Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Renewable Energy News, April 20, 2010

Renewable Energy Certificates Market Could Nearly Triple in Size by 2015 | Business Wire
The Renewable Energy Certificate (REC) has rapidly emerged in recent years as a significant financial and regulatory instrument to support the growth of renewable energy in the United States. The REC, which is the environmental attribute associated with the generation of 1 megawatt hour (MWh) of green energy, is considered to have value in the market because the generation of energy from wind, solar, hydropower, geothermal and biomass displace energy that would otherwise be sourced from fossil fuels. Two distinct markets exist for RECs: the compliance market, mandated by state-level Renewable Portfolio Standards (RPS), and the voluntary market, which includes companies and institutions who purchase certificates to demonstrate environmental commitment.

According to a new report from Pike Research, the REC market is poised for continued growth in the coming years, and the cleantech market intelligence firm forecasts in a base-case scenario that REC sales in the compliance market alone will increase more than 50% by 2015, reaching 179 million MWh. In a forecast scenario that includes passage of a Renewable Portfolio Standard at the U.S. federal level, Pike Research anticipates that the REC market could nearly triple in size to 329 million MWh by 2015.
Wind & Solar Projects on Landfill & Brownfield Sites? : CleanTechnica
“Mixed use” development is an exciting term in city planning. Mention it to a planner and chances are their eyes will widen, they will stand up straighter, and they will start talking with you in an excited tone about all the benefits of mixing land uses. When it gets down to it, these places are just more efficient, more vibrant and create a real sense of place.

Now, mixing wind and solar projects with landfills and brownfields may not create a great “sense of place” or make the place “vibrant” with life, but it can surely achieve that first benefit — more efficiency.
Iberdrola Plans World’s Largest Wind Farm in Romania | Bloomberg.com
Iberdrola SA won approval to build the world’s largest onshore wind-energy project in Romania, requiring at least $2 billion in investment through 2017. The Spanish utility said today it acquired rights from the Romanian government to build 1,500 megawatts of capacity. That’s almost five times the power coming from Europe’s largest wind complex and triple what’s proposed offshore Massachusetts in a project opposed by the late U.S. Senator Edward Kennedy.
Geothermal Energy Association Report: Geothermal Grows 26% in 2009 | Green Energy News
The April 2010 US Geothermal Power Production and Development Update, published by the Geothermal Energy Association (GEA), showed 26% growth in new projects under development in the United States in the past year, with 188 projects underway in 15 states which could produce as much as 7,875 MW of new electric power.
"Eaarth": Earth is over | Salon.com
According to Bill McKibben, the respected environmentalist and author of the pioneering "End of Nature," the planet Earth, as we know it, is already dead. Over a million square miles of the Arctic ice cap have melted, the oceans have risen and warmed, and the tropics have expanded 2 degrees north and south. Global warming has caused such pervasive and irreversible changes, he argues, that we now live on a new planet with a new set of environmental and climatic realities — and, as such, it deserves a new name: Goodbye, Earth. Hello, "Eaarth."
The Worst Metric in Renewables: ‘Payback Period'| The Green Light Distrikt.
Chris Williams, over at the Green Light Distrikt, rails against the use of the term "payback period"; focus on the rate of return instead, he says:
For as long as I can remember, since I was 16 and first stated going to NESEA, the renewable industry has talked about renewable investments in terms of this silly little term call ‘the payback period’. you might have heard this before, and from now, when you hear this term YOU HAVE the responsibility and obligation to correct the individual that uses this term.
Brian Keane of SmartPower, Renewable Energy Marketer: "Our Thinking is Twenty Years Behind" : TreeHugger
Few would disagree with the idea of clean energy: it can help reduce global warming, air pollution, energy shortages, the national debt, and our reliance on foreign oil. But America isn't exactly putting its money where its mouth is. How to get average people to know that "clean energy is here, and it works," is the task of Brian F. Keane. The head of SmartPower, the country's leading non-profit devoted to marketing clean energy, Keane is using Madison Avenue thinking and grassroots efforts -- like giving away thousands of dollars to the greenest college campus or to the best homemade ad -- in order to hawk clean energy "like it's Coke or McDonalds."

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