Meeting South Africa’s household energy needs is not just about having access to the grid, or a suite of renewable technologies on hand. It requires tackling the roots of poverty in one of the most unequal societies in the world, writes Leonie Joubert.
The Paris Climate Agreement and the inclusion of energy in the Millennium Development Goals were two key moments in 2015, writes Marie-José Nadeau, Chair of the World Energy Council and member of the Advisory Board of the SE4all initiative of the United Nations, which presented a new five-year strategy in Brussels last week. According to Nadeau, this new strategy has the potential to impact the way energy is perceived across the world, in addition to bringing improvements in energy access. This will have important implications for the global energy sector.
A Ukrainian Energiewende could go a long way to resolving the current geopolitical crisis around the country, writes Oleg Savitsky of the National Ecological Centre of Ukraine in a new report for the Succow Stiftung. According to Savitsky, it would reduce Ukraine’s dependence on Russian gas and uranium as well as on coal from the breakaway regions, while at the same time reducing pollution, greenhouse gas emissions and the risk of a nuclear disaster. It would also help to combat corruption and usher in economic growth and a more equitable society. Savitsky calls on the EU and Germany to set up a “Marshall Plan” to bring about a Ukrainian energy transition, rather than trying to maintain Ukraine as a failed gas transit state.
We have created a slew of new charts in the annual update of this website. Today, Craig Morris focuses on two of them concerning power prices and so-called energy poverty.
Are high power prices really the problem? The EEG Fund shows how inexpensive renewables have become. Instead of reducing the EEG surcharge, it should be used to speed up growth. Dr. Patrick Matschoss (IASS Potsdam) weighs in on the EEG debate.
The Greek renewable energy transition has its origin in the 1990s when the country first introduced a feed-in tariff. The road since then has been a bumpy one, yet Greece’s government issued a draft proposal whereby the country is to reach a 40 percent renewable electricity target by 2020. If this proposal is adopted, Greece will have to considerably speed up its build-up of renewables, as Marilena Zidianaki explains.
Bulgarian energy policy has suffered a lot in the past 20 years from the interdependence between state and private interests in the energy sector and bad governance practices at national level. Radostina Primova gives a summary of the current situation and explains why an improvement in the regulatory framework is urgently needed.
Energy poverty is sometimes held to be related to renewable energy. In reality, the cost of fossil energy for heat and motor fuels plays a larger role – as do general poverty levels. Most of all, statistics are hard to compare, and Germany combats poverty, not merely “energy poverty.” Craig Morris takes a look.
In 2015, the average German household power bill fell slightly from 85 euros to 84 euros per month. What’s more, that level is relatively low compared to US averages. But Craig Morris says comparisons are not easy.
When it comes to renewable energy development, Latin America is a mixed bag with a lot of potentials. Sandra Guzman provides an overview over what is holding the region back as well as its prospects.