Library filed under Energy Policy from Europe

Energy giants urge end to subsidies for 'green' power

The senior executives from ten utilities in Europe have recommended that the end subsidies for renewable energy if it wants to regain its competitiveness. The companies argue subsidies for solar and wind energy are driving up prices for consumers and market distorting. E.ON CEO Johannes Teyssen said that " renewable " subsidies are reaching a level which is totally unbearable. This industry is the biggest kid on the block now, not a child any longer."
11 Oct 2013

Axe green tax or energy bills will go up every year for a decade, says energy chief

The chief executive of the energy giant Scottish & Southern Energy said on Thursday night it was time for a national debate about the country’s green agenda after unveiling an 8.2 per cent price rise for customers. ...Gillian Guy, the chief executive of Citizens Advice, added: “This price rise will be a blow for stretched budgets. The hike comes at a time when some working households are turning to food banks to feed their families as they struggle to cope with the rising cost of living.
10 Oct 2013

National Grid warns of winter blackout risk

In June, energy regulator Ofgem said that risks to security of electricity supply - the danger of the lights not being kept on - had increased due to the UK's shortage of power stations and new wind farms. It also warned that the risk of electricity customer disconnections would "appreciably increase".
7 Oct 2013

Coalition faces clash over green energy plans

The coalition is heading for a fresh dispute over green energy after a call by Downing Street to water down climate commitments as part of efforts to keep power bills down. ...But any attempt to water down or end the Eco, which is set to run until 2015, will meet stiff opposition from the Liberal Democrats
6 Oct 2013

David Cameron: a Prime Minister in a hurry

On wind farms – seen by many as an expensive blight on the countryside, subsidised by the taxpayer to burnish the image of politicians who live nowhere near them – the PM is equally diplomatic. “Recently, I opened the London Array and it’s good that Britain is leading the way in this technology. But as I say, you shouldn’t keep the subsidies for any longer than is necessary.”
29 Sep 2013

Consumers face bill for power stations to be mothballed amid blackout fears

In June, Ofgem warned that the risk of blackouts in 2015 had risen to one in four, if energy demand continued at its current level. Uncertainty around the amount of available electricity in 2015 and 2016 meant that it was "prudent" to consider keeping mothballed plants in reserve, it said. GDF Suez, the energy company that has mothballed its Teesside gas power station, has estimated that keeping plants on standby could cost between £90 million and £120 million per year.
22 Sep 2013

Germany's effort at clean energy proves complex

Last year, wind, solar and other nonfossil-fuel sources provided 22 percent of the power for Germany, but the country increased its carbon emissions over 2011 as oil- and coal-burning power plants had to close gaps in the evolving system ...Germany's power grid has been strained by new wind and solar projects on land, compelling the government to invest up to $27 billion over the next decade to build roughly 1,700 miles of high-capacity power lines and to upgrade lines.
19 Sep 2013

German power premium most since '98 tests voters: Energy markets

Germany's drive to increase renewable energy sources has created the biggest discrepancy between consumer and producer power prices in 15 years, turning the cost of electricity into a political battleground before the Sept. 22 national election. Because of taxes and charges that subsidize the country's 550 billion-euro ($734 billion) plan to expand solar and wind power, residential bills are more than twice the amount that utilities pay to deliver the electricity.
19 Sep 2013

Germany industry in revolt as green dream causes cost spiral

"We need a drastic policy shift. They haven't paid any attention to costs. These are now huge." German electricity costs are ratcheting up faster than elsewhere in Europe, and are now twice US levels. Households and the "Mittlestand" backbone of the economy are carrying the burden, paying cross-subsidies to exempted sectors of heavy industry. "Spiralling energy costs will soon drive us into the wall. It has become dangerous."
19 Sep 2013

The answer to green energy is not blowing in the wind

Wind-power advocates used to uphold Germany as the super-country of the future, and it still is, if you are in favour of wind generation for its own sake. The amount of German electric power supplied by wind is approaching 10 per cent of national demand, even as big North Sea projects meet with unexpected technical and environmental delays. The German government has guaranteed a high, fixed, long-term feed-in tariff for renewable energy projects, including wind turbines.
17 Sep 2013

Examining thoughts on Germany's clean energy push

Harvey acknowledges the enormous costs at which renewables innovation has been achieved in Germany, writing that escalating costs of the Energiewende "need to be controlled" ...But he also obfuscates many inconvenient facts, particularly those that suggest that current problems facing the Energiewende represent more than temporary setbacks.
14 Sep 2013

Geneva utility CEO quits amid wind power scandal

The chief executive of Geneva's public utility resigned after six years in the position on Thursday amid a scandal over tens of millions of francs invested in wind energy without producing any electricity. ...With Geneva parliamentary and government elections coming up next month the issue threatens to become a political football.
12 Sep 2013

Germany's Energy Poverty: The regressive energy tax

It is only gradually becoming apparent how the renewable energy subsidies redistribute money from the poor to the more affluent, like when someone living in small rental apartment subsidizes a homeowner's roof-mounted solar panels through his electricity bill. The SPD, which sees itself as the party of the working class, long ignored this regressive aspect of the system.
5 Sep 2013
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