Sustainability

Brexit paralysis and lack of incentives leave community energy facing uphill struggle in the UK

The future benefits of technology such as smart meters and the associated aggregation of small scale generation are not being adequately rewarded, support for solar and wind is being cut off and parliament is fixated solely on one issue.

Colombia imposes renewables quota on power distributors

The obligation will be applied annually from 2022. The clean electricity required will have to be bought through power purchase contracts of at least 10 years’ duration.

SMA: ‘We can’t be credible if we’re not sustainable’

Credibility comes not just from offering products that generate clean electricity, but also from the way in which those products are manufactured, says SMA Solar Technology CEO Jürgen Reinert. Here, transparency and sustainability are key. That’s why one of the world’s largest PV inverter producers has partnered with pv magazine’s UP sustainability initiative. In the following Q&A, Reinert lays out what SMA is doing to step UP its green game.

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IRENA and the UN ink agreement to combat desertification with renewables

A memorandum of understanding signed by the institutions was not solar specific but the use of PV modules for shading, especially in agriculture, can reduce water consumption and help halt the expansion of deserts.

Germany will need 160 GW of solar by 2030 to prevent power shortages

EuPD Research has calculated what needs to be done to replace the nuclear and coal generation to be phased out in Germany. Accelerated expansion of PV appears the best short-term option. However, storage capacity will need to increase 30-fold by 2040 so solar can become the main pillar of the country’s energy system.

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Five takeaways from EU PVSEC 2019

This week, pv magazine headed to Marseille for the 36th edition of the EU PVSEC conference and exhibition. During the week-long show, leading universities and research institutes presented their latest results to the industry and public. As the conference heads into its final afternoon, we’ve put together five key takeaways from this year’s event.

The cooling effect of PV

Research from Finland’s Aalto University claims the residential cooling sector could sustain 540 GW of solar generation capacity if the world’s air conditioning systems were solar powered. Academics say synergies between PV and the cooling industry will become stronger as demand for the latter shifts nearer the equator, where seasonal differences in weather are less pronounced.

Does slew of solar mega tenders mean Gulf nations are belatedly accepting the inevitable?

With Kuwait, Qatar and even renewables laggard Saudi Arabia following in the wake of regional clean energy pioneer the UAE, a raft of huge solar tenders is entering the Middle Eastern project pipeline. Obstacles remain to overseas project developers but significant rewards are on offer.

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New Japanese environment minister touts end of nuclear power

After Fukushima, Japan’s nuclear power fleet went offline with plans to restart only when safety concerns could be addressed. On his first day at the office, the new environment minister has said he has no intention of ever restarting the reactors. The move could put Shinjiro Koizumi at loggerheads with PM Shinzo Abe, a vocal proponent of nuclear.

The energy transition is easily affordable but all hope of 1.5C warming will vanish in 2028

Technical consultancy DNV GL has published its Energy Transition Outlook 2019. While the electric vehicle, storage and renewable energy industries are likely to see significant rises in demand, the sobering conclusion is the world will miss carbon reduction targets by a long shot.

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