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SETIS/ JRC report published on Best available technologies (BAT) for the heat and cooling market in the European Union

SETIS feed - Fri, 2012-11-16 15:35

Every year, over 40% of the total energy consumed in Europe is used for the generation of heat for either domestic or industrial purposes whereas the cooling demand is growing exponentially. The importance of the heat and cooling sector is underlined in several EU energy policy initiatives. They emphasize the role of technologies based on renewable energy sources combined with high-efficiency energy technologies, to meet the heat and cooling demand in Europe more sustainably in the future.  In this context, it is essential to identify the current and future heat and cooling demand and the technologies employed in the domestic, commercial and industrial sectors of the EU.

The underlying technology database contains specific techno-economic information such as capacity range, performance, cost and potential barriers for deployment up to 2050 for the BATs described in this document. This database in combination with a market database has been used in a calculation tool to study scenarios for the evolution of the heat and cooling demand up to 2050. The figure here shows results obtained for the evolution up to 2050 of the useful energy for heating demand for the EU for three different scenarios: baseline scenario (current trend according to the European Energy and Transport Trends to 2030), scenario A (penetration of BAT 50% higher than in the baseline scenario) and scenario B (penetration of BAT two times higher than the baseline scenario). These results show a reduction of the useful energy demand of around 7% and 11% for the scenario A and scenario B respectively compared with the baseline scenario in 2050. Furthermore they also show changes in the shares of the final energy demand, reflecting a different technology portfolio mix in the different scenarios.

Categories: EC Energy News

New JRC Scientific & Policy Report: "A Systemic Assessment of the European Offshore Wind Innovation"

SETIS feed - Wed, 2012-11-14 12:12

It looks not only at which actors are involved in offshore wind systems but also what the national regulatory framework consists of; what the expectations and social acceptance are; and what the state of the knowledge, physical and financial infrastructure is in these four countries.

Additionally, the study identifies the system weaknesses that block proper functioning of the offshore wind innovation systems and which, for that reason, require urgent and coordinated policy effort.


Categories: EC Energy News

EU reaches 100 GW wind power milestone

SETIS feed - Fri, 2012-11-09 14:27

It took Europe 20 years to achieve its first 10 GW of grid-connected wind capacity, and only 13 years for the next 90 GW. Half of the total European wind power capacity has been installed over the past six years.

"It would require burning 72 million tonnes of coal annually in coal-fired power plants to match Europe’s annual wind energy production. Loading that amount of coal on trains would require 750,000 wagons with a combined length of 11,500 km – the distance from Brussels to Buenos Aires," said Christian Kjaer, CEO of EWEA.

"Despite only utilising a tiny fraction of Europe’s vast domestic wind energy resources, wind power is having a substantial impact on Europe’s energy security and environment, and benefits us hugely in creating green jobs and technology exports", said Kjaer.

A recent contributor to the 100 GW milestone is the 400 MW Anholt offshore wind farm developed by DONG off the coast of Denmark.

For further information:

Categories: EC Energy News

Interview: Henning Kruse, Chairman of TPWind

SETIS feed - Fri, 2012-11-09 13:27
Could you please explain in a few words what TPWind is and why it was set up?


TPWind is a network and R&D forum made up of more than 180 wind energy experts. TPWind was launched in 2006 and, since 2007, it has received EU funding. Its Secretariat is hosted by EWEA and managed in cooperation with Garrad Hassan, now part of the Germanischer Lloyd group, and DTU Wind (Technical University of Denmark).

TPWind advises European Institutions and Member States on the R&D priorities of the EU wind power sector. It also provides funding recommendations on wind energy R&D projects to ensure that public resources are allocated where the sector most needs them. This maximises the value for money of public funding schemes, and helps to optimise support for the sector and use of taxpayers’ money.

How successful has TPWind been in getting universities, industry and utilities to work together? What have been some of the successes and challenges?

TPWind has been extremely successful in involving all relevant players. The Platform has 184 members. About 52% of them are from industry (including utilities) and 35% from the R&D community, with the remaining 13% from consultancies, public authorities, certification bodies and associations. TPWind ensures a balanced and comprehensive representation of the EU wind energy sector.

In a few words, how is wind energy doing in terms of the SET-Plan targets regarding transition to a low-carbon economy?

In 2020, when the SET-Plan reaches its end, 34% of the EU’s power needs to be met by renewables. It is expected that 14% to 16% of all electricity consumption will be met by wind alone. Today wind is at around 7%, or halfway there.

The SET-Plan is instrumental in focusing research priorities constantly on increasing the efficiency and reliability of wind turbines and bringing down the cost of the energy they produce.


Onshore wind is a now a maturing technology. What are some of the remaining challenges, both technologically and in terms of public acceptance?

Onshore wind is technologically mature. And the European Wind Initiative (EWI) forecasts that onshore wind will become fully cost competitive in 2020, bearing in mind the current distorted electricity market situation that favours conventional fossil fuel generation.

From a technological point of view, TPWind’s goal is threefold:

-    develop new turbine designs, materials and components supporting the upscaling of turbines (turbines of 10MW to 20MW);

-    improve the efficiency and reliability of turbines, including for complex terrains and extreme climates;

-    develop manufacturing processes and procedures for the mass-production of turbines.

To address social and environmental concerns, TPWind is focusing on reducing noise emissions, improving end-of-life policies and investigating wind power’s economic and social benefits.


Offshore wind technology is still developing. What have been some of the main innovations in recent years and what still remains to be done?

Offshore wind costs are still high because working at sea adds complexity. And the sector is younger, so there is still a lot of room for economies of scale. The industry expects to reach full competitiveness before 2030.

TPWind’s specific offshore objectives are:

-    to develop new stackable, replicable and standardised substructures for large-scale offshore turbines;

-    to develop floating structures;

-    to develop manufacturing processes and procedures for the mass-production of substructures.

These are, naturally, complementary to the general objectives of turbine up-scaling and manufacturing.

Strategies and requirements for improved design and use of ports, vessels, installation logistics, and operation and maintenance (O&M) processes are important to speed up deployment and keep costs down. TPWind is also looking at grid infrastructure for offshore wind farms – how this can be optimised and how processes can be streamlined. Offshore grids are both an important cost component and require long-term planning.

How is the Northern Seas offshore grid coming along? What are the main challenges there?

The development of an offshore grid in the North Sea is a sine qua non condition for EU Member States to meet their offshore wind deployment objectives and the EU to meet its climate and energy targets, as success or failure here will have repercussions on offshore grid developments in the other sea basins.

EU Member States must, therefore, work together to facilitate the construction of the North Sea offshore grid with the appropriate regulatory framework.

The North Sea grid received a major boost in 2010, when ten European Members States signed up a Memorandum of Understanding and committed themselves to identify and tackle barriers to coordinated grid development. In 2011, the European Commission launched the so-called European infrastructure package, identifying the North Sea Offshore Grid as a priority area for Projects of Common Interest (PCI).

However, results are still limited because of the lack of vision for offshore wind beyond 2020. 2030 renewable energy targets would help give wind developers and grid operators a longer-term perspective to plan investments. It’s important to be clear about future perspectives early on, because of the long lead times for developing offshore wind farms and, especially, grid infrastructure.


Are there still significant barriers regarding a truly European grid i.e. overcoming national borders?

There are some technical barriers to a truly European grid. And there are still important political steps to be made. It’s necessary to rapidly finalise the Internal Electricity Market, allowing electricity to be traded across Europe, taking into account the characteristics of our future electricity mix: flexibility.


Is the funding there to support further developments in wind energy in the EU? What more is needed and where should this come from – for example, public funding vs industry and the utilities?

The European Wind Initiative has an overall budget of EUR 6bn for the 2010 – 2020 decade, of which roughly 52 % should be covered by the industry, 17 % by Member States and 31 % by EU Institutions.

Over the first three years of implementation, about EUR 800 million of EU funds were provided to wind energy, but mainly through the 2009 European Energy Programme for Recovery (EEPR), a one-off initiative for offshore wind. This raises questions about the level of EU funding that will be available under the next multiannual financial framework.

For this reason, TPWind is working with the European Commission to ensure that EUR 1.3bn will be allocated to wind energy over the 2014 – 2020 period.

How can SETIS contribute to dialogue around wind energy?

The EU Joint Research Centre (JRC) is an excellent repository of technical know-how and plays a key role in the implementation of the SET-Plan in general and in the development of wind power in particular. The JRC is in charge of defining and monitoring SET-Plan’s key performance indicators (KPIs), together with industry and R&D community representatives. For this reason TPWind has been working closely with the JRC in the definition of EWI’s KPIs.

Moreover, SETIS, provides up-to-date information and analyses on energy technology innovation. SETIS and the JRC help to disseminate validated information on the development of renewables and wind energy. Awareness raising activities are essential to maintain political focus on the implementation of the SET-Plan, create ideal conditions for technology development and increasing social acceptance of renewables.


Categories: EC Energy News

Wind Turbine Noise: From Source to Receiver

SETIS feed - Thu, 2012-11-08 09:00

Five sessions focus on source noise; wind farm design; real-world measurements; national guidelines and human perception; and new this year: noise issues offshore.

Categories: EC Energy News

5th International Conference on Integration of Renewable and Distributed Energy Resources

SETIS feed - Wed, 2012-11-07 09:00
IRED 2012 covers the latest technical, market and policy aspects of the integration of renewable and distributed energy resources and smart grids, with an emphasis on interdisciplinary collaboration, and deployment projects – including large-scale demonstrations – in many countries.
Categories: EC Energy News

Commission moves to address less-sustainable biofuels

SETIS feed - Tue, 2012-11-06 15:15

The new rules to be implemented through the Renewable Energy Directive and the Fuel Quality Directive:

  • limit to 5 percent the contribution that biofuels based on food crops can make to the EU’s 10 percent target for renewable energy in the transport sector by 2020;
  • for new biofuel plants, increase the minimum greenhouse gas savings requirement to 60 percent compared to fossil fuels (the current figure is 35 percent, increasing to 50 percent in 2017);
  • require indirect land use change (ILUC) to be taken into account – through mechanisms still to be agreed – in the reporting of greenhouse gas savings;
  • provide incentives for biofuels with no or low ILUC emissions, notably second- and third-generation biofuels made from algae, straw and other waste materials.

Climate Action Commissioner Connie Hedegaard said: ‘"We must invest in biofuels that achieve real emission cuts and do not compete with food. We are of course not closing down first generation biofuels, but we are sending a clear signal that future increases in biofuels must come from advanced biofuels. Everything else will be unsustainable".

The European Biomass Association (AEBIOM) responded that the new rules would damage growing markets in biogas and biomass as well as biofuels. In contrast to the food and animal feed industries, the biofuel industry already has strong and credible certification systems to guarantee sustainability, said AEBIOM president Gustav Melin, so it would be penalised unfairly.

When calculating contributions towards renewable energy targets, the extra weighting (a factor of up to four) proposed for waste-derived biofuels would mean the remaining 5 percent renewables target under the Renewable Energy Directive could be met by as little as 1.25 percent of actual biofuels. Some of this might also be made from imported waste derived from unsustainable sources, AEBIOM added.

For further information:

Categories: EC Energy News

Growing interest in deep geothermal energy

SETIS feed - Tue, 2012-11-06 14:55

In the UK, a new all-party parliamentary group aims to give “deep geothermal” the kind of lobbying support among legislators that wind, solar and marine energy already enjoy. One of its founders is Sarah Newton, whose constituency in Cornwall overlies granite rock that is well suited to geothermal exploration. Iceland, which makes extensive use of geothermal energy, has agreed to share technical information

In October, energy minister Greg Barker backed UK geothermal development in a speech at the UK Deep Geothermal Symposium in London, which followed an EGEC workshop on geothermal district heating (GeoDH). According to the International Energy Agency, Barker said, geothermal energy could eventually provide more than 3 percent of both the world’s electricity and heat demand. The UK is helping to develop up to 15 GW of geothermal projects in east Africa, while the EU is working with similar aims alongside the African Union.

EGEC reports that the lle-de-France region of France, including Greater Paris, is looking to nearly double its use of geothermal energy as a part of a larger plan to get 50 percent of its heat from renewable sources. The results of the first nationwide study of geothermal energy in France will be presented at Les Journées de la Géothermie on 14 and 15 November.

In Hungary, PannErgy subsidiary Miskolci Geotermia has won the second part of a EUR 3.5 million government grant for a joint geothermal project at Kistokaj. And in Turkey, energy company Zorlu Enerji says it plans to build a 175 MW geothermal project in Osmaniye.

For further information:

Categories: EC Energy News

GeoPower Europe

SETIS feed - Tue, 2012-11-06 09:00

Highlights this year include a focus on district heating and CHP, interactive sessions with top-level speakers, the Eastern European market, and more case studies than ever before.

Categories: EC Energy News

New Solar Europe PV plan will aim for grid integration and quality components

SETIS feed - Mon, 2012-11-05 16:06

That’s the conclusion of a workshop held at the end of September to discuss R&D priorities for the European PV industry up to 2015. The event was organised by the European Photovoltaic Industry Association (EPIA) and the European Photovoltaic Technology Platform (EU PVTP).

According to Pietro Caloprisco of the EPIA, the PV manufacturing segment is struggling to accommodate steep decreases in selling prices of modules and cells.

At the same time, more PV capacity than expected has been connected to the power grid, raising concerns among grid operators and policy-makers.
PV R&D needs to address grid stabilisation – such as ancillary services, storage and innovative inverter functionalities – the delegates concluded. The EPIA recently published a report: Connecting the Sun: Solar photovoltaics on the road to large-scale grid integration, which concludes that “large-scale integration of PV in the power system is possible to a greater extent than many have expected, even if some technical issues will have to be addressed”.

The workshop participants also noted that lower generation costs are better achieved through product reliability, increased performance and sustainability than through cheap system components.

A group of manufacturers calling themselves EU ProSun have complained that China is dumping cheap solar panels onto Europe, prompting a Commission enquiry that may lead Europe to impose import duties. But representatives from a counter-coalition representing the wider European solar industry, the Alliance for Affordable Solar Energy, say that free trade has helped to create 300,000 European jobs that would be put at risk by a trade war.
In future the SEII also plans to work more closely with industrial initiatives such as the European Electricity Grid Initiative (EEGI) and Energy Efficiency Buildings European Initiative (E2B EI).

For further information:

Categories: EC Energy News


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