The elusive gas connection between Spain and France

Signing ceremony in support of MidCat research agreement with Canete, 6 April 2016

The French energy regulator has recently said that a long-awaited gas interconnector between Spain and France, which the European Commission says would help reduce Europe’s dependence on Russian gas, is not needed and too costly in the current market environment. Juan Vila, President of the Spanish company Gasindustrial, disputes the CRE’s assumptions and calls its viewpoint short-sighted. “The people and industries in Spain and Portugal need to … [Read more...]

Ukrainian crisis can be solved – with an Energiewende

protest against fossil fuels for rnewables February 2015 Kiev (photo 350.org)

A Ukrainian Energiewende could go a long way to resolving the current geopolitical crisis around the country, writes Oleg Savitsky of the National Ecological Centre of Ukraine in a new report for the Succow Stiftung. According to Savitsky, it would reduce Ukraine’s dependence on Russian gas and uranium as well as on coal from the breakaway regions, while at the same time reducing pollution, greenhouse gas emissions and the risk of a nuclear … [Read more...]

Offshore wind: Europe far ahead, Siemens largest by far

EP-News-Logo2 (1)-new

The number of new offshore wind installations in Europe went down sharply in the first half of 2016, but investment grew to a record €14 billion, promising higher growth in the coming years. Siemens installed all 114 new turbines in Europe in 2016 and has a global market share of 64%, according to new reports from WindEurope and PlanetOS. … [Read more...]

Interview Professor Han Wenke: “China’s energy sector is opening up”

solar powered electric vehicle in Anyang China March 2015

Less coal. Less bureaucracy. More renewables. More market. Those are four key elements in the “new balance” China is seeking in its energy sector, after years of huge growth in fossil fuel consumption. Professor Han Wenke, Director-General of the Energy Research Institute of the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), China’s largest ministry, explains the ramifications of the new Five-Year Plan for the energy sector in an interview … [Read more...]

American way of financing energy efficiency projects could lead to breakthrough in Europe

retrofitting (photo province of British Columbia)

A retrofit project of the National Health Service (NHS) in the UK is the first in Europe to sign up to a new energy efficiency accreditation scheme, imported from the United States. This Investor Ready Energy Efficiency (IREE) certification gives investors and financial institutions guarantees that a project is environmentally and financially sound. It could pave the way for a huge expansion of energy efficiency projects across Europe: “the IREE … [Read more...]

We need a lorry-load of energy savings – the UK government delivers a hatchback

Prime Minister Theresa May visits UK company Martek Designs (photo Downing Street 10)

The UK government has published a proposal for the new phase of its flagship energy savings policy, the Energy Company Obligation (ECO). According to Jan Rosenow and Richard Cowart of the Regulatory Assistance Project (RAP), the plan falls far short of what is needed to meet the UK’s targets both on fuel proverty and carbon reduction. “The government has its reasoning backward.” … [Read more...]

The US’s multi-trillion-dollar bridge to nowhere in the Greater Middle East 

Trojan AVRE tank cuts through the Afghanistan Desert (photo Defence Images)

The US finds itself fighting multiple wars across the Greater Middle East, but no one in Washington asks the questions that really matter, writes historian Andrew Bacevich: do these wars make sense? What is their goal? When will they end? Are they even winnable? This article was first published on TomDispatch.com and is republished here with permission. It is more than about energy - it's about the future of our planet - which defines much of the … [Read more...]