DeepResource

Observing the world of renewable energy and sustainable living

Archive for the category “renewable”

City Air Pollution is as Bad as Smoking 20 Cigarettes a Day

[source]

The study, led by researchers from the University of Washington, Columbia University and the University at Buffalo, is published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Another good reason to push through the renewable energy transition.

[independent.co.uk] – Air pollution in cities ‘as bad for you as smoking 20 cigarettes a day’, says study

German Renewable Energy Transition in Trouble

[source]

Der Spiegel sounds the alarm bells: the German Energiewende is stalling. Few new wind turbines are currently being installed, only 35 in H1-2019, the lowest rate since 2000! This year new installations to the tune of 1.5 GW can be expected at best, down from 5.3 GW in record year 2017. The minister of economic affairs and transition proponent Altmaier is forced to call for an emergency meeting with all parties involved. 26,000 jobs were lost in the wind branche since 2017. Several companies went bust.

Who are the main culprits?

1. German government (Altmaier’s ministry)
2. German public (“not in my backyard” attitude)

Ad 1) Since 2017, the German government introduced a new dubious tender system for new wind parks. Additionally: bureaucracy. A lot of wind projects are in the pipeline, waiting for approval… and stay there (10 GW or more). Furthermore, regulations are too restrictive, killing off projects for no good reason, like excessive distance from urban areas, radio masts, etc. Currently renewable electricity in Germany is at 40% and should be 65% in 2030. That’s going to be difficult to achieve, according to der Spiegel.

Hopefully the upcoming emergency meeting after the Summer will address the issues raised above.

[spiegel.de] – Die große Windkraftkrise

Germanys Renewable Energy Revolution

Germany Trade Invest presents its short film about Germanys Renewable Energy Revolution, the so called Energiewende (energy transition). Germany is pushing for 80 percent of its energy to come from renewable sources by the year 2050. (2017)

Power Mix India

[cleantechnica.com] – Share of Fossil Fuel In Indian Power Mix Drops For 14th Consecutive Quarter

Renewable Electricity Champs 2018

Renewable share electricity production:

Country %
Scotland 74
Portugal 55
Spain 46
Denmark 43
Germany 42
China 38
EU 32
UK 30
Italy 20
USA 15

Note that northern countries with low population density and high mountains and hence high proportion of hydro-power, like Norway, Sweden and Canada, have even higher shares. But we are for the moment more interested in those countries with high shares of wind and solar.

China’s Renewable Energy Ambitions

[source] Note that with given population numbers, current per capita energy use (USA 6800, EU 3200, China 2200 kg of oil equivalent, source World Bank), the impact of the Trump administration, as well as Chinese growth ambitions, Europe is destined to achieve a fossil fuel-free economy first.

The world’s biggest energy consumer is aiming for renewables to account for at least 35 per cent of electricity consumption by 2030, according to a revised draft plan from the National Development & Reform Commission seen by Bloomberg.

Chinese energy experts estimate that by 2050 the share of electricity from coal will decline to 30%-50%, and that the remaining 50%-70% will come from a combination of oil, natural gas, and renewable energy sources, including hydropower, nuclear power, biomass, solar energy, wind energy, and other renewable energy sources (Wikipedia).

China’s National Development & Reform Commission (NDRC) has written a draft policy that would increase the renewable energy target from 20% to 35% by 2030. (Cleantechnica)

[forbes.com] – China Is Set To Become The World’s Renewable Energy Superpower
[scmp.com] – China’s revised renewable target of 35% by 2030
[cleantechnica.com] – China Wants 75% Increase 2030 Renewable Energy Target
[wikipedia.org] – Renewable energy in China

Record German Renewable Share of 54.5% in March

[energy-charts.de] – Energy chart 2010-2019

In merely 9 years, economic super power Germany increased share renewable electricity (yearly maximum to maximum) from 24% to 54%

Australia’s Booming Renewable Energy Industry Starts Hitting Hurdles

Prof. Volker Quaschning on Energy Transition & Climate

German language videos.

Quaschning studied electrical engineering at Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, then wrote his PhD on photovoltaics at the Technische Universität Berlin. After obtaining his habilitation on low-carbon power system scenarios for Germany, he worked for the German Aerospace Center in Almeria, Spain and lead research into concentrated solar power. In 2004, Quaschning was appointed professor of renewable energy systems at the Hochschule für Technik und Wirtschaft Berlin.

Quaschning is the author of several books, including the scientific textbook Regenerative Energiesystems (Renewable energy systems), first published in 1998. In 2015, the ninth edition of this book was released. The book has been translated in English, Arabian, and Russian and a translation to the Kazakh language is in progress. According to Panos Konstantin, the book is “highly recommendable”. In 2016, an updated second edition in English was published.

[wikipedia.org] – Volker Quaschning

[video channel]

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The Smart Cities of the Future

ARTE French-German co-production, German language.

Jeremy Rifkind, “internet of energy”, Alstom CEO, Daniel Kaplan, Chris Greenwood, Adam Greenfield, Rand Hindi and others.

Transition Physics

Clean Energy Wiki also known as “Center for Materials and Devices for Information Technology Research (CMDITR)Photonics Wiki”
This wiki is a reference collection on clean energy, organic photovoltaics, research in photonics, and organic electronics.

The bulk of the collection was created by the Center for Materials and Devices for Information Technology Research -NSF Grant #0120967.

The Photonicswiki is now being administered by the University of Washington Clean Energy Institute (CEI) and is transitioning to the Clean Energy Wiki with the addition of new solar materials, energy storage and grid integration topics. Legacy photonics content will be maintained because there is a productive overlap in and fundamental science and the tools.

[photonicswiki.org] – Clean Energy Wiki

“Climate Change, Are We Doomed?” Public Discourse Heating Up in Holland

Ir. Guus Berkhout is niet zo maar iemand: afgestudeerd TU-Delft, lid Nederlandse Akademie van Wetenschappen, Officier in de Orde van Oranje-Nassau. O.a. gewerkt voor Shell. Berkhout heeft een open brief geschreven naar onze premier, zie hieronder. Daaronder ons kommentaar.

Geachte heer Rutte,

Geluk heeft te maken met geloof in de toekomst. Daarom kijken velen van mijn generatie met warme gevoelens terug naar de jaren ’60, waarin we veel minder welvaart hadden dan nu, maar waarin we vast geloofden dat alles beter zou worden. Bedrijfsinvesteringen lagen dan ook op een hoog niveau. Wat een verschil met nu, waarin onze welvaart weliswaar aanzienlijk hoger is dan toen, maar waarin het geloof in de toekomst ver te zoeken is. De huidige generatie wordt overladen met inktzwarte verhalen over de toekomst van de aarde. En ze krijgen al jaren te horen dat er in ons land honderden miljarden nodig zijn om te proberen catastrofale klimaatrampen te voorkomen. Het is volgens de klimaatbeweging vijf voor twaalf! Maar is dat wel zo?

Meneer Rutte, ik weet dat u met ons land graag voorop wilt lopen in het nemen van klimaatmaatregelen. Maar bent u er zich wel van bewust dat u vreselijk verkeerd bent voorgelicht? Realiseert u zich wel dat de werkelijkheid heel anders is dan het sombere beeld dat u nu al jaren voorgeschoteld krijgt? Weet u wel dat als we alles gaan uitvoeren wat er in uw kostbare klimaatplannen staat, de wereld slechts 0,00030C minder opwarmt? Dat getal is niet te meten!

In mijn brief wil ik u graag vijf aantoonbare onjuistheden in de argumenten van uw voorgenomen klimaatbeleid voorleggen.

De bewering dat 97% van de klimaatwetenschappers er van overtuigd is dat opwarming wordt veroorzaakt door de mens, is een gemanipuleerd getal. Van de 11.944 klimaatartikelen die werden geraadpleegd waren er 7930 die zich daar helemaal niet over uitlieten, slechts 41 artikelen die er echt in geloofden (slechts 41 van de 11.944!) en de resterende artikelen die min of meer twijfels hadden.

Klimaatverandering is een razend ingewikkeld proces en de wetenschap is er nog lang niet uit. Met name over de effecten van wolken en oceanen is nog weinig bekend. Bovendien, de nieuwste wetenschappelijke resultaten laten zien dat de invloed van CO2 op de temperatuur aanzienlijk kleiner is dan eerder geschat. Dat verklaart waarom tot nu toe de voorspellingen van klimaatmodellen altijd veel te hoog uitkwamen. De daaraan gekoppelde doemverhalen zijn dus niet op feiten maar op fictie gebaseerd.

De wereld van het klimaatonderzoek zit al jarenlang vol met bedenkelijk gedrag. Temperaturen uit vroegere warme perioden worden naar beneden bijgesteld, met als gevolg dat de hoge temperaturen van vandaag uniek lijken in de geschiedenis. Ook zien we regelmatig dat metingen van nu juist naar boven worden bijgesteld, met als gevolg dat metingen en modelresultaten goed overeen lijken te komen. Waarom deze misleidende acties in naam van de wetenschap?

Zon en wind kunnen bij lange na niet ons land voorzien van voldoende energie. Dat is geen zaak van technologie, maar van klimaat. Nederland heeft relatief weinig zon en wind, met ook nog eens een grote variatie in het aanbod. Bovendien, ons land is welvarend en gebruikt daardoor veel energie. We zullen ons land dus propvol moeten gaan zetten met windparken en zonneweiden. Als één van de dichtstbevolkte landen ter wereld is dat geen prettig vooruitzicht. Maar het is nog erger. We zullen ook nog een peperduur back-up systeem operationeel moeten houden om energie te leveren op dagen met weinig zon en wind.

De vaak genoemde optie van biomassa verbranden is aanwijsbaar veel slechter dan het verbranden van steenkool. Waterstof dan? Helaas, waterstof is een zeldzaam gas in de natuur. Dat gas moet de mens dus zelf maken en daarvoor is goedkope groene elektriciteit nodig. Maar die hebben we juist niet. Dus zitten we hier in een cirkelredenering.

In conclusie, meneer Rutte, de wetenschap weet het nog (lang) niet, de natuurlijke fenomenen zon + wind zullen in ons land nooit de benodigde hoeveelheid energie op een betrouwbare en betaalbare manier kunnen leveren, het verbranden van biomassa is erger dan het verbranden van steenkool en groene waterstof is pas toepasbaar als we de groene energie hebben om het te maken.

Maar wat u echt zorgen moet baren is dat de samenleving zienderogen polariseert. Steeds meer burgers willen Nederland niet zien veranderen in een jungle van gesubsidieerde windturbines en zonnepanelen, terwijl ze weten dat er geen meetbaar effect zal zijn op het klimaat. Ze beginnen nu ook te merken aan hun besteedbaar inkomen dat ze er wel veel armer van worden.

Daarom, tot slot meneer Rutte, mijn dringende advies aan u is om klimaatbeleid over een heel andere boeg te gooien. Het kan nu nog. Haal milieu- en klimaatbeleid uit elkaar, stop met de omvangrijke houtkap, temporiseer de energietransitie en geef de burger juiste informatie over de nationale kosten. De laatste wetenschappelijke stand van zaken laat zien dat we ruim de tijd hebben om met deskundige critici – die tot nu toe niet aan de klimaattafels van ja-knikkers mochten plaatsnemen – een alternatief voorstel op te stellen met als beginsel: aanpassen aan zaken waar de mens geen invloed op heeft (‘adaptatie’) en voorkomen van zaken waar de mens wél invloed op kan uitoefenen (‘mitigatie’). Is het bestuurlijk niet onverantwoord van uw kabinet om klimaatbeleid te gaan uitvoeren zonder kennis te hebben genomen van de nieuwe inzichten in het alternatieve voorstel?

[climategate.nl] – Open brief aan Mark Rutte
[climategate.nl] – Guus Berkhout: ‘Stop met doemdenken!’
[wikipedia.org] – Guus Berkhout

Onze reaktie:

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Renewable Energy Breakthroughs Tipping Point

GreenBiz

Gepubliceerd op 31 okt. 2018

We are at an amazing tipping point with recent renewable energy breakthroughs. To achieve a carbon-free world, the challenge is staggering, but so is the size of the opportunity. Technology and innovation pioneer Bill Gross shares new developments that make this tipping point a reality.

Magnetic Gearing for Renewable Energy Devices

Renewable energy sources, such as wind and wave, can power our world. Currently, mechanical gears are used inside of these energy conversion systems to connect a high-speed electric machine to a low-speed physical energy source. Improving the design of the systems that convert these sources into electrical energy has far-reaching benefits.

[coastalstudiesinstitute.org] – Improving Efficiency, Maintenance and Power Output
[tees.tamu.edu] – Magnetic gears to advance renewable energy technology
[wikipedia.org] – Magnetic gear

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Intersolar Europe 2018 – Exhibition Highlights

[intersolar.de] – Inter Solar 2019/2020 exhibition dates

[cleantechnica.com] – Intersolar Announces 2019 Award Finalists In Smarter E Europe Show

Energy Transition Index 2019

The World Economic Forum studied 115 countries to see which ones were the best prepared to achieve the renewable energy transition first. The result was no surprise: Europe is best positioned, just like last year.

The report says despite the diversity of the top performing nations in their primary energy mix, systems and resources, they all share certain characteristics, demonstrating a combination of technical advances and effective policy-making and implementation.

Countries with high ETI scores also performed well on their readiness for energy transition, with Finland topping that list, followed by Denmark, and Austria in third.

Again, these countries have commonalities: stable regulatory frameworks, innovative business environments capable of attracting investment and strong political commitment to energy transition.

[weforum.org] – European Countries Are The Most Ready For Global Energy Transition

Shell to be the World’s Largest Electricity Producer by 2030

[source]

Royal Dutch Shell Plc plans to become the world’s biggest power company despite electricity’s historically narrow margins.

The world’s second-largest oil explorer by market value is spending up to $2 billion a year on its new energies division, mainly to grow in a power sector it envisions delivering 8 percent to 12 percent annual returns, according to Maarten Wetselaar, director of Shell’s integrated gas new energies unit.

“We believe we can be the largest electricity power company in the world in the early 2030s,” Wetselaar said in an interview with Bloomberg TV on Monday. “We are not interested in the power business because we like what we saw in the last 20 years. We are interested because we think we like what we see in the next 20 years.”

[bloomberg.com] – Shell Says It Can Be World’s Top Power Producer and Profit
[royaldutchshellgroup.com] – Shell says it can be top power producer and make money
[cleanenergywire.org] – Shell says Sonnen purchase part of effort to become world’s largest power company
[businessinsider.nl] – Shell wil in 2030 het grootste stroombedrijf ter wereld zijn

Thermal Solar to Electricity Conversion Efficiency 34% With Stirling Engine

CSP-Stirling is known to have the highest efficiency of all solar technologies (around 30%, compared to solar photovoltaic’s approximately 15%), and is predicted to be able to produce the cheapest energy among all renewable energy sources in high-scale production and hot areas, semi-deserts, etc.[citation needed] A dish Stirling system uses a large, reflective, parabolic dish (similar in shape to a satellite television dish). It focuses all the sunlight that strikes the dish up onto a single point above the dish, where a receiver captures the heat and transforms it into a useful form. Typically the dish is coupled with a Stirling engine in a Dish-Stirling System, but also sometimes a steam engine is used. These create rotational kinetic energy that can be converted to electricity using an electric generator.

In 2005 Southern California Edison announced an agreement to purchase solar powered Stirling engines from Stirling Energy Systems over a twenty-year period and in quantities (20,000 units) sufficient to generate 500 megawatts of electricity. In January 2010, Stirling Energy Systems and Tessera Solar commissioned the first demonstration 1.5-megawatt power plant (“Maricopa Solar”) using Stirling technology in Peoria, Arizona. At the beginning of 2011 Stirling Energy’s development arm, Tessera Solar, sold off its two large projects, the 709 MW Imperial project and the 850 MW Calico project to AES Solar and K.Road, respectively. In 2012 the Maricopa plant was bought and dismantled by United Sun Systems. United Sun Systems released a new generation system, based on a V-shaped Stirling engine and a peak production of 33 kW. The new CSP-Stirling technology brings down LCOE to USD 0.02 in utility scale.[citation needed]

According to its developer, Rispasso Energy, a Swedish firm, in 2015 its Dish Sterling system being tested in the Kalahari Desert in South Africa showed 34% efficiency.

Website comment: interesting! But one would tentatively guess that an array of solar panels will probably be cheaper in a long-term per kWh cost.

[wikipedia.org] – Solar Thermal Energy, Dish Designs
[ripassoenergy.com] – Company Site

Tegenlicht – Doorbraak van Duurzaam

Nyrstar – The Next Royal Dutch Shell?

The European Union has decided it wants a 100% renewable energy future and as the saying goes: “He Who Says A Must Say B”, with “A” being a renewable energy base and “B” the required energy storage facilities. This implies giant business opportunities for those companies, that can provide for large-scale energy storage options, options that become a necessity if a society begins to heavily rely on intermittent renewable energy sources solar and wind. Batteries and pumped-hydro can only provide hours worth of storage. What is really required are seasonal storage options, with a size in the order of 40% of annual primary energy consumption, to be able to completely compensate intermittency and waive energy demand management.

Several candidates for seasonal storage exist. First of all the largest share of primary energy consumption is used for space heating. A lot of fossil fuel can be saved if solar heat is stored in large bodies of water or other bulk materials. Excess renewable electricity can be converted in hydrogen and if necessary further converted into other forms of chemical energy that are easier to maintain than hydrogen, like ammonia (NH3), natural gas (CH4).

A relatively unknown possibility is using hydrogen to reduce metal-oxide powder (“reduce” as in: “strip of oxygen”) and turn it into pure metal powder that can be burned again, back to metal-oxide, thus creating a carbon-free closed-loop. Few people realize that metals can burn, a process mundanely known as “rusting”, yet they can, as fine-grained powders, the finer the better:

In contrast to hydrogen, metal powders like iron can be stored, moved around, traded easily at room temperature and ambient pressure for as long as you want, provided you keep moist away. Potentially suitable metal-powder-as-fuel candidates are: lithium (Li), boron (B), magnesium (Mg), aluminum (Al), silicon (Si), iron (Fe), and zinc (Zn).

IF metal-powder can assert itself as an efficient energy storage vehicle for the 21st century, dominated by the EU renewable energy policy and Paris Accords, the sky is the limit for those companies already specialized in reducing metal ores into pure metals. They could become the successors of the Seven Sisters that dominated the 20th century and become the energy companies of the 21st century in that they lay their hands on every renewable kWh and convert it into metal powder.

This possibility has been recognized by Zinc-giant Nyrstar, located near the small town of Budel-Schoot in the South of the Netherlands at the Belgian border, conveniently situated at a run-down, but upgradable “Iron Rhine” railway-line, connecting the Antwerp Harbor and the German industrial Ruhr-valley heartland. This is the rationale behind the recently initiated Metalot energy storage campus, located next to the Nyrstar zinc factory in Budel-Schoot.

[fabriekofiel.com] – Budel

[wikipedia.org] – Nyrstar
[elsevier.com] – Recyclable metal fuels for clean and compact zero-carbon power
[deepresource] – How Much Storage is Needed?
[Google Maps] – Nyrstar, Budel-Schoot
[deepresource] – Iron Rhine Revitalized?

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