Renewable energy

South Korea turns towards renewables

The country, a traditionally strong supporter of coal and nuclear, could switch to natural gas and renewables

The new South Korean government – elected in May – has announced plans to shift the country’s support from coal and nuclear power towards natural gas and renewables. It is a bid to ease public concerns over air pollution and nuclear safety.

Coal and nuclear power currently meet 70 per cent of the…

Renewables provide half of UK’s electricity for the first time

Favourable weather conditions during a spell one day last week helped the UK’s renewable energy sector set a new record for sustainable power production

Renewable sources of energy briefly met 50.7 per cent of the UK’s electricity needs, reported the National Grid – the organisation responsible for power supply management around the UK – at lunchtime on Wednesday.

Clear skies and strong winds had created ideal weather conditions for solar and wind energy production. Backed up by other renewable sources including wood pellet burning and hydropower, renewable output reached a record 19.3GW at midday, enough…

The U.S. Is Already Falling Behind On Future Energy Technology, Generals Warn

The United States has already fallen behind its rivals in developing new, clean energy technology, posing a major risk to long-term security, a group of retired military officers warned on Tuesday.

Energy demand is expected to soar by at least 30 percent over the next three decades as China’s middle class grows and countries across Africa and South Asia emerge from poverty. And, thanks to aggressive investments in nuclear, hydro and renewable energy, China and the European Union are far better-positioned to dominate those new markets, according to a new 66-page report from the CNA Military Advisory Board.

“American resolve at this point has not been sufficient to put us into the lead,” Lee Gunn, a retired U.S. Navy vice admiral, told HuffPost by phone. “We fear the instability around the world in everything from trade to political influence that will result from the reduction in American views, values and economic and political power.”

Losing control over emerging energy industries could damage national security, said retired Lt. Gen. Richard Zilmer of the U.S. Marine Corps.

Workers walk near wind turbines for generating electricity, at a wind farm in Guazhou, China.

“Leader of the free world post-World War II is something we very comfortably fell into,” Zilmer told HuffPost by phone…

U.S. Withdrawal From The Paris Agreement Misreads The Evolving Energy Sector

SunPower President and CEO Tom Werner participates in a panel discussion at the COP21 Conference in Paris (December 9, 2015).

Our nation’s energy sector is changing. The sustained growth of the U.S. solar industry over the past decade speaks directly to the evolution taking place. Today many traditional energy companies have embraced renewables as key to their portfolios. Such a shift is a game changer: It marks a new age of integration, one that stands to benefit every community across the country.

The announcement by the Trump administration that the United States is pulling out of the COP21 agreement might come across as a win for traditional energy sources over renewables. However, the market tells us that this simply isn’t the case. When the Paris Agreement was finalized in April 2016, companies in the U.S. quickly worked to understand core provisions and principles so that they could factor them into their long-term business plans. By removing the U.S. from the agreement, President Trump has effectively disrupted this market, which will force many to question the possibility of future economic growth across our sector. It’s just as much an economic issue, affecting all providers, as it is an environmental one.

With practically every country in the world signed onto the agreement, the U.S. is now missing a clear opportunity to stand as a leader on an issue that is just as domestic as it is global. To remain competitive with other nations, we must be a part of the infrastructure associated with the Paris Agreement. If the government doesn’t step up,…

‘Trump can’t cancel the momentum behind the Paris climate deal’

World leaders, cities, businesses and communities have vowed to press ahead with the Paris climate deal after President Trump announces the US’s withdrawal from the landmark agreement

Global leaders, business chiefs, cities and grassroots organisations alike have reaffirmed their commitment to the Paris Agreement after President Trump announces the US will pull out of the accord.

Frederik Dahlmann, assistant professor of global energy at the UK-based Warwick Business School, told Positive News that the president’s decision ignores the very significant shifts occurring in the global energy system.

“At a time when costs in the renewable energy sector are falling significantly and clean tech employment is reaching record levels, combined with other key economies’ desire – notably the EU and China – to accelerate rather than to stop these trends, politically the US will find itself in growing isolation, and face accusations of scientific ignorance and moral irresponsibility.”

Dahlmann, who researches the transition to a low-carbon economy, said Trump’s decision would go down in history as “significantly anachronistic and self-harming”.

US businesses, communities, cities and states are miles ahead on climate change

US businesses, communities, cities and states are “miles ahead in their assessment and responses to the threats posed by climate change”, said Dahlmann.

Trump’s statement comes just days after shareholders of the world’s largest public oil company, ExxonMobil, voted in favour of the fossil fuel giant analysing and disclosing the risks it faces due to climate change.

“Other companies are increasingly integrating proactive responses to climate change in their strategies,” said Dahlmann.“They are setting ambitious science-based carbon reduction targets and aiming to source their electricity almost exclusively from renewable sources.

“Put simply, the commercial and economic opportunities are already changing America’s competitive landscape such that [the withdrawal] will be largely seen as an unwelcome irritation, rather than…

Regardless of Trump, US businesses are speeding toward a low-carbon world

While Trump’s administration grapples with its position on climate change, it’s worth stepping back to see the wider picture in the US, believes Lance Pierce, North America president of the CDP. In fact – he writes from New York – it is business that is really taking action on climate

It is vital for the US to lead on the Paris Agreement on climate change. This is, of course, the global commitment made in 2015 enabling the world to tackle rising CO2 emissions and prevent a catastrophic further two degrees warming of the planet. Global warming doesn’t just increase temperatures, it threatens food security, clean water, and people’s health. Some 145 countries, including the UK and the US, have sealed the deal. It is this agreement that is currently being scrutinised by the US government. Will President Trump pull out?

We need to accelerate our joint actions as people, organisations and nations to have maximum impact, and the Paris Agreement represents a meaningful shift towards a low carbon economy. That is, it provides a clear path to guide our emissions reductions together with the rest of the world.

Everyone is quickly learning that cutting carbon pays

Our country’s power is not all in the capital in Washington. In fact, it is spread right across our vast nation, spanning boardrooms, city and state borders. Governments are not working alone: companies, investors, citizens, cities, states and regions are thankfully awake to the urgent need for tackling climate change and are the major force behind the move to a low carbon world. This will continue regardless of the US federal government’s position, a crucial point to remember.

Climate change is an urgent concern and our investors at the CDP, formerly the Carbon Disclosure Project, want to know how companies are dealing with environmental risk and working to build a green and fair economy. We see investors buying into those…

LEGO Reaches 100% Renewable Energy Goal 3 Years Early

After expending almost $1 billion in investments, LEGO has finally achieved its target of balancing 100% of the energy used by all of its factories, offices, and stores worldwide, with clean renewable energy three years earlier than anticipated.

Their most recent investment was buying a 25% stage in the Burbo Bank Extension wind farm, which helped them reach the goal that they set in 2012: funding over 160 megawatts of sustainable energy development worldwide.

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