Breath of Fresh Air: Interview with Oliwia Mroz

» By | Published 15 Sep 2010 |

Oliwia Mroz, a wind energy enthusiast from Poland, has participated in EWEA’s campaign to get every turbine in Europe adopted. We caught up with her…

EWEA:   Would you like to see more wind energy in your region?

Oliwia: Of course! My area of Poland (North West) has excellent wind conditions, and it is mostly agricultural therefore it meets all conditions for wind farms. However, the main obstacles are complicated investment procedures and the lack of great financial instruments to support the development of wind energy.


Despite peak oil, wind power can drive a green electricity revolution

» By | Published 14 Sep 2010 |

As if the economic devastation and uncertainty experienced around the world the past two years wasn’t bad enough news, along comes a leaked German military study warning how massive oil shortages in the not too distant future could create a disturbing global shift in power.

The study, published earlier this month by Der Spiegel, says “peak oil” could cause a frightening energy crisis that has the possibility of further battering financial markets already dealing with the effects of the near-global recession that began in 2008.

“It warns of shifts in the global balance of power, of the formation of new relationships nations, of the ‘total collapse of the markets’ and of serious political and economic crises,” the Der Spiegel report says.


Hard Rain exhibition opens in Brussels

» By | Published 13 Sep 2010 |

D.Rodrigues / UNEP / Still Pictures

In the heart of the EU quarter in Brussels is a stunning new photography exhibition displaying the most harrowing images of climate change in our world today.

At the foot of the European Parliament in Place du Luxembourg, the 80-metre long exhibition designed by Mark Edwards is based on Bob Dylan’s prophetic song ‘A Hard Rain’s a-Gonna Fall’.

From birds covered in oil – the result of oil tanker or rig disasters, to barren land that was once pristine forest, there are images that are sure to make you sit up and think about the impact our modern, fossil-fuel and environmentally-damaging ways can have on our delicate planet.


Ikea buys six wind farms

» By | Published 10 Sep 2010 |

Be it a flat-pack chest of drawers or bedside lamps, most of us have bought something from Ikea. And now, the Swedish chain well-known for creating a revolution in home furnishings is at the forefront of a hopefully incoming tide of companies to back wind power.

Ikea has bought six German wind farms, adding to its portfolio of four French wind farms purchased last year and bringing the total number of wind turbines the company owns to 52. The German farms provide enough electricity to power 17 Ikea stores, and in total the firm can now meet10% of its electricity needs with wind power.

The Financial Times reports that Ikea intends to make further investments in wind and solar power in order to meet its long-term goal to secure all its electricity needs from renewable sources.

“We are conscious of our impact on people and the environment, so we feel duty bound to act responsibly in all we do,” Mikael Ohlsson, Chief Executive of Ikea, told the paper.

However, Ikea’s green credentials were tarnished last year when the company was found guilty by French courts of building a new storage unit close to Marseille on envrionmentally sensitive land, Spiegel Online reports.

Ikea joins Google – another company that has invested in wind power. In May, the internet giant invested in two wind farms in the US that generate 169.5 MW of power, enough to provide electricity for more than 55,000 homes.


In the offshore wind farm race, China is easily beating the US

» By | Published 09 Sep 2010 |

Peggy Liu, CEIBSFurther proof of China’s desire to aggressively tap into the still nascent, and potentially highly lucrative, offshore wind power sector as part of its plan to embrace a green energy revolution was revealed earlier this week in a story by ClimateWire.

The story, published by Environment & Energy Publishing and distributed by The New York Times, also pointed out just how much further China is ahead of the US in developing its offshore wind industry.

“What the U.S. doesn’t realise,” the story quoted Peggy Liu, founder and chairwoman of the Joint U.S.-China Collaboration on Clean Energy, as saying, is that China “is going from manufacturing hub to the clean-tech laboratory of the world.”