New Zealand to build geothermal plant
March 6, 2008 04:06 AM - Reuters

WELLINGTON (Reuters) - State-owned electricity generator Mighty River Power said on Thursday it planned to build a 132 Megawatt geothermal power station to meet growing demand. A final decision on building the plant, to be located at Rotokawa near Taupo in the North Island, would depend on completing procurement contracts, said Mighty River chairman Carole Durbin.

Chile's Congress approves renewable energy law
March 6, 2008 03:34 AM - Reuters

SANTIAGO (Reuters) - Chile's Congress voted on Wednesday to require electric utilities to invest in and supply nonconventional energy sources (NCES) as part of the government's drive to diversify current tight energy supplies. The vote in favor of the project, which mandates that NCES account for at least 10 percent of the energy supplied by Chile's electric utilities by 2024, was unanimous.

Sweden aims for renewable sources for half its energy
March 6, 2008 02:58 AM - Reuters

STOCKHOLM (Reuters) - Sweden will aim to get nearly half its energy from renewable sources by 2020 as part of an EU-wide plan, Energy and Enterprise Minister Maud Olofsson said on Wednesday. Olofsson said in Washington that Sweden had been tasked with increasing its share of renewable energy to 49 percent from a current 40 percent as part of binding targets set by the European Union.

California cows start passing gas to the grid
March 5, 2008 07:10 AM - Reuters

RIVERDALE, California (Reuters) - Imagine a vat of liquid cow manure covering the area of five football fields and 33 feet deep. Meet California's most alternative new energy. On a dairy farm in the Golden State's agricultural heartland, utility PG&E Corp began on Tuesday producing natural gas derived from manure, in what it hopes will be a new way to power homes with renewable, if not entirely clean, energy.

Nuclear cannibals: Nuclear power will feed on itself
March 4, 2008 10:21 AM - Inderscience Publishers

Nuclear energy production must increase by more than 10 percent each year from 2010 to 2050 to meet all future energy demands and replace fossil fuels, but this is an unsustainable prospect. According to a report published in Inderscience's International Journal of Nuclear Governance, Economy and Ecology such a large growth rate will require a major improvement in nuclear power efficiency otherwise each new power plant will simply cannibalize the energy produced by earlier nuclear power plants.

France, Germany draw battle lines on car emissions
March 4, 2008 06:52 AM - Reuters

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - European Union countries that make heavy cars, led by Germany, clashed on Monday with makers of smaller ones such as France over tough measures to force automobile manufacturers to cut carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. In December, the executive European Commission proposed steep penalties for car makers whose fleet exceeds an average of 120 grams per km of CO2 -- the main greenhouse gas blamed for climate change.

Indonesia's Koba Tin faces 2nd illegal mining probe
February 29, 2008 06:07 AM - Reuters

JAKARTA (Reuters) - Indonesia's second-largest tin producer, PT Koba Tin, should stop using sub-contractors to mine tin as the company faces its second investigation into alleged illegal mining, a senior government official said on Friday. Indonesia is the world's No. 2 tin producer after China. A government crackdown on illegal tin mining in the Bangka-Belitung islands since late 2006 has led to the closure of several small smelters.

Renewable Energy Accelerates Meteoric Rise
February 28, 2008 10:17 AM - UNEP

Washington, D.C. - The renewable energy industry is stepping up its meteoric rise into the mainstream of the energy sector, according to the REN21 Renewables 2007 Global Status Report. Renewable energy production capacities are growing rapidly as a result of more countries enacting far-reaching policies.

Bad blends: biofuel labeling often inaccurate
February 28, 2008 10:04 AM - ENN

While sampling blended biodiesel fuels purchased from small-scale retailers, researchers at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution found that many of the blends do not contain the advertised amount of biofuel. Marine chemist Chris Reddy and colleagues sampled pure biodiesel and blends from more than a dozen distributors across the United States. When testing fuels listed as 20 percent biodiesel (commonly known as B20), they found that the actual percentage of biofuel ranged from as little as 10 percent to as much as 74 percent. Only 10 percent of samples met the specifications for biofuel blends required for vehicles of the U.S. Department of Defense, one of the leading consumers of the products.

UK clears 3 wind farms in clean energy target chase
February 28, 2008 09:00 AM - Reuters

LONDON (Reuters) - British energy minister Malcolm Wicks has given the all clear to three wind farms in England as the government tries to clear a backlog of clean energy projects and hit ambitious renewable energy targets. Two of the projects are onshore wind farms in North Lincolnshire and South Yorkshire, while the third is an offshore project planned for the Thames Estuary.

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