Thursday, July 31, 2008

Ambitious plans for electric cars

Spain has become a world leader in wind turbine manufacture thanks to a good wind regime and a generous feed-in tariff for windfarms feeding its national grid. Now it plans to become a world leader in electric car manufacture, if one reads between the lines of this Reuters report: The wind energy will charge the cars'batteries, of course.

SPAIN: July 31, 2008

MADRID - Spain's government aims to have 1 million electric cars on the roads by 2014 as part of a plan to cut energy consumption and dependence on expensive imports, Industry Minister Miguel Sebastian said on Tuesday.

"Electric vehicles are the future and the driver of the industrial revolution," Sebastian said in testimony to a congressional panel.

Sebastian recently unveiled government plans to cut energy use by 10 percent over two years in a bid to save 5 billion euros (US$7.87 billion) annually as oil prices soar and Spain suffers a severe economic slowdown.

The plan will cost 245 million euros and contains 31 measures, including a target to cut driving speeds by 20 percent.

Slow Food, Slow Travel now Slow Transport

One of the headlines we had for 2016 was transport by sail. It seemed implausible to many at the time, but...

Sailing ship takes ‘slow cargo’ from France to Ireland

Carrying a 23-tonne cargo of 21,000 bottles, tall ship Kathleen & May [right] dropped her anchor in Dublin on 25 July, after a weeklong crossing from Brest. It’s the first commercial trip chartered by the Compagnie de Transport Maritime à la Voile (CTMV), a freight business sending cargo solely by sailing boat. CTMV estimates the carbon dioxide emissions to be seven times less than a container ship plying the same route. The five vessels it uses aren’t emissions-free because of onboard generators that power navigational instruments and the use of diesel to manoeuvre the boat into port or down rivers. But the company is currently working on designs for a new ship based on traditional models, which should cut emissions by ten times. Over the next few years it’s aiming to run regular crossings to Europe and North America, stocking up with cargo for the way back too.

Monday, July 28, 2008

About Energy Scenarios Ireland 2.0

Energy Scenarios Ireland first appeared in 2006 as part of a report commissioned by the Environmental Protection Agency in Ireland to Explore the impact on Ireland of changing energy prices. At the time the project kicked of in 2005, the view held by the Irish Government, it's advisors and most of the population who had heard the term Peak Oil, was that peak was not likely to occur until 2025. While the ESI team felt this was very optimistic, we felt the need to include a Business As Usual scenario by the miraculous discovery of new large oil fields. The consensus is now that peak oil has occurred or will do so within the next 2 years and the peak is more likely to be a plateau. It is also being recognised that the energy cost of extracting the remaining half of the worlds reserves is going to be much higher than the first and therefore the slope on the declining side of the curve is likely to be much steeper the growing side.

We felt there was still much value to be had from the scenarios but that they would require revising, so we are kicking of this process here in this blog. We intend to produce Energy Scenario Ireland 2.0 (ESI2) by the end of the year and hope that by developing this in this format, we will get comment and involvement from a wide audience. Our primary objective is to stimulate better discussion and better decision making in Ireland (and elsewhere) by exploring the future ahead, which we feel will be significantly different from Business As Usual.

The resulting material will alway be freely available under a Creative Commons license