Articles filed under Energy Policy from Europe

German utilities, wind power industry dismiss govt's 2020 wind power target

German utilities and wind turbine makers have dismissed the government's goal of boosting off-shore wind power capacity to 15,000 megawatts by 2020, citing a lack of resources and transmission lines, Financial Times Deutschland said. The goal, which is equivalent to 3,000 high-capacity wind turbines, is 'not viable, neither from an economic nor a technological point of view,' the paper quoted a spokesman from German utility E.ON AG (NYSE:EONGY) as saying. ...The legal reimbursement of 14 euro cents per kilowatt hour of off-shore wind power is sufficient but building transmission lines from the wind parks to consumers on the continent is not profitable enough to encourage investments, BWE managing director Ralf Bischof said.
15 Apr 2008

Wind energy company in Euro call

A major wind farm developer has asked European Commissioners to acknowledge support for its 181-turbine proposal for Barvas Moor on Lewis. Lewis Wind Power (LWP) will be one group at a European Parliament event discussing the Europe-wide Natura 2000 network of protected areas. Sites covered by the Natura 2000 designation include Lewis peat bogs. LWP said the designation should not hinder developments which could bring benefits to remote communities. ...The Natura 2000 event is to be held on Wednesday by the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe (ALDE). European Commissioners are expected to attend.
15 Apr 2008

German politicians still clash over power-supply future: reports

Economy minister Glos over the weekend accused the SPD's environment minister Sigmar Gabriel of looking at energy supply through "ideological goggles." Glos warned of a supply shortage by 2012 and rejected a thesis paper from the environment ministry which stated that supply in Germany was secure. Glos told weekly business magazine Wirtschaftswoche that "one could rather trust a hungry dog [guarding] sausage stocks" than trust the environment ministry with watching over the safety of power supply. It was therefore good, said Glos, that the security of energy supply is under the responsibility of the economy ministry. Gabriel, meanwhile, said lobbying against new coal units was putting secure supply in danger and that blocking new coal units may actually support longer lives for nuclear units.
14 Apr 2008

Wind farm decision branded 'failure in democracy'

Protesters have labelled the decision to give the go-ahead for a £90 million wind farm in east Sutherland as a disaster. The Scottish Government announced this week that it had approved the 35-turbine wind farm at Gordonbush, Strath Brora, which will generate 87.5 megawatts of electricity ...Energy minister Jim Mather called it "a good example of a sensitively scaled and sited wind farm operating in harmony with the environment". But opponents pointed out that approval had been granted even though no habitat management plan had been agreed and the access route was still uncertain. Sutherland landowner Edward Reeves of Suisgill Estate, a supporter of local anti-wind farm action group Landscape, claimed the decision represented a failure in democracy. "This is a disastrous decision for Brora and Helmsdale and for the few remaining stretches of wild land in the Highland," he said. "When democracy fails, where do you turn?"
10 Apr 2008

E.ON tells ministers to come clean about green energy's cost to public

Senior energy executives have called on ministers to come clean about the costs of the Government's ambitious plans for a green energy revolution. Government ministers have eagerly publicised in recent months tough new carbon reduction targets and an array of initiatives that will be needed to meet those demands, such as biomass and wind power generation and carbon capture and sequestration technology - "green" measures that play well with the electorate. ...But signs are emerging that energy companies are tiring of taking the flak for higher tariffs that are increasingly a direct result of government policy. Paul Golby, the head of E.ON UK, said: "We need our politicians to stand up to the mark a bit more and be honest about the costs. It doesn't come for free. Energy is going to cost more in the future."
10 Apr 2008

EON set for MoD showdown over controversial wind farm

EON is set for a showdown with the Ministry of Defence after it submitted a planning application for a £700m ($1.4 billion USD) offshore wind farm despite objections from the ministry. The energy company's move to push ahead with the Humber Gateway wind farm, which would be one of the largest in the UK, is the first new project to have been proposed since John Hutton, the Secretary of State for Business Enterprise and Regulatory Reform (BERR) revealed a plan to install 33 gigawatts of wind energy by 2020. That is up from the 1gw that is generated from wind power in the country today. The MoD has objected to the project, set to be located about 5 miles off the East Yorkshire coast, because it could interfere with radar equipment.
7 Apr 2008

Blowing hard: European money piles into U.S. wind

What's telling is that the European interest hasn't wavered even though U.S. federal subsidies for clean energy are slated to expire this year and have yet to be extended. Historically, the federal tax-credits have been make-or-break for the industry. Now, though, it appears other factors weigh more heavily. EDP is so anxious to expand in the U.S. that it ordered more wind turbines from India's Suzlon this week, even though those Suzlon machines have had technical glitches. The big drivers? State incentives for renewable energy, like those in Texas; a slow but inexorable shift in the U.S. toward cleaner energy; and the high-quality wind resources in the U.S., which dwarf those of Europe (and other parts of the world.)
7 Apr 2008

Energy targets being blocked

The Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform (DBERR) - which heads up the drive to ensure 15 per cent of the UK's energy comes from renewables by 2020 - has also been working hard on finding ways around the objections. Military fears over the impact of the turbines creating blackspots on radar has seen more than 40 proposals blocked, while agencies of the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs have used the threat of flooding and the impact on wildlife to put forward objections to both onshore and offshore wind farms. But the British Wind Energy Association insisted Government departments had to work harder to overcome the objections to pursue the higher goal of cutting carbon emissions. Charles Anglin, BWEA director of communications, told the WMN: "If the UK is going to meet its tough new targets for renewable energy and tackle climate change, then the Government agencies like the Ministry of Defence and the Environment Agency have to play their part.
7 Apr 2008

Assembly's wind farm warning

Wind developers are to be warned to stop ignoring airports and fully consult before putting in plans for turbines in parts of Northumberland. The North East Assembly has written to the Government insisting that when the region's planning master plan is produced this summer it includes a line forcing developers to check there are no radar objections likely to scupper proposals. The NEA is producing a Regional Spatial Strategy (RSS) which has to first be approved by the Department of Communities and Local Government (DCLG). The final version will be used as a legal guide underpinning every planning decision made in the North East.
7 Apr 2008

More failures of wind energy

While wind energy is being wildly supported by many in the U.S., there have always been drawbacks to the performance and costs of these machines. The U.S. has had a heavily subsidized romance with them for nearly 40 years and too few of the state and federal policy makers have taken a close look at what the tens of billions in subsidies have actually done for the taxpayers. These wind energy programs have made many companies such as Florida Power and Light very wealthy because of the heavy subsidies, tax credits, and accelerated depreciation allowance. Additional benefits come from local taxing authorities. This source of energy remains very unreliable and limited, having produced only about 1% of the nation's energy for decades.
6 Apr 2008

Green Party's lack of power

Without any public discussion Eamonn Ryan and the ESB unveiled plans to spend €22bn of our money on a madcap proposal which will seriously damage our ability to meet future energy needs. The plans include a massive increase in wind power which can never supply dependable power when needed. ...ESB Chief Padraic McManus said that he did not see nuclear power "being an issue" before 2035 thereby ending the nuclear debate promised by Minister Ryan, before it even started. So at a stroke this country has been effectively condemned to almost total dependence on imported fossil fuels for the foreseeable future.
6 Apr 2008

Storm against wind farm in Westwood Park

A Campaign to halt a proposed wind farm on Sheffield parkland is picking up speed. Protesters this week lobbied leading councillors in their attempts to blow away the plans for Westwood Country Park at High Green. And they pointed to opposition from their local MP, Angela Smith, who says the park is "totally unsuitable" for a wind farm, partly because it would be near hundreds of homes. Andy Redfern, who chairs the action group, Save Westwood Country Park, said: "The storm that this has elicited in local people is quite tangible. ...Mr Redfern asked councillors: "Given this is a piece of green belt land and Hillsborough MP Angela Smith opposes these plans, as do local residents, will you abandon the plans? No other windfarms are near so many homes. Please stop this madness."
4 Apr 2008

Overblown: The real cost of wind power

If you have a hankering to see Britain's green and pleasant countryside or its rugged coastline, you shouldn't wait too long. They are both likely to disappear soon under thousands of massive, swirling, 400-foot wind turbines. Recently, U.K. Industry Secretary John Hutton announced that the British government is planning 25 gigawatts of offshore wind power capacity, adding to the 8 GW already in development. A grand plan that could, in theory anyway, power all of Britain's 25 million homes by as early as 2020. Wind seems to be blowing in the minds of the politically correct and those on the environmentalist bandwagon. But the cost is going to be huge, no companies will plunge into it without massive government subsidies, and should the turbines actually be built, power reliability will almost certainly take a nosedive. ...The bottom line is that the debate about renewables, and investment in them, is as much about ideology and political belief as about economics and environmental issues. When the real cost of wind power as a major player in our future power needs is assessed, the answer won't be found just "blowin' in the wind."
2 Apr 2008

Wind farm bids blasted

The SNP Government intends to do nothing about the number of speculative planning applications for onshore wind farms being made in Perthshire, it was revealed in a parliamentary answer to MSP Murdo Fraser. In a parliamentary question, Murdo asked the SNP Government how it intends to reduce the number of speculative planning applications for onshore wind farms. In response, the Minister for Transport and Infrastructure Stewart Stevenson stated: "Under planning legislation there are no powers to prevent planning applications being made. ..."It is disappointing that the SNP Government is not prepared to create ‘no go' areas for applications. I believe that large parts of Perthshire should be automatically ruled out for a wind farm application due to their natural beauty and importance to the local tourism industry."
1 Apr 2008

Cyclic energy policy

Scottish & Southern Energy is advocating more hydro-electricity projects because wind farms need instant back-up when the wind abates (Scrutineer, 27 March). This is most interesting to those of us endowed with memory, for we've come around a full circle ...
31 Mar 2008

Hitting EU's energy targets will cost Brits at least £2,000

It will cost every household in the UK at least £2,000 to comply with the new European Union target of producing 15 per cent of all energy from renewable sources by 2020, according to a report commissioned by the government. ...According to energy consultancy Pöyry, the bill for the UK to meet the target would be at least €5bn a year for more than a decade, compared with just over €3bn a year for France and Germany, and well under €500m for most other countries.
30 Mar 2008

Hitting EU's energy targets will cost Brits at least £2,000

It will cost every household in the UK at least £2,000 to comply with the new European Union target of producing 15 per cent of all energy from renewable sources by 2020, according to a report commissioned by the government. ...According to energy consultancy Pöyry, the bill for the UK to meet the target would be at least €5bn a year for more than a decade, compared with just over €3bn a year for France and Germany, and well under €500m for most other countries.
30 Mar 2008

Bill Carmichael: French lesson about power

Another area where the French have emphatically got it right is in power generation. After the oil shocks of 1973, France, with no significant oil or gas reserves of its own, embarked on a massive expansion of nuclear power, completely ignoring the doom-mongerers such as Greenpeace. The result has been an unqualified success story. Today, France has 59 nuclear power plants producing 78 per cent of its electricity needs. Electricity is so cheap and abundant that much of it is exported to the UK and Germany, earning the French economy about three billion euros a year. ...And because nuclear emits no carbon or pollutants, France is also one of the "greenest" countries in the industrialised world.
28 Mar 2008

Bill Carmichael: French lesson about power

Another area where the French have emphatically got it right is in power generation. After the oil shocks of 1973, France, with no significant oil or gas reserves of its own, embarked on a massive expansion of nuclear power, completely ignoring the doom-mongerers such as Greenpeace. The result has been an unqualified success story. Today, France has 59 nuclear power plants producing 78 per cent of its electricity needs. Electricity is so cheap and abundant that much of it is exported to the UK and Germany, earning the French economy about three billion euros a year. ...And because nuclear emits no carbon or pollutants, France is also one of the "greenest" countries in the industrialised world.
28 Mar 2008

Germany is running out of energy, says expert

Germany could face a serious energy shortage over the next decade if it doesn't start building new power plants, said the German Energy Agency. As a result, energy prices are likely to rise dramatically. By 2020, Germany could face an energy shortage that is equivalent to the output of 15 power plants, according to a study by the German Energy Agency (Dena), which could mean higher prices for consumers. ...Last week, the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung opined that, in light of possible energy shortages, it was "ironic" that environment groups and residents protest replacing old power plants, as the newer models are actually less polluting.
24 Mar 2008

https://www.windaction.org/posts?location=Europe&p=39&topic=Energy+Policy&type=Article
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