Observing the renewable energy transition from a European perspective

Archive for the month “October, 2012”

South Africa To Invest $5.4B In Renewable Energy

Capacity: 1,400 MW of electricity.
Investment volume: $5.4 billion.
First part program encompass 28 wind and solar projects.
Operational date: between 2014 and 2016.
Current dependency on coal for electricity: 85%
Total installed capacity: 41,000 MW.

Another 19 projects are selected for phase two of the program.
Phase one + two: 3,725 MW renewable energy until 2016.
Another 3,200 MW planned until 2020.

Next to this more than 9,000 MW of new electricity produced from coal, gas, regional hydro and co-generation at industrial plants by 2025.
Other plans include a tender for 9,600 MW worth of nuclear power.


London Array Wind Farm

London Array project has begun producing electricity. When finished this offshore wind farm will be the largest in the world. Location: 12 miles off the coasts of Kent and Essex in the Thames Estuary. Capacity after completion first phase: 470,000 households. Start project: March 2011. Wind turbines installed to date: 151 or 175 at the end of phase one (630 MW). Phase two (if started) will add another 240 MW. Ownership: E.ON 30%, Abu Dhabi–based Masdar 20%, Dong Energy 50%. E.ON believes that the costs of offshore wind energy can be reduced with by 40% by 2015.


Read more…


Pipelines are fascinating. They connect separated regions. The energy content represents the equivalent of billions of virtual human energy slaves. Pipelines decide the fate or emergence of alliances, pipelines can spark wars.

[wikipedia – pipeline transport]
[wikipedia – List of oil pipelines]
[wikipedia – List of natural gas pipelines]

Read more…

Turkish Pipelines


Turkey is a hub between Europe and the Middle East and as such of enormous geopolitical importance. Here an inventory of the pipelines, existing and projected, through Turkey. Pipelines have the potential to make and break alliances and could spark wars. It is likely that the western initiated civil war in Syria has to do with attempts to block the plans of a ‘Shia pipeline‘ from Iran, via Iraq and Syria to the Mediterranean, servicing the vast and lucrative European market.

Read more…

The European Supergrid

The Friends of the Supergrid is a group of companies and organisations with a mutual interest in promoting the policy agenda for a European Supergrid.


Read more…

Where Does Everybody Gets Its Oil From?

USA 2010

Read more…

Pete Schwartz Discusses Oil Reserves And Depletion

Solar Panels Already Pay Off

[Dutch language video] Peter Meijers, director of IBC Solar, does a simple calculation, showing that a solar installation on a roof, directed towards the south, in a weatherwise relatively grey country like the Netherlands, already pays off handsomely. A Kwh from the grid in the Netherlands costs 0.23 euro. Based on a 20 year lifetime, solar panels can produce electricity for merely 0.13 euro. Meijers stresses that in 2011 prices for solar panels have come down with 30%. A typical installation cost 2260 euro (that’s an Apple MacBook Pro MD104N/A 15 inch). Meijers does not expect that prices will come down much more in the coming years. This calculation shows that at least for private households in countries like the Netherlands, the energy transition still could be smooth and that the installation of solar panels could be compared with the invasion of the personal computers in nearly all Dutch households over the past twenty years.

[GreenemNL Youtube]


A child will understand that if you have a garden with potatoes planted in it and if you harvest these potatoes at the end of the season, that there are two applications possible for the potatoes: consumption and seed for the next harvest. With energy it is much the same. Before you have a windturbine installed, able to produce electricity for decades to come (consumption potatoes), you first have to invest a lot of energy to get the machine installed in the first place (the seed potatoes). And a child will also understand that it would not make sense to install the windturbine if it takes more energy to install it than it will ever generate during its productive lifetime. Fortunately it doesn’t. Some estimates state that a windturbine can generate 18 times the amount of energy necessary to produce the windturbine. That number is called EROEI (or EROI), Energy Return On Energy Invested. The graph shows the EROEI values for all sorts of energy sources. For a table with the same values, see below.


Read more…

Solar Power From The Sea

DNV unveils its SUNdy floating solar field concept. Many countries are turning to solar technology and renewable energy because of a need for alternative energy sources and environmental concerns. To help meet these needs, DNV has developed SUNdy, a large-scale offshore solar field concept which launched at Singapore International Energy Week.



Post Navigation