the last months saw how bad news and good news alternated. Positive signals like the announcement of the world´s largest battery and rapid EV charging network were contrasted by setbacks like the planning of new nuclear power plants in a few Eastern European states.
However, in our latest newsletter we would rather like to highlight the positive steps towards the energy transition. For EUROSOLAR as European Association for Renewable Energy, the next highlights will be the celebrations of our 30th anniversary and awarding German and European actors of the energy transition with the European Solar Prize 2018. If you haven´t applied yet, you still have the chance to do so until the 15th of June.
12th International Renewable Energy Storage Conference (IRES) in Düsseldorf
The 12th International Conference on the Storage of Renewable Energies (IRES2018) once again succeeded this year in uniting science, research, industry and companies at international level. With more than 160 speakers and 500+ attendees from all over the world we presented and discussed research results on energy storage technologies in over 15 lecture series and an extensive poster exhibition. Together with the partner conference Energy Storage Europe, the entire spectrum of topics relating to energy storage was covered and the integrated exhibition also offered the opportunity to observe the latest technologies and concepts and to make a large number of new contacts. A short report as well as pictures of the event can be found at www.energystorageconference.org
In 2019 the IRES conference will take place from 12-14 March at Messe Düsseldorf. The Call for Abstracts will be published mid July, stay tuned.
12th Municipal Utilities Conference in Nuremberg
Municipal utilities are ready for a decentralised energy turnaround, government must finally follow suit - this was the clear conclusion of the 12th EUROSOLAR conference "Municipal utilities with renewable energies", which took place in Nuremberg on 15 and 16 May. Around 100 visitors from all over Germany came to find out about the potential and challenges for municipal utilities as key players in an innovative, decentralised and renewable energy supply.
Criticism was voiced at the outmoded legal framework conditions, which are still the biggest barriers to the energy transition. The presentations and discussions have also shown, however, that economic potential, will and technology are available to advance a fast, cost-effective and efficient energy transition. Municipal utilities and other decentralised players now have to move forward more than ever and take their future into their own hands – even without the support of the legislator.
European Solar Prize 2018: Application deadline extended
A successful energy transition requires civic, medium-sized and municipal actors who point the way through commitment and innovation to a renewable future. EUROSOLAR's solar prizes put these pioneers in the public eye and illustrate the practicable, efficient and cost-effective use of renewable energies for society.
Applications and proposals can be submitted quickly and easily online until Friday, 15 June 2018. All entries will be submitted to a qualified jury, which will decide on this year's prize winners this summer.
Further information about the European Solar Prize and the application procedure are available on: www.eurosolar.de/en
The call for entries is addressed to cities and municipalities, architects, municipal and private companies, associations, organisations and cooperatives, journalists and committed people who actively support the energy transition with their projects and initiatives. The solar prizes are awarded in ten categories – from mobility solutions, solar architecture and urban development to projects in the fields of education, one-world cooperation and media.
On the occasion of the 30th anniversary of EUROSOLAR, this year's prize winners will be honoured in the EUROSOLAR home town of Bonn. The award ceremony takes place on Saturday, 17 November 2018, at Kunstmuseum Bonn.
The 30th anniversary of EUROSOLAR is coming!
30 years ago, on August 22, 1988, the European Association for Renewable Energy EUROSOLAR e.V. was founded on the initiative of Hermann Scheer.
On this occasion we would like to celebrate together with you, look back into the past as well as into the future and therefore cordially invite you to the EUROSOLAR birthday party, which will take place on Saturday, 25 August 2018, from 2 to 7.00 pm in the backyard of the EUROSOLAR office, Kaiser-Friedrich-Straße 11 in Bonn.
We look forward to being together with familiar and new faces and look forward to the summer with great anticipation. Please let us know by e-mail to 30Jahre@eurosolar.de by 5 August 2018 whether we may welcome you to our garden party.
Jubilee Symposium and Parliamentary Evening: A Europe of Renewable Energies
In the context of the 30th anniversary EUROSOLAR organizes the symposium "A Europe of Renewable Energies" to expand the dialogue field to include the energy transition and to raise it to the European level. The symposium will take place on Thursday, 27 September 2018 at the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung in Berlin.
The focus is on the positions and the cooperation of the European member states in the course of the energy transition and the overcoming of the dependence on coal, oil and gas in order to finance a solar Europe and to finally turn away from the nuclear industry.
Impulses from the EUROSOLAR sections and a parliamentary discussion forum will be basis for in-depth and practical discussions. The day will be rounded off with a joint evening reception and good entertainment.
The event is kindly supported by the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung and will be translated into German and English. Registration will soon be possible via these pages.
100% renewable electricity worldwide is a new cost-effective reality
In their new unprecedented study the Lappeenranta University of Technology (LUT) and the Energy Watch Group (EWG) simulate a global electricity system based on 100% renewable energy. The main result: A worldwide energy transition until 2050 is a tangible reality. The existing energy potentials and technologies are already sufficient to provide a secure energy supply worldwide by 2050.
Moreover the study gives evidence that every other alternative form of power generation is not worth investing in anymore – 100% renewable power generation is the most cost-effective option. This shows us that energy transition is no longer a question of technical feasibility or economic viability, but of political will. Now it is up to policy-makers to create the necessary framework conditions to accelerate the unstoppable process.
In light of this analysis and apparently against all economic reason nuclear power is gaining ground in Poland, Slovakia, the Czech Republic and Hungary. However, Greenpeace Energy underlines in its new report why renewables might be a better and especially more cost-effective option for these specific states.
A Guideline for Policy-makers to Scale Up Renewables
In order to help decision-makers to choose the right policy-options, the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), the International Energy Agency (IEA), and the Renewable Energy Policy Network for the 21st Century (REN21) published a report about policy barriers to increased deployment of renewable energy and how to overcome these obstacles.
“Renewable Energy Policies in a Time of Transition” provides policymakers with an in-depth analysis of the diverse policy alternatives to support a faster development of renewables across sectors, technologies, socio-economic contexts of the countries and energy market structures to boost their ambitions.
The way is paved for next-generation energy storage technologies
The US Department of Energy announced a new round of $30 million in funding for new battery-technologies, which are able to store electricity in great quantities for at least 10 hours. This would lead to a higher share of renewables in the grids so that coal, gas and nuclear could be driven out.
The funding comes through the Energy Department’s ARPA-E (Advanced Projects Research Agency – Energy) office which is a thorn in President Donald Trump´s side. He threatened to close the office last year but ARPA-E still pursues new projects.
Interesting fact: The Department of Energy also noted that onshore wind and solar photovoltaics (PV) are now the cheapest forms of new electricity generation in the United States.”
The world´s largest battery and rapid EV charging network announced
The British national grid operator “National Grid” and the storage specialist “Pivot Power” announced their cooperation on an ambitious project: They aim to set up the world´s first 2 GW network of grid-scale batteries and rapid electric vehicles (EV) charging stations in the UK at a cost of only £1.6 billion.
The plan is to install 45 battery storage units, each with an output of 50 megawatts, at neuralgic points in the power grid in England, Scotland and Wales. Pivot Power in particular wants to combine these with the expansion of the charging infrastructure for electric cars. The company intends to build up to 100 quick charging points at a rate of up to 150 kilowatts. The comparatively low price of £1.6 billion comes mainly from the British investor Downing and from car and energy companies.
What we can already learn from this project: If governments succeed in creating favorable framework conditions investors can be found and projects like this one can be set up more easily. In this case, other countries would be well advised to take the UK as an example.
Being dedicated to the cause of completely substituting for nuclear and fossil energy through renewable energy, EUROSOLAR acts to change conventional political priorities and common infrastructures in favor of renewable energy, from the local to the international level.
For different (international) conferences, political symposia as well as the award ceremony for the German and European Solar Prize and many more activities EUROSOLAR brings together expertise from the fields of politics, economy, science and culture to promote the deployment of solar energy (including wind, water, waves, biomass and geothermal sources!) and to develop and encourage political and economic action plans and concepts for the fast and decentralised transition to a 100 % renewable supply with energy, heat and mobility.