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Follow Renewable Energy Focus' bloggers as they share their thoughts on the industry, technology, and much more. Our bloggers have been selected for their industry expertise. They welcome interaction, so we encourage you to add your opinions to theirs.

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WRITTEN BY TIM BROWN. The UK would, in theory, have the conditions required to rely heavily on renewable energy now and in the future. Being an island, hydro and wind power can be harnessed to a great extent — though the same can’t be entirely said for solar power, as the sun can be ...
Posted 19 August 2014 by Reg Tucker
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WRITTEN BY ANDREW MOURANT. The race to create renewable energy fuel from microalgae – of potential huge significance – is leading research teams around the world in diverse directions. The science is becoming better understood, but no one can yet say what will be the best model for ...
Posted 09 July 2014 by Reg Tucker
tags: algae , biofuels
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WRITTEN BY CHARLES MORRIS The production of biofuels has long been mired in controversy – especially over the highly contentious issue of which feedstocks are appropriate to use in making the fuels. Indirect land use change (ILUC) has been a hot topic since it became clear that using edibl ...
Posted 24 June 2014 by Reg Tucker
tags: biofuels , policy
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US EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy expands on the Obama Administration's Clean Power Plan in the wake of the release of the proposed guidelines for cutting carbon emissions from existing power plants. Following are excerpts of her comments:  About a month ago, I took a trip to the Cleveland ...
Posted 02 June 2014 by Reg Tucker
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WRITTEN BY DAVID TAYLOR. Climate change is a very serious issue, and it was only recently that Prime Minster David Cameron said he believed man-made climate change to be ‘one of the most serious threats that this country and this world faces’. It is, therefore, no surprise, that th ...
Posted 28 May 2014 by Reg Tucker
tags: wind power , UK
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BY AARON LIM. The race towards building a world not dependant on fossil fuels has a powerful, but silent ally in the global military apparatus. For the Pentagon, clean energy and sustainability isn’t about saving whales or hugging trees — it’s about improving combat efficiency. ...
Posted 12 May 2014 by Reg Tucker
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WRITTEN BY VIC SHAO. Green Charge Networks CEO Vic Shao, comes to the defense of the ‘cleantech’ industry by providing clear evidence on an industry on the rise — not in decline, as some critics have argued. In his words...  As a cleantech CEO who has received $12 ...
Posted 07 April 2014 by Reg Tucker
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WRITTEN BY CONOR MACGUIRE. Can a green engineering application, system or process be really ‘green’ without manufacturers and service providers first making sure that the energy input too is green? The answer to that rhetorical question is a resounding "no!" The relationship ...
Posted 31 March 2014 by Reg Tucker
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WRITTEN BY JAN CLYNCKE.  It’s no longer just a green thing to do: starting in February the collection, transport and recycling as well as its related financing and administration of discarded end-of-life photovoltaic panels is EU law. One of the most significant changes in the European ph ...
Posted 20 March 2014 by Reg Tucker
tags: PV , recycling , photovoltaic , EU
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BY REGINALD TUCKER. The recent 60 Minutes piece on the “Cleantech Crash” reminds us that the proper “context” in reporting the news is just as important as “content”— if not more so. By now I’m sure most industry watchers have seen (or hea ...
Posted 10 February 2014 by Reg Tucker
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Thermal stores are the key to getting the best from renewable energy. Here Mark Wozencroft, Managing Director of Minus 7, explains how they work and the benefits. Energy storage A crucial part of getting the most from renewable energy is the correct storage of the energy you have harvested. This i ...
Posted 04 February 2014 by Steve Barrett
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Written by Alex Nicholsen, P.E., Nicholsen Engineering Services, Sunland, California. I would like to point out that the green revolution and in particular, renewable and clean energy products such as solar power, wind turbines, geothermal and algae-based bio-fuels are not waiting for viable t ...
Posted 13 January 2014 by Reg Tucker
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The idea of reusing wastewater is not a new one. For decades governments and environmentalists have been pushing the idea of treating wastewater for other uses. In some instances, treated wastewater has been accepted without much fuss – like for irrigation and cooling industrial plants. As we ...
Posted 16 December 2013 by Alan Burrows
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Written by Andrew Mourant. It’s hard to imagine a more unsavoury sight than mounds of rotting household rubbish or piles of farmyard dung. And so few prospects are more appealing than turning these into a source of renewable energy. The worldwide demand for anaerobic digestion (AD) plants t ...
Posted 28 November 2013 by David Hopwood
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By Nick Ni – Verde LLC, Massachusetts, USA Renewable energy has grown at a dramatic rate in recent years. The US Energy Information Administration has recently reported that renewable energy sources provided 9.81% of US energy consumption and 11.82% of domestic energy productio ...
Posted 31 October 2013 by Steve Barrett
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I hate to say I told you so but … I did.  Well, actually Adam Workman, partner at 350 Investment Partners, told me and I told you in the latest issue of Renewable Energy Focus magazine: investment decisions relating to the UK renewables market now face a two-year wait until after the ele ...
Posted 18 October 2013 by Gail Rajgor
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By Nick Ni – Verde LLC, Massachusetts, USA The concept of fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs) has been promoted for several years. Compared to conventional vehicles, fuel cell powered vehicles generate zero greenhouse gas emissions and air pollutants at point-of-use. In addition, they can gre ...
Posted 19 September 2013 by Steve Barrett
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It’s been some year since I took on the role of Managing Editor for Renewable Energy Focus. The highlight? When Faith Birol, chief economist of the International Energy Agency, declared fossil fuel subsidies “public enemy number one”. He was speaking at the European Wind Energy As ...
Posted 10 September 2013 by Gail Rajgor
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by Elizabeth Block We cannot afford to miss out on renewables. Safe development of renewable energy will cut energy bills and create wealth without ruining precious countryside, writes David Cameron, or so I wish (We cannot afford to miss out on shale gas, The Telegraph.*) Britain has led t ...
Posted 12 August 2013 by Elizabeth Block
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By Elizabeth Block Faithful readers of this blog will remember my first biomass breakfast – out at a rugby club somewhere where wood pellets were on the menu, as it were. Actually there were bacon sandwiches, no pellets – and an opportunity to “see” wood pellets whisked in ...
Posted 09 August 2013 by Elizabeth Block
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ONE OF the things I really love about my job is seeing the amazing work taking place around the world to make other people’s lives better - in the May/June 2013 issue of Renewable Energy Focus I’m delighted to share that with you in all its glory. The UN wants sustainable energy su ...
Posted 10 June 2013 by Gail Rajgor
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The last month has brought another depressing piece of news: This time the potential demise of Suntech, a pioneer credited with helping scale up the PV industry, on the verge of bankruptcy. The recent turmoil being suffered by module and cell manufacturers in the PV industry is well documented (Pau ...
Posted 10 April 2013 by David Hopwood
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AND WOW, there are certainly plenty of new markets for the renewable energy industry – and they are finally coming out into the light. Deployment of renewables is an “idea whose time has come”. These are the words of Adnan Amin, director general of the International Renewable ...
Posted 09 April 2013 by Gail Rajgor
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So cumulative solar PV power installations worldwide shot past the 100GW mark in 2012, the European Photovoltaic Industry Association (EPIA) announced this month. In fact, the figure by end 2012 was just over 101GW. A major milestone indeed.  While the global industry still grapples with some ...
Posted 20 February 2013 by Gail Rajgor
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The past few years has seen Google embark on an ambitous program of investment in the renewables space, the most recent announcement seeing Google investing $200 million in a Texas wind farm. So where else has Google been putting its money? Spinning Spur Wind Farm: West Texas wind In December 2012 ...
Posted 31 January 2013 by David Hopwood
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Around this time of year everyone and their dog does a review of the year just gone, or a preview for the year to come, often in the form of a ‘Top 10’. Even so, it’s interesting to see what analysts at Pike Research highlight in a white paper that identifies the 10 most notable a ...
Posted 30 January 2013 by Steve Barrett
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The global growth of renewable energy over the last few years cannot be disputed, but can it really play a major role in the world of large-scale electricity generation? Some would say it already is. Wind power is the obvious example. “If anybody had said we would be here talking about w ...
Posted 23 January 2013 by Gail Rajgor
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EWEA 2013 is just a few weeks away. So what can conference delegates expect to be the main topics up for debate? Event launch and keynotes The EWEA 2013 conference will open with a series of high-profile speakers addressing important political and business issues affecting the European wind indust ...
Posted 23 January 2013 by David Hopwood
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The Renewable Energy Focus team – along with many on the wind power side of the renewable energy business – is looking forward to some top wind-related events coming up in the next few weeks and months… First up on the events scene for wind power is the European Wind Energy Assoc ...
Posted 22 January 2013 by David Hopwood
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The European Fuel Cells and Hydrogen Joint Undertaking (FCH JU) plays a key role in the development – and in particular demonstration – of fuel cell and hydrogen energy technologies in a wide range of applications. The FCH JU is a unique public-private partnership that was established i ...
Posted 08 January 2013 by Steve Barrett
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By John Peters, Managing Director, Engage Consulting The global renewable energy market is evolving rapidly. John Peters from Engage Consulting looks into his crystal ball and discusses some of the changes that would enable the market to grow in 2013. 1) One thing I would like to see in 2013 ...
Posted 17 December 2012 by Gail Rajgor
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By Elizabeth Block The UK government appears to have given up on being “the greenest government ever”. No one saw much comfort for renewables in the recent Energy Bill or in the Autumn Statement that followed. Why, I wonder, instead of a “dash for gas”, can’t we h ...
Posted 10 December 2012 by Gail Rajgor
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HURRAH! THE UK’s Energy Bill has finally landed – following months of delays and turbulence caused by conflicting interests within Government departments. And so now, the hard work begins.  The Bill’s announcement should finally “help to draw a line under the recent pol ...
Posted 10 December 2012 by Gail Rajgor
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By Sneha Shah. The vicious downturn of the global solar industry has seen innumerable bankruptcies and thousands of job losses. Companies which used to rule the roost in the solar industry like Q-Cells, Evergreen Solar, and Energy Conversion Devices no longer exist today. The most promising o ...
Posted 04 December 2012 by David Hopwood
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By Felicia Jackson. The second UK Wind & Marine Energy Business Barometer, covered recently in a UK, The Times newspaper supplement, Wind & Marine Energy, reveals findings from an annual survey of 450 senior executives in the sector. In this guest post, Felicia Jackson, author of Conquering ...
Posted 23 November 2012 by David Hopwood
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By Barry Johnston Given the increasing 6 degrees threat of global warming, and its appalling consequences, should there now be a global patent amnesty? Might it accelerate the worldwide rollout of clean and renewable energy technologies, along the lines of the medical patent amnesties granted to de ...
Posted 21 November 2012 by Gail Rajgor
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In contrast to the mixed messages coming from Westminster in recent times that many believe have constrained renewable energy development in parts of the UK, Scotland has made its renewable energy aspirations clear, with some eye catching announcements. Not least its recent MOU with Areva: The ...
Posted 20 November 2012 by David Hopwood
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By Richard Kemp-Harper, Technology Strategy Board Over a number of years, the UK's Technology Strategy Board has built up a good relationship with innovative businesses working in the fuel cell and hydrogen sectors, and has been providing support that suits the needs of this developing industry. W ...
Posted 16 November 2012 by Steve Barrett
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The solar power market in South Africa has ramped up a gear, with a stream of project news emanating from the country in recent days. Covering project financial close, contract awards and construction starts, the news covers both solar PV and concentrated solar power (CSP). Why this news flurry? W ...
Posted 15 November 2012 by Gail Rajgor
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By Mathias Aarre Maehlum, EnergyInformative.org Electrical power is probably the most important factor for development and growth. According to International Energy Agency (IEA), there are almost 1.5 billion people in the world that lack access to electricity. The IEA has stated that half of those ...
Posted 12 November 2012 by Gail Rajgor
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Who doesn’t dream of a few weeks escape to a tropical island paradise like the Maldives? I know I certainly do. So I couldn’t wait to watch Indian Ocean with Simon Reeve on BBC Two last weekend. It was the fourth installment of what has so far proved to be an excellent six-part series (I ...
Posted 07 November 2012 by Gail Rajgor
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By Comly Wilson, CleanEdison Are you going to Green Build 2012? If so, you’ll be in good company. The 11th annual gathering of all those involved in ‘building green’ into the national fabric looks set to be the biggest yet – with 35,000 architects, facility managers, educato ...
Posted 07 November 2012 by Gail Rajgor
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Despite the billions of investment being ploughed into renewable energy and low carbon technologies across the globe, the world is failing dramatically in its battle to stem the tide of global warming, according to research published yesterday by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC). “Governments ...
Posted 06 November 2012 by Gail Rajgor
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The green blogosphere has been ablaze with posts, tweets, and comments about the second US presidential debate in which the two candidates squared off on their respective energy approaches.  President Obama offered strong support for continued government-funded development in renewables, ...
Posted 05 November 2012 by Gail Rajgor
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In the last week, a British company (Air Fuel Synthesis) introduced us to a potential breakthrough piece of technology which can create petrol using just air and electricity. One major benefit of this generated fuel is that it can be used in many of our transport options with no adaptation required. ...
Posted 29 October 2012 by Gail Rajgor
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As energy demand rises and consumer electricity bills increase, more and more attention is turning to renewables. Sometimes this is for the wrong reasons: Support for renewable energy is often unjustly blamed for energy price hikes – however analysis from the UK-based Renewable Energy As ...
Posted 26 October 2012 by Gail Rajgor
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CLIFF EDGE or bright future? That’s the question on everyone’s mind right now, with fortunes at the mercy of election outcomes, as in the US, or long-term policy decisions facing yet further consultation, as in the UK. There’s no getting away from the fact that the renewables ...
Posted 16 October 2012 by Gail Rajgor
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For the decade 2002 to 2011 there were some 4130 natural disasters globally, resulting in more than a million deaths and an economic loss of at least $1.195 trillion. The figures come in a new report out today. The key message from that report is that environmental degradation increases the risk of ...
Posted 11 October 2012 by Gail Rajgor
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Did you know it takes 100,000 gallons of water to produce a single megawatt hour of electricity? Well according to a new report out today, it does – unless you’re using wind or solar power that is. So maybe, with much of the world battling more regular bouts of drought and water shortage ...
Posted 19 September 2012 by Gail Rajgor
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When David passed on the editorial metaphorical torch to me for Renewable Energy Focus, I knew it was going to be a whirlwind first month or two. That was certainly the case, kicking off with a marathon trip to Germany – taking in Berlin, Hamburg, Stuttgart and Munich in an action-packed eight ...
Posted 30 August 2012 by Gail Rajgor
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As we enter 2012 with more talk of funding problems and reduced financial incentives, it is apparent how the dynamics – and drivers – for renewable energy have changed, and relatively quickly at that. When I first took this job a few years ago “climate change” was the buzz p ...
Posted 27 February 2012 by David Hopwood
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An interesting report from the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) crossed our desk recently. The EIU spoke to 284 senior-level renewable energy executives about the risks in financing, constructing and operating renewable energy projects, as well as the risk management challenges that the renewable e ...
Posted 20 February 2012 by David Hopwood
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NB: this is my editorial from the March/April issue of Renewable Energy Focus magazine, which is now out. If you don't subscribe yet, it's free, so feel free to subscribe here. Global clean energy finance and investment grew significantly in 2010 to US$243 billion, a 30% increase from 2009, accord ...
Posted 27 April 2011 by David Hopwood
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During fast and heated growth in 2010, the solar market has seen its share of technology shake-ups as well. In July, Applied Materials made headlines by discontinuing new sales of it SunFab thin-film silicon line after production had fallen woefully behind cost and efficiency expectations of the mar ...
Posted 15 November 2010 by Paula Mints
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Amid optimistic announcements for gigawatts of CSP installations over the next few years, stage whispers of the barriers this industry continues to face continue. At CSP Today’s Project Development conference held in Denver on October 25 and 26, Stephen Mullennix, Partner at U.S. Renewables Gr ...
Posted 01 November 2010 by Paula Mints
tags: csp , solar , pv , permitting
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Author: Guest Blogger Rakesh Radhakrishnan, Ph. D. | Associate Director| Energy | Navigant Consulting, Inc. A short and very unsatisfactory answer to this question is, “Well it depends!” In reality, there actually are some critical details that must be understood before a decision is m ...
Posted 15 September 2010 by Paula Mints
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So much happening in California, much of it crucial to the forward progress of solar in the biggest market in the USA. First, unemployment remains high, the budget remains in limbo with outgoing governor Schwarzenegger willing to let the situation pass on through to the next administration, while i ...
Posted 31 August 2010 by Paula Mints
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Caught ya – this is really an article about branding. You know,  that marketing function that turns needs into wants and functions into attributes – or, scares the heck out of you and then turns around and offers you a safe place to land while it makes you love being scared. The fu ...
Posted 20 August 2010 by Paula Mints
tags: solar , panel , pv , energy , power , renewable
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First came the announcement, then came optimism, then came the announcements, then came the reality checks and finally, the changes to Ontario’s wildly anticipated feed-in tariff; not to kill it off, but to control it and, hopefully, help develop a sustainable market. Historically, Canada has ...
Posted 11 August 2010 by Paula Mints
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Look around the FiT landscape and if you can, find one that created a healthy, sustainable market that did not overburden those who are paying for it; Yes, I mean remember the ratepayers; Look around again; Yes, I mean remember the ratepayers, you do not want to make them mad; ...
Posted 31 July 2010 by Paula Mints
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There is a wave of new business professionals in the solar industry – and not all of them speak solar. Every industry has its own language along with a host of acronyms to go along with it. The specific language of business can actually obliterate understanding, but, there is no getting aroun ...
Posted 27 July 2010 by Paula Mints
tags: Solar , PV
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Taken at face value, the news that the winner of the Zayed Future Energy Prize 2010 (and with it a cool US$1.5 million) is Japanese car manufacture Toyota for its groundbreaking third generation Prius may raise a few initial eyebrows. But the message it sends is an interesting one. There's no doubt ...
Posted 20 January 2010 by David Hopwood
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Well, it’s finally over. I’m back here at my desk in Amsterdam, and looking through the all-but-final documents on the UNFCCC web site. You can find details of the ‘Copenhagen Accord’ about which we put out a statement early this morning. The ‘legally binding’ la ...
Posted 05 January 2010 by Steve Sawyer
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17 December: On Wednesday morning, Connie Hedegaard resigned as the COP President in favour of Danish Prime Minister Rasmussen, and in the obviously tense handover between the two, they made the huge blunder of announcing that there would be ‘new text’ from the Danish Presidency released ...
Posted 18 December 2009 by Steve Sawyer
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16 December: Amidst the up-and-down of the climate negotiations and the chaos of the registration system to get people into the building, at least one thing is going to plan: The wind industry’s efforts to make wind power highly visible to negotiators and media during the climate summit. Wind ...
Posted 17 December 2009 by Steve Sawyer
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15 December: After a manic first week or 10 days, things are a bit less hectic in the Bella Center today. After 9 days of largely circular discussions, I believe the negotiations at official’s level have gone as far as they can go. We have a couple of draft texts (on the Kyoto Protocol a ...
Posted 15 December 2009 by Steve Sawyer
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The much talked about UNFCCC COP15 Climate Change Summit in Copenhagen is now underway. If you, like us, have been completely overwhelmed with all the news; views; predictions; doom and gloom; excitement; not to mention political machinations, possibilities and stall setting of the last few months l ...
Posted 08 December 2009 by David Hopwood
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