Research scientists are collaborating with industry to find ways of building wind turbines up to 200 metres high.
Production of electricity is responsible for about a quarter of global greenhouse gas emissions, and demand is poised to rise as underserved populations connect to the grid, and electronics and electric vehicles proliferate. So stopping global warming will require a transformation of electricity production. But it is important to avoid various environmental pitfalls in this transition, researchers say.
Longyearbyen, the world’s most northerly city, could save more than 100 million kroner (11.5 million US dollars) a year in the cost of electricity, if a completely green hydrogen-fuelled power station is built in preference to laying a cable from the mainland, according to calculations made by SINTEF scientists.
The transition to green energy hasn’t really begun, according to Associate Professor Espen Moe. Even though the 278 new wind turbines that will be built in central Norway are an important investment, it’s not nearly enough, he says.
If every other passenger car in Norway is plugged into the electric network by 2020, Europe will have to produce more electricity – mainly from coal-fired power plants – to meet the demand. But it will be a plus for the climate nonetheless.
Policymakers, industry and government officials will have to invest US $2.5 trillion for electricity generation over the next 20 years. A new report presents the environmental costs and benefits linked to different renewable energy sources, and makes one thing abundantly clear: anything is better than coal.
An offshore wind turbine currently costs twice as much to build as an onshore wind turbine. Truer pricing of environmental costs will help make renewable energy cost-effective.
Norway’s wealth and prosperity over the last four decades has been built on oil, but Jeremy Rifkin, a futurist and social and economic thinker, says it’s time for the country to change. The Third Industrial Revolution is coming, and Norway needs to abandon fossil fuels and move towards a greener future that relies on renewable energy, shared transport and ultra-efficient housing.
The countries of the world wrapped up preliminary climate talks in Lima, Peru this weekend with an agreement on how the UN’s 194 countries will tackle climate change. The agreement comes in advance of major negotiations scheduled for Paris next year to designed to curb the world’s production of greenhouse gases. In a publication from earlier this year, researchers at NTNU’s Industrial Ecology Programme report that the low-carbon future that would result from curbing greenhouse gas emissions is both feasible from a practical standpoint, and will also substantially reduce air pollution.