Current Renewable Energy Issues in Scotland

David Torrance

Scotland is well on its way towards becoming a world leader in renewable energy. Rich in natural resources, Scotland enjoys a plethora of potential sources of renewable energy, from wave and tidal to wind, solar, geothermal, hydropower and biofuels. Not only do we possess the largest offshore renewable energy resources in the EU, with a quarter of Europe’s tidal and offshore wind potential, we are also at the forefront of developing breakthrough innovations in renewable energy technology. In this article I focus on marine (wave and tidal) power, which I view as one of the most promising sources of renewable energy in Scotland. Whilst we remain at an early stage in terms of technological development, there is vast potential for Scotland to harness its marine power further. This will require targeted investment in innovation, research and development, in addition to more practical aspects such as improvements to grid access; however, the benefits that Scotland can gain in relation to jobs, the economy, meeting our climate change targets and achieving energy security constitute major incentives for doing so.

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Dubai Harvesting Green Economy

Waleed Salman

Dubai rumbles on enroute its ambitions to become the Green Capital of the world, as Dubai Carbon Center of Excellence ramps up plans after a successful 2014, with a forum and knowledge product on Green Economy, measurement and verification of Greenhouse Gas Emissions for 2014.

Dubai has made rapid strides in “green economy innovation”. I refer to it as an innovation because of the shift in thinking the emirate is going through. 2014 was a successful year, because UAE is moving towards a low carbon economy and the Dubai Carbon Center of Excellence is actively involved by facilitating the transition.

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Hansa Green Tour 2014: Raising Sustainability Awareness Across Europe

Claire Connacher

The northern European Hanseatic region has long been one of the most advanced regions in sustainability and renewable energy innovations. Hansa Green Tour provides national sustainability and clean-tech organizations and initiatives the opportunity to share available knowledge so that an optimum use of the available best practices and technology can be made.

The fifth Hansa Green Tour, covering the Netherlands, Germany, and Stockholm, was held from June 25 to June 28, 2014. Participants drove electric, hybrid, green gas and hydrogen vehicles, and visited several sustainable initiatives in several countries across Europe. The tour concluded in Copenhagen, EU Green Capital 2014 and a leading city in the world for sustainable development. The city, which aims to become the world’s first carbon-neutral capital by 2025, showcased its green initiatives to tour participants.

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Lighting Up Off-Grid Ghana

Thomas George

Reducing the world’s energy poverty by providing electricity and energy services to off-grid rural households is an important task, but a huge challenge. Households without electricity often light their homes with kerosene lamps or battery-powered flashlights, both of which are expensive on a per-watt hour or per-lumen basis. Moreover, kerosene is highly polluting and poses significant health risks to its users, as its fumes are toxic and lamps can tip over and cause fires.

Village solar micro-grids can emerge as a viable solution to deal with energy poverty, especially in Africa. Persistent Energy Ghana has taken the lead in this direction by providing solar energy services to off-grid low-income Ghanaian households through microfinance banks. Village solar micro-grids and pay-as-you-go solar home systems in the Eastern and Greater Accra Regions of Ghana provide people with basic energy services including lighting, mobile phone charging, fans, radio, and TV. Such services are convenient and affordable because people can purchase energy credit from local agents in any amount.

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Fukushima’s Third-Year Anniversary: Where Are We Now?

Andrew DeWit

world fukushimaHistory's largest and most expensive natural and nuclear disasters hit Japan's Northeast Region on March 11, 2011, and unfolded over the following weeks through nuclear meltdowns. Roughly 19,000 people died, most by drowning, from the Great East Japan earthquake and tsunami. The region is neither rich nor densely urbanized, but property damage has been assessed at approximately US$200 billion. Of this, buildings sustained about $102 billion worth of destruction, while $13 billion was to what Japanese assessors describe as "lifeline facilities," including water supply, gas, electrical grids, communications and broadcasting facilities. Damage to "social infrastructure," such as rivers, roads, ports, sewage systems, airports and other items was approximately $22 billion.

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