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This Month in Energy - April 2016

16 minutes to read

Here’s what happened in the world of energy this month

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GLOBAL 

Green Energy Dropping Out of Mix in Developing World

In a recent report, the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) says that many developing countries have made huge strides towards deploying renewable technologies over the past decade — but this rise is now levelling off. Instead, these countries are turning towards fossil fuels to meet the energy demands of their citizens.

175 States Sign Landmark Paris Deal on Climate Change

The historic agreement on climate change marked a major milestone on Friday with a record 175 countries signing on to it on opening day.  Countries that were notably missing include Saudi, Iraq, Nigeria & Kazakhstan.

Ikea Unveils Ambition to be #1 Global Residential Solar Retailer

IKEA announced  that it will begin offering solar PV arrays at stores in nine countries over the next two years including the UK, Netherlands, and Switzerland.

ASIA

China has Designed a $50 trillion Global Energy Grid

China has proposed a $50+ trillion Global Ultra High Voltage grid connecting power generation including a massive wind farm at the North Pole by 2050

LNG Faces Tough Future in Korean Power Sector

Gas demand from South Korea’s power sector is forecast to plummet by 40% by 2029, an outlook that experts have said is driven by contradictory energy policies.

ADB Pushes Low Carbon Development Plan for Asia

The Asian Development Bank urges the Asia -Pacific region countries to pursue a low carbon developement plan path to reduce GHG emissions for a sustainable development.

AFRICA

Solar Micro-grids Take Root in East Africa

Solar micro grids are playing an important role in ensuring that communities living in remote areas away from main power have access to electricity in East Africa in a region where nearly 80 percent of the population have no access to grid power. The biggest and most unique feature of the growing concept is the ability of companies offering the service to leverage and use mobile phone technology to run their businesses and save on costs.

African Development Bank Plans to Invest $12B in Africa’s Energy Sector

African Development Bank will invest a further US$12 billion into Africa’s energy sector over the next five years.

Nigeria: Erratic Energy Sector- A Threat to the Banks

In West Africa, a professor of economics is advising Nigeria's federal government to assist banks from facing bankruptcy because of their exposure to the energy sector.

Company Undertaking 'Waste to Energy' Project to Generate 25MW in Ethiopia

A project to address city waste disposal problem in the capital has began as waste is converted to produce energy in Ethiopia by a Chinese company. 

EUROPE

EU to Open Sustainable Energy Info Centres in Eastern Europe

The EU-funded regional cooperation program INOGATE has launched a Sustainable Energy Information Centre in Georgia. It is aimed at fostering public awareness of energy efficiency and renewable energy and eventually helping this country to reduce fuel imports and limit climate change consequences. Similar centres are to be opened also in Moldova, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus and Ukraine.

Only Electric Cars to be Sold in Netherlands from 2025

The Dutch parliament has passed a law that will be the the first step in banning petrol and diesel cars from sale in the Netherlands from 2025. 

Danish Vestas to Test Multi-Rotor Wind Turbines

Vestas, a Danish manufacturer and seller of wind turbines, is going to examine the technical feasibility of a multi-rotor wind turbine, comprising four nacelles mounted on a support structure. With this project, Vestas plans to question the idea that wind turbines need to be bigger to produce more energy.

Vattenfall Sells German Lignite Assets to Czech EPH

A year and a half after Sweden's Vattenfall said it would sell its German lignite operations, a decision on the future of eastern German brown coal seems to be in the works. Vattenfall had been under growing pressure from desinvestment advocates and the Swedish Gouvernment to pull out of its coal operations in the last months. 

Germany tells Belgium to Take Two Nuclear Reactors Offline

The German Government has officially asked the Belgium Gouvernment to shut temporarly shut down two nuclear power plants which are located close to the German border due to safety concerns.

Brexit Could Create Renewable Energy ‘Paradox’

The renewable energy industry faces a “huge paradox” in the event of Brexit, according to legal experts from a UK-based international law firm.

LATIN AMERICA

Argentina Aims for $5B Investment in Renewable Energy by 2018

Argentina aims to rake in $5 billion in investments in renewable energy by 2018 with the goal of reducing its energy deficit as hopes for near-term increased output from the Vaca Muerta shale field fade.

Mexico’s Clean Energy Market Is Surging

Mexico’s Energy Transition Law is quickly showing results, lifting the lid on a renewable market primed for take off. With completion deadlines between January and March of 2018, the government hopes the auction can generate additional investment of around $2.6 billion in the next two to three years.

Ecuador Signs US1B Investment Deal to Boost Oil Production in Existing Fields

Petroamazonas, an Ecuadorian state-owned energy firm has inked an agreement with the Panaturi consortium to boost the production of oil in the country. 

Enel Green Power PV plant in Chile begins production

Enel Green Power Chile invested around $150 million in the construction of the Plant that consists of approximately 258,000 polycrystalline silicon solar PV modules installed over an area of around 290 hectares with a capacity of 79MW.

MIDDLE EAST

OPEC Meeting Ends Without Deal on Oil Production Freeze

The world's biggest oil producing nations have failed to reach an agreement at a meeting aimed at freezing output and reassuring markets that a recent recovery in prices can be sustained.

90 000 Solar Panels will be Installed on Rooftops in Dubai, UAE

Dubai has an objective to obtain 25% of its energy from renewables by 2030, and 75% by 2050. As a step to achieve this goal, the city plans to install 90 000 solar panels on rooftops, capable of generating between 30 and 40 MW. When completed, it is going to be the Middle East's foremost rooftop solar project.  

NORTH AMERICA

Tesla Model 3 Received Almost 400,000 Pre-Orders

Tesla CEO Elon Musk launched the new Model 3 sedan for a price tag of only $35,000 on April 1.  The company has received almost 400,000 preorders ($1000 deposit) showing huge demand for EVs.

Canada Moving on High-Speed Charging Stations for Electric Cars 

Natural Resources Canada announced that they will solicit proposals to develop a nationwide network of EV fast-charging stations. Canada's most reent federal budget allocated $62.5 million to "support the deployment of infrastructure for alternative transportation fuels."