Energy

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Castle Debates – Solar energy

The ‘solar cell’ (also called a photovoltaic cell) converts the energy of light directly into electricity. A solar panel is a collection of solar cells and is usually made from layers of semiconducting materials, for example, silicon. When light shines on the panel it creates an electric field across the layers; the stronger the light […]

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New rules aid 20-20-20 targets

New rules on public funding for projects in the field of environmental protection and energyhave been announced by the European Commission, which aim to facilitate the meeting of 2020 climate targets by Member States. These targets, known as the “20-20-20” targets, set three key objectives for 2020: A 20% reduction in EU greenhouse gas emissions […]

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Divest From the Past:

With religious groups writing to the Pope and calling on him to support the Divestment campaign and take the Catholic Church’s money out of the fossil fuel industry; over 100 Harvard Professors calling on the University to do the same; and a brewing movement in the US – led by 350.org – to call on […]

Fracking

Shale Gas

It is not only the job of the historian to remember what others forget. There are plenty of vital lessons which today’s environmental policymakers can extract from past successes and old failures of environmental regulation and enforcement. It is not only the job of the historian to remember what others forget. There are plenty of […]

windmill and nuclear

Low Prospects of Low Carbon Power from Nuclear Plants

The energy regulator, Ofgem, has predicted that the UK risks running out of energy generating capacity in the winter of 2015-16.  The National Policy Statement for Nuclear Power Generation, published in July 2011, identified eight sites as potentially suitable for new nuclear power stations and noted that there was an urgent need for these to […]

windmill and nuclear

Low Prospects of Low Carbon Power from Nuclear

The National Policy Statement for Nuclear Power Generation, published in July 2011, identified eight sites as potentially suitable for new nuclear power stations and noted that there was an urgent need for these to be developed before the end of 2025. At the time of writing only one of the sites, Hinkley Point, is being […]

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Ready..Steady..Green Deal

The Green Deal is expected to be launched in the next few days. Momentum has been picking up since we heard in August that the Green Deal Finance Company will be loaned £7m by DECC, the Green Deal registry was opening and that guidance had been issued on how to become a holder of the […]

DECC 2050 pathways

The right mix

In case you didn’t already know, there is a team in the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) whose work revolves around 2050. Or more specifically, the work revolves arounddetermining the various pathways that will lead us to a clean, safe and energy healthy 2050. As such, the entire team integrates long-term thinking into its […]

Houses of Parliament and Big Ben, London

Pressure needed on carbon targets

The Government must come up with new policies to drive the step change needed to cut carbon emissions, David Kennedy, the CEO of the Climate Change Committee [1] will tell members of the UK Environmental Law Association (UKELA) this Thursday (December 1st). The UK is aiming to achieve an 80% cut in carbon emissions by 2050 which […]

windmill and nuclear

The German windfall

I am writing down these observations whilst on a family holiday in Germany. We are being taken on a guided tour up the top of Lüneburg’s stunning Saint Nicholas’s Church. The view from the tower in the traffic-free centre of Lüneburg, north Germany is, in every sense, far-reaching. On the horizon to the north, 40 […]