Skip to main content


Showing posts from June, 2012

Oxfam warns businesses of climate change effect on supply chain
Businesses have been warned by Oxfam that climate change is threatening the resilience of global supply chains. A paper published by the charity today highlights the increasing impact of climate change on small-scale producers in the developing world, even suggesting that agricultural productivity in some countries could fall by as much as 50% by 2080.

Sustainable buildings can be sexy....
For the longest time, discussion of green design and construction were considered very inside baseball; that is, limited to interested industry geeks already familiar with the concept. But the marriage of sustainability and architecture has become more than just a trendy buzz phrase for both the media and general public. Around the world, projects are showing not only how sustainable building practices can help a project’s bottom line but also how they can make an architectural splash.

New policy will force UK firms to reveal emissions
New emissions policy will force biggest UK firms to reveal CO2 figures
Public companies in the UK are to become the first in the world forced to publish full details of the greenhouse gases they produce, under plans announced by the government at Rio+20. About 1,800 companies listed on the London Stock Exchange, including some of the biggest corporate names in the world such as BP, Tesco and Tate & Lyle, will have to publish their emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases from April next year. The move will please business leaders and organisations such as the Confederation of British Industry, which have urged the government for regulations to provide greater transparency and enable companies to be easily compared. (The Guardian)

Don't subsidise nuclear power

Don't Subsidise Nuclear Power The government plans to force everybody to pay for new nuclear power stations through their electricity bills, despite promising there would be no public subsidies.
Proposed changes to the electricity market, currently going through parliament, will provide a series of direct and indirect subsidies to the nuclear industry. These include a guaranteed long term price for the electricity produced by new nuclear plants.
Don't let the government throw good money after bad. Rather than increasing our bills to pay for the runaway costs of nuclear power, they should be supporting a clean, sustainable future based on renewable sources and energy saving.
Please send a letter [click here] to the government minister responsible for this policy - Ed Davey, Secretary of State for Climate Change – urging him to abandon all subsidies for nuclear and stick to his original commitment to a nuclear-free future.
More information at:…

US in trouble as massive 'debilitating' heat wave spreads eastwards
An historic heat wave that has helped create tinderbox conditions in Colorado and other Western states is moving east, with record-breaking temperatures expected in at least 13 states Thursday, from Oklahoma to Ohio. Already during the past seven days, 1,701 warm temperature records had been tied or set across the U.S., compared to 401 cool temperature records during the same period.

Britain's coal imports increase by 20%
Britain is burning more now than at any time since 2006, despite official promises to move to greener fuels. [The Sun] Imports are up 20 per cent to 18 million tons this year — with coal responsible for generating 42 per cent of all UK electricity, the Department of Energy says.

Nature Climate Change publishes new evidence on warming oceans

From Climate Progress
Nature Climate Change has published a new paper on the warming oceans which compares Ocean Heat Content (OHC) simulations in climate models to some of the newest and best OHC observational data sets from Domingues (2008), Ishii (2009), and Levitus (2009). The paper makes several important points:
The 0-700 meter layer of the oceans warmed 0.022 degrees C to 0.028 degrees C on average per decade since 1960.Climate model simulations which include the most complete set of external forcings – natural (solar and volcanic) and anthropogenic (greenhouse gases and sulphate aerosols) – are consistent with the rate of warming observed over the past 40 years and multimodel response including volcanic forcings projected forward using the IPCC SRES Sc…

Rio 20+ or whatever nonsense...

There's lies, damned lies and then there's the Rio 20+ summit or whatever it's called, supposedly arranged to do something about climate change. We know its going to achieve jack sh*t, so why bother giving it any attention at all.... what we need is global mass movements, but that isn't going to happen in a hurry, given that most people are too busy watching Eastenders... until the flood waters start coming in of course, and then it's "why didn't the government do something?". Look in the mirror, that's why....

Wave of Hydro Investment in Pipeline for Scotland

From British Hydropower Association Press release Over £5m paid to independent schemes in last year TENS of millions of pounds of investment in smaller-scale hydropower projects in Scotland could be unlocked by the outcome of a review of a green energy support scheme, industry leaders have predicted. A significant number of potential schemes are on hold by landowners and investors while the UK Government considers changes to rates paid under the Feed-in Tariff (FiT) support scheme. The British Hydropower Association believes investment of as much as £100m in Scotland is being held back by the uncertainty over the FiT scheme which provides guaranteed financial returns from investment in renewable energy projects. An announcement on the outcome of the review of the FiT scheme is expected shortly. New figures released today (June x) have highlighted the contribution already being made by smaller-scale hydro to the Scottish economy. SmartestEnergy, the UK’s leading purchaser of …

UK solar PV industry at a crossroads
According to Edwin Koot, chief executive of Solarplaza, the UK solar industry is at a crossroads in its development, the independent global knowledge platform for the solar PV industry. Mr Koot believes that it’s now up to the industry players, and not the government, to shape the UK market for solar PV. “The UK solar industry needs to reflect on what happened over the past 18 months. It can either throw in the towel or realise that there is a solar future – even without feed-in tariffs – and fight for its future.

New LCOE report for wind and solar
New research report "Grid Parity for Wind and Solar Power - Future Outlook and Impact Analysis" prepared by GlobalData has been recently published by Market Publishers Ltd. The report suggests that the levelized cost of electricity for solar PV is likely to keep on decreasing due to declining capital costs and increasing capacity factor.

German solar industry getting hammered by cheap Chinese imports
Cheap imports of silicon solar photovoltaic (PV) panels from China, sharp cuts in subsidies, and the ongoing euro zone debt crisis is taking a heavy toll on Germany’s once world-beating solar energy industry. Source: Clean Technica ( Cheap imports of silicon solar photovoltaic (PV) panels from China, sharp cuts in subsidies, and the ongoing euro zone debt crisis is taking a heavy toll on Germany’s once world-beating solar energy industry. Source: Clean Technica ( Cheap imports of silicon solar photovoltaic (PV) panels from China, sharp cuts in subsidies, and the ongoing euro zone debt crisis is taking a heavy toll on Germany’s once world-beating solar energy industry. Source: Clean Technica (

Global PV market to treble in three years
The global solar PV industry is going through what McKinsey & Co recently described as the darkness before the dawn – a massive shakeout as subsidies are wound back, demand plateaus (at least temporarily), and the rewards go to the cheapest, most efficient and best managed. Some 200 solar manufacturers that displayed last year failed to make an appearance at this year’s InterSolar conference, one of the biggest on the annual calendar, with most unable to cope with the 45 per cent cut in module prices over the past 12 months.

But getting through the current shakeout may be not be a guarantee for success, even if the prospects of volume look promsing. According to Dieter Manz, the CEO of Manz, a German electronics (LCD and solar PV) manufacturer, the solar PV industry is likely to more than triple by 2015 to 100GW a year, and that will be the signal for a range of new competit…

LDK Solar introduces first operational and warranty insurance
LDK Solar, a leading vertically integrated manufacturer of photovoltaic (PV) products, together with its partner Solarif, a fully mandated underwriter of HDI Gerling for PV insurance, are the first companies to introduce a unique insurance solution at the system level.  LDK Solar announced the new 'Secure' offer at Intersolar Europe, the world's largest solar industry exhibition taking place in Munich from the 13th – 15th of June.

Issues with the Green Deal

Some of the administration costs of the Green Deal are to be waived for two years in a bid to help encourage more companies and organisations to join it and stimulate the market (Greenwise Business - link broken). The Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) has confirmed that no-one seeking to become a Green Deal assessor, installer or provider will have to pay fees for registration until 2014. Meanwhile the government has appointed Gemserve and its partner REAL to be the overseer for assessors, installers and providers and to monitor the Green Deal code of practice for the next three years.

Energy Minister Greg Barker has described the Green Deal as a 'game changer' writing in his blog in The Guardian. In counter argument to an earlier Guardian story that claimed insulation rates would drop by 83% under the Green Deal, the minister said, :

"The government's ambition for the green deal goes much further than the current system of cheap loft-lagging and cavity-w…

How environmentally friendly is insulation material? Most people should know by now that loft and cavity wall insulation can really help you to cut your carbon emissions, but just how environmentally friendly are the materials used in the process? The good news is that modern insulation is much more environmentally friendly than it used to be. 

Indian solar manufacturers seek anti-dumping duty on imports
NEW DELHI: Indian manufacturers of solar equipment are seeking anti-dumping duty on imports from China, Malaysia, Taiwan and the US on the grounds that local industry is bleeding because of "ridiculously low" price of foreign equipment.
The industry wants anti-dumping duty on imports of solar photovoltaic (PV) cells and modules, and has filed an application to the directorate general of anti-dumping and allied duties (DGAD).

Solar industry feeling the effects of cuts

From The Financial Times
The rapid expansion of photovoltaic installations across Europe has made solar power not just a matter of political controversy, but a common feature of the landscape.
A sharp reduction in subsidies for domestic and commercial PV installations – particularly in the Germany and the UK – may for the time being result in financial distress to both European manufacturers and installers. But beyond the policy hiccups facing those in the more popular PV arena, work on developing projects based on concentrated solar power, the original focus of the solar sector, continues.

(For full article see link)