Articles filed under Impact on Economy from Europe
Bosses of a historic Northumberland estate told a wind farm inquiry the turbines would damage tourism. Trustees of the Ford and Etal Estates also revealed they had been close to allowing turbines to be erected on their land, before pulling out of negotiations following a "backlash of public opinion". ...The estate asked the developer to consider reducing the height of the turbines but this approach was rejected. As a result, the trustees pulled out of negotiations in early 2006, incurring "considerable abortive professional fees."
It is important to understand why the Danish government, which appears to have commissioned Mr. Pedersen's comments, is sensitive to critiques of the Danish experience with wind power. Denmark is home to Vestas, the world's largest wind turbine manufacturer, with 20,000 employees and a market share of between 20% and 25%. As the market for its turbines in Denmark and other European countries becomes saturated, it seeks to export the Danish experience worldwide. To this end, it recently ran a multi-million dollar global ad campaign with the slogan, "Believe in the wind," claiming that Denmark has solved the problem of dirty electricity through wind power.
German savings banks are handing out more loans to renewable-energy projects as corporate rivals retreat from financing the world's biggest solar-panel market. The 438 savings banks financed 45 percent of the 5.3 billion euros ($7 billion) invested in solar and wind power projects in 2008, while loans from major corporate lenders including Deutsche Bank AG shrank to 0.8 percent.
President Barack Obama has praised Spain as a global leader in renewable electricity generation and has lauded its success at creating so-called "green jobs." However, a recent Spanish university study concluded that Spain's mad rush to meet overly aggressive renewable standards has destroyed jobs and driven up the real cost of electricity, without cutting carbon emissions.
This year has not been a good one for renewable energy, despite promises by politicians all round the globe to make it the centrepoint of economic recovery. Vestas chief executive Ditlev Engel began 2009 by warning that the economic downturn had left it with a 15% excess in global manufacturing capacity.
The amount invested in British renewable energy schemes, including wind, solar and wave power, fell from £377 million during the first three months of last year to £79 million during the same period this year, according to figures from New Energy Finance, a research group that monitors industry trends. The figures have raised fresh questions over the Government's ability to fulfil its pledge to slash Britain's carbon emissions and produce more than one third of the country's electricity from green energy by 2020.
President Obama in a speech at the Southern California Edison Electric Vehicle Technical Center last month favorably cited Spain as an example of how to boost an economy by creating green jobs. ...A new study by researchers at Spain's King Juan Carlos University suggests that the president may want to rethink Spain as a model for stimulating the economy with green jobs.
Danish wind turbines are now producing so much energy that they may have to be stopped at night in order to avoid excess production duties. ..."When prices go negative, wind turbines will probably have equipment installed so that you can reduce production," Marketing Manager Nicolaj Nørgaard Petersen tells Jyllands-Posten.
Firms and households are facing significantly higher electricity bills over the next five to 10 years as consumers shoulder the cost of renewable energy targets. Analysts estimate that households are already paying up to £10 extra a year through their utility bills to subsidise alternative forms of energy. At an energy conference in Edinburgh last week policymakers admitted that the financial burden on households and businesses will only increase as governments push to achieve ambitious renewables targets.
Concerns emerged this week over the effectiveness of carbon trading in encouraging alternative energy development after a tumbling carbon price made investment in projects more expensive. The price of carbon has fallen by nearly 70 per cent since reaching a high of €32.90 in April 2006 to a new low of €10.81 last week, although it recovered this week to just under €12.
According to the Financial Times, E.ON UK, the British arm of the German energy group, said the viability of its London Array project, a planned 1000 MW wind farm in the Thames estuary, had been called into question by the falling prices of oil, gas and carbon dioxide emissions permits. ...Centrica, the owner of British Gas, estimates that each megawatt of wind power capacity costs about £3m to build: more than the equivalent cost for a nuclear power station.
It has been reported today that the £1.5bn London Array project, which would plant 270 turbines in the Thames Estuary off Thanet, may be jeopardised by funding doubts. ...Consortium members are likely to ask the Government to raise its level of subsidy, arguing that the private sector should not bear so much risk from a scheme that is in the national interest. London Array has been in the planning stage for years, and a team of engineers have been working on it for some time.
Wind turbine blade maker LM Glasfiber Group has announced that it will lay off up to 600 workers at plants in Europe and the United States. The Danish company plans to cut a fifth of its domestic workforce - 450 employees - and to close one of its two blade plants in Little Rock, Arkansas, with the loss of 150 jobs. ...Despite this, the company stressed it is confident in the long-term outlook for the wind turbine business.
The former head of tourism in Argyll and the Islands is to appear as a professional witness at two public inquiries into the refusal of separate wind farm proposals for hills opposite Rothesay Bay. James Fraser, formerly VisitScotland's area director for Argyll, the Isles, Loch Lomond, Stirling and the Trossachs, will give evidence against the plans when developer West Coast Energy appeals against refusal of its proposal at an inquiry which begins at the Queen's Hall in Dunoon on January 20.
The cost of offshore wind farms has continued to soar, Centrica said, leading the company to review the economics of its £4bn wind power investment programme. The spiralling costs of offshore wind threaten to derail the government's renewable energy plans, which rely heavily on offshore turbines because of the difficulty and delays in obtaining planning permission for onshore wind farms.
Centrica, which is raising 2.2 billion pounds to help fund its proposed 25 percent stake in nuclear power generator British Energy, said it was "revisiting the economics of wind farms given rising raw material and credit costs." The company, which hopes to start full operation of its new Lynn & Inner Dowsing wind farms off the coast of eastern England by the end of the year, has yet to approve investment for three more farms that it plans to build in the North Sea.
Once a booming industry thanks to sky-high oil prices, the feel-good trend, carbon reduction and subsidies, the financial crisis has pushed investors to give up on green energies, and like the dot-com bubble of 2000, some analysts say it's about to burst. ..."I think economic reality will kill the green industry," said Mr. Buckee, who now lives in Britain and lectures on climate change. Solar energy isn't alone in its woes. Wind, biomass, biofuel and other "clean-tech" companies are getting pasted too as the financial crisis sends investors fleeing from technology names, dries up credit and freezes the IPO market.
Developers of a proposed Speyside wind farm have hit back at claims it will deter visitors and insist their plans will promote tourism in Moray. Dorenell Wind Farm on the Glenfiddich Estate will give local tourism a valuable boost and inject ongoing investment into the Moray economy, said Infinergy. And it accused a survey by a local accommodation provider, Tomintoul and Glenlivet Highland Holidays marketing group - which claimed a large number of tourists would be deterred from visiting the area because of the wind farm - of lacking objectivity and claimed it should be discounted because it asked leading questions.
A wind development in Moray will deter visitors from returning to the area, according to a tourism survey carried out by a local accommodation provider. A year long survey in the Dufftown-Glenlivet area suggests 17% of people, mainly walkers, would be put off coming back to the area if it had a wind farm. The survey, begun in March by Tomintoul and Glenlivet Highland Holidays marketing group, has had more than 200 forms returned by visitors staying in the Dufftown-Glenlivet area and expects to have 350 returned by March next year.
The massive planned expansion of renewable energy may produce far fewer jobs than the government has claimed, a study has found. Producing enough renewable energy to meet government targets would create about 36,000 jobs in the wind energy sector by 2020, according to a study by Bain & Company for the British Wind Energy Association, to be published today. ...In its renewable energy strategy, published over the summer, the government claimed it would create 160,000 new jobs by 2020.