Alaska’s decision to host the largest oil and gas lease sale of any US state this year is good news for the oil and gas industry, which has been pressing for more access. And while the resulting exploration and production certainly will be good for the overall economy – creating jobs and boosting activity – it is a pity that it is not against a backdrop of better news on the environmental front.
By this I mean concerted steps by the US government to reduce the use of oil as part of a larger effort to curtail carbon emissions. This issue has long disappeared from the political radar, despite being a key platform on which President Barack Obama was elected.
Banks will have to supply 2 per cent of Europe’s GDP, or €2.9 trillion, to meet consumer demand for projects and technologies that tackle climate change, according to a new report from Barclays and Accenture.
The report took what it calculated to be the likely level of demand for things such as wind farms, energy efficiency measures and electric vehicles and estimated how much capital would be needed to fund these.
In a way, this looks like good news: demand is likely to be so high that it could provide a real opportunity for the banks. Rupesh Madlani, head of European renewables and cleantech equity research, told Energy Source: “There is a lot for the banks to play for here.”
Last year was not a good one for investment in green projects and technologies. The combined effect of the recession and the hangover from the failure of the Copenhagen talks saw investment levels drop sharply.
But this year is looking rosier, according to HSBC. Their analysts say in a new report:
Doubts about science have been replaced by the realities of extreme events and rising commodity prices. The shocks to European renewables incentives sparked by the fiscal crisis appear to have run their course, and efforts to drive energy efficiency will be intensified in the EU in the next 12 months.
Sara Vaughan, image by Eon
In the first of a new series of readers’ Q&A sessions, Sara Vaughan, Eon UK’s head of energy policy and regulation, tackles the burning questions you wanted answering. Eon is Germany’s largest energy company and is heavily involved in the UK market.
In the first of two parts, Sara talks about why the changes to the carbon reduction commitment could be a good thing, how to reform the energy market and the future of carbon capture and storage.
In the second part, to be published later this morning, she will discuss the obstacles to building new nuclear plants, how the UK measures up on low-carbon technology and the limitations of a carbon floor price.
Next in the hotseat is Ditlev Engel, chief executive of Vestas, the world’s biggest manufacturer of wind turbines. Send in your questions by the end of Friday, November 26th for consideration, to firstname.lastname@example.org.
But for now, over to Sara:
The smart electricity market in the European Union is expected to expand rapidly in coming years, according to a report by Greenbang, an independent sustainability research house, which sees the meter market hitting between $24bn and $26bn by 2020
Government initiatives, growing demand for energy, and rising oil prices are all expected to result in between 133m to 145m new smart meters being installed by the end of the decade. Recently the EU set the target of installing smart meters in 80 per cent of households by 2020.
The report stated:
The top countries for this market will probably be those that haven’t yet implemented smart metering on any meaningful scale: Germany, the UK and Poland. France and Spain are also set to make a significant impact in the next few years, with announced projects already in the
It is estimated that only about 53m smart meters are currently installed across Europe.