - A quarter of the world's countries are now pursuing green economy plans Three new reports to support governments in building greener and more inclusive economies unveiled at the Green Economy Coalition annual meeting

Green economy policies are spreading worldwide at an increasing pace, with more than 65 countries now actively pursuing green economy policies and 48 of them taking steps to develop national green economy plans.

These figures were presented by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) at the Green Economy Coalition's first public annual meeting, which is assessing the status of green economy around the world and particularly progress towards financial reform. read more>>>

PV system supports biodiversity
02.09.2014 - A recent study has demonstrated that the Citizens' Solar Power Plant Vienna-Liesing helps to protect rare species of animals. Even field hamsters have settled at the site of the photovoltaic system.

The ground-mounted system consists of nearly 4,000 solar modules and preserves the green areas of the region as a natural habitat for insects and small animals. During construction of the photovoltaic system in the vicinity of Heizwerk Süd, particular attention was paid to the natural environment at the location. This allowed new habitats to be created. read more>>>

Green Bonds Add to $5.7 Trillion Privately Invested in the Green Economy
September 2, 2014 - The first two quarters of 2014 show the Green Transition Scoreboard® (GTS) at $5.7 trillion in private investments and commitments since 2007. This confirms the green economy is on track to reach $10 trillion in investments by 2020 to effectively scale innovations and reduce costs in green technologies as the world transitions to the Solar Age.

The 2014 mid-year update “Green Bonds Growing Green Infrastructure” focuses on the bond markets’ addition of green, impact and ESG (environmental, social, governance) targeted bond issues. These new bonds provide long-term investment opportunities to pension funds and other institutional investors as global policy makers, corporations and asset managers see demand for investments in infrastructure, environmental, social and human capital being integrated into financial markets. “This update of the Green Transition Scoreboard gives you a ‘one stop reference’ to the dynamic and growing area of Green Bonds, all the latest in a few pages - great job!,” says Peter Lynch, principal, Salem Financial, Inc. read more>>>

GridShare launches crowdfunding platform for renewable energy projects
13 August 2014 - GridShare LLC has launched an independent crowdfunding platform to help renewable energy projects and cleantech companies raise capital.

In a written statement, the company said its online platform will enable renewable energy project developers and cleantech companies from around the world post their funding needs.

Potential investors can then peruse investment opportunities in a variety of renewable energy sectors, including: solar, wind, geothermal, and biogas. The site will also host micro-hydro projects, green building initiatives, and cleantech companies that are raising funds to develop alternative energy technologies or expand their existing green businesses. read more>>>

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