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World Bank’s ‘Green” Energy Funding Up 87 Percent

Deborah Zabarenko, Reuters
World Bank funding for efficient and renewable energy rose 87 this year to nearly $2.7 billion, reflecting the importance of moving to a low-carbon economy, the bank’s energy chief said on Thursday.

Investment in “green” energy projects is essential for poor countries hit hard by soaring oil prices, said Jamal Saghir, World Bank Director for Energy, Transport and Water.

“What’s affecting the poor countries is not only the oil price increase, it’s the volatility as well, which is creating vulnerability at the same time,” Saghir said by telephone. “That’s why you look at alternative sources of energy.”
(2 October 2008)

Study Eases Fear About Wind Farm Threat to Birds

Michael Kahn, Reuters
Wind turbines do not drive birds from surrounding areas, British researchers said on Wednesday, in findings which could make it easier to build more wind farms.

Conservation groups have raised fears that large birds could get caught in the turbines and that the structures could disturb other species.

But scientists found only one of the 23 species studied, the pheasant, was affected during their survey of two wind farms in eastern England.

The findings published in the Journal of Applied Ecology could help government and business efforts to boost the number of wind farms as a way to increase production of renewable energy.
(1 October 2008)

Wind power and feed-in tairffs in Ukraine
Marc Strassman, Etopia News
An audio interview with photos with Andrei Konechenkov, Chairman of the Board of the Ukrainian Wind Energy Association, talking about the current and future implementation of wind power and green (feed-in) tariffs in Ukraine, with some personal comments about the disasterous impact of the Chernobyl nuclear accident in the former Soviet Union
(2 October 2008)
Site seems to be down at the moment (Oct 4). -BA

More on feed-in tariffs from Etopica News: Craig Lewis’ presentation to the CEC on FIT as solution for RPS:

Presentation by Craig Lewis, VP, Government Relations at GreenVolts, to the California Energy Commission, in which he makes the case for a feed-in tariff for wholesale distributed generation (WDG) as a solution for unmet renewable portfolio standard requirements in California.

Dutch city kept warm by hot-water mines

David Charter, The Guardian
In an age of rapidly rising fuel bills the discovery of vast supplies of free hot water sounds too good to be true. But that is exactly what one Dutch city has found to run the radiators of hundreds of homes, shops and offices.

Heerlen, in the southern province of Limburg, has created the first geothermal power station in the world using water heated naturally in the deep shafts of old coalmines — which once provided the southern Netherlands with thousands of jobs but have been dormant since the 1970s.

Tapping “free energy” marks a breakthrough in green technology by exploiting the legacy of the coalmines that emitted so much pollution and helped to create the climate change emergency faced by the planet.

“With the threat of global warming and soaring energy prices, nobody can afford to sit back,” said Riet de Wit, a councillor in Heerlen. “We have proven that a local initiative can provide a local solution for sustainable energy. Moreover, our concept can be adapted by former mining regions all over the world.” …
(6 October 2008)