Battery storage to make reserve coal plants redundant

Yesterday, a new battery storage system went into operation in Germany, and it could mark the end of the need for conventional plants to provide fast backup power to stabilize the grid. Insiders believe this option is already less expensive than conventional plants. read more »

German carbon emissions up in 2013

Germany’s Environmental Agency UBA produced its statistics on carbon emissions from 2013 in July, but a relaunch of their website meant that it remained hidden, and there was no press release. But the statistics show that carbon emissions were up by one percent, whereas we had calculated a slightly smaller decrease. (Read: we were wrong.) read more »

The golf-course potential of wind power

Densely populated Japan is home to a mind-boggling number of golf courses. With so much land set aside for golf, how much wind power could be produced from the land area covered by golf courses in Japan? read more »

Vattenfall » 14.09.2014

Swedish elections impact German coal

Today, Swedes go to the polls to elect a new government. One outcome already seems certain: lower coal production in Germany. And we also learn something about Putin’s Russia. read more »

IRENA » 13.09.2014

Solar keeps getting cheaper

IRENA has published a new report investigating the successful cost reduction of various renewable energy technologies. Today, we take a look at three charts pertaining to PV. read more »

Wholesale market » 13.09.2014

Power trading volume in Germany up

The German power exchange has seen a steep increase in trading over the past few years. Energy Brainpool says the rise of wind and solar is one reason. read more »

German renewable energy companies eye export markets

A survey conducted by the German Energy Agency (dena) found that most German renewable energy companies have a positive export outlook. One of the driving factors is the rising cost effectiveness and maturity of renewable technology. read more »

Does Japan lack suitable land for wind power?

While solar power is currently booming in Japan, sadly wind power is not. In 2013 Japan only added 50 MW of wind. This begs the question: Is a lack of suitable land holding wind power back in Japan? read more »

Hawaii says it has too much residential PV

Though alternating current by definition flows back and forth, Hawaii’s grid operator now says too many homeowners have PV, and “the electric grid was designed to send electricity one-way from utility generators to customers.” Homeowners with “unapproved” arrays are to have their systems disconnected. read more »

August’s day of negative prices

Last month, conventional plants in Germany got squeezed down to their must-run level, leading to negative prices on the wholesale market. read more »

German coal power generation at 10-year low in August

This year electricity generation from coal is down in Germany and last month only 14.45 TWh. This is not only a hefty 20% decline compared to the previous year, but also the lowest monthly coal power production in more than a decade. read more »

Does storage really kill the affordability of 100% renewable power?

Over the last two weeks, we wrote a lot about the “Kombikraftwerk2”, 100% renewable power scenario. While the study focused on the technical feasibility, one of our articles questioned the economics of the described storage requirements. But is storage really that expensive? read more »

German wholesale prices down further in August

In August, wholesale power prices in Germany were down roughly 30 percent year-over-year. Prices were even lower in France, however. But the streak of days on which power prices remained below the threshold of four cents came to an end this month – after a streak of 46 days. read more »

Solar power » 05.09.2014

Floating solar power plants to be built in Japan

Since the introduction of feed-in tariffs in mid-2012, Japan has experienced a solar power boom. The rapid growth has apparently led to somewhat of a shortage of available land for “mega solar” projects. This has encouraged project developer Kyocera to view Japan's ponds, reservoirs and lakes as potential sites for large solar projects. read more »

Grid stability » 05.09.2014

Stable grids from cow’s milk

German researchers are looking into ways of stabilizing power grids. What does that have to do with milk? read more »