The hydrogen economy is much nearer than we think  

Toyoto fuel cell vehicle photo Toyota UK-slider

For over 30 years promoters of green energy have proclaimed the hydrogen economy is around the corner. Now this could finally become true. While some energy experts claim that hydrogen from renewable energy is prohibitively expensive, companies like ITM in the UK are proving in the market that this technology is already competitive. They produce hydrogen for use in cars and in the form of power-to-gas to be used in the gas network. Energy … [Read more...]

Interview Sir John Scarlett, advisor Statoil, ex-head MI6: “The role of old-fashioned geopolitics will become less important in energy”

Sir John Scarlett (photo Chatham House)

Thanks to new energy policies, technologies and market trends the potential to use energy for political purposes has decreased in recent years, says Sir John Scarlett, former Chief of the Secret Intelligence Service MI6 and now Chairman of the Strategy Advisory Council at Statoil, in an interview with Energy Post. At the same time he notes that instability in North Africa, the Middle East and Eastern Europe has grown and energy security should … [Read more...]

It will take more than a share in shale gas profits to sway public opinion on fracking

frack free Notts at the Major Oak 2015 (photo thornypup)

The UK government has proposed a scheme under which households in communities affected by shale gas production would be paid directly out of a Shale Wealth Fund financed by company revenues. Joseph Dutton, Research Fellow at the Energy Policy Group, University of Exeter, points out it is impossible to estimate how much they would get paid. According to Dutton, in the absence of a social license to operate, the promise of payments will do little … [Read more...]

Christoph Frei, World Energy Council: “Grand transition” requires new vision of energy security

Christoph Frei, Secretary General World Energy Council

The energy sector is going through a “grand transition” that will radically change the way energy security should be approached, says Christoph Frei, Secretary General of the World Energy Council, on the eve of the ONS Summit, a high-level meeting on energy security in Stavanger‎ on August 28-29, hosted by the Munich Security Conference and the ONS Foundation‎. In particular, the role of gas in the European energy system will change, says Frei. … [Read more...]

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

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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...]