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US DOE Invests $20 Million to Advance Hydrogen

Washington, D. C. – The Energy Department today announced $20 million for ten new research and development projects that will advance hydrogen production and delivery technologies. Developing technologies that can economically produce and deliver hydrogen to power fuel cells from diverse, domestic, and renewable resources can enable substantial reductions in energy use and carbon emissions. Advancing these technologies will be critical to the widespread commercialization of fuel cell electric vehicles and other fuel cell technologies.

The six hydrogen production R&D projects selected today aim to produce, deliver, and dispense hydrogen at less than $4 per gallon gasoline equivalent:

FuelCell Energy Inc. of Danbury, Connecticut will receive $900,000 to develop a novel hybrid system for low-cost, low greenhouse gas hydrogen production.
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory of Richland, Washington will receive $2.2 million to develop a reactor for hydrogen production from bio-derived liquids.
National Renewable Energy Laboratory of Golden, Colorado will receive $3 million to develop high-efficiency tandem absorbers based on novel semiconductor materials that can produce hydrogen from water using solar energy.
University of Hawaii of Honolulu, Hawaii will receive $3 million to develop photoelectrodes for direct solar water splitting.
Sandia National Laboratories of Livermore, California will receive $2.2 million to develop an innovative high-efficiency solar thermochemical reactor for solar hydrogen production.
University of Colorado, Boulder of Boulder, Colorado will receive $2 million to develop a novel solar-thermal reactor to split water with concentrated sunlight.
The four hydrogen delivery R&D projects aim to reach the hydrogen cost goal of less than $4 per gallon by addressing the cost of compression, storage, and dispensing at the station:

Southwest Research Institute of San Antonio, Texas will receive $1.8 million to demonstrate a hydrogen compression system.
Nuvera Fuel Cells Inc. of Billerica, Massachusetts will receive $1.5 million to design and demonstrate an integrated, intelligent high pressure hydrogen dispenser for fuel cell electric vehicle fueling.
Oak Ridge National Laboratory of Oak Ridge, Tennessee will receive $2 million to demonstrate a low cost, steel concrete composite vessel for high pressure hydrogen storage.
Wiretough Cylinders LLC of Bristol, Virginia will receive $2 million to demonstrate a low cost high pressure hydrogen storage vessel using a steel wire overwrap.

Renewable Energy Across the Globe

Generally, each continent has access to most renewable energy sources—solar, wind, tidal, hydroelectric, geothermal, and biomass. Some continents have an easier or more abundant access to some resources than others. Access to resources in the equatorial regions of Africa, Europe, Asia and the Americas is the most isolated, while coastal and mountainous areas have abundant access to wind resources. The Antarctic, unsurprisingly, has the most restricted access to renewable energy sources,with mainly solar and wind energy available.

Great steps have been made across the globe toward adopting more environmentally conscious energy sources.

Overall, South America tops the leader board with almost 66% of the continent’s total electricity produced from renewable sources. This is followed by Europe with 28%, Australia with 22%, North America with 19%, and Africa and Asia with 16% of all electricity coming from renewable energy. There is still progress to be made, of course, but successful countries like Iceland and Brazil, where nearly all electricity needs are provided for by renewable, show that it is possible, here and now.

How each continent makes use of their varied resources is what sets them apart from each other. Check out how each continent is doing at being more sustainable with energy:

Africa – lots of untapped potential
Antartcica – yes, even in Antarctica
Asia – World’s largest producers of solar panels
Australia – hydroelectricity accounts for almost 60% of their renewable energy
Europe – guess which country has the first commercial wave farm
North America – who is the world’s largest wind producer, Canada, Mexico or the United States?
South America – find out why it is the leader in electricity from renewable sources.

Renewable Energy Across the Globe: Asia

Great steps have been made across the globe toward adopting more environmentally conscious energy sources. How each continent makes use of their varied resources is what sets them apart from each other.
Here’s what’s happening in Asia:

Southern Asia and India has high population densities and high solar insolation, making these ideal locations for use of solar power. In Nepal solar energy is more reliable than traditional sources of electricity.

Japan is one of the world’s largest producers of photovoltaic electricity; the most notable example is the Tohoku Electric Power plant in Hachinohe, Aomori, which hosts 10,000 solar panels on a 50,000 square-meter site and is expected to produce over 1.5 million kilowatt-hours (kWh) of electricity per year. China produces more than half of the world’s solar PV panels. In addition, China has an installed solar capacity of around 50 MW. China has plans to expand their installed solar capacity to 20 GW by 2020. Korea comes in 4th in the world for installed solar capacity, largely due to a generous feed-in tariff system. Eight solar power generation plants have been installed in Pakistan, so far, with eleven more in the works. In Indonesia, Bangladesh and India, the solar PV sector is comparatively underdeveloped. Most solar energy systems in these areas are used in rural, decentralized areas to aid with water pumping and off-grid lighting.

In the wake of the nuclear disaster at Fukushima, Japan is making great strides toward increasing their share of renewable energy generation. At the end of 2012, Japan had 7.4 gigawatts (GW) of installed solar capacity, with plans to add more. In Korea, government financing for renewable projects has been doubled and tax breaks for renewable energy technologies expanded. The World Bank has backed the Rural Electrification and Renewable Energy Development Project in Bangladesh to bring solar energy to a wider population. Several large projects have been proposed in India which could result in upwards of 2,000 GW of solar energy.

China, with the world’s most abundant wind resource, ranks fourth among wind power producers after the United States, Germany, and Spain. By 2009 alone China had an installed capacity of 26 GW of wind energy. Despite only having adopted wind power in earnest relatively recently, India has the fifth largest installed capacity of wind energy in the world. Japan had almost 2000 wind turbines installed by 2011 alone, with a capacity of 2,440 MW.  Several wind power plants are being developed in Pakistan.

Originally, the Chinese government had set a target of 10 GW of installed wind energy capacity by 2010. However, since 25 GW had already been installed by 2009, the goal was been increased to 100 GW by 2020. The target set by the Indian Government is 11 GW of wind energy by 2017. Efforts to increase installed wind energy capacity in Japan are hindered by a lack of locations with constant wind as well as other restrictions.

The main renewable energy resource in both Pakistan and Japan is hydroelectricity and both countries are looking into ways to make use of tidal power in the future. Japan had over 1000 small hydropower plants by the end of 2011, with a total capacity of 3,225 MW. China had a further 200 GW of hydroelectric capacity installed by 2010, with more planned. Indonesia has set a goal to install 2 GW of hydroelectric energy capacity.

As of 2006, China has almost 200 known geothermal systems and 2,700 surface hot springs. The estimated potential energy from these systems is over 1,700 MW. So far, only 32 MW had been taken advantage of by 2006, but this is still enough to make them the second largest direct user of geothermal energy in the world. The Phillipines, on the other hand, is the world’s second largest generator of geothermal energy with 1.9 GW of installed capacity, followed by Indonesia with 1.3 GW. Japan has a further 18 geothermal plants, as of 2011.

In 2008 alone Japan produced 322 million tons of fuel from biomass. By 2011, Japan had set up 70 independent plants to burn this fuel for energy. China is the world’s third largest producer of ethanol-based fuels, and 20% of cars in China use this type of fuel. China plans to step up its production of ethanol-based fuel to 15 megatons per year by 2020. The Indian government has been promoting energy from waste projects and has estimated that a potential of approximately 3000 MW of energy from urban and industrial waste currently exists. At a domestic level, in China and Indonesia, among others, ‘bioenergy’ is still used in the form of wood-burning stoves for warmth and cooking.
Want to know what’s happening in the other continents? Check below:

Africa – lots of untapped potential
Antartcica – yes, even in Antarctica
Asia – find out how Japan is doing in response to the Fukushima nuclear accident and where the rest of Asia is at renewable energy
Australia – hydroelectricity accounts for almost 60% of their renewable energy
Europe – guess which country has the first commercial wave farm
North America – who is the world’s largest wind producer, Canada, Mexico or the United States?
South America – find out why it is the leader in electricity from renewable sources.
Overview

 

Renewable Energy Across the Globe: Australia

Great steps have been made across the globe toward adopting more environmentally conscious energy sources. How each continent makes use of their varied resources is what sets them apart from each other.
Here’s what’s happening in Australia:

By the end of 2012 Australia was producing almost 30,000 GWh of electricity from renewable energy sources annually. The main renewable sources utilized in Australia are hydroelectric, and wind, with some smaller amounts produced from bioenergy, solar, and geothermal sources.

Currently in Australia there are over 3.2 GW of solar panels installed. Two commercial-scale PV power plants have been opened since 2011 with 1 MW and 10 MW capacities, respectively, and there are plans for many new solar power farms and stations in the future.

There are over 50 wind farms in Australia, with over 1000 turbines between them, which produce 5,000 gigawatt-hours (GWh) of electricity each year, representing 2% of Australia’s total electricity, 23% of electricity from renewable sources, and enough to power over 700,000 homes. The largest wind farm in the southern hemisphere, in terms of area, the Waubra Wind Farm in Victoria, was completed in 2009 and produces 192 MW of electricity. The largest capacity wind farm is Lake Bonney Wind Farm, which produces around 240 MW, despite having 30 fewer turbines. An even larger farm was set to open in 2013 with a capacity of 420 MW.

Hydroelectricity represents almost 60% of renewable energy production on Australia, with several tidal energy projects in the works for the future.

Currently, a geothermal power plant in Queensland produces 80 kW of electricity. Geothermal energy is otherwise underutilized as a source of power. There are recorded potential locations with detectable geothermal activity with further exploration planned, however. It was the goal to have at least three power generation demonstration projects running by 2012.

Energy from biomass in Australia generally takes the form of ‘Bagasse’, or burning sugar cane waste. Together with burning wood, this accounts for 8% of renewable energy production in Australia.

Africa – lots of untapped potential
Antartcica – yes, even in Antarctica
Asia – find out how Japan is doing in response to the Fukushima nuclear accident and where the rest of Asia is at renewable energy
Australia – hydroelectricity accounts for almost 60% of their renewable energy
Europe – guess which country has the first commercial wave farm
North America – who is the world’s largest wind producer, Canada, Mexico or the United States?
South America – find out why it is the leader in electricity from renewable sources.
Overview

Renewable Energy Across the Globe: Europe

Great steps have been made across the globe toward adopting more environmentally conscious energy sources. How each continent makes use of their varied resources is what sets them apart from each other.
Here’s what’s happening in Europe:

The shining star of renewable resource reliance in Europe currently is Iceland, where nearly 100% of the country’s electricity is produced from hydroelectric and geothermal sources. As of 2013, wind energy has become a part of this mix.

By 2012, 17.2 GW of solar PV capacity was installed in Europe, predominantly in Italy (5,225 MW), Germany (4,500 MW) and Spain (3,775 MW). This number is expected to rise to over 100 GW by 2020. Denmark reached their 2020 goal of 200 MW installed capacity by 2012 and therefore raised their 2020 goal to 1,000 MW.

By 2011 almost 94 GW of wind power capacity had been installed in the European Union, or enough to provide for over 6% of the EU’s electricity demand. This is expected to increase to 230 GW by 2020 (190 GW onshore and 40 GW offshore). Germany alone had 29 GW of wind power capacity installed, which produces enough to supply 8% of Germany’s total electricity demand. Greece planned to have over 2,500 turbines installed by the end of 2010. Spain generates over 16% of its electricity with wind power, while wind power accounts for 20% of the Danish domestic electricity supply. Denmark is also home to the world’s largest wind turbine industry. The UK has over 2.5 GW of installed wind power capacity, ranking it as 8th in the world for producer of wind power. This number is expected to exceed 2.8 GW by 2020.  Ireland has some of the best wind resources in Europe due to high winds off the ocean on its western coastline, and over 1 GW of installed wind power. There are plans to expand an existing offshore wind farm as well as construction of two new parks, one with a capacity of 1,100 MW. Estonia has a further 300 MW installed wind power capacity and plans to install more than 1,000 MW worth of new wind power, both offshore and on. Portugal currently has a little over 2 MW of installed capacity, with plans to increase this to 21 MW. Lithuania planned to install 200 MW worth of turbines by 2010.

Portugal is home to the world’s first commercial wave farm. Scotland plans to follow suit with a 3 MW wave farm off the coast of Orkney at the European Marine Test Centre.

By 2010, Italy had over 800 MW of geothermal capacity installed, which represents 1.5% of the nation’s electrical production and 8% of global geothermal production. Italy is followed closely by Iceland with almost 600 MW installed capacity, representing 30% and 5% of national electricity and global geothermal production, respectively.

Europe’s largest biomass refinery is a bioethanol plant located in Britain. The plant is capable of producing over 100 million gallons of bioethanol and almost 400,000 tons of animal feed.

 

Want to know what’s happening in the other continents? Check below:

Africa – lots of untapped potential
Antartcica – yes, even in Antarctica
Asia – find out how Japan is doing in response to the Fukushima nuclear accident and where the rest of Asia is at renewable energy
Australia – hydroelectricity accounts for almost 60% of their renewable energy
Europe – guess which country has the first commercial wave farm
North America – who is the world’s largest wind producer, Canada, Mexico or the United States?
South America – find out why it is the leader in electricity from renewable sources.
Overview

 

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