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Fossil-fueled Republicanism: what to expect from the new US Congress

While more and more people around the world are coming to recognize the need for restraints on fossil fuel consumption, the new Republican-dominated Congress will lead the United States in the opposite direction, writes Michael Klare, author of many books and articles on energy policy. Klare outlines the energy policies the Republicans in Congress are likely to pursue and explains what is behind their fervent commitment to oil and gas……..

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World Energy Council: Germany and Spain less energy secure, UK and Japan on watch list

The new release of the World Energy Council’s annual Energy Trilemma Index, a ranking of countries based on their energy security of supply, affordability and sustainability, shows that Germany and Spain have gone down in their ratings. The UK and Japan have been placed on “negative watch”, showing a downward trend in energy security. In an interview with Energy Post, Joan MacNaughton, Executive Chair of the World Energy Trilemma work,…….

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Why Google gave up on renewables (hint: because they don’t know much about energy)

The two scientists responsible for Google’s failed attempt to launch a renewable energy revolution have written an article explaining what, according to them, went wrong with their project. They have come to the conclusion that fighting climate change with today’s renewable energy technologies won’t work – but they present no evidence for it, writes Energy Post editor Karel Beckman.

Catherine Day, Jean-Claude Juncker & Martin Selmayr in front of the press after the Juncker Commission's first weekly meeting in early November (credit: European Union, 2014)

The Five Energy Labours of Juncker

The new team heading the European Commission in Brussels is lucky. Its predecessors closed two sensitive deals before the reshuffle: a European energy and climate strategy for 2030 and a gas winter package between Ukraine and Russia. On top of that, outgoing Energy Commissioner Günther Oettinger finished off a thick report on the way forward for a European energy market. The new Commission will follow up on these three dossiers,…….

(photo: Marnanel)

The “historic” US-China climate change deal confirms that we are failing in the fight against climate change

The US-China Joint Announcement on Climate Change made on 11 November, has been hailed by many as a historic breakthrough in the fight against climate change, but it has also met with quite a bit of scepticism. Robert Wilson, who publishes the blog The Energy Transition on the website of The Energy Collective, argues that the agreement between the two largest economies in the world demonstrates that the world is failing to…….

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SunPower: “solar the greatest market opportunity world has seen”

The head of one of the world’s leading solar PV manufacturers and developers, SunPower’s Tom Werner, predicts that solar will be a $US5 trillion industry within 20 years, and represents one of the greatest ever opportunities in the history of markets. Giles Parkinson of Reneweconomy.com reports on a recent investment briefing given by Werner.

(photo: Kevin Dooley)

Let’s not forget those fossil fuel subsidies

The IEA’s World Energy Outlook (WEO), published on 12 November, has – not for the first time – put the spotlight on the huge subsidies given worldwide for the use and production of fossil fuels. And these do not include other costs (e.g. the hundreds of billions in US military spending to garrison the Middle East) and externalities caused by our oil, gas and coal use. Sophie Vorrath of RenewEconomy…….

Vizn grid storage battery system

Where battery storage will take over from backup power plants

Although the growth in renewables has led to the shutdown of many gas- and coal-fired power plants, power producers believe their plants will still be needed to provide backup capacity. But grid storage batteries are becoming increasingly competitive with ‘peaker plants’, says Paul Siblerud of US storage company ViZn Energy Systems in an interview with Roy L. Hales of The EcoReport, citing a new study by Energy Strategies Group.

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World’s first power-to-liquids production plant opened in Dresden

A Power-to-Liquids (PtL) demonstration rig which is the first of its kind in the world was officially inaugurated on 14 November by Dresden-based sunfire GmbH. The ceremony was attended by German Federal Minister of Education and Research Johanna Wanka, Board Member Pieter Koolen of venture capitalist Bilfinger,  as well as a number of other high-ranking representatives from the worlds of politics, industry and research. French energy companies Total and EDF…….