Wind power development in Brazil, South America’s largest and most populated nation, has been much in the news recently with a report that more than 88% of the country’s electricity came from renewables last year.
The preliminary report from Brazil’s Energy Research Company has revealed that wind power increased more than any other renewable power source, responsible for a 24% increase between 2010 and 2011.
Plans to levy a charge of up to 11% of revenue on Spanish wind energy producers have been condemned by the industry there and are described as being “the final blow for wind energy” by President of the Spanish Wind Energy Association (AEE) Rocio Sicre. Media reports have said that the production of nuclear, hydroelectric and thermoelectric energy would be charged a lower 4 %, with an additional tax of 10 euros per megawatt for nuclear and 15 euros per megawatt for hydroelectric.
EWEA CEO Christian Kjaer has said that ““I am appalled by the proposal of the Spanish Government to introduce a discriminatory tax on wind power generation. Such a tax would destroy Spanish jobs, undermine world-class Spanish wind energy companies and set a very bad precedent for Governments in Europe and beyond. As such it poses a threat to the world-leading European wind industry.”
Connie Hedegaard, European Commissioner for Climate Action
Denmark is synonymous with wind energy. Last year the Nordic country met a massive 26% of its electricity demand with wind power, confirming its pole position as a beacon for wind energy as well as for its ability to integrate renewable electricity into the grid.
Already a world wind energy leader, Denmark plans to do better: by 2020 it wants wind energy to occupy a 50% slice of its electricity generation as part of its plans to phase out fossil fuels by 2050. With this target, set by the Danish centre-left coalition government last year, and a second target to deepen carbon dioxide cuts to 40% by 2020 – the country is a blueprint for transitioning to a renewable, climate-friendly, fuel-independent economy.
MEPs sitting on the regional development committee have rejected a proposal that would have allowed public subsidies to be spent on fossil fuel infrastructure projects under the European Regional and Development Fund.
The rejection came as part of the Regional Development Committee of the European Parliament’s vote yesterday on the proposed Cohesion Package. The report will decide on how to divide up a budget of €336 billion intended to develop regions, provide transport solutions, renewable energy and structural reform.
Inspecting wind turbine blades is a time-consuming part of operating a wind farm and not always exact given that many inspections are carried out from the ground. The ability to send robots to the top of these increasingly bigger structures to monitor the blades is clearly attractive and two companies believe they may have found a way to turn this into reality.