LONDON, March 1 (Reuters) – A stalled biofuel industry will
need to produce far more efficient fuels to avoid setting off
another bout of arguments over its contribution to boosting
energy security and cutting carbon emissions.
Biofuels had a difficult 2012.
In the United States, Energy Information Administration data
show production through November fell compared with the same
period the previous year, putting the industry on track for the
first annual drop since 1996. (See Chart 1)
LONDON, Feb 27 (Reuters) – Saudi Arabia has the world’s
second best solar resource after Chile’s Atacama Desert, making
investment in solar a no-brainer as an alternative to burning
its most precious resource.
The Kingdom has for several years been talking up its plans
to become a major player in solar power.
LONDON, Feb 26 (Reuters) – Bulgarian street protests over
electricity prices illustrate the problems with a regulated
approach where several European countries are preparing to step
back from fully liberalised markets.
Protesters have complained about a lack of transparency in
the way Bulgarian power prices have been set, questioning the
logic of stinging rises in household electricity prices as coal
costs fall but power companies try to pay themselves more.
LONDON, Feb 22 (Reuters) – Roof-top solar power is
increasingly cost-competitive with retail power prices, with
far-reaching implications for solar manufacturers, utilities and
rival generation technologies.
Data gathered from U.S. installations by the Department of
Energy suggests it is cheaper to generate electricity from
roof-top solar panels than to purchase power from electric
utilities, if applied to European retail power prices.
LONDON, Feb 20 (Reuters) – Britain and Germany have
contrasting blueprints for electricity policy, with Germany
funding greater diversity and security of supply that may avert
sharp increases in electricity bills in future.
The two countries have a similar starting point – a major
decommissioning of conventional capacity within a straightjacket
of mandatory European Union targets for carbon emissions and
LONDON, Feb 19 (Reuters) – High German retail electricity
prices add to the burden of supporting renewable energy and
bring closer the end of outright financial support for wind and
German policymakers are seeking ways to cut household
electricity bills and address concern among voters ahead of an
election expected in September.
LONDON, Feb 15 (Reuters) – Vast uncertainty remains over the
causes of melting Arctic sea ice and when it may disappear
altogether during the summer, which would have consequences for
oil explorers, shipping firms and the fight against climate
The answer will depend on the balance of natural and manmade
Those causes include warmer air and seas as a result of
greenhouse gas emissions, variations in atmospheric circulation,
and a faster southward ice drift down the east coast of
LONDON, Feb 13 (Reuters) – Coal could join gas in making
losses in Germany’s struggling power market, as a continuing
renewable energy boom and slumping power demand force utilities
to rethink their strategy.
Wind and solar power have seen massive capacity growth
driven by priority grid access plus 20-year
LONDON, Feb 12 (Reuters) – Present European Union fuel
economy standards discriminate against use of lightweight
materials while an alternative basis for setting targets would
cut the cost of more ambitious targets.
The European Commission has proposed a target to reduce
carbon emissions from cars by 2020 to nearly a third below
present levels, in a regulation currently awaiting European
Parliament and member state approval.
LONDON, Feb 8 (Reuters) – The U.S. government can only
overcome industry resistance to planned carbon emissions limits
on coal-fired power plants by offering a wide range of options
to comply, from buying credits to making renewable energy or
Even then, it faces an environmental battle to rival the
fight over the Keystone pipeline serving Canadian oil sands